Earth’s changing atmosphere

Mean sea level pressure for JJA (June-July-Aug...

Average sea level atmospheric pressure January above, July below. Note the absence of a low pressure zone in the northern hemisphere to match the ring of very low pressure off Antarctica

Guest Post by Erl Happ

This article investigates the sources of natural climate variation.  This is a long post but it’s a big subject. Before you get half way through, your perception of the way things are, will have changed. You might even begin to smile inwardly, as if a burden had been removed from your  shoulders.

I begin with a description of the critical features of the atmosphere as I perceive them, and it is different to what you will find in Wikipedia or an IPCC report.

Figure 1 shows the major wind systems, the location of the jet streams in the upper troposphere and the polar front. Were the vertical scale to be in strict accord with the horizontal, the atmosphere would be embodied in the line drawn to represent the perimeter of the Earth’s surface. About 75% of the mass of the atmosphere is held within 10 kilometers (6 miles) of the surface. Figure 1 is in that respect, a spectacular fiction. Suggesting that the composition of that skin, when change is reckoned in just parts per million, can change the temperature of the surface of the earth, is not good science. Were the atmosphere completely static, yes, but only to a very small degree. Still air is a fair insulator; moving air is no insulator at all.
The greenhouse idea is too simple, too unsophisticated and too easy. It is a disabling thought pattern that climatologists must discard if they are to understand the system. Understanding the system is a pre-requisite to modeling it.

Figure 1 The surface winds

Beyond an altitude of about 10km, the atmosphere changes in its composition according to the variable flow of nitrogen compounds from the mesosphere via the polar night jets and also the intensity of short wave radiation from the sun that splits the oxygen molecule, allowing the formation of ozone, but only to the extent to which the presence of oxides of nitrogen will allow. The ozone rich layer from 10 to 50km in elevation is called the stratosphere. The ability of ozone to trap long wave radiation from the Earth delivers increasing air temperature all the way to 45 km in elevation. At the equator the temperature that is reached is sufficient to melt ice but at the poles it is 10-20°C more. Increased ozone concentration at the poles increases stratospheric air temperatures despite a decline in the incidence of short wave radiation with latitude. The flux in ozone concentration is the prime agent of change in the temperature of the stratosphere and the upper troposphere.

The stratosphere is Earth’s natural greenhouse umbrella. In that role it has the advantage over the troposphere that it is relatively non convective. But only where there is a downward transport of ozone into the troposphere do we see an impact of ozone  on surface temperature. This impact on surface temperature  is not due to back radiation, unphysical due to strongly countervailing processes within the troposphere, but flux in cloud cover that is a direct result of flux of ozone into the cloud bearing troposphere.

In the context of the forces described above, the issue as to whether the proportion of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is 350 parts per million or 550 parts per million is inconsequential (so far as  ‘climate’ is concerned), but to the extent that it would enhance the productivity of photosynthesizing plants and marine organisms, enhancing evaporation, thereby cooling the near surface air and sustaining life, a little more rather than a little less would be desirable. CO2, along with nitrogen, is the fertilizer in the air. From the point of view of a plant, these are scarce building blocks  and none more so than CO2 at just 380 parts per million. Can you appreciate the difficulty attached to finding a unique vehicle in a parking lot with 2,600 others. In order to survive a plant must select from the molecular parade, a molecule that is supplied in that ratio. The efficiency of plants in assimilating CO2, so rendering it a ‘trace gas’, is plainly evident in the savaging of the CO2 content of the global atmosphere in northern summer when the great bulk of the global plant life on land benefits from temperature that is warm enough to sustain photosynthesis.

While there is water and carbon dioxide on Earth there will be plant life and CO2 will always be a trace gas. Paradoxically, as the CO2 content of the air rises, a plant uses less water and is capable of living in a drier environment.

This has been a preamble. I hope you are ready to look at the climate system with new and inquiring eyes.
The first part of my story is about atmospheric pressure and the winds. The second, to come at a later date, the clouds, and the third the sun and its influence on the distribution of the atmosphere and its circulations.

All data presented here is  from: http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/cgi-bin/data/timeseries/timeseries1.pl

THE WIND
Figure 2 Average sea level pressure by latitude in mb.

Figure 2 shows the average air pressure at the surface between 1948 and October 2010 as it varies with latitude. Air moves from zones of high to low pressure and we call it wind. It can be seen that pressure relations define a climate system where:

  1. Sea level pressure is higher in winter than summer, especially over Antarctica.
  2. Apart from Antarctica in winter, pressure is highest at about 20-40° of latitude in both hemispheres. This is the region of the traveling high pressure cells where air descends, warming via compression, promoting relatively cloud free conditions. The trades and the westerly’s originate here.
  3. Globally the lowest sea level pressure is experienced at 60-70°south latitude. This limits the southward travel of the humid north westerly winds and the northward travel of the cold and dry polar easterlies in the southern hemisphere. By contrast there is no such pressure trough in the northern hemisphere. That hemisphere will accordingly freeze or fry according to whether the easterlies or the westerlies prevail. Whether the prevailing wind is from the north or the south depends upon the balance of atmospheric pressure between the Arctic and 30-40°N. Because pressure relations change in a systematic fashion over time (will be documented below) this dynamic dictates the direction of temperature change in the northern hemisphere.

The average character of the wind according to latitude
By subtracting the sea level pressure at destination latitude from that at source latitude, the average pressure differential driving the surface winds can be calculated.

Figure 3 The differential pressure between key latitudes driving the surface winds in mb
Abbreviations: PENH (Polar Easterlies Northern Hemisphere), PESH (Polar Easterlies Southern Hemisphere), SW (South Westerlies), NET (North East Trades), SET (South East Trades), NW (North Westerlies).

The strongest winds are found in Antarctica in winter. The differential pressure driving the surface winds falls away from south to north. Figures 2 and 3 taken together suggest that there is fundamental difference between the hemispheres, a theme that will run throughout this post and an understanding that is essential if one is to appreciate the source of change in surface temperature over time.
With the exception of the Trades and the Westerlies in the southern hemisphere (where there is little difference between the seasons) the differential pressure is noticeably higher in winter.
In the Arctic the differential driving the surface polar easterlies is only weakly positive, a marked contrast to conditions in the southern hemisphere. Consequently the dominant wind from 30°N latitude to the Arctic is the South Westerly, bringing warm moist air to the highest latitudes, rendering land masses that are to the north of the Arctic circle marginally useful to man, at least in summer, a situation very different to that which prevails in the Antarctic where the warmest locations may thaw for just one month in a year. The hemispheres are so different that it is really like two planets in one.
It is the roaring forties that brought the clipper ships via the Cape of Good Hope to Australia to disembark settlers and load grain on a round trip of about 200 days. Clippers, the Formula 1 of sailing ships, continued in an easterly direction via Cape Horn, braving giant swells, ice floes, and extreme wind chill. This is the latitude of Spain and Portugal in the northern hemisphere but the climate is different there. The Westerlies in the northern hemisphere are Arcadian zephyrs when compared to the Westerlies of the roaring forties. For an interesting perspective on the Roaring Forties see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clipper_route
The Trade winds of the northern hemisphere are much stronger in winter, and stronger than the southern Trades in any season, but the southern trades are more constant. In northern summer the north east trades are weak.

Variations in surface pressure over time, the key to climate change
The average tells us little about the habitability of a place. We need to appreciate the extremes.
Figure 4 Range in atmospheric pressure experienced since 1948 according to latitude in mb

Figure 4 records the difference between the highest and lowest monthly average sea level pressure for the four summer and the four winter months taken as a group. It is plain that variability increases with latitude. Variability is greater in the southern hemisphere and greater in winter than summer. In the northern hemisphere winter variability in is almost twice as great as summer variability. The flux in pressure at the highest latitude of the northern hemisphere is almost as great as it is in the southern hemisphere. This has important implications for the variability  in climate in the entire hemisphere because the north lacks the stabilizer of the low pressure trough at 60-70° south latitude that is apparent in figure 2 and also in the map that heads this post. The northern hemisphere might be characterized as ‘an accident that is waiting to happen’.
Figure 5 Difference between sea level pressure extremes for winter and summer, a measure of the swing between the seasons.

Figure 5 shows the extent of change in the extremes of the pressure differentials between summer and winter. This statistic is simply the difference between the curves in figure 4. Latitudes pole-wards of 60°north and 80° south see the most extreme shift between summer and winter. This diagram gives us a measure of the extent to which the atmosphere can shift about, affecting wind direction and strength, within the space of a year. The ‘lumps and bumps’ at 30-60°north and 40-70°south relate to the ‘annular mode’ or ‘ring like mode’ associated with the flux in ozone from the winter pole and associated geopotential height anomalies, the atmospheric heating via the absorption of long wave radiation from the earth by ozone. This generates change in cloud cover with associated flux in sea surface temperature. This is the essence of the Northern Annular Mode (the Arctic Oscillation) and the Southern Annular Mode (The Antarctic Oscillation). Describing this mode, and the origin of its locomotion, will be the subject of the second post in this series.
What figure 5 does not reveal is the extent to which the atmosphere can shift between one hemisphere and the other, something that changes the dynamic in the annular modes over time. Flux within just a single hemisphere is something that never actually occurs and yet you would think, from our reliance on the AO and the AAO that it is of no importance whatsoever. Wrong.

Change in the distribution of the atmosphere

Figure 6 evolution of sea level pressure at high latitudes in mb

Figure 6 shows that there has been a systematic loss of atmospheric pressure at the poles since 1948 and a partial recovery. Trend lines are second order polynomials. Notice the upward trend in Arctic pressure in winter after 1989 (black line).  The loss in pressure in both polar jurisdictions up to 1989 indicates external forces at work. Antarctic winter pressure is yet to bottom. Otherwise pressure appears to have bottomed in the 1990’s. As Antarctic summer pressure has increased just a little, Arctic pressure has increased a great deal. As we shall see this will change the climate of the northern hemisphere.

Change in distribution of atmospheric mass affects the differential pressure driving the winds. Figures 7 and 8 show the changing distribution of atmospheric mass over time in two key latitudes in the northern hemisphere.
Figure 7 Sea Level Pressure at 80-90°N and 30-40°N in June July August and September. mb

In summer, the increasing atmospheric mass at latitude 30-40°north and diminishing atmospheric mass at 80-90°north increases the domain of the south westerly winds warming the high latitudes. The trend lines suggest that a reversal of this process is underway.

Figure 8. Pressure at 80-90°north and 30-40°north in December, January, February and March. Mb.

In winter (figure 8), atmospheric pressure at 30-40°north latitude has been slowly increasing since 1948 and mass over the Arctic fell away till 1990 favoring the Westerlies over the Polar Easterlies. But pressure has recovered in the Arctic since 1990. When the brown line rises above the blue, the easterlies dominate and a cold winter is experienced in the northern hemisphere. The latest data in figure 8 relates to the winter of 2009-10.

A falling AO indicates a change in pressure relativity favoring the Polar Easterlies. A rule of thumb is that surface atmospheric pressure in the Arctic is inversely related to the Arctic Oscillation Index. When the AO falls, pressure is rising in the Arctic.
In all the following diagrams except the last monthly data is reported. The statistic is the anomaly. I calculate the monthly average for the entire period 1948 to November 2010 and the anomaly represents the departure from that average. The changing pressure differential driving the surface winds indicates the nature of monthly weather and to the extent that it departs from the average in a systematic fashion over long periods of time represents climate change in action.
Figure 9 Anomalies in differential pressure between 30-40°N and 50-60°N (differential Westerlies North) and 50-60°N and 80-90°N (differential Easterlies North) Monthly data. Mb.

The data in figure 9 relates to the northern hemisphere. The monthly anomalies reveal a flux in the differential pressure driving the Polar Easterlies (right hand axis) that is about three times the flux in the differential driving the Westerlies. Weak easterlies are sometimes associated with strong Westerlies, but for much of the time, surprise, surprise, the two move together. For both the Easterlies and the Westerlies to advance at the same time an inter-hemispheric redistribution of atmospheric mass is required allied with an intensification of the low pressure cells where the two converge (polar cyclones). This generates weather extremes. Rest easy. These are naturally generated extremes. Records tend to be broken at both ends of the spectrum. More heat and more cold.
The paradigm of the Arctic Oscillation takes no cognizance of this inter-hemispheric shift in pressure and cannot therefore fully account for the change in weather and climate that occurs. The second order polynomials in figure 9 suggest a cyclical pattern of change. The dominance of the Westerlies after 1978 is associated with warming winter temperatures and melting ice sheets in the Arctic a reversal of the circumstance that caused the Arctic to cool for thirty years up to the late 1970’s.
When the pressure differential is negative the wind ceases to exist and another takes its place blowing from the opposite direction. If you cover the bottom part of the graph below the zero point and inspect the curves above that point you get an idea of how the wind direction and temperature has changed over the course of time.
Figure 10 Anomalies in differential pressure between 30-40°N and 0-10°N (differential Trades North), 30-40°N and 50-60°N (differential Westerlies North) Monthly data. Mb.

Figure 10 reveals that the Trades and the Westerlies of the northern hemisphere vary together. Again, the polynomial (3d order) suggests reversible phenomena. This diagram is a representation of a climate system oscillating about a mean state in a fashion that makes it very difficult to model unless the forces moving the system away from the mean state are recognized, are quantifiable and predictable. If you cannot do this forget about modeling.

Cloud cover and ENSO
Figures 11 and 12 break new ground in understanding climate science. The connection between cloud cover and ENSO is apparent.

Figure 11 1948-1977

dWN (differential pressure between latitude 30-40°north and 50-60° north, the pressure driving the South Westerly winds in the Northern Hemisphere). SST (Sea Surface Temperature).

Figure 12 1978-2010

Figures 11 and 12 show us that the temperature of the sea in the mid latitudes of the northern hemisphere varies directly with the differential pressure driving the Westerly winds. When the wind blows harder we expect the sea to cool. But it warms. One infers a loss of cloud cover. The cooling of the sea between 1948 and warming thereafter are entirely accounted for in the shift in the mass of the atmosphere that lies behind the change in wind strength and the flux in ozone that causes the cloud cover to change. The  explanation of the ozone dynamic must await the next post. The warming of the sea in the northern hemisphere in winter is the distinctive feature of climate change as it has been experienced over the last thirty years. The cooling of the sea in the northern hemisphere between 1950 and 1978, under the influence of changes in the distribution of atmospheric mass, provides the key to an explanation of  climate change.
Figure 13 Evolution of sea surface temperature in mid and low latitudes of the northern hemisphere.

Figure 13 shows that the temperature of the sea between the equator and 30°north follows the temperature of the sea at 30-50° north but in a less agitated fashion. It appears that the cloud cover response in tropical waters is less energetic than it is in the mid latitudes. I suggest, no I insist, that the ENSO phenomenon in the Pacific, and climate change on all time scales, is ultimately due to changes in cloud albedo. ENSO is not climate neutral. ENSO is not a driver of climate change. It reflects climate change as it happens just as the ripples on the sea reflect change in the wind. Global temperature trends are not confounded by ENSO dynamics. ENSO is part of the whole, integrating the effects of change that occurs in latitudes where the cloud dynamic is more sensitive than it is in the tropics.

Figure 14 dWS (differential pressure between latitude 30-40° south and 60-70° south) SST (the temperature of the surface of the sea between 30-50°south latitude).

Figure 14 shows that the temperature of the sea in the southern hemisphere moves with the strength of the westerly winds in a very similar fashion to that seen in the northern hemisphere.

I repeat that the dynamic behind this phenomenon is the flux of ozone from the winter pole as atmospheric mass moves to and from the pole, enhancing or limiting the flow through the night jet thereby metering the flow of nitrogen oxides from the mesosphere. When NOx flow is reduced  ozone concentration rises. Ozone finds its way into the upper troposphere as can be seen in any map of 200hpa height anomalies. Sea surface temperature responds precisely in accord with this spatial pattern. As the upper troposphere warms the cloud evaporates.
At the root of the increasing temperature of the sea is the long term shift in atmospheric mass away from the Antarctic, and the consequent increase in the temperature of the stratosphere in the southern hemisphere prior to 1978. The slow build of pressure at 30-40° south and the increase in the strength of the westerlies is just collateral damage. The decline in rainfall in my part of the world (South West Australia) is part of this phenomenon. High pressure cells are relatively cloud free and have dry air. As the Antarctic regains the atmospheric mass that it has lost, the high pressure cells of 30-40° south will shrink and the frontal action that brings the rainfall will move north again.

Figure 15 Changing atmospheric pressure at the poles

Figure 15 shows a 12 month moving average of polar pressure. It suggests that polar pressure is currently increasing at both poles with the Arctic leading the way. Frequently both poles experience a loss or gain of mass at the same time. This suggests a dynamic where the interchange of atmospheric mass is primarily between high and low latitudes. Something attracts the atmosphere away from the poles, weakening the polar easterlies and strengthening the Trades and the Westerlies. This is plainly associated with loss of cloud and surface heating. Inversely as surface pressure increases at the poles the flow of NOx from the mesosphere will increase, ozone concentration in the stratosphere will fall and surface temperature will fall. Atmospheric mass is returning to the poles especially in the northern hemisphere, particularly in winter when it matters most.

The second post  will trace the flux in ozone from the polar stratosphere that erodes cloud cover in the mid and low latitudes.

The third post will describe a force that shifts the atmosphere between the poles and the equator and between the hemispheres causing the winds to wax and wane, the clouds to come and go and the sea to warm and cool. This is a force that is external to the Earth. So I see the Climate System as responding to external stimuli. It is an open system with ever changing parameters.

I want to give thanks to Leif Svalgaard whose continuing presence at this venue stimulates so much interest. We cannot agree on everything but that’s entirely healthy. To argue is human. At the end of the day its the integrity of the author that is important. Leif said to me once, when highly provoked: ‘I don’t do red herrings’. And I believe him.

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About erl happ

I am a winemaker and grape-grower with a strong interest in climate. I was interested enough to try and discover the common thermal characteristics that are seen in great vineyard locations and did a lot of work with hourly temperature data from around the world. Climate sets the limit on what can be achieved in the vineyard. I became interested in climate change when I noticed the growing season temperature falling in our part of the world, the south west of Western Australia. That set me on a quest to work out why. Soon, it became apparent that parts of the Southern Hemisphere like Antarctica and Southern Chile had been cooling for fifty years or more. My experience in analyzing temperature dynamics for vine sites and working out just how much heat these plants need to bring their fruit to maturity gave me a focus on sourcing data and figuring out what has been happening on a regional scale, both at the surface and in the upper atmosphere. I think there is room for a subject called historical climatology. We can learn a lot just by looking at what has happened over long periods of time. Good data sets are readily available on the net. All one needs is a little curiosity, a facility with spreadsheets and a lot of determination.
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143 Responses to Earth’s changing atmosphere

  1. richard verney says:

    This looks a very interesting post. I will no doubt have to consume several bottles of the fermented grape juice whilst pondering what has been said.

  2. Lonnie E. Schubert says:

    My views changed by the time I was past Figure 1. Thank you.

  3. Will says:

    I quit reading after coming to the following sentence:

    “Increased ozone concentration at the poles increases stratospheric air temperatures despite a decline in the incidence of short wave radiation with latitude.”

    Holes in the ozone layer are over the poles are they not?

  4. Joe Lalonde says:

    Erl,

    Thank you for this very informative post!!!
    I have been pushing the ocean surface salt changes due to the added pressure in the atmosphere and using new mountain growth as part of this.

  5. John Kehr says:

    I will spend some time absorbing all of this, but it is very interesting. My interpretation seems to be that atmospheric mass is swining like a pendulum away from the poles and back again.

    The change in mass alters the wind patterns which alters the cloud cover and temperature. The decreasing polar mass since 1948 has affected the winds in such a way that warming has resulted.

    This would also be like a long term tide of the atmosphere. Much to consider. I will be re-reading this.

  6. Joe Lalonde says:

    Erl,

    I have been trying to show how an Ice Age is an atmospheric event and not a solar event.

  7. Jeroen says:

    In the top picture it must be January below. Typical for the winter is the enormous high above east russia. In the source it is also noted as: ‘JJA (June-July-August, top) and DJF (December-January-February, bottom’

  8. Sal Minella says:

    Erl,

    Thank you for sharing your research. It is always interesting to see the work done in support of an enterprise as opposed to work done to snag a government grant.

  9. Ted Wagner says:

    “Understanding the system is a pre-requisite to modeling it.”

    That, and knowing what results you want :)

    Enlightening post, I look forward to the followups!

  10. Natsman says:

    I enjoyed reading that – look forward to the next two instalments. I’m no scientist, but I found this fairly straightforward reading. I’m not able to judge its veracity, I’ll leave that to others, but it seems well thought out.

  11. Stephen Wilde says:

    Hmmm. Basic principles similar to this:

    http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=6645

    “How The Sun Could Control Earth’s Temperature”

    but with some difference of opinion as to the precise mechanism of the top down forcing.

    I also think that ocean cycles do have a modulating effect as a bottom up effect sometimes supplementing and sometimes offsetting the top down effect.

    I certainly agree that changes in air circulation meridionality or zonality is key to cloud amounts, global albedo and the net balance of energy into or out of the oceans.

  12. alan neil ditchfield says:

    NATURE IN THE RAW IS SELDOM MILD.
    Caterpillar Tractor Company placed this warning on its advertisements decades ago, when environmental activists began to grab headlines by obstructing construction projects. The warning merits being placed as a caption of every photograph of the Queensland floods of 2011. After the 1974 floods, of equal magnitude, the common sense response was the design of a flood containment system. It was never built because the frivolous objections environmentalists prevailed against it.
    It is a shame, and a sign of the times, that this should be happening in Australia, the land of John Monash, the gifted engineer who conceived multiple-use dams, for flood control, power generation, irrigation and waterways. In the 1920s, Monash presided over the Murray-Darling basin project to implement a concept that became the model for the celebrated works of the Tennessee Valley Authority. This was last gift of Monash to mankind. His previous ones were given as builder and as soldier. A century ago, Monash had won renown as a pioneer of the large-scale use of reinforced concrete for buildings, bridges, ports, dams, and irrigation pipe. He then turned his rational mind to warfare, as commander of the Australian forces in World War I, to devise the successful tactics that broke the deadlock of trench warfare. The innovations conceived by Monash put an end to the slaughter in the Hundred Day Campaign that ended on November 11 1918. He did not regard his military exploits as heroic deeds, but as a grim side of his life devoted to destruction instead of the construction he loved so much. His words were:
    “From the far off days of 1914, when the first call came, until the last shot was fired, every day was filled with loathing, horror and distress. I deplored all the time the loss of precious life, and the waste of human effort. Nothing could have been more repugnant to me than the realisation of the dreadful inefficiency of, and the misspent energy of, war.”
    In his regard for human life Monash is the epitome of a practitioner of traditional religion, with its message:
    Man is the lord and master of creation and nature was made to serve needs of mankind.
    This has been overturned by a creed that worships a goddess Nature and excoriates the works of man and the very existence of man as blasphemy. Blame for losses due to Queensland floods should be placed on the followers of this evil religion that demands human sacrifices.

  13. DanDaly says:

    I eagerly await the subsequent posts. I can’t wait to learn which components of solar variability drive the changes in the climate.

  14. Jeff T says:

    Erl, you say, “Suggesting that the composition of that skin, when change is reckoned in just parts per million, can change the temperature of the surface of the earth, is not good science.” Then you go on to say, “The ability of ozone to trap long wave radiation from the Earth delivers increasing air temperature all the way to 45 km in elevation.” And you imply that ozone is a major driver of climate. But, even in the “ozone” layer, the ozone concentration is only a few parts per million; and ozone accounts for less than 1 part per million of the total atmosphere. Tell me, please, which is it: can a low-concentration gas affect our climate or not?

  15. UK John says:

    Such Heresy, next you will be suggesting the World is not flat.

  16. Jim Sorenson says:

    If Mr. Happ makes wine as well as he writes English, I’m in for a case or two to hold me till the easterlies again cease to dominate in the Northern Hemisphere. This highly lucid and logically tight presentation could be a game changer. I think a book is in order and can’t wait for the next post. Truly well done and thanks.

  17. Girma says:

    SIMPLE PREDICTIONS OF GLOBAL MEAN TEMPERATURE

    From the historical global mean temperature data shown below

    http://bit.ly/bUZsBe

    the following patterns can be established:

    a) 30-years of global cooling by 0.2 deg C.
    b) Followed by 30-years of global warming by 0.5 deg C.

    VERIFICATION

    Let us start from the global mean temperature anomaly (GMTA) for the 1880s of -0.3 deg C, which was at the beginning of a cooling phase. As a result, we have:

    1) For 1880s, GMTA = -0.3 deg C
    2) For 1910s, a GMTA of -0.3 – 0.2 = -0.5 deg C
    3) For 1940s, a GMTA of -0.5 + 0.5 = 0 deg C
    4) For 1970s, a GMTA of 0 – 0.2 = -0.2 deg C
    5) For 2000s, a GMTA of -0.2 + 0.5 = + 0.3 deg C

    These results approximately agree with the data given in the link above!

    PREDICTION

    6) For 2030s, an approximate GMTA of 0.3 – 0.2 = + 0.1 deg C

    CONCLUSION

    Global cooling until 2030!

  18. Enneagram says:

    It is like a vacuum cleaner: Down there it is the sucking end. Could it be related with Vukcevic dropping magnetic field in the southern hemisphere?
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/MF.htm

  19. izen says:

    @-Erl Happ
    “The ability of ozone to trap long wave radiation from the Earth delivers increasing air temperature all the way to 45 km in elevation.”

    Actually ozone absorbs shortwave radiation from the Sun which is what warms the stratosphere and thermosphere.

    The rest of the article dosen’t seem to mention the measured reduction in ozone, especially at the poles, since the 1970s due to CFs, how has this influenced cloud albedo if cloud cover is related to ozone levels?

    (sorry posted this in the wrong thread before….)

  20. Alex says:

    Who is this “Erl Happ” and what did he try to tell us?

    Some messy text with many mistakes and no clear message.

    At some point peer review procedure is good to cut out messy guys.

  21. Billy Liar says:

    Will says:
    January 12, 2011 at 5:24 am

    You quit reading because of your own ignorance?

    Take a look at:

    http://exp-studies.tor.ec.gc.ca/e/ozone/Curr_allmap_g.htm

    There is plainly more ozone at high latitudes than there is around the equator.

  22. David says:

    Earl, thank you for your detailed post. This statement I am fond of. ” I suggest, no I insist, that the ENSO phenomenon in the Pacific, and climate change on all time scales, is ultimately due to changes in cloud albedo. It is percisely clouds that the IPCC admits to a low understanding of. Cloud cover is affected by many factors, top down and bottom up, extremely complicated. I also liked this; “Understanding the system is a pre-requisite to modeling it.”

    Earl, one of the common complaints made is that we cannot set up a laboratory to mimic the earth. However the reality is that we in a way do have two earths, in that we have two hemispheres, one mostly land, the other mostly ocean, and we have the seasons.

    Before my question to you first some very fundamental statements.
    Sunlight, falling on the Earth when it’s about 3,000,000 miles closer to the sun in January, is about 7% more intense than in July. (This is huge, and dwarfs any CO2 effect.) Because the Northern Hemisphere has more land which heats easier then water most people state that the Earth’s average temperature is about 4 degrees F higher in July than January, when in fact they should be stating that the ATMOSPHERE is 4 degrees higher in July. In January this extra SW energy is being pumped into the oceans where the “residence time” within the Earth’s ocean land and atmosphere is the longest. There are of course other factors.

    Each wavelength of incoming TSI has a different residence time within the atmosphere, land and ocean. This residence time is of course affected by it own inherent properties as well as all of the material it encounters. Only two things can effect the energy content of any system in a radiative balance. Either a change in the input, or a change in the “residence time” of some aspect of those energies within the system.” The longer the “residence time” the greater the energy sink capacity. The greater the energy capacity, the longer it takes for any change to manifest, and in the case of OHC this involves years, not annually.

    NOW MY three OUESTIONS. We have major bi-annual changes in albedo, cloud cover, cloud location, humidity, pressure fields, wind fields, water temperatures and so on, all due to this immense seasonal flux.
    Do the climate models predict these known changes?
    If we cannot effectively model these very large annual changes then how can we expect to accurately model much smaller changes?
    Can we gain insight into “where the energy goes” by looking at these seasonal changes?

  23. TomRude says:

    Figure 1 and its concepts are obsolete, and do not conform to observation. Read “Dynamic analysis of weather and climate” by Leroux, 2ed. Springer 2010. EOM

  24. David Spurgeon says:

    Light shines in High Arctic darkness..
    Relevant?
    http://www.cbc.ca/canada/north/story/2010/12/27/north-high-arctic-24-hour-dark-light-climate-change.html
    Inuit have been noticing changes during the dark season for years but the changes are becoming more visible as the climate warms, Davidson said.

    “It should be usually, around average, –31 degrees,” he said. “It was, couple of days ago, –5 or something like that, so it’s pretty wild.”

    That refraction of light at the border between cold and warm air is what’s allowing people to see farther than normal, Davidson said.
    Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/north/story/2010/12/27/north-high-arctic-24-hour-dark-light-climate-change.html#ixzz1Apvax8To

  25. Steve Keohane says:

    Thanks for this Erl. Looking at the atmosphere as a whole is extremely useful. Aside from the flow from high to low pressure, I think the second most important point is:
    Still air is a fair insulator; moving air is no insulator at all. This is why the spacing in thermopane or insulated windows is limited to about abut .5 inches or 1 cm. Any greater spacing allows for convection and the loss of any insulating properties.

  26. J.Hansford says:

    After reading and absorbing most of what you wrote Erl, I was mulling over what you had written when I spied your “about ErlHapp” footnote explaining your involevement in winemaking and interest in climate….. It was then that I was struck with a realization….. I still had half a bottle of a damn good mid range Semillion Sauvignon Blanc somewhere in the ‘fridge…… Thanks fer that. Ya gotta be quick or dead in this house hold sometimes…..;-)

    I am looking forward to your next installments.

    Alan Neil Ditchfield…… Hear, Hear. Damn well said sir!

  27. Jeremy Crick says:

    “Before you get half way through, your perception of the way things are, will have changed.”

    Well I, for one, didn’t get beyond the first paragraph. I resent being told in advance how I’m going to respond to an article – I’ll be the judge of that.

  28. Bob from the UK says:

    Alex says:
    January 12, 2011 at 7:30 am

    Who is this “Erl Happ” and what did he try to tell us?

    Some messy text with many mistakes and no clear message.

    At some point peer review procedure is good to cut out messy guys.

    Could say the same about this comment.

    If you were to bother to click on his link it tells you who he is.

    Understand the text first, if you have the necessary background and knowledge, and then criticise the individual points.

    You mention peer review as if you know what it is. You clearly don’t, or if you have God forbid whatever subject area you’re involved in. Is this yet another “armchair” pseudo scientist.

  29. Sam Hall says:

    Alex says:
    January 12, 2011 at 7:30 am

    “Who is this “Erl Happ” and what did he try to tell us?

    Some messy text with many mistakes and no clear message.

    At some point peer review procedure is good to cut out messy guys.”

    If true, then that is a problem. Many very smart people are messy and careless with English. It is the science that counts, not how it is presented.

    The only thing that matters is if he is right or not.

  30. Richard Wakefield says:

    Very Very nice, this is a definite keeper! Looking forward to the rest, thanks for this, fascinating!

  31. Bob from the UK says:

    TomRude says:

    January 12, 2011 at 7:48 am
    Figure 1 and its concepts are obsolete, and do not conform to observation. Read “Dynamic analysis of weather and climate” by Leroux, 2ed. Springer 2010. EOM

    That’s interesting in what way is it obsolete, or doesn’t conform to observation.

    Perhaps you could eloborate.

    From my understanding there are prevailing winds, for example Westerlies which are accurately depicted.

    Al Gore did depict storms on the equator in his book. Is this the kind of thing you mean?

  32. mkelly says:

    izen says:
    January 12, 2011 at 7:29 am
    “…since the 1970s due to CFs,…”

    Balderdash!

  33. kwik says:

    Alex says:
    January 12, 2011 at 7:30 am

    “Who is this “Erl Happ” and what did he try to tell us?
    Some messy text with many mistakes and no clear message.
    At some point peer review procedure is good to cut out messy guys.”

    Hey, Alex, I think your text is the messy one.

    Thank you Earl for a fine post, looking forward to the next one!

  34. tommy says:

    It is a interesting theory, but i cant say it changed my perception of how climate works.

  35. TomRude says:

    Bob from the UK, please check the reference, it is available in the UK from a well known worldwide internet bookstore.

  36. ferd berple says:

    Figure 2 and 9 are interesting. The low pressure differential in the Northern Hemisphere suggests that a very small change could result in long term arctic air overpowering the westerlies – which would create another ice age.

  37. Al Tekhasski says:

    TomRude says,
    “Figure 1 and its concepts are obsolete, and do not conform to observation. Read “Dynamic analysis of weather and climate” by Leroux, 2ed. Springer 2010.”

    Which concepts are wrong in Figure 1? How the data can be obsolete and do not conform to itself? Are you trying to say that the ERA-15 data averages are made up? Please explain yourself.

    While I always maintained that the concept of averages is seriously inadequate to _dynamics_ and physics of climate processes, I still think that local averages are a useful statistical tool to indicate changes in overall system state. As far as I can see, the Earl’s article does not attempt to construct a physical theory of climate change and does not suggest any equations for conservation or dynamics of properties of some material bodies. The article simply shows that “climate disruption” is occurring mostly from changes in global atmospheric circulation rather than from uniform radiative “imbalance” allegedly imposed due to change in atmospheric CO2.

  38. PB-in-AL says:

    NOOOO!!!! The climate can’t change…. AlGore said that climate change is BAD!

    /sarc off

    Mr. Happ – while I was only able to make it through a bit of your argument, don’t quite have the time or attention right now to give, this is a welcome comment on just how complex this whole system is and that it nature is to change, not to be static. I know that this is a point that has been repeated over and over on this site as well as many others, but, somehow, folks just don’t seem to get it: climate, by definition, changes.

    Thank you for your work on this article. Hopefully, I can carve out a bit of time to really look at it completely and in detail.

  39. Hoser says:

    Ozone driver? Be careful distinguishing between cause and effect. Uncle Al had that problem (CO2 ppmv v. T).

    This post is a very interesting description of a dynamic system. Seems like a discussion of actual climate science in contrast to the usual fare AGW crowd dish up. I’m waiting to see the discussion swing to solar cycle parameters, which covary with some of the SST graphs (we’ve seen them in previous posts). I think we are seeking drivers of climate. Solar activity modulating cosmic rays and thus cloud cover seems like a reasonable mechanism to drive climate.

    I suspect there is more to the story. Something can cause greater cooling than occurred during the Little Ice Age with a very quiet sun. Can the sun go into a deeper slumber? Climate shifts can happen suddenly, e.g. Younger Dryas; the cause is perhaps volcanic or cosmic. There seems to be no evidence for a significant volcanic event to kick off the Younger Dryas. There are at least two ideas for cosmic origin.

    First, is the suggestion that a comet or asteroid struck the North American ice sheet and produced a large melted area that flowed into the North Atlantic. This sudden outflow of fresh water may have stopped the thermohaline conveyor.

    The second idea is supported by much higher cosmogenic isotope concentrations in the Greenland ice cores during the last Ice Age and during the Younger Dryas. Comparable high levels were not observed during the LIA. The measurement of radically higher cosmogenic isotope levels suggests the cosmic ray flux can be much higher than it is today, and much higher than during the LIA.

    The cosmic ray flux is not isotropic, and it can vary significantly over time. Galactic magnetic fields could concentrate galactic cosmic rays. If the solar system passed through higher density GCRs, the climate might change quickly and unpredictably. GCR flux changes may be just one more factor that can contribute to dramatic climate shifts.

  40. TomRude says:

    Al, please read the reference before unrolling the red carpet to the author of this post.

  41. Al Tekhasski says:

    TomRude, I would be delighted to read the reference and provide you with my analysis if you could supply the corresponding pdf file. If you cannot do this, I ask again to explain yourself:

    Which concepts are wrong in Figure 1? How the data can be obsolete and do not conform to itself? Are you trying to say that the ERA-15 data averages are made up?

  42. Dave Stokely says:

    I’ve been lurking at this blog for quite a long time. I read the postings and many many of the comments virtually every day. Previously I’ve never posted here as I have no expertise in this field. I find what is written here to be absolutely fascinating. . .much of it difficult for me to understand, but fascinating nonetheless. What is even more difficult for me to understand than the posts themselves is the vitriol of some of the responses to the posts. I found this article by Erl Happ to be very interesting. I don’t understand much of what I’ve read here, but I surely appreciate Mr. Happ’s significant effort in putting together his ideas for us. It takes real courage to put something out for others to read. It takes no courage to make deeply cutting remarks hidden by the anonymity of the Internet. . .

  43. TomRude says:

    Al and Bob FYI:

    About general circulation here is the key original article:
    http://ddata.over-blog.com/xxxyyy/2/32/25/79/Leroux-Global-and-Planetary-Change-1993.pdf

  44. Who is this “Alex” (7:30am) and what did he try to tell us?

    Some messy text with many mistakes and no clear message.

    At some point peer review procedure is good to cut out messy guys.

    Just a teabreak, Erl. Mirrors often work. Meanwhile I’m totally fascinated and second the request for a book.

  45. Tim Folkerts says:

    Just eyeballing your graphs, I suspect that many of your trends are not statistically significant. I strongly suspect that few if any of the quadratic terms are significant.

    Have you performed any tests of significance on your fits? As an initial hypothesis it is interesting, but until you show statistical significance, I have a hard time accepting the small upturns and downturn on which most of your conclusions seem to rest.

  46. Pompous Git says:

    Jeremy Crick said:

    “Before you get half way through, your perception of the way things are, will have changed.”

    Well I, for one, didn’t get beyond the first paragraph. I resent being told in advance how I’m going to respond to an article – I’ll be the judge of that.
    ——————–
    My perception of the way things are changes constantly; it’s called *learning*. If you resent learning, why are you visiting this website?

    Thanks Anthony, Erl, Willis, E.M., Bob, TonyB, Leif… & not forgetting the Mods.

  47. Tenuc says:

    Sign of a good theory is if it can be summarised in a few words…

    It’s the polewards shifts in air mass that produce the observed cyclical climate change via the mechanism of changes atmospheric ozone concentration.

    Looks like the next ~30y are going to be cold…brrrrrr

  48. stevenmosher says:

    Personally I think the collective brain power of the public is better put to use finding errors in peer reviewed science than in trying to sort through the theory de jour.

  49. jorgekafkazar says:

    Looks great. I’ll have to come back later and read carefully. Thanks, Erl.

  50. Pompous Git says:

    stevenmosher said:

    Personally I think the collective brain power of the public is better put to use finding errors in peer reviewed science than in trying to sort through the theory de jour.
    —————————
    That has to be the most condescending comment I have ever read on this website!

  51. jakers says:

    Is this just a philosophical exercise, as many commentators seem to be taking it? Or was it meant to be a scientific endeavor? In other words, just “interesting”, as expressed in many comments; or on the path to being a true and correct description of reality?
    I, too, think it really needs some peer review, at best.

  52. jakers says:

    Tim Folkerts says:
    January 12, 2011 at 10:32 am
    Just eyeballing your graphs, I suspect that many of your trends are not statistically significant. I strongly suspect that few if any of the quadratic terms are significant.
    Have you performed any tests of significance on your fits? As an initial hypothesis it is interesting, but until you show statistical significance, I have a hard time accepting the small upturns and downturn on which most of your conclusions seem to rest.

    I was thinking the same thing. A small upturn at the graph endpoint taken for a trend of the future? I think likely not, and data endpoints, it is well known, skew the trend.

  53. Ian W says:

    Dave Stokely says:
    January 12, 2011 at 10:30 am
    I’ve been lurking at this blog for quite a long time. I read the postings and many many of the comments virtually every day. Previously I’ve never posted here as I have no expertise in this field. I find what is written here to be absolutely fascinating. . .much of it difficult for me to understand, but fascinating nonetheless. What is even more difficult for me to understand than the posts themselves is the vitriol of some of the responses to the posts.

    Perhaps some of these vitriolic responses are due to cognitive dissonance.

  54. Ian W says:

    TomRude says:
    January 12, 2011 at 10:31 am
    Al and Bob FYI:

    About general circulation here is the key original article:
    http://ddata.over-blog.com/xxxyyy/2/32/25/79/Leroux-Global-and-Planetary-Change-1993.pdf

    There does not appear to be any conflict between the Leroux paper and this post. I think that they are saying very much the same thing with Leroux talking of ‘mobile polar highs’ and Erl Happ talking of average air pressure anomalies between the poles and more equatorial latitudes and the associated winds. One is a meteorologists detailed view the other a more abstract view – but both really saying much the same.

  55. Charlie A says:

    stevenmosher says:
    January 12, 2011 at 10:52 am
    Personally I think the collective brain power of the public is better put to use finding errors in peer reviewed science than in trying to sort through the theory de jour.

    Fortunately, it is not an either-or choice, and we are not forced to choose either reviewing peer reviewed literature or developing theories/speculations.

  56. TomRude says:

    Ian W, except that Leroux demonstrates what he writes and does not write “warm air goes down” types of nonsense…

  57. JAE says:

    Earl: Very thought-provoking and interesting! Contrary to what a few others say here, we NEED a new explanation for what has been going on for the last millenia (warm-cold-warm cycles). The current “theory de jour” (the silly one that magically invokes small traces of OCO to explain temperature increases) doesn’t seem to be explaining squat.

  58. TimC says:

    Or perhaps Tenuc would agree to “it’s the wind, stupid…”
    Yes, I began to smile – but then to frown. This a whole new take on the issue and these new theories are hard work for us mere amateurs (without science PhDs) to take on board.
    Erl: you say these are the “critical features of the atmosphere as I perceive them”. Is this a just quirky personal theory, or for real? Is it published? Will it truly benefit us to understand it properly?

  59. David A. Evans says:

    I really need a print option. I find extreme difficulty reading from screens, always have & even my program coding was done largely on paper, then entered in small, easily assimilated chunks, later to be merged.

    DaveE.

  60. Carla says:

    “””3.Globally the lowest sea level pressure is experienced at 60-70°south latitude. This limits the southward travel of the humid north westerly winds and the northward travel of the cold and dry polar easterlies in the southern hemisphere. By contrast there is no such pressure trough in the northern hemisphere. That hemisphere will accordingly freeze or fry according to whether the easterlies or the westerlies prevail. Whether the prevailing wind is from the north or the south depends upon the balance of atmospheric pressure between the Arctic and 30-40°N. Because pressure relations change in a systematic fashion over time (will be documented below) this dynamic dictates the direction of temperature change in the northern hemisphere.”””

    I’m sorta expecting that pressure trough to return during this solar minimum. Weather hmm.. not my cup of tea.
    Didn’t Harvard or one of the other Ivy’s have a tech doc on south pole being compressional and north pole being extensional last year?..
    Flux in flux out..

  61. James Chamberlain says:

    Alex says:
    January 12, 2011 at 7:30 am
    “Who is this ‘Erl Happ’ and what did he try to tell us?

    Some messy text with many mistakes and no clear message.

    At some point peer review procedure is good to cut out messy guys.”

    May peer review die quickly, I say!!! (Or, should we call it insider review?) I am all for EVERYONE speaking and being heard and that the listeners (or peers, as you call them) can choose to listen or not.

  62. Mr Lynn says:

    alan neil ditchfield says:
    January 12, 2011 at 6:44 am

    Thanks much for the fascinating introduction to John Monash. Wikipedia seems to regard him as mainly a military man, but clearly he was much else in addition. And if the terrible floods now plaguing Australia could have been prevented by good engineering, heads should now roll.

    /Mr Lynn

  63. David A. Evans says: January 12, 2011 at 12:15 pm

    I really need a print option. I find extreme difficulty reading from screens…

    Two adjustments in tandem that I use sometimes.
    (1) in Firefox, View>Toolbars>Customize. Drag the full-screen display to your navigation toolbar. Then use it.
    (2) increase font size several times.

  64. Alex says:

    James Chamberlain says:
    “January 12, 2011 at 12:30 pm
    May peer review die quickly, I say!!! (Or, should we call it insider review?) I am all for EVERYONE speaking and being heard and that the listeners (or peers, as you call them) can choose to listen or not.”

    Even with peer review there is too much noise already.

  65. Mr Lynn says:

    David A. Evans says:
    January 12, 2011 at 12:15 pm
    I really need a print option. I find extreme difficulty reading from screens, always have & even my program coding was done largely on paper, then entered in small, easily assimilated chunks, later to be merged.

    Do you have a good monitor? I find reading from the screen on my gorgeous new 27″ iMac to be quite effortless, especially when I enlarge WUWT using the Zoom button on my Microsoft Natural Ergonomic keyboard (now if M$ would learn how paint letters on keys that don’t immediately wear off. . . )

    /Mr Lynn

  66. jrwakefield says:

    Have you performed any tests of significance on your fits?

    I get this from the True Believers to obvious trends when it does not conform to what the True Believers expect AGW to be doing. Endless requests to do more and more stats. If these graphs came from business you would not be questioning such extended stats.

  67. Erl,
    in graphs 11-12 you say that the two lines correlate, but the correlation is difficult to see. When I looked closely I got the impression that there were small-scale direct correlations that would be lost with more smoothing. Also (what I think you are trying to explain) the slope of SST corresponds to the level of dWN but it’s difficult to see visually. A more graphical portrayal of correspondences would help (I seem to have noted two different correspondences).

    You seem to ascribe here a lot of power to ozone and I wait to see it explained. However I am aware that its GHG power to absorb UV, which converts to heat, is the whole reason for the existence of the stratosphere, stratified precisely because it gets hotter the higher one goes. And clearly this impinges on the formation of clouds which require the turning (“tropos”) of the troposphere where higher=cooler.

  68. Erl
    Sometimes the most obvious thing gets missed. Or maybe I’m thick. What the heck is the cause of the kinky graph 2 (also seen in graph 0)? O-o-o- had a cranky senior-moment thought. You can discout it instantly. Is there a correlation (never even think causation!) with the South Atlantic magnetic anomaly?

  69. Ian W says:

    TomRude says:
    January 12, 2011 at 12:01 pm
    Ian W, except that Leroux demonstrates what he writes and does not write “warm air goes down” types of nonsense…

    What was written was that as air descends it gets warmer – this is actually one of the ‘gas laws’. I suggest you read about ‘heat bursts’ some of the hottest temperatures at the surface are due to these.

    The air temperature rises as air descends due to the same lapse rate that has air decrease in temperature as it rises. This is not hot air going down – it is air going down getting warmer.

  70. erlhapp says:

    Al Tekhasski says:

    The article simply shows that “climate disruption” is occurring mostly from changes in global atmospheric circulation rather than from uniform radiative “imbalance” allegedly imposed due to change in atmospheric CO2.

    Perceptive. Hits the nail right on the head.

    This is not the ‘Theory du Jour’. From figure 2 onwards its just observation.

    Back tonight with replies. First earn the daily bread.

    Including a note on how hot air can descend.

  71. Very interesting is the clear evidence again of the 60 year cycle. That cycle, of course, is linked to the forbidden subject, represented by 2 Ss, followed by a B. Murray

  72. Dave Springer says:

    @happ

    Suggesting that the composition of that skin, when change is reckoned in just parts per million, can change the temperature of the surface of the earth, is not good science. Were the atmosphere completely static, yes, but only to a very small degree. Still air is a fair insulator; moving air is no insulator at all.

    The greenhouse idea is too simple, too unsophisticated and too easy. It is a disabling thought pattern that climatologists must discard if they are to understand the system.

    What appears too simple is Earl Happ. The thickness of the atmosphere has nothing to do with its ability to change surface temperature. Don’t believe me? Put your hand on the hood of a black car and a white car sitting out in full sun and figure out which is hotter and why while keeping in mind the only difference is a few molecules of colorant dispersed in the very thin coat of paint. What a dufus.

    You should have begun your investigation with a bit of physics. I might have read the whole article if it hadn’t begun with such a blinding display of ignorance in the opening paragraphs.

  73. Louis Hissink says:

    “Figure 1 shows the major wind systems, the location of the jet streams in the upper troposphere and the polar front. Were the vertical scale to be in strict accord with the horizontal, the atmosphere would be embodied in the line drawn to represent the perimeter of the Earth’s surface. About 75% of the mass of the atmosphere is held within 10 kilometers (6 miles) of the surface. Figure 1 is in that respect, a spectacular fiction.”

    The same graphing technique is used in geology – vertical exaggeration of scale, and the late Lance Endersbee stressed this point a couple of years ago when discussing groundwater theories. As an engineer Endersbee knew that the real gradients that water had to flow down to recharge artesian basins was impossible, yet hydrologists, using these exaggerated cross sections, argued otherwise. One arguing from the desktop, the other from real world experience.

    A similar problem is plate tectonic theory exists – put the subduction zones into proper perspective and the mechanism becomes laughable – and in any case modern seismic tomography has shown that the subduction zones are fiction.

  74. Tim Folkerts says:

    jrwakefield says: January 12, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    Have you performed any tests of significance on your fits?

    I get this from the True Believers to obvious trends when it does not conform to what the True Believers expect AGW to be doing. Endless requests to do more and more stats. If these graphs came from business you would not be questioning such extended stats.

    And I get this from non-mathematicians/non-scientist all the time. “Don’t expect real analysis. Just ‘look’ at the data and see the trends. (Unless of course the results do not agree with pre-conceived conclusions, in which case no amount of analysis is enough.)” This is a sure recipe for chasing shadows.

    For those who actually care more about analysis, below is the regression analysis for 80-90N DJFM pressures in Figure 6. The stated conclusion is “Notice the upward trend in Arctic pressure in winter after 1989 (black line). ” There are even dramatic upward arrows added for effect to highlight the turnaround.

    The linear coefficient is not statistically significant. The quadratic coefficient is even less significant. The overall fit only explains about 3% of the observed variation.

    The regression equation is
    Pressure = 9658 – 8.684*(Year) + 0.002180*(Year)**2

    S = 4.38385 R-Sq = 6.4% R-Sq(adj) = 3.2%

    Analysis of Variance
    Source DF SS MS F P
    Regression 2 76.95 38.4743 2.00 0.144
    Error 59 1133.87 19.2181
    Total 61 1210.82

    Sequential Analysis of Variance
    Source DF SS F P
    Linear 1 52.7824 2.73 0.103
    Quadratic 1 24.1661 1.26 0.267

    P.S. If these charts came from business, i would ignore them altogether! If Figure 6 was stocks and my stockbroker insisted that those stocks were all making a turn around based simply on the quadratic fits, I would find a new stockbroker.

  75. JAE says:

    “Put your hand on the hood of a black car and a white car sitting out in full sun and figure out which is hotter and why while keeping in mind the only difference is a few molecules of colorant dispersed in the very thin coat of paint. What a dufus. ”

    So the atmosphere, with all the convection can be compared to surfaces with different absorptive qualities and heat capacities? WoW! Who’s the dufus?

  76. TomRude says:

    Now Ian w. writes: “The air temperature rises as air descends due to the same lapse rate that has air decrease in temperature as it rises. This is not hot air going down – it is air going down getting warmer.”

    yeah the compression… fine. BUT

    Ian W, Let me quote from the other post by Erl
    “Here is my best shot:
    There are four factors contributing
    1. Warm air descends from the stratosphere. …”

    And this air getting warmer that never reaches the surface -see circulation. And to boot the velocity of this movement is only cm per seconds from an air mass of low pressure and it would hardly create any sub tropical anticylonic cell.

    As for Heatbursts you are talking about rare phenomena of very limited area, not large scale movements.

    You’re free to find Erlhapp stuff groundbreaking but please do not associate me or the work of a rational guy like Leroux with this. eom.

  77. TomRude says:

    O man and now the anti-subduction crowd… fitting!

  78. Al Tekhasski says:

    Tim Folkerts wrote: “And I get this from non-mathematicians/non-scientist all the time … the regression analysis for 80-90N DJFM … blah-blah ”

    And I get this from logical formalists and “computing scientist” all the time. Let me ask you, when you insist on formal regression analysis of a short climatological data set, what are your assumptions about PDF of datapoints that you forgot to spell out for us and for yourself?

  79. Paul Vaughan says:

    Dave Springer wrote, “The thickness of the atmosphere has nothing to do with its ability to change surface temperature.”

    If this is the case, then why is Kevin Trenberth writing papers like this?

    Trenberth, K.E.; Stepaniak, D.P.; & Smith, L. (2005). Interannual variability of patterns of atmospheric mass distribution. Journal of Climate 18, 2812-2825.
    http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/Trenberth/trenberth.papers/massEteleconnJC.pdf

    I can suggest that you familiarize yourself with earth orientation parameters. Ignoring global constraints is not sensible.

  80. Paul Vaughan says:

    Re: jakers & Tim Folkerts

    Erl is thinking nonlinearly. The implicit assumption of linearity made by many absolutely cannot be substantiated. Elaboration here:
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/11/something-topical-2/#comment-572144

    The recent technical thread on Judith Curry’s blog is highly worthy of attention.

  81. Paul Vaughan says:

    Enneagram asked, “Could it be related with Vukcevic dropping magnetic field in the southern hemisphere? http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/MF.htm

    Addressed here:
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/11/something-topical-2/#comment-571911

  82. Dinostratus says:

    “Air moves from zones of high to low pressure and we call it wind.”

    Fluids accelerate in the direction of high to low pressure and decelerate in the direction of low to high pressure. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Primitive_equations note the dv/dt =…del P…. equation) Pressure gradients cause acceleration.

    Wind is a fluid that is moving (a velocity, not acceleration). It can be moving in a region where there is no pressure gradient.

    The eye of a hurricane is an excellent example of a region with a high pressure gradient and little wind.

  83. jrwakefield says:

    Tim Folkerts says
    January 12, 2011 at 3:05 pm
    And I get this from non-mathematicians/non-scientist all the time.

    That’s the best you are going to get with a chaotic system like the climate. There is too much randomness and cycles of forcings to get the definative trends you want. Do you apply the same criteria to the chart from the AGW side likes to display of the anomaly of the yearly mean temperatures? A totally useless measure of what is going on, yet we see this perfect increasing trend. We never get the full range of numbers that is used to calculate those yearly means. No correlation coefficient, no R2, no confidence, no ranges, just that perfect graph and told this represents the planet getting hotter. It’s pure BS, tells us nothing what is physically going on. What *IS* going on is summer TMax is either flat or dropping since 1900. It is not increasing as AGW claims it should. What is driving up the mean is winters are getting less cold in the lowest TMin. Not only that, the mean is just the daily (TMax+Tmin)/2. If in instead you average the hourly temps you get an average that is generally LESS than Tmean.

    So where is your demand for more stats from the AGW side?

  84. jrwakefield says:

    When the entire envelope around an object is air it is a great insulator, assumption one in this post fails and the rest follow.

    You missed the note that air is an insulator ONLY when static. In a moving system it’s terrible as an insulator. The sun is only heating a small portion of the planet at any given time. That warmed air then rises and the heat tries to get to colder areas distributing that heat around.

    I own a greenhouse. If I keep the vents closed, even in the depths of winter, that static air heats up very quickly when the sun shines. Soon a I open a vent and allow the air to circulate, it loses all that heat fast. At night if I want to keep it warm as long as possible I have to close it all down and keep any cold air from getting in.

    The point is, the theme of the post is that the air is NOT static, and hence heat is continuously circulated redistributing the heat to colder areas.

  85. fhsiv says:

    Louis Hissink said:

    “The same graphing technique is used in geology – vertical exaggeration of scale, and the late Lance Endersbee stressed this point a couple of years ago when discussing groundwater theories. As an engineer Endersbee knew that the real gradients that water had to flow down to recharge artesian basins was impossible, yet hydrologists, using these exaggerated cross sections, argued otherwise. One arguing from the desktop, the other from real world experience.”

    Vertical exaggeration is sometimes needed to graphically depict relationships that would otherwise be obscurred by the thickness of the lines on the cross section when considering conditions which extend over large horizontal distances. That said, the technique should be used carefully. Many have got into trouble making interpretations based on cross sections with exaggerated vertical scales! By the way, what makes the basins artesian then?

    Also you said “A similar problem is plate tectonic theory exists – put the subduction zones into proper perspective and the mechanism becomes laughable – and in any case modern seismic tomography has shown that the subduction zones are fiction.”

    Don’t you mean: “…and in any case interpretation of modern seismic tomography data has shown….” After all, you’re just advocating a different theory on the basis of a different type of indirect observational data! If subduction zones are fiction, then what are the facts?

  86. George E. Smith says:

    Well I can’t say that I am competent to either understand or criticize Erl’s paper, so I am sure I will have to read it may times to try and understand.

    I’m not a great fan of applying “curve fitting” mathematical processes to what purports to be real world actual measured data.

    It is one thing to have experimental data for some relationship that is already known from theory to have some particular mathematical form; where that experimental data is “noisy” because of random variations due to experimental limitations.

    If the data is NOT noisy; but simply reflects a variable that actually takes on those observed values; I see no value in statistical prestidigitation whatsoever. That amount to simply replacing real but fluctuating data, with calculated but entirely fictional pseudo data. Any sort of smoothing process, simply throws away real data that was already obtained at often significant (and maybe taxpayer supported) expense.

    Statistics, is a mathematics of recurring events; and there really isn’t any statistical significance to any event which only happens once. Oh you can do the statistical analysis of the probability of throwing snake eyes with two ordinary dice; but don’t expect that to tell you anything about the next toss of those dice.

    Yes if you do a million trials; or these days perhaps a trillion; then statistics should tell you what fraction of all trials, you should get snake eyes. But that won’t alter your chances of not seeing that roll in the first 1000 trials.

    The problem is that you can do statistical calculations on any random set of data; even quite unrelated data, that has no cause and effect connection between one trial and another.

    For example, we could make up a set of quite arbitrary icons; say 366 of them. A snake, a toothpick, blackboard eraser, …. and so on; all related to each other in no way. We then randomly (as we pick them out of a hat) assign each icon, as a proxy for one of the calendar days of the year from January 1 through Dec 31, and including Feb 29.

    Since the icons are quite arbitrary; they are unrelated to each other in any way; they simply are incognito proxies for actual calendar dates.

    A random drawing of all 366 icons from a bin, will yield factorial 366 different possible sequences of icons; which is near enough to infinity for rough work; and each one of those drawings will have the same probability of occurrence; namely 1/366!

    If we now perform such a single drawing to produce an order of the 366 icons; no possible rigorous mathematical study could prove that the drawing process had been biassed, and that the resultant sequence of icons was non random.

    But a decoder of the proxy order, might reveal that the number equivalents, went:- 1,2,3,4…..364,365,366 or equivalently Jan 1 through Dec 31st in calendar order. That eventuality is no more unlikely than any other order of the icons or number equivalents that could occur.

    Yet when an equivalent process was carried out in the 1960s, in something called a “Draft Lottery”, on the basis of a single drawing out of 366! equally probable drawings resulted in an immediate claim by otherwise intelligent so-called mathematicians, that the selection was not random

    So I think you have to be careful when performing mathematical operations on presumably experimentally observed data; especially in the absence of some reasonably well founded theoretical cause and effect relationship between that data; and as Dr Roy Spencer found out when he tried a polynomial (4th order I think) fit to some Temperature data; the fit came out rather good between the data end points; but it totally sucked as a predictor of as yet unobserved results beyond that data set.

    I believe Dr Roy was sufficiently apologetic after the fact. Well we forgave him anyway; for who among us has not done the very same thing.

  87. AusieDan says:

    Tim Folkerts
    Do you use statistical analysis when deciding to buy or sell shares?
    If so, how?

    I have some knowledge of statistics, but have not thought to apply it to share trend analysis.
    I would have thought that by the time a significant trend had emerged in a share chart, that the best time to buy would have been long gone.

  88. jae says:

    “WTF says:
    January 12, 2011 at 4:29 pm
    When the entire envelope around an object is air it is a great insulator, assumption one in this post fails and the rest follow.”

    Get thee off to a college with a science besides political science.

  89. jae says:

    FWIW, I say, again…

    What is missing in the debate about “greenhouse gases” is ANY empirical data that demonstrates a “greenhouse effect.” Earl is correct. There is NONE, whatsoever, anywhere, except in the dreams and cartoons of the “warmers.” In fact the empirical data now show absolutely NO EFFECT of increasing OCO in the atmosphere–for at least 15 years (how long do I wait to see some effect???). I know that the radiation cartoons are appealing, because they look very logical, BUT they are wrong–because they ignore everything else that is going on in the atmosphere (like convection!). The nonsense becomes very clear when one simply compares areas with the most “greenhouse gases” (water vapor) with those with low volumes of GHGs. They are no warmer on average (in fact colder most of the time) than the areas with far less greenhouse gases. High noon in Atlanta in July is MUCH cooler than high noon in Phoenix (same latitude and elevation). (At night, too, for anyone that still believes in the “cold desert night” myth). Yeah, yeah, it’s due to heat lost to evaporation, BUT THAT IS THE WHOLE GAME ON THIS PLANET!

  90. Paul Vaughan says:

    George E. Smith, I would caution you not to conflate data analysis with statistical inference (the latter of which is based on a lot of assumptions that simply don’t hold in many fields in practice, even though mainstream convention is often to pretend otherwise [a foolhardy custom]).

    You do make a good point about assumed functional forms. Smoothing operators are needed to develop multiscale vision. For example, no one would suggest not adjusting the magnification & focal length on a microscope if their true intent was to see clearly. However, Erl won’t be able to successfully defend his choice of functional forms in some of his graphs if pressed; nonetheless we can still get his general points, appreciating that he’s on volunteer hours and not professing to be an expert on multiscale cognition.

    Even if one filters off debatable aspects of Erl’s presentation, politics, &/or whatever, one is left with a primary point that is not radical: we should be thinking about dynamic mass distribution. The earth orientation parameter experts have known this all along. It’s not sensible for modelers to ignore known, real, global constraints.

  91. alphajuno says:

    Interesting article. The forecasted high in Oslo is 48F for Sunday (about 60N) and for Base Orcades in Antartica the forecasted high is 39F for Sunday (about 60S). There will be a little over 18 hours of daylight in Base Orcades but only 6.5 hours of daylight in Oslo. I woulda never thunk it. I did cherry pick a bit because today Oslo is colder by about 20F (13F vs 33F) but still it is winter in the NH…

  92. suricat says:

    Erl Happ.

    This could form part of an excellent educational piece. The most important thing that’s missing from the first instalment that, IMHO, would explain things more clearly is the effect of Earth’s centrifuge.

    Many years ago, Earth was struck by Thea (so the legend goes). Apart from the devastation that this caused, Earth was given an extra rotational energy (spin) and Earth’s moon appeared from the debris of the collision. Ever since Earth’s moon became formed it’s gravitational force has slowed Earth’s rotation via the teleconnection force of tidal influence and also flung the moon into a higher orbit (a couple of years ago we took a second off the annual record to correct temporal accountancy with the seasonal temporal record). Thus, Earth’s rotational periodicity is slowing (days are slowly becoming longer on a geological time scale).

    Earth’s ‘spin’ is interesting in that an ‘over-spin’ condition provides a scenario where Earth’s centrifuge provides energy to the atmosphere that would otherwise not be there. Earth’s ‘over spin’ characteristic provides the Hadley, Polar and Ferrel cell configuration that just wouldn’t be there if Earth’s centrifuge was at equilibrium, or rather ‘static’.

    The radial (Hadley) centrifuge develops more pressure than the planar (polar) centrifuge, thus the Brewer-Dobson flow exists as a balance between the two.

    Your “fig 0″, incredibly, depicts the disparity between Earth’s polar centrifuges. Being ‘planar’ centrifuges it’s important that there are plenty of ‘bumps’ near the periphery of the cell to improve the ‘pumping efficiency’ of the centrifuge. Protrusions into the atmosphere help the Earth to impart a kinetic for the boundary atmosphere to keep up with Earth’s increasing linear rotational speed with decreasing latitudes.

    Thus, your “roaring 40s” in the ‘SH’ (southern hemisphere), with the calmer westerly in the ‘NH’ (northern hemisphere). Ocean in the SH just doesn’t get to grip with the atmosphere as well as the land masses in the NH. The resultant slower rotational speed of boundary atmosphere in the SH polar cell is also responsible for the reduced static pressure that the cell generates at sea level, but it’s great that “fig. 0″ shows this so plainly, irrespective of the season.

    Enough said for now, I look forward to future posts from you.

    Best regards, Ray Dart.

  93. ES says:

    David A. Evans says:
    January 12, 2011 at 12:15 pm
    I really need a print option. I find extreme difficulty reading from screens, always have & even my program coding was done largely on paper, then entered in small, easily assimilated chunks, later to be merged.

    Copy and paste to word and print from there.

  94. brightgarlick says:

    A brilliant article thanks Erl. I wonder how you would see recent changes on Jupiter and Mercury ? I’m looking froward to your next article and how you see the sun or specific sun behaviour influencing our climate. Also, do you believe that Earth sends energy back towards the sun (think 2 knights jousting), as a response to geomagnetic activity that is coming from the sun and that in turn influences wind and sea currents. an extension of this is the interplanetary energy exchanges that might happen between all planets.

    Nice to see your acknowledgement of Leif Svalgaard.
    Cheers, Bright Garlick.
    http://otherworldyencounters.wordpress.com/

  95. Tim Folkerts says:

    Al Tekhasski says: “And I get this from logical formalists and “computing scientist” all the time. Let me ask you, when you insist on formal regression analysis….”

    I am actually an experimentalist. My preference when discussing science is (ranked in order):
    * accurate data
    * theoretical predictions
    * statistical analysis
    * eyeball analysis

    Earl Happ’s writing provides no new data. He provides no theoretical analysis (and frankly a full theoretical prediction is probably impossible given how complex and chaotic the system is). The next best thing is statistics.

    I *do* credit him for going beyond the “eyeball analysis” to do some actual curve fitting. I also credit him for the initiate and insight to even consider these issues. There could well be some interesting and useful results. But to get beyond “there might be something here”, more detailed analysis should be performed.

    Until then, I consider this just “interesting musings”.

    jrwakefield says: So where is your demand for more stats from the AGW side?
    Well, not many people from the AGW side post articles on this site. When they do, I will most likely question their statistics too. :-)
    (But more seriously, that is an important issue. Every one should be held to a high standard in data analysis — ESPECIALLY professional scientists. One challenge is that not every detail can be given in every report — especially when information is intended for the general public. The level of detail will be too much for some and too little for others.)

  96. Tim Folkerts says:

    AusieDan says: January 12, 2011 at 6:25 pm

    Tim Folkerts
    Do you use statistical analysis when deciding to buy or sell shares?
    If so, how?

    I have actually tried, and that is one reason I am very wary of apparent trends in data. It was easy to find correlations in historical data that led to marvelous returns. Unfortunately, more often than not the warning that “past performance is no guarantee of future results” reared its ugly head. Many of the apparent correlations were mostly luck. A system that significantly outperformed the markets using historical data suddenly failed when projected into the future.

    I see a bit of the same challenges here. The trends are barely above the noise in the past. Without theoretical support, what reason is there to expect any continuation in the future?

  97. Just The Facts says:

    suricat says: January 12, 2011 at 7:58 pm
    “The most important thing that’s missing from the first instalment that, IMHO, would explain things more clearly is the effect of Earth’s centrifuge.”

    There is a lot there. In addition to the atmospheric implications, there are also the Oceanic Gyres;
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ocean_gyre

    which are influenced by the Coriolis Effect:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coriolis_Effect

    And the associated Ocean Surface Currents;
    http://oceanmotion.org/html/background/wind-driven-surface.htm

    which descend into absurd complexity when you begin to isolate them e.g. Atlantic Ocean surface currents:
    http://oceancurrents.rsmas.miami.edu/atlantic/atlantic.html

    There is so much to be learned… Erl, your contributions to the process are most appreciated.

  98. tregembo says:

    Must say…one thing I love here at WUWT is the fountain of new ideas that come from the public…can’t possibly imagine how this isn’t influencing scientists and their theories (including Svaalgard, OK, maybe not!). Keep it up, wiggle matching is not a bad thing at ‘tall! Where there is correlation, there could be causation to be gleaned. Just saying…you think the scientific community isn’t reading all of these ideas, noticed correlations and not scrambling to figure it all out! Love it…it will be fun to look back 10-20 years from now and see how it all played out, this riddle of climate…meanwhile…we’ll observe the sun, CRs, negative ocean cycles, and perhaps correlate the drivers into causation.

  99. rbateman says:

    Figure 15 suggests an extremely long cycle in hundreds of years.

  100. kuhnkat says:

    Will,

    just in case you weren’t being sarcastic, the Arctic has no ozone hole, and the Antarctic only has one during the winter. The so called ozone hole over the Antarctica is a severe lowering of the ozone concentration, not total absence of ozone.

  101. Dinostratus says:

    “When the wind blows harder we expect the sea to cool. But it warms. One infers a loss of cloud cover. ”

    That one went by kind of fast.

    Why would one expect the sea to cool when the wind blows harder?

    Why should one infer a loss of cloud cover to explain the expectation I don’t know I should have?

  102. Mike Jonas says:

    Erl – thanks for an interesting post. I will have to re-read it a few times to get my mind around it.

    Fig. 15 interests me : you say “Figure 15 shows a 12 month moving average of polar pressure. It suggests that polar pressure is currently increasing at both poles with the Arctic leading the way. Frequently both poles experience a loss or gain of mass at the same time. This suggests a dynamic where the interchange of atmospheric mass is primarily between high and low latitudes. Something attracts the atmosphere away from the poles, weakening the polar easterlies and strengthening the Trades and the Westerlies. This is plainly associated with loss of cloud and surface heating.“.

    Correct me where I go wrong :- By polar pressure’ you mean atmospheric pressure at a pole, and by loss or gain of mass you mean loss or gain of atmospheric mass. wrt the N Pole, the loss of cloud and surface heating are associated with the decline in the blue graph from ~1978 to ~1990 or maybe to ~2008. I am looking at the actual not the smoothed. So that tallies with the observed warming in the Arctic over roughly that period. So far so good. But over the same period, the S Pole graph behaved similarly though more markedly, yet the Antarctic, if anything, cooled (Eric Steig notwithstanding). By your argument, there should have been loss of cloud over this period in the Antarctic too (I have no way of checking that). If you are correct, then it looks like Henrik Svensmark is right when he says that loss of cloud over the Antarctic tends to deliver cooling not warming, because clouds are less reflective than the icecap.

    I would be interested in any comment you may have on this, and also whether you have any data confirming the polar cloud changes that you refer to. (Apologies if it’s already in your post, I don’t recall seeing it).

  103. John of Kent says:

    Excellent post Erl, and yes, as Stephen Wile commented there is a lot of parallel between your ideas and his.

    I look forward to your next post!

    And yes, it is true that many great scientists are very bad at written English. Two of the best organic chemists I have ever worked with had terrible punctuation, capitalisation, spelling and grammar. I’m not claiming my English is above reproach, just to note that a great science mind and a great linguistic mind do not always go together.

  104. Grey Lensman says:

    A truly great post and by someone with some honest cajones. Besides its primary aim it certainly exposed some very and pedantic minds.

    What it said to me, was clear and simple. The Northern Hemisphere and the south are very very different. This I knew but had not considered in that fashion. Very generally the South is 2/3 sea balance land. The north 1/3 sea and the balance land. This has two obvious effects, land heats and sheds heat quickly, ocean does not, so the thermal balance is vastly different. Secondly sea does not obstruct or divert wind, land does. This shows that shape and nature are vital components. Are these included in the alarmists models I ask.

    Second thought, I was taught that high pressure equals falling air and low pressure rising air. Thus looking at my shape comments above and relating them to pressure, whilst there is a correlation they do not seem to me to be connected. possibly another force or vector is at work here.

    I will look forward to the next part.

  105. John Marshall says:

    Climatologists are more concerned with trends than cycles. They then miss the real science of climate which is cyclic.

  106. Thanks very much for your insightful perspective, it is not often that clear and in depth analysis such as this are understood at first reading, as evidenced by some of the comments. Much strength to your arm in further writing on this line of reasoning, I look forward to the rest of these installments.

    Richard Holle

  107. erlhapp says:

    Thanks to Anthony for hosting this discussion. Thanks for the comments. I see from the vehemence of some of the objections to this post that cherished belief systems have been shaken. I am happy about that.

    To those who want me to get into some serious statistical analysis I say this. The data tells its own story. When the easterlies of polar origin stay in the stratosphere and don’t descend to the surface it is the westerlies that dominate. It is like a switch on an air conditioner. One way it cools and the other way it warms. The pressure relations tell us so. Put your head in the sand if you want to. No, go out and put it in the snow.

    Now I could be wrong in suggesting that Antarctic sea level pressure has bottomed and a recovery will occur, but I don’t think so and I hope that you can be convinced as I post more information. Pressure in the Arctic depends upon the pull from Antarctica all year round. The gorilla in the room is the loss of atmospheric mass in the Antarctic. So far I see no reasonable explanation as to why this occurred or even any discussion as to what the implications could be.

    In my next post I will describe the mechanism that lies behind the change in sea surface temperature when polar pressure changes. There is a school of thought that says that ENSO drives the Arctic Oscillation, i.e drives the change in pressure relations between the high and the mid latitudes. This school of thought relies on very sophisticated statistical analysis to show that yes there is a connection between sea surface temperature in the tropics and the way in which the AO happens to lean. And the same has been mooted in relation to the Antarctic Oscillation.

    But, the modes of causation suggested are unbelievably tenuous. I will give you a much more believable scenario and back it up with some pretty convincing observational relationships. Stats are absolutely useless without a believable scenario. Indeed, it can be pretty obvious what drives what when you are aware that multifold influences impinge, but ask a statistician to back it up with some sort of correlation coefficient and he will be hard pressed to assist.

    I am reminded of a comment by a very successful plant breeder, John Gladstones, who developed a lupin plant that has been important in dry land Australian agriculture. John said, If you can’t see the difference in the field don’t worry about the stats because unless there is a ‘stand out difference visible to the naked eye’ it’s not worth worrying about. And that’s the sort of stuff I am talking about.

    My purpose has been to show that climate changes with the pressure relations driving the winds and that substantial change has occurred. That change is wholly consistent with the mode of warming that has been observed. That should be sufficient to give the AGW idea the flick. The usual argument is that “We can’t think of anything else so it must be man”. My aim has to add that something else and in that I have succeeded. Rather, I have simply pointed out that it is in the climate record.

    But, I am not holding my breath. I don’t think the ‘science’ or the ‘stats’ or anything much matters if your habitual mode of thought are that man is the biggest threat to the planet.

    Joe Lalonde says:
    January 12, 2011 at 5:40 am
    Erl,
    I have been trying to show how an Ice Age is an atmospheric event and not a solar event.
    Be interested in seeing your theory.
    For a good explanation of an orbital possibility see:
    David says:
    January 12, 2011 at 7:38 am

    Jeroen says:
    January 12, 2011 at 5:54 am
    Yes, my error.

    alan neil ditchfield says:
    January 12, 2011 at 6:44 am
    The alarmism in relation to extreme weather events does not help anyone. The sooner we get a handle on what drives natural variations and the extent of the extreme events that might be expected, the better. Flood mitigation is a basic planning priority.
    alan neil ditchfield says:
    January 12, 2011 at 6:44 am
    Yes, very much so but the radiative proposition is negated by convection.
    izen says:
    January 12, 2011 at 7:29 am
    The notion that ozone levels have been materially affected by CFC’s was promoted by a group of environmentally focused chemists who knew little of the global circulation. Meteorologists would possibly suggest that NOx from the mesosphere is more influential.

    David says:
    January 12, 2011 at 7:38 am
    NOW MY three OUESTIONS. We have major bi-annual changes in albedo, cloud cover, cloud location, humidity, pressure fields, wind fields, water temperatures and so on, all due to this immense seasonal flux.
    Do the climate models predict these known changes? NO
    If we cannot effectively model these very large annual changes then how can we expect to accurately model much smaller changes? WE CANT
    Can we gain insight into “where the energy goes” by looking at these seasonal changes? ABSOLUTELY
    And I agree with everything you wrote.
    stevenmosher says:
    January 12, 2011 at 10:52 am
    That won’t get you far.
    TimC says:
    January 12, 2011 at 12:09 pm
    Is this a just quirky personal theory, or for real? Is it published? Will it truly benefit us to understand it properly?
    Tim, it’s not that difficult. Is it important to you that things make sense?
    Lucy Skywalker says:
    January 12, 2011 at 1:34 pm
    I will include a graph with a smaller time frame in the next post.
    “You seem to ascribe here a lot of power to ozone and I wait to see it explained. However I am aware that its GHG power to absorb UV, which converts to heat, is the whole reason for the existence of the stratosphere”
    Usually the warmth of the stratosphere is ascribed to absorption of short wave lengths by the atmosphere. However, there is a signature for OLR in the stratosphere that occurs above the cold waters of the SE Pacific. http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/map/time_plot/ A lot of heat is lost in the atmosphere by simple decompression. But, if there is no uplift, then heat is lost predominantly via radiation. You can see a positive anomaly at 10hPa over this part of the world that can only be due to ozone picking up OLR. The same factor heats the descending air in the polar stratosphere. The vortex pulls this warm air downwards, but this will be news to Tom Rude. Wind in the mesosphere moves from the summer to the winter hemisphere and sets up a spiralling circulation above the winter pole. The signal of an increase in atmospheric mass at the pole is rising air temperature in descending air. The ozone profile determines that. The positive anomaly in temperature corresponds to a greater geopotential height.
    Here is a good primer:
    JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH, VOL. 104, NO. D24, PP. 30,937-30,946, 1999
    doi:10.1029/1999JD900445
    Propagation of the Arctic Oscillation from the stratosphere to the troposphere
    Mark P. Baldwin Timothy J. Dunkerton
    Geopotential anomalies ranging from the Earth’s surface to the middle stratosphere in the northern hemisphere are dominated by a mode of variability known as the Arctic Oscillation (AO). The AO is represented herein by the leading mode (the first empirical orthogonal function) of low-frequency variability of wintertime geopotential between 1000 and 10 hPa. In the middle stratosphere the signature of the AO is a nearly zonally symmetric pattern representing a strong or weak polar vortex. At 1000 hPa the AO is similar to the North Atlantic Oscillation, but with more zonal symmetry, especially at high latitudes. In zonal-mean zonal wind the AO is seen as a north-south dipole centered on 40°–45°N; in zonal-mean temperature it is seen as a deep warm or cold polar anomaly from the upper troposphere to ∼10 hPa. The association of the AO pattern in the troposphere with modulation of the strength of the stratospheric polar vortex provides perhaps the best measure of coupling between the stratosphere and the troposphere. By examining separately time series of AO signatures at tropospheric and stratospheric levels, it is shown that AO anomalies typically appear first in the stratosphere and propagate downward. The midwinter correlation between the 90-day low-pass-filtered 10-hPa anomaly and the 1000-hPa anomaly exceeds 0.65 when the surface anomaly time series is lagged by about three weeks. The tropospheric signature of the AO anomaly is characterized by substantial changes to the storm tracks and strength of the midtropospheric flow, especially over the North Atlantic and Europe. The implications of large stratospheric anomalies as precursors to changes in tropospheric weather patterns are discussed.
    South Atlantic magnetic anomaly? I have no idea

    Tim Folkerts says:
    January 12, 2011 at 3:05 pm
    Don’t like my pressure figures. Can’t see the decline? Then perhaps look at the AO index itself.

    Really, I have no patience with this sort of smart alec one-upmanship. Address the argument if you can. I suggest you have a look at the Baldwin and Dunkerton reference and get up to speed re the phenomena and change over time. I am talking about the Northern annular Mode and the Southern annular Mode, the major modes of inter-annual variability in the Earth’s climate. What I am doing here is to give the historical perspective to change in these modes over time.

    Dinostratus says:
    January 12, 2011 at 11:38 pm
    Wind blows harder surface cools because of enhanced evaporation due to larger surface area.

    Mike Jonas says:
    January 13, 2011 at 12:38 am

    Mike, I don’t mention polar cloud at all. I look at sea surface temperature in the mid latitudes as a result of ozone flux into the troposphere. That is the post to come.

  108. jrwakefield says:

    Climatologists are more concerned with trends than cycles. They then miss the real science of climate which is cyclic.

    What does one expect when the climate science community considers 30 years “long term”. The epitome of not seeing the world beyond your nose.

  109. TimC says:

    Erl – thanks for your go-around. I will try to get my brain around it then!

    Isn’t it always important that things make sense, really at the gut-feel level? That is the essence of my problem with CAGW theory: if the feedbacks were really positive I feel sure the system would have gone divergent millions if not billions of years ago. We humans would not be here now, to worry about it …

    Thanks again – it’s that cold towel for me again, then.

  110. Ulric Lyons says:

    North Atlantic
    Effect of solar activity
    Boberg and Lundstedt (2002, 2003) showed that variations of the NAO index could be correlated with the electric field strength of the solar wind. Using geopotential height data they found a strong correlation between the electric field strength of the solar wind and pressure variations in the stratosphere and troposphere. For the tropospheric pressure the influence is confined to the North Atlantic and resembles the action of the NAO.
    If the 17-yr time lag between the NAO index and Kola Section temperature remains in the future, one can expect that the Barents Sea will remain anomalously warm until about 2012. After that, a long term cooling trend until about 2023 is likely. The cooling may start as a sharp decline of winter temperatures.
    http://www.climatelogic.com/book/export/html/182

  111. Ulric Lyons says:

    The Response of the Thermosphere and Ionosphere to Magnetospheric Forcing
    http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/328/1598/139.abstract

  112. Grey Lensman says:

    In for a penny.

    This indicates to me that the Solar electric current enters the earth via the North Pole, Causing an increase in air Pressure. This current reacts with the iron core, causing it to spin. This then sets up a strong magnetic field, the poles of which wander according to the current strength and angle of the earth to the current. The current then exist via the South Pole, stripping mass from the atmosphere thus causing the lower air pressure.

    These inward and outward events also have heat implications which combine with the atmospheric heat caused by uv light from the sun generating ozone.

    Makes sense to me and fits the observations.

  113. George E. Smith says:

    “”””” Paul Vaughan says:
    January 12, 2011 at 7:27 pm
    George E. Smith, I would caution you not to conflate data analysis with statistical inference (the latter of which is based on a lot of assumptions that simply don’t hold in many fields in practice, even though mainstream convention is often to pretend otherwise [a foolhardy custom]). “””””

    Well Paul, If I had ANY idea what you just said (above), I would try to make some intelligent comment.

    “”””” George E. Smith says:
    January 12, 2011 at 6:19 pm
    Well I can’t say that I am competent to either understand or criticize Erl’s paper, so I am sure I will have to read it may times to try and understand. “””””

    Well THAT is actually what I said.

    So I couldn’t find an OED definition of “Conflate”; but I did look at the Merriam Webster definition; and from that definition I can see that “Conflate” is self referencing. So who can know what that word means.

    If you mean “Confuse”, then say “Confuse”. If you mean “Combine” then say “combine”. If you mean “mix up” then say “mix up”; but if you say “conflate” nobody will have any idea what you mean.

    And as for these:- “”””” data analysis with statistical inference “”””” Well I have no idea what you mean there either.

    Now “data analysis” I do understand; I do it all day, every day. But I would never have considered “statistical manipulation” to be “data analysis”. “Data obfuscation” maybe, but not data analysis, since rather than analysing the data; one replaces that data, with made up substitutes for that data; as if there somehow was more information in that substitute, than was in the original data.

    As for statistical inference; I have no idea whatsoever what that is; but it almost sounds to me, something akin to believing the statistics is real information but the original data wasn’t.

    But that is all part of why I said:- “”””” Well I can’t say that I am competent to either understand or criticize Erl’s paper, so I am sure I will have to read it may times to try and understand. “””””

  114. Dave Springer says:

    This article shook to the very core my belief that grape growers are smarter than the grapes they grow.

    Oh well, it’s not the first belief I’ve been forced to abandon.

  115. Dave Springer says:

    @Happ

    “Can you appreciate the difficulty attached to finding a unique vehicle in a parking lot with 2,600 others. ”

    Your knowledge of chemistry is right on a par with your knowledge of physics.

    It’s about as challenging as locating a cow amongst 2,600 dogs. Or a Sherman tank in a parking lot filled with Volkswagon Beetles. You’re in serious need of introductory courses in basic sciences.

  116. erlhapp says:

    Dave Springer says:
    January 13, 2011 at 1:22 pm

    A comedian? I gotta laugh.

  117. Ulric Lyons says:

    Erl, I am intrigued why you did JJAS and DJFM, and not JJA and DJF ?

  118. Erl Happ says:

    Hi Ulric,
    Thinking:
    March is still height of summer in this part of the world. Its vintage time. Same applies in many parts of the northern hemisphere.

    The Southern Ocean used to have a warm temperature anomaly in mid year which disappeared post 1978. Further, if you remember my post called ‘The Climate Engine’ there was a swing in the data from mid to late year. In addition there is a curious discontinuity in the temperature data here that appears in November with sudden warming apparent. I now think that is a function of the increasing importance of the Arctic in governing ozone flux into the troposphere. Much more ozone in the northern hemisphere in general. Currently, the anomaly in sea surface temperature in the mid latitudes of the southern hemisphere reinforces the annual swing that peaks in February -March. Back in the fifties it did the opposite.

    Since the turn of the century the Arctic has been the major factor driving ENSO.

    Have you looked at SST anomalies recently? Big changes on a week to week basis in the southern hemisphere.

    I don’t know whether one month more or less makes a lot of difference in the data. Could be that trends in the north would be more obvious if September were dropped out of the calculation. I haven’t tried it.

    Really, to decide which months to include in the analysis one would have to look at when the variability in the AO becomes significant in determining stratospheric temperature and whether that has changed over time.

    Thanks for the reference which I will enjoy perusing

  119. Erl Happ says:

    Dave,
    Less fluff and more substance would be good. Address the argument. Make a contribution. Insults merely betray your degree of unease.

    Look at the data yourself and tell me why there has been a 10mb increase in the pressure differential driving the westerlies in the southern hemisphere since 1948. Get with the substance lad. Don’t just get angry, get even.

    If your first post on this thread is fair indication of your grasp of matters pertaining to the effect of the atmosphere on energy accumulation at the surface then your expertise in the field is wholly apparent.

  120. Mike Jonas says:

    Erl – “I don’t mention polar cloud at all. I look at sea surface temperature in the mid latitudes as a result of ozone flux into the troposphere.“.

    That wasn’t clear to me as I read the blurb on Fig.15 – which was all about the poles. So presumably when you said “Something attracts the atmosphere away from the poles, weakening the polar easterlies and strengthening the Trades and the Westerlies. This is plainly associated with loss of cloud and surface heating.“, the “This” [my emphasis] refers principally to the Trades and the Westerlies not the pole or the polar easterlies.

    Somehow, I’ve got to find more time to read through it all a lot more carefully …..

  121. Feet2theFire says:

    This is a very impressive presentation. Lots to absorb – especially the relationships he shows. It is only anecdotal, but NE Illinois is often on a cusp between weather systems, and whether we are on the SE side of systems coming through (from Southwesterlies in AMJJAS) or not makes a huge difference in our local climate. Since about 1985 we’ve been what I literally call “the climate capitol of the U.S. We have dodged so many weather bullets because of where that cusp line is. Winter winds since then have been much more often straight westerlies, rather than the earlier northwesterlies – and us being IN the path of them, rather than them sliding to our north.

    Like I said, that is just local, and just weather – but it has been such a clear change and over that long of period, so if it is not climate, I’d disagree with the dividing line.

    My general assessment is that I agree. I don’t know the statistical parts of what goes on here and at CA. But I do know that winds move from high to low pressure, so this treatment is eminently reasonable, on a qualitative basis, even though it is all quantitative data. The wind patterns changed – over the entire US Midwest, judging from weathermaps I’ve observed for 35 years here – and right about the time the charts say it did. A look back would confirm pictorially much of what Erl Happ has shown here. It isn’t proof, but it fits with the US Midwest as I’ve seen it happen.

  122. Feet2theFire says:

    Three figures stood out for me (though all are very instructive):

    Figure 8 – Pegs exactly the 1976-7 and 1978-9 winters when the Alberta Clippers came screaming down from the pole over the US Midwest and East, as well as the 2009-2010 winter of arctic temps and blizzards in Europe.

    Figure 11 – the transition to positive is right at the time of the Great 1976-1977 Climate Change, if that means anything. And I think it does.

    Figure 12 – This really pegs the super minimum Arctic Ice of 2007 and gives a reason for it – the high pressure differential pushing warmer air north from the 30°N-40°N region to the 50°N-60°N region. This bulge of warm air must have had some degree of push northward against the polar air high pressure system. The differential spiked for just that one year and then settled back down to more normal levels.

  123. Grey Lensman says:

    From reading this blog, I have discovered that as the Arctic shrinks the Antarctic expands, maintaining roughly a total balance of ice Similarly when the Antarctic shrinks the Arctic expands.

    Why is that.

    Seeing how the Tropics and the ITCZ act as a barrier between the two hemispheres and the fundamental different dynamics of both hemispheres, how can this action be paired except by an external force.

  124. Erl Happ says:

    Mike Jonas says:
    January 13, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    By ‘This’ I meant the force that moves the mass of the atmosphere, changing the pressure differentials. In my next post you will see that the change in sea surface temperature is associated with a change in upper troposphere temperature. In the mid latitudes upper troposphere temperature is conditioned by a continuous flow of ozone from the stratosphere. Change the amount of ozone in the stratosphere and you change the temperature of that part of the troposphere that is subject to this continuous flow.

    First things first. This post deals with change in pressure differentials and how that drives northern hemisphere climate. The reference to sea surface temperature is minimal, just enough to establish that there is a difference between two regimes. These are 1. Polar Easterlies dominant. 2 South westerlies dominant.

  125. Erl Happ says:

    Grey Lensman says:
    January 13, 2011 at 11:27 pm

    “From reading this blog, I have discovered that as the Arctic shrinks the Antarctic expands, maintaining roughly a total balance of ice Similarly when the Antarctic shrinks the Arctic expands.

    Why is that.”

    This observation is true only of the last thirty years. The Arctic had another period of warm temperatures in the first half of the 20th century.

    The Antarctic is protected from attack by the westerlies by that deep low pressure zone that rings the globe at latitude 60-70S that you see in the map at the head of the post and also in figure 2. A good question to ask is why is it there?

    The Arctic is not protected by a low pressure zone and is vulnerable to influence from the westerlies. Even when the low pressure zone is formed during negative AO conditions it forms only over the oceans leaving the continents vulnerable to a flow of cold air that, under the circumstances is well channeled rather than dispersed. That probably enhances the degree of penetration that occurs. Alabama, Venezuela, South China, India and so on.

    The difference is undoubtedly due in part to the distribution of land and sea. Antarctica is a big cold sink, all pretty well below freezing point all the time, surrounded by cold ocean, doubling its surface area in winter but susceptible to erosion by warmer waters. There is no intermittent, on again, off again flow from the stratosphere. Its continuous with the polar night jet connecting to the mesosphere. That keeps ozone concentration low which in turn keeps the descending air cool. That circulation creates its own low pressure zone I believe due persistent descent of ozone into the troposphere creating a geopotential anomaly that begins at the surface and is widest in extent at the top of the stratosphere. Geopotential anomalies in the stratosphere are connected with ozone descent.

    I have no explanation for the gain in ice mass in Antarctica except to suggest that, given the temperature, that gain has been going on for a very long time. Gain is limited of course by precipitation which is very light.

    The strange thing is that if the atmosphere gets colder (as in Antarctica) than the rest of the globe the weight of the atmospheric column over Antarctica should increase. But it has decreased (falling sea surface pressure). That indicates that an external process must be at work.

    Is it chewing gum that’s holding the atmosphere up at low latitudes or something with more persistence?

  126. Erl Happ says:

    Feet2theFire says:
    January 13, 2011 at 9:47 pm
    Data is data. If the record is accurate the rest follows. But its very nice to get an anecdotal confirmation. Somehow it’s much more real.

    Similarly, if an Eskimo says that the winter temperatures have been warmer in the middle of the polar night you know that the air is coming from a warm place and it is quite possibly the place where there is a geopotential height anomaly due to descending ozone.

  127. Erl Happ says:

    Interesting and very much up to date article summarizing a modelers understanding of what drives European climate especially in the context of this post.

    http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/368/1924/3733.full
    Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A 13 August 2010 vol. 368 no. 1924 3733-3756
    Dynamical influences on European climate: an uncertain future
    Tim Woollings

    “There is still much debate over the origin of the dramatic ‘trend’ of the NAO from strong negative conditions in the 1960s to strong positive conditions in the 1990s, even though it has since returned to a more normal state. The NAO does not in fact show a robust long-term trend (Cohen & Barlow 2005; Franzke 2009), and the strongest trends in sea level pressure are located further east, reflecting a trend towards deeper penetration of the westerlies into northern Europe (van Oldenborgh et al. 2009). The NAO trend from the 1960s to 1990s is still of interest, however, because of the magnitude of the circulation change experienced over just a few decades. Several candidates have been suggested as influences on this trend, including tropical SSTs (Hurrell et al. 2004), stratospheric water vapour (Joshi et al. 2006) and of course anthropogenic climate change (Gillett et al. 2003). It remains a concern that climate models are in general unable to simulate changes as large as that observed, either as natural variability, or as the response to greenhouse gas forcing (Gillett 2005), although there are exceptions (e.g. Cooper & Gordon 2002; Osborn 2004; Selten et al. 2004; Raible et al. 2005). There are two significant concerns: not only do we not understand the causes of the dramatic variations which occurred over recent decades, but we are also left in doubt over the skill of current models in simulating the dynamics of the jet stream.”

    Nice to see the admission of deficiencies but note this:

    They don’t seem to know the origin of a “a trend towards deeper penetration of the westerlies into northern Europe”. They will be equally at sea when it comes to explaining the chill of current winters.
    AND
    “There is still much debate over the origin of the dramatic ‘trend’ of the NAO from strong negative conditions in the 1960s to strong positive conditions in the 1990s, even though it has since returned to a more normal state.”

    The NAO and the AO are just two ways of measuring the changing relationship between high and mid latitude sea level pressure. The NAO is regional in focus. The AO is global.

    Don’t expect answers from people who are so focused on micro elements like jet streams, storm tracks, Rossby waves, wave trains and ‘blocking’ (constipation?) that they can not see the big picture. The big picture is about shifts in the mass of the atmosphere driving change in the pressure relations between the source and sink latitudes of the major winds systems……… as described in this post. It is not rocket science.

    What I see is a surfeit of mathematics that can in no way compensate for deficiencies in understanding the most basic processes that drive climate. You can glean an understanding of these processes by examining the climate record. You don’t need a model to do this. Just ask the right questions like: Why has the warming occurred in winter rather than summer?

    This is just very sad. Confusion reigns. ‘Experts’ are inexpert.

    A quotation per line, but we are really dealing with no more than a house of cards.

  128. Carla says:

    Carla says:
    January 12, 2011 at 12:29 pm
    Flux in flux out..
    ~
    I did have it backwards in that last post.
    North pole is COMPRESSIONAL and the south pole is EXTENSIONAL.
    ~
    Ulric Lyons says:
    January 13, 2011 at 8:50 am
    The Response of the Thermosphere and Ionosphere to Magnetospheric Forcing
    http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/328/1598/139.abstract
    ~
    Thanks Ulric .. this is from that abstract.
    The Response of the Thermosphere and Ionosphere to Magnetospheric Forcing
    D. Rees and T. J. Fuller-Rowell

    “””The exact distributions will depend very much on detailed plasma convection patterns. However, the winter subauroral trough and localized polar troughs will be created when the combination of convection and corotation cause plasma stagnation in regions out of sunlight and photoionization. There is a strong U.T. modulation of plasma density within the winter polar cap and dusk auroral oval (generally) as the polar cusp enters sunlight for a few hours around 18h U.T., and there is a direct source of high-density plasma (photoionization plus particle ionization) convected through the cusp.”””
    http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/328/1598/139.abstract

    Ulric, scroll down the page the full PDF freeeeeeeee hey..

  129. Carla says:

    oops one more thing.
    Though we are not seeing the heating caused by CMEs. This continuos slow speed solar wind streams with associated upticks in density are quite substantial in the longer run of a longer solar minimum. A contributor of more junk in during these periods.

    How ya like that .. more junk in.. lol

  130. HenryP says:

    Hi Erl
    very good.
    I wonder if I may ask,
    what you make of this report that I did:
    http://letterdash.com/HenryP/assessment-of-global-warming-and-global-warming-caused-by-greenhouse-forcings-in-pretoria-south-africa

    from 1974 we note
    increasing max temperatures
    decreasing minimum temperatures
    and the mean temps. stayed the same

  131. Carla says:

    Ulric Lyons says:
    January 13, 2011 at 8:50 am
    The Response of the Thermosphere and Ionosphere to Magnetospheric Forcing
    http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/328/1598/139.abstract
    ~
    There seems to be a discrepancy between the abstract and the full text. Try seaching the FULL text for the word trough or that paragraph I had posted from the abstract page for that matter. Like whats up with that?

  132. Grey Lensman says:

    Thanks Erl, you concluded with

    Quote

    That indicates that an external process must be at work.

    Unquote

    Perhaps different reasons/paths but we reach the same conclusion.

  133. Erl Happ says:

    HenryP says:
    January 14, 2011 at 6:25 am
    Well, I am not going to say you are a funny sausage HenryP I reckon you are a good lateral thinker.

    I think your approach of removing the cloudy days is interesting and should isolate the greenhouse effect of CO2 alone.

    Did you do an analysis of the cloudy days as well? I imagine smaller daily range but what about the mean? Warmer? Perhaps reflecting air of tropical origin?

    More or less cloud will obviously be the chief dynamic determining surface temperature and you could probably extend your analysis to evaluate that proposition.

    Last comment is that Antarctica and the high southern ocean could be influencing your temperature. I have seen no change or even falling temperature in coastal parts of Chile over the period of record, from memory up to 100 years. Suggestion. Try Cape Agulhas or Cape Town.

    Plenty of temperature data on the web if you look for it.

  134. Ulric Lyons says:

    Erl Happ says:
    January 14, 2011 at 2:46 pm

    Sergei Rodionov http://www.climatelogic.com/

  135. suricat says:

    Grey Lensman wrote: January 13, 2011 at 11:27 pm:

    “From reading this blog, I have discovered that as the Arctic shrinks the Antarctic expands, maintaining roughly a total balance of ice Similarly when the Antarctic shrinks the Arctic expands.

    Why is that.

    Seeing how the Tropics and the ITCZ act as a barrier between the two hemispheres and the fundamental different dynamics of both hemispheres, how can this action be paired except by an external force.”

    Please read my post to Erl Happ on January 12, 2011 at 7:58 pm.

    Bearing that post in mind, it’s true that the ITCZ is a ‘barrier/diffusion interface’ between Hadley Cells, but [b]not[/b] between hemispheres. The Hadley Cells generate the strongest positive pressure on the planet, that effuse near surface gasses to altitudes that enter the Mesosphere. Gasses elevated to such high altitudes find their way to the poles via the (rather slow [in comparison]) Brewer-Dobson Circulation, carrying a rich content of O3 (among other ionised gasses). This is where explanation gets difficult.

    However, gasses that are in excess to the Hadley Cell’s return cycle are caught up in the Brewer-Dobson Circulation’s ‘flavour of the month’! They may either circulate North, or South, depending on the hemisphere’s current pressure. When north is high they flow south, and conversely, when south is high they flow north. So you can realise (I hope) that any N/S polar oscillations are facilitated via the Brewer-Dobson Circulation conduit.

    Let’s ‘push the envelope a bit. Land mass beneath the ‘Arctic Cell’s region’ generates more static pressure than the land mass beneath the ‘Antarctic Cell’s region’ (the concept here is that faster clearance of a ‘drain pipe’ leads to faster passage through a ‘vortex’). Thus, one would expect the ‘lion’s share’ of the Brewer-Dobson Circulation to flow into the northern hemisphere. That being the case (and I don’t know if it is), the Arctic Cell would become dominant for the control of any N/S polar oscillations. Should my presumption be valid, the Arctic ‘ice/no ice’ scenario should dictate the Brewer-Dobson level of flow to southern regions. This makes me think that the ‘Ozone Hole’ over Antarctica has always been there until we discovered it.

    Hope this helps.

    Best regards, Ray Dart.

  136. Erl Happ says:

    Hi Ray, You say:
    “However, gasses that are in excess to the Hadley Cell’s return cycle are caught up in the Brewer-Dobson Circulation’s ‘flavour of the month’! They may either circulate North, or South, depending on the hemisphere’s current pressure. When north is high they flow south, and conversely, when south is high they flow north. So you can realise (I hope) that any N/S polar oscillations are facilitated via the Brewer-Dobson Circulation conduit.”

    Which hemisphere has high and which low depends upon the orientation of the Earth towards the sun. In the summer hemisphere the atmosphere warms and kinetic energy forces molecules apart. There is a wholus bolus type shift to the winter hemisphere.

    But there are other factors also involved.
    1. Water vapour makes the atmosphere heavier and the northern hemisphere appears to get the lions share of water vapour streaming out of the tropics.
    2. Long term shifts in mass from the southern to the northern hemisphere that can be seen in changing atmospheric pressure at each latitude.
    3. Movement between the poles and low latitudes.

    Re:
    “Land mass beneath the ‘Arctic Cell’s region’ generates more static pressure than the land mass beneath the ‘Antarctic Cell’s region’ ”

    Figure 2 shows that the Antarctic has the higher pressure in January and the Arctic in July.

    Better test your speculations against what is happening in the real world.

    What I note is that the fluctuations in the AO and the AAO are much greater in the winter months. So, we have strong flux into and out of the winter hemisphere.

  137. Grey Lensman says:

    Another dynamic, hemisphere summers occur at different distances from the Sun. Thus we have a number of non symmetries overlaid on each other.

    Symmetry is. non symmetry works

    Thanks for reminding me about the Hadley Cells

  138. HenryP says:

    Erl Happ says
    HenryP, I reckon you are a good lateral thinker.

    Thanks for the compliment! I appreciate you taking the time to look at my report.
    http://letterdash.com/HenryP/assessment-of-global-warming-and-global-warming-caused-by-greenhouse-forcings-in-pretoria-south-africa

    I think it would be absolutely rediculous to look at the cloudy and rainy months here.
    Even to chose Cape Town as weather station. It would just show scatter.
    Here in Pretoria, I noticed on the 21 of March when the clouds moved in, that the difference in max. temp. was at least 14 degrees C (cooler) compared to the day before with no clouds. Because of the position of earth re. the sun, on that date, that result can be taken as an average for the year. With that type of fluctuation due to clouds and rain, you understand why I would not even bother to have a look at the wet seasons. Also I don’t have the time. Informing people of the goodness of CO2 is just my hobby.
    Clouds are important. All weather is in the clouds.
    if more heat comes to earth then you get more clouds and that brings everything back to zero.
    So what we call “weather” is really God’s way of keeping the temperature of our planet stable.
    Otherwise we’d all melt in the heat or be frozen in the cold.
    But if you want to see if global warming is happening my thinking was that you must eliminate those clouds
    and “weather” in general
    because they are going to cause serious scattering, especially if it occurs at night in winter.
    The results you get, will then become dependant on how long those clouds linger,
    which from one day when compared to the same day (on the calendar) exactly one year ago may be very much different,
    if your place of measurement on earth is constant.
    the striking finding of my investigation (which actually puzzles me) during the dry season here is that minimum temperatures have been declining at a rate of ca. 0.035 C per annum which refutes the theory of the warming being due to GHG’s.
    but could it be that the net effect of more CO2 is cooling rather than warming?

  139. Lynn Clark says:

    David Evans and others who have a hard time reading articles on computer screens…

    If you use a Mac, there may be a solution already at your fingertips that you are not aware of (if you use Windows, read on). Many web pages are amenable to being reformatted by the Apple Safari web browser. When such a page is loaded in the browser, a “Reader” button appears at the right end of the “Smart Address Field” (URL field) at the top of the browser window. Clicking on the “Reader” button instantly reformats the page in an easier-to-read format. On-screen controls let you email, print and zoom. When you’ve finished reading the article, click on the “Reader” button again to return to the normal formatting. Note that this feature does not work on “top-level” pages like the main WUWT web page. The page has to be for a specific article only. It also does not reformat comments to the article. Click on What’s New in Safari 5 for more information.

    If you have a Windows PC (sorry, if you use Linux, Safari is only available on Mac and Windows), it may be worth downloading Safari and giving it a try.

    REPLY:
    Thanks for the helpful tips. The new Firefox 4 is also worth a look. I use it. WUWT is formatted to work on most browsers, but the browsers have to be reasonably current. Many people simply refuse to upgrade older versions or don’t know how. – Anthony

  140. suricat says:

    Hi Erl, you say:

    “Which hemisphere has high and which low depends upon the orientation of the Earth towards the sun. In the summer hemisphere the atmosphere warms and kinetic energy forces molecules apart. There is a wholus bolus type shift to the winter hemisphere.”

    I can well understand that, however!

    Sorry if I’ve caused any confusion here, but my remarks are to do with Earth’s rotational dynamic ‘only’. Any temperature alteration due to insolation level, or seasonal change, overlays the basic rotational dynamic and on many points, obscures it completely.

    That’s why I thought it worth a mention, it’s another ‘obscure’ level of the overall dynamic.

    You also say:

    “But there are other factors also involved.
    1. Water vapour makes the atmosphere heavier and the northern hemisphere appears to get the lions share of water vapour streaming out of the tropics.
    2. Long term shifts in mass from the southern to the northern hemisphere that can be seen in changing atmospheric pressure at each latitude.
    3. Movement between the poles and low latitudes.”

    1. I find it difficult to understand just ‘how’ a lighter than air gas can add to the weight of the atmosphere. Unless we consider ‘cloud droplet formation’ and not water vapour per se, that is.
    2. The strong Arctic Cell, no doubt. It may be good to compare pressures and wind-speeds between NH and SH within the Brewer-Dobson circulations (at all latitudes) for clarification.
    3. I’m not sure what you mean here. Is this about Polar Cell Circulation growth/shrinkage?

    And also, you say:

    “Re:
    “Land mass beneath the ‘Arctic Cell’s region’ generates more static pressure than the land mass beneath the ‘Antarctic Cell’s region’ ”

    Figure 2 shows that the Antarctic has the higher pressure in January and the Arctic in July.

    Better test your speculations against what is happening in the real world.

    What I note is that the fluctuations in the AO and the AAO are much greater in the winter months. So, we have strong flux into and out of the winter hemisphere.”

    Seasonal, or temperature, change isn’t part of Earth’s rotational dynamic. I don’t ‘speculate’!

    However, “What I note is that the fluctuations in the AO and the AAO are much greater in the winter months. So, we have strong flux into and out of the winter hemisphere.”
    That makes sense if you imply the Polar Cells! Static pressure increases with a ‘fixed planar centrifuge configuration’ when it pumps a ‘denser medium’.

    Come on Erl, I’m an engineer. I’m not a climatologist! :)

    Best regards, Ray Dart.

  141. Anthony re viewing:
    MSIE 8 has a zoom feature in View menu, though how much it can be zoomed and still have full line width in view depends on monitor resolution setting which of course affects size of text.
    I don’t like the risk of changing software, though the last two upgrades of MSIE went fine for me (not for everyone however).
    Choice of browser depends in substantial part on needed features for all tasks/websites, brands and even versions of same brand are not identical in features. Security is a needed feature.
    Using Microsoft Word is a way to view the text in web pages, and graphics usually (doesn’t always pick them up – one can copy & paste from the web page of course, and resize them in Word). Save the page as .mht and use OpenWith.
    One can save a graphic and open it larger on the other monitor (well, easier for laptop users I suppose, if they are at their desk, as most laptops can drive an external monitor without needing modification (adding a card)). Or print the text on paper and use that with the monitor displaying certain illustrations or parts to refer to.
    Bigger budget for a bigger monitor is good. ;-)

    I don’t see what the big problem is viewing this thread per se, many threads need careful reading and referring back and forth – seems like grousing to me.

  142. All:
    There is a fundamental need for integration, which I take Happ’s article as trying to do. (There are many articles on particular elements, but they need to be connected.)

    Happ’s article may or may not be enough toward that daunting task, but it seems worth reading.

    Unfortunately I see much blather herein, some of it sneering before reading, some of it jumping on the author after mis-reading (Rude Tom’s ““warm air goes down” types of nonsense…”), some of it picking unfairly on a few awkward wordings (“concrete bound mentalities” at work?), with only a few questions that are pertinent and add to the debate. Tougher moderation is needed.

    Regarding awkward wordings, I comment that people need to get reasonable proficiency in language to communicate (as for example Ayn Rand did well with English after growing up in Russia, unlike the scientist someone referred to), but readers need to show a little sense. Read carefully. A recent climate paper from Japan on arctic matters was not as good as it could have been in English, but a careful reader could understand it or ask questions where translation resulted in too-terse phrasing (it needed review for understandability). (Good translation does not come cheap, the translator needs to understand at least terminology of the particular science and be proficient enough in each language to avoid traps like somewhat different meanings of words that will be sprung by rote translation.)

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