Pielke Sr. on “missed opportunities” in Washingtion

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Missed Opportunity At The March 8 2011 The House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee Hearing “Climate Science and EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Regulation”

Yesterday, I posted on the March 8 2011 House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee Hearing “Climate Science and EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Regulation”;

Oral Presentation On March 8 2011 At The House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee Hearing Climate Science and EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Regulation

Today, I want to present a few comments on the process. First, as has been written elsewhere (e.g. see) the Hearing was political theater, including props (such as the stack of books presented by Congressman Inslee) .

There were only a few questions/comments directed to the witnesses of the opposing sides and these were usually confrontational, and not designed to effectively explore the areas of disagreements and, of  equal or even more importance, of agreement.  The introduction of DDT by one of the Republican witnesses and of tobacco smoke effects by Congressman Jay Inslee of Washington was completely irrelevant to the science issues of climate.

There were some exceptions. For example, Morgan Griffith of Virginia asked a series of excellent science questions which he said will be sent to us for answers. Pete Olson of Texas, Steve Scalise of Louisiana, Jay Inslee of Washington, Henry Waxman of California and Bobby Rush of Illinois were clearly passionate about the subject, and a number of their questions were very good (but generally also directed to their invitees).

I have a recommendation to the Chair of the Committee Congressman Ed Whitfield of Kentucky for future Hearings of this type. Rather than adopt the standard Hearing format, it would be more informative for him to invite 6 scientists (3 witnesses each selected by the Republicans and Democrats) and pose a set of several questions, such as

1. Is CO2 the dominant human climate forcing?

2. What observational evidence is available to bolster or refute the predictions of the climate model multi-decadal predictions of climate change and of  extreme weather?

3. What certainty is there in the skill of regional and local predictions of societally and environmentally important climate for the coming decades?

Then permit each witness, in sequence, 5 minutes to answer one of the questions followed on by 5 minutes of further comment by each witness.  Then the second question can be addressed.

In this format, the House members would listen and would wait until the witnesses have cycled through each question before asking their questions on the science. The Members might be quite surprised regarding the degree of agreement among the climate scientists, as well as see major areas of disagreement (as well as how these disagreements can be resolved).

I recognize that this is not the way formal Hearings are conducted and my request is unrealistic.  However, until there is a venue to properly discuss and assess the diversity of perspectives regarding climate science issues (and the National Research Council has not properly done this in the last few years), we are going to continue in the same polarized framework where scientifically unsubstantiated claims (on both sides) are being make.

An NRC panel, which is inclusive of climate scientists of all viewpoints, that is convened to report on areas of agreement and disagreement, would be very valuable to everyone.

Read Dr. Pielke’s presentation here:

Oral Presentation On March 8 2011 At The House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee Hearing Climate Science and EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Regulation

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58 Responses to Pielke Sr. on “missed opportunities” in Washingtion

  1. Geoff says:

    I think some better questions would be,

    Why were there three Ice Ages with more atmospheric CO2 than today, one had ten times more, one five times more?

    How is it possible that the dinosaur period supported such a diversity of life when atmospheric CO2 levels were 20 times greater than today?

    Why is it that atmospheric CO2 levels are today, among the lowest in the last 50 million years, and life was not adversely impacted in the past when CO2 levels were much higher?

    Why is it that Antarctica had the most sea ice ever recorded in 2008, yet temperatures are supposed to be getting warmer? Ice can only grow in volume if temperatures are getting colder.

    What made global temperatures warmer than today in the Roman and Medieval periods and several other times during the Holocene (last 10,000 years).

    Why are we so concerned with global warming (we are in an interglacial warming period) when 85% of the last 450,000 years, the Earth has been in an ice age?

  2. Noelle says:

    “the Hearing was political theater, including props (such as the stack of books presented by Congressman Inslee) .”

    So, you define peer reviewed scientific literature as a “prop?” I would like to see the climate scientists who disagree with the findings in those stacks of studies sit down and write their own peer-reviewed scientific papers which refute the findings in them. The documents are not props because the scientific community has not done that. Inslee was pointing out that there is no “balance” in presenting the scientific findings because the vast majority of published scientific literature points in one direction.

  3. Poptech says:

    I agree with Dr. Pielke about the DDT and tobacco smoke comments as I have no idea why they are always injected into the climate debate.

    As for stacks of books, reports and papers, that is an easy task for Skeptics to do,

    Climate Change Reconsidered (868 pgs) (NIPCC Report)
    850 Peer-Reviewed Papers Supporting Skepticism of “Man-Made” Global Warming (AGW) Alarm

  4. AndrewsDad says:

    I would like to apologize in advance for my Rep. Jay Inslee. I have never voted for him and will not do so when he runs for WA governor in 2012.

  5. Jeremy says:

    Dr. Pielke, you can’t have Political Theatre that way! Where would they get their drama? How do you get the soundbites with that format?

  6. Dave L says:

    Another question:

    How do the climate models account for changes in cloud cover; i.e., how do changes in cloud cover affect climate?

  7. Smokey says:

    Noelle,

    Read The Hockey Stick Illusion, available on the right sidebar. And the “Climategate” tab on the top menu bar. You will see how corrupt the climate peer review system really is. It is controlled by a relatively small clique that has discussed re-defining peer review if a skeptical scientist’s submission was accepted by the cowering climate journals.

    So yes, many if not most climate papers are props intended to keep the publicly funded grants flowing. It’s a crooked system that is bilking taxpayers.

  8. Bennett Dawson says:

    Great set of questions, Geoff. Especially the last question. I’d love to hear their answer to that one…

  9. Roy UK says:

    Noelle let me edit your post slightly, to see if you get the point yet…

    Inslee was pointing out that there is no “balance” in presenting the scientific findings because the vast majority of pal reviewed published scientific literature points in one direction.

    The lack of balance coming from the refusal to publish any paper that does not fit with the teams view, and the refusal of the team to release data and methods used to establish their conclusions

    As always Noelle will hit and run. There will be no responses to legitimate questions or points.

  10. Doug Proctor says:

    The game has its own rules and its own rhythms. Those involved already have a good feel for where they stand, but the weakness of the warmist view is not so well known as its vehemence. The determination of certainty of forward view and the certainty of evidence today of warming from 1980 linked to AGW is what will determine the politicians stance on moving now vs moving when the certainty is higher (or not).

    The politicians would like to have a good position to recommend, in light of the 2011 economy and coming economic challenge from China and India, to wait until at least 2016 (election) until hammering on the subject (either way).

  11. John A says:

    “Is CO2 the dominant human climate forcing?” is a useless question. The most truthful answer would be “it might”. It all begs the question of whether human originated CO2 has a measureable effect on climate.

    The question should really be about the actual experimental record of carbon dioxide forcing temperature change, of which there is none.

  12. JaneHM says:

    ‘Washingtion’?

  13. lawrie says:

    Nature will eventually answer all the questions. It has already shown that man is incapable of stopping a rainstorm let alone an earthquake. If we spent the time and effort in learning to live with nature rather than futile attempts to control it we would be much better off; so would the worlds poor.

  14. Helen Armstrong says:

    There are only two questions that must be answered to enable government to make a risk based assessment on whether to allocate funds to mitigate, adapt or do nothing.

    They are:

    How much will it cost and how much will it reduce the world temperature by?

    Anything else just muddies the waters.

  15. pesadia says:

    I know that i keep on about the precautionary principle, but i am convinced that it is this concept which is continuing to underpin support for AGW by the none scientific, rather than the science.
    I have been in selling over fifty years and i know that PP is such an easy concept to sell.
    It is sold without accurate cost/benefit analysis which enables the sellers to use false analogies like house or car insurance to make it attractive.
    Until the precautionary principle is legitimately discredited, this upward struggle will continue.
    Please let me know if you think i am talking out of my rectum.

  16. Lady Life Grows says:

    The evidence that really counts is almost totally absent one way or another: the actual impact of CO2 on the biosphere. There are thousands of studies on plants, which of course show that the main input of photosynthesis yields more growth (duh).

    But how do animals fare? We only know that more primary production means more animals and more biodiversity. We have almost no evidence on direct effects on terrestrial vertebrates except that they can certainly tolerate at least 50 times atmospheric concentrations of CO2 without adverse effects. There are hints that the optimum is at least twice today’s concentrations–just hints.

    And I have taken a look at grants available from NAS–very heavy on AGW stuff, indicating profound bias. The flimsiest nonsense–practically astrology–can be published in biology now if some excuse for panicking about AGW is thunk up–no matter how untested or imaginary the actual evidence.

    If I am right that both warming (within 10 degrees C) and increased CO2 (possibly up to 100 times ambient) are beneficial to life, then this overwhelming bias is deadly dangerous.

    And it definitely has killed tens of thousand of Arabs this year, as they are rioting for food, not freedom. Cropland has been diverted to ethanol production over the AGW claptrap, and the major industrial coutnries are investing in wind farms and other boondoggles that are horrifically expensive–meaning a tough time creating jobs, and worldwide crashed economies.

    This stuff KILLS. Let not our enemies think their lies are harmless.

  17. Don Shaw says:

    His spoken words below represent Inslee’s understanding of Sciences

    Inslee, one of Congress’ loudest voices in the fight against global warming, arrived at the hearing with a two-foot-high stack of books and scientific reports. He allegedly used his time to call out Republicans, saying they have an “allergy to science and scientists,” the Times reports.

    “If Copernicus, Galileo, Newton and Einstein were testifying today,” Inslee said, “the Republicans would not accept their views until all the Arctic ice has melted and hell has frozen over, whichever comes first.”

    Inslee also accused those involved in the energy industry with fueling a campaign to provide false information about global warming.

  18. will1be says:

    Geoff,

    The ancient CO2 history is very pertinent, IMHO. I would like to have good references I can use on the “five and ten times CO2″. All good questions.

  19. eadler says:

    It is clear that the hearings were designed as a show. Anthropogenic Global Warming positions among non scientists correlate with political parties very strongly. People who accept the principle that governmental action for the common good is OK, are able to accept the scientific consensus relating to AGW, because they don’t object to the actions that are implied. In the US, most of these people are Democrats. The current Republican Party wants to do away with the Federal Government and specifically eliminate governmental regulatory power as much as possible. This ideological bias generally prevents them from accepting the scientific consensus.

    So consider that among self-identified Republicans, getting more education makes you less informed about global warming. But that’s not because Republicans with BAs are ignorant compared to Republicans without them. On the contrary. Republicans with BAs are better informed about what the Republican view is and therefore worse informed about the underlying issue because the Republican position is mistaken.

  20. Lew Skannen says:

    Helen Armstrong says pretty much what I was going to say.
    That is the only question that matters and when we see the answer (with appropriate error bars) we can decide whether to spend all that money trying to steer a planets climate.
    We might also skip temperature and just ask for some relation (again with error bars) to indicate how much the temperature difference will make to our comfort on the planet. It is by no means clear that a temperature rise will inevitably lead to a degradation.

    (My gut feeling is that we will not be getting very good value for money.)

  21. Smokey says:

    will1be says:

    “The ancient CO2 history is very pertinent, IMHO. I would like to have good references I can use on the ‘five and ten times CO2′.”

    I don’t know how good these references are, but they’re interesting:

    click1 [click in image to embiggen]
    click2 [from AR-4]
    click3 [Bill Illis' chart]
    click4 [NOAA chart]
    click5 [CO2 follows temperature by about 800 years]

  22. Ian W says:


    Noelle says:
    March 14, 2011 at 12:22 pm
    “the Hearing was political theater, including props (such as the stack of books presented by Congressman Inslee) .”

    So, you define peer reviewed scientific literature as a “prop?” I would like to see the climate scientists who disagree with the findings in those stacks of studies sit down and write their own peer-reviewed scientific papers which refute the findings in them. The documents are not props because the scientific community has not done that. Inslee was pointing out that there is no “balance” in presenting the scientific findings because the vast majority of published scientific literature points in one direction.

    Reminds me of the old ‘Jewish tailor’ saying from the East end of London….

    “Never mind the quality – feel the width!”

  23. bubbagyro says:

    As a scientist, and published many times in peer reviewed journals in the 80s and 90s, I can say without a doubt that “peer review” today is different with regard to “climate science”. I would prefer the term “pal review” for those journals, especially Nature and Science. The old gray mare just ain’t what she used to be.

  24. Oakden Wolf says:

    Why are we so concerned with global warming (we are in an interglacial warming period) when 85% of the last 450,000 years, the Earth has been in an ice age?

    The standard answer would be:
    Because the current rate of warming is such that if continued unabated or if the rate increases, the temperature shifts are increasingly likely to cause significant alteration of Earth’s major ecosystem regimes, as has happened at many other times of rapid global temperature change. I.e. most ecosystems and biomes have a finite capacity to adapt to altered climate factors. Once the adaptation threshold is surpassed, the primary result, as seen in other times of rapid global temperature change, is population changes in both floral and faunal species accustomed to the prevailing conditions, and in many cases, local, regional, and possibly global extinctions.

    Wonderful current example: the die-0ff of whitebark pine trees in the American West, caused by infestations of pinebark beetles enabled by warmer winter temperatures.

    That’s why biomarkers are used to mark epoch and era boundaries in the geological timescale. This goes all the way back to the worldview-changing work of William Smith.

    (Well, I figured since someone asked, the question deserved an adequate answer).

  25. Douglas says:

    pesadia says: March 14, 2011 at 3:05 pm
    [I know that i keep on about the precautionary principle, but i am convinced that it is this concept which is continuing to underpin support for AGW by the none scientific, rather than the science.---------
    Until the precautionary principle is legitimately discredited, this upward struggle will continue.
    Please let me know if you think i am talking out of my rectum.]
    ——————————————————————-
    Pesadia. I’m glad you keep on about this because I too am convinced that it is used shamelessly by agenda driven entities, against all govt., local govt., and NGOs to pressurize them to meet their various objectives. They use the responsibility that these bodies have, the endless tax sources available to them, as well as their fear of litigation and public opprobrium to effectively ‘blackmail’ then into submission. As a result, costs of service provision explode while service levels and benefits frequently decline. It happens at all levels of society.

    Taken to its logical (and patently absurd conclusion), people might never leave their beds as a precaution against the fear of some adverse event happening to them.

    The precautionary principle is a two edged sword IMO that can be both sensible and dangerous. In the case of nuclear power plants, it is plainly sensible to take all appropriate precautions against any possible disaster imaginable and within in their power, as the Japanese have evidently done. But there are many examples where the benefits of adopting the principle are far and away outweighed by losses to individuals and communities.

    A critical factor in adopting the principle must be a measurable and known outcome should it not be adopted or not.

    In the case of the effect of co2 emissions I believe the outcome is not known nor is it measured. If it is adopted it is certain that the cost of providing alternative energy sources will cripple national economies or if no alternative energy sources not found or used, people will ultimate starve or perish.

    The trick is how to deal with it if you are the one upon whose head the opprobrium is heaped.
    So no, I do not think that you are talking out of you own rectum.

    Douglas

  26. DEEBEE says:

    You mean politicians listen to commoners! “Watch you smoking there Piellke?”

  27. Gary Krause says:

    I love this debate. It is based on tax money, yet the money is not mentioned. The demon CO2 is a vehical for profiteers. I must go with Geoff’s set of questions, yet we have no clear minded thinkers asking clear minded questions at the table: WUWT?

  28. Mark T says:

    eadler, I typically chalk your assinine comments up to ideologocal nonsense but your latest makes me wonder the depths to which your ignorance extends… Do people like you really think Republicans want to get rid of the government? Wow, lay off the dope and stop reading the Daily Kos because you clearly no longer possess the tools necessary to understand the world around you. I suppose the path you are on, however, will fulfill the “ignorance is bliss” creede, however, if that is your goal.

    Mark

  29. philincalifornia says:

    Noelle says:
    March 14, 2011 at 12:22 pm

    So, you define peer reviewed scientific literature as a “prop?” I would like to see the climate scientists who disagree with the findings in those stacks of studies sit down and write their own peer-reviewed scientific papers which refute the findings in them.
    —————————————————

    Instead of your appeal to a big stack of books, why don’t you extract, from the big stack of books, the scientific data that you believe proves that anthropogenic CO2 causes global warming, climate change, climate disruption, climate crisis, whatever.

    Our stack is bigger than your stack won’t cut it on here.

    You have a strong opinion. Back it up with science.

  30. Latitude says:

    Inslee said, “the Republicans would not accept their views until all the Arctic ice has melted and hell has frozen over, whichever comes first.”
    ================================================
    I don’t see anything wrong with either of those………………..

  31. Smokey says:

    Agree w/Latitude. And IANAR. Far from it.

    Also, the gov’t should pay attention to the latest Gallup poll.

  32. Lew Skannen says:

    Precautionary Principle?
    By contrasting the experiences of floods in Queensland and Pakistan it is clear that prosperity is the best protection against ‘extreme climate events’.

  33. eadler says:

    In my previous post: in my previous post:

    eadler says:
    March 14, 2011 at 4:11 pm

    I accidentally omitted the following link, which discusses the relationship between political ideology, knowledge of politics and positions on global warming in different countries:

    http://yglesias.thinkprogress.org/2011/03/public-opinion-and-elite-signalling/

  34. Douglas says:

    Oakden Wolf says: March 14, 2011 at 5:22 pm
    Why are we so concerned with global warming (we are in an interglacial warming period) when 85% of the last 450,000 years, the Earth has been in an ice age?
    [————————————-Wonderful current example: the die-0ff of whitebark pine trees in the American West, caused by infestations of pinebark beetles enabled by warmer winter temperatures.
    —————————————————————————-
    But is this truly the case?

    My understanding is that the increase of pine bark beetle infesting Pinus contorta and other spp. is due (in part) to the restriction on burn off as a management tool in these forests. Pine bark beetle thrives on old trees.

    Also control efforts on certain National Forests are now routinely hampered by environmental activists who effectively use legal appeals and lawsuits to halt or delay suppression activities. The Four Notch experience in East Texas provides testimony to the destructive potential of SPB if no control is taken. Due to actions by environmentalists that caused delays in direct control, SPB infestations on this proposed wilderness area killed more than 2,000 acres of sawtimber in less than one year, drastically increased the frequency and severity of timber losses on adjacent commercial forest lands, and eliminated several colonies of the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker (Miles, 1987).

    Historically the first attempts to control bark beetles were probably European. Disastrous bark beetle outbreaks occurred in Germany during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. So severe was the problem that a special prayer for the protection of forests from wind and insects was included in a prayer book printed in 1705. Gmelin (1787) reported that over a million-and-a-half trees were killed in the Hercynian Mountains alone between 1781 and 1787.

    So this is not new.

    Gmelin collected data from these seventeenth and eighteenth century outbreaks and in 1787 published a treatise on bark beetles. In addition to biological data, the treatise contained comprehensive detection and control recommendations. As a first step, Gmelin recommended an intensive survey to locate infested trees.

    His major recommendation for beetle control was prompt salvage or burning of infested trees. Emphasis was placed on selecting trees still containing brood and ignoring trees from which beetles had already emerged. After trees were salvaged, bark removed from trees during the milling process was burned.

    It seems to me that like so many other insect infestation, there are several conditions that lead to these periodic events – certainly not confined to a short term fluctuations of climate conditions,

    Douglas

  35. Douglas says:

    eadler says:
    March 14, 2011 at 4:11 pm
    [It is clear that the hearings----- etc]
    ——————————————
    You don’t seem to have any powers of reason or logic.
    Douglas

  36. Garacka says:

    Geoff March 14, 2011 at 12:13 pm,
    “How is it possible that the dinosaur period supported such a diversity of life when atmospheric CO2 levels were 20 times greater than today?’

    You just gave another reason to cap CO2 levels at the current low levels. It is widely known that earthquakes, tsunamis, disease, hurricanes, and drought are all caused by increasing CO2. It is not yet widely known that increased CO2 will allow birds to transform back to the dinosaurs they evolved from.
    /sarc off

  37. TrueNorthist says:

    It seems that a fairly decent plurality exists to at least carry on a discussion with some important legislators. I think some patience is in order here. Of course the hard liners on the left are going to fight tooth and nail to hold on to even a small part of what they gained–and have lost really– under this administration. The “Global Warming and Climate Change Pandemonium Medicine Show™:” is sputtering on 3 cylinders. They are looking for a place to land. I say turn out the runway lights!

  38. Harold Pierce Jr says:

    “Is CO2 the dominant human climate forcing?”

    Humans can not affect the earth’s climate. If you study a recent atlas of earth, you will conclude the following:

    1. There are few humans on the earth and they occupy a small fraction of the earth’s surface.

    2. Humans have permanently modified an even smaller fraction of the earth’s surface by construction of cities and towns, highways, airfields, etc.

    3. About 50% of humans live in cities and urban areas.

    4. Most major cities are located near sea coasts or large bodies of water.

    5. Humans are moving in ever in increasing numbers to urban areas.

    Humans might regional climate due the billions (and billlions and billions!) pounds of rubber, asphalt and brake dust emitted into the enviroment from the reansporation system.

  39. eo says:

    How come Rep Inslee did not bring stack of books on the impending doom and gloom of the Y2K programming shortcuts? It could make presentation balanced. Besides, the Y2K projections would be more relevant to computer models as basis for decison making.

  40. Mike Restin says:

    How about “where’s the original data”?

  41. Policyguy says:

    I’ve designed, run and participated in many hearings of this sort to know that Dr. Pielke knows what he’s talking about and commenter Noelle hasn’t a clue. Like I said I have set the agenda on sensitive topics and invited participants, knowing full well what each would say. Its part of the political game, and it doesn’t have to be partisan to still be political. When it comes to hearings, unfortunately, its all political theater. Where I might differ with the good Dr. is in the format of the discussion. It doesn’t have to be a hearing. It could be called a workshop or a working session etc. Something less formal and dogmatic than a hearing.

    As to Noelle’s comment. How naive can one be to not understand that “Piles” of anything are props in the context of a hearing.

  42. Roger Knights says:

    Oakden Wolf says:
    March 14, 2011 at 5:22 pm

    Wonderful current example: the die-0ff of whitebark pine trees in the American West, caused by infestations of pinebark beetles enabled by warmer winter temperatures.

    But that’s not the whole story:

    monroe says:
    December 11, 2010 at 7:54 am

    We have a similar broken record playing in BC. A naturally occurring cycle along with a “snuff every fire” approach by forestry has resulted in a Pine Beetle outbreak.
    ……………….

    RJ Hendrickson (20:40:18) :
    The bark beetle kill-off was a result of a drought, not lack of cold in the winter. Pine trees always have a few bark beetles hanging about. They punch a hole in the bark, and it fills up with sap, preventing more beetles from being attracted by the original beetles phemerones. In a drought condition, the trees lack moisture, and not enough sap is produced to plug the hole, and lots of new beetles come to the tree. Enough beetles will eventually girdle the cambium, and the tree is kaput. Cold doesn’t kill beetles, rain does.
    …………..

    Factoids about mountain pine beetle:

    * Beetle outbreaks in Western forests are not new – infestations have been documented as far back as 1894. The last major outbreak in Montana occurred in the 1970s and early 1980s, when some four million acres were affected, including large forested areas in Glacier and Yellowstone national parks.
    * Extreme cold temperatures play an important role in controlling mountain pine beetle outbreaks. Rapid drops in temperature to 10s of degrees below zero in early fall, before larvae have had a chance to prepare for cold, or in late spring, after larvae have resumed feeding, will kill large numbers of beetle offspring.
    * Forest fires and better silviculture methods of selective thinning of forestland reduces the outbreak of mountain pine beetles. Beetles prefer trees 80 years old and older.
    * Some believe a combination of warmer weather, restricted logging, and fire suppression have aided in the uncontrollable infestation in Canada.

    http://seekingalpha.com/article/212688-current-beetle-invasion-and-some-timber-companies-worth-watching

  43. Al Gored says:

    Oakden Wolf says:
    March 14, 2011 at 5:22 pm

    “Wonderful current example: the die-0ff of whitebark pine trees in the American West, caused by infestations of pinebark beetles enabled by warmer winter temperatures.”

    If you mean a wonderful example of a false AGW poster child based on a half-truth and a consistent omission of the whole story, you are absolutely correct.

  44. Roger Knights says:

    Policyguy says:
    March 14, 2011 at 8:04 pm

    As to Noelle’s comment. How naive can one be to not understand that “Piles” of anything are props in the context of a hearing.

    Piled Higher & Deeper.

  45. Oakden Wolf says:

    Gored, Knights, & Douglas:

    You make good points. But I think temperature is still a vital variable.

    Backing:
    http://www.usu.edu/beetle/documents/Logan_Powell01.pdf

    Relevant section:
    “As temperatures warm, the thermal environment actually would become less
    favorable for the mountain pine beetle until a threshold was reached, at which point the thermal environment suddenly would become dramatically more favorable for the beetle. This prediction is ominous in that increasing temperatures could unexpectedly release an endemic or invading mountain pine beetle population in whitebark pine with little or no warning.”

    They compare models with actual observations and it works out nicely. Gored, I think the whole story is well-covered here.

  46. Geoff says:
    Ice can only grow in volume if temperatures are getting colder.

    I don’t agree. Plots of the amount of ice accumulated in Vostok per thousand years clearly shows that more ice accumulates when the climate is warmer. This is explained by a cold planet increasing the size of the ice desert surrounding Antarctica and reducing the ice accumulation. The same association is visible in the Greenland cores.

    This is one of the obvious failings of “climate scientists” – they think that rising temperatures will cause the amount of ice to shrink. However, after many plots, and lots of analysis, it is clear high temperatures produce more ice in environments where it is too cold to melt the ice. In temperate environments, this may be reversed.

  47. Mechanical P.E. & MBA says:

    Hey ask if the decline is hidden in that prop stack? Hey maybe Phil Jones’ original data set without all that added value is in there too?

    Heads up to WUWT readers: the new end around for a carbon tax by the policy wonks is creeping up in Low Carbon Fuel Standards and Renewable Portfolio Standards: coming soon to a state run agency in a liberal state near you. With all the favorable tax treatment, ratepayer funds, tax credits and rebates we will be paying in excess of $250 per MTCO2(e) to save the planet. All under a different name so we won’t notice.

  48. Mr Green Genes says:

    You guys in the US may have some issues about how the hearings are being conducted but at least you’re having them. Here in the UK where all 3 major political parties have sold their souls (and probably everything else too) to the CAGW camp, we have nothing at all. According to our feeble minded politicians, the science is indeed settled and we are going to be paying dearly for the scam for decades to come.

    Oh, and Noelle, I too have taken piles into formal hearings from time to time.

    It didn’t add anything to the matter at hand but it was jolly painful.

  49. NikFromNYC says:

    “As temperatures warm, the thermal environment actually would become less
    favorable for the mountain pine beetle until a threshold was reached, at which point the thermal environment suddenly would become dramatically more favorable for the beetle.”

    Oh good god please visit a brothel.

  50. Jeremy says:

    eadler says:
    March 14, 2011 at 6:11 pm

    I accidentally omitted the following link:
    http://yglesias.thinkprogress.org/2011/03/public-opinion-and-elite-signalling/

    Eadler, what’s amazing to me is someone who considers themselves enlightened cannot see the pure awkward prejudice written down on that link. It’s not surprising. I’ve been around a lot of tragically internally deceived people in my lifetime but it is still amazing each time I am witness to it. That entire article is saying that educated people turn away and cover their ears because of a political stance. What is being implied is that the pull of the republican party line is so powerful that humans will self-deceive about a supposed worldwide catastrophe and their childrens deaths. As I’m sure you’ve likely seen the video of Senator Inhofe getting ambushed by some well-meaning people, how can any rational person behave as if all republicans are robotic uncaring atomatons with no children, no family, and no concern for the future of their nation or humanity at large? It seems to me quite irrational to conclude that the opposing party is anything less than human like yourself. Yet that link makes just that inference. It’s leaving the reader with no option but to believe that Republicans simply don’t care about anyone, they only care about the party line. The blog entry says that the old Republican elites used to believe in CAGW, but do not now because of the party line. So what it’s really saying is that they’re all committing mass family suicide for a party line.

    So that article is basically inferring that the republicans want worldwide death and destruction simply to adhere to a political strategy. That writer is doing this because the absurd left has painted itself into a corner with a belief system in catastrophic human-induced global warming that SIMPLY ISN’T OCCURRING. So instead of FACING THE FACT that the world climate isn’t following YOUR PARTY LINE, you infer that everyone else is CRAZY.

    I submit that you’re crazy.

  51. beng says:

    ****
    eadler says:
    March 14, 2011 at 4:11 pm

    verbal excrement
    ****

    Couldn’t you have used the word “republican” any more in your verbal scat?

  52. Noelle says:

    Smokey:
    You wrote You will see how corrupt the climate peer review system really is. It is controlled by a relatively small clique that has discussed re-defining peer review if a skeptical scientist’s submission was accepted by the cowering climate journals.

    Smokey, you make the assumption that the author of the “The Hockey Stick Illusion” is not himself “corrupt,” or that his findings are not also controlled by “a relatively small clique.” Can you explain here why your trust is placed in that particular author’s document and not the collected works of the scientists’ who publish in the climate journals? Calling these individuals “corrupt” is a serious charge. I just think it’s fair to ask that you back that up with concrete evidence. (Note that I did not call the author of “The Hockey Stick Illusion” corrupt. I merely stated that, in the opinion of the scientific community — as demonstrated by their research — his scientific findings are not valid.)

    Roy UK:

    you write the vast majority of pal reviewed published scientific

    Can you give me an objective definition of the difference between peer review and what you characterize as “pal” review?

    You write: The lack of balance coming from the refusal to publish any paper that does not fit with the teams view …

    Can you provide an objective explanation of how turning down papers for publication because other scientists reach the conclusion that they lack scientific merit is wrong? I would argue that there is no such thing as “balance” when what is presented is just plain wrong. Or, in your opinion, should wrong science be published?

    You write: As always Noelle will hit and run. There will be no responses to legitimate questions or points.

    1. I am here. 2. I don’t consider your questions and points legitimate because what I read here is nothing more than to characterize practically the entire scientific community as wrong without pointing specifically to the research they perform (that would be Inslee’s pile of documents). If the scientific research which Inslee presented at the hearings is so wrong, then, by all means, present the scientific evidence that it is wrong. I’ve yet to see that.

    philincalifornia:

    you wrote: Instead of your appeal to a big stack of books, why don’t you extract, from the big stack of books, the scientific data that you believe proves that anthropogenic CO2 causes global warming, climate change, climate disruption, climate crisis, whatever….You have a strong opinion. Back it up with science.

    That would be a reference to the IPCC reports, which I have read. Is there a particular page/reference number you would like to disagree with? (and, no, I’m not interested in the error about the Himalayan glaciers — that is an agreed upon error that has no impact on the central findings.)

    Policyguy:

    you wrote: Dr. Pielke knows what he’s talking about and commenter Noelle hasn’t a clue.

    For the record, (I know you did not say that I said this, but I do not want to be misinterpreted here) I never claimed that Dr. Pielke does not know what he’s talking. However, I’d would like him to address (or anyone else here) the documents that Inslee presented and publicly report where they are wrong.

  53. Smokey says:

    Noelle,

    Impugning Bishop Hill requires evidence. Post your evidence or admit you’re trying to smear him.

    I’ve provided you with enough facts to convince the average citizen that the climate peer review/journal system is corrupt. Here is an unrefuted account of corruption within the system:

    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2008/8/11/caspar-and-the-jesus-paper.html

    But it is much worse than that. The Climategate emails reveal scheming by climate scientists to game the system for their own personal aggrandizement. They are more crooked than Lombard Street.

    Instead of attacking the messenger, look at the message.

  54. JaneHM says:

    Still puzzled as to why it’s ‘Washingtion’ and not ‘Washington’ in the title. It is because the suffix ‘-ion’ means ‘the act of’ or ‘the condition of’?

  55. D Caldwell says:

    Jeremy said:
    “So that article is basically inferring that the republicans want worldwide death and destruction simply to adhere to a political strategy.”

    Jeremy, it is obvious to me that alarmists like eadler know they cannot put up a winning argument regarding the CO2 mitigation issues before Congress. Therefore, in order to appear credible, they must create a straw man with which to argue.

  56. Brian H says:

    JaneDM;
    I dunno, maybe there’s a joke in “Washingshun”? I doone git it.

  57. rw says:

    It might be worth noting that the pile-of-documentation prop was also used by Joseph McCarthy in his maiden communists-in-the-government speech. In this case, someone tried to call him on one of his ‘facts’, but was bullied down. (Stewart Alsop wrote a memorable account of this in his book The Center).

  58. rw says:

    Noelle,

    Have you also read anything by H. H. Lamb, in particular, Climate, History and the Modern World (ed 2 1995) ? I’m reading it now, and I find it remarkably rich in detail concerning past periods of warmth and cold, the former being periods that were obviously much warmer than at present (especially a period ending about 1500 BC). In its richness of interlocking detail it reminds me a bit of a book in another field, Verne Grant’s The Origin of Adaptation. This is material that from what I am reading here and elsewhere has more or less been buried by more recent reports, including the IPCC volumes (not because it’s wrong, but because it’s inconsistent with the present hysterical claims). In particular, there is no way one can square the many results discussed by Lamb with the Hockey Stick curve.

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