Uncertain Climate Risks (Nature Climate Change)

Guest Post by Ira Glickstein

Clouds cast a shadow over IPCC climate models.

As I continue to plow through Vol 1 Issue 1 of the new Journal Nature Climate Change, I came to the following amazing statement:

Communicating the value of climate modelling … requires confronting such apparent contradictions as the fact that increasing a model’s complexity — by adding the behaviour of clouds, people or ecosystem feedbacks, for example — may actually increase the uncertainty in climate projections. Atmospheric scientist Kevin Trenberth of the US National Centre for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, has explicitly warned that unless such seemingly paradoxical results are communicated carefully, the more complex modelling being used in climate simulations for the upcoming fifth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) may confuse both the public and decision-makers, thereby reducing their willingness to act. [My emphasis]

“Apparent contradictions”? Heck yes, and more than simply “apparent”! The Warmists finally understand that including the major natural cycles and processes that affect climate change in their models will make it that much harder for them to convince the public that human activities are the main cause and, therefore, changing our activities the main solution!

Yet, the title of the paper that includes the above quote is The role of social and decision sciences in communicating uncertain climate risks – as if communications was the major problem, rather than the fact it is largely nonsense they are trying to communicate.

They base their opinion on Trenberth’s 2010 paper which includes these equally amazing words:

[An IPCC AR5 chapter] will deal with longer-term projections, to 2100 and beyond, using a suite of global models. Many of these models will attempt new and better representations of important climate processes and their feedbacks — in other words, those mechanisms that can amplify or diminish the overall effect of increased incoming radiation. Including these elements will make the models into more realistic simulations of the climate system, but it will also introduce uncertainties.

So here is my prediction: the uncertainty in AR5’s climate predictions and projections will be much greater than in previous IPCC reports, primarily because of the factors noted above. This could present a major problem for public understanding of climate change. Is it not a reasonable expectation that as knowledge and understanding increase over time, uncertainty should decrease? But while our knowledge of certain factors does increase, so does our understanding of factors we previously did not account for or even recognize. …

Trial and error

It has been said that all models are wrong but some are useful. …

Performing cutting-edge climate science in public could easily lead to misinterpretation, and it will take a great deal of work communicating carefully with the public and policymakers to ensure that the results are used appropriately. … what to do about climate change is a high-profile, politically charged issue involving winners and losers, and such results can be misused. In fact — to offer one more prediction — I expect that they will be.
[My emphasis]

When confused, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout.

Here is what they say (and what they may be thinking):

  • Including important forcings, such as clouds, will increase uncertainty. (Yeah, we were much more certain when our simple models gave nice crisp conclusions that matched our political biases. Then we added some of the complexity of the real-world climate, and now the conclusions are uncertain. Could it be that our political biases are at fault? Nope, we just have to work on our communications tactics and “social and decision sciences” to sell this load of baloney to the great unwashed public.)
  • The contradictions are merely “apparent” and the results merely “paradoxical”. (Yeah, if we merely communicate this stuff carefully so as not to confuse the public and decision makers and make them unwilling to act in the politically-correct way.)
  • There are mechanisms that can amplify or diminish the overall effect of increased incoming radiation. (OOPS, we forgot about those effects that diminish the overall warming. How can we include them in a way that does not add to public uncertainty about our competence?)
  • Scientific knowledge and uncertainty are supposed to increase over time. (So how come we keep looking dumber?)
  • All models are wrong, but some are useful. (Why is it that as our models become less wrong they become less useful to our political agenda?)
  • Public disclosure of climate science research results can lead to misinterpretation and results can and will be misused. (We better keep our climate research results away from the public until we get a chance to misinterpret and misuse them before the skeptics find out the truth behind our methods.)

153 thoughts on “Uncertain Climate Risks (Nature Climate Change)

  1. Slightly of topic!
    Hey fellow skeptics, here a really great Idea!

    I like this one. It’s real simple, non-destructive and gets the point across. All you need to do is get a pad of sticky yellow notes and write on each one…….

    “How’s that Hope & Change working out for you?”

    Every time you stop to fill your vehicle with gas, place your sticky note somewhere on the pump before you drive away.

    DO NOT be destructive in ANY way! Place your sticky note somewhere, so as not to impede the next customer’s ability to read the pump’s digital readout.

    You can go to their Facebook page here. The hashtag on Twitter is #stickynote if you want to tweet about it.

    I’m stocking up on sticky notes tomorrow!

    Source: The ‘Hope and Change’ Sticky Note Campaign (Until Jan. 20th, 2013)

    co2insanity.com/2011/04/28/join-the-hope-change-sticky-note-campaign/

  2. I’m a research scientist in endocrinology and have discovered the more I know the less I know, as every result leads to a whole heap of other questions. Hence the belief the “Science is settled” doesn’t happen in areas other than climatology. It seems Dr Trenberth is now of similar opinion. Or is this just wishful thinking?

  3. As concerned as they may sound, I call bollocks on their statements–they don’t want to add clouds to their models not because it may increase uncertainty in the outcome, but because it will show, with certainty, that the earth is actually not going to overheat just because of a little extra CO2.

  4. Sound like a job for Occam’s Razor.
    What they should be doing is examining the risks each climate region are known to experience in both warming and cooling, and identify what particular regions are presently doing.
    Just like they do for earthquake, volcano, flood, drought etc.
    Chuck the global schmobal programs until the time in the distant future when the possibility of reducing uncertainties to a managable level occurs.
    Dump the trend without amen junk and get some credibility back into the modeling systems.

  5. This tells me that the models they have used so far have NEVER had proper error bars.
    They have NEVER been as accurate as they claim.

    It also seems to me that these ‘scientists’ are only now discovering what error bars are…

    I think that WUWTs new section on “Climate FAIL Files” highlights this fact rather well.

  6. That is simply stunning. As the models become better they become politically useless.
    A perfect physical model is perfectly useless politically. A physically useless model is politically perfect.

  7. Quite so Sir, quite so. You have a fine appreciation of the matter. Why anyone should have written such a damning commentary is another matter entirely. Still intelligent people, as they imagine they are, can be unbelievably stupid at times. I don’t know why.

    Kindest Regards.

  8. “… thereby reducing their willingness to act.”

    Just like the UEA admission from yesterday, Trenberth states clearly that the point of the IPCC report is not to inform the decision makers but to get them to follow his desired course of action.

    Mike.

  9. The more they know, the more they know how little they know. But Heaven forfend that they acknowledge not knowing! That would just discredit The Narrative™.

  10. Again, it amazes me: Climate Scientists in Glass Houses who Throw Stones. It’s as though they don’t think anyone is watching. Some of these convolutions are so blatantly tortuous as to defy the politicians themselves. Basically, they say nothing of substance except that which is outlined in the bulleted points listed above. And, yes, that is nonsense. These people are no longer scientists. They are genuiflecting, cynical, jaded toadies all scrabbling up the talus slope below the bulwark of world Power, hoping to grab a morsel from those who would annoint them with favor. It’s sickening to read stuff like this….because it means that these people are engaged full time with coming up with such tripe, while people elsewhere are unemployed, thirsty, starving, and generally ignorant…a fact guaranteed by the likes of this seething klatsch of self-flagellating contortionists.

    Who the heck is John Galt indeed.

  11. “What we need from scientists are estimates, presented with sufficient conservatism and plausibility but at the same time as free as possible from internal disagreements that can be exploited by political interests, that will allow us to start building a system of artificial but effective warnings, warnings which will parallel the instincts of animals who flee before the hurricane, pile up a larger store of nuts or grow thicker coats before a severe winter.”

    … Margaret Mead in 1975, laying out the plan of the scam.

    Not much progress, eh? Still looking for plausible uncomplicated explanations after all these years.

  12. Anyone remember John Sununu ?
    He was White House Chief of staff for Bush 41.
    He earned a BS in 1961, a Master’s degree in 1963, and a Ph.D. in 1966 from MIT in Mech Eng.

    IIRC in 1990 he brought out the facts the warmistas back then were using 2D models for a 3D problem. They were ignoring cloud effects on climate. And the media hated him.

    Wow, 21 years later, it’s what John said.

    Meanwhile Al Gore, who has no scientific or engineering credentials is the media darling.

  13. The alarmists and everyone else agree that the amount of warming from doubling CO2 is about 1 ° C. The remainder is supposed to come from increased water vapor.

    The problem for the alarmists is that the water vapor isn’t increasing in fact it is decreasing.

    http://c3headlines.typepad.com/.a/6a010536b58035970c0147e2fc6895970b-pi

    As you can see since 1950 there has been a steady decrease in water vapor.

    Since the amplification is based on increasing water vapor which isn’t happening then it follows that the amplification isn’t happening either.

    An increase in temperature of 1 ° C in 100 years is not a problem worth crippling our economies for is it ?

    Do the scientific based alarmists not know this fact ?

  14. As we try to incorporate more of reality into the models, the models stop giving us the certain results we want, since their uncertainty begins approaching that of reality.

    We must hide this from the unwashed unscientific un-peer-reviewed masses, lest they falsely think we never did know what we were doing, even though we didn’t, and deny the results of our catastrophe-predicting models can actually foretell reality, even though they never have (and never will).

  15. Is it not a reasonable expectation that as knowledge and understanding increase over time, uncertainty should decrease? But while our knowledge of certain factors does increase, so does our understanding of factors we previously did not account for or even recognize.

    Reasonable expectation when young and naive…. then you (hopefully) grow up.

  16. Either:

    1. They have just painted targets on their foreheads by finally acknowledging their models have been primitive and inaccurate, unable to ‘model’ what the climate does at all (i.e. they are too dumb or too blinded by fanaticism to see that this leaves them vulnerable), or

    2. They are smug because they know they are invulnerable – they have stacked academia, the political class and the media with their fellow travellers. They feel they can admit that their models have been poppycock because it won’t matter. They’re in charge, they can manipulate the mass’s opinion how they choose, so no one will care.

    I hope it’s #1. I fear it’s #2.

  17. As more of these AGW whoppers roll out they elevate that point in the AR4 or AR5 about the “the uncertainties being understated” to nearly the most severe understatement in history.

  18. A research field, for which no control experiment is possible, allows for any enunciation and can live out as long as funds are available.

  19. Is it just me or do I detect a huge case of congestive dissonance here? That along with a whopping heap of demagoguery. I am beginning to think Tremberth and others wouldn’t recognize real science if it bit them in the ass.

  20. A welcome to the science of climatology to the real world of natural sciences. As a geologist I am continually confronted with the problem that every time I have a good theory and explanation for a problem, I test the prediction and more often than not I’m wrong. New data doesn’t reduce uncertainty in complex natural systems it increases uncertainty. 2 points can always be joined with a line and a 100% correlation. 3 points almost always reduces your correlation coefficient. It just keeps getting worse as data and knowledge is added. Eventually the trend starts going down again but at any time, expect the unexpected and be prepared for an outlier that you can’t explain. That’s the world in the natural sciences. Accept and embrace uncertainty because it is not going away!

  21. netdr2 says: April 28, 2011 at 8:43 pm
    “The alarmists and everyone else agree that the amount of warming from doubling CO2 is about 1 ° C.”

    I disagree; show me the actual measured data that supports that conjecture.

    You indicated:
    Increasing carbon dioxide concentrations from 0.00000001 ppm to 0.00000002 ppm causes a 1 degree C increase in global temperature.
    Increasing carbon dioxide concentrations from 1,000 ppm to 2,000 ppm causes a 1 degree C increase in global temperature.
    Increasing carbon dioxide concentrations from 100,000 ppm to 200,000 ppm causes a 1 degree C increase in global temperature.

    You conjecture is a simple as the Models, which are incomplete, simplistic and wrong.
    Your statement is constructed as a continuously moving threat that implies that that it is true at all times and at all concentrations.
    Your statement as written is not true for both clauses:
    “everyone else agree”, is incorrect since I do not agree.
    “amount of warming from doubling CO2 is about 1 ° C.”, incorrect since it contains no actual starting value.
    Prove what you have claimed with Actual Measured Data.

  22. My, their web is getting extremely tangled isn’t it? I’ve been working on an explanation of highly intelligent, well educated people behaving like Dr. Trenberth. Working title:”Functional Idiocy.”

  23. The nonsense in Trenberth is the idea that uncertainty is simply an artifact of what goes on in the model, not an artifact of what goes on in the real world.

    As some one has said much of climate science occurs inside a virtual reality created by the models – too many gamers in the discipline if you get my drift.

    I said when the paper was published that I thought that expectations were being managed now that more of reality is having to be owned up to.

  24. Deadman,
    The real answer is billions of dollars worth. But the fun answer is enough to spin a story.

  25. Unfortunately, I think many in the public believe this is how real science is done. In the case of uncertainty just get a bunch of pointy-headed gurus who can tell us what to do, even if it’s just gut feel or instinct. This is where the IPCC comes in.

  26. So… by adding clouds and other things to the models to make them behave more like the real world increases the danger of them… behaving less like the real world? Yep, the science is settled. Thanks Kevin, you have cleared up everything… If only we weren’t spending the rent money on this stuff it would be funny.

  27. “The Warmists finally understand that including the major natural cycles and processes that affect climate change in their models will make ….”

    … will make the models much closer a match the semi-chaotic solar/Earth system that it actually is, unpredictable.

    Sigh.

  28. OT from the closed thread, but this isn’t about that subject anyway.

    “Dave Springer says:
    April 28, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    … Lesson 1: Never ascribe malicious intent when incompetence can explain the situation…”

    Noble statement, but I am growing sick and tired of attributing actions of malice due to simple ignorance. These buffoons know exactly what they are doing and are relying on the public being either to stupid or too lackadaisical to hold them any standard whatsoever. So, they get a “free pass,” carry on smartly and continue to push the scam.

    It’s time for the B/S to stop. Period.

  29. Scientific knowledge and uncertainty are supposed to increase over time.

    Did you perhaps intend to write certainty?

  30. tokyoboy says: (April 28, 2011 at 9:06 pm)
          “A research field, for which no control experiment is possible, allows for any enunciation and can live out as long as funds are available.”

    Very nice, tokyoboy! Bears repeating.

  31. GixxerBoy says: April 28, 2011 at 8:56 pm
    Either:

    [1. ——finally acknowledging their models have been primitive and inaccurate, unable to ‘model’ what the climate does at all —-( too dumb or too blinded by fanaticism to see that this leaves them vulnerable), or

    2. They are smug because they know they are ——They’re in charge, they can manipulate the mass’s opinion how they choose, so no one will care.]
    —————————————————————————-
    I hope it’s #1. I fear it’s #2.
    GixxerBoy. Forget 1 –accept2. But people only accept BS for so long – then they get angry. History tells us that the greater the anger the greater the punishment. We can see this anger happening even now (other issues though) in certain parts of the world when enough is enough.

    Douglas

  32. The irony is that, at the same time that even the most activist pseudoscientists are having to confess that their “science is settled” projections are little better than hunches and wild stabs-in-the-dark; the political machine is in overdrive to introduce ineffective “solutions” to the catastrophic crisis the pseudoscientists projected.

    This is particularly the case in the UK when EVERY political party with any representation, except the (out in the wilderness) UKIP and the (racist and fascist) BNP are 100% committed to the scam.

    OK, there are a decent number of honourable individual exceptions. But the policy of the leadership is monolithic.

    Our real masters, the unaccountable and anti-democratic European Union, are actively working up a Carbon Tax at the moment. Parts of it (direct taxes on high energy users in Industry) are already in place. Other parts (increased tax on red diesel used in agriculture and construction plant) are about to be imposed. All this will increase prices of just about everything. It is in addition to the hidden subsidies and stealth taxes for BigWind and bungs for WWF, Greenpiss and the rest, extracted through electricity, gas and fuel bills.

    Inevitably, the truth will out. But I genuinely fear it will get very messy.

  33. As I read Trenberth’s statement, above, they’re going to build a new gun that will shoot farther and have less windage than the old one, but will have even less chance of hitting the elephant. If people find this out, the sillies will use this information against those responsible.

    There are idiots in climatology, and there are incompetents in climatology, and there are lunatics in climatology. Kevin Trenberth is none of these. There are only one or two categories left, and I’m really not sure which he falls into. I’ll just say he’s amazing and let it go at that.

  34. What struck me the most is the fact that these guys already KNOW what the outcome of the so called “cutting edge” models will be!
    He knows that it will predict doom and the only problem will be how to convince the public about it.
    They are amazing, one have to admit.

  35. Jack, my last response
    typed as a haiku of sorts
    lost its formatting.

    How Much Wool?

    It’s enough to weave
    a tangled web, I believe,
    wherewith they deceive.

  36. “If a man will begin with certainties, he shall end in doubts., but if he will be content to begin with doubts, he shall end in certainties.”
    Francis Bacon

  37. Trenberth
    ‘So here is my prediction: the uncertainty in AR5′s climate predictions and projections will be much greater than in previous IPCC reports —But while our knowledge of certain factors does increase, so does our understanding of factors we previously did not account for or even recognize. …’
    ———————————————————————-

    Can Trenberth be for real? ‘Rumfeldian’ statement – re the Iraq war – and we all know how many unknowns were involved in the decision making then. Trenberth’s statement amounts to ‘No matter about any of this though, what we say is right and always was so’ – As it was in the beginning is now and ever more shall be – world without end – amen!

    Douglas

  38. I think many have missed the really alarming bit of Dr Trenberth’s statements. He really doesn’t understand how uncertainty works.

    If a model has ‘n‘ parameters, they sum the uncertainties of the parameters and call that the uncertainty of the system. Adding new parameters, with their own uncertainties, thus increases the “uncertainty” if the system. Thus they equate known uncertainty with total uncertainty. If I cannot see it, it isn’t there. (Ostrich uncertainty?)

    Of course, the problem is that those uncertainties were already in the system — they just had not been identified.

    This practice of ignoring the presence of unknown uncertainty will inevitably lead to overestimation of the accuracy of the model — which is exactly what we have seen.

  39. How can ignoring important data make your models more certain than including it? Ignoring uncertainties doesn’t make them go away. It’s like saying, “I don’t know how to model the real world, so I’ll just pick and choose a few easy things to model and ignore all the other key factors. Then I’ll present my findings as settled science.”

    Trenberth is like the drunk who dropped his keys in the dark on his way home from the bar and then went to the nearest streetlight to look for them because the light was better there. Just because uncertainties are greater in the dark, doesn’t mean you can find the answer under the streetlight.

  40. The near-future history is silly. It has illogical phrases like this: “Prediction b: By 2015, a punitive tax on non-renewable carbon-based energy will quadruple costs of coal, oil, and natural gas. All or most of the Carbon Tax revenue will be returned to the people, making it (almost) revenue-neutral. ”

    What’s the flaw? Well, the money returned to the people will mostly be spent on activities that generate GHG. Indeed, because of inefficiencies compared to producing GHG in optimised fossil fuel plants, this fragmented activity by the peasants will probably increase the per capita production of GHG.
    Time after time, I have asked the authorities for lists of ways that peasants can spend windfalls WITHOUT producing GHG. Time after time, no anser has been given. This is because the ONLY way of significance is through spending on more nuclear power production. Even then, it merely inserts another step in the human chain of production of GHG. Does anyone know of such a list?
    It is almost impossible to envisage a large scale way for billions of people to spend money while reducing total GHG. The economists’ faulty models need to be run again, with a boundary assumption that a person has a cradle to grave emission quota of GHG and there ain’t much that can be done to alter that. If you need an analogy, every person will breathe in an amount of oxygen in a lifetime, an amount that can be measured. If they do not, they get ill or die.
    Likewise, unless they emit a calculatable amount of GHG over a lifetime, they will get sick or die from one of many ailments precipitated by energy shortage.

  41. The problem with today’s professional theorists is that they have no practical knowledge. Knowing a Professor of ignorance with more degrees than I can count, I asked him why, if he was so concerned about the environment he drove his hybrid puddle jumper with the lights on all the time, his reply was for safety and it should be a law for all. After 5 minutes of trying to explain that it requires energy for the lights and it costs on average $80.00 per year per car I could see that I was talking to myself and gave up.

  42. “…by adding the behaviour of clouds, people or ecosystem feedbacks, for example — may actually increase the uncertainty in climate projections.”

    This is so basic that I cannot begin to describe it. OF COURSE it does. The models are a system put together of uncertainties. There are few understood constants and the whole project is an increasingly comical effort to deny the obvious chaos. Of course there can be climate science… but the model predictions as “settled science”? Don’t try to fool me with something this obvious.

  43. ‘Adding clouds to the models increases uncertainty’?

    Tomorrow’s weather forecast is to a degree uncertain so what chance do rubbish models have.

  44. They just don’t know what they are talking about and can’t cope any more; Game set and match to the sceptics?

  45. Kevin Trenberth of the US National Centre for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, has explicitly warned that unless such seemingly paradoxical results are communicated carefully, the more complex modelling being used in climate simulations for the upcoming fifth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) may confuse both the public and decision-makers, thereby reducing their willingness to act.
    ————————————————–

    Does that not say it all right there? Let’s tighten that sentence up a bit for both brevity and clarity:

    Unless accompanied by marketing spin, the results will reduce the public’s willingness to act.

    Boggles the mind. The “need to act” has already been decided, so any results that cannot be clearly intepreted in that manner are “seemingly paradoxical”. In fact, they are so strongly “seemingly paradoxical” that they have to be “carefully communicated” to that everone understands that we need to act. Otherwise they might just get interpreted as oh… the old resutls missed half the data, the new ones have more and there’s no need to act.

    To tell the truth, I smell a rat. Their case is falling apart and they know the tied is turning, they can’t maintain the fiction any longer, mommy nature just ain’t cooperating. So… new model adds some things that were missing, increasing the uncertainty. Over time the models will get better and better, more accurate, and each rev there will, paradoxicaly, be less of a problem. At some point they’ll converge with actual observations and actual trends, call a press conference, and declare the whole thing a raging success and how lucky they are to have all been part of it. Anyone asks but hey, what about all those prophecies of doom from bedore?

    Of those… yeah we weren’t as good at communicating back then as we are now… just a misunderstanding by the reporters. They really don’t know much about science you know.

  46. This admission of the underestimation of the effect of clouds on their models must, by extension, also apply to their appraisal of past climate change.
    I am reminded of Roy Spencer’s study:

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/research-articles/global-warming-as-a-natural-response/

    Maybe the crux of the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report will read:
    “Some of the observed increase in global average temperatures since the mid-20th century could possibly be due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations.”
    (“could possibly” means the assessed likelihood, using expert judgment, somewhere between 0% and 100%)

  47. To continue on from Ziiex Zeburz says:
    The ‘safety culture’ and ‘precautionary principle’ have come to to fore so much.
    See the recent news about firefighters not being allowed in to rescue victims of London’s 7-7 bombings and how police officers watched a 10 year old boy drown in a pond (after he’d rescued his baby sister) because none of them had had “the required (pond-rescue) training”
    Also, especially since Tony Blair tripled the size of the UK statute book (the number of things that make you A Criminal), the whole UK system treats its subjects as naughty and ignorant children that are simply not to be trusted with ANYTHING. Its almost to the point where we cannot change a lightbulb in our own homes without getting a qualified/registered/approved electrician to do it – lest we invalidate our home insurance policies.
    Then, number of expensive hoops(s) he has to jump through to get that approval are simply mind blowing and have to be repeated annually, at great cost to everyone.

    The whole climate change bandwagon is an extension of that because only governments employ climate scientists, only governments can afford them.

  48. Andrew 30 says “I disagree; show me the actual measured data that supports that conjecture.”

    Thank you Andrew. I wonder when science is going to realise that no-feedback climate sensitivity is a complete load of nonsense. DeltaT = Dedlta F/Lambda is one of the biggest pieces of scientific garbage that has ever produced.

  49. So expect more hide the decline from AR5 in the cause clarifying the “message” (but there’s no agenda here you understand – just science).

    So here is my prediction: the uncertainty in AR5′s climate predictions and projections will be much greater than in previous IPCC reports [..]

    Interesting that the high “certainty” levels expressed in AR4 will have to be glossed over to make way for the new. Surely if you were 95% certain last time but now you are less certain then that is an admission that the previous 95% figure was simply plucked out of thin air.

  50. Increasing model complexity it will not increase uncertainty, if the models become more accurate as a result.

    The “apparent”, paradoxical situation results from the fact they are not being honest about huge uncertainty that is produced by using inadequate, oversimplified models that have been frigged to produce a match to historical data and pretending they can extrapolate out 100 years by matching a model to 50 years of data.

    If they gave a true, scientifically calculated uncertainty of their model results only due to the way they (don’t) “model” clouds, everyone would see that the emperor has no clothes and would realise their models have no value even ten years into the future.

  51. The post-normal scientific methods says that when the stakes are high and the results uncertain, we must act. Now, the results are becoming more uncertain, therefore we must act more. I hope i got that right. Mr. Hulme? Mr. Ravetz? Care to comment?

  52. …..by adding the behaviour of clouds, people or ecosystem feedbacks, for example — may actually increase the uncertainty in climate projections.

    ‘Clouds’ is the elephant in the room. It’s like driving at night with all headlights off – you can’t see where you are going (projections).

  53. “thereby reducing their willingness to act.”

    And there you have it.

    First decide we all need to act, then decide on what we need to act upon, thereby making sure we still need to act upon something, anything.

    Got to love the looney communist hippie hunters that hunt for unregulated revenue streams.

  54. How does one deal with the complete illogic of the warmie position? I look at it this way, the reasonable ones are skeptics now, leaving the unreasonable ones, like Japanese soldiers in Pacific island caves, fighting on.

  55. Jack says:
    April 28, 2011 at 8:44 pm
    How much wool can a warmist pull
    Over everyones eyes?

    Between us Aus and NZ, we produce a lot of bloody wool, and I don’t wreckon it’s enough. It may be a start though. :-)

  56. Add in a random factor and the results are less predictable. And they are surprised.

    They make me feel old.

    When it comes down to it, I am a determinist. I believe in strict causality down to the level and including every thought that pops into your or my head. But i am not the flavor of fool that thinks we will ever come anywhere near to mapping it to the level where we can predict anything but the crudest results and even then we’re likely wrong.

    So, for practical purposes it might as well be random, even though, being a strict causalist, I don’t even believe in “randomness”, per se, when it comes right down to it. Bohr wasn’t wrong; it’s just that his model was incomplete — according to my live-dead cat.

    But these bozos not are not only my fellow causalists, it seems, but they have the unmitigated egoism to imagine they can construct a tactically predictive climate model. What hubris!

    So they are surprised that when they add an additional factor, their results become less predictable. Sheesh! WHAT are they THINKING?

    The only thing absolutely predictable in this whole mess is my above comment . . .

  57. The modellers inherited two bits of incorrect physics which because they were supposed to cancel each other out, misled the subject for 30 years.

    1. There’s no ‘back radiation’: not only is the concept a breach of the 2nd law of Thermodynamics, Miskolczi showed it’s an artefact of Milne’s wrong choice of boundary condition when he solved a PDE: http://met.hu/doc/idojaras/vol111001_01.pdf

    2. The modellers were misled by incorrect aerosol optical physics which predicts the cloud part of global dimming, ‘cloud albedo effect’ cooling in AR4.

    By 2004, when Miskolczi left NASA frustrated by a bar on publication, NASA knew there was no proof of the optical effect. The wheels had come off the CAGW wagon.

    The apparent way out was to substitute Twomey’s partially correct Mie physics with a fake ‘surface reflection’ explanation: http://geo.arc.nasa.gov/sgg/singh/winners4.html

    This misled the rest of climate science. AR4 was incorrect when published. Correct the physics and ‘cloud albedo effect’ cooling changes to heating, another GW which explains palaeo-climate better than CO2-GW with its 800 year delay, also recent ocean heating [Asian aerosol pollution reducing the albedo of low level tropical clouds, a self limiting process when albedo asymptotes to 0.5].

  58. Joe Miner said: “Don’t confuse them with facts, baffle them with BS!”
    The prof in the next office to me in grad school had a poster with a similar motto(“if you can’t dazzle them with brilliance baffle them with BS”). I thought he actually lived it, which made the poster quite ironic.

  59. As most of us probably know that the answer to the ultimate question is 42.

    But what is the question? Thats what we need to find out. The new whizz-bang models might be able to tell us? Not.

    So the formulation of the question will have to evolve away from its origins. That is what being a climate scientist is all about.

  60. Sounds like a kind of ‘coded message’ to his colleagues and other climate mystics – sorry – scientists, suggesting they bury, obfuscate or diminish any results from future model runs that disagree with predetermined CAGW conclusions. Not to do science, actual scientists, or models down, but ‘climate science’ is a now a contradiction in terms. The total substitution of cherry-picked computer simulation for reality as ‘evidence’ would be hilarious but for the fact the ‘team’ seem to have actually convinced themselves it is a legitimate thing to do. Any real branch of science, this would be seen as confirmation bias, tautology ridden madness. Or maybe they don’t really buy their own nonsense? Maybe they just believe it’s okay to lie to the public on the back of little more than a superstitious hunch; that the public are as gullible and pliant as lazy journalists, and will see a lab coat (a la Milgram) and happily swallow any computer simulated BS they are fed? Maybe this insistence from those such as Trenberth that black equals white, and two plus two will now equal five is simply a face-saving exercise? Maybe they feel the public just won’t ‘get’ anthropogenic climate change if it is far in the future, slow, not particularly catastrophic or unprecedented, so feel the need to construct a more immediate narrative, forgetting in their fog of smug, statistics driven hubris that their long-term hunch is just that – a belief – no more real or provable than a belief in the impending wrath of an angry sun god. Or maybe it is just about the money and prospect of tenure? One thing that is certain is that once their own models start to betray them, unless they can hide the undesirable results, they’ve got a problem..

  61. If they want more certainty in their climate projections, I think they should come up with a simpler model. In particular, get water out of it – I don’t understand how any model can successfully deal with something that goes from GHG vapor to albedo increasing cloud in under 100 meters.

    Now, if they want accuracy too, well, then they’ll just have accept that it’s a tough to impossible task and spend a lot of time learning how to model water.

  62. It’s not about communicating uncertainty…
    it’s not about communication… it’s about
    EVIDENCE .

  63. I think the problem they have is with the English language. The word they wanted wasn’t
    “add”, it was “acknowledge.”

  64. The more we learn the less we understand is typical of immature natural sciences and a single, dramatic and reproducible finding in a mature area of science can upset the apple cart of whatever is currently used as the consensus, standard model. This is how normal science works and what Trenberth so clearly fears.

  65. “… in other words, those mechanisms that can amplify or diminish the overall effect of increased incoming radiation.”

    Increased incoming radiation. Where will that be coming from? I was under the impression that the Sun had no effect on this as it was a steady input.

    Now if they would publish a K&T graphic based on temperature not W/m^2 we would see how silly the graphic is.

  66. Sometimes its useful to take a statement and reverse the sense. just like the negative of a photograph can show more and in sharper relief .

    by removing the behaviour of clouds, people or ecosystem feedbacks, for example — we will increase the certainty in climate projections. The simplified model that was used in previous AR’s, therefore, did not confuse both the public and decision-makers, thereby increasing their willingness to act

    EO

  67. Trenberth: “…may confuse both the public and decision-makers, thereby reducing their willingness to act.”

    Nothing says more clearly that climate science is being orchestrated in such a way as to make people “willing to act”. By this they mean, sacrifice their lifestyle, their money, and their freedom.

  68. Public disclosure of climate science research results can lead to misinterpretation and results can and will be misused.

    Does this include publication in journals? If not then this is not following the scientific process which demands that others see if they can replicate your results.

  69. “Is it not a reasonable expectation that as knowledge and understanding increase over time, uncertainty should decrease? But while our knowledge of certain factors does increase, so does our understanding of factors we previously did not account for or even recognize. ”

    Well if your initial conclusions were correct, then making the model more accurate would decrease the uncertainty.

    Unfortunately in this case the models were not designed to mirror the physical world, but the anticipated result. Which naturally leads them to be less accurate (to the made up anticipated result) and more accurate toward the actual physical environment.

  70. The paper is simply stating what every scientist knows. It is basic mathematics. Many of the comments here are showing the level of ignorance of all science by those posting. There is a failure here to distinguish between precision and accuracy.

    If you multiply two parameters with values of 2 and 5 in a calculation with each an uncertainty of 5% the result is 10 with an uncertainty of 5+ 5 = 10 % = 1.

    But two parameters may not describe the reality of the situation. If you add a third parameter with a value of 1.5 and an uncertainty of 10% making the calculation more complicated but more realistic, the uncertainty in the result will 15 with an uncertainty of 5 + 5 + 10 = 20% = 3.

    The oversimplified calculation may have a lower calculated uncertainty, with the calculated result lying between 9 and 11, but the more complicated calculation can be expected to real world situation and calculated result of between 12 and 18 is therefore likely to be more accurate.

    The author is explaining that non-scientist are likely to be confused about this and it needs explaining. The responses here show how right he is.

    To repeat. It is nothing unique to climate science in this. It is a fact of all scientific calculation.

  71. Andrew30 says:
    April 28, 2011 at 9:22 pm

    netdr2 says: April 28, 2011 at 8:43 pm
    “The alarmists and everyone else agree that the amount of warming from doubling CO2 is about 1 ° C.”

    I disagree; show me the actual measured data that supports that conjecture.
    *************************
    OK everyone else doesn’t agree.

    Dr Hansen and the British royal society have been quoted as using that value. So have skeptics like the editor of climateskeptic.com so it is widely accepted.

    Paragraph 28
    Application of established physical principles shows that, even in the absence of processes that amplify or reduce climate change (see paragraphs 12 & 13), the climate sensitivity would be around 1 ° C, for a doubling of CO2 concentrations. A climate forcing of 1.6 Wm-2 (see previous paragraph) would, in this hypothetical case, lead to a globally averaged surface warming of about 0.4oC. However, as will be discussed in paragraph The Royal Society Climate change: a summary of the science I September 2010 I 6 36, it is expected that the actual change, after accounting for the additional processes, will be greater than this.

    http://royalsociety.org/climate-change-summary-of-science/

    It is a computed value taken from Boltzmann’s equations on radiation of a black/gray body.

    The point which some people missed is that it [1 ° C] is not a problem, the problem comes from the water vapor and the water vapor is going down instead of up as predicted. Without amplification the puny warming from CO2 is not a problem.

  72. Trenberth is channeling zombie Schneider, who stated that it’s A-OK to lie to the public in order to move the agenda forward. So recently Trenberth proposed replacing the climate null hypothesis with his very own cherry-picked “null hypothesis,” because temperatures aren’t rising like he wants them to; the ultimate authority – the planet itself – is falsifying AGW.

    Articles like this one are a real public service. We can see by reading Trenberth’s own words that he is a real scoundrel – the poster boy for climate charlatans, with his snout deep in the public trough. There needs to be a reckoning.

  73. Well as I mistakenly posted below; adding proper cloud behavior to the present models which give the wrong answers, would simply show that the whole thing is too chaotic to predict.

    Why not try to learn what the climate IS first; before you worry about trying to predict what it is going to be.

  74. I have long contended that any long term stable, predictable results in the integration of noisy, stiff, PDE’s, with incomplete or inaccurate starting and boundary conditions can *only* be an artifact of the solver and not an accurate model of the underlying system.

    The reality is, that the nice clean results were fully based on the assumptions and biases of the model, not any physical reality. The fact that “frobbed knobs” can be set to match a given hindcast set yeilds no predictive value.

    Interestingly, it is a logical fallacy of the same type as those in the Mann-ian temperature reconstructions.

  75. The more uncertainty, the less doubt – that something must be done.
    Someone should explain the uncertainties OF the risks OF the damage.

  76. I have long contended that the temperatures since records began can be explained very adequately without resorting to CO2.

    The warming from 1978 to 1998 was caused by excess El Nino’s over La Nina’s.

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/ensostuff/ensoyears.shtml

    There are more El Nino’s when the PDO is positive .

    http://rankexploits.com/musings/2008/nasa-says-pdo-switched-to-cold-phase/

    From 1940 to 1978 there were excess La Nina’s, and it cooled

    From 1998 to present there were an equal number of El Nino’s and La Nina’s and the temperature stayed the same.

    I have long contended that the temperatures since records began can be explained by natural cycles and no CO2 is needed.

    There seems to be a 1/2 ° C per century ramp [from increased solar activity ] and a 60 year PDO cycle combined . We are at the top of the cycle and headed down.

    The point is: If you subtract the natural ocean cycles there is almost nothing left so of course the human contribution cannot be very great.

    This undermines the alarmists attaining their goals.

  77. Philip Shehan:

    At April 29, 2011 at 7:50 am you provide your interpretation of what Trenberth meant. That interpretation may be correct but if it is then Trenberth managed to hide his meaning very well.

    And your explanation of uncertainty is wrong.

    Richard

  78. I think that this can all be summed up by the Chinese proverb:

    “He who rides a tiger, is afraid to dismount”

    In this case they have created a really ferocious industry killing tiger. What will it eat next if its not allowed to kill industries?

  79. “Ian says:
    April 28, 2011 at 8:15 pm

    I’m a research scientist in endocrinology and have discovered the more I know the less I know, as every result leads to a whole heap of other questions. ”

    I am a neurochemist and I have discovered that much of what I think I know is actually wrong or only right in particular circumstances.
    The type of brain cancer cells I work on are noted for their increased expression of monoamine oxidase B. I somewhat accidentally discovered this morning that one of my ‘funny’ and very aggressive primary GBM cultures has next to no MAO-B, but stuffed to the gills with MAO-A.

  80. “uncertainty” is the warmists ways of say “evidence that tends to disprove our beliefs”

  81. We need a stronger word than hubris! To accept that the simpler models that left out major meteorological features like clouds led to more certainty about climate is the most assinine (I left the double ‘s’ in on purpose) thing I have heard thus far in this craziness. Scientifically, the only way to make sense of such statements is to have to accept that CAGW is a fact. If not, what yardstick is being used to decide that uncertainty is increased. When you say uncertainty is increased you are saying that you are less certain than you were before – this progress is totally lost on ideologues like Trenberth. To me, his remark that it was a ‘travesty’ that they couldn’t account for the lack of warming over 10 years, showed he didn’t know the meaning of the word travesty. Now I see that being a zealot, he meant that there is no question that the globe is in a runaway CAGW and it is a travesty that one can’t point to its manifestation (he would never consider that the hypothesis is wrong).

  82. netdr2 says: April 29, 2011 at 9:26 am
    “Dr Hansen and the British royal society.”, “editor of climateskeptic.com” “It is a computed value”

    Feynman:
    “Guess -> Compute the consequences -> Compare to Experiment/Experience (Directly to Observations)

    If it disagrees with experiment, it’s wrong.
    That simple statement is the key to science.

    It doesn’t make a difference how beautiful your Guess is. It doesn’t make a difference how smart you are, who made the Guess or what his name is, if it disagrees with experiment, it’s wrong!”

    netdr2 your response appears to stop at the “Compute the consequences” phase; where is the “Compare to Experiment/Experience (Directly to Observations)” part?

    Until that can is done the whole thing is conjecture, not science, if it is shown to disagree with nature, even once, then it is Wrong.

    It has not been Observed; and I do not accept; that there is a consistent, predictable and demonstrable link between the concentration of carbon dioxide in the Earth’s atmosphere and the global average temperature.

    netdr2 your analysis of the effect of a 1 degree C rise in global average temperature in the context of carbon dioxide is a response to a relationship that has not been shown to exist, and gives the conjecture a credence that it does not deserve. Effectively you are saying “OK, but ..” , which means that you are accepting as science that which is not, and arguing the outcome of the conjecture rather than arguing in support of science.

    I disagree with your position.

  83. Andrew30,

    Thanks for that Feynman quote on the key to science. It can’t be repeated too often.

    However, as I read the comments above, I don’t see that you and netdr2 are very far apart. Netdr2 wrote:

    “I have long contended that the temperatures since records began can be explained very adequately without resorting to CO2. …the temperatures since records began can be explained by natural cycles and no CO2 is needed.”

    That is my position, too. CO2 may add some insignificant warming, but the effect is negligible and overwhelmed by natural cycles. And so far, the putative warming from CO2 is explained only by radiative physics models; it has not been demonstrated with testable, empirical measurements or observations.

    But neither has warming from increased CO2 been falsified. To the minuscule extent that it may be occuring, it is harmless.

  84. Seems to me that the more correct (less “wrong”) a model is, the less politically useful it becomes…

    SSam says:
    April 28, 2011 at 10:51 pm
    OT from the closed thread, but this isn’t about that subject anyway.

    Dave Springer says:
    It’s time for the B/S to stop. Period.

    I would like to see that, too. How do you propose making it happen?

  85. In physics class we once approximated the heat dissipation of a running horse by assuming it was a uniform sphere. We all acknowledged that it was only a first order approximation and was at best a ballpark starting point, requiring shape, density and permeability corrections to even get close to the real answer. We never would have published a paper on that first order approximation, but we did use it as an upper limit approximation to check our answers against. I still bet our final answer was a bit high.

    Why can’t “climate scientists” realize that their models weren’t much closer to the Earth climate system than modeling a horse as a uniform density spherical heat engine. Yes it gets very messy as you add all the real terrain and albedo effects of all the molecules in the system.

    I believe meteorology is what chaos theory evolved from, and climate is just the integral over all space-time of weather. I haven’t studied it closely, but I think the sum over all time of a spatially chaotic system is chaotic. The chaos likely lives between upper and lower bounds, but between those bounds anything goes.

  86. In other words, “I know what I know, don’t confuse me with facts”.

    His statements indicate that the modelers know their results have a large uncertainty that they are hiding. Adding detail to a model doesn’t increase uncertainty, it only makes the uncertainty that was always there show itself? The uncertainty is greater in a model with less detail, it just isn’t being exposed. My guess is that adding clouds and other major drivers and feedbacks to the models will overwhelm any input from CO2. The models might begin to act like weather, chaotic, and reveal the models for what they really are, useless (at predicting climate).

    How did this guy (Trenberth) end up in such an important position, one from which he can influence the economic future of the world? Reading his inane non-science gibberish made me feel dirty. He is no scientist, he is simply a tool of those who would like to control our lives. If he keeps it up, he will find himself looking for work, which would be a good thing.

    Can anything useful be created by someone so biased?

  87. Smokey:

    This is where I disagree with netdr2;
    “The point which some people missed is that it [1 ° C] is not a problem”
    netdr2, is yielding to the conjecture that 1 degree C will occur.

    Man: Would you sleep with me for a million dollars?
    Woman: Ok.
    Man: Would you sleep with me for ten dollars.
    Woman: What do you think I am; some kind of prostitute?!
    Man: That has already been established, we are now only discussing price.

    By yielding 1 degree C, the premise (more carbon dioxide = higher temperatures) is established, and the amount (1 degree – 6 degrees) becomes the argument.

    The premise (more carbon dioxide = higher temperatures) must be confronted.

    It may seem like a minor difference of position to you, but to me it is fundamental.

  88. Best summation of the point of Trenberth’s remarks:

    Tilo Reber says:
    April 29, 2011 at 7:00 am
    Trenberth: “…may confuse both the public and decision-makers, thereby reducing their willingness to act.”

    Nothing says more clearly that climate science is being orchestrated in such a way as to make people “willing to act”. By this they mean, sacrifice their lifestyle, their money, and their freedom.

    The IPCC was created to further an agenda, not to do science. The intent was clearly to create panic among the public, the media, and government by making it seem as though the industrialized world was causing catastrophic ‘global warming’. What better vehicle than an ‘official’ United Nations report by an agency purportedly representing ‘thousands of scientists’, a ‘consensus’ that this alarming prospect was imminent, and emergency action by government was required. They might as well have called it ‘The International Panic Creation Commission’.

    They were very successful. Even while responsible scientists and laymen increasingly question the ‘findings’ of the IPCC, the establishment media, academics, bureaucracies, and political leaders continue to pursue draconian statist ‘solutions’ to this imaginary crisis. Dr. Trenberth worries that any admission of error (‘uncertainty’) in the next IPCC report could undermine this movement toward world statism. And well he might—but only if Climate Realists can continue to challenge establishment ‘climate science’ and can undermine the legitimacy and raison d’etre if the IPCC. A concerted effort to abolish it cannot come too soon.

    /Mr Lynn

  89. I can’t believe that a substantial proportion of climate “scientists” are even this minute looking around to find another research field to move to before this whole charade comes crashing down.

    OK, there are a few key players who are “in blood stepped in so far that should I wade no more, Returning were as tedious as go o’er.” (Macbeth), but for the rest unless they are just outright stupid they know it is just a matter of time before the funding dries up and those last in the queue to get into new areas will have no chance of a new job when the reputation of climate “Science” hits rock bottom.

  90. Michael J says:
    April 29, 2011 at 12:04 am
    I think many have missed the really alarming bit of Dr Trenberth’s statements. He really doesn’t understand how uncertainty works.
    —————————————————————————-
    Michael. From his position, he doesn’t need to understand that. As I have already said, he comes from a position of immutable truth. All he (or rather others who follow him) needs to do is communicate that to the great unwashed more effectively. You cannot win with such people.

    Douglas

  91. Philip Shehan April 29, 2011 at 7:50 am

    Trenberth is talking about the uncertainty in predictions and forecasts of future climate, not measurement error. Go back and read what I said at April 28, 2011 at 9:58 pm.

    The old models without the new parameters only look more certain because Trenberth et al ignored the uncertainty due to their limited ability to describe the real world, and only reported the uncertainty arising for different model runs (and even then ignored the uncertainty in absolute temperatures – reporting only difference from the mean etc etc).

    With the addition of further parameters hopefully more of the uncertainty in the real world is modeled, so the scenario runs have more variation. Consequently the predictions and forecasts as reported look less certain, whereas in fact what is actually happening is the forecasts are better representing the variability in the climate.

    What Trenberth meant to say was our old models badly underestimated the variability in the climate, and what we had previously reported was woefully understated. Our new models give a better estimate of that uncertainty, but they are still inadequate to adequately describe future climates, and we still haven’t attempted to calculate the real uncertainty in that.

    Incidentally you should probably brush up on how to combine measurement errors.

  92. This article neatly wraps up all thirty years of this nonsense. We’ve come from 20/20 ignorance, to blind understanding.

  93. Andrew30 says:
    April 28, 2011 at 9:22 pm

    netdr2 says: April 28, 2011 at 8:43 pm
    “The alarmists and everyone else agree that the amount of warming from doubling CO2 is about 1 ° C.”

    I disagree; show me the actual measured data that supports that conjecture.

    You indicated:
    Increasing carbon dioxide concentrations from 0.00000001 ppm to 0.00000002 ppm causes a 1 degree C increase in global temperature.
    Increasing carbon dioxide concentrations from 1,000 ppm to 2,000 ppm causes a 1 degree C increase in global temperature.
    Increasing carbon dioxide concentrations from 100,000 ppm to 200,000 ppm causes a 1 degree C increase in global temperature.

    I can’t tell if you’re familiar with it, or if netdr2 is, but the logarithmic nature of CO2 concentrations to temperature is merely a rule of thumb. It breaks down at concentrations significantly above or below current levels, but does hold for much of Earth’s O2 containing atmosphere.

    The logarithmic fit is simply from curve fitting and provides an easy to compute value useful in modeling or discussions at the lunch table. At much lower concentrations, the effect is more linear, at much higher, then you have to start deciding if it replaces N2 and O2 or just makes the atmosphere thicker. Your 200,000 ppm is close to current O2 levels.

    One physical description is that the IR window is pretty much shut at current concentrations, increasing CO2 merely widens the window a little bit. At very low concentrations where most IR made it out, then a linear relationship is what you’d expect.

    Various references, the first may be the best, perhaps you can read through them, look up some others and report with critiques of them all.

    http://scienceofdoom.com/2010/02/19/co2-an-insignificant-trace-gas-part-seven-the-boring-numbers/

    http://motls.blogspot.com/2008/01/why-is-greenhouse-effect-logarithmic.html

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/03/08/the-logarithmic-effect-of-carbon-dioxide/

  94. “I have long contended that the temperatures since records began can be explained very adequately without resorting to CO2. …the temperatures since records began can be explained by natural cycles and no CO2 is needed.”
    .
    No they can’t because we don’t have a reliable temperature record. If you think that a dozens stations in 1850 have same precision of thousand in 2000? And even those thousand today, do you think the current temperature is measured correctly and with 0.1 Cº precision?
    ———————————
    ———————————
    The text shows how current models are not even models since they are absurdly incomplete.
    And it shows worse, the denial of warmists.
    They even talk about what is in front of their eyes, but they don’t extract any consequence of the facts they list.

  95. “…increasing a model’s complexity — by adding the behaviour of clouds, people or ecosystem feedbacks, for example — may actually increase the uncertainty in climate projections.”

    This is as opposed to the SIMPLE element of human activity. When I first got into all of this (somewhere in the late 1990s), one of my first questions was:

    “Where is the quantified data on the different human activities and how much each contributes to warming?”

    We have let them blame humans with sweeping statements, but besides carbon dioxide and the pitifully false Wang, Jones et al UHI study, they haven’t addressed anything else. It is too complicated for them. And they are here stating that shortcoming as fact.

    The other aspect of this pathetic cry-baby statement is that they are arguing that a simpler model is better than one that includes everything. And rather than go out and LEARN about clouds, they whine to the public and policymakers that they need to simplify their models.

    This is like arguing that Frogger is a better game than the more complicated and better video games, because all that 3D stuff and smooth action is just too much, and can we all please go back to Space Invaders and Tetris? Let’s all ditch our post-386 PCs, too. It’s all just too much to absorb.

    If it is too much for them, Trenberth et al should just get out of the way and let the next generation get on with it.

    Atmospheric scientist Kevin Trenberth of the US National Centre for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, has explicitly warned that unless such seemingly paradoxical results are communicated carefully

    Yes, watch the pea. It isn’t whether or not the “seemingly paradoxical results” are calculated properly. It is whether they are spoon-feeding it properly. This is their meme now, as long as skeptics exist: “The skeptics are only about communicating, so we will be, too.”

    In other words, when a stand-up comic doesn’t get laughs, it isn’t the comic who is at fault, or the joke writers. It is the audience (or the stage lights, or the acoustics…). He must not have explained it to them well enough. — We all know how jokes go over when one has to EXPLAIN them…

    A hint to Kevin: No one is laughing, except at your ineptitude. Thanks for at least admitting it, but we won’t let you try to compute using your abacus.

    Did they really say it is too complicated for them? And they expect people to give them grant monies after that admission?

    Ay-yi-yi. . .

  96. TonyG says:

    Ref my “It’s time for the B/S to stop. Period.”

    “I would like to see that, too. How do you propose making it happen?”

    For one, stop making lame excuses for repugnant behavior. If an idiot (and associated organization) makes a statement or correlation that flies in the face of moral decency, call them out on it. Excusing an idiot for being an idiot because he/she/it could be incompetent is just asking for more of the same. Why? Because you’ll just excuse it again.

  97. netdr2 says:
    April 28, 2011 at 8:43 pm
    The alarmists and everyone else agree that the amount of warming from doubling CO2 is about 1 ° C. The remainder is supposed to come from increased water vapor.

    The problem for the alarmists is that the water vapor isn’t increasing in fact it is decreasing.

    http://c3headlines.typepad.com/.a/6a010536b58035970c0147e2fc6895970b-pi

    As you can see since 1950 there has been a steady decrease in water vapor.

    Since the amplification is based on increasing water vapor which isn’t happening then it follows that the amplification isn’t happening either.

    An increase in temperature of 1 ° C in 100 years is not a problem worth crippling our economies for is it ?

    Do the scientific based alarmists not know this fact ?

    Thanks netdr2 for that excellent point! I agree that anyone whose opinions are driven by scientific based truths and whose arguments follow the scientific method should weigh the information that cast doubts on the supposed multiplicative effect of atmospheric CO2.

    The only minor quibble I have with your terminology is when you write “scientific based alarmists”. I suggest we reserve the term “Alarmist” for the non-science-oriented folks, many of whom are driven by political philosophy to believe big-corporations are driving human civilization to destroy Planet Earth and (a non-sequitur) that big-government is the solution. Unquestioned belief in Catastrophic CAGW is central to their agenda and some of them who have genuine scientific credentials are quite willing to prostitute false science to their service.

    I would rather use the term “Warmist” for those whose belief in CAGW is subject to change based on real data (e.g., no statistically significant global warming over the past decade and a half despite continued rapid rise in CO2 levels, no significant multiplier effect of CO2 on water vapor, etc.). A Warmist has sufficient faith in the scientific method to change his or her views based on evidence.

    On our side, we have those good folks I call “Disbelievers” (aka “Deniers”, a term with baggage I would rather avoid) who also tend to be non-science-oriented to the point they do not accept the well-established idea that certain Atmospheric gases (mainly water vapor and CO2) are responsible for the surface temperatures of the Earth being some 33ºC warmer that it would be if the Atmosphere was pure nitrogen. In my recent WUWT Topic a couple of them spouted nonsense about the Second Law of Thermodynamics preventing a cooler body from emitting radiation in the direction of a warmer body, and also claiming that radiation we call “light” (in the visible and near-visible range) lacked the “oomph” to be “thermal”, so only the radiation we call “heat” (in the mid-far IR range) can actually warm anything. These good people seem to be so driven by political (and in some cases religious) reaction against the CAGW Alarmists that they have the opposite and equally wrong doctrine of Disbelieving DAGW. Like their CAGW opponents, they are not reachable by science-based argument. Some in the DAGW camp have genuine scientific credentials that they misuse to come up with scientific-sounding nonsense to defeat the CAGW nonsense.

    So, your fine posting has given me an opportunity to identify two groups who are unqualified for science-based argument, the CAGW Alarmists on the left, and the DAGW Disbelievers on the right.

    That leaves us with the science-oriented Warmists, the Lukewarmers, and the Skeptics. We all accept the basic science of the Atmospheric “greenhouse” effect. We also accept the fact that human activities, primarily burning unprecedented quantities of formerly-sequestered fossil fuels and land use that has reduced the albedo of the Earth, have some effect on climate, along with a number of natural cycles and processes. As you point out, netdr2, increased levels of CO2, acting alone, would indeed raise global temperatures above what they would be given natural cycles and processes, but not enough to impel us to wreck our economies over.

    Given the above accepted scientific truths, the main difference between Warmists, Lukewarmers, and Skeptics is how much they judge human activities to contribute to natural warming and cooling, whether or not that amount of anthropogenic warming would be a net benefit or detriment to human society, and what, if anything we should do beyond adaptation.

    Warmists tend to judge the net human contribution to be on the high side (more than 1ºC or 2ºC or 3ºC warming), that it would be a net detriment to human society, and that individuals and governments should take strong action to ameliorate these effects, and we should do so sooner than later.

    Skeptics tend to judge the net human contribution to be on the low side (less than 1ºC and possibly as little as 0.1ºC or 0.2ºC warming), that slightly more CO2 and warmth would be a net benefit to human society, that governments are so incompetent (or corrupt) that they cannot do much to reduce CO2 and land use even if it was justified, and therefore individuals and governments should take little or no action to ameliorate these effects, at least until the facts justify action.

    Lukewarmers are somewhere between Warmists and Skeptic. Further data and scientific discovery may slide Warmists and Skeptics towards the Lukewarmer position, or the other way, no one knows.

  98. Andrew30 says:
    April 28, 2011 at 9:22 pm
    netdr2 says: April 28, 2011 at 8:43 pm
    [Quoting netdr2] “The alarmists and everyone else agree that the amount of warming from doubling CO2 is about 1 ° C.”

    I disagree; show me the actual measured data that supports that conjecture. …

    You conjecture is … incorrect since it contains no actual starting value.
    Prove what you have claimed with Actual Measured Data.

    Please get with the program, Andrew30. When any of us (on either side) who have been following the conversation speak of CO2 sensitivity, we assume a starting point somewhere around 270 or 280 ppmv that would double to around 540 to 560 ppmv. We all know that doubling from some much smaller value such as you suggest, 1 to 2 ppmv or from some much higher value such as you suggest of 100,000 to 200,000 ppmv would have far different effects on mean surface temperatures. Lets not create “straw-man” arguments that indicate you have not been paying attention or that you are purposely trying to obfuscate the issue.

  99. SO FAR I have never seen Dr. Trenberth as the bad guy some around here make him out to be. He’s interested in the truth and he’s pursuing it. He’s also one of the brightest folks in his field. Let’s give him credit, particularly for acknowledging paradox explicitly; only the brightest people have the ability to see where the assumptions break down and only the brave capable ones who can defend themselves dare point it out. Good work Kevin. Best Regards, Paul Vaughan.

  100. Geoff Sherrington says:
    April 29, 2011 at 1:04 am
    The near-future history is silly. It has illogical phrases like this: “Prediction b: By 2015, a punitive tax on non-renewable carbon-based energy will quadruple costs of coal, oil, and natural gas. All or most of the Carbon Tax revenue will be returned to the people, making it (almost) revenue-neutral. ”

    What’s the flaw? Well, the money returned to the people will mostly be spent on activities that generate GHG. Indeed, because of inefficiencies compared to producing GHG in optimised fossil fuel plants, this fragmented activity by the peasants will probably increase the per capita production of GHG. …

    Here is the argument for an across-the-board Carbon Tax, collected at the coal-mine, oil- or gas-well, or port-of-entry and returned to the people on a per-capita basis:

    1) Given punitively higher costs for products and services containing high quantities of fossil fuels, each individual and every industry will have an incentive to reduce usage -or- pay the higher price, according to their own judgment of what will be most beneficial to them.

    2) That will get the government out of the business of picking winners (Ethanol, wind, …). People and industries will either pay the higher costs, take prudent risks to develop alternative energy sources that make sense to them, or reduce usage by being more efficient or vacationing locally rather than far away or using walking, bicycling, or using public transport, etc.

    3) It will be inexpensive to collect the tax and hard to cheat since governments already impose taxes at ports-of-entry and quantities are measured fairly accurately at mines and wells.

    4) Assuming the Carbon Tax is across-the-board (no exceptions or preferences for any particular fossil fuel or industry), and that all the money is immediately disbursed equally per-capita (both big ifs), and the tax starts relatively small and is increased annually according to a pre-specified schedule allowing people and industries to plan long-term, there should be little or no disruption of the economy.

    5) Yes, some people will turn around and spend the money they get when the Carbon Tax revenues are dispersed on GHG-creating activities. But, some will look to their own self-interest and, over time, change their behaviors. Industries, faced with inexorably rising costs for fossil fuels, will spend their own money according to their own interests. Yes, some will continue to use fossil fuels and try to pass the costs on to consumers. Others will invest in alternatives and some of these will turn out to be bad choices. But, some will make good choices and prove out new ways to effectively reduce energy costs. That is called “creative destruction”.

    The main justification for such a Carbon Tax is not any real danger of extreme global warming. It is the cost, in blood and treasure, of defending our access to oil from unstable areas of the world. We need to increase our levels of self-sufficiency. So long as foreign petrol is available at less cost than alternative, non-fossil sources, even at current inflated levels, industries and people will not switch away from fossil fuels or do anything much to conserve.

    When gas cost $4-$5 a couple years ago (and now with costs around $4) people did (and do) use less. All that extra money goes to the oil companies and (mostly) foreign countries. With a Carbon Tax we’d get the same effect, but the money would stay here.

    Although I do not believe our political system will ever pass a Carbon Tax that meets all the above requirements, I support the idea as a political tactic. You can’t fight something (the cap and trade scam, for example, which is a politician’s delight) with nothing. By saying we favor the Carbon Tax we can pass as concerned citizens and call the bluff on the phony-environmentalists who talk about saving energy but do nothing.

  101. I’m wondering whether there is a current chart like the sea ice page that shows past and current temperature projections?

  102. Ira,

    In addition to what you stated, one more key aspect that needs to be studied through observations and data collection is that whether the earth’s system has a homeostatsis kind of mechanism wherein natural processes react to the addition of the extra CO2 to keep temperatures within a certain narrow, stable range. Nobody seems to have looked at this possibility.

  103. Paul Vaughan on April 29, 2011 at 9:00 pm

    SO FAR I have never seen Dr. Trenberth as the bad guy some around here make him out to be. He’s interested in the truth and he’s pursuing it. He’s also one of the brightest folks in his field. Let’s give him credit, particularly for acknowledging paradox explicitly; only the brightest people have the ability to see where the assumptions break down and only the brave capable ones who can defend themselves dare point it out.

    Sorry but Trenberth is a political animal. Faced with the unpalatable fact that the scenarios were going to diverge further and draw attention to their weaknesses he is simply out there as part of the advance publicity team managing expectations.

    If you want to see Trenberth’s sophistry at work have a look at the statement in Trenberth, K. E., and J. T. Fasullo, 2010: Tracking Earth’s energy. Science, 328, 316-317.

    Increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) (see the figure) and other greenhouse gases have led to a post-2000 imbalance at the top of the
    atmosphere of 0.9 ± 0.5 W m–2 ( 5); it is this imbalance that produces “global warming.”

    And then check on the reference (5) Trenberth, K. E., J. T. Fasullo, and J. Kiehl, 2009: Earth’s global energy budget. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 90, No. 3, 311-324, doi: 10.1175/2008BAMS2634.1. which says:

    Thus, the net TOA imbalance is reduced to an acceptable but imposed 0.9 W m−2 (about 0.5 PW). [my emphasis]

    Obviously someone who is deeply misunderstood.

  104. Ira Glickstein, PhD says:
    “Please get with the program, Andrew30. When any of us (on either side) who have been following the conversation speak of CO2 sensitivity,…”

    The point I was making, which you appear to have missed, likely because I was not clear was:

    The statement did NOT include a value of 270 or 280 ppmv, but instead made a general statement about doubling carbon dioxide causing an increase in temperature. It contain no actual value for ‘double’. It was thus no different that a moving goalposts prediction. The same ‘statement’ as been used since about 1975, with multiple base values for CO2. Papers from the past and the present use the same term with completely different meaning, the phrase ‘doubling of co2’ corresponds to No Actual Value.

    Google: “doubling of co2 from”
    doubling of CO2 from current values
    doubling of CO2 from 280ppmv to 560ppmv
    doubling of CO2 from pre-industrial levels
    doubling of CO2 from present levels
    doubling of CO2 from about 300 ppm to six hundred ppm
    doubling of CO2 from 380 ppm to 760 ppm
    doubling of CO2 from 370 to 740
    doubling of CO2 from 275 to 550 ppmv

    Ira I suggest that you send out a memo to “any of us (on either side)”, they do not seem to understand the unspoken value of ‘double’. Get with the program Ira, do not make assumptions; be clear; use Real Numbers, ‘double’ is Not a Number.
    Double is not a recognized Constant.

  105. >>
    Philip Shehan says:
    April 29, 2011 at 7:50 am

    If you multiply two parameters with values of 2 and 5 in a calculation with each an uncertainty of 5% the result is 10 with an uncertainty of 5+ 5 = 10 % = 1.

    But two parameters may not describe the reality of the situation. If you add a third parameter with a value of 1.5 and an uncertainty of 10% making the calculation more complicated but more realistic, the uncertainty in the result will 15 with an uncertainty of 5 + 5 + 10 = 20% = 3.
    <<

    I disagree. The error (in percent) for the product of two numbers in your example is:

    e = ((.05)^2 + (0.5)^2)^0.5 = 7% or about ±0.7

    The error for three numbers in your example is:

    e = ((.05)^2 + (.05)^2 + (.10)^2)^0.5 = 12.2% or about ±1.8

    But that’s the way I learned how to calculate error in engineering (for products). YMMV

    Jim

  106. It would be nice if I could correct posting errors. The first equation in my post above should read:

    e = ((.05)^2 + (.05)^2)^0.5 = 7% or about ±0.7

    I got the decimal point wrong while typing it.

    Jim

  107. Ira Glickstein, PhD says: April 29, 2011 at 9:52 pm
    “Yes, some will continue to use fossil fuels and try to pass the costs on to consumers. Others will invest in alternatives and some of these will turn out to be bad choices. But, some will make good choices and prove out new ways to effectively reduce energy costs. That is called “creative destruction”.”

    Ira, you left out the ‘Most will move production to China to reduce costs’ option?
    That is called “economic destruction”, and it is already working.

    You seem to be a bit naïve about international business and manufacturing.

  108. >>
    Ira Glickstein, PhD says:
    April 29, 2011 at 8:38 pm

    Lukewarmers are somewhere between Warmists and Skeptic. Further data and scientific discovery may slide Warmists and Skeptics towards the Lukewarmer position, or the other way, no one knows.
    <<

    The problem with a feedback model such as depicted in Kiehl and Trenberth 1997 is that you don’t get to play with numbers willy-nilly. The energy flows require a specific response. If we assume that the atmosphere window is narrowed when GHGs are added, then this will indeed warm the surface. But the atmosphere must warm at a faster rate than the surface.

    I’ve argued with many on the importance of the 15 micron CO2 absorption band (some say it’s more like 14.99 microns). We know that CO2 by itself can’t do the major lifting, so they add in H2O to compensate. The argument always deteriorates to how much is caused by CO2 initially and H2O after that. The advantage with narrowing the atmospheric window is that we don’t have to worry about which GHGs are causing it, and that any added GHG will work to narrow the window.

    The KT 97 model responds with window narrowing by warming the surface, but it effectively warms the atmosphere faster. The current temperature measurements show the atmosphere warming, but not at the correct rate. That is, the atmosphere is warming at a rate from between 70% to 90% of the surface. For GHG warming, it must warm at a rate exceeding 120% of the surface (maybe higher than 150%).

    So we can’t verify KT 97 with GHGs. However, if we alter the planet’s albedo, then the surface warms and the atmosphere warms at the correct rate. I always chuckle when warmist claim that we can’t explain the current surface warming without CO2. Actually we can–simply alter the albedo. In fact, we can keep the albedo changes well within the current known error slop for albedo and explain all the current surface warming.

    Jim

  109. Thanks Jim. That’s how I recall calculating errors as a research chemist but it’s been a while. I would have to check but I don’t think your corrections (if they are inded correct) alter the thrust of my argument.

  110. Jim. Just tried this method of calculation:

    An error of 5% for 2 is ± 0.1 so the value is between 1.9 and 2.1

    An error of 5% for 5 is ± 0.25 so the value is between 4.75 and 5.25

    So multiplying the upper and lower bounds means the calculated product is between 9.025 and 11.025. Close enough to 10 ± 10% especially if you take the result to 2 significant figures.

  111. Ira Glickstein, PhD says: April 29, 2011 at 9:52 pm
    Spending carbon tax monies.

    Think a little deeper, Ira. What is available for the peasant to spend his windfall money on? Almost everything that matters has an equation “spend $ = more GHG”. If you think that John Citizen is going to buy electricity from windmill shysters, John Citizen will need convincing that it is cheaper BEFORE subsidies and that is does not require gas turbine spinning reserve.
    You have a naive view of altruism of the common man. I credit her/him with a geat deal more common sense. All of them that I know see the push for alt energy rather like a compulsory Nigerian scam.
    BTW, I live in Australia where I helped to discover abundant future energy, so your closing conclusions are lost on me. I’d still like to see a good persons’ guide, a list of ways to spend money while reducing GHG. Sad if it does not exist.
    We are getting closer to the full title of Kubrick’s ‘Doctor Strangelove’, whose latter part was ‘or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.’

  112. Andrew30 says:
    April 29, 2011 at 11:57 pm /#comment-650926

    replying to Ira’s post /#comment-650873 “Please get with the program, Andrew30. When any of us (on either side) who have been following the conversation speak of CO2 sensitivity, we assume a starting point somewhere around 270 or 280 ppmv that would double to around 540 to 560 ppmv.”

    The point I was making, which you appear to have missed, likely because I was not clear was:

    The statement did NOT include a value of 270 or 280 ppmv, but instead made a general statement about doubling carbon dioxide causing an increase in temperature. …….Doubling is not a recognized constant.

    From: http://www.real-debt-elimination.com/real_freedom/Propaganda/Global_Warming_Myth/carbon_cycle_modeling_and_CO2.htm

    Carbon cycle modelling and the residence time of natural and anthropogenic atmospheric CO2: on the construction of the “Greenhouse Effect Global Warming” dogma.

    Tom V. Segalstad Mineralogical-Geological Museum University of Oslo

    3. The foundation of the CO2 dogma -early atmospheric CO2 measurements.

    In order to construct a “CO2 Greenhouse Effect Doom” dogma, it will be necessary to justify that (1) pre-industrial atmospheric CO2 was lower than today, (2) atmospheric CO2 has steadily risen from its pre-industrial level to today’s level, (3) Man’s burning of fossil fuel is causing an increase in atmospheric CO2 level, (4) hence atmospheric CO2 must have a long residence time (lifetime), and (5) atmospheric temperatures are increasing due to Man’s burning of fossil fuel.

    Callendar (1938) revived the hypothesis of “Greenhouse Warming” due to Man’s activity, proposed by Arrhenius (1896). Callendar may truly be regarded as the father of the current dogma on man-induced global warming (Jaworowski et al., 1992 b). In order to support his hypothesis, Callendar (1940, 1958) selected atmospheric CO2 data from the 19th and 20th centuries. Fonselius et al. (1956) showed that the raw data ranged randomly between about 250 and 550 ppmv (parts per million by volume) during this time period, but by selecting the data carefully Callendar was able to present a steadily rising trend from about 290 ppmv for the period 1866 -1900, to 325 ppmv in 1956.

    Callendar was strongly criticized by Slocum (1955), who pointed out a strong bias in Callendar’s data selection method. Slocum pointed out that it was statistically impossible to find a trend in the raw data set, and that the total data set showed a constant average of about 335 ppm over this period from the 19th to the 20th century. Bray (1959) also citicized the selection method of Callendar, who rejected values 10% or more different from the “general average” and even more so when Callendars’s “general average” was neither defined nor given.

    (Grin)

    However, Andrew30, the following is what I thought you were referring to – not that “doubling” is not a constant, but that the CO2 figure used as Ira takes for granted, comes from this sleight of hand and cherry-picking of data from the very beginning of the scam.

    Callendar was anti-coal, he had an agenda and he stuck with it. Keeling continued under his tutelage, establishing ‘without a shadow of doubt in less than two years measuring of volcanic output + on the world’s biggest active volcano etc., that he was measuring a rise in a mythical ‘background CO2′ untainted by this vast production of CO2 all around him, again, the ‘background’ never properly defined or proven to exist etc.’.

    So, I don’t agree with Ira’s “all agree”, for a kick off, because the 270-280 comes from this mythical cherry-picked agenda driven corruption of science – the rest of the science was and still is equally corrupt to continue the scam, but because this “doubling causing a 1°C rise is nowhere proved either, because it is nowhere proved that CO2 raises global temperatures. So:

    It is nowhere proved that doubling CO2 can raise global temperatures.

    All these types of, ‘new data clouds’ and the arguments then around them don’t deal with the basic premises about CO2 which AGWScience claims and has led to demonising of the food of Life. Frankly, I’m getting tired of these, we are being ripped off and plans to micro-manage us into poverty, ignorance, sickness and death to extinction of superfluous to requirements for slave labour to the elite are going on at full speed regardless.

    Ira – first prove that CO2 is capable of causing global rises in temperature.

    You’re promoting junk science here, as you did in your last discussion where you claimed that the heat we feel from the Sun comes from Solar, which in bog standard real science are not thermal, WE CAN’T feel them as heat, because they are not hot.

    Your opening posts continue to spout unproven claims and junk science re properties of the AGW premise as if they are fact. You still haven’t proved that Visible Light can heat land and sea.

    Prove that CO2 drives temperature.

  113. Myrrh

    I don’t think there is any doubt that CO2 causes warming. The debate is over how much.

    If you fill a jar with 100 % CO2 and another one with Nitrogen and expose them to sunlight the CO2 one will get warmer. Disputing the obvious doesn’t convert anyone.

    That being said, filling the jar with 380/1,000,000 CO2 won’t cause much warming in the jar or on the earth. The exact amount is difficult to measure because there are so many feedbacks and natural processes that are almost impossible to remove.

    The calculated values depend upon many assumptions which may be wrong but I use them as a starting point.

    Feedback may in fact make it even less than this “open loop” value.

  114. HAS: Again there is nothing at all startling in Trenberth and Pidgeon& Fischoff’s remarks concerning uncertainties in data. As one commentator pointed out, the more parameters you add each with its own uncertainty, the greater the total uncertainty at the end. This is really a statement of the bleeding obvious to any scientist. What they are pointing out is a that this will need to be explained to nonscientists who think it a paradox. It is not.

    It should be pointed out that the uncertainty in the final calculation or model can be lowered by reducing the uncertainty in the individual parameters by better measurements or reduction of uncertainty by other means. For example if mass measurements were made with balance that was state of the art at one time and measured to one thousandth of a milligram, the accuracy and the precision of the measurement would be improved by an updated balance that measured to a millionth of a gram, and any multifactorial calculation involving this parameter would also be improved.

    The assertion that climate scientists have not been aware that their data and the models on which they are base do not contain errors is ridiculous. The main object of climate science is to improve upon the understanding of the complex climate system by improvements in data and addition of forcing factors which have earlier been ignored. In 1981 Hansen produced a model based on just three parameters (CO2, solar and volcanic) which in good agreement with temperature records (Fig 5 of this paper)

    http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/1981/1981_Hansen_etal.pdf

    In 2005 he produced a more complex model based on a dozen forcings which provided a better fit of the observed temperature data.

    http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/2005/2005_Hansen_etal_1.pdf

  115. As regard to the argument here about the starting point for doubling of CO2. The relationship between CO2 concentration is logarithmic not linear. The sensitivity factor is taken as the temperature rise resulting from a doubling of CO@ from its pre industrial age concentration of 280 ppm in 1750. Let me quote from the abstract of this paper:

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

    “Various observations favour a climate sensitivity value of about 3 °C, with a likely range of about 2–4.5 °C. However, the physics of the response and uncertainties in forcing lead to fundamental difficulties in ruling out higher values.”

    Note the discussion of the uncertainties here. It takes up most of the abstract Claims that climatologists are not aware of the uncertainties are nonsense. They are working to reduce them.

    And from the text:

    radiative forcing and is readily computed as a function of the current CO2
    Relative to the pre-industrial CO2: ΔT = S ln(CO2/CO2(t=1750))/ln2.
    The total forcing is assumed to be the sum of all individual forcings. The sensitivity S can also be phrased as 8–10
    S = ΔT0/(1 − f) (2)
    where f is the feedback factor amplifying (if 0 < f < 1) or damping the initial blackbody response of ΔT0 = 1.2 °C for a CO2 doubling.

    So yes, 1.2 C of that amount is the direct response of CO2 and the remainder from the feedback mechanisms. Which are being further researched in order to better define their contribution and reduce the uncertainty.

    Again, that is what the research is all about. That is what Trenberth and the others are saying. That is what so many here fail to undestand.

  116. Philip Shehan,

    Observations trump computer models, which greatly overstate the assumed temperature rise.

    Who are you gonna believe? Trenberth? Or your lyin’ eyes?

  117. netdr2 says:
    April 30, 2011 at 7:24 am

    Myrrh – I don’t think there is any doubt that CO2 causes warming. The debate is over how much.

    I know there’s a lot of doubt… It follows temp rises by around 800 years, nothing in the line it takes following temp rises gives any indication of CO2 being the cause of the rises or falls, for example Vostok, but there are many other studies which show the same thing, including our own last century… CO2 also cools the Earth, in the same way as the Water Cycle, it takes heat away from the Earth.

    You can debate as much as you want ‘how much warming it causes’, but you (AGWScience & Others) have as yet not proved it causes any.

    If you fill a jar with 100% CO2 and another one with Nitrogen and expose them to sunlight the CO2 one will get warmer. Disputing the obvious doesn’t convert anyone.

    Sounds like a variation of the BBC. Take one jar of CO2 and one jar of Air and heat..

    …What temp did you get them to? Did you time it? Did you then time how long it took each to cool? Please show me details of the experiment. I don’t have the wherewithal to test it for myself.

    S’far as I’ve gathered, CO2 has a lower heat capacity than Nitrogen, so it will get hotter slightly quicker but also cool down more quickly. Water has a much higher heat capacity than either, it takes longer to heat up but retains the heat longer, that’s why we use it in our radiators, because it’s better for storing heat. Carbon Dioxide doesn’t store heat, it releases it practically instantly.

    That being said, filling the jar with 380/1,000,000 CO2 won’t cause much warming in the jar or on the earth. The exact amount is difficult to measure because there are so many feedbacks and natural processes that are almost impossible to remove.

    Including that as a real world ‘greenhouse gas’, it also directly cools the Earth, as does Nitrogen and Oxygen and especially Water Vapour; without the Water Cycle the Earth would be 67°C.

    In other words, it is not even proven that AGWScience’s ‘greenhouse gases’ warm the Earth to begin with. None of these basic premises used by AGWScience, and seemingly accepted without question by some Others, have actually been shown to be science fact.

    So, first let’s have the proof that CO2 drives temperature to cause global warming of the Earth.

    I’ve just had a look for heat capacity re this for a reminder and found something else that’s interesting about CO2 and Nitrogen – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_capacity

    Nitrogen is not a monatomic gas as is Carbon Dioxide, it acts differently in storing thermal energy because of this.

    Scroll down to “Example of temperature-dependent specific heat capacity, in a diatomic gas

    It says that on an atom to atom level Nitrogen which is a diatomic gas has a lower heat capacity than a monatomic gas such as Carbon Dioxide. But:

    “The heat capacity per atom for nitrogen is therefore less than for a monatomic gas, so long as the temperature remains low enough that no vibrational degrees of freedom are activated.
    At higher temperatures, however, nitrogen gas gains two more degrees of internal freedom, as the molecule is excited into higher vibrational modes which store thermal energy., Now the bond is contributing heat capacity, and is contributing more than if the atoms were not bonded. With full thermal exitation of bond vibration, the heat capacity per volume or mole of molecules approaches seven-thirds that of monatomic gases, or seven-sixths of monatomic, on a mole-of-atoms basis. This is now a higher heat capacity per atom than the monatomic figure, because the vibrational mode enables an extra degree of potential energy freedom per pair of atoms, which monatomic gases cannot possess.”

    So, even more so. Let us have the details of the heating Nitrogen and Carbon Dioxide experiment and the temperature these were heated to.

    And, I hope there’s someone here who has easy real science familiarity with all this, so obviously good at the maths.., but does this mean then that on the ‘normal’ tables of heat capacity where, iirc, CO2 is around .84 and Nitrogen 1.04, that is at the lower “mole of atoms basis”, and that if the Nitrogen got very hot that its heat capacity would be more like water?

    Is this saying that Nitrogen, which is some 80% of our atmosphere, is, say, on a typical hot midsummer midday at the equator, storing considerably more heat than CO2 is capable of?

  118. Re: HAS April 29, 2011 at 11:55 pm

    Why focus on the false statements of Leif Svalgaard, Piers Corbyn, & Kevin Trenberth when it is more productive to focus on their true statements? Are you opposed to being practical?

  119. Philip Shehan, I can understand your frustration with some commenters here who insist on politics over understanding of nature. However, it’s not the simple matter you seem to suggest since fundamentally flawed base assumptions have had an undeserved free ride. For example, Simpson’s Paradox arises in a multitude of ways that are unknowable with ignorance of key conditioning variables, spatial aspects of phase reversals, and complex (not to be confused with linear) correlation. Nonetheless, it is helpful that you challenge some members of the audience here to focus on nature rather than uninteresting politics. (It’s NOT a uniform crowd – far from it!!)

  120. Myrrh
    NetDr posted
    If you fill a jar with 100% CO2 and another one with Nitrogen and expose them to sunlight the CO2 one will get warmer. Disputing the obvious doesn’t convert anyone.
    _______________________

    Sounds like a variation of the BBC. Take one jar of CO2 and one jar of Air and heat..

    …What temp did you get them to? Did you time it? Did you then time how long it took each to cool? Please show me details of the experiment. I don’t have the wherewithal to test it for myself.

    S’far as I’ve gathered, CO2 has a lower heat capacity than Nitrogen, so it will get hotter slightly quicker but also cool down more quickly. Water has a much higher heat capacity than either, it takes longer to heat up but retains the heat longer, that’s why we use it in our radiators, because it’s better for storing heat. Carbon Dioxide doesn’t store heat, it releases it practically instantly.
    ****************************

    The heat capacity of CO2 vs Nitrogen has little or nothing to do with it.

    The opacity to certain frequencies of light has everything to do with it.

    If both jars are at room temperature and exposed to sunlight the jar portion is the same for both but the CO2 part is not. The jar with CO2 warms more when they come to equilibrium. The rate of warming isn’t a factor when you get to equilibrium is it ?

    I am as skeptical as you but facts are facts. CO2 causes some warming. How much is where the disagreement lies.

    A wise man once said “You have a right to your own opinions but not to your own facts. “

  121. Philip Shehan April 30, 2011 at 8:17 am

    HAS: Again there is nothing at all startling in Trenberth and Pidgeon& Fischoff’s remarks concerning uncertainties in data. As one commentator pointed out, the more parameters you add each with its own uncertainty, the greater the total uncertainty at the end. This is really a statement of the bleeding obvious to any scientist. What they are pointing out is a that this will need to be explained to nonscientists who think it a paradox. It is not.

    Trenberth isn’t talking about uncertainty in data he is talking about “the uncertainty in AR5′s climate predictions and projections”.

    What he is actually saying is that the more parameters we add to climate models the greater the spread of scenario outputs. This is not a general consequence in modelling per se, but is bleeding obvious to anyone that understands the limitations of current climate models – they seriously underestimate the unexplained, so more parameters are quite likely to reveal more of what they fail to explain.

    On the other hand Trenberth and others involved in the policy debate have characterize the scenario output as being synonymous with (or even as estimating) the true variability in the climate (willfully in my view). They have done this to overstate (for political reasons) the certainty in their work. If there is one overwhelming weakness in climate models it is in estimating the true variability in their output (although modeling actual temperature is a challenge for them too).

    So he is creating the paradox by claiming uncertainty in model output is the same thing as uncertainty in the climate. If he simply came clean on the limited nature of the models there would be no paradox, but unfortunately his whole enterprise would start to fall to bits. Instead he introduces the mumbo jumbo about uncertainties “having been introduced” so expect greater uncertainty in our ability to predict and forecast the climate.

    That uncertainty was always there. It’s just that he and his kind have never been explicit with policy makers and the public about this.

    Just on the measurement point you do discuss I’m afraid it isn’t bleeding obvious that adding parameters to a model ipso facto leads to a less certain estimate. It all depends on the interdependence of the parameters being measured etc etc.

    There are too many engineers reading this blog and not enough statisticians :)

  122. Paul Vaughan at April 30, 2011 at 11:53 am

    The practical problem is working out what is really true amid the political rhetoric.

    Stop funding them all, I’d say.

  123. Don’t know how I missed this..

    Ira says /#comment-650867 to netdr2 April 29 at 8:38 pm

    On our side, we have those good folks I call “Disbelievers” (aka “Deniers”, a term with baggage I would rather avoid) who also tend to be non-science-oriented to the point they do not accept the well-established idea that certain Atmospheric gases (mainly water vapor and CO2) are espnsible for the surface temperatures of the Earth being some 33°C warmer that it would be if the Atmosphere was pure nitrogen. In my recent WUWT Topic(http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/03/29/visualizing-the-greenhouse-effect-molecules-and-photons/) a couple of them spouted nonsense about the Second Law of Thermodynamics preventing a cooler body from emitting radiation in the direction of a warmer body, and also claiming that radiation we call “light” (in the visible and near-visible range) lacked the “oomph” to be “thermal”, so only the radiation we call “heat” (in the mid-far IR range) can actually warm anything. These good people seem to be so driven by political (and in some cases religious) reaction against the CAGW Alarminsts that they have the opposite and equally wrong doctrine of Disbelieving DAGW. Like their CAGW opponents, they are not reachable by science-based argument. Some in the DAGW camp have genuine scientific credentials that they misuse to come up with scientific-sounding nonsense to defeat the CAGW nonsense.

    netdr2 – as one of those Ira refers to.. Sadly it is he without any science to back up his claims, please do read the points I made and the requests I made for proof, surely asking for proof is the scientific method, even for those without a science background?

    But as an example, Ira refuses to prove that Blue light, any Visible, can heat the Earth’s land and sea to produce the amount of claimed Thermal IR as depicted in the AGWScience Energy Budget KT97, and as above continues to pretend, note, pretend, that such claims are ‘well-established science’, just as here with the claim that CO2 drives temperatures.

    I say pretend, because I don’t believe his position in this is genuine. I think he fully understands the arguments made re Light/Heat energies and the 2nd Law, but continues to promote the AGWScience corruption of these deliberately, so people continue to think these are actual real science facts that everyone takes for granted.

    I think his is a deliberate campaign to propagandise on behalf of the AGWScience hierarchy. So when he says what he does here about heat and light energies, he deliberately chooses to ignore, and doesn’t respond to, any explanation or reference to the contrary.

    Look at this which I posted and noted the reference came from 1987 – before AGWScience propaganda had got into full swing among the adults and to date where it has already corrupted the education of children in the West especially – it used to be well-known scientific fact that heat and light energies were different – that light energies are not thermal as Ira claims in that discussion, see page in the link 2: “Infrared radiation from 756-100,000nm is heat”

    http://www.geobotany.uaf.edu/teaching/biol474/biol474-06_lesson24.pdf

    So, in 1987 it was still common scientific knowledge that Light energies were not thermal, but Ira claims otherwise.

    Now, take a look at Ira’s post to Geoff Sherrington above, /#comment-650883

    Notice anything? His meme, the Meme that he is pushing here on behalf of the those who think they rule the world, is the acceptance of lower standards of living for the plebs: less enjoyment of life for those who have modern day higher access through abundant energy supply now by more and more restrictions and which comes as we can already see, a restriction on third world countries such as Africa making use of their cheap energy resources of coal to better their own life expectancy and living conditions.

    If he genuinely thinks the Warmistas are blowing hot over nothing very much, then why is he so keen to put restrictions on cheap energy of coal which is abundant everywhere and easily accessed?

    He really doesn’t give a toss about any of this, he knows the AGWScience claims are rubbish and he never bothers arguing for them. His brief is to push those two memes only. Enslavement of the people to poverty and restrictions (travel one of them) by those who think they have the power and control to organise such by using the AGWScience Method of twisting real science fact just as a means to that end, because the goal in sight is the dumbing down and control of the population.

    Someone called him a wolf in sheep’s clothing. He just ignores it all and carries on churning out these two memes regardless.

    We have abundant energy resources for all. The meme that ‘we are running out’ is simply another scam.

    Too many want to play God in this and that’s the problem with Ira and his ilk, and I think this the new religion of Hierarchy they’re trying to foist on us built on AGW lies is because of hate for the other, at the very least without respect for the other’s well-being, as the AGWPolitburo minions won’t have to endure any energy or food or health or travel restrictions..

    ..will you, Ira?

  124. Translation: If heretofore forgotten, unwanted and/or rejected inputs are considered in climate models (ie: planetary mechanics, coronal mass ejections, cosmic ray flux/clouds, underwater volcanoes and thermal vents, etc.), there will be no sound basis to blame humans for climate change, and nature will be exposed as the cause for all the climate change observed.

    It would be interesting to see what kind of climate model Piers Corbin would come up with. But he already has, and it is beating the pants off the predictions of The Met Office.

  125. Myrrh

    The point that you miss is that when two jars one with CO2 and the other with nitrogen are heated and come to equilibrium the CO2 jar is warmer. [Thermal mass has nothing to do with it.] That is observation and trumps theory every time.

    CO2 causes some warming if only from the infra red

    I don’t know what is meant by :
    But as an example, Ira refuses to prove that Blue light, any Visible, can heat the Earth’s land and sea to produce the amount of claimed Thermal IR as depicted in the AGWScience Energy Budget KT97, and as above continues to pretend, note, pretend, that such claims are ‘well-established science’, just as here with the claim that CO2 drives temperatures.

    All sunlight contains light at many different frequencies including infra red which is heat. When sunlight hits CO2 it causes warming. The only debate is how much.

    This seems to me to be what I was taught in college physics long before AGW was dreamed up. Was that incorrect ? Did the professor have an agenda ?

  126. Andrew30 says:
    April 29, 2011 at 11:57 pm
    Ira Glickstein, PhD says:
    “Please get with the program, Andrew30. When any of us (on either side) who have been following the conversation speak of CO2 sensitivity,…”

    [Andrew30 answers] … the phrase ‘doubling of co2’ corresponds to No Actual Value.

    Google: “doubling of co2 from”
    doubling of CO2 from current values
    doubling of CO2 from 280ppmv to 560ppmv
    doubling of CO2 from pre-industrial levels
    doubling of CO2 from present levels
    doubling of CO2 from about 300 ppm to six hundred ppm
    doubling of CO2 from 380 ppm to 760 ppm
    doubling of CO2 from 370 to 740
    doubling of CO2 from 275 to 550 ppmv

    It appears that you still do not get it. ALL the CO2 sensitivity estimates you found via Google are essentially the same when it comes to the estimates of resultant “X”ºC warming, where “X” ranges from 0.2ºC up to 4.5ºC, depending upon who is doing the estimating. That is a very large dynamic range of uncertainty. Look at your Google values for CO2, which range from 275 to 380 ppmv on the starting end, doubling to 550 to 760 ppmv, comparatively a very low dynamic range.

    In your original posting that started our conversation, you suggested 1 ppmv doubling to 2 ppmv and then 100,000 ppmv doubling to 200,000 ppmv. What do those extreme and totally unrealistic values have to do with actual and potential CO2 levels on Earth? How do those very high and very low “straw-man” values contribute to the scientific debate between science-oriented Warmists and Skeptics?

    They don’t. They only serve to confuse the issue.

  127. Geoff Sherrington says:
    April 30, 2011 at 3:42 am
    Ira Glickstein, PhD says: April 29, 2011 at 9:52 pm
    Spending carbon tax monies.

    Think a little deeper, Ira. What is available for the peasant to spend his windfall money on? Almost everything that matters has an equation “spend $ = more GHG”. If you think that John Citizen is going to buy electricity from windmill shysters, John Citizen will need convincing that it is cheaper BEFORE subsidies and that is does not require gas turbine spinning reserve.
    You have a naive view of altruism of the common man. I credit her/him with a geat deal more common sense. …

    I think your use of “peasant” is a bit condescending. On the other hand, I fully agree that the “common man” (and woman of course) has a great deal of common sense, particularly when they are spending their own money. The government, on the other hand, due to political pressure from well-funded and totally selfish special interest groups, has no common sense at all, which is why they waste our money on nice-sounding but essentially dumb ideas like Ethanol and wind power.

    I definitely do not believe John (and Jane) Citizen will spend his or her own money on wind-generated electricity unless it is cheaper than the other sources. Currently, the government, urged on by both “green” “environmentalist” pressure groups and corporations that have developed wind-power, subsidizes wind-power and thus forces wind-electricity into the power grid. Under the Carbon Tax as I described it, the government would not pick specific winners at all.

    The Carbon Tax would slowly and inexorably raise the cost of all types of fossil-fuel energy, along with products that have high fossil fuel content. Proceeds would be returned to John and Jane Citizen. With that money in their own pockets, they would adjust their buying patterns to whatever they judged (using their own common sense and their own money) to be the best for themselves.

    No one would force them to car-pool or use public transit or bike to work, but their own economic interests would tend to push them in those directions. No one would force them to turn down their air conditioning in summer or their heat in winter, or buy more energy-efficient cars, but their own economic interests would tend to push them in those directions.

    Manufacturers would also adjust their manufacturing and buying patterns accordingly. They would direct their ingenuity develop products and services that would be more energy-efficient and better compete in the market as fossil-fuel-based costs went up.

    The winners would thus be picked not by the political process of government, but by individual people, in their self-interested roles as managers and engineers at market-based, profit-driven corporations, and as their private roles as selfish consumers, trying to get the most for their own money.

    Does anyone think government “experts” can pick the winners better than free market forces?

    NOTE: My main motivation for supporting a tax on fossil fuels is the high cost, in blood and treasure, to maintain our access to foreign sources.

  128. Paul Vaughan says:
    April 30, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    Point taken Paul and I was not implying every commentator with a “skeptical” (I object to the idea that those persuaded by the evidence that AGW is real are not skeptics) viewpoint is “guilty” of my objections. Also my statement of the “bleeding obvious” was based on “all other factors being equal” and elsewhere I note how uncertainties may be reduced or otherwise affected.

    HAS says:
    April 30, 2011 at 1:38 pm

    I can only direct you to the review article linked in my 8:38 am post which is all about uncertainty in models. No climatologist is hiding or downplaying this. Non scientists on both sides of the debate take extreme views which they falsely represent as the opinion of scientists which get all the attention but do not reflect what the climatologists themselves say and write.

    And I confess to being puzzled by your remark:

    “So he is creating the paradox by claiming uncertainty in model output is the same thing as uncertainty in the climate.”

    There is no uncertainty in “the climate”. The pysical reality. The climate just is. It would exist free of any uncertainty in the absence of human beings who try to understand it..

    Uncertainty exists only in the human attempts to understand the real world climate. This includes uncertainties in models and measured observations. Uncertainties are a human invention. So Trenberth’s statment about uncertainties “having been introduced” is far from mumbo jumbo.

    And the term models is another word for theory that long predated the computer age. Bohr’s model for the atom was constructed in his mind. Watson and Crick’s model of DNA was constructed out of bits of metal. Modern models are constructed in silico.

    Norse models for climate involved the actions of Thor. Not sure how they dealt with uncertainties in the model. Perhaps “Thor got pissed last night.” (Pissed in either American or Australian usage)

  129. Philip Shehan at April 30, 2011 at 9:52 pm

    I was being brief when I said Trenberth” is creating the paradox by claiming uncertainty in model output is the same thing as uncertainty in the climate.” I had thought the context (and my opening para) would have made it clear I was referring to uncertainty in forecasts and predictions.

    In terms of “The equilibrium sensitivity of the Earth’s temperature to radiation changes” Reto Knutti1 and Gabriele C. Hegerl: you do understand that climate sensitivity as defined as a simple well behaved parameter is a gross simplification?

    I’ll simply note that the bulk of the article interviews climate models to see how it behaves and the authors are reduced to offering their own subjective analysis of is PDF in the absence of anything better in the literature.

    Rather proves my point.

  130. netdr2 says:
    April 30 2011 at 4:48

    The point that you miss is that when two jars one with CO2 and the other with nitrogen are heated and come to equilibrium the CO2 jar is warmer. [Thermal mass has nothing to do with it.] That is observation and trumps theory every time.

    The point I’m making is that you’re not giving me any details of the experiment and just what do you mean by “Thermal mass has nothing to do with it”?

    If you look at a specific heat table for different gases you’ll see that Carbon Dioxide is much lower than Nitrogen, it’s an at a glance comparison of the differences re specific heat, and in physical effects it means that Carbon Dioxide gets hot much quicker than Nitrogen, but that also means that it cools much quicker. In other words, Nitrogen is better capable of storing heat. Carbon dioxide can’t store it at all, it releases it practically instantly.

    So your description, or lack of it, in the so called ‘observation’ is meaningless to me. Without the detail of temps reached and times etc. it says zilch, but importantly, it also says rubbish because the different heat capacities of each are very well understood in real science.

    Carbon Dioxide does not have the physical ability to store heat. Nitrogen is better able to do so, and from the link I posted to the explanation, the hotter Nitrogen gets the more it is able to store heat because of its particular atomic structure.

    As I said, this appears to me the same kind of mangling of an experiment as the BBC one comparing heating a jar of Carbon Dioxide with a jar of Air. The Carbon Dioxide got hotter, and they stopped the experiment. If they’d timed it, and timed how long it took the jar of Air to heat up too, and then timed how long it took for each to cool back down to room temp it would have shown that Carbon Dioxide cools down as rapidly as it heats up, and the jar of air takes much longer to cool down, showing that it has a far greater capacity to store heat. This should also have been done with some idea at least of what proportions of gases the jar of Air contained, because the water content of the jar of Air would slow down its heating and keep the heat longer too. This is what the quick glance at the specific heat tables shows, the higher the number the longer it takes to get hot and the longer it keeps the heat. The BBC audience thought they were seeing ‘by observation’, but it was deliberately manipulated so they had no understanding of what they were seeing.

    Water has by far the higher number, it’s greater capacity to store heat as it evaporates from the Earth’s surface as the gas Water Vapour and rises into the atmosphere taking that heat with it until it cools down and condenses out into rain is what makes it the real science ‘greenhouse gas’, it cools the Earth down. Think deserts without water. Globally, it’s the Water Cycle which keeps the Earth from becoming one. The figure given for our Atmosphere without the Water Cycle is that the Earth would be 67°C. Which even if you don’t have the numbers, you can get the concept from understanding what properties water has and what it does in the Earth’s atmosphere. The AGWScience claim that it ‘heats’ the Earth because a ‘greenhouse gas’ doesn’t take into account its main effect which is that it cools the Earth’s Atmosphere globally.

    Each time you exhale 4% of your breath is Carbon Dioxide, which is around how much water there is in our Atmosphere so many more ppm than ‘normal air’. Try your own ‘observation’, see how long it takes for you to heat up the room you’re in, choose a small one like the bathroom. You’re emitting around the same amount of Thermal IR from your body as the Earth so if there’s ‘back radiation’ from the CO2 you’ve got head start on ‘doubling causes 4-6°C rise in global temps’ because of the greater ppm of Carbon Dioxide in your breath. Try it with the window closed and open. Keep breathing.

    I won’t be making any request for your presence to take the place of my central heating system.. :)

    CO2 causes some warming if only from the infra red.

    But since it also cools down quickly, any that is in the colder higher atmosphere, in the immediate sky above us, will also be helping to cool the Earth, just as Water does, by taking it away from the surface. It will cool down much more quickly than the water in the atmosphere, but both release it to colder regions around them and that is up and away from Earth, heat rises.

    I don’t know what is meant by: “But as an example, Ira refuses to prove that Blue light, any Visible, can heat the Earth’s land and sea to produce the amount of claimed Thermal IR as depicted in the AGWScience Energy Budget KT97, and as above continues to pretend, note, pretend, that such claims are ‘well-established science’, just as here with the claim that CO2 drives temperatures.”

    Visible Light and the shortwave either side of UV and Nr IR are not thermal, they are not heat on the move as was still understood by scientists even in 1987, as I posted the link above, IRA claims they are, that these are what we feel as heat from the Sun.

    He continues to make the absurd claim that his version is the Real, traditional science. Real traditional science knows these are not Heat, so they can’t warm the land and oceans by transferring heat as does Thermal IR; they are Light energies not Heat energies.

    I have asked him to prove that these Solar energies of the AGWScience KT97 Energy Budget, of Visible, UV and Nr IR, are capable of directly converting to heat the land and oceans of the Earth to produce the amount of Thermal IR radiated back from the Earth because of this, as AGWScience claims, and Ira continues to promote.

    I gave two other references about this in the previous discussion (http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/03/29/visualizing-the-greenhouse-effect-molecules-and-photons/), one from a NASA page for education on Infrared, and another from an encyclopedia entry which say that physicists are still teaching that Thermal IR heats the earth and this is traditional (my post /#comment-645468)

    If something is traditional in Science, then it is not enough to say it isn’t that any more, you MUST show proof that Traditional Science is wrong and you are right. I keep asking for the proof, but it is constantly avoided, deflected.

    I know it cannot be proved because this is such well known real science fact about energies from the Sun, constantly in use in real life science, that the AGWScience claim is obviously absurd.

    That this ridiculous version from AGWScience has now been introduced even into educating children in the last decades, does not make it true. It makes it a Con.

    The NASA site is http://science.hq.nasa.gov/kids/imagers/ems/infrared.html

    Which is being taken down at the end of May because of people like Ira, but it is saved here: http://www.webcitation.org/5y68yeeRD

    The URL for the Newworld Encyclopedia quote: http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Infrared
    And it is archived on: http://www.webcitation.org/5y6Any4VA

    This is what the NASA site for education says:

    “The longer, far infrared wavelengths are about the size of a pin head, and the shorter, near infrared ones are the size of cells, or are microscopic”.

    “Far infrared waves are thermal. In other words, we experience this type of infrared radiation every day in the form of heat! The heat that we feel from sunlight, a fire, a radiator or a warm sidewalk is infrared.”

    “Infrared light is even used to heat food sometimes – special lamps that emit thermal infrared waves are often used in fast food restaurants!”

    “Shorter, near infrared waves are not hot at all – in fact you cannot even feel them. These shorter wavelengths are the ones used by your TV’s remote control.”

    This is traditional, real world, really well understood in practical science the difference in properties between the shorter non-thermal Solar energies and the Infrared thermal. Ira knows he can’t prove this wrong, so he avoids answering. He’s not a real scientist.

    I’m asking for proof that the Visible Light energies in the Solar Energy Budget of KT97 convert to heat the land and oceans of Earth to produce the amount of Thermal IR claimed, which it is claimed raises the temperature of the Earth globally etc. To show that Blue light can heat water, for a start.

    This AGWScience claim is pure, unadulterated b*llsh*t. That it is believed to be real by people who take it on trust, or have been deliberately as children educated to believe it, is one thing, but for someone like Ira promoting it when it’s obvious he perfectly understands that this NASA traditional science contradicts him, is disingenuous.

    He avoids answering directly but continues to push, as above in this discussion, that his deliberately contrived to deceive AGWScience version is correct. He has no integrity as a scientist. He is lying in claiming his version is traditional science. He has to answer to his own conscience for his integrity as a man.

    All Sunlight contains light at many different frequencies including infra red which is heat. When sunlight hits CO2 it causes warming. The only debate is how much.

    First, the debate has to begin with the original premise claimed by AGWScience as depicted in the KT97, if the premise to a claim is wrong then the rest of the arguments are irrelevant. Light energies do not have the ability to transfer heat as do Heat energies. Each of the wavelengths has different properties and effects on encountering other matter in the real world. The AGWScience claim is that Thermal IR does not heat the Earth, but these Light energies do. Nonsense.

    This seems to me to be what I was taught in college physics long before AGW was dreamed up. Was that incorrect? Did the professor have an agenda?

    As you can see from my explanation, AGWScience, and Ira promoting, has twisted this around to become the opposite of what you were taught. It is subtle and clever, but it is utterly deceitful and done because the promoters of AGWScience have an agenda.

    Your professor taught you traditional real world well-established tested science that infrared is heat.

    Ira is teaching that it is the shorter wavelength Solar of Visible and UV and Nr IR which is heat.

  131. Philip Shehan at May 1, 2011 at 12:43 am

    If you want to be serious about understanding climate models spend some time at http://www.sms.cam.ac.uk/collection/870907, particularly those presentations that have got the most traffic. A couple of useful ones to put the IPCC stuff in context are http://www.sms.cam.ac.uk/media/871991 and http://www.sms.cam.ac.uk/media/1083858

    If you want to get a feel for how you might use Baysian techniques to estimate the PDF of climate sensitivity without just making guesses have a look at http://www.sms.cam.ac.uk/media/1084396

  132. I have searched for predictions from other climate models other than Hanson’s 1988 one which “jumped the shark” about 2007.

    Does anyone have a site I could go to to evaluate more than just Hansen’s model ?

    In my opinion there is only one way to evaluate a model and that is by comparing it’s output against measured temperatures. No matter how well it is coded or how learned the reasoning it is based on it is predictive results which matter, nothing else.

    So far the only example I know of has done very poorly as of 2011.

  133. >>
    Philip Shehan says:
    April 30, 2011 at 2:23 am

    Jim. Just tried this method of calculation:

    An error of 5% for 2 is ± 0.1 so the value is between 1.9 and 2.1

    An error of 5% for 5 is ± 0.25 so the value is between 4.75 and 5.25

    So multiplying the upper and lower bounds means the calculated product is between 9.025 and 11.025. Close enough to 10 ± 10% especially if you take the result to 2 significant figures.
    <<

    So you’re using maximum error. There’s nothing particularly wrong about using maximum error as it’s more likely that the true value will appear between the larger range. You could also use minimum error. It just so happens that the universe doesn’t always show us maximum error or always show us minimum error in our measurements. Generally most engineers/scientists use the standard error calculations. If you’re going to use something different from the standard method, then you’ll have to indicate that in your write ups.

    I prefer to stick with the standard methods of calculating errors. Why get fancy when you don’t have to?

    Jim

  134. “”””” Myrrh says:
    May 1, 2011 at 3:14 am
    netdr2 says:
    April 30 2011 at 4:48

    The point that you miss is that when two jars one with CO2 and the other with nitrogen are heated and come to equilibrium the CO2 jar is warmer. [Thermal mass has nothing to do with it.] That is observation and trumps theory every time.

    The point I’m making is that you’re not giving me any details of the experiment and just what do you mean by “Thermal mass has nothing to do with it”?

    “”””” when two jars one with CO2 and the other with nitrogen are heated and come to equilibrium the CO2 jar is warmer. “””””

    Well that statement is in direct conflict with the zeroth law of thermodynamics. If two bodies are in thermal equilibrium with a third body (thermometer), they are in thermal equilibrium with each other. So the two gas samples; with and without CO2 are at the same temperature if they are in equilibrium with each other (after heating by the same source).

    But you see, that is not the correct demonstration anyway.

    The greenhouse effect is NOT ABOUT HEATING ANYTHING; it is about irradiating different air mixtures, with electromagnetic radiation with a normal black body spectrum that peaks at about 10.1 microns wavelength, and has a BB source Temperature of approximately +15 deg C or + 59 deg F.

    A “light bulb” or a “heat lamp” is not a BB like source at an effective radiating Temperature of +15 deg C (288 Kelvins).

    So why don’t you try to “heat” your two gas mixtures; with and without CO2 using a heat source like an ordinary brick that has been placed in the refrigerator and cooled to +15 deg C. Use that to emulate the EM radiation from the mean earth surface; and then report the temperature difference of the two samples.

  135. “”””” I can’t tell if you’re familiar with it, or if netdr2 is, but the logarithmic nature of CO2 concentrations to temperature is merely a rule of thumb. It breaks down at concentrations significantly above or below current levels, but does hold for much of Earth’s O2 containing atmosphere. “””””

    Ric, that is a comletely unsupportable statement.

    Based on ANY recognized mean global surface Temperature data set; and ANY recognized atmospheric CO2 abundance data set covering the same time range; there is NO analysis, that you or anyone else could do, which would show that the two are logarithmically related; or that they are NOT linearly related; or in fact that the relationship is ANY defined mathematical function you want to name. And the Logarithm function IS a precisely defined mathematical function; it is not some nebulous non-linear relationship. In fact you can’t prove that it is even ANY non-linear relationship or for that matter that they are related at all.

    All of the believable available data, shows that the CO2 follows an anual cyclical periodic oscillation of about 6 ppm amplitude added to a baseline continuous increase, of about one to two PPM per year. The most believed mean global surface Temperature data sets, availabble from at least four sources, don’t show any sign of such an annual cyclical variation; nor do they show a continuous monotonic increasing value. The Temperature data, wanders up and down in sometimes periodic looking events that may last for 30 or 60 years or so, and show no correspondence to the log of the CO2 amount at all..

    The available data isn’t anywhere near good enough by a long shot, to say that any relationship is linear; or non-linear in a logarithmic fashion.

    There is the question of some time lag between one phenomenon and the other. There is NO time offset, that one can use between the CO2 and Temperature data that would revela a logarithmic relationship; nor any that would reveal a linear relationship. Their association is quite chaotic. It might be said that over periods of centuries, both variables may appear to be increasing; but given the extreme range of possible Temperatures on earth from around -90 c minimum to about +60 c maximum; all available simultaneously, we can’t even say reliably that we have any idea what the mean global surface temperature is.

    A logartihmic curve is no some arbitrary non-linearity; it is a precise defineable mathematical function that usually has its roots in some theoretical basis for being such a curve. And there is no such theoretical basis for expecting a logarithmic relationship between CO2 abundance, and mean global surface Temperature; and many poeople are in agreement, that that is the definition of “Climate Sensitivity”; for better or for worse.

  136. Mike Bromley the Kurd says: April 28, 2011 at 8:36 pm “Who the heck is John Galt indeed.”

    Being a theme from a famous novel, that in one sense is about methods of knowledge, which is a major problem in climate “science” – it is about the efficacy of the human mind. Part of the plot is much about the results of not using the mind for human life in respect of reality – poverty, disaster, corruption, and violence. Examples abound around the world, throughout history.

    The book “Atlas Shrugged” is still in print, and part 1 of it is a movie now showing in theatres: http://www.atlasshruggedpart1.com/theaters.

  137. This genius is confusing the meaning of uncertainty Accuracy Precision, and the range of your calculated answer must be greater than the natural variability.

    Short version, we have a more accurate physical model, but we are hitting the butterfly effect.

    George, there is a definite logarithmic physical relationship between infrared absorption and fractional concentration (or an Arrhenius relationship with gas density), and it does break down in the very high volumes when the O2 absorption band starts decreasing. Now, this cannot be determined on a global scale due to noise, uncertainty, and an overall weak signal. However, it does exist and there is a theoretical and factual basis for the relationship.

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