Another sea level rise fallacy falls short

Heat-driven expansion not a major source of sea level rise

With the power to drown low-lying nations, destroy infrastructure, and seriously affect sensitive coastal ecosystems, sea level rise may be one of the most readily apparent consequences of global warming that is already under way. However, the sources of the rising waters, and the dynamics driving them, are not so clear. Melting land-locked glaciers, shrinking ice sheets over Greenland and Antarctica, and the ocean’s thermal expansion will all play a part, but the expected contribution from each of these sources is still up for debate. Previous studies have suggested that thermal expansion driven by rising sea surface temperatures will account for up to 70 percent of sea level rise in the near future, but research by McKay et al. suggests this may be a drastic overestimate.

The authors draw on paleoclimate records and model simulations of the last interglacial period, when the sea level rose by more than 6 meters (19.7 feet), to isolate the contribution of thermal expansion to sea level rise during a previous period of global warming. The authors found that during the last interglacial period, between 130,000 and 120,000 years ago, the global average sea surface temperature changed between 𔂾.4 and 1.3 degrees Celsius (-0.7 and 2.3 degrees Fahrenheit). On the basis of research into the temperature sensitivity of thermal expansion, the authors suggest that between 𔂾.2 and 0.7 m (-0.66 and 2.29 ft) of ocean rise would have been attributable to thermal expansion. With thermal expansion playing such a small role in the pronounced sea level rise during the last interglacial, the authors suggest that the Greenland and, in particular, Antarctic ice sheets may be more sensitive to increasing temperatures than previously thought, with important implications for estimates of future sea level rise.

Source:
Geophysical Research Letters,
doi:10.1029/2011GL048280, 2011
http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2011GL048280

Title: The role of ocean thermal expansion in Last Interglacial sea level rise

Authors: Nicholas P. McKay: Department of Geosciences, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA;

Jonathan T. Overpeck: Department of Geosciences, Institute of the Environment, and Department of Atmospheric Science, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA;

Bette L. Otto-Bliesner: National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, Colorado, USA.

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98 Responses to Another sea level rise fallacy falls short

  1. omnologos says:

    the authors suggest that the Greenland and, in particular, Antarctic ice sheets may be more sensitive to increasing temperatures than previously thought

    who would have thought

  2. Katherine says:

    Typo alert: Anoter sea level rise fallacy falls short should be “Another sea level rise fallacy falls short”

  3. Morley Sutter says:

    Typo in heading: “Anoter” should be “Another”.

  4. Here we go again: “[might be] worse than we thought”, while continually reminding us that it is sea SURFACE temperatures that they discuss. In short, an insignificant volume of the total sea, yes? So what is the fuss about? Who, aside from themselves, are they trying to frighten?

  5. Patrick Davis says:

    Tell that to the people of Japan. LAND levels FELL at least 1m as a result of the quake movements this year, and are STILL shifting. So it appears only alarmists assume land levels are static and sea levels change.

    And there is the money grab sound bite “model simulations”…it has to be true ‘coz it’s on a computer and in full 1080p HD colour.

  6. Nick Stokes says:

    I don’t see the message here. They are saying that thermal expansion was a small fraction of a 6m rise. Well, yes – if we are to have a 6m rise, the thermal component would also be a small percentage. Do you expect that?

  7. R Taylor says:

    Another paper to reinforce GRL’s post-rational reputation. More funds required to investigate the magical properties of polar ice.

  8. TBear (Warm Cave in Cold-as-Snow-Sydney) says:

    Maybe the aliens will have the answers.

  9. Andrew Harding says:

    Mike Bromley the Kurd says: ” Here we go again: “[might be] worse than we thought”, ”
    It always is, that is why I am 100% sure that they are lying through their teeth. It is not in the nature of the warmists to err on the side of caution with regard to their computer models. A sea level rise of 2 inches in 100 years does not get headlines a sea level rise of 30 feet does, especially if followed by the statement this is worse than the 20 feet our initial computer models predicted. There is no getting away from the fact that somewhere in all the data that has been collected there has to be results showing that global temperature increases/ sea level rises are less than predicted. This is in the very nature of statistics, but we the general public are not privy to it. Neither I suspect are the politicians. I would also say that all of this propaganda as well as it’s content cherry picked, so is it’s timing. There were very few press releases in the UK last winter, and any debate used the phrase “climate change” as opposed to “global warming”. Now that summer is here we are back to “global warming” ( not that that is very convincing in UK this summer!!). They might not be very clever with regards to what is actually happening to the climate, but they surely are when it comes to propaganda.
    Josef Goebbels would be proud of them!!

  10. Nick, I have trouble with evidence for past melting of land ice in the Antarctic. Nobody appears to have demonstrated an unconformity or disconformity in Antarctic ice layers indicative of past erosion of any large type or scale. It sems to be assumed that the annual record is preserved. If we use Vostok, with its admitted data imperfections, can we not comfortably assume that failure of the land ice sheet to melt in the last 700,000 years is comforting for the immediate future? To the contrary, the measurable several km of ice thickess would seem to indicate accumulative mechanisms that favour lowering ocean levels. Have you seen evidence of past melting on either Greenland or Antarctica, of a type that could change ocean levels substantially? Any references?

  11. LeeHarvey says:

    I’ve been telling anyone who would listen that when people talk about sea level rise due to thermal expansion of water, they’re forgetting about a little concept called thermoclines. You may warm the surface five degrees, but once you get a hundred meters down the temperature isn’t going to change a hell of a lot. The dynamics of a large fluid body with the unique properties of water – it starts getting less dense with decreasing temperature below 277 K – dictate that you can’t warm the whole thing from the surface and expect it to expand. You’re actually going to find that any water that is below 277 K (and there’s a whole lot of it in the deep oceans) will contract and drop sea levels if its temperature increases.

    The fact that many people have devoted doctoral theses to deep ocean dynamics should be an indication that the problem is slightly more complicated than simply applying the thermal expansion coefficient of water at an arbitrary temperature to the entire ocean.

  12. Katherine says:

    With thermal expansion playing such a small role in the pronounced sea level rise during the last interglacial, the authors suggest that the Greenland and, in particular, Antarctic ice sheets may be more sensitive to increasing temperatures than previously thought, with important implications for estimates of future sea level rise.

    It might be worse than we thought! Send money so we can be sure!

    Heh. Considering that we seem to be on the downslope of the current interglacial, catastrophic sea level rise isn’t much of a concern.

  13. Alan D McIntire says:

    Since the discussion is about sea level, there ought to be a link to

    http://sealevel.colorado.edu/

    Admittedly 1 year is not significant, but it looks like sea levels took a dive in 2011

  14. John W says:

    So, if the sea level rise hockey stick is correct(lol) and it’s not from thermal expansion then there must also be a hockey stick in land locked ice volume loss. Another Mann paper for sure.

  15. If sea level rise is mainly due to melting land ice, then that melting ice has removed a lot of heat in the form of latent heat of fusion. Water at 0°C has a much greater heat content than does ice at 0°C. Adding cold water to the ocean must lower the average heat content., and therefore the temperature, or at least partially offset any warming.Since the added cold water is close to the land ice, it has a negative feedback effect on local air temperature. I seem to recall a paper published maybe last year on this effect around Greenland.

  16. Bruce Cobb says:

    The Eemian basically only lasted about 11k years, but hung on in Europe for another 12k. The current interglacial is getting somewhat long in the tooth. Most of the melting action took place during the first hundred years. Sorry, warmies, but sea level rise is only going to continue at its current snails pace of roughly 4 to 6 inches per century. If anything, Antarctic ice is expanding, and Arctic ice melt has slowed to a crawl. The future for climate alarmism looks dim. I suggest they seek another line of work. Perhaps palm reading or tarot cards would be up their alley.

  17. Corey S. says:

    Here’s a copy, though maybe not the finished product.

    The role of ocean thermal expansion in Last Interglacial sea level rise
    http://www.leif.org/EOS/2011GL048280-pip.pdf

  18. A G Foster says:

    Whatever component of U Colorado’s adjustment was based on increased sea level rather than post glacial rebound, already assumed mass increase due to ice melt rather than rise due to deep thermal expansion, which has the effect of decreasing density and even decreasing bottom pressure, as the water mass is moved inland on mostly northern continental shelves (see http://wcrp.ipsl.jussieu.fr/Workshops/SeaLevel/Posters/7_7_Landerer.pdf).

    According to Landerer’s model thermal expansion, depending on its depth, will have a negligible or slightly decreasing effect on LOD, whereas a melting Antarctic should increase LOD. Current decreasing LOD then suggests lots of new snow at the poles, and/or continued rebound probably more from the Little Ice Age than from the Last Glacial Maximum. But core/mantle coupling provides a convenient deus ex machina–up to a point. –AGF

  19. Magnus says:

    “The authors draw on paleoclimate records and model simulations of the last interglacial period”

    Sounds like rock solid, fact-generating, effin science. Just give ‘em a trillion to start fixing this thing right away.

  20. John says:

    Anthony, should there be a clarification regarding this statement: “The authors draw on paleoclimate records and model simulations of the last interglacial period, when the sea level rose by more than 6 meters (19.7 feet).”?

    Do you mean that the sea levels in the previous interglacial, at their peak, were 6 meters higher than today?

    Sea levels rose in this interglacial by about 350 feet, from the depth of the last ice age to the present, and mostly likely did the same prior to and during the previous interglacial.

  21. A G Foster says:

    Antarctica and Greenland don’t melt much during the “interglacials”; it’s North America and Eurasia that fluctuate. Only if ALL the ice melted would you get a rise of 100 meters.

  22. Richard Wakefield says:

    Question. Isn’t only the top few feet of the seas that gets warmed by the sun before plunging down to the cold depths? Hence the thermal component of the oceans must include the entire cold depths? Is there any indications that the deep oceans are warming/cooling?

  23. Joshua says:

    Speaking of worse than we thought:

    –snip–

    Across the globe, plants and animals are creeping, crawling, slithering and winging to higher altitudes and latitudes as temperatures climb….The new analysis reexamined more than 100 previous studies to give a global picture of altitude shifts in 23 groups of plants and animals and latitude shifts in 31 groups. Although Thomas and colleagues found great variation in how far individual species had shifted over the decades, a trend was clear. On average, species migrated uphill 36 feet per decade and moved away from the equator — to cooler, higher latitudes — at 10 miles per decade. The rates are two to three times those estimated by the last major migration analysis, published in 2003.

    –snip–

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/up-and-up-plants-and-animals-migrating-as-climate-changes/2011/08/18/gIQAzlTxNJ_story.html?wprss=rss_homepage

    Wait – Anthony, isn’t there some snowstorm somewhere that you can post about?

    Or, alternatively….

    Look!! Squirrell!!

  24. Richard Wakefield says:

    For those who may not know of this, look up Glacier Girl. A P38 that was extracted from the icepack along Greenland’s east coast. A group of WWII planes was forced landed on the icepack. The planes were abandoned. Expaditions found them, and extracted one P38 from the ice. They had to go down some 200 FEET! So if all this ice is melting in Greenland in the last 60 years, how did 200 feet accumulate and bury these planes in that same 60 years? Me thinks these predictions of melting ice are a tad off.

  25. ferd berple says:

    Why is it that scientists are so certain that the understand AGW and the effects, when we continue to hear them say things are worse than they previously thought. Doesn’t that mean that what they though previously was wrong?

    Also, if the science on climate change is settled, then why continue to pay money to fund research on the subject? We should halt the funding for research and move to engineering. De fund the scientists and politicians and start funding the engineers and put people back to work building things of value. Scientific studies and the taxes that drive them are not contributing to the national wealth.

  26. ferd berple says:

    “Doesn’t that mean that what they though previously was wrong?”

    And if they were wrong previously, doesn’t that make them more likely to be wrong the second time around? Why believe someone with a track record of errors is somehow right this time?

  27. Frank K. says:

    Since we’re talking about catastrophic seal level rise, who could forget this? (From the person who shared half of the Nobel peace prize money for climate change – heh!)

    http://newsbusters.org/static/2009/11/Al%20Gore%20Photoshops%20Hurricanes%20Into%20New%20Book%27s%20Cover%202.jpg

  28. Frank K. says:

    Sorry forgot to close my bolding in the previous post…

  29. Andrew30 says:

    If water is most dense at 4 degrees C, then if the depths of the oceans are Cooling from 4 dergees to below 4 degrees then that would cause expansion. If there was a very strong el nino then that cools the ocean, heat from below rises, water at depth cools and expands, sea level rises.

    Sea level will rise because of cooling or warming, that has to be a eco-rent-seeking climate scientologists wet dream.

  30. A G Foster says:

    Richard Wakefield says:
    August 19, 2011 at 7:15 am

    No expert here, but I would think the thermohaline system would be slower to respond to temperature changes than would land ice. Accordingly, the now extended drop in sea level (which I for one didn’t anticipate) argues as well against thermal expansion as against land ice loss. The easiest way to map T and salt boundaries is with powerful sonar, but this was decided against decades ago to save the cetaceans’ ears. As you can imagine, it’s no easy task checking the entire ocean at all depths.

    And “MostlyHarmless says” at August 19, 2011 at 6:24 am, makes valid points. Ice melts first, cooling the seas; they heat up later (lag time). Additionally, arctic ice insulates the ocean; once removed the seas are exposed to release their heat to the arctic air (inverse relation). –AGF

  31. An Inquirer says:

    Alan D McIntire @ August 19, 2011 at 5:55 am: You might be aware that the chart to which you linked incorporates an adjustment of .3 mm per year to account for continental rebound (from last ice age). According to the graph, sea levels have crept up 50 mm in the last 20 years; but actually, they have crept up 44 mm relative to land because analysts assume that land has risen 6 mm in those 20 years.

  32. An Inquirer says:

    Richard Wakefield @ August 19, 2011 at 7:15 am: You might be interested in discussions by Dr. Roy Spencer on warming in lower ocean depths. Leviticus observations of ocean temperatures trends reveal that temperature increases fall off quite rapidly after a few dozen meters. http://www.drroyspencer.com/

  33. Doug Proctor says:

    Using the paleoclimate warming of 0.4 – 1.3C seems a little wide for meaningful, useful predictions. Interesting in a generalized way, but with an accuracy like that, what confidence in an extrapolation can you make?

    In today’s Calgary Herald (August 19th) worries are expressed about sea-level rise flooding Vancouver with its prediction by “most experts” of a 1.0m rise by 2100. In less than 89 years the sea-level is going to rise 1000 cm, or 11mm/yr. How much is from thermal expansion? Who cares when the prediction requires 3 to 5 times the current rate ON AVERAGE until 2100 (depending on whether you prefer the 1.9 mm/yr tidal record or the 3.4mm/yr satellite record, a difference that is amazingly different itself). And since no records show sea-level rising at an accelerating level, then the actual “average” rate required to reach 1.0m rise by 2100 must be >5 X whatever current rate you choose. And that is likely?

    “Huh?” moments arise continually when you read and THINK about what you are reading what comes out of the Gore-Suzuki-Hansen Future Universe.

    My point here is that the warmist or just alarmed don’t think things through, don’t look at the actual accuracy or “representation of reality” such research, articles or pronouncements are likely to have. It’s a grown-up version of “my Dad says”, and if you disagree then you have to fight me because you just insulted my father. One day “my Dad” will suggest the experts are full of hooey and that is what you will read, until the title is “Another Zany End-of-World Prediction Falls Flat”.

    I/we should look forward to that day, but, man, is it painful coming. Perhaps – hope springs eternal – this 14 September, with Al and his Gorethon, there will be enough WTF moments to make the MSM blink. Beyond the critical 9 already exposed in An Inconvenient Something.

    The push to publish to validate one’s existence in academia and justify continued funding is drowning us in trivia. Anxiety-producing trivia for the non-thinker or agenda-driven. Methinks the Vatican was right in resisting the Bible being published in the language of the people: we now know what happens when the smiling masses are invited to think for themselves. (They don’t.)

  34. rbateman says:

    If it’s worse than previously thought, then there is an equally disastrous counter-outcome depending on which state the oceans & Ice Caps are in.
    If Global Cooling were to onset, according to their models, the sea levels would drop precipitously, sea Surface temperatures would drop like a rock enhancing Sea Ice extent increase, and the Ice Caps would turn into roving monsters in a few decades.
    IF their models are worth anything.
    I need big $$$ to study this coming Ice Avalanche.

  35. Molon Labe says:

    “The authors draw on paleoclimate records and model simulations of the last interglacial period”

    I wonder if historical sea levels were in any way used to calibrate the models.

  36. Nuke says:

    Shouldn’t sea level rise be accelerating, if AGW theory is correct? Isn’t this just another failed hypothesis for a failed theory?

  37. Latitude says:

    Nuke says:
    August 19, 2011 at 9:13 am

    Shouldn’t sea level rise be accelerating, if AGW theory is correct? Isn’t this just another failed hypothesis for a failed theory?
    ====================================================================
    yep cause so far it ain’t moving….

    http://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2011/07/25/monterey-bay-shows-no-change-in-sea-level-or-ph/

  38. John W says:

    RE: Joshua
    Really? Do we still not understand that evidence for GW is not evidence for AGW and certainly not evidence for CAGW or that it doesn’t even come close to being any sort of deciding factor between a climate sensitivity of less than 1C or greater than 2C or whether climate sensitivty is simply calculatable or not?

  39. tadchem says:

    “the authors suggest that between -0.2 and 0.7 m (-0.66 and 2.29 ft) of ocean rise would have been attributable to thermal expansion”
    The math says that is 0.25 (+/- 0.45) m. [In the 'measurement' community, that's the signal (+/- noise).]
    If the ‘signal’ you are looking for is less than the noise, it is hard to be sure it is there.
    If the ‘signal’ you are looking for is less than *half* the noise, you can bet the signal *isn’t* there.

  40. R. Gates says:

    So, what this study basically is saying is expect more of a contribution to sea level rise from the glacial melting coming from Antarctica and Greenland and less from thermal expansion. This goes back to previous points related to the IPCC estimate in 2007– it was too low, as it did not give a significant contribution from Greenland and Antarctica, and more evidence since that time has shown that the IPCC estimate was too low more than half.

  41. Luther Bl. says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 19, 2011 at 4:32 am

    I don’t see the message here.
    ———
    Media Studies not your field then? Could it be “Greenland and Antarctica are doomed!”…

  42. I’m tired of the charts and graphs- deal with it! The true cause of sea level rise is ocean floor volcanic activity,(lava displacement) human effluent discharge from treatment plants, giant cargo ship water displacement, ships sinking, space debris re-entering, meteorite dust, and lastly… more beach goers as the world population increases.

  43. jrwakefield says:

    Nuke says:
    August 19, 2011 at 9:13 am
    Shouldn’t sea level rise be accelerating, if AGW theory is correct? Isn’t this just another failed hypothesis for a failed theory?

    ———

    Yes, to get to 2 meters in 100 years the increase in rate of sea level rise would have to be about 4% per year. 4% has a doubling period of about 22 years, that means in the last 22 years to 2100 sea level would have to increase a meter. Anyone who thinks that is possible is definitely drinking too much coolaid.

  44. jrwakefield says:

    Nuke says:
    August 19, 2011 at 9:13 am

    Shouldn’t sea level rise be accelerating, if AGW theory is correct? Isn’t this just another failed hypothesis for a failed theory?
    ====================================================================
    yep cause so far it ain’t moving….

    http://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2011/07/25/monterey-bay-shows-no-change-in-sea-level-or-ph/

    ——————–

    California is an active tectonic zone, so not an indicator of sea level increasing, more an indicator of what the land is doing in relation to sea level. There arn’t too many places on the planet where tectonics has little influence.

  45. Joe Crawford says:

    With thermal expansion playing such a small role in the pronounced sea level rise during the last interglacial, the authors suggest that the Greenland and, in particular, Antarctic ice sheets may be more sensitive to increasing temperatures than previously thought, with important implications for estimates of future sea level rise.

    I guess we should never let reality interfere with “good” science…

    However… It seems to me that between the Vostok example of Geoff Sherrington (August 19, 2011 at 5:13 am) and the Glacier Girl example of Richard Wakefield (August 19, 2011 at 7:22 am) the authors of the McKay et al. paper are looking look pretty ridiculous at this point. Of course if you need to make your living from ‘Climate Science’ today, and, you have even the slightest inkling of common sense you must also have developed a pretty thick skin by now.

  46. Bruce Cobb says:

    R. Gates says:
    August 19, 2011 at 10:16 am

    So, what this study basically is saying is expect more of a contribution to sea level rise from the glacial melting coming from Antarctica and Greenland and less from thermal expansion. This goes back to previous points related to the IPCC estimate in 2007– it was too low, as it did not give a significant contribution from Greenland and Antarctica, and more evidence since that time has shown that the IPCC estimate was too low more than half.
    Except that the IPCC’s “estimate” of some 6 to 38″, depending on the “scenario”, were based on some wild assumptions, with very little basis in reality. And now you want to increase those “estimates” by 50%? The C02 delusion is an amazing thing to behold sometimes.

  47. Latitude says:

    jrwakefield says:
    August 19, 2011 at 11:04 am
    California is an active tectonic zone, so not an indicator of sea level increasing, more an indicator of what the land is doing in relation to sea level. There arn’t too many places on the planet where tectonics has little influence.
    ======================================================
    and it’s no accident that the only places showing sea level rise….
    ….are right on top of underwater volcanoes

    it could not be more obvious when you compare the gravity satellites to the sea level satellites.

    http://suyts.wordpress.com/2011/06/25/discussion-so-far/#comments

  48. steven mosher says:

    Nick,

    Did you read SteveF’s post over at Lucia’s?.

  49. jorgekafkazar says:

    Richard Wakefield says: “For those who may not know of this, look up Glacier Girl. A P38 that was extracted from the icepack along Greenland’s east coast. A group of WWII planes was [force] landed on the icepack. The planes were abandoned. Expeditions found them, and extracted one P38 from the ice. They had to go down some 200 FEET! So if all this ice is melting in Greenland in the last 60 years, how did 200 feet accumulate and bury these planes in that same 60 years? Me thinks these predictions of melting ice are a tad off.”

    Metal objects frozen into ice don’t remain at a constant level. The weight causes the ice beneath to melt very slowly, letting them sink. The 200′ doesn’t all represent accumulated ice.

  50. Nuke says:

    R. Gates says:
    August 19, 2011 at 10:16 am
    So, what this study basically is saying is expect more of a contribution to sea level rise from the glacial melting coming from Antarctica and Greenland and less from thermal expansion. This goes back to previous points related to the IPCC estimate in 2007– it was too low, as it did not give a significant contribution from Greenland and Antarctica, and more evidence since that time has shown that the IPCC estimate was too low more than half.

    By “evidence” do you mean to say “unverified (and unverifiable) computer models” and by “too low” did you actually mean to say “wildly over-exaggerated in order to stir up political activism among the easily mislead proletariat?”

  51. Kohl says:

    I’m not sure why so many are becoming agitated about this. It seems to be a straight forward investigation of the cause(s) of sea level rise. Their conclusion is that melting icesheets contribute more than has been thought to be the case.

    I can’t see any reason to find that objectionable. In fact I find it interesting.

  52. Pompous Git says:

    jorgekafkazar said @ August 19, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    “Metal objects frozen into ice don’t remain at a constant level. The weight causes the ice beneath to melt very slowly, letting them sink. The 200′ doesn’t all represent accumulated ice.”

    Granted. So is there an engineer who can calculate for us how much of the 200′ is due to the planes sinking?

  53. Of course. It takes about sixty times more heat (thermal energy) to rise sea level via thermal expansion of water than by melting land based ice. That much is elementary physics, it does not require an overcomplicated computational model.

    If heat is actually accumulating in the climate system and if it does, how much of it is focused on the polar regions is an entirely different question. Currently ~16 million square kilometers are covered by ice sheets, some 3% of the entire surface. The interior of these ice sheets is very cold, 20-50°C below freezing, that is, no projected warming would ever melt it. Ablation can only happen along the edges, which is a tiny fraction of the surface area. At the same time higher average SST (Sea Surface Temperature) implies more evaporation, therefore more snow accumulation where it is still damn cold, that is, over the ice sheets themselves.

    Ice sheet mass balance is determined by the fine equilibrium of these opposing processes, which is not simple physics. Current ice sheets can’t be compared to the huge Laurentide, Fennoscandian or Tibetan ice sheets of the past, any of which extended to much lower latitudes than either the Antarctic of Greenland ice sheet does now, so they got much more insolation on average.

  54. Any report based on Topex/Poseidon sea level measurements is principally flawed because a most critical part outside 66º N and S is left out. In these areas the sea level sinks dramatically. Around Antarctica down to -2 metres! This massive dip is caused by strong W to E winds driving equally strong currents. Due to strong Coriolis forces near the poles, the water is then pushed equator-ward where it heaps up (Ekman spiral). Topex/Poseidon looks only at the heap and not at the trough, as do moored buoys.
    Wind strength, which can change by 25% on a decadal scale and 30% in a century, has a most determining effect on sea levels everywhere. Because of the seminal work of Dr Joseph fletcher, we can no longer ignore this.
    Dr Fletcher’s lecture http://www.seafriends.org.nz/issues/global/fletcher.htm
    What is normal climate change?: http://www.seafriends.org.nz/issues/global/climate7.htm
    Are sea levels rising?: http://www.seafriends.org.nz/issues/global/climate4.htm#Are_sea_levels_rising?

  55. Joshua says:

    JohnW –

    Perhaps you can explain, but if there is widespread acceptance here at WUWT that GW is happening but it just isn’t A, why does Anthony loves him some posts about snowpack in the High Sierras, snowfall in NZ, seals unexpectedly turning up in Boston Harbor, etc?

    And as someone who is interest in climate change but who believes that the Earth is warming (although not anthropogenically) – why exactly, doesn’t Anthony run posts that discuss notable trends of change in plant and animal migration that are consistent with significant global warming?

    You see – I keep reading at this here site that folks accept GW but not AGW, but then I see post after post that implies a lack of belief in GW. And I also see comment after comment that doubt a Greenhouse Gas Effect, and that say that the Earth is cooling.

    Curious, isn’t it? It makes it seem as if there’s a whole lot o’ inconsistent logic being bandied about, doesn’t it?

  56. Bruce Cobb says:

    Kohl says:
    August 19, 2011 at 3:01 pm

    I’m not sure why so many are becoming agitated about this. It seems to be a straight forward investigation of the cause(s) of sea level rise. Their conclusion is that melting icesheets contribute more than has been thought to be the case.

    I can’t see any reason to find that objectionable. In fact I find it interesting.

    No one’s “upset”. It’s pretty much SOP warmscience. It has the trappings of science, but because the assumptions are so completely out of whack, so are the conclusions. The fact that sea level rise apparently has less to do with thermal expansion and more to do with actual melting than they thought might be interesting if somewhat useless information. It is the warmist spin they and others (like Gates) will no doubt put on it which is troublesome.

  57. Philip Shehan says:

    R. Gates is correct. The IPCC projections for sea level rise were based almost entirely on thermal expansion. Climatologicts knew that warming seas undermined greenland and antarctic ice resting on land below sea level, which would evewntually result in these shelves detaching, but did not know enough about the mechanism to calculate how much this would add. So these “alarmists” simply left this contribution to sea level rise out of calculations entirely.

    Increasing knowledge of this mechanism has now allowed estimates to be made, which is why projections of sea level rises by 2100 have been increased. Loss of land based ice sheets will be a relatively sudden addition to sea levels, which is why you cannot extrapolate the current thermal expansion rates to the end of the century.

  58. Ian L. McQueen says:

    Floor Anthoni, thank you for the three references. I have read some of your papers before, but not these ones. The connection between “sea level” and wind is very interesting and persuasive.

    IanM

  59. Smokey says:

    Philip Shehan,

    Observations are falsifying your conjecture: click

  60. Kohl says:

    For Bruce Cobb

    If you are going to quote what I said, please make sure that it is actually what I wrote. I didn’t say “upset” and didn’t imply it.

    Otherwise, I have two problems with what you say –

    1. “The fact that sea level rise apparently has less to do with thermal expansion and more to do with actual melting than they thought might be interesting if somewhat useless information.”

    It seems to me that to-day’s “useless” information might turn out to be tomorrow’s essential foundation. A great deal of science used to be ‘blue sky’. That is to say, the results of research did not always have immediate or even expected practical impact or application. I would hate to see that change.

    (As an aside and per contra, I rather think that it has already changed significantly as the influence of government and large private company funding tends to require ‘results’ for continued funding).

    2. “It is the warmist spin they and others (like Gates) will no doubt put on it which is troublesome.”

    Whatever ill use ‘they and others’ might make of this study is best dealt with when it occurs. Pre-emptive dismissal of ideas on the basis of what use ‘might’ be made of those ideas looks a lot like censorship to me.

  61. jrwakefield says:

    jorgekafkazar says:
    August 19, 2011 at 12:39 pm
    Metal objects frozen into ice don’t remain at a constant level. The weight causes the ice beneath to melt very slowly, letting them sink. The 200′ doesn’t all represent accumulated ice.

    ——–

    In this case it does. Objects, non metal, left on the ice surface when the crew was rescued was still with the aircraft 200 ft down. The planes were not deformed in any way, which would be the case if the planes sunk into the ice. So the planes did not sink into the ice, the ice accumulated around the planes as snow.

  62. jrwakefield says:

    Joshua says:
    August 19, 2011 at 5:28 pm
    JohnW –

    Perhaps you can explain, but if there is widespread acceptance here at WUWT that GW is happening but it just isn’t A, why does Anthony loves him some posts about snowpack in the High Sierras, snowfall in NZ, seals unexpectedly turning up in Boston Harbor, etc?

    And as someone who is interest in climate change but who believes that the Earth is warming (although not anthropogenically) – why exactly, doesn’t Anthony run posts that discuss notable trends of change in plant and animal migration that are consistent with significant global warming?

    You see – I keep reading at this here site that folks accept GW but not AGW, but then I see post after post that implies a lack of belief in GW. And I also see comment after comment that doubt a Greenhouse Gas Effect, and that say that the Earth is cooling.

    Curious, isn’t it? It makes it seem as if there’s a whole lot o’ inconsistent logic being bandied about, doesn’t it?

    —————

    Not at all. The AGW claim is the planet is getting hotter. But it isn’t. Parts of the planet are getting less cold in the winters, such as the north. Summer temps are flat in the tropics, no change since records began, just fluctations. Canada, for example, has had FEWER heat waves today since the 1930’s. It’s all that together that is driving the average temperature up, and shows that a global planetary average temperature is completely meaningless. What we see posted here is a planet with a very complex climate system, with cycles within cycles, and different cycles at different locations. It’s the claim that the entire planet is “warming” evenly everywhere because of CO2 that is the curious concept indeed.

  63. RACookPE1978 says:

    Pompous Git says:
    August 19, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    jorgekafkazar said @ August 19, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    “Metal objects frozen into ice don’t remain at a constant level. The weight causes the ice beneath to melt very slowly, letting them sink. The 200′ doesn’t all represent accumulated ice.”

    Granted. So is there an engineer who can calculate for us how much of the 200′ is due to the planes sinking?

    Several flaws in the “the aircraft sunk through the ice” theory:

    These WWII aircraft were very, very light in terms of their wing area, tail planes, and fuselage body areas. They landed with their wheels down, and rolled to a stop. Available photo’s hundreds of feet under the ice show all with virtually no damage, and all at nearly the same depth and at stable, flat, attitudes. Hundreds of similar WWII fighters and bombers landed at sea and stayed floating for hours on water … proof again, that at low speeds and no crash impact to tear the structure apart immediately, a WWII aircraft’s wings WILL keep a similar aircraft suspended above a hard mass like snow indefinitely. That the larger, heavier bomber and smaller-winged but lighter fighters were all at just about the same depth means that none “sunk” but that all were buried under ice and snow after the event.

    So any twisting, sinking or “ice-melting” can be eliminated. It simply didn’t happen. (Sure, the first 5 feet? The wheels and struts could have “sunk in” . but no further. After that 5 foot drop, they were stable, and stayed stable for 60-odd years.

    Will a small, heavy metal plate sink in? Certainly. But that heavy “plate” is not a lightweight airplane wing!

    All of the 200 foot of the ice and snow above them was deposited in place in the 60 years between their crash-landing and their removal.

  64. Joshua says:

    jrwakefield –

    The AGW claim is the planet is getting hotter. But it isn’t.

    Looks like you and JohnW need to have a sit-down.

  65. Kohl says: August 19, 2011 at 7:28 pm “(As an aside and per contra, I rather think that it has already changed significantly as the influence of government and large private company funding tends to require ‘results’ for continued funding).”

    Do tell, where else does substantial funding come from? The Green Party? The tooth Fairy? The WWF?

  66. ozspeaksup says:

    Patrick Davis says:
    August 19, 2011 at 4:25 am

    Tell that to the people of Japan. LAND levels FELL at least 1m as a result of the quake movements this year, and are STILL shifting. So it appears only alarmists assume land levels are static and sea levels change.==============
    huh? theres world of difference between a plate of crust moving some land- or supposed warm water or some C02 in their sinking islands, which..also..seems not to be happening anywahere.
    tuvaalu eg.

  67. Axel says:

    This is ALL speculation, because THERE ARE NO actual witnessed records of ice age temperatures. We must ask British “Time Lord”, Doctor Who, to go back for us in his “TARDIS” and have a look, and preferably make some videos & etc. Then we can maybe know the truth.
    Maybe it was the terrible “Skith” what done that seal level; thing ?
    http://tardis.wikia.com/wiki/The_Age_of_Ice

    it’s as likely as the yarns that these “scientists” spin in here about catastrophic sea level rises.

  68. ozspeaksup says:

    Joshua says:
    August 19, 2011 at 5:28 pm >>>– why exactly, doesn’t Anthony run posts that discuss notable trends of change in plant and animal migration that are consistent with significant global warming?<

    because evrything any animal bird bug does lately is immediately linked as "warming affected"
    when the fact is until now they either didnt have (AGW)funding to go look. or any reason to tout it loudly and make unproven claims
    so if AGW funds you, going against the grain with observations purely as observations of range habitat etc, is sort of UNlikely.
    those that do dont get published as easily, if at all. and they sure dont get a new grant.
    you will see people here like Willis actively asking for critiques and revision and sharing working out info, freely.
    funny how "msm style researchers like a certain mann, refuse to allow that?

  69. Philip Shehan says:

    Smokey: It would have been helpful to see what the various plots on the graph actually describe but I will limit my comment to saying that apart from envisat, which apppears to be anomolous compared to the other lines, the current short term dip is similar to other short term variations in the record within the long term rise.

  70. Bruce Cobb says:

    @ Kohl; Perhaps I was unclear. The paper reeks of Alarmism, and that is what people object to. Their conclusion: “These results reemphasize the concern that both the Antarctic and Greenland Ice Sheets may be more sensitive to temperature than widely thought” is not science, but Alarmist spin. Why should there be “concern”?

  71. Bruce Cobb says:

    Joshua says:
    August 19, 2011 at 5:28 pm
    And as someone who is interest in climate change but who believes that the Earth is warming (although not anthropogenically) – why exactly, doesn’t Anthony run posts that discuss notable trends of change in plant and animal migration that are consistent with significant global warming?
    It is completely meaningless, and in fact disingenuous to say that “the Earth is warming”. All we can truthfully say is that is has warmed, or did warm since the end of the LIA, although the extent is greatly exaggerated, and purposely, by the Alarmists. The previous warming has in fact stalled, and we are likely going into a period of cooling. If there are any plants or animals currently in the process of migrating, it would more likely be in the warm direction, unless they are suicidal.

  72. Joshua says:

    Bruce –

    It is completely meaningless, and in fact disingenuous to say that “the Earth is warming”.

    So, then, you disagree with what I am told is the majority opinion here at WUWT?

    And I notice that still, no one can answer my questions.

    Interesting.

  73. Axel says:

    The Earth can only do two things.
    It can be warming, or it can be cooling.
    Humans cannot alter that fact,
    though some would like to do so.

    Like fleas on an elephants back, arguing which way
    that the elephant should next go, months into the future.
    Humans have about as much idea or hope as those
    fleas of getting ANY prediction right, except for the rather
    obvious one. In the future, it will either get warmer or colder.

  74. daveburton says:

    sea level rise due to thermal expansion of the top layer of the ocean is a localized effect. It does not affect coastal sea levels. Only thermal expansion in the lower layers of the ocean affects coastal sea level.

    Thermal expansion of the top layer of the ocean does affect satellite-measured sea level, but for coastal planning purposes that doesn’t matter. (That’s one of the reasons it is Just Plain Wrong to create a graph which combines tide gauge-measured coastal seal levels through ~1995 with satellite-measured sea levels from 1995 on, as Hansen likes to do, to create the illusion of acceleration in rate of sea level rise.)

    Quantifying the effect of deep ocean thermal expansion is problematic, at present. The Argo Buoys are attempting to measure deep ocean temperatures, but they aren’t finding much warming in the ocean depths. In fact, early reports (now disputed) were that the Argo Buoys were detecting a slight cooling, rather than warming.

    If it isn’t clear to you why thermal expansion of the top layer of the ocean doesn’t affect coastal sea levels, recall that the top layer of the ocean basically floats on the lower layers. Consider what happens when there is a density change in the top layer of seawater in the open ocean (perhaps due to temperature change). If the density decreases (the water expands) then the sea level rises, in place, in the open ocean, without affecting coastal sea levels at all.

    Mariners call this concept “displacement” – it is measured in units of mass, not volume.

    Examples of this are icebergs and sea ice. When frozen, water has reduced density, so an iceberg (or Arctic icecap) rises above the surrounding liquid water. Its top surface is a locally elevated sea level. When the ice melts, that locally elevated sea level falls, but it has no effect at all on coastal sea level, because the iceberg’s water has the same mass (displacement) regardless of its varying density and solidity.

    The same thing happens when surface water warms in the open ocean. Sea level goes up locally, in the open ocean, due to thermal expansion of the water, but it has no effect at all on coastal sea levels.

    Density changes in seawater in lower layers of the ocean do affect coastal sea levels, but it takes hundreds of years for surface heat to find its way down to the lower layers of the ocean, so anthropogenic global warming cannot have much affected it yet.

  75. Smokey says:

    daveburton,

    Face it, sea level rise is decelerating. The reason for the previous rise was the natural warming since the LIA. And the 3,351 ARGO buoys are not wrong, even though some alarmist dispute the measurements. They argue about the readings because a cooling ocean debunks thier “carbon” globaloney. The models are wrong, not the observations.

  76. Steve Case says:

    Lee Harvey says that once you get a hundred meters down the temperature isn’t going to change a hell of a lot

    And if you increase the temperature of that 100 meters by once degree Celsius you will get about 21 mm or a little over three quarters of an inch in sea level rise due to thermal expansion. The Executive summary in chapter 5 of the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report tells us that over the period 1961 to 2003, global ocean temperature has risen by 0.10°C from the surface to a depth of 700 m. That works out to about 15 mm or a little over half an inch of sea level rise. Alan D McIntire links us to the current Colorado.edu graph showing recent a decrease in the rate of sea level rise. How about that?

    “The authors suggest that the Greenland and, in particular, Antarctic ice sheets may be more sensitive to increasing temperatures than previously thought, with important implications for estimates of future sea level rise.”

    And the previous thoughts are: Regarding Antarctica the IPCC’s AR4 in Chapter 10 figure 10.5 shows us that the projections for sea level rise by 2100 from the change in Antarctic ice mass will be negative across the board. Added together with Greenland’s change in ice mass it’s still mostly negative.

    Al Gore tells us that sea level is going up 20 feet.

    Who are you going to believe?

  77. Axel says:

    But Smokey, the warm water is hiding in the cold deepness, don’t you know.
    Cooling is a symptom of warming, and work will make you free. Truth is lies,
    and black is white, whereas green is really red. This has all been said.

    Back ye seas, said Canute the Dane, and the seas didn’t listen to him.
    Back ye seas, deign the Canuts, especially Strong & Suzuki, but the
    seas will not listen still, perhaps they never will ? The sea has no ears.

  78. R. Gates says:

    Axel says:
    August 20, 2011 at 4:43 am
    This is ALL speculation, because THERE ARE NO actual witnessed records of ice age temperatures.

    ——–
    Well, I’ve personally witnessed a temperature from the ice age…just this morning. It was 68 degrees F here early this morning in Denver. Since earth is still in an ice age and has been for millions of years, we have lots of actual witnessed records from this current ice age.

  79. jorgekafkazar says:
    August 19, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    Metal objects frozen into ice don’t remain at a constant level. The weight causes the ice beneath to melt very slowly, letting them sink. The 200′ doesn’t all represent accumulated ice.

    Try a bit of science instead of urban myth. To melt ice at -7°C would require a pressure of 1000 kg/cm² or just under 1000 atmospheres of pressure.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clausius–Clapeyron_relation
    Even the pressure at the base of a glacier isn’t sufficient to melt the ice there. It’s a popular fallacy that ice-skates slide because the pressure on the ice melts it under the blade – they slide because ice is slippery.

  80. John W says:

    Joshua says:
    Perhaps you can explain, but if there is widespread acceptance here at WUWT that GW is happening but it just isn’t A, why does Anthony loves him some posts about snowpack in the High Sierras, snowfall in NZ, seals unexpectedly turning up in Boston Harbor, etc?

    I didn’t say there was widespread acceptance that GW is happening. I don’t think many would disagree that it’s warmer now than 100 years ago, however, I think there’s probably a large portion that believe recent warming has reached a plateau and that a large portion of the height of the plateau is due to a warming bias in the instrumental record.

    And as someone who is interest in climate change but who believes that the Earth is warming (although not anthropogenically) – why exactly, doesn’t Anthony run posts that discuss notable trends of change in plant and animal migration that are consistent with significant global warming?

    WUWT(Watts Up With That) is a blog, bloggers blog about what blogger’s wish. I don’t speak for Anthony, but for myself, I can read about anything pro-CAGW in the MSM, CAGW get’s enough press without WUWT. Besides, any “study” that examines other “studies” and concludes “It’s worse than we thought” and “accelerating” is most likely going to get torn apart here in short order.

    You see – I keep reading at this here site that folks accept GW but not AGW, but then I see post after post that implies a lack of belief in GW. And I also see comment after comment that doubt a Greenhouse Gas Effect, and that say that the Earth is cooling.

    Have you seen the # of views? Obviously there’s a diverse crowd here. A belief in GW(historical) does not necessarily conflict with a belief that the Earth is cooling (currently). I think more accurate summation of the view here would be that warming/cooling is natural and cyclical. There’s probably widespread differences on when / how much / relevance / measurability of any particular attribute of climate such as “global average temperature”.

    Curious, isn’t it? It makes it seem as if there’s a whole lot o’ inconsistent logic being bandied about, doesn’t it?

    That’s rich! Banding CAGW with AGW to INSIGNIFICANT GW evidence while ignoring observations that bring into doubt the very core of AGW hypothesis. LOL.

  81. On the temperatures… all this summer the temps have been remarkably cool here- mid ’80s to high ’50s. I hazard to guess this is a swing of at least 5-10 degrees from the average. The normal wind patterns seem to have shifted about 30 degrees. Summer is like late spring here in the Sierras at 4,000 feet. Something is wrong with this. Having to close the windows at night because it’s chilly is a definite sign. I actually have to wear a jacket some nights! The garden got snowed on twice, so this summer’s crop is nill. Our tremendous snowfall filled the reservoirs- and they are still full! I’m chainsawing and splitting more firewood than normal- the last two years are stating to spell a downward trend average temps. Winter temps have been moderate, but heavier snowfall. I don’t want to rant about an ice age, but I don’t see a big global warming thing going on here.
    The carbon footprint of this subject is starting to be a concern, though.

  82. Dave Wendt says:

    Joshua says:
    August 20, 2011 at 6:56 am

    That paper you linked to is possibly worth a post here, but it was only published a few days ago and the abstract and WP’s hyperventilating coverage don’t seem to be entirely justified by the actual work. The article is paywalled but glancing through the Supporting Online Materials causes me to suspect that author’s baleful conclusions are more a product of analytical methodology than of the examined input studies.

    For example, in Tables S1a and S1b the included studies report smaller observed range shifts than the expected range shifts for 12 of 20 of the latitudinal studies and for all 16 of the elevational range shift studies. One of the more interesting entries (no. 17 T. S1a) is for a study from Finland which includes the largest number of species(birds) of any of the included studies. It shows an expansion of range much larger than expected, but that is because the temperature trend in the area was actually negative. The other Tables show that there is rather dramatic variability both within and among the included studies. I’m not a really dedicated number cruncher so I can’t meaningfully criticize the multitude of choices the author’s list in their methodological description, but the sheer number of them hints at numerous opportunities for bias to enter in to the analysis. If Anthony does decide to post on this piece perhaps some of commentary community here who are more in tune with statistical voodoo will weigh in. Until then I’ll have to give this work a very big MAYBE.

  83. Axel says:

    Richard gives a good explanation of the insignificance of these predicted temperature scares, versus the actual empirically measured temperature changes. See his lecture, Dr. Lindzen of MIT at the CEI – Real Facts about Climate Change.

    [ viddler id=79d667f3&w=545&h=307 ]

    More videos like this collated at the website linked to the name “Axel”, in blue, above.

  84. Bruce Cobb says:

    Joshua says; So, then, you disagree with what I am told is the majority opinion here at WUWT?
    It depends, Joshua, on what strawman “opinion” you think is in the “majority” here. Just because it did warm doesn’t mean it still is warming, or indeed that warming will recommence in the coming decades. But you seem to think it is, and will. Why, I wonder?

  85. Joshua says:

    Dave Wendt –

    A fair response. I’ll look forward to a reasoned discussion about that study and its findings.

    In the meantime, I hope that you subject posts such as those Anthony makes about snowpack in the Sierras, or unexpected appearance of seals in Boston Harbor (with, to my memory, some kind of throw-away line about seals knowing something about scientists don’t about climate change) to the same level of scrutiny.

  86. Joshua says:

    It depends, Joshua, on what strawman “opinion” you think is in the “majority” here.

    Bruce –

    I have been told by WUWT readers that the majority opinion is that warming is happening, just not in a way that is consistent with theories of AGW. You should take up the question of strawman opinions with those who have originated the opinion.

  87. Axel says:

    Seems like WordPress don’t support Viddler in the comments, though it works in articles.
    It is all a bit confusing…… http://en.support.wordpress.com/videos/viddler/ :eek:

    :oops:

    So here is the urls:
    some geezer with a beard droning on about insignificance of temperature variations ;)
    http://www.viddler.com/explore/ceivideo/videos/121/

    some geezer with a mustache droning on about temperature gauges ;)
    http://www.viddler.com/explore/heartland/videos/351/

    :cool:

    —–

  88. A G Foster says:

    Re Joshua, August 19, 2011 at 5:28 pm

    Somewhat guilty as charged. Let me explain. Natural GW? Probably. AGW? Maybe, maybe not. Certain catastrophic AGW? Hardly. So we must respond simultaneously to a cacaphony of assertions representing an array of views. Snow storms in warm places must be noted to confront the constant cry of heat waves, tornadoes, and hurricanes which are asserted by the more radical to be the fulfillment of Gorean prophecy. Yeah, it’s weather, but 20 years ago they predicted no more snow in the currently habitable earth. So the “it’s weather not climate” mantra must be maintained to counter the most ignorant and radical.

    As for species moving northward, this should also be inspected from a variety of aspects. We seem to have a fresh synthesis of a number of former studies, probably most of which were funded by way of connecting them to AGW so that there was a built in incentive to find evidence of poleward migration. It all sounds far too simple to be true–the precision of population studies required to ascertain such a result. A one degree T rise represents somewhere around a few dozen miles or a degree of latitude, and all these studies harmoniously report a detected signal of such poleward movement which can be filtered out from all the effects of habitat encroachment and invasive species, etc. We could claim, as the population moves to the sunbelt, the animals find more room in the north.

    The point being, I find the whole notion of the ability to detect mass northward migrations across species of just a few miles to be pure nonsense. The sort of made-to-order science which WUWT seems dedicated to eridicating. The poster species of the ignorant fantatics–the polar bear–is one of the safest of all the big canrivores, precisely because it lives so far north, far from people. Tigers on the other hand are in big trouble, seeing as how they presently compete with farmers for space. The notion that GW presents the most clear and present danger to wildlife the world over is a preposterous one, one that only fools can entertain. Odds are it presents no threat whatever. –AGf

  89. phlogiston says:

    Alan D McIntire says:
    August 19, 2011 at 5:55 am
    Since the discussion is about sea level, there ought to be a link to

    http://sealevel.colorado.edu/

    Admittedly 1 year is not significant, but it looks like sea levels took a dive in 2011

    The same data can be seen here on WUWT at the reference pages, both on the ENSO and Ocean pages. FWIW, the decline in sea level in the Colorado data from 2009 to the present is unprecedented in the whole Colorado dataset from 1993 (albeit < 2 decades only…)

    Bob Tisdale is conservatively (and sensibly) giving no emphasis to this decline (see earlier post) attributing it to random noise – but it is becoming interesting.

  90. Jeff Alberts says:

    Joshua says:
    August 20, 2011 at 2:21 pm

    I have been told by WUWT readers that the majority opinion is that warming is happening, just not in a way that is consistent with theories of AGW. You should take up the question of strawman opinions with those who have originated the opinion.

    Majority opinions mean nothing. You’re trying to pigeonhole everyone who visits this site, which is a failed exercise.

  91. Axel says:

    Indeed phlogiston, lets also see the
    Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory
    records from the UK, though they do
    list all the World’s known tidal stations.
    eg: Newlyn, Cornwall, England.
    Sea level variation over the past 30 days.
    http://is.gd/iqCnCy
    The variation between high and low tide,
    ranges from 2 metres to 5 metres, depending
    on the position of the moon obviously.

    In the Gloss Station Handbook, Newlyn,
    we have observations since 1915, with
    a change of instrument in 1983 / 84, and
    again in 1996.

    The tables on this page refer to the earliest
    incarnation of themeasuring station & etc.
    What we see are two sets of figures. One related to
    Ordnance Datum Newlyn (ODN), based on mean
    sea level at Newlyn between 1915 and 1921, and
    another set based on the Tide Gauge Bench Mark.
    Both sets of figure show a small rise of about 1 or 2
    centimetres in about 70 years. This is hardly dramatic.
    it is about 1/2 a percent of the daily variation at best,
    and about 1/10th of a percent at the full moon tide.
    https://www.bodc.ac.uk/data/documents/nodb/30932/

    There is a marked jump in the “sea level” when the
    gauges were changed. This is no surprise though.

    Similarly for other UK stations on the whole ….
    Though the south east of England is falling,
    as the north west of Scotland is rising, due to
    delayed glaciative effects ? Additionally several
    other UK locations are affected by pivoting, such
    as the islands of North & South Uist in West Scotland.
    South Uist is sinking as north Uist is rising. So what
    the actual “Sea Level” is in these places is moot.
    There seems little thant man can do to prevent
    South Uist from sinking into the sea, short of
    extensive dyke works to a Nederlands scale.

    UK Tide Gauge Network – more examples
    http://www.pol.ac.uk/ntslf/networks.html

    See also
    Permanent Service for Mean Sea Level (PSMSL)
    http://www.pol.ac.uk/psmsl.html

    Global Sea Level Observing System (Gloss Handbook)
    http://www.gloss-sealevel.org/station_handbook/

    Gloss throws up some perhaps surprising results,
    when you look at the adat devoid of “green spin”.
    In that flagship of the endangered coral atolls,
    Male in the Maldives, we see that it went up by
    about 3cm in 5 years, but then fell again by
    about 4cm in the next 5 years, since when
    it has risen by about 3cm in the last 2 years.
    …..according to the chart. http://is.gd/kKJETh

    And just how exactly is this supposed to be
    related to atmospheric CO2 concentrations,
    because once again we see clear cyclic
    behaviour with levels falling as well as rising.
    In one case probably due to the Moon, and
    in another case probaly due to ENSO,
    ocean currents, & etc. Yet all the while CO2
    concentrations are rising slowly, but
    apparently in a more or less linear fashion.

    How does the straight line cause a wavey line effect ?

    Hmm.

  92. Dave Wendt says:

    Joshua says:
    August 20, 2011 at 2:19 pm
    Dave Wendt –

    “A fair response. I’ll look forward to a reasoned discussion about that study and its findings.

    In the meantime, I hope that you subject posts such as those Anthony makes about snowpack in the Sierras, or unexpected appearance of seals in Boston Harbor (with, to my memory, some kind of throw-away line about seals knowing something about scientists don’t about climate change) to the same level of scrutiny.”

    As a general rule I would advise against placing a great deal of confidence in anything which has been or is currently being produced in the field of “climate science”. What epistemilogical sympathies I may have tend toward the “skeptical” side for a number of reasons, but mainly because they provide a deserately needed counterweight to those who would use this illusory “crisis” to advance their political and economic goals. They also seem to possess a much higher degree of humility with regard to their work, being far less inclined to claims that it “proves” anything. To the extent that any of them do indulge in hyperbole about their findings I’m inclined to cut them some slack, given the profound deficit of access to the levers of information that they are forced to operate under. In that regard, if their exagerations were 100 times worse than they actually are they would still be as a spit in the ocean compared to the deluge of climate claptrap that has been the sea we all swim in for a couple decades now.

    Even though I admit to possessing a rooting interest in the skeptical viewpoint I don’t “believe” they “know” what is driving the climate any more than the alarmists do. I certainly don’t. I put the words believe and know in quotes because almost the entire human population is incapable of meaningfully differentiating between what they claim to know and what they simply choose to believe. If one feels the need to believe something about the climate the state of the science is so abysmal that an argument can be constructed to support your decision, no matter which of the many speculations about what drives it you choose to embrace. I don’t choose to embrace any of them, but I don’t rise to challenge those who do unless they are also demanding that world embrace draconian “solutions” to illusory problems. If I set my mind to it I could poke enough logical holes in any of the alternative hypotheses about climate that presently exist, to demonstrate that they have not been proven to be correct, but the poor state of the science that allows that also allows that none of them can ever be proven to be entirely wrong. When it comes to the future, the possiblities are endless and the prospects that we can project which will eventuate with any degree of certainty are extremely slim

  93. Andy says:

    Sorry, the study mentioned ‘models’.

    I stopped reading.

    BTW – R Gates, let me get this right: you admit that we’re currently in an ice age and therefore global temperatures have been much higher in the past, before we started producing all those nasty SeeOhToos. Have I understood your admission correctly?

  94. Willis Eschenbach says:

    Richard Wakefield says:
    August 19, 2011 at 7:22 am

    For those who may not know of this, look up Glacier Girl. A P38 that was extracted from the icepack along Greenland’s east coast. A group of WWII planes was forced landed on the icepack. The planes were abandoned. Expaditions found them, and extracted one P38 from the ice. They had to go down some 200 FEET! So if all this ice is melting in Greenland in the last 60 years, how did 200 feet accumulate and bury these planes in that same 60 years? Me thinks these predictions of melting ice are a tad off.

    The Greenland Ice Cap looks solid and stable. But it’s not. Much of it is a very slow-moving river of ice. Down at the bottom, where ice meets rock, pressure plus the heat of friction can turn ice back into water. Further up, the ice is plastic. The ice cap moves outwards from the center and eventually ends up back in the ocean.

    The relatively constant height of the great ice caps of Greenland and Antarctica is an illusion. It is the result of a balance between constant addition of snow in the middle of the continent/island, and constant ablation of the resulting ice at the edges.

    Lke a fly in amber, the Glacier Girl was trapped in that slow river and in some thousands of years it would likely have emerged from a calving glacier somewhere at the edge.

    w.

  95. jrwakefield says:

    Lke a fly in amber, the Glacier Girl was trapped in that slow river and in some thousands of years it would likely have emerged from a calving glacier somewhere at the edge.

    ———

    Yes, but the depth of their burial was because of accumulated snow turning into ice. The river part is why it was, if I recall, they were several kilometers down stream from their landing co-ordinates. That’s how they were found, by predicting how much they likely were moved down stream. The fact that other artifacts left under and around the planes, which were still there, shows they planes could not have sunk into the ice.

  96. Rascal says:

    Several months ago this rising oceans business was discussed, and I was able to produce maps showing Manhattan Island when Henry Hudson landed there in 1640, and the extent Lower Manhattan in 2008; about one-third of the of the area occupied by the former World Trade Center Towers would have been in the river in 1640!

    Unfortunately, a recent computer malfunction prevents me from showing the views, but as I recall, Anthony posted a similar map showing the growth of the Boston land area since Revolutionary time.

    Expand the land area in one place and the sea will necessarily rise in others, all other things being equal.

  97. barry says:

    Another sea level rise fallacy falls short

    Heat-driven expansion not a major source of sea level rise

    When will we overcome the fallacy of heralding new science papers as if they are the definitive pinnacle of understanding?

    And when the next paper comes out saying that sea level rise isn’t happening, will we be able to refrain from heralding it as the definitive word, even when it contradicts the premise of this post?

    Because that happens a lot here – espousing a paper that ‘drives the final nail in the coffin’, and then a little while later giving that plaudit to another one that contradicts the first. This is not good reasoning or even reasonable.

    Yes, I will corroborate if that’s necessary.

  98. John Marshall says:

    Water does not expand until +4C. So it melts but still shrinks until that magic temperature.

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