Trenberth’s missing heat? Look to the deep

From the National Center for Atmospheric Research/University Corporation for Atmospheric Research  an explanation for Global Ocean Heat Content Is Still Flat.

Graph by Bob Tisdale - not part of the NCAR/UCAR press release

Key point from the press release:

Observations from a global network of buoys showed some warming in the upper ocean, but not enough to account for the global build-up of heat. Although scientists suspected the deep oceans were playing a role, few measurements were available to confirm that hypothesis.To track where the heat was going, Meehl and colleagues used a powerful software tool known as the Community Climate System Model

This new paper (which hasn’t been put online yet at NCC as of this writing, I’ll post a link as soon as I have one) from Trenberth is simply modeling, and modeling so far hasn’t done a very good job of accounting for the oceans:

I’d like to see some supporting observations, otherwise this is just speculation for something that Trenberth is doggedly trying to explain away. My question is; show me why some years the deep ocean doesn’t mask global warming. It’s not like that big heat sink was suddenly removed.

Deep oceans can mask global warming for decade-long periods

BOULDER — The planet’s deep oceans at times may absorb enough heat to flatten the rate of global warming for periods of as long as a decade even in the midst of longer-term warming, according to a new analysis led by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR).

The study, based on computer simulations of global climate, points to ocean layers deeper than 1,000 feet (300 meters) as the main location of the “missing heat” during periods such as the past decade when global air temperatures showed little trend. The findings also suggest that several more intervals like this can be expected over the next century, even as the trend toward overall warming continues.

“We will see global warming go through hiatus periods in the future,” says NCAR’s Gerald Meehl, lead author of the study. “However, these periods would likely last only about a decade or so, and warming would then resume. This study illustrates one reason why global temperatures do not simply rise in a straight line.”

The research, by scientists at NCAR and the Bureau of Meteorology in Australia, will be published online on September 18 in Nature Climate Change. Funding for the study came from the National Science Foundation, NCAR’s sponsor, and the Department of Energy.

Where the missing heat goes

The 2000s were Earth’s warmest decade in more than a century of weather records. However, the single-year mark for warmest global temperature, which had been set in 1998, remained unmatched until 2010.

Yet emissions of greenhouse gases continued to climb during the 2000s, and satellite measurements showed that the discrepancy between incoming sunshine and outgoing radiation from Earth actually increased. This implied that heat was building up somewhere on Earth, according to a 2010 study published in Science by NCAR researchers Kevin Trenberth and John Fasullo.

The two scientists, who are coauthors on the new study, suggested that the oceans might be storing some of the heat that would otherwise go toward other processes, such as warming the atmosphere or land, or melting more ice and snow. Observations from a global network of buoys showed some warming in the upper ocean, but not enough to account for the global build-up of heat. Although scientists suspected the deep oceans were playing a role, few measurements were available to confirm that hypothesis.

To track where the heat was going, Meehl and colleagues used a powerful software tool known as the Community Climate System Model, which was developed by scientists at NCAR and the Department of Energy with colleagues at other organizations. Using the model’s ability to portray complex interactions between the atmosphere, land, oceans, and sea ice, they performed five simulations of global temperatures.

The simulations, which were based on projections of future greenhouse gas emissions from human activities, indicated that temperatures would rise by several degrees during this century. But each simulation also showed periods in which temperatures would stabilize for about a decade before climbing again. For example, one simulation showed the global average rising by about 2.5 degrees Fahrenheit (1.4 degrees Celsius) between 2000 and 2100, but with two decade-long hiatus periods during the century.

During these hiatus periods, simulations showed that extra energy entered the oceans, with deeper layers absorbing a disproportionate amount of heat due to changes in oceanic circulation. The vast area of ocean below about 1,000 feet (300 meters) warmed by 18% to 19% more during hiatus periods than at other times. In contrast, the shallower global ocean above 1,000 feet warmed by 60% less than during non-hiatus periods in the simulation.

“This study suggests the missing energy has indeed been buried in the ocean,” Trenberth says. “The heat has not disappeared, and so it cannot be ignored. It must have consequences.”

A pattern like La Niña

The simulations also indicated that the oceanic warming during hiatus periods has a regional signature. During a hiatus, average sea-surface temperatures decrease across the tropical Pacific, while they tend to increase at higher latitudes, especially around 30°S and 30°N in the Pacific and between 35°N and 40°N in the Atlantic, where surface waters converge to push heat into deeper oceanic layers.

These patterns are similar to those observed during a La Niña event, according to Meehl. He adds that El Niño and La Niña events can be overlaid on top of a hiatus-related pattern. Global temperatures tend to drop slightly during La Niña, as cooler waters reach the surface of the tropical Pacific, and they rise slightly during El Niño, when those waters are warmer.

“The main hiatus in observed warming has corresponded with La Niña conditions, which is consistent with the simulations,” Trenberth says.

The simulations were part of NCAR’s contribution to the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5). They were run on supercomputers at NCAR’s National Science Foundation-supported Climate Simulation Laboratory, and on supercomputers at Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility and the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center, both supported by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy.

###

The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research manages the National Center for Atmospheric Research under sponsorship by the National Science Foundation. Any opinions, findings and conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

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

h/t to WUWT reader Bradley Fikes

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205 Responses to Trenberth’s missing heat? Look to the deep

  1. Molon Labe says:

    Not just any software tool, but a *powerful* software tool.

  2. John M says:

    The planet’s deep oceans at times may absorb enough heat to flatten the rate of global warming for periods of as long as a decade even in the midst of longer-term warming

    Hmmm….as long as a decade

    Well I guess we ought to know pretty soon.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:2001.7/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:2001.7/trend

    Of course, who’s to know what meme they be trying next.

  3. Brian H says:

    It went into the “deep”, all right. Deep Space, you gormless cadets! As Spencer demonstrated, the OLR and albedo feedback is so quick and powerful that the supposed influx to the oceans never actually happens.

  4. Juraj V. says:

    Where oh where is my little heat? It has to be hiding somewhere..
    It is not in the ocean, it is not in the atmosphere, it must be somewhere and my model confirms it. Medieval alchemists x10.

  5. Ibrahim says:

    This is getting pathetic.

  6. son of mulder says:

    So if this is correct how come the GCM’s only started to diverge from the temperature record around 2000ish?

  7. Anything is possible says:

    Which model are they using this time?

    Miss Rhode Island again?

  8. Eternal Optimist says:

    I understand their theory of CAGW (although I dont agree with them)

    what I dont understand is why the deep is not part of the ‘g’. since when did it become a seperate entity ?

    If the globe is warming, then the globe is warming. Maybe they should admit that they have never measured it properly, never will do, and dodgy proxies and models are no substitute for the real thing. It’s nothing less than a travesty.

  9. richard verney says:

    I thought that in climate science, the magic period is 30 years (although why 30 years should be regarded as a magic number, nobody trully knows why this period is justified). On that basis, Trenberth has plenty of time to still be looking for his missing heat. What a pity, since this will be a long drawn out saga, but matters will not become easy for him if the oceans are now in a cold phase excaserbated by a quiet sun No doubt he will be drawing his ‘gold plated’ pension by the time the search is called off.

    On a related matter, which goes to the heart of assessing the sensitivity of the system to GHGs, is 2 fundamental errors made in th greenhouse climate theory. First, that the Earth can be considered as a blackbody. Second, that the average temperature.of the Earth is circas 14 to 16 degC such that greenhouse gases raise the temperature by about 33 degC.

    The Earth does not behave like a blackbody since it is a water world with a huge heat sink, a hydrological cycle and the unusual characteristics of water phase changes and changes in latent heat involved in those processes.

    The average temperature of the Earth is better regarded as circa 4degC. The oceans contain 99% of the stored heat/energy capacity of the Earth system (ignoring geothermal) and the average temperature of the oceans is circa 3.9degC. The ocean is suposedly well mixed. That being the case and given that the mixing has been on going for about 4 billion years, it is easy to see that the average temperature of the Earth is in fact approximately 4 degC. It is material that after about 4 billion years of mixing, the ocean is not at 15 deg C and this confirms that the average temperature of the Earth is not 15degC.

    Sooner or later the relatively cold temperature locked into the ocean will surface (excuse the pun) and this will play a major role in the next ice age.

    Once you appreciate that the average temperature of the Earth is a lot less than climate scientists use in their theory/conjecture, it follows that GHGs play a less significant role and that the sensitivity to GHGs is less than climate scientists would have one believe. This is part of the reason why Trenberth cannot find his missing heat. Another obvious (part) explanation being that the oceans do not absorb significant amounts of DWLWIR (due to its wavelength) and the oceans are heated by solar irradiance not by DWLWIR..

    PS I have not checked when the Earth first aquired oceans. It does not matter whether this was 3 billion or 4.5 billion years ago. The point still stands that there has been plenty of time (epochs) for the mixing to take place such that one can safely conclude that the average temperature of the Earth is about 4degC (not about 14 -16 degC)… .

  10. Lars Jonsson says:

    Whenever the models and their predictions fails new sophisticated and even more powerful models are created in order to force the stubborn real world to fit the theories.

  11. philincalifornia says:

    Wow, I bet that purported missing heat outgassed some serious purported CO2 !! Part II of the powerful model, no doubt …..

  12. Bill Yarber says:

    “Yet …, and satellite measurements showed that the discrepancy between incoming sunshine and outgoing radiation from Earth actually increased.”

    Not according to Spencer & Braswell, or any other analysis as far a I know. Is this a case of making up the data to support the desired conclusion? Anyone see any data which supports the above claim?

    Bike

  13. DirkH says:

    With “powerful” they mean a model with an especially large number of eipcycles.

  14. Robert E. Phelan says:

    Yet emissions of greenhouse gases continued to climb during the 2000s, and satellite measurements showed that the discrepancy between incoming sunshine and outgoing radiation from Earth actually increased. This implied that heat was building up somewhere on Earth, according to a 2010 study published in Science by NCAR researchers Kevin Trenberth and John Fasullo.

    Hmmm… Dr. Trenberth is still searching for his missing heat and Dr. Spencer announced his explanation before Dr. Trenberth could announce his. Why is Dr. Trenberth so active in the Remote Sensing affair? Look no further…. his “We found it! We found it!” moment was pre-empted.

  15. joseph says:

    Simple people just guess.
    Some simple people make wild-assed guesses.
    Some “scientists” make SWAGs; scientific wild assed guesses.
    Really cool “scientists” make SSWAGs. Software-enhanced Scientific Wild Assed Guesses. (note, this normally takes government funding)

    Sounds to me like we have another SSWAG as the topic of this post.

  16. Latitude says:

    Doesn’t he know the science is settled……….

    This seems like a lot of work….
    ….why didn’t they just do it the easy way and lower past temperatures

    I guess he’s saying that surface temperatures would have been a whole lot colder…
    ….if all that deep water heat wasn’t keeping it warm

  17. richard verney says:

    One of the problems with the greenhouse thoery (lets be generous and call it that) is that there is nothing within the theory that allows for a hiatus in the warming. The properties of GHGs does not change from year to year (ie., it does not on some years stop absorbing and re-radiating LWR, or re-radiating only upwards and not downwards etc). The theory dictates (and allows no other option) that as GHGs increase in concentration (at least until a saturation point is reached), the temperature of the atmosphere must go up. IT IS A ONE WAY ONLY CYCLE.

    Saying that periods of hiatus may develop is in effect saying that the upward effect of temperature rise is subordinate either to:
    (1) a change in aerosols/particles in the atmosphere which have caused a negative cooling exceeding the underlying warmiing which has been caused by the increase in GHG emissions and this additional heat is in the system but blinded/masked by the the opposite effect caused by the change in aerosols/particles, or
    (2) natural variation, ie., some unkown unidentified factor which has a greater (and in the present case) opposite effect to the underlying GHG warming which has been caused by the increase in GHG emissions and this additional heat is in the system but blinded/masked by the the opposite effect caused by the natural variation change.

    The second explanation is a real problem for the greenhouse gas theory. If climate scientists concede that natural variation exists and can have a negative effect exceeding the warming caused by GHGs, there is no reason why the natural variation can not have a warming effect. That being the case, climate scientists/the IPCC cannot validly argue that as for the warming since the mid 1940s this must be CO2 since we cannot think of any other possibility. There would now be another possibility, ie., warming cdaused by natural variation.

    Thus conceding that there can be a hiatus due to natural variations (or even ocean cycles) is the thin edge of the wedge on a slippery slope demonstrating the weakness in the GHG theory.

  18. Doug in Seattle says:

    This is simply hilarious. They tuned the model to explain why the model was out of sync with the ARGO buoys.

    Gotta wonder though why it took so long to tune, why they chose this particular model, what other models they worked with, and what they chose to omit from their paper.

    I eagerly await the deconstruction after the study is published.

  19. P Walker says:

    Will the paper explain the mechanism through which the heat sinks deep in the oceans and remains there for about a decade before it reemerges and cooks us all ?

  20. Mike says:

    When it comes to heat what goes down must eventually come up.

  21. michel says:

    This is a very naive question, but is it not possible to simply measure the heat content of the ocean depths? Why cannot one lower probes or measure by submersibles? The engineering challenges may be great, but what is wrong with doing this? Are they insuperable?

  22. Ed Scott says:

    Memorializing Global Warming in song.

    Dedicated to high priest Almore Gortry.

    RayStevens – The Global Warming Song

  23. John W says:

    Just more contortions in attempt to make the CAGW “SSWAG” (thanks, joseph) fit reality. A sure sign of a failed hypothesis.

    “This study suggests the missing energy has indeed been buried in the ocean,” Trenberth says. “The heat has not disappeared, and so it cannot be ignored. It must have consequences.”

    It MUST? Why must it?

  24. rbateman says:

    A fishing expedition has been launched by a Computer Model to explain why observations don’t match theory. The cold phase of the PDO does not look to me to have changed until 2007, so there was more El Nino than La Nina. If AGW is to be explained by missing heat, the heat left the building, and so too did the La Nina that is supposed to be responsible for masking the AGW that wasn’t.

  25. Bob Tisdale says:

    The post states. “The study, based on computer simulations of global climate, points to ocean layers deeper than 1,000 feet (300 meters) as the main location of the “missing heat” during periods such as the past decade when global air temperatures showed little trend.”

    But as Anthony has illustrated with the two Ocean Heat Content graphs, even the temperatures to depths of 700 meters have stopped rising. And for those interested, here’s a comparison graph of Global Ocean Heat Content anomalies and Global Sea Surface Temperature anomalies:
    http://i51.tinypic.com/64frf4.jpg
    It’s from this post:.
    http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2011/05/22/sea-surface-temperature-versus-ocean-heat-content-anomalies/

  26. Stephen Wilde says:

    If they want to concede that some of the solar energy has gone into the deeps then so be it.

    That raises the possibility that at least some of the recent ocean surface warming is from such energy resurfacing from the MWP 1000 years ago which is the approximate length of the thermohaline circulation.

    That would help to explain the apparently steady change in ocean CO2 absorption characteristics recorded at Mauna Loa despite current or recent atmospheric variability.

    I wish they would approach their speculations from a more holistic point of view.

  27. Garry says:

    I get it: hot air sinks, cold water rises.

    Not what we were taught in middle school science class, but I guess if Trenberth can model it with “powerful software tools” then it must be so.

  28. Gary says:

    We can’t actually measure the heat energy in the deep ocean, but we can make a really complex simulation of where we would like it to be so that’s where it is and it must have consequences.

    Sounds an awful lot like magical thinking. Or pre-school thinking.

  29. Bob Diaz says:

    RE: “The study, based on computer simulations of global climate,…”

    That raises a big red flag. While a computer simulation can be useful, it can also be wrong. Garbage In = Garbage Out.

    The study might have some credibility IF there were measurements over time showing the change in heat at different depths.

  30. DirkH says:

    michel says:
    September 18, 2011 at 12:28 pm
    “This is a very naive question, but is it not possible to simply measure the heat content of the ocean depths? Why cannot one lower probes or measure by submersibles?”

    The ARGO buoys do that up to a depth of 2,000 m. If the missing heat hides below that depth, it must have sneaked by the ARGO buoys undetected for the first 2,000 m. In the words of the IPCC: “Highly unlikely”.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argo_(oceanography)

  31. P Walker says:

    Bob Tisdale ,
    700 meters isn’t deep enough . The missing heat is obviously hiding in the Marianas Trench where it is warming Atlantis and the sea monkeys .

  32. Dale says:

    Isn’t science supposed to be:
    1. Come up with theory
    2. Model it to make sure it’s possible
    3. Find empirical data (through experiment or observation) to confirm theory?

    Seems Kevin believes it is:
    1. Come up with theory
    2. Model it to confirm theory

  33. Sean Peake says:

    A powerful software tool AND a dessert topping!

  34. polistra says:

    Any theory that relies on hidden variables is prima facie NON-SCIENCE.

    Oceans are an integral part of the system. Their effects are not accidental, temporary, or extraneous.

    My car is actually going 500 MPH every time I drive it, but miscellaneous extraneous factors like air drag, friction, brakes and finite fuel-pump capacity are hiding the real speed. I am uniquely aware of its truly awesome real speed, because I have secret knowledge.

  35. R. Shearer says:

    Can we just settle where the missing heat is by a show of hands?

  36. David, UK says:

    “To track where the heat was going, Meehl and colleagues used a powerful software tool known as the Community Climate System Model.”

    She must be one powerful model. With powers like that, someone should tell her to track which balls are going to drop at the next national lottery.

  37. Theo Goodwin says:

    ‘“This study suggests the missing energy has indeed been buried in the ocean,” Trenberth says. “The heat has not disappeared, and so it cannot be ignored. It must have consequences.”’

    Yo, Warmista! If you want people to have confidence in your models, you should create the model first and then use it to forecast coming events. Apparently, you have not noticed, and I guess no one told you, that you are doing it in reverse. You are discovering heat phenomena that you cannot account for and then – thirteen years later – creating a model which finds the heat in the deep oceans where there is no observable evidence!

    In all of this, you do nothing to give people confidence that your models are in touch with observable reality. Your models do not track observable phenomena in any way whatsoever.

    Your method is the method of the con man. You want trust from citizens today for the output of a model that will be available Tuesday after next. Just stop it! You are embarrassing not only genuine scientists but genuine academics of all sorts.

  38. Green Sand says:

    R. Shearer says:
    September 18, 2011 at 1:19 pm
    Can we just settle where the missing heat is by a show of hands?

    Only if I can keep my gloves on!

  39. Gary Swift says:

    Hey, I designed a powerfull software tool that says I’m going to be a billionair within the next decade? Is that how this works?

    Ternberth, you need to bring some data that supports your powerfull software tool or it’s no better than my powerfull sofware tool.

    All your models are belonging to me.

    Muahahahah.

  40. Jason Joice M.D. says:

    I love how they don’t even say something like the model gives a possible explanation for where the heat might be. They seriously indicate that the models are equal to or superior to direct observation. This truly is post-modern science.

  41. rbateman says:

    Looking at this link: http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/ensostuff/ensoyears.shtml
    where we find the ENSO index numerics for 2000 to 2010, I calculated the average:
    0.07878787879
    There has been no significant La Nina ENSO absorbtion by the Pacific from 2000 to 2010, being that it is slightly positive. I call that trace positive. A meteorological neutral.
    Whoops, no overwhelming absorbtion to feed Trenberth’s Missing Heat.
    We’re sorry, the Pipeline is disconnected or is no longer in service.
    Please hang up and Model again.

  42. Green Sand says:

    Maybe Trenberth is on to something, is this an world domination attempt by the the genus Electrophorus? Who else could store and hide energy in the deep?

    Be afraid, be very afraid, they walk swim amongst you.

  43. Eyes Wise Open says:

    Problem is, this is the “model” they used:

  44. kwik says:

    “To track where the heat was going, Meehl and colleagues used a powerful software tool known as the Community Climate System Model.”

    Just like the (G)Oracle of Delphi.

  45. Jim Barker says:

    Nothing up my sleeve and Presto: the missing heat! Super models saving the planet one byte at a time:-)

  46. I just came back from the Sorce meeting in Arizona
    http://lasp.colorado.edu/sorce/news/2011ScienceMeeting/

    It was a very nice meeting. Our dear friend Leif was there too. Unfortunately he did not have time to listen me explaining him why his criticism to the planetary theory of the solar oscillations is flawed, which would have prevented him to do further damage.

    About Trenberth.

    Trenberth presented his theory that the lack of warming observed since 2000 was nothing but an occasional decadal variation of the ENSO. Essentially, he used his GCM to prove that sometime the computer simulations could run flat for periods of 10 years from where he deduced his interpretation of the lack of warming as a momentarily red noise fluctuation.

    One day after Trenberth, I presented my own results regarding the quasi 60-year climate oscillation that explains the observed patterns in the temperature since 1850 quite better than Trenberth’s hypothesis.

    After my talk Trenberth appeared quite shocked, he could not believe it. Of course he started claiming that my way to analyzing the data was not acceptable but he was not able to prove why. On the contrary, I proved him that his GCM model was totally unable to reproduce the warming from 1910 to 1940 and the cooling from 1940 to 1970. His model essentially runs flat until the 1960s and then starts to rise!

    After, I gave him my three last papers on the 60-year cycle which would seriously question the AGW theory.

    A. Mazzarella and N. Scafetta, “Evidences for a quasi 60-year North Atlantic Oscillation since 1700 and its meaning for global climate change,” Theor. Appl. Climatol., DOI 10.1007/s00704-011-0499-4 (2011).

    C. Loehle and N. Scafetta, “Climate Change Attribution Using Empirical Decomposition of Climatic Data,” The Open Atmospheric Science Journal, 5, 74-86 (2011).

    N. Scafetta, “Empirical evidence for a celestial origin of the climate oscillations and its implications”. Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics 72, 951–970 (2010), doi:10.1016/j.jastp.2010.04.015

    Let us see if something happens :)

  47. Iskandar says:

    I really do give a sh** about the outcome of models. They are 110% artificial, a competent modellist can tune them to give you any liked response. A model is never, ever proof that a particular theory is correct, it only indicates that that particular theory can be reproduced by a model.

    Which is likely to evoke my claim: I can model any process on this planet, proving that increasing CO2 is the culprit.

    Challenge me?

  48. Dale says:

    Hey Trenberth!

    I currently have on my PC a very powerful software model of the entire Earth and its systems. The model is over 20 years old, in its fifth major iteration. The model is backed by hundreds of programmers, designers and testers over the full 20 years, funded by a company worth billions, and run by millions of people worldwide. I would estimate that this model has been run through literally hundreds of millions of times.

    The science is in and settled!

    This very powerful software model proves, after hundreds of millions of runs simulating 4000BC to 2100AD, that:
    - Spearmen beat tanks in a battle
    - Knights can shoot down helicopter gunships
    - Rifles don’t use gunpowder
    - You can build a modern navy without iron

    And best of all,

    - Human industrialization has no effect on the planet
    - Global warming does not exist.

    I suggest you take a look at this very powerful software model. Easy to find, just Google “Sid Meier’s Civilization V”.

  49. Dr A Burns says:

    Are these people serious ? Surprise, surprise, ‘look what the model has produced, it must be true’, rather than ‘look what the model has been programmed to produce”.

  50. mac says:

    Inventing virtual data where no real data exists.

  51. NW says:

    Deep basements can mask sock accumulation for decade-long periods

    BOULDER A house’s basement at times may absorb enough socks to flatten the rate of sock accumulation for periods of as long as a decade even in the midst of longer-term sock accumulation, according to a new analysis led by the Center for Research on Underperforming Dryers (CRUD).

    The study, based on computer simulations of malfunctioning dryers, points to nooks and crannies deeper than 10 feet (3 meters) as the main location of the missing socks during periods such as the past decade when socks mysteriously disappeared from dryer loads. The findings also suggest that several more intervals like this can be expected over the next century, even as the trend toward overall sock accumulation continues.

  52. JJ says:

    “This study suggests the missing energy has indeed been buried in the ocean,” Trenberth says.

    Statements like this very concisely exemplify the problems with ‘climate science’, as practiced by the likes of Trenberth. They are not seeking truth, they are defending a faith commitment. This is religion, not science.

    The statement is false. The modeling effort that Trenberth refers to cannot suggest that the missing energy ‘has indeed’ been buried in the ocean. Their model is not an observation of fact, it is a hypothesis. It is their hypothesis regarding the way the world works. What ‘has indeed’ occurred with the global energy budget can only be determined by observation, and those observations do not exist. Restating hypothesis as fact, conflating the way the world works with the way we wish it to work, is not scientific.

    The statement also ignores the potential adverse interpretation of the the proposed defense mechanism. It is proposed that decades of ‘missing heat’ may be accumulating in the deep ocean now, masking the alleged ‘global warming’ that has been hypothesized, but not observed. If this is possible, then it is also possible that the observed warming that occurred during the 80s and 90s was the result of previously ‘buried’ heat being released from the deep ocean, rather than the result of soccer moms driving mini-vans.

    What ‘has indeed’ occurred remains in the realm of speculation.

  53. David L. Hagen says:

    See Pielke Sr.’s email to Trenberth et al.:

    I do not see how such large amounts of heat could have transited to depths below 700m since 2005 without being detected.

    Josh Willis responded:

    . . .Sarah Purkey and Greg Johnson: http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/people/gjohnson/Recent_AABW_Warming_v1.pdf
    They looked at the prospect of deep warming on decadal time scales using the sparse, but highly accurate repeat hydrographic sections and found that below 3000 m in the global oceans, and below 1000 m in the southern ocean, the ocean is taking up an energy equivalent of about a 0.1 W/m^2 energy imbalance at the top of the atmosphere.

    Pielke to Trenberth:

    I still, however, can not understand how heating can occur below 700m without it being seen transiting through that upper level.

    Perhaps the “models” don’t fit the data?
    See also Global Warming “missing energy” row erupts.

  54. Marlow Metcalf says:

    I remember somebody had the theory that when the sun and PDO were both in the warm mode, as they were for the last 30 years, then the ocean would have a net loss of energy. The sun caused the upper atmosphere molecules to be spread out more which allows heat to radiate out with less obstruction and there was more waves or turbulence between atmosphere layers that allowed more surface contact between layers and so more heat transfer. The ocean was radiating more stored heat and was having more and taller thunderstorms. I think that was just one scientist’s theory.

  55. Wijnand says:

    There’s laughing in my head….

  56. Ken Harvey says:

    No wonder that when I went for a dip on my local shoreline a couple of weeks ago, the water was chillier than I had hoped for. I learn now that all of the heat’s gone to the bloody bottom.

  57. Max Hugoson says:

    From Dr. Spencer’s website, Aug. 14th (Read to end to get the JOKE!)

    Christopher Game says:

    August 14, 2011 at 4:25 PM

    Dr Spencer’s post is partly governed by an attempt to estimate the climate sensitivity. While this is perhaps the main over-all aim of the work, it seems he is asking the principal question too early in the dialectic, before housework and preliminary logic has been done. This may be what mediaeval scholars meant by their term ‘petitio principii’ according to Jaakko Hintikka (The fallacy of fallacies, Argumentation 1:211-238, 1987).

    Surely restricting his dialectical move to a bit of preliminary logic would be safer and more effective at this stage of the dialogue? Dr Spencer would do best just to focus on the top 700 meters of the ocean, for which it seems that acceptable data are available, than to extend the discussion to include deeper water, for which it seems the acceptable data are not available.

    It seems that Dr Spencer has a nearly unassailable case that the best IPCC AOGCMs are very far wrong about an essential thing. Surely at this stage it is better to leave it at that.

    For Dr Spencer to take it further at this stage is to give the IPCC people huge opportunity to obfuscate and distract attention from the basic and apparently established fact that their models are very far wrong about an essential thing. A model that is very far wrong cannot be relied upon. Full stop. Christopher Game

    Reply
    Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D. says:
    August 14, 2011 at 4:33 PM
    Interesting perspective, Christopher. But if I ended the story at 700 m depth, then people like
    TRENBRETH COULD SAY THAT THE EXTRA HEAT FROM GLOBAL WARMINGMUST BE DEEPER DOWN.

    OK, so I wanted to address that possibility. Levitus has presented data which suggests virtually no warming below 1500 meters, so I think that at least addressing the possibility of warming to 3,000 meters — just to see what it means in terms of changing the diagnosed sensitivity — is (I believe) a useful exercise.

    ——————————–
    Quote from Ancient Chinese philosopher: “In battle of WITS it is good to not go in UNARMED.”

  58. Baa Humbug says:

    The atmosphere can not, has not and will not heat the oceans.
    The oceans however, did, do and will heat the atmosphere.

    The warmists frantic efforts to explain the ‘missing heat’ has gone from the sublime to the ridiculous.

  59. Gary Hladik says:

    So can we finally take the missing heat off the milk cartons? :-)

    Doug in Seattle says (September 18, 2011 at 12:22 pm): “Gotta wonder though why it took so long to tune, why they chose this particular model, what other models they worked with, and what they chose to omit from their paper.”

    Me, too. Personally, I would have added more “aerosols” to the model to make it fit. That seems to have worked pretty well as a fudge factor in the past, so why change now?

    Based on my own models, I fearlessly predict that if ocean heat remains flat for another decade, Trenberth will “discover” that his “dark heat” can hide up to 20 years, not 10, in the deep ocean.

    Makes you wonder if cosmologists should look for their “dark matter” in the deep ocean, too.

  60. Richard S Courtney says:

    Friends:

    This model assertion is a very bad joke. If its output is true then the model is describing an effect which is magic that would have made Merlin proud.

    1. The oceanic expansion has reduced and this clearly indicates that ocean heat uptake has reduced.

    2. Heat cannot get to the deep ocean from the atmosphere unless it passes through the upper ocean that ARGO shows has not warmed.

    So, the model output indicates that
    (a) the additional heat in the deep ocean has not induced thermal expansion of the ocean (i.e. magic)
    and
    (b) the heat was transported to the deep ocean without passing through the upper ocean (i.e.magic)
    or
    the model is wrong.

    Meanwhile, Lindzen & Choy and Spencer & Braswell have observed by empirical measurement that the heat went up (to space) and not down (to deep ocean) which is clear indication that the model is wrong.

    Magic or empirical observation? Scientist will accept the empirical observation. But it can be confidently predicted that warmists and the MSM will trumpet Trenberth’s assertion of magic.

    Richard

  61. Robinson says:

    My God! More confirmation bias. This is, frankly, becoming absurd.

  62. gnomish says:

    well, astrophysicists have ‘dark matter’ to make the numbers work.
    so why not ‘dark heat’?

    (thanks for the belly laugh, polistra – divine revelation is about as funny as it can get)
    (love the comments of verney, too)

  63. u.k.(us) says:

    BOULDER — The planet’s deep oceans at times may absorb enough heat to flatten the rate of global warming for periods of as long as a decade even in the midst of longer-term warming, according to a new analysis led by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR).
    =========
    Wow, Global Warming is now classified as a decade of “flattening”, while the scary heat builds in the background.
    Um, my suggestion is to abandon your position, it being indefensible, and sue for peace.

  64. James Allison says:

    says NCAR’s Gerald Meehl, lead author of the study. “However, these periods would likely last only about a decade or so, and warming would then resume.

    =============================
    All bow and make homage to our lords and diviners of climate. Its no more than modern day Babylonian haruspicy. Probably less.

  65. Doug in Seattle says:

    nicola scafetta says:
    September 18, 2011 at 1:46 pm
    …”After my talk Trenberth appeared quite shocked, he could not believe it.”

    I suppose I too would be shocked if after explaining how my models prove otherwise some upstart (and a dang foreigner at that) presented data showing my “proof” to be wishful thinking.

    After all KT is at the top of climate pyramid while the ink on Scafetta’s doctorate is still wet.

    Nicola, you naughty boy!

  66. Latitude says:

    ……………….this is all getting just a little too weird

  67. Doug in Seattle says:

    NW says:
    September 18, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    Deep basements can mask sock accumulation for decade-long periods.

    Still clearing the coffee out of my sinuses after that one. Thanks NW!

  68. kim says:

    A year and a third ago, there was a plaintive conversation among Josh Willis, Kevin Trenberth, and Pielke Pere at the latter’s blog. In it, Josh and Roger tried to explain to Kevin that there was no evidence of deep transport of Kevin’s ‘Missing Heat’. Kevin would not hear it.

    It’s just that simple.
    ==========

  69. kim says:

    Ah, Hagen beat me to it. That whole exchange is worth stamping on gold bars and circulating to all citizens.
    =======

  70. R. Shearer says:

    I’d like to nominate Miss South Carolina to become the NCAR spokesperson to explain this.

    Seriously, R. Verney makes a valid point regarding natural climatic effects. It’s obvious that those effects cannot be quantified, but CO2 effects can?

  71. BobW in NC says:

    In looking at sun activity several years ago, Anthony pointed out a “step function” drop in the AP index, I believe it was (2005? 2007?). If so, what is the proximity of this step function to the time that ocean heat started leveling out? Is there any significance to these two events or is it just coincidence? Any possibility of them being related to Svensmark’s theory recently supported with CERN data?

    Lotta questions. Sorry!

  72. Robert of Ottawa says:

    Our models show heat that isn’t there, so we resort to our new super-duper-computer model to explain why the observations are wrong.

    Grief….

  73. R. Gates says:

    There is some recent evidence showing that, at least across the Pacific, the deeper ocean is warming:

    http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.173.2607&rep=rep1&type=pdf

    A note too about the idea that it is just “heat” that is missing, rather than energy. At least some of the energy will be in other forms besides heat, such as currents, internal waves, salinity. Granted that the majority of the energy is in sensible heat, certainly not an inconsequential amount might be in other forms. For example, how has the total velocity and mass of the deepest ocean currents changed over the past 30 years? Those changes would represent changes in energy. Or, if, as it appears, we are seeing an increase in methane from the bottom of the Arctic, there is not an inconsequential amount of deeper ocean latent heat of melting that it took to melt those clathrates and release that methane.

  74. Models are not science and do not produce real data. If you do not or can not measure it then what ever it is resides in the world of speculation. The last time I looked speculation was not part of the scientific method.

    From my recent essay Obfuscation: “Science is:
    1. Posing a question.
    2. Constructing a hypothesis, or several. (I like several, that the geoscience way)
    3. Created an experiment(s) to test this hypothesis or hypotheses.
    4. Specify the parameters that would validate or support one or more hypothesis.
    5. Carried out the experiment(s). Note models are not definitive data producing experiments.

    Science is not:
    1. Determine the outcome required to secure continued and additional funding
    2. Construct a model to generate the required outcome and do nothing to calibrate it to reality.
    3. Locate data that supports the model and outcomes from 1 above. Ignore anything contrary to your ideological position.
    4. Make sure the model can not be calibrated to reality.
    5. Announce the predictive power of your model.
    6. Make one or more predictions far enough into the future, that you’ll be retired by the time it will be falsified.”

  75. Mike Borgelt says:

    What convoluted cr*p!
    The right answer to Trenberth is for everyone to fall about laughing when he makes a presentation.
    Whose poor abused taxpayers pay his salary?

  76. Bill Yarber says: September 18, 2011 at 12:06 pm
    “Yet …, and satellite measurements showed that the discrepancy between incoming sunshine and outgoing radiation from Earth actually increased.”

    Not according to Spencer & Braswell, or any other analysis as far a I know. Is this a case of making up the data to support the desired conclusion? Anyone see any data which supports the above claim?

    The ISCCP data shows net radiative balance at the top of the atmosphere varies chaotically between positive and negative that appears on eyeball analysis to be somewhat correlated to solar cycles, but in no way suggestive of increasing “trapped heat” from GHGs.

    http://isccp.giss.nasa.gov/zFD/an9090_TOTnet_toa.gif

  77. Davy123 says:

    They are total nutters. They are now losing the plot.

  78. Philip Mulholland says:
  79. Curiousgeorge says:

    If this “missing” heat was the victim of foul play, and the body was only recently discovered, why haven’t we seen anything in the obits about it? If it was buried at sea I hope it was given a proper funeral.

  80. Truthseeker says:

    Dale wins the funny comment award!

  81. gnomish says:

    r gates said:
    “deeper ocean latent heat of melting that it took to melt those clathrates and release that methane.”
    latent heat of melting, eh? in the deep ocean, too…
    ice stores heat, then?
    can you explain your point just a little? – it can’t mean what i inferred – that would be very wrong.

  82. Richard S Courtney says:

    R. Gates:

    At September 18, 2011 at 3:14 pm you say;

    “[snip]
    A note too about the idea that it is just “heat” that is missing, rather than energy. At least some of the energy will be in other forms besides heat, such as currents, internal waves, salinity. Granted that the majority of the energy is in sensible heat, certainly not an inconsequential amount might be in other forms. For example, how has the total velocity and mass of the deepest ocean currents changed over the past 30 years? Those changes would represent changes in energy. Or, if, as it appears, we are seeing an increase in methane from the bottom of the Arctic, there is not an inconsequential amount of deeper ocean latent heat of melting that it took to melt those clathrates and release that methane.”

    You did not put a ‘sarc’ on that comment but you were joking, weren’t you?

    If not, then please explain
    (a) How do solar radiation and IR ‘back radiation’ not become thermalised by absorbtion in the upper 300m of the ocean?
    (b) How does the absorbed energy in the upper 300m of the ocean undetectably transport to deep ocean?
    and
    (c) How does the transported energy become “currents, internal waves, salinity” at depth?

    If you are not joking then it seems even you recognise that the model study is ridiculous so you are desperately trying to find any excuse for its indefensible “results”.

    Richard

  83. Isn’t the elephant in the room that, if this particular model is correct, that expected rates of warming are now much slower than originally predicted? Are we talking about 200 or 300 years to reach 2-4C of atmospheric warming, considering that the deep ocean can absorb much more heat than originally assumed and neutralize surface temperature warming for decades at a time? Does this mean we have much more time to deal with the problem of AGW than was originally assumed? If so, shouldn’t we be congratulating Trenberth for pointing us to arguments for why AGW now appears to be less urgent than was originally claimed?

  84. Bill Illis says:

    Paper abstract is here called “Model-based evidence of deep-ocean heat uptake during surface-temperature hiatus periods” as if we should just accept models as “evidence”.

    http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate1229.html

    The accurate climate models are the ones that predict no warming.

    Or, in this case, the accurate climate models are the ones that still have no warming but have energy accumulating/hiding in plain sight of where the Argo floats measure.

    In case anyone doubts that Argo wouldn’t see it, have a look at the current coverage (even the Antarctic sea ice area is getting covered now).

    http://www-hrx.ucsd.edu/www-argo/status.jpg

  85. rbateman says:

    R. Gates says:
    September 18, 2011 at 3:14 pm

    There are no hidden sheep to shear, and Trenberth is out of excuses.
    The extra heat never got past the locked door.
    It was most likely Lost to Space.
    Read my 1:33 pm post.

  86. H.R. says:

    Is it just me or did anyone else find the General Circulation of Missing Socks Model (GCMSM) to be more believable?

    I have empirical data collected from my own sock drawer (filled with unmated socks) that supports the model.

  87. LearDog says:

    It always bug that these modelers tend to write their papers as if their models are producing actual DATA or OBSERVATIONS. I’m sure the paper contains the proper caveats etc., but they never seem to make their way into the press releases…ha ha ha!

    The other points that are curious are

    a) shouldn’t the ARGO buoys have seen this past decades ‘extra heat’ ‘going by’ on the way to the deep? and

    b) if the lag is a decade or so – this mechanism should be demonstrated by say, next year…? ;-D

  88. Pamela Gray says:

    This missing warm water must be a new species (being both warm and dense)! I would like to dub it Trenbreth Water. We could put a picture of it on the backs of milk cartons to help him find the missing water.

  89. Robert E. Phelan says:

    Dr. Scafetta:

    It was a pleasure sitting with you and your lovely family for breakfast at the Washington conference. What is likely to happen re Dr. Trenberth and your papers is that the editors of those journals will resign in abject humiliation that such sub-standard work got through their usually impeccable peer-review process and they will e-mail their abject apologies to Dr. Trenberth personally.

  90. “…The study, based on computer simulations of global climate, points to ocean layers deeper than 1,000 feet (300 meters) as the main location of the “missing heat” during periods such as the past decade when global air temperatures showed little trend. The findings also suggest that several more intervals like this can be expected over the next century, even as the trend toward overall warming continues…”

    So let’s see – there’s enough water in the deep oceans to store enough heat to keep the current temps “flat”.

    This storage ability hasn’t manifested itself prior to this point, otherwise the temps would have flattened before.

    Yet this storage ability is projected to “shut off”, and allow more warming later on (and pause again)?

    Have they explained how this storage turns on and off like this?

  91. Graeme W says:

    R.Gates, I’ve just had a read of that article you linked, and it doesn’t appear to support this new paper. It does not mention any increase in the warming rate during the current ‘hiatus’, even though the paper covers the 1990s and 2000s. It also states that the Southern Ocean (the one you mentioned) appears to have the majority of the warming, with statistically significant cooling noted elsewhere.

    While there may be warming, as indicated by that paper you linked, there’s no support for the idea that the warming rate has been increasing over the last decade, which is what the new paper indicates should be happening. There is simply no mention of a change of rate at all.

    I also noted that the paper states how they calculate the rate of change of temperature when there are only two data points… which doesn’t provide a lot of confidence in the size of the datasets they’ve been using.

  92. John F. Hultquist says:

    When I read:

    tool known as the Community Climate System Model,

    Two things came to mind: “toil and trouble; fire burn and cauldron bubble”
    and
    Rube Goldberg. I went with the latter:
    http://cache.gizmodo.com/assets/resources/2008/04/rugoldbe1.jpg

  93. F. Ross says:


    “We will see global warming go through hiatus periods in the future,” says NCAR’s Gerald Meehl, lead author of the study. “However, these periods would likely last only about a decade or so, and warming would then resume. This study illustrates one reason why global temperatures do not simply rise in a straight line.”

    So to summarize the study then: Sometimes climate warms, other times it either cools or stay steady for a while …but we don’t know why, when, or for how long a given change may take place. That about it?

  94. Mac the Knife says:

    Wow! I knew Trenbreth’s analyses were tortured, but now he and Meehl et.al. are waterboarding the poor circulation models until they ‘confess’ where they’ve hidden the ‘missing heat’. Someone should bring them up on climate terrorism charges before the UN!

    You say the UN is supporting their model torture and climate terrorism??! Oh Dear….

  95. Bill DiPuccio says:

    The hypothesis is already falsified by their own observations:
    “Observations from a global network of buoys showed some warming in the upper ocean, but not enough to account for the global build-up of heat. Although scientists suspected the deep oceans were playing a role, few measurements were available to confirm that hypothesis.”

    How did the heat enter the deep ocean without transiting through upper ocean layers? It would appear that they continue to evade this issue. So it will be interesting to see how their model handles this problem.

  96. 3x2 says:

    Ha har me harties we’ll be throwin’ that Xbox over the side…if she sinks it be warmin’. If she floats it be warmin’ too. A full share of treasure for any man standin with me. Ha har

  97. Theo Goodwin says:

    Bill DiPuccio says:
    September 18, 2011 at 5:54 pm

    “How did the heat enter the deep ocean without transiting through upper ocean layers? It would appear that they continue to evade this issue.”

    In ordinary humans, not members of the “scientific elite,” this reasoning by Trenberth and friends would be clear evidence of schizophrenia or drunkenness.

  98. ferd berple says:

    Wasn’t it Gavin that said 15 years without significant warming would prove AGW was wrong? So, in theory that would be in 2 more years. However, that goal post has now recently been changed to 17 years, or wait, didn’t Trenberth’s latest paper say 20 years? Sort of like Hansens story of the ocean covering the highway in 20 years, or wait it was 40 years.

    Anyone that travels to Mexico will have come across an interesting word. Mañana. It means “tomorrow”, but really it means “never”. Because tomorrow, when you go to see when something will happen, you will get the same answer. Mañana. And the day after? Mañana. The day that never arrives.

    Like Al Gore’s climate catastrophy predictions that he has been spouting for 30 years. Disaster will happen all right, it is certain. 100% the world is going to end, Mañana. So, might as well send me all your money, you wont need it once the earth ends, Mañana.

  99. ferd berple says:

    BobW in NC says:
    September 18, 2011 at 3:02 pm
    In looking at sun activity several years ago, Anthony pointed out a “step function” drop in the AP index, I believe it was (2005? 2007?). If so, what is the proximity of this step function to the time that ocean heat started leveling out? Is there any significance to these two events or is it just coincidence?

    CO2 drives the AP index on the sun, via the missing heat stored at the bottom of the oceans. 100 billions dollars of taxpayer money makes it true. Oh wait, its isn’t the missing heat at all, it is the money missing out of the US economy that drives global warming.

  100. David Falkner says:

    Brian H says:
    September 18, 2011 at 11:39 am

    It went into the “deep”, all right. Deep Space, you gormless cadets! As Spencer demonstrated, the OLR and albedo feedback is so quick and powerful that the supposed influx to the oceans never actually happens.

    If that were actually true, don’t you think the oceans would be frozen?

    NW says:
    September 18, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    Classic! I love it.

    Will Nitschke says:
    September 18, 2011 at 4:10 pm

    Isn’t the elephant in the room that, if this particular model is correct, that expected rates of warming are now much slower than originally predicted? Are we talking about 200 or 300 years to reach 2-4C of atmospheric warming, considering that the deep ocean can absorb much more heat than originally assumed and neutralize surface temperature warming for decades at a time? Does this mean we have much more time to deal with the problem of AGW than was originally assumed? If so, shouldn’t we be congratulating Trenberth for pointing us to arguments for why AGW now appears to be less urgent than was originally claimed?

    Or, alternatively, does this cast doubt on the ability of a forcing so easily masked to cause short term changes in climate? Seems like the ocean having this incredible ability to mask warming casts some serious doubt on the causation prospects of the warming in the last of the 20th century. Unless, of course, we can explain why the ocean masks warming except for when it doesn’t.

  101. philincalifornia says:

    Theo Goodwin says:
    September 18, 2011 at 6:04 pm
    In ordinary humans, not members of the “scientific elite,” this reasoning by Trenberth and friends would be clear evidence of schizophrenia or drunkenness.
    ================================================
    …… or deliberate scientific fraud.

    I doubt, however, that the fake socialist, poverty-redistributing stealth taxers will even touch this one, although I kinda hope they do.

  102. ferd berple says:

    richard verney says:
    September 18, 2011 at 12:21 pm
    Thus conceding that there can be a hiatus due to natural variations (or even ocean cycles) is the thin edge of the wedge on a slippery slope demonstrating the weakness in the GHG theory.

    No, because only theories that support AGW can be true. Theories that suggest the temperature rise 1980-2000 are due to natural variability simply cannot be true because they would show that AGW may not be true, but since we know AGW is true, it is impossible that the warming is due to natural variability. For the same reason we know that lack of warming since 2000 must be due to natural variability, because otherwise it would suggest that AGW was false, and since we know AGW is true, this proves that the lack of warming is due to natural variability.

    The error in your logic is in thinking that AGW is a theory. It isn’t theory, it is a Scientific Law. Once you realize that, it is obvious that any observation or theory that contradicts AGW is simply wrong. It is the way science works.

  103. Theo Goodwin says:

    nicola scafetta says:
    September 18, 2011 at 1:46 pm

    “Trenberth presented his theory that the lack of warming observed since 2000 was nothing but an occasional decadal variation of the ENSO. Essentially, he used his GCM to prove that sometime the computer simulations could run flat for periods of 10 years from where he deduced his interpretation of the lack of warming as a momentarily red noise fluctuation.”

    Yep, that is good old Trenberth. Never met a physical phenomenon of warming or cooling that he could not interpret as statistical noise in his radiation-only model of Earth’s climate.

  104. Theo Goodwin says:

    NW says:
    September 18, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    “The study, based on computer simulations of malfunctioning dryers, points to nooks and crannies deeper than 10 feet (3 meters) as the main location of the missing socks during periods such as the past decade when socks mysteriously disappeared from dryer loads. The findings also suggest that several more intervals like this can be expected over the next century, even as the trend toward overall sock accumulation continues.”

    NW deserves a special prize for this. It is truly priceless.

  105. RichyRoo2011 says:

    So key questions:
    1) How did the heat get to the bottom without going through the top?
    2) Is there any scientific (i.e. empirical) evidence that this heat exists?
    3) If the deep ocean has warmed, why hasnt it expanded?
    4) If the deep ocean has warmed, where if the expected CO2 outgassing?

    clearly we are at the epicycles phase of CAGW faith, but how many decades can these desperate believers continue to avoid falsification? Clearly when all it takes is data from a model to somehow fend off empirical evidence, or failures of prediction, then something is clearly wrong.

    The best Trenberth and cohorts can manage is to show that AGW is ‘not necessarilly not possible’ (i.e observations are not inconsistant with the theory) … barely and wholly reliant on models to thwart observations.

    I hope that researchers such as Scafetta can kill this beast, and hopefully the resignation of a Nobel prize for Physics winner will make some more physicists wake up and smell the crazy.

  106. Theo Goodwin says:

    philincalifornia says:
    September 18, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    “…… or deliberate scientific fraud.”

    I considered that. But he published the stuff. To publish it, you would have to be so arrogant that your detachment from humanity would render you either schizophrenic or {chronically) drunk (high, if you like).

  107. J. Felton says:

    This seems to be more of an attempt to make an excuse for why there has been no warming for the last decade.

    ” Oh, it’s still warming,it’s just…..uh….something delayed it. Yeah, that’s it.”

    They provide no explanation for why the delay was this decade, and not others, in fact, they seem to be grasping at straws. And as the Graph B clearly shows, the GISS model predictions does not meet the observations in the slightest.

    In my opinion, they haven’t explained anything at all, and are just throwing out more guesses.

  108. Ron Dean says:

    Hold the proverbial boat. If the “missing heat” is in the deep ocean, then how come the ocean’s thermal expansion has ceased? The waters are not rising, so how can they be warmer?

  109. Anna Lemma says:

    Anyone suspect that Trenberth got his “inspiration” from reading Kurt Vonnegut’s “Ice 9″?

  110. Camburn says:

    Talk about clutching at a straw man. I am surprised he could get this published. Where is the model verfied? Or are we now so far gone that verification is a thing of the past?????

  111. rbateman says:

    David Falkner says:
    September 18, 2011 at 6:17 pm

    No, the oceans wouldn’t be frozen simply because Trenberth can’t find a few good degrees.

  112. jae says:

    I just wonder what UCAR is going to say and do once their all-knowing “scientists” realize that NOBODY is buying their nonsense anymore. Probably blame it on Bush.

    UCAR is only slightly behind Big Al in bufoonery, and the public sees it. LOL.

  113. R. Gates says:

    Richard S Courtney:

    1) I am not defending any model, as they all are wrong…but some can be useful.
    2) Do you know how much energy is transported to the deeper parts of the Atlantic as the Gulf Stream plunges downward in the N. Atlantic. Do you not think this is one of the major ways that heat is transported from the upper to the lower ocean?
    3) Though the calculation would be difficult because we don’t have enough global data, but there is some total amount of energy contained in the THC, when considering sensible heat, mass, and velocity. Because of the large amount of mass we are dealing with across the entire worlds ocean basins, even a slight change in any one or more of these parameters represents huge amounts of energy.

  114. mark wagner says:

    uhm…. if the heat was going into the deep oceans wouldn’t it be showing up as an increase in sea levels? As Sea levels have been flat for going on a decade, wouldn’t the lack of thermal expansion disprove their model?

  115. ImranCan says:

    Instead of building a new model, … gee whiz, even a ‘powerful’ new model, maybe they should go and do some real sceince ….. eg. TAKE SOME MEASUREMENTS.

  116. R. Gates says:

    Here’s an article that some may find interting on the relationship between atmospheric warming and deeper ocean warming. It answers some question that some of you have brought forward regarding a plausible mechanism by which heat could be transported to the deeper ocean withoug being detected in surface layers:

    http://www.sciencemag.org/content/329/5989/319.short

  117. Douglas DC says:

    So the deep heat doesn’t cause thermal expansion? Why are sea levels dropping? Seems
    someone isn’t being honest here…

  118. JJ says:

    “The study, based on computer simulations of global climate, points to ocean layers deeper than 1,000 feet (300 meters) as the main location of the “missing heat” during periods such as the past decade when global air temperatures showed little trend. The findings also suggest that several more intervals like this can be expected over the next century, even as the trend toward overall warming continues.”

    What? Several more decade long intervals of no ‘global warming, in addition to the one we just finished, can be expected over the next century? Several more?

    So, these guys think that most of the coming century of ‘global warming’ will feature no ‘global warming’? DENIERS!!

    :)

  119. Ed Fix says:

    “This study suggests the missing energy has indeed been buried in the ocean,” Trenberth says. “The heat has not disappeared, and so it cannot be ignored. It must have consequences.”

    Of course, the only evidence it’s buried in the ocean is that the new and improved models need it to be there. Certainly, the heat has not disappeared (conservation of energy), but he is unable to consider the possibility that it has already been radiated to space.

    Hey, I know! It’s buried right under the cache of Iraqi biological weapons. Let’s look there.

  120. rbateman says:

    ImranCan says:
    September 18, 2011 at 7:18 pm
    Instead of building a new model, … gee whiz, even a ‘powerful’ new model, maybe they should go and do some real sceince ….. eg. TAKE SOME MEASUREMENTS.

    They already tried that.

  121. u.k.(us) says:

    R. Gates says:
    September 18, 2011 at 7:09 pm

    1) I am not defending any model, as they all are wrong…but some can be useful.
    ====================
    OK, define useful.

  122. Theo Goodwin says:

    richard verney says:
    September 18, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    “Thus conceding that there can be a hiatus due to natural variations (or even ocean cycles) is the thin edge of the wedge on a slippery slope demonstrating the weakness in the GHG theory.”

    Brilliant post! This slippery slope is greased with Owl excrement.

    Actually, what you have done is show that Trenberth and friends are now trying to build something like natural variation into their models. That cannot be done, as you explain. But they are conceding the point about natural variation. This must be their last desperate move. It takes them down to the level of Al Gore.

    Are they so stupid as to believe that people cannot see what they are doing? More likely, they are so arrogant that they believe they can get away with it.

    I cannot believe that NSF provided some funding for this study. They should be investigated by Congress pronto!

  123. Al Gored says:

    “Community Climate System Model”

    Yes, yes. Just what a Community Organizer needs.

    Was the missing heat “saved” or “created.”

  124. James Sexton says:

    rbateman says:
    September 18, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    ImranCan says:
    September 18, 2011 at 7:18 pm
    Instead of building a new model, … gee whiz, even a ‘powerful’ new model, maybe they should go and do some real sceince ….. eg. TAKE SOME MEASUREMENTS.
    ===============================================
    Trenberth doesn’t like climate science to be constrained by observation.

  125. u.k.(us) says:

    Theo Goodwin says:
    September 18, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    Brilliant post! This slippery slope is greased with Owl excrement.
    ======================
    “Owl feces looks like a hair ball from a cat. When the owl eats its prey, all the waste items like bones, beaks, feathers, etc. are released in an owl pellet or feces ball.”

    I’ve got photo’s, of same.
    Kind of proud of them, willing to share :)

  126. David Falkner says:

    rbateman says:
    September 18, 2011 at 6:57 pm

    No, the oceans wouldn’t be frozen simply because Trenberth can’t find a few good degrees.

    I was responding to what looked like the assertion that oceans couldn’t absorb any energy.

  127. Grant says:

    Trenberth talks like it’s a fact. How can a guy be so certain about something yet have no evidence to back it up? No shortage of confidence, that’s a fact anyway.

  128. HankH says:

    Okay, I’m just a little confused by all this THC transport stuff. What isn’t making sense to me is AGW promoting scientists say that AGW is slowing down the conveyors of the THC and expressing great alarm that some tipping point may be reached where the THC might shut down.

    Trenberth’s model says the deep is storing more heat energy without changing upper layer temperatures. Now, the last I studied energy balance in systems, when a system takes on more energy and there exists greater potential between the constituients of the system, the system becomes more conductive (or active or whatever you want to call it). So how is it that the deep ocean is warming up and taking on more energy, the surface is not, and the THC conveyors are supposed to be slowing down?

  129. gnomish says:

    Theo Goodwin said:
    “Yep, that is good old Trenberth. Never met a physical phenomenon of warming or cooling that he could not interpret as statistical noise in his radiation-only model of Earth’s climate.”

    …ha ha! and yet he also grubs thru residuals to find the signals of great meaning.

  130. davidmhoffer says:

    So… now we see why Spencer and Braswell 2011 caused so much fuss…. from Trenberth. SB11 so discomfited Trenberth that he sought to use his influence to have the paper blocked or recalled. When he failed, he pressured Wolfgang Wagner, the figure head Editor-In-Chief of the publication Remote Sensing to resign in “protest” over the paper being published. Oddly, Wagner’s own letter of resignation stipulated that the paper had been properly peer reviewed, by qualified reviewers, from prestigous American universities…and had no apparent scientific flaws. He cited that the only failing of the paper was that “modelers” (programmers of artificial computer simulations) had not been “consulted”. Astoundingly, this sequence of events was followed by Trenberth BRAGGING that he had received an apology from Wagner personaly for allowing SB11 to be published. We know that in his role at the Vienna University of Technology in building a global soil moisture database, that Wagner had much to lose by offending Trenberth whose position as the Science Committee Chair of WEDEX provided Trenberth with more than just a little ability to make Wagner’s life miserable and his joib impossible. But what was it about SB11 that got so much attention from Trenberth? Now we know.

    SB11 is based on observed data that shows the “missing heat” has escaped to space.
    Trenberth’s artificial computer simulation says it has been sequestered in the ocean.

    SB11 points to a physical explanation in that clouds are not the positive feedback modelers supposed, and hence accounts for how the LW gets to space. The physical explanation posited is supported by the observed data.
    Trenberth’s artificial computer simulation has no physical explanation for how the LW gets into the ocean (LW being absorbed in a few microns of water which near instantly evaporates into the atmosphere), and is not supported by the observed data.

    So there we have the whole gory story. Trenberth and an artifical computer simulation based on pure theory with no physical explanation and with no confirming data, or a physical explanation confirmed by actual data.

    Now we know what Trenberth so feared about SB11 that he attempted to have it blocked or recalled from publication, and then went to absurd lengths to discredit byt the use of…absurd criticism.

  131. Theo Goodwin says:

    u.k.(us) says:
    September 18, 2011 at 7:59 pm

    Thanks for the offer, but no thanks. “Slicker than owl’s *hit” is a country boy idiom meaning the very slickest.

  132. R. Gates says:

    I am not defending any model, as they all are wrong…but some can be useful.

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

    Oh my f-ing god. You sound like Ellsworth Toohey (the arch villain) in The Fountainhead.

    You sure you want to align yourself with Ellsworth Toohey?

    Oh yeah right, I forgot….you are a glutton for getting a wedgy.

    Chris
    Norfolk, VA, USA

  133. Brian H says:

    Anna Lemma says:
    September 18, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    Anyone suspect that Trenberth got his “inspiration” from reading Kurt Vonnegut’s “Ice 9″?

    Actually, the book is “Cat’s Cradle”. The real value in that book is Bokononism, full of important concepts and adages.
    Wiki:

    The religion of the people of San Lorenzo, called Bokononism, encompasses concepts unique to the novel, with San Lorenzan names such as:[1]

    karass – group of people who, often unknowingly, are working together to do God’s will. The group can be thought of as the fingers that support a cat’s cradle.
    duprass – a karass that consists of only two people. This is one of the few kinds of karass about which one can have any reliable knowledge. The two members of a duprass live lives that revolve around each other, and are therefore often married. “A true duprass can’t be invaded, not even by children born of such a union.” The novel cites the example of “Horlick Minton, the New American Ambassador to the Republic of San Lorenzo, and his wife, Claire.” The two members of a duprass always die within a week of each other.
    granfalloon – a false karass; i.e., a group of people who imagine they have a connection that does not really exist. An example is “Hoosiers”; Hoosiers are people from Indiana, and Hoosiers have no true spiritual destiny in common, so they really share little more than a name. Another example is a Cornellian, a student or graduate of Cornell University. [or climate scientists ...]
    wampeter – the central theme or purpose of a karass. Each karass has two wampeters, one that it is moving away from, and one that it is moving towards.
    foma – harmless untruths; lies that, if used correctly, can be useful.
    wrang-wrang – someone who steers a Bokononist away from a line of speculation by reducing that line, with the example of the wrang-wrang’s own life, to an absurdity.
    vin-dit – a sudden shove in the direction of Bokononism
    saroon – to acquiesce to a vin-dit
    stuppa – a fogbound child (i.e. an idiot)
    duffle – the destiny of thousands of people placed on one stuppa

    sin-wat – a person who wants all of somebody’s love for him/herself
    pool-pah – wrath of God or “shit storm”
    kan-kan – the instrument which brings a person into his or her karass
    Busy, busy, busy – words Bokononists whisper upon witnessing an example of how interconnected everything is
    boko-maru – the supreme act of worship of the Bokononists, which is an intimate act consisting of prolonged physical contact between the naked soles of the feet of two persons.
    Now I will destroy the whole world. – What a Bokononist says before committing suicide.
    sinookas – the tendrils of one’s life
    Zah-mah-ki-bo – fate, inevitable destiny
    Calypso – song from The Books of Bokonon. Eight such songs are cited in Cat’s Cradle, some of them are presented with a title (i.e. On Dynamic Tension or The Boko-maru Calypso) and others are presented with a number (i.e. The Hundred-and-nineteenth Calypso). The Calypsos illustrate various aspects of the teachings of Bokonon.

  134. davidmhoffer says:

    R. Gates says:
    I am not defending any model, as they all are wrong…but some can be useful.>>>

    How is a model known to be wrong of any use? Is there value in wrong answers?

  135. vigilantfish says:

    Philip Mulholland says:
    September 18, 2011 at 3:56 pm

    How to get surface heat to go down into the ocean?
    Well there is always The Meddy (etc.)

    ——-

    Thanks for the links. I knew there was some mechanism but had never heard these terms before. The question I have is how stable such an inversion would be (cold water overlying warm water)? Presumably one would not find situations in which masses of warm water sink below cold water in fresh-water bodies; it is the salinity that throws an extra wrench in the system.

    Highly saline warm water will be denser than less saline cold water and hence will sink, and if I recall correctly from past marine science courses these different masses of water can persist for quite a long time. However, while one can see this happening with warm and highly saline Mediterranean water entering the Atlantic, it’s hard to imagine this is a widespread phenomenon in the world’s oceans. There’s no analogous system in the Pacific, and even if there were, to what extent would this contribute to Trenberth’s ‘missing’ heat? However, I suppose the Mediterranean warm water might be contributing to the large warming anomaly shown in one of the graphs in Bob Tisdale’s post that comes after this one (Tisdale on Ocean Heat Content Anomalies http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/09/18/tisdale-on-ocean-heat-content-anomalies/)?

  136. phlogiston says:

    “This I had also forseen”

    The soothsayer, Asterix and the Soothsayer

  137. Mac the Knife says:

    u.k.(us) says:
    September 18, 2011 at 7:59 pm
    ““Owl feces looks like a hair ball from a cat. When the owl eats its prey, all the waste items like bones, beaks, feathers, etc. are released in an owl pellet or feces ball.”
    I’ve got photo’s, of same. Kind of proud of them, willing to share :)”

    You willingness to share is appreciated U.K. (ahem..) but hold that thought for a bit…..
    Like the ‘vet’ said about the cat’s hairballs, “This too shall pass!”

  138. Mac the Knife says:

    Grant says:
    September 18, 2011 at 8:22 pm
    “Trenberth talks like it’s a fact. How can a guy be so certain about something yet have no evidence to back it up? No shortage of confidence, that’s a fact anyway.”

    Grant,
    He learned the technique from R. Gates!

  139. u.k.(us) says:

    Theo Goodwin says:
    September 18, 2011 at 8:43 pm
    ==========
    I was just trying to throw some interesting owl facts out there, cause i’ve been there and seen it.

  140. rbateman says:

    David Falkner says:
    September 18, 2011 at 8:02 pm

    Your response was fine.
    GCM based arguments are sitting ducks.

  141. David Ball says:

    son of mulder says:
    September 18, 2011 at 11:46 am
    It is interesting that around the year 2000, many more people started to look at what these “climate science” guys were doing, and the temperature flat-lined. Hmmmm, ……

  142. u.k.(us) says:

    Mac the Knife says:
    September 18, 2011 at 9:43 pm

    Be clear this time, what was your question ?

  143. Marlow Metcalf says:

    People! You can do this!
    So far commenters have found three ways for warm water to go below cold water. You can find more.

    Philip Mulholland Meddy from the Mediterranean
    http://stommel.tamu.edu/~baum/paleo/ocean/node24.html#meddy
    ” The central core region of a meddy rotates with nearly solid body rotation at each depth between about 500 and 1500 m. Maximum rotation rate and swirl velocity 30 cm/s are found near the central depth of the core, i.e. 1000 m, although the central depth varies from 700 to 1200 m depending on density structure. The diameter of maximum swirl velocity ranges from 20 to 50 km, and beyond the region of solid body rotation swirl velocities appear to decay exponentially with radius. Some axes have been observed to tilt due to the background geostrophic shear.
    The mean lifetime of a newly formed meddy has been estimated to be about 1.7 years, although some have been observed to last over 5 years. An estimated 17 meddies form each year, which when combined with the typical lifetime suggests that about 29 meddies coexists in the North Atlantic at any one time. Some meddies have been observed to coalesce and others to split, although there are no percentage estimates for these phenomena.”

    R. Gates “Gulf Stream plunges downward in the N. Atlantic”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulf_Stream
    “The Gulf Stream is typically 100 kilometres (62 mi) wide and 800 metres (2,600 ft) to 1,200 metres (3,900 ft) deep”
    Then when the water gets way north. “The cooling is wind-driven: Wind moving over the water cools it and also causes evaporation, leaving a saltier brine. In this process, the water increases in salinity and density, and decreases in temperature. Once sea ice forms, salts are left out of the ice, a process known as brine exclusion.[21] These two processes produce water that is denser and colder (or, more precisely, water that is still liquid at a lower temperature). In the North Atlantic Ocean, the water becomes so dense that it begins to sink down through less salty and less dense water.”
    R. Gates again Internal waves near some coasts.
    http://www.sciencemag.org/content/329/5989/319.short

  144. Espen says:

    R. Gates says:
    September 18, 2011 at 7:09 pm

    1) I am not defending any model, as they all are wrong…

    Without correct models, no CAGW theory. I think you’ll end up as a lukewarmer, Gates!

  145. Kelvin Vaughan says:

    Wanted – Dead or Alive
    Miss Heat.
    Presumed to be wandering around the ocean floor.
    Do not approach. She is dangerous and could destroy the planet!

  146. Bart says:

    “So far commenters have found three ways for warm water to go below cold water.”

    And, other commenters have put forward reasons that these explanations are grasping at straws.

    But, suppose it did? The question then becomes, how does it stay there?

    Anyway, thanks all for one of the most hilarious threads ever. Which one of these guys is Trenberth?

  147. Allan M says:

    “How did the heat enter the deep ocean without transiting through upper ocean layers?”

    Easy! It got past the Argo bouys by moving through a wormsea-slug hole.

    ———

    ferd berple says:
    September 18, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    Anyone that travels to Mexico will have come across an interesting word. Mañana. It means “tomorrow”, but really it means “never”. Because tomorrow, when you go to see when something will happen, you will get the same answer. Mañana. And the day after? Mañana. The day that never arrives.

    I heard a tale about a sociologist who went to the Outer Hebrides to study their way of life. After several weeks of nothing much happening, and not much data, he decided to consult one of the locals.

    He asked: “Is there a word in the Gaelic language that corresponds to the Spanish ‘mañana?’” The man thought for a few minutes, and then replied: “Aye, there is. But I dinna think it conveys quite such a sense of urgency.”

  148. Richard S Courtney says:

    Marlow Metcalf:

    At September 19, 2011 at 12:07 am yoiu say;

    “People! You can do this!
    So far commenters have found three ways for warm water to go below cold water. You can find more.”

    Well, yes and no.

    There are many possible ways warm water may have been transported down to deep ocean; e.g. some child may have been lowering it down in a bucket on a rope. So, yes, many ways can be suggested.

    The problems are
    1. Trenberth’s missing heat is so much that it is hard to imagine any combination of ways that could have together transported more than a small fraction of it to deep ocean

    2. The ability to suggest a possibility does NOT mean the possibility exists: e.g. some evidence is needed for the child, his rope, his bucket and his activity.

    Of course, these problems will not bother warmers: they see data and empirical evidence as information to be cited when convenient and ignorede when inconvenient.

    Richard

  149. Alistair says:

    CO2-AGW has been overestimated by at least a factor of 9.

    [a statement like this could be mistaken for trolling if it isn't backed up with some justification . . you may wish to provide justification . . kb.mod]

  150. Disko Troop says:

    Trenberth is indeed a powerful tool.

  151. Konrad says:

    Marlow Metcalf says:
    September 19, 2011 at 12:07 am
    People! You can do this!

    Sorry, but we cannot make Kevin’s ludicrous claims look even vaguely plausible.

    We would need a way to allow backscattered LWIR to slow the cooling of water that is free to evaporatively cool even though such IR radiation cannot even penetrate 10 microns through the 1mm skin layer. I am aware that a thin layer of LDPE plastic could do this, but there are not enough oil reserves on the planet to achieve this level of plastics production.

    Then we would then need a way to get gigatonnes of warm water past a network of thousands ARGO buoy sensors without a gratuitous training montage with actor Sean Connery.

    Further to this we would need a matter transporter to beam a Mediterranean Sea worth of water to the far side of the Moon to make sea level records compatible with decades of missing heat hidden in the ocean depths.

    It is far easier to say that Kevin Trenberth should cease speculating about the ocean depths given his proven ability to get out of his depth on a wet pavement. Reverse the null hypothesis in the case of global warming? No one has forgotten, Kevin, nor will they ever.

  152. tallbloke says:

    “This study suggests the missing energy has indeed been buried in the ocean,” Trenberth says. “The heat has not disappeared, and so it cannot be ignored. It must have consequences.”

    “Buried”? Is this a technical explanation for the energy transfer process?

    How does Trenberth propose that the missing heat gets down past 700m of cooling upper ocean (I trust Loehle on this) to hide in Davy Jones locker? The man is thermodynamically challenged.

    The climate clowns have dug a hole so deep for themselves that the missing heat fell in it with them.

  153. Martin Lewitt says:

    @Marlow Metcalf,

    “So far commenters have found three ways for warm water to go below cold water.”

    The challenge is to find ways for warm water containing missing heat to go below cold water WITHOUT a detectable increase in sea level rise, due to thermal expansion of the oceans from the presence of the “missing heat”. Perhaps the missing heat isn’t on earth.

  154. tallbloke says:

    Konrad says:
    September 19, 2011 at 2:00 am
    Further to this we would need a matter transporter to beam a Mediterranean Sea worth of water to the far side of the Moon to make sea level records compatible with decades of missing heat hidden in the ocean depths.

    Water is densest at 4C. The deeps below 3000m are colder than that. If they warmed 0.2C, sea level would fall.

  155. tallbloke says:

    Mike says:
    September 18, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    When it comes to heat what goes down must eventually come up.

    About 850 years later. Some of the modern warming was from the medieval warm period perhaps?

  156. Bob Tisdale says:

    Bill Illis says: Thanks for the link to the abstract of Meehl et al (2011). It’s unfortunate that the only thing not blocked by a paywall is the Supplementary Information:
    http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/extref/nclimate1229-s1.pdf

  157. Kevin L. Copple says:

    What I’m worried about is the possibility that the oceans are masking global cooling for decades before it hits us up the side of the head.

  158. Martin Lewitt says:

    @tallbloke,

    “Water is densest at 4C. The deeps below 3000m are colder than that. If they warmed 0.2C, sea level would fall.”

    You can’t hide missing heat without sea level rise that way, because salt water gets denser all the way down to its freezing point. So all increase in ocean heat, except for fresh water at the surface will increase sea level rise, unless sea water itself is “missing” due to increased retention of water on land, perhaps in ice caps, soil or behind dams..

  159. Trenberth is so far out of his depth, he is surrounded by beasties with little fishing poles and lights on their heads

  160. @Richard Courtney:

    2. The ability to suggest a possibility does NOT mean the possibility exists: e.g. some evidence is needed for the child, his rope, his bucket and his activity.

    See thats where post normalism and science part ways. For the post normal thinker the assertion need only be ‘not neccessarilly not possible’ (in a modal logical sense) to be treated as assumed.

  161. John W says:

    “I’m not sure why my zeroing the data in 2003 is so difficult for some people to accept. Hansen et al (2005) zeroed at 1993 to show how well the models recreated the rise in OHC from 1993 to 2003, but some bloggers attempt to criticize my graphs when I zero the data in 2003 to show how poorly the models match the data after that.”

    Because the CAGW advocates are the good guys, so they can do whatever it takes to keep the gravy train on its tracks.

  162. richard verney says:

    R Gates

    I would appreciate your further views. I know that you answer questions put to you, and, I, for one, appreciate that you do.

    We have previously exchanged comments (on other threads) upon the usefulness of models, and I am pleased to note that you accept that they are all wrong; we will have to beg to differ on how many models are encompassed in ‘some’ and how you define ‘useful.’

    I fully share your view on the lack of qualitative data. Unfortunately, this lack of qualitative data extends to more than just ocean related data. The poor quality of the data no doubt partly explains our lack of understanding as to what is truly occurring in the real world. I hold the view that until you really understand what is going on in the real world, you cannot begin to create a worthwhile model. A flawed and incomplete understanding inevitably leads to a flawed and incomplete model.

    We all know and accept that the oceans are great heat conveyors distributing heat all over the globe, including vertical transport in the ocean itself.

    My question to you is this. If heat from the upper ocean is effectively transported to the mid and thence to the deep ocean, what would you expect to be the temperature of the mid and deep ocean, and why?

    In answering this question, I would appreciate your views, obviously, in very general terms as to the order of magnitude of temperature being transported from the top ocean to the mid and deep ocean. If you wish to include the addition of geothermal heat, please feel free to add that in the mix of things.

    I have in mind that if one assumes that say 0.0001 deg C per Century is transported from the top ocean to the deep, given that this process, no doubt, has been occurring ever since the planet formed oceans, say for a few billion years, one would (at least at first glance) expect the mid and deep ocean to be warmer than they are. There are no doubt many possible reasons as to why the mid and deep oceans are not warmer (including but not limited to the conclusion that the input energy into the oceans does not consist of Solar + DWLWIR, and/or if it does, then the DWLWIR is miniscule only), but I would be interested in hearing and considering your views on this and on the amount of heat being transported from top to bottom.

    If one stops to consider the geological timescale involved and what this implies about the extent of energy/heat transport to the deep, it follows that we will never in our life time be able to witness and measure a change to the deep ocean temperature, or if, by some chance, we are able to measure a change in temperature, we will have one hell of a problem on our hands far exceeding the wildest nightmares of the most alarmist of the ‘warmista’,

    I look forward to reading your further comments.

  163. aaron says:

    Makes sense to me. Cold water comes to surface, lowers temperatures, but absorb more heat.

    I think Tisdale has said as much.

  164. aaron says:

    I’d look to patches on the ocean surface and where circulation patterns move water down.

  165. RockyRoad says:

    tallbloke says:
    September 19, 2011 at 2:49 am

    Mike says:
    September 18, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    When it comes to heat what goes down must eventually come up.

    About 850 years later. Some of the modern warming was from the medieval warm period perhaps?

    Perhaps, but I’ve been scratching my head trying to figure out a mechanism in the ocean that would have an 850-year lag period and considering deep ocean current velocities, rollovers from density differences, etc., I can’t envision a mechanism centered in the oceans that would have an 850-year period.

    Can you suggest such a long-cycle mechanism?

  166. aaron says:

    One reason he may be having trouble finding the heat is his assumption of the directionality of causation of warming and the THC slowdown. I’d be suprised if THC hasn’t accelerated since we seem to have shifted PDO phase and see more la Ninas.

    With a cool ocean and still warm atmosphere, we probably also have more wind.

  167. Theo Goodwin says:

    Marlow Metcalf says:
    September 19, 2011 at 12:07 am
    “People! You can do this!
    So far commenters have found three ways for warm water to go below cold water. You can find more.”

    The fact that warmer water can slip beneath cooler water is irrelevant to Trenberth’s claims for several reasons. Reason number one is that the warm water would be detected by the ARGO buoys and it has not been detected.

    Reason number two is that Trenberth’s and friends’ paper contains no empirical research about this particular phenomenon. It would be wonderful if they would become inspired to be empirical researchers and actually do some studies of deep ocean temperatures, but that is less likely than each of us receiving a new supercomputer for Christmas.

    Reason number three is that the claim being sold, namely that oceans are the repositories for the heat that should have accumulated over the last 13 years, is an example of a Cherry Picked Explanation. If there is some complicated ocean phenomenon of the sort Trenberth needs, it has been going on for eons, it is only now being discovered, and it is being treated as important for only one reason, namely, that it can be portrayed as explaining Trenberth’s missing heat. The scientific attitude toward such a phenomenon would be to treat is as important in its own right and to investigate it extensively rather than touching upon it just enough to explain the present difficulties in CAGW.

  168. Brian G Valentine says:

    I would admit, that circulation of deep ocean heat over an 800-1000 year period was consistent with the emergence from the LIA.

    I cannot think of a thing that Kev Trenberth has interpreted correctly, even remotely. In most disciplines such a poor track record would lead to simply being ignored; this happens to be one of those areas where someone could be wrong over 20, 30, 40 year periods and still get traction with the media (and amongst fellow misanthropes).

    Has anyone made a serious study of the causes of misanthropy? Is the belief system singular to developed societies?

  169. Nuke Nemesis says:

    Bill Illis says:
    September 18, 2011 at 4:16 pm
    Paper abstract is here called “Model-based evidence of deep-ocean heat uptake during surface-temperature hiatus periods” as if we should just accept models as “evidence”.

    All together now: Models do not output evidence. Model outputs are not facts.

    Repeat until you get it.

  170. Stephen Wilde says:

    “Can you suggest such a long-cycle mechanism?”

    The Thermohaline circulation is reputed to be anything between 1000 and 1500 years depending on who does the guessing. However there are multiple inputs and multiple outputs along the way and the ocean basis do not operate as one, they constantly interact with one another over time so various timings for a climate effect are possible.

    Furthermore the pattern of energy going into and coming out of the THC would be in the form of a sine wave just like the longer term solar variations so we would see 500 to 750 years in one phase and 500 to 750 years in the opposite phase.

    If we place the MWP at 1000 to 1300 AD then it could well be influencing CO2 levels and water temperatures today.

  171. Axel says:

    England has a long tradition of “the Village Idiot”.

    Seemingly many of them are now employed by the UK Government.
    In this archaic comedy clip from the 1970s, which has been viewed
    over a million times, the “Monty Python” team explain that tradition.
    It comes as no surprise that in the film the diplomas in idiocy are
    handed out by none other than “East Anglia University”.

    What did the “Python Team” know, and was this a warning of sorts ?

  172. Bill Illis says:

    Salty ocean water is densest at about -1.0C although in practise this only occurs at the surface in the polar regions where the air temperature is coldest and directly under the sea ice.

    Salty ocean water then starts to get less dense as the temperature declines below -1.0C (the starting point depends on the salinity – the Arctic ocean water starts to freeze and then floats becoming the least dense ocean water when temperatures get down to about -1.5C – Antarctica is a little lower than that).

    The very deep ocean water next to Antarctica at about 4500 metres deep is the coldest densest deep ocean water on the planet at about -0.35C. Even in the ice ages, it would have been at about this temperature, but the extent of -0.35C water would have expanded, potentially even into the North Atlantic from Antarctica.

  173. Colin Porter says:

    To me this comment by Will Nitschke is by far and away the most important point and which everyone else seems to have missed or skirted around.
    “Isn’t the elephant in the room that, if this particular model is correct, that expected rates of warming are now much slower than originally predicted? Are we talking about 200 or 300 years to reach 2-4C of atmospheric warming, considering that the deep ocean can absorb much more heat than originally assumed and neutralize surface temperature warming for decades at a time? Does this mean we have much more time to deal with the problem of AGW than was originally assumed? If so, shouldn’t we be congratulating Trenberth for pointing us to arguments for why AGW now appears to be less urgent than was originally claimed?”
    The fact is that whether there is any substance in the missing heat hypothesis or not, it does not let Trenberth off the hook in terms of his climate alarmism stance and how little time we have until Thermageddon.
    Any heat absorbed into the deep ocean is essentially locked up for millennia. This means that it is not available to contribute to global warming until long after we have ceased to use fossil fuels or that they have run out. By the time the heat is transported back into the air, the CO2 in the atmosphere will have had time to regain natural equilibrium with the oceans (assuming it is not already in natural equilibrium now, which I believe it is) and will not be able to make any additional contribution to the greenhouse effect; that is if it does indeed make any significant contribution now. Additionally Will Nitschke’s point is that these temperature stasis intervals summed together must slow down the rate of global warming.
    So I shall use a couple of very dirty words which I hope will get through moderation.
    Your mechanism of stored heat in the lower ocean amounts to
    NEGATIVE FEEDBACK Mr TRENBERTH and Meehl et al
    There is no point in trying to worm out of the missing heat debate by claiming that it is stuck at the bottom of the ocean. You are only helping the sceptic cause by proposing an additional form of mitigating negative feedback.
    And a comment to the editors at Nature Climate Change. Are you going to resign for permitting a very poorly constructed paper which failed to identify and mention the very important negative feedback implications of the proposed mechanism, with apologies to Mr Trenberth of course? And why did you approve these reviewers who failed to pick up such an omission?

  174. sunderlandsteve says:

    This is probably a stupid question, but how did this heat by-pass the sensors on the way down? I mean it didn’t just appear there one day, it must have transitted the upper oceans to get there surely?

  175. Steve Keohane says:

    Dr A Burns says: September 18, 2011 at 1:49 pm

    Are these people serious ? Surprise, surprise, ‘look what the model has produced, it must be true’, rather than ‘look what the model has been programmed to produce”.

    I wonder about perception. I didn’t see TV until I was seven, computers at 28, and went through half a dozen programming languages before I decided I didn’t want to learn another one. I noticed my children were enamored (transfixed, hypnotized) by the TV in a way I didn’t understand. The first life lesson from dad was don’t believe the commercials, they are trying to sell you something. I suspect the subsequent generation is equally hypnotized by their monitor, I almost said CRT, not realizing the source of what comes up on it. My youthful sense of wonderment was applied to the physical world. What happens when that sense of wonderment is contained by the box it is seen in?

  176. JJ says:

    Honestly people, look at this:

    “The study, based on computer simulations of global climate, points to ocean layers deeper than 1,000 feet (300 meters) as the main location of the “missing heat” during periods such as the past decade when global air temperatures showed little trend. The findings also suggest that several more intervals like this can be expected over the next century, even as the trend toward overall warming continues.

    Here is an official Team press release, telling us that we can expect several more decades of flat temperatures over the century 2001-2100.

    Under those conditions, you can not get 6C per century without seeing more than 1.5C per decade during the few rising decades remaining between the several flat ones. You can not even get 2C per century, unless you have 0.5C per decade when it warms. That is twice the rate of warming seen during the giddy years of ‘global warming’ 1980-2000.

    They are slinging paint so madly, they haven’t noticed that they are standing in the corner. According to their current proclamation, by the time we get to any of the levels previously identified as ‘tipping points’ and ‘global catastrophe’, we will all be dead and our descendants will be zipping around in SUVs powered by green fairy dust.

    ‘Global warming’ is a dead cow, they know it, and they are just trying to squeeze the last bit of milk out of her before the rest of us notice the smell.

  177. Sean Peake says:

    Trenberth’s heat is in a place where the sun doesn’t shine.

  178. Brian G Valentine says:

    “What happens when that sense of wonderment is contained by the box it is seen in?”

    I’ve reached the conclusion that “reality” itself is insufficiently entertaining for some people – hence their preoccupation with things that aren’t. There’s no sense of “wonderment” – only a sense of satisfaction of sufficient entertainment.

    People like Trenberth and Hansen know this only too well.

  179. Espen says:

    tallbloke says:
    September 19, 2011 at 2:38 am

    Water is densest at 4C. The deeps below 3000m are colder than that. If they warmed 0.2C, sea level would fall.

    This doesn’t apply to the ocean – salt water has a density maximum at its freezing point.

  180. Keith Battye says:

    Yet at the same time the sea level has stayed . . . well. level. No change at all.

    The heat was supposed to make it rise through thermal expansion.

    As my Anglo Saxon ancestors had a good word for this sort of nonsense I will use it . . .

    Bollocks !

  181. tallbloke says:

    Martin Lewitt says:
    September 19, 2011 at 3:29 am

    @tallbloke,

    “Water is densest at 4C. The deeps below 3000m are colder than that. If they warmed 0.2C, sea level would fall.”

    You can’t hide missing heat without sea level rise that way, because salt water gets denser all the way down to its freezing point.

    Good point Martin, I’d forgotten that.

  182. kwik says:

    If I am allowed to put together some “data” from The Team, (thats those who has changed what Peer Review means….) I realise that this Hansen guy says the heat is in a pipeline, and Trenberth says it is on a certain depth.

    Sooo….I can only conclude that the recent Missing Heat is in a top secret pipeline, not yet found, on the bottom of the ocean. And it got there via mysterious ways. It is most likely constructed by Big Oil.

    If I am to choose between Spencers “local control-system of clouds”….and Hansens/Trenberths “instant” hidden heat……I think I choose;

    800-1000 year old current upwelling combined with Spencers “local control system of clouds”.

    Thank you Trenberth for finally coming out of the closet; You are a sceptic too!

  183. P Walker says:

    Question – In those circumstances where warm water sinks beneath cooler water due to salinity , wouldn’t it reach a temperature equilibrium at some point ?

  184. Mac the Knife says:

    u.k.(us) says:
    “Be clear this time, what was your question ?”

    I didn’t ask a question (clearly). I suggested you repress your urge to provide your photos of owl feces/pellets, observing “Like the ‘vet’ said about the cat’s hairballs “This too shall pass!””
    T’was light hearted humor offered and nothing more.

  185. Brian G Valentine says:

    “In those circumstances where warm water sinks beneath cooler water due to salinity , wouldn’t it reach a temperature equilibrium at some point ?”

    No, because a diffusion equilibrium would have to be reached first, and that is not going to happen (although a stable steady state can be reached in quiescent water if solar energy can maintain a higher temperature of deeper water), and no, because any diffusional or temperature instability will eventually produce convection

  186. higley7 says:

    So, hot water sinks because it is less dense. Evaporation could cause a concentration of the salt but with all of the rain that occurs in that region it is unlikely to be so dense that it would sink. Of course we have not seen any warm downwelling.

    Of course, it should also be pointed out that, if there was warm water that might surface later, there is no reason to expect it to be augmenting warming when it surfaces. It could just as well surface during a cold spell and make it less cold. The ocean circulation serves mostly to lessen temperature fluctuations by spreading the heat and cold out over time. It very simply mixes the heat energy over time.

  187. Werner Brozek says:

    “Will Nitschke says:
    September 18, 2011 at 4:10 pm
    Does this mean we have much more time to deal with the problem of AGW than was originally assumed? If so, shouldn’t we be congratulating Trenberth for pointing us to arguments for why AGW now appears to be less urgent than was originally claimed?”

    I agree that congratulations to Trenberth are in order, although I do not think he intended his comments to be taken that way.

    I did some calculations with the following numbers:
    Mass of air is 5 x 10^18 kg;
    Specific heat capacity of air is 1 kJ/kgK
    Assume a 2 C rise in air temperature due to AGW. (I do not agree with this scenario, But I am just crunching numbers assuming that is the case.)

    Mass of oceans is 1.4 x 10^21 kg;
    Specific heat capacity of ocean water is about 4 kJ/kgK
    The question I am trying to answer is that IF we for the moment assume the air temperature were to potentially go up by 2 degrees C, but IF we then assume ALL this heat goes into the ocean instead, how much would the ocean warm up?

    Using mct(air) = mct(ocean), I get an answer of 0.0018 C is the increase in the temperature of the ocean. Of course, this cannot be measured, nor would the ocean expand to any noticeable degree with this added temperature. But IF Trenberth is right that the heat can go into the ocean, what are we worried about?

  188. GixxerBoy says:

    WANTED!
    Dead or alive
    CAL KELVIN
    aka ‘The Trenberth Heat’
    This notorious law-breaker is now known to have evaded the Argo posse and is in hiding. “Seems like he slipped past our bouys undetected,” said a spokesman.
    Anyone with information on the whereabouts of the missing ‘Heat’, contact the Sheriff in Boulder.
    REWARD: $1 million in Feed in Tariffs

  189. TomRude says:

    R.Gates:
    Clathrate and claptrap…

  190. Al Gored says:

    kwik says:
    September 19, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    “Sooo….I can only conclude that the recent Missing Heat is in a top secret pipeline, not yet found, on the bottom of the ocean. And it got there via mysterious ways. It is most likely constructed by Big Oil.”

    Yes. Its just like the internet, as described by AK Senator Stevens: “an elaborate series of tubes.”

    But I’m worried. All that heat hidden in that tube for so long now… and apparently it doesn’t cool down despite all the cold water around it. Is it going to blow up?

  191. DCC says:

    @LearDog who said: “shouldn’t the ARGO buoys have seen this past decades ‘extra heat’ ‘going by’ on the way to the deep?”

    Argo has been operational less than a decade, Deployment began in 2000 and was completed in 2007. http://www.argo.ucsd.edu/

  192. Philip Bradley says:

    Essentially, he used his GCM to prove that sometime the computer simulations could run flat for periods of 10 years from where he deduced his interpretation of the lack of warming as a momentarily red noise fluctuation.

    Digital software is wholly deterministic. Run the same software with the same data, you will always get exactly the same result, except where quasi-random functions have been inserted into the software.

    Trenberth is saying that randomness introduced into the models proves randomness (red noise) exists in the climate.

    Laughable.

  193. DCC says:

    Didn’t Lindzen show that this is all nonsense way back in 2002?

    http://www.ff.org/centers/csspp/pdf/lindzen.pdf

  194. “But each simulation also showed periods in which temperatures would stabilize for about a decade before climbing again. For example, one simulation showed the global average rising by about 2.5 degrees Fahrenheit (1.4 degrees Celsius) between 2000 and 2100, but with two decade longhiatus periods during the century.”

    1.4C by the end of the century? Overall that’s likely to offer a net benefit rather than a net negative. Crisis averted. Next problem. ;-)

  195. Tristan says:

    Dr Scafetta, what is your response to this hindcasting of your PDO:temperature model?
    http://www.skepticalscience.com/pics/LSvsMobergvsLoehleAll.png

  196. Tristan,

    in my paper with Loehle we clearly stated that the linear trend was just a first order approximation of the trend that could work just for the interval under observation or a little bit more than that. We cleartly stated that other multisecular and millennial cycles were not taken into account in that modelling. Thus, the claim of skepticalscience that we were claiming that the proposed linear trend had to last forever in the past and in the future is not only false, but stupid.

    A first preliminary attempt to include other longer cycles has been shown in this publication of mine see figure 6 (sorry in Italian)
    N. Scafetta, “I cicli climatici e le loro implicazioni” (Climate cycles and their implications), (invited article), Bollettino della Scuola Normale di Pisa 13(2), 6-10 (2010).

  197. markx says:

    Werner Brozek says:
    September 19, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    “…..I did some calculations with the following numbers:
    Mass of air is 5 x 10^18 kg;
    Specific heat capacity of air is 1 kJ/kgK
    Assume a 2 C rise in air temperature due to AGW. (I do not agree with this scenario, But I am just crunching numbers assuming that is the case.)

    Mass of oceans is 1.4 x 10^21 kg;
    Specific heat capacity of ocean water is about 4 kJ/kgK
    The question I am trying to answer is that IF we for the moment assume the air temperature were to potentially go up by 2 degrees C, but IF we then assume ALL this heat goes into the ocean instead, how much would the ocean warm up?

    Using mct(air) = mct(ocean), I get an answer of 0.0018 C is the increase in the temperature of the ocean. Of course, this cannot be measured, nor would the ocean expand to any noticeable degree with this added temperature. But IF Trenberth is right that the heat can go into the ocean, what are we worried about?…..”

    THIS is what I want to hear more about – having in years past done a little work with drying materials, and heat storage, I do know that water is one of the best heat storage mediums on this planet.
    And we do have quite a lot of it!
    I’ve often wondered why all of this trapped energy wants to stay in the atmosphere –

    I’d love to hear more comment on this!

  198. Tim Clark says:

    “The planet’s deep oceans at times may absorb enough heat to flatten the rate of global warming for periods of as long as a decade even in the midst of longer-term warming, according to a new analysis led by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR).”

    In five years the new “Super Powerful” computer will prove that the flattening may last for periods of “as long as 15 years”.

    You can’t argue with B.S.

  199. Werner Brozek says:

    See:
    http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2011/09/20/lorne-gunter-global-warming-is-afraid-to-come-out-of-hiding/

    “Now here is Lorne’s Razor: The more desperate someone is to hold onto a theory or belief, the more preposterous their explanations will become.”

  200. Bart says:

    nicola scafetta says:
    September 20, 2011 at 6:34 am

    “Thus, the claim of skepticalscience that we were claiming that the proposed linear trend had to last forever in the past and in the future is not only false, but stupid.”

    To quote C3P0: “Oh, he excels at that, Sir.” This is a standard in the Cook/Bickmore playbook – project a local-in-time model to extreme ends and claim to have falsified it through reductio ad absurdum. To quote Forrest Gump: “Stupid is as stupid does.”

  201. Tristan says:

    Dr Scafetta

    Thank you very much for your response. Would you be comfortable saying that PDO was the primary forcing agent of temperature over a timescale of say, 100 years?

  202. Tristan says:

    Addendum

    The graph I linked to that extrapolates Dr Scafetta’s work over a timescale of 2000 years seems to have been removed from SkS’s PDO page.

  203. Brian H says:

    Kelvin Vaughan says:
    September 19, 2011 at 1:02 am

    Wanted – Dead or Alive
    Miss Heat.
    Presumed to be wandering around the ocean floor.
    Do not approach. She is dangerous and could destroy the planet!

    You omitted her given name; it’s “Miss Ing Heat”.

  204. Tristan,

    look at my last paper (from my web-page):

    A. Mazzarella and N. Scafetta, “Evidences for a quasi 60-year North Atlantic Oscillation since 1700 and its meaning for global climate change,” Theor. Appl. Climatol., DOI 10.1007/s00704-011-0499-4 (2011).

    Or try to translate from Italian these two blog summaries on it.

    http://www.climatemonitor.it/?p=19252

    http://meteolive.leonardo.it/news/In-primo-piano/2/Indice-NAO-se-il-tempo-prende-una-piega–la-tiene-60-anni/34179/

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