Why is 20 years statistically significant when 10 years is not?

Guest post by James Padgett

Many of you are aware that the concept of continental drift, proposed by Alfred Wegener, was widely ridiculed by his contemporaries. This reaction was in spite of the very clear visual evidence that the continents could be fit together like a giant puzzle.

I think this is where we are in climate science today. There is an obvious answer that many experts cannot see even though a young child would understand when presented with the evidence.

Our current crop of experts cannot see simple solutions. Their science is esoteric and alchemical. It is so complex, so easy to misunderstand, that, like the ancient Greek mystery religions, there is a public dogma and then there are the internal mysteries only the initiated are given access to.

And then there are the heretics who challenge their declared truths.

That isn’t to say that many climatologists aren’t smart. On the contrary, they can be very smart, but that doesn’t preclude them from being very wrong on both collective and individual levels.

One of the most brilliant men alive in the last century, John von Neumann, believed that by the 1960’s our knowledge of atmospheric fluid dynamics would be so great, and our computer simulations so precise, that we’d be able to control the weather by making small changes to the system.

It is true that the climate models used today do a very good job with fluid dynamics, but despite that understanding we can neither predict nor control the weather (and the climate) to the degree he imagined.

An incredible genius, he made a mistake. He didn’t understand the fundamental chaos that made his vision impossible.

In regard to the climate, I hope my simple vision is closer to reality than the excuse-filled spaghetti hypothesis that currently brandishes the self-given title of “settled science.”

My proposal, that climate is primarily driven by solar and oceanic influences, is probably believed by more than a few skeptics, but hopefully I can make a compelling case for it that both small children and climate scientists can understand. To that end I’ll take a quick look at the temperature record from 1900 until the present. I will explain the case for the oceanic/solar model and articulate the excuses given by the anthropogenic camp for the decades that inconveniently do not line up with the hypothesis of carbon dioxide being the primary driver of climate change.

1900-1944:

This period is largely warming. What could possibly be the cause of that?

The sun seems to be the obvious answer. It is so obvious in fact that even most mainstream climatologists admit its influence in these years. Some also say there is an anthropogenic effect in there, somewhere, and they could be right, but it certainly isn’t obvious.

And while the Atlantic is in its cool phase over the earlier part of this period, the largest ocean, the Pacific, is warm,especially in the last couple decades, but when it turns into its cool phase….

1945-1976:

We get 30 years of cooling in the surface station record.

According to proponents of the anthropogenic model, the unprecedented increase in carbon dioxide following World War II was not only masked, but overpowered by sulfate emissions. That is an interesting excuse, but this cooling period exactly matches the cool phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO).

So much so that when it goes into its warm phase in…

1977-1998:

We get 20 more years of warming:

which is kicked up a notch towards the end as the Atlantic goes into its warm phase:

That leaves us with the final period from…

1999-Present:

After the super El Nino of 1998 temperatures have largely flat-lined and perhaps even dropped slightly. Both the Atlantic and Pacific are in their warm phases and the sun remains at the “high” levels following the recovery from the Little Ice Age, but the Pacific seems to be wobbling cooler and cooler as it shifts back into its cool phase.

True we are the “warmest decade on record,” but we are also the only decade on record with both oceans in their warm phases in a time of relatively high solar activity. The only comparable time would be during and around the 1930’s and early 1940’s, around the time of the Dust Bowl, and the sun wasn’t as active back then – and that’s assuming the records are an accurate reflection of global temperatures back then.

So how do climate scientists explain this lack of warming for over a decade? Ah, well they blame the sulfates again – a classic excuse, while others say that the heat has teleported deep into the oceans. I say teleported because there is no record of the journey of that missing heat into those unmeasured depths from the well-measured depths it would normally have had to travel through in order to get to that abyss.

Of course, others say this time period is simply not statistically significant, but the only period of heating we can’t directly trace to the sun, the time from 1977-1998, a mere twenty year period, is certainly statistically significant in some minds.

To that I only have one question for them:

Are you smarter than a 5th grader?

Cheers,

James Padgett

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200 thoughts on “Why is 20 years statistically significant when 10 years is not?

  1. Very, very interesting and important.

    My only quibble is about the Sun. For several years the Sun has been quiet. As the PDO shifts the level of solar activity is minimal.

    Or, perhaps I am wrong.

  2. Since a twenty year period is also a 240 month period, are those 240 data points enough to be significant? And in reality we are measuring daily. Are 7300 data points enough to be significant? Never could figure out the logic right there but would love for a statistician explain it to me (and others).

    Who is setting these rules here? Pure mathematics or the climate scientist community (aka IPCC)?

  3. 1900-1944:

    This period is largely warming. What could possibly be the cause of that?
    ———
    From the graph it’s seems that James associates warming with increased sunspot activity. And this seems to be consistent with theories about the origin of the little ice age.

    So why dont we see a little ice age every 11 years? And the answer has to be backed by evidence, not hand waving or speculation.

  4. The sun seems to be the obvious answer. It is so obvious in fact that even most mainstream climatologists admit its influence in these years.

    And the same climatologists include the sun’s influence in their analyses.

    Or are you claiming that they do not?

  5. I have held the view for some time that due to surface tension the sun controls the ocean. The agw theory holds that the “excess heat” created by green house gas being heated is stored in the ocean, I say no. Surface tension acts rather like double glazing, it will allow the sun’s rays to penetrate but will block physical heat therefore you cannot “store” heat on this planet. If you want to check this out try heating a bucket of water with a heat gun. The results are very surprising. There is no immediate transfer of heat. It takes about 10 minutes for the heat of the gun to break down the surface tension and only then does heat transfer take place. My view is that the atmosphere never has anything like the temperature needed to break down the oceans surface tension. This would explain Trenberth’s missing heat, the argo buoys under reading and the fact that despite co2 climbing we are having very cold winters. Put graphs of ocean temperatures and sun activity together and I’ll bet they match exactly. R.i.p. agw.

  6. Bernard J

    So are you claiming that all the causation effects of the sun on our atmosphere (all the known knowns, unknown knowns and unknown unknowns) are included in climate models?

    If so maybe you could expand a little and let us all in on the secret!

  7. LazyTeenager says:

    November 5, 2011 at 12:55 am
    “So why dont we see a little ice age every 11 years? And the answer has to be backed by evidence, not hand waving or speculation.”

    HYSTERESIS !!!

  8. R.M.B. says:
    November 5, 2011 at 1:44 am

    I have held the view for some time that due to surface tension the sun controls the ocean. The agw theory holds that the “excess heat” created by green house gas being heated is stored in the ocean, I say no. Surface tension acts rather like double glazing, it will allow the sun’s rays to penetrate but will block physical heat therefore you cannot “store” heat on this planet. If you want to check this out try heating a bucket of water with a heat gun. The results are very surprising. There is no immediate transfer of heat. It takes about 10 minutes for the heat of the gun to break down the surface tension and only then does heat transfer take place. My view is that the atmosphere never has anything like the temperature needed to break down the oceans surface tension. This would explain Trenberth’s missing heat, the argo buoys under reading and the fact that despite co2 climbing we are having very cold winters. Put graphs of ocean temperatures and sun activity together and I’ll bet they match exactly. R.i.p. agw.

    I have two reasons to dispute what you say. Firstly the sun is not a heat-ray, and the radiation is of much shorter wavelength, ie light. That will get through the barrier you believe exists. Secondly long and rigorous experimentation sitting by my pool in the summer tells me that when it has been sunny, the water is much warmer.

    If anyone has the spare budget, I’d love to test the theory out all around the world. Only good quality hotels have the right kind of pools, however, so research could be expensive. It would be hard work, but I am prepared to put up with it…

  9. I think you might have something there. However, solar activity is currently languishing in an extended minimum. I wouldn’t describe it as a time of relatively high solar activity.

  10. James Padgett writes in the post, “That is an interesting excuse, but this cooling period exactly matches the cool phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO).”

    That’s a coincidence related to ENSO, since the PDO is an aftereffect of ENSO and North Pacific Sea Level Pressure. The PDO does not represent the Sea Surface Temperatures of the North Pacific north of 20N. It has no impact on Global Temperatures. The PDO is actually inversely related to the Sea Surface Temperatures of that part of the North Pacific.

    You continued, “…which is kicked up a notch towards the end as the Atlantic goes into its warm phase.”

    The phase of the AMO is not what dictates whether or not the North Atlantic is contributing to the rise in Global Surface temperatures. Its contribution is dependent on whether the North Atlantic Sea Surface Temperature anomalies are rising faster than the rest of the global oceans. We can determine this by subtracting the SST anomalies of the Rest of the World from the North Atlantic SST anomalies. The curve is similar to the AMO:

    In looking at the graph, the North Atlantic is contributing to the rise in Global Surface Temperatures from the minimum in the mid-1970s, when it started to rise faster than the SST anomalies of the rest of the world.

    The graph is from this post:

    http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2011/02/03/comments-on-tamino%e2%80%99s-amo-post/

  11. I think the short answer to the title is that, of course, neither of them is of much significance. Given that we know that the climatic system has cyclical components with periods on the scale of decades and centuries, nothing less will be even relevant unless read in the light of reasonably detailed knowledge of those cyclical variations.

    We don’t have that knowledge. Therefore, to quote a favourite phrase of my Maths teacher some four and a half decades ago, “In general, nothing can be said”.

  12. In reply to Jay Currie.
    November 5, 2011 at 12:48 am
    “My only quibble is about the Sun. For several years the Sun has been quiet. As the PDO shifts the level of solar activity is minimal.”

    When the Maunder minimum occurred there was a lag time of 12 years before there was observed planetary cooling. If the past is a guide to the future, the planet will significantly cool.

    The twentieth century warming was caused by solar wind bursts that removed cloud forming ions via a mechanism called electroscavenging. (The solar wind bursts create a space charge differential in the ionosphere that removes cloud forming ions. See Tinsley’s review paper for details concerning the different solar mechanisms that modulate planetary cloud cover.) 20th century planetary temperature increases and decreases closely correlated to solar changes of the geomagnetic field which are caused by solar wind bursts.

    There are multiple climate modulating mechanisms that are controlled by solar magnetic cycle changes.

    http://solar.njit.edu/preprints/palle1264.pdf

    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/pubs/solanki2004/solanki2004.html

    http://sait.oat.ts.astro.it/MSAIt760405/PDF/2005MmSAI..76..969G.pdf

    See section 5a) Modulation of the global circuit in this review paper, by solar wind burst and the process electroscavenging where by increases in the global electric circuit remove cloud forming ions. The same review paper summarizes the data that does show correlation between low level clouds and GCR.

    http://www.utdallas.edu/physics/pdf/Atmos_060302.pdf

    Once again about global warming and solar activity K. Georgieva, C. Bianchi, and B. Kirov

    We show that the index commonly used for quantifying long-term changes in solar activity, the sunspot number, accounts for only one part of solar activity and using this index leads to the underestimation of the role of solar activity in the global warming in the recent decades. A more suitable index is the geomagnetic activity which reflects all solar activity, and it is highly correlated to global temperature variations in the whole period for which we have data.

    In Figure 6 the long-term variations in global temperature are compared to the long-term variations in geomagnetic activity as expressed by the ak-index (Nevanlinna and Kataja 2003). The correlation between the two quantities is 0.85 with p<0.01 for the whole period studied. It could therefore be concluded that both the decreasing correlation between sunspot number and geomagnetic activity, and the deviation of the global temperature long-term trend from solar activity as expressed by sunspot index are due to the increased number of high-speed streams of solar wind on the declining phase and in the minimum of sunspot cycle in the last decades.

    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2009/2009JA014342.shtml

    If the Sun is so quiet, why is the Earth ringing? A comparison of two solar minimum intervals.

    Unusual activity of the Sun during recent decades compared to the previous 11,000 years
    Nature, Vol. 431, No. 7012, pp. 1084 – 1087, 28 October 2004.

    According to our reconstruction, the level of solar activity during the past 70 years is exceptional, and the previous period of equally high activity occurred more than 8,000 years ago. We find that during the past 11,400 years the Sun spent only of the order of 10% of the time at a similarly high level of magnetic activity and almost all of the earlier high-activity periods were shorter than the present episode.

  13. James Padgett: Oops. My mistake. My eyes were drawn to the red curve in the graph. Let me rewrite the one sentence:

    In looking at the graph, the North Atlantic is contributing to the rise in Global Surface Temperatures from the minimum about 1990, when it started to rise faster than the SST anomalies of the rest of the world.

  14. There are far better statisticians around here than me, but a brief explanation of statistical significance.

    Tests of statistical significance measure the probability that a result could have occurred by chance.

    Generally 95% is considered the threshold for statical significance. Which means there are 5 chances or less out of 100 that a result could have occurred by chance.

    The number of years is irrelevant, except to the extent that more years means more data points and more data points means a greater chance of finding statistical significance, assuming there is a real effect.

    The argument that you need 30 years to detect the AGW climate signal is because the data is noisy.

    But then climate scientists seem to misunderstand noise even more than they misunderstand statistics.

  15. James Padgett: One last thing. I can’t find in your post where you answer the question asked in the title. So I’ll ask you, Why is 20 years statistically significant when 10 years is not?

  16. In effect the statistically significant year length is a function of how useful any period is to support AGW while the inverse is the case for anything that does not , which is why it flexible in practice. For example 10 years is enough for data that supports AGW but no where there nothing for that which does not . Further if the data from 12 years fails to support that is because you need to collect data from any higher number years to fully prove the case , there of course being no amount of data that can disprove it .
    It works a similar situation with predictions of climate doom , the doom will always happen at some time in the future so if the forecast of 10 years turns out to be nonsense that is becasue it will be a number of years higher than 10 in the future , there is of course no possibility of the forecast being wrong in the first place.

    Essentially like so much in climate science it not an actual argument around facts but an argument around politics which drive what is ‘needed’ and how you use it .

  17. the issue is not being smart or not, as long you can’t quantify things, you re just making assumptions , and you ll know if your assumptions are right if things will be what you can predict from oceanic oscillations and sun activity..
    You have to build a model …something like dT= A( atlantic)+B( pacific)+C( sun activity)
    find out ABC from actual available data….and from that make predictions…and wait and see…
    well from my point of view dT= A( atlantic)+B( pacific)+C( sun activity)+D( CO2)+F(other antropogenic) and unfortunately +G(Temperature) i would add H( atmospheric /earth relative velocity)…

    But as you can see even in the simpliest case, we don’t have enough data to be sure of anything.
    We just have global reliable data since….30/40 years….so…

    Too much parameters from my point of view….

    You must understand that if you want to convince scientists ( 5 grade) you must give a physical explanation such as heat transfert, forcing from coulds coverage modifications…so that you can quantify and be falsified…

    ability to predict….
    that s why we have to assess models predictions and results carefuly…

  18. Interesting post but the title seems a misnomer, or at any rate, I could not see any attempt to explain why 10 years or 20 years or some other period may be statistically significant.

    As regards the length of required periods, I recall that about 18 months ago Phil Jones (in an interview for the BBC) conceded that the temperature change (on his case a slight warming) was not these past 15 years statistically significant. Then with 2010 being the warmest or 2nd warmest year on record, last year Phil Jones argued that the warming these past 16 years (with 2010 data it was now 16 years) was stastically significant. When 2011 temperature figures come in, one can anticipate that if Phil Jones is asked whether the temperature change these past 17 years (it will then be 17 years) is statistically relevant, he will reply no.

    So how come can it be the case that 16 years of data can yield a statistically relevant result whereas 15 and 17 years of the same data set cannot?

  19. Bernard J. says:
    November 5, 2011 at 1:08 am
    The sun seems to be the obvious answer. It is so obvious in fact that even most mainstream climatologists admit its influence in these years.
    And the same climatologists include the sun’s influence in their analyses.
    Or are you claiming that they do not?

    Err, well yes! Well at least not much. If the UN IPCC & its oh so cleverer than anybody else scientists (allegedly) keep making SPM statements that basically say, & here is the boring bit yet again, “we don’t really know exactly how element “A”, (Sun) affects element “B”, (Earth’s Climate), but we know for a fact that element “C”, (manmade CO2), overpowers element “A”!!!!! It’s obvious really in that case. Try reading a Summary for Policymakers & see for yourself, it’s all in the tables of forcings! Can they not realise how stupid that makes them look, or is it just arrogance too?:-)

  20. Analogies.. be scared when you hear them :) It is only a few decades that the hypothesis of continental drift had been confirmed. Until then, there were a few theories around, with good reason. I have a good friend (who is otherwise not stupid), but who unfortunately caught on to the “growing earth theory”.
    It is not only that the continents fit nicely together; on the face of it, the growing earth theory seems even more plausible (because you can form a mini globe out of the continents… errr). Most kids actually interpret the evidence quite differently from you, so no, kids cannot see the ‘obvious’.

  21. It’ll be interesting to see if the statement changes over the coming decade:

    10 11 12 13 14….etc….years isn’t a significant period to characterize the global temperature…..blah…blah….blah….”

  22. So how come can it be the case that 16 years of data can yield a statistically relevant result whereas 15 and 17 years of the same data set cannot?

    Because 15 years of data does not contain enough positive (for want of a better word) data to support the hypothesis. With the addition of a 16th year there is enough positive data. But the 17th year contains enough negative data that the data from all 17 years doesn’t have enough positive data (relative to negative data).

  23. Let’s see… statistical significance… Seems I remember something about that from all those stat classes I took. Ok, here’s one on “Statistical Signficance” that gives what I believe to be an easily understood example and might very well be used to determine the answer to this 10 year vs. 20 year question: http://www.statpac.com/surveys/statistical-significance.htm

    Then we have WIkipedia weighing in on the subject here (which I also like because it ties Type 1 and Type II errors into the testing framework regarding the probability of rejecitng or accepting the null hypothesis): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Statistical_significance

    And since three references should be sufficient, here’s a third I find very informative: http://www.csulb.edu/~msaintg/ppa696/696stsig.htm

    Based on the relative sample sizes (for number of data points is the critical factor in determining whether the differences are statistically significant) one simply needs to compare temperature data for the last 10 years with the prior 10 years; if the difference in the two are statistically significance then yes, you can say there’s been a difference in the last 10 years vs the prior 10.

    I’ve not crunched the numbers, but it would be an interesting exercise for someone with the time and tools to do so. (It pretty much depends on the signal to noise ratio of the two groups of data sets.) It would be interesting to do that on daily datasets and on those averaged weekly, monthly, quarterly, and so on, although obviously no test for statistically significant difference can be made if we have averaged down to just two data points–the most recent decade and the one just prior. At some point there are insufficient data points to say the diffence is statistically significant but the averaging would certainly lower the signal to noise ratio.

  24. Even my 5th grader understands this article. She now has to educate her science teacher who repeatedly shows DVDs by Bill Ney the Science Guy.

  25. Now, for those who want to know what the research says about why a period greater than 17 years is required to see the anthropogenic signal through short-term fluctuations, see:

    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/pip/2011JD016263.shtml

    The only quibble with this paper I might have is that it really didn’t consider longer-term solar cycle fluctuations such as we might see during a Dalton or Maunder minimum, which would push that period even longer of course. But, as a general rule, greater than 17 years is the minimum to see the anthropogenic signal, and so anyone pointing to a shorter period as proof the anthropogenic signal is not there simply is misguided or intentionally trying to deceive.

  26. the fact the changes in world economic growth (GDP), particularly though the 2007-2010 great recession, are poorly correlated with global CO2 and methane emmissions is very damning for AAGW: Because even if AGW is true, the normal measures would fail to stop it (energy consumption declined sharply due to the great recession).

  27. Nice article.

    … alchemical;
    … teleported;
    … public dogma and internal mysteries.

    Good descriptions.

    ————-

    Statistical significance is based on random chance. To be able to determine significance, we must determine how the climate can change randomly, how much it can change by by chance.

    To be able to do that, we have to determine how the climate changes “without” chance, what other forces drive the climate. To be able to do that, we have to determine what those other forces actually are. Then we have to determine how much those other drivers can also change by chance themselves.

    The climate goes up and it goes down. We can’t figure it out and we don’t know what all the drivers are. We do know that chance and the other drivers not included in a climate model can overwhelm the greenhouse forcings in the climate models for a long period of time because none of them have been right since the first ones were run 29 years ago.

  28. Bob Tisdale and others point out that long period ocean current cycles cause variations that can last up to decades or longer. These long period cycles are on top of long period variations of solar variation (which may be from a combination of absolute insolation variation, spectral variation with more UV, or effect on clouds via cosmic radiation). This variation in atmosphere temperature drivers is on top of the ocean’s lag and chaotic behavior of such a complex system as Earth’s biosphere, glacial content, aerosols, etc. Finding a simple correlation on one or two of these parameters that holds all the time is too simplistic. However, it appears that main ocean cycle and solar activity is a far better source of correlation that simplistic use of CO2. Just don’t try to take such correlation too far.

  29. Bill Illis says:

    “To be able to determine significance, we must determine how the climate can change randomly, how much it can change by by chance.”
    —–
    This is muddled thinking at it’s worst. The climate does not change by chance.

  30. The answer to the headline question is the same as the answer to ‘Why does it take three women with PMS to change a light bulb? Because it does OK

  31. Richard Lawson.

    So are you claiming that all the causation effects of the sun on our atmosphere (all the known knowns, unknown knowns and unknown unknowns) are included in climate models?

    I was claiming nothing more than that climatologists “include the sun’s influence in their analyses”. I was asking James Padgett if he was claiming that climatologists were not, in their analyses, accounting for the sun’s output.

    Your own question, with the Rumsfeldian litany of unknowns, is a strawman, as is Alan the Brit’s waffle. The fact remains that the sun’s output, and changes to such, are accounted for in climatological analyses, and certainly at the level of solar physics mentioned by James Padgett.

    I simply asked, and I will ask again, if James Padgett is claiming that climatologists do not, in their analyses, account for the sun’s output. Of course, the obvious supplemetary question for James Padgett and others to answer, if they think that the first can be answered in the affirmative, is to indicate which analyses are deficient in accounting for solar output, where such deficiency occurs, and exactly what are these supposed deficiencies.

    The rancorous responses above don’t actually address the point of my questioning.

  32. Simple answer to the title’s question is that 20 years is longer that the basic solar cycle and 10 years is not.

    I embrace the idea of creating a new climate model that focuses on the fundamentals such as sun, clouds and oceans. Dr Spencer has his own simple climate model that is quite good especially compared to the billion dollar IPCC models. We should use mostly the best data ARGO and satellites, because the length of training period is not necessarily better.

  33. There are a few misconceptions above. First the number of points in an interval is irrelevant, only the length of the interval matters. I could set up equipment to measure temperature every microsecond but my 86 billion extra data points per day would make no difference. Second, even R Gates made this mistake, amplitude matters. If we get (for example) a 1C drop over the next (say) 5 years, that is statistically significant. Why? Because it’s unique in the record, no other 5 year periods have shown that magnitude of a drop. How significant? That part is tricky, there may only be a few dozen 5 year periods to compare against unless we overlap them in which case they are not independent samples.

    In short, to determine significance, ask what your sample is, what samples you are comparing against (and how many), what those samples show compared to your sample. Is your sample unique compared to a large number of other samples? Then it is significant.

  34. A fine article though I’d like to point out there is no such thing as “fundamental chaos” in nature. Choas Theory is a mathematical concept. Just because something appears chaotic doesn’t mean it is. One should never confuse mathematical models with reality. Chaos and Randomness are merely expressions of lack of knowledge. There is no theoretical reason that the underlying processes will not be discovered. Otherwise, the basic mission of Science is futile. If von Neumann made an error it was in underestimating the complexity of the problem possibly by several orders of magnitude.

  35. 10 years vs 20 years? When an entire earth climate cycle (glacial period–to–interglacial period–to start of glacial period) is 100K years this is a silly question. With a mere 100 years of highly biased unrepresentative surface temperatures and a few decades of satelite data there is simple no such thing as climate science. There is barely enough data for weather reporting-as daily demonstarted by the woefully inaccurate weather predictions makes clear. Climate scientist and meteorologist, get over yourselves! You are a pseudo-science like “social science”, “political science” and economics.

  36. The premis of this article is ridiculous, bearing in mind that huge groups of people in ‘educated’ countries don’t believe that continental drift ever happened.

    God made the planet in 6 days remember. There were no dinosaurs, despite the evidence, the president is not American, despite the evidence, the world is not warming, despite the evidence.

  37. Bernard J:

    At November 5, 2011 at 6:28 am you say;

    “I simply asked, and I will ask again, if James Padgett is claiming that climatologists do not, in their analyses, account for the sun’s output.”

    Clearly, you failed to understand the several answers you obtained. So, I will spell it out in simple language for you. The answer to yourt question is:

    No, they do not: they only include a factor for solar irradiance which is only a small – and, in this case, a possibly insignificant – part of the sun’s output.

    I hope you are now able to understand.

    Richard

  38. lemiere jacques says:
    November 5, 2011 at 3:41 am
    You must understand that if you want to convince scientists ( 5 grade) you must give a physical explanation such as heat transfert, forcing from coulds coverage modifications…so that you can quantify and be falsified…

    Gravity, relativity, quantum mechanics, these are some of the greatest triumphs in modern physics. Where is the physical mechanism to explain them? What causes time to pass slower in a gravitational field? What is the speed of gravity? What is the physical mechanism underlying the uncertainty principle? How can these great theories have any value without there being a physical mechanism to explain them?

    Science has one great power – and only one. True science can DEMONSTRATIVELY and REPEATEDLY and RELIABLY predict the future – with better odds than chance. That simple test is what sets science apart from everything else.

    If a theory seeks to explain but has no predictive value, it is worthless as science, because there is no way to determine if it is true or false. Worse, it can do great harm. We end up blood-letting. Yet at the time the “experts” were convinced, the consensus opinion was that illness was caused by bad blood.

    The human brain is no bigger today than it was then. We are still equally as likely to make mistakes.

  39. From the viewpoint of a physician.

    Statistics is the science of how numbers behave. Not many people really care about or understand statistics. They care about the subject they love (climatology, psychology, whatever), but don’t give a hoot about how numbers behave. They just plug their data into a formula without any understanding of what they are doing. Since nobody loves statistics, statisticians have a hard time convincing people to use their expertise in many types of studies, including tree rings. Only when the numbers look bad will they call in a statistician. Imagine spending years gathering data, getting accolades from your peers, and then having some statistician tell you that your data is garbage. You have wasted millions of dollars and years of your life.

    Keep in mind that you never prove anything by statistics. You simple state the probability that a series of numbers or a set of groups of numbers occurred solely by random chance. Not really very sexy.

    The 95% cut off is clearly artificial. And, almost never applied properly. Data dredging is a well know way to get the desired but wrong conclusion. If you try 20 different correlations with an outcome, one is bound to be statistically significant at the 5% level.

    Especially for observational data, to get data free of bias is extremely hard. Investigators will cherry pick all the time to get the result they want. Even with laboratory testing, investigators will throw out data they deem “outliers.” If this were not so, we would not see so many medical science papers refuted by further studies. People also tend to report positive results and forget the negative results. Everybody has to make discoveries to get more grants.

    So, ask any seasoned medical statistician ( I am not one of those.) about the climate data. They would just laugh.

  40. Here is a simple elegant peer reviewed study which explains the temperature since records began very well.

    http://people.iarc.uaf.edu/~sakasofu/pdf/two_natural_components_recent_climate_change.pdf

    In a nutshell there is a 1/2 ° per CENTURY warming due to solar increase and feedbacks. This warming is real but of interest only to climate scientists.

    On top of this there is a 60 year PDO cycle which explains the short term variation very well.

    This warming and cooling doesn’t add any actual warming or cooling but it annoys the alarmists very well.

    The pattern fits for 120 years but let’s just look at 1940 on.

    1940 to 1978 — Cooling because PDO was negative [Aerosols aren’t needed to explain this ]

    1978 to 1998 — Warming because the PDO was positive and there were more El Ninos than La Nina’s.

    1998 to present Flat because El Nino’s equal La Nina’s

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

    The cooling of 1940 to 1978 caused climate scientists to decry global cooling. The warming of 1978 to 1998 caused them to decry global warming.

    As of 2005 the cycle has turned down.

  41. Posted on November 5, 2011 by James Padgett
    Guest post by James Padgett

    “ … Of course, others say this time period is simply not statistically significant, but the only period of heating we can’t directly trace to the sun, the time from 1977-1998, a mere twenty year period, is certainly statistically significant in some minds.

    Why is 20 years statistically significant when 10 years is not? “

    Right, significance is a term from the discipline of statistic. In the science of physics time periods are not used, but frequencies f [f = 1/sec]. Time is not an observable in physics. A well used term in physics is a correlation coefficient. And it is useful to take a most great interval.

    Because of the knowledge of a climate frequency of about ~ 1/900 years^-1 for the frequency of the “Warm time / Little Ice age”, and the knowledge of the warm phase in these centuries, a discussion of 20 or 10 years has no relevance in climate science.

    The reconstructed global temperature spectra contain a lot of non sinusoidal oscillations with frequencies in the range of three to four orders of frequency. All that oscillations have a real heat source and a physical mechanism and a real geometry.

    Of coarse the reconstructed global temperature proxies are neither precise in time nor in amplitude. And moreover it is not known for sure what the source of heat spikes are, next to the Sun.

    This leads to a problem if a correlation coefficient is computed from a possible solar heat source and the reconstructed global temperature. On the other side it is not out of the question to verify terrestrial heat sources by using the method of the solar system heat dynamics.

    Simple summation of solar tide functions from couples of six slow moving planets suggests that the main global temperature effect on Earth is controlled by the solar system:

    The simulation can be updated adding the fast moving bodies inside Jupiter.

    The tide frequency of ~ 1/900 years^-1 and its half frequency of ~1/1.8 ky^-1 is well known as ‘Bond event’. The climate amplitude of this non sinusoidal oscillation is about +- 2 °Cel. and this has more relevance as some tenth of 1° Cel. in 10 or 20 years.

    V.

  42. LazyTeenager says:
    November 5, 2011 at 12:55 am
    1900-1944:

    This period is largely warming. What could possibly be the cause of that?
    ———
    From the graph it’s seems that James associates warming with increased sunspot activity. And this seems to be consistent with theories about the origin of the little ice age.

    So why dont we see a little ice age every 11 years? And the answer has to be backed by evidence, not hand waving or speculation.

    Once we realize we don’t know the answer, we can start looking for it. But as long as we’re zero-ed in on the CO2 boogey-man, we will probably never attempt to find out.

  43. wayne says:
    November 5, 2011 at 12:49 am

    Since a twenty year period is also a 240 month period, are those 240 data points enough to be significant? And in reality we are measuring daily. Are 7300 data points enough to be significant? Never could figure out the logic right there but would love for a statistician explain it to me (and others).

    Who is setting these rules here? Pure mathematics or the climate scientist community (aka IPCC)?
    ====================================================================

    The level at which the result of a statistical analysis becomes significant is a purely arbitrary decision on the part of the analyst or his boss. Stats 101. There are conventions that have been adopted over the years ( 1, 2, or 3 sigma), but they are not carved in stone. Has to do with the power of the test to reject a given hypothesis. The analyst attempts to reduce the probability of a Type II error.

  44. R. Gates says:
    November 5, 2011 at 6:21 am

    This is muddled thinking at it’s worst. The climate does not change by chance.

    You can make the argument that nothing happens by chance. For instance it is, in theory, possible to predict what numbers will come up when you throw the dice. All you need is a bunch of data and a good computer.

    Given that you, personally, are unable to predict how the dice will land when they are thrown by a human being, you are stuck with talking about chance.

    Given that we don’t have:
    1 – sufficient data
    2 – sufficient computer power
    3 – sufficient knowledge of the underlying processes
    we are stuck with talking about chance when we talk about the climate. We describe it as a chaotic system because its sensitivity to initial conditions makes accurate predictions almost impossible no matter how much computer power we can bring to bear.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butterfly_effect

  45. DAV says:
    November 5, 2011 at 6:56 am

    “A fine article though I’d like to point out there is no such thing as “fundamental chaos” in nature.”

    I disagree. Nature has many non-linear adaptive systems where small changes in the initial conditions can result in large changes whole system. For example, the behavior of water is quite different when the temperature changes from 1C to -5C. Non-linearity means that governing equation is not linear e.g. radiation is proportional to the forth power of temperature. Adaptive means the there are positive and negative feedbacks. This is what climate sensitivity is about. For example an increase in temperature due to CO2 in the atmosphere, is immediately connected to thermal expansion of air which opposes the change.

    Lottery machine is a real life example of chaos theory. You can’t predict the numbers because small variations in the initial conditions result in a random outcome. You could argue that its not random because the rolling balls have deterministic behavior but this is what we call chaos.

  46. DRSG says:
    November 5, 2011 at 7:01 am
    the world is not warming, despite the evidence.

    Where I live, things are cooling as compared to a month ago, but warming as compared to an hour ago.

    If you go back far enough in time, there is no place on earth that was not at some point in the past warmer or colder than it is right now. Thus, depending on where you start measuring, ever point on earth is both warming and cooling right now – at the same time.

  47. Since 1900 the PDO signal aligns with the temperature record, solar influences are important but perhaps play a second tier role. Some might say the PDO is an after effect of ENSO but the data is certainly not clear on this front. Some years the PDO leads the ENSO signal as we see now and other years we see the reverse. An El Nino can produce the warm water pool above New Guinea that fuels the next La Nina but what about the current situation where we see a strong La Nina forming straight after another La Nina. A cool PDO means a warm pool off the coast of Japan which can with the current prevailing winds build the necessary warm pool to fuel the Walker pump.

    The current La NIna shows us that ENSO is not driving the PDO, the next one may be different..

  48. wayne says:
    November 5, 2011 at 12:49 am

    Since a twenty year period is also a 240 month period, are those 240 data points enough to be significant? And in reality we are measuring daily. Are 7300 data points enough to be significant? Never could figure out the logic right there but would love for a statistician explain it to me (and others).

    Who is setting these rules here? Pure mathematics or the climate scientist community (aka IPCC)?
    ================================================================

    Wayne, rather than waxing poetic about the issue, I’ll simply refer you to this: http://www.statsoft.com/textbook/statsoft-textbook-search/?Name=significance

  49. @Jerome says sitting around his pool on sunny days he notes the pool gets warmer.
    Perhaps, but, I live in Costa Rica and my pool, despite having a dark bottom, does not get appreciably warmer unless there are MANY sunny days AND the kids are using it all the time!
    My pool is deep, to accommodate scuba classes and let me tell you, it is very cold most of the time as are most pools in this country that are not heated. When I say many sunny days, I mean 3 or 4 months at a stretch!
    I’d be willing to give R.M.B. some credence for his surface tension theory!

  50. I like the simplicity of the article, but it seems to be lost on those who insist on analytical analysis.

    Back to the comparison to plate tectonics – complex theories might “explain” things, but stepping back and looking at the big picture (the continental puzzle) was more correct. This is another example of Occam’s Razor. The AGW crowd (and some of our commenteres here) believe that they need to keep building a more and more complex model to explain global warming. But every complexity is subject to the biases of the researcher and the lack of a significant period of observed data.

    Such is the arrogance of modern human intelligence. “If it happened, then humans must have contributed to its happening”. Or the belief that humans can do a damn thing to stop it. I firmly beleive we cannot. It’s a planet. Can we do anything to change the magnetic field? Can we preserve forests by keeping all fires (even natural ones) from happening? Better to sit back and observe for another century or two before taking drastic action. Too many real human lives are at stake.

  51. Mathematics uses a known “equation” to produce a chaotic output. By knowing the “equation” and the input points, the output can be predicted — even though the system output is chaotic.

    I am tired of hearing about how the weather/climate is chaotic. We just don’t know enough of the underlying “equation”, yet. The problem is spending billions/trillions of dollars based on part of the “equation”. Until the ego of the scientists, for making a small discovery, is brought under control, wild projections can result.

    Especially in an unstable “equation” all input data is critical, therefore, 20 year, 10 year, 400 year, data is all needed and is all equally important.

    The last time APG effects were “controlled” was with Freon [R-12, R-22, etc.]. Shouldn’t that Ozone hole closed by now, or is it affected by the “just discovered” UV from the Sun????

  52. R. Gates says:
    November 5, 2011 at 6:21 am
    Bill Illis says:

    “To be able to determine significance, we must determine how the climate can change randomly, how much it can change by by chance.”
    —–
    This is muddled thinking at it’s worst. The climate does not change by chance.

    ——————-

    Statistical significance, by definition, requires that something can change by chance. It is what the field is all about. Otherwise, there is no significance to measure. All changes, no matter what they are, are significant: they are deterministic. Any cooling trend is therefore significant.

    My point is that noone really knows how to measure statistical significance for the climate. We need to be able to measure the probability of change by chance. We can’t. I would say, however, it is a non-Zero quantity unlike your claim.

  53. malagaview says: November 5, 2011 at 3:08 am Why is 20 years statistically significant when 10 years is not?

    “More importantly: Is (Tmax + Tmin) / 2 meaningful or statistically valid?
    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2011/11/4/australian-temperatures.html

    Thanks for the reference. The last time I tried to use range/2 of a data set to estimate an average response a process engineer and statistician asked me a couple questions- what was the variation (variance and SD) in the data for the time period in question and was the data normally distributed over the time period in question. Using essentially + 6 sigma and -6 sigma data points can be very problematic when trying to get an accurate estimate of X bar. Their next question had to do with confidence intervals on my point estimate- which I could not give them without an estimate of sigma.

    Thanks once again for the reference to “Jonathan Lowe, an Australian statistician, has performed extensive analysis of weather data recorded at fixed times by Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology (BoM). This analysis is available at his blog, A Gust of Hot Air. The data comes from 21 weather stations manned by professional meteorologists.”

    http://gustofhotair.blogspot.com/

  54. For those trying to defend the idea that 10 or 11 years doesn’t say much, a bit of a history lesson would be in store. As many have pointed out, it wasn’t until the mid to late 70s did the cooling notion die out. And we went to this warming notion. The notion of CAGW was in full swing by the time Hansen played with Congress’ thermostat. How many years of data did the warmista have to get the warming ball rolling?…….. About 10 to 11 years.

    Don’t play their time frame game. 10 years is relevant to what is occurring. 30 years will tell you what occurred. Both time frames are arbitrary. And both hold equal value. They simply examine different things. Will ten years tell us much when discussing solar and ocean cycles? Probably not, though you can see La Nina/El Nino occurrences. Recall, atmospheric CO2 has increased by about 30ppm since 1998. I think that is extremely relevant when discussing the hypothesis that CO2 drives our climate, especially considering 280ppm as some sort of baseline.

  55. DAV says:
    November 5, 2011 at 6:56 am
    Dr. Lurtz says:
    November 5, 2011 at 8:02 am
    Both of you do not understand the concepts in chaos theory. I suggest you read a good book on it. For the climate, we know the NS fluid dynamics equations, and radiation equations very precisely. On top of those there are many other terms controlling climate such as cloud variation, solar effects, aerosols, slow varying ocean currents, etc. Even if we knew all relevant equations of all the physics, and measured initial conditions from a starting time and at all locations to dozens of decimal places, the basic theory in chaos shows that multiple nonlinear equations of this level will diverge from any level of calculation accuracy over time, and for weather and climate, this time is very short. There is no solution possible that will hold for long times. This is characterized by the the expression “the butterfly effect”. Until you realize the nonsense you have stated, you are clearly uninformed on this issue.

  56. If somewhat arbitrary claims are made that there must be a rigid minimum threshold of a 17 year period of data as an absolute requirement to show significance statistically, and then if someone else observes that at the end of the previous 17 years there is a 11-to-13 year continuous segment showing a different (plateau-like to then declining) behavior than the (up-sloping) behavior of the first 4-to-6 years, then all bets are off on what is going to happen in the next 4-to-6 years except that several significant natural (non-anthropogenic) physical mechanisms provide indicators that at least the next decade will have persistent cooling.

    Nature is instructing that a posited alarming warming by CO2 from fossil fuels is not very informative.

    John

  57. commieBob says:
    November 5, 2011 at 7:26 am
    You can make the argument that nothing happens by chance. For instance it is, in theory, possible to predict what numbers will come up when you throw the dice. All you need is a bunch of data and a good computer.

    In which case the future is written and there is no such thing as free will. All our future choices are already determined by our current state. In which case the future is rather pointless.

    Quantum mechanics suggests otherwise. That the future is not deterministic. That is an illusion of scale. The future is not a place we are traveling to. The future is a probability.

    For example: When you say you are going on vacation next week that is not entirely accurate. You are planning to go on vacation, and are taking steps to increase the probability that you will in fact go on vacation, but events are also in motion which could prevent you from going. Until the vacation actually arrives, you don’t know for sure that you are in fact going to go on vacation.

    We like to believe that if we knew all the events going on in the world, we could determine in advance if we were actually going to go on the vacation. Our current level of understanding of the physical world is such that you cannot calculate this in advance, even with the computer that has not yet been built, at a very fundamental level.

    There was a time, many years ago, that scientists knew this to be true. However, over time that knowledge has been lost. People at a very fundamental level were not comfortable with the concept that the future is uncertain.

    The Precautionary Principle was invented to replace the Uncertainty Principle – Heisenberg was German after all. Computers programs were developed to predict the decades in advance, and thus the future was thus secured for all. Scientist now are certain that all they need to make it all work is bigger computers.

  58. Ten to 20 years of time is not enough. The earth’s magnetic fields are in a constant state of change. The strength, movement, integration or disintergration of the fields seem rarely to be part of the climate argument but are probably significant drivers in climate. Along with solar influences, the location and strenght of anomalies like the South Atlantic contribute to ocean oscillations..

    http://www.science27.com/Earth/index.htm

    #TEN in this article at the above link shows a graph of magetic strength compared to temperatures for 100,000 years. I would have liked the peak of the last interglatial to be included in the time span since temperatures then roughly correspond to temperatures now.

  59. James, James, James…

    Correlation is not causation.

    The classic cautionary tale is to plot shoe size against income. Very high positive correlation – the bigger the shoe the larger the income.

    The CO2 correlation has the distinct advantage of a proven modus operandi. The sunspot correlation does not. Even a fifth grader should know that so if I were you I’d be more careful about who I was calling not smarter than a fifth grader – people who live in glass houses shoudn’t throw stones.

  60. R. Gates says:
    November 5, 2011 at 6:21 am
    This is muddled thinking at it’s worst. The climate does not change by chance.

    God plays dice with the climate.

  61. Bill Illis says:
    November 5, 2011 at 8:23 am
    R. Gates says:
    November 5, 2011 at 6:21 am
    Bill Illis says:

    “To be able to determine significance, we must determine how the climate can change randomly, how much it can change by by chance.”
    —–
    This is muddled thinking at it’s worst. The climate does not change by chance.
    ——————-

    Statistical significance, by definition, requires that something can change by chance. It is what the field is all about. Otherwise, there is no significance to measure. All changes, no matter what they are, are significant: they are deterministic. Any cooling trend is therefore significant.
    ———-
    We are talking about separating signal from noise when taking about long-term climate changes, versus shorter-term, thus the significance of any change must be measured against the appropriate scale of time. It is finding that appropriate scale for the anthropogenic signal that is really the core issue, and that’s what this excellent bit of research was about:

    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/pip/2011JD016263.shtml

    If I measure the temperature at 3 a.m. and then again at 3 p.m. And note the 30 degree difference, it would be inappropriate to conclude anything about Milankovitch cycles from that difference even though of course the difference is statistically significant and certainly not by chance. So too, if I take the temperature at the the height of a big El Nino, and then again 10 years later at the bottom of an series of La Nina, and try to draw any conclusion from that about anthropogenic forcing from CO2, that would be an inappropriate application of scale. The research referenced above make a very strong case as to why.

  62. Dave Springer says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:17 am
    The classic cautionary tale is to plot shoe size against income. Very high positive correlation – the bigger the shoe the larger the income.

    I’ve got to get myself some bigger shoes!

  63. DAV says: “A fine article though I’d like to point out there is no such thing as “fundamental chaos” in nature. Choas Theory is a mathematical concept. Just because something appears chaotic doesn’t mean it is. One should never confuse mathematical models with reality. Chaos and Randomness are merely expressions of lack of knowledge. There is no theoretical reason that the underlying processes will not be discovered. Otherwise, the basic mission of Science is futile. If von Neumann made an error it was in underestimating the complexity of the problem possibly by several orders of magnitude.”

    DAV says: “A fine article though I’d like to point out there is no such thing as “fundamental chaos” in nature. Choas Theory is a mathematical concept. Just because something appears chaotic doesn’t mean it is. One should never confuse mathematical models with reality. Chaos and Randomness are merely expressions of lack of knowledge. There is no theoretical reason that the underlying processes will not be discovered. Otherwise, the basic mission of Science is futile. If von Neumann made an error it was in underestimating the complexity of the problem possibly by several orders of magnitude.”

    Let me expand slightly on what Cherry Pick has said. The chaos theory of the 1970s is a fundamentally new way of analyzing much of what we see in nature. I would respectfully disagree that what we see in nature is not chaos. The fundamental properties needed for chaotic behavior are non-linear behavior and reiteration, i.e., each succeeding moment is a function of what the immediately prior moment was. You are correct that chaos and randomness are often conflated — especially in common speech — but the two are actually very different. We know that physics has been especially successful over the years in reducing complex phenomena to the interaction of simple forces. Chaos theory does the same and has found that much of what happens in the world appears to be random — but is actually deterministic. True randomness cannot be predicted, not even in theory. Chaos, on the other hand, even though it appears to be random, can be predicted. It is deterministic, it is a system responding step by minute step to predictable natural rules. So what is the big deal, what makes chaos any different from normal, everyday physics problems? Chaos can be predicted, but there is a catch. Actually, two catches, and they are both very big. Chaotic systems can be predicted only if we have infinitely exact knowledge of all the beginning physical states, and only with a computer or calculating system at least as complicated — if not more complicated — the system which is being analyzed. Von Neumann’s mistake is completely understandable. Up until the 1970’s is was believed that all phenomena –- such as weather – were inherently simplifiable. There would be, so it was thought, a method of reducing large systems into smaller more easily analyzed systems. Chaos explains that this is not so.
    So where does that leave us? Obviously, not all phenomena are chaotic – otherwise physics and science in general would have never gotten off the ground. Even chaotic systems have regularities which can, in fact be predicted, but we now know that all such predictions have specific limits. Chaotic systems tend to do “quantum jumps” from one state to another. Each specific state, if you look more closely, tends to have finer substates to it. Certainly, if we look at long time scale charts of Earth’s climate or temperature, we see large jumps, mostly bounded by the thermal properties and phase change states of water. More recently, in the 20th Century we see small step changes in temperature (like the one in the late 90s.) Instead of being able to predict what climate – or weather – we will have, we can only (at best) be able to say, “It is most likely to fall within a certain range, with these regions being most likely.” And just like a rock bouncing down a mountain slope, with each state shift, the results become more and more unpredictable. Using the world’s most powerful computers, we can give rough prediction of weather only a week or so out before it becomes too error laden to be useful. As the article points out, the addition of more data, that is oceanic and solar states, may allow us to make better (though still not arbitrarily good) predictions of longer term climate.
    Chaos is not randomness, so at least we have the possibility of approaching useful prediction, but we are very limited in how close we will ever get to what von Neumann expected.

  64. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 5, 2011 at 8:30 am

    Volker Doormann says:
    November 5, 2011 at 7:14 am
    “Simple summation of solar tide functions from couples of six slow moving planets suggests that the main global temperature effect on Earth is controlled by the solar system:

    http://volker-doormann.org/images/hadc_ghi6_1850.gif

    Extend the blue curve back to 1600…

    No problem, Sir.

    Back to 1000 AD + high frequency temperature reconstruction from A.Moberg et al.

    Back to 500 AD + high frequency temperature reconstruction from A.Moberg et al.

    Done.

    V.

  65. ferd berple says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:14 am

    In which case the future is written and there is no such thing as free will. All our future choices are already determined by our current state. In which case the future is rather pointless. Quantum mechanics suggests otherwise. That the future is not deterministic. That is an illusion of scale. The future is not a place we are traveling to. The future is a probability.

    For example: When you say you are going on vacation next week that is not entirely accurate. You are planning to go on vacation, and are taking steps to increase the probability that you will in fact go on vacation, but events are also in motion which could prevent you from going. Until the vacation actually arrives, you don’t know for sure that you are in fact going to go on vacation.

    We like to believe that if we knew all the events going on in the world, we could determine in advance if we were actually going to go on the vacation. Our current level of understanding of the physical world is such that you cannot calculate this in advance, even with the computer that has not yet been built, at a very fundamental level.

    You had no real choice in writing the above, of course, nor in your belief that you possess free will. And I of course had no real choice but to make exactly this response.

    Seriously, the jury is still out on determinism vs. nondeterminism. There is no consensus even among quantum physicists. Even Stephen Hawking famously lost a wager to Leonard Susskind over this. Hawking argued that information could be destroyed, or at least hidden forever inside a black hole, because once something fell in the only way out was via particles quantum tunneling through the event horizon (Hawking Radiation). He argued that the tunnelling was predictable only statistically and so information about the particle before it entered the black hole was lost when it tunneled back out. This actually violates a fundamental tenet of quantum mechanics – conservation of information – and Susskind argued that you can’t get around that rule even with a black hole. The mathematical details are beyond my ken but after ten years and every theoretical physicist in the world throwing in his two cents Hawking conceded and conservation of information, and thus absolute determinism which follows from it, is still safely ensconsed.

  66. R. Gates says:
    November 5, 2011 at 5:58 am

    Now, for those who want to know what the research says about why a period greater than 17 years is required to see the anthropogenic signal through short-term fluctuations, see:

    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/pip/2011JD016263.shtml

    The only quibble with this paper I might have is that it really didn’t consider longer-term solar cycle fluctuations such as we might see during a Dalton or Maunder minimum, which would push that period even longer of course. But, as a general rule, greater than 17 years is the minimum to see the anthropogenic signal, and so anyone pointing to a shorter period as proof the anthropogenic signal is not there simply is misguided or intentionally trying to deceive.

    Wait a minute… are you being honest? Admittedly it takes 17 years for their models to see signal/noise ratios sufficient to detect forcing (their term), but these were all based on computer models (simulation) based on somebody’s CAGW-determined algorithms. Want me to quote it from the summary on their paper?

    Here it is:

    “…a multi-model ensemble of anthropogenically-forced simulations…”

    You’ve moved into the accusatory mode by saying anybody pointing to a shorter time period “as proof the anthropogenic signal is not there simply is misguided or intentinally trying to deceive” and yet who you refer to is using models.

    Again.

    Is it their purpose to use referential conclusions to eventually justify an anthropogenic signal just because their models show what it takes in signal/noise ratio to find one?

    Probably. That’s how they do things there in climsci. They didn’t say they found it. They just indicated how long the time period would have to be to find it if you choose to believe in their “models”. So is it you who (turnabout is fair play) “is misguided or intentionally trying to deceive?”

    I think the latter, but you make the call because you’re privy to that information.

  67. ferd berple says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:23 am

    R. Gates says:
    November 5, 2011 at 6:21 am
    This is muddled thinking at it’s worst. The climate does not change by chance.

    God plays dice with the climate.
    _____
    Nice sentiment, but they’d have to be loaded dice.

  68. ferd berple says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:24 am

    “Dave Springer says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:17 am
    The classic cautionary tale is to plot shoe size against income. Very high positive correlation – the bigger the shoe the larger the income.”

    >I’ve got to get myself some bigger shoes!

    Statistically speaking, you betcha!

  69. Responding to RockyRoad
    November 5, 2011 at 9:58 am

    _____
    How could you find the minimum period in which the anthropogenic signal could be seen if you didn’t include the anthropogenic forcings? Should they have run the models with CO2 and other GH gases being held at a year 1600 level? Did you read the entire paper? Sound like perhaps not…

  70. Good article but rather late to the party:

    “A change in the heat coming from the sun may not have an immediate effect unless it is in phase with the overall average state of the various oceanic oscillations.

    Thus a decline in solar energy will have an immediate effect if it occurs at a time when the overall balance of all the oceanic oscillations is negative as now (2007 to date) when the end of solar cycle 23 is significantly delayed and the late start of cycle 24 suggests a weaker cycle than we have had for some time.

    A cooling effect of such a solar decline will be delayed if it occurs at a time when the overall balance of all the oceanic oscillations is positive (1998 to 2007) when solar cycle 23 started showing it’s weakness in relation to previous solar cycles but the Pacific Decadal Oscillation was still positive.

    An increase in solar energy will have a delayed effect if it occurs at a time when the overall balance of the oceanic oscillations is negative (1961 to 1975) when solar cycles 18 and 19 were historically intense but the effect was masked by the negative Pacific Decadal Oscillation.

    The warming effect will be immediate if it occurs at a time when the overall balance of the oceanic oscillations is positive (1975 to 1998) during the historically active cycles 21 and 22.

    Remember that there is a variable lag between the initial solar effect of warming or cooling on the Pacific Ocean and that effect then working through all the other oceanic oscillations so it is difficult to establish the overall balance of the oceanic oscillations at any given time. In fact it is more likely that observed changes in the trend of global temperature will be the first and simplest indication as to when a global shift from solar/oceanic warming mode to solar/oceanic cooling mode and vice versa has occurred.

    Indeed on the basis of my previous article about weather being the key it may be possible to get even earlier warning of changes in global temperature trend from observation of the preferred positions of the jet streams and the main high pressure systems.”

    from here:

    http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=1487&linkbox=true&position=5

    “The Hot Water Bottle Effect”, first published 25th June 2008.

    and followed by a number of articles presenting more detail as to how the oceanic and solar influences interact over time to shift the permanent climate zones and lead to all the changes that we observe.

  71. malagaview says:

    “Why is 20 years statistically significant when 10 years is not?

    More importantly: Is (Tmax + Tmin) / 2 meaningful or statistically valid?

    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2011/11/4/australian-temperatures.html

    When I questionned the use of (Tmax + Tmin)/2 as a substitute for Tmean, some months ago, I was torn apart by Steve Mosher who provided me with a link to data which appeared to confirm that the approximation was correct. Having read the paper in the Bishophill link, perhaps I gave up too easily. Or perhaps Mr. Mosher can reply to malagaview’s second question in the light of the evidence to which the Bishophill blog refers.

    For any period of time why should the average of the peak and the trough provide an accurate estimate of the area beneath the curve?

  72. Volker Doormann says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:44 am
    Extend the blue curve back to 1600…

    http://volker-doormann.org/images/hadc_ghi6_1000.gif

    Considering that the two largest tides are due to Jupiter and Venus, the two next ones [of half the magnitude] due to Earth and Mercury and all the rest smaller by a factor of ten or more, what you plot cannot be the sum of the tides. That sum would show the Jupiter period modulated by Venus and much smaller contribution from the rest.

  73. Volker Doormann says: November 5, 2011 at 7:14 am
    Simple summation of solar tide functions from couples of six slow moving planets suggests that the main global temperature effect on Earth is controlled by the solar system: http://volker-doormann.org/images/hadc_ghi6_1850.gif

    Leif Svalgaard says: November 5, 2011 at 8:30 am
    Extend the blue curve back to 1600…

    Volker Doormann says: November 5, 2011 at 9:44 am
    …Done!

    Leif Svalgaard says: November 5, 2011 at 10:21 am
    …And note how poor the fit is from 1750 until today
    .

    What strikes me is how good the fit is, ie to me, visually, this looks like a statistically significant correlation, even if not perfect, and I trust my …eyes.

    But there is more: in Doorman’s first comparison graph, it is not just the overall picture, but even more the details, the nuances, that bob up and down together, over and over and over again. Now how does one measure statistical significance when we are clearly dealing with at least two scales of effect, one being over years and the other being over decades and centuries?

  74. ferd berple says: November 5, 2011 at 7:02 am

    …Gravity, relativity, quantum mechanics, these are some of the greatest triumphs in modern physics. Where is the physical mechanism to explain them? What causes time to pass slower in a gravitational field? What is the speed of gravity? What is the physical mechanism underlying the uncertainty principle? How can these great theories have any value without there being a physical mechanism to explain them?

    Science has one great power – and only one. True science can DEMONSTRATIVELY and REPEATEDLY and RELIABLY predict the future

    Well said ferd.

  75. Santer et al et al et al 2011 linked above by R. Gates just says that the RSS-UAH lower troposphere temperature trend just needs to fall to about 0.11C per decade to be outside of the 90% confidence limits (not 95%) of the models (over about 15 years, the number stays the same as we move out to even more than 35 years).

    http://muenchow.cms.udel.edu/classes/MAST811/Santer2011.pdf

    So, what are the odds that RSS-UAH will fall to 0.11C per decade. Temps only need to decline the way they did in the 2008 La Nina for another year or so and the 90% confidence interval will be broken. Then Santer will be forced to declare a statistically significant lack of warming (or he will just come up with some other way of saying no warming is consistent with global warming).

  76. The scientific community is regularly wrong en masse, not just for plate tectonics. Other notable gaffes include the failure to accept mitochondria as bacterial inclusions; the continued belief in the savannah theory of human evolution, in spite of overwhelming evidence to the contrary; the failure of medical doctors to wash their hands in spite of overwhelming empirical evidence that it could reduce disease spread (Ignace Semmelweiss)(okay M.D.s aren’t scientists, but after hundresds of years of evidence, they still don’t wash their hands properly); the problems that evolution had gaining acceptance (and still does, but I mean in the scientific community); and many others. Max Planck summed it up “a new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.” So until we get twenty or thirty years of non-warming data and the current warmista cadre all dies or retires, this seemingly irrational argument will continue. And truth won’t win the minds of the public as long as reporters are too lazy or too poorly educated to read the scientific literature themselves rather than having Al Gore (or David Suzuki in Canada) interpret it for them.

  77. Lucy Skywalker says:
    November 5, 2011 at 11:01 am
    “…And note how poor the fit is from 1750 until today.”
    What strikes me is how good the fit is, ie to me, visually, this looks like a statistically significant correlation, even if not perfect, and I trust my …eyes.

    1) the fit between the blue and the green line after 1750 is terrible [i.e. not there], so either the blue or the green line is not a good representation.
    2) but then before 1750 the fit looks better to your eyes, but we just established that one of the two could not be trusted when the data should be good.
    3) the blue curve is not the sum of the tides [as I just pointed out]. Rudolf Wolf [who invented the sunspot number] was the first to postulate the tidal theory. Here is his graph plotting the sum of the four largest tides for the years 1835-1850: http://www.leif.org/research/Wolf-Tides.png
    for times before and after you just repeat the curves.

  78. Some researchers have attributed the lack of warming in the last ten years to a mysterious drop in water vapor in a relatively thin layer of the stratosphere. Of course, they are doing this in a belief context that temperatures should be increasing with CO2 at a rate that implies a near runaway degree of positive feedback magnification of the raw effect. Perhaps they should be asking what might have put that extra water vapor up there in the first place.

    Scientific American:
    “Is Water Vapor in the Stratosphere Slowing Global Warming?”

    “A mysterious drop in water vapor in the lower stratosphere might be slowing climate change”
    By David Biello – January 29, 2010

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=is-water-vapor-in-the-stratosphere-slowing-global-warming

  79. KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) is good.

    And, while I do not discount the role of the PDO, I can distill this to an even simpler analysis. I did so here:

    http://sbvor.blogspot.com/2011/10/amo-driving-best-climate-change.html

    Notice in the previous link that…
    Every bit of climate change over the last century (and more) can be explained by just two factors the AMO and whatever has been driving a steady, gradual warming of 0.5C/century ever since the LIA. I offered no cause for that second factor, only an observation that it exists. Could that second factor be the sunspot evidence presented by Padgett?

    Having accounted for all climate change over the last century (and more) somewhat surprisingly leaves anthropogenic CO2 with no apparent role at all. Of course, we could speculate that whatever tiny bit of warming might have been created by anthropogenic CO2 was completely reversed by the observed negative water vapor feedback.

    Click here to see how the UAH global satellite data fit into the AMO theory.

    Click here to see how the USA data fit into the AMO theory.

    Click here for my primary post on the role of the AMO.

  80. Jason Calley says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:27 am

    RE: chaos . Excellent post! The distinction between chaotic and random behavior in particular. I use to have this conversation (pre-retirement) with various aerospace managers and it usually resulted in glazed over eyes. ;)

  81. Dave Springer says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:49 am

    ferd berple says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:14 am

    In which case the future is written and there is no such thing as free will. All our future choices are already determined by our current state. In which case the future is rather pointless. Quantum mechanics suggests otherwise. That the future is not deterministic. That is an illusion of scale. The future is not a place we are traveling to. The future is a probability.

    For example: When you say you are going on vacation next week that is not entirely accurate. You are planning to go on vacation, and are taking steps to increase the probability that you will in fact go on vacation, but events are also in motion which could prevent you from going. Until the vacation actually arrives, you don’t know for sure that you are in fact going to go on vacation.

    We like to believe that if we knew all the events going on in the world, we could determine in advance if we were actually going to go on the vacation. Our current level of understanding of the physical world is such that you cannot calculate this in advance, even with the computer that has not yet been built, at a very fundamental level.

    You had no real choice in writing the above, of course, nor in your belief that you possess free will. And I of course had no real choice but to make exactly this response.

    Seriously, the jury is still out on determinism vs. nondeterminism. There is no consensus even among quantum physicists. Even Stephen Hawking famously lost a wager to Leonard Susskind over this. Hawking argued that information could be destroyed, or at least hidden forever inside a black hole, because once something fell in the only way out was via particles quantum tunneling through the event horizon (Hawking Radiation). He argued that the tunnelling was predictable only statistically and so information about the particle before it entered the black hole was lost when it tunneled back out. This actually violates a fundamental tenet of quantum mechanics – conservation of information – and Susskind argued that you can’t get around that rule even with a black hole. The mathematical details are beyond my ken but after ten years and every theoretical physicist in the world throwing in his two cents Hawking conceded and conservation of information, and thus absolute determinism which follows from it, is still safely ensconsed.
    ======================================================================

    Interesting discussion. I see no reason why determinism and non-determinism should be mutually exclusive. Also, there is some speculation regarding information – the Holographic Principle.

  82. LazyTeenager says:
    November 5, 2011 at 12:55 am

    1900-1944:

    This period is largely warming. What could possibly be the cause of that?
    ———
    From the graph it’s seems that James associates warming with increased sunspot activity. And this seems to be consistent with theories about the origin of the little ice age.

    So why dont we see a little ice age every 11 years? And the answer has to be backed by evidence, not hand waving or speculation.
    ###

    If you can’t answer that for yourself, then I doubt that you have the sapience to contribute anything useful, but most of us knew that already.

  83. “Dave Springer says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:17 am

    The classic cautionary tale is to plot shoe size against income. Very high positive correlation – the bigger the shoe the larger the income.”

    Big feet generally indicates big body parts. Big body parts indicates a big person. Big people generally get more of the pie, than little people. We all learned that in grade school the first time some “big” kid took our candy. GK

  84. Lucy Skywalker says:
    November 5, 2011 at 11:01 am

    Volker Doormann says: November 5, 2011 at 7:14 am
    ‘Simple summation of solar tide functions from couples of six slow moving planets suggests that the main global temperature effect on Earth is controlled by the solar system:

    http://volker-doormann.org/images/hadc_ghi6_1850.gif

    What strikes me is how good the fit is, ie to me, visually, this looks like a statistically significant correlation, even if not perfect, and I trust my …eyes.

    But there is more: in Doorman’s first comparison graph, it is not just the overall picture, but even more the details, the nuances, that bob up and down together, over and over and over again. Now how does one measure statistical significance when we are clearly dealing with at least two scales of effect, one being over years and the other being over decades and centuries?”

    As I wrote above, relevant in climate science is the correlation coefficient of two different functions, but not any statistical significance, because a high correlation coefficient shows a strong geometric relation between two functions.

    In climate science a real source has to be shown for real global temperature anomalies; it is not the question in physics whether there is a source or not.

    All people who are involved in global temperature reconstructions do know that there are differences in timescale functions and amplitudes. Taking the time scale from the astronomic functions alike eclipses, heliocentric positions of celestial bodies can be determined in seconds in time and arcseconds of an ecliptic longitude angle.

    Because of this fact it is not the question whether astronomy functions fit to the temperature proxies ( “14C” ), but more whether the assumed time scales of the temperature proxies fit to astronomy functions.

    I wrote also on a global temperature frequency range of about four orders of magnitude (some month to 1.8 ky). It is self explained that it is not possible to show a comparison of all these frequencies in detail in one graph. Taking the saw tooth frequencies of 1/94.5 ky^-1 , 1/41.2 ky^-1, 1/29 ky^-1 or 1/23.6 ky^-1 from the Vostok core of Great Ice Ages the range of climate frequencies extends to about five orders of magnitude.

    So I think the scientific climate question is, ‘Why do the imperfect reconstructed global temperature frequency spectra correlate with solar tide functions from real planets and its positions?’
    Who in climate science cares on the statistical significance of a time decade or two?

    V.

  85. Curiousgeorge says:
    November 5, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    I see no reason why determinism and non-determinism should be mutually exclusive

    Are you saying – that which has been determined is constantly being modified by that which has not been determined? The holographic projection of the big bang would apparently account for the determined source. However, what do you attribute the non-determined source to? The only thing that occurs to me is the introduction of intelligence, hence purpose, implying choice.

    I admit – It all makes my head swim. GK

  86. Jason Calley November 5, 2011 at 9:27 am Chaos can be predicted, but there is a catch. Actually, two catches, and they are both very big. Chaotic systems can be predicted only if we have infinitely exact knowledge of all the beginning physical states, and only with a computer or calculating system at least as complicated — if not more complicated — the system which is being analyzed.

    Pretty tall catch. Because of it, it follows then that you can never build chaotic models that predict. Which in turn means you can never prove them. At best, you can only say the system appears chaotic. Just because there are mathematical models with chaotic properties resembling the data does NOT mean they exist in nature.

    Assigning a system to Chaos Theory is like assigning it to the Bogey Man. All you need to do is catch him to prove it. It’s the ultimate cop-out.

    Chaos is not randomness, so at least we have the possibility of approaching useful prediction

    But didn’t you say prediction was possible only with infinite knowledge and a Deep Thought class computer? So how then is there a possibility?

  87. The Sun is at the root of all warming, and sunspots deserve more analysis! I still believe sunspots are a key indicator of where global temperatures are headed. Human activity does not yet affect the sun, but maybe Al Gore and his Hadcrut acolytes, including Phil Jones at the University of East Anglia can devise some new computer programs to prove that AECR (Anthropogenic Earth Carbon Releasing) affects the Sun, too.

    I also believe there is likely validity in Prof. Svensmark’s theory about how the Sun’s variable-intensity heliomagnetic field shields Earth from those cloud-seeding inter-galactic protons, sometimes more and sometimes less, as it varies during the Sun’s long-term rising and falling magnetic cycles. Maybe more experiments at CERN, using its incredibly-complex CLOUD chamber, will advance that interesting theory, or they may not.

    But my personal conviction is that there is indubitably a relationship between the Sun, its cyclic sunspots, and Earth’s climate. This is evident simply because the chart depicting the International Sunspot Numbers from 1745 to the present clearly shows big variations in peak numbers and shapes of the cyclic curves over that period. Go here to see this yourself: http://spaceweather.com/glossary/sunspotnumber.html

    A correlation is obvious between sunspot numbers with climate warming and cooling temperature records since reasonably accurate measurements have been recorded over those last 260 years or so. I believe that the shape of a sunspot cycle’s rise, its peak number, and the shape of its fall can be matched to average climate temperatures for the corresponding time periods that follow.

    I have roughly assessed those parameters and find that the rising shape, the peak value, and the stretched-out shape of the last cycle clearly resemble those for the cycles that ended around 1850 or 1880. Compare these time periods with their corresponding climate conditions and you may have an indicator of the near term climate to come.

    It may be cooler than you imagined, and far cooler than IPCC’s doctored computer programs have been erroneously predicting.

  88. BCBill says:
    November 5, 2011 at 11:11 am
    “So until we get twenty or thirty years of non-warming data and the current warmista cadre all dies or retires, this seemingly irrational argument will continue. And truth won’t win the minds of the public…”

    ____
    I think a large contingent of the so-called “warmista” would be well enough convinced that AGW is not occurring if we get 30 years of cooling…as it will be self-evident. But the cherry picking of data from the peak of an El Nino in 1998 to a period of multiple La Ninas during the quietest solar activity in a century as evidence that AGW isn’t a real phenomenon is hardly scientific or convincing. Furthermore, we’d have to know what the global temperatures would be like during the same period if you reduced the CO2 levels to 280 ppm or so. Interestingly, we can do that via the climate models, and we get something that looks a lot like the Dalton Minimum.

    In term of wining the minds of the public…with the exception of the intellectuals (who are the first killed in any revolution) it generally really isn’t rational arguments that win the group-mind of the public, but circus acts and emotional appeals. This emotional appeal is strengthened by physical reality being thrown in their face…i.e. my house being washed away might be a great point of leverage to paying more in taxes to build up flood defenses.

  89. G. Karst says:
    November 5, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    Curiousgeorge says:
    November 5, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    I see no reason why determinism and non-determinism should be mutually exclusive

    Are you saying – that which has been determined is constantly being modified by that which has not been determined? The holographic projection of the big bang would apparently account for the determined source. However, what do you attribute the non-determined source to? The only thing that occurs to me is the introduction of intelligence, hence purpose, implying choice.

    I admit – It all makes my head swim. GK
    =========================================================================

    I have no answer to your question. We are dealing with the “Unknown unknowns” with this. There is, of course, a faith based response. But, I won’t jump into that particular swimming hole. ;)

  90. R. Gates says:
    November 5, 2011 at 1:32 pm

    i.e. my house being washed away might be a great point of leverage to paying more in taxes to build up flood defenses.

    So what does a pleasant walk in the park signify?? GK

  91. Volker Doormann says:
    November 5, 2011 at 1:09 pm
    Why do the imperfect reconstructed global temperature frequency spectra correlate with solar tide functions from real planets and its positions?
    Except that what you plot is not the sum of the tidal effects of the planets.

  92. R. Gates says: November 5, 2011 at 1:32 pm
    wining the minds of the public… it … isn’t rational arguments… but circus acts and emotional appeals.

    haha, you said it!

    Beyond the chuckle, I’m only in limited agreement – because, although people want a circus too, there is something people reach for that is higher, that makes us happy and proud to be alive, something like truth and integrity. IMHO, WUWT is a standing witness to this.

  93. “Why is 20 years statistically significant when 10 years is not?”
    “R. Gates says:
    November 5, 2011 at 5:58 am
    But, as a general rule, greater than 17 years is the minimum to see the anthropogenic signal”

    I am confused now. Look at the following with the 95% confidence ranges.

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/hadobs/hadcrut3/diagnostics/global/nh+sh/

    Hold a ruler from the BOTTOM of the 95% confidence range for the year 2011 to the TOP of the 95% confidence range for the years 1989, 1990, 1991 and 1992. I come to the conclusion that warming IS significant for the years 1989 and 1992, but NOT significant for the years 1990 and 1991. So my question to R. Gates or the author of this piece is: Are we seeing an anthropogenic signal or not?

  94. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 5, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    Volker Doormann says:
    November 5, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    “Why do the imperfect reconstructed global temperature frequency spectra correlate with solar tide functions from real planets and its positions?”

    Except that what you plot is not the sum of the tidal effects of the planets.

    Science is not to argue what NOT is. Science is to argue what IS.

    My plot shows a blue curve what IS the sum of solar tidal geometric functions of six planets and it correlates with well known global temperature functions.

    That is a fact.

    EOD

    V.

  95. It’s 15 years of no warming according to RSS data (1997-2011). If 2012 is cold, it will be 18 years (1995-2012) of insignificang warming for RSS data.

  96. G. Karst says:
    November 5, 2011 at 2:03 pm

    R. Gates says:
    November 5, 2011 at 1:32 pm

    i.e. my house being washed away might be a great point of leverage to paying more in taxes to build up flood defenses.

    So what does a pleasant walk in the park signify?? GK
    ____
    Or libraries, museums, performing arts complexes, and so on for that matter. The further you move up from the basics (i.e. defense, roads, water, police and fire, etc.) to the niceties like parks, libraries, museums, the more you need to appeal to the rational side and the harder the “sell” to the taxpayer. And what you’ll find is the average socio-economic class of any given community will dictate what form of “sell” works best. Emotional appeal works best at the lower end, rational appeal works best at the higher. Thus, it is, for example, harder to get a working class community to vote for a museum, then an upper class. No judgements here as to which is better, but simple observation.

  97. R. Gates says: “…This is muddled thinking at it’s worst….”

    That is muddled punctuation at its worst.

  98. “Many of you are aware that the concept of continental drift, proposed by Alfred Wegener, was widely ridiculed by his contemporaries. This reaction was in spite of the very clear visual evidence that the continents could be fit together like a giant puzzle.”

    The problem is that he wasn’t the only one who worked in that field. In fact, most experts in the field who did work in it were for an expansional Earth. They were initially in favour of pangea where most of the theory’s development came from but there were too many issues with it. So they had to leave it behind (and where the expansionist Earth theory took over). When these scientists died, the remaining scientists that had always been opposed to any kind of continental drift decided to ignore the problems of the past as if they did not exist. So today’s continental drift threory is actually based on a theory that was left behind for being inadequate (but note that continental drift was never the issue at that point). For example problems, subduction is impossible in most cases where it would be required. Take Antarctica. No subduction possible because it creates a circle where sea surface would move toward a single point. Same thing around Africa. Same problem almost everywhere you look. Also, there needs to be an EXACT balance of new surface and destroyed surface (in fact, every 1 million years, the area of MORE than Africa would need to be created and destroyed and is only increasing, just think about it… Africa is 30million sq km. Every 1 million years, 35 million sq km will have to be created and destroyed. Next 1 million years, it will be 37.6 million sq km). With so many areas of the world that cannot upport subdiction, the theory becomes untenable. This was known well before we knew the age of the seafloor because it’s the oldest and most debunked theory around in this field even without knowing the seafloor age.

    Also, much like AGW, it wasn’t that the pieces fit together that was the problem or the notion of continental drift. The problem was if it explained the other issues. Sound familiar? It should.

    People really need to read up on the history of these theories. There were always three groups. The first group was for continental drift. The second was in support of this and pangea. The third did not support continental drift at all. The second group was the group that did the most work. They quickly found out that Pangea was an untenable proposition. So they came up with the expanding Earth theory. This used to be the accepted theory. When this group of scientist died out, group #3 took over. This is where they ridiculed group #1. Then they got the seafloor age. Since they used to ridicule group #1, they couldn’t very well agree with them. Also, they were adamantly opposed to group #2 for years. So they revived the Pangea theory for no other reason than they were opposed to everything else. And they could do this because the other two groups were long gone. With subduction, they claimed to have an explanation for the movement of the seafloor. Expanding Earth did not have a theory on how new matter is created or the expansion process. What we have today is essentially a situation where one would pretend gravity does not exist because there is no acceptable explanation for it.

    Sound like AGW to you? It should. AGW Scientists are sure of themselves because they can’t explain it without blaming man. So I wouldn’t use plate tectonics as any kind of analogy. You’re actually supporting the opposite point of view.

  99. malagaview says:
    November 5, 2011 at 3:08 am

    Why is 20 years statistically significant when 10 years is not?

    More importantly: Is (Tmax + Tmin) / 2 meaningful or statistically valid?

    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2011/11/4/australian-temperatures.html

    __________________________
    Beat me to it.

    After several years hanging around this site, I would say the sun, earth’s orbit/orientation, water (aka, oceans, clouds, water vapor snow….) with the odd volcano and meterorite thrown in and possibly Vukcevic’s Geo magnetic changes have a lot more effect on climate/temperature than a trace gas like CO2.

    But CO2 has one characteristic the rest do not. You can TAX CO2 and makes lots of money off “indulgences” (CO2 credits) It can also be used to “punish” capitalism.

  100. joel says:
    November 5, 2011 at 7:07 am

    From the viewpoint of a physician.

    Statistics is the science of how numbers behave. Not many people really care about or understand statistics…..

    The worst thing that ever happened was the “statistics packages” for computers that allows people to plug numbers into a program without knowing any of the underlying math/statistics dos and don’ts. It is about like handing the keys to you ten year old and telling him to go drive your car just because most cars are now automatics.

  101. Gail Combs says:
    November 5, 2011 at 3:45 pm

    “After several years hanging around this site, I would say the sun, earth’s orbit/orientation, water (aka, oceans, clouds, water vapor snow….) with the odd volcano and meterorite thrown in and possibly Vukcevic’s Geo magnetic changes have a lot more effect on climate/temperature than a trace gas like CO2.”
    ___
    Perhaps, in addition to this site, you should hang around other sites as well, and read up a bit more on the trace gas CO2. Maybe begin here:

    http://scienceofdoom.com/2009/11/28/co2-an-insignificant-trace-gas-part-one/

    And don’t stop until you’ve read all 8 parts.

  102. Dave Springer says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:17 am

    James, James, James…

    Correlation is not causation.

    The classic cautionary tale is to plot shoe size against income. Very high positive correlation – the bigger the shoe the larger the income…..
    _____________________________
    Bad example, at least “Classically” that is historically. I can name two factors that influence both shoes size and income… Make that three.

    The first is age. A baby normally does not have a high income.
    Second, women have smaller feet than men and women even in the same job earn less. A sex change would net me a higher salary than earning a masters degree(ACS salary survey several years ago)
    Last, before 1900 shoe size would depend on getting enough to eat to grow to your full potential and that would depend on your parents income which would influence your education and future earning potential.

    The reason we have a “theory” of how CO2 effects temperature is because a trillion dollars was thrown at the problem with the objective of coming up with an “explanation” Other information was cause for papers not to be published up to and including firing.

    Reminds me of all the debates on how many angels can dance on the head of a pin…

  103. R Gates

    Furthermore, we’d have to know what the global temperatures would be like during the same period if you reduced the CO2 levels to 280 ppm or so. Interestingly, we can do that via the climate models, and we get something that looks a lot like the Dalton Minimum.

    Please review your participation on this thread, as it is nonsensical.

    You begin in response to those that question the model-based claim of AGW. They question that this could be happening here on earth, based on actual measurements of that earth. In response, you offer a paper which claims that it is not possible to detect modeled anthropogenic trends in modeled earths over periods of 17 imaginary years or less. Good to know about model earths, but what about the real one?

    With this last post, your estimation of the models’ power grows infinitely. Even though you agree that the models cannot determine with any certainty what the modeled earths (let alone the actual one) are actually doing right now, even given the actual level of CO2, you nevertheless claim that those same models can permit us to know what the actual earth would be doing over the very same period with an imaginary CO2 level. LOL.

    The danger in video games is that, although the vast majority of children can readily discern fantasy from reality, some unfortunately cannot.

  104. Bernard J:

    ‘The fact remains that the sun’s output, and changes to such, are accounted for in climatological analyses’

    OK I’ll say it again slowly. The sun’s effect on our climate is not yet fully understood. Try googling CERN CLOUD and see what you get. At CERN they certainly don’t know all the effects the sun has on our climate. In fact they are starting to understand just how little they know about solar effects on cloud formation. If they don’t know then it is impossible to model it and therefore cannot be ‘accounted’ for in any model. You say the the sun’s output is accounted for. I say it cannot be. A strawman argument that ain’t!

  105. JJ says:

    “With this last post, your estimation of the models’ power grows infinitely. Even though you agree that the models cannot determine with any certainty what the modeled earths (let alone the actual one) are actually doing right now, even given the actual level of CO2, you nevertheless claim that those same models can permit us to know what the actual earth would be doing over the very same period with an imaginary CO2 level.”
    ______
    The power of models is their ability to indicate dynamical trends and relationships. (i.e. more CO2=less Arctic sea ice, etc.). The concept of what a model earth would be doing “now” or the real earth would be doing “now” is meaningless, as that is not what their intent is. Your misrepresentation of my comments perhaps indicates that you don’t really understand what models are for and aren’t for. In regards to what a Maunder or Dalton Minimum like solar event might do a model earth with both current levels and lower levels (as they were several centuries ago) is plug these into the model and see what trends and dynamics develops. Of course, the models don’t currently include all the effects that a quiet sun has on the climate (as they are either not fully know or not fully quantified). But of course, some skeptics want to insinuate that the models don’t include any solar effects, which is flatly wrong.

  106. Arguing who’s right and who’s wrong about the climate is NEVER going to prove anything,unfortunately.(i do like a good argument sometimes,lol)
    The media love arguments about this stuff.
    INSTEAD
    How about starting a campaign(starting with yourself,obviously) of having every peer reviewed journal that publishes climate predictions/projections DEMAND that EVERY author starts their predictions/projections with the words….
    “I think”

  107. R. Gates says:
    November 5, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    Perhaps, in addition to this site, you should hang around other sites as well, and read up a bit more on the trace gas CO2. Maybe begin here:

    http://scienceofdoom.com/2009/11/28/co2-an-insignificant-trace-gas-part-one/

    And don’t stop until you’ve read all 8 parts.
    ________________________________________
    Water beats the crap out of CO2. There is a lot more of it (water) in the atmosphere and there are more and wider absorption bands. On top of that the first increments of CO2 have a heck of a lot more effect (exponential) That is just the water in the atmosphere.

    On top of the water in the atmosphere you have 70% of the earth covered in H2O, a gigantic heat sink. And then there is changes in albedo caused by changes in clouds and snow cover.

    Then there is the analysis of Jonathan Lowe (A Gust of Hot Air) – http://gustofhotair.blogspot.com/

    Lowe does and analysis of thre hour time intervals over a 24 hour period and SHOWS

    (Tmax + Tmin) / 2 is not statistically valid or useful. In other words Climate scientists have been chasing their tails for thirty years.

    ….three significant elements in his work.

    1. Using a minimum and maximum temperature dataset exaggerates the increase in the global average land surface temperature over the last 60 years by approximately 45%

    2. Almost all the warming over the last 60 years occurred between 6am and 12 noon

    3. Warming is strongly correlated with decreasing cloud cover during the daytime and is therefore caused by increased solar insolation

    4. Reduced anthropogenic aerosols (and clouds seeded by anthropogenic aerosols) are the cause of most the observed warming over the last 60 years….

    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2011/11/4/australian-temperatures.html

    I think that real live OBSERVED data shot the CO2 theory as the prome climate driver full of holes.

  108. I’d like to thank NetDr for providing this link above- http://people.iarc.uaf.edu/~sakasofu/pdf/two_natural_components_recent_climate_change.pdf

    Though no climate scientist, I have thought and argued for several years that the longer term trend from the LIA must be subtracted from the recent trend (since WWII) in order to infer the anthropogenic footprint, if any. That is exactly the thesis of this peer reviewed paper by an arctic and climate scientist, Syun-Ichi Akasofu. The paper, IMO, is a must read. I sure would Like Anthony to feature this paper on WUWT, perhaps ask its author if he can update any of the graphs and also take part in a discussion of it. It would be very educational to have warmist critics, the author, and the rest of us wrestle with the thesis presented.

  109. Now they finally admit that temps are decreasing, or at least ‘pausing’.
    Next they need to admit ditto for sea-level.
    But their worst nightmare would be for CO2 to decline as well.
    Can we ask in advance if that would make the Warmistas disband?

    Already it turns out that the highest CO2 concentrations
    are over the tropical forests, not here!
    That could means that a cooling world
    might lower its CO2 in spite of our combustion prodigies.

    Truly we live in interesting times.

  110. bob paglee November 5, 2011 at 1:27 pm The Sun is at the root of all warming

    I have heard money is. Well, for Evil anyway. But I’ve also heard Global Warming is Evil at RC and Eli’s and Grant’s web sites and other places. Therefore, if money is the root of all Evil then it follows the root of Global Warming must also be money.

  111. You are way off in the satellite era. I will describe it based on my book “What Warming?” The eighties and the nineties were a period where nothing much happened but alternating El Nino and La Nina phases of ENSO. The mean temperature stayed the same and there was no warming. But you connect an imaginary warming of that period with the 21st century across the 1998 super El Nino. This simply should not be done. The super El Nino did not belong to the ENSO system but brought its own large supply of warm water across the ocean. This raised the global temperature of the beginning of the 21st century by a third of a degree. It is this warming and not any greenhouse effect that was responsible for the very warm first decade of our century. There was no additional warming after that and according to the BEST temperature data there has not been any warming at all since our century began. This means that this one short spurt of warming was in effect a step warming, initiated by the 1998 super El Nino. Since there was no warming before or after it this gives us two horizontal, linear curve segments that flank it but do not meet. As to the early part of the century, my graph from the Met Office shows cooling from 1880 to 1910 followed by warming from 1910 to the beginning of World War II. From the end of the war till the 1998 super El Nino shows up there is essentially no warming while carbon dioxide keeps relentlessly increasing. Bjørn Lomborg assigned this early twentieth century warming to solar influence and I think he is right. But the fifty year stretch of no warming after the end of the war cannot be explained by the greenhouse effect. Lame attempts have been made to claim that warming was covered up by aerosols but the southern hemisphere cooled more than the northern hemisphere did even though the aerosols originated in the northern hemisphere. We thus have two stretches of twentieth century warming with a fifty year no-warming stretch in between. Since carbon dioxide was steadily increasing no way can this temperature history be explained by carbon dioxide greenhouse effect.

  112. Volker Doormann says:
    November 5, 2011 at 3:16 pm
    My plot shows a blue curve what IS the sum of solar tidal geometric functions of six planets
    So produce seven plots, one for each of the six planet and one for the sum.

  113. R Gates,

    The power of models is their ability to indicate dynamical trends and relationships. (i.e. more CO2=less Arctic sea ice, etc.).

    Correction: (among) the power of models is alleged to be their ability to indicate dynamical trends and relationships. This remains an unsupported allegation wrt climate models, and a question that you persist on begging. You appeal to models to makes claims that are not apparent in the observational record, and attempt to cover it by more appeals to models.

    The concept of what a model earth would be doing “now” or the real earth would be doing “now” is meaningless, as that is not what their intent is.

    LOL. Yes, dear. The models are not intended model, and they certainly are not supposed to reflect anything now. They cannot be expected to tell us anything about now, their only power is to tell us with requisite certainty what now is going to be like at a politically convenient time in the future. Just far enough out that the prediction cannot be tested before policy must be made, but not so far out that the sense of imperative fizzles. I gather that the current optimum for that time frame is considered to be about 17 years.

    Your misrepresentation of my comments perhaps indicates that you don’t really understand what models are for and aren’t for.

    Sweetheart, I write models for a living. I know what they are for, and I know how they are often misused. I have seen it attempted by others abusing my own work, let alone the crap that is pulled with ‘climate models’ in these politicized times. Save your condescension.

    In regards to what a Maunder or Dalton Minimum like solar event might do a model earth with both current levels and lower levels (as they were several centuries ago) is plug these into the model and see what trends and dynamics develops.

    You forgot to finish that sentence with “… in the model.” It is important to remind the reader, as well as yourself, of the only realm wherein those results are relevant.

    You float between pretending the models are not supposed to be indicative of conditions, and pretending that they are absolutely reflective – e.g. when you say that such models allow us to know what the actual earth would be doing now under 280 ppm CO2. LOL.

    Know. LOL.

    Of course, the models don’t currently include all the effects that a quiet sun has on the climate (as they are either not fully know or not fully quantified).

    Yes, your models do not currently include all of the ad hoc excuses for flat to down trending temperature and energy balance that you now wish to appeal to. And you better plan ahead and gin up a few more bandaids for the future. People are only going to buy the situational reparamerization of aerosols for so long before they can’t hold in the laughter, and you can’t fill the holes with too much of the ‘quiet sun’ before the whole house of cards comes down on your head.

    Funny how those deficits were not coinsidered of import before … in fact the whole notion that those unmodeled effects of a quiet sun were of an interesting magnitude was brashly denigrated by people like you, using the same condescension that you employ now.

    Even funnier how you yet use the word know to describe what these painfully inadequately parameterized models spit out. Chutzpah, Bubby called it.

  114. All the global surface temperature data sets have short-term cooling periods. Here’s an example from the last 40 years with BEST data.

    Example

    6 cooling periods from 1972, but an overall warming trend for the whole period of 0.26C/decade.

    Just a graphical way to demonstrate that time periods that are too short will not tell you anything about the long-term trend.

    Borrowing a reasonable parameter from the title of this thread (not less than 20-year time periods), let’s test Judith Curry’s assertion that there has been a pause/slowdown in global warming from 1998. I will plot trends from 1979 to 1998 inclusive, and from 1979 to the end of the data set (except for BEST, where the last 2 months are only Antarctic temps). I’ve chosen 1979 as the start date so that satellite data can be compared directly.

    BEST

    Using statistically significant time periods, it is clear from BEST data that warming has not ‘paused’ or ‘stopped’ or ‘slowed down’. Here is a ‘scientific basis’ for suggesting there has been no change in the trend, or rate of climate change. remember, if you use less than 16/17 years, the results will not be statistically significant and you will not be able to say anything conclusive about a change in trend

    As it happens, if you DO compare the post-1998 trend to the pre-1998 trend from BEST data, they are virtually identical. Of course, the post-98 data is not statistically significant, and this result is not robust. However, it does put the lie to Judith Curry’s assertion that there is ‘no scientific’ basis to say that warming hasn’t stopped/slowed/paused whatever. The null hypothesis is the trend prior to 1998. To break the null hypothesis, a deviation from the trend has to be statistically significant. We don’t have enough post-98 data to achieve a statistically significant trend, so we cannot falsify the null hypothesis, to say that the trend in warming has stopped/slowed down or whatever.

    So that was from BEST data, just to test what Judith said.

    Here is the 20yr and 30yr plot for GISS, HadCRU, RSS and UAH – global data this time, not just land only. The trends are virtually identical. Using only statistically significant periods, the trend in warming has not changed much post-1998.

    Statistical significance is derived by mathematics, not by arbitrary choice as someone queried upthread. The only choice is the degree of confidence in a trend before ‘statistical significance’ is achieved. While 90% is used in some disciplines to denote statistical significance, the more common 95% confidence tests tend to apply to climate-related data analysis.

  115. In the following plot, a 10 year and a 14 year cooling trend can be found in the early UAH data.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/from:1987/to:1997/trend/plot/uah/from:1980/to:1995/trend/plot/uah

    The period 1987 to 1990 is a decade of cooling. The period 1980 to 1995 represents a ‘cooling trend’ of 14 years. But neither of these represent the true signal in the data. they are more indicative of the noise in the data – otherwise known as ‘weather’.

    Neither are statistically significant, but ‘skeptics’ would have been arguing back then that these represented some meaningful ‘slowdown’ in global temps. We have the advantage of hindsight here. Can we learn from it?

    Just to compare, here is the last 10 (complete) years ‘trend’ and the ‘trend’ since 1998 for UAH;

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/from:1987/to:1997/trend/plot/uah/from:1980/to:1995/trend/plot/uah/plot/uah/from:2001/to:2011/trend/plot/uah/from:1998/to:2011/trend

    Neither are statistically significant, but they are both positive. So if one insists on using these periods to talk about climate trends, then compare with the cooling periods early in the record for similar periods and think again how meaningful the last 10 – 14 years is WRT the underlying signal.

  116. Doug Allen says:
    November 5, 2011 at 5:43 pm

    I’d like to thank NetDr for providing this link above- http://people.iarc.uaf.edu/~sakasofu/pdf/two_natural_components_recent_climate_change.pdf

    I particularly like the falsifiable prediction provided on page 7, which compares to IPPC prediction:

    Figure 2b: The figure shows that the linear trend between 1880 and 2000 is a continuation of
    recovery from the LIA. It shows also the predicted temperature rise by the IPCC after 2000.
    Another possibility is also shown, in which the recovery from the LIA would continue to 2100,
    together with the superposed multi-decadal oscillation. This possible progress beyond the peak
    of an oscillation could explain the halting of the warming after 2000. The observed temperature
    in 2008 is shown by a red dot with a green arrow.

    I hope someone can post this graph jpg. GK

  117. “barry says:
    November 5, 2011 at 9:21 pm”

    Barry, see the following on what Pat Michaels says:

    http://www.thegwpf.org/the-climate-record/4239-pat-michaels-a-few-observations-on-the-latest-best-kerfluffle-and-recent-trends.html

    Two relevant quotes:
    “Observation #3: The last ten years of the BEST data indeed show no statistically significant warming trend, no matter how you slice and dice them.
    Observation #5: Both records are in reasonable agreement about the length of time without a significant warming trend. In the CRU record it is 15.0 years. In the University of Alabama MSU it is 13.9, and in the Remote Sensing Systems version of the MSU it is 15.6 years.”

    I appreciate where you are coming from. Both you and Richard Muller have one view as to what a significant time period is whereas Pat Michaels and Judith Curry have a different view. So the real debate is not what actually happened over the last dozen or so years, but how significant the time period is.

  118. I was there an undergraduate geology student in the the early 1960 when the continental drift thing all came down. The major question most of us young students and many of our professors had was simply, how do you move a continent? As soon as that was answered, it did not take long for myself and most others to accept the idea. That is called a paradigm shift. Climate stuff is, shall we say a bit more complex and the analogy brakes down quickly. The magnetic reversals of the oceanic crust moving out from the rift zones was clear and explanatory. (I saw the map and even before I read the article knew what the conclusion would be. I took it and ran to the geology department coffee room.) Not in detail but in the general. What I don’t see, and that may well be due to my near fossil status, is what might be found as a paradigm shift, something that lays open the driving forces behind ups and downs of climate. Many have their pet ideas. None seem all wrong but none seem quite right either.

    Other points. Most models in geology and the bulk of the earth sciences are only predictive of the long haul. Geologic time is well geologic, that is you can put away your watch and probably your annual calendar too. In situation after situation we see geologic processes are complex and intertwined. The devil is always in the details. If my memory serves climatology is a branch of physical geography as in meteorology. Physical geography is like geology an, earth science. We are sciences and not pseudosciences; our hypotheses are testable, we realize our models explain but do not produce data. We know any model we would use in a predictive mode must be calibrated by empirical measures. We do not or know we should not confuse correlation with causation.

  119. Anthnoy

    The sunspot figure is covered with the “WUWT on Facebook” image.

    Is it possible to move it down the page?

    Thanks

    [Reply: To make sure Anthony sees your request, please post it in Tips & Notes. Thanks, ~dbs, mod.]

  120. When looking at those cycles of ocean temperatures, this paper ought to be looked at:

    http://www.pnas.org/content/97/8/3814.full

    I basically proceeds from lunar orbit, nodal crossing, and perigee timing/location to find an 1800 year periodicity to earth ocean tides. One with peaks that fairly neatly match recorded cold periods. Bond Events. Elk Lake dust layers. Akkadian drought. Etc.

    They also find shorter (and one longer) tidal cycles as well. One is a 179 year cycle that is remarkably close to the “Solar Barycenter” period; so perhaps it’s not the solar tides and solar heat output that maters so much as the effect on Earthly tides? (My speculation).

    A time-series plot of Wood’s values of γ (Fig. 1) reveals a complex cyclic pattern. On the decadal time-scale the most important periodicity is the Saros cycle, seen as sequences of events, spaced 18.03 years apart. Prominent sequences are made obvious in the plot by connected line-segments that form a series of overlapping arcs. The maxima, labeled A, B, C, D, of the most prominent sequences, all at full moon, are spaced about 180 years apart. The maxima, labeled a, b, c, of the next most prominent sequences, all at new moon, are also spaced about 180 years apart. The two sets of maxima together produce strong tidal forcing at approximately 90-year intervals.

    Gee… a 90 year pattern, and an 18 year pattern, so some beat frequencies will be produced. Perhaps they blend in such a way that recently we’ve seen a quasi-60 year PDO? A surmise and place to ‘dig hear’ more than a conclusion… but still. We have cycles of ocean temperatures that are at least a sub-multiple of a known tidal cycle. I think that’s important.

    As the tides slope the oceans around, we get more or less cold water up the West coast of South America, and a colder or warmer Pacific results. IMHO, it really can be that simple.

    Simple (well, to the extent orbital mechanics and tides are simple ;-) mechanics. No magic gas. No teleconnected solar thermal process. No “random oscillation of the ocean”. Just simple phsyical processes.

    That recently we’ve been on a ‘warming trend’ of tides explains the recent past rather nicely.

    This graph:

    Though a bit hard to read, shows a ‘peak’ of cold (per this tidal thesis) in about 1974, then we fall off that peak, on average, toward today (warming in the process). There are what look to me sort of like some ‘cooler’ times ‘about now’ as the mass of the lines are a bit higher than just before (lower is warmer) but the general longer term trend continues toward a ‘warmer’ pattern until about 2090. (One can only hope that the general ‘sleep sun’ outweighs this or we’re going to be dealing with CO2 religion for a long time… if the tide thesis is correct.)

    At any rate, an actual mapping of this ‘data’ onto the PDO / AMO state would be far more instructive than my ‘eyeball compare’ and likely more fruitful too.

    So, to the point of this posting:

    If you have known 18, 90, 180, and even 1800 year cycles of tides, and the ocean temperatures do change with the water motion, what makes either a 20 year or a 10 year period significant? You need an 1800+ year perspective, at least… and a close comparison to known drivers like the tides…

  121. Werner,

    I read the Pat Michaels page. I’ll comment on it if you do me the courtesy of commenting on the points I was making in my post first. That would be politer than completely ignoring it and expecting me to follow your lead. Thanks.

  122. James Padgett

    One word for your article => Brilliant!

    James, could you please, please include the following graph at the end of your article?

    http://bit.ly/nz6PFx

    James, is it just a coincidence the AMO index correlates with the following global mean temperature pattern?

    http://bit.ly/uXy8jw

    The emperor has no clothes regarding AGW!

  123. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 5, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    Volker Doormann says:
    November 5, 2011 at 3:16 pm
    “My plot shows a blue curve what IS the sum of solar tidal geometric functions of six planets”

    So produce seven plots, one for each of the six planet and one for the sum.

    It is senseless to give knowledge to a black hole.

    My discovery of the main climate frequency of 2/1.827 ky^-1 of a couple of celestial bodies and its synodic tide pattern is able to make a terrestrial climate forecast for 1000 years. Adding other faster couples and it’s tide functions to this pattern the resolution of the climate frequencies can be higher until some month.

    Simple two couples do show that the time scale in the plot of Prof. Patzelt is not correct. And moreover the comparison does show that because of the knowledge of the movement of the bodies the coming climate in the next 1000 years is simple summing of solar tide functions.

    This method is unique. No one ever has shown such a simulation of the terrestrial climate inclusive a forecast for 1000 years.

    It is senseless to give knowledge to a black hole. Knowledge is only for those who respect knowledge.

    V.

  124. Werner,

    I appreciate where you are coming from. Both you and Richard Muller have one view as to what a significant time period is whereas Pat Michaels and Judith Curry have a different view.

    Statistical significance is tested by mathematics, not opinion. Michaels and Curry offer no mathematical analysis to support their views, and those views are meaningless until they do so. Michaels’ views in that article are rather silly, too.

  125. @Philip Bradley says:
    November 5, 2011 at 4:49 am
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Philip
    Perhaps the better interpretation is that it shows a lack of understanding of the extent and variability of the noise? At 15 years they cannot wean out the signal from the noise. At 16 years they think that they can wean out the signal from the noise (and hence the plea of now being statistically significant) but by the time 17 years of data comes in the signal remains lost in the noise. The 16 year declaration is based upon a lack of understanding and appreciation of the extent and variability of the noise which in practice swamps the signal being looked for.

    This is why we do not know whether it is necessary to assess cliamte changes over 10 or 15 or 20 or 30 or 60 or 100 or 5000 or 1000 or 2000 or 5000 years etc.

  126. I think that the issue most people fail to discuss is simple:

    THIS ISN’T ABOUT SCIENCE.

    This is now about two polarised camps, the losing one of which will have their credibility destroyed.

    That cannot be allowed to happoen, so the losing camp will try and maneuvre to the other position without acknowledging what they are doing.

    Because if they didn’t, hundreds of Professors would hold up their hands and say: ‘we’ve been bullshitting for 10 years, knowing full well the truth’.

    The politicians would all look fools, which they cannot abide being seen as.

    So we are where we are. The warmists trying to add solar and oceanic influences onto their models, whilst continuing to ostracise those who always advocated that position.

  127. James Padgett:

    John von Neumann, believed that by the 1960’s our knowledge of atmospheric fluid dynamics would be so great, and our computer simulations so precise, that we’d be able to control the weather by making small changes to the system.

    Could you provide a citation for this? The only things I can find are to do with his development of numerical weather forecasting and his proposal for reducing the albedo of snow areas in the event of an ice-age.

  128. Bob,

    It has no impact on Global Temperatures. The PDO is actually inversely related to the Sea Surface Temperatures of that part of the North Pacific.

    You are totally missing the point. The PDO is just one symptom of the ‘reversal’ of the climate system and the mechanism(s) behind has a huge impact on global temperatures, but the PDO is not supposed to correlate with temperature because of the thermal inertia. The correlation is between PDO and the rate of change of temperature. http://virakkraft.com/Hadcrut-deriv-PDO.png

  129. JJ says:
    “R Gates

    Furthermore, we’d have to know what the global temperatures would be like during the same period if you reduced the CO2 levels to 280 ppm or so. Interestingly, we can do that via the climate models, and we get something that looks a lot like the Dalton Minimum.

    Please review your participation on this thread, as it is nonsensical.”

    Come on JJ, if you apply that high a standard there would be very few comments indeed!

  130. Rhys Jaggar said:

    ” So we are where we are. The warmists trying to add solar and oceanic influences onto their models, whilst continuing to ostracise those who always advocated that position.”

    ——
    You have no idea that solar and oceanic dynamics have been part of global climate system models for decades? Furthermore, you have no idea that models are always evolving to include more and more dynamical processes once those processes can be fully quantified? Suggest you read:

    http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/Trenberth/trenberth.papers/T_Nature1997.pdf

    But in general, there isn’t any conceivable way that models will add some new found process that will suddenly show that increases in anthropogenic greenhouse gases will not result in a warmer future in the long run , and furthermore, the current plateau in global temperatures is a general feature shown in many global climate models as likely occurring at various points during the course of the next century as we have a general trend upward in the long run. It would in fact be a negative against the accuracy and validity of those models if such periods did not occur!

  131. DRSG says:
    November 5, 2011 at 7:01 am

    I think it’s clear that the world has warmed. We are not longer in a Glaciation period, after all. Of course, the question isn’t “has the world warmed?” The question is “how much did the world cool after the height of the MWP and have we come back up to that high point?”

    The way I see it is that we don’t really know how warm the entire planet was during the WMP. We don’t know what caused the planet to drop from that height to the depths of the LIA, and we don’t know why the temperature returned to a warmer period afterwards. That’s a lot of unknown.

    We do know that the seas have been rising (which requires heating and the addition of meltwater) for over 12,000 years. We do know that for the vast majority of that time, the rise in sea levels were higher than the “out of control warming” period of 1977 – 1998.

    We do know that the temperatures we were able to measure in the mid-1930s were approximately the same as the temperatures of the mid 1990s, and we did not produce enough CO2 during the early 20th century to significantly alter the balance of warming (rebound from the LIA).

    We also know that the slope of “Global Warming” during the 1910 – 1940 period was virtually identical to the slope of warming from 1977 – 1998, without the amount of CO2 emissions produced by humans to cause it. We also know that we are producing CO2 emissions faster now than we ever have in the history of ever, and yet the slope of warming has gone to virtually zero (actually slightly negative) for almost a statistically significant amount of time.

    Should the world begin warming again at 0.17C per decade tomorrow, in 10 years we will still not match the temperature of 1998, 2006, or even 1934. At that point, we’ll have a “statistically significant” result that will show that warming from CO2 does not match the kind of rise in temperature that the warmists have been projecting.

  132. LazyTeenager says:
    November 5, 2011 at 12:55 am

    “So why dont we see a little ice age every 11 years? And the answer has to be backed by evidence, not hand waving or speculation.”

    Probably for the same reason you can’t boil a pot of water in 11 seconds but with the same flame you can boil it in 11 minutes.

    You evidently don’t have enough experience in everyday life to give you any common sense guidance. Either that or you’re intentionally obtuse.

  133. R. Gates says:
    November 6, 2011 at 6:53 am

    “You have no idea that solar and oceanic dynamics have been part of global climate system models for decades?”

    eally? They factored in the effect of solar magnetic field strength? Got a link to that, ya putz?

  134. Volker Doormann says:
    November 6, 2011 at 12:41 am

    “It is senseless to give knowledge to a black hole.”

    Actually that’s the meat of a famous (if you’re a theoretical physics afficionado, that is) between wager between perhaps the two most recognized living theoretical physicists in the world today, Leonard Susskind and Stephen Hawking. Hawking said information is lost forever to the universe when it enters a black hole. Susskind says information can’t be destroyed and you can’t even cheat by hiding it forever in a black hole. After ten years of theoretical bickering and input from every two bit theoretical physicist on the planet Hawking conceded.

    So, you see, it isn’t senseless to throw information into a black hole! Write the down! :-)

  135. Electric Blanket says:
    November 6, 2011 at 3:14 am
    James Padgett:

    John von Neumann, believed that by the 1960’s our knowledge of atmospheric fluid dynamics would be so great, and our computer simulations so precise, that we’d be able to control the weather by making small changes to the system.
    ——————-
    Could you provide a citation for this? The only things I can find are to do with his development of numerical weather forecasting and his proposal for reducing the albedo of snow areas in the event of an ice-age.
    ———————–
    It’s probably true. I didn’t find an matching quote but the following is conceptually close:

    http://www.colby.edu/sts/climateengineers.pdf

    John von Neumann, the multi-talented mathematician
    extraordinaire at the Institute for Advanced
    Study in Princeton, New Jersey, endorsed Zworykin’s
    view, writing to him, “I agree with you completely. . . .
    This would provide a basis for scientific approach[es]
    to influencing the weather.” Using computer-generated
    predictions, von Neumann wrote, weather and climate
    systems “could be controlled, or at least directed,
    by the release of perfectly practical amounts of energy”
    or by “altering the absorption and reflection properties
    of the ground or the sea or the atmosphere.” It was a
    project that neatly fit von Neumann’s overall philosophy:
    “All stable processes we shall predict. All unstable
    processes we shall control.”

  136. Dave Springer says

    Probably for the same reason you can’t boil a pot of water in 11 seconds but with the same flame you can boil it in 11 minutes.

    You evidently don’t have enough experience in everyday life to give you any common sense guidance. Either that or you’re intentionally obtuse.
    ——–
    The ocean thermal inertia explanation did occur to me. However I don’t believe in common sense, especially when no one has any direct experience of the such things as ocean thermal inertia.

    I did add the -produce evidence condition- to preempt such explanations that begin with “probably”.

    What I want is actual figures in how much ocean inertia affects/suppresses the influence of the Sun’s magnetic field influence on the earth’s temperature. This is the key to establishing how important this effect is.

    Also remember that many here have suggested the diminution in the sunspot cycle in just the last cycle, is the one true explanation of why some temperature records show a plateau in the last 10 years, thus contradicting your claim of “common sense”.

  137. Dave Springer says:
    November 6, 2011 at 10:48 am

    Volker Doormann says:
    November 6, 2011 at 12:41 am

    “It is senseless to give knowledge to a black hole.”

    Actually that’s the meat of a famous (if you’re a theoretical physics afficionado, that is) between wager between perhaps the two most recognized living theoretical physicists in the world today, Leonard Susskind and Stephen Hawking. Hawking said information is lost forever to the universe when it enters a black hole. Susskind says information can’t be destroyed and you can’t even cheat by hiding it forever in a black hole. After ten years of theoretical bickering and input from every two bit theoretical physicist on the planet Hawking conceded.

    So, you see, it isn’t senseless to throw information into a black hole! Write the down! :-)

    The Royal Academy of Science were convinced by Sir Robert Ball that communication with the planet Mars was a physical impossibility, because it would require a flag as large as Ireland, which it would be impossible to wave. That was in 1893.

    This blog is read some million times probably because climate science authority Michael E. Mann says: “The scientific consensus regarding human-caused climate change is based on decades of work by thousands of scientists around the world.” and in comments this fallacy is recognized by readers as fallacy giving the reason.

    Argumentum ad numerum fallacy: “All I’m saying is that thousands of people believe in pyramid power, so there must be something to it.”

    Neither a great number of years of work nor a great number of scientists are valid arguments for truth.

    On the level of science the object is what IS. But not all sayings are on the level of science. A lot of sayings in this world are suggestions to fool other people to win. But as it is well known in physics a win is only possible if another lost it. That what IS in not to be destroyed or multiplied.

    To come to the point, the discovery I did with the solar tide function of celestial couples is free for everybody to discover, because recognition is owned by nobody. In any case each recognition must be done by the self. And nobody can destroy information.

    What we call destruction is a process of transferring energy into another structure. This happened all the time because of the motivation to win.

    Leif says about my plot: “ the blue curve is not the sum of the tides” . He is the authority. He wins.

    But it does no change the information, which is to discover in each present.

    What is to be changed with motivation is the balance of power.

    But that is irrelevant to science.

    V.

  138. lgl says: “You are totally missing the point…”

    I’m not missing the point. The PDO has nothing, nada, zip to do with surface temperature. It is a statistically prepared index that has been standardized, and greatly exaggerated through standardization.

  139. “barry says:
    November 5, 2011 at 11:57 pm

    Werner,

    I read the Pat Michaels page. I’ll comment on it if you do me the courtesy of commenting on the points I was making in my post first. That would be politer than completely ignoring it and expecting me to follow your lead. Thanks.”

    Fair enough. You plotted several graphs. For example the HADCRUT3 graph for 1979 to 1999 had a certain positive slope. The HADCRUT3 graph for 1979 to 2011 had virtually the same positive slope. Your conclusion was that “Using only statistically significant periods, the trend in warming has not changed much post-1998.” However had you plotted just 1999 to 2011 for HADCRUT3, you would have gotten a negative or 0 slope. The significance of this negative or 0 slope of course is a different question.

    In the interview with Phil Jones: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8511670.stm
    “B – Do you agree that from 1995 to the present there has been no statistically-significant global warming

    Yes, but only just. I also calculated the trend for the period 1995 to 2009. This trend (0.12C per decade) is positive, but not significant at the 95% significance level. The positive trend is quite close to the significance level. Achieving statistical significance in scientific terms is much more likely for longer periods, and much less likely for shorter periods.

    C – Do you agree that from January 2002 to the present there has been statistically significant global cooling?

    No. This period is even shorter than 1995-2009. The trend this time is negative (-0.12C per decade), but this trend is not statistically significant.”

    Here, Phil Jones talks about two different trends while stating that both are not statistically significant. In my opinion, Judith Curry is exactly correct when she says there has not been much change since the late 90s. In your opinion, was she dead wrong to make this assertion? And if so, would it have been OK for her to say it if she had then added what Phil Jones said earlier, namely “but this trend is not statistically significant”. That assumes of course that this is indeed the case. I am not in a position to judge that, but see the quote below.

    At the following, this quote is taken:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2055191/Scientists-said-climate-change-sceptics-proved-wrong-accused-hiding-truth-colleague.html

    “Prof Ross McKittrick, a climate statistics expert from Guelph University in Ontario, added: ‘You don’t look for statistically significant evidence of a standstill.

    ‘You look for statistically significant evidence of change.”

    Is he correct?

  140. LazyTeenager says:
    November 6, 2011 at 3:31 pm

    What I want is actual figures in how much ocean inertia affects/suppresses the influence of the Sun’s magnetic field influence on the earth’s temperature. This is the key to establishing how important this effect is.

    You won’t get actual figures because they’re not available. It would take a detailed study that would require a great deal of funding, but the vast majority of funds have been sent on one wild goose chase instead.

    Also remember that many here have suggested the diminution in the sunspot cycle in just the last cycle, is the one true explanation of why some temperature records show a plateau in the last 10 years, thus contradicting your claim of “common sense”.

    One common-sense argument for a sun-led temperature plateau in the last 10 years is that if you turn the flame under a pan of water down to minimum, the water stops heating up almost instantaneously. Just as you may earlier have turned down the flame a small amount below maximum but the water continued to heat up. Whether it’s actually a major part of the reason for the temperature plateau we don’t know, but the basic, common-sense physical analogy isn’t contradicted by events. Or, to put it another way, recent temperature trends are consistent with saucepan theory…

  141. La Nina conditions are picking up with the warm pool above New Guinea building and the cold tongue developing off Sth America gaining strength. There is a deep low pressure off the coast of Japan with that area also having a large warm pool as is typical in cool PDO periods. The prevailing winds from the low pressure are pushing the warmer water to the south which is solid evidence for ONE case of the PDO driving the ENSO state.

    The Australian BOM ENSO update should show a strengthening of the trade winds across the equator on Wednesday.

    The severe NH winter outlook remains.

  142. Keith says

    One common-sense argument for a sun-led temperature plateau in the last 10 years is that if you turn the flame under a pan of water down to minimum, the water stops heating up almost instantaneously. Just as you may earlier have turned down the flame a small amount below maximum but the water continued to heat up. Whether it’s actually a major part of the reason for the temperature plateau we don’t know, but the basic, common-sense physical analogy isn’t contradicted by events. Or, to put it another way, recent temperature trends are consistent with saucepan theory…
    ———–
    Rather than rely in common sense I think you need to do the experiment for yourself.

    Suspend a thermometer in a saucepan of water and adjust the heat so the temperature is something like 70C. Let it sit for a while to equilibrate. Let’s say for the sake if the argument it is at setting 3. Drop the setting to setting 2.

    During the process record and graph the temperature.

    If I interpret your comments accurately you believe the temperature should plateau. I predict that initially the temperature will drop off rapidly at first and then level off to a new constant temperature.

    You also say in the first part of your comment that if the temperature is rising initially then after turning off the heat it will continue to rise. Perhaps, but I believe this is due to the thermal inertia of an electric hot plate. I predict this effect will not occur if you use a gas fire or use an electric heater and raise the heat setting incrementally.

    These latter expectations are also verifiable or not by experiment.

    You could even write an article for Anthony’s blog describing the experiment and explain how wonderful common sense is.

  143. Geoff Sharp says:
    November 6, 2011 at 3:22 am

    Volker Doormann says:
    November 6, 2011 at 12:41 am

    “This method is unique. No one ever has shown such a simulation of the terrestrial climate inclusive a forecast for 1000 years.”

    Not unique, there are plenty of us prepared to speculate.

    http://tinyurl.com/2dg9u22/?q=node/61

    What we talk about is quality; the quality to verify and forecast terrestrial climate with methods of science.

    It is different in quality, whether I say it will become cooler (or warmer) in the next 1000 years, -or what else ever – because there are century cycles of temperature in history which are correlated to the angular momentum of the Sun, or I say that the reconstructed terrestrial temperature frequencies of the past 2 or 5 millennia are strong related to tidal functions of real solar system couples, and the given global temperature spectrum can be verified in high fidelity up to the tidal frequency of the synodic frequency of the couple of Mercury and Venus of 1/39.7 days^-1 or 1/0.217 y^-1. And because of detected 11 bodies until now, which all are in general able to build precise tide functions in time, it is possible by this method to verify and forecast global temperature frequencies in high resolution of time.

    The plot in your link – ‘Earth’s Future Climate’ – shows five data points for the next 1000 years created with your method of analysing the angular momentum of the Sun.

    My method of summing up the tide functions of the planets is able to simulate the terrestrial climate from 5000 B.C.E. until 3000 C.E. with a time resolution of about better than 40 days.

    This can be shown for a China sample:

    but also for the Hadcrut 3 data in high resolution:.

    As already said, spikes of terrestrial heat spikes cannot be part of this method, but the method can be used to separate such terrestrial heat spikes and thermal impedances of the surface of the Earth from the solar driven climate stream, and moreover it can be used to calibrate temperature proxy data precisely in time.

    I have said, ‘No one ever has shown such a simulation of the terrestrial climate inclusive a forecast for 1000 years’.

    “It’s one thing not to see the forest for the trees, but then to go on to deny the reality of the forest is a more serious matter.”
    (Paul Weiss)

    “Some people trying to put their head in the sand, not perceiving that there isn’t anymore sand actually.”
    (Volker Doormann)

    V.

  144. R Gates,

    But in general, there isn’t any conceivable way that models will add some new found process that will suddenly show that increases in anthropogenic greenhouse gases will not result in a warmer future in the long run , …

    That is a stunning admission.

  145. R Gates,

    …. and furthermore, the current plateau in global temperatures is a general feature shown in many global climate models as likely occurring at various points during the course of the next century as we have a general trend upward in the long run. It would in fact be a negative against the accuracy and validity of those models if such periods did not occur!.

    This out of one side of the mouth, while the other is making excuses:

    Of course, the models don’t currently include all the effects that a quiet sun has on the climate (as they are either not fully know or not fully quantified). & Furthermore, you have no idea that models are always evolving to include more and more dynamical processes once those processes can be fully quantified?

    Pick a lane, Gates. Are the current models accurately predicting the current lack of warming? Such that if this lack of warming were not occurring then the model’s accuracy would be questioned?

    Or is the current lack of warming itself a negative against the accuracy and validity of the models, such that ajustments need to be made (low level volcanos, Chinese SO2, the magnitude of the effect of the Sun which is now ‘quiet’, etc) to account for this lack of warming?

    You can’t cool your cake and bake it, too.

  146. Volker Doormann says:
    November 7, 2011 at 5:57 am

    What we talk about is quality; the quality to verify and forecast terrestrial climate with methods of science.

    Your statement is offensive. My research is based on JPL data of 6000 years with a daily resolution if required.

    The plot in your link – ‘Earth’s Future Climate’ – shows five data points for the next 1000 years created with your method of analysing the angular momentum of the Sun.

    Incorrect, there are six data points that are derived from many thousands of data points at a lower level. I am predicting solar output which is one important part of climate, solar output is governed by the amount of solar downturn experienced through solar grand minima that occur on a regular basis over the Holocene. This is all that is needed for predicting solar output at a higher level. I suggest you read the rest of my website and paper before making assumptions.

    I am not sure what your research is suggesting, is it tidal effects on earths oceanic systems or tidal effects on solar output? If it is the latter you will need to expand your data as Leif suggests along with showing a repeating modulating frequency (around 172 years) that aligns with each grand minimum over the Holocene.

  147. Geoff Sharp says:
    November 7, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    Volker Doormann says:
    November 7, 2011 at 5:57 am

    What we talk about is quality; the quality to verify and forecast terrestrial climate with methods of science.

    I tracked down the source of this “quality” and will let others judge. A document outlining Doormanns principles on tidal effects can be found at http://www.volker-doormann.org/ghi_solar_s.pdf

    You will note that the main reference used to calculate the tidal effects is Quaoar (a small 900 km rock in the Kuiper belt out past Neptune) and Pluto. On other graphs Neptune, Uranus, Saturn and Jupiter are added to Quaoar and Pluto to produce an outcome.

    Basic physics tells us that objects outside of Jupiter have almost immeasurable impact when considering tidal forces.

  148. Geoff Sharp says:
    November 7, 2011 at 8:10 pm
    Basic physics tells us that objects outside of Jupiter have almost immeasurable impact when considering tidal forces.
    But as Volker says in his closing statement:
    “However, as the gaps between most disciplines in science including philosophy and astrology, are still deep, new sights are always only valuable for them who have an open mind”
    In astrology, basic physics has no home.

  149. Geoff Sharp says:
    November 7, 2011 at 3:29 pm
    Volker Doormann says:
    November 7, 2011 at 5:57 am

    “What we talk about is quality; the quality to verify and forecast terrestrial climate with methods of science.”

    I am predicting solar output which is one important part of climate, solar output is governed by the amount of solar downturn experienced through solar grand minima that occur on a regular basis over the Holocene. This is all that is needed for predicting solar output at a higher level.

    That what you have predicted in an image ‘Future.png’ are six data points of an angular momentum for the millennium in the future.

    That’s your quality to forecast terrestrial climate.

    I am not sure what your research is suggesting, is it tidal effects on earths oceanic systems or tidal effects on solar output? If it is the latter you will need to expand your data as Leif suggests along with showing a repeating modulating frequency (around 172 years) that aligns with each grand minimum over the Holocene.

    Well, we are talking about the quality to verify and forecast climate with methods of science, and I have given my arguments in graphs. The graph shows the global temperature simulation of 6000 years ! using time increments of 1 year.

    It seems to me that it is senseless to give such graph here.

    From Bond et al. a FFT heat power frequency of ~1/1800 years^-1 is known of about twelve periods back for 12000 years.

    The precise length of the Bond cycle is 1827 years, two times of 913.5 years and equal to the periods of warm times or cold times. Because of the eccentricity of Pluto there are mostly three exact tide events in some two centuries.

    Comparing the data from China (Wang), or from T. Edwards (Columbia Ice Field) it is evident that the solar tide function of the couple Pluto and Quaoar (f = 2/1827 years^-1) fits well in the past with the temperature proxies:

    http:/volker-doormann.org/images/ghi_jux2.gif

    I do not make use the synodic cycle of Uranus/Neptun [ c = 1/( (1/84.0133)-(1/164.79345) = 171.389 years ]. I take the real tide function (~ 85.7 years)..

    Expanding the time scale, the GHI 6++ can be compared with the Data of hadcrut3:

    This plot can be expanded to the year 3000 AD.

    It wound be a pleasure to me if you can show me such quality with your method.

    Omar Chayyam has done a new calendar. An authority of Islam has argued his calender is nonsense, because Omar drinks wine.

    If no one is interested in the method to forecast the global climate in high resolution of month, because it fits not with Sir Newton idea of gravitation, it’s OK. But it isn’t science.

    V.

  150. LazyTeenager says:
    November 7, 2011 at 2:57 am

    Keith says

    One common-sense argument for a sun-led temperature plateau in the last 10 years is that if you turn the flame under a pan of water down to minimum, the water stops heating up almost instantaneously. Just as you may earlier have turned down the flame a small amount below maximum but the water continued to heat up. Whether it’s actually a major part of the reason for the temperature plateau we don’t know, but the basic, common-sense physical analogy isn’t contradicted by events. Or, to put it another way, recent temperature trends are consistent with saucepan theory…
    ———–
    Rather than rely in common sense I think you need to do the experiment for yourself.

    Suspend a thermometer in a saucepan of water and adjust the heat so the temperature is something like 70C. Let it sit for a while to equilibrate. Let’s say for the sake if the argument it is at setting 3. Drop the setting to setting 2.

    During the process record and graph the temperature.

    If I interpret your comments accurately you believe the temperature should plateau. I predict that initially the temperature will drop off rapidly at first and then level off to a new constant temperature.

    You also say in the first part of your comment that if the temperature is rising initially then after turning off the heat it will continue to rise. Perhaps, but I believe this is due to the thermal inertia of an electric hot plate. I predict this effect will not occur if you use a gas fire or use an electric heater and raise the heat setting incrementally.

    These latter expectations are also verifiable or not by experiment.

    You could even write an article for Anthony’s blog describing the experiment and explain how wonderful common sense is.

    It seems you misunderstand a little bit (this is why I tend to avoid analogies…) Allow me to pad it out and add some approximate numbers:

    Take a pan of water from the cold tap, about 15C, and put it on a gas hob (year c.1700). Ignite the hob ring and set the flame to half power, until the water temperature reaches 50C (year c.1910). Now turn the flame to maximum power and heat the water until it reaches 90C (year c.1990). At this point, turn the flame down to three-quarters power, which should still be enough to boil the water, and wait until the temperature reaches 95C (year c.2000). Next, bring the flame down a small amount and watch the temperature reach a steady state for a while (year c.2009). Finally, turn the flame back down to half power or less, not off, and watch the temperature immediately start to drop (this decade and, perhaps, longer).

    Heating began with a moderate heat source. This heating then accelerated under the influence of a maxed-out heat source. As the heat source was slowly turned down, heating continued for a short while, until a further decrease in power saw the temperature level off for a period. Once the power was turned well down, temperature dropped right away.

    It’s not just fluctuations (and their directions) that are important, but the absolute level too.

    I’ll save the analogy of the car accelerator pedal for another time.

  151. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 9, 2011 at 7:43 am
    Geoff, Volker is offering a veiled hint about the moon. Remember confounding.
    Veiled hints have no value. If one has something to say, say it!

  152. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 9, 2011 at 7:43 am

    I see no point in conversing with Volker, his work has no scientific basis and he shows no intention of understanding other peoples work to the point of being rude.

  153. Geoff Sharp says:
    November 9, 2011 at 6:57 pm

    I see no point in conversing with Volker, his work has no scientific basis ..

    http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/mathew/logic.html#hominem

    The basis of conversation in science are arguments; personal viewpoints or/and sayings are no arguments.

    Science is not equal physics. Science is (p.e.) the discovery that an area of a square format has a square function to it sides. There is no physics involved.

    EOD

    V.

    http://www.volker-doormann.org/physics.htm

  154. Scale symmetry isn’t a feature of most physical systems, but it occurs naturally at boundaries such as coastlines and thus sampling geometry patently canNOT be ignored.

  155. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 10, 2011 at 8:49 am
    Scale symmetry isn’t a feature of most physical systems, but it occurs naturally at boundaries such as coastlines and thus sampling geometry patently canNOT be ignored.
    And isn’t.

  156. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 10, 2011 at 3:05 pm
    Earth itself aliases & integrates — and it doesn’t do so uniformly.
    So you assume, provide an example. When scientists try to provide global values of something they also integrate properly. You assume everyone else but you are morons.

  157. Aliasing: The asymmetries of the magnetic field differ from those of climate (for example ocean-continent heat-capacity contrast). The dominant variations are clearly orbital (Earth’s tilt) – no argument there – but there’s a small amount of signal aliased from solar cycles (Hale & Schwabe, the relative importance of which depends on the particular geophysical variable). You guys missed something (OR you have to keep it out of public knowledge for whatever important reason – understandable if so). You could easily finish off the work you’ve started (RC effect etc. – remember your 22 year residuals pattern?) – and extend it by parallel analogy to climate. Geomagnetic aa index anomalies have the exact same twist 1915-45 and they share other features with EOP. It’s all within reach by people with your resources (I don’t have the time & particularly the computing resources needed to finish the spatial calculations) as soon as the aliasing is recognized (unless there’s some important reason why this mustn’t become public – if so, understandable).

    Integration: Physical leveraging (e.g. land-ocean heat-capacity contrast) introduces spatial paradoxes that aren’t being interpreted properly (at least by central-mainstream climate scientists — maybe some on the periphery understand much better, but perhaps their voices have less reach).

  158. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 10, 2011 at 5:44 pm
    The asymmetries of the magnetic field differ from those of climate
    Since they have nothing to do with each other whatever differences you think there might be are not relevant.

    The dominant variations are clearly orbital (Earth’s tilt) – no argument there – but there’s a small amount of signal aliased from solar cycles (Hale & Schwabe, the relative importance of which depends on the particular geophysical variable)
    There is an expected 0.1K solar cycle effect, that is all, and that is not an aliasing, unless you simply mean that the signals are in phase.

    You guys missed something (OR you have to keep it out of public knowledge for whatever important reason – understandable if so).
    Nonsense, don’t believe in such conspiracy theories.

    You could easily finish off the work you’ve started (RC effect etc. – remember your 22 year residuals pattern?)
    The RC effect and its consequences are well-understood. No surprises there

    and extend it by parallel analogy to climate.
    And have no effect on the climate.

    Geomagnetic aa index anomalies have the exact same twist 1915-45
    Don’t know what you are referring to. The ‘anomalies’ involve a calibration error in 1954 and a change of observer in 1938 and both are well-understood. You ‘twist’ must be some special spatio-temporal jargon that is unknown to me. I know of helicity and writhes, but ‘twist’? other than a dance from my youth.

    and they share other features with EOP.
    wiggle matching with no physical basis.

    It’s all within reach by people with your resources (I don’t have the time & particularly the computing resources needed to finish the spatial calculations)
    There are no spatial calculations.

    as soon as the aliasing is recognized (unless there’s some important reason why this mustn’t become public – if so, understandable).
    Non-existing conspiracy again.

    Integration: Physical leveraging (e.g. land-ocean heat-capacity contrast) introduces spatial paradoxes that aren’t being interpreted properly
    Completely unfounded, scientists are very well aware of this and it is taken into account fully.
    There are no ‘paradoxes’.

  159. You’re again misunderstanding that I’m suggesting a magnetic driver for climate; what I’m actually doing is drawing attention to the source of CONFOUNDING (that leads to some of the speculation we see from others).

    There most definitely are paradoxes. You’re well outside of your area of expertise if you think otherwise. Just a few examples:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modifiable_areal_unit_problem

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spatial_analysis

    The heat-capacity of land LEVERAGES stats, including temperature gradients that drive the pressure gradient force. This isn’t controversial at all. Boundaries in the northern hemisphere have a higher fractal dimension.

    Since you assert there are no secrets, you and your colleagues have definitely missed something very simple & very important (the multivariate quasi-discrete asymmetric aliasing). This key piece of the puzzle is relevant for geomagnetic aa index, climate, & EOP. In light of what the data reveal, your conceptualization of the nature of the 0.1K effect appears unsound (but we do agree that the effect is small).

    Take some time to think more carefully about p.4 here:

    http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/vaughn-sun-earth-moon-harmonies-beats-biases.pdf

  160. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 10, 2011 at 9:15 pm
    You’re again misunderstanding that I’m suggesting a magnetic driver for climate; what I’m actually doing is drawing attention to the source of CONFOUNDING (that leads to some of the speculation we see from others).
    I think you are confounding something here. There is no confounding going on.

    There most definitely are paradoxes. You’re well outside of your area of expertise if you think otherwise. Just a few examples:
    But these are not paradoxes. They are well-understood and not controversial.

    This key piece of the puzzle is relevant for geomagnetic aa index, climate, & EOP.
    Not at all. Since climate and EOP are complicated, try to explain what that piece is for aa.

    In light of what the data reveal, your conceptualization of the nature of the 0.1K effect appears unsound (but we do agree that the effect is small).
    A 0.1% solar-cycle change in solar input of energy to the Earth leads to a 0.025% change of temperature [one quarter], which comes to 0.07K. Rounded up to 0.1K.

    Take some time to think more carefully about p.4 here:

    http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/vaughn-sun-earth-moon-harmonies-beats-biases.pdf

    No such document.

  161. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 10, 2011 at 11:31 pm
    No such document.
    Finally loaded. But all there is is a bunch of curve fits, so no meat and nothing worth thinking about.

  162. You’re not being reasonable. You insist on simplifying the narrative to averages when it is GRADIENTS that drive circulation. And those aren’t curve fits.

  163. Leif Svalgaard (November 10, 2011 at 11:31 pm) ignoring Simpson’s Paradox:
    “A 0.1% solar-cycle change in solar input of energy to the Earth leads to a 0.025% change of temperature [one quarter], which comes to 0.07K. Rounded up to 0.1K.”

    Where? Are you suggesting the terrestrial solar cycle marker is UNIFORM across the surface, across day & night, across winter & summer, across land & ocean, etc.? No spatial differentials? And no circulatory component?!!!

    If so, your assumptions are patently untenable, your conceptualization is RAZED by the data, you’re ignoring what has been right in front of everyone’s eyes, and your grasp of sampling & aggregation fundamentals is SEVERELY lacking.

    Or perhaps you’re simply NOT communicating in good faith.

  164. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 11, 2011 at 7:23 am
    Where? Are you suggesting the terrestrial solar cycle marker is UNIFORM across the surface, across day & night, across winter & summer, across land & ocean, etc.? No spatial differentials? And no circulatory component?!!!
    Yes, the input is indeed uniform, we see the same sun no matter where we are. The rotation of the Earth and the circulation of the atmosphere and oceans distribute that energy all over the globe.

    This key piece of the puzzle is relevant for geomagnetic aa index, climate, & EOP.
    Not at all. Since climate and EOP are complicated, try to explain what that piece is for aa.

  165. Obfuscation. You know very well I was not referring to the input. You remain unwilling to communicate in good faith.

  166. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 11, 2011 at 8:15 am
    You know very well I was not referring to the input.
    It is the input that determines the response of the system. Regions may have different response, but when properly averaged over the globe will match that determined by the input.

    But you just wallop in generality and ignore the specific issue. You said: “This key piece of the puzzle is relevant for geomagnetic aa index, climate, & EOP.”
    I asked you to specifically and clearly and in detail explain what that piece is for aa.

  167. Leif Svalgaard (November 12, 2011 at 11:56 am) wrote:
    “[…] when properly averaged over the globe […]”

    Seeds of awareness. Fractal geometry of diffuse & abrupt boundaries. Leveraging. Simpson’s Paradox. Spatiotemporal aliasing. Modifiable Areal Unit Problem. These are heavy issues.

    As for your request: If & when volunteer time & priorities permit over the months & years ahead.

  168. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 12, 2011 at 7:52 pm
    Seeds of awareness. Fractal geometry of diffuse & abrupt boundaries. Leveraging. Simpson’s Paradox. Spatiotemporal aliasing. Modifiable Areal Unit Problem. These are heavy issues.
    And I’m sure that the thousands of scientists that are dealing with these issues every day recognize that and deal with in a suitable manner. I certainly do in my own work.

    As for your request: If & when volunteer time & priorities permit over the months & years ahead.
    Well, not good enough. You made a specific claim about the aa-index. Without having already done the analysis you are not in the position to make your claim.

  169. Leif Svalgaard (November 12, 2011 at 7:59 pm) wrote:
    “And I’m sure that the thousands of scientists that are dealing with these issues every day recognize that and deal with in a suitable manner. I certainly do in my own work.”

    They do the best they can.

  170. Leif Svalgaard (November 12, 2011 at 7:59 pm)
    “Without having already done the analysis […]”

    So you’re falsely assuming.

    Again: I’ll address your request if & when volunteer time & priorities permit over the months & years ahead.

  171. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 12, 2011 at 8:34 pm
    “Without having already done the analysis […]“
    So you’re falsely assuming.
    Again: I’ll address your request if & when volunteer time & priorities permit over the months & years ahead.

    So, your lack of explanation is showing.

  172. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 12, 2011 at 8:34 pm
    “Without having already done the analysis […]“
    So you’re falsely assuming.

    I’m interested in knowing how you applied: “Seeds of awareness. Fractal geometry of diffuse & abrupt boundaries. Leveraging. Simpson’s Paradox. Spatiotemporal aliasing. Modifiable Areal Unit Problem” to the construction of the aa-index. Which you claim to have already done, so it should not take you long to tell us. On the other hand, if you have not, then I can readily see that it might take years…

  173. @Leif Svalgaard

    On the other thread [ http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/11/10/aurora-borealis-and-surface-temperature-cycles-linked/#comment-795634 ] you complained about not being able to attract enough funding. I can suggest that, as step 1, you focus on your research instead of protracted petty blog disputes. (If you cannot accomplish this independently, I can suggest that the moderators consider offering a helping hand.) You’re harassing a volunteer to help you do what you’re paid (well) to do. My focus must shift to the work that I am paid to do for the next 5 days.

  174. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 13, 2011 at 8:22 am
    You’re harassing a volunteer to help you do what you’re paid (well) to do.
    I’m asking someone who is making silly claims to back them up.

  175. Leif Svalgaard (November 13, 2011 at 10:13 pm)
    misquotes what I wrote.

    Further evidence that Leif Svalgaard does not communicate in good faith — same point Dr. Nicola Scafetta was making where I actually linked:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/11/10/aurora-borealis-and-surface-temperature-cycles-linked/#comment-795634

    As indicated in response to Leif Svalgaard’s off-topic request:
    1. My focus must shift to the work that I am paid to do for the next 5 days.
    2. I’ll address your request if & when volunteer time & priorities permit over the months & years ahead.

    Cease with the harassment.

  176. Paul Vaughan says:
    November 14, 2011 at 5:32 am
    Cease with the harassment.
    Inquiring minds want to know. Your posts as you say touch upon ‘heavy issues’. You do seem to have time for continued stream of comments diluting the content. So perhaps you have time for simply yes/no questions. You state “Seeds of awareness. Fractal geometry of diffuse & abrupt boundaries. Leveraging. Simpson’s Paradox. Spatiotemporal aliasing. Modifiable Areal Unit Problem” should be used in the construction of the aa-index, and that you have already done the research. So it should be easy to answer yes/no to the following:
    1) did you use ‘seeds of awareness’ for this Y/N
    2) did you use ‘fractal geometry’ for this Y/N
    3) did you use ‘leveraging’ for this Y/N
    4) did you succumb to ‘Simpson’s Paradox’ Y/N
    5) did the ‘modifiable Areal Unit problem’ directly play a role for this Y/N

    You see, when you make such claims, you just put yourself up for something like this. You can, of course, avoid further attention, simply by stating that your ‘issues’ do not apply, after all.

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