66 thoughts on “Friday Funny – how to do climate graphs

  1. Alarmist cherrypicking of dates = good. Genuinely sceptical cherrypicking of dates = bad.

    You can establish cooling, warming, or static trends depending on whatever arbitrary dates you cherrypick It is the alarmist believers of the cAGW religion who insist that their own cherry picking is not cherrypicking and that the only accurate and legitimate dates are ones which show warming and any other dates are “cherry picked”.

  2. Video – Funny, Funny, Just so Funny – I laughed till I cried. Yes this was the Friday funny’s at their best.
    Regards to Gator.

  3. It’s worse than that. If SkS says we’re in a “pause” of global warming, nobody says a peep. If 16 scientists say there’s a lack of global warming, the cognoscenti erupt. Even if it’s the same period everybody’s talking about.

  4. I cannot stand that show. It’s not the acting. It’s not even the concept. It’s the absurd stereotyping of smart people that Hollywood gets away with. Apparently to be a genius you are required to be socially inept, at least according to the pretty people of the world. That’s the take-away message from the absurd characters, at least for me.

    If I want funny and smart, I’ll re-watch “Real Genius”, tyvm.

  5. The SkS graphic shows that within a period of overall rising trend you can spend almost the entire time claiming a falling trend by referencing short periods.

    The IPCC graphic shows that within a period of overall rising trend there are multidecadal periods of increases that are higher than the overall trend.

    All “MrSean2k”, Josh and others have done is shown they didn’t understand the point.

  6. I started watching TBBT when people told me I remind them of Sheldon. Don’t get me wrong, I’m flattered. I just don’t see it. Plus, I like string theory. ;-)

  7. Someone should also point out to the likes of SS the difference between “cherry picking” (does not prove a theory) and a “counterexample” (does disprove a theory).

  8. It’s worse than that, they took the 1940-1970 trend and extrapolated that to an Ice Age, then took the 1970 – present trend and repeatedly extrapolated to Warmocalypse.

    Of course, the policy prescriptions were close to identical in broad terms.

  9. “Does anybody know why a multidecadal temporal window is “science” in a planet whose existence has lasted 4.5B and counting?”

    Approximately 30 years is the period at which short term variability tends to cancel out and reveal the true climate response to external factors. The longer the time period the less chaotic and variable the response is e.g. over 100 years increasing solar activity will lead to higher temperatures regardless of how complex the climate system is or how poorly it is understood.

    The shorter the time period the more variability, complexity and chaotic elements have to be understood e.g. why is winter 2011 warmer than 2010, why is winter 2010 colder than 2009. The answer to that relies on a very precise understanding of the very specific phenomenon that drive short term variability. This is not understood which is why even in, say, October, nobody could reliability predict whether winter 2011 would be cold or not.

    The age of the Earth is a complete misdirection. It has no bearing whatsoever on how climate behaves nor do factors in play 1.2 billion years have any relevance beyond understanding how the planet worked 1.2 billion years ago.

  10. Sharper00 – you’re mistaken. The 30 years period has been plucked out of…thin air and everybody in the field knows there are climate phenomena at all timescales, from seconds to geological eras. As you won’t believe me, please believe Gavin Schmidt.

    As for longer periods showing less of a chaotic behavior I guess ice ages never happened.

  11. “The 30 years period has been plucked out of…thin air and everybody in the field knows there are climate phenomena at all timescales”

    Nobody said there were not climate phenomena at all timescales. As above, on longer timescaled short term phenomena tend to cancel out. By their nature long term climate phenomena do not drive short term variability. Your assertion that the 30 year period is simply an assertion without evidence or suppport, I look forward to your body of work showing that can achieve superior analysis and understanding of the Earth’s climate using your method.

    “As for longer periods showing less of a chaotic behavior I guess ice ages never happened.”

    I don’t think you know what chaotic behaviour is. Chaotic systems exhibit a high degree of variability in their behaviour based on small differences in conditions, for example if you’re trying to predict exactly when a hurricane will form it’s very difficult even small factors can make the difference between nothing happening and a hurricane happening.

  12. Every graph I have ever seen based on credible science – unlike certain hockey sticks – shows a cyclic nature similar to a sine curve.

    The slope of this cyclic curve is somewhat increasing BUT is always exaggerated to generate fear and always shows an anomaly or an exaggerated scale on the vertical axis – show a range from say 0 to 20 C on the temperature axis and there is almost no discernable change.

    And doesn’t anybody question the ridiculous 3 decimal place accuracy often quoted in annual figures when the actual measurements are unlikely to be even 1 decimal place accurate ????

    All SkS do is preach alarm and insult anyone who uses their human right to think for themselves and simply disagree with SkS’s “cult” of beliefs – as cults do not allow questioning of the wisdom handed down.

  13. @Rosco

    “Every graph I have ever seen based on credible science – unlike certain hockey sticks – shows a cyclic nature similar to a sine curve.”

    You should be careful of thinking like this, confirmation bias is the most difficult type of error to detect and correct. When looking for a pattern it’s dangerous to discard anything that doesn’t match it.

  14. sharper00 said “The IPCC graphic shows that within a period of overall rising trend there are multidecadal periods of increases that are higher than the overall trend.”

    A more accurate wording would be “The IPCC graphic shows that at a particular time in an overall rising trend you can cherry-pick a rise in the rise and make an unsupported claim of acceleration.”

  15. Hi Maurizio
    ‘Clean’ meant as in: the highest frequency (lowest period) where all three temperature indices (global, Nth hemisphere and the CET) have the same component of a reasonable amplitude, in this case it appears to be a second harmonic of the fundamental frequency with a period of about 70 years.

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/CET-NVa.htm

    Not convinced, why not have a go yourself, still doubtful? Fine, for any statement to be validated as science , it requires testing again and again, not by believers but the true sceptics.

  16. sharper00,

    The reason you’re losing this argument is because you’re trying to defend pseudo-Skeptical pseudo-Science’s zero baseline graphs, which disguise the naturally rising warming trend from the LIA. Their scary-looking charts are simply an artifact of all charts that use an arbitrary baseline. The IPCC uses the same gimmick, for the same reason: to alarm the public.

  17. the 30 year period has been used by so-called “climate scientists” because up to about 2000 it supported their hypothesis. they are now having to use different time periods or JUST concentration on the 1976-2000 period (during which the calculated value of the global land surface went up, but there was NO UHI effect, and no loss of thousands of remote stations ;-)

    Take the temperature range out to a couple of thousand years, to include the RWP and MWP, and we see a very different picture, a general downward trend with a long term cyclic behaviour, but the CAGW cult members try very hard to suppress that, even going so far as to say that the MWP never existed… why… because it doesn’t suit their agenda !!!!!!

    If you did the same thing now as they did in that 3rd graph above, you would see a very different story, being that temperature rise has decelerated rapidly, and will thus almost certainly go negative in the next 5-10 years (if not sooner).

    Well, I’ll be….. that is the nature of cyclic behaviour, !!!!

  18. Careful Anthony your close to admitting your a Trekky, I had to admit years ago I was to my friends and famiy although my love of cricket has taken some of the heat away.

  19. In addition to seeing that IPCC graph with trend lines on time periods of 25 and 50 and 100 and 150 years I used to see other graphs posted by the alarmists. The other graphs included 10 or 15 year trend lines. I don’t see those anymore. I assume this is because the shorter term trend lines are no longer steeper than the long term trend lines.

    But I would not ridicule the idea of these types of presentations. I would turn them around. I hope someone out there has the skill and inclination to re-create the IPCC graph with up do date data and also to create a new graph which also includes a 10 year trend lines. Having used this format the IPCC and the other alarmists will have a bit of trouble rejecting it now.

    And of course either now or very soon the graphs will show that the 25 year trend line is less steep than the 50 year trend line and the 15 year trend line is negative.

  20. sharper00,

    I don’t think you understand what’s happening. Let me help out here. When a temperature chart is used with a baseline number such as zero [or any specific number], an artifact of the chart appears, often a hockey stick-like rise. The IPCC chart is a good example of this. But it is a bad example of reality, because it fools the eye.

    When charting long term global warming, such as the natural temperature rise since the 1600′s, the correct method is to show the trend. But by using a zero baseline chart, a misleading chart is created. That’s why they do it; it’s deliberate, like coloring maps bright red. By using zero baseline charts, you are being manipulated.

    Note that the natural rising temperature trend started close to two hundred years before the rise in CO2 began. And as Phil Jones shows, almost identical rising trends occur regularly within that natural long term trend.

    By using a non-arbitrary baseline chart, and showing the natural long term warming trend since the LIA, we see that nothing unusual is happening. Temperatures are not accelerating, and if CO2 causes any warming, it is too minuscule to measure. The trend is the same before and after CO2 began to rise.

    In addition, a non-arbitrary chart shows that the climate null hypothesis has not been falsified, which is why Trenberth insists on changing the definition of the null hypothesis, thus putting skeptics in the position of having to prove a negative. If Trenberth got his way it would overturn the scientific method, and put the witch doctors back in charge. That’s how weak the alarmists’ arguments have become.

    Whenever you see a scary looking long term chart, check to see if it’s built around a specific baseline [usually zero]. If it is, you’re being deceived. Temperatures are not accelerating, they are just rising naturally from one of the coldest episodes of the Holocene: the LIA.

  21. The Trenberth letter is really sad coming from a guy who famously told others we don’t know why it’s not warming now and it’s a travesty we don’t (in climategate 1 email). Could you make a statement like that and then write an open letter essentially saying the lack of warming doesn’t mean anything? The reason Trenberth and others are frustrated is because they can’t “convince” skeptics, and of course they blame the skeptics for not being susceptible to real science. I was climate neutral before climategate and would have just assumed that it represented a few bad apples and the field overall was probably OK. Then I saw the response of mainstream climate scientists, stridently and angrily defending the indefensible. So, the more I see of Trenberth type letters, lists of which experts are the real experts, etc., the more determined I become and the more active I become in contacting everyone I know with any type of political clout with the message that CAGW has been way oversold. If climate scientists want to restore the trust that was previously placed in them, all they have to do (IMO) is say that what Jones and Mann did (hide the decline) was wrong and that even hinting that there is a “cause” that should shape the “message” is unscientific. That would be a good start. It also would be good not to accuse skeptics of doing exactly what IPCC did to make a case for accelerating warming (great cartoon!). Just admit that IPCC was wrong to do that, and by the way, I don’t think skeptics typically draw graphs emphasizing the declines, at least I haven’t seen them. However, people tend to be most concerned about recent and future trends, so it makes sense to look at the most recent period of time. The fact that there is a break point (1998) after which warming essentially stops and the fact that this is the longest stop in a while should get everyone’s attention. The fact that Trenberth doesn’t even want to admit that it exists says a lot. But since he concluded that 17 years is the magic number, we only have to wait two years for him to renounce CAGW, right?

  22. sharper00 says:
    February 3, 2012 at 11:56 am

    The age of the Earth is a complete misdirection. It has no bearing whatsoever on how climate behaves nor do factors in play 1.2 billion years have any relevance beyond understanding how the planet worked 1.2 billion years ago.

    ———–

    Bazinga! That’s catastrophism, which in its first incarnation indirectly defended the idea that God was needed to re-create the life on earth after various catastrophes wiped out assemblages of life in past ages. It was a geological theory promoted by Georges Cuvier (1769-1832) to explain why dinosaurs no longer exist, for example. Cuvier could see no clear connections between Precambrian and Cambrian life-forms, or Cambrian and Jurassic, or Jurassic and Tertiary. So he decided that geological forces in the past were massively more powerful than in the present. Conservative scientists loved the theory because it allowed the earth to have a short history. The last catastrophe was the Great Flood, which wiped out the dinosaurs.

    Charles Lyell gave the basis for modern geology (1797-1875) by providing evidence that past geological forces were no different than those in action today, and convinced many scientists – including the young Darwin who read his work while on the Beagle – that his uniformitarian theory was correct. While Lyell’s ideas don’t hold for the very early history of the earth, when the earth was in a gaseous or molten state, the basic principles are correct, and explain the evolution of the earth to its present configurations. If science is to have any hope of advancing, scientists have to rely on universal principles to explain things in all dimensions, including the past and present.

  23. Look people, this is very easy to understand.

    If your climate graph does not show a postive trend line, then you are doing it wrong.

    /sarc

    First 15 years was enough for a series, then 17… the smart ones jumped ahead to 30. With 30 years being the currect defacto time series, if we do get to a point of 30 years without warming, then you can be sure of only one thing… 30 years is not enough time to compute a trend line.

  24. Funny that – the minimum period which takes into account ENSO was 25 years. funny that eh?

    After all who would thought we are just coming out of a La Nina?

    The pattern therein of ENSO variability of the past will always be there but the elevator going up is with us all as well – still up and not down. Can’t you see that or are those who cannot see all blind? A five year plot will show a huge warming spike if we ran it from 2010 through to 2015, when we arrive at 2016. Up my friend – it is UP!! No – no – its does not go D-O-W-N !

    EL Nino’s do not exist at the moment swamping the variability of the warming background effect of CO2 radiative budgets. Anti-warmists think there is going a permanent La Nina.

    Remember guys if you can listen – the biggest La Nina (2010/2011) in history was also the WARMEST. It is now – yes right now weakening. What do you think what is going to happen with the graph trends?

    Bye bye – till the warming comes back to bite you in the backside. I detect an air of doubt around here.

  25. Jeremy says (February 3, 2012 at 10:40 am): “Apparently to be a genius you are required to be socially inept, at least according to the pretty people of the world. That’s the take-away message from the absurd characters, at least for me.”

    Correction: Socially inept geniuses who seem to have a lot more sex than I ever did as a bachelor (three of the four anyway, and even Sheldon actually had to turn away a seductress who was turned on by his comic book props). Must be the Pasadena air. :-)

  26. rossbrisbane,

    Apparently you haven’t read this thread. Scientific skeptics are not claiming that there is no global warming. Of course there is, otherwise we would still be in the Little Ice Age.

    We are pointing out the fact that since the 1600′s, global warming has been a steadily rising trend. It has not accelerated. In fact, there is a slight long term moderating trend [the green line].

    Your imagined speculation “till the warming comes back” doesn’t even make sense. The planet is still in a long term warming trend despite el ninos and la ninas. There have been almost identical short term variations riding atop the long term trend, as even Phil Jones admits. Until the long term trend is broken, beneficial global warming will continue. And that is entirely a good thing. Warmer is better. As we know, the planet has been significantly warmer in the past, with no ill effects. It is the specter of another LIA – or worse – that is the real threat.

    And as far as harmless, beneficial CO2 is concerned, it doesn’t seem to have any measurable effect, other than increased agricultural productivity and the greening of the Earth. So bring on the CO2! More is better. And there is no downside.

  27. rossbrisbane says (February 3, 2012 at 5:28 pm): “Bye bye – till the warming comes back to bite you in the backside. I detect an air of doubt around here.”

    No, I smell something different. :-)

  28. IMHO CAGW has long since moved past religion and into the realmes of what we now term as a Cult, common defining characteristicts of those in a cult include;
    1.People are put in physical or emotionally distressing situations;
    2.Their problems are reduced to one simple explanation, which is repeatedly emphasized;
    3.They receive what seems to be unconditional love, acceptance, and attention from a charismatic leader or group.
    4.They get a new identity based on the group;
    5.They are subject to entrapment (isolation from friends, relatives and the mainstream culture) and their access to information is severely controlled.

    Nails it for me….

  29. Sharperoo:

    Actually it’s more like ~1,000 years over which natural trends tend to cancel out, rather than the 30 years you stipulate. Superimposed on a (roughly) 1,000 year natural cycle there is also a 59.6 year cycle, so 30 year trends are about the worst you could cherry pick.

    The plot at the foot of my Home page http://climate-change-theory.com shows just why. It is a plot of the gradient of 30 year trends calculated on a moving basis each month.

    It clearly shows just how much the gradient changes, but it also shows a cyclic pattern in such changes, so, by using an “axis trend” for the apparent, though incomplete sinusoidal pattern, we see a decline in the underlying ~1,000 year trend’s rate of increase.

    I hope I am making myself clear. The green line effectively takes out ENSO cycles and the 59.6 year cycle and tells us about the underlying ~1,000 year trend. That trend was increasing at about 0.06 degree C per decade between 1900 and 1930, whereas it is now increasing at the slower rate of about 0.05 degree C per decade, and the rate of increase should continue to decrease, passing through zero in about 200 years, maybe less. When it does so we should see a 1,000 year maximum in the underlying trend which would be about 0.8 deg.C above the current level in the year 2200. After that it should decline for 500 years.

    This method of fitting an “axis trend” overcomes accusations of cherry picking because, even if the data started 30 years earlier, the green line would be very close to the same. More importantly, we can be confident it can be extrapolated at least another 30 years, probably somewhat more.

    Of course the 59.6 year trend will add superimposed short-term maxima and minima, meaning net level or slightly declining temperatures until about 2028, then rises for the next 30 years.

  30. Smokey says:
    February 3, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    When charting long term global warming, such as the natural temperature rise since the 1600′s, the correct method is to show the trend. But by using a zero baseline chart, a misleading chart is created.

    ;———————————————————————————————————————–

    Both statements are false.

    First, if one draws a linear line through a nonlinear series, then the line is a lagging indicator, i.e., it has no predictive power.

    Second, the residue series (or what you mistakenly call the so-called “anomaly” in the so-called “base line chart”) is not the temperature series. Taking the differences necessary to generate the residue series amplifies the noise already inherent in the original temperature series.

    Third, if one calculates the residue series using the arithmetic mean, then it’s mean should be zero. If it’s not, then they’re cooking the calculations.

    And there should never be a need to draw a line through the residues. The problem is the linear regression line is sensitive to the starting point.

    As for historical temperature series prior to 1940, they are riddled with problems ranging from biases, to resolution issues, to systematic errors from the instruments and the measurements, etc. The further back you go back in time, the greater the uncertainty in the result.

  31. Agile Aspect says:

    “…what you mistakenly call the so-called ‘anomaly’ in the so-called ‘base line chart’…”

    I never used the term “anomaly”. But thanx for setting up that strawman, and killing him. But he was your strawman, not mine. AA continues:

    “As for historical temperature series prior to 1940, they are riddled with problems ranging from biases, to resolution issues, to systematic errors from the instruments and the measurements, etc. The further back you go back in time, the greater the uncertainty in the result.”

    Thanx again for your [uncited] opinion. The fact is that CO2 has had no measurable effect on the rising global temperature since the LIA. And that is the central issue in the entire debate: CO2 is not relevant to any significant degree. If you don’t believe that is so, then post testable, verifiable, empirical evidence contradicting that fact. Otherwise, concede that the putative effect of CO2 is minuscule, and may be completely non-existent. Because that is what the entire debate is about, isn’t it?

  32. D. Robinson says:
    February 3, 2012 at 1:44 pm
    According to Hadcrut 3 we’ve had 15 years of flat temps, so buck up Sharperoo, only two years to go!

    I could be wrong here, but at least for RSS, I think that point in time could come in a matter of months. This would be true if RSS dropped like UAH and stayed there for a few months. Take a look at the lines in the plots below. For the last 16 years and 10 months, the slope is only 0.0051. This goes back to March, 1995. RSS had 2011 as the 12th warmest, but did you know that 1995 beat it by coming in at 11th warmest? (The January UAH value of -0.09 puts that in 25th place by the way.)

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/rss/from:1980/plot/rss/from:1997.08/trend/plot/rss/from:1995.17/trend

  33. Yes, but how else can the warming be ‘ever accelerating’, if we don’t draw steeper and steeper lines? There must be something wrong with the data. Send it to UEA for adjustment.

  34. sharper00 says:
    February 3, 2012 at 12:24 pm
    “By their nature long term climate phenomena do not drive short term variability. ”

    You’d better have a reason that makes you say that; or I’ll call you blunter00.

  35. Re Sharperoo’s “30 year trends” ….

    Well, here are a few 30 year trend rates calculated each 10 years with the rate of increase per decade against each. Which would you like to cherry-pick Sharperoo? Data source is linked at the foot of http://climate-change-theory.com where you’ll see a plot including all the intermediate moving monthly values of such 30 year trends between the dates shown below.

    Jan 1900 to Dec 1929: 0.020 deg.C/decade
    Jan 1910 to Dec 1939: 0.086 deg.C/decade
    Jan 1920 to Dec 1949: 0.096 deg.C/decade
    Jan 1930 to Dec 1959: 0.036 deg.C/decade
    Jan 1940 to Dec 1969: 0.002 deg.C/decade
    Jan 1950 to Dec 1979: 0.016 deg.C/decade
    Jan 1960 to Dec 1989: 0.064 deg.C/decade
    Jan 1970 to Dec 1999: 0.113 deg.C/decade
    Jan 1980 to Dec 2009: 0.084 deg.C/decade

    So, according to you, any of these 30 year trends would have sufficed at the time to indicate “the” long-term trend. I’ll settle for the green “trend of the trends” line showing 0.06 reducing to 0.05 deg.C / decade. I had drawn that before calculating the arithmetic mean of the above 9 values for which I then got 0.057 deg.C / decade.

    So take you pick anywhere around half a degree per century.

    Any good reason for any advance on that?

  36. Bloke, I am with you. Bernadette is HOT ! Like her voice better since she moved in with Howard and his mother.

  37. Doug Cotton says:
    February 4, 2012 at 3:18 am

    This is an interesting analysis. However I would expect the 30 year lines to vary widely since the climate seems to go in 60 year cycles. So if 60 year cycles were drawn, the numbers should be much closer. See:

  38. Un-oh. Per the Wikipedia:

    (“Bazinga!” is now officially trademarked by Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.)

    Ref: http://www.trademarkia.com/bazinga-85210353.html

    Better slap some ™ symbols (Ctrl-shift-u + 2122 on a proper Linux box) on the post above before the Warner Bros Trademark Enforcement Department swoops in with the Cease and Desist Order!

    (PS: Authors are also not allowed to mention Velcro™ and Band-Aids™ without permission of the trademark holders and cannot use them without the appropriate ™ indicators. This information provided for non-commercial educational purposes only, so please don’t sue me, you wonderful multi-national corporate trademark holders who are legally obligated to defend your trademarks.)

  39. Werner: “since the climate seems to go in 60 year cycles” – yes, The green “trend of the trend” line on the plot I mentioned (at the foot of my Home page) takes out the 60 year and ENSO cycles. Of course the plot of the gradients also shows evidence of the 60 year cycle which I further discuss on my original site http://earth-climate.com .

  40. Doug Cotton says:
    February 4, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    Thank you! I also read the paper by Nahle. Interesting stuff! All of these people with doctor’s degrees in physics disagreeing with each other is enough to make one’s head spin!

  41. My backyard experiment (February 5 & 6, 2012)

    I shielded a small section of my backyard with a car windscreen shade (silver on each side) which I suspended at an angle of about 45 degrees so that it would not interfere with convection loss and would reflect away upward radiation from the ground. I used a digital thermometer with a metal spike which I inserted into the ground, or held in the air just above the ground for the ambient readings. The “shielded” ground readings were taken under the shade about 20cm from where it came down to the ground, whilst the “unshielded” readings were taken in an open area about 2m away.

    Below are the results (temperatures in deg.C) …

    time unshielded shielded ambient
    21:33 23.3 23.1 22.1
    05.34 21.7 21.7 17.7

    (a) I found no evidence of “backradiation” slowing the rate of cooling.

    (b) My results agreed with those of Prof Nahle (Sept 2011) showing that the air was cooler than the surface and also cooled faster than the surface.

  42. Werner: I’m not sure which of Nahle’s papers you are refering to. I just quoted above his Sept 2011 experiment in which he showed the air cooled faster than the surface at night. His deductions from that information may or may not be correct, so I don’t quote such.

    What makes my “head spin” is all these “climate scientists” who don’t understand the prerequisites for the Stefan-Boltzmann Law to apply, and thus abuse physics when they calculate that the Earth’s surface would be -18 deg.C if there were no water vapour, carbon dioxide, methane etc.

    My backyard certainly doesn’t go down to that temperature when I shield all that “backradiation” and furthermore, I understand why it doesn’t vary even a tenth of a degree from the unshielded area – from basic undergraduate physics.

    Doug Cotton

    http://climate-change-theory.com

  43. Doug Cotton says:
    February 5, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    Werner: I’m not sure which of Nahle’s papers you are refering to.

    I was talking about the 18 page paper you referred to at one time.

    … and thus abuse physics when they calculate that the Earth’s surface would be -18 deg.C if there were no water vapour, carbon dioxide, methane etc.

    Have you seen the following where this is also questioned:

    http://climatechangedispatch.com/home/9799-that-bogus-greenhouse-gas-whatchamacallit-effect

    “Dr. Latour is one of many experts old enough to remember that in 1981 James Hansen stated the average thermal T (temperature) at Earth’s surface is 15°C (ok) and Earth radiates to space at -18°C (ok). From that he declared the difference 15° – (-18°) = 33°C (arithmetic ok) to be the famous greenhouse gas effect.

    This is not ‘ok’ to more astute analysts critical of Hansen’s number fudging. They say Hansen’s math is very seriously awry because there is no physics to connect these two dissimilar numbers.”

  44. “NotTheAussiePhilM says:
    February 3, 2012 at 10:36 am
    As my primary school teacher used to say, ‘Two wrong’s don’t make a right!’”

    Oh yea, my redneck teacher, across the road from your one, used to say;

    “Two wongs don’t make a white.”

  45. Werner and others. Frankly I don’t think any experiments done with boxes really prove anything, and so I no longer refer to Nahle’s experiment early last year in which he tried to prove Wood correct, nor to Wood’s experiment, even if they do seem to support my general viewpoint. There are too many possibilities for heat transfer by conduction and reflection etc in such boxes.

    In regard to Nahle’s experiment in September 2011 http://principia-scientific.org/publications/New_Concise_Experiment_on_Backradiation.pdf all I take from this is that the atmosphere is generally cooler at night, and cooling faster than the surface. (My backyard experiment showed likewise.) I don’t think it is really valid to deduce that Nahle’s experiment disproves the GH effect as he claims.

    To do that we need more experiments showing that warmer bodies do not acquire thermal energy from radiation from (significantly) cooler ones. It is easy to show with gases using spectroscopy – but we need more empirical data relating to solids and liquids. Prof Claes Johnson has proved it computationally, but the world needs to see supporting experiments.

  46. Werner, yes I have read what Dr Latour wrote about the 18 degree figure. In effect he was using the same point which arises from the fact that the air temperature close to the ground is not controlled by radiation anywhere near as much as it is by diffusion (molecular collision) which brings about the close thermal equilibrium observed between the surface and the first 1mm of the air above it. Of course solar radiation at noon can feel warmer than the air at the top of a high mountain, but that’s not really proving anything.

    To show why the 18 degree figure is so wrong, you can start by deriving a much lower figure using zero radiation for 12 hours (at night) and twice their mean radiation for the other 12 hours, then take a mean of the two values. The logic is more sound than their flat disk concept. Of course integration would be better still. But their “science” is flat-Earth science and just as wrong.

    But that’s not all. If, say, 50% of the energy is transferred from the surface to the atmosphere by diffusion and evaporation, then you only have 50% left to attribute to radiation from the surface. The other 50% goes into the atmosphere first and is then radiated by the atmosphere. Mind you, that 50% by diffusion and evaporation is probably more like 70%, but we don’t need to cause arguments over that detail.

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