Pielke Sr., Curry, and Singer on the new AMS climate statement

Dr. Roger Pielke Senior has weighed in on the new AMS climate statement:

Contradictory Statements By The American Meterological Society – Comments On The New Statement Titled “Climate Change”

The American Meteorological Society has released its Statement

Climate Change – An Information Statement of the American  Meteorological Society

(PDF also here: http://www.ametsoc.org/policy/2012climatechange.pdf)

where its stated intent starts with

The following is an AMS Information  Statement intended to provide a trustworthy, objective, and scientifically  up-to-date explanation of scientific issues of concern to the public at large.

Unfortunately, the Statement then goes on to write [highlight added]

It is clear from extensive scientific  evidence that the dominant cause of the rapid change in climate of the past  half century is human-induced increases in the amount of atmospheric greenhouse  gases, including carbon dioxide (CO2), chlorofluorocarbons, methane,  and nitrous oxide. The most important of these over the long term is CO2,  whose concentration in the atmosphere is rising principally as a result of  fossil-fuel combustion and deforestation.

The new AMS Statement on Climate Change focus on primarily CO2 has already been refuted as documented in the National Research Council Report:

Read Dr. Peilke’s complete report here:  Contradictory Statements By The American Meterological Society – Comments On The New Statement Titled “Climate Change”

Also, Dr. Judith Curry has weighed in:

http://judithcurry.com/2012/08/27/ams-statement-on-climate-change/

She doesn’t think much of it either, writing:

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As far as I can tell, this statement is a naive example of Michael Kelly’s invisible hand (quote from my no consensus paper):

Kelly (2005) describes an additional source of confirmation bias in the consensus building process: “As more and more peers weigh in on a given issue, the proportion of the total evidence which consists of higher order psychological evidence [of what other people believe] increases, and the proportion of the total evidence which consists of first order evidence decreases . . . At some point, when the number of peers grows large enough, the higher order psychological evidence will swamp the first order evidence into virtual insignificance.”

In other words, consensus statements get parroted without any actual intellectual examination.  In this case, what is the point of the AMS statement.  Apparently, to ‘inform the public’  on this controversial issue by appealing to the ‘authority’ of the society.

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Ouch!

I think we’ll be seeing a new meteorological society soon, many professional members won’t put up with this sort of misrepresentation – Anthony

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Dr Fred Singer weighed in shortly after I pressed the publish button, here’s his statement:

Winning the AGW science debate: Here’s how

The upcoming election battles may be unique in offering for the first time a debate about Global Warming. Neither Bush-Gore nor McCain-Obama chose to discuss the issue – maybe because they were not that far apart. By contrast, Barack Obama has already announced that, if re-elected, climate change will be an important priority — while Paul Ryan is an assertive skeptic on AGW (anthropogenic global warming).

The science of climate change is not only of academic interest but has been leading to proposals that advocate large-scale changes in energy use and supply — with important economic consequences. The burden of proof for AGW therefore falls on those who call for such policies. They must demonstrate with reasonable certainty that human activities are causing global warming, that a future warming will cause significant global economic and ecological damage, and that it would be more cost-effective to mitigate now than to adapt later. They must also be ready to respond to any critique of the underlying science.

I would start by asking AGW supporters the following question “What is your single most important piece of evidence for AGW?” I have received many answers to this question but most of them can be disposed of in a trivial way. Some examples are:

  • ”Man-made CO2 is increasing in the atmosphere.” True, but is warming increasing as a result?
  • ”Climate models predict rising climate temperatures in the future.” True, but models are not evidence.
  • ”Glaciers are melting, sea ice is shrinking, storms are increasing, droughts and floods are increasing.” Even if any of these were true, they don’t reveal the cause and certainly cannot furnish temperature data, like thermometers.
  • ”Sea Levels are rising.” But they have been rising for 18,000 years, and there is no evidence that the current rate of rise is affected by temperature; 20th century data show no acceleration.
  • A common misleading reply by AGW supporters: “The past decade is the warmest in X years”
    This may be true, provided X is chosen appropriately, but the current trend over the past decade has been approximately zero. [One must not confuse Trend (measured in degrees C/decade) with temperature (measured in degrees C). According to climate models, it is an increased temperature trend that should relate to any increasing trend in greenhouse gases.]

But note also that climate seems to follow long-term cycles of about 1500 years [Singer and Avery “Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1500 years” 2007]. If the ‘Bond-cycle’ is active now, we may expect further, irregular, warming in the present century and beyond – entirely due to natural causes, likely related to the Sun.

Finally, a common response simply appeals to the report of the UN-IPCC. To which one should say: “OK, then let’s see if it holds up to scrutiny.” [Note that the “evidence” presented as crucial has been different in all of the past four IPCC assessment reports.] The latest IPCC claim for AGW is laid out simply in the Summary for Policymakers on page 10 of the 2007 report: “Most of the observed increase in global average temperatures since the mid 20th century is very likely [i.e., 90-99% sure] due to observed anthropogenic increase of greenhouse gases.”

  • This claim is advanced in the SPM and eventually backed up by fig. 9.5 on page 684 of the report. The models are “fitted” to the observed temperature record from 1900 up to about 1970 by choosing suitable sensitivities and model parameters, using “expert judgment.” But the figure shows a large gap after 1970 between reported temperatures and unforced models (i.e., models that do not incorporate an increase in GH (greenhouse) gases).

[Heavy Black line: Global Ave Surface Temp Blue: Superposition of models without GH gases]
________________________________________________________________________

The IPCC, claiming that they completely understand all natural forcings, now asserts that only AGW (i.e., forcing by anthropogenic GH gases) can explain the gap between the reported global average surface temperature (GAST) and models that do not include GH-gas forcing. (This is an instance of the common logical fallacy of ‘argument from ignorance.’ Even if the warming since 1970 were exceptional, and even if science were unaware of any natural explanation for it, that unawareness would not constitute certain evidence that GH gases are responsible.)

Even if we were to accept the IPCC’s assertion for the sake of argument, note that the temperature curve refers to global surface average temperature and that the models are retro-fitted to the temperature data by a suitable choice of climate sensitivities and parameters of the models.

Fair enough, but can the same sensitivities and parameters also explain temperature data that are non-global: e.g., the mean for the northern hemisphere (NH) and the mean for the SH? Can they explain ocean temperature data? Can they explain atmospheric temperature trends? And finally, can they explain temperature trends derived from non-thermometer data of various proxies (tree rings, lake sediments, stalagmites, ice cores, etc.)?

Note that the sensitivities and parameters are chosen with great care in order to reach agreement with the reported GAST data; yet the same IPCC report admits to very large uncertainties about most forcings (in fact, 11 out of 16), particularly from aerosols and clouds. But the greatest uncertainty arises from implicit feedbacks that the models assume will amplify direct warming from GH gases. In particular, there is uncertainty about the feedback from water vapor and clouds: the IPCC claims a positive feedback, i.e., an amplification of GH forcing of nearly threefold — while others adduce evidence for a negative feedback, i.e., opposing GH warming. This is a matter that needs to be resolved urgently; and, until it is, the science underlying the “official” IPCC claim cannot seriously be regarded as “settled.”

The models are largely unable to represent or capture important natural forcings, for example, well-documented climate oscillations involving the oceans, such as the North Atlantic Oscillation or Pacific Decadal Oscillation. Also omitted from the models are the effects of solar-activity changes– in spite of excellent evidence, supported by a growing body of published results, that solar-caused cosmic-ray variations strongly correlate with terrestrial climate changes.

Turning next to climate observations, there are many questions about the reliability of the reported land-surface temperature data reported by weather stations. Mid-troposphere temperatures do not agree with surface trends — a disparity that a National Academy of Sciences climate panel tried unsuccessfully to resolve in 2000. It seems that mid-troposphere temperature trends derived from radiosondes in weather balloons and from microwave instruments in satellites both show negligible tropical warming in the last decades of the 20th century. Data are never perfect and there may be corrections necessary. However, for the time being, these two independent datasets show remarkable agreement with one another, and remarkable disagreement with what the IPCC models would expect as a result of anthropogenic warming.

Ocean data have been notoriously difficult to reconcile, since they employ so many different types of instrumentation. These include buckets, buoys, ship-engine cooling-water inlet temperatures, and both infrared and microwave satellite observations. Unfortunately, there are problems with each of the datasets; their coherence is often different from what one might expect. One example: inlet temperatures seem to be warmer than bucket and drifter buoys that measure temperatures close to the surface– just opposite to what would be expected.

Additional ocean datasets do not show the warming observed by land weather stations; for example, night-time marine air temperatures (NMAT) confirm the strong warming up to 1940 and cooling to 1975, but show only a small recovery, with maximum temperatures in the 1990s no greater than 1940. Similarly, data of ocean heat content (OHC) do not show a warming trend from 1978 to 2000 — although it should be noted that 20th-century OHC data is of poor quality and has been subject to frequent corrections.

Finally, we have non-thermometer proxy data, which mostly show no warming from 1978 to 1997. Most confirm the 1910-40 warming from weather stations — but also show no post-1940 warming.

It would be interesting to examine the large dataset assembled by the authors of the “hockeystick” to see what temperatures are observed after 1978; unfortunately, their publication stops at just at that point and their underlying data have not been made accessible.

It should be clear by now that the strong AGW claims of the IPCC are based on rather flimsy evidence. We look forward to the next IPCC report due in 2013-14 to see if additional data and model results show better support for their claim. I serve as an “expert reviewer” of this report but have not seen any such evidence in the first draft.

***

In the meantime we can post certain question to the AGW supporters and await their answers:

**Why did climate warm between 1910 and 1940?

**Why did climate cool from 1940-1975? If the cause is assumed to be aerosols, also please explain the separate trends observed in the northern and southern hemispheres and compare with climate models. This asymmetry has been a puzzle for some time.

**Why is there a step increase (temperature “jump”) in 1976-77 — and again in 2001-2002? Such jumps are not in accord with the slow steady increase calculated by climate models.

**Why is there no pronounced warming trend since 2002?

**And finally, why no warming for night-time marine air temperatures, troposphere, and proxies in the last two decades of the 20th century — in conflict with reported land-surface temperatures? Could one admit the possibility that there might be something wrong with the land-surface data used by IPCC as ‘evidence’ for AGW?

For these and many similar reasons, scientific debate about the extent and implications of the anthropogenic contribution to past and future global warming is essential for formulating a rational energy policy as the keystone for economic prosperity. The upcoming election battles may provide such an opportunity.

——————————————————————————————————————————

S. Fred Singer is professor emeritus at the University of Virginia and director of the Science & Environmental Policy Project.  His specialty is atmospheric and space physics.   An expert in remote sensing and satellites, he served as the founding director of the US Weather Satellite Service and, more recently, as vice chair of the US National Advisory Committee on Oceans & Atmosphere. He is a Senior Fellow of the Heartland Institute and the Independent Institute. He has also held several government positions and served as an energy adviser to Treasury Secretary Wm. Simon. He co-authored the NY Times best-seller “Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1500 years.” In 2007, he founded and has chaired the NIPCC (Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change), which has released several scientific reports [See http://www.NIPCC.org. He is the founding chairman of Virginia Scientists & Engineers for Energy & Environment (VA-SEEE). For recent writings see http://www.americanthinker.com/s_fred_singer/ and also Google Scholar.

 

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45 thoughts on “Pielke Sr., Curry, and Singer on the new AMS climate statement

  1. I think we’ll be seeing a new meteorological society soon…” One can only hope … and for a new American Physical Society, too. Not to forget fond hopes for reform of the AGU and the NAS.

  2. follow-on to Pat Frank @ 12:47: Not to forget the Royal Society, Amer. Chem. Soc. and a host of others too long to list.

  3. Ahh! Nitrous oxide. Something I have some familiarity with from some past research! A number of years ago I was in a discussion where people were yammering about the “air pollution” and “global warming” caused by smokers. So I went and got the EPA and Surgeon Generals’ reports and did some figuring:

    A cigarette puts out a total of 3 mg of nitrogen oxide (NO) and 40 mg of carbon monoxide (CO). A single 747 takeoff/landing emits about 115 pounds of NO and 32 pounds of CO: that’s 52 million mg of NO and 14 million mg of CO if you do the math.

    Doing a bit more math for a typical 500 takeoffs/landings per day at a moderately large airport shows us that the nice clean smokefree air being pumped into the smokefree airport terminals has the CO equivalent of over 160 million cigarettes and the NO of Eight and a Half BILLION cigarettes.

    I guess that doesn’t inform us much as to whether the amount of NO could have any climatic effect, but at least it looks like the AMS isn’t blaming smokers for a change! LOL!

    :>
    MJM

  4. This is possibly my favorite quote from the AMS Climate Statement:
    “Since long-term measurements began in the 1950s, the atmospheric CO2 concentration has been increasing at a rate much faster than at any time in the last 800,000 years.”

    How does one make a conclusion referring to measurements which began 50-60 y ago, but then extend the time frame to a period 15,000 times far back (without so much as winking)?

    Can one really make comparisons on RATE of CHANGE of CO2 concentration by comparing ice core data with Keeling curves? Really?

    Kurt in Switzerland

  5. The AGW lobby has started PR onslaught.
    What are they worried about, another freezing cold winter?
    Having a go while there is some warmth about?

  6. Roger Pielke, Sr., is the best practicing climate scientist. When climate science achieves some maturity and escapes its Marxist nightmare, all of it will resemble his work.

    Judith Curry is the best theoretician of uncertainty in climate science and, through her blog, the best historian of theory and modeling in climate science. When climate science achieves some maturity, her guidelines about uncertainty will have become universal.

    Fred Singer is a first rate theoretician of climate science and his essay speaks for itself.

    The AMS document is a shambles and should be retracted. Ideologues should be removed from the leadership of the AMS. Otherwise, the AMS will soon become all “science communication” and no science.

  7. vukcevic says:
    August 27, 2012 at 1:53 pm
    The AGW lobby has started PR onslaught.
    What are they worried about, another freezing cold winter?
    Having a go while there is some warmth about?

    ===================================================================
    It’s an election year in the US. They don’t care about winter. They care about November.
    (PS I first came across SEPP back when the Environmental Defence Fund was spouting alarm about atrazine in the drinking water in Central Ohio. I think (My memory’s not as good as Overpeck’s.) that’s where I first came across anyone seriously refuting AGW. That may have been before Algore joined the AGW bandwagon. Anyway, assuming he sees this, I’d like to thank him for what he’s done in the past and continues to do.)

  8. Kurt in Switzerland says: “This is possibly my favorite quote from the AMS Climate Statement: “Since long-term measurements began in the 1950s, the atmospheric CO2 concentration has been increasing at a rate much faster than at any time in the last 800,000 years.” … Can one really make comparisons on RATE of CHANGE of CO2 concentration by comparing ice core data with Keeling curves?”

    Good comment. The answer is: of course not. Differentiation is a notoriously inaccurate process. When applied to ice core data that has little short-term precision, the result is utter nonsense. But that’s to be expected. AMS = Abysmally Mediocre Science.

  9. “The following is an AMS Information  Statement intended to provide a trustworthy, objective, …”
    Never trust anyone or any organisation that has to claim they are “trustworthy”.

  10. RayG says:

    follow-on to Pat Frank @ 12:47: Not to forget the Royal Society, Amer. Chem. Soc. and a host of others too long to list.

    …which, with a little self-reflection, might suggest something about your own position! As the old joke goes about the mother of a soldier when she sees her son go marching by with his unit: “Look…Everybody is out of step but my Johnny!”

  11. “They must demonstrate with reasonable certainty that human activities are causing global warming, that a future warming will cause significant global economic and ecological damage, and that it would be more cost-effective to mitigate now than to adapt later. They must also be ready to respond to any critique of the underlying science.”

    They have, and they are. Some people will refuse to believe the most glaring evidence, and no-one’s under any obligation to convince brick walls of anything.

    “I would start by asking AGW supporters the following question “What is your single most important piece of evidence for AGW?””

    The only appropriate response – “It’s a little bit more complicated than that”.

    “The IPCC, claiming that they completely understand all natural forcings…”

    This is what we call a “straw man”. You could at least try to make them less risibly absurd. In all of the thousands of pages of text, figures and tables that the IPCC has ever produced, nothing resembling this claim has ever appeared, as I’m sure you’re perfectly aware.

    **Why did climate warm between 1910 and 1940?

    1. solar activity was rising towards the mid-20th century “Grand Maximum”. 2. no significant injections of aerosols into the stratosphere occurred. 3. moderate rise in CO2 concentrations.

    **Why did climate cool from 1940-1975? If the cause is assumed to be aerosols, also please explain the separate trends observed in the northern and southern hemispheres and compare with climate models. This asymmetry has been a puzzle for some time.

    Yes, most likely aerosols. Northern hemisphere temperatures show a dip, southern hemisphere temperatures don’t. 90% of the world’s population, and thus industry, and thus aerosol emission, is in the northern hemisphere. This is not a very hard puzzle.

    **Why is there a step increase (temperature “jump”) in 1976-77 — and again in 2001-2002? Such jumps are not in accord with the slow steady increase calculated by climate models.

    Climate models do not predict a slow steady increase. They predict discontinuities as the climate system enters different states. These are popularly known as “tipping points”. Nevertheless I do not perceive any “jumps” at the dates you propose. In what dataset are you seeing these?

    **Why is there no pronounced warming trend since 2002?

    Natural variations are large enough that you cannot calculate a climate trend with only 10 years of data. This is a rather simple concept, explained patiently by many people, time and time and time and time again. What is it that you still don’t get?

    **And finally, why no warming for night-time marine air temperatures, troposphere, and proxies in the last two decades of the 20th century — in conflict with reported land-surface temperatures? Could one admit the possibility that there might be something wrong with the land-surface data used by IPCC as ‘evidence’ for AGW?

    Links to datasets would help. Otherwise it is not clear what you are basing your assertions on. In any case, satellite-based temperature records agree very well with land-based records.

  12. The AMS has gone all in on this game of high stakes poker, can’t blame them in one way ‘the cause ‘ has brought with it massive funded and lots of jobs that otherwise would not there.And even better the actual ability to forecast is not required to be any better than ‘weather ‘ and they can’t do that worth a dam for more then 48 hours ,they need to use the magic word ‘models’ and you can get away with anything .

  13. The only way to stop this kind of bulldozing within professional organisations, is to leave them! At the end of the day, it will simply become a temple/place for the post normal science ‘believers’ if the real scientists leave. Personally, were I to have paid my subscription to such an organisation, I would be demanding my money back and walking away. Sure, we all often get misrepresented by our governments and politicians, but for such an organisation, anyone disapproving of the stance can vote instantly with their feet! (it’s a shame we can’t do that with governments as easy!)

  14. I hear a lot that the climate models have made lousy predictions, but I’ve seen no conclusive proof. But the fact the IPCC is not showing the results to prove that their models work speaks volumes to me. Whenever I argue against AGW, I always ask them to show me the IPCC predictions from 1990 and compare that with the observed increase in temp over the past 22 years. That seems like a long enough time. If their 1990 model correctly predicted the temps over the past 22 years, then AGW wins. But if their models failed then you must throw out the AGW hypothesis. Does anyone know how to compare the IPCC 1990 model prediction with the observed data over the past 22 years?

  15. Donald was asked:

    “What is your single most important piece of evidence for AGW?”

    Donald answered:

    “The only appropriate response – ‘It’s a little bit more complicated than that’.”

    Not really. It’s as simple as taxing “carbon”.

    The entire climate scare is predicated on human CO2 emissions. But there is no scientific evidence showing that CO2 causes global warming. However, there is ample evidence showing that CO2 rises as the result of rising temperature.

    So what are you going to believe? Government scientists, who stand to cash in on climate alarmism? Or solid scientific evidence that contradicts the scare story? It’s your choice what to believe.

  16. CO2 causes taxation, employment for Lysenkoist scientists climate consultants and useless subsidy farms

  17. It blows me away that their own statement says that what they do and what climate scientists do is entirely different. Then they make a statement about climate and expect that their opinion should be accepted. Can you imagine if other disciplines did the same?

    Hi, I’m a furrier. I have no expertise in climate. Let me explain the climate to you.

    Hi, I’m a tax accountant. I have no expertise in climate. Let me explain the climate to you.

    Hi, I’m a politician. I have no expertise in climate. Let me explain my hand in your pocket to you.

    Hi, I’m a marriage counseler. I have no expertise in climate. Let me explain how the “does this dress make me look fat?” question affects regional climates.

  18. Argument from consensus again? Sigh.

    As a junior high school student, my 9th grade American Government class was a split period with two half-sessions sandwiching our short lunch break, and our classroom was located at the virtual antipode of the cafeteria, four flights up, where the class change bells were barely audible to our young ears and totally inaudible to our aged teacher. We quickly tired of being last in line every single day and having to wolf and run to get back to class on time. One day an overeager student thought he detected the sound of the bell and blurted out “There’s the bell!”, whereupon we all rose and headed for the cafeteria as our teacher smiled indulgently. Each day thereafter, self-interest overriding collective guilt, one or another of us quite deliberately announced the bell a few minutes before it sounded, and off we went. Our ruse harmed no one and actually smoothed out the lunch process, so we reasoned, but we were all liars and cheats, partners in fraud. Many of us felt bad about it, but not so bad as to consider ratting on our compadres and returning to the back of the line. I doubt that any in that class went on to be AGW climate scientists, but I think we understand a little of their mindset.

  19. Anthony Watts wrote:

    Read Dr. Peilke’s complete report here: Contradictory Statements By The American Meterological Society – Comments On The New Statement Titled “Climate Change”

    Hmm. Pielke, Sr. must have his own very free interpretation of the content of documents. He claims the AMS statement about greenhouse gases as the dominant driver of rapid global climate change of the past half century had been allegedly refuted by the National Research Council Report, 2005, which can be found here: http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?isbn=0309095069

    I looked at this report and couldn’t find anything in support of Pielke, Sr.’s assertion.

    Pielke, Sr. also seems to create confusion between global climate change on hand hand, and local and regional climate change on the other hand.

    REPLY:Hmmm. Kind a like James Hansen’s “free interpretation” of 10 years of warming temperature in 1988 before congress in a purposely overheated room for dramatic effect. Freedom to interpret goes both ways my friend. – Anthony

  20. Donald says:
    August 27, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    You are just regurgitating narrative. We know the narrative. It’s the evidence which is wanting. You believe because you want to believe, but your assertions and speculations are not evidence.

  21. Jan writes:

    “Pielke, Sr. also seems to create confusion between global climate change on hand hand, and local and regional climate change on the other hand.”

    You got part of it right. Keep reading. Pielke is not confused. He argues that land use changes are as much a factor in climate change as increasing CO2. His research is impeccable.

  22. davidmhoffer says:
    August 27, 2012 at 4:30 pm

    Well said. They are not doing science. They are doing hype.

  23. Hi! I’m a climate scientist. Nothing I have done or studied or forecasted or hindcasted the past 24 years has come true, and everything I have projected and extrapolated the past 24 years has been falsified by real data, or proven to have come from bad programs, post-hoc edits, and exaggerated sources of no reasonable validity. I have published nothing but what has been pal-reviewed by my fellow climate scientists, all of whom are sharing my government grants and research money and bureaucracies to join in future promotions and more government grants – as long as I continue to require new government taxes on other people and other incomes other than my climate research grants.

    Trust me. I want to take your money, ruin your future, and kill millions with my stated intentions of raising energy costs and starving innocents.

    Do not listen to others who are more skilled than I in their fields, for “I” am a climate scientist.

  24. Remember, this is the same AMS that named James Hansen (head of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies) as the 2009 winner of the Rossby Research Medal (for outstanding contributions to climate modeling, understanding climate change forcings and sensitivity, and for clear communication of climate science in the public arena).

    Apparently, they think someone with a formal education in astronomy knows more than a meteorologist (He was trained in physics and astronomy…He obtained a B.A. in Physics and Mathematics with highest distinction in 1963, an M.S. in Astronomy in 1965 and a Ph.D. in Physics, in 1967).

    So next time anyone shows that image of James Hansen in handcuffs, we need to remember his method of “…clear communication of climate science in the public arena…”

  25. The CAGW scare is based on the guess that increasing CO2 will cause water vapour in the upper atmosphere to increase, amplifying the small warming effect from CO2. A change in the amount of water vapour in a layer from 300 to 400 mbar (about 8 km altitude) has 30 times the effect on out-going radiation as the same change in a layer from the surface to 850 mbar, according to radiative line-by-line code. Since the humidity in the lower layer is 21 times greater than at the upper layer, a 1% increase increase in humidity near the surface can be totally compensated by at 0.67 % decrease in the upper layer. Data is at http://members.shaw.ca/sch25/Ken/Test.xls

    The graph below shows the annual specific humidity in the tropics from 30 degrees North to 30 degrees South latitude at the 400 mbar pressure level versus CO2 concentration from 1960 to 2011.

    The specific humidity at 400 mbar in the tropics best fit line has declined by 0.11 g/kg, or 13% while CO2 increased from 1960 to 2011. Globally, specific humidity has declined 8%. Meanwhile, specific humidity near the surface had increased about 3%. Humidity data is from NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory. Apparently, CO2 replaces water vapour in the upper atmosphere, so CO2 emissions do not increase the total amount of greenhouse gases much. Our best estimate of climate sensitivity is 0.5 C/double CO2, about 1/6 of the IPCC estimate.

  26. Donald says,
    “The IPCC, claiming that they completely understand all natural forcings…”

    This is what we call a “straw man”. You could at least try to make them less risibly absurd. In all of the thousands of pages of text, figures and tables that the IPCC has ever produced, nothing resembling this claim has ever appeared, as I’m sure you’re perfectly aware.

    By saying they are right enough to ignore other scientists and do significant damage to the world economy on the basis of their models, then they are claiming that – it isn’t a strawman

  27. RACookPE1978 says:
    August 27, 2012 at 6:00 pm
    Hi! I’m a climate scientist…
    ==========================
    No, it’s more like:

    , I am an 8 hit dice Global Climate Change Groupie with special ability to bore. I have a polymorph ability that allows me to change into a Climate Scientist Troll once a week, even though my specialization is Modeling Magik, which allows me to divine who are the “Good” scientists.

    Special ability #2 is to read the word “Uncertainty” and Intelligence and Wisdom go to 3 for (5) turns (It says so in the Climate Master Manual) and Reason Resistance 95% for (10) turns.

    Special ability #3 is to read CMIP5 and FLAWED in the same sentence causes an instant summoning of a Temporal Ignoring, a black hole that sucks the instance of that thought or concept from the Global Climate Change Groupie’s thought processes. This ability is unlimited.

    You are all wrong because my Monster Global Climate Change Manual (5th Edition) says so.

  28. David Ging:

    Google “Hansen et al 1988″. Download the .pdf. Read the report. Compare the current CO2 emissions with the scenarios in the report. Now compare actual temperature measurements with the predicted temperature change through 2011.
    Draw your own conclusions.

    Kurt in Switzerland

  29. Donald says:
    August 27, 2012 at 3:02 pm (Edit)

    In the same mode of response, you do realize that your statements are unconvincing in that they appear to be a bit of vague justification for your position. You also do not adress the problem with sea level change and that is really the big refutation of sudden, man made global warming in the 20th century. The levels are not changing in any way differently from what has gone before.

    You may well think us ignorant and unaccepting of the theories and processes you have accepted but the evidence you use is unconvincing and , to my mind at least, the reluctance of the sea level to conform to your models is fatal to your position.

  30. Ken Gregory wrote in

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/08/27/pielke-sr-and-curry-on-the-new-ams-climate-statement/#comment-1066427

    The graph below shows the annual specific humidity in the tropics from 30 degrees North to 30 degrees South latitude at the 400 mbar pressure level versus CO2 concentration from 1960 to 2011.

    This graph comes without any statement what the source of the data is, without any explanation what specifically has been compared, and no scientific reference is provided. And what is supposed to mean “Climate model assumption: constant relative humidity”? There is no assumption “constant relative humidity” in climate models used for climate simulations, i.e., coupled ocean-atmosphere general circulation models or Earth system models. The relative humidity in the atmosphere is calculated in those models.

    I only can suspect that the data used in the graph, to which the model data are compared, whatever those model data are supposed to be, are coming from NCEP reanalysis. It is correct that those data show a downward trend in the specific humidity in recent decades in contradiction to what theory and model simulations say (Paltridge et al, 2009, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00704-009-0117-x). Only, it has been shown that the NCEP data are an outlier regarding the long-term trend and the trend in these data is very likely spurious. Four other reanalysis data sets show the expected relationship between surface temperature and specific humidity also for the long-term variability. They show that specific humidity in the troposphere, including the upper troposphere, has increased with global warming (Dessler and Davis, 2010, http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2010JD014192). The reasons why the NCEP data are less reliable than the data from the other reanalyses are outlined in the Dessler and Davis paper.

    Thus, the so called “Friends of Science” picked the least reliable data to support their assertions, and they ignored those data and the scientific study, which are in agreement with theory and model simulations according to which a positive water vapor feedback is indeed present in the climate system, in contradiction to the assertions of the “Friends of Science”.

  31. The upcoming election battles may be unique in offering for the first time a debate about Global Warming. Neither Bush-Gore nor McCain-Obama chose to discuss the issue – maybe because they were not that far apart. By contrast, Barack Obama has already announced that, if re-elected, climate change will be an important priority — while Paul Ryan is an assertive skeptic on AGW (anthropogenic global warming).

    I would not hold my breath waiting for a debate on Climate Science. Paul Ryan is just a bone thrown at the “Tea Party” and the “Climate Deniers” to shut them up and make them think the Republicans are supporting their ideas. The person you really want to look at is Mitt Romney and he is right on track for pushing forward BP, Shell and ENRON’s plans.

    Gore’s Inconvenient Enron

    Twelve years …I left my law firm to accept a position… from Enron, asking me to be their Director of Federal Government Relations. Everyone polled suggested it was a great opportunity, a company admired throughout town, not just by the current (Clinton-Gore) administration with which it was very close, but by Republicans, too.

    My recollection is that it was my first day on the job when I walked into my boss’s office in Enron’s suite across from the White House, smack into a meeting between her and who I now know to be two of the Natural Resources Defense Council’s senior DC officials. OK. But the next day I was tasked with sitting in for “Kenny Boy” [Kenny Lay, Enron CEO] at a meeting in fancy New York law firm offices (in DC), around a table of Baptists and Bootleggers, rent-seekers and green puritans, discussing how to ensure a global warming treaty came about, of our collective design, and how to rope the U.S. in.

    So, seeing very measured groups like Union of Concerned Scientists on my immediate left, I turned to one of the rent-seekers’ officers on my right, among whom I recall being the American Gas Association, Niagara-Mohawk Power, and BP, among others. In response to my query, “what are we doing sitting around a table with a bunch of people who want to put us out of business?”, I was told with a laugh, “they want to put coal out of business first.”

    Lovely people, these folks kind enough to introduce me to the world’s second-oldest profession of trying to make one’s fortune off of policy favors from buddies in government instead of by innovation or competition. Frederic Bastiat, phone your office…

    Here is Mitt Romney’s take on the issue in his own words.

    MAIN PLATFORM
    “Republicans should never abandon pro-growth conservative principles in an effort to embrace the ideas of Al Gore. Instead of sweeping mandates, we must use America’s power of innovation to develop alternative sources of energy and new technologies that use energy more efficiently.”

    Myclob.pbworks.com – Governor Mitt Romney on the Current Environmental Debate – Feb 23, 2007

    “I adopt what I call no regrets policies. Policies that will allow us to become energy independent and will have as one of their by-products, reduction of the CO2 that we emit, the greenhouse gases that we emit. So let me tell you the kinds of things that I’d like to do.

    “With regards to our developing more energy, I want to see us use more of our renewable resources: bio-diesel, bio-fuel, ethanol, cellulosic ethanol. I want to see us developing liquefied coal if we can sequester the CO2 properly.

    “On the other side of the equation, in addition to developing our energy, we have to be more efficient in our use of it. And that means more fuel efficient vehicles. It means more energy efficient homes. The combination of more efficiency and the generation of more domestic-sourced energy will allow us to become energy independent. And we do need an Apollo type project. A Manhattan style project where we put in place the funding necessary to seriously get on track to becoming truly energy independent. And that has as the benefit, of reducing our emissions of CO2.” [Sounds like a Smart Growth/Agenda 21 endorsement if you read between the lines G.C.]
    About Mitt Romney

    OH, and because I called Mitt Romney, Obama-lite within the last month, it would seem LDS Freedom Forum has already banned me even though I have never commented on their site! That was fast work.

  32. joeldshore says: @ August 27, 2012 at 2:47 pm

    RayG says:

    follow-on to Pat Frank @ 12:47: Not to forget the Royal Society, Amer. Chem. Soc. and a host of others too long to list.

    …which, with a little self-reflection, might suggest something about your own position! As the old joke goes about the mother of a soldier when she sees her son go marching by with his unit: “Look…Everybody is out of step but my Johnny!”
    ____________________________________
    Utter Bull.
    I was a member of Amer. Chem. Soc. from 1970 on. NEVER was there a poll on anything but position held, field, degree, salary, age, Male- Female. These pronouncements by scientific societies do not reflect the opinions of the members in any way, shape or form.

    NGOs are not democratic and never let the rank and file know what is going on at higher levels. The only thing the rank and file contribute is funds and number of members to hit the politicians over the head with. Actual opinions are not wanted.

    NGOs are all about window dressing to give people the feeling they are ” out of step” with everyone else. We have been brainwashed into going along with the crowd, and to compromise. The Movers and Shakers take advantage of this with their propaganda campaigns.

    If by some miracle an actual grassroots organization forms that is not a controlled NGO, it is stomped on, ridiculed in the press, called names and blackballed. Only the internet has made possible wildcat grassroots organizations that have any broad based exposure.

    I learned all this well before I even knew WUWT existed BTW

  33. It’s remarkable that the AMS has published a statement on climate change that is at variance with the views of its own members expressed in a survey conducted as recently as February. The survey found that only a minority of AMS respondents (around 20%) is really worried about anthropogenic global warming (AGW). The results are here:

    http://www.climatechangecommunication.org/images/files/AMS_CICCC_Survey_Preliminary_Findings-Final.pdf

    An analysis:

    Question 1: 89% think GW “is happening”. But, after excluding (see Question 2) the 15% who are only “somewhat sure” or “not at all sure”, only 74% are sure it’s happening.

    Question 3: Of the 74%, 59% think it is caused “mostly by human activity” – i.e. 44% of all respondents.

    Question 4: Of the 74%, 38% think GW will be “very harmful” if nothing is done to address it – i.e. 28% of all respondents. (Note: another 28% of all respondents think it will be “somewhat harmful” – so seem unlikely to think it serious.)

    Comment:

    Looked at independently, these results are revealing: (A) 44% of all respondents are sure GW is happening and is mostly anthropogenic (therefore, 56% either (i) think it’s not happening, or are unsure about whether it’s happening, or (ii) think it’s happening but is not anthropogenic) and (B) 28% of all respondents think GW (anthropogenic or not) is serious.

    But they’re not independent: at most, only 28% consider GW is real, anthropogenic and serious. But, as it’s reasonable to assume (B) includes some of the 56% who think GW is real but not anthropogenic (A ii), it’s very likely that less than 28% think GW is real, anthropogenic and serious.

  34. Donald says:
    August 27, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    **Why did climate warm between 1910 and 1940?

    1. solar activity was rising towards the mid-20th century “Grand Maximum”.

    Thank you Donald, case closed.

  35. What a lame questionnaire. Loaded questions abound. Nobody is asked why a belief is held, merely “do you believe” The author’s viewpoint is obvious from the formulation of the questions.
    Most notably, there is ZERO differentiation between MITIGATION AND ADAPTATION, as both are thrown into the same question (#5).

    Then they flat out ignored half the respondents’ viewpoints with their statement. Incredible.

    If I were a member, I would organize a group letter to send to the board.

    Kurt in Switzerland

  36. Donald says:
    **Why did climate warm between 1910 and 1940?

    1. solar activity was rising towards the mid-20th century “Grand Maximum”. 2. no significant injections of aerosols into the stratosphere occurred. 3. moderate rise in CO2 concentrations.

    But then it cooled in later decades with a “moderate rise in CO2 concentrations.” As for the Sun you should know better. It has had a negligible part to play in the past or in recent warming. ;-)

  37. Jan P Perlwitz says: August 28, 2012 at 7:13 am
    Concerning my graph:

    This graph comes without any statement what the source of the data is, without any explanation what specifically has been compared, and no scientific reference is provided.

    Below the link I wrote, “Humidity data is from NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory.”, directly contradicting Jan’s remark. The CO2 data is as measured at Mauna Loa, Hawaii. If Jan had bothered to view the source document of the graph at

    http://www.friendsofscience.org/assets/documents/FOS%20Essay/Climate_Change_Science.html#Water_vapour

    he would have also found the link to the NOAA data.

    And what is supposed to mean “Climate model assumption: constant relative humidity”? There is no assumption “constant relative humidity” in climate models used for climate simulations, i.e., coupled ocean-atmosphere general circulation models or Earth system models. The relative humidity in the atmosphere is calculated in those models.

    The word “assumption” does not mean to imply they directly program relative humidity to stay constant, but is short hand for the models set various parameters that give the result that relative humidity in the upper atmosphere stays approximately constant. Of course humidity is calculated in the models, but the calculation for the upper atmosphere is wrong because it disagrees with the direct measurements.

    Jan provided a link to an abstract which states,

    all of the reanalyses except the NCEP/NCAR assimilate satellite radiances rather than being solely dependent on radiosonde humidity measurements to constrain upper tropospheric humidity.

    This means that the other reanalyses are not of direct radiosonde measurements, but are adjusted or manipulated by outside factors and computer modelling. They are not direct measurements. The NOAA ESRL data are from direct radiosonde measurements.

    The NASA water vapour project (NVAP) uses multiple satellite sensors to create a standard climate dataset to measure long-term variability of global water vapour. The Heritage NVAP merges data from several satellites and radiosonde water vapour products. The data for the 300 to 500 mbar layer is;

    Note the large reduction in water vapour with time.

    I asked Janice L. Bytheway of the NVAP-M Team to provide the humidity data for the upper atmosphere. In their paper, they only provided the total water vapour column, which is completely useless for climate research because water vapour changes in the upper atmosphere has 30 times the effect as near the surface. She replied:

    As for your interest in the trends at the upper versus lower levels of the atmosphere, we unfortunately don’t have the staff or funding to provide subsets of the data at this time. This feature should be provided in about 6 months after the NASA Langley ASDC has taken stewardship of the data.

    This is a nonsense reply as they can’t provide the total column water vapour without having it by layer.

    Increasing water vapour as modeled in the upper atmosphere must cause an enhanced warming rate in the tropical upper atmosphere at double the surface warming rate. Both radiosonde and satellites show that there is no enhanced upper atmosphere warming, so there can be no increase in water vapour.

    Furthermore, if there was enhanced tropical upper atmosphere warming there would be more hurricane activity. But the data shows hurricane activity is at a 32 year low, again indicating no enhanced warming and no increase in upper level water vapour.

    So we have 5 independent data sets that confirm no enhanced upper atmosphere moistening-warming: radiosonde humidity, radiosonde temperature, satellite humidity, satellite temperature, and hurricane Accumulated Cyclone Energy, all contradicting climate models.

  38. “no scientific evidence showing that CO2 causes global warming”

    Yes! None! Except for the mountains and mountains of evidence that have accrued since John Tyndall first discovered the IR-blocking properties of certain atmospheric gases, 150 years ago. But yeah, apart from all the evidence, there is no evidence!

    “But then it cooled in later decades with a “moderate rise in CO2 concentrations.” ”

    Yes. What’s your point?

    As for the Sun you should know better. It has had a negligible part to play in the past or in recent warming. ;-)

    Incorrect.

    **Why did climate warm between 1910 and 1940?

    1. solar activity was rising towards the mid-20th century “Grand Maximum”.

    Thank you Donald, case closed.

    Why no, no it isn’t. No matter how much you like the Sun, you can’t actually explain all temperature variations ever by attributing them all to solar activity.

  39. Bart says to Donald:

    “You are just regurgitating narrative. We know the narrative. It’s the evidence which is wanting. You believe because you want to believe, but your assertions and speculations are not evidence.”

    Repeated for effect. No matter how much the Donalds insist they have scientific evidence showing that manmade CO2 causes global warming, they never seem to post any testable evidence or data. They only post their assertions about “mountains of evidence”, and their personal beliefs.

  40. ”Man-made CO2 is increasing in the atmosphere.”

    The work of Salby actually calls into question whether this is relevant. I haven’t heard anything about Salby’s work since it appeared on the scene last year but the key point was changes in natural emission and absorption are much larger than human emission. Changes in man-made Co2 are puny and changes in our emission may not have all that much impact on the atmospheric level of Co2.

  41. Ken Gregory:

    At August 28, 2012 at 4:02 pm you reply to Jan P Perlwitz having said (at August 28, 2012 at 7:13 am) concerning your graph:

    This graph comes without any statement what the source of the data is, without any explanation what specifically has been compared, and no scientific reference is provided.

    Your reply to that assertion from Perlwitz says;

    Below the link I wrote, “Humidity data is from NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory.”, directly contradicting Jan’s remark. The CO2 data is as measured at Mauna Loa, Hawaii. If Jan had bothered to view the source document of the graph at

    http://www.friendsofscience.org/assets/documents/FOS%20Essay/Climate_Change_Science.html#Water_vapour

    he would have also found the link to the NOAA data.

    With respect, I think it likely that you are mistaken when you suggest Perlwitz did not “bother” to read what you wrote.

    The history of his posts on WUWT show Perlwitz has extreme reading comprehension difficulties. So, on the basis of his past record, he probably failed to understand the meaning of
    “Humidity data is from NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory”
    and, therefore, he ignored it. This would be consistent with previous posts on WUWT from Perlwitz.

    Richard

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