Discovery Channel FAIL – Sandy was not a ‘megastorm’

The hype meter at the Discovery Channel has pegged at full McKibben. See this:

Sandy wasn’t even a category 1 hurricane when it made landfall. Yet somehow, that elevates it for “megastorm” status?

I wonder if AccuWeather meteorologist Henry Margusity (who was heavily relied upon in the show) knew before he got suckered into this show that they’d make such incredible leaps of labeling?

Now, with a storm that doesn’t even come close to storms that have hit the area in the past, such as 1954 Hurricane Hazel or the Great Hurricane of 1938, what will they call a Cat3 or greater storm if it hits the area? Here’s some possibilities:

  • SuperDuperStorm
  • MegaMegaStorm
  • GigaStorm
  • SandyOnSteroids
  • Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious Storm
  • Spawn of MegaDoppler 9000

135 thoughts on “Discovery Channel FAIL – Sandy was not a ‘megastorm’

  1. Rabbi Daniel Lapin provides an insightful perspective on environmentalism:
    Myth #3 Business Harms the Environment

    . . . environmentalism is not the ultimate value for everyone, and those for whom it is not are not thereby condemned to hell. . . .America’s gift to her citizens is that she grants total freedom of belief to all. . . .
    the strong emotions that environmentalism evokes are chiefly the consequence of beliefs rather than facts. . . .
    some believe that global warming is a problem, and others believe it is not. . . .
    environmentalism has to be taken seriously because business is blamed for the catastrophes, whether real or imagined. . . .According to this view, the world’s original condition of natural perfection is being irreparably jeopardized by business. . . .The problem is nearly always the belief. . .
    Environmentalism places the preservation of nature in the forefront of moral consciousness, above and beyond most other values with which it may well be in conflict. In so doing, environmentalists may effectively censor out any calculation of relative benefits. They might also be making competing facts quite irrelevant. . . . Because environmentalism is as much a belief as almost any religious faith, trying to aggressively win converts is in bad taste. . . .
    My hope here is to encourage you to reject the conventional wisdom and the cultural hysteria about environmental issues until you have conducted your own independent research. . . I merely recommend that you include within your reading list books and magazines that offer alternative viewpoints on this controversial issue. . . .

    Thou Shall Prosper: Ten Commandments for Making Money. 2002 ISBN 0-471-21868-5 pp 153-156

  2. PBS Nova ran a show this evening about Sandy entitled, “Inside the Megastorm.” I don’t know whether it’s the same show as the Discovery Channel show, but it certainly sounds similar. I sent them the following “feedback” message.

    re: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/earth/inside-the-megastorm.html

    Your mostly-excellent program this evening, “Inside the Megastorm,” about superstorm Sandy, ended with a series of blatant misrepresentations about climate change and sea-level. The truth is that global warming has caused no detectable increase in sea-level. Measurements show that the rise in CO2 and other greenhouse gases over the last 2/3 century has not caused any increase at all in the rate of sea-level rise. In fact, the best studies of globally averaged sea-level measurements indicate that the rate of sea-level rise has actually decreased slightly as CO2 levels have risen.

    Moreover, contrary to a statement in your program, warming of the upper layer of the ocean does not affect coastal sea levels at all, even in theory. Because gravity balances mass, not volume, water density changes in the upper ocean do not cause lateral flows; instead, the water rises or falls IN PLACE. This is most obvious in the case of icebergs and other floating ice, but is true of all ocean density changes, including those from warming water.

    Plus, about half of the sea-level rise experienced by New York is due to land subsidence, rather than changes in global sea-level. The statement in your program that sea-level at New York has risen about a foot over the last century is technically true, but misleading, because it lumps land subsidence together with global sea change to convey an exaggerated impression of the extent of sea level rise over the last century. Most long term tide station measurements of sea-level rise around the world have measured less than six inches of sea level rise over the last century.

    Here’s a reference:

    http://tinyurl.com/nhazburt1

    Please run a correction informing your viewers that, thus far, scientific measurements have detected no indication of any increase in the rate of sea-level rise in response to human activity.

  3. Daveburton
    “The truth is that global warming has caused no detectable increase in sea-level.”

    Straight from wiki but it could be any number of informed sources.
    “Two main factors contributed to observed sea level rise. The first is thermal expansion: as ocean water warms, it expands. The second is from the contribution of land-based ice due to increased melting. The major store of water on land is found in glaciers and ice sheets.
    Sea level rise is one of several lines of evidence that support the view that the climate has recently warmed. It is likely that human-induced (anthropogenic) warming contributed to the sea level rise observed in the latter half of the 20th century.”

    I think you might be wrong.

  4. Good luck with that, daveburton. Well written, but they’ve already turned off the sceptic channel.

    Hermann Goering could not have done a better job of defining an enemy of the sheeple. Well done, mainstream media.

  5. OK, Simon, please. Tell us how a minute fraction of the ocean’s surface layer, warming at best by a fraction of a degree kelvin, is going to expand into a detectable rise in sea level? Oh. Sorry, I thought you could. My bad.

  6. I followed it on the Accuweather forums. Sandy’s destructiveness was due to a series of co-incidences…

    * A tropical storm (Sandy)

    * Blocking highs in the Atlantic that forced Sandy to go inland

    * It occured at full moon, when lunar sea tides are aligned with, and add up with, solar sea tides.

    * The remnants of Sandy merged with a regular low heading east over North America

    Remove any of these factors, and Sandy would’ve been a relative flop.

  7. A major issue is the direction of the governmental response to this storm. Will cities, states, and the feds spend billions of dollars helping communities rebuild based on the assumption that such ‘superstorms’ can be controlled by a carbon tax? If so, we are all in trouble. Alternatively, politicians and media could tell the truth, namely, this was a big storm with a coincidence of a high tide and odd path. Damaged families and such need to be helped. But bigger storms have happened and will happen again and rebuilding in certain areas is a recipe for disaster. Blaming Sandy on global warming and encouraging a stupid response is immoral and ought to be criminalized.

  8. Simon says:

    “Sea level rise is one of several lines of evidence that support the view that the climate has recently warmed.”

    Flat wrong. The sea level rise has not accelerated. Thus, the false claim that sea level rise is due to human CO2 emissions is proven to be baseless nonsense.

    The planet has not warmed at all for the past sixteen years, falsifying your AGW belief system. If AGW exists, it is too small to measure. There are no empirical measurements of AGW. So go peddle your climate alarmist nonsense elsewhere.

  9. “…what will they call a Cat3 or greater storm if it hits the area?”

    That’s easy. First, they’ll call it an “unprecedented” storm, like they always do. Then they’ll compare it to the previously unprecedented megastorm Sandy as proof that incidences of extreme weather are rapidly accelerating due to climate change. (Being accurate with the facts always takes second place to supporting “the cause.”)

  10. It was a really big storm. The effects were increased by AGW. Really tough decisions about rebuilding in coastal areas in the face of rising sea levels have to be made now.

    But if you want to pretend that nothing much happened, and that even if it did, it was nothing to do with AGW, and that even if it was, it wasn’t actually caused by CO2, and that even if it was, it wasn’t CO2 that we emitted – feel free.

    REPLY: “The effects were increased by AGW.” Your are an “academic” so, go ahead, prove it. Otherwise your claim is just like the rest of the noise coming out of Australia’s SkS zealots – Anthony

  11. Simon says:
    November 18, 2012 at 7:10 pm
    Mike Bromley
    The sea is rising. About 3mm a year at present. Are you saying it isn’t?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    The question is not if it is rising, but if the rise is accelerating. Which it isn’t.

    Rather odd don’t you think? Because CO2 emissions are certainly accelerating. They are increasing faster than ever before. Yet HadCrut, GISS, UAH and RSS all show no warming over the last 15 years. If there has been no warming for 15 years, what has caused the sea level to rise since it wasn’t warming? Or are you saying that the world’s four major temperature indices are wrong? Really having trouble with this Simon. Can you explain it to me better?

  12. D Böehm

    I didn’t say it had accelerated, I merely said it was increasing and that is undeniably true. I don’t think there is any doubt the oceans sea level rise is because of the recent (last 100 years) warming. And am I wrong in thinking this is an open forum, where one can discuss ideas freely. Is there no room to discuss things here? Have I got this wrong?

  13. @Simon

    Sea level was rising at 3mm/yr until recently when contrary to GCM predictions, it has reduced even though CO2 continues to rise at an increasing rate. Do you not find the failure of these modelling predictions alarming? I do. It means the models are not correct and we have funded a boondoggle, multiple times.

    The damage caused by Sandy will be exceeded by the next large storm if people of limited vision continue to build on dangerous ground with unreliable foundations. Kinda like CAGW alarmism, wouldn’t you say?

    Fairbridge, who studied the seal changes on the E Australian coast said it had risen and fallen by as much as 2 metres in 20 years during the past few millenia. I think we can quite comfortably adapt to a rise of 300mm/century if the recent downturn reverses again.

  14. KiwiSi,

    Of course this is an open forum. What are you going on about? Others have a different view, do you expect that your view should not be challenged?

    You write: “I don’t think there is any doubt the oceans sea level rise is because of the recent (last 100 years) warming.”

    You ‘think’ wrong. The rise in sea level is right along its long term trend line. There has been no acceleration of sea level rise, despite the large increase in [harmless, beneficial] CO2, thus falsifying your belief that anthropogenic CO2 causes global warming.

    The planet has been warming along the same long term trend line since the Little Ice Age, irregardless of whether CO2 has been low or high. Therefore, the rise in CO2 has had no measurable effect. QED

  15. Sandy caused damage out of proportion to its strength as a hurricane due to the location of its landfall in the USA and by the very fact that it was expanding (in extent) as it decayed into a major rain depression. The extent of the low pressure region caused record high sea levels which in turn brought the flood damage.

  16. Hey, if you live in Manhattan, whatever happens there in your lifetime defines the biggest, worst, best, etc. The Capital of the World is filled with insulated people, whose world view is constantly reinforced with messages from ABC at Lincoln Square, CBS over on W57th St., NBC in Rockefeller, and FOX on 6th Ave. Therefore Sandy must be a megastorm, not matter what reality actually is. To be fair, coastal CA has a larger population of colossal dopes, completely out of touch with the real world. So, you goofballs over there, enjoy the sunset while you can, the party isn’t going to last. In a real disaster, I’d rather be with the NYers, no doubt about it.

  17. John Brookes: “It was a really big storm. ”
    It was a “big” storm, though only borderline Cat.1. Hazel in 54, and the big storm in ’38 were more powerful. And Sandy hit just right to push water into the NYC “funnel”, during high tide, on a full moon. The NAO was negative, which steered Sandy westward. CAGW was not a factor, unless you claim this was responsible for the previous BIGGER storms.

  18. Anthony Watts said in part: “Sandy wasn’t even a category 1 hurricane
    when it made landfall.”

    Sandy did have hurricane force sustained winds at landfall, according to
    National Hurricane Center determinations. There were merely unusually at an
    offshore location on the unusually left side storm – and in an offshore direction.

    Although Sandy did not produce any hurricane force sustained winds in USA,
    the reason Sandy was disqualified from being a hurricane was because that
    storm had transitioned into a Nor’Easter. Some of those do have eyes, though
    mostly clouded by low clouds, and lacking eyewalls that amount to a circular
    squall line of thunderstorms with convection from surface to tropopause.

    I would not minimize Sandy, because the large size of Sandy was largely due
    to extratropical forces favorable to a Nor’Easter to form where Sandy was
    running into. Instead, I would compare Sandy to the October 1991 “Perfect
    Storm”, Agnes of June 1992 (mainly just a rain event but historically bad),
    and (as you did do) Hazel of October 1954.

    All of these storms did most of their damage after being disqualified from
    being tropical cyclones. They were storms that feed mainly from horizontal
    temperature gradient. That tends to be greater at colder times of the year.
    And in the northern hemisphere, less when the world is warmer, since the
    Arctic has been warming more than the tropics.

  19. The point I see everybody missing is that FEMA has screwed up and failed to do its job in the aftermath of Sandy at least as badly as they did after (bigger) Katrina and Rita. Another on the list of things our “hope and change” president said he’d change for the better but hasn’t.

  20. KiwiSi;
    Is there no room to discuss things here? Have I got this wrong?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>.

    Have you been snipped? Banned from posting? No? So what’s stopping you from continuing the discussion?

    Several points have been made in response to you. If you wish to clarify your assertion, by all means, I for one am listening. But simply saying the sea levels are increasing is kinda meaningless. As I said earlier (presuming you and “Simon” are one and the same) the rise isn’t accelerating even though CO2 emissions have increased massively in recent years.

    Suppose you threw a ball in the air, and kept track of its height every tenth of a second. You’d notice that as it rose in the air, itz rate of ascent kept on slowing down until it reached itz peak trajectory. So for the time segment prior to the peak it would be fair to say that it is still rising, but it would also be fair to say that the deceleration will eventually overcome the ball’s momentum, it will reach a peak, and then fall back to earth.

    We don’t have close to the data required to know exactly what is driving sea level rise, but we do know that it is decelerating and we know also that the temperatures which are supposedly driving it upward have not changed in about 15 years, suggesting that other factors are at play.

  21. There is an interesting article dated October 24, 2012 (one week before Sandy!): Sea Level Rising Faster Than Average in Northeastern U.S. You know, I gotta give credit to the editor of OnEarth for exquisite timing.

    Based on readings at 23 tidal gauges stretching along the entire East Coast, John Boon of the Virginia Institute of Marine Science has determined that the rate of sea level rise began to accelerate in 1987 at points north of Norfolk, Virginia.
    Boone concluded that if the acceleration continues at this rate — something that is not certain at this point — Boston will see 27 inches of sea-level rise by 2050, New York will see 20 inches and Norfolk will see 24 inches.

    The John Boon full paper in PDF referenced by the article is: John D. Boon (2012) Evidence of Sea Level Acceleration at U.S. and Canadian Tide Stations, Atlantic Coast, North America. Journal of Coastal Research In-Press. 9 pgs. He fits tide gauges to a quadratic model and uses 35 year serial trends for first order rates.

    Boon has quite an accelerated extrapolation to get a rise of 27 inches by 2050. I wouldn’t bet the farm on his prediction. But assuming the data is valid, we have to ask how sea level rise can accelerate north of Norfolk, but not south of there. A possible reason for localized acceleration in the tidal readings could be a change in currents and/or salinity of parts of the ocean. PSMSL.org FAQ reports “These currents lead to differences between the MSS and the geoid of 1-2 m..” (see WUWT comment May 28, 2012, Is Sea Level Rise Accelerating?” This means that localized accelerations can happen, but must be limited in degree and duration. You cannot depart far from the geode.

  22. I am watching a bizarre show on the History Channel. I have learned that a cold front energized Sandy and turned it into a super-storm. The Storm of The Century. This proclamation by a ‘scientist’. Gov. (Useless Andy) agrees. There was absolutely nothing he could have done in the face of this disaster caused by conservative industry. Nothing. No storm was ever so great.
    It is like listening to drug addicts discuss the best high, but with their added expertise on neurology. . .

  23. Oh for god’s sake. Sandy was a notable autumn gale, nothing more. That a stiffish autumn gale did so much damage is entirely down to the complete unpreparedness of New York for even a minor sort of storm.

  24. Crispin in Waterloo noticed the recent dip in sea level rise. But this is just a temporary blip, and no reason to doubt that the sea will continue to rise. Just as atmospheric temperatures regularly drop down – amidst a generally increasing trend, the sea level will continue to rise.

    Crispin also tries to comfort us by pointing out extremely rapid sea level change in the past. Somehow that doesn’t reassure me. If it changed rapidly in the past, it could do it now (but lets hope not).

  25. Bill Jamison says:
    November 18, 2012 at 6:53 pm

    Sandy qualifies as a megastorm in sheer size and damage it caused.

    Define “megastorm.”

    Hint: mega-, the SI prefix for one million (10^6)

    FYI:
    1900 Galveston hurricane, fatalities 6000–12,000 direct
    Damages $20 million (1900 USD) – $558,720,000 (2012 USD)
    145 mph (230 km/h) Lowest pressure 936 mbar (hPa); 27.64 inHg

    Sandy: Pressure bottomed at 939.9 mbar; 27.76 inHg and had maximum sustained winds of about 90 mph.

    Sandy went extra-tropical as it was making landfall, as such, it’s wind field opened up to a size more appropriate for that structure.

    “Megastorm” my arse.

  26. Brooklyn-Battery tunnel flooded by Sandy was opened to limited traffic on Nov. 13, 2012

    http://observer.com/2012/11/the-hugh-carey-brooklyn-battery-tunnel-just-reopened-and-already-theres-traffic/

    Both sides of Broklyn-Battery tunnel to open Monday, Nov. 20. For busses and cars. Trucks not yet allowed.

    For history: Nov. 1, 2012, NYDailyNews:Repairing the New York subway system after Hurricane Sandy may be the MTA’s biggest task yet. A good summary of what was flooded and early repairs.

  27. John Brookes says:
    November 18, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    It was a really big storm. The effects were increased by AGW. Really tough decisions about rebuilding in coastal areas in the face of rising sea levels have to be made now.

    Really tough decisions? Well, more along the line “Do we rebuild, or do we sell?” Long Beach Island was rebuilt and development exploded on the north end of the island after the 1962 storm.

    AGW has very little to do with barrier islands – they’re sand traps that keep migrating on shore until silly people come along and try to stop them. Then the ocean-facing people get upset when the towns help nature build some really big protective dunes that block the view of the ocean….

  28. Donald L. Klipstein says:
    November 18, 2012 at 9:02 pm

    Anthony Watts said in part: “Sandy wasn’t even a category 1 hurricane
    when it made landfall.”

    Sandy did have hurricane force sustained winds at landfall, according to
    National Hurricane Center determinations. There were merely unusually at an
    offshore location on the unusually left side storm – and in an offshore direction.

    A storm with hurricane force winds is not necessarily a hurricane. The NHC downgraded it to an extra-tropical storm just before landfall, so technically, Anthony is right. There was still sort of an eye structure, but I’m not sure what the other criteria for extratropical/tropical weather were impacted.

  29. @ 9:02 pm Donald L. Klipstein says: “ I would not minimize Sandy, . . .

    I, and I think most regular readers of WUWT — and the host thereof, agree with the fact that Sandy was a major storm and did major physical damage. Lives have been lost and businesses damaged and many likely will not survive. The WSJ has been following several and reporting on the problems faced. Lots of agreement on the impact of this storm.

    But we should not let anyone suggest all of this is caused by CO2. Past storms were not. This one was not. Suggesting this can be fixed by wind turbines and electric cars is nonsense. Living on a sand bar is bad for one’s health and hard on everyone’s pocketbook. I live at 2,240 feet and object to paying for beach enhancement and rebuilding private homes in the sand.

  30. November 18, 2012 at 7:10 pm | Simon says: “The sea is rising. About 3mm a year at present. Are you saying it isn’t?”
    ——————————–

    Try 3mm per DECADE, if at all. Some places in the world have recorded increases and others decreases. Around Australia, a recent study has identified 3mm per decade.

  31. Just watching some garbage here in Australia, some group throwing a gig with lights, speakers mixing desks, dancers etc. in Rockefeller Plaza NY. Everyone seems happy, content and dancing. Sandy was definitely no megastorm if they’ve recovered that quick. Just a “hype”-r-storm..

  32. D Böehm
    I am happy for you to challenge my view. It was just your statement..”So go peddle your climate alarmist nonsense elsewhere.” Pardon me for saying, but It seemed, a little well….unwelcoming.

    So now I feel welcome, here is what I have to say? You seem reluctant to credit CO2 with the warming. I can excuse that. But there has been increased warming. We can argue about how much, but it is there. Pretty much every scientist (every scientist really) on both sides of the debate accepts that. And sea level rise has increased as a result. As water warms it expands and swells. Simple. And that is without the melt from glaciers etc.

    If you take the time to even skim read this:

    http://academics.eckerd.edu/instructor/hastindw/MS1410-001_FA08/handouts/2008SLRSustain.pdf

    you will see there has been an increase in the speed of rise. Graph (a) on page 12 says it all.

    Please direct me to a reputable link that says otherwise and I will happily read it.

  33. Walter Dnes says:
    November 18, 2012 at 7:11 pm

    I followed it on the Accuweather forums. Sandy’s destructiveness was due to a series of co-incidences…

    Another coincidence was its unusual (unprecedented?) low atmospheric pressure in the eye.

  34. Discovery Science channel just aired the program “A Few More Degrees” as part of their “Avoiding Apocalypse” series. It ends with the preposterous statement of “Eliminating Co2 from the air we breathe is the key to our survival”. Simply astounding.

  35. Daniel L. Hagen quotes a rabbi (respect) to the effect that environmentalism is not the view of everyone.

    Obviously, first, one has to define terms (in rabbinical and other traditions of thought). But, if I define, for the purposes of discussion, ‘environmentalism’ as the recognition that we humans depend for our well-being and, perhaps, very existence, on natural systems which we do not control and cannot replace with human-made systems, and therefore have to make sure that those natural systems continue functioning effectively (as our ‘life-support’, let’s say), we all must be ‘environmentalists’.

    We humans, with 200,000 years at most of existence, cannot outguess or replace the 4 billion year evolution of the biosphere and volatisphere, and we must recognise that we are subject to the natural environment, and dependent on it. Biomes, ecosystems, have a value which we still cannot really measure in terms of our economics; they sustain us, but we (often) think they can be destroyed or changed without long-term consequences. However, humans are an essential part of the biosphere and we change it: I’m British, for example, and I recognise that humans on those islands have completely changed the biomes that existed before their arrival. There is no ‘wild’ or ‘natural’ place in the British Isles.

    We need great understanding of those natural systems, and of our interactions with them; that’s what science is about in relation to climate and many other topics. I read and learn and occasionally write in WUWT because I am environmentalist, amongst other things. To be a real environmentalist requires a deep understanding of how the whole world works, critical and thoughtful. I am not betraying my youthful environmentalism by being sceptical about CAGW; on the contrary, I am learning from those scientists, in many areas, who are presenting sound evidence and explanations for how the Earth system works, and how to really care for the environment.

    .

  36. Utterly predictable the rush for interested parties to push the line that this storm was something greater than it was, of course for the people caught up in the storm I am sure it was a frighting experience, yet for a storm which has been billed as one of the worst on record the loss of life’s has been (thankfully) remarkably small.

  37. well, the World Bank should know a thing or two!

    19 Nov: Sydney Morning Herald: Tom Arup: Degrees of devastation: major report warns of drastically hotter planet
    The World Bank has warned the planet is on track to warm by four degrees Celsius this century – causing increasingly extreme heat waves, lower crop yields and rising sea levels – unless significant action is taken to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
    In a major report released ahead of the year-end United Nations climate summit in Qatar, the bank says changes associated with four degrees of warming would have dramatic and devastating effects on all parts of the world, including Australia, but that the poor would be most vulnerable…
    The report – a snapshot of the most recent climate science prepared for the bank by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and Climate Analytics – says global mean warming is now about 0.8 degrees above pre-industrial levels.
    It says that if current promises by nations to curb emissions are met then it is most likely there will be more than three degrees warming. However, under that scenario it warns there is also a 20 per cent likelihood that four degrees of warming will occur by 2100.
    If current promises are not met, then the world is “plausibly” on a path to warm by four degrees this century, possibly as early as 2060, the bank says.
    The report, titled Turn Down the Heat, says if the world experiences four degrees of warming it would: (TRY GUESSING BEFORE READING)

    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/degrees-of-devastation-major-report-warns-of-drastically-hotter-planet-20121119-29l3c.html

    the Bank should be grateful the Australian Prime Minister has their back:

    15 Nov: Prime Minister’s Office: Speech to Business Council of Australia Dinner
    It’s been observed by some that there are controversial Labor policies reflected in the White Paper – like the NBN, like school improvement, like pricing carbon…
    In total around sixty per cent of the world’s GDP is either subject to a carbon price today, or has one legislated or planned for implementation in the two or three years ahead.
    International carbon markets will cover billions of consumers this decade. Ask the bankers at your table whether they want Australia to clip that ticket. We’re going to help them get their share…

    http://www.pm.gov.au/press-office/speech-business-council-australia-dinner

  38. The storm came ashore on the high spring tide. Most unfortunate timing to be sure. But let’s not make it something it was not. There is always a chance with late season hurricanes that they can be swallowed up by a mid latitude cold core cyclone. That has happened many times in the past. The “Perfect Storm” in 1992 to which Sebastian Junger writes about is one such example, though luckily (for Boston) it was further out at sea when it became extra-tropical.

  39. ROTFLMAO!
    I love the idea of a hype scale with a catagory five torrential panic as a McKibben. Or should that be a category four, with a storming Romm being the big monster at number five?

  40. Simon says:

    November 18, 2012 at 11:01 pm

    It’s your imprecise language that is the problem. There has been no accelerated increase in sea level rise. There is ample proof from the physics of heat transfer between gas and liquid to show that it is virtually impossible for a low density gas to transfer significant quantities of heat to a high density liquid. If the gas of influence is only 0.0004 mole (partial pressure, Dalton’s Law) of the carrier gas it cannot under any circumstances heat the liquid. Read the physics and stop listening to the clowns.

  41. Evan Pugh says:
    November 18, 2012 at 11:47 pm
    Discovery Science channel just aired the program “A Few More Degrees” as part of their “Avoiding Apocalypse” series. It ends with the preposterous statement of “Eliminating Co2 from the air we breathe is the key to our survival”. Simply astounding.

    If by “survival” they mean the complete extermination of all life on the planet, they are of course right. Statements like these demonstrate how successful warmist propaganda has been at labeling CO2 as a pollutant.

  42. Simon says:
    November 18, 2012 at 11:01 pm

    – Simon’s link is to Church & White (2008), probably the most referenced paper in recent years on sea-level rise. He points us to the familiar fig. 3(a) on p12. I point you all to fig. 4 (a & b) on the following page. They show that virtually all the satellite-era (since 1993) rise is in those areas where the upper 700m of the ocean has warmed, manly the western Pacific and eastern Indian Ocean. In the main, tide gauge data I’ve analysed confirms the satellite data. There’s no actual discrepancy (in my opinion) between rise measured by gauges and rise measured by satellite. It’s just that most of the rise is localised and remote from most tide gauges worldwide.

    The assertion that expansion-driven rise is entirely localised and that coastal gauges won’t show it is generally true, but not borne out everywhere. There’s a fairly convincing correlation between recent rates of rise and SST around Australia, for example, once changes in land height are taken into account. In my opinion wind direction, strength and barometric pressure may help explain why sea level correlates well or partly with SST even in some areas with shallow coastal waters (e.g. continental shelves). Pacific Islands are mostly surrounded by steeply-shelving seabed (almost vertical for volcanic islands and volcano-based atolls).and generally reflect SST (increased or otherwise) in rates of sea-level rise.

  43. Simon says:
    November 18, 2012 at 11:01 pm

    Interesting paper. I usually stop as soon as I get to a prominent activist/alarmist (in this case Rahmstorf) but this paper has some redeeming qualities even if (some) papers cited have been, more recently, superseded.

    However, the main source for sea-level metrics:

    http://sealevel.colorado.edu/

    show that for 200 years not much has changed. Papers full of if, but and maybe do not trump observation.

  44. The BBC, of course, had their own version. I did not, on principle, view it but I did read the resume which confirmed my suspicions that it would be alarmist in the extreme.

  45. this is so sensational, it needs its own thread:

    ***MUST READ ALL. DON’T MISS THE HELEN BOADEN/Andrew Dlugolecki STUFF ON PAGE 3 & KEEP AN EYE ON UNSWORTH, NOW PROMOTED, WHO WAS AT THE JAN 2006 SEMINAR:

    3 pages: 19 Nov: UK Register: Andrew Orlowski: How can the BBC be saved from itself without destroying it?
    Dumbed-down climate coverage is just a symptom
    Special Report
    Blogger Tony Newbery’s pursuit of the seminar’s previously secret attendee list highlights two things of much greater significance. One is that it casts light on a strategy by the BBC’s legal department to shield the public-funded corporation from scrutiny by the citizen, by redefining itself as a private organisation.
    The Freedom of Information Act 2000 allows facts and figures to be withheld and kept secret “for the purposes of journalism”, and the BBC’s use of this get-out clause is so pervasive it must be considered strategic rather than accidental. This appears to have the full backing of executives: the BBC’s director of news Helen Boaden appeared as a witness during an information tribunal hearing into Newbery’s request; the journalism derogation was trotted out as a key pillar for the BBC’s defence.
    And the trust? It appears not to know or not to care about the battle over the climate seminar’s attendees. But the affair also highlights the role the BBC thinks it must perform – and it’s rather different to the one licence-fee payers expect it to perform – that of staying aloof from the fray…
    Scientists are clever, they should tell us what to do – right?
    A thought exercise. Imagine, if you will, that an astronomer discovered a large meteorite hurtling to Earth. The precise time and date of impact were then calculated. This would leave us with a wide range of moral and economic choices. It would be very strange, in fact inconceivable, if someone handed all these decisions to the astronomer to make.
    “Here you go, Man with the Telescope – tell us what to do!”
    Yet this is what happened throughout the media and political class in response to the dramatic and simplified tale of climate change. Now we have it from the highest authority, Mark Thompson: he gave three lectures at Oxford University recently, which reveal him to be an intelligent and witty man. But in one lecture he makes a quite extraordinary argument [PDF].
    Thompson picks apart a statement made by social scientist Dr Benny Peiser, who stated that the scientific fact of climate change invites a range of policies, economic choices, and moral decisions. Peiser doesn’t quibble with the “science”, but merely points out the obvious, that we have to decide what to do. Thompson doesn’t like this because only “scientists” are qualified to make ethical and economic decisions. Others may get involved, but only if they delegate their authority to the “scientists”. This is the course we’re told to follow on climate change.
    There are enormous problems with this. The mitigation policies being advanced (and they came in a bundle – buy the science, get the policy for free) fall largely on the developing countries most in need of an advanced industrial society. These policies, if implemented, will perpetuate poverty, increase unwanted human misery and cause avoidable deaths…
    Thompson concluded his Oxford lecture by telling scientists that without the broadcasters they “have no voice” – he is literally saying: “Make us your mouthpiece.” Given that Thompson has completely conceded moral authority on the matter, he really has no other conclusion to make. It’s a return of Comte’s Positivism, in which scientists are the ultimate authority in society on all decisions. Why? Because… well, they do science and stuff…

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/11/19/the_virus_that_ate_the_bbc/

  46. In November 2010 WUWT posted on sea level rise and the absurdity of the hysterical predictions being made by scientists and a press which delights in scaring people. It was clearly demonstrated, using data from the Battery Park tide gauge, New York, that sea level was rising at only 2.77 mm per year.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/11/28/freaking-out-about-nyc-sea-level-rise-is-easy-to-do-when-you-dont-pay-attention-to-history/

    A graph in the same post showed that sea level rise was not linear and had leveled out in the the last 6000 years after several thousand years of steeply rising.

    http://www.globalwarmingart.com/wiki/File:Post-Glacial_Sea_Level_png

    Clearly if CAGW was being taken seriously the huge institutions and corporations located in New York would be heading for the hills without delay.

    One problem with the CAGW scare is that it is seen by investment portfolio managers as an opportunity to make fortunes. A report last year by global investors managing
    $2 trillion in assets considered scenarios to 2030. The report was welcomed by the Investor Network on Climate Risk (INCR) which comprises “95 institutional investors in North America managing more than $9 trillion in assets.”

    Some of the findings of the report were that, within 20 years:
    “Low-carbon technology investment opportunities could hit $5 trillion. The impact on food security, the physical environment, and health could result in costs that exceed $4 trillion. Carbon emission costs could rise by as much as $8 trillion due to climate change-related policy changes.”

    “A statement from Mindy Lubber, president of Ceres and director of INCR claimed, “that no prudent investor could ignore either the portfolio performance risk, as high as 10%, or the potential rewards offered by low-carbon investment opportunities.

    “However, Lubber warned, in order for regulators and policy makers to make the right investment decisions, they must have accurate information from companies; they must also, she added, put in place carbon-reducing policies that will allow investors to shift “large amounts of capital” away from polluting technologies and into low-carbon opportunities.”

    http://www.advisorone.com/2011/02/21/climate-change-puts-institutional-investors-at-ris

    It’s another potentially monstrous financial bubble, based on the results of computer modelling and both climate predictions which are not born out by data and pessimistic financial risk predictions based on flawed science.
    And bubbles always burst eventually.

  47. “2012 Season Draws To Close”

    “The 2012 Hurricane Season is now drawing to a close and officially ends on November 30th this year. So, we thought we’d take a little look back at why this year has been pretty impressive year for the Atlantic basin…..

    ….Then came Sandy…. one of the largest systems observed with sustained winds of tropical storm-force which spanned a diameter of 932 miles!

    As it draws to a close, we will always remember this season for Hurricane Sandy, however we’ve had no Category 4 or 5 hurricanes this season. In addition if the season ends this way, it would be the least amount of major hurricanes in a season since 1997.”

    http://www.metcheck.com/UK/

  48. John Brookes says:
    November 18, 2012 at 9:49 pm
    Crispin in Waterloo noticed the recent dip in sea level rise. But this is just a temporary blip, and no reason to doubt that the sea will continue to rise. Just as atmospheric temperatures regularly drop down – amidst a generally increasing trend, the sea level will continue to rise.

    Maybe not:

    Bill Illis says:
    November 2, 2012 at 5:09 am

    They are going to fix the satellite records now because they have improved ocean mass (glacial melt) numbers and improved ocean heat steric rise numbers.

    Eric Leuliette (of NOAA) and Josh Willis (managing the ARGO program) are arguing the rise should be reduced to 1.6 mm/year.

    Basically, the previous models of glacial isostatic adjustment were not correct (shown by recent measurements using GPS of Antarctica and by redoing the assumptions used for GRACE) and the steric ocean heat rise was over-estimated (shown by the ARGO floats).

    The old models allowed the researchers to adjust the Raw satellite data to get the results the models said should be there or something close to 3.0 mm/year. But the old models were flawed and we are back to 1.6 mm/year, the same number as most of the 20th Century.

    http://ibis.grdl.noaa.gov/SAT/SeaLevelRise/documents/NOAA_NESDIS_Sea_Level_Rise_Budget_Report_2012.pdf

    http://www.tos.org/oceanography/archive/24-2_leuliette.pdf

  49. I’m in a rush this morning so couldn’t read all of the comments, so apologies if this point has been made.

    Being able to call this a “Mega” or “Super” storm and blaming it on global warming is perfect cover for politicians. If this was anything less than the “storm of the century”, then it was less than the engineering design event. And if it was less than the design event, then anything that failed was substandard. And if something failed because it was substandard, then the responsible party is liable. Yet the media continues to provide cover to the politicians who are responsible for assuring that the facilities that failed would be capable of withstanding a design storm. Hazel should be the design storm in NY. Had Hazel stalled where Sandy stalled, rather than over Toronto, the impact would have been much worse than Sandy.

    Got to run, sorry for any missed typos!

    JE

  50. First, “mega” means “large, impressive, great” in informal usage, so I don’t have that much problem with “megastorm” – as long as through overuse we don’t wind up with a climatological Lake Wobegon effect, where today “all the storms are above average”. Which, of course, they aren’t.

    In fact, according to the ICAT damage estimator site (which has estimates of the amount of damage various storms would have caused if they had happened this year instead of whenever they actually occurred – a good way to “compare apples with apples”), half of the top ten hurricanes occurred before 1940, with only two coming since 2000. The top three are all pre-1930: the Great Miami Hurricane of 1926 ($180.2B), the Galveston Hurricane of 1900 ($105.6B), and the Galveston Hurricane of 1915 ($84.9B, just edging out Katrina’s $84.6B in 2005).

    Assuming Sandy’s damage comes in close to the $50B I’ve seen quoted, that would put her in seventh or eighth place (bumping 2005’s Wilma out of the top ten), right next to the 1938 New England Hurricane ($46.8B).

  51. Simon says:
    November 18, 2012 at 11:01 pm

    I looked at the page 12 plot and it is a classic example of selective data usage- start that plot at around 1925 and it clearly becomes linear going forward. In this case the quadratic “fit” is simply a result of th data set used. Not sure what happened in 1925 to change the trajectory of sea level rise but if you are being objective you must see my point.

    Regards

  52. Massive Waterspout Forms Off Australian Coast

    http://news.sky.com/story/1013352/massive-waterspout-forms-off-australian-coast

    Finishing off a weekend of wild weather.

    McKibben will be McGibber’n!

    Never been one like that before! Unprecedented! Megastorm Sandy in the North Hemisphere, now here’s the counterpart on the opposite side of the planet!

    Must be climate change AGAIN!

    Time to get out the hip boots, and that ain’t water we’ll have to wade through.

  53. Anthony said: “Now, with a storm that doesn’t even come close to storms that have hit the area in the past, such as 1954 Hurricane Hazel or the Great Hurricane of 1938, what will they call a Cat3 or greater storm if it hits the area?”

    In terms of intensity, Sandy doesn’t compare. In terms of “damaging-ness”, it beats them both (though it doesn’t edge the 1938 storm by much).

    The estimates I’ve seen for damages from Sandy run around $50B. According to the ICAT Damage Estimator, if they had happened this year, the 1938 storm would likely have caused about $46.8B, Hazel about $24.3B. If the $50B figure holds up, Sandy would break into ICAT’s Top Ten Hurricanes at #7, just ahead of 1960’s Donna ($49.8B) and behind Storm 11 of 1944 ($53.9B).

    So, using the more informal definition of “mega” as “impressive, large, great” – yeah, “Megastorm” would fit. Of course, sometimes there seems to be a kind of climatological Lake Wobegon effect going on, where “all the storms are above average” today – and that’s nonsense under any meaningful comparative measure. In ICAT’s system, of their Top Ten, half occurred before 1940 and only two have occurred after 1960’s Donna (Sandy wouldn’t change that, since she’d bump 2005’s Wilma out of the list).

  54. KiwiSi says: November 18, 2012 at 8:19 pm
    “D Böehm
    I didn’t say it had accelerated, I merely said it was increasing and that is undeniably true. I don’t think there is any doubt the oceans sea level rise is because of the recent (last 100 years) warming. And am I wrong in thinking this is an open forum, where one can discuss ideas freely. Is there no room to discuss things here? Have I got this wrong?”

    Here comes the sophistry. In Doomsday Cult style, KiwiSi comes out of the gate with an ad hominem attack. My prediction model sez he or she will scurry off to the Critical Studies department claiming that no one was willing to engage in scientific discussion, but trounced aggressively on him or her. Let’s see if KiwiSi can stick to an evidence-based discussion of sea level change, or will play the liberal pseudo-intellectual game.

  55. Bill Jamison says:

    November 18, 2012 at 6:53 pm
    Sandy qualifies as a megastorm in sheer size and damage it caused.

    Then that must mean that if Sandy, a Cat 1 storm, had struck a lightly populated coastline, that was better prepared to cope with the effects of the storm, and had heeded several days worth of storm warnings, then it would not be a megastorm

  56. Donald L. Klipstein says: November 18, 2012 at 9:02 pm
    “Anthony Watts said in part: “Sandy wasn’t even a category 1 hurricane
    when it made landfall.”
    Sandy did have hurricane force sustained winds at landfall, according to
    National Hurricane Center determinations. There were merely unusually at an
    offshore location on the unusually left side storm – and in an offshore direction.”

    At what elevation? According to what data buoy? I looked for this and did not find it. At 20 meters, the technical criterion for a hurricane. Not at 3K meters – the wind is always close to 75mph there. This is another trick to make a storm seem worse than it is – find a wind speed at a great elevation.

  57. It seems well accepted that the unusual feature of Sandy was the curve westward instead of eastward whilst it maintained a very low central pressure and merged with a mid latitude feature approaching from the west.

    The BBC show last night made it clear that the westward track was due to a weak Bermuda High (failing to direct Sandy eastward across its northern flank) in conjunction with a powerful polar high pressure cell around Labrador. The combined effect was to block the normal eastward track and push Sandy onto the mainland.

    The loss of warm ocean surfaces as Sandy moved north and then north westward was compensated for by cooling upper air coming in from the west thus maintaining the low central pressure.

    The interesting thing is that this was all a consequence of a weaker than normal subtropical high pressure cell and a stronger than normal polar high pressure cell during a period of low solar activity and generally negative Arctic and Antarctic Oscillations.

    We tend to see such patterns when the climate is cooling rather than when the climate is warming so I think attribution of the Sandy event to a warming global climate is flawed.

    Furthermore the storm sucked vast amounts of energy out of a large area of ocean and the huge area of associated cloud cover prevented replacement of that energy from sunshine.

    Storms like Sandy are a feature of a cooling process rather than a warming process.

  58. There are many people who wrongly think that storms are always weaker than hurricanes and therefore always cause less damage. Storms that are not hurricanes can cause more damage than hurricanes. Hurricanes that are weaker than storms can cause more damange than stronger storms. Hurricanes that collide with storm systems can really shake up the population but because all they see in print is “Sandy”, all they know is that Sandy was at fault for all the damage. The labels are causing confusion.

    This befuddled thinking and wrong assumptions could be cleared up if required basic science classes included more advanced lectures in weather science. Many textbooks through high school include the hydrological cycle, cloud types, and storm systems but do not include more advanced Earth science centered on micro and macro weather parameter drivers. They should. A case in point: Most people have barometric pressure gauges somewhere in their house but I wonder if they know what the measurement means and why pressure readings are important in understanding severe weather systems?

  59. thelastdemocrat – Donald’s claim comes from the NHC’s “POST-TROPICAL CYCLONE SANDY DISCUSSION NUMBER 31″, where they state:

    SATELLITE…RADAR…SURFACE…AND RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT DATA
    INDICATE THAT SANDY MADE LANDFALL NEAR ATLANTIC CITY NEW JERSEY
    AROUND 0000 UTC. THE INTENSITY OF THE POST-TROPICAL CYCLONE WAS
    ESTIMATED TO BE NEAR 80 KT AT LANDFALL WITH A MINIMUM PRESSURE OF
    946 MB. AT LANDFALL…THE STRONGEST WINDS WERE OCCURRING OVER
    WATER TO THE EAST AND SOUTHEAST OF THE CENTER. HURRICANE-FORCE
    WINDS GUSTS HAVE BEEN REPORTED ACROSS LONG ISLAND AND THE NEW YORK
    METROPOLITAN AREA THIS EVENING.

    According to the “About” page report , wind speeds are surface. No mention of what buoy specifically.
    (Sorry about the all-caps, I just copy-and-pasted the text as-is).

  60. “Many textbooks through high school include the hydrological cycle, cloud types, and storm systems but do not include more advanced Earth science centered on micro and macro weather parameter drivers. They should.”

    Pamela, I hope you don’t get what you wish for! Can you guess who would write these texts – the teaching profession has long ago been co-opted.

  61. The mules on both sides of this argument appear to purposely have blinders on. The continued battle focus on carbon without regard for other major climate change contributors occurring now is myopic. Geo-engineering of weather is happening. The aluminum, barium, strontium shield being sprayed in the atmosphere may be effective in solar reflection to aid in cooling the planet but it also aids in cloud seeding at the same time. When a hurricane travels through a heavily seeded environment shouldn’t a broader area of rain be expected?

    The northern and southern magnetic poles are shifting rapidly. The icecap center and boundaries will shift accordingly and gain/lose ice depending on numerous factors at the new perimeters of the icecap. Is there sufficient time to offset the melt on one side while adding ice to the open ocean on the other side?

    Carbon sequestration and carbon taxing has too little impact and is too slow to offset the other changes that result from the sun and the magnetic field changes.

  62. Bill Jamison says:
    November 18, 2012 at 6:53 pm

    Sandy qualifies as a megastorm in sheer size and damage it caused.

    We rate stormes based on how unprepared those who were hit are?

  63. Simon says:
    November 18, 2012 at 6:59 pm

    Two problems. The seas aren’t warming and the rate of glacial melt has been pretty much constant for the last couple hundred years.

  64. Simon says:
    November 18, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    Mike Bromley
    The sea is rising. About 3mm a year at present. Are you saying it isn’t?

    And has been for the last 300 to 400 years.

  65. Dave says:
    November 18, 2012 at 9:46 pm
    Oh for god’s sake. Sandy was a notable autumn gale, nothing more. That a stiffish autumn gale did so much damage is entirely down to the complete unpreparedness of New York for even a minor sort of storm.

    Please, this nonsense indicates that you don’t have a clue about what happened! I’ve lived in central NJ for 30 years, in that region covered by PSE&G, unlike the Jersey shore we had relatively little flooding and water damage, basically we had wind damage. In order to restore power PSE&G had to cut down 41,000 damaged trees, replace 2,500 poles and 1,000 transformers. This was far from a ‘stiffish autumn gale’! The damage wasn’t due to lack of preparedness, in fact before the storm I observed PSE&G setting up in a local mall parking lot their cherry pickers, supplies of poles and transformers, this distribution point is still a hive of activity.

  66. There are some very convincing points and links posted here in this thread, as usual

    But the problem facing us, is how to get journalists, activists, teachers, and parents to read such stuff in order to better inform themselves. For example, I posted a few incontrovertible links on an activist friend’s Facebook page recently, since he’d been propagating the usual post-Sandy / AGW alarmism and false correlation.

    His immediate response was to delete me from his page. I was a real-life friend too, from so far back as 1970! It’s impossible to get such people to look at the facts. They simply refuse to consider they might be wrong. How to around this, is the main problem facing every thinking person.

  67. Of course Sandy was a hugely damaging storm – no argument here. But a little history is useful.

    ” During the decades of calm between major hurricanes, the city grows and forgets. During the great hurricane of 1821, only 152,000 people lived in New York City. When the next major, direct hit came in 1893, the city’s population was 2.5 million. At the time of the 1938 storm, Long Island wasn’t a densely populated suburban sprawl; it was a rural home for oyster fishermen, potato farmers and wealthy industrialists. The same storm today would wreak incredible havoc. ”

    and
    ” In 1821, stunned colonial New Yorkers recorded sea levels rising as fast as 13 feet in a single hour at the Battery. The East River and Hudson Rivers merged over Lower Manhattan all the way to Canal Street. According to Coch, the fact that the 1821 storm struck at low tide “is the only thing that saved the city.”

    and
    “It turns out there was once a small, sandy spit of an island off the southern coast of Rockaway. In the years after the Civil War, developers built saloons and bathhouses, and Hog Island became a sort of 1890s version of the Hamptons. During the summers, the city’s Democratic bosses used Hog Island as a kind of outdoor annex of Tammany Hall. That all ended on the night of August 23, 1893, when a terrifying category-2 hurricane rolled up from Norfolk, Virginia, and made landfall on what is now JFK airport.

    “The storm was a major event. All six front-page columns of the August 25, 1893 New York Times were dedicated to the “unexampled fury” of the “West Indian monster” and the damage it wrought throughout the region. Dozens of boats were sunk, and scores of sailors perished. In Central Park “more than a hundred noble trees were torn up by the roots,” and thousands of sparrows lay dead on the ground. “Gangs of small boys roamed through the Park in the early hours of the morning collecting the dead sparrows and picking their feathers.”

    “At the brand-new Met Life building at Madison Avenue and 23rd Street, a heavy-iron fence was torn away by the wind, plunging 10 stories and crashing through a stained-glass dome before landing on a mosaic “including quantities of costly Mexican onyx.” In Brooklyn, at Wyckoff and Myrtle Avenues, “the water in the street was up to a man’s waist,” and residents used ladders to get in and out of their houses. Most of the boats moored at the Williamsburg Yacht Club were “sunk, driven ashore or demolished.” The East River rose “until it swept over the sea wall in the Astoria district and submerged the Boulevard.” At Coney Island, 30-foot waves swept 200 yards inland, destroying nearly every man-made structure in its path and wrecking the elevated railroad.

    “Hog Island largely disappeared that night,” Coch says. “As far as I know, it is the only incidence of the removal of an entire island by a hurricane.”

    http://web.archive.org/web/20071230031244/http://www.nypress.com/18/29/news&columns/aaronnaparstek.cfm

    The above 2007 article is terrific.

  68. Peter Hannan
    Thank you for caring for the earth, detailing your understanding of “environmentalist” and searching for truth.
    Climate equivocation
    The hype around the large storm “Sandy” (technically not even a category 1 “hurricane” at landfall) being “caused” by “global warming” is to stir up panic and pressure politicians to impose draconian legislation to eliminate the use of fossil fuels. Note particularly the equivocation of “climate change” or “global warming” to mean both the long term natural warming since the Little Ice Age AND “catastrophic anthropogenic global warming” where the “majority” of warming in the latter half of the 20th century is attributed to anthropogenic causes – read fossil fuels. If one is skeptical about evidence for the latter, one is often castigated as “anti-science” in not “believing” the former. It is important to carefully evaluate the data and claims versus the beliefs and basis and benefits for proposed actions.

    Radical environmentalism
    Please distinguish being an environmentalist as caring for the earth, and the religious belief of (radical or extreme) “environmentalism” that requires we restore the earth to its “natural” state of the current “climate” without any anthropogenic impact as the supreme value at whatever cost to humans. Rabbi Lapin is referring to environmentalism as a religious belief in “protecting” the earth as the supreme value. e.g., Les U. Knight established the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement to eliminate humans to prevent environmental degradation. Philip, Duke of Edinburgh (1988) stated:

    “In the event that I am reincarnated, I would like to return as a deadly virus, in order to contribute something to solve overpopulation.”

    Similarly, James “death trains” Hansen holds that our consumption of coal is morally equivalent to the Holocaust – without any recognition that fossil fuel use has brought about massive benefits in raising peoples out of poverty with corresponding reduction in disease and death rates and improvement in their environment. Note particularly the metaphysical presuppositions underlying the high emotions and radical actions.

    Contrast the views of the The Cornwall Alliance as stated in:
    An Evangelical Declaration on Global Warming

    We believe Earth and its ecosystems—created by God’s intelligent design and infinite power and sustained by His faithful providence —are robust, resilient, self-regulating, and self-correcting, admirably suited for human flourishing, and displaying His glory. Earth’s climate system is no exception. Recent global warming is one of many natural cycles of warming and cooling in geologic history. . . .
    We deny that Earth and its ecosystems are the fragile and unstable products of chance, and particularly that Earth’s climate system is vulnerable to dangerous alteration because of minuscule changes in atmospheric chemistry. Recent warming was neither abnormally large nor abnormally rapid. There is no convincing scientific evidence that human contribution to greenhouse gases is causing dangerous global warming.

    This shows that there is a wide range of beliefs on environmental issues. Many journalists are swept up in the reporting without actually evaluating the claims and the uncertainties on the evidence involved. Many people similarly accept the claims and are carried along with the emotions without having thought through what they actually believe or hold as their foundational worldview.

  69. thelastdemocrat

    “Here comes the sophistry. In Doomsday Cult style, KiwiSi comes out of the gate with an ad hominem attack”

    OK the science is interesting, but this comment is more so. Please indicate where I attacked anyone here? I thought I was playing nicely.

  70. Sam the First says:
    “…His immediate response was to delete me from his page…It’s impossible to get such people to look at the facts. They simply refuse to consider they might be wrong.”

    You are dealing with religious zealots, Sam.

  71. What ever happened to the Category 5 and over hurricanes which qualified for super storms? Sandy was a category 2 at the most with most of the damage done by floods which is typically what happens in a hurricane. As usual the mainsteam media moved the goal posts.

  72. @John Brookes says:
    >Crispin in Waterloo noticed the recent dip in sea level rise. But this is just a temporary blip, and no reason to doubt that the sea will continue to rise.

    I am interested to know why you think the rise will continue. There is no significant net increase in the bulk temperature of the oceans, and there is no increase in the loss of land-based ice (Arctic sea ice melt does not increase the sea level).

    >Just as atmospheric temperatures regularly drop down – amidst a generally increasing trend, the sea level will continue to rise.

    That is a completely inappropriate comparison. The sea level in 700 AD was almost exactly what it is today. In between it was lower. Global temperatures are apparently following a 60 year sine wave – something flatly denied by the vast majority of AGW alarmists. Until climate alarm-promoting scribes admit to the basic mechanisms at work in the atmosphere I don’t see much change taking place in their position.

    Roger’s contribution was helpful. He also has given us links previously which discuss the matter in detail. I have been quoting 1.8mm/yr for sea level rise. I see that is now reduced to 1.6 for the 20th Century (average). At present it is not rising or is rising at a very reduced rate. Unless something ‘new’ happens it is not going to ‘accelerate’ that’s for sure!

    So far as I have seen, there is no established link between CO2 and sea level nor any sound mechanism proposed for how an anthropogenic increase in CO2 (which appears to be the case for at least some of it) would warm the oceans as oceans are not warmed by IR radiation or re-radiation in any meaningful manner.

    I undertand from your comment, John, that you feel a temperature cycle would necesssarily impact the ocean temperature, right? If this is the case, we would like to know the mechanism for this. If on the other hand if it is the oceans impacting the air temperature (which I see as likely) then we have several mechanisms by which that can happen. That being the more likely case, as it is at least possible, then there being no mechanism for CO2 to heat the oceans indicates that CO2 may have nearly no influence on air temperature at all. The parts must be viewed in the context of the whole.

  73. It was a megastorm, at 1000 miles wide with wind gusting to 92 mph it was an undermined storm that caused billions of dollars in damage and killed over 100 people. Do you think this is a joke? Do you like making fun of a storm that ruined peoples lives and destroyed every possession they owned? They made this show to bring to light what happened, what should you do if this happens again, and why things got so bad. Maybe instead of whining about how “megastorm” is not the right word to use, you should use this blog to inform people of ways to stay alive if a disaster happens to them. This is a waste of a website and you waste your life doing absolutely no good on here. Good Day

  74. A few things to think about.As water expands because of temperature doesn’t it also phase change to vapor? I know when i run the hot water at my house steam arises but the water is not boiling(i.e.212°).
    Does not land and objects in the water also have “thermal expansion”or is the rate of expansion different ? Does evaporation remove water from the ocean and maybe deposit some of it on land?Does more water get made somewhere?………….WUWT?
    Thanks for the interesting articles and comments

  75. @Kyle

    The damage was significant and it would have been much worse if it had contained a well-developed eye like nearly all hurricanes worthy of the name. Perhaps you will agree that tempering the tone a little when it comes to storms will provide some constancy because when the next storm hits, perhaps a ‘real hurricane’, the devastation will make Sandy’s look pale. The principled objections on WUWT relate to the fact that the storm damage was blamed widely by man commentators on human-caused CO2 emissions ‘disrupting’ the climate. This is categorical nonsense. Let’s call it Cat 4 Nonsense. Cat 4 Nonsense is powerful, has an empty core, is surrounded by high winds of distraction and causes a lot of damage to science.

    When a population is properly prepared by a decent and comprehensive scientific education to at least High School level Cat 4 Nonsense does hardly any damage at all because the strong walls of common sense and analytical ability easily fend off the waves of B-S and the surges of para-scientific ignorance that accompany such storms.

    Your emotional appeal to consider ‘the children’ is reasonable and we sympathise with those affected by the bad planning of the NYC and New Jeresy governments. Calls to reinforce the protections we know full well how to construct are a reasonable use of public monies. Shutting down coal-fired power stations are not going to help prepare for the next, inevitable hurricane which is bound to be far worse than the last if is happens to come at high tide.

  76. Kyle,
    Your moral outrage has brought a tear to my eye…not really, the tear was from me laughing so hard about this: “Spawn of MegaDoppler 9000″. This site does do a lot of good. Instead of just standing by while brain washed do-gooders try to tax us back to the stone age and make energy and food so expensive that impoverished peoples can not afford it and die by the hundreds of thousands, this site does what it can to dispel the myths of man made catastrophic global warming. Sandy has been politicized by the (mostly liberal) global warming alarmists as caused by CO2 emissions. By making the storm seem worse than it was the alarmists can say that Sandy was unprecedented and unusual, therefore caused by man. This site dispels that myth. It’s not that I don’t care about the human aspect of Sandy, I do. I also care about the ramifications of a false CO2 to storm link that will have an even greater impact on humanity. Oh, and I enjoy a good laugh.

  77. @10:20 am Crispin in Waterloo {referring to John Brookes} says: “If on the other hand if it is the oceans impacting the air temperature (which I see as likely) . . .

    Introductory earth science text books discuss “air masses” and “air mass source regions” with the oceans being a big player. Air masses from over tropical waters are given the acronym ‘mT’ while ‘c’ indicates continental locations. All explained here:

    http://www.theweatherprediction.com/basic/airmass/

    Quite a bit of solar radiation is in the visible wavelengths and a true color photo from a satellite with the Sun above will show a black or nearly black ocean. An example, Maupiti Island (16.44 S. Long.), is here:

    http://spacefellowship.com/news/art16192/maupiti-island-seen-from-space.html

    The visible light (radiation) is entering the water and being absorbed. Put the term ‘parrot fish’ in an image-search (I used Bing) and look at all the fantastically colored critters from underwater. Water under the ocean’s surface is warmed by this incoming energy, especially where the water is clear (or clean) and the sky is free of clouds. Info is on the web.

    To decipher what CO2 might have to do with this requires more thought twists than a pretzel and might be the sort of reasoning the commenter you refer to can help out on.

  78. if one refers to mega meaning large than yes it was a large storm (megastorm), but many over the planet have also been mega. Megastorm doesn’t exist in the English dictionary so many views of this will be different because there is no definition of one. The only real scientific comparison is the hurricane scale or Beaufort wind force scale. Therefore with just these a large storm doesn’t come in to this because these depend on the wind severity of the storm.

  79. Simon says:
    November 18, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    Mike Bromley

    The sea is rising. About 3mm a year at present. Are you saying it isn’t?
    ________________________________
    The sea level has been rising ever since the start of the Holocene. What the heck else do you expect during an INTERGLACIAL?

    Now really think. If the sea level starts to quit rising and actually starts to Fall, what does that mean?

    A possible return to a fully glaciated state. Heck we already have passed the hump in temperature and are on the downward slope. graph

    Temperature and precipitation history of the Arctic

    …..Solar energy reached a summer maximum (9% higher than at present) ca 11 ka ago and has been decreasing since then, primarily in response to the precession of the equinoxes. The extra energy elevated early Holocene summer temperatures throughout the Arctic 1-3° C above 20th century averages, enough to completely melt many small glaciers throughout the Arctic, although the Greenland Ice Sheet was only slightly smaller than at present… As summer solar energy decreased in the second half of the Holocene, glaciers reestablished or advanced, sea ice expanded, and the flow of warm Atlantic water into the Arctic Ocean diminished. Late Holocene cooling reached its nadir during the Little Ice Age (about 1250-1850 AD), when sun-blocking volcanic eruptions and perhaps other causes added to the orbital cooling, allowing most Arctic glaciers to reach their maximum Holocene extent…

    Lesson from the past: present insolation minimum holds potential for glacial inception (2007)

    …Because the intensities of the 397 ka BP and present insolation minima are very similar, we conclude that under natural boundary conditions the present insolation minimum holds the potential to terminate the Holocene interglacial. Our findings support the Ruddiman hypothesis [Ruddiman, W., 2003. The Anthropogenic Greenhouse Era began thousands of years ago. Climate Change 61, 261–293], which proposes that early anthropogenic greenhouse gas emission prevented the inception of a glacial that would otherwise already have started….

    If you truly believe that CO2 causes a rise in temperature then you should be lobbying Congress and the UN to burn as much coal and fossil fuels as possible to keep us from descending into the cold. You should be supporting new technological breakthroughs in Nuclear power and in Agriculture. Unfortunately from what I can see the Greens are only concerned with destroying the present civilization and dooming humans to short brutal lives as slaves of the powerful. The greens hope to BE the powerful but as the fate of the Russian Intelligentsia showed, once their usefulness is at an end they become expendable.

  80. mbur says:
    November 19, 2012 at 11:14 am
    A few things to think about.As water expands because of temperature doesn’t it also phase change to vapor? I know when i run the hot water at my house steam arises but the water is not boiling(i.e.212°).

    You might see small water droplets but technically not “steam.” There is a bit of loose usage with these terms. When you can no longer see this that you are calling steam, then it is vapor and properly called steam. Wet your hand and slide it over a smooth kitchen counter surface – note the sheen. Watch it disappear. Did it boil? At what temperature? Again, “boiling” has a technical meaning(s) and you could spend a little time researching these concepts.

    Sea (salt) water behaves a little differently than pure water but they are equally amazing substances. A beginning discussion is here:

    http://chemwiki.ucdavis.edu/Physical_Chemistry/Physical_Properties_of_Matter/Intermolecular_Forces/Unusual_Properties_of_Water

  81. Hoser says:
    November 18, 2012 at 8:57 pm

    Hey, if you live in Manhattan,… In a real disaster, I’d rather be with the NYers, no doubt about it.
    ________________________________
    Make it upper state New York. I am sure some of them were kinda hoping NYC would be completely washed out to sea and never seen again.

  82. John Brookes says:
    November 18, 2012 at 9:49 pm
    ….Crispin also tries to comfort us by pointing out extremely rapid sea level change in the past. Somehow that doesn’t reassure me. If it changed rapidly in the past, it could do it now (but lets hope not).
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Oh for crying out loud, use your brain.

    The extremely rapid sea level change in the past were due to the melting of mile high glaciers one of which sat on top of where NYC is sitting right now. Do you see any glaciers sitting on NYC, NO? Then you are not going to see an extremely rapid sea level change.

    This graph shows what I mean.

  83. Evan Pugh says:
    November 18, 2012 at 11:47 pm

    Discovery Science channel just aired the program “A Few More Degrees” as part of their “Avoiding Apocalypse” series. It ends with the preposterous statement of “Eliminating Co2 from the air we breathe is the key to our survival”. Simply astounding.
    _________________________
    “Eliminating CO2 from the air we breathe will make us deader than an doornail. Humans HAVE TO HAVE CO2. (Not to mention the poor plants)

    Blood pH is tightly regulated by a system of buffers that continuously maintain it in a normal range of 7.35 to 7.45 (slightly alkaline). Blood pH drop below 7 can lead to a coma and even death due to severe acidosis. This causes depression of the central nervous system. High blood pH (above 7.45) is called alkalosis. Severe alkalosis (when blood pH is more than 8) can also lead to death, as it often happens during last days or hours of life in most people who are chronically and terminally ill. Hyperventilation is the most common cause of respiratory alkalosis.
    The main mechanisms for blood pH maintenance and control are:

    – Carbonic Acid-Bicarbonate Buffer System
    – Protein Buffer System
    – Phosphate Buffer System
    – Elimination of Hydrogen Ions via Kidneys

    Carbon dioxide plays one of the central roles in this blood pH abnormality. Note, however, that tissue hypoxia due to critically-low carbon dioxide level in the alveoli is usually the main life-threatening factor in the severely sick. As we discussed before, CO2 is crucial for vasodilation and the Bohr effect…. http://www.normalbreathing.com/CO2-blood-pH-respiratory-alkalosis.php#.UKqi5LARh0E

  84. Gail Combs

    That is one interesting graph. Just shows what can be achieved with a little licence and a creative mind.

  85. Evan Pugh said on November 18, 2012 at 11:47 pm

    “Discovery Science channel just aired the program “A Few More Degrees” as part of their “Avoiding Apocalypse” series. It ends with the preposterous statement of “Eliminating Co2 from the air we breathe is the key to our survival”. Simply astounding.”

    And Marco at 1:24 am, picked up on it and said

    “If by “survival” they mean the complete extermination of all life on the planet”

    Reduce co2 to below 150ppm and all plant growth ceases, without plants all life on Earth ceases to exist, including the ignoramuses at the Discovery Channel.

    When Lisa Jackson of the EPA was being quizzed by (a congressional ?) committee she was unable to answer the question of how much co2 was in the atmosphere, to both her and the US courts co2 is a pollutant, presumably both would seek removal of that ‘pollutant’ and hence unwittingly the consequent extermination of all life on Earth.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if everyone at Greenpeace also thought that co2 should be ‘”eliminated” from the air we breathe.

    That would be the ultimate irony, the organisation set up to protect mankind from pollution etc ends up ‘inadvertently’ killing all life on planet earth. That would be quite an epitaph.

  86. Pamela Gray says:
    November 19, 2012 at 6:55 am

    …Many textbooks through high school include the hydrological cycle, cloud types, and storm systems but do not include more advanced Earth science centered on micro and macro weather parameter drivers….
    __________________________________
    Guess I was lucky, out high school Earth Science teacher covered all of that plus plate tectonics, how to use topo maps and lots of other neat stuff. He is the reason I took several Geology courses in college just for the fun of it. (And yes I did go back and thank him)

  87. What are the odds on New York doing anything to prepare for the “new normal”, or even a proper hurricane.

    Low to non existent ?

  88. JudyW says:
    November 19, 2012 at 8:11 am

    The mules on both sides of this argument appear to purposely have blinders on. The continued battle focus on carbon without regard for other major climate change contributors occurring now is myopic…
    ___________________________
    I do not think you have been at this site for very long. The discussions are wide ranging. For example a frequent commenter is Vukcevic. Here are a links to some of his work focusing on geomagnetism since that is one topic you mentioned.

    North Atlantic Hydro-Magnetic loop: http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/HmL.htm
    more: http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/NFC1.htm

  89. Sam the First says:
    November 19, 2012 at 8:36 am

    There are some very convincing points and links posted here in this thread, as usual

    But the problem facing us, is how to get journalists, activists, teachers, and parents to read such stuff in order to better inform themselves….
    _______________________
    It is very frustrating especially since the Greens keep morphing from “Global Cooling” to “Global Warming” to “Climate Change” to “Weather Weirding” This alone tells you the basic fight is really about whether humans should be allowed to advance scientifically and technologically or whether western civilization should retreat back into a Dark Age of superstition and serfdom. An age where capitalism and individual freedom are submerged into communitarianism.

  90. mstickles said that the NHC reported the following about SANDY:

    SATELLITE…RADAR…SURFACE…AND RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT DATA
    INDICATE THAT SANDY MADE LANDFALL NEAR ATLANTIC CITY NEW JERSEY
    AROUND 0000 UTC. THE INTENSITY OF THE POST-TROPICAL CYCLONE WAS
    ESTIMATED TO BE NEAR 80 KT AT LANDFALL WITH A MINIMUM PRESSURE OF
    946 MB. AT LANDFALL…THE STRONGEST WINDS WERE OCCURRING OVER
    WATER TO THE EAST AND SOUTHEAST OF THE CENTER. HURRICANE-FORCE
    WINDS GUSTS HAVE BEEN REPORTED ACROSS LONG ISLAND AND THE NEW YORK
    METROPOLITAN AREA THIS EVENING.

    Unfortunately the NHC are apparently infested by AGWers, and therefore their opinions are biased, and I consider their “estimates” to be opinions. It is still possible though that their raw data are not biased – in another thread I showed that the highest sustained winds on land that could be found in NWS recorded data were about 52mph (below Storm Force 11). There were indeed several hurricane force gusts reported, which can be damaging, but they do not qualify as hurricane force _winds_. The point is that sustained hurricane force winds occurring as the eyewall of a true hurricane makes landfall cause a swathe of damage which would make SANDY look like a picnic.

    As a non-American it continues to amaze me that power is carried by relatively flimsy overhead cables. New Jersey’s electricity supply devastation is, I believe, a consequence of past design decisions that that is an OK and cost-effective thing to do. Still, it may actually be more cost-effective to replace them on rare storm occasions than to invest in underground cables.

    Rich.

  91. JudyW says:
    November 19, 2012 at 8:11 am

    The mules on both sides of this argument appear to purposely have blinders on. The continued battle focus on carbon without regard for other major climate change contributors occurring now is myopic…
    =====================================================
    Like Ma Gaia?
    The “focus on carbon” is because the political spin is focused on the control of “carbon emissions”.
    A real and honest scientific look at what’s going on has been left in a cloud reddish-green dust.

  92. Is Sandy being called a “Superstorm” because the storm itself was powerful or because it deprived so many of power?
    If our power grid depended on windmills and solar panels maybe nobody who didn’t live on the coast would have noticed?

  93. Andy: I think you’ve grossly mischaracterized Sandy by saying it “wasn’t even a category 1 hurricane when it made landfall”. Although the storm no longer had the characteristics of a hurricane (a warm core), it came ashore with the wind speed (85-90 mph) of a Category 1 hurricane. The storm was poorly organized, so the area covered by hurricane force winds reached 175 miles from the center. This means that a much larger area was damaged than typical for even a Category 3 hurricane (www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/hurricanes/archives/2012/h2012_Sandy_prt.htm), but that much less severe damage occurred near the track of the eye. Most importantly, the storm was powered by a 940 mb low pressure center typical of a Category 3 hurricane, a record for the region.

    In many cases, most damage from hurricanes is caused by storm surge. The direction of approach and the shape and steepness of the coast have a great influence on how much water strong winds can push onto land. Sandy’s track directed the greatest storm surge into densely populated Northern New Jersey shore and New York Bay. New York Bay had been previously identified as being unusually vulnerable to storm surge (www.nhc.noaa.gov/surge/risk/).

    Below is a comparison of Sandy and The Great Hurricane of 1938 using information from the source you linked and data of unknown reliability from the web. Sandy comes close to 1938.

    The Great Hurricane of 1938 Sandy
    Peak Steady Winds 121 mph 85 mph
    Lowest Pressure 946 mb 940 mb
    Peak Storm Surge 17 ft. 14.6 ft
    Peak Wave Heights 50 ft. 40 ft
    Deaths 700 131
    Homeless 63,000 40,000
    Cost $47 billion $20-50? billion
    Rate of Advance 50-70 mph 18-25 mph
    (slower = more time for damage)

  94. Kyle says:
    November 19, 2012 at 10:49 am
    … Do you think this is a joke? Do you like making fun of a storm that ruined peoples lives and destroyed every possession they owned? …. you should use this blog to inform people of ways to stay alive if a disaster happens to them. This is a waste of a website and you waste your life doing absolutely no good on here.
    ____________________________________
    You are addressing the WRONG people.

    I have complained here as have others, that building on a flood plain, as my geology prof. explained, is building IN A RIVER, it is just a part of the river not used very often. Others here have noted barrier reefs MOVE.

    Anyone with a lick of sense DOES NOT BUILD in those locations. If the people are too ignorant to understand that, then complain to the school system that is SUPPOSED to prepare them for life. Complain to the local and state government that let local planners get away with being bribed by construction companies so they could build in unsuitable locations.

    Remember Katrina? That should have never have been the disaster it was and the politicians who allowed it to happen should be up on manslaughter charges and I do Not mean Bush.

    Again, you are addressing the wrong people. Worse, by the media calling this a mega-storm caused by CO2 instead of explaining what is actually happening more people will die while funds are wasted on pork barrel solar and wind projects that do nothing but transfer wealth from the poor tax payer to the politically connected ‘Investor’

  95. Simon says:
    November 19, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    Gail Combs

    That is one interesting graph. Just shows what can be achieved with a little licence and a creative mind.
    ___________________________
    Oh you mean like this? graph

  96. Jimmy Haigh (Nov 18, 2012 at 10:28 pm) says: “For all those deniers of natural sea level changes – here is some information… At several times in the geological past sea level has been 200 to 300 metres higher than present.”
    And what was the comparison of the mean volume of the ocean below present sea level in those past eras, compared with the present time?
    The topography of the hard surface of the planet was very different in the geological times for which sea levels are claimed to be 400 metre above the present level.

  97. Gail Combs
    No, that Greenland ice core one made Manns hockey stick look straight. If Mann is to be accused of distorting facts, whoever did that one should be in the circus.

  98. There is only one thing “super” about Sandy. It struck a densly populated area, filled with Chicken Littles. Those impacted by the strorm, needed a PR system to milk the federal system, and in stepped the NY media. The transformation was a win-lose. The winners get to re-build, on the taxpayers expense, in an area exposed to storms of this type, and the losers, get the bill. And the winners even get to blame the losers for the causing the storm, by their “reckless use of energy”.
    This is another effort to justify building structures in risky locations, and transfer the financial risk of “inevitable” distruction, to those that did not build at those locations. If you want to build next to the ocean, accept the risk that goes with it. Coastal residents are fine, with accepting the benefits of easy access to the oceans, they just want to be subsidized for the associated financial risk.

  99. Gail Combs says:
    November 19, 2012 at 3:15 pm
    Anyone with a lick of sense DOES NOT BUILD in those locations. If the people are too ignorant to understand that, then complain to the school system that is SUPPOSED to prepare them for life. Complain to the local and state government that let local planners get away with being bribed by construction companies so they could build in unsuitable locations.

    Rather like NC-20 in North Carolina.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/06/11/science-vs-agw-advocacy-in-north-carolina/

  100. Gunga Din says:
    November 19, 2012 at 2:32 pm
    Is Sandy being called a “Superstorm” because the storm itself was powerful or because it deprived so many of power?
    If our power grid depended on windmills and solar panels maybe nobody who didn’t live on the coast would have noticed?
    ================================================
    I notice some new names here. Just to be clear, they’d be so used to power outages that they might not have noticed Sandy knocking out their power.

  101. I guess you’re just one those people who likes being a moron. The storm was the most powerful ever to hit the east coast at 940 mb’s. Over a hundred people died and will probably end up causing 60 – 80 billion in damage. 40,000 homes are still uninhabitable just on the south shore of Long Island alone. Sorry that it doesn’t qualify for your own numbnuts definition of what a megastorm is. And I’m also sorry for whatever severe head trauma you suffered as a child – living with brain damage can’t be easy.

    REPLY: Thanks for so clearly illustrating the angry, scientifically bereft, emotionally based rhetoric of the warm side of the debate, Mr. “Bazwald”.

    Be sure to look up some hurricane history to see where that 940mb fits into the scheme of things. Here’s a good place to start. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/11/09/bill-mckibbens-tabloid-climatology-claims-are-easily-debunked/

    – Anthony Watts

  102. See – owe to Rich says:
    November 19, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    As a non-American it continues to amaze me that power is carried by relatively flimsy overhead cables. New Jersey’s electricity supply devastation is, I believe, a consequence of past design decisions that that is an OK and cost-effective thing to do. Still, it may actually be more cost-effective to replace them on rare storm occasions than to invest in underground cables.
    ***

    Not so much a problem w/overhead lines per say, but trees draping over & around them. I doubt many lines were directly blown off the poles. Maintaining proper clearances around the lines would have vastly decreased the damage.

    As a former power plant engineer, underground lines are impractical/too expensive in rural areas and much more time-consuming to locate faults on when they occur.

  103. beng says:
    November 21, 2012 at 9:01 am
    See – owe to Rich says:
    November 19, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    As a non-American it continues to amaze me that power is carried by relatively flimsy overhead cables. New Jersey’s electricity supply devastation is, I believe, a consequence of past design decisions that that is an OK and cost-effective thing to do. Still, it may actually be more cost-effective to replace them on rare storm occasions than to invest in underground cables.
    ***

    Not so much a problem w/overhead lines per say, but trees draping over & around them. I doubt many lines were directly blown off the poles. Maintaining proper clearances around the lines would have vastly decreased the damage.

    As a former power plant engineer, underground lines are impractical/too expensive in rural areas and much more time-consuming to locate faults on when they occur.

    Indeed most of the damage to the overhead lines in central NJ was due to trees. One thing to remember is that there are many more trees here than there were 50 years ago and they’re much bigger. PSE&G’s latest number is 48,000 trees cleared, the previous highest number was 22,500 for hurricane Irene which held the previous record for number of customers effected, at 1.7 million Sandy was double Irene! Several substations and switching stations were knocked out by storm surge, this was the first time that had happened in their 50-75 year history!
    PSE&G’s initial plans going forward are:
    “To deal with the flooding from heavy rains that we saw in last year’s storms, we identified substations that needed to be protected with barriers and installed them.
    We will evaluate options to protect substations in coastal areas.
    The best way to protect the system is to build in redundancy in our distribution system. For example, we will be building a new substation over the next year inland in Newark. With the “loop” design of our network, we can reroute electricity when we have an issue with a substation. So, we will continue to build more redundancy into our system.
    We will evaluate our tree trimming programs and be more aggressive with trees near power lines and will consider moving from a four-year cycle to a three-year cycle.
    Repairing damaged equipment in hard-to-reach places is time and resource intensive. We need to consider how we can work with municipal leaders to move utility poles and electrical lines that run through backyards to the curb.
    We will continue to build up our transmission infrastructure around the state to increase reliability. We expect to invest about $1 billion in transmission enhancements and replacements this year.
    We will analyze the effectiveness, costs and whether it might make sense to bury some overhead lines to increase reliability.”

    Like many other things they’re fighting the last battle, no doubt the next event will be different and require different counter-measures.

  104. “It really isn’t normal for sea surface temperatures to be so high.”

    SSTs were generally between 0.5c and 1c above normal where hurricanes track so nothing unusual here.

    Part of the AMO and this has been warm in past.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-amo

    High pressure being persistent over Greenland is opposite would should happen with global warming when it was expected to cause mainly positive NAO and AO pressure anomalies with the jet stream further North.

    Instead the NAO and AO were generally negative and the jet stream further South with a meridional pattern. A meridional pattern is often associated with this pressure anomaly with a jet stream further South and brings colder and warmer air together much easily. This increases severe weather events around the planet and has been observed particularly during the cooler periods. This type of behavior was normally associated with cooler climates and recent research currently blames the low solar activity for it. Low Arctic ice has also been blamed, but where was it before when Arctic ice was still low then? This pattern happened fairly often in the cooler periods when ice was higher, so I don’t see any link with ice here. The difference in the positioning of the hurricane towards New York area happens occasionally, but this change brought this recent event.

  105. I saw Leland Palmer’s comment before it was snipped. He is calling everyone a “liar”. Note to Leland: when you argue with everyone else like you’re doing, it probably means you are wrong. And people don’t generally lie, particularly not our host.

    When your science is non-existent, name-calling is your fallback position.

  106. “And people don’t generally lie, particularly not our host.
    When your science is non-existent, name-calling is your fallback position.”

    Our host does not lie?

    I submit that he does.

    Occam’s razor strongly suggests that he is just another paid off spokesperson for a particularly well paid point of view, rather than a selfless seeker after truth who just can’t particularly see a melting icecap.

  107. Mr. Palmer:

    Justify any part of your claim.

    Your apparent CAGW theism (religion) has a budget a over 89 billion dollar per year taken from US taxpayers.
    Why do you claim our host is a liar?
    Why do you claim any skeptic position is “paid off” when the government money and government power and government positions goes TO the government-paid CAGW proponents and extremists based ONLY on how strongly they promote their self-serving CAGW exaggerations and biases?

    You are claiming “lies” when the only lies have come from government-paid so-called scientists paid to produce government-desired results.

  108. It’s an argument based on common sense.

    Paid off liars are as common as dirt.

    Noble seekers after truth who can’t see melting icecaps must be comparatively rare.

    Therefore our host is very likely just another paid off liar:

    Study:
    9 out of 10 top climate change deniers linked with Exxon Mobil

    A recent analysis conducted by Carbon Brief investigated no less than 900 published papers, all of which cast doubts on climate change, or even speak against it. After concluding this investigation, they found that 9 out of 10 of the most prolific ones had some sort of connection with Exxon Mobil. You can find a link to these papers at the Global Warming Policy Foundation.
    The results showed that out of the 938 papers cited, 186 of them were written by only ten men, and foremost among them was Dr Sherwood B Idso, who personally authored 67 of them. Idso is the president of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, an ExxonMobil funded think tank. The second most prolific was Dr Patrick J Michaels, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, who receives roughly 40% of his funding from the oil industry.

    Pat Michaels admitted to Fareed Zakaria on national TV that 40 percent of his funding comes from the oil industry. But, he was obviously lying about even that. If you toss in funding from the Cato Institute (funded mostly by the Koch Brothers – who control the largest privately controlled oil corporation in the U.S.) and from other oil industry related sources, essentially all of his funding probably comes from the oil industy, think tanks funded by the oil industry, or the super rich made rich by oil.

    So for Pat Michaels, it’s “oil all the way down”.

    When confronted about it, Michaels lied even about this basic fact.

    Watts is doing mighty work for the climate change denial community. If he’s not riding that gravy train, he’s about the only “climate skeptic” who’s not.

    It’s an argument based on probabilities, and common sense.

    The simplest explanation is that Watts is a paid off liar.

  109. Leland Palmer says:
    November 22, 2012 at 11:49 am

    Don’t need any funds to shows the alarmist claims are rubbish pseudoscience not based on any evidence.

  110. Mr Palmer:

    So I assume you have some evidence that the proportion of fraud and lies in a scientific debate is proportional to the source of funding, and the amount of funding received; the amount of rewards and honor and recognition offered; and the continued employment of the scientists from one side of the debate?

  111. [snip – If you want to make those personal accusations against me, step up and put your real name to and and take the consequences like I do every day, otherwise kindly shut your Thanksgiving pie (Apple or Pumpkin, your choice)hole. ;-)

    UPDATE: Mr Palmer responded with another missive but no proof that that his name etc., (we are just supposed to take him at his word) but placed further demands for information on my personal life and my business. That was deleted per blog policy. My personal life and my business is none of your business sir. – Anthony Watts]

  112. Leland Palmer says:
    November 22, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    It’s an argument based on common sense.

    Paid off liars are as common as dirt.

    Noble seekers after truth who can’t see melting icecaps must be comparatively rare.

    Therefore our host is very likely just another paid off liar:

    Study:
    9 out of 10 top climate change deniers linked with Exxon Mobil

    A recent analysis conducted by Carbon Brief investigated no less than 900 published papers, all of which cast doubts on climate change, or even speak against it. After concluding this investigation, they found that 9 out of 10 of the most prolific ones had some sort of connection with Exxon Mobil….
    ________________________________________
    SO that makes Phil Jones of CRU a paid off LIAR since CRU received start-up funds from BP and Shell.
    Climategate e-mails: from link

    cc: “Mike Hulme” , “Neil Adger”
    date: Fri, 22 Mar 2002 23:32:53 -0000
    from: “Tim O’riordan”
    subject: WSSD [World Summit on Sustainable Development] conference
    to: “Trevor Davies”

    Dear Trevor, Mike and Neil,

    I support Mike’s suggestion of a clear contact person for this task as there will be a lot to do and it must go smoothly.

    I phoned Sheila McCabe who was full of good cheer. She has virtually guaranteed five grand and told ud also to to hard for DTI funding as they will bite if DEFRA is in the frame.

    I also talked to Bill Clark. I got a supportive email from him with an excellent summary of all that is going on in sustainability science in the world. I will forward his email onto you all. The big meeting is in Maxico City on 20 to 23 May where the position paper for WSSD will be drawn up. I feel someone from UEA should try to get to that meeting,< possibly with RS [Royal Shell?] grant aid.

    Bill simply cannot do it but will lean on Corell to come. They are all very impressed with what we are trying to do so we are on the right track.

    I will email Bob Corell again and will call him from New York next week. I think we can land him given the profile we are generating.

    My list for invitees includes

    Richard Newton, BP; Richard Sykes, Shell; Martin Stanley TXU-europe, Angela Wilkinson, Shell; Jim Skea, PSI; Paul Ekins,PSI; Diedre Hutton Consumers Association; Ann Power, LSE; Rod Aspinwall, Enviros; Becca Willis, Green Alliance; Ute Collier, WWF; Charles Secrett, FoE; Mike Ashley,LGIB; Bill Adams, Cambridge; Polly Courtice, CPI;Malcolm Grant, Cambridge; Chris Harrison CUP; Sheila McCabe, DEFRA.

    I have not looked at the science community in any great detail. But people such as Brian Hoskins, Richard Mcrory, John Pethick, Geoffrey Boulton, Brian Moss, and Ghillain Prance spring readily to mind.

    Cheers, Tim

    Prof. T. O’Riordan
    School of Environmental Sciences
    University of East Anglia

    Norwich
    NR4 7TJ

    from: Mike Hulme
    subject: BP
    to: shackley

    Simon,

    Have talked with Tim O about BP and he knows Paul Rutter but reckons he is junior to his two contacts Charlotte grezo (who is on our Panel!) and Simon Worthington.

    Tim is meeting Charlotte next week and will do some lobbying and we will also make contact with Simon Worthington.

    So I guess there is no necessity to follow up on Paul right now (I’ll wait for Tim’s feedback), but if you feel there is a strong enough UMIST angle then by all means do so (but bear in mind that we will be talking to some other parts of BP).

    We’re getting a few letters back from people here too which I will copy onto you – two water companies, Shell and the Foreign Office (the latter is not really business though).

    All for now,

    Mike

    from: “Elaine Jones”
    subject: ECF Autumn Conference
    to: “Martin Welp”

    Martin,

    Just to confirm and clarify a few of our views expressed in Monday’s telecom (I listened with interest alongside Mike) on the ECF Autumn Conference Preliminary Programme.

    The programme looks very good so far….

    In case Mark MS cannot accept an invite (he would also be an excellent dinner speaker) you could consider Phil Watts, who is actually Mark’s replacement as Chairman of the CMD of Royal Dutch/Shell Group, (and a Yorkshire Geophysicist) but rather for his other role as chairman of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development ( a coalition of 160 International companies from >30 countries and 20 sectors and a global network of 35 national and regional business councils) , which he took on in November 2001, succeeding Charles Holliday, DUPONT Chair and CEO. Of course, he’s incredibly busy but would be an excellent dinner speaker if he couldn’t manage day-time – and with an attractive letter invite may be tempted (e.g. building on his “I am honoured to become chairman of the WBCSD, it plays a vital role in helping both to challenge and encourage business, governments and institutions to address the issue of sustainable development”). As an alternative, and not to be to Shell biased, Rodney Chase deputy group chief exec. of BP (former Exploration Head) is also on the WBCSD Exec. Committee. I don’t know him – but I’m sure he would be good… he gave a Pew Centre presentation in 2000 – Innovative Policy Solutions to Global Climate Change http://www.pewclimate.org/media/rchase_speech.pdf – one might consider inviting him to “reflect on the subsequent 2 years track record of innovative solutions” ! he may be most useful for session 4, given the BP-Amoco (Arco) transatlantic make-up ! (and they are also a PEW member). He’s also a non-exec. director of DIAGEO plc (Europe’s largest Beverages co.).

    I will continue to think of other options.

    ref the Session 4 title, we wondered whether something like “EU perspectives on US (policy) trends (or signals)” or “EU perspectives on the implications of US(policy) trends (or signals)” would be better. The latter would capture the Developing Countries dimension which was mentioned.

    We could see some merit in Jean-Charles’s suggestion to bring the ‘Dangerous Climate Change’ and the ‘Emission targets and timing’ break-out groups together since the subject does require a truly integrated approach; the main concern is whether the resulting merged group would perhaps be too large for effective discussion. A compromise may be that the synergies/connection of the 2 themes could be a discussion item tabled both groups ?

    One final point is that Mike feels that an overall title is needed …… something along the lines of ‘Setting and achieving climate change targets: European perspectives’

    Regards,

    Elaine

    Tyndall Centre

    re: List of Industrial and Commercial Contacts to Elicit Support for the Tyndall Centre

    >dear colleagues
    >
    >re: List of Industrial and Commercial Contacts to Elicit Support
    >from for the Tyndall Centre
    >
    >This is the list so far. Our contact person is given in brackets
    >afterwards….

    >SPRU has offered to elicit support from their energy programme
    >sponsors which will help beef things up. (Frans: is the Alsthom
    >contact the same as Nick Jenkin’s below? Also, do you have a BP
    >Amoco contact? The name I’ve come up with is Paul Rutter, chief
    >engineer, but he is not a personal contact
    ]
    >
    >We could probably do with some more names from the financial sector.
    >Does anyone know any investment bankers?
    >
    >Please send additional names as quickly as possible so we can
    >finalise the list.
    >
    >I am sending a draft of the generic version of the letter eliciting
    >support and the 2 page summary to Mike to look over. Then this can be
    >used as a basis for letter writing by the Tyndall contact (the person
    >in brackets).
    >
    >Mr Alan Wood CEO Siemens plc [Nick Jenkins]
    >Mr Mike Hughes CE Midlands Electricity (Visiting Prof at UMIST) [Nick
    >Jenkins]
    >Mr Keith Taylor, Chairman and CEO of Esso UK (John
    >Shepherd]
    >Mr Brian Duckworth, Managing Director, Severn-Trent Water
    >[Mike Hulme]
    >Dr Jeremy Leggett, Director, Solar Century [Mike Hulme]
    >Mr Brian Ford, Director of Quality, United Utilities plc [Simon
    >Shackley]
    >Dr Andrew Dlugolecki, CGU [Jean Palutikof]
    >Dr Ted Ellis, VP Building Products, Pilkington plc [Simon Shackley]
    >Mr Mervyn Pedalty, CEO, Cooperative Bank plc [Simon Shackley]
    >
    >
    >Possibles:
    >Mr John Loughhead, Technology Director ALSTOM [Nick Jenkins]
    >Mr Edward Hyams, Managing Director Eastern Generation [Nick
    >Jenkins]
    >Dr David Parry, Director Power Technology Centre, Powergen
    >[Nick Jenkins]
    >Mike Townsend, Director, The Woodland Trust [Melvin
    >Cannell]
    >Mr Paul Rutter, BP Amoco [via Terry Lazenby, UMIST]
    >
    >With kind regards
    >
    >Simon Shackley

    Subject: Re: industrial and commercial contacts
    Date: Mon Jan 10 17:01:32 2000

    Simon,

    I have talked with Tim O’Riordan and others here today and Tim has a wealth of contacts he is prepared to help with. Four specific ones from Tim are:

    – Charlotte Grezo, BP Fuel Options (possibly on the Assessment Panel. She is also on the ESRC Research Priorities Board), but someone Tim can easily talk with. There are others in BP Tim knows too.
    – Richard Sykes, Head of Environment Division at Shell International

    – Chris Laing, Managing Director, Laing Construction (also maybe someone at Bovis)
    – ??, someone high-up in Unilever whose name escapes me….

    Tyndall°Centre for Climate Change Research ®

    The Tyndall Centre is a unique partnership between a selection of researchers from eight UK research institutions, who together with contributions from Fudan University form the Tyndall Consortium.

    The following Tyndall staff and researchers are based at partner institutions within the Tyndall Consortium.

    There is also the Scenarios – SRES description 2 SRES WRITING TEAM ADDRESS LIST And it includes among others


    Dr. Gerald R. Davis
    Group Planning
    Shell International Petroleum
    London, UK…

    Mr. William Hare
    Greenpeace International
    Amsterdam, the Netherlands…

    Dr. Richard Moss
    Head of Technical Support Unit
    IPCC Working Group II
    Washington, D.C., U.S.A.

    You can do a search for Gerald Davis yourself in the Climategate e-mails and on the internet.

    Accusing Anthony or the rest of us of taking ‘Oil Money’ is nothing more than projection. Activists have been trying for years and found nothing yet a quick search turns up lots of ‘Oil Money’ funding activists and researchers.

    Give it up and take off your blinders.

  113. Quote from Anthony Watts:
    “My personal life and my business is none of your business sir.”

    Nice line, Anthony.

    Unfortunately, figures don’t lie, but liars do often figure.

    In the real world, Anthony, not in the fantasy world you construct on this site, your sources of funding matter because they are very likely influencing the content on this site, which you seem intent on sharing with hundreds of thousands of readers.

    In the real world, corporations do hire people to lie, directly and indirectly. There is a truly massive program of paid disinformation and propaganda being conducted by the oil corporations, and you are very likely a product of that program.

    If you have nothing to hide, tell us where the money comes from, Anthony.

    REPLY:
    No, I have not nor have I ever received any money from oil corporations, coal, tobacco companies, or any other corporation. In case you have not noticed, WUWT runs on a shoestring, hosted on wordpress.com free blog hosting (as are most blogs) with a donations button and some Adwords advertising. What projects I have done, such as the surfacestations project and the upcoming climatereference project were done by concerned individuals who donated to make it happen. The recent low budget TV program I did to counter Al Gore (with all its technical glitches because I can’t afford a team of tv producers like Mr. Gore) was made possible also by a donation from a private individual who reads this blog for about $8K for the main rigs, with readers and myself chipping in for the remainder. Go look at it. See any big petro-dollars in the production there?. Yet somehow, people such as yourself see such low rent efforts as part of a “massive program of paid disinformation”. Well speculate all you want, but the reality doesn’t fit the charge here.

    You should ask your buddy Joe Romm the same questions, since his organization, the Center for American Progress, won’t even reveal their budgets for paying Romm (who draws a salary), Goose, gander, and all that.

    I’ve given you the truth, but I expect you’ll just dismiss it as you don’t seem capable of disengaging yourself from conspiracy theory, and your language telegraphs your contempt. – Anthony

  114. Anthony Watts says, “Sandy wasn’t even a category 1 hurricane when it made landfall. Yet somehow, that elevates it for “megastorm” status?” Well Mr. Watts you really need to learn your facts before you come on here and say things that you know absolutlely nothing about. Yes Sandy lost it’s hurricane status, do you know the real reason why? Of course you don’t, or you would never had made that stupid comment. Sandy was a category one hurricane in carribean, then strenthened to a category 2 hurricane as it moved across the Atlantic Ocean. Then the REAL reason the storm lost its status as a hurricane was because it no longer had a warm core center nor the convection — the upwards air movement in the eye — that traditional hurricanes have. It was still every bit as dangerous when it had the “hurricane” status, but because it met with TWO different cold air pressure systems- which is why it got the the nickname “Frankenstorm”. Also it lost it’s hurricane status and it tipped into the post-tropical category because it became devoid of thunderstorms near the center. Any minor detail that changes in a storm changes the name of the storm. Shouldn’t you know this since you supposedly run a site with “commentary on science, news, climate, etc..). Sandy had EVERY aspect of a category 1 hurricane, her winds were at 92 mph when she made landfall in NJ. If she would have reached 96 mph, she would’ve been a category 2. Also with hurricanes, in order to classify them they must have all this: 74-95mph winds, 4-5 foot storm surge, and a minimum central pressure of 980 mb. Sandy had 92 mph winds, 14 foot storm surges, and a central pressure of 950 mb when it hit landfall. That is the lowest pressure system ever recorded in the east coast. Thats one reason it was so damaging. Sandy moved north and made a left hand turn and slammed the jersey shore, which is something that never happens, but did because it got caught in the cold pressure system that was drawing it inland, and a high pressure system from the east blocking it and pushing it to the west, along with the wide spread devestation it caused is why it is now called a MEGASTORM or a SUPERSTORM. A post tropical storm doesn’t cut it. I am a Sandy survivor, I live on the Jersey Shore. I didn’t evacuate, and I was stuck inside for 4 days because there was 8 feet of water surrounding my house. Unless you lived through a hurricane, especially one like Sandy, don’t underestimate what you see or hear. And definitely DO NOT let a storm fool you. And one more thing, do your homework before posting. Its embarressing…

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