The Ultimate ‘Skeptical Science’ cherry pick

First some background graphics before we demonstrate the cherry pick.

We’ll start with the IPCC graphic from the AR5 draft.

IPCC_AR5_draft_fig1-4_without

Then we’ll look at Christy and Spencer’s recent graph.

CMIP5-73-models-vs-obs-20N-20S-MT-5-yr-means1[1]

Now let’s look at what Marlo Lewis brought to our attention at globalwarming.org. He writes:

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

Seeing is believing, but things are not always what they seem. Skeptical Science, a Web site devoted to “debunking” global warming skepticism, asserts that Spencer’s claim about recent warming being only 50% of what the model consensus projects is “flat-out ridiculously wrong” (original emphasis). Observed warming has been “spot on consistent with climate model projections,” Skeptical Science contends. The evidence, supposedly, is in the graph below (click on it to activate the presentation if it doesn’t animate).

Skeptical-Science-Predictions_500[1]

Figure explanation: This animation compares the observed global temperature change since 1990 (black curve) to projections of global temperature change from the first four Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports (red, pink, orange, green) and from various “climate contrarians” (blue, purple, green, gray dashed).  The observations are given by the average of 3 primary global temperature datasets (NASA GISS, NOAA NCDC, and HadCRUT4).  All of the IPCC projections have proven to be quite accurate, suggesting high reliability.  The contrarian projections all underestimate the global warming substantially, and in fact they erroneously predict global cooling and are quite unreliable.

So who’s right: Spencer and Christy or Skeptical Science (SS)? The SS graph and commentary are misleading in two ways.

The period covered in the SS graph is a decade shorter than that covered by the Spencer-Christy graph and looks suspiciously like cherry-picking.  By starting their graph in 1990, SS can use the Mt. Pinatubo-induced cold period of 1992-93 to tilt the trend to be more positive. The Spencer-Christy graph begins at the start of the satellite record — 1979 — providing a longer and more representative period.

More importantly, SS uses global surface temperature datasets, which do not accurately represent heat content in the bulk atmosphere. In contrast, Spencer and Christy use temperature data from the tropical troposphere — the place where the models project the strongest, least ambiguous, greenhouse warming signal.

As Christy explained in testimony last August, the popular surface datasets often touted as evidence of model validity are not reliable indicators of the greenhouse effect. Land use changes (urbanization, farming, deforestation) “disrupt the normal formation of the shallow, surface layer of cooler air during the night when TMin [daily low temperature] is measured.” Over time, TMin gets warmer, producing a trend easily mistaken for a global atmospheric phenomenon.

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

Full essay here: http://www.globalwarming.org/2013/06/10/climate-models-epic-failure-or-spot-on-consistent-with-observed-warming/

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91 Responses to The Ultimate ‘Skeptical Science’ cherry pick

  1. grumpydenier says:

    My granddaughter covers her eyes and thinks because she can’t see me, it means I can’t see her.

    These alarmists must work on the same principle; if we believe no one will spot this then perhaps they won’t.

    It might have worked at one time but there are just too many people, across a range of disciplines, who are not taken in and are watching everything very closely.

  2. M Courtney says:

    I agree entirely.
    SkS are despicable deceivers. Propagandists!

    But please call them ‘SkS’, not ‘SS’.

    They are foolish and clownish.
    Their only threat is that they might be taken seriously.

    The SS were worse.

  3. Ken Hall says:

    So are “sceptical science” now claiming that the IPCC are a bunch of contrarian deniars too now?

    They are seriously dishonest by screwing with the data like that to still try to fraudulently present the current pause in warming as continued on going projected warming. It is deperation on the cusp of madness that they try to be so blatantly dishonest in how the selective, cherry-picked data is being presented.

    There is nothing sceptical about sceptical science, they are utter mindless believers in their religion. They are looking more and more like creationists and evolution deniars.

  4. Ryan says:

    Why don’t Christy and Spencer just use global temps? If the models are SO WRONG it should be easy to just slap up all of the various IPCC projections and well-known models along with their ranges of uncertainty and plot it against measurements.

  5. Margaret Hardman says:

    Is there an explanation for why the satellite and balloon data is so different up to 2003 and then the two datasets seem locked together? I realise Dr Spencer is an expert on satellite data of this kind so perhaps he might be generous enough to give me an explanation.

  6. Gary Hladik says:

    Spencer: “Mid-troposphere measurements don’t match corresponding model projections.”

    SkS: “You’re wrong! Motorcycles don’t have doors!”

    :-)

  7. Tilo Reber says:

    Ryan: The surface instrument records are effected by uncompensated UHI. The satellite records are not. The surface instrument records are effected by extrapolation. The satellite records are not.

  8. Lance Wallace says:

    Remember that the IPCC projections have a range depending on scenarios of CO2 increase. Generally (not always) it is the HIGHEST curve that is based on “business as usual” increase of CO2. Since in fact CO2 concentrations HAVE risen according to “business as usual”, it is the HIGHEST curve of the IPCC projections that should be considered, NOT the middle portion of the range. This is the mistake that Ira Glickstein made in his treatment of this effort, and it is also the “mistake” (or perhaps willful deception) that SkS make in their approach.

  9. Doug Huffman says:

    In re SkS versus SS: My education spans the cusp between inkwells and personal computers, and between slide-rules and the HP-35. In high school, the inkwells were pulled up to make room for manual typewriters, and the latest Selectrics were a reward for good copy. It was explained that abbreviations, initialisms and acronyms were lazy and excused only in manuscript as labor saving devices. We could avoid so much alphabet-soup-confusion by writing out Schutzstaffel and Samozaryadnyj Karabin Simonova, each a concept worthy of a complete spelling out.

    That might even help avoid “chart junk” (Edward Tufte in The Visual Display of Quantitative Information) as deep thought.

  10. Henry Galt says:

    M Courtney says:
    June 10, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    Nope. SS is what I have invariably monikered them.

    I am glad to see them labelled truly – they made a big noise about it and, when ‘politeness’ seemed to be the way to go, most succumbed. The gloves are truly off now.

    They have multiple problems. Number one? They all believe they are the smeartest guy in the womb.

  11. Lance Wallace says:

    I forgot to mention that the IPCC graphic from the AR5 draft uses the same deceptive approach. It presents the range of IPCC projections as though they are equivalent, and some value near the middle is their “best estimate.” But in fact in each case, it was a projection near or at the top of the range for which the scenario was closest to reality. Were the AR5 authors honest, they would include only the projection most closely related to the real way CO2 increased. You can do this for them by taking just the top boundary of each colored band as the actual IPCC projection most closely following the real CO2 increase.

  12. J.Seifert says:

    Could someone explain why AR5 observations are just vertical sticks and the
    brown line of measurements stops in year 2000? Thanks.

  13. Peter Miller says:

    The acronym SS somehow seems so appropriate.

    Only the Cause matters, the facts are irrelevant, the science is settled, so all hail the IPCC.

  14. weltklima says:

    And one more question, while we are at it: The observation for 2011 is out of the AR4 range,
    as demonstrated…..why is a vertical stick missing and only 2 dots were made? This has to
    signify something??….

  15. Eliza says:

    The SKS lot are a group of young Australian fanatics who have nothing to do better with their time there losing massively just like Gillard.No one believes them anymore just like Gillard and Australian labor is out for the next 30 years. Mark my words not even the diehard lefties believe this crap anymore they’ve had it, Howwvere thay are the best allies of Skeptics just like Romm etc They only re-inforce doubt in the general population Ha ha Good luck SKS LOL

  16. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    From M Courtney on June 10, 2013 at 1:04 pm:

    But please call them ‘SkS’, not ‘SS’.

    They are foolish and clownish.
    Their only threat is that they might be taken seriously.

    The SS were worse.

    Hey now, recognize the type of person. Given time and a few lucky breaks, I’m certain they could live down to our lowest expectations.

    Seriously, for example, you remember how Dana was accusing Richard Tol of being a denier? How his whiny pedantic style so perfectly emulated Sheldon on the Big Band Theory?

    It’s so easy to picture him on the street, while surrounded by his guards, patiently explaining to a woman: “Now you listen to me, it is true that your daughter drew a picture with the words ‘the Sun is making us hotter’. This is against the course material approved by the Climate Correction Commission as only carbon emissions are responsible, thus it proves she’s a climate denier. Now unless you want to join her, you will quickly say goodbye and take her over to that black van. We will take care of her. We are the government, we are here to help her.”

    Trust me, give these fine lads at SkepSci the authority they are certain they should have by virtue of their righteous intellect, and they will go far, farther than they’d ever let you live to see!

  17. Luther Wu says:

    Doug Huffman says:
    June 10, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    We could avoid so much alphabet-soup-confusion by writing out Schutzstaffel and Samozaryadnyj Karabin Simonova, each a concept worthy of a complete spelling out.
    _______________________
    Did you start off saying something about reverse Polish notation?

  18. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    New game! Spot the embarrassing typo in my last comment!

  19. Billy Liar says:

    And, of course, nobody has been fiddling with the GISS or NCDC temperature record:

    https://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/tracking-us-temperature-fraud/

  20. Bruce says:

    Has anyone else noticed Skeptical Science is NOT using oserved temperatures, they also cheat by using temerature “change”

  21. Billy Liar says:

    kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    June 10, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    New game! Spot the embarrassing typo in my last comment!

    Showing your age!

  22. Paul Martin says:

    Sadly it isn’t the ultimate one — not even the penultimate one. These guys never seem to give up.

  23. The role of skeptical science is predicted sociology wise by Irving Janis, defining them as Mind Guards

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

    Please read that, to understand how crowd interaction works. Obviously it was inevitable that a site as SkS emerged after the failure of realclimate as mindguard den.

  24. Bryan says:

    Skeptical Science is propaganda shop window for GAGW.
    They shamelessly delete and alter posts from posters to their site.
    I am talking from personal experiance .
    What else can you expect!

  25. Mike jarosz says:

    Doug Huffman says:
    June 10, 2013 at 1:36 pm
    In re SkS versus SS: My education spans the cusp between inkwells and personal computers, and between slide-rules and the HP-35.

    You sir are a senior citizen. as I recall the cost of Hp 35 at the time was about $400. That was real money back then.

    Reply: $395.00. My high school Math teacher had one. He was so proud. ~mod (~ctm)

  26. MarkW says:

    I can’t tell you the number of warmists that I deal with who proclaim that if SkS says it, then it’s true and anyone who disagrees is probably in the pay of the Koch brothers.

  27. MarkW says:

    Lance Wallace says:
    June 10, 2013 at 1:32 pm
    —-
    CO2 levels have actually risen a bit faster than the “business as usual” scenario’s forecast.
    At the time nobody was predicting the rapid industrialization of both China and India.

  28. MarkW says:

    Regarding the SS vs SkS controversy.
    Several prominent warmists have proclaimed a desire to see us skeptics put on trial for crimes against humanity.
    I’m not inclined to cut them much slack.

  29. TonyG says:

    @kadaka:

    The Big Band Theory?

  30. KNR says:

    The cartoonist and his lapdog are going full on for the ’cause ‘ has their looking to be ‘leaders’ of the area . Its actual a good thing they are , for one things its funny as and two the more extreme they get the quicker the people right them off as nutters. Has with Mann and Dr Doom , keeping them in the spot light and under pressure will result in much ‘good ‘ for the very people and ideas they hate ,

  31. Wyguy says:

    Again I say to you: The real deniers are people like SkS, Mann, Hansen, et al, they keep denying the truth.

  32. Russ R. says:

    @ Ryan:

    ” If the models are SO WRONG it should be easy to just slap up all of the various IPCC projections and well-known models along with their ranges of uncertainty and plot it against measurements.”

    Since you asked nicely, I’ll once again post this little spreadsheet of IPCC projections and observations… https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/78507292/Climate%20Models.xlsx

    Enjoy!

  33. jrwakefield says:

    In 1979 you buy a stock portfolio on the recommendation of a broker. It does well until 1998. Since then your net return has been 0%. You contact your broker complaining, and he says “dont cheery pick numbers. It’s gone up over all. It definitely will go up gangbusters in the future, my model says so.”

    This then begs the question: How many more years of no growth to your funds do you wait before you finally realize your broker is wrong?

  34. Zeke says:

    Akasafou does not disappoint.

    He subtracts the recovery from the LIA (and another natural variable) to arrive at a flatline. And keeping in mind that upward adjustments were made (yearly) to temp data which biases it towards the poorer, less compliant sites, I would say he is bringing some reality to the problem.

    He seems to be showing a slight downturn in temps after 2012.

    So if any legislators are looking at this, smaller independent grids, and cheap abundant energy from fossil fuels is the best way to flexibly respond to cooling (or even warming) temps, natural disasters, or in the event of an Electromagnetic Pulse Weapon. A more centralized grid, smart meters, and worthless wind turbines will not respond well to future needs or in emergencies and are already devastating economies in Europe. Most of all, adding electric cars to the grid must be looked at with great wariness – Although I am sure it is fun to be caught up in a fashion whirlwind and to show off one’s trendiness to friends, it really is a horrible idea, and unnecessary. The public should not be coerced into adding worthless, powerless, and expensive electric vehicles as a further demand on existing grids. Or perhaps that is the idea: add vehicles to the demand, diminish the supply with worthless wind turbines, and then claim a new, centralized, remotely controlled grid is needed?

  35. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    From TonyG on June 10, 2013 at 2:58 pm:

    @kadaka:

    The Big Band Theory?

    Yup! Sailed through spell check, and we don’t yet have contextually-aware phrase check. BTW, I’m old enough to know about them, but not to have danced to them.

    For your reward, just reach behind like when you zip up your dress and pat yourself on the back. Enjoy!

  36. Eric says:

    I don’t see this mentioned in the original post, or in the subsequent comments, but I think another important deception was used in the SkS graph.

    Look at the IPCC “Observed” and match it to the SkS “Observed”…they used the high point of the error range bar of the IPCC graph for observed temp anomaly for each point in their graph (which does not contain error bars).

  37. ckb says:

    Looks to me like they are taking the “mid-line” of the model projections from the AR5 graph and plotting them against the same observations shown in the AR5 graph.

    Their graph is not incorrect, it’s just not nearly as useful as the AR5 graph. The models are not their midline.

    I also do not understand why any sensible scientist clings to using the surface temp data sets for the computation of a global temp when the satellite data is available. Goes double when you are plotting data that falls completely within satellite era.

  38. Willis Eschenbach says:

    Ryan says:
    June 10, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    Why don’t Christy and Spencer just use global temps? If the models are SO WRONG it should be easy to just slap up all of the various IPCC projections and well-known models along with their ranges of uncertainty and plot it against measurements.

    There are a couple of problems with that. The first is the one highlighted by Christy above.

    As Christy explained in testimony last August, the popular surface datasets often touted as evidence of model validity are not reliable indicators of the greenhouse effect. Land use changes (urbanization, farming, deforestation) “disrupt the normal formation of the shallow, surface layer of cooler air during the night when TMin [daily low temperature] is measured.” Over time, TMin gets warmer, producing a trend easily mistaken for a global atmospheric phenomenon.

    The second is that the models are tuned to hindcast global surface temperatures. As you might expect, to tune for one measurement induces errors in other measurements (tropospheric temperature, rainfall, etc.).

    As a result, while the models all do a passable job of hindcasting surface temperature, they’re worse, and often much worse, at hindcasting just about anything you might mention.

    As illustrated by Spencer and Christy above regarding the size of the tropical tropospheric “hot spot” predicted by the models …

    Of course, the current hiatus in the warming has already shown that “Past performance is no guarantee of future success”, as the stock brokerage ads warn us. None of the models predicted this at all. In fact, the models are constitutionally incapable of predicting cooling on average, unless there chance to be volcanoes. So far, the only thing they can do is what they were tuned to do—hindcast the 20th century.

    w.

  39. Here’s a thought.
    Who in their right mind, when naming an organisation chooses one with the initials SS?
    Do we really think that a media savvy operator like John Cook chose the name of his blog…by accident?
    No I’m afraid that Cook does in fact see himself as an elite Climate Warrior, fanatical, loyal and prepared to do anything for the cause.
    Worth bearing in mind that the Nazi SS was established by minor civil servant, Heinrich Himmler; a podgy, little, creepy guy with delusions of grandeur.

  40. Tony says:

    Kadaka – sadly, the picture didn’t post. It illustrated your typo nicely :)

  41. BarryW says:

    Wait a minute! Look at the AR5 observations and the ones SkS is using. Take ’98 for example. The AR5 graph shows the value at ~.5 but the SkS graph shows the same data point at ~.6! Similarly the ’90 point is at ~.3 (AR5) and ~3.5 (SkS). It looks like the anomalies are skewed between the charts pushing the data up in the SkS chart so it alines more closely with the IPCC trend lines. I tried readjusting the observation line to account for the offset (by eye) and it looks like it lines up with Akasofu’s line very nicely. Can anybody verify this?

  42. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Tony said June 10, 2013 at 4:21 pm:

    Kadaka – sadly, the picture didn’t post. It illustrated your typo nicely :)

    Link showed up the second time, have to click on it…

    Lawrence Welk! Local PBS staple programming here in Pennsylvania and undoubtedly elsewhere. Before digital transition, on bow tie antenna, got it on both 33 (Harrisburg) and 44 (Wilkes Barre-Scranton), parents would watch it as there wasn’t much else on. Now we lost 33 but get 44.1 to 44.4 when the weather behaves and the Sun is quiet (Note to Vuk, does not indicate a sun/weather correlation).

    And on one or more of those sub channels, at least on the weekend guaranteed, “The Best of the Lawrence Welk Show” WILL be on.

    Turn on the bubble machine!

  43. David L. says:

    How hard is it for these guys? Lets see an r-squared value for all their fits. That’s a measure of how good the model matches the prediction. Also, inspection of the residuals between the model and the actual values will help show if the model holds value. For example, are the residuals normally distributed about zero? Where are the statistical analyses? All I ever see are cute animated graphs.

  44. evanmjones says:

    I miss Reverse Polish Notation.

  45. Steve from Rockwood says:

    What Lance Wallace said. Plot the IPCC business as usual graph versus actual temperatures and stand back and laugh.

  46. James Smyth says:

    [Zeke]Akasafou does not disappoint.

    Google returns zero(0) results for “Akasafou” (and it’s closest matches don’t look relevant)

  47. James Smyth says:

    [Zeke]Akasafou does not disappoint.

    Google returns zero(0) results for “Akasafou” (and it’s closest matches don’t look relevant)

  48. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    evanmjones said on June 10, 2013 at 5:02 pm:

    I miss Reverse Polish Notation.

    Hurry up or you’ll miss it more.

    Now I gotta go check where I left my original one. I’m pretty sure I had taken the old button batteries out…

  49. Ian H says:

    Surely the models must specifically identify which temperatures they were tuned to and which they are predicting. Either they are troposphere averages or they are average surface temperatures. They cannot be both. This is a question which has an easily determined and unambiguous answer. Someone is right and someone is wrong. Who is it?

  50. Ric Werme says:

    evanmjones says:
    June 10, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    > I miss Reverse Polish Notation.

    I have a HP11C at home and a HP16C at work (that’s the hex/oct/bin/dec calculator for geeks). Then (free) HP11C and HP15C aps on my iPhone.

    Having had a few computer science courses before I first saw a HP35, I was using it comfortably in less than a minute. The owner was crestfallen when the HP45 came out and he no longer had the coolest thing on the planet.

    10 digit accuracy. My slide rule was no match….

  51. Bill Illis says:

    Every time SkS produces one of these charts (and there have been many), each one has got different numbers in it.

    Observations, IPCC, Hansen, it doesn’t matter.

    They get away with it and the authors/fakers just get more and more popular in the climate science field every time they produce/exaggerate another one.

    It seems to be the best way to get invited to speak at conferences for example.

  52. jai mitchell says:

    (sigh)

    you’re just mad that they didn’t start in 1998 and used real temperature data.

    if they had corrected for solar variations, El Nino Southern Oscillation and stratopheric volcano effects then they would have shown much more warming (which would show the CO2 effect!)

    http://tamino.files.wordpress.com/2011/12/figure05.jpg

  53. Bill Illis says:

    jai mitchell says:
    June 10, 2013 at 6:30 pm
    (sigh)
    ————–

    Most warmers seem to exhibit this “emotional response”. Rather than looking at the real data (or examining Grant Foster’s real data and methodology), we get a sigh.

    I’d be happy to show you how fake Tamino’s chart and Grant Foster’s paper is, but I would have to use real numbers which I suspect is not going to have an impact on you.

  54. Eric says:

    BarryW

    That is what I was saying…if you look at the IPCCs graph they have error bars on the observations, SkS is using the highest point on the error bars for each point on their graph.

  55. RACookPE1978 says:

    jai mitchell says:
    June 10, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    you’re just mad that they didn’t start in 1998 and used real temperature data.

    if they had corrected for solar variations, El Nino Southern Oscillation and stratopheric volcano effects then they would have shown much more warming (which would show the CO2 effect!)

    ????

    There have been no significant volcano\s recently (during the “flat earth” no-global-warming period you need to explain away), so how is anybody supposed to “add in effects” in ANY temperature record?

    See, your models NEED periodic artificial constraints added in routinely (aerosol adjustments, volcanoes, El Nino’s) to allow their inherent calculation errors to be “corrected” such that the printed graphic outcomes match the temperatures that you need to re-create. But, in almost 16 years now of no significant El Nino’s nor La Nina’s nor volcanoes nor solar variations, the earth’s temperature measures out flat-lining (cooling very slightly actually) while CO2 increases by nearly 13% ….

    And no model can predict when the flat-line will end,although one model (out of 23) (one time) shows it lasting this long either!) …. And that one run of that one model will cross today’s decreasing temperature trends in 10 months time.

    But the collective group of all 23 models continue tracking off their writers’ fantasies. So, if only one is correct, are you going to throw out the other 22 and defund their labs and turn off their supercomputers and fire their writers and staff?

  56. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    From jai mitchell on June 10, 2013 at 6:30 pm:

    (sigh)

    you’re just mad that they didn’t start in 1998 and used real temperature data.

    *sigh*

    We’re just irritated you subsequently flashed a link to a graph from the discredited Foster and Rahmstorf 2011 paper and expected us to bow to the exalted wisdom you have graciously presented.

    Didn’t you do your research?
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/12/17/frank-lansner-on-foster-and-rahmstorf-2011/
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/01/14/tisdale-on-foster-and-rahmstorf-take-2/

    Which was followed by the also-debunked Rahmstorf, Foster (tamino), and Anny Cazenave 2012 paper:
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/11/28/mythbusting-rahmstorf-and-foster/

    We’re here to help you get through the disinformation clogging your brain as presented to you previously by tamino and fellow currently un-indicted co-conspirators, help you see the real science clearly. If you need any further enlightenment besides what’s in those links, you can ask here or on the next related thread.

  57. weltklima says:

    Are we on the alternative sceptical website? When will alternative forecasts be
    shown in a graph for all of us to discuss? This instead of regurging the deadbeat AR5
    horse meat over and over again. We know by now that AR5 is smelling. Anthony, show
    us the good stuff, the alternatives, please…

  58. David vun Kannon says:

    It is too bad most of the comments are focused on the superficial issue of Marlo Lewis using SS vs. SkS or some other acronym. His actual argument is also worth discussing!

    Marlo thinks the SkS graph is misleading “in two ways” – starting at 1990 and using surface temperature data.

    Is starting at 1990 a kind of cherry picking, as Marlo insinuates? No, it is simply as far back as you can go – to the First Assessment Report. That should be clear from the first chart included by Anthony Watts in this post. There can be no projections prior to that. Nothing nefarious or cherry picking going on here.

    Is it misleading to use surface temperature data? Marlo makes two claims himself:

    Spencer and Christy use temperature data from the tropical troposphere — the place where the models project the strongest, least ambiguous, greenhouse warming signal.

    and (in the full article linked to)

    Of course, observational systems may have biases and errors, but that is an implausible explanation for the mismatch.

    Well, no, Marlo, that isn’t quite right. The conclusion of the US Climate Change Science Program was that the satellite data had errors. From the Executive Summary (John Christy was one of the Lead Authors):

    Tropical Temperature Results (20°S to 20°n)
    • Although the majority of observational data sets show more warming at the surface than in
    the troposphere, some observational data sets show the opposite behavior. Almost all model
    simulations show more warming in the troposphere than at the surface. This difference between models and observations may arise from errors that are common to all models, from
    errors in the observational data sets, or from a combination of these factors. The second
    explanation is favored, but the issue is still open.

    So it isn’t “implausible” that observational systems have errors that are explanatory. That is the favored explanation! Nor is it particularly helpful to quote Christy before Congress trying to resurrect UHI under the moniker ‘land use change’, you’d think the BEST results would have kept that poor beaten horse in its grave.

  59. jai mitchell says:

    @Kadaka

    your assertions are far from scientific or even correct. That is the problem with this site, tons of hypotheses about why the data or science is wrong. (everything from conspiracy theories to your own pet theories about physics) your “debunk” page simply hypothesizes that the PDO is a stronger effect than ENSO and that PDO is caused by solar activity. . .and then says the correction is incorrect, “because he says so. . .” This is the worst form of denialist behavior.

    @RACook1978

    in 16 years we went from the strongest el nino on record to a period of cool negative pacific decadal oscillations so strong that it is only similar to the 1945-1979 period of warmth stagnation. The negative PDO is caused by human activity and only leads to increased warming of the oceans, that is why the surface air temperatures stay cool.

    oh and the Pinatubo eruption is in the chart they provided so, yes, volcanos. Though there are many more to compensate for than that one. see here: http://www.wunderground.com/climate/volcanoes.asp

  60. Bill Illis says:

    jai mitchell says:
    June 10, 2013 at 7:33 pm
    The negative PDO is caused by human activity and only leads to increased warming of the oceans, that is why the surface air temperatures stay cool.
    —————————–

    Interesting wierdness there for sure.

  61. Caleb says:

    Cook should win the “climate craziness” prize every week.

    What bugs me is that someone I care for goes to his site to be re-indoctrinated after talking with me, and then comes back with a chart or graph like the above, and confronts me with, “Ah Ha! What have you got to say about THIS, smarty.” Then it’s my turn to give them the old, “Sigh…”

    I think eventually Cook will be relegated to the back burners of the internet, where he will share company with other bizarre sites proclaiming unfounded theories. It is the price we pay for a free press.

  62. Caleb says:

    Cook chart has most-recent temps more than a half degree above normal, while last month’s UAH data had us less than a tenth of a degree above normal.

    It’s hard to even start on the same page with the guy.

  63. Werner Brozek says:

    James Smyth says:
    June 10, 2013 at 5:13 pm
    [Zeke]Akasafou does not disappoint.

    Was this posted on the wrong thread? I used a diagram by Dr. Syun-Ichi Akasofu on my post at http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/06/09/are-we-in-a-pause-or-a-decline-now-includes-at-least-april-data/

  64. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    From jai mitchell on June 10, 2013 at 7:33 pm:

    The negative PDO is caused by human activity…

    *smirk*

    The Pacific Decadal Oscillation is a natural pseudo-cycle that runs approximately 60 years total, spending about half that in either its positive or negative phase.

    And right about when it could and should be expected, it flipped to negative, in 2005.

    A natural thing changed course when it should naturally be expected to, therefore, in your view, what happened was caused by human activity.

    Just like how much of the warming has already been shown to be natural, and all of it is not extraordinary in historical terms, but despite being natural it too is caused by human activity.

    You’re in luck, Willis Eschenbach just got done with an informative post about the PDO, which contains information you have obviously been denied as it would interfere with making you conclude mere humans have so dramatically shifted an entire planet’s climate. Well it’s less than a degree or so over the past century, but it looks very dramatic when Tami graphs it.

    Bob Tisdale has also posted many informative pieces about the PDO, ENSO, and other things you would benefit from knowing real facts about.

  65. GaryM says:

    “More importantly, SS uses global surface temperature datasets, which do not accurately represent heat content in the bulk atmosphere.”

    Looking through AR4, it seems that most of the “global mean temperature” projections they report are based solely on surface air temperatures. Their predictions did not therefore even attempt to represent heat content in the bulk atmosphere, let alone the climate as a whole. So SS was comparing apples to apples. But the IPCC’s use of the term “global mean temperature” in this context was more dishonest than the cherry picking by SS.

    You post a graph listing the “mean surface air temperature,” and people will ask what about the rest of the climate. But you just label it “global mean temperature,” and the average voter has no idea that you are hiding huge gaping holes in your knowledge.

    I for one don’t think we have a clue what the “global mean temperature” is to any reasonable degree of accuracy. So using the term to describe the reported surface air temps is propaganda, not science.

  66. JimF says:

    evanmjones says:
    June 10, 2013 at 5:02 pm
    “…I miss Reverse Polish Notation….” I use my HP12c everyday. I almost cannot make a TI or el cheapo calculator work. RPN seems to mirror the way my mind works. Those two little machines – 12c and 15c – are iconic examples of great technology.

  67. Kasuha says:

    You have missed one important detail in the Spencer’s graph – it is comparison of middle troposphere tropical temperatures, models and reality. Middle troposphere, not surface temperatures. And tropical, not the whole world (although about half of it). While this graph is okay to show how wrong models got it in this particular metric, it cannot be used for comparison with graphs of global surface temperatures as it does not work with global surface temperatures.

  68. ninhspalace says:

    Sceptical of Science. The “of” is silent.

  69. M Courtney says:

    I apologise for derailing the thread.
    Yet, my dislike of “SS” as a name for those who we disagree with, is sincere.
    Keep it classy and stick to the facts. The facts are on our side. Don’t put neutrals off with petty smears.

    Remember, the squirmers who are trying to argue that their predictions aren’t proven wrong just yet (petty smear, I know) have already conceded the real argument.

    They predicted the end of the world, mega-disasters and other things that would have been noticed by the man in the street. Luckily they were wrong.
    And, despite fiddling with fake surveys and fake graphs, everyone can see they were wrong.

  70. Perhaps SkS might like to tell us why the Met Office’s decadal forecasts were so wrong then.

    http://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2013/02/06/met-office-decadal-forecast2007-version/

  71. CodeTech says:

    weltklima, are you asking for “Skeptics” to commit to a temperature trend prediction?

    Can’t speak for all, but my personal position is that we simply don’t have enough information on what is driving temperatures, and those who think they do are idiots. Nothing in nature moves in a straight line, not even light. NO trend continues unabated. NOTHING in our atmosphere just monotonously alters climate without a feedback mechanism kicking in and knocking it down. And most important, CO2 DOES NOT DRIVE CLIMATE.

    Again, to me, it appears likely that we are going to see some cooling over the next few decades. I think it’s pretty obvious from looking at all temperature records that temperatures oscillate around an average, whether the underlying trend is up or down. Yes, I’d love for someone to explain exactly what drives “recovery from the LIA”, however the “climate scientists” that we are paying for that sort of science are playing hooky, frittering their grants away trying to prove something unprovable, since CO2 DOES NOT DRIVE CLIMATE.

    And any one of you recent visitors from whatever bastion of AGW thinking who claims that 30 years is sufficient to determine anything about climate have completely invalidated any credibility you MIGHT have brought with you. Climate is in MINIMUM 60 year cycles, and has been documented to be that way for centuries. You’ve seen the up, now the crest, should be interesting to watch the anti-science AGW crowd trying to explain an actual cooling trend.

  72. William Astley says:

    In reply to:
    Kasuha says:
    June 10, 2013 at 10:26 pm
    You have missed one important detail in the Spencer’s graph – it is comparison of middle troposphere tropical temperatures, models and reality. Middle troposphere, not surface temperatures. And tropical, not the whole world (although about half of it). While this graph is okay to show how wrong models got it in this particular metric, it cannot be used for comparison with graphs of global surface temperatures as it does not work with global surface temperatures.

    William:
    Your comment is correct, however, you may be missing Spencer’s scientific point which is there are fundamental errors in the general circulation models which the IPCC have used to base their future climate change predictions on.

    The extreme warming hypothesis predicts and requires for there to be extreme warming that the most amount of warming on the planet shall occur in the tropics where there is the most amount of long wave radiation emitted to space and where there is amply water to amplify the CO2 forcing by the greenhouse effect.

    The amplification mechanism that the extreme warming hypothesis includes and requires to create extreme warming is only a hypothesis. The satellite temperature measurements Vs general circulation models predictions indicates there is no amplification in the tropics. The data shows there is almost no long term warming of the tropical troposphere which indicates there could be a second problem in addition to the lack of amplification.

    Spencer’s graph obviously shows the general circulation models fail (to model the tropical troposphere). The assertion that there is something fundamental incorrect with the general circulation models is supported by other peer reviewed papers.

    For example Lindzen and Choi’s 2009 and 2011 papers note planetary clouds in the tropics increase or decrease to resist forcing changes by reflecting more or less sunlight off into space. Lindzen and Choi’s analysis used top of the atmosphere radiation measurements from satellites compared ocean surface temperatures. As Lindzen and Choi note in their paper, if there is no amplification of the CO2 forcing, a doubling of atmospheric CO2 will result in 1.2C warming. As the planet resists forcing (negative feedback) the warming due to a doubling of atmospheric CO2 will be less than 1C with most of the warming occurring at high latitudes which will cause the biosphere to expand.

    The general circulation models that are currently used by the IPCC assume that low level planetary cloud cover either stays the same when the planet warms or decreases. It should be noted that the IPCC reports are predicting 1.5C to 6C warming for a doubling of CO2. The general consensus is that warming up to 2C will be beneficial to biosphere. Lindzen and Choi’s finding that the planet resists forcing changes (negative feedback) and that that the planet will hence only warm roughly 1C due to doubling of CO2 is therefore very important.

    http://www-eaps.mit.edu/faculty/lindzen/236-Lindzen-Choi-2011.pdf

    On the Observational Determination of Climate Sensitivity and Its Implications
    Richard S. Lindzen and Yong-Sang Choi

    The second paper by Douglas et al. notes that tropical tropospheric have not warmed as predicted by the general circulation models. As Douglas’ paper notes the general circulation models predict that water vapour amplification will cause a large amount of warming (more than the surface) due to the increased greenhouse effect of more water at 8km above the surface of the planet. The warming at 8km will then cause increased warming on the surface of the planet by long wave radiation emitted down. Douglas found that below 8 km the GCM models predicted tropospheric temperatures are too high by 100% to 300% when compared to observations. At 8 km the troposphere cooled rather than the predicted warming.
    Douglas et al’s results support Lindzen and Choi’s finding that the planet resists forcing changes by an increase or decrease of clouds in the tropics.

    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/DOUGLASPAPER.pdf
    A comparison of tropical temperature trends with model predictions
    We examine tropospheric temperature trends of 67 runs from 22 ‘Climate of the 20th Century’ model simulations and try to reconcile them with the best available updated observations (in the tropics during the satellite era). Model results and observed temperature trends are in disagreement in most of the tropical troposphere, being separated by more than twice the uncertainty of the model mean. In layers near 5 km, the modelled trend is 100 to 300% higher than observed, and, above 8 km, modelled and observed trends have opposite signs. These conclusions contrast strongly with those of recent publications based on essentially the same data.

  73. RichardLH says:

    Hypothesis

    The UAH Global temperature anomaly data series (ref: http://www.drroyspencer.com) can be modeled as a sequence with the following terms:

    1. 24 hours
    2. 12 months (both implied in the creation of the above temperature anomaly data series)

    3. 37 months
    4. 48 months
    5. ~12 years
    6. ~60 years
    7. Weather

    Data Analysys

    http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b550/RichardLH/uahtrendsinflectionfuture_zps7451ccf9.png.html

    Cascaded central output running average filters of 12, 16, 21, 28 and 37 months span and the original data plotted on a scatter graph.

    Inflection points extracted at the conjunction points of the filter outputs. (These indictate local ‘zero’ crossing points in the data.)

    Periodicity observed in these nodal values clustered around 37 months, 48 months, ~12 years (3.0833.. * 4.0 = 12.33.. years?) and partial ~60 years.

    Prediction

    The values will, in the future, continue to be bounded by an envelope dictated by the observed periodicity.

  74. Kasuha says:

    William Astley says:
    June 11, 2013 at 3:18 am
    In reply to:
    Kasuha says:
    June 10, 2013 at 10:26 pm
    William:
    Your comment is correct, however, you may be missing Spencer’s scientific point which is there are fundamental errors in the general circulation models which the IPCC have used to base their future climate change predictions on.
    ________________________________________

    I have no problem with Dr. Spencer’s conclusions and with the graph itself. But its usage in this article and especially this sentence:

    “So who’s right: Spencer and Christy or Skeptical Science (SS)?”

    is misrepresentation.
    It’s comparing apples to oranges.

  75. Jim Turner says:

    A while ago, a German academic visited us to give a seminar. Afterwards he was taken to lunch at a nearby pub well known for its pies. The pies all look the same apart from the initials of the contents on the pastry. When his steak and stilton pie was placed before him with ‘SS’ on the top, he smiled and said “Ah, these are not so popular in Germany anymore!”

    Incidentally, I don’t think anyone else has mentioned this point about the AR5 graph: I presume that the orange ‘cone’ represents the confidence limits of the prediction from AR4. The mid-line clearly has an upward trend, while the observed points show no such trend beyond about 2001. Observation and prediction are clearly diverging, but the prediction is rescued by its declining confidence level with time.

  76. RichardLH says:

    The inability of climate science to provide a cross calibratation between the main estimated Global temperature data sets (balloon, satellite and thermometer) given their overlap since 1979 makes relying on any one of them suspect.

  77. J.Seifert says:

    “”””CodeTech says:
    June 11, 2013 at 3:14 am
    weltklima, are you asking for “Skeptics” to commit to a temperature trend prediction?
    Can’t speak for all, but my personal position is that we simply don’t have enough….”””

    Yes, there is a wider number of Skeptics predictions..which we nicely could compare,
    discuss and learn from…..Anthony also knows a lot, but rather prefers to keep them
    out..instead of demonstrating alternatives, he prefers the moaning, growning glee articles,
    pointing only one thing out: “Warmists produce BS”, which is the same old drag; nothing to
    learn from, we know this already……..but beyond:
    No alternatives……sorry…..thats life…..

  78. Bob Kutz says:

    Re; J. Seifert, 6-11 8:21;

    So you would rather believe in something that is a fairly unskillful predictor than have nothing to believe in.

    That is called religion, J.

    In science you have to be correct. If you are correct, we will call it science, until a better predictor comes along. So far the GCMs are terribly unskillful, requiring modifications and adjustments with each new twist and turn of the data. When you no longer have to do that, you have a skillful model. Nevermind that a lot of the scientists have actually made ‘adjustments’ to data, to better match their models or expectations. That is a topic for another day. And nevermind that there is nothing in the science to point to the ‘catastrophic’ part of CAGW. That too is also not germane to the scientific discussion. There is no science pointing that AGW will produce more hurricanes, there is no science backing the claim that the oceans will rise two meters by 2100. There is no science supporting the notion that there will be climate refugees, extinct polar bears or increased torrential rain and drought. The science and the data upon which it is based actually supports the opposite, though correlation is fairly weak in any regard. There is no science supporting the ‘tipping points’ of methane hydrates or the polar ice cap.

    Yet we hear these memes repeated, over and over, by believers who have little actual comprehension of just what is meant by the term ‘science’. That usually baffles them.

    CAGW is a cult. You are a part of it.

  79. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    From J.Seifert on June 11, 2013 at 8:21 am:

    Yes, there is a wider number of Skeptics predictions..which we nicely could compare,
    discuss and learn from…..Anthony also knows a lot, but rather prefers to keep them
    out..instead of demonstrating alternatives, he prefers the moaning, growning glee articles…

    No alternatives……sorry…..thats life…..

    Scafetta still has an entire reference page here, go toolbar at top, Reference Pages, Research. He even has a widget that was posted on the WUWT right sidebar for a time. His last prediction update reported here was March 2012, then he stopped, maybe he didn’t like the criticism. Down in the comments, which are still open, there’s a link to his other page where he does update the prediction. His widget got pulled from the sidebar eventually, still available from on the reference page, the image still un-updated.

    Scafetta’s work can still be found discussed here, like with this recent Willis Eschenbach post.

    Besides the cycle seekers, there are some true nutters that Anthony keeps out, but mostly for bad behavior, like with Oliver K. Manuel continually spamming threads with his “Iron Sun” stuff, and Doug Cotton, while continually promoting his forthcoming book, got banned for his nonsense, and still tries to circumvent his ban with fake identities.

    But by far the greatest number of “alternative skeptics” that Anthony tries to keep out are the loony “Slayers of the Sky Dragon”, repackaged as “Principia Scientific International”. They’ve decided the (C)AGW alarmism must be wrong because there can be no greenhouse effect, which brings to mind an ancient Star Trek episode where the crew refuses to believe the bullets are real so they wouldn’t get hurt by the bullets. Well The Matrix was an illusion world as well, but they knew enough to duck there. Anthony has several posts up debunking their non-science nonsense.

    Oh, and Henry Pool comments here regularly, who has his own predictions, as does Vukcevic. Their stuff does get discussed here, a lot.

    Which particular “alternative skeptic predictions” are you missing so badly?

  80. RichardLH says:

    Bob Kutz says:
    June 11, 2013 at 10:38 am

    “CAGW is a cult. You are a part of it.”

    I think that hanging lookouts because they call out too early that shallow waters may well lie ahead is likely to be a poor survival characteristic.

  81. Bob Kutz says:

    RichardLH; I am not suggesting we hang anyone. I am suggesting that the warmist movement is trying to co-opt the mantle of science, when in reality they are reading tea leaves and proclaiming that the sky is falling.

    People who believe that we are in real and immediate danger from CO2 emissions need to be told that. They certainly don’t hear anything like reality from people like Mann, Jones, Hansen and Briffa. They should at the very least hear it from people who have studied the science and concluded that there is something to CAGW, but it likely isn’t dangerous and certainly not ‘run-away’.

    I don’t see where I advocated hanging the lookouts.

  82. Bob Kutz says:

    And as further follow up, Richard LH; these lookouts are not saying that shallow water ‘may well lie ahead’.

    They are calling for us to ‘abandon ship’ on the economic system that allows us to live a modern lifestyle. They are effectively advocating that most of the world’s people live like they did in the 1700′s, so that the 1% can live an opulent and unaffected lifestyle.

    They are also calling for the persecution of the navigator, pointing at the charts showing no shoals or reefs within hundreds of miles and saying ‘don’t abandon ship yet, we’ve yet to run aground and the charts don’t show any dangerous shoals in the immediate vicinity.’

    But no, I don’t think we should hang them. Make them academic pariahs? Yes. Embarrass them for what strongly appears to be collusion in academic fraud? Okay. Out them as having thwarted scientific endeavor to earn political favor? Yeah, hold a parade. Put ‘em on display. Sue ‘em for misused government grants. Make them pay it all back. But we don’t hang people for political offenses.

  83. JabbaTheCat says:

    For fellow HP calculator fans, we now how these wonderful Android emulators by Olivier De Smet over at Google Play, so now you can have your favourite calculator with you all the time. Many are free, but even the ones you pay for are worth it.

    It does get better, as with something like a 7″ tablet, you can run the HP97 comfortably.

  84. Ken Hall says on June 10, 2013 at 1:04 pm:
    “-_—-_———- — -.
    There is nothing sceptical about sceptical science, they are utter mindless believers in their religion. They are looking more and more like creationists and evolution deniars.”
    = = = = = = = = =
    Pardon? – - – - Do you perhaps believe that some/any-thing can evolve unless it has first been created????

  85. Ryan says on June 10, 2013 at 1:07 pm:

    “Why don’t Christy and Spencer just use global temps? If the models are SO WRONG it should be easy to just slap up all of the various IPCC projections and well-known models along with their ranges of uncertainty and plot it against measurements.”

    = = = = = = =

    They do use global temps. But the temperatures they use are derived from Satelite measurements. That’s why they do not go back further than 1979 as they believe (or at least I suppose they do believe) satellite data which began in 1979 are the only data that matters for the – at least – past 30 years.
    T (temperature) data going further back are subjected to thermometers which have a ”guess what” factor between each whole degree (C or F) – and thermometers that could be, on occasions, broken or in the wrong place. – Etc. Etc.

  86. Scott Scarborough says:

    The temperature prediction from “Lindzen” seems to have predicted the 1998 and 2010 El Ninios. I thought the no one has been able to predict El Ninos! Lindzen should receive a Nobel Prise. That is, if SKS ins’t flat out lying.

  87. RichardLH says:

    How about a global temperature trend prediction for the next 2-3 years anyone? That should be short enough to be easily checkable.

    With probably a lot less accuracy than sunspot predictions try this for a view of the state of the recent record to date. ;-)

    http://s1291.photobucket.com/user/RichardLH/media/uahtrendsinflectionfuture_zps7451ccf9.png.html

  88. Paul H says:

    “In contrast, Spencer and Christy use temperature data from the tropical troposphere…”

    This isn’t quite correct. Spencer and Christy are only able to retrieve temperature across broad altitude regions using the MSU data. The upper tropical tropospheric altitude band includes regions of the atmosphere that have cooled (lower stratosphere) and parts that haven’t warmed as strongly (mid troposphere). It simply isn’t possible to retrieve the uncontaminated temperature from just the upper tropical troposphere band (300 hPa) alone where the “hot spot” is predicted to exist.

  89. Elliot Kennel says:

    This reminds me of the “not your father’s Oldsmobile” commercials.

    “Global Warming predictions…not nearly as inaccurate as people who we say are crackpots.”

  90. David vun Kannon says:

    Paul H @ June 12, 2013 4:51am –
    You’re making a good point, the MSU data don’t line up well with the pressure levels reported in models. I’ve been reading up on the use of GPS Radio Occultation as an independent satellite based data source recently, and it sounds like this data gathering method will be very helpful in the future, though we only have a few years of data now.

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