Dodgy statistics and IPCC Assessment Reports

Guest essay by Christopher Monckton of Brenchley

In the 19th century, British Prime Ministers used to say there were “lies, damned lies, and statistics”. In the 21st century, we may say there are frauds, serious frauds, and IPCC Assessment Reports.

Recall, for instance, the notorious graph in the Fourth Assessment Report that falsely indicated that the rate of global warming is accelerating and we are to blame. Using the same statistical dodge, one can show that a sine-wave has a rising trend.

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In the Fifth Assessment Report, the IPCC still cannot bring itself to behave. My expert review of an earlier draft of that report opened with these words:

“To restore some link between IPCC reports and observed reality, the report must address – but does not at present address – the now-pressing question why the key prediction of warming in earlier IPCC reports have proven to be significant exaggerations. The IPCC’s credibility has already been damaged by its premature adoption and subsequent hasty abandonment of the now-discredited “hockey-stick” graph as its logo; by its rewriting its Second Assessment Report after submission of the scientists’ final draft, to state the opposite of their finding that no discernible human influence on climate is detectable; by its declaration that all Himalayan ice would be gone in 25 years; and by its use of a dishonest statistical technique in 2007 falsely to suggest that the rate of global warming is accelerating. But the central damage to its credibility arises from the absence of anything like the warming it had predicted.”

The IPCC have indeed addressed The Pause. But they have addressed it by using statistical prestidigitation to air-brush it out. As Bob Tisdale has pointed out, the very first graphs the reader of the Summary for Policymakers will see are in Figure SPM.1, which consists of three panels. Each of these panels exploits bogus statistical techniques to vanish the pause.

Here is what They did and how They did it.

The first of the three panels shows the global instrumental surface temperature record since 1850:

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And what is wrong with that? It looks innocuous enough, but a mathematician would take one look at it and sniff. He would see two things obviously wrong with drawing any conclusion about dangerously-rising 20th-century temperatures from this graph.

First, there is the aspect-ratio dodge. For the x axis is in years and the y axis is in Celsius degrees of temperature change. One can choose any aspect ratio one wants. To make 20th-century global warming look worse, just stretch the graph northwards.

Not all climate extremists know that. In a debate with me on Roy Green’s radio show in Canada a few years ago, one of the pointy-heads at TheSmugBlog asked the audience, with that earnest desperation in his voice that is mandatory, “But don’t you see how serious it is that global temperatures are rising at an angle of 45 degrees?”

I had to explain to the poor sap, as gently as I could, that degrees of arc and degrees of temperature change are clean different things.

But it is Dick Lindzen, whose vast experience and profound knowledge allows him to put the climate scare into perspective as no other can, who has best illustrated the insignificance of 20th-century global warming.

His local paper, the Boston Globe, prints the previous month’s temperature movements in the city. He has superimposed on that record an orange band that shows the entire warming of 0.75 Cº over the 20th century.

Even allowing for the fact that a global annual average will change less than a regional monthly one, it is difficult to look at Dick Lindzen’s orange band and draw the conclusion that 20th century global warming was alarmingly beyond the bounds of natural variability.

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The second statistical dodge in the IPCC’s first panel is the error-bars dodge. If you look carefully at the error-bars in the IPCC’s graph, you will see that they are absent. Let us remedy that absence:

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Even today, the combined measurement, coverage, and bias uncertainties in the global terrestrial data are ±0.15 Cº. The uncertainties were far larger in the 19th century. Notice also how much less drastic and exciting the graph looks once the 2 σ uncertainty bounds are plotted.

There is a third dodge that is not directly evident from looking at the graph itself. All around the world the record-keepers have been rewriting the temperatures in the early 20th century to push them downward, so as to make the rate of warming over the century seem a great deal steeper than it was. Here, for instance, is New Zealand:

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And Darwin Airport, Australia:

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And the U.S. Historical Climate Network, before and after adjustment (this example and the next two are thanks to the vigilant Steven Goddard):

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And the GISS record at Reykjavik, Iceland, before (left) and after adjustment (right):

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And Santa Rosa, CA, this time with the trend-line added:

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The effect of all these tamperings is to make it look as though there was more global warming in the 20th century than there was. Fortunately, there is not so much scope for the compilers of the terrestrial temperature records to tamper with what has happened since 1979, because the watching satellites now provide an independent record of global temperature change.

So to the second of the three mendacious panels in Figure SPM.1:

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This graph is an illustration of a meme that has become a favorite with the apologists for Apocalypse: the most recent decade was warmer than earlier decades, so global warming is still getting worse (for the theology of the New Religion, standing common sense on its head, is that warmer weather is worse than cooler).

The priceless advantage of taking decadal averages, if one wants to magic the Pause away, is that it wipes out the entire trend of the most recent decade. One can dock off a further two years if, as here, one uses the decades 1991-2000, 2001-2010 etc. rather than 1993-2002, 2003-2012 etc. Finally, using decades docks off all the months of the current year. So this statistical dodge neatly erases the past 12 years 8 months of the Pause.

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And, by what is perhaps more than a coincidence, the length of the Pause, taken as the longest period exhibiting a zero least-squares linear-regression trend on the mean of the monthly global mean surface temperature anomalies on the three terrestrial datasets, is – er – precisely 12 years 8 months.

There is another and more subtle dodge here. As we saw in the earlier graph of the uncertainties in the HadCRUt4 global temperature dataset, the error bars narrow toward the present. The way the IPCC has presented the decadal blocks on the graph exploits this to make it seem that the blocks in the 1970s, 80s, 90s, and noughties are much further apart than those in the 1910s, 20s, 30s, and 40s, implying without quite saying so that the rate of warming over the four most recent decades on the graph was significantly greater than the warming earlier in the 20th century.

Dick Lindzen, however, uses a graph that shows how little difference there is between the earlier and later periods of warming, even though it was only in the later period that we could have exercised much influence.

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One panel shows the global temperature anomalies from 1895-1946. The other shows the anomalies from 1957-2008. Both cover 52 years. Both are plotted to an identical scale. Dick Lindzen asks his audiences whether they can tell which panel covers which period. It is not at all easy to tell.

Which brings us to the third panel. Here, the dodge is one of the newest in the arsenal of statistical shiftinesses on which the IPCC draws with such disfiguring frequency and relish. It is the use of colors, and bright ones at that, to try to suggest that the mild and beneficial global warming of the 20th century was grievous and alarmingly damaging.

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And here the IPCC will find that it has made a mistake. Previously it has chiefly used bright colors in the red scale to indicate predictions of future planetary overheating. However, most people, on looking about them, will see remarkably little change as a result of 100 years’ warming. The trees are greener; the deserts have shrunk by quite a bit (the Sahara by 300,000 sq. km in 30 years); sea level is 8 inches higher; and that’s it.

Recoloring the graph in neutral tones would have been more scientifically adult:

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Does the Earth really look that much different as a result of 0.7 Cº global warming over 100 years? Not really. Let us end with a God’s-eye view of the planet He has given us. Really, our stewardship has not left it in too much of a mess.

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Yet.

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125 thoughts on “Dodgy statistics and IPCC Assessment Reports

  1. So why is the world spending trillions on attempts to reduce CO2 emissions? Why does Obama think regulating CO2 is so important that he will go it alone without Congress while equating CO2 to Arsenic and Lead?

  2. Well, since the IPCC got rid of the Medieval Warming Period, which was approximately 500 years in length, it can surely get rid of that annoying 20th-21st century “pause” of roughly 17 years in length.

  3. Whenever an assertion is made by the alarmist crew in the press a few minutes checking the background typically exposes it as being hyperbole.

    We are relentlessly told that such and such an event is unprecedented, take the Colorado flooding, only to be told in the same article that it’s the worse they’ve seen in that area in x years. In the case of Colorado x = 37 years. A large tragic event ? Certainly. Unprecedented, err no, a similar occurrence happened in recent memory. Similar occurrences have likely occurred and unrecorded for thousands of years.

    It’s the relentless hyperbole that weakens them, I hope that they continue to do it.

  4. Let us end with a God’s-eye view of the planet He has given us.
    __________________________________________

    I think you will find that your singular deity has to be neuter, not male.

    Unless you are honouring the Egyptian Atum, who was certainly male. But then Atum’s hand was considered to be female, for obvious reasons (if you recall how the universe was formed). But despite popular opinion, I have not found any evidence that Atum went blind.

    Or perhaps you are honouring the Primeval Adam, the primary deity of the Nazarenes, who was said to be hermaphrodite. Saul (St Paul) and others were, of course, Nazarene. But a hermaphrodite can hardly be male.

    I would hate to think the deity currently in favour, is going to be offended by your incorrect gender attribution.

    .

  5. I am pleased to see them acknowledging the hockey stick was discredited.

    But as an earlier commenter noted, the IPCC is not science, but Politics. So of course they are going to use polemics to get their point across. it does not matter if their point is false or not, only in getting it across.

  6. Silver Ralph:

    In attempt to avoid this thread being deflected by other proselytising atheists jumping in to support your religion, I write to point out that He is a gender neutral word when applied to an individual of unspecified gender. In other words, the excuse you used to present your nonsense was plain wrong so there is no valid reason for anybody to follow it up.

    Richard

  7. But if one were to include the error bars on that colorful globe to show statistically significant warming, the colors (or rather noncolors) associated with zero would dominate. And that is the greatest dodge of all.

  8. With each year for which there is no meaningful increase in temperature, the odds that the IPCC projections are incorrect grow exponentially.

    No wonder the alarmists sound a little desperate lately.

  9. @b>Silver Ralph, September 17, 2013 at 12:40 pm: “I would hate to think the deity currently in favour, is going to be offended by your incorrect gender attribution.”

    Great Ghu the Grandfather God is offended by your weird effingness.

  10. One day I hope to see some of those graphs of climate fraud published in the worlds press and shown on TV. Maybe David Rose at the Daily Mail would be interested, or Christopher Booker, or James Delingpole.

  11. Forgot to mention in my comment that my example elaborates on Christopher Monckton of Brenchley’s observation:

    All around the world the record-keepers have been rewriting the temperatures in the early 20th century to push them downward, so as to make the rate of warming over the century seem a great deal steeper than it was.

  12. U.N.
    U.F.
    United Nations = So united they can not agree on one important thing ever.

    Useless Fools = So useless they can not agree on one valid fact ever.

    Those who sign off on these lies should have all their degrees withdrawn and all the funds they by lies and deception aquired taken from them total.

    High crimes aginst all mankind.

  13. Silver Ralph says:
    September 17, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    “He” in English grammar is both the neuter & masculine gender pronoun, not necessarily connected to biological sex.

  14. Bill Clinton supports the IPCC reports.
    Al Gore supports the IPCC reports.
    John Kerry supports the IPCC reports.
    B. Obama supports the IPCC reports.

    Common trait of these 4.

    LIARS ALL FOUR OF THEM….

  15. I don’t see anything odd with the first panel: both axes are linear and the upper and lower bounds appear to be chosen to allow the data to fill as much space as possible.

    I don’t see anything odd with the second panel, the block widths are equal and the axes limits and scaling are the same as on the first panel.

    On the last panel the only thing I find odd is that the contour interval has been tweaked so that it not constant across the full range of data; that would be worth looking into as the contours should be evenly spaced and cover the full range of data.

  16. It appears that increased CO2 results in increasing frauds, serious frauds, and bad IPCC Assessment Reports. Thanks for your report.

  17. Ralph of the Silver fingers:
    As my nick suggest, spent time in Forward Operation Bases in combat zones.

    Often the atheists (odly often from California) would come running during a bad ambush fire fight.
    “You that Apache guy who knows how to pray.” ?
    “YA” but ya see he may be busy like I am just now, got get us some ammo….”
    You need to “help thyself” by knowing more.

  18. Richard you crack me up. My diety ensemble (I’m catholic-lolol) protects me like a female bear and lifts me up on her eagle wings. But Richard, you are free to be neutral.

    I found great humor in Silver’s post. His post reminds me of my past. I found myself at odds with a number of elders during my long history as a Sunday School teacher and liturgical choreographer. Yet I was the one using proper gender in the original Arabic and Hebrew languages. One of these days you and I must share those stories. Like the time I choreographed a Holy Friday performance titled “Sophia’s Trial”, which was an interpretation of the crucifixion. We compromised. I got to put a female in the lead role of Sophia, but they made me change the title to “Wisdom’s Trial”.

  19. I am pleased to see Monckton address the misleading graphs, statistics, etc., and wanted to add a thought I had when first seeing the third of the three panels that are at the end of this article. The scale has zero as being the turning point of the blues to the reds, but has not (even in the IPCC) there been an established “normal” warming? I was sure the argument was, “Yeah, the earth has been warming, but all this carbon has made it accelerate.” If that is the case, and that “normal” warming is, say, one degree per century, then it would follow that the point of transfer from blue to red in the scale should occur at the one degree mark, not at the zero mark.

    In saying this, I do like how Monckton has used neutral tones, but I think a better reconstruction of this panel would be to shift the blue/red transfer point to wherever the “normal” warming per century is located – that would then highlight the “excessive” warming in red, keeping the “normal” warming in blues. Just by looking at the panel and imagining if (taking the one degree as “normal warming” for a moment) instead of the light blue/light yellow being the colors straddling the zero degree value they straddled the one degree value, the entire panel would suddenly become very dominantly blue and light yellow, with only a few smatterings of red.

    Not being one who is experienced with graphical editing software, I would not know how to do this, but I am sure that one of you could and make an astounding rebuttal panel that put the light blue/light yellow moment at whatever the IPCC considered, “normal warming before human influence” and showed how much the warming is not a big deal at all.

    Just a thought. Love this site, it is one of my top four that I go to. Keep up the good work everyone!

    Word.

  20. One can dock off a further two years if, as here, one uses the decades 1991-2000, 2001-2010 etc. rather than 1993-2002, 2003-2012 etc.

    My eyeball tells me that the IPCC is using the decades 1990-1999, etc. If so, the IPCC is docking off three more years from The Pause, not just two.

    Incidentally, Here’s a comment I posted earlier today at the end of another thread:
    ————

    Here’s how to instantly undermine the psychological impact of the decadal chart. Someone here with charting skills should add a short-length block to the chart that shows the 3.5 years from 2010 thru June 2013. It will be below the block from 2000 thru 2009, indicating the warm has turned.

    This block should be extended every six months to keep the follow-on chart up to date.

  21. Simon W says:

    “what are the ulterior motives of the controlled opposition – Monckton?”

    Not sure of the point you’re trying to make. But it sounds slightly derogatory. So I ask: what are your ulterior motives?

    Lord Monckton has been very straightforward throughout the entire debate, supporting his arguments with testable science. To label that as “ulterior motives” reeks of ad hominem desperation due to a lack of any credible science.

    If it were not for ulterior motives, the climate alarmist crowd would cease to exist. They never admit to their true motives, do they? That is why they tuck tail and run away from any fair, moderated scientific debate. They cannot prevail based on science. Thus, their ad hominem attacks.

    My apologies if I mis-read your comment. But if so, please explain it better.

  22. “would have been more scientifically adult”

    The only thing ‘adult’ about the IPCC is one of Pachauri’s dodgy novels.

  23. One question, one suggestion.

    Suggestion first — it is highly instructive to plot the actual temperature by adding the “anomaly” to the supposed baseline temperature the anomaly is the anomaly of. That takes care of the “45 degree slope” problem once and forever. At typical high resolution plot scales, the entire 150 year warming is around one pixel high, so that the temperature graph is basically a straight line, with barely visible weakly trended noise. This eliminates a fraud straight out of the book “how to lie with statistics” — plotting the anomaly or difference instead of the actual quantity in question.

    Although it is difficult to see, it is worthwhile illustrating the uncertainty that NASA itself acknowledges in the baseline temperature one is adding to the supposedly more accurate anomaly (where we could spend a few happy hours talking about whether one generally knows the mean of a distribution — this baseline — or its variance — the anomaly — more accurately, where I would have said that almost without exception it is the former known more, not less, accurately than the latter). This uncertainty is roughly 1 degree Kelvin today — anywhere from 13 to 15 C depending on the model used to estimate the actual mean. This makes the horizontal error bar on the baseline itself (on the absolute scale) roughly twice the size of the entire range of variation of the anomaly.

    So do we know the variation of male height from the mean height of all males more accurately than we know the actual mean height of all males (from any given sample of measured heights of males randomly selected out of a crowd)? I don’t think so.

    The question — that I have not had time to look at in the “leaked” report — is what they do with their statistical claims, the ones that were so horribly botched in AR4. In particular, do they persist in using language such as “likely”, “extremely likely”, and “possible” to describe e.g. probable warming in the future (or worse, give actual probability percentages for future expected warming given various warming scenarios)? If so, are those claims based on e.g. averages over sets of predictive model results from different general circulation models (GCMs)? Do the statistical ranges come from the assumption that these models somehow form independent and identically distributed samples drawn from some sort of distribution of GCMs that might enable them to use the Central Limit Theorem to make sound assertions of how probable it is that some sort of mean behavior is within some given range of the true, observed, or even expected behavior for any quantity those models might produce including global average surface temperature?

    Because if they do, even implicitly, this goes beyond mere lying with statistics in the sense of presenting results that are accurately computed in a misleading way, it is an horrible error and abuse of statistics itself to promote any such conclusions.

    The correct use of statistics in the general arena in which the GCMs live is to apply it to the models, one at a time, to determine if we can reject the null hypothesis: “This model is correct, given the observed climate since the model prediction was made” and if so, at what confidence level the rejection can be made. GCMs that fail to make a reasonable cut — for example, GCMs for which it is less than 5% likely that temperature trajectories as extreme as the actual, observed temperature series occur given the usual Monte Carlo spread in small perturbations of the model’s initial conditions and parameter set — should be summarily rejected and their results completely omitted from the report altogether. And by “as extreme”, I don’t mean trajectories that rarely dip down to overlap with the observed trajectory, I mean trajectories that vary over much the same range and with the same average trend.

    This criterion would, I am confident, reject well over 90% of the GCMs that are currently being used as the basis for false statistical claims of probable future warming. Even after such a step, the mean of the remaining models could not be taken as being predictive of future climate behavior, but there would at least be a chance that one or more of the remaining models could be approximately correct, perhaps not in any sense we could ascribe a particular probability to at this time, but to the point where at least common sense tells us not to reject its predictions out of hand.

    IMO, there is no possible way that one can make an assertion such as “over half of the warming observed post 1950 can be ascribed to human activity, e.g. increased CO_2″ based on the data itself. Dick Lindzen’s graph above already suffices to show, even over the tiny time interval plotted, that late 20th century warming is not “unprecedented” or impossible to explain with natural variation, it almost exactly matches the non-anthropogenic warming of the first half of the 20th century. Only by comparing models that predict much less warming without CO_2 and much more warming with CO_2 can one make any such claim at all, let alone claim that it is somehow “likely”.

    But when the claim is made on the basis of an ensemble of similar results, all of them obtained from models that fail the hypothesis test above, how then can we give it even a shred of predictive confidence? Am I certain that most of the planetary warming has been manmade because failed numerical models tell me that it is, at the same time they are telling me that the current climate anomaly should be 0.5C or thereabouts instead of the measured value of 0.15C or thereabouts?

    The mean of a bunch of incorrect models is not a correct model. The standard deviation of the predictions of a bunch of incorrect models is not a predictor of how close the real climate is expected to get to the mean — quite the opposite! As it shrinks (widening the gap between model and reality in terms of the statistical variation) all it does is make us more certain that the model is wrong!

    I very much fear that AR5 will attempt, one final time, to perpetuate this sort of completely incorrect use of statistics, and in doing so will set actual climate science back another five to ten years. There is nothing that refines the scientific mind like having one’s pet model rejected from a major scientific review for cause, because it just doesn’t work! Suddenly one is motivated to go back to the drawing board or else — the typical or else being loss of funding, failure to publish in the future, failure to get tenure, students who aren’t interested in working for you — or else you commit professional suicide, in other words.

    The way things stand now, there seem to be no restrictions on what gets included in the construction of the final “average” predicted trend for the climate. Don’t want to hurt anybody’s feelings, after all. If your model predicted a whole degree C of warming over the last 15 years, who cares? It’s still in the hat, just as likely or unlikely as anybody else’s to be right, still weighted the same as somebody who might have actually written a model that WORKS and got most of “the pause” correct.

    And that’s just stupid.

    rgb

  24. Silver Ralph- You are talking nonsense. Paul was no Nazorean!! He was not a Jew either. He was a member of Herod’s own large and rapacious family, they were Arabs who were pronounced Jews by fiat of the Romans and their High Priest puppets. This massively unpopular appointment and the Herodian penchant for ‘first cousin marriage’ in fact helped initiate the revolution against Roman rule in 66 AD. Nazoreans, the word comes from nezer- to separate, were like Jesus’ cousin John the Baptist, were sworn to poverty by Nazirite vows. They were part of the community that wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls. James the brother of Jesus, was one such and Paul, termite-like tried to undermine him in the hierarchy of the Jerusalem Church. Indeed, Acts is replete with snide remarks about those in Jerusalem, the chief enemy of course, was James the Just, Jesus’ brother ‘in the flesh’ as Paul writes in Acts. It seems clear that both Paul and Josephus
    spent time among the Nazirites of Qumram and knew both James and John. They had to lie about this association to save their own hides, after their serial betrayals of friends and fellow travelers. Josephus especially. Paul was rich and well connected and used his Roman citizenship to get him out of trouble, often. Finally, even hint that a hermaphrodite was worshiped by these people is ludicrous. The sexual climate extremely fraught with political issues at the time and fooling around was *not acceptable behavior* and could get you killed.This stuff is OT but i couldn’t let this gross misstatement stand.

  25. Dodgy statistics and IPCC Assessment Reports

    Good job Christopher.

    It is dodgy scientists. Statistics is just a neutral tool that they utilize to intentionally mislead.

    John

  26. Silver Ralph says:
    September 17, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    Let us end with a God’s-eye view of the planet He has given us.
    __________________________________________

    I think you will find that your singular deity has to be neuter, not male.
    ===========================================
    I wonder if that’s intentionally written at this moment because the author is trying to advantage others’ sense of decorum? Surely, this has nothing to do with what Monckton was trying to communicate. Still, I’m given to understand that Christ called Him, Father.

    Graph on the left is the most recent one. But, Christopher, you’re spot on about the chicanery the crazies are doing with artificially decreasing our past temps.

    But, while we’re on that subject, I thought I’d share something I think is hilarious. A while back, the alarmists were trying to convince people of the power of CO2. At the time, I put several graphs together (using WFT) demonstrating very lengthy periods of time the earth hadn’t warmed, in spite of increasing aCO2! For instance, I did this one 1944-1977 http://suyts.files.wordpress.com/2011/11/image_thumb3.png?w=608&h=322 It actually showed slight cooling. But, because of the lunatics’ fanatical obsession to make temps match their beliefs, it now shows warming. And, they’ve done this with all their data sets. In other words, they had cover for this recent pause, but, they erased it away! Clowns!

  27. James Sexton says:
    September 17, 2013 at 1:56 pm
    In other words, they had cover for this recent pause, but, they erased it away! Clowns!
    =====
    LOL…..yep!

  28. Here in the UK we are currently running at around 12-13 deg C in Southern England (in the countryside but not in the towns) – that’s about 5 degC to 6 degC BELOW normal September temperatures. Roughly a normal late October early November temperature. Suggests a long cold winter is a real possibility and the IPCC and their mouthpiece, the BBC, may find it a little difficult persuading the public that this ultra-cold is in fact warming.

  29. DavidG what praytell is your background? I find your post fascinating and speaks of why I find the books so endlessly worth investigating.

  30. Building on part of the above analysis, there are three quite interesting tests which could be carried out (e.g.) monthly using the “main” surface temperature series:

    Starting “now” and working backwards:

    1. What is the first month in a least squares fitted line with zero gradient: i.e. how many months show no gradient whatsoever?

    2. What is the first month in a least squares line with a positive gradient, but is just within the bounds of a 95% confidence interval: i.e. how many months show no statistically significant warming, despite there being insignificant trend?

    3. What is the first month in a least squares line (if one exists) with a statistically significant negative trend at the 95% level.

    The third might not always produce an answer if the data is level, but it could be quite a tantalising measure if it does.

    An appealing feature of the first two measures is that the first month could move backwards in time, if there are months added “now” which are either level with- or lower than very recent history.

  31. RGB, as ever, shines his light into the dark spaces between Science and Stupidity. I agree with Lord Christopher; another headline post for the Duke of Pearls is in the offing!

  32. That second graph on the right at the top explains it clearly. A full cycle sine wave will have a zero trend, but if you only select two uplegs and one downleg, the trend must rise.This illustrates the lie in starting a temperature graph from a cool period, it is not a trend but part of a cycle.
    Can we start the temperature graph from the MWP ?

  33. “why is the world spending trillions on attempts to reduce CO2 emissions?”

    “The world” doesn’t spend, hasn’t been spending. Rapacious politicians, OTOH…

  34. Figures often beguile me, particularly when I have the arranging of them myself; in which case the remark attributed to Disraeli would often apply with justice and force: “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics.”
    – Autobiography of Mark Twain
    for more info on the background of this quote, see Stephen Goranson’s post to the Mark Twain Forum 31 July 2002

  35. If prof Brown provided a post in the future I hope he would include a good clear anomoly graph of world temp for the last 140 years ? and remember there are a lot ordinary folk who would like to understand the post as well.
    At least provide a summary paragraph or two in lay person’s language. Thank you.

  36. Jordan says:
    September 17, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    Here you are for 1 and 2 on several data sets. #3 does not exist yet.

    On all data sets below, the different times for a slope that is at least very slightly negative ranges from 8 years and 11 months to 16 years and 10 months.
    1. For GISS, the slope is flat since March 2001 or 12 years, 6 months. (goes to August)
    2. For Hadcrut3, the slope is flat since April 1997 or 16 years, 4 months. (goes to July)
    3. For a combination of GISS, Hadcrut3, UAH and RSS, the slope is flat since December 2000 or 12 years, 8 months. (goes to July)
    4. For Hadcrut4, the slope is flat since December 2000 or 12 years, 8 months. (goes to July)
    5. For Hadsst3, the slope is flat since August 2000 or 13 years, 0 months. (goes to July)
    6. For UAH, the slope is flat since October 2004 or 8 years, 11 months. (goes to August using version 5.5)
    7. For RSS, the slope is flat since November 1996 or 16 years and 10 months. (goes to August) RSS is 202/204 or 99% of the way to Ben Santer’s 17 years.
    For this analysis, data was retrieved from  http://moyhu.blogspot.com.au/p/temperature-trend-viewer.html?Xxdat=%5B0,1,4,48,92%5D

    For UAH: Since June 1995: CI from -0.006 to 2.422
    For RSS: Since January 1993: CI from -0.025 to 1.966
    For Hadcrut4: Since July 1996: CI from -0.004 to 1.389
    For Hadsst3: Since January 1994: CI from -0.005 to 1.736
    For GISS: Since March 1997: CI from -0.005 to 1.306

  37. I used to see a lot of the graph with the HCru 5 year running average, that was supposed to tell us a great deal when the red line was moving up. And I used to see a lot of that graph which shows the 150, 100, 50 and 25 year trends, that was supposed to tell us a great deal when each slope became steeper as the time period became more recent. Now I don’t see much of either graph, I wonder why certain scientists changed their mind about how valuable that information is?

  38. IPCC is in a world of hurt, right where it and it’s acolytes like UK Met belong. It isn’t just the mendacious SPM opening as exposed here. It is through all of AR5 SOD, which it appears will not be much altered in the FOD. SOD obscures the fact that CMIP5 models still produce roughly constant UTrH, when the majority of newer observations using three methods (corrected Radiosonde, GPS dither, satellite) show a negative lapse rate feedback such that UTsH increases, but substantially less than constant UTrH. That means, as Nic Lewis has shown, the models necessarily run hot absent overstated aerosol corrections. SOD posits significantly positive cloud feedback, expressly attributed to unknown causes since observations show it is neutral or negative. Ditto why themodels necessarily run hot. SOD slightly widens the lowest sensitivity range but leaves the implicit expected ECS value at 3, when a host of recent studies say it must be less than 2. And so on.
    Sticking to the few major points noted here (misleading manipulation and representation of data, wrong on humidity, wrong on clouds, wrong on sensitivity) and whatever else major turns up (grey literature, anyone?) will be a more powerful way to get at them than endless snipping on minutia. Concentrate fire like Nelson did at Trafalger. Break their line in the middle, and take out the flagships first. To paraphrase Nelson’s final battle signals, the world expects every man ( and woman) will do their duty.

  39. rgbatduke on September 17, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    One question, one suggestion.

    [. . .]

    – – – – – – – – –

    rgbatduke,

    Your latest product is good. Really good.

    Here’s to clarity in physical science with no allusions to anything outside of demonstrable / observable ‘is-ness’. Thanks.

    Hope to see much more of you around here.

    John

  40. DavidG says:
    September 17, 2013 at 1:47 pm

    As you’re no doubt aware, The Acts of the Apostles was supposedly written by Luke, not Paul.

  41. Hmm… Not terribly sure what to make of this essay. It’s an accusatory piece, to be sure. Which, thankfully and surprisingly, makes use of pedagogy and demonstration. But it’s still just an accusatory piece. (Or polemic if you prefer the word.)

    The basic thrust of the argument is: That people, if they are not are their toes, can be caught out by ‘leading’ or ‘suggestive’ presentations. The basic mode of the argument is: A leading and suggestive presentation.

    I’ve got not one issue with stating that one can, and perhaps should, use the same form of argument as their opponent. Certainly, if the opponent pounds the table that the mode is satisfactory, then they can hardly make legitimate disagreement with the conclusion when your returned use of it leads them into absurdity.

    But such things are limited to running dialogues, interactive or written down in context. It has pedagogy in it, but it’s presentation is such that it isn’t terribly useful for those that aren’t on the right side of their confirmation bias already.

    For example, if one already knows to have a care in analyzing a visual presentation of non-visual data, then the ‘scientifically adult’ coloring of the last graph is simply undesirable. Such graphs are presented in high contrast to assist looking for variance in the data values. Indeed, you could re-frame the same argument as stating that an ‘adult’ display would be to present a graph, of only green colors, to the colorblind. They might be able to sort out the differences in the low contrast that they perceive, but they’d have rather a time of it. In this one example the underlying argument, unstated, is that the range of values underlying the color assignments is simply too small to be useful. And this is a similar case for the underlying assumptions about the second graph.

    I think it inarguable that the ‘interesting’ data ranges in a graph are precisely those that should be labeled on the axes. That is, after all, the only part we’re interested in. To make the contrary argument, that they should be presented in ‘some other’ scale or range requires stating that the ‘interesting’ range is uninteresting because there is a ‘more interesting’ range that ‘should’ be used. And that’s a legitimate argument, but only if there is data in that range. One can hardly argue that a different range is ‘more interesting’ for the data when there is no data in it.

    A truly bad argument about ranges, and terribly common, is that ‘people are easily deceived by graphs.’ Which is simply a polite manner to put the claim: “People are incompetent at evaluating data.” And if we assume that is true, then what is the argument?

    Is it that presenting data to non-experts is equivalent to Fraud? Is it that elected politicians are to incompetent at evaluating data to permit the use or advise of Science when crafting policy? Or is it that the incompetency, confirmation bias, and certitude of Truth, are so pervasive in Science that we cannot but call Science a religion for legal purposes?

    There are any infinite number of possibilities. But the one it cannot be is that data is invalid as such. (Feel free to adjust the definition of Data if it doesn’t support your theory; that is a best practice in Science after all.)

  42. When the adjustments to the historical record are made – where is the meta-data documenting the rationale for the change, who did it, what the raw data was, etc. recorded?

  43. rgbatduke says:
    September 17, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    How about making the baseline temperature for the anomaly the median temperature for the Holocene, or at least the past 8200 years since the last glacial melt event, since its supposedly climate that’s of interest, not WX?

    Doing so would show how remarkably cool & equable our current interglacial has been, compared to previous ones.

  44. SO… Essentially the powers that be have adjusted and manipulated the data sets but with other data available they are now caught in a lie and are using high school statistical math parlor tricks in an effort to gain a “the world is burning” emotional response.

    And people wonder why we distrust government and now scientists who work for government…

  45. Ron Scubadiver says:
    September 17, 2013 at 12:06 pm
    So why is the world spending trillions on attempts to reduce CO2 emissions? Why does Obama think regulating CO2 is so important that he will go it alone without Congress while equating CO2 to Arsenic and Lead?”

    Read UN Agenda 21 and every chapter of http://green-agenda.com

  46. rgbatduke & Monckton of Brenchley,

    The IPCC is a political UN affiliation. Their gross misuse of statistics that you argue (forcefully) they have done is reprehensible, but given the nature of the UN perhaps its not entirely unexpected.

    Horrific though is the apparent complicity in the IPCC behavior of virtually every major scientific academy and institute in Europe / US by their open endorsing and praising of the IPCC behavior.

    There is a profound avoidance of verification efforts by those scientific academies and institutes. avoidance I cannot see how to avoid that conclusion.

    John

  47. How about 7.9F, 3.2F, and 3.5F? Those temperature differences also wouldn’t look too significant on a graph of daily Boston temperatures, but they represent the annual avg difference between Charleston SC and Washington DC, Washington and New York City, and NY and Boston, respectively. All cities with noticeably different climates even though their temperature ranges overlap significantly. So maybe, just possibly, small differences in climatological averages are more consequential than in day-to-day variations?
    The main argument of this article seems to be that many graphical choices such as aspect ratio and color are arbitrary. Then the article goes on to say that any graphical choice that emphasizes global warming is wrong and any one that de emphasizes is right! Actually for any politically-neutral graph I make at work, I would always boost the aspect ratio and color contrast so that the reader can see the feature I am graphing. This seems rather obvious. We could graph temperature difference between Montreal and Miami on a 0-300 K temperature scale and it would give everyone a headache squinting at it but it wouldn’t be the best way to show the temperature.
    [City temperatures are from the city wikipedia entries, avg of avg daily high and avg daily low for each, converted from C to F]

  48. For those who still don’t quite get it:
    The first graph uses an inappropriate device to suggest that the planet has warmed much more than it actually has. It ignores the fact that this + or minus amount is actually in the region of 1% of the planetary mean temperature and therefore getting close to the margins of error – information is sacrificed to achieve visual impact.
    The second graph simply obliterates the pause by using decadal temperatures and then achieves visual impact at the expense of information in the same way that the first graph does.
    The third graph has bright red at 1 degree centigrade (no timescale on the graph so I don’t know over what period). No serious commentator has sought to suggest that a warming amount of 1 degree is likely to lead to serious impacts and yet the colour red is always used for danger – unless this is the future plan of the marxists.
    To the casual reader these graphs convey a not very subtle implied message, which is difficult to override even when one has scientific training and chooses to take a moment to see what the graph is really saying. What the graph is really saying and the message that the IPCC is seeking to convey appear to be divergent.

  49. To follow up on my previous comment looking at graph 3 it is clear that the commentators have sought to may the issue black and white (or blue [cooler] and red [warmer] – there is not specific value judgement in regards to the colour and yet there should be. One might have added a third colour (green) to provide a consideration of what the IPCC considers the normal or natural range of variability. However, this would have lost the impact and perhaps that is why it was omitted.

  50. Latitude says:
    September 17, 2013 at 5:19 pm

    I don’t think I would call it a sine-wave…
    …just herky jerky jumps up and down
    ——————-

  51. ” In the 21st century, we may say there are frauds, serious frauds, and IPCC Assessment Reports.

    Can I suggest an addition? “In the 21st century, we may say there are frauds, serious frauds, IPCC Assessment Reports, and IPCC Executive Summaries

    Arguably the Executive Summaries are just part of the now traditional IPCC B.S., but I think they deserve special separate attention as especially devious takes on the Reports’ own tricks and gimmicks.

  52. Rexx Vernon Shelton says:
    September 17, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    Please note that the esteemed on this blog Family Courtney is implicated in Twain’s source for the famous quotation:

    Further background on this quote is provided by Stephen Goranson who writes on the Mark Twain Forum in a post dated 31 July 2002: Twain’s Autobiography attribution of a remark about lies and statistics to Disraeli is generally not accepted. Evidence is now available to conclude that the phrase originally appeared in 1895 in an article by Leonard H. Courtney. So Disraeli is not the source, nor any pre-1895 person; merely Courtney. The 1895 article is now available online at: http://www.york.ac.uk/depts/maths/histstat/lies.htm Courtney may have read Carlyle on statistics (also quoted at this site); certainly, misuse of statistics was complained about before 1895.

  53. I’ve been following this blog a long time but I still don’t know ( please forgive me) but does GISS or Hadcut or whoever explained why early 20th century temps were adjusted downward? Is there a published basis by which they make and justify these adjustments?
    An inquiring mind wants to know.

  54. rgbatduke says:
    September 17, 2013 at 1:39 pm
    (This and a lot more good stuff)
    “Dick Lindzen’s graph above already suffices to show, even over the tiny time interval plotted, that late 20th century warming is not “unprecedented” or impossible to explain with natural variation, it almost exactly matches the non-anthropogenic warming of the first half of the 20th century.”

    That it almost exactly matches the non-anthropogenic warming of the first half… is a clear falsification of the CAGW theory all by itself. If the rise in CO2 since 1950 has been responsible for the “alarming” late century warming, then the slope of the decline 1950 to ~1979 should be shallower than the late 19th Cent- early 20th Cent. cooling trend and the following warming trend from 1979 should rise more steeply than its counterpart after ~1910 to reflect the anthropo component. It doesn’t.

  55. Moreover, following on the comment above, Even though the record has been jiggered down in its first half and raised somewhat up to about ~2000 (they daren’t go too far with this because the satellites are watching the recent temperatures) the trends of cooling and warming are the same. Shearing the record downward from the early 40s to push 1937 down below 1998 to create a new record should have, in fact, made the the earlier slopes gentler – meaning that, unjiggered, the early warming slope was steeper than the later one.

  56. Among the statistical dodges of the IPCC is one that this agency shares with Mr. Monckton. This is to disregard the non-existence in the various IPCC assessment reports of the events underlying the IPCC climate models. In the absence of these events, there is no such thing as mathematical statistics.

  57. I would still like to know if the UN-IPCC has managed to extract any man-made warming signature from the natural climate variation. If so how? I trust their method can be practically demonstrated and replicated by any competent university. Or have they just played more computer model games?

  58. FYI, for anyone wondering, Who is Dick Lindzen?

    Lindzen, Richard S: Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology, Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, MIT. “Prof. Lindzen is a recipient of the AMS’s Meisinger, and Charney Awards, the AGU’s Macelwane Medal, and the Leo Huss Walin Prize. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, and the Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters, and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences, the American Geophysical Union and the American Meteorological Society. He is a corresponding member of the NAS Committee on Human Rights, and has been a member of the NRC Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate and the Council of the AMS. He has also been a consultant to the Global Modeling and Simulation Group at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, and a Distinguished Visiting Scientist at California Institute of Technology’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. (Ph.D., ’64, S.M., ’61, A.B., ’60, Harvard University)

    http://www-eaps.mit.edu/faculty/lindzen.htm

  59. david eisenstadt says:
    September 17, 2013 at 7:41 pm
    rgbatduke says:
    September 17, 2013 at 1:39 pm…….

    your students are very lucky.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++

    We’re his students too, and yes we are.

  60. Great stuff! EU policy on climate change is right even if science was wrong, says commissioner.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/10313261/EU-policy-on-climate-change-is-right-even-if-science-was-wrong-says-commissioner.html

    Connie Hedegaard’s comments come as the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is expected to admit that previous scientific predictions for global warming and the effects of carbon emissions have been proved to be inaccurate.
    Bjorn Lomborg, a professor at the Copenhagen business school and the author of Cool it, a book arguing that too much climate change policy is based on scaremongering, accused the commissioner of being “both callous and wrong”.
    “EU climate policies have directly increased energy costs and caused more energy poverty – 300,000 households in Germany lost their power last year because they couldn’t pay the bills, and millions are energy poor in the UK. EU climate policies will cost £174 billion annually by 2020, the EU commissioner seems to suggest wasting £174 billion is no problem,” he said.

  61. Mr. Oldberg, who whines that there are no events in the climate and that, therefore, there is no such thing as statistics, is – as usual – wasting his breath and everyone else’s time. An event is that which has happened. A predicted event is that which has not yet happened but is forecast. If the predicted event does not happen, then the prediction was incorrect. The IPCC has predicted that global temperature would have risen by now at a rate of 0.35 Celsius/decade (in its 1990 report) and 0.2 Celsius/decade (in its 2007 report), but warming has actually occurred since 1990 at less than 0.12 Celsius/decade. The predicted event, therefore, did not occur and the IPCC was incorrect. It is as simple as that. The vaunted “consensus” (to the extent that it ever existed in the first place) was wrong. Get over it.

  62. Check this out :

    Scientists call for overhaul of UN ‘blockbuster’ climate reports

    As the IPCC prepares for its next major assessment, experts and governments propose more targeted and frequent studies

    4 September 2013

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/sep/04/scientists-overhaul-un-climate-report-ipcc?INTCMP=ILCNETTXT3487

    I think myself that the IPCC has outgrown its usefulness in the way in which it does things,” said Kevin Trenberth, a climate scientist at the National Centre for Atmospheric Research in Colorado.

    Andrew Weaver, a lead IPCC author and a Green party leader who earlier this year was elected to the British Columbia legislature, agreed it was time to shift away from the blockbuster style of reports.

    The scientists said the science on the causes of climate change and its global effects was already well-established. Given the rate and extent of climate change, it would be more useful to governments which rely on the IPCC reports to have scientists working on more targeted reports on specific topics, which would be delivered every year or two.

    “My own view is that … it would be healthy for the IPCC to focus on regional impacts and to focus on individual phenomena rather than the big global thing. The way to go forward would be to pick an issue and to work together in an interdisciplinary way,” Weaver said.

    And of course, as it’s the Guardian

    “Comments for this discussion are now closed.”

  63. CM says:

    “…the deserts have shrunk by quite a bit (the Sahara by 300,000 sq. km in 30 years).”

    Now that is an interesting stat to put against ‘the ice-cap is melting!’ meme.

  64. Time and history will show our current crop of politicians, who are such firn advocates of AGW, to be either gullible idiots or con artists. I wonder if they appreciate that

  65. Jean Parisot says: @ September 17, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    When the adjustments to the historical record are made – where is the meta-data documenting the rationale for the change, who did it, what the raw data was, etc. recorded?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    Phil Jones: The Dog Ate My Homework, and Other Stories… “…The world’s source for global temperature record admits it’s lost or destroyed all the original data that would allow a third party to construct a global temperature record. The destruction (or loss) of the data comes at a convenient time for the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) in East Anglia – permitting it to snub FoIA requests to see the data…. Most famously, Jones told an Australian climate scientist in 2004:

    “Even if WMO agrees, I will still not pass on the data. We have 25 or so years invested in the work. Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it.”….

    The Goat ate the Data
    Back before Climategate even began Dr. Phil Jones at one point stated that the CRU had “lost” the “raw” data they had collected during the move into their new building back in the 1980′s. This spawned the story the “Dog ate the Data” … At that time a New Zealand group called the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition (NZCSC) looked at the raw temperature records for their country and found that the temperatures were flat and that the warming trend shown in the graphs published by the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) was all due to adjustments NIWA did. At that time a FOI request was put in to see why and when these “adjustments” were made. Now two months later the NZCSC states that NIWA has been forced to admit they lost the records of how and when the adjustments were made….

    What makes this story even more interesting is that until this year (April) the head of NIWA was a Dr. Jim Salinger who was let go by NIWA for repeatedly violating NIWA policy…

    The interesting thing about Dr. Salinger is that prior to going to work for NIWA he was a member of Dr. Joneses CRU and he appears in the Climategate emails. Strange how data goes missing where ever these CRU boys work.

    Since the adjustments can not be verified/validated they come under the “Creative Accounting” and not “science” department.

    This alone tosses the IPCC report, and most of the ‘Climate Science’ peer-reviewed papers that rely on the unvalidated data, on the dung heap.

    An excellent example is theWUWT post looking at a new study by Duke Univ., More settled science: Climate change/warming speeds up tree life cycles instead of causing migration

    …Many climate studies have predicted that tree species will respond to global warming by migrating via seed dispersal to cooler climates. But a new study of 65 different species in 31 eastern states finds evidence of a different, unexpected response.

    Nearly 80 percent of the species aren’t yet shifting their geographic distributions to higher latitudes. Instead, they’re staying in place – but speeding up their life cycles….

    The entire study is based on the ASSumption that the adjusted temperature records are true. However the adjustments plus the MAP of movement of the Köppen climatic boundaries in the US Midwest show the entire study is compromised by the false appearance of an increase in temperature.

    The correct conclusion of the study is:
    A) The trees independently verify the Köppen climatic boundary map.
    B) The raw temperature data showing no trend is correct and not the adjusted data.
    C) CO2 is good for trees and makes them grow.

    However the scientists conducting the study would have had to have correct scientific training and an open mind to reach these conclusions.

  66. Barry Klinger says:
    September 17, 2013 at 6:22 pm

    How about 7.9F, 3.2F, and 3.5F? Those temperature differences also wouldn’t look too significant on a graph of daily Boston temperatures, but they represent the annual avg difference between Charleston SC and Washington DC, Washington and New York City, and NY and Boston, respectively. All cities with noticeably different climates even though their temperature ranges overlap significantly. So maybe, just possibly, small differences in climatological averages are more consequential than in day-to-day variations?….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>.
    And you just showed those temperatures are all quite livable. However the more correct way of looking at it is “What happens if we DO commit economic suicide?”
    Another commenter at WUWT….

    MADE IT SIMPLE TO UNDERSTAND

    If the US would entirely cripple its economy for the next hundred years, it would avert, according to the direst 3.5C IPCC sensitivity, about 0.1C in warming, the climate difference between two points about 5 miles apart

    Deindustralizing the US completely, no cars, no electricity, would avert the climate difference half of the length of the Fifth Avenue.

    If the whole industrialized world would deindustrialize, become North Korea like, the difference would be, in 100 years, 0.25C, the climate difference between the two ends of the Fifth Avenue

  67. Sasha says: @ September 18, 2013 at 2:22 am …

    Scientists call for overhaul of UN ‘blockbuster’ climate reports

    As the IPCC prepares for its next major assessment, experts and governments propose more targeted and frequent studies

    4 September 2013

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/sep/04/scientists-overhaul-un-climate-report-ipcc?INTCMP=ILCNETTXT3487

    ….The scientists said the science on the causes of climate change and its global effects was already well-established. Given the rate and extent of climate change, it would be more useful to governments which rely on the IPCC reports to have scientists working on more targeted reports on specific topics, which would be delivered every year or two….

    WOW!
    TRANSLATION:

    The Science is settled can’t you understand? WE SAID SO! (We don’t want another IPCC report front and center that the sceptics can pick apart because we are afraid the climate is now going into cool the cycle and we can no longer ‘Hide the Decline’. Darn it ,you politicians were supposed to have made UN Agenda 21 a done deal by now and take credit for the coming decline in temperatures!)

  68. Gail Combs: The article here is about whether IPCC is distorting the facts to make global warming seem big when it is actually small. Whether it is bad is another question but one we can’t even get to if we are still arguing about whether humans are even affecting the climate. For the record, I personally believe that an 8F global mean warming (which is not out of the question for the next century) might have some positive effects in cold places where few people now live, probably has negative affects in hot places where many people now live, and will probably be disruptive everywhere.
    Gail, I assume your “deiundustralizing” scenario is for the US and no one else. If so it has the fallacy employed by all who want to do wrong. What is my little theft going to do to GDP? What is my can of motor oil going to do to the lake? What is one more boatload going to do to the fishery? Probably not too much, but the laws have to be designed to apply to everyone. If the world economy converts to low-emission technology, it will have a big effect on CO2 levels. But the whole world won’t do it if the richest country refuses to.

  69. Earlier I commented on some fallacies in the article. Here are some more.
    Early 20th century warming looks similar to late 20th century warming: The article dismisses anthropogenic affects in early 20th century, but according to the graphs from Hansen et al (2007, Clim Dyn), the change in radiative forcing was around 1/3 – 1/2 as big for 1st half of century as for 2nd half. That’s not negligible.
    The article also talks about error bars. I think those error bars are for individual years. To the extent that errors for different years are random, the error bar for an average of N years should be decreased by a factor of sqrt(N). I think simply taking a 5 yr running mean gives the clearest picture of decadal and longer trends while eliminating year-to-year noise; for this the error bars should be reduced by about 2.2 which makes the long-term trend highly significant.
    Of course the error bar argument cuts both ways. To the extent that error bars early in the century were larger, it is harder to make a case that apparent early 20th century warming disproves human effects for better-measured late 20th century warming!

  70. Barry Klinger says:
    September 18, 2013 at 4:49 am

    Gail, I assume your “deindustrializing” scenario is for the US and no one else. If so it has the fallacy employed by all who want to do wrong. What is my little theft going to do to GDP? What is my can of motor oil going to do to the lake? What is one more boatload going to do to the fishery? Probably not too much, but the laws have to be designed to apply to everyone. If the world economy converts to low-emission technology, it will have a big effect on CO2 levels. But the whole world won’t do it if the richest country refuses to.

    The US won’t do it if doing so would be futile / insignificant and economically ruinous–plus indirectly causing more CO2 by encouraging off-shoring to countries with less efficient power plants and worse pollution standards. The US has indicted it would go along if the major emitting countries would also do so–but they’ve indicated they won’t.

    “Doing wrong” in such a context is something that is not an absolute, but a relative. If the other major grazers on the global commons won’t agree to limit their access to it, we have no moral obligation to refrain.

  71. Barry Klinger:

    At September 18, 2013 at 4:49 am you assert

    If the world economy converts to low-emission technology, it will have a big effect on CO2 levels. But the whole world won’t do it if the richest country refuses to.

    Converting “the world economy … to low-emission technology” requires a massive switch to nuclear power, together with reduction of economic activity resulting from higher transportation and agricultural costs. It could only be achieved by major reduction to the use of fossil fuels.

    I fail to understand why anybody would want to do such an evil thing with all its resulting billions of deaths.

    The use of fossil fuels has done more to benefit human kind than anything else since the invention of agriculture. This is because it has released us from the energy poverty of wind, solar and muscle (animal and slave) power. Human health, life expectancy and leisure have all increased with resulting increase to art, philosophy and knowledge. And the environment has benefited enormously.

    That improvement was provided by use of fossil fuels and is sustained by use of fossil fuels. The developing world wants those benefits, too. At the moment they live at subsistence levels. Human population is set to reach a peak before declining around ~2050. That peak is anticipated to be an additional ~3 billion people and they need additional energy supply to survive. That additional energy supply is ONLY available by increased use of fossil fuels and nuclear power. But nuclear power provides electricity, not fuel. And not everything can be done by use of electricity: ask a farmer what his production would be if he had to replace it with a a Sinclair C5.

    Without that additional energy supply ~3 billion people – mostly children – will die slowly and in pain from hunger and disease

    If you don’t want the benefits of fossil fuels then fine: you swap places with somebody living in a mud hut and doing their cooking on a fire in the middle of the hut with the fire fueled by the wood and dung collected each morning.

    We don’t want to lose those benefits: we want to enable those now living in mud huts to get those benefits, too.

    Richard

  72. Barry Klinger:

    Your sophistry at September 18, 2013 at 5:01 am talks about “error bars” on global temperature determinations.

    In reality, the error bars on each global temperature datum are infinite because average global temperature is an undefined metric with no possibility of calibration. Read this link, especially its Appendix B

    http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmselect/cmsctech/memo/climatedata/uc0102.htm

    The entire AGW-scare is based on meaningless fabrication.

    Richard

  73. “Using the same statistical dodge, one can show that a sine-wave has a rising trend.”

    This is ironic because in fact it was a sine wave which caused the “acceleration”. Take a look at the first panel here. If you remove the contribution of the periodic component, the remaining temperature data has a constant .5 deg/century slope across the entire data set.

  74. Gail Combs:

    Could you give the source for the “Fifth Avenue” explanation? Although the source probably did not show his work, I for one would find it interesting if he did.

  75. Barry Klinger says: @ September 18, 2013 at 4:49 am
    ….. For the record, I personally believe that an 8F global mean warming (which is not out of the question for the next century) might have some positive effects in cold places where few people now live, probably has negative affects in hot places where many people now live, and will probably be disruptive everywhere….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    8F ~ 4.4C increase? NOT bloody likely!
    First we are at the tail end of the Holocene and the Solar insolation seen at earth has been decreasing since the Holocene Optimum. graph and as shown the earth is slowly cooling in response.

    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….

    Even Joe Romm over at Climate Progress states:
    “Absent human emissions, we’d probably be in a slow long-term cooling trend due primarily by changes in the Earth’s orbit” — see Human-caused Arctic warming overtakes 2,000 years of natural cooling, “seminal” study finds…”

    This paper also agrees that we are at the point in the earth’s Milankovitch cycle that ushers in an ice age. The biggest question of course is why we are not covered in ice yet.

    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….”

    There are several other papers that come to a similar conclusion. We are near the time for glacial inception.

    The second part of the argument against your statement was made by Dr Brown, (Physicist) of Duke University, about climate, Chaos Theory and a “strange attractor”, which is typically a limit point. No new strange attractors: strong evidence against both positive feedback and catastrophe

    This Vostok graph of the last 450ky shows the upper and lower limits (strange attractors) that Dr. Brown is talking about and the tendency of the temperature to bounce between them. (There is a third some where between the upper and lower that is in response to Dansgaard–Oeschger events.)

  76. Barry Klinger says:
    September 18, 2013 at 4:49 am
    …. Gail, I assume your “deiundustralizing” scenario is for the US and no one else…..
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    No, the EU has also stated goals of cutting carbon dioxide by 80% by 2050 and Australia was also on board until the fools were voted out of office.

  77. DavidG. Silver Ralph- You are talking nonsense. Paul was no Nazorean!!
    ___________________________________

    Sorry, I was going to let this one go. I was just having a bit of fun with Monkton’s over-zealous faith – which he tries to sneak into scientific comment, when he should know better and keep his beliefs to himself. But I do draw the line at believers who don’t know anything about the texts they are supposed to be beliving in.

    Acts 24:5 says:
    For we have found this man (Saul-Paul) a real pestilent fellow who stirs up dissension among all the Jews throughout the world, and he is a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes.
    (King James version).

    Hmm, I think that makes Saul-Paul a Nazarene, don’t you think??

    .

  78. Barry Klinger says: @ September 18, 2013 at 4:49 am

    …If the world economy converts to low-emission technology, it will have a big effect on CO2 levels. But the whole world won’t do it if the richest country refuses to….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    What happens to humans if we converts to low-emission technology (and do not use Nuclear or Hydro because they are also targeted by the ECOLOONS)

    #1. We see the results of ‘Fuel Poverty’ already in the UK About 2,000 extra deaths were registered in just the first two weeks of March compared with the average for the same period over the past five years. ‘An increase in fuel costs and the extended winter means that more people are going to suffer, and more will be unable to afford to eat and heat their homes. It’s a scary prospect.’

    #2. The WTO, according to Bill Clinton, intentionally stripped third world countries of their ability to produce their own food. “We Made a Devil’s Bargain”: Fmr. President Clinton Apologizes for Trade Policies that Destroyed Haitian Rice Farming We have already had food riots in 60 countries in 2008.

    BILL CLINTON: Since 1981, the United States has followed a policy, until the last year or so when we started rethinking it, that we rich countries that produce a lot of food should sell it to poor countries and relieve them of the burden of producing their own food, so, thank goodness, they can leap directly into the industrial era. It has not worked. It may have been good for some of my farmers in Arkansas, but it has not worked. It was a mistake. It was a mistake that I was a party to. I am not pointing the finger at anybody. I did that. I have to live every day with the consequences of the lost capacity to produce a rice crop in Haiti to feed those people, because of what I did. Nobody else.

    So what does a ‘low-emission technology’ do to farming?
    In 1970, One farmer supplied 75.8 persons in the United States and abroad. In 1940, one farmer supplied 10.7 persons in the United States and abroad.

    The average energy use per person for the USA is 335.9 million BTUs per person. In 1949, U.S. energy use per person stood at 215 million Btu. (This is when the USA changed from horses to tractors.) The U.S. in 1800 had a per-capita energy consumption of about 90 million Btu. If the USA reduces its energy consumption by 80% it equals 45.18 million Btu. HALF that used in 1890!

    In a ‘low-emission’ society most people will have to work on farms and from actual experience I can tell you that first world people are pretty much useless for farming. So The WTO has wiped out third world farmers, (According to a study by Jose Romero and Alicia Puyana carried out for the federal government of Mexico, between 1992 and 2002, the number of agricultural households fell an astounding 75%) and without carbon based fuel first world farmers can not produce the food the world needs. So the result will be food riots and revolutions similar to 2008 but much much worse.

    RIOTS and DEATH will be the actual results of trying to make first world citizens into third world peasants. Russia and China not being the idiots first worlders are will rise to dominate the rest of the world.

    1890 – 40-50 labor-hours required to produce 100 bushels (5 acres) of wheat with gang plow, seeder, harrow, binder, thresher, wagons, and horses
    1890 – Most basic potentialities of agricultural machinery that was dependent on horsepower had been discovered
    1890-99 – Average annual consumption of commercial fertilizer: 1,845,900 tons
    ……
    1945-70 – Change from horses to tractors and the adoption of a group of technological practices characterized the second American agriculture agricultural revolution
    …..

    [COMPARE TO TODAY]
    1987 – 1-1/2 to 2 labor-hours required to produce 100 pounds (1/5 acre) of lint cotton with tractor, 4-row stalk cutter, 20-foot disk, 6-row bedder and planter, 6-row cultivator with herbicide applicator, and 4-row harvester
    1987 – 3 labor-hours required to produce 100 bushels (3 acres) of wheat with tractor, 35-foot sweep disk, 30-foot drill, 25-foot self-propelled combine, and trucks
    1987 – 2-3/4 labor-hours required to produce 100 bushels (1-1/8 acres) of corn with tractor, 5-bottom plow, 25-foot tandem disk, planter, 25-foot herbicide applicator, 15-foot self-propelled combine, and trucks

    http://inventors.about.com/library/inventors/blfarm1.htm

  79. Terry Oldberg on September 17, 2013 at 9:20 pm

    Among the statistical dodges of the IPCC is one that this agency shares with Mr. Monckton. This is to disregard the non-existence in the various IPCC assessment reports of the events underlying the IPCC climate models. In the absence of these events, there is no such thing as mathematical statistics.

    – – – – – – –

    Terry Oldberg,

    There is a certain degree of playful subtlety in your comment. A not infrequent thing in your many comments and it causes a pause . . . to reflect.

    Are you suggesting that the models are of such a nature (lacking events as their basis) that mathematical statistics cannot be applied to them?

    Please expand your original comment. Thanks.

    John

  80. ralfellis:

    Please desist from attempting to divert this thread from its subject.

    In hope of stopping further discussion of your ‘red herring’, I write to answer your question in your post at September 18, 2013 at 6:33 am

    Acts 24:5 says:

    For we have found this man (Saul-Paul) a real pestilent fellow who stirs up dissension among all the Jews throughout the world, and he is a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes.

    (King James version).

    Hmm, I think that makes Saul-Paul a Nazarene, don’t you think??

    No, it does not.
    He was a tent maker who was a Roman Citizen from Tarsus, not Nazareth. This is why he was known as (S)Paul of Tarsus. He became leader of the Nazarene sect in their “trouble making” while he was among them, but that did not make him a Nazarene.

    Let that be an end to this irrelevance to the thread.

    Richard

  81. Barry Klinger says: @ September 18, 2013 at 4:49 am

    … If the world economy converts to low-emission technology, it will have a big effect on CO2 levels. But the whole world won’t do it if the richest country refuses to.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    The final part of why lowering or keeping CO2 levels the same is idiotic.

    First C3 plants, especially during glaciation are near starvation levels. Carbon starvation in glacial trees recovered from the La Brea tar pits, southern CaliforniaDepartment of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Kansas

    Second the consensus seems to be that higher CO2 levels are all that is keeping us out of glaciation.

    …Comparison [of the Holocene] with MIS 19c, a close astronomical analogue characterized by an equally weak summer insolation minimum (474Wm−2) and a smaller overall decrease from maximum summer solstice insolation values, suggests that glacial inception is possible despite the subdued insolation forcing, if CO2 concentrations were 240±5 ppmv…. (Tzedakis et al., 2012).”

    ….the June 21 insolation minimum at 65N during MIS 11 is only 489 W/m2, much less pronounced than the present minimum of 474 W/m2. In addition, current insolation values are not predicted to return to the high values of late MIS 11 for another 65 kyr. We propose that this effectively precludes a ‘double precession-cycle’ interglacial [e.g., Raymo, 1997] in the Holocene without human influence….

    http://web.pdx.edu/~chulbe/COURSES/QCLIM/reprints/LisieckiRaymo_preprint.pdf

    As you may have notice some think we are headed into another solar minimum

    Here we analyse annually laminated sediments of Lake Meerfelder Maar, Germany, to derive variations in wind strength and the rate of 10Be accumulation, a proxy for solar activity, from 3,300 to 2,000 years before present. We find a sharp increase in windiness and cosmogenic 10Be deposition 2,759  ±  39 varve years before present and a reduction in both entities 199  ±  9 annual layers later. We infer that the atmospheric circulation reacted abruptly and in phase with the solar minimum. A shift in atmospheric circulation in response to changes in solar activity is broadly consistent with atmospheric circulation patterns in long-term climate model simulations, and in reanalysis data that assimilate observations from recent solar minima into a climate model. We conclude that changes in atmospheric circulation amplified the solar signal and caused abrupt climate change about 2,800 years ago, coincident with a grand solar minimum.

    http://theresilientearth.com/?q=content/earths-climate-follows-suns-uv-groove

    We are already seeing a change in the weather patterns as the Jet Stream moves from zonal to meridional flow with blocking highs.

  82. ralfellis says:
    September 18, 2013 at 6:33 am

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/09/17/dodgy-statistics-and-ipcc-assessment-reports/#comment-1420235

    ========================================================================
    Don’t confuse the the OT vow with the city of Nazareth. Jesus was called a Nazarene because that is where Joseph and Mary went with him after they returned from Egypt when he was young.
    PS Philippians 3 has a bit on Paul’s background and how he valued it compared to what he really held dear.
    Now can we keep this thread on track?

  83. John Whitman:

    I see that at September 18, 2013 at 6:53 am you again attempt to disrupt a thread this time by inciting Terry Oldberg to spew his repeatedly refuted (by Monckton, by rgb@duke, by me, by etc.) nonsense into this thread.

    It can be anticipated that Terry Oldberg will jump at the invitation. If he does then I beg everybody to ignore it, otherwise he will drag this thread down into Alice’s rabbit hole as he has other threads.

    Richard

  84. Joe Born says: @ September 18, 2013 at 5:46 am

    Gail Combs:

    Could you give the source for the “Fifth Avenue” explanation? Although the source probably did not show his work, I for one would find it interesting if he did.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    I really wish I could dig up who made the comment on WUWT but so far I haven’t been able to dig it out. All I can remember is that it was within the last week or two before September 16th. I will keep looking since it is such a great illustration and I really want to H/T the author.

  85. Thanks to all who responded to my previous comments. We are all drifting a bit off-topic when we discuss what to do about rising GHG levels, so I will just say a few words about it here.

    1) Is decarbonizing evil because it condemns the developing world to squalor? Not if done correctly. Currently in the US wind is economically competitive in some areas and needs a small subsidy in others. Solar is further away from breaking even but has been getting cheaper for a long time. Modest adaption of these and similar sustainable technologies + more efficient devices by rich countries now will speed the time when green tech becomes cheap enough for poor countries to use to expand their economies in a clean way. Saying that we need to keep using fossil fuel because it started the industrial revolution is like saying we need to keep the vacuum tube because it started the information revolution.

    2) Does negotiating climate agreements fruitlessly doom the US economy? No, rich countries have an obligation to start first, but poor countries should be brought along, first in agreements about imports (so we don’t just offshore CO2 emissions) and (as they get richer) in curbing their own growth. That also gives time for (1) and for the science to be clearer.

    3) Must we do our patriotic duty to spew CO2 to prevent the next ice age? In principle there may be some truth in that but in practice I think the huge rate of increase in GHG’s is way more than is needed to curb a multi-millenium trend in insolation.

  86. Barry Klinger says:
    September 18, 2013 at 7:47 am

    1) Is decarbonizing evil because it condemns the developing world to squalor? Not if done correctly….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    First CO2 is up over 8% and there has been no increase in temperature for 17 years or so. The laboratory response curve is logarithmic, that is the first small amount has a major effect and the last much larger amount has a minor effect. It is like painting a window, only the first coat of paint has a really big effect on the amount of sunlight transmitted. We are now into the minor effect area akin to several coats of paint. That plus decreasing solar insolation makes the whole issue a tempest in a teapot only useful to academics sucking up grant money, financial investors and energy companies sucking up tax payer subsidies and bureaucrats salivating over more power.

    Second The ONLY REAL alternate options are Hydro and Nuclear and you will get the Eco-loons screaming bloody murder if you try to build them. Besides we already have the Wild and Wonderful Rivers Act in the USA and the dismantling of dams occurring. So forget hydro.

    As Richard Courtney said:

    ….Costs are the sum of price and subsidies. And being “cheaper” is having lowest costs.

    Renewables such as wind and solar cannot be cheaper than coal or other fossil fuel energy: it is physically impossible. I explain this as follows.

    All energy is free. It was all created at the Big Bang. But it is costly to collect energy and to concentrate it for conduct of useful work.

    Fortunately, nature has collected and concentrated energy for us.

    For example, the little energy available in sunlight has been collected by photosynthesis over geological ages, and the collected energy exists in dry, compressed stores known as fossil fuels, notably coal.

    The energy available in sunlight as it falls, or the solar energy collected as biomass is in such small amounts that collecting it costs much more than collecting the energy concentrated in fossil fuels.

    Wind is also energy supplied by the sun but it is also too feeble in normal winds to make its collection affordable when the solar energy collected by fossil fuels is so much and is so concentrated.

    However, hydropower is solar energy collected by evapouration over large areas which is concentrated when it falls as rain and is routed to rivers by geography. This large collection area makes hydropower affordable in competition with fossil fuels and nuclear power. (Nuclear power is energy concentrated by now long-dead stars).

    The high concentration of energy in fossil fuels is why windpower and muscle power (from animals and slaves) were abandoned when the high energy intensity in fossil fuels became available for use as power by using of the steam engine….

    I suggest you read the rest of what he says HERE

  87. richardscourtney on September 18, 2013 at 7:04 am

    John Whitman:

    I see that at September 18, 2013 at 6:53 am you again attempt to disrupt a thread this time by inciting Terry Oldberg to spew his repeatedly refuted (by Monckton, by rgb@duke, by me, by etc.) nonsense into this thread.

    It can be anticipated that Terry Oldberg will jump at the invitation. If he does then I beg everybody to ignore it, otherwise he will drag this thread down into Alice’s rabbit hole as he has other threads.

    Richard

    – – – – – – –

    Richard,

    Always a pleasure to here from you. Thanks for your comment, but your efforts to be a WUWT intellectual traffic director are completely unsolicited.

    As you are free to say whatever you like (within this site’s policy) to anyone you wish it is also the case that I am likewise free to say whatever I like (within this site’s policy) to anyone I wish. N’est ce pas?

    What site policy has Terry Olberg violated either in fact or in spirit with his comment (Terry Oldberg on September 17, 2013 at 9:20 pm)?

    What site policy has John Whitman violated either in fact or in spirit with his comment (John Whitman on September 18, 2013 at 6:53 am)?

    Has richardscourtney violated a site policy either in fact or in spirit with his comment (richardscourtney on September 18, 2013 at 7:04 am)?

    I am here to learn, share, create, network and to get to understand better, for my part, some individuals. In Terry Oldberg’s climate science comments I often see philosophically (particularly in the area of epistemology) subtle premises as his basis. I, for my part, will try to get to know him better. And my comments to him will be sincere and polite.

    John

  88. Barry Klinger:

    I am replying to only one point in your post at September 18, 2013 at 7:47 am because they are all spurious and I explained why your suggestion would kill billions. Your reply to that explanation is either out of La La Land or is a deliberate call for the deaths of billions.

    It says

    Currently in the US wind is economically competitive in some areas and needs a small subsidy in others. Solar is further away from breaking even but has been getting cheaper for a long time. Modest adaption of these and similar sustainable technologies + more efficient devices by rich countries now will speed the time when green tech becomes cheap enough for poor countries to use to expand their economies in a clean way. Saying that we need to keep using fossil fuel because it started the industrial revolution is like saying we need to keep the vacuum tube because it started the information revolution.

    That is wrong in every particular!

    Wind is only “economically competitive” because it is subsidised: it has competitive PRICE but its costs are 5 to 10 times those of gas, coal, and nuclear power.
    Cost is Price + Subsidy

    Solar is also exorbitantly expensive.

    It is a physical impossibility for wind and solar to be as cheap as hydro, fossil fuels or nuclear. I explained this on another thread recently. I copy that explanation to here so you do not need to find it.

    Renewables such as wind and solar cannot be cheaper than coal or other fossil fuel energy: it is physically impossible. I explain this as follows.

    All energy is free. It was all created at the Big Bang. But it is costly to collect energy and to concentrate it for conduct of useful work.

    Fortunately, nature has collected and concentrated energy for us.

    For example, the little energy available in sunlight has been collected by photosynthesis over geological ages, and the collected energy exists in dry, compressed stores known as fossil fuels, notably coal.

    The energy available in sunlight as it falls, or the solar energy collected as biomass is in such small amounts that collecting it costs much more than collecting the energy concentrated in fossil fuels.

    Wind is also energy supplied by the sun but it is also too feeble in normal winds to make its collection affordable when the solar energy collected by fossil fuels is so much and is so concentrated.

    However, hydropower is solar energy collected by evapouration over large areas which is concentrated when it falls as rain and is routed to rivers by geography. This large collection area makes hydropower affordable in competition with fossil fuels and nuclear power. (Nuclear power is energy concentrated by now long-dead stars).

    The high concentration of energy in fossil fuels is why windpower and muscle power (from animals and slaves) were abandoned when the high energy intensity in fossil fuels became available for use as power by using of the steam engine.

    But hydropower was not abandoned and is still used because the energy intensity in falling water is comparable to the energy intensity in fossil fuels.

    In summation, collecting energy for use is cheap by using hydropower, fossil fuels and nuclear power because nature has done most of the collecting. But collecting energy is expensive from wind and solar because we have to do all the collection ourselves.

    Wind and solar are ancient technologies which were surpassed over a century ago.
    They were replaced by the steam engine. Your claim that they are capable of significant further development is plain daft. You are claiming the steam engine is future tech.!

    I do not know if your desire to reduce fossil fuel usage is pure evil or is simple ignorance stupidity. But it is only necessary for the ignorant and stupid to promote evil for evil to prevail.

    Richard

  89. John Whitman:

    At September 18, 2013 at 8:30 am you say

    I am here to learn, share, create, network and to get to understand better, for my part, some individuals. In Terry Oldberg’s climate science comments I often see philosophically (particularly in the area of epistemology) subtle premises as his basis. I, for my part, will try to get to know him better. And my comments to him will be sincere and polite.

    Assuming your first quoted sentence is true (I doubt it is true on the basis of your behaviour on the ‘dustbin’ thread) then use the Search facility to read the several threads where Terry Oldberg has spouted his irrational drivel or – alternatively – contact him personally.

    He destroyed some threads and damaged two others (as you did with your ‘tag partner’ in the ‘dustbin’ thread).

    There are people who want to discuss the subjects of this thread even if you don’t.

    Richard

  90. Barry Klinger says:
    September 18, 2013 at 7:47 am

    Thanks to all who responded to my previous comments. We are all drifting a bit off-topic when we discuss what to do about rising GHG levels, so I will just say a few words about it here.

    1) Is decarbonizing evil because it condemns the developing world to squalor? Not if done correctly. Currently in the US wind is economically competitive in some areas and needs a small subsidy in others. Solar is further away from breaking even but has been getting cheaper for a long time. Modest adaption of these and similar sustainable technologies + more efficient devices by rich countries now will speed the time when green tech becomes cheap enough for poor countries to use to expand their economies in a clean way. Saying that we need to keep using fossil fuel because it started the industrial revolution is like saying we need to keep the vacuum tube because it started the information revolution.

    So, you – specifically and uniquely – are NOT condemning people to an early death by demanding they “de-carbonize” in order that you feel better and are not afraid of a non-existent threat from increasing CO2 levels?

    OK. How many solar panels do I need to buy – at what price! – to power six 1000 watt welders for a water and sewage project in the south Andes mountains. Cloudy skies 80% of the time, 600 miles from a concrete plant: I can get solar power for 6 hours a day. I’ll need to grind gravel, transport it, weld the steel pipes, lift them into place move the pipes around. Dig ditches, place the concrete. Cut wooden forms, pour the concrete. Run pumps and cut steel. Control the pumps and sprayers and filters 24 hours a day when the project construction is finished.

    But YOU have decided my power costs 3 times as much, my concrete and steel costs more, the wood cannot be provided, the roads cannot be cut through, the power lines cannot be run, and that the locals cannot use fossil power to build it. YOU have killed them through YOUR fear and YOUR superstitions about CO2.

  91. richardscourtney on September 18, 2013 at 8:38 am

    John Whitman:

    At September 18, 2013 at 8:30 am you say

    I am here to learn, share, create, network and to get to understand better, for my part, some individuals. In Terry Oldberg’s climate science comments I often see philosophically (particularly in the area of epistemology) subtle premises as his basis. I, for my part, will try to get to know him better. And my comments to him will be sincere and polite.

    Assuming your first quoted sentence is true (I doubt it is true on the basis of your behaviour on the ‘dustbin’ thread) then use the Search facility to read the several threads where Terry Oldberg has spouted his irrational drivel or – alternatively – contact him personally.

    He destroyed some threads and damaged two others (as you did with your ‘tag partner’ in the ‘dustbin’ thread).

    There are people who want to discuss the subjects of this thread even if you don’t.

    Richard

    – – – – – – – – –

    richardscourtney,

    Being still engaged in discussion is my honor. Thanks for your comment.

    The Dustbin topic may be off topic in this thread? Would you consider it appropriate here? Should we mutually agree to pursue it further then lets go there. I look forward to further discussion there.

    Is it just my impression or are you actually trying to incite against the possibility of free and open discussion here between Terry Olberg and I that is reasonably within the topic of this thread?

    Is Terry Olberg’s comment (Terry Oldberg on September 17, 2013 at 9:20 pm) off topic? Is my questioning his basis off topic?

    Are you suggesting that there are consensus positions on the topic of this thread such that discussing other on topic positions should not be done here? That non-consensus discussion should go elsewhere?

    What is the meaning of science dialog tolerance if it is not what made WUWT the most consistently successful science blog?

    John

  92. John Whitman:

    re your post at September 18, 2013 at 9:27 am.

    Just so you know, I refuse to get embroiled in your semantic drivel and thus assist you in dragging this thread off topic. So, I will ignore any similar posts from you.

    Richard

  93. Gail and Richard, I see two copies of the same incorrect claim that renewable energy is intrinsically more expensive than fossil fuels. The flaw in the argument is that it does not take into account the relative cost of extracting energy from (for example) wind and from (for example) coal. If harnessing the wind is cheap enough relative to digging up, transporting, and burning coal, then wind energy could be cheaper to produce. Whether it is depends on the details.
    The levelized cost of wind energy seems to be around .072 $/kWh based on a land-based 1.5 MW turbine achieving an average power of .37 MW. (2011 cost of Wind Energy Review, Table ES1, NREL web site). At the retail level, residential rates from Washington Gas Energy Services are .089 $/kWh for a mix of coal, gas, and nuclear, versus .110 $/kWh. That’s 24% larger. Please provide a citation for the claim that wind is 5-10 times more expensive than fossil fuel sources.

  94. Barry Klinger says: @ September 18, 2013 at 9:45 am

    Gail and Richard, I see two copies of the same incorrect claim that renewable energy is intrinsically more expensive than fossil fuels. The flaw in the argument is that it does not take into account the relative cost of extracting energy from (for example) wind and from (for example) coal. If harnessing the wind is cheap enough relative to digging up, transporting, and burning coal, then wind energy could be cheaper to produce. Whether it is depends on the details.
    The levelized cost of wind energy……
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Has been calculated by a Professional Engineer. He has a short blurb about his book: WIND POWER FRAUD

    I suggest you buy and read the entire book and then get back to us.

  95. Barry Klinger:

    I see that at September 18, 2013 at 9:45 am you use the usual Big Wind propaganda trick of pretending prices are costs. I refuted that nonsense above.

    And I am sorry that I was typing and copying something when Gail Combs was posting the same thing.

    However, you ask for information on the cost of windpower being 5 to 10 times more than fossil fuel power. Of course, 10 times is conservative because the subsidies enable more extreme windpower costs. For example, this one whereby a subsidy of £130,000 was provided so a windfarm could produce power sold for £100,000.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1355419/UKs-useless-wind-turbine-Cost-130k-raise-electricity-worth-100k.html

    Windfarms are expensive, polluting, environmentally damaging bird swatters that provide electricity some of the time and produce electricity of use to a grid supply none of the time. See

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/reprint/courtney_2006_lecture.pdf

    Richard

  96. Barry Klinger says:
    September 18, 2013 at 9:45 am

    The levelized cost of wind energy seems to be around .072 $/kWh based on a land-based 1.5 MW turbine achieving an average power of .37 MW. (2011 cost of Wind Energy Review, Table ES1, NREL web site). At the retail level, residential rates from Washington Gas Energy Services are .089 $/kWh for a mix of coal, gas, and nuclear, versus .110 $/kWh. That’s 24% larger. Please provide a citation for the claim that wind is 5-10 times more expensive than fossil fuel sources.

    =======================================================================
    Just a question. Does “levelized” mean “subsidized”?

  97. richardscourtney on September 18, 2013 at 9:39 am

    John Whitman:

    re your post at September 18, 2013 at 9:27 am.

    Just so you know, I refuse to get embroiled in your semantic drivel and thus assist you in dragging this thread off topic. So, I will ignore any similar posts from you.

    Richard

    – – – – – – –

    richardscourtney,

    Thanks once again for your dialog, by your persistence it has now come to the crux of the matter.

    I politely point out to you that you initiated this [¿'semantic drivel'?] by commenting on my comment addressed to Terry Olberg in an attempt to preemptively disparage a dialog between Olberg & I.

    My focus (on responding to your comment which was addressed specifically to me) was what basis you had to advocate against my potential conversation with Terry Olberg.

    We see now that your basis is that you did not approve of Terry Olberg’s (and perhaps also my) behavior in the past at WUWT, even though the behavior was ruled within site policy in both letter and spirit. Therefore you think I should defer to your disapproval, but I simply decline to do so.

    ‘Just so you know’.

    John

  98. richardscourtney on September 18, 2013 at 10:42 am

    John Whitman:

    re your post at September 18, 2013 at 10:36 am

    Read and ignored.

    Richard

    – – – – – – – –

    richardscourtney,

    This is becoming a classic dialog! I do quite appreciate it. Thanks.

    I have read your above quoted terse comment and it is absolutely not ignored by me because . . . the future is the unknown frontier*** . . .

    *** expression taken from a Star Trek movie

    John

  99. Friends:

    I write to place on record that I shall not be answering the trolling of John Whitman.
    My failure to reply does not indicate that I am refusing to read his posts.

    I refuse to feed the troll.

    Richard

  100. Richardcourtney
    Let that be an end to this irrelevance to the thread.
    ___________________________________________

    Not an irrelevance at all Richard. Some of Monkton’s carping polemics indicate that he sees himself standing in a pulpit, rather than a lecture theatre. My point, which I thought was well made, is that the skeptic community would be better served if their chief spokesmen left their beliefs at home (be that semi-literate design or left-foot Christianity).

    This is an important debate about the science and politics of climate, which may greatly afflict and regress Western society and civilisation, and not a platform for DIY evangelists.

    Ralph

  101. Gunga Din: “Just a question. Does “levelized” mean “subsidized”?”
    No, the Levelized Cost of Electricity seems to be a standard way of including construction and maintenance costs in the total cost of an energy facility. I don’t know too much about it but there is a wikipedia article about it.
    Richard: The Daily Mail article doesn’t seems to be about the size of the subsidy (for 1 turbine) not about the cost/kWh, but I’ll take a look at the longer material you referenced.

  102. ralfellis:

    I am replying to your post addressed to me at September 18, 2013 at 12:18 pm.

    The good Viscount talks from who he is and that provides part of the power with which he says things. He mentions his acceptance of the existence of the Almighty. This is no different from the founders of the US Constitution who did the same.

    The attempts of you and Silver Ralph to evangelise your religion in this thread certainly are an irrelevance. Similarly, they would also be an irrelevance in a discussion of the US Constitution.

    I ask you to consider your words – that I strongly agree – in your post I am answering; viz.

    This is an important debate about the science and politics of climate, which may greatly afflict and regress Western society and civilisation, and not a platform for DIY evangelists.

    I repeat my request that this be an end to the matter.

    Richard

  103. Richard Courtney: In your posts above, you claim wind is 5 or even 10 times more expensive than fossil-fuel electricity sources and cite your own talk. Yet the only cost estimate I could find in your talk was 2.3 p/kWh for gas turbines and 3.7+1.7 p/kWh for wind+blackup capacity (p=pence). That’s a factor of 2 difference in cost, more than I have read elsewhere but far less than 5-10 times you claim. Note that a 2008 US Dept of Energy Report, “20% Wind Energy by 2030″ has a discussion in Sec 4.1 which points out that unpredictable variability in demand already adds something like an intermittency factor and that the combined effect of demand variability and wind variability is less than the sum of the magnitudes of variability. This may reduce the capacity requirements from what you are assuming.
    You mention that we shouldn’t go by retail price, but if you are warning that switching to wind will bankrupt ordinary people and cause them to starve, the retail price is very relevant. If my electricity originally costs around .09 $/kwH and wind increases it to around .14 $/kwH, that’s the price I have to worry about. Actually that’s probably an overestimate because much of the electricity consumed by a country is used by industry and commerce which probably gets cheaper bulk rates. Anyway, per capita consumption in US and UK (World Bank figures) is around 13,000 kWh and 6,000, respectively, which means electric costs are $1170 and $540 at low rates and $650 and $300 for 100% wind at todays rates. No one is talking about converting to 100% wind next year, but going to 30% wind over 30 yr I can’t believe there won’t be some technological innovation to lower the price and some efficiency improvements to lower demand, so a big growth in wind-derived electricity could well come at 0 increase over today’s rates. No mud huts needed.

  104. galileonardo says:
    September 17, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    Forgot to mention in my comment that my example elaborates on Christopher Monckton of Brenchley’s observation:

    All around the world the record-keepers have been rewriting the temperatures in the early 20th century to push them downward, so as to make the rate of warming over the century seem a great deal steeper than it was.

    Um, you mean the dude who wrote this article?

  105. Barry Klinger:

    The ‘time-out’ from WUWT imposed on me has now expired so I am now replying to your post addressed to me at September 19, 2013 at 9:08 am.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/09/17/dodgy-statistics-and-ipcc-assessment-reports/#comment-1421306

    Your post refers to an Annual Prestigious Lecture I had the honour to provide and begins saying

    Richard Courtney: In your posts above, you claim wind is 5 or even 10 times more expensive than fossil-fuel electricity sources and cite your own talk. Yet the only cost estimate I could find in your talk was 2.3 p/kWh for gas turbines and 3.7+1.7 p/kWh for wind+blackup capacity (p=pence). That’s a factor of 2 difference in cost, more than I have read elsewhere but far less than 5-10 times you claim. Note that a 2008 US Dept of Energy Report, “20% Wind Energy by 2030″ has a discussion in Sec 4.1 which points out that unpredictable variability in demand already adds something like an intermittency factor and that the combined effect of demand variability and wind variability is less than the sum of the magnitudes of variability. This may reduce the capacity requirements from what you are assuming.

    You are egregiously conflating two different issues with the result of (wilfully?) misleading.

    The post in which I cited that lecture is at September 18, 2013 at 10:09 am

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/09/17/dodgy-statistics-and-ipcc-assessment-reports/#comment-1420409

    Its concluding two paragraphs say

    However, you ask for information on the cost of windpower being 5 to 10 times more than fossil fuel power. Of course, 10 times is conservative because the subsidies enable more extreme windpower costs. For example, this one whereby a subsidy of £130,000 was provided so a windfarm could produce power sold for £100,000.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1355419/UKs-useless-wind-turbine-Cost-130k-raise-electricity-worth-100k.html

    Windfarms are expensive, polluting, environmentally damaging bird swatters that provide electricity some of the time and produce electricity of use to a grid supply none of the time. See
    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/reprint/courtney_2006_lecture.pdf

    Clearly, the former of those two paragraphs refers to the costing and the latter refers you to the lecture which explains that, “Windfarms are expensive, polluting, environmentally damaging bird swatters that provide electricity some of the time and produce electricity of use to a grid supply none of the time.”

    That lecture explains

    Windfarms for power generation provide intermittent power so they merely displace thermal power stations onto standby mode or to operate at reduced efficiency while the thermal power stations wait for the wind to change. They make no significant reduction to pollution because thermal power stations continue to use their fuel and to produce their emissions while operating in standby mode or with reduced efficiency that can increase their emissions at low output. And this need for continuously operating backup means that windfarms can only provide negligible useful electricity to electricity grid supply systems.
    {emphasis added: RSC}

    It also explains

    Windfarms have capital, maintenance and operating costs that add to the cost of electricity. These costs are their only real contribution to the electricity supply system. And a windfarm is the true source of emissions from a thermal power station operating spinning standby as spare capacity in support of the windfarm. But windfarms disrupt operation of the electricity grid system.
    {emphasis added: RSC}

    In other words, windfarms add cost but NO useful electricity supply so the cost of windpower is the total cost of adding windpower to the grid with no return of any kind except problems. Windfarms don’t even provide useful electricity, they only provide a nuisance addition of electricity!

    The costings cited in the paper are – as the paper says – from OFGEN which is a UK government department. It is tasked with justifying use of windfarms in fulfilment of the UK’s government’s commitment to use of windfarms. And, as you admit, even OFGEN says on-shore windpower is double the cost of gas-fired electricity and off-shore windpower is 3 times the cost of gas-fired electricity.

    Your spurious points about “retail price” have been repeatedly refuted by me and others earlier in the thread. Costs matter. But you say to me

    You mention that we shouldn’t go by retail price, but if you are warning that switching to wind will bankrupt ordinary people and cause them to starve, the retail price is very relevant.

    Absolute nonsense!
    As I keep telling you, costs are the sum of prices and subsidies. The consumer pays both the retail price and the subsidies. Who do you think provides the subsidies, pixies?

    The remainder of your post is equally fallacious propaganda for subsidy farms and is covered by what I have already written in this reply.

    Richard

  106. Richard… you still haven’t provided a citation for your claim about the cost of wind power. I see no reason to believe that the Royal Academy of Engineering’s statistics are politically motivated. I do see that as a member of the coal industry (according to your bio at the end of your speech) you may have a vested interest in denigrating alternative energy sources, but I do not dismiss what you are saying for that reason but rather am trying to learn from all sources and viewpoints.

  107. Richard, the August 2011 “Wind Integration Cost Study” by Xcel Energy and EnerNex Corporation seems to be a consulting report for the cost of using wind prepared by the public utility. Since the utility has an interest in getting the numbers right this seems like a good place to start to get numbers on excess capacity demanded by wind power. The report concludes that integration costs, including (as far as I can tell from the body of the report) the excess capacity and storage needed to meet demand with 20% wind power, is .02$/kWh. Same ballpark as paper you cited.

  108. ralfellis on September 18, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    [. . .]

    [. . .] Some of Monkton’s carping polemics indicate that he sees himself standing in a pulpit, rather than a lecture theatre. My point, which I thought was well made, is that the skeptic community would be better served if their chief spokesmen left their beliefs at home (be that semi-literate design or left-foot Christianity).

    This is an important debate about the science and politics of climate, which may greatly afflict and regress Western society and civilisation, and not a platform for DIY evangelists.

    Ralph

    – – – – – – – –

    ralfellis,

    I agree somewhat with the general tone of your comment.

    But I differ in the following regard. Christopher Monckton is not lacking in a highly sophisticated level of astute circumspection. So, when he gives his views on climate science juxtaposed with his allusions to his endorsed religion, it is intended on his part to stimulate the discussion of science compared with religion.

    Based on several previous WUWT posts he has done where his science was explicitly juxtaposed with his religion, he knew what would happen in this thread. He seeks it.

    Actually, I think it relevant to discuss religion in a climate science discussion in one context only; an important context. That context is if there is a significant pseudo-scientific aspect to IPCC centric CAGW ‘science’ ( and I think there is) then can it be considered a religion. That is a relevant discussion within climate science since the CAGWists are claiming they are doing proper science. Science should enter the fray.

    So, I actually thank Christopher Monckton for his repeated teeing up of that context when he juxtaposes his religion and climate science.

    John

  109. Oh dear – it is true that there are none so blind as those who will not see – so it must be business as usual then, and we can all wait with baited breath for the 6th Assessment Report, by which time you will have been proved right?
    I don’t think so!

  110. As Harry Huffmann has shown, they actually used the graph of rising CO2 as a template for their addition of fake warming to the true record – that really is breathtaking audacity!

  111. What is more annoying is we still never see the fact that the climate scientists refused to do as the computer modelling engineers who originally worked with them told them to, and to include the warming caused by ending SO2 from both power stations clean up and the end of the very dirty communist heavy industry. Together these were estimated at about one degree. This was not really warming but the end of a period of anti green house gas based cooling.

    At the same time they are suggesting indirect re introduction of exactly the same effect to reduce climate change.

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