New paper: Arctic amplification of temperature not primarily due to albedo changes, climate models need to be reworked

From the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology: Climate changes faster in the Arctic than anywhere else on Earth, a phenomenon that is often explained by retreating snow and ice leading to more solar surface warming (positive ice-albedo-effect).

In a new study in Nature Geoscience the scientists Felix Pithan and Dr. Thorsten Mauritsen from the department “The Atmosphere in the Earth System” at the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology show that this effect is only secondary. Instead, the main cause of the high Arctic climate sensitivity is a weaker temperature feedback, due to 1) the low temperatures that prevail and 2) the increasing temperatures with height trapping warming to remain near the surface. For these reasons, the Arctic warms more in a global warming due to a forcing from e.g. CO2 than other regions.

Some commentary sheds further light on this.

NoTricksZone points out that the German Newspaper, Spiegel, writes:

To balance out the radiation budget at an ambient temperature of 30°C, an increase of 0.16° is enough. However at minus 30°C, an increase of 0.31 °C would be needed, i.e. almost double, which gives Pithan und Mauritsen cause for thought. According to their calculations the lower start temperature in the Arctic is an important reason for the more rapid temperature increase in the Arctic compared to the tropics.”

They found that the surface albedo feedback is only the second main contributor to Arctic amplification, and that other contributions are substantially smaller or even oppose Arctic amplification.

This casts many of the assumptions made in earlier climate models deep into doubt. It’s back to the drawing board (again) for the modelers.

- See more at: http://notrickszone.com/#sthash.K8HUQkuu.dpuf

The paper:

Arctic amplification dominated by temperature feedbacks in contemporary climate models

Felix Pithan & Thorsten Mauritsen

Nature Geoscience (2014) doi:10.1038/ngeo2071 Received 25 November 2013 Accepted19 December 2013Published online 02 February 2014

Abstract:

Climate change is amplified in the Arctic region. Arctic amplification has been found in past warm1 and glacial2 periods, as well as in historical observations3, 4 and climate model experiments5, 6. Feedback effects associated with temperature, water vapour and clouds have been suggested to contribute to amplified warming in the Arctic, but the surface albedo feedback—the increase in surface absorption of solar radiation when snow and ice retreat—is often cited as the main contributor7, 8, 9, 10. However, Arctic amplification is also found in models without changes in snow and ice cover11, 12. Here we analyse climate model simulations from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 archive to quantify the contributions of the various feedbacks. We find that in the simulations, the largest contribution to Arctic amplification comes from a temperature feedbacks: as the surface warms, more energy is radiated back to space in low latitudes, compared with the Arctic. This effect can be attributed to both the different vertical structure of the warming in high and low latitudes, and a smaller increase in emitted blackbody radiation per unit warming at colder temperatures. We find that the surface albedo feedback is the second main contributor to Arctic amplification and that other contributions are substantially smaller or even oppose Arctic amplification.

http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/ngeo2071.html

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105 thoughts on “New paper: Arctic amplification of temperature not primarily due to albedo changes, climate models need to be reworked

  1. Inherent nonlinearity is not a feedback. Temperature is not a “feedback” when you are measuring temperature. This entire debate (at least as framed here) appears to be nothing more than semantics.

  2. For these reasons, the Arctic warms more in a global warming due to a forcing from e.g. CO2 than other regions.

    Wouldn’t surprise Patrick Michaels, who emphasized in The Satanic Gasses (2000) that increased CO2 has a much stronger warming effect near the poles because cold polar air contains much less water vapor, making CO2 much less redundant with water vapor in its heat trapping effect. That was the basis for his conclusion that a human warming signal could indeed be detected, or was in evidence: the observed pattern of greater warming at the poles is just what the GHG theory predicts. But of course he did not think there was any reason to believe that this bit of warming was something to be avoided. For such still-modest forcing effects to present any danger they would have be combined with highly positive feedback effects, for which there is no evidence.

    It is not clear that Michaels’ enhanced polar-GHG effect is even taken into account in the present paper. They are claiming that the greater warming near the poles is from unaccounted feedbacks other than the albedo feedback, not from greater forcing near the poles. Odd that they don’t even mention the greater GHG forcing near the poles. That would be a glaring omission, since they present themselves as trying to explain why there has been greater polar warming.

  3. “Climate changes faster in the Arctic than anywhere else on Earth, a phenomenon that is often explained by retreating snow and ice leading to more solar surface warming (positive ice-albedo-effect).”

    This cracks me up !. In addition to and aside from daily rotation ,all locations on Earth turn once to the central Sun as a component of its orbital motion hence the polar coordinates turn parallel to the ecliptic plane as seen in those sequence of images of Uranus –

    Is there some mental block which prevents readers here from ascertaining the dynamical cause behind Arctic sea ice appearance and disappearance ?. It is not rocket science and actual images should put the issue beyond doubt so rather that load the planet with the awkward ’tilt’ towards and away from the Sun,for goodness sake ,introduce the second surface rotation necessary to explain Arctic conditions and the seasons at lower latitude where it mixes with daily rotation.

    It ain’t the models that need adjusting, it is an entirely new way to approach planetary climate.

  4. ‘New paper: Arctic amplification of temperature not primarily due to albedo changes, climate models need to be reworked’, if this true it’s, because it’s due to the increased co2 levels and the extra trapped warmth! It is after GLOBAL warming!

  5. “To balance out the radiation budget at an ambient temperature of 30°C, an increase of 0.16° is enough. However at minus 30°C, an increase of 0.31 °C”

    Climate “science” finally notices Stefan-Boltzmann Law!

  6. So, climate is a lot more complex than they thought … LOL. With overly simplistic climate models they’ve been essentially denying this for decades.

  7. There is no link to CO2, no evidence that CO2 causes any significant part of the warming. It should read “global warming due to a forcing from natural cycles, and stratospheric warmings”

    More bogus conclusions

  8. Alex Rawls. Interesting post but wouldn’t the lack of water vapour cause LESS warming near the poles as water vapour is by far the biggest GHG and the relatively small amount of CO2 would not make up for the large drop in water vapour?
    (Just wondering)

  9. John West says:
    February 3, 2014 at 10:53 am

    “To balance out the radiation budget at an ambient temperature of 30°C, an increase of 0.16° is enough. However at minus 30°C, an increase of 0.31 °C”

    Climate “science” finally notices Stefan-Boltzmann Law!
    ———————————————————————————————————————–

    Ahh, but for that to matter we’d have to stop assuming that the planet is at a uniform “average” temperature. Which would make the sums really hard,

  10. Does this not reinforce the idea of Solar/other changes rather then albedo. And not to include the changes of incidence of light, refraction of light, and reflection. Then add the incidence of less water vapor, and many other factors. Such as season, which the warmests never accepted.

  11. Ulric Lyons says:
    February 3, 2014 at 11:04 am
    …and being the negative AO/NAO phase means it is the wrong sign for [global] warming.

  12. Mods, can we please make people who want to suggest that the earth rotates pole-to-pole just go away?

    I know there’s a strong, and worthy, principle against censorship here but when someone insists on insisting on something that’s absolutely and demonstrably wrong, and refuses in at least one thread to take heed of long and patient explanations, it does give those who’d call us headless chickens free ammunition.

  13. William Connolley says:
    February 3, 2014 at 10:57 am

    > climate models need to be reworked

    You seem to have made that up. Its not in the paper.
    ————————————————————————————–

    Ahh, Bill me old mucker, how the devil are you?

    It’s what’s called inductive reasoning. Long ago, as children, we used to be taught something called The Green cross Code. It was all about how to cross the road safely. Now, in the Code, it never specifically said “otherwise you might get your brains splodged over the tarmac by an artic” but most of us were able to see that implication.

    The same applies here.

    If there are factors that are more significant than what the models treat as the “most significant” ones then the models will be wrong (again) and should be re-worked to account for these newly recognised, even ore significant, factors. For anyone with half a brain cell, the paper shouldn’t need to say that any more than the GCC needed to say “or you might die”.

  14. It is unclear to me if the authors considered the physical differences between arctic air & say tropical air. Arctic air being dry & cold has a much lower heat capacity than moist & warm tropical air. Thus, for any change in radiation budget ( ie increase in energy ) will have a larger effect on temperature of dry air than it will on moist air.

    This is easy to see in daily weather. Compare the diurnal temp range of say Denver to Wash DC in the summer. Both cities are at roughly the same latitude & would have roughly the same daily radiation budget. However, DC is much more humid & the diurnal range of temps is much smaller (on average). Moister air = higher heat capacity = lower temperature response.

    Same analog should apply to the arctic. Very dry air so any change in CO2 radiative forcing should have a bigger effect than seen in more humid air, all else being equal ( which probably isn’t the case).

    This seems pretty obvious so perhaps it is already incorporated into their thinking

  15. Originally the magic word “albedo” sounded so gosh-darned mysterious and magical and scientific that ordinary laymen were backed off. However over the past ten years a lot of self-education has occurred, and people are starting to see the original scary-idea just doesn’t pass a number of tests. (The increased ice at the South Pole ought increase albedo more than the decreased ice in the Arctic would decrease it; the fact the arctic sun is setting in September means rays are striking at such a low angle that open water has a higher albedo than ice-covered water; and so on and so forth.) Therefore we can expect to see people distancing themselves from the idea albedo is some sort of super-villain out to destroy the planet.

    Pity, because I was just learning to spell the word correctly.

  16. William Connolley:

    At February 3, 2014 at 10:57 am your post says in total

    > climate models need to be reworked

    You seem to have made that up. Its not in the paper.

    Surely, you really mean you don’t like it so you have deleted it from Wicki?

    Richard

  17. Well this looks like it answered my earlier query in September 2013 when the Arctic saw a 50% increase in sea ice extent (and volume?) over September 2012.

    Now what did Professor Peter Wadhams say in September 2013?

    The Scotsman – 12 September 2013
    Arctic sea ice will vanish within three years, says expert
    “The entire ice cover is now on the point of collapse.

    “The extra open water already created by the retreating ice allows bigger waves to be generated by storms, which are sweeping away the surviving ice. It is truly the case that it will be all gone by 2015. The consequences are enormous and represent a huge boost to global warming.”

    I know he is an Arctic scientist but he really should read the news.

  18. There are two sources of radiation to the ground, direct from the sun, and back radiation from the sky. The atmosphere operates as a heat engine, taking energy from the equator and distributing it at the poles. The radiation the equator gets is 1 from the sun, and say X from the sky, for a total of 1 + X.
    The radiation the poles get is K + Y., where K is some small fraction of 1, and Y is less than X. Thanks to the earth redistributing heat, the ratio of radiation from sun to poles and equator , K/1, is always greater than the ratio of radiation from atmosphere to poles and equator, Y/X. With increased greenhouse effect, radiation from the atmosphere increases, and the ratio of radiation from ATMOSPHERE to poles and equator will increase.

    Since temperature is proportional to the 4th root of radiation, temps at the poles will increase faster than temps at the equator. That’s all the article says- extra warming at the poles is due to simple radiation calculations, and NOT due to albedo changes.

  19. Much as I hate to agree with Mr. Connolley, the abstract appears to clearly state that this analysis is from climate model simulations. That is, they analysed the output of the climate models and it is their conclusion that the data from the models indicates this alternative source of polar amplification.

    I don’t have a Nature subscription so I can’t say if the article indicates if this model behaviour matches real-life observations. If it does, then the models are, in this one respect, matching real-life. If they don’t, then, yes, it means not only are the models wrong, but also this suggested information on polar amplification.

  20. From phys.org/news:
    “Things are very different in the Arctic—there is very little churning, which means that warm air close to ground (just one to two kilometers thick) remains where it is, trapped by a heavy layered atmosphere.
    The simulation also helps to explain why Arctic warming is more pronounced in the winter than during other seasons—even less mixing of the air in the atmosphere occurs because the air is so cold.” http://phys.org/news/2014-02-temperature-feedback-magnifying-climate-arctic.html

    In fact less mixing during more positive AO/NAO conditions will ensure that the very cold low altitude air in the polar night inversion will be even colder.

  21. Stephan-boltzman equation shows that energy varies with the 4th power of temperature, so of course with a given energy increase, a lower temperature starting point will result in a higher temperature delta than a higher temp starting point. I would have thought the models already incorporated that. Surprising.

  22. Here is an earlier stab at this issue.

    Abstract – September 2002
    Igor V. Polyakov et. al.
    Observationally based assessment of polar amplification of global warming
    [1] Arctic variability is dominated by multi-decadal fluctuations. Incomplete sampling of these fluctuations results in highly variable arctic surface-air temperature (SAT) trends. Modulated by multi-decadal variability, SAT trends are often amplified relative to northern-hemispheric trends, but over the 125-year record we identify periods when arctic SAT trends were smaller or of opposite sign than northern-hemispheric trends. Arctic and northern-hemispheric air-temperature trends during the 20th century (when multi-decadal variablity had little net effect on computed trends) are similar, and do not support the predicted polar amplification of global warming. The possible moderating role of sea ice cannot be conclusively identified with existing data. If long-term trends are accepted as a valid measure of climate change, then the SAT and ice data do not support the proposed polar amplification of global warming. Intrinsic arctic variability obscures long-term changes, limiting our ability to identify complex feedbacks in the arctic climate system.

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2001GL011111/full

    DOI: 10.1029/2001GL011111

  23. I just don’t get the co2 forcing.

    If i have a room with a source of heat set at say 65 degrees, I add another source of heat set at 65 degrees, I am guessing the room stays at 65 degrees no matter how many heaters i add set at 65 degrees,

    So co2 absorbs longwave radiation from the ground and supposedly reflects back ( is this possible 2nd rule of TD etc ) if the same upward energy is the same as the downward how is this a forcing,

    My science stopped at 14 but the only way it seems to me to get a forcing would be to use a thermal heat pump, say two rooms – the same temp, how do i increase the heat of one room with heat from the other – I would imagine i would have to use a thermal heat pump.

  24. How about puting the weather stations back in artic isles that would help . Also the ice melts from under side because of the current speed

  25. Or in short and not surprisingly , its all more complicated than with though and we are still ‘guessing ‘ what does what , how and by what degree .
    Given despite massive amounts of computing power throw at it and with many , many years of practice ,you still cannot make a weather prediction more than 72 hours ahead worth a dam. Why should be be that other ‘forecasts’ are any better

  26. Joe wrote –

    “Mods, can we please make people who want to suggest that the earth rotates pole-to-pole just go away?”

    If you are going to build a house the most important thing is the foundation and presently there appears to be a visceral hatred to discuss a second surface rotation.

    Simple logic, The Earth has a maximum Equatorial speed which diminishes to zero at the North/South polar latitudes hence no rotation. These geographical polar points offer a window into the orbital behavior of the planet and to the fact that All locations turn once to the central Sun,coincident with an orbital period and entirely separate to the planet’s daily rotation.

    It is absolutely impossible to discuss the cyclical appearance and disappearance of polar sea ice without the primary dynamic which causes it as a gateway into actually discussing global climate before even considering the next level of inputs.

    The polar day/night cycle is a fact just as the daily day/night cycle is a fact and for goodness sake would somebody please come to grips with the fact that the polar day/night cycle and the seasons at lower latitudes requires a second surface rotation to explain it. It won’t register with a carbon dioxide cult or even those who argue against their dictates and is solely for those who wish to escape that small minded,vindictive impasse.

  27. William Connolley says:
    February 3, 2014 at 10:57 am
    > climate models need to be reworked

    You seem to have made that up. Its not in the paper.
    ########################

    yup reading is fundamental

    #############

    Much as I hate to agree with Mr. Connolley, the abstract appears to clearly state that this analysis is from climate model simulations. That is, they analysed the output of the climate models and it is their conclusion that the data from the models indicates this alternative source of polar amplification.

    ###########

    Bonus points for you!

    REPLY: it’s an opinion, are you prepared to argue that models should not be reworked, updated and improved? – Anthony

  28. Ulric Lyons says:
    “”””
    The dominant warming of the Arctic is from poleward transport of warm sea water during negative AO/NAO episodes … “” …and being the negative AO/NAO phase means it is the wrong sign for [global] warming. “”””

    Am I the only one who finds it quite strange that no-one is arguing with Ulric’s hypothesis that runs counter to the accepted dogma? Everyone seems to talk around it whenever he brings it up. What’s up with that? It’s simple enough – evidence points to the opposite of current(pun intended), conventional wisdom. This could have profound effects within (at least Arctic) climate science. Discuss.

    At a lecture I attended last year the prof said (I paraphrase) “…. with the large body of papers in ANY field it is now possible to pick your argument and then trawl the library to find peer reviewed support for your conjectures …”

    I prefer empirical evidence. How ’bout you?

  29. richard says:
    February 3, 2014 at 11:39 am
    ——————————————————
    Co2 doesn’t warm the surface, it inhibits LWR cooling. In your analogy it would be more akin to closing an open window than adding another heater.

  30. Here is something I found some years ago but I can’t track down a follow up. It’s about clouds compensating for loss of ice albedo in the Arctic.

    NASA Earth Observatory – January 2007
    …….Although sea ice and snow cover had noticeably declined in the Arctic from 2000 to 2004, there had been no detectable change in the albedo measured at the top of the atmosphere: the proportion of light the Arctic reflected hadn’t changed. In other words, the ice albedo feedback that most climate models predict will ultimately amplify global warming apparently hadn’t yet kicked in.

    Kato quickly understood why: not only is the Arctic’s average cloud fraction on summer days large enough—on average 0.8, or 80 percent—to mask sea ice changes, but an increase in cloudiness between 2000 and 2004 further hid any impact that sea ice and snow losses might have had on the Arctic’s ability to reflect incoming light……..

    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/ArcticReflector/arctic_reflector4.php

    ———————-

    Abstract – 2006
    Seasonal and interannual variations of top-of-atmosphere irradiance and cloud cover over polar regions derived from the CERES data set
    [1] The daytime cloud fraction derived by the Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System (CERES) cloud algorithm using Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) radiances over the Arctic from March 2000 through February 2004 increases at a rate of 0.047 per decade. The trend is significant at an 80% confidence level. The corresponding top-of-atmosphere (TOA) shortwave irradiances derived from CERES radiance measurements show less significant trend during this period. These results suggest that the influence of reduced Arctic sea ice cover on TOA reflected shortwave radiation is reduced by the presence of clouds and possibly compensated by the increase in cloud cover. The cloud fraction and TOA reflected shortwave irradiance over the Antarctic show no significant trend during the same period.

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2006GL026685/abstract

  31. If CO2 is a factor, why do the ice-core proxies for temperature vary consistently by about twice the tropical proxies for the 800,000+ years before humans started burning carbonaceous fuels? Poor Max Plank, who has voodoo priests such as Pithan and Mauritsen acting in his name.

  32. David says: @ February 3, 2014 at 10:59 am

    Alex Rawls. Interesting post but wouldn’t the lack of water vapour cause LESS warming near the poles as water vapour is by far the biggest GHG and the relatively small amount of CO2 would not make up for the large drop in water vapour?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Actually water vapor modifies temperature by making the high temperatures cooler and the low night time temperatures warmer and also makes the average temperature cooler because some of the energy used up in the heat of vaporization. (The temperature does not change as water boils it just evaporates faster as more energy is applied – think tea kettle on a stove)

    You can see this in the temperatures for 2013 link (click date 2013 on left) in the Arctic temperature data. When the temperature was above freezing the temperature graph is quite smooth. Below freezing in much lower humidity the temperature swings wildly. (don’t forget the Arctic is an ocean)

  33. > Much as I hate to agree with Mr. Connolley,

    Dr. But apart from that, yes, you’re correct. This is an analysis of model simulations. The article makes no claim at all that the models are flawed, all it is doing is analysing the actual causes of a certain affect *in the models*. The suggestion that “climate models need to be reworked” appears to be an interpolation by our host, possibly based on the post at NTZ, which has made a similar error.

    See-also http://notrickszone.com/2014/02/03/climate-modelers-flub-again-albedo-not-the-number-one-arctic-amplifier-after-all/#comment-916718

    REPLY: Yet, CMIP5 models still don’t match reality. So yes, they need to be reworked on many levels until they can properly predict climate with accuracy. The dialing in Arctic albedo and feedbacks (plus many other things) aren’t quite there yet. If they were, we’d see better agreement in graphs like this one:

    Unless of course, you’d like to argue that models are “good enough” and need no improvement whatsoever.

    -Anthony

  34. It is true that the temperature of equilibrium of a colder body increases more rapidly with a relative increase in forcing. But the warming is not faster, you still need as much energy to increase the temperature.

    If the increase in greenhouse gases returns one percent of the infrareds back to the ground, it is a very small amount of energy in the Arctic. There is a very small amount of infrareds in the Arctic because of the same fourth power law that guarantees that colder places will warm more in the long term. The Arctic is also an ocean covered with ice, it might take a lot of time to warm this with one percent of ground emissions of infrareds there. So it is true that the poles should warm the most from a one percent increase in forcings, but they should also warm slower than the tropics.

    But if the warming is due to more heat brought there from a change in circulation, than it gets trapped there because the Arctic air emits little infrareds for its temperature(fourth power law).

    The polar amplification is compatible with any warming, but a fast warming in the Arctic can only occur with a change in circulation.

  35. That the CMPI simulations aren’t perfect would be agreed by all who work on model development. But that’s not the point here: which is that *this study* provides no evidence for that assertion; its entirely orthogonal to that idea, since its an analysis of model output. I don’t know what you mean by “dialing in Arctic albedo”; that appears to continue your misunderstanding of the paper. The paper isn’t suggesting the models should “dial in” the albedo at all. All its doing is presenting an interpretation of the model results.

    REPLY: And you are honing in on a headline, not the body, tough noogies if it upsets you. The fact remains that

    1. CMIP Models still have a poor understanding of feedbacks
    2. CMIP Models still don’t have a handle on real-world albedo changes
    3. CMIPModels aren’t matching reality as measured

    Hence, they need to be reworked. That is an opinion shared by many. I’m not going to change the headline simply because you interpret it in your own special way. Now run along and write up your usual smear. – Anthony

  36. William C0nn0lley:

    In your post at February 3, 2014 at 1:11 pm you say

    This is an analysis of model simulations. The article makes no claim at all that the models are flawed, all it is doing is analysing the actual causes of a certain affect *in the models*. The suggestion that “climate models need to be reworked” appears to be an interpolation by our host

    Please provide a clarification which would remove the ambiguity in your post.

    Are you saying
    (a) the models are wrong so their indications that albedo is not the main cause of polar amplification is wrong
    OR
    (b) the models are wrong because there is no indication of polar amplification.
    OR
    (c) nature is wrong because it refuses to provide the polar amplification indicated by the models?

    If (c) then you need to buy a clue. So, your clarification would be appreciated.

    Richard

  37. Arctic sea ice albedo feedback has loooooong been a CAGW religious staple, but is both greatly exaggerated and greatly misunderstood and greatly simplified.

    Classic CO2-based Arctic amplification is based on 2 legs: Let’s look at each separately.

    Arctic Amplification Assumption 1. Increased CO2 will have a much greater effect in the Arctic than in lower latitudes.

    The high Arctic average temperatures are very cold compared to the tropics and mid-temperate zones, therefore there is little water vapor present. But, CO2 is expected to be uniformly mixed worldwide, so ANY increase in CO2 levels worldwide will increase CO2 levels in the Arctic as well. But, since the water vapor is lower in those latitudes, the effect of CO2 will be increased as a proportion.

    It is never explained in this reasoning what happens to the “multiplier” effect of greater vapor (more water evaporates due to greater temperatures from CO2) that is essential to the CAGW requirement of doubling CO2’s effect will occur when the amount of water vapor needed to double CO2 forcing is not present.

  38. > honing in on a headline, not the body

    Not at all. Later on you include: “This casts many of the assumptions made in earlier climate models deep into doubt. It’s back to the drawing board (again) for the modelers.”

    This is as wrong as your headline. As I said, that models can be improved is doubted by none, but what we’re talking about here is this study.

    > Please provide a clarification which would remove the ambiguity in your post.

    Mmmm, this is difficult. (a) and (b) are wrong, because the study doesn’t talk about errors in the models. (c) is wrong, because the study isn’t really talking about nature very much. I think you’re missing the basic point: this study is about the interpretation of model output; its trying to work out what processes in the models are responsible for a certain result in the models. Models are complicated things; its often not at all easy to work out why they do what they do.

  39. Henry Galt. says:
    February 3, 2014 at 12:13 pm
    I prefer empirical evidence. How ’bout you?
    Empirical evidence without [at least some] theoretical understanding is not science

  40. Are you saying
    (a) the models are wrong so their indications that albedo is not the main cause of polar amplification is wrong
    OR
    (b) the models are wrong because there is no indication of polar amplification.
    OR
    (c) nature is wrong because it refuses to provide the polar amplification indicated by the models?

    None of the above, I’d say.

    IIUC: Basically, one of the points of Watts and NoTricksZone was that this shows the models to be wrong. It doesn’t. It can’t. You can’t analyze a physics-based computer model, and just from that, come to the conclusion that the model is wrong. (Not without comparing it to the real world, which was really not the point of this paper, and probably not feasible in this case anyway).

    No, the point of this paper is something like this:
    “Mechanism A is often cited as the main contributor to Effect X. We analyzed some models, and found that in these models, Mechanism B is actually more important, and Mechanism A is the second-most important mechanism.”

    The paper is about understanding what’s going on inside the climate models.

  41. Hey, Everyone – Don’t scare of Connolley. If he can be kept occupied here, then a host of corrections can be made over at that other favorite site of his without being flipped back within minutes.

  42. lsvalgaard says:
    “Empirical evidence without [at least some] theoretical understanding is not science”

    Oh I got the theory understood, global circulation models give increasingly lower Arctic pressure with increasing warming. That’s rational, but it directly contradicts Arctic amplification, as the Arctic warms most when the Arctic pressure is higher during negative AO/NAO episodes, and for very good reason as that’s when there is more poleward transport of warm sea water, and there is more atmospheric mixing when the vortex weakens.

  43. Windchasers:

    Thankyou for your reply on behalf of William C0nn0lley at February 3, 2014 at 1:49 pm.

    I will assume you can read his mind and will address your point as though he had stated his meaning himself. You say

    No, the point of this paper is something like this:
    “Mechanism A is often cited as the main contributor to Effect X. We analyzed some models, and found that in these models, Mechanism B is actually more important, and Mechanism A is the second-most important mechanism.”

    The paper is about understanding what’s going on inside the climate models.

    Yes, nobody disputes that, but you also say

    Basically, one of the points of Watts and NoTricksZone was that this shows the models to be wrong. It doesn’t. It can’t. You can’t analyze a physics-based computer model, and just from that, come to the conclusion that the model is wrong. (Not without comparing it to the real world, which was really not the point of this paper, and probably not feasible in this case anyway).

    Again, I agree. However, it is simply true that there is no polar amplification in reality. In other words, Mechanism X exists in the model but NOT in reality.

    Therefore, the fact that the model does emulate Mechanism X (however it does it) is clear evidence that the model is wrong. And that clear and undeniable evidence for the model being wrong was the subject of my question to William C0nn0lley.

    Richard

  44. Windchasers:

    As an addendum for clarity I point out that there may be some polar amplification but – if it exists – it is too small for it to be discernible.

    I provide this clarification to avoid being side-tracked about whether polar amplification does or does not exist at indiscernible magnitude. If it exists then it is too trivial for it to be considered worthy of modelling because the model would not show it if it were correctly modeled.

    Richard

  45. John West says:
    February 3, 2014 at 10:53 am
    “To balance out the radiation budget at an ambient temperature of 30°C, an increase of 0.16° is enough. However at minus 30°C, an increase of 0.31 °C”
    Climate “science” finally notices Stefan-Boltzmann Law!
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    Yeah, that was my reaction too. On the other hand, they managed to slide in that explanation without telling the whole story. Upward LW at +30 is 478 w/m2 while upward LW at -30 is 198 w/m2. So, any increase in CO2 has a lot more upward LW to work with at +30 than at -30, hence the change in forcing is not uniform in the first place. Then add to that water vapour being a much larger chunk of the ghe as a whole at warm temps (higher humidity) than at cold temps, and that changes the balance of the forcing as well. Then add to THAT the fact that the tropics are net absorbers of energy and the poles net radiators of energy, with the difference being made up by energy xfer from tropics to poles via wind and water currents….now figure out, keeping all those things in mind, how much extra energy gets radiated from the poles that was the result of extra forcing from CO2 in the tropics….

    The problem is many times more complex than the article suggests, but at least we’re starting to see discussion that includes SB Law at all. It is at least a first step toward a realistic discussion.

  46. JM 12-14pm.
    Not so bud – just replace the Argon in the double glazing with Co2 and watch the room temperature rocket even after you`ve replaced the heater with a Pandora`s box full of ???

  47. Independent of anything else, I applaud William Connolly for making comments. Communication is far better than none.
    .
    That being said, I agree that 1) the models really do need substantial improvements, since they do not match reality very well in several important respects, including the range of natural variability over a different time scales, and 2) Anthony appears to miss the point of the article. (Perhaps he can clarify.)
    .
    Civil participation should always be welcomed.

  48. Well Part of the Arctic problem is Kevin Trenberth’s Earth energy budget. His model has 342 W/m^2 of solar radiation falling continuously at all points on earth 24-7.

    As a result, the Temperature is the same everywhere (288 K) and each point on the earth surface emits 390 W/m^2, corresponding to a 288 K black body radiator.

    It’s beautiful; with no Temperature gradients, no “heat” energy flows anywhere else to cool this and warm that.

    Well the problem is, that planet Earth does not work that way.

    We get more like 1362 (6) W/m^2 at TOA, measured on a surface normal to the sun-earth vector.

    In the tropics, near the equator, this high irradiance, gets reduced to something like 1,000 W/m^2 at the surface, due to atmospheric scattering (blue) and absorption by atmospheric gases, including GHGs. This is for a CAVU sky; no clouds.

    Well needless to say, at 1,000 W/m^2, the surface Temperature soars way above 288 K, often reaching +60 deg. C or more on the surface.

    Away from the tropics, towards the poles, the solar beam is attenuated more, by a longer air mass, AM due to the sun’s zenith angle. And that lesser irradiance strikes the ground at an inclined angle, spreading the beam out over a larger surface area, which therefore cannot reach as high a Temperature as the equatorial regions.

    So there has to be a surface Temperature gradient, from the equator, towards the poles.

    At the equinoxes, both poles should receive about the same solar irradiance, with the sun near the horizon and a large air mass absorption path, coupled with a very large surface tilt relative to the sun-earth vector. So the poles receive less irradiance, and reach a much ;lower Temperature than the equator.

    As a result of this Temperature gradient, large amounts of “heat” energy must flow towards the poles from the equator, driven by the Temperature gradient.

    This happens whether the poles are in daylight or not.

    The amount of “heat” flow should depend linearly on the Temperature gradient, as regards conduction, but probably more complex for convection, because of the vertical component of air flow.

    But radiative cooling of the surface goes as T^4 for total emittance, and as T^5 for spectral peak emittance (per micron of wavelength), so the radiative cooling rate at the poles, is radically reduced, compared to that at the equator.

    Now the polar Temperatures; particularly the South pole, are cold enough to move the surface thermal radiation into the CO2 absorption band, making CO2 potentially more efficient at the poles in absorbing LWIR radiant energy. Well there is a competing mechanism too. As a result of the lower Temperatures (air), the width of the CO2 band is narrowed because of reduced Doppler broadening of the spectral absorption lines.

    I don’t have the data or the means, nor the inclination to calculate these effects; that’s what Terrafloppy computers are for, and I don’t have one.

    But why on earth should it surprise anyone that the poles warm faster than the equator; if and when “Global warming” occurs. The earth’s polar regions really suck, when it comes to radiating LWIR EM radiant energy from the surface; specially with a spectral Temperature fitting the CO2 band better.

    Therein lies another gotcha, relating to so-called “downwelling” or “back” LWIR emission from either the atmosphere or clouds.

    On several occasions, Richard S Courtney has noted here that essentially 100% of the surface emitted LWIR radiant energy, that is IN the CO2 absorption band (13-17 micron) is absorbed by the first 100 meters of atmosphere. Well others have said similar things. I have no easy way (or inclination) to check that, and no real reason, to doubt what Richard says with that regard.

    So what happens with the rest of the atmosphere; totally starved of 15 micron band radiant energy to feast on.

    Well of course, that energy captured by CO2 (or other GHGs) doesn’t stay dead. It is re-radiated, likely in a different spectrum, considering the continuing collisions with other molecules, resulting in thermalization of the emission spectrum. Moreover, it Is emitted isotropically, where as the surface emittance is more Lambertian. So half of the atmospheric re-radiation is directed upwards, and half downwards.

    The downward radiation encounters denser and warmer air than the upward radiation, so as the altitude increases, both the Doppler (Temperature) broadening, and the density (collision) broadening of the CO2 lines are reduced, compared to the conditions seen by the down welling radiation. This would seem to favor re-absorption for down radiation as compared to the upward radiation, which runs an ever narrowing gauntlet.

    Now a funny thing occurred to me the other day; well directly triggered, by the most recent time RSC had mentioned the “saturation” of the CO2 band in 100 meters of (lower) atmosphere.

    This phenomenon of course happens both ways, so down welling LWIR radiant energy from the high Cirrus clouds, that are supposed to keep us toasty; that too must be totally absorbed by the bottom 100 meters of atmosphere (in the appropriate bands), or actually by some deeper, but less dense and colder layer of atmosphere adjacent to the cloud. That layer too, re-radiates isotropically, so half goes up, and half goes down, to be captured and split again, by the next layer of totally band absorbing air.

    Well it simply doesn’t look too promising to me, for that cloud re-radiated LWIR radiant energy, to ever make it down to the earth surface, given all the GHG laden air it has to navigate through.

    Now I’m sure that some math whizz, with a very large taxpayer grant, must have put all this coming and going, and isotropic splitting into his Terraflop, so (s)he can tell us exactly how much of the LWIR energy radiated from any atmospheric altitude, makes it back to the surface, and how much of it escapes to space. Well at least for some simplified static atmosphere.

    Yes I know, that “heat” transport by other processes. to the nether reaches of the atmosphere, have their effects, but for just the Radiant transport, just how effective are GHGs like H2O, CO2, and O3 in keeping LWIR from clouds, and the upper atmosphere (not to mention the sun), from reaching the surface of the earth.

  49. The second assumption about Arctic Amplification, and easily the second most important assumption in the entire CAGW religion, is how the CAGW dogma assumes the albedo change as the polar icecap reduces will affect future climate. Sea Ice vs Open Ocean albedo does matter, and, in truth, really deserves a long conversation in its own entire thread, but let’s look at few important things.

    One. Continuously increasing positive Antarctic Sea Ice anomalies between 70 south latitudes and 59 south latitudes every day of the year for the past 15 years DO affect the world’s heat balance, but Arctic sea ice declines since 1979 – which occur between 78 north and 85 north in September each year do NOT affect the earth;’s heat balance.

    Two. Arctic sea ice albedo DOES change routinely over the year, and is lowest during the yearly June-July-August melt season. Actual Arctic sea ice is NOT the pristine Wikipedia-approved laboratory values you so often see quotes: 0.95, 0.90, 0.86, etc) Actual measured Arctic sea ice (Curry, JGR 2001, Applications of SHEBA/FIRE Data to Evaluation of Snow/Ice Albedo Parametrization) is available for 13 years now, but seldom accurately called out. Figure 1 of Curry’s measurements shows the following:
    From DOY = 1 (1 January) to 133 (May 14), albedo is basically that of new snow over old ice. 0.8228
    From DOY = 134 to 278, albedo decreases from 0.82 down to at minimum curve fit at 0.460 on Day 206 (July 26), then increasing back to Day 278 (Oct 6).
    From DOY 279 – 365 (6 Oct – 31 Dec), measured Arctic sea ice albedo returns to that same snow-covered ice value of 0.82
    Numerically, this is a flat line = 0.8228 until DOY 133, a sinusoid dropping to a low point = 0.460 at DOY 206, and a second flat line after DOY 279 until 365: The sea ice albedo best-fit curve is
    sea_ice_albedo = 0.06803 + 0.02015 *cos(0.03561 * DOY – 4.1809)
    Actual data points scatter somewhat of course, but the measured lowest arctic albedo was 0.386 on DOY 223. Next lowest measured albedo was 0.41 on DOY = 208.

    Three. Of the 19.5 million square kilometers of Antarctic Sea Ice, all but a little bit 3.0 Mkm^2 immediately around the continent melts every Nov-Dec-January (Antarctic summer, Arctic winter). Thus, Antarctic sea ice is always “first-year” ‘ice, and ice thinner and cleaner (with greater quantities of fresh snow from the near-continuous storms around Cape Horn) than the multi-year (darker) Arctic sea ice. Until more measurements are published, that 0.82 albedo is valid all year.

    Four. Sea ice DOES reflect slightly more energy into space all year than does open ocean water, but the actual open ocean albedo is NOT the very dark, pessimistic foreboding but Wikipedia-approved 0.061. Now, understand that the “standard” 0.061 water albedo IS correct, but ONLY for very diffuse light under completely clouded skies.

    So, if the skies are cloudy the open ocean albedo is low, BUT the top of the clouds DO reflect some 30% of the potential solar energy present, the clouds absorb some 30% of the potential solar energy present, and so only 30% of the potential solar energy can be absorbed by the open ocean.

    Five. Do not ever let anybody conn you into using the “pure physics” laboratory-theoretical pristine-perfectly-calm conditions for a perfect-reflecting pure-water surface Fresnel equations either! THOSE values are NOT correct in the real world at any time.

    Rather, actual open-ocean direct-sunlight clear-sky measured-albedos – YES, WITH REAL OCEAN WAVES ! – have been available for many years, but these are seldom used: Most importantly, they CANNOT be used in “average” monthly “average albedo” tables or annual albedo summaries. See, solar absorption into the ocean (or ice) and solar energy reflection from the ocean (or ice) is a constant, minute-by-minute surface interaction very dependent on the latitude, amount of clouds and percent of clear sky, atmospheric air mass (how much light is absorbed merely passing through the even a “perfect atmosphere” to get down to the ocean’s surface), atmospheric clarity, and the day-of-year, solar declination angle, hour-of-day. The latter three combine to define the ever-changing solar elevation angle SEA each minute of each hour of each day.

    (SEA is also written as solar zenith angle SZA in many papers = which is the angle DOWN from the vertical to the sun’s position. SEA is the angle of the sun UP from the horizon to the sun. I will use only SEA to keep one consistent term in use. Many building and solar panel calc’s require plotting azimuth angles for each minute, but – since we are only talking flat surfaces of ice and water at the earth’s sea level, we will ignore the solar azimuth angle and altitude albedo corrections.)

    So, what is this “measured open-waters, clear-sky, direct-sunlight, wind-corrected” ocean albedo? Jin (GRL 2004) Figures 1-5 plot it rising from 0.035 at SEA = 71.8 to a 0.25 maximum (and a 0.21 average) at SEA = 9 degrees), but they only used the values as albedo vs SEA as look-up tables. Payne, (JAS, 1972) Figure 4 also plots it (rising from 0.040 at SEA = 74 to 0.44 at SEA = 8 degrees) but he does not offer a numeric solution.
    Rutledge and Schuster (P5.17, Multi-Year Observations of Ocean Albedo from a Rigid Marine Platform) plot both clear-sky direct radiation and cloudy sky (diffuse radiation) albedos in their Figure 4: If any can post that image, nothing will more strongly emphasize the difference between direct and diffuse radiation behavior reflecting from the real-world open ocean!
    Briegleb (1986) does give a equation, but it does not correct for wind conditions:

    albedo_direct_sun_clear skies = 0.026/(mu^1.7 +0.065) + 1.5*(mu-0.1)*(mu-0.5)*(mu-1.0)

    where mu = sine of that hour’s SEA. (Curry has quoted this equation in her papers.)
    Pegau and Paulson (International Glaciological Society, 2001, The Albedo of Arctic Leads in Summer) worked under the SHEBA ice platform with Curry’s team, and corrected Breigleb for wind speed:

    albedo_direct_sun_clear skies (SEA, wind) = 0.026/[(mu^1.7 + (-0.0002w^2 + 0.0076w+0.0266)] + 1.5*(mu-0.1)*(mu-0.5)*(mu-1.0)
    where mu (again) = sin(SEA) (or cos SZA) and w is in meters/sec.

    So, in September in the high Arctic when the solar elevation angle SEA is NEVER more than 8-10 degrees above the horizon at ANY time of the day when the sun is even visible, what is the measured clear sky open ocean albedo? Between 0.22 and 0.35.

    Not all that much different from the albedo of the “dirty sea ice” that is melting away. Yes, there is an increase in absorbed radiation in the Arctic above 78-82 latitude when sea ice is replaced by open ocean, BUT it is not very much difference in energy over the 12 hours of even potential sunlight!

    And, although the sun’s rays do heat the open water slightly during those daylight hours, the open water about 78-82 north loses MORE HEAT to the sky over the entire period of the 24 hour day through increased long-wave radiation, increased evaporation, increased convection, and increased conduction than does sea ice!

    Rather than an “arctic sea ice amplification” the numbers show that – during the late melting season under today’s conditions, every square meter of open ocean north of 76-82 north LOSES more heat on a daily basis than does sea-ice-covered arctic waters under the same air conditions!

    The exact opposite, unfortunate, is also true down south:
    Under today’s conditions at Antarctic sea ice extents between 60 south and 70 south latitudes, EVERY square kilometer of increased Antarctic sea ice at ANY time of year reflects more energy into space away from the planet, INCREASES total planet cooling!

  50. Windchasers says:
    February 3, 2014 at 2:24 pm

    That’s definitely not right. We are observing polar amplification: about 3x the average so far.

    Hmmmn. And just what data is that red “splot” smeared across the arctic ocean using? See, IF you use the SUMMER DMI actual measured composite data for the region where the sea ice ACTUALLY IS up at 80 north across all summer months (melt season when the sun is actually shining onto the Arctic sea ice!) since 1959, you get …. ZERO TREND. (Actually, the DMI daily tmperatures sinc e1959 at 8 north latitude are declining, and are declining even faster as we get more and more CO2 into the atmosphere sicne 1959, but you will ignore this in favor of NASA-GISS self-serving self-funding approximations of models.)

    See, the yearly DMI data “average” temperature is increasing, but that increase ONLY happens when winter (non-sunshine) deviations are thrown in. Summer temperatures have a near-zero standard deviation, and are declining. What NASA-GISS does do is extrapolate very dark, low-albedo, newly-greened-over heavily-forested and tundra areas out to sea as much as 1200 km, over sea ice areas that are NOT measured.

  51. “””””…..RACookPE1978 says:

    February 3, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    Arctic sea ice ……………………….
    ……………………………………………

    The high Arctic average temperatures are very cold compared to the tropics and mid-temperate zones, therefore there is little water vapor present. But, CO2 is expected to be uniformly mixed worldwide, so ANY increase in CO2 levels worldwide will increase CO2 levels in the Arctic as well. But, since the water vapor is lower in those latitudes, the effect of CO2 will be increased as a proportion. …..”””””

    Well CO2 isn’t even approximately uniformly mixed worldwide.

    I refer you to the now disappeared NOAA/NASA three D graph showing the atmospheric CO2 variation from pole to pole.

    At Mauna Loa, in Hawaii, the CO2 has an annual cyclic p-p variation of about 6 ppm, while at the north pole, and over most of the arctic, there is an 18-20 ppm p-p cyclic change each year; three times the variation at ML (izzat an anomaly ?) At the south pole, the result is even weirder, having only about a 1 ppm cyclic peak variation, and it really is a -1, because it is out of phase with the ML data.

    That is not my idea of world wide uniform mixing. At ML and the north pole, the down portion of the CO2 cycle takes about 5 months, while the up portion takes about 7 months.

    I can understand to some extent, why the southern hemisphere tends to be six months ahead of the northern hemisphere, since their land based plant growth cycles are reversed, but I don’t know how the ocean plankton cycle goes.

    Also the south pole does not have the ice melt that the arctic ocean sees, so it would not be expected to have the same CO2 partitioning between liquid and solid phases, that is seen in the arctic. I believe the arctic atmospheric CO2 increase, coincides with the fall sea ice freeze, and CO2 is expelled from the solid into the liquid ocean, which then becomes saturated and outgasses CO2 to the atmosphere per Henry’s law.

  52. Understand, and I agree with your point that CO2 is NOT uniformly mixed across all latitudes and across all longitudes. But, since uniform CO2 increases everywhere ARE a central Commandment of the CAGW religion, I figured I would need to make their assumption when I spoke about their additional assumptions about CO2 amplification in the Arctic and Antarctic.

    Your corrections/amplifications are valid, and further destroy “arctic amplification” at both ends of the earth.

  53. Both Arctic and Antarctic issues with sea ice and ice bridges stem from the same phenomenon: Warm pools riding currents into these ice systems. These warm pools are birthed in the equatorial belt. So if we are to find the ultimate culprit, be it natural or anthropogenic, we must focus our attention and instruments between the 45th parallels, and possibly even in a narrower more equatorial band than than that. And that focus must be both in the oceans and in the air.

    Clearly these changes at both poles are specific and confined to certain areas. And it just so happens these areas are right in the way of permanent large oceanic currents. So we must suspect whatever rides these currents to these locations and work backwards to their origin. To think that well-mixed CO2 can cause such odd targeted changes in sea ice and ice shelves is to give anthropogenic atmospheric CO2 sentient malevolent intent.

  54. Pamela Gray says:
    February 3, 2014 at 4:08 pm “…permanent large oceanic currents…” Permanent for now, or us short-lived beings. Not permanent in any way geologically. Someday Antarctica will probably be a tropical paradise of islands and minor continents, and all those currents will behave in some other way.

  55. lsvalgaard says:
    February 3, 2014 at 1:36 pm “…Empirical evidence without [at least some] theoretical understanding is not science…” (sic) That is sort of the “chicken and the egg” proposition. For much of the past “theory” said “The Gods did it”, but empirical evidence finally overcame those ideas and led to understanding. Empirical evidence without thought is not science, nor is theory without testing (like our current “climate modeling” fetish).

  56. Gkell1 says: February 3, 2014 at 10:51 am

    You really need to polish up your social and communication skills sunshine. Such anger and contempt for others that you perceive to not meet your intellectual standards. I’ll make a blind assumption that you are positioned somewhere along the Autism Spectrum – and no harm in that. I think if it wasn’t for the “Mentat” superpowers of autism/aspergers, then maybe science and learning would not have progressed as it has. Pure speculation of course.

    So, enough of your drive by shootings please. Since you have a proposition, an hypothesis, then it is time for you to write it up as a paper and submit it to a journal (physics or astronomical?) or even a blog such as this. Then be prepared to have it torn apart looking for errors. If it holds up then good for you and the world. If you haven’t the courage to do it, well then you will be seen as no more than a troll. Do you want that?

  57. george e. smith says

    Well Part of the Arctic problem is Kevin Trenberth’s Earth energy budget. His model has 342 W/m^2 of solar radiation falling continuously at all points on earth 24-7.

    No, it doesn’t. It’s not a model; it’s mainly directly and indirectly measured fluxes REPORTED AS averages over the Earth’s surface.

    Since your whole premise is wrong, unfortunately the rest of your post is of little relevance.

  58. richardscourtney says:

    As an addendum for clarity I point out that there may be some polar amplification but – if it exists – it is too small for it to be discernible.

    I provide this clarification to avoid being side-tracked about whether polar amplification does or does not exist at indiscernible magnitude.

    Maybe you can’t discern it, but as Windchasers has shown, actual scientists can easily do so.

  59. Isn’t this just another discussion about unicorns like CO2 and climate models ?

    According to Hansen, black carbon on Arctic ice has a effective forcing of 1.0 * 3 = 3 W/m2.

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

    Add 2 W/m2 from black carbon in the atmosphere (IPCC 1.0 W/m2 global, but almost entirely in the northern hemisphere), and the forcing adds up to 5.0 W/m2, making CO2 (1.8 W/m2) rather an insignificant man made side show.

    Of course, all of this still should be dwarfed by AMO.

  60. george e. smith, CO2 latitudinal variation is actually well studied and there is lots of data (and graphs) at such places as CDIAC. The larger annual variation in the Northern Hemisphere is due to the increased amount of plant growth in the spring summer. The low variation is the Southern Hemisphere is, well, it is pretty much all ocean. Go look at the results in the various stations in the Scripps Network.

    What is more, you can relate the CO2 annual variation to changes in O2. (see Keeling/Ralph.

  61. “Marc77 says:
    February 3, 2014 at 1:23 pm
    It is true that the temperature of equilibrium of a colder body increases more rapidly with a relative increase in forcing. But the warming is not faster, you still need as much energy to increase the temperature.”

    I have an isolated cabin at 1100 meters and in the winter it can be as cold as minus 20 deg C inside when we arrive. Heating is with wood and I have noticed that the warming of the cabin happens in about 5 deg C intervals. In other words the living room where the fireplace is stops warming every 5 deg C and then has to warm the rest of the cabin air and inside surface first before it can warm the living room further. (Cabin temperature gradient).
    And I guess the same apply to cooling of the cabin after we leave.

    So the reason it’s so bloody cold in winter at 60 deg North is that it’s because it’s even colder further north. And the reason 60 deg North is warmer than further North is because it’s warmer further South. the atmosphere is interconnected from equator to the polar regions. And over distance X there can not be a larger temperature difference than Y?

  62. What I really have a problem grasping is that Earth’s global temperature for a very very long time up to 30 million years ago was stable at 23-24 deg C. And what was different was that there was less temperature difference over distance than there is today?
    More ocean area and less land area?

  63. High surface albedo positive feedback around and near the Arctic Circle has been used to explain great ability of some of the Milankovitch cycles to explain surges and ebbings ofIce Age glaciations.

    However, I see climate sensitivity related to this, and also the lapse rate feedback, becoming less positive as global temperature increases past typical of warmer times of the interglacial periods.

  64. Santa Baby says:
    February 3, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    What I really have a problem grasping is that Earth’s global temperature for a very very long time up to 30 million years ago was stable at 23-24 deg C. And what was different was that there was less temperature difference over distance than there is today?
    More ocean area and less land area?

    No, total land area was about the same. Not exactly the same, but close.

    What was different are two very, very important items: The LOCATION of the major land masses was very close to the equator, gathered all into one (or only few) very large land masses surrounded by un-impeded wide oceans . And two, about 33-30 million years ago, the now-very-wide-spread continents re-collided with other into “clumps” that BLOCKED middle ocean circulation: The isthmus of Panama closed, the Cape Horn currents around Antarctica were “opened” into a single continuous circular flow that cut off more than half of the southern land mass from ANY heat flow, and the Africa-India-Suez rifts and mountains came together so the Med Sea, Black Sea, Indian Ocean, Malaysia-Australia currents were altered. Suddenly (geographically speaking) the Pacific ocean was split off from the Atlantic, the Atlantic became “divided” by the Coriolis circulation into north-half/south-half currents, western Europe could begin warming and cooling due to the Gulf Stream, Siberia got colder, etc.

    The result of the two is what you noticed.

  65. Donald L. Klipstein says:
    February 3, 2014 at 8:22 pm

    High surface albedo positive feedback around and near the Arctic Circle has been used to explain great ability of some of the Milankovitch cycles to explain surges and ebbings ofIce Age glaciations.

    However, I see climate sensitivity related to this, and also the lapse rate feedback, becoming less positive as global temperature increases past typical of warmer times of the interglacial periods.

    Justify your assumption of this “high surface albedo feedback” – It just isn’t there, and (during the latter part of the melt season in the Arctic is completely opposite in today’s real (non-model) world: Arctic sea ice melting creates more heat losses fro the open ocean than are gained from the sunlight.

  66. It seems that this back and forth discussion is a parsing of words. Can the post logically suggest the models need to be reworked based on the content of the article being presented? Sure. Because it begs the question.

    The modelers thought that modeled albedo affects would cause Arctic temperature outputs to change accordingly and is the real reason for actual Arctic ice conditions. Does the modeled albedo input accurately cause the output? If the answer is no, which appears to be the case, are the models in need of reworking? The models need to be reworked if the modelers continue to believe that albedo is the real mechanism for temperature changes.

    If, on the other hand, the modelers are saying that something else is happening in the models that may point to another plausible mechanism, the models need to be investigated, not reworked, to determine what in the models is the actual trigger for temperature change outputs.

    But then that begs the next question.

    Is it possible for current un-reworked models to prove the real mechanism?

  67. Patrick wrote –

    “So, enough of your drive by shootings please. Since you have a proposition, an hypothesis, then it is time for you to write it up as a paper and submit it to a journal (physics or astronomical?) or even a blog such as this. Then be prepared to have it torn apart looking for errors.”

    Torn apart indeed !. Genuine climate researchers are unlikely to be caught up in the carbon dioxide fuss and can explore planetary climate in such a way that it becomes an enjoyable visual exercise rather than the voodoo and bluffing that currently surrounds this terrestrial science. By introducing a second surface rotation arising from the orbital behavior of the Earth,the heat is taken out of the current assertion binge and I assume it would attract genuine investigators who are not afraid to begin from scratch.

    In the era of satellites and human exploration of space to be still stuck with a ’tilting’ Earth in order to avoid the second surface rotation is simply ridiculous,even if it is initially difficult to ascertain that second surface rotation but certainly the polar day/night cycle makes it easy enough to spot.

    Teaching children about the second surface rotation is a breeze. Give them a broom to represent the way the Earth constantly points in the same direction in space as it orbits the Sun and ask them to walk (orbit) a central object (Sun) while keeping the broom handle at roughly 23 1/2 degrees from the line of their body and pointing at the same external point at all times. The line of their body represents the ecliptic axis and they will enjoy the experience of walking forwards,sideways,backwards and then forwards again in order to keep the same orientation of the broom handle and come to understand that all sides of their bodies face the central Sun at different points as they walk/orbit around the object. Of course daily rotation is subtracted from this single orbital rotation in this analogy as the focus is on how a planet behaves as it orbits the Sun –

    So have you got that there Patrick, we could go on to discuss a global climate spectrum between zero degrees and 90 degree inclination which determines how a planet spends its heat budget across latitudes over an orbital period and why the Earth is so special in this respect. The ‘predictions’ mob try to introduce fear and doom into climate studies however the only fear I see is fear of unfamiliar concepts and the fear of appearing silly instead of being confident and comfortable with modern tools and the ability of the human mind to use them.

  68. joeldshore:

    Your silly post at February 3, 2014 at 6:22 pm says in total
    richardscourtney says:

    As an addendum for clarity I point out that there may be some polar amplification but – if it exists – it is too small for it to be discernible.

    I provide this clarification to avoid being side-tracked about whether polar amplification does or does not exist at indiscernible magnitude.

    Maybe you can’t discern it, but as Windchasers has shown, actual scientists can easily do so.

    At issue is whether there is any detectable ‘Arctic amplification’.
    The measurements (i.e. data) indicate the truth of that. Imaginings of climastrologists do not.
    And – as happens – the data has recently been the subject of debate here on WUWT.

    Wills Eschenbach recently posted and assessed data for the satellite era as the UAH Lower Troposphere Temperature by zonal bands. His article has the title “Should We Be Worried?” and is here. He presents the data graphically and correctly says of the Arctic

    Now, that leaves the 4% of the planet north of the Arctic Circle. It cooled slightly over the first decade and a half. Then it warmed for a decade, and it has stayed even for a decade

    That is NOT discernible Arctic amplification.
    But the anonymous pop-up claimed operating as Windchasers claimed but did NOT “show”

    We are observing polar amplification: about 3x the average so far.

    then cited GISS and C0nn0lley’s wicki.

    GISS smears data over 1000 km, and has been ‘adjusted’ beyond belief: it is a joke; see this. C0nn0lley is notorious for misusing his wicki editorial rights by censoring anything on wicki which does not scare-monger about AGW.

    It is NOT ‘cherry picking‘ to reject what wicki says and to reject the fabricated GISS data in favour of the UAH data which is real data obtained by real scientists.

    THERE IS NO DISCERNIBLE ARCTIC AMPLIFICATION.

    Your flaming is an intended diversion from that issue. It can be laughed at – and otherwise ignored – because as you have often demonstrated you have no idea what real science is and Windchasers is merely some anonymous pop-up.
    Anyway, measurements and not “real scientists” provide real-world data.

    Richard

  69. Windchasers and joeldshore:

    You each provided the Red Herring of your untrue claim that there is discernible Arctic amplification.
    I have rebutted your falsehood in my post at February 4, 2014 at 1:44 am.

    So, my having disposed of your diversion, please now address the point I made.

    At February 3, 2014 at 2:13 pm in this post I wrote

    Again, I agree. However, it is simply true that there is no polar amplification in reality. In other words, Mechanism X exists in the model but NOT in reality.

    Therefore, the fact that the model does emulate Mechanism X (however it does it) is clear evidence that the model is wrong. And that clear and undeniable evidence for the model being wrong was the subject of my question to William C0nn0lley.

    That is the issue which C0nn0lley tried to dispute, Windchasers tried to pretend does not exist, and joeldshore tried to hide with flaming and a Red Herring.

    Please now address the issue.

    Richard

  70. Patrick wrote –

    “If it holds up then good for you and the world. If you haven’t the courage to do it, well then you will be seen as no more than a troll. Do you want that?”

    Watts had written something similar to that a while ago but what can be said of people who only know themselves by who they hate just as the opposing side does. Peer review is fine as long as you know it is there to maintain the reputation and salaries of those doing the reviewing and is easily discounted as a method of transmission of insights so that leaves the informal approach of a forum,preferably unmoderated or lightly moderated, to bring genuine insights to the front.

    Given that this forum can’t read a daily temperature graph which shows the massive response of temperatures to one rotation of the Earth each and every 24 hour cycle in order to hype a stupid late 17th century conclusion which they don’t even use anymore,how much regard do you think I have for the voodoo and bluff on either side of the carbon dioxide fuss ?.

    Grow up the lot of you and when you reach the ‘high’ standard of interpreting the rotation of the Earth out of a temperature graph then get back to me but not before then –

    http://www.timeanddate.com/weather/usa/los-angeles/hourly

    The modeling cult ,including the bunch that inhabits this forum ,can’t manage that much as shown in their statements –

    ” It is a fact not generally known that,owing to the difference between solar and sidereal time,the Earth rotates upon its axis once more often than there are days in the year” NASA /Harvard

  71. The Arctic is supposed to react first to global warming. How would we know since actual temperatures are few and far between there, we have no real data only model runs which are synthetic and generally wrong.

  72. @Gkell1

    Okay, you responded to me quite nicely in 2 posts. Firstly, when I say “Then be prepared to have it torn apart looking for errors.” I mean that in a positive way. Remove errors and then we have what is the truth to us at our current level of understanding. Of course the goal is to add to our level of comprehension and understanding not merely reiterate.

    Secondly, you managed to damn our host and the rest of the WUWT community: “Watts had written something similar to that a while ago but what can be said of people who only know themselves by who they hate just as the opposing side does. ” and “Given that this forum can’t read a daily temperature graph which shows …”.

    I’ve met Anthony and he came across as a caring and genuine person – not someone who defines himself through hatred. I think anyone here can read a daily temperature chart, eg your “hourlies”. Indeed, an observation from many over a course of years has been that considering the large swing of temperatures over a daily period for most geographic sites, how or why does a small “temperature anomaly” of under 1 deg C make any significant difference to say the ability of any particular environment to deal with the change.

    Look, you have a story to tell. Stop mucking about, stop annoying others, stop upsetting yourself. Write it up. If you believe it has value to educate and to either correct current misconceptions or add new knowledge – then flipping well do it. Stop making whiny excuses that no one will understand or that peer reviewers are in it just for the money or that everyone hates you. You cannot tell what is in the hearts and minds of others so any of these excuses, which you say motivates others, is in reality an echo of your own mind.

  73. Patrick wrote –

    . “I think anyone here can read a daily temperature chart, eg your “hourlies”.”

    Not a single one of you can extract the cause of the daily temperature fluctuations within a 24 hour period as our planet turns once in that period and remains in step, after all, the dumbest people ever to set foot on the planet assert otherwise –

    ” It is a fact not generally known that,owing to the difference between solar and sidereal time,the Earth rotates upon its axis once more often than there are days in the year” NASA /Harvard

    http://www.timeanddate.com/weather/usa/los-angeles/hourly

    No wonder you have so much trouble with the polar day/night cycle and sea ice fluctuations across an orbital period due to second surface rotation because if you cannot account for the massive temperature fluctuations daily then there isn’t a chance you have a grip on climate studies.

    I once met a person who said he knew what nation he came from by virtue that he hated a person from another nation and that is how this carbon dioxide business has evolved .Of course when you can’t handle cause and effect at the most immediate experience of temperature fluctuations then what do I care whether a person is nice or not because the inability to handle the correlation between one rotation and all the effects within a 24 hour cycle is in a region of intellectual oblivion.

  74. richardscourtney says, February 4, 2014 at 1:44 am:

    “Wills Eschenbach recently posted and assessed data for the satellite era as the UAH Lower Troposphere Temperature by zonal bands. His article has the title “Should We Be Worried?” and is here. He presents the data graphically and correctly says of the Arctic

    Now, that leaves the 4% of the planet north of the Arctic Circle. It cooled slightly over the first decade and a half. Then it warmed for a decade, and it has stayed even for a decade

    That is NOT discernible Arctic amplification.

    That seems indeed to be true and very interesting (the RSS data BTW shows the exact same thing), because it clearly shows that the Arctic does not follow the evident ‘two-steps-up’ (one post 1987 and one post 1997) evolution in global temperatures that we’ve seen since 1978/79. Instead the Arctic quite clearly suddenly responded to something in 1995, almost like a heat gate opening, and then stabilising again after the peak in early 2005. One decade of massive warming (about one degree in the lower troposphere) and that’s it.

    It’s hard to justify this as being just a slavish amplifying response of global temperature rise, I agree.

    So what happened in 1995?

  75. REPLY: It’s an opinion. much like many of your Wikipedia entries – Anthony
    *********************************
    BOOM!!
    that answer rocked :)

  76. Also, like B. Tisdale has shown before, the OHC of the northern part of our globe follows much the same peculiar pattern:

    Nothing of significance seems to be happening until around 1995, when the OHC suddenly surges up for about a decade. And that’s it. (Caveat added: data quality and coverage.)

  77. How does this square with the NASA / University of Irvine study (and the 2 folowups) that attribute a (very) large chunk of both temperature increase and loss of ice integrity to a 3% reduction of albedo resulting from increasing soot, mostly from China?

    That would also explain the increase in ice loss since 2001 despite the stall in warming. It would also explain why the melt increase is occurring primarily during summer despite the fact that DMI shows the summer temperature trend from ‘way, ‘way back to be flat as Tokyo after a cheap monster movie.

    Or else, the explanation above might pertain, and the delay in melt is mere lag, as is typical when it comes to ice and oceans?

  78. 90-65N 1980-2014 according to HadCRUt4:

    Two abrupt and big jumps in mean temperature level, one in 1994>95 and one in 2004>05. Otherwise, basically nothing …

  79. Windchasers says:
    February 3, 2014 at 2:24 pm
    “That’s definitely not right. We are observing polar amplification: about 3x the average so far. ”

    The GISS graphic you link to shows most of the Antarctic completely refusing to warm. So while more or less uniformly distributed CO2 leads to a terrible north-polar amplification it has no effect at all on the south pole.

    Now that’s one funny enhanced greenhouse effect.

  80. RichardSCourtney says:

    Wills Eschenbach recently posted and assessed data for the satellite era as the UAH Lower Troposphere Temperature by zonal bands. His article has the title “Should We Be Worried?” and is here. He presents the data graphically and correctly says of the Arctic

    “Now, that leaves the 4% of the planet north of the Arctic Circle. It cooled slightly over the first decade and a half. Then it warmed for a decade, and it has stayed even for a decade”

    That is NOT discernible Arctic amplification.

    Are ya kidding? Look again at the chart Willis posted:

    The increase in temperature across these charts, from 1980 to now is plainly greater for the Arctic than for the tropics. Eyeballing it (meaning, estimating very roughly), it looks like ~1.5 degrees for the Arctic vs <0.5 degrees for the next three areas.

    Re: the GISS chart, remember that they're comparing the 2000-2009 period to a 1951-1980 baseline. Your complaints with GISS aside, I'll be surprised if you can show me any temperature series that doesn’t show arctic amplification over that time period.

  81. DirkH says:

    The GISS graphic you link to shows most of the Antarctic completely refusing to warm. So while more or less uniformly distributed CO2 leads to a terrible north-polar amplification it has no effect at all on the south pole.

    Now that’s one funny enhanced greenhouse effect.

    Dirk, I recommend you read the paper being discussed again. The polar amplification isn’t believed to come mainly from an enhanced GHG effect, but from heat flows from the tropics and from change in surface albedo due to melting ice.
    I’m sure extra CO2/water would also matter, particularly since the Antarctic is so dry, but IIUC, they just don’t matter as much as other mechanisms.

    But, yeah: because of how the continents / ocean basins are shaped, ocean currents can carry warm water can much farther north towards the Arctic than south towards the Antarctic. The Antarctic basically has an ocean current flowing around it that more or less blocks off most of the warm water flows from the tropics, quite the opposite of the Arctic. This means that the Arctic will warm a lot faster than the Antarctic.

    Incidentally, before 40 million years ago, the Drake Passage – the space between S. American and Antarctica – wasn’t open yet. This means Antarctica wasn’t split off as it is now, with its own ocean currents that interacted minimally with the rest of the world. And it also means that the ocean currents would have brought warm water from the tropics to the South Pole. The climate would have been very different.
    Basically, given how much ocean currents control the climate, and the shape of the continents shape the ocean currents, we can’t say jack s**t about how CO2 and the climate interacted more than a few million years ago. Just something to keep in mind, generally, when talking about paleoclimate. There are good reasons to ignore the far, far past, and not just because our data from back then is crap.

  82. Windchasers said
    “The increase in temperature across these charts, from 1980 to now is plainly greater for the Arctic than for the tropics.”

    The Arctic was cooling up to 1994, so much for Arctic amplification. The step up from 1995 is not an amplification of any warming, it’s a negative feedback (-ve NOA/AO) to a drop in solar forcing which then caused a regional warming because of its overshoot.

  83. DirkH says:

    The GISS graphic you link to shows most of the Antarctic completely refusing to warm. So while more or less uniformly distributed CO2 leads to a terrible north-polar amplification it has no effect at all on the south pole.

    Now that’s one funny enhanced greenhouse effect.

    Actually, even the climate models of Manabe et al. (1991) from 20 years ago predicted that transient response would be amplified much more in the Arctic than in the Antarctic [see Fig. 12(a) of that paper here: http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/1520-0442%281991%29004%3C0785%3ATROACO%3E2.0.CO%3B2

  84. Ulric says:

    The Arctic was cooling up to 1994, so much for Arctic amplification.

    If you look at that chart again, you’ll find that the Arctic was about flat from 1980-1994, and particularly so within the range of variability. I seriously doubt that there’s any statistically significant cooling trend.

    In reality, it’s plain that temperatures in the Arctic are more variable than the global average (just as with most regions), and to account for that, we should look at the long-term trends. And if you do that, the Arctic amplification pops out, nice and clear, warming about 3x as faster as the rest of the world.

  85. Friends:

    My 24 hour time-out has ended so I write to reply to the silly arguments by Windchasers and joeldshore. Their arguments amount to ‘Evidence, I don’t need no steenkin’ evidence’.

    The issue is that the egregious William C0nn0lley claimed our host had fabricated the claim that the paper (reported in the above article) indicates climate models require revision. I pointed out that C0nn0lley was wrong: reality shows no polar amplification but the paper discusses mechanisms of polar amplification in the models. Modelled mechanisms of an effect which is not observed in reality is an error in the models.

    Windchasers asserted that polar amplification consists of warming in polar regions – in this case, the Arctic – being 3x more than elsewhere and that it does exist.

    The – as always, obnoxious and astonishingly ignorant – joeldshore jumped in with a post that claimed “real scientists” had measured the polar amplification and anybody who says otherwise is not a “real scientist”.

    I pointed out that no such polar amplification is observed to exist. The purported evidence for it is false. It consists of what C0nn0lley’s doctored wicki says and Hansen’s fabricated GISS data. In reality the UAH Lower Troposphere Temperature shows no such polar amplification.

    Kristian wrote to say that the RSS data shows the same as I described; i.e. two periods of no discernible temperature rise separated by a period of slight rise which is not consistent with polar amplification, saying of my observation

    That seems indeed to be true and very interesting (the RSS data BTW shows the exact same thing), because it clearly shows that the Arctic does not follow the evident ‘two-steps-up’ (one post 1987 and one post 1997) evolution in global temperatures that we’ve seen since 1978/79. Instead the Arctic quite clearly suddenly responded to something in 1995, almost like a heat gate opening, and then stabilising again after the peak in early 2005. One decade of massive warming (about one degree in the lower troposphere) and that’s it.

    It’s hard to justify this as being just a slavish amplifying response of global temperature rise, I agree.

    Some discussion of why this ensued and centred around NAO/PDO, not polar amplification.

    DirkH pointed out that there is definitely no polar amplification in the Antarctic.

    At February 4, 2014 at 10:27 am Windchasers replied with a post which defies both science and logic writing to me

    Are ya kidding? Look again at the chart Willis posted:

    The increase in temperature across these charts, from 1980 to now is plainly greater for the Arctic than for the tropics. Eyeballing it (meaning, estimating very roughly), it looks like ~1.5 degrees for the Arctic vs <0.5 degrees for the next three areas.

    Re: the GISS chart, remember that they're comparing the 2000-2009 period to a 1951-1980 baseline. Your complaints with GISS aside, I'll be surprised if you can show me any temperature series that doesn’t show arctic amplification over that time period..

    The quoted reply from Windchasers is ridiculous.
    1.
    He has redefined his original definition of “polar amplification” from 3x the GHG global warming to a jump in temperature over a decade.
    2.
    He has refused to accept the clear indications that there is NO polar amplification of 3x the global warming signal provided by both the UAH data and the RSS data.
    3.
    And he has asked for evidence of a negative which is normally not possible but in this case was provided.

    Windchasers replied to DirkH with a load of waffle about ocean currents which claims a difference between Northern and Southern polar regions. The waffle, of course, obfuscates that POLAR amplification occurs to the poleS (n.b. both of them). However, he would have had a valid point if he had said the paper being debated in this discussion only considers modelling of climate in the Arctic.

    Joeldshore also replied to DirkH by pointing out that Manabe et al. (1991) had predicted more polar warming in the Arctic than the Antarctic. This, of course, is not relevant when there has been no observation of polar amplification (and, being not relevant, is typical of comments by joeldshore)

    Ulric Lyons was not satisfied by the responses from Windchasers (no sensible person would be satisfied) and he wrote

    The increase in temperature across these charts, from 1980 to now is plainly greater for the Arctic than for the tropics.

    The Arctic was cooling up to 1994, so much for Arctic amplification. The step up from 1995 is not an amplification of any warming, it’s a negative feedback (-ve NOA/AO) to a drop in solar forcing which then caused a regional warming because of its overshoot.

    Windchasers replied

    If you look at that chart again, you’ll find that the Arctic was about flat from 1980-1994, and particularly so within the range of variability. I seriously doubt that there’s any statistically significant cooling trend.
    In reality, it’s plain that temperatures in the Arctic are more variable than the global average (just as with most regions), and to account for that, we should look at the long-term trends. And if you do that, the Arctic amplification pops out, nice and clear, warming about 3x as faster as the rest of the world.

    That is an admission by Windchasers that there has NOT been polar amplification in the Arctic despite his assertion to the contrary.

    Nobody disputes that there was global warming from “from 1980-1994”. Therefore, there should have been large warming in the Arctic region in the period “from 1980-1994”. And the Arctic warming should have been very large over that period if polar amplification exists and is “warming about 3x as faster as the rest of the world”.

    But Windchasers admits there was NO discernible warming in the Arctic during that period. He says of Arctic temperature “the Arctic was about flat from 1980-1994, and particularly so within the range of variability”.

    The undisputed fact that there was a sudden and short duration rise in Arctic temperature starting in 1995 does NOT change the fact that global temperature was NOT seen as being ANY RISE in Arctic temperature during the period of global warming. And it requires reason to be abandoned as a method to pretend that the short duration rise represents “Arctic amplification” over the entire record which is “nice and clear, warming about 3x as faster as the rest of the world”.

    In summation, the asserted polar amplification is observed to NOT exist and, therefore, the climate models do require modification because they emulate mechanisms which induce modelled output of polar amplification which does not exist in reality.

    So, our host was right and William C0nn0lley was wrong, which should surprise nobody.

    Richard

  86. Windchasers says:
    “If you look at that chart again, you’ll find that the Arctic was about flat from 1980-1994, and particularly so within the range of variability.”

    What do I need to look again for when I saw the drop from the mid 1980’s the first time I looked at it? It’s you that needs to look again.
    North pole UAH to Dec 1994: http://snag.gy/YV4Ny.jpg
    So the north pole cooled slightly during 16yrs of “global warming” from 1979 to 1994 inclusive.

    Windchasers says:
    “In reality, it’s plain that temperatures in the Arctic are more variable than the global average (just as with most regions), and to account for that, we should look at the long-term trends. And if you do that, the Arctic amplification pops out, nice and clear, warming about 3x as faster as the rest of the world”

    No we should look at precisely when it warmed from, only then we can have a logical and rational explanation for the warming, which is the increasingly negative NAO/AO episodes from 1995. The Arctic warming from 1995 is an internal negative feedback to a drop in forcing, it’s completely the wrong sign for a forced warming, where the NAO/AO would be more positive.

  87. Windchasers says:
    “In reality, it’s plain that temperatures in the Arctic are more variable than the global average (just as with most regions)”

    On UAH, the most variable region in the monthly figures by far is the NoPol Ocean:

    http://www.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/t2lt/uahncdc_lt_5.6.txt

    See how well the positive NoPol Ocean anomalies there correlate to negative monthly NAO/AO values.

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/pna/norm.nao.monthly.b5001.current.ascii.table

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/daily_ao_index/monthly.ao.index.b50.current.ascii.table

  88. Santa Baby says: @ February 3, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    What I really have a problem grasping is that Earth’s global temperature for a very very long time up to 30 million years ago was stable at 23-24 deg C. And what was different was that there was less temperature difference over distance than there is today?
    More ocean area and less land area?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    (William McClenney could probably give you a better answer than I but I will take a stab at it.)
    Possibly the Oligocene Epoch topography see: http://jan.ucc.nau.edu/~rcb7/globaltext2.html

    map

    There was the opening of Drake Passage.
    Drake Passage and palaeoclimate

    ABSTRACT: The effect of Drake Passage on the Earth’s climate is examined using an idealised coupled model. It is found that the opening of Drake Passage cools the high latitudes of the southern hemisphere by about 3°C and warms the high latitudes of the northern hemisphere by nearly the same amount. This study also attempts to determine whether the width and depth of the Drake Passage channel is likely to be an important factor in the thermal response. A deeper channel is shown to produce more southern cooling but the magnitude of the effect is not large. Channel geometry is relatively unimportant in the model because of a haline response that develops when the channel is first opened up.

    Introduction
    South America and Australia separated from Antarctica between 20 and 40 million years ago, isolating Antarctica and the South Pole behind a continuous band of ocean water. The palaeoceanographic record shows that this separation led to the accumulation of glacial ice on Antarctica and an abrupt cooling of the ocean’s deep water (Kennett, 1977). Both effects persist to this day. The palaeoceanographic record gives every indication that the isolation of Antarctica was a major step in climate evolution.

    Today, the band of open water around Antarctica is most restricted between the tip of South America and the Palmer Peninsula, a feature known as Drake Passage. In one of the earliest scientific papers written about the output of an ocean general circulation model, Gill and Bryan (1971) showed how a gap such as Drake Passage alters the ocean’s meridional circulation and heat transport. With Drake Passage closed, the ocean transports heat southward by moving warm water poleward near the surface. Cooling at the Antarctic margin leads to deep-water formation and the northward flow of cold water at depth. With Drake Passage open, warm upper ocean water from the north is unable to flow into or across the channel because there is no net east–west pressure gradient to balance the effect of the Earth’s rotation. The ocean’s ability to transport heat southward is thereby diminished. Cox (1989), England (1992) and Mikolajewicz et al. (1993) carried out similar experiment…..

    The closing of the Isthmus of Panama came quite a bit later:
    The closure history of the Panama Isthmus

    This may be of interest: Extinction and environmental change across the Eocene-Oligocene boundary in Tanzania

    …For the first time, we are able to place this event clearly in the plateau between the two main steps in the isotope records. This should enable improved correlation of the epoch boundary in a variety of geological settings, removing the need to shift the GSSP to some other section or point. The boundary corresponds to the climax of the marine extinctions and lies within an extended interval of severe global change that lasted ∼500 k.y., as bracketed by the first nannofossil extinction (Discoaster saipanensis) and the beginning of the early Oligocene glacial maximum

    The Eocene-Oligocene transition marks a profound shift in global climate and marks the end to an extended period of predominantly “greenhouse” conditions on Earth that stretches back into the Mesozoic. The stepwise pattern of biotic events in the surface ocean and shelf seas, as recorded in the new cores, mirrors the pattern of global change. This pattern contrasts with sudden and catastrophic mass extinctions such as at the end-Cretaceous, suggesting that multiple causes, prolonged effects, and complex feedbacks between the geosphere and biosphere are necessary to explain the sequence of events that is only now becoming clear.

    In other words they really do not know at this point. Unfortunately CAGW mania pollutes everything now a days so CO2 is the catch-all explanation that is tied to everything.

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