An Odd Mix of Reality and Misinformation from the Climate Science Community on England et al. (2014)

In this post, we’ll discuss a recent article and blog post about the recently published England et al. (2014). This post includes portions of past posts and a number of new discussions and illustrations.

We’ve already discussed (post here) the paper England et al. (2014) Recent intensification of wind-driven circulation in the Pacific and the ongoing warming hiatus. Since then, NBC News has an article by John Roach with the curious title Global Warming Pause? The Answer Is Blowin’ Into the Wind. And the team from RealClimate have agreed and disagreed with England et al. (2014) in their post Going with the wind.

I find it surprising that England et al. is getting so much attention. It’s simply another paper that shows quite plainly that the past and current generations of climate models are fatally flawed…because they cannot simulate coupled ocean atmosphere processes that cause global surface temperatures to warm and that stop that warming. Maybe the attention results from their use of “wind” as a metric. Everyone understands the word wind.

A FEW PRELIMINARY COMMENTS

We’ve illustrated and discussed in past posts how the current generation of global models cannot simulate how, when and where the surfaces of the oceans have warmed since 1880 and during the satellite era. See the posts:

We’ve also illustrated this recently, but as a reminder: The sea surface temperature anomalies of the tropical Pacific are a part of this discussion, because that’s where El Niño and La Niña events take place, and because that’s where the trade winds in question blow. The satellite-enhanced sea surface temperature data for the tropical Pacific show that the surface of the tropical Pacific has not warmed over the past 32+ years—the full term of the Reynolds OI.v2 sea surface temperature data. See Figure 1. On the other hand, climate models indicate that, if the surface temperatures of the tropical Pacific were warmed by manmade greenhouse gases, they should have warmed more than 0.6 deg C (or about 1.1 deg F).

Figure 1

Figure 1

So the problems with climate models are not limited to the past decade and a half.

OVERVIEW OF ENGLAND ET AL. (2014)

England et al. (2014) are basically claiming that stronger trade winds in recent years are driving CO2-based global warming into the depths of the Pacific Ocean, and that the stronger trade winds are associated with a shift in the frequency, magnitude and duration of El Niño and La Niña events. They use an abstract metric called the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) to define the periods when El Niño or La Niña events dominated.

As an expanded overview of England et al., during the period from the mid-1970s to the late 1990s, the trade winds were weaker because El Niño events dominated, so, according to their modeling efforts, more global warming was occurring at the surface. But since the late 1990s, the stronger trade winds associated with more-frequent La Niñas are causing the CO2-based global warming to be driven into the depths of the Pacific Ocean.

Figure 2 presents a commonly used index for the strength, frequency and duration of El Niño and La Niña events. It is a graph of the sea surface temperature anomalies of the NINO3.4 region. I’ve also highlighted NOAA’s official El Niño and La Niña events, based on their Oceanic NINO Index (but the data in the graph are not from the Oceanic NINO Index). And as we can see, there were a series of strong and long El Niño events from 1982 through 1998: the 1982/83, the 1986/87/88 and the 1997/98 El Niños. Although the series of El Niños in the first half of the 1990s are now considered independent events, Trenberth and Hoar proclaimed them as one long event in their 1996 paper The 1990-1995 El Niño-Southern Oscillation Event: Longest on record. The El Niño events since 1998 have not been as strong, and the frequency of La Niña events has increased.

Figure 2

Figure 2

Because trade winds are weak during El Niños and strong during La Niñas, the change in the frequencies of El Niño and La Niña events indicate the trade wind should have increased during that time…and they have. We illustrated and discussed this in the recent post El Niño and La Niña Basics: Introduction to the Pacific Trade Winds.

But that’s not where the problems exist with the findings of England et al. (2014).

THE BASIC PROBLEMS WITH ENGLAND ET AL. (2014)

England et al. (2014) have the same problems as the recent Trenberth papers. I discussed those in my Open Letter to Kevin Trenberth – NCAR. The following is a revised portion of that post. I’ve changed a few of the graphs to reflect the differences in the start date for the hiatus. Trenberth used 1999 in one of his recent papers, while England et al. used 2001.

Based on England et al (2014), the ocean heat content of the western tropical Pacific should be increasing during the hiatus period. As noted earlier, England et al. used 2001 as the start of the hiatus. Figure 3 presents the NODC ocean heat content for the western tropical Pacific (24S-24N, 120E-180), for the depths of 0-700 meters, for the period of January 2001 to December 2013. We can see that the western tropical Pacific to depths of 700 meters has, in fact, warmed.

Figure 3

Figure 3

Before we proceed, let’s confirm that the variability in the ocean heat content of the tropical Pacific takes place in the top 700 meters. The Tropical Atmosphere-Ocean (TAO) project buoys have sampled subsurface temperatures, etc., in the tropical Pacific since the early 1990s, so the NODC data should be a reasonably reliable there. Over the past decade, ARGO floats have supplemented the TAO buoys. And now for the data: the source Ocean Heat Content data in the tropical Pacific for the depths of 0-700 meters and 0-2000 meters (represented by the unadjusted UKMO EN3 data) during the TAO project and ARGO eras are exactly the same, see Figure 4, and that suggests that all of the variability in the tropical Pacific ocean heat content is taking place in the top 700 meters.

Figure 4

Figure 4

Back to our discussion of the hiatus period: The NODC ocean heat content data also show the ocean heat content (0-700m) of the eastern tropical Pacific, a much larger region, has been cooling from 2001 to 2013. See Figure 5.

Figure 5

Figure 5

As a result, there has been an overall decrease (not increase) in the ocean heat content of the tropical Pacific since 2001, Figure 6, and a substantial decrease in the ocean heat content of the tropical Pacific as a whole since the peak around 2004.

Figure 6

Figure 6

Therefore, based on data, there appears to have been a rearrangement of heat within the tropical Pacific and not an addition of heat as suggested by England et al. (2014).

Also, in the recent post If Manmade Greenhouse Gases Are Responsible for the Warming of the Global Oceans… I presented the NODC’s vertical mean temperature anomaly data for the Indian, Pacific, North Atlantic and South Atlantic Oceans, for the depths of 0-2000 meters, during the ARGO era (starting in 2003). Figure 7 is an update of that illustration, including the recently released 2013 data. The flatness of the Pacific trend indicates there has not been a substantial increase in the subsurface temperatures of the entire Pacific Ocean to depths of 2000 meters over the past 11 years…same with the North Atlantic. It cannot be claimed that manmade greenhouse gases caused the warming in the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans, when they obviously have had no impact on the warming of the North Atlantic and Pacific Oceans to 2000 meters over the past 11 years.

Figure 7

Figure 7

The problems with the England et al. (2014) model-based assumptions are blatantly obvious. The ocean heat content of the tropical Pacific has cooled quite rapidly since 2001. And subsurface temperatures of the entire Pacific Ocean during the ARGO-era show little to no warming.

Those basic data-based realities contradict the climate-model-based assumptions of England et al. (2014)…and Matthew England’s guest post at RealClimate, and the NBC News article by John Roach.

REALCLIMATE POST

The body of the RealClimate post by Matthew England is a summary of the England et al. (2014) paper, and we outlined the failings of the paper above. Eric Steig wrote the introduction for the RealClimate blog post. For support, Eric linked a few papers:

THE NBC NEWS ARTICLE ABOUT ENGLAND ET AL. (2014)

John Roach begins his article with (my boldface):

For the past 13 years, global surface air temperatures have hardly budged higher despite continual pumping of planet-warming gasses into the atmosphere from the engines of modern life. Does this prove global warming is a giant hoax? No, according to a new study, which says the missing heat is being blown into the western Pacific Ocean by extraordinarily powerful and accelerating trade winds.

The reference to “global surface air temperatures” is curious. I suspect John Roach relied on England et al. (2014) for it. The abstract of England et al. (2014) begins (my boldface):

Despite ongoing increases in atmospheric greenhouse gases, the Earth’s global average surface air temperature has remained more or less steady since 2001.

And the first sentence of the paper reads (my boldface):

Observations of global average surface air temperature (SAT) show an unequivocal warming over the twentieth century1, however the overall trend has been interrupted by periods of weak warming or even cooling (Fig. 1).

Yet England et al. did not present “global surface air temperature” data in cell a of their Figure 1. See my Figure 8.

Figure 8 - Cell a of Figure 1 England et al. 2014

Figure 8 (cell a of Figure 1 from England et al.)

England et al. (2014) presented GISS Land-Ocean Temperature Index (LOTI) data in their Figure 1, which is a combination of land surface air temperature data and sea surface temperature data, with the vast majority being sea surface temperature data since the oceans cover 70% of the planet.

To confirm that, under the heading of Methods, England et al. write [my brackets]:

Observations and reanalysis data. SAT [surface air temperature] is taken from the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) climatology.

And no, I’m not being pedantic. As we’ve shown in numerous posts over the past year, climate models do a reasonable job of simulating land surface air temperatures over the past 30+ years, but in order to achieve that warming, the climate models have to double the observed warming rate of the surface of the oceans. See Figure 9.

Figure 9 model-data-oceans-and-land

Figure 9

And using marine air temperature data do not help the models, either—see Figure 10—though it has to be kept in mind that the ICOADS marine air temperature data are not corrected for the shipboard “heat island effect” that plagues that dataset.

Figure 10

Figure 10

John Roach began his discussion of climate models with a catchy heading:

Model failure
The shortcomings of the climate models highlighted in this new paper feed into larger criticism that the models play down the importance of natural variability in the global climate system. “You want to have enough noise in your system” in order to get a realistic result, noted Xie.

That this shortfall is highlighted in the new research, he added, “is quite a nice result, but in a sense it is bad news for the climate research community because it does point to a potential problem for the climate models.”

It’s not a potential problem. It’s a major problem. One contributing factor to the problem is that climate scientists (example Shang-Ping Xie’s quote) view coupled ocean-atmosphere processes as “noise in your system”. ENSO is not noise; ENSO is a coupled ocean-atmosphere process that climate models still cannot simulate. Sea surface temperature data and ocean heat content data indicate that ENSO acts as a chaotic, sunlight-fueled, coupled ocean-atmosphere, recharge-discharge oscillator—with El Niño events acting as the discharge mode, and with La Niña events acting as the recharge and redistribution mode. If this topic is new to you, refer to illustrated essay “The Manmade Global Warming Challenge” [42MB pdf] for an introduction.

Climate models failings with respect to ENSO—their failures to properly simulate of El Niño- and La Niña-related processes—have been known for years. See Guilyardi et al. (2009) and Bellenger et al (2012). It is very difficult to find a portion—any portion—of El Niño and La Niña processes that the models simulate properly.

Then John Roach allowed Matthew England and others some more leeway:

A problem with the models, in turn, could erode trust in climate science, noted England. But “that would be akin to writing off the medical profession for finding out something new about an illness that they didn’t know about earlier,” he said.

The inability of the models to capture the observed wind trends and thus the hiatus is “just one small process in the global system that seems to need improvement,” he noted. The long-term global warming trend, he added, is independent from decade-to-decade variability in the Pacific Ocean.

Fyfe echoed the sentiment. Instead of undermining climate science, he said, “What you are seeing here in this discussion is the natural evolution of science and improving our understanding. The overall big picture that the planet is warming and that that warming is due to human influence stills stands with or without the hiatus.”

For those who understand climate model failings, the trust in climate science has been eroding for years. In fact, for many persons, it has eroded to the point that we have no confidence in climate models…none at all.

This sentence is a classic: “The long-term global warming trend…is independent from decade-to-decade variability in the Pacific Ocean.” And the claim “just one small process in the global system that seems to need improvement” is the understatement of the year. Combined they form the most bizarre assertions I’ve seen attributed to a climate scientist to date…

  • …especially when the paper that England authored indicated the lack of global surface warming has been caused in part by the “decade-to-decade variability in the Pacific Ocean”. In other words, without that “decade-to-decade variability in the Pacific Ocean” there would not have been the hiatus. (His paper also failed to address the contribution to the long-term warming from the mid-1970s to the turn of the century caused by the domination of El Niño events during that period.)
  • …especially when England et al. (2014) presented multidecadal changes in surface temperatures in response to multidecadal “variability in the Pacific Ocean”, not “decade-to-decade variability”. (See their Figure 1, which is my Figure 8.)
  • …especially when one considers that the Pacific is the largest ocean on this planet, that it covers more of the surface of the planet than all of the land masses combined, and that its surface area dwarfs the area of the other ocean basins. See Figure 11.

Figure 11

Figure 11

  • …especially when one considers than the monthly, annual and decadal variations global sea surface temperatures mimic the variations in the Pacific sea surface temperatures…because the Pacific is so massive and because the dominant coupled ocean-atmosphere processes that express themselves as El Niño and La Niña events take place in the Pacific. See Figure 12.

Figure 12

Figure 12

  • …especially when one considers that the multidecadal variations in the sea surface temperatures of the global oceans mimic the variations in the Pacific…again because the Pacific is so massive and because the dominant coupled ocean-atmosphere processes that express themselves as El Niño and La Niña events take place in the Pacific. See Figure 13, which presents the two datasets detrended and smoothed with 121-month running-average filters.

Figure 13

Figure 13

  • …especially when one considers that the forced component of the climate models (represented by the multi-model mean) cannot simulate the multidecadal variations in the sea surface temperatures of the Pacific Ocean (Figure 14) or the global oceans (Figure 15), again represented by detrended and smoothed data and model outputs.

Figure 14

Figure 14

# # # # # #

Figure 15

Figure 15

  • …and, last but not least, especially when everyone understands that climate models were tuned to (and model projections extend from) a naturally occurring upswing in global sea surface temperatures, not the long-term trend. See Figure 16. (For the years used for model tuning, refer to Mauritsen, et al. (2012) Tuning the Climate of a Global Model [paywalled]. A preprint edition is here.)

Figure 16

Figure 16

Imagine how foolish the models would look if the modelers had tuned their models to the warming period from the early-1910s to the mid-1940s.

[Note: If you’re wondering why the climate models performed so poorly in Figures 14 and 15, refer to the post IPCC Still Delusional about Carbon Dioxide. The climate model simulations of sea surface temperatures do not capture the cooling that took place from 1880 to the early-1910s (see Figure 16 above) and, consequently, they do not capture the warming that took place from the early-1910s to the early-1940s.]

And once again, we find climate science being compared to medicine. But let’s put the climate model failings into perspective. The failures of the climate models to properly simulate coupled ocean-atmosphere processes are akin to doctors not being able to explain respiration and circulation. Climate models are in the dark ages compared to medicine.

SOURCES

The data and model outputs presented in this post are available from the KNMI Climate Explorer.

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48 thoughts on “An Odd Mix of Reality and Misinformation from the Climate Science Community on England et al. (2014)

  1. Why does the climate arena like to force linear regressions on everything? If there was sparse data, like an average temperate for each decade then maybe I could see a linear regression as a first pass. But when the graphs are continuous data of monthly temps for multiple decades that clearly show periodic fluctuations up and down, superimposing a line on them is downright ridiculous. I guess there’s some sort of implication that in all the drivers behind the scenes, there is one and exactly one factor that it alone, with zero interaction with any other factor, describes that line.

  2. The line draws the eye away from the data and focuses one on the erroneous conclusion that it will continue ad infinitum. I’ve demonstrated this effect having students generate random data rolling dice then fitting a line to it. Never in my career did the regression yield zero as a slope.

  3. Well now that cliamte science has shown we can manage the wind with giant windmill arrays, we don’t have to worry about anything at all, do we?
    Great article, Bob.

  4. Well this has been going on for a very long time doing exactly this sort of cyclic behaviour.

    Why should now be any different?

  5. the more i see of c02=main driver of climate the more it reminds me of groupthink

    “Groupthink is a psychological phenomenon that occurs within a group of people, in which the desire for harmony or conformity in the group results in an incorrect or deviant decision-making outcome. Group members try to minimize conflict and reach a consensus decision without critical evaluation of alternative ideas or viewpoints, and by isolating themselves from outside influences.

    Loyalty to the group requires individuals to avoid raising controversial issues or alternative solutions, and there is loss of individual creativity, uniqueness and independent thinking. The dysfunctional group dynamics of the “ingroup” produces an “illusion of invulnerability” (an inflated certainty that the right decision has been made). Thus the “ingroup” significantly overrates their own abilities in decision-making, and significantly underrates the abilities of their opponents (the “outgroup”).

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

  6. part of experiment design is that you should know when the experiment has failed. Otherwise its just infinite iteration, The Co2ers seem to have not identified in their design when their experiment fails?

  7. All they did was outline part of what of the ENSO is about and then cherrypick the western half of it.

    It is interesting that coming up with an “excuse” is now one of the prime areas of climate science publishing. Come up with a new excuse and you’re guaranteed to be in Nature.
    ————

    Meanwhile, the ENSO is doing its thing.

    The warm water from the Western Warm Pool is making a break for the ENSO regions in the equatorial undercurrent.

    The question is, can it push its way through all that cool water in the eastern Pacific.

    If it can, there will be an El Nino.

    If not and the cool water just neutralizes it and returns it to normal, then Matthew England’s paper can go into the dustbin. The Pacific equatorial depths will become more-or-less average temperature throughout its length and there will be no heat hiding in the Pacific ocean.

  8. I think a look needs to be taken at the wind speeds across the pacific, albedo of the region, and sea level in the western pacific during each el nino and la nina.

  9. Interesting that Trenberth used to write papers on ENSO and then the climate modelers kind of ignored it and dismissed it as having any kind of effect on climate (as if it were noise) and now they seem to think it is really important.

  10. the missing heat is being blown into the western Pacific Ocean by extraordinarily powerful and accelerating trade winds.
    =====================
    so, the climate system naturally reacts to warming by increasing the winds and thus cooling the planet.

    In other words, climate is self-correcting. Clearly Climate Science needs to take a refresher course in statistics. The model builders have not considered the most obvious cause for the pause.

    Regression toward the mean
    In statistics, regression toward (or to) the mean is the phenomenon that if a variable is extreme on its first measurement, it will tend to be closer to the average on its second measurement… To avoid making wrong inferences, regression toward the mean must be considered when designing scientific experiments and interpreting data.

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

  11. “A problem with the models, in turn, could erode trust in climate science, noted England. But “that would be akin to writing off the medical profession for finding out something new about an illness that they didn’t know about earlier,” he said.” I would suggest that it is more like “that would be akin to writing off the medical profession for realizing an illness that they had been really worried about didn’t really exist – the anomaly was due to the natural variability in Man,”

    “Because trade winds are weak during El Niños and strong during La Niñas, the change in the frequencies of El Niño and La Niña events indicate the trade wind should have increased during that time…and they have.” This seems to me to be implying that the ocean currents drive the winds, rather than the winds drive the currents. Oh!…..

    It does seem logical that if winds drive ocean currents, then warm surface water, when driven up against a barrier such as a coast, will then be subjected to downwelling. On the other side of the ocean the wind, driving water away from the coast, will create upwelling. If the wind is stronger, the surface gradient will increase, and the downwelling and upwelling effects will be stronger. So more heat can be “buried” on the down wind side, and as upwelling increases and the cool water spreads faster, the overall appearance is that the ocean is cooling. Which does not explain anything to do with whether the land and air is warming or not.

    I do remember coming across a document giving the changes at all of the Californian temperature recording stations. Almost invariably, the increases were in the urban areas, and the largest increases were in the largest urban areas. In the outlying regions, small towns and villages, readings were very slightly positive, negative or unchanging. I thought – virtually all of California’s warming must be due to the urban heat island effect. After all, you cannot have all those cars, factories, houses, etc, burning fuels and releasing waste heat without the temperature going up.

  12. The planet has seen a shift in the climate since the dawn of time, now we are seeing a shift in science from independent research to a time of grant driven predetermined outcome. The rise of Goreism in climate science is a mirror of Lysenkoism from the Soviet Union of the 30′s and 40′s. Stalin political doctrine allowed that rise of conformational science and those same tactics seem to be making a comeback.
    The average person has no clue that the report they see or hear from a media outlet is somebody’s WAG, how many times a day does the words global warming or carbon pollution get thrown at them. It is seldom reported as somebody’s theory, it is reported as proven science. Go to the weather channel website for your daily weather, click a link and before long you will hear or see global warming/climate change thrown at you.
    Then they successfully labeled you as a denier or skeptic, your science or data is then dismissed by 75% of the people hearing it. AGW is not about science, it is a war for political control. The Goreism science is just a smokescreen to cover the backdoor regulations and policies.
    The global climate can continue to cool for the next 20 years and the science will continue to show that it is cause by carbon pollution. When you are basing your research on failed climate models and readjusted data you can produce any projection you deem necessary to prove your theory.
    Look at 90% of the graphs they produce, they pick two points in time and get a bold red line to shoot up, the average Joe only sees that and thinks they are going to fry in 10 years.
    I may be the lest intelligent person posting on here, but from my point of view, honest science and factual data are winning the science battle but losing the Climate Change War. The average person on the street does not believe it is getting hotter or that the planet will burn up in the next 20 years, but they do think that CO2 is a pollutant and it is hurting the environment. CO2 may not be heating up the planet but it is a nasty pollutant. To many here see this as a discussion of only the science, I am right and you are wrong, when really this has nothing to do with the science, it is a AGW ad campaign.
    The people producing these papers are intelligent and have to know the shortcomings of their work. They turn a blind eye to the critics and move on to the next well funded project. As I type this listening to the news about the weather on the west coast, I laugh thinking that they got billions for drought relief, now they can get billion for flood relief and climate change caused both.
    Go out on the street and ask 100 people for their thoughts on El Nino and La Nina, most will say they like La Nina, the food is better.
    How in the heck do you fight that?

  13. All This Wittering Over A Few Tenths Of A Degree
    THIS IS UTTER MADNESS !!!!

    Jeez if only people were as concerned about shameful Third World Poverty
    and slave-shop manufactured products in our stores. Get Real People !

  14. Thanks to the author for another informative post/article.
    A question:
    In your studies is/are differences in the recorded data or differences in the current observations considered change? or are those differences just describing a system ?the system of ‘the climate’?
    Thanks for the interesting stuff.

  15. Bob,
    With regard to Figures 12 and 16, can you provide a link to a summary of the uncertainties in the Pacific and Global Temperature Anomalies as a function of time from 1880 to 2013.

    What I have to keep telling myself as I look at these charts is that the error bars on the left hand side (1880-1940) of the chart are much larger than the right hand side (1990-2013). The entire range over 130 years is only 1.3 deg C (1910 low, 1998 high). But at the same time, I must believe that we know the Global Sea Surface (Annual Mean) Temperature in 1910 to a precision of a fraction of a degree. How can I believe that when in the era of Argo 2004+, 100,000 more or less uniformly spaced temperature measurements per year yield a temperature range of 0.4 deg C, year to year range. How much of that is real; how much is noise?

    In 1910, the end of sailing vessels, we have bucket temperatures a couple times a day. concentrated around shipping lanes. On top of that measurement uncertainty and biased spatial sampling, we have wholesale bulk shifts in temperatures in the data processing of as much as 0.5 deg C in the early half of the century which itself adds to uncertainty. If we can hang our hat on 0.4 deg C swings in the Argo era, what is the real uncertainty in 1910? Using Willis’
    “Decimals of Precision” rule of thumb, It is hard to convince myself we even have 1/10 the data in 1910 so can we have better than 0.4*sqrt(10) =~ 1.2 deg C ?

    Even in 1960, when we had the US Office of Naval Research conduct extensive ocean thermal profiling down to 300 meters (800,000 profiles in 30 years), they were concentrated in the North Atlantic, North West Pacific and North East Pacific — where the anti-submarine research was needed. The paucity of temperature profiles south of the equator in 1960, even 1985, is stunning.
    See Figure 1 data coverage: maps b=1960, c=1985. from Abraham, J. P., et al. (2013) (pdf), and WUWT comment 2/16/14

    … I went rather long here. To repeat, is there a link you can provide that addresses the accepted uncertainty in global sea surface temperature anomalies since 1880?

  16. The doctor analogy:
    “Your arm’s infected, Mr. Public. I’ll have to amputate.”
    “But, Doc, I heard about this Dr. Sceptic, down the street, who says he can treat infections with antibiotics.”
    “Dr. Sceptic is a flat-earther. Now, come here, this will only hurt for a minute.”

    Headline: Public Loses Faith in Medical Profession Following Unnecessary Amputation

  17. I like your presentation, Bob Tisdale, thanks again.

    I think Steven Mosher wrote the best comment: In response to clear model failure, England et al proposed a testable elaboration of the theory. Now the elaborated theory has to face the challenges of fitting new (“out of sample”) data that are relevant.

  18. They use an abstract metric called the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) to define the periods when El Niño or La Niña events dominated.

    All the metrics are abstract, including the SOI, El Niño or La Niña events, and the surface mean temperature. Which will be the most informative for learning about and predicting El Niño or La Niña events, and gross heat flows, remains to be seen.

  19. “England et al. (2014) are basically claiming that stronger trade winds in recent years are driving CO2-based global warming into the depths of the Pacific Ocean”

    Do they make that claim anywhere in the paper? I am referring specifically to the tropical pacific ocean.

  20. jauntycyclist says:
    February 28, 2014 at 3:50 am
    Loyalty to the group requires individuals to avoid raising controversial issues or alternative solutions, and there is loss of individual creativity, uniqueness and independent thinking.
    —————————————————————————————————————–
    That leads right to the heart of the matter of why the Muslim world stopped producing new thought that could have rejuvenated their culture and added to the world bank of knowledge and understanding for all.

  21. John Roach is an AGW PR shill masquerading as a journalist working in an AGW PR firm (NBC News) masquerading as a news organization. The day he submits a story that says anything objective about global climate change I’ll eat my hat.

  22. Joe says: “Do they make that claim anywhere in the paper? I am referring specifically to the tropical pacific ocean.”

    Did you read the abstract of England et al. (2014), Joe? The third sentence reads:
    “Here we show that a pronounced strengthening in Pacific trade winds over the past two decades—unprecedented in observations/reanalysis data and not captured by climate models—is sufficient to account for the cooling of the tropical Pacific and a substantial slowdown in surface warming through increased subsurface ocean heat uptake.”

    Regards

  23. Stephen Rasey says: “With regard to Figures 12 and 16, can you provide a link to a summary of the uncertainties in the Pacific and Global Temperature Anomalies as a function of time from 1880 to 2013.”

    The two Kennedy et al papers about HADSST3 should be applicable since all sea surface temperature datasets rely on the same source data. Link to Part 1:

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/hadobs/hadsst3/part_1_figinline.pdf

    Link to Part 2:

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/hadobs/hadsst3/part_1_figinline.pdf

  24. mbur says: “In your studies is/are differences in the recorded data or differences in the current observations considered change? or are those differences just describing a system ?the system of ‘the climate’?”

    Please expand on and clarify your questions.

  25. Bob: Assuming that PDO and temperatures in the Pacific (and possibly therefore world wide) are linked in any way then this graph shows that the recent data is not that unusual at all.

    Unless you believe that data from the 1500′s is not representative of today in any way.

  26. Given that the “super” El Niño of 1998 released quite a large amount of heat from the Eastern Pacific, there is no surprise that the information shows the Eastern Pacific Ocean to have cooled and by extension land temperatures directly east thereof.

  27. Thank you for your response to my question,I was thinking it was OT (not about England et al. (2014) ) let’s see if I can re-phrase it.:
    If I look at the recorded data, and see all these ups and downs. Does that mean if it goes up or down now is that different than what happened in the past ? or is that just what the system does? With multiple states(nino,nina,nada, etc. i.e. ocean systems) What is the normal or is multiple states the normal? What has changed that is not a part of the system’s normal ? I understand frequency of events might play a role but how is that reconciled with the far past where records arent as good as modern data? Is the data record long enough to declare a normal that we have deviated from?
    Thanks again—

  28. RichardLH says: “Unless you believe that data from the 1500′s is not representative of today in any way.”

    It’s a reconstruction. It’s not equivalent to what we look at today as data.

  29. mbur says: “If I look at the recorded data, and see all these ups and downs. Does that mean if it goes up or down now is that different than what happened in the past ?”

    There are paleoclimatological reconstructions that show ENSO existed millions of years ago. Whether or not it’s equivalent to what is exists today is unknown.

    mbur says: “With multiple states(nino,nina,nada, etc. i.e. ocean systems) What is the normal or is multiple states the normal?

    La Niña is simply an exaggerated ENSO-neutral state. El Niño is the anomalous state. Trade winds reverse. Warm water floods the eastern tropical Pacific, where it’s normally cool.

    mbur says: “What has changed that is not a part of the system’s normal ?”

    What’s “normal” in a chaotic system?

    mbur says: “I understand frequency of events might play a role but how is that reconciled with the far past where records arent as good as modern data?”

    Sea surface temperature records for the equatorial Pacific become sparse before the 1950s, almost non-existent before the opening of the Panama Canal in 1914. There is no way to reconcile anything before then.

    mbur says: “Is the data record long enough to declare a normal that we have deviated from?”

    Nope. That was one of the points I tried to make in my earlier post about England et al.:

    http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2014/02/10/quick-comments-on-england-et-al-2014/

  30. Bob Tisdale says:
    February 28, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    “It’s a reconstruction. It’s not equivalent to what we look at today as data.”

    As that graph also contains the current PDO (which can be displayed on its own if you wish)

    and the two are in lockstep during their periods of overlap

    I consider that to be an odd response.

    Do you have any reason to believe that the jisao PDO and the reconstruction PDO are showing different things? Given that they match so well?

  31. “so, the climate system naturally reacts to warming by increasing the winds and thus cooling the planet.” how do winds cool the planet?

    REPLY: Look it up snarkboy. Google is your friend. – Anthony

  32. Bob: A filter is not a smoothing (other than if you wish to not address what is there). Talk about calling things names so as not address a reality!

    Everybody will happily use a 12 month filter but gets cross if you use longer ones! Why?

    Which part of science do you come from? Filter are not smoothers! They are filters! They are used everywhere else and for good reasons. Only in climate are they so ignored.

    I blame it on the statisticians.

  33. Aanthanur DC says:
    March 1, 2014 at 5:21 am

    Mr. Tisdale. will you publsih your work on this in the scientific literature and challenge the papers you challenge here?

    - – - – - – -

    Aanthanur DC,

    I see you have been banned due your multiple blatant policy violations on another thread, but you might consider letting us know (somehow on another blog) your intent to publish your work confirming the research papers that support the IPCC alarmism. So, as a parting thought to you, When will you publish?

    John

  34. Aanthanur DC, why do that? Peer review is guaranteed in this venue. If a mistake is made, it will be hammered on by 100′s if not 1000′s of readers with a great deal of expertise in the various areas needed to understand ENSO components. Publishing in a journal has no such guarantees. Hell, anybody can fake an article and get it published these days.

    http://www.foxnews.com/science/2014/03/01/over-100-published-science-journal-articles-just-gibberish/

  35. Oops? Did my comment end up in spam?

    [Odd. But yes, that is where it t'was. Mod]

    [It went to the spam folder because ‘aanthur’ (AKA: Daniel Kuhn) has been banned by Anthony. Comments like this with his name in them will now have to be rescued and posted. ~another mod.]

  36. Mr. Tisdale, there is something I don’t understand above. You write, “the source Ocean Heat Content data in the tropical Pacific for the depths of 0-700 meters and 0-2000 meters (represented by the unadjusted UKMO EN3 data) during the TAO project and ARGO eras are exactly the same, see Figure 4, and that suggests that all of the variability in the tropical Pacific ocean heat content is taking place in the top 700 meters.”

    The graphic illustrates what you write, that there is no difference. How does this confirm that the variability is in the top 700 meters? I was looking for a difference between the datasets in order to confirm that. Or was this sarcasm that I missed?

    Thank you for your work on this.

  37. John, both measures include the top 700 meters. If there is additional heat deeper than 700m there would be a differences between the data sets, with the 0-2000 data set demonstrating more heat. Since there is not, there is likely no additional heat beyond the top 700 meters that is measurable by the instrumentation used to sample water temperature at such depths.

  38. I had considered that, Pamela. Even though the top 1/3 of the depth is in common between the datasets, if one of them had more heat deviation than the other, I would expect that to show up in the graph. The text says, “Before we proceed, let’s confirm that the variability in the ocean heat content of the tropical Pacific takes place in the top 700 meters.” To my untrained eye, it looks like the data is saying ‘no difference between 0-700 meters and 0-2000 meters’. I don’t see how that confirms anything other than the opposite. In other words, if the variability is confined to one dataset, the difference should show up between that and the other set.

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