RSS MSU LT Global Temperature Anomaly for April 2008 – flat

I’ve plotted the results of the RSS Microwave Sounder Unit (MSU) global temperature anomaly data by RSS (Remote Sensing Systems of Santa Rosa, CA).

For April 2008 it has moved a tiny bit higher, with a value of .080°C for a change (∆T) of 0.001°C globally from March.

RSS
2008 1 -0.070
2008 2 -0.002
2008 3 0.079
2008 4 0.080


click image for a ZOOMED 1998 -2008 DATA PORTION of the 1979-2008 image

RAW RSS data is available here

Note that there does not appear to be any sustained upwards trend post 1998.

Here is the entire RSS MSU dataset plotted:


click for a larger image

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114 thoughts on “RSS MSU LT Global Temperature Anomaly for April 2008 – flat

  1. I was wondering the other day, that the 1998 spike never seems to have been discussed in the plethora of blogs on climate.

    To my old style simple mind, the spike seems an outlier of pluto or whatever it’s name is nowadays proportions. Also coincidentally it was about the time the world went AGW rabid.

    I used to be a banker (and please dont tell anyof my neighbours) but if I saw a number like that in a series for forecast as a business venture was being started with the associated prior numbers my finance hackles would rise.

    So I wonder if anyone has ever truly looked at that one remarkable kick start temperature for the Climate scare, has the data been audited for massage.

    Because that is the kick off time for the hysteria.

  2. The last six months have averaged +.046, the lowest six-monthly average since March 2000. The March 2000 six-monthly average included some figures from late 1999, so we can say that the current spell has been the coldest six month spell of the century! (relatively, that is: it is still positive after all)

    The 10-year trend (since May 1998) is about +.04 degrees per decade. The trend from January 1998, which includes those high figures from Jan -April 1998, is -.04 degrees C per decade. Trends this small are essentially zip.

    These figures could change. I noticed that some earlier RSS numbers have changed a little since last month.

  3. Tropics now have 6 months in a row with a negative temperature anomaly, SH 4 months in a row.

    Strange kind of global warming that is only in the NH, excluding the tropics.

  4. John Van Krimpen: I believe you might actually question the source of the 1998 spike in temperature. I’m not sure, but you might. Just in case you do: The 1998 spike is the result of the well-documented and highly discussed 97/98 El Nino–the “El Nino of the Century”.

  5. For those who haven’t seen this graph of global HADSST minus ERSST.v2: That 97/98 El Nino was so strong it broke the Hadley Centre’s SST calculator. Note the step change. Can’t miss it. It’s also reflected in their combined global temperature and other data. http://i28.tinypic.com/2ronf9w.jpg
    No other source has that step. Sorry I went off topic, Anthony.

  6. John Van Krimpen: The 1998 spike was due to the very strong El-Nina that occurred that year. And you’re right, the warming crowd went crazy that year!

  7. Can somebody else check and confirm?

    RSS 12 month mean Oct 1987 to Sep 1988 = 0.17783

    RSS 12 month mean May 2007 to Apr 2008 = 0.16917

    That’s over 19 and a half years folks.

  8. “was wondering the other day, that the 1998 spike never seems to have been discussed in the plethora of blogs on climate.

    To my old style simple mind, the spike seems an outlier of pluto or whatever it’s name is nowadays proportions. Also coincidentally it was about the time the world went AGW rabid”

    As this blog mentions climate cycles to explain away AGW you should check your El Niño cycles, 1997-1998 was the last major event. Considering we are in the middle of a La niña, there is s solar minimum and the north Pacific is on a cooling cycle then we would expect the global mean temperature to dip, not slowly rise since February. The Arctic ice sheets are again retreating rapidly (could this winters high ice sheet cover be the result of melt water from the summer/autumn reducing the salinity of the water and thus raising the freezing point?) and with Eurasia and the north east of North America having much higher temperatures than the norm at the moment then this year could still be a warm one. When the current cooling cycles end and the next El Niño hits then we will see the true effects of AGW.My mum always told me to walk away from hornets nests if they are disturbed so I’m off!!
    P.S I applaude Mr Watts work on temperature sensors, excellent stuff.

  9. Dear John Van Krimpen,

    the warm year 1998 was due to the “El Nino of the century”, the strongest warming pattern in the equatorial Pacific Ocean. It explains virtually everything about the peak, is a well-known fact admitted by “both sides”, and it is certainly not being hidden by the skeptics. JunkScience likes to add the “El Nino of the century” label to the peak.

    Best
    Lubos

  10. The last 2 months the tropic regoin is colder than any time since the late 80s. This La Nina is very strong.

  11. I was wondering the other day, that the 1998 spike never seems to have been discussed in the plethora of blogs on climate.

    To my old style simple mind, the spike seems an outlier of pluto or whatever it’s name is nowadays proportions. Also coincidentally it was about the time the world went AGW rabid.

    The hysteria started long before then, early to mid 80s.

  12. The last six months have averaged +.046, the lowest six-monthly average since March 2000. The March 2000 six-monthly average included some figures from late 1999, so we can say that the current spell has been the coldest six month spell of the century! (relatively, that is: it is still positive after all)

    Not positive when compared to pre-Hansenized historic data.

  13. John Van Krimpen:

    The spike in 1998 was a giant El Nino where the Pacific Ocean dumped a tremendous amount of heat into the atmosphere. You can see spikes caused by other El Ninos in the temperature series, they are just not as large. The obvious ones are at months 48, 108, 144, and 198.

  14. Braddles,

    Won’t the RSS anomalies change slightly every month until a solid baseline has been established (i.e., 30 yrs worth of data)? In other words, you can expect the RSS numbers (of the past) to vary slightly since the baseline is still being developed.

  15. John:

    There was an extremely strong el nino in 1998, which caused sea surface temperatures to rise across a wide area of the Pacific. I don’t think the data were massaged more than other data – several sources (including direct measurements from things like ships and bouys as well as satellites) recorded warming of approximately the same magnitude.

    The warmer temperatures associated with that event most certainly were held up as evidence that the globe was warming – “the hottest year on record”, and were largely responsible for kicking off the current hysteria. There was relatively little comment on the fact that this was the strongest El Nino on record (at least back to 1950 – handlily beating the 1972 event).

    By contrast, there seems to be greater willingness to credit La Nina and the apparent change in the Pacific Decadal Occilation (which has been in its “warm phase”, and may be shifting into its “cool phase”) for the current cooling.

  16. I think that I will continue to cut and stack fire wood. I agree with JVK that 98 was an outlier just as 1934ish was an outlier. And just think GISS is now revamping the older readings and the new history seems to be cooler. What a wonderful way to negate the current flat to cooling trend change. Please notice that I said trend change not trend. How can we see cooling if the past is made to appear cooler.

    I am looking forward to looking at the numbers from UAB and HC and GISS. I wonder if there will be any divergence from metric to metric.

    By the way the conservative group Grass fire is now on the anti AGW politically. They had an article this morning calling for the end to the hysteria about global warming using the RSS figures in their article. I think things are getting interesting and look forware to the rebuttals to the new measurements and John C’s open letter.

    Bill

    Bill Derryberry

  17. John:
    Certainly the spike in temperature associated with the 1998 El Nino was unusually strong relative to what has been seen since modern measurements of temperatures but Super El Ninos have been found throughout the historical record including 1596, 1630, 1789-1793, 1877-1878, 1899-1900 and 1972. All were associated with the worldwide weather disruption such as was seen in the 1998 El Nino. Also El Nino events are subject to modifcation by what else is occurring in the weather system. For example, some researchers have pointed out that the 1982 El Nino was modified by the powerful eruption of El Chichon. The point is that strong El Ninos have occurred throughout history and as several have correctly commented, what one makes of a natural and recurring event may depend upon belief rather than science. We are far away from understanding ENSO with only glimpses of relationships to solar activity and the PDO.

  18. Is the accuracy of the measuring instrument and technique really 1/1000 of a degree C? It doesn’t seem to make much sense to talk in such numbers unless it is. To do so seems to be playing under hockey rules.

    And please don’t confuse resolution with accuracy. Is my electronics background showing?

  19. Morgan said: “The warmer temperatures associated with that event most certainly were held up as evidence that the globe was warming – “the hottest year on record”, and were largely responsible for kicking off the current hysteria. There was relatively little comment on the fact that this was the strongest El Nino on record”

    But according to the Pogies, the El Nino was an aberration and had little if anything to do with Planet Earth’s temperature. They recently made this statement when painting the current cooldown as the result of natural variations. I’ll find the article somewhere in my stack and post the URL later.

    Jack Koenig, Editor
    The Mysterious Climate Project
    http://www.climateclinic.com

  20. Hi,

    Guys take a look at the tropics in UAH -.53. I can’t see how temperature can go up if the tropics stay cool. So far only the NH is warmer than average. I think soon as AMO flips we will really see temperatures drop.

  21. This looks like Feb-April were a slight bump up before the next drop (like June-Aug 07). -.3 global anomaly by summer?

  22. If the El Nino of 1998 was the strongest of the century why was 1934 the warmest year of the 20th century?

  23. Dormant sun, negative trending PDO and AMO, Asian (SOx) aerosols out the wazoo, Kiluea spewing out more (SOx) aerosols and now stratospheric ash spreading across the SH … we are going to be in a world of hurt.

  24. The caption on the top graph, when you click to enlarge, is incorrect. It should say “1998.”

    REPLY: It is a ZOOMED SECTION of the 1979-2008 graph.

  25. pdm: [Seasonally corrected CO2]

    At the time I decided to use the raw data (well, the one with interpolated missing values) because we should be able to apply our own seasonal adjustment. For example, here’s the data with a 1-year running mean subtracted:

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-co2/mean:12

    But granted this isn’t as sophisticated as their method, so perhaps I should include both; I’ll add it to the (ever-growing ;-) ) list.

    Paul

  26. [This comment seemed to get lost earlier, sorry if this results in a duplicate through some time wormhole feature of WordPress that I’m not aware of…]

    Folks,

    I’ve been wondering about the difference in baselines in the four temperature series, and I couldn’t find a definitive statement of how to align them, so I’ve tried to work one out – I’d appreciate comments…

    The four temperature series quote their baselines as follows

    HADCRUT: Jan 1961 – Dec 1990 (30 years)
    UAH: Jan 1979 – Dec 1998 (20 years)
    RSS: Jan 1979 – Dec 1998 (20 years)
    GISTEMP: Jan 1951 – Dec 1980 (30 years)

    (Note in woodfortrees.org you quote the sample _after_ the last one in ‘to’, so it would be e.g. rss/from:1979/to:1999, and I’ll quote them like that below)

    The period of comparable overlap is therefore 1979-1999. I’ve added a feature in the ‘raw data’ output of woodfortrees.org so you can see the mean of all the samples at the end. So if we look at the raw data of the 4 series for that period, we get:

    Graph: http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1979/to:1999/plot/uah/from:1979/to:1999/plot/rss/from:1979/to:1999/plot/gistemp/from:1979/to:1999

    Data:
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/data/hadcrut3vgl/from:1979/to:1999/plot/uah/from:1979/to:1999/plot/rss/from:1979/to:1999/plot/gistemp/from:1979/to:1999

    The means are as follows:

    HADCRUT3: 0.146
    UAH: -0.001
    RSS: 0
    GISTEMP: 0.238

    So, allowing for a bit of rounding, UAH & RSS are both zero across that period, as we would expect. HADCRUT3 is 0.146K higher, GISTEMP is 0.238K higher.

    Before anyone complains about GISTEMP reading high, this is inevitable given that its baseline includes an earlier, relatively cooler period!

    So, it would seem that

    GISTEMP = UAH/RSS + 0.238
    HADCRUT = UAH/RSS + 0.146
    and therefore
    GISTEMP = HADCRUT + 0.092

    I’ve heard 0.24 quoted for GISS before, so it would seem this is reasonable.

    Hence we can now provide a 4-series comparison to a single baseline:

    1979-1999, baselines adjusted:
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1979/to:1999/offset:-0.146/plot/uah/from:1979/to:1999/plot/rss/from:1979/to:1999/plot/gistemp/from:1979/to:1999/offset:-0.238

    and the data shows all means now roughly zero, as we’d hope:
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/data/hadcrut3vgl/from:1979/to:1999/offset:-0.146/plot/uah/from:1979/to:1999/plot/rss/from:1979/to:1999/plot/gistemp/from:1979/to:1999/offset:-0.238

    This means we can now compare series properly:

    1970 onwards, 12 month mean, baselines adjusted:
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1979/offset:-0.146/mean:12/plot/uah/from:1979/mean:12/plot/rss/from:1979/mean:12/plot/gistemp/from:1979/offset:-0.238/mean:12

    Last 10 years, baselines adjusted:
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/last:120/offset:-0.146/plot/uah/last:120/plot/rss/last:120/plot/gistemp/last:120/offset:-0.238

    Last year, baselines adjusted:
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/last:12/offset:-0.146/plot/uah/last:12/plot/rss/last:12/plot/gistemp/last:12/offset:-0.238

    (note that HADCRUT & GISTEMP aren’t out for April at the time of writing, but the link will automatically fill them in when they are)

    Does this make sense? Can anyone spot any flaws in this logic? The only fly in the ointment that I can see is that the anomalies are quoted against the average of that particular month in the baseline period, so technically doing it on an annual average like this is invalid – but done globally, I can’t see it is going to make a significant difference.

    Paul

  27. In response to Jim Arnt’s suggestion that we take a look at the tropics, here are three quick graphs, one each for the tropics, the NH, and the SH, respectively. Plotted are the raw UAH monthly data, and a smoothed trend using HP filtering.

    I don’t see a much of a “trend” at all through the “satellite era” in the tropics. The trends in the NH and SH have leveled off, and are moving downward.

  28. I am confident that the GISS numbers will show 2008 to be among the warmest years ever, and if they don’t… I’m sure they will after a few “corrections” are made.

    I expect they will still be strongly positive as the Ice sheet covers my home.

  29. SteveSadlov,
    Relax…we are not all going to die.
    We’re only cooling back to normal.
    We’ll have a much better picture in a couple of years.
    If you start feeling anxiety, just think of them IPCC climate models! ;)

  30. Paul,

    You have built an awesome tool on your website. I was reviewing similar charts earlier, but without applying the baseline adjustment. I output your data from 2001 onward to Excel and found three sources with downward trends since 2001, and GISS with an upward trend which raises the GISS alarm a little higher for me, though I’m not sure it would still be there with the baseline shift. Is it possible (without a herculean effort) to add trendlines to your graphing program?

    Quick question for you statiscians out there – if GISS Temp’s baseline period ends in 1980, why would they still be ajdusting (lower) mid century data? The mean is suppose to have beeen established, so stop lowering it? Or am I missing something?

  31. I have a comment about CO2 beeing back on track, it isn’t.
    CO2 has shown a significant decrease in growth rate for april, as you could expect with lower global temperatures.
    Here are the last 5 years of april CO2 meassurments.

    Year _ Month _ CO2(ppm) _ increase(ppm)
    2002 _ 4 _ 374,93
    2003 _ 4 _ 377,75 _ 2,82
    2004 _ 4 _ 380,42 _ 2,67
    2005 _ 4 _ 382,18 _ 1,76
    2006 _ 4 _ 384,69 _ 2,51
    2007 _ 4 _ 386,37 _ 1,68
    2008 _ 4 _ 387,19 _ 0,82

    AS you can see the growth from april to april is much lower than previous years. Lower temperatures yeilds in a lower CO2 increase in atmosphere.

    The increasing CO2 level follows the temperature much more closely than anthropogen CO2 emissions.

    So considering those facts this years annual increase will be much lower than previous years due to lower global temperatures. We may see as small increase as 1-1,5 ppm this year.

  32. UAH shows SH has a negative temp anomaly for the last 7 months. Clear cooling trend. Current month is coldest since 1989.

    A global climate signal should be clearest in the SH because there are far fewer people, less land use changes, weather is less noisy and a few other reasons.

    An unbiased observer would probably say we are seeing an accelerating global cooling trend, largely obscured by local factors in the NH.

    Basil, your UAH SH graph shows an uptick at the end, while the UAH SH data has no uptick. Last 6 months are all cooler than the previous month.

  33. pAUL cLARK SAID: “Does this make sense? Can anyone spot any flaws in this logic? The only fly in the ointment that I can see is that the anomalies are quoted against the average of that particular month in the baseline period, so technically doing it on an annual average like this is invalid – but done globally, I can’t see it is going to make a significant difference.

    Paul, you sure did a hell of a job. I’ve been studying your charts and can’t see any flaw yet.

    Jack Koenig, Editor
    The Mysterious Climate Project
    http://www.climateclinic.com

  34. Rod Duke said: Two German physicists have constructed a very convincing argument against AGW. It is guite lengthy but I can find no errors in their logic. Their math is beyond my abilities to verify so you’re on your own with it.

    I read this last year when it first appeared and again last January. Although I have a math and chemistry background, I found it quite a challenge. The Pogies hammered the authors when it was first published, even though they probably didn’t understand a word of it.

    Jack Koenig, Editor
    The Mysterious Climate Project
    http://www.climateclinic.com

  35. Philip_B

    I think I have it right. Here’s a portion of the data I imported:

    2008 3 0.089 0.424 -0.246
    2008 4 0.015 0.170 -0.140

    The last number is the anomaly for SH. That’s an uptick, moving from -0.246 to -0.140.

    Basil

  36. Basil,

    You somewhat stole my thunder. At work today (don’t tell anyboby), I plotted RSS data using the following data:

    NH minus Tropics (20 / 82.5)
    Tropics (-20 / 20)
    SH minus Tropics (-20 / -70)
    World (-70 / 82.5)

    The MONTHLY trend was the following (multiply by 120 to get decadal trend):

    Data Source: Monthly Trend Decade Trend
    NH minus Tropics (20 / 82.5) 0.0029 0.348
    Tropics (-20 / 20) 0.0014 0.168
    SH minus Tropics (-20 / -70) 0.0005 0.060
    World (-70 / 82.5) 0.0015 0.180

    Thus, it appears that the following is true (especially seen when plotted):

    – World trend is essentially the same as the Tropics trend. There are very few occasions in the last 30 years where they part. Actually, the last 7 months has been a big exception.

    – Very little warming in SH (minus tropics)

    – A lot of warming in NH (minus tropics)

    – Tropics appears to be the average between NH (minus tropics) and SH (minus tropics)

    One last thing, I plotted NH (minus tropics) against SH (minus tropics). I wish I had the time to figure out how to do tinypics. Anyway, here is what’s interesting. NH and SH temp anomalies (minus tropics) are pretty much aligned between 1979 and 1994. Then, 1994 onwards, there is this huge split between them, especially since 1999 (post El Nino). This is unparalled in the history of satellite-derived data. I can’t explain it except for:

    a) less aerosols over the land masses of NH causing preferrential heating,
    b) land heats quicker than ocean under a hotter sun (NH land >> SH land), c) changes in land use (NH land>>SH land),
    d) localized CO2 effect (from industrial activity in NH), preferential absorption of CO2 in oceans (SH ocean>>NH ocean), better atmospheric convection in SH, and finally, better negative feedback mechanisms in SH due more ocean,
    e) solar effects that preferentially affects the atmosphere over land masses.

    I encourage everyone to do the plots themselves (again, I wish I had time to learn tinypics). Gotta run.

  37. The formatting wasn’t the best (plus, I had an memory error):

    NH minus Tropics (20 / 82.5)
    0.0024 monthly
    0.288 decade

    Tropics (-20 / 20)
    0.0014 monthly
    0.168 decade

    SH minus Tropics (-20 / -70)
    0.0005 monthly
    0.060 decade

    World (-70 / 82.5)
    0.0015 monthly
    0.180 decade

  38. One question:

    Is the January ’08 as much an outlier as the 1998 peak? Or is this the beginning of a massive drop-off in temperatures as China, the sun and Chaitén Volcano combine to freeze our butts off?

  39. McGrats / Jack Koenig: As a physicist, I can tell you that the Gerlich & Tscheuschner paper (which I believe is the paper by German physicists that you refer to) is complete and utter garbage. (And, by the way, it not only claims to disprove AGW but the entire greenhouse effect period, which makes me wonder if it is only a matter of time before someone writes a paper arguing not only that CO2 does not cause warming but that the molecule does not even exist.) Actually, a very smart fellow who I went to grad school with, Arthur Smith, has written something that tears most of it apart: http://arxiv.org/abs/0802.4324

    In addition, their argument that the greenhouse effect violates the Second Law of Thermodynamics is such nonsense that, if I were in academia rather than industry and taught an undergraduate physics course (maybe even a first year one), I would give my students a simple radiation problem that would lead them through showing how silly this claim is.

  40. Godozo,

    Over the last 6-8 years, there has been a number of NH “drops” to negative values. Interestingly, they almost always occurr in December, January, or February. So, being clever, I only plotted the anomalies of those 3 months over the past 29 years. Guess what? The trends were almost exactly the same for the NH, SH, Tropics, and world as when all the months were analyzed (see post above for my trend values). So, I concluded that these occassional negative spikes had no impact on the long term trend. Something else is going on that is causing a split between NH and SH temp anomalies. Note that this split started in 1994 and became worse (and consistent) post 1998. By the way, world trend between 1979 and 1993 was 0.05 C/decade (or essentially zilch). The positive trend did not start still 1994, and again, essentially due to warming in the NH alone. However, as pointed out elsewhere, even the NH trendline has flattened over the past 10 years (since 1998).

    By the way, none of the observations being discussed above fits with classical global warming theory.

  41. Joel Shore,

    Did you read page 89? The authors had some choice comments regarding realclimate.org. Apparently, the two parties were in contact with each other prior to the paper being published. I taught radiative heating once in an enginering class. Some of the ideas in the paper don’t seem to square with what I remembered teaching. But, I do remember this (at least for engineering calculations): at low temperatures (such as the atmosphere), conduction and convection are vastly more important for heat transfer than radiative heat transfer. But, I suppose the difference in temperature between the earth and outer space is pretty high, which makes radiative heat transfer important (as it happens on a dry, clear night that cools quickly after the sun is down). Interestingly, the Stefan-Boltzman equation can be used very easily to approximate the maximum surface temperature for the earth (roughly 130-135 F), which does occur in a few places around the world. Anyway, the uncertainties in the climate models regarding cloud cover, convection, etc. are much larger than any forcing effect of CO2, so I have never understand why those guys at RC.org are so smarmy about their models in the first place.

  42. Mike K; Not to worry. We are a relatively friendly lot.

    You have to consider that although the PDO is flipping to cool it is still quite warm. Also, the AMO, AO, and NAO are all in maximum warm phase. So its not surprising it’s warm in the NH. Contrast that with the SH where none of that applies and you have record ice down there, even more than the pit of the last cool at the end of te 70s.

  43. Is the accuracy of the measuring instrument and technique really 1/1000 of a degree C?

    Not a prayer. Of by a factor of 100. On a good day. (And there ain’t never been no good day.)

    Measurements to that resolution are what we can “the fallacy of misplaced precision” in the history biz.

  44. Joel Shore,

    I believe you did not read their paper. They were very explicit about CO2 and other gases, basically our atmosphere, keeping us from freezing.

    What they did claim is that the classic Greenhouse effect is not the same physically as so called greenhouse gases.

    They explained that a greenhouse retains heat through a LACK of convection/circulation, which is easily proven (open the doors/windows).

    The enhanced greenhouse effect that AGW loves is quite different in function with only IR in common. CO2 absorbs and reradiates IR. One of their points is that the Enhanced GG claims appear to require all the reradiation back to the earth rather than in multiple directions. Another is that they do not appear to include convection and conduction at a reasonable level.

    Unfortunately this idea that they claim to disprove well understood physical principals is being used to scare people away from the paper.

    Here is a quote from the paper you provide a link to:

    “Incoming solar radiation still drives everything – if the solar constant S drops, then so does everything else. But
    the effect of the absorbing layer is to reduce the final outgoing energy for a given temperature, so the planet heats up
    until things are back in balance again.” (bottom page 8)

    Now, if I were to treat this paper the same way others treat the Germans I would claim he is saying the Greenhouse Gas actually heats the planet while the external energy input drops.

    I think we all accept he MEANS that the GG SLOWS the radiative losses or RETAINS heat.

    The Germans paper say the same thing, but, disprove the idea that GG can cause excessive radiation delay at conditions even remotely similar to the earths.

    For example, they point out the difference in AMOUNT of CO2 in the Venusian atmosphere which is 98% with a pressure of almost 100 times earths at the surface. Mars has little retention even though it is also over 90% as its surface pressure is about 1/10 of earth. The actual number of molecules available for radiative delay or absorption is enormously smaller at each step.

    Basically the paper you reference, without me being able to parse the math, does NOT falsify the Germans. I think the term RED HERRING applies as they appear to be using a strawman.

    I will admit I don’t fully understand either sides claims on the Average Global Temp. I really don’t care as it does not appear to affect whether CO2 is going to cause a catastrophe or not.

    By the way, would you explain to me how CO2 can ADD energy?? Otherwise I think their claim about the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics probably holds.

    One of the things I have noticed is that the AGW crowd appears to have started accepting the idea that the second doubling of CO2 will NOT cause the same increase in temp as the first doubling. They used to ascribe almost as much effect on second on later doublings in their calcs. I believe this is also a part of the Germans claim that Enhanced Greenhouse is against the 2nd Law, but, may be corrected in their models now.

    Here is an example of the faulty conception from the IPCC statement on GG:

    “…For example, an increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration leads to a reduction in outgoing infrared radiation and a positive radiative forcing.”

    Similar to the statement in the paper you reference, they can not POSSIBLY mean that the amount of outgoing radiation decreases permanently, can they??? What would be the mechanism??? More CO2 simply means more possible “stepping stones” for the outgoing radiation. That is, it is DELAYED, not STOPPED!!! If the CO2 ABSORBS the IR, then it warms and convection enters, Boyles law and all that rot!! Their statements make it sound like CO2 increases heat, or, is an extremely good insulator!!!

    Back to the Venus Mars comparisons. We simply do not have enough CO2 to cause significant warming even if it ALL managed to ABSORB heat rather than reradiate it!!

    I believe the AGW types are now saying the water vapor cycle will provide the feedback they need to replace this disproven enhanced CO2. Of course, they apparently do not admit to the extensive NEGATIVE forcings that can also be in the H2O cycle!!! Hopefully the findings from the Argo Observations will help straighten that area out!!

    OK, I’ve exhibited my ignorance. Please, will some one give the paper a real evaluation rather than head bobbing and hand waving??????

  45. Rod Duke,
    I read the summary, which summarises everything us skeptics have been saying all along. Nothing in the German press about them.

    Crosspatch
    Good way to put it. Al Gore: Disaster-chaser.
    Of course we all know the Burma disaster here is a civic one, and not so much due to the climate. Kind of like Ray Nagin / Kathleen Blanco…

    godozo
    I like your question. It seems many people only see either a warming disaster or a cooling disaster, and nothing in the middle. Why can’t people ever think that maybe it’ll just be a little cooler, or a little warmer? Why must it be either this extreme, or that extreme?
    —-

    I’ve had it with all the global warming doomsaysers. Now, hopefully, the folks on this side are not succumbing to global cooling doom and gloom. We’re supposed to be smarter than that.
    So far I don’t see any data suggesting we’re headed for a cooling disaster?
    If you have it – then show it! So far I’ve seen only imaginations running amok. Keep your fantasies in check folks.

  46. Chris,
    As you describe it, sounds like most of the warming took place from 1994 – 1998. Maybe it was all due to the El Nino?

  47. Looking at Don Easterbrook’s graph of PDO periods reminded me of the SOI measurements; from 1980-1998 there was a preponderance of -ve SOI’s; -ve SOI’s indicate a greater number of El Nino events, which in turn reflect warm PDO’s. Since 2000, there has been a majority of +ve SOI’s’ which appears to be reflected in the temp decline and the PDO flip to cold. 1998 didn’t show the biggest and most sustained -ve SOI’s ,but it was preceded by some very large -ve years; perhaps a lapse or just simple accumulation is responsible for the 1998 spike; given the correlation between temp, SOI and PDO configuration, and the lack of correlation with a steadily increasing CO2 level, it is hard to go past natural factors.

  48. KuhnKat,

    You seem to have a lot of confusions about the G&T paper. First of all, let me clarify that when I said that the paper was “garbage”, I did not mean everything in it is wrong. What I meant is that what is in it is either well-known or wrong. (In particular, many…maybe even most…of their mathematical calculations are probably correct but the interpretation of them is wrong, in fact, sometimes bizarrely wrong.) The statement that real greenhouses operate by a different mechanism than the atmospheric greenhouse effect is an example of something that is correct but is also well known (see, for example, the last paragraph in the “Basic mechanism” section of the Wikipedia article on the greenhouse effect: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenhouse_effect ).

    I don’t know how you use the term “RED HERRING” and “strawman” to describe Arthur’s paper where he very specifically notes what part of what they say (which is basically the “meat” of their paper) he demonstrates is wrong. And, you frankly admit to not being able to “parse the math”. G&T are very clear in claiming that they have falsified “the Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse effect”, as can be seen from the title of their paper and their abstract. Admittedly, there are lots of different arguments (or unsupported statements) in that very long paper and Arthur did not attempt to address all of them, but he addressed most of the ones that they seemed to emphasize as most important, e.g., in their abstract.

    As for your question, “By the way, would you explain to me how CO2 can ADD energy?? Otherwise I think their claim about the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics probably holds”: The CO2 does not add energy but helps retain energy in the same way that a heat shield can do so. They claim that it is impossible for this to happen without violating the 2nd law of thermodynamics because they say it involves a flow of heat from a colder place (the upper troposphere) to a warmer place (the earth’s surface). However, their statement is incorrect as the net flow is still from the earth’s surface to the upper troposphere and then out into space. The existence of a radiatively-active troposphere just makes this rate of loss of heat from the surface slower. One can in fact come up with very simple radiative physics problems that demonstrate the same effect. For example, take a blackbody sphere at a constant temperature that represents the sun. Put a concentric blackbody spherical shell around it (that will be analogous to the earth) and then either put or leave out a second larger radius blackbody spherical shell around it (to be analogous to a radiative-active troposphere). Assume this is immersed in empty space (T=0). Then, it is a simple 1st-year physics problem to calculate the temperature of the 1st (earth-analog) shell both with and without the presence of the 2nd shell. One finds that this shell is warmer when the 2nd shell is present even though the 2nd shell is at a lower temperature than the 1st shell. By their arguments, this would violate the 2nd law of thermodynamics, which is proposterous.

    As for your question “they can not POSSIBLY mean that the amount of outgoing radiation decreases permanently, can they??? What would be the mechanism??? More CO2 simply means more possible ‘stepping stones’ for the outgoing radiation. That is, it is DELAYED, not STOPPED!!!”: Well, it depends what you mean by “permanently”. It is more than just delaying the outgoing radiation. The net effect of CO2 is to cause the outgoing radiation from the earth to be emitted higher up in the atmosphere where it is cooler. And, as a result, the earth as a whole (including the atmosphere) behaves as a blackbody emitter having an average temperature of around 255 K, rather than the average surface temperature of 288 K. In other words, the surface temperature of the earth is 33 K warmer than its blackbody temperature. This, in the most basic sense, is the atmospheric greenhouse effect.

    Now, to the question of permanence of a radiative imbalance produced by an increase in greenhouse gases: No, such a radiative imbalance will not be maintained indefinitely. What will happen is that the earth’s atmosphere will slowly heat up until it is at a temperature such that the outgoing radiation again balances the incoming radiation. And, this is how a rise in greenhouse gas concentrations causes an increase in the earth’s temperature. (So, the summary is that the rise in greenhouse gases causes radiative imbalance which causes global warming to restore the radiative balance.) Note, however, that there is a lot of thermal inertia, particularly due to the oceans, so that this warming takes a long time (say a “half-life” on the order of a decade to several decades).

    Your statement “We simply do not have enough CO2 to cause significant warming even if it ALL managed to ABSORB heat rather than reradiate it!!” is simply wrong. A doubling of CO2 levels, with no feedbacks is enough to produce about 1.2 C of warming. You are correct that the water vapor feedback (and other feedbacks like the ice albedo feedback) are what then raise the estimate climate sensitivity to doubling from about 1.2 C to about 2 to 4.5 C. As for your speculations about there being extensive negative feedbacks in the water cycle, this is rather far afield from the G&T paper but let’s just say that some such feedbacks have been speculated about but there does not seem to be good evidence for them…and strong negative feedbacks seem incapatible with our current understanding of the oscillations of the earth’s climate in the past, such as the ice age – interglacial cycles.

  49. Much better Joel

    When I read your first comment I suspected you had not read the paper.

    I am as skeptical about the whole AGW idea as just about anyone but from what I can get out of this paper I don’t see that they have actually falsified the things they claim they have. Much of it is pretty boring and much of the math was to prove points I didn’t need proven.

    What bothers me about it is their Thermodynamics section, Unless I missed something it looks like the authors here set up a straw man. There is no claim I know of that the stratosphere is what is heating the earth. Rather what is supposedly happening is that GHG is slowing down the transfer of heat away from the surface producing warming.

    I have seen claims that stratosphere should warm faster than the surface and it is failing badly to do so, but that isn’t what the authors are talking about.

    The authors are likely right about the incorrect assumptions in the models like setting parameters to zero that are not zero, but, I don’t see that they have proven anything. As you said they are proving things we already knew.

    Meanwhile, I am still freezing, I wish global warming would hurry up. ;)

  50. I do think you should take a serious look at the water vapor feedback being positive as it is in the models. This seems unlikely to me for many reasons but the most obvious one is that if it was true, previous periods of high CO2, much higher than today, would have caused “catastrophic” warming events which they clearly didn’t.

    Net feedbacks pretty much must be negative or must change to negative as temperature rises or the entire paleo record is totally wrong. A mighty good case can be made that there is no evidence of any positive feedback in the recent past especially if your temperature data set has not been … (Hansenized?)

  51. Pierre,

    Yes, world trend since Jan 1998 is slightly negative at -0.036 C/decade (inclusive of the 1998 peak). Other trends since Jan 1998 are shown below:

    NH minus Tropics (20 / 82.5)
    0.0003 monthly
    0.036 decade

    Tropics (-20 / 20)
    -0.0004 monthly
    -0.048 decade

    SH minus Tropics (-20 / -70)
    -0.0008 monthly
    -0.096 decade

    As mentioned above, world trend between 1979 and Dec 1993 was 0.05 C/decade. So, what were the trends between Jan 1994 and Dec 1998 (again, inclusive of the 1998 peak for dramatic effect)?

    World (-70 / 82.5)
    0.008 monthly
    0.96 decade

    NH minus Tropics (20 / 82.5)
    0.0066 monthly
    0.792 decade

    Tropics (-20 / 20)
    0.0105 monthly
    1.260 decade

    SH minus Tropics (-20 / -70)
    0.0067 monthly
    0.804 decade

    So basically ALL of the accrued warming since 1979 occurred in a 5 year span (1994 through 1998). That’s it! Again, let me point out that it was during this period that the divergence between NH and SH anomalies began, and, since 1998, has essentially held steady at approx. 0.4 delta C (or 0.5 C NH vs. 0.1 C SH).

  52. Wondering Aloud,

    I agree, if water vapour is a positive feedback increasing the effect of CO2 by 2.5 times, as the IPCC models say, how can the Earth have ever recovered from previous high levels of CO2? The temperature would surely have just kept on rising?

    There must therefore be some other mechanism, not yet modelled, that is occurring.

  53. Joel writes, “The CO2 does not add energy but helps retain energy in the same way that a heat shield can do so. They claim that it is impossible for this to happen without violating the 2nd law of thermodynamics because they say it involves a flow of heat from a colder place (the upper troposphere) to a warmer place (the earth’s surface). However, their statement is incorrect as the net flow is still from the earth’s surface to the upper troposphere and then out into space.”

    Absolutely so. CO2 or other such greenhouse gasses is like a diode, lets sunlight IR heat in, yet prevents an equal or greater loss going out into space in the opposite direction. I dn’t see any rational scientific position against this. And no, I’m not algore. :)

    The crux of the arguement is the positive feedback amplification factors in the computer models and their degree of completeness. Are there negative feedback mechanisms? We don’t really know enough. So, what to do? As a lukewarmist, I say we’re advised to err on the side of caution about things we don’t understand like doubling a gas in our atmosphere. There are plenty of other good reasons to mitigate CO2 emissions besides any pseudoscientific algoreish exaggeration of climate effects (e.g. Katrina, Myanmar). Utilize nuclear power to run our new electric cars, develop solar photovoltiac power and don’t panic.

  54. Wondering Aloud: Thanks for your response.

    Just a couple of further comments:

    (1) It is the troposphere (especially the lower and, perhaps, mid-troposphere) that is supposed to be warming at least as much as the surface, not the stratosphere. In fact, the stratosphere should be cooling as it has been, and in fact this is a signature that the cause of the current warming is greenhouse gases rather than, say, solar irradiance changes (which would cause the stratosphere to warm too). Admittedly, interpretation of the stratospheric cooling is somewhat complicated by the fact that ozone depletion also contributes to stratospheric cooling, although I think the best estimates are that there is more cooling seen than can be accounted for purely by ozone depletion. As for the tropospheric warming, the discrepancy between prediction and data from the satellites used to significant but, now, with corrections to the satellite data and a longer record, this discrepancy seems to have disappeared (within error bars) at least on a global scale; in the tropics, some unexplained discrepancy remains.

    (2) I am not sure why you think that the paleo record is compatible with a negative feedback. The scientists who study the paleo record, e.g., who have actually tried to use the Last Glacial Maximum or other paleo evidence to estimate the climate sensitivity, come up with estimates compatible with net positive feedbacks. In fact, here is a paper that argues that the climate sensitivity based on paleo evidence suggests the climate models may be, if anything, UNDERESTIMATING the climate sensitivity: http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/summary/sci;306/5697/821 Note, by the way, that a positive feedback does not imply an instability, as some seem to think, unless that feedback exceeds a certain value. For feedbacks less than that value, what you get is a magnification of the warming but no instability…and that is what the estimates of climate sensitivity give. (There is a close relation between positive feedbacks and infinite series and an instability corresponds to a diverging infinite series but a magnification occurs for a converging infinite series like 1 + (1/2) + (1/4) + (1/8) + …, which converges to, and thus gives a magnification of, 2 to the effect.)

  55. Joel Shore:

    Having a degree in physics, and there are many specialties within physics, does not ensure that one’s opinions let alone one’s work will not be other than basura, garbage, empty posturing.
    Your concentric black-body illustration is just such an example.
    The emissivities of living matter are routinely > 0.9, that of CO2 at 25C is equal to its absorptivity at 9*10^-4 or 1000 times smaller(Hottel 1942).
    Even if the 2nd Law did not apply, and re: back-radiation it certainly does, the flow of heat is inexorably into the atmosphere.
    Heat transfer at the surface is ruled by evaporation removing heat from the surface. Near the tropopause heat transfer is ruled by condensation, releasing heat to the atmosphere.
    The fact that MSU data do not show tropopause heating, and Aqua data do not show stratospheric cooling means the effect of CO2 is evidently unmeasurable.
    In the ionosphere, where temps prevail in the thousands of degrees Kelvin, all gases emit radiation, thus the earth cools.

  56. I do think you should take a serious look at the water vapor feedback being positive as it is in the models. This seems unlikely to me for many reasons but the most obvious one is that if it was true, previous periods of high CO2, much higher than today, would have caused “catastrophic” warming events which they clearly didn’t.

    Monckton pointed out (in an essay on Doc P.’s Climate Science) that the significant tidbit in IPCC AR4 was to increase the feedback factor in the basic projection equation.

    But whether or not water vapor does have the effect the IPCC says it does, much of the increased vapor is not going to GHG but instead into low-level cloud cover, which increases albedo, which produces homeostasis. Which may well be why the temps have been relatively flat since 1998.

    This was discovered by NASA’s AquaSat, and its findings are why hardly anyone seems to have heard of it. (And when you look it up on the NASA site it never quite tells you the actual results.)

    AquaSat was built for the express purpose of confirming AGW. One can’t help wondering that if NASA had known the results in advance the project would ever have been approved.

    Paired with the results of the ArgoBots, which, since deployed, have shown a slight ocean cooling, one can’t claim the heat is merely “hiding in the ocean”, either.

    OTOH, when CO2 was 7000 ppm, temperatures are estimated at 22°C, 8°C higher than today. CO2 dropped, rose back to c. 3000 ppm, then dropped again since 600mya. Earth’s climate spent most of its time at 22°C with one or two big, temporary dips. The around the time of the Cretaceous, both COS and temperatures declined steadily to present levels.

    CO2 does not correlate very well with climate.

  57. Joel,

    Less aerosols and ash in the stratosphere will cause it to cool as well (relative to the past). How does global warming theory explain the high temperature anomalies in the NH versus the tropics and the SH (see my trend data in my posts above). Is it possible to have regional CO2-driven global warming only over land? Does a cleaner atmopshere and land use changes lend itself to higher temperatures over land (most of humanity live in the NH). By the way, these are questions that the modelers don’t want to hear because a) they don’t have answers for them (thus, potentially showing their ignorance), and b) it suggests their models are fallible. Methinks mother nature is playing one big trick on these modelers. Haven’t they learned: Don’t mess with Yo’Mama!

  58. Joel,

    then you agree that we have to have more warming in the upper trop before we can have the enhanced greenhouse effect go catastrophic??

    I believe the OBSERVATIONS, even if there is some error still in them, simply do NOT support a large change happening any time soon. In fact, the observations support the Germans in that the temps generally get cooler with elevation. I believe the correct scientific method is to modify your theory when the FACTS contradict it!!

    Please do not start the semantic war about Greenhouse Effect. The original Greenhouse Effect was based on preventing CONVECTION, not capturing IR!!! This is a common misunderstanding and causes problems talking about the issue. It is why I try to use Enhanced Greenhouse when referring to the CO2 theory. They ARE NOT THE SAME!!!

    The Germans are specificaly correct in that their paper is titled “Falsification of the Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects in the Frame of Physics.” In other words, claiming that they claim to falsify the Greenhouse Effect is FALSE. This is the Strawman I am talking about. They do not claim to disprove the Greenhouse Effect or the standard theory for the habitability of the earth, only the IPCC and other warmers Enhanced Theory.

    By the way, the reradiation of the IR is so fast there is typically no real time lag in its leaving. Not much of a heat shield if the CO2 doesn’t ABSORB the IR. If it does in appreciable amounts (warming trop faster than surface) then you would have convection and conduction to remove the heat. Also, unless you are over a desert where there is little water vapor the CO2 has little effect as the water vapor gets the energy directly.

    I notice that you also used a poor analogy of how GG’s are supposed to work. A heat shield?? Again, poor analogies and labels are part of the problem with conceptualizing the issue!!!

    By the way, repeating the arguments do not change them. The GG in the atmosphere is NOT equivalent to a black body sphere (mostly holes in the bandwidth) and they NEVER claim that the atmosphere does NOT keep the earth warm. Again they claim that CO2 and other GG in conditions anywhere approaching the earths atmosphere CAN NOT RETAIN ENOUGH HEAT TO CAUSE A CATASTROPHE!!! The IR is reradiated too quickly for there to be any large temp increase under earth conditions among other reasons.

    Basically their paper sticks with known physics and does not ADD to it with poorly conceptualised models of the atmosphere that would require GG to perform in unknown ways.

    You state that the doubling of CO2 will cause 1.2 to 2 to 4.5C with other feedbacks. I believe when the Germans wrote the paper the IPCC were still claiming almost twice that amount WITHOUT feedbacks other than CO2 itself. Maybe the IPCC are coming to believe in real physics also??

    Would you like to address the question of how much the second doubling will raise the temps?? Personally I would LOVE a 4.5C average warming over the next 200 years for my great great grandkids!!

    I will jump into your other discussion about the paleo record. CO2 apparently has been over 1000PPM. If the feedback from GG including water vapor is so strong, how do we explain that their is no record of a disastrous warming?? It would also appear that it has been rather cold with these levels. After the first 2 doublings there is no appreciable effect left. I do not believe there is any paleo record of an earth since the dinos that we could NOT have enjoyed with modern technology.

    Another issue with the theory is the lack of Ocean Warming. The unphysical “reflection” of IR from GG to the surface should be warming it. The Aqua system has not found elevated temps. So, no atmospheric signature, no ocean signature. Only SOME indication of melt as both Greenland and Antarctica appear to be gaining mass while melting at the edges. Please, pray tell, where are all the indications of the ENHANCED Greenhouse Theory?? If there is no retained heat in the atmosphere and none in the oceans, apparently there is NONE. Only the original physical model that gives a more linear warming. No catastrophic warming.

    By the way, you do know that there are at least 2 other papers in the last year that give a much lower sensitivity to GG???

    http://www.ecd.bnl.gov/steve/pubs/HeatCapacity.pdf
    http://met.hu/doc/idojaras/vol111001_01.pdf

    They are both closer to the Germans than the IPCC. You might also want to take a look at this if you haven’t already:

    http://www.dailytech.com/Researcher+Basic+Greenhouse+Equations+Totally+Wrong/article10973c.htm

    It is an article about the second paper and explains the equations including one of the same points the Germans make. The IPCC math includes an INFINITE atmosphere (apparently easier to solve the equations). Here again is a well known scientist showing that the original IPCC math is problematic with energy balance equations.

  59. KuhnKat; I think you have nailed it; when read in conjunction with the Gerlich paper, the Miskolczi and Schwartz pieces just about bury AGW; especially when combined with the Aqua and Argo data. Now, let’s sit back and wait for ipcc to acknowledge this. Perhaps Anthony can set up a clock and counting.

  60. Chris, Pierre Gosselin:

    I raised my question because I noticed that the timeline between 1998 and 2007 seemed to point towards a relative stable range of between .1 and .5 (with 1999 through early 2001 being a rise to the “stable range” and mid 2001 to 2007 holding steady). Suddenly we get a drop of .4 to the negative portion of the graph. Not only that, but the spring rise seems to be stalled.

    Hence my question: Is this an outlier, or a clue of things to come? (a cooling down over the next few years?)

    Just so you know, I do believe in human-caused global warming, but am definitely aware of the solar minimum of the middle ages, the power of volcanoes, and what I’m calling the Pollution effect (think China’s coal dust polluting the states of California, Washington and Oregon). And even without the evidence of a built-in limit of how warm the atmosphere can get (which does intrigue me), it wouldn’t surprise me to see the Pollution effect of this winter multiplied by the seeming disappearance of sunspots (cooling of the sun) and the volcano down south over the next year or two to overwhelm whatever warming we may have caused and hit us with some severe winters and cool, wet summers.

  61. With my traning in chemical engineering, I’m wondering if the climate is behaving like a distillation column. Like adding more steam (i.e., heat) to a reboiler, GG’s absorbed more of the heat that would have been lost to space. In a distillation column, when more steam is sent to the reboiler (i.e., a heat exchanger at the bottom of the tower), then more liquid is vaporized and sent up the tower. If unchecked, more of the higher boiling component (think water and ethanol as the two main components inside the tower) is sent up the tower. Eventually, the purity of the ethanol going overhead as the distillate decreases as the concentration of water increases (not good!). So, how does one compensate if steam to the reboiler (i.e., the source of heat to the system) cannot be cut back? Easy, you send some the condensed overhead stream (called reflux) back down the tower as a liquid to cool it down. So, if more heat is being redirected back to the earth’s surface due to GG’s, then it appears to me that the atmosphere over the oceans (such as in the SH) causes more water to be vaporized. But instead of producing a positive feedback, it condenses at some altitude as it is loses heat. Eventually, this heat finds its way out to space. If all this happens very fast (i.e., it’s in equilibrium), I don’t see how “climate sensitivity” occurs.

    So, to continue the analogy, the incoming irradiance plus the additional heat from GG absorption is like the steam to the reboiler, and the coldness of outer space is the overhead condenser. When more heat is applied (via GG’s), all that means is more vaporization and condensation going on between the earth’s surface and outer space. This is exactly what happens in a tower when more steam and reflux is added. There is more vapor traffic up the tower due to additional heat added to the reboiler, and when distillate is sent down the tower to compensate, there is more liquid traffic going down the tower. Overall, this does tend to increase the temperature at the bottom of the tower (or the earth’s surface, if you will) and lower the temperature at the top of the tower (or the stratosphere, if you will). However, both temperatures reache a plateau. The temperature does not runaway. In the example above, the overhead and bottoms temperature of the distallation tower reach their respective boiling points at the pressure of the tower. So, if the tower was run at atmospheric pressure, the bottoms stream can never exceed 212 F (the bp of pure water) and the top streram can never exceed 176 F (the bp of the ethanol-water azeoptrope, if I recall).

    Maybe this is why we are seeing no temperature increases across the SH (mostly covered by oceans), and the highest temperature increases across the NH, particularly Asia (the largest land mass of all). In essence, there is not enough moisture to carry the heat into the atmosphere where it can “lose” it (via condensation) at higher altitudes.

  62. Chris, the potential negative feedback of H2O in the form of clouds is obviously a big sticking point for AGW; Roy Spencer is doing work on this. The other issue you raise is the lapse period between the heating and the restoration of thermal equlibrium; if the lapse period isn’t sufficient, then AGW can’t occur; this is the point of the Gerlich, Miskolczi and Schwartz papers.

    Another maintenance factor which the AGW models do not consider is plate tectonics; according to Craig O’Neill, writing in Australasian Science, vol 29, no 3, the oceans are recycled in a process where “water, absorbed into the oceanic crust as hydrous minerals, follows the plate into the mantle. Similarly, dissolved CO2 in the oceans can precipitate to form calcite, which is then deposited on the plate and likewise recycled into the mantle.”

    The process completes in geological time but is continuous so that if there is more dissolved CO2 in the water than more will be deposited. Likewise, if there is more heat than in the atmosphere, more will be re-radiated into space.

  63. KuhnKat, Joel, and wondering aloud: Thank you for the finest exposition I’ve yet read of the Gerlich and Tscheuschner paper. And cohenite, I agree with your summary. The clock is certainly running, but what will be the endpoint? Some of these warmistas will still be howling crisis when science settles over them in their graves. Soon, if not already, the cry of alarm will mean ‘what’s your agenda’ as real environmentalists(that’s all of us, folks) come to realize that this is a grand and dangerous ‘Boy Who Cried Wolf’ tale.
    =====================================

  64. Chris,

    The traditional explanation of the GW crowd is this:

    The Southern Hemisphere is dominated by water, whereas the NH has a closer balance of land and air. The ocean responds more slowly to changes in temperature than the land. So, the warming would be slower where the ocean dominates. Air currents tend to move laterally around the globe, and between the upper latitudes and the tropics, but rarely from longitudinally from one hemisphere to the next. So, SH temperatures are affected by the preponderance of ocean in the SH, even over land. This all seems like a hypothesis that is reasonable enough to examine.

    The GW crowd uses the disparity in NH vs SH temperatures to suggest that the SH is a running mean of sorts. And when temperature increases are constant, a running mean makes for a lagging indicator, and so the GW corwd is saying that the NH is more indicative of future changes than the SH. But the problem with the notion of oceanic temperatures as a running mean is that a running mean continues to move in one direction even after an abrupt change in the input. (Think of how they’ll say that unemployment claims are down, but the four-week running mean of unemployment claims is up.) The fact that the SH is leading a reversal of GW makes no sense at all.

  65. Dan,

    I agree. It makes no sense. I was using the distillation analogy as a means of trying to make sense of it all (it still fails).

    Cohenite,

    The other issue is the starting condition of the tower, or for the climate models, the starting assumptions. For example, if the bottom stream is already mostly water (say 99%), then extra heat and reflux will improve the purity of the bottoms stream to 99.5%, or higher. However, the increase in temperature at the bottom of the tower only increases incrementally (say 210 F to 211 F). At constant pressure, the temperature of the bottom of the tower is a function of its purity. As purity asymptotes to 100%, so does the bp (temperature) of the stream. On the other hand, if the starting condition of the tower bottoms stream is a 50 wt% water/ethanol mixture, then adding heat to the reboiler will increase the bottoms temperature from 190 F to 211 F (as an example) as ethanol is driven overheard. One of the takeaway points here is that climate sensitivity should DECREASE with higher surface temperatures (i.e., it asymptotes). Also, no matter how much heat you add to the atmosphere over the oceans, the temperature should not change since you cannot measurably change the purity of the oceans (way too large). However, a little extra heat over land could raise its surface temperature. Again, solar effects and land use changes over the centuries can have a big impact as well. With the temperature trend over NH essentially flat since 1998, I wonder if the NH climate has reached a point where the extra heat from GG absorption is balanced out with negative climate sensitivity?

  66. superDBA – You do ask an interesting question.

    >Is the accuracy of the measuring instrument and technique really
    >1/1000 of a degree C? It doesn’t seem to make much sense to talk
    >in such numbers unless it is.

    It is important to note that calculating an anomoly of .001 is not the same as measuring to 1/1000 of a degree. There is only 1 significant digit in .001 which is a fair number regardless the precision of the original measurements. I’d be interested to see if all of the calculations are reported with this in mind.

  67. Just to answer a few of the issues raised in response to my post…

    Gary Gulrud: I agree with you that a degree in physics does not guarantee that one’s work will not be garbage…In fact, the Gerlich paper unfortunately demonstrates that quite clearly. My point is only that a lot of people think, “Oh, a couple of physicists have come along and shown the climate science community that they are all wrong”…and indeed that is the angle that the paper itself takes. So, it is important to point out that there is no groundswell of support for this paper in the physics community. In fact, we can readily detect that it is wrong.

    As for my concentric blackbodies illustration, you are claiming that this is not a realistic calculation for determining the radiative effects of CO2 in all its detail…but this is a “strawman”. I was using that analogy as an example of a much simpler system exhibiting all of the basic characteristics that lead G&T to conclude that the greenhouse effect violates the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

    cohenite: You mention 5 recent papers that you think “bury AGW”. I think you need to maintain a bit of perspective. There are hundreds…if not thousands…of papers published every year on climate science and you are cherry-picking those that agree with your preconceived conclusions. Of these, one (the G&T paper) is, as I have noted, an embarrassment and has not seen the light of day in any journal. The second, the Miskolczi paper, is pretty impenetrable so I don’t have much to say about it but it is rather suspicious that such a supposedly groundbreaking paper can’t find the light of day except in some obscure Hungarian journal. The third, the Schwartz paper, represented what the author admitted was a first attempt to determine climate sensitivity in a new way…and there are already some comments submitted on that paper that basically show that it has severe problems. The fourth, the Aqua data (by which I assume you mean the work of Roy Spencer et al.) is some interesting work…but by someone who has a track record of getting the analysis wrong in favor of no-warming before (and has clearly stated motivations on this). The fifth, the Argo data is indeed a bit of a mystery…However, it is only available over quite a short time period, there has already been one previous problem identified with that system that caused a spurious cooling artifact, and the results seem to be in contradiction with sea level rise data that suggest that the sea level is continuing to rise due to thermal expansion of sea water (which would suggest it is continuing to warm).

    The overall point is that you are taking 5 recent papers that have not even been in the literature long enough to have other scientists react to them (and in some cases have yet to appear, or in the case of G&Twill likely not appear in the literature…at least in any reputable journal) and elevating them to the status of received wisdom, and you are ignoring the many other papers that have appeared in the meantime that have supported AGW.

  68. JS:
    Your reply to my points casts them in the most favorable light possible. Your illustration is worthless beyond 7th grade science class.
    I don’t believe your study of physics could have included Thermodynamics at all, as you have not addressed a single material critcism.
    Put up or run away before we taunt you anew, Sir.

  69. JS; yes, I tend to get a bit excited; the Schwartz paper has been subject to a Hansen and associates’ analysis:

    http://www.jamstec.go.jp/frsgc/research/d5/jdannan/comment_on_schwartz.pdf

    Hansen notes that; “In fact the principal physical mechanism which leads us to believe that not all committed GHG warming has yet been experienced and a substantial amount remains “in the pipeline”, is the warming of the deep ocean.”

    Now, as I pointed out, this seems to be contradicted by Argo; it also is merely restating the problem the ipcc models face; which is, their predictive, real-world success rate is zilch (unless, of course you accept NASAGISS without demur); they need the lapses to be right; so the critique of Schwartz is right in that his model does not fit the lapse parameters of other models, but Schwartz seems to be in better accord with what is really happening. And, you are right, noone is coming near Miskolczi; he has a go at this endless opaque, stratified atmospheric model that is at the heart of CO2 activity. I have tried to argue on the basis of Wien and Beer, but I am assured that temps are insufficient for wavelength shift, and the strata opaqueness defeats Beer; much is also made of the fact that the rate of excitation due to thermal radiation of CO2 is many orders of magnitude slower than the rate of collisional deexcitation so there is no chance absorption will be saturated. Miskolczi seems to bypass this traffic jam; and right now seems to be vindicated by what is actually happening.

  70. re: getting papers into major journals

    I have been down that path. It is a backroom-dealing, turf-guarding, jealousy-rules endeavor that left me desperately wanting a bath and forever jaded against the Ivory Tower research departments of our institutions of higher learning. My first submission was to a journal that had as its editor an investigator that was studying the very thing I was studying (but I finished my study first thus submitted first). Needless to say, it was not published in his journal. Unless you have lived the process, don’t call it some kind of merit measure. It is decidedly not.

  71. KuhnKat: I don’t know exactly where to start with your last post.

    Firstly, you state: “In fact, the observations support the Germans in that the temps generally get cooler with elevation.” Who is exactly is arguing that temperatures don’t decrease with elevation in the troposphere? In fact, as I have previously explained, this decrease is vital to understanding the greenhouse effect as it means that the effect of the greenhouse gases is to cause re-radiation from a place higher in the atmosphere where it is colder. All your talk about whether there is a delay or not is completely irrelevant. Before you attack a theory, it is wise to actually understand it.

    Secondly, you claim: “In other words, claiming that they claim to falsify the Greenhouse Effect is FALSE. This is the Strawman I am talking about. They do not claim to disprove the Greenhouse Effect or the standard theory for the habitability of the earth, only the IPCC and other warmers Enhanced Theory.” You don’t even have to go beyond the first sentence of the abstract to see that you claim is false. They state: “The atmospheric greenhouse effect, an idea that authors trace back to the traditional works of Fourier 1824, Tyndall 1861, and Arrhenius 1896, and which is still supported in global climatology, essentially describes a fictitious mechanism, in which a planetary atmosphere acts as a heat pump driven by an environment that is radiatively interacting with but radiatively equilibrated to the atmospheric system. According to the second law of thermodynamics such a planetary machine can never exist.” And, among other things, they claim that the calculation showing that the earth’ surface temperature is, because of the atmospheric greenhouse effect, 33 K warmer than it ought to be “is a meaningless number calculated wrongly”.

    Thirdly, you say: “You state that the doubling of CO2 will cause 1.2 to 2 to 4.5C with other feedbacks. I believe when the Germans wrote the paper the IPCC were still claiming almost twice that amount WITHOUT feedbacks other than CO2 itself. Maybe the IPCC are coming to believe in real physics also??” Could you please find me the place where the IPCC report stated that the climate sensitivity is twice this amount without feedbacks. Hint: You won’t be able to since the IPCC had previously in its Third Assessment Report in 2001…and I believe even going back to the First Assessment Report in the early 90s…put the likely equilibrium climate sensitivity, including feedbacks, at 1.5 C to 4.5 C. And, the fact that the sensitivity to CO2 without accounting for feedbacks would be about 1.2 C is a calculation that follows by a simple back-of-the-envelope calculation once you know that the radiative forcing for a doubling of CO2 is about 4 W/m2, which also is an estimate that has been known for a long time.

    I’ve already addressed the issues with the other papers that you mentioned in my response to cohenite.

  72. Vince Noir: I don’t know where the heat is…which is why it is a bit of a mystery. The sea level rise data suggests the heat is continuing to go into the ocean. The Argo data is suggesting it hasn’t. One of these sets of data must be wrong (or being misinterpretted). Hence the mystery. Such mysteries are not uncommon in science…and this one will presumably be resolved in the next few years.

  73. Joel Shore, et al., re: The GHG effect as a concentric black-body enclosing the earth:

    An ideal black-body absorbs all radiation impinging on its surface. It then emits at a wavelength related to its temperature(note: reflection of incident radiation does not occur with the ideal and is not considered further).
    Black solids, like anodized aluminum, we consider to closely approach black-bodies in that all of the absorbed radiation not instantly re-radiated is retained as heat in the solid’s lattice.
    The values ’emissivity’ and ‘absoptivity’ are defined as dimensionless constants of proportion to the black-body and its characteristic curves of radiative emission and absorption.
    On one hand, a black solid at room temperature might possess an emissivity of 0.98, or 98% that of the ideal black body. An analogy might well be made between a body so comprised with the ideal and inferences made from the theory of the ideal and conferred on the real.
    On the other hand, a lower temperature gas like C02 at 25C has an emissivity(equal to its absorptivity) of 9*10^-4, or <<1/1000th that of the ideal. The bulk of energy absorbed(not instantly re-radiated) by the gas molecule is converted to kinetic energy and shared with any other molecules present(not retained by the molecule alone or its like). Analogies made between the ideal black body and such a gas aren’t simply loose, or fraught with inaccuracies, they are wildly unsound. All solids, snow for example, any alloy for another, are better candidates.
    Joel’s concept of the atmosphere as an increasingly effective blanket owing to the increase in partial pressure of CO2(for whatever cause) may have some value, however small, but his analogy–as a black-body enclosing the earth–is woefully ill-informed, suggesting (whatever the truth of the matter) no formal training in the subject.
    I cannot, therefore give his opinion regarding the G&T paper, or a matter involving Thermodynamics, generally, any credence whatever.

  74. Cohenite: I’ve tried arguing on the basis of Wein and Beer, too, but above a certain percentage they cause rapid forward feedback, undue excitation, an increase in lapse rate and imminent collapse.

  75. Chris, time is moving on, but I have been thinking about your tower model and the purity of the base creating a circumstance where climate sensitivity asymptotes with increased temp; does this invoke the Wien, Stefan-Boltzmann, Beer effects, which the AGW crowd do not accept as limiting, through saturation, CO2 forcing?

  76. Gary: You continue to miss the point. My point is that their argument about the violation of the 2nd law of thermodynamics does not in any way depend on the emissivity. If you think it is, go to the section where they talk about it and show us where it comes in.

    I am not saying that a blackbody is a good analogy for CO2 in the atmosphere but merely that I have shown you an elementary radiation problem that exhibits all of the same characteristics that G&T argue means that the atmospheric greenhouse effect violates the 2nd law of thermodynamics. Is that so hard to understand…Or, are you just pointing out irrelevancies because you have no real counterargument to this?

  77. Joel Shore said: I don’t know where the heat is…which is why it is a bit of a mystery. The sea level rise data suggests the heat is continuing to go into the ocean. The Argo data is suggesting it hasn’t. One of these sets of data must be wrong (or being misinterpretted). Hence the mystery. Such mysteries are not uncommon in science…and this one will presumably be resolved in the next few years.

    Well, let’s see. Sea level rise is supposed to be somewhere on the order of 1-2mm per year. And this isn’t everywhere. Some places it has dropped, others it has risen, so it’s clearly not rising everywhere. Some of the rise is actually due to tectonic movement (subsidence, et al). I’d question whether 1-2 mm is even measurable, given that the average ocean surface varies by much more than that from second to second. It’s also important to note that sea levels have been higher than they are now since the last glaciation, so again, what’s the “norm”?

  78. JS:

    “violation of the 2nd law of thermodynamics does not in any way depend on the emissivity”

    G&T’s raising the 2nd law is entirely focussed on the back-radiation issue, providing chapter and verse of its importance to AGW theorists(sic), you are misrepresenting their argument to imply otherwise. I brought up emissivity.

    “I am not saying that a blackbody is a good analogy for CO2 in the atmosphere”

    Not for CO2 and not for the atmosphere as a whole. Don’t use the analogy, it is invalid as an heuristic at any level.

    “I have shown you an elementary radiation problem that exhibits all of the same characteristics that G&T argue means that the atmospheric greenhouse effect violates the 2nd law of thermodynamics”

    You showed us nothing re: G&T, and you cannot. You simply granted their point on back-radiation, that it cannot heat the surface and proceeded to a non-physical fantasy which purported to explain a putative retarded gradient in the IR radiative fluence through the atmosphere.

    “Or, are you just pointing out irrelevancies because you have no real counterargument to this?”

    Like pointing to the failure of MSU and Aqua satellite data to give any evidence of your retarded gradient? How is this irrelevant?

  79. “Now, hopefully, the folks on this side are not succumbing to global cooling doom and gloom. We’re supposed to be smarter than that.
    So far I don’t see any data suggesting we’re headed for a cooling disaster?
    If you have it – then show it! So far I’ve seen only imaginations running amok. Keep your fantasies in check folks.”

    hear hear pierre! you and me both!

  80. I am worried about the DeVries cycle, I cannot deny it.

    But I also think is a very serious misunderstanding of recent history to posit wars over dwindling resources, especially including food.

    Wars over resources are SO pre-mid 20th Century. Those times are over, plain and simple, made so by technological capability.

    Given a bad cooling scenario, we may see some relatively tight times as we adapt and readjust. And, yes, the poorest of the word will be hardest hit, as always. But I will add my voice in protest against those who talk about food wars and various Mad-Max-joins-the-Esquimeaux scenarios.

  81. Thanks Paul, I get that a lot; as a result I’ve taken up champagne; I think of the bubbles as CO2 molecules. The distribution curve gives me a headache.

  82. Gary: It is useless to argue this point with you since it is clear you haven’t even read the relevant section of G&T. I suggest you look at their section 3.9.3.

    And, by the way, although it is actually irrelevant to the current discussion, I am curious how you got your number of 9*10^-4 for the emissivity (/ absorptivity) of CO2. As you no doubt know, emissivity and absorptivity are wavelength-dependent…and in this case, strongly wavelength dependent since CO2 has specific absorption bands. Since skeptics have often argued that the bands are saturated already (as an excuse to rule out any significant effect of CO2 on radiative absorption without actually doing the calculations that show otherwise), it seems unlikely to me that the absorptivity is so low in these bands.

  83. re: resource wars over due to technology

    Unfortunately, humans haven’t changed much, just their toys. We quickly fall into wars around resources, faster than the resources dwindle. Do we hate muslims because of their religion, because they hate us, or because they have the lion’s share of high-grade sweet crude oil?

    WHEN, not if, we enter into another severe cold minimum, agricultural expansion will shrivel up to nothing in one growing season and then will stay that way long after food stores are gone. What happens when Russia once again is unable to grow wheat? Or mid/far eastern countries are unable to grow enough rice to feed their population explosion? What happens when the world, including our allies have to get their oil from US?

    The eastern oil countries will fall back into camels and tents, a life style still evident there. Tribal wars will once again be the normal day to day life within these countries. But Japan, China, Russia, England, France, Spain, etc are highly developed countries (some more than others) where horse and buggy, hitch and plow, and water buckets hauled up from the well are just not a major or even minor part of their lives. The population as a whole has been lulled into a technology-based, food importing culture where the most important thing to do in a day is get to your job in the city, not stay warm for the day and stoke the fire at night, or gather and hunt for the day’s food and then prepare it from scratch.

    That kind of oil-less, everything you own you make, daily living is, in reality, only a drop in temperature away for far more people than you think.

  84. cohenite: Re: the critique of Schwartz, you seem to have grabbed on to one sentence, and because of some data that is very new and may well be wrong or represent only a short-term fluctuation, you dismiss the entire critique. In fact, the critique of Schwartz presented there does not really rely on the ocean data at all. Perhaps you should read it in detail and then tell us what parts you disagree with and why.

  85. Unfortunately, humans haven’t changed much, just their toys.

    Pamela, I agree with you on most issues, but I disagree strongly with your pessimism.

    Humans have changed hugely. We used to be creatures who had a 10% chance of reaching the age of 40. We are no longer that sort of creature. This has changed everything, including morals in general and willingness to go to war in particular.

    Cold Max is not impossible (esp. around the edges), but it is unlikely to be the rule. I don’t predict any food wars.

    We are still in a huge and rapid socioeconomic conversion process. A fairly bad cool (or warm) will slow it down, but I doubt it will stop it.

  86. Washington universities are doing studies on vineyard susceptibility to cold. They are either hedging their bet re agriculture expansion of warm weather crops into traditionally cold weather areas (that are enjoying momentary global warming), or some folks in the ivory towers up there think that cold is a-comin. I noted too that 2007 American wine will be rather expensive as bottled supplies dwindle fast (you should be seeing 2007 on shelves now), since crops were, in places, less than half what they were at their peak due to cold weather. Some estates did not produce 2007 estate wine because they didn’t have any 2007 grapes from their fields. In stead, they used grapes from warmer areas for their non-estate labels. Think what the 2008 crop will be like. The models not only didn’t work for Antarctica, they sure didn’t work for upper US wine production.

  87. “And please don’t confuse resolution with accuracy. Is my electronics background showing?”

    LOL. The realclimate.org folks were wondering “why is it that electrical engineers seem to be AGW skeptics”. I didnt have the heart to explain it to them.

    My Answer:
    – we know the difference between a model and reality and we know reality trumps model every time
    – We know non-linearities and feedbacks.
    – The climate models are like capacitors, resistors and inductors. We can intuitively understand what makes sense and what doesnt. massive positive feedback in a system that those same hockey-stick maker claim is resiliently stable prior to man’s showing up sets of our BS detectors. we know what an overdamped system would look like.

    The case for huge AGW impact, contrary to data backing it up, doesnt impress an EE, and appeals to authority and ‘this is too complicated for you peons to figure out so trust us’ is laughable.

  88. Pamela Gray (17:26:21) :

    “Washington universities are doing studies on vineyard susceptibility to cold. … Think what the 2008 crop will be like.”

    Washington State isn’t the only area with grape problems, the San Francisco Chronicle reported “Cold nights in North Coast are hitting vineyards hard” at
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2008/04/23/state/n063523D87.DTL

    “After a long string of unseasonably low nighttime temperatures, officials estimate as much as 10 to 15 percent of Sonoma County’s $400 million crop has been lost to frost damage.

    The cold weather is also hurting vineyards in Mendocino and Lake counties, where damage to the crop is expected to be about 20 percent.

    In Napa County, a spokesman for Napa Valley Vintners says there has been little damage because most growers have adequate frost protection.”

  89. PJ (20:38:01) :

    “The realclimate.org folks were wondering “why is it that electrical engineers seem to be AGW skeptics”. I didn’t have the heart to explain it to them.”

    I made the double mistake of reading “The Limits to Growth” right after my EE Systems course and was duly impressed with the block diagram in the middle of the book. Then I read Brian Aldiss’ Greybeard, about a society dealing with an economic collapse. Left me depressed for weeks.

    Of course, the Club of Rome missed their forecasts, and there are interesting things afoot in biotech and nanotech that may get us past the next obstacle. Whatever that winds up being.

    Just as long as we get off the planet before we reach the real limits.

  90. The realclimate.org folks were wondering “why is it that electrical engineers seem to be AGW skeptics”. I didnt have the heart to explain it to them.

    Har! Har!

    – we know the difference between a model and reality and we know reality trumps model every time
    – We know non-linearities and feedbacks.

    Anyone who has stringently storyboarded a wargame (i.e., can “demonstrate the war via the game” well enough to satisfy a historian. Is well aware of those problems in a logical, if not mathematical, sense.

    Unfortunately very, very few wargames are up to this standard. And even if they are, it is very obvious that while they–might–be adequate models of the past, they are near-useless for predicting the future.

  91. Of course, the Club of Rome missed their forecasts

    British understatement?

    The Club of Rome made the incredibly basic mistake to equate “proven reserves” with that which was actually left. Those Bozos had us running out of aluminum (6% of earth’s crust).

    Nor did they account for substitutability, technology, and methods to do far more and better with far less, etc.

    It takes a very hi-IQ type to make a mistake that idiotic. Peak Oil is the same basic (stupid) error, taken a level wider. Note that only very intelligent people are capable of a.) coming up with, or b.) subscribing to, such a mammoth fallacy.

    (Fortunately, as I do not have a high IQ, I am not thus encumbered.)

    We may never reach those limits. Not for thousands of years. If ever, should we eventually come up with a decent mass-conversion process. In a way that would almost be a pity, because it will remove much of the incentive from extraplanetary expansion.

  92. Many estimates of reserves are questionable because the owners of those reserves are naturally wanting to paint a rosier picture than is the case. It is also difficult to estimate reserves because extraction cost are a running average. Easy reserves are mined first, which provides cheap finished products. Harder to extract reserves are mined last, leading to much more expensive products. Because of the media’s reluctance to explain the technicalities of oil production, the general public thinks reserves are reserves are reserves. Most folks don’t know that oil prices in the news are quoted only for the sweet, suck it up with a straw, crude oil that takes just a relatively small amount of refining to turn it into gasoline. They also think that all we need to do is pump more oil out of the ground or find unknown pockets of the sweet stuff that blows out of the top of a well and haul it to a refinery in order to reduce the price. They may not understand that refineries were built to refine sweet oil into gasoline, not oil sands or shale. In some cases, oil shale looks like rocks and is mined in an open pit. Refining this stuff is a whole ‘nother ballgame. That kind of refinery is another kind of refinery all together. We don’t have very many of those kind. Its like when we stopped chopping down the big trees. Suddenly we needed to build saw mills that could handle smaller trees.

    The bottom line is that I think sweet oil is at peak. The other stuff isn’t. But the other stuff isn’t very attractive as a business because it is very expensive and complicated to turn it into a finished high grade product for general consumption at the gas pump. When I hear comments like, “All we have to do is drill in Alaska if we can just tie up the greenies”, I wonder whether or not people will always be so gullible.

  93. I agree with Pamela’s comments on sweet oil reaching its peak. Recent articles on the Bakken Formation in North Dakota show that, while it may be substantial, it will be incredibly difficult to get the oil out.

    Here’s a little fun fact to serve as a reality check on just how much oil we (the world) are using:

    Current world-wide consumption rate in 2006 was 86 million barrels of oil every day, or about 1000 barrels per second. If Lake Champlain (NY – VT border) were filled with oil rather than water, the world would consume it in 5 years and 2 months. For those on the west coast, the much deeper Lake Tahoe would be drained in 30 years and 3 months. That is assuming, of course, the rate of oil consumption does not increase.

  94. HadCRUT is in too:

    2008/04 0.250 0.266 0.233 0.391 0.109 0.250 0.244 0.392 0.108 0.392 0.108

    Paul Clarke’s graph now shows the GISS data, but not the HadCRUT yet.

    John M Reynolds

  95. HadCRUT brought January down from 0.056 to 0.053 while GISS changed both January and March. As of 2008/05/02 GISS had 2008 12 26 67 but is now 2008 13 26 60. — John M Reynolds

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