Antarctica warming? An evolution of viewpoint

mt-erebus.jpg

Above: Mt Erebus, Antarctica

picture by Sean Brocklesby

A press release today by the University of Washington makes a claim that Antarctica is warming and has been for the last 50 years:

“The study found that warming in West Antarctica exceeded one-tenth of a degree Celsius per decade for the last 50 years and more than offset the cooling in East Antarctica.”

“The researchers devised a statistical technique that uses data from satellites and from Antarctic weather stations to make a new estimate of temperature trends.”

“People were calculating with their heads instead of actually doing the math,” Steig said. “What we did is interpolate carefully instead of just using the back of an envelope. While other interpolations had been done previously, no one had really taken advantage of the satellite data, which provide crucial information about spatial patterns of temperature change.”

Satellites calculate the surface temperature by measuring the intensity of infrared light radiated by the snowpack, and they have the advantage of covering the entire continent. However, they have only been in operation for 25 years. On the other hand, a number of Antarctic weather stations have been in place since 1957, the International Geophysical Year, but virtually all of them are within a short distance of the coast and so provide no direct information about conditions in the continent’s interior.

The scientists found temperature measurements from weather stations corresponded closely with satellite data for overlapping time periods. That allowed them to use the satellite data as a guide to deduce temperatures in areas of the continent without weather stations.

Co-authors of the paper are David Schneider of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo., a former student of Steig’s; Scott Rutherford of Roger Williams University in Bristol, R.I.; Michael Mann of Pennsylvania State University; Josefino Comiso of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.; and Drew Shindell of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York City. The work was supported by grants from the National Science Foundation.

Anytime Michael Mann gets involved in a paper and something is “deduced” it makes me wary of the veracity of the methodology. Why?  Mann can’t even correct simple faults like latitude-longitude errors in data used in previous papers he’s written.

But that’s not the focus of the moment. In that press release they cite NASA satellite imagery. Let’s take a look at how the imagery has changed in 5 years.

NASA’s viewpoint – 2004

Click for larger image

NASA’s Viewpoint 2007 (added 1/22)

NASA’s viewpoint – 2009

antarctic_warming_2009
Click for larger image

Earth’s viewpoint – map of Antarctic volcanoes

Click for larger image

From the UW paper again:

“West Antarctica is a very different place than East Antarctica, and there is a physical barrier, the Transantarctic Mountains, that separates the two,” said Steig, lead author of a paper documenting the warming published in the Jan. 22 edition of Nature.

But no, it just couldn’t possibly have anything at all to do with the fact that the entire western side of the Antarctic continent and peninsula is dotted with volcanoes. Recent discovery of new volcanic activity isn’t mentioned in the paper at all.

From January 2008, the first evidence of a volcanic eruption from beneath Antarctica’s ice sheet has been discovered by members of the British Antarctic Survey.

The volcano on the West Antarctic Ice Sheet began erupting some 2,000 years ago and remains active to this day. Using airborne ice-sounding radar, scientists discovered a layer of ash produced by a ’subglacial’ volcano. It extends across an area larger than Wales. The volcano is located beneath the West Antarctic ice sheet in the Hudson Mountains at latitude 74.6°South, longitude 97°West.

antarctic_volcano2.jpg

UPDATE 1/22

In response to questions and challenges in comments, I’ve added imagery above and have a desire to further explain why this paper is problematic in my view.

The author of the paper himself (Steig) mentions the subglacial heat source in a response from “tallbloke” in comments. My issue is that they don’t even consider or investigate the possibility. Science is about testing and if possible, excluding all potential candidates that challenge your hypothesis, and given the geographic correlation between their output map and the volcanic map, it seems a reasonable theory to investigate. They didn’t.

But let’s put the volcanoes aside for a moment. Let’s look at the data error band. The UAH trend for Antarctica since 1978 is -0.77 degrees/century.

In a 2007 press release on Antarctica, NASA’s describes their measurement error at 2-3 degrees, making Steig’s conclusion of .25 degrees Celsius over 25 years statistically meaningless.

“Instead, the team checked the satellite records against ground-based weather station data to inter-calibrate them and make the 26-year satellite record. The scientists estimate the level of uncertainty in the measurements is between 2-3 degrees Celsius.”

That is from this 2007 NASA press release, third paragraph.

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=8239

Also in that PR, NASA shows yet another satellite derived depiction which differs from the ones above. I’ve added it.

Saying you have a .25 deviation over 25 years (based on one-tenth of a degree Celsius per decade per Steig) with a previously established measurement uncertainty of 2-3 degrees means that the “deduced” value Steig obtained is not greater than the error bands previously cited on 2007, which would render it statistically meaningless.

In an AP story Kenneth Trenberth has the quote of the day:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090121/ap_on_sc/sci_antarctica

“This looks like a pretty good analysis, but I have to say I remain somewhat skeptical,” Kevin Trenberth, climate analysis chief at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, said in an e-mail. “It is hard to make data where none exist.”

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Alan the Brit
January 21, 2009 10:46 pm

The report does say that these temperature trends are an”estimate”. That gives a distinct possibility that they could be wrong, by a long way! I am always bothered by new “techniques” that produce the desired results, April is coming, the new UK financial year looming, cuts in public funds are inevitable I suppose.

anna v
January 21, 2009 10:52 pm

Any guess given on why Antarctica is such a good Christian? ( the left hand does not know what the right hand is doing).

CodeTech
January 21, 2009 10:59 pm

Let me see if I have this straight…
They didn’t just use their heads, they calculated it using deduction.
And people call the skeptics “anti-science” !!!!!

matty
January 21, 2009 11:09 pm

By the time this is shot down they will have the headlines they wanted. Bit like “the hottest October ever”. Matty, Perth, Western Australia

Gaudenz Mischol
January 21, 2009 11:14 pm

And all this contrasts with an above average Antarctic seaice for the last couple of years!!!

Lloyd Burt
January 21, 2009 11:15 pm

Unfortunately the satellite data only covers the recent warming period. Many trends during a warming period (like the PDO for example) are radically different than trends during a cooling mode. In my part of the US it actually gets warmer (relative to the rest of the country) during a cooling PDO. Using warming mode data to work out cooling mode data is probably about as stupid as using arctic ice extents to predict antarctic ice extents. On the surface it sounds like it would work but we know from experience that it can often give radically different (and wrong) results.

Phillip Bratby
January 21, 2009 11:17 pm

“statistical technique”, “estimate”, “guide to deduce”! No mention of what the uncertainty is in the one-tenth of a degree or how much the cooling was in the East Antarctic. It doesn’t sound like real science, more like an attempt to find some way of plugging another hole in the sinking of the ship SSAGW. The press release does not give any confidence that the paper has any worth.

Neil Crafter
January 21, 2009 11:26 pm

“The study found that warming in West Antarctica exceeded one-tenth of a degree Celsius per decade for the last 50 years and more than offset the cooling in East Antarctica.”
Wow, scary hot! One tenth of a degree per decade. How can they ‘measure’ to this degree of accuracy I have to wonder, especially with interpolation, albeit “careful interpolation”. So its gone from really really really cold to only really really really cold (same number of reallys there due to the uncertainty bands!).

Barry L.
January 21, 2009 11:27 pm

per the following map , http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=8239 and eyeballing an average temperature change works out to
25years x 0.05deg/year = +1.25deg over 20 years
using the 2004 map above, and eyeballing an average temperature change works out to
25 years x -.1 = -2.5deg over 20 years
Thats a poorly estimated on my part, whopping difference of 4 degrees. I wonder how the difference came about?
But wait… they added a disclaimer on latest data: “The scientists estimate the level of uncertainty in the measurements is between 2-3 degrees Celsius.”
So it looks to me like they decided to change thier color scheme to suit good buisness practices, in hopes of getting some funding for more reaserch.
I’d like to see how the following graph looks now, after “correction”
http://icecap.us/images/uploads/ANTARCTIC_SP.jpg

Kath
January 21, 2009 11:27 pm

Scientists involved in this field have to toe the line for the sake of their careers. An article in the http://www.cato.org web site (Vol.15, No.2, Spring 1992) notes that one scientist lost funding from the National Science Foundation (who also funded the study above) because of:
*quote*
“…data analyses that were failing to show net warming over the past century. Reviewers suggested that his results were dangerous to humanity.”
*end quote*

Cassandra King
January 21, 2009 11:33 pm

I am trying to get my head around the methodology used, they say this is not back of the envelope guestimation but end up saying that in effect their work is nothing more than calculation by guess work?
Interpolation is a grand word for it but a simpler explanation may be that they have been trying every which way to get the figures to fit a desired outcome and this ‘interpolation of data’ is just another complicated way of smashing that square peg into that obstinate round hole.
The ommision of volcanic activity in the western quarter must at least raise the spectre of selective and biased procedures.
The BBC have been flogging the story to death which also leads me to believe that something fishy is going on.

lulo
January 21, 2009 11:38 pm

I’ll have to read their paper before giving serious comment, but, before I read it, my guess is that the inconvenient trend over the past three decades or so in Antarctica (which is the opposite of the trend observed elsewhere, perhaps due to cloudiness-albedo issues, or perhaps due to the fact that it’s the only terrestrial area on Earth without urban heat island issues) gave them cause to go out and prove that the continent was actually warming. The period with the highest and most rapidly rising CO2 concentrations was showing some cooling, so it made sense to go back and find a cold starting point. Then they could turn around and say that the long-term trend is upward. This, of course, is true, but belittles the fact that this has not been the case since the 1970’s. Next, they will tell us that the reason for the increase in sea ice in the area around the Antarctic is because of the added melting caused by warming and increased precipitation, and the resultant increase in freshwater, which is more stable and has a higher melting point. Never mind the more likely possibility that it has something to do with the slight cooling during the past three decades (though I’ll bet this is conveniently no longer apparent in their paper). Anyway, enough with my diatribe. I’ll pick it up on the weekend and actually read it before I comment further. Maybe they’ll convince me.

Neil O'Rourke
January 21, 2009 11:40 pm

I suppose with the arctic sea ice ignoring Al Gore’s prediction that it will vanish within 5 years, they had to divert attention somewhere else. The other side of the globe seems to be far enough away…

January 21, 2009 11:45 pm

George Smith of this parish spoke directly with Steig on this and posted on another thread, but I can’t find the post now. I hope he reposts it here. – Anthony, please badger wordpress for a better author search facility!

January 21, 2009 11:48 pm

Climate Audit is also covering this one…http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=4914#comments
I posted the comment below earlier today, as it’s station related I thought it might interest some readers here. I posted a brief version of this on Real Climate but it appears to be one of those questions that some prefer not asked.
The following are the station history comments for Butler Island AWS WMO ID 89266 from the University of Wisconson Antarctic Automated weather stations project. I assume this is GISS station ID Butler Island 700892660009. The temperature graph from GISS is available through- http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/gistemp_station.py?id=700892660009&data_set=0&num_neighbors=1
The supplementary data of Steig et al 2009(www.nature.com/nature/journal/v457/n7228/extref/nature07669-s1.pdf) indicate a warming trend of 0.45 C/decade for Butler Island – the highest of any site reported. I thought it would be interesting to see what the station history revealed-(from http://amrc.ssec.wisc.edu/aws/butlerismain.html). Note that Butler Island sits on the east side of the Antarctic Peninsula. Google earth shows a featureless rounded island surrounded by sea ice.
Station history
1983: This unit was deployed by the BAS but upon installation at Butler Island the unit did not operate. The unit was removed leaving the tower and other equipment in place on Butler Island and will be returned to Wisconsin for repairs.
1986: AWS 8902 was tested and found to be functioning well. This unit was deployed 1 March 1986. The old station was located and found to be almost totally buried. The solar panel, aerovanes, and top tower section were returned to Rothera.
1986-87; 01 Mar 86. On 01 Oct 86 wind direction failed for unknown reasons. On 19 Jul 87 station stopped transmitting for unknown reasons.
1990: Wind speed and direction were intermittent after 2 May.
1991: Pressure gauge ceased functioning 8 Dec.
1992: Performance: 100%
1993: Performance: Station not functioning after 3 November.
1994: Performance: Station off until 15 February, and again 18 March-5 April. Wind system intermittent July, October-December.
1997: Performance:Aerovane replaced 11 February. Pressure had to be corrected due to a failure of the precision time-based correction to the system clock. Aerovane “frozen” most of the time in May and August through November.
1998: Performance:Aerovane not functioning from 10 September to 27 October. Pressure continues to need correction due to the failure of the precisiontime-based correctin to the system clock.
1999: Performance:Aerovane intermittently “frozen” in July. Pressure continues to need correction due to the failure of the precision time-based correction to the system clock.
2000: Performance:Aerovane not functioning from mid-June through December. Pressure continues to need correction due to the failure of the precision time-based correction to the system clock.
2001: the following work was done “Moved Solar panel and electronic boxes up so all above 120cm allowing accumulation for the next year.”(amrc.ssec.wisc.edu/aws/butlerismain.html).
2003 Visited on 22/12/03 The mast was not raised but the old solar panel and charging box were removed. The new solar panel was mounted on the mast. The new battery box was placed at the bottom of the mast in a hole that just buried it on the western side of the mast. A flag was placed on top of the box so it could easily be located. The wind vane was replaced with a repaired one. New cables were connected and the AWS started up without any trouble.
The GISS graph shows a break between 2003 and two new data points for 2007, 2008(?). There is data available for station 892660 for the intervening period but not shown on GISS (eg http://www.tutiempo.net/en/Climate/BUTLER_ISLAND/01-2005/892660.htm) for some reason.
Given the station history I am surprised that Steig et al 2009 manage to define a trend at all let alone a rising one of 0.45degrees C/decade. If it were me I would have left this station out of the analysis altogether as it appears far to unreliable. I wonder how many other stations are similarly affected? Did reviewers bother to examine station records at all?
Note also there is a change in station altitude of about 100 m but I am unable to work out when this occurred.

January 21, 2009 11:57 pm

From NASA: Satellites Confirm Half-Century of West Antarctic Warming — global-warming hype of the day?

January 22, 2009 12:02 am

Update: I contacted the ‘Today’ program on radio 4 which just ran the story with a praisee of George’s comments. They emailed me straight back and asked George to contact them direct. http://news.bbc.co.uk/today/hi/contact_today/default.stm
I hope George sees this and sends them the post he made.

January 22, 2009 12:38 am

One of the main arguments in this thread is one ad hominem against one of the authors of the paper in Nature ( “Anytime Michael Mann gets involved …” ). This sounds poor.
The other argument is, volcanoes. I’m missing the quantification of this point – how can spots of volcanism be relevant for the warming of one half of the continent?
Somehow, not much justice is done to the paper. It corroborates results of several other papers and it uses widely applied methods. Using satellite data to fill gaps in coverage is used in many fields including weather forecast, and the verification proves that it works.
With this work we now have a broader picture of global warming in work in general, the dynamics of the lower stratosphere and the ozone layer influencing continental Antarctica and even cooling it in the last two or three decades, and regional winds and sea ice influencing the pattern of temperature change over the continent. It gives us hints, where coupled models need improvement, because we understand better, why they fail in some points. This is, how science works.

January 22, 2009 12:45 am

@ Mike (23:57:08) :
Hype of the day?
To identify causes of the warming, the team turned to Drew Shindell of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York, who has used computer models to identify mechanisms driving Antarctica’s enigmatic temperature trends.
Some bloke at GISS who has used computer models to identify
AGW is a ship called Titanic in 1912 ignoring the warnings of pack-ice and icebergs.

Neil Hampshire
January 22, 2009 12:45 am

So they have combined satellite data with conventional weather station data to show the Antarctic is warming.
Does this mean that the satellite data is now considered to be a valid measurement of global temperature trends or is it only valid in Antartica?

Rossa
January 22, 2009 12:49 am

As a side issue read Richard North’s posts on carbon permits at http://eureferendum.blogspot.com/
A Study in Useless says that a side effect of the recession is that the steel and cement industries in the EU now have a surplus of permits. They are trying to sell them to raise funds that they can’t get from their normal channels in the crippled banking system. Reuters reckons they could raise 1 billion Euros.
It will also depress the price still further, possibly as low as $5 a ton….bet Al Gore is crying into his Cheerios as he watches his carbon based investments tank. (Do they release CO2 into the atmosphere too as they evaporate?)
“Look behind You” says our government (UK) has committed to selling 25 million permits this year. Hardly worth the effort to raise just £125m. Mind you anything is something as they try to “save the planet”.
Belated congratulations to you Anthony. We’ve been away so only found out the good news today. Well deserved and hopefully you’re picking up a few more visitors from the UK now.

Alex
January 22, 2009 1:00 am

Almost exactly a year ago on 22/01/08 there was an article “Suprise! There’s an active volcano under Antarctic ice”, And the same pictures were used, perhaps on 22/01/09 there might be an article about one of those volcanoes blasting a hole in the ice sheet!

Alex
January 22, 2009 1:00 am

*22/01/10 not 09

Harry G
January 22, 2009 1:16 am

I cant wait to see Steve McIntyre’s take on this paper

Araucan
January 22, 2009 1:23 am

Wathever the conclusion, this article invents a new kind of modelling, the retro-modelling, which gives them a very large road in order to re-write history …

January 22, 2009 1:24 am

How boringly predictable, every summer we have the same alarmist “all the ice is melting” BS. Every September in the North and January/February in the south.
However this year is different. This year they are deducing the data. So the raw data is NOT showing any meaningful or significant rise in temps? Could that be why there is MORE ice there than last year?
Mind you, the AGW alarmists have never let what is actually happening get in the way of their alarmism, have they?

Gerard
January 22, 2009 1:38 am

The Australian Government and its cohort of green supporters will grasp this ‘scientific’ knowledge with both hands as the wheels appear to be falling off the proposed emissions trading scheme, not necessarily because of global cooling facts but people are nervous about jobs due to the global finacial meltdown. I just hope that one of politicians sees the threat of global cooling as a get out of gaol card for the stupid emissions trading scheme that will have no impact on the worlds emissions even if they were causing a problem, afterall Australia produces less than 1.5% of the worlds CO2 and its percentage is falling due to the growth of China and India.

Richard Heg
January 22, 2009 1:46 am

Real Climate have an article from co-authors of the report, gives some extra details.
http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/01/state-of-antarctica-red-or-blue/
I find this bit interesting,
“In our own published work to date (Schneider and Steig, PNAS), we find that the 1940s [edit for clarity: the 1935-1945 decade] were the warmest decade of the 20th century in West Antarctica, due to an exceptionally large warming of the tropical Pacific at that time.”
So if west antartica was warmer 60/70 years ago how would the trend look if we started it 70 years ago and not 50 years ago?
“Our results do not contradict earlier studies suggesting that some regions of Antarctica have cooled. Why? Because those studies were based on shorter records (20-30 years, not 50 years) and because the cooling is limited to the East Antarctic. Our results show this too, as is readily apparent by comparing our results for the full 50 years (1957-2006) with those for 1969-2000 (the dates used in various previous studies), below.”
So if there has been less warming or even cooling for the last 20-30 years, but is this not the time when CO2 concentratons were higher?
It all sounds like weather to me.
The BBC are all over this story http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7843186.stm
Hows this for drama:”A BAS team currently on site is reporting that the Wilkins shelf, about 15,000 sq km in area, is probably about to break free.
“It really could go at any minute, and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the final cracks started to appear very soon,” said BAS’s David Vaughan.”

January 22, 2009 2:29 am

Kath (23:27:30) quotes in part: “Reviewers suggested that his results were dangerous to humanity.”
This beggars belief. Have we really sunk so low that science may be corrupted at will by thought control wild-eyers?
“…data analyses that were failing to show net warming over the past century.”
Was his data analyses correct or incorrect? Who cares? That’s not the point. He was apparently propping up the sky…
Slash (and burn).
What a sad time we are living in.

January 22, 2009 2:41 am

Don’t miss the really good bits from this story… strike fear into your heart…

“Professor Brook said it had been thought Antarctica was cooling partly because of the hole in the ozone layer, which allowed the hot air out.”
“Scientists now estimate the melting of Antarctica’s massive ice sheets will cause the world’s sea levels to rise by one to two metres by the end of the century.”


Southern ice cap victim of global warming

January 22, 2009 2:53 am

Anthony: I’m going to try to post on the Antarctic TLT sometime today or tomorrow as part of the series I was doing on the effects of ENSO and volcanic eruptions on TLT. Here are a few preview graphs of Antarctic temperatures from that future post.
************
The following are graphs of Antarctic and Southern Ocean TLT [AHU MSU] created from data available through the KNMI Climate Explorer Website. Keep in mind that the MSU satellite data does not reach the entire Antarctic, which is something I found curious about the use of satellite data for the University of Washington study. (They must be supplementing the sparse surface measurements with it.) In fact, RSS only lists data as far South as 70S. AHU extrapolates, smoothes, estimates, whatever, to provide data for the rest of the Antarctic. Regardless, here are additional graphs of the AHU TLT data for the Antarctic to add to the ones I put up yesterday for those discussing the Antarctic off-topic on the previous thread.
Here are the East and West TLT anomalies from 90S to 60S with linear trends. The trend in the west is flat, and the trend in the east is toward cooling:
http://i39.tinypic.com/9hqeeh.jpg
The Southern Ocean would influence that data so I reduced the longitudes in the following to 90S to 70S. Again, this is apparently data that’s estimated by AHU because it’s outside the reach of the MSU satellite as far as I know. Finally, a dataset with a warming trend:
http://i42.tinypic.com/b69i6e.jpg
You’d have to segment the data looking hard for an area that’s warming differently that the rest of the continent in order to come up with one that’s more significant.
There’s a phenomenon that effects Antarctic sea ice called the Antarctic sea ice dipole, which has ENSO as one of its primary influences, so I decided to take a look at the Antarctic TLT dipole, which I calculated as Western TLT MINUS Eastern TLT for 90S to 70S and compared it to scaled NINO3.4 SST anomalies. There’s some very apparent ENSO influence and at times it’s hard to tell what drives what. Curious.
http://i41.tinypic.com/2lunv5.jpg

Kohl Piersen
January 22, 2009 2:55 am

O.K. so a paper is produced and published which “finds” warming in East Antarctica.
The paper depends upon no new observations (no new data). It depends upon an examination of existing data and satellite data but uses a different analytical method.
So why aren’t the experts lining up to produce similar papers on similar data which show how this one is wrong?

MattN
January 22, 2009 2:56 am

“People were calculating with their heads instead of actually doing the math,”
A claim I find extremely unlikely…..

Leon Brozyna
January 22, 2009 2:58 am

What is a simple layman to make of all this?
Well, I notice that 3 of the 5 coauthors in this study (Rutherford, Mann, & Shindell) were also cited in the Wegman Report to Congress as being part of the social network involved in the infamous first hockey stick. Shindell (GISS) took part in the Nature teleconference; was he there to make sure all public pronouncements remained on message and that the proper spin was included?
And just as the hockey stick helped get rid of that inconvenient Medieval Warming Period (MWP), this new ‘research’ has managed to warm West Antarctica enough to overcome the cooling in East Antarctica so that the report can claim that on average the whole continent is warming. And just how were they able to pull off this feat? They devised {created; made up} a statistical technique {did they run it by a statistician to ensure their statistical approach was valid, since none of the coauthors is a statistician} to make a new estimate {so they don’t know what the temperatures were; they just came up with a guess that just happens to match their belief system}. Will this end up as yet another project for Steve McIntyre to examine the statistics used?
So is this the way modern ‘science’ works? Come up with a belief, then look for data that supports the belief while ignoring data that doesn’t conform? I think I’ll self-snip myself here before I let loose my frustrations on this latest display…

will
January 22, 2009 3:07 am

This is total drivel
There is no evidence for increased temepratures in the Antarctica:
http://www.physorg.com/news148239677.html
and
http://data.aad.gov.au/aadc/soe/display_indicator.cfm?soe_id=1
(scroll down to the graphs)
The AGW hypothesis and modelling predicts warming at high latitudes and very little at the equator, due to the presence of atmospheric water vapour. It was always the failure of the Antarctica to warm, as well as the failure of temperatures to increase in line with atmospheric CO2 over the last 10 years, that left the warming hysterics without any case. They are trying desperatly to manufacture one.

January 22, 2009 3:33 am

Here are the graphs I posted as part of the off-topic comments on yesterday’s thread.
Has the Antarctic warmed? Yes. Has it warmed in recent years? No. Unless you use surface temperature data, then you have a rise in recent years.
Lower troposphere temperature:
http://i39.tinypic.com/2d0i2hu.jpg
A blurb from my post on Surface Temperature By Continent. Did they cherry-pick the start date for the study? Scroll down for the Antarctic:
http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/01/land-surface-temperature-comparison-by_07.html
It included a comparative graph of GISS, CRUTEM, and NCDC data for the Antarctic:
http://i39.tinypic.com/33nkxfc.jpg
And the capper that seems to contradict their claim that the recent Antarctic cooling is a result of the change in ozone, blah, blah. How did man vary ozone in the early period of this graph to cause that drop in SST anomalies from 1880 to 1920? The peak in the 1980s/90s didn’t come close to reaching the SSTs at the end of the 19th century.
http://i44.tinypic.com/2uen29u.jpg
One of the authors of the Nature paper, Eric Steig, made an appearance at Lucia’s website and had a discussion with Roger Pielke Jr that’s worth reading. I, of course, had to throw a few graphs into the conversation.
http://rankexploits.com/musings/2008/who-expects-a-tropical-tropospheric-hot-spot-from-any-and-all-sources-of-warming/#comments
**********
And for those interested in the TLT of the Antarctic Peninsula, here’s a graph of it compared to scaled NINO3.4 SST anomalies and to Sato Index data. The anomalous dip in 1986 appears to be the cause of the positive trend in Antarctic Peninsula Lower Troposphere Temperature.
http://i41.tinypic.com/rt43ns.jpg
I should be posting the rest of the Antarctic data in a day or two at my website.

January 22, 2009 3:37 am

Matty from Perth Summed it up –
By the time this is shot down they will have the headlines they wanted.
In today’s Australian Media Alarmist Professor Barry Brook has been having a field day.

That’s bad news if you live near the Australian coast,” Prof Brook said.
“In some areas where you’ve currently got housing, you’d probably have to abandon those areas.”
He said the sea would penetrate up to 1km inland in flat areas like South Australia’s lower lakes. Large areas which don’t see flooding now would get flooded by king tides.
House prices for coastal areas would probably drop, Prof Brook said.
Scientists already knew, he said, that the massive ice sheets of western Antarctica were melting, but the study showed they would melt more quickly.
The study, contained in today’s issue of Nature, was also bad news for climate change in general, Prof Brook said.
It had been thought Antarctica’s cooling would help restrain global warming by acting as a “cool pack”, but this did not appear to be the case

We have done our best to deal with this hysterical alarmism, but its all over the Australian TV News this evening-
See the Agmates post here.

realitycheck
January 22, 2009 3:42 am

What is the scale on the 2009 image?
Smoke and Mirrors
If Mann is involved in this, I’d put it straight in the trash.

January 22, 2009 4:06 am

Is the Wilkins Ice Sheet, which is mentioned recently by this Reuters report, in the region that should be affected by the volcanic activity? What about the reports of ice in Antartica growing by 20% in the past story about solar albeido?
http://gmy.news.yahoo.com/v/11649825

January 22, 2009 4:06 am

As south america is divided in two different climates, separated by the Andes, also Antartica has two climates areas, as you say. I have observed that these issues conveniently appear during SH summer. Warmers will produce similar “papers” during NH next summer.

Simon Evans
January 22, 2009 4:06 am

But no, it just couldn’t possibly have anything at all to do with the fact that the entire western side of the Antarctic continent and peninsula is dotted with volcanoes. Recent discovery of new volcanic activity isn’t mentioned in the paper at all.
You are hypothesising that surface warming of Antarctica over the last 50 years might be significantly attributed to volcanic activity? That’s an interesting idea. Do you, or does anyone, have any figures to support such a notion?
The recent discovery you refer to was of a sub-ice volcano that erupted 2,000 years ago. Whatever its current level of activity and the extent to which that may continue to effect ice sheet flow, it’s somewhat hard to imagine the extent to which you think that might be affecting surface temperatures.
Does your hypothesis of volcanic activity as a driver of warming apply equivalently to other continents?

Bruce Cobb
January 22, 2009 4:11 am

Looks like they were looking for warming, got creative with the data, and well, what do you know, they “found” warming. That’s it? They needed a “last hurrah” and this is the best they could come up with? Pathetic. Funny thing is, even if they did manage to “prove” overall warming in the antarctic the past 50 years, all they’ve proven is the climate changed (maybe). Yes, we know. Now, please show us how man caused it.

old construction worker
January 22, 2009 4:21 am

OT
I just read that Intel will be closing their wafer production in Santa Clara, Calif. and Williams-Sonoma of San Francisco will be cutting 1400 jobs.
Soon, Hollwood wil be the last industries in California and all the “Stars” will be on the government payroll. I wonder if they could live on $100,000.00 IOU’s per year.

ROM
January 22, 2009 4:36 am

A true disaster in the making with one to two metre sea rises and you will have to abandon your houses as well according to Professor Barry Bock, Director of the University of Adelaide’s Research Institute of Climate Change and Sustainability. [ Australia ]
The good Professor also has a reason for the cooling of the Antarctic as well!
“Professor Brook said it had been thought Antarctica was cooling partly because of the hole in the ozone layer, which allowed the hot air out.”
I kid you not! Check for yourself!
“The Australian” 22 / Jan / 2009
http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,24946666-11949,00.html

January 22, 2009 4:38 am

For the known argentinian geologist Miguel Gonzales, in his studies in the “Salinas del bebedero”, a salt lake in Argentina, http://www.springerlink.com/content/m11m129238u61484/ all these weather changes coincide with solar minimums like the Maunder minimum, which produced drought in the argentinian “pampa” (plains), and which it is happening again now. So, in general, we have different weather systems: one west of the andes and the other east of the andes.

Roger Knights
January 22, 2009 4:39 am

There’s a partisan story on Bloomberg here:
http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601124&sid=a88Ja2tPfcnM&refer=home
Here are the headline plus selected paragraphs of spin:
Antarctic Warming Found by Scientists Dashes Argument (Update1)
By Alex Morales
Jan. 22 (Bloomberg) — Antarctica has warmed over the past half-century, scientists said, dashing a key argument by skeptics who say climate change is overstated.
Temperatures rose an average 0.12 degrees Celsius (0.22 Fahrenheit) per decade since 1957, researchers led by Eric Steig, a professor of glaciology at the University of Washington in Seattle, said in the journal Nature. Using new measurement methods, they discovered warming in the continent’s interior, which United Nations-sponsored scientists theorized was cooling.
The findings may help puncture arguments by global-warming skeptics such as the late author Michael Crichton who have pointed to cooling in parts of Antarctica as an indicator that climate change is exaggerated.
“This has put the last pieces of the jigsaw in place,” Gareth Marshall, a British Antarctic Survey climatologist in Cambridge who wasn’t involved in the research, said yesterday in a telephone interview. “If you consider Antarctica as a whole, it shows a significant warming.”
………….
Ice Shelves Breaking
The study indicates that the breakup of ice shelves already seen in the Antarctic Peninsula, a spit of land reaching toward South America, may “eventually” extend to other parts of the continent, Steig said in a telephone interview.
“The fact that the warming that is appearing on the peninsula extends way down into West Antarctica would suggest that eventually, if that trend continues, ice shelves in West Antarctica are also going to similarly be affected,” Steig said, pointing to a timeframe of “hundreds of years.”
…………..
Most ground-based temperature measurements from Antarctica began in 1957, and the data is largely from coastal areas. Gauging the vast interior by satellite didn’t begin until 1979. Steig’s team used mathematical models to establish the relationship between the ground and satellite measurements between 1979 and 2006 and then used the correlation they found to calculate temperatures for the interior going back to 1957.
…………….
Over the past 50 years the Antarctic Peninsula warmed an average of 0.11 degrees Celsius a decade, West Antarctica gained 0.17 degrees every 10 years and temperatures in East Antarctica rose by 0.1 degrees, Steig’s team found. The data from the east had a margin of error of 0.07 degrees, meaning the actual warming may be close to zero.
Even so, East Antarctica has cooled by about 0.2 degrees Celsius a decade since the 1970s, the researcher said.
“The warming prior to that was even greater than the cooling since and therefore, on average, it’s warming,” Steig said. The recent cooling has been attributed to the hole in the ozone layer caused by pollutants that are now banned so the cooling is likely to reverse in coming years, he said.
‘Huge Gap’ Filled
“Normally when ozone is warmed up by the sun, it causes the stratosphere, which is part of the atmosphere, to warm,” the British Antarctic Survey’s Marshall said. “If the ozone is missing, then that part of the atmosphere will cool and therefore you get this colder air over Antarctica and this propagates downwards toward the surface.”
Because of the statistical uncertainty that still surrounds the data from East Antarctica, Steig said his team’s biggest advance was in establishing there’s a clear warming trend in West Antarctica.
“The magnitude of the trend is larger in West Antarctica so we’re more confident that it’s warming,” Steig said. “We’ve really filled in a huge gap.”
To contact the reporter on this story: Alex Morales in London at amorales2@bloomberg.net.

realitycheck
January 22, 2009 4:43 am

Update on scale – the original figure at NASA has it here
http://www.nasa.gov/images/content/305938main_Antarctica_temps.jpg
The figure in 2004 shows a cooling of 0.2C per year (2C per decade) in the heart of the Antartic Continent. Now we are to believe a warming of 0.1C per decade in the same place – quite a turnaround in view.
Again, per my comment previously….JUNK

Joel Shore
January 22, 2009 4:47 am

Anthony – You have presented us with two pictures, one labeled “NASA’s viewpoint – 2009” and the other labeled “NASA’s viewpoint – 2004”. They both show temperature trends but are you sure they show the trends over the same time period?
One of the points of this paper is that there are some places in Antarctica seem to have shown cooling over the last 20 or 30 years but appear to show warming over a longer (50 year) time period. And, this is in line with the idea that there might be a different countervailing forces operating…namely a general warming trend like the global trend but then also a cooling effect caused by a change in wind patterns due to ozone depletion (which only became significant around the late 1970s). Of course, this is still a rather speculative hypothesis. This piece discusses all of this more: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/01/state-of-antarctica-red-or-blue

Bruce Cobb
January 22, 2009 4:47 am

From RealNonsense.org last Feb.:
“Despite the recent announcement that the discharge from some Antarctic glaciers is accelerating, we often hear people remarking that parts of Antarctica are getting colder, and indeed the ice pack in the Southern Ocean around Antarctica has actually been getting bigger. Doesn’t this contradict the calculations that greenhouse gases are warming the globe? Not at all, because a cold Antarctica is just what calculations predict… and have predicted for the past quarter century.”
So, I guess this means they’ll be changing their tune now to “a warming Antarctica is just what calculations predict…. and have predicted for the past quarter century”. AGW Believers hoisted by their own petard. Once again.

January 22, 2009 4:50 am

MattN (02:56:58) quotes: “People were calculating with their heads instead of actually doing the math,”
I think that may be a series of typos, Matt. They probably meant to write:
“People were calculating with their heads instead of their hearts.”

Bill Illis
January 22, 2009 5:04 am

When the actual base data used in this study is made available, it will show something completely different.
That is what I have noticed everytime I have looked into the basic data used in all these alarmist studies. The actual data does not support the claims made.
They actually expect noone to look into the data they provide with the study (or they don’t provide it, one or the other.)

Rick, michigan
January 22, 2009 5:05 am

When they use the word “contrarian” that many times to describe those who scientifically disagree…well…I think that says it all.

Ed Zuiderwijk
January 22, 2009 5:06 am

Doesn’t this mean that someone 25 years ago had his or her thermometers off by about 5C degrees? Are we really to believe that the folk who put the detectors in place were that incompetent? Also, how does this “warming” tally with the current extent of Antartic sea ice which is the largest in the last 30 years?

JimB
January 22, 2009 5:09 am

“Joerg Zimmermann (00:38:25) :
One of the main arguments in this thread is one ad hominem against one of the authors of the paper in Nature ( “Anytime Michael Mann gets involved …” ). This sounds poor.
The other argument is, volcanoes. I’m missing the quantification of this point – how can spots of volcanism be relevant for the warming of one half of the continent?
Somehow, not much justice is done to the paper.”
Joerg, I disagree. My understanding of what you stated here is that there are two arguments presented. One being an “attack” on Mann, and the other, volcanoes.
I see people questioning the data produced by the weather stations, people asking why the albedo/ash result wasn’t taken into account, people questioning how you can make such a refined result of .1c with such a large margin of error, and many other questions regarding methods, data, etc.
THAT is, how science is done.
JimB

Perry Debell
January 22, 2009 5:15 am

Chaiten in Chile became more active last Monday.
http://s147.photobucket.com/albums/r301/numero22/?action=view&current=chai20090119.flv
http://volcanism.wordpress.com/
It’s the Ring o’ Fire wot dun it guv, not us clever apes wiv our internal comestible thingamajigs.

January 22, 2009 5:25 am

So how is a change from 60 below, to 59.5 below going to change anything?
Maybe the hole in the ozone, which is created and destroyed by sunlight, letting in the sun’s rays through the upper atmosphere and warming the lower atmosphere.

JP
January 22, 2009 5:27 am

Perhaps this is the beginning of a new front in Climate Science. First, the disappearing artic ice cap, and now the warming artic. Look for GISS to jump on this with both feet, as they add .5 deg to global temps based on findings from this study. The Alarmists will go into over drive just in time for Rep Waxman’s hearings.

January 22, 2009 5:32 am

I’ve found George Smith’s comment, which I’ll post here because it is so relevant:
Well I read that Paper by Professor Eric Steig of WU. Strangely, although I am a paid up member of AAAS, I was not able to log in and download that “embargoed” paper, so I had to get it from somebody with a top secret clearance.
So I already e-mailed Prof Steig; and first I asked him, given that the West antarctic is warming at over 0.1 deg C per decade; when does he prdict it will reach the melting point and start the global flooding by raising the sea.
He replied that he doesn’t make such predictions; but that it would be “many many decades before melting started” My guessw as 3000 years.
So then I aksed him how deep down in the ice do the satellite measurements observe the temperature, and how deep in the ice does his 0.1 deg C per decade propagate. He replied that the satellites only measure the very surface temperature; that ice is a very good insulator so the rise doesn’t go very deep. He said that the major heat source of that 6000 feet of ice is warmth from the earth underneath.
In other words, a storm in a teacup. The Prof and his team used 25 years of satellite data, which can roughly cover the whole of Antarctica, and they used ground based but coastal weather station sites that date from OGY in 1957/58 to calibrate the satellite data, so they then extrapolated the coastal measured data over the whole continent.
East Antarctica is still cooling; so no problem there, but west is warming more than East is cooling, so net warm.
Please note that cooling is bounded by 0K or -273.15 C, while warming has no known upper limit.
Also note that EM radiation cooling from Antarctica goes as T^4, so a net increase overall, means that Antarctica increases its pitiful contribution to the cooling of planet earth.
So let’s hear it For a warming Antarctica.
By the Way Prof Steig was very polite, and forthright and sounds like an OK chap to me.
But it still sounds to me like a report that somebody found that a sheet of toilet tissue now absorbs water faster and will sink a little sooner.
George
Key point from the studies author is that the warming is due to heat from the interior of the Earth – MMGW not involved.

hunter
January 22, 2009 5:38 am

The ehadline should have read, to be accurate:
Antarctic cooling since 1980.
The AGW promotion industry only shows how disreputable it is by making untrue and misleading claims, as this report exemplifies.

John
January 22, 2009 5:38 am

Perhaps Antarctic is indeed warming. I’d like to see how the warming fits with the increase in sea ice, but I’m certainly open to argument.
But isn’t the most important part of this new study the endorsement of satellite temperature measurements?

Neo
January 22, 2009 5:39 am

I noticed that one of the authors indicated elsewhere (not in the paper) that East Antarctica has been cooling the last 2 decades, but warming for the last 5 decades.
I love this “pick your convenient timeframe” stuff. It’s “Oh so scientific”.

Editor
January 22, 2009 5:41 am

Kath (23:27:30) :

… notes that one scientist lost funding from the National Science Foundation (who also funded the study above) because of:
*quote*
“…data analyses that were failing to show net warming over the past century. Reviewers suggested that his results were dangerous to humanity.”
*end quote*

This sounds like a James Hansen critique. A Google search for “james hansen” humanity yielded 86,400 hits, “james hansen” creation yielded 26,800, though I expect that to catch up in the future as he widens the scope of evil climate change.

Tom in I had to scrape frost off my windshield this morning Florida
January 22, 2009 5:50 am

“Satellites calculate the surface temperature by measuring the intensity of infrared light radiated by the snowpack, and they have the advantage of covering the entire continent. However, they have only been in operation for 25 years”
So why do all the reports of NH warming use the satellite data from 1979 -2000 as gospel?

Jon
January 22, 2009 5:50 am

“The researchers devised a statistical technique”
Anyone can “devise” a “technique” for whatever. One way is looking at volcano’s and rising magma under part of an area, and ignore 60% of the land area.

Mark Stewart
January 22, 2009 5:54 am

I see the different color scales in the two “NASA’s Viewpoint” Images, but are there different time periods represented by the two images as well?

terry46
January 22, 2009 5:55 am

I’m making A prediction today.President Obama will have the clobal warming criss cured in less than two years.After the democratic congress gets all these new laws about climate change and after everyone is forced to buy hybrid’s or walk the media will tell us that global warming ,which they don’t call it that now ,has been stopped and Obama will get full credit.Actually by then these nuts will know we are in an ice age again.

January 22, 2009 6:08 am

Bob Tisdale, they use data from polar orbiting satellites including data from the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR). See literature of Steig et al 2009. Thus they have full coverage of Antarctica.

Bill Illis
January 22, 2009 6:08 am

Regarding the BAS team on-site at the Wilkins ice shelf awaiting its probable break-up – too late its already happened.
NSIDC has put up a new webpage posting really good satellite pics of the Antarctic ice shelves – back to 2002 or earlier in some cases.
You can use this page to access them.
http://nsidc.com/data/iceshelves_images/
Or this ftp site where the raw images are stored. I try to use the ftp sites for the NSIDC as much as possible since you never really know what they are up to.
ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/pub/DATASETS/ICESHELVES/
It looks like the thin ribbon of glacial ice shelf (versus the normal sea ice) already broke by December 31, 2008. There is more snow cover since this date so there are no new images where one can see the change. I’m assuming the BAC team hasn’t been camped out there since December 31st.
ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/pub/DATASETS/ICESHELVES/wilkins/wilk_2008363_1400_modis_ch02.png

January 22, 2009 6:10 am

Will’s comment ‘total drivel’ seems appropriate.
In addition to the links he provides, here is a reminder of some of the clear evidence
that Antarctica is cooling, or at least certainly not warming:
(a) Station data. Some stations show no trend (eg McMurdo, Vostok, Amundsen-Scott at the pole), some show definite cooling (eg Halley, Manuela).
(b) Antarctic ice extent is increasing, see for example
http://www.nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/
Most entertainingly, the comedians at new scientist, http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn14724, admit this and refer to it as ‘an unusual side-effect of global warming’ 🙂
(c) Satellite data – RSS TLT (http://www.remss.com/msu/msu_data_description.html) shows a trend of about -0.2 C/decade at 70 degrees South.

Steven Hill
January 22, 2009 6:11 am

[snip, pointless to this discussion as were your subsequent religious based comments, now deleted. 24 hours time out]

Frank Lansner
January 22, 2009 6:14 am
Allan M R MacRae
January 22, 2009 6:17 am

Thanks to Bob Tisdale (02:53:41) for posting his graphs.
I would doubt the validity this U of Washington study of alleged Antarctic warming, based on the Lower Troposphere temperature data that shows no significant warming.
If someone wanted to do further research, it could focus on the accuracy of any satellite temperature measurements extending this far south.
Regards, Allan
Here is an excerpt of Bob’s post from above:
Here are the East and West TLT anomalies from 90S to 60S with linear trends. The trend in the west is flat, and the trend in the east is toward cooling:
http://i39.tinypic.com/9hqeeh.jpg
The Southern Ocean would influence that data so I reduced the longitudes in the following to 90S to 70S. Again, this is apparently data that’s estimated by AHU because it’s outside the reach of the MSU satellite as far as I know. Finally, a dataset with a warming trend:
http://i42.tinypic.com/b69i6e.jpg

The Engineer
January 22, 2009 6:21 am

Does no-one find it strange that 50 yrs of weather station data shows cooling, while 30 years of satellite data shows cooling, BUT…………………
If one take those two sets of data in 2009, add a single ice boring, shake the whole lot up with a statistical analysis – and hey presto – warming.
Reminds me a bit of Mann-o-statistics.
I e-mailed steig and he answered that his paper when it was published would show cooling in the antartic (unfortunately my computer went down – and I can’t find the back up of E-mails I thought I had: The conspiracy thickens.)

Perry Debell
January 22, 2009 6:29 am

Below is the text of my email just sent to Richard Black at the BBC. He has only acknowledged one of the many emails I have sent him, but I am not discouraged by his weakhearted spirit.
—————————————-
Well, well, well, Mr Black,
Up to your biased reporting tricks again are you?
Even the U. S. Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works is on to you. http://epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Minority.Blogs&ContentRecord_id=fc7db6ad-802a-23ad-43d1-2651eb2297d6
Seriously. have you given any thought to what you might do in the future, as AGW is consigned to the “trash can of stupid ideas”? The planet is in a cooling phase. CO2 is not a pollutant. The IPCC is totally wrong. It’s time you came clean.
http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=4914
http://wattsupwiththat.com/
http://australianclimatemadness.blogspot.com/2009/01/another-antarctic-scare-story.html
Nothing humans can do will prevent the dearth of sunspots from chilling our little world and inexorably, every claim that AGW exists, will be ground down to oblivion by the descending temperatures. All around you, reality is exerting its pressures, but Cognitive Dissonance will not let you change your mind.
http://web.mac.com/sinfonia1/Global_Warming_Politics/A_Hot_Topic_Blog/Entries/2008/8/20_More_On_Cognitive_Dissonance.html
It is just possible to recover from “True Believer Syndrome”, but you’ll have to work hard at. http://www.csicop.org/si/
Perry Debell

leftymartin
January 22, 2009 6:31 am

If there’s something weird
with your dataset…..
Who ya gonna call?
Michael Mann!
If your history
don’t match the faith….
Who ya gonnal call?
Michael Mann!
He ain’t fraid of no facts….
He ain’t fraid of no facts…..
If your temperature….
don’t match dogma
who ya gonna call
Michael Mann!!!!

DR.M.A. Rose
January 22, 2009 6:32 am

Has anybody visited http://climate.jpl.nasa.gov/keyIndicators/index.cfm#CarbonDioxide and looked at the monthly CO2 (the last 8 months of 2008) from Mauna Loa. If you average out it’s flat; no significant increase

John Galt
January 22, 2009 6:38 am

I always find it hard to swallow that while the actual measurements show one thing, crunching the numbers show something else.
There’s a reason Mark Twain is famously quoted about lies, damn lies and statistics. Slice and dice the numbers any way you want until you get the results you want.
Who gets credited with the quote about global warming is created by computers?

January 22, 2009 6:39 am

In looking at the CRUTEM, GISS, and NCDC Surface Temperature data (January 1950 to Dec 2008) for the West Antarctic (available through the KNMI Climate Explorer website)…
http://i40.tinypic.com/vp7pdt.jpg
…there are a number of things that stand out:
1. The NCDC and CRUTEM anomalies have increased since 1969 (period referenced in the study), while GISS remained relatively flat. The study wouldn’t deal with this, just an observation.
2. There appears to be a difference in the number of sampled surface stations between NCDC and the other two from the 1960s to the early 80s. Also not related to the study.
3. But, related to the study, during periods of volcanic activity (excluding El Chichon), year-to-year variability appears to decrease.
4. And the NCDC and CRUTEM data appear to have step changes that could be linked to the 1982/83 and 1997/98 El Nino events.
Did the paper discuss these, especially the ENSO-induced step changes?
If you’ve never heard of ENSO-induced step changes, there are discussions of it here in a two-part series:
http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/01/can-el-nino-events-explain-all-of.html
http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/01/can-el-nino-events-explain-all-of_11.html

John Galt
January 22, 2009 6:51 am

And another thing — let’s suppose Antarctica is warming. So what? Does that mean it’s man made? Does that mean it’s caused by too much CO2 in the atmosphere?
We all know the climate is changing and we all should know the climate is supposed to change, that change is natural and expected. The fact the climate in Antarctica may also be changing should come as a surprise to no one.
I am from Missouri, so you’ll have to show me. Anything from the inventor of the “hockey stick” (not the “discoverer”, the “inventor”) needs to be scrutinized with extra care. First, let’s attempt to establish what’s really happening and then why.

Brooklyn Red Leg
January 22, 2009 6:56 am

Hmm…could someone please point to any respectable definition of ‘Interpolate’ that does not mean ‘we made it up’? Furthermore, whenh was Interpolation accepted as a legitemate scientific method? Isn’t Interpolation completely at odds with Empirical Obsevation?

AKD
January 22, 2009 6:59 am

“We’ve really filled in a huge gap.”
So very telling.

Bill DiPuccio
January 22, 2009 7:07 am

Please see the insightful comments by Roger Pielke Sr. @ climatesci.org.
He concludes:
“In terms of the significance of their paper, it overstates what they have obtained from their analysis. In the abstract they write, for example,
“West Antarctic warming exceeds 0.1C per decade over the past 50 years”.
However, even a cursory view of Figure 2 shows that since the late 1990s, the region has been cooling in their analysis in this region. The paper would be more balanced if they presented this result, even if they cannot explain why.”

January 22, 2009 7:10 am

When I interpolate or “stretch” my photographs, they get fuzzy. Perhaps these guys are a little “fuzzy”.
This seems a little like the early settlers pulling up the the Carolina shores and proclaiming that the entire continent is swamp and forest. You can’t tell what the margarita tastes like by sampling the salt on the rim of the glass.
This sounds like a job for McIntyre, and fortunately, it looks like he’s already on it.

Flanagan
January 22, 2009 7:12 am

You shouldn’t all be paranoid abou this study. The authors themselves remain quite cautious about the reasons behind the warming
“We’re almost certain that greenhouse gas increases are contributing to this warming, but what’s difficult is to attribute this warming and so say how much is down to natural warming and how much down to anthropogenic causes.”
Drew Shindell from Nasa’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (Giss) in New York. (in the BBC press coverage)

Bill Marsh
January 22, 2009 7:13 am

It’s disturbing that the ‘margin of error’ (whatever that actually means) is more than 60% of the claimed average. It seems to me that this makes the claim virtually useless.
Clearly a threat if the temperature in Antarctica goes from -20C to -19C over the next 100 years.

Gripegut
January 22, 2009 7:15 am

Correct me if I am wrong but I thought that satellite data was incomplete over the poles. The last satellite picture that I saw showing icecap depth covered only 78% of Antarctica (there is a similar “hole” in coverage in the northern icecap also). The article states that satellites “have the advantage of covering the entire continent”. Are there satellites that completely cover the Antarctic continent?

Steve M.
January 22, 2009 7:18 am

“Steig’s team used mathematical models to establish the relationship between the ground and satellite measurements between 1979 and 2006 and then used the correlation they found to calculate temperatures for the interior going back to 1957.”
Mathematical models are a good substitution for actual measurements. /sarc off
“Using airborne ice-sounding radar, scientists discovered a layer of ash produced by a ’subglacial’ volcano”
How does this affect the albedo of the ice/snow in that area? Isn’t there going to be more meltoff and warmer termperature due to the ash as well as the increase in meltoff from the volcano?

Albert
January 22, 2009 7:21 am

I am easily reminded of those blokes walking up and down public roads wearing sandwich boards stating:
PREPARE THYSELF:THE END IS NIGH
This is a new religion. They have an inquisition, burn skeptics (scientists) at the stake (lose their jobs), They have this profound faith in the future heaven and hell (heaven is an atmosphere without CO2, hell being an atmosphere with CO2). They even have an afterlife: Antarctica; after the global warming, Antarctica will be the only habitable place on the planet and only a certain number of human beings will be let in, the others will die burning.

Flanagan
January 22, 2009 7:24 am

That’s it ! I finally discovered how some “skpetics” do to have those famous petitions of “scientists” agains AGW. They actually… pay them!
I’m not kidding, check this link http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/ethicallivingblog/2009/jan/19/1
Scientists who attend the International Conference on Climate Change to be held in New York, 8-10 March 2009 (organized by the Heartland Institute) get a $144 reward if and only if they sign the petition claiming skepticism against AGW.
Ahhh, this is science as we like it, isn’t it? Can we also receive a Macy’s card, please?

An Inquirer
January 22, 2009 7:26 am

Perhaps the Steig did not communicate well as he explained what he did in the study, but he is not doing interpolation — he is doing extrapolation. When one knows the end points and fills in missing some values in the middle, that is interpolation. Steig explains that they established a relationship between two sets of variables in the last twenty five years and then based on that relationship estimated temperatures in areas of the continent without weather stations for the previous 25 years. That is extrapolation which is more prone to error than interpolation.

Mark P
January 22, 2009 7:36 am

The alarmists really are getting desperate now. Their arguments are so frequently contradictory and so utterly unscientific one wonders what sort of insane, twisted world we must live in for them to be taken seriously. All they’ve done here is fudged a few figures to suit their agenda. This isn’t science, it’s politically driven rubbish.
We simply have to hope that nature continues to fly in the face of these idiots. There’s only so many times they can cry ‘wolf’ before even the mainstream media see them for the disgraceful crooks they really are.

Bill Wirtanen
January 22, 2009 7:48 am

“To identify causes of the warming, the Team turned to Dr Schwindle of ORACLE’s Institute for Space Studies in Delfoi, who has used cristal balls to identify mechanisms driving Antarctica’s enigmatic temperature trends.”

January 22, 2009 7:53 am

Volcanos? Really? Surely with a claim like that, you will shortly be providing us with some evidence that there has been a -trend- in vulcanism in West Antarctica over the past 50 years. The argument that West Antarctica is hotter because there are lots of volcanoes there is completely irrelevant (and rather misguided given the limited effect of volcanoes on local temperatures over the long-term) IF there is no trend in vulcanism. Stieg et al are not arguing that West Antarctica is warmer or colder than East Antarctica, rather that it has warmed faster over the past 50 years.
For those hoping that this paper will be proven wrong, don’t hold your breath. They seem to have crossed their Ts and dotted their Is on the analysis this time around, and others who have produced studies of Antarctic temperature (e.g. Monaghan) concede that they are revising their position on long-term temperature trend in light of the evidence presented.

kuhnkat
January 22, 2009 8:06 am

It is interesting how these guys insist on averaging averages of averages of non-existent data, which they have “in-filled” with more averages that they have deduced.
I believe I was taught the error of averaging averages in grade school. I guess statistics have changed over the last 40 years?
Since we are told that WEATHER is not predictable, and what we measure IS the weather, how can they put any reliance on this deduction??
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Richard M
January 22, 2009 8:22 am

Just what models were used to determine these NEW temperatures. Surely they did not use the same types of modelling that was projecting non-existent warming before this exercise?
Tell me it’s not ture.

Steven Hill
January 22, 2009 8:26 am

New Opportunity….beach front property
Antarctica is warming! Buy Now!

Russ R.
January 22, 2009 8:26 am

Last fall, before the Arctic desended on the Midwest, I was fortunate enough to go golfing. Unfortunately I lost my scorecard, and I have no memory of what my score was. I am suposed to enter my scores into the handicap system, in order to play fairly against others who keep a handicap.
I do remember playing the last two holes. I made a birdie on 17 (unusual), and a par on 18 (not unusual).
Now if I use the method employed by the scientist in the above study, do I extrapolate the known data, to the unknown holes and post a -9, for the round? Or do I take my average scores for each missing data point, and then add the two relatively good scores at the end?
Missing data is data which is not known, and therefore no amount of “deductive reasoning” will contain a useful trend to analyze. Too much of it is reduced to an average, and what you care about is the departure from the average.

Simon Evans
January 22, 2009 8:27 am

Steve M.,
“Using airborne ice-sounding radar, scientists discovered a layer of ash produced by a ’subglacial’ volcano”
How does this affect the albedo of the ice/snow in that area? Isn’t there going to be more meltoff and warmer termperature due to the ash as well as the increase in meltoff from the volcano?

The volcano in question erupted 2,000 years ago The ash layer from it is now below ice and therefore has no relevance to recent albedo. As for “increase in meltoff from the volcano”, it seems possible that any current activity may affect ice sheet flow in that specific region, but if there are those who think that sub-ice vulcanism is contributing significantly to surface temperature trend then I look forward to their figures on the matter.

AKD
January 22, 2009 8:27 am

“Stieg et al are not arguing that West Antarctica is warmer or colder than East Antarctica, rather that it has warmed faster over the past 50 years.”
Warmed faster than what?

Richard M
January 22, 2009 8:29 am

Let me add one other observation. If the east side is cooling and west side is warming exactly how does that fit the current models? How do the models explain the eastern cooling.
In my mind this simply strengthens the arguments that climate is regional and without regionalizing the models there is little hope of getting anything close to reality.

John Galt
January 22, 2009 8:32 am

One of the main arguments in this thread is one ad hominem against one of the authors of the paper in Nature ( “Anytime Michael Mann gets involved …” )
Is it an attack on Mann or a comment on the poor quality of his science? I believe you’ll find it to be the latter and not the former. Criticizing Mann’s work is not an ad hominem argument.

Robert Bateman
January 22, 2009 8:38 am

Could the picture showing the Antarctic Volcanoes be made expandable by “Click for Larger Image” ???

January 22, 2009 8:44 am

Flanagan (07:24:18)…
…Appears to be deliberately misrepresenting the situation, by stating that petition signers are “paid” a $144 “reward” for signing.
Event sponsors offer a 20% discount only to legitimate, degree-holding scientists, if they wish to add their names to the OISM petition [and only those with degrees in the hard sciences qualify; no English Lit majors, no Sociologists, etc.].
There are always some people who have not heard about the OISM petition, and this is a way to make them aware. It is no less legitimate than a newspaper coupon that gives a discount at the door.
Since many universities and professional organizations pay entry fees for events such as this, those attending may not receive any compensation from the discount.
And regarding that silly Guardian link, the names of signers are verified prior to being added to the list. From the OISM website:

Petition project volunteers evaluate each signers’s credentials, verify signer identities, and, if appropriate, add the signer’s name to the petition list.

But rather than shout and point at something, anything, in order to distract from the issue, it’s best to keep focused on exactly what the petition says, since it has been signed by over 31,000 U.S. scientists:

We urge the United States government to reject the global warming agreement that was written in Kyoto, Japan in December, 1997, and any other similar proposals. The proposed limits on greenhouse gases would harm the environment, hinder the advance of science and technology, and damage the health and welfare of mankind.
There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.

If anyone disagrees with that statement, I would like to hear credible reasons, backed up by facts, showing that it is not accurate.

An Inquirer
January 22, 2009 8:50 am

Flanagan:
You raise doubts about your ability to analyze if you think that a $144 discount on a conference registration fee will persuade a scientist to sign a petition in which he doesn’t believe.

Pierre Gosselin
January 22, 2009 8:50 am

Mark P
“The alarmists really are getting desperate now.”
This is what makes them so dangerous. They’ve become Orwellian, and that tells me they won’t stop at nothing. I see our inconvenient sceptic blogs getting shut down soon. And good bye Talk Radio. You’ll see.
Get ready to be a dissident on the run. I’m glad I live only 6 hours away from the Czech Republic. It might be the only country left that will offer climate asylum! It’s getting serious.

Bill Junga
January 22, 2009 8:50 am

Let’s me see now. Words like “devised a statistical technique”, deduce and intropolate vs calculating in their heads and back of an envelop. Michael Mann is a coauthor. I don’t know if I want to waste my time reading the whole report.
Has an experienced PhD statistician examined their “statistical technique”?

Fernando
January 22, 2009 8:51 am

From Nature:
A new reconstruction of Antarctic surface temperature trends for 1957–2006, reported this week by Steig et al., suggests that overall the continent is warming by about 0.1 °C per decade.
The work ends in 2006. sure.
reconstruction,reconstrutcion,reconstruction….
suggests, suggests, suggests, suggests….
Sorry.
With the benefit of the doubt, the work must be repeated. (2007 and 2008)????
Dr Leif, 0.01 ° C / year.( days … weeks .. months .. years … century millennium …) a small question;
is compatible with a range of 1W/m ^ 2?..(TSI)
Leif, independent of your wife. I love your comments.

Pierre Gosselin
January 22, 2009 8:56 am

Just as I predicted a few day ago, this La Nina now appears to be fizzling away.
http://www.osdpd.noaa.gov/PSB/EPS/SST/climo&hot.html

Pierre Gosselin
January 22, 2009 9:00 am

Overall, now that Obama is Prez,
expect a blizzard of global warming reports to come out.
This will give him the momentum needed to ram
climate policy down our throats.
The big blizzard is coming!

foinavon
January 22, 2009 9:04 am

Gripegut (07:15:06) :
The temperature data is from the USGS Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer:
http://edc.usgs.gov/guides/avhrr.html
which has pole to pole coverage and measures the temperature of radiating surfaces
It’s the satellite tropospheric temperature data that is somewhat dodgy at high latitudes since the microwave sounding units (MSU) seem to pick up spurious non-temperature-related artefacts from seasonal sea ice cycles (and also from high altitude snow covered mountains, as it happens):
http://www.agu.org/journals/gl/gl0320/2003GL017938
So, for example, the RSS tropospheric temperature analysis omits tropospheric temperature data from regions more southerly than 70′ latitude.

January 22, 2009 9:11 am

Joerg Zimmermann: Thanks for the suggestion about reading the paper, but I understand the basis. My comments, the two before yours and the one after, were provided to illustrate longer-term datasets and to show the inconsistencies between the study and those records. My third comment also asked two very basic questions.
Did the researchers account for the apparent changes in variability due to volcanic activity?
And how did the researchers account for the apparent ENSO-induced step changes?
The step changes are visible in Cell b of Stieg et al (2009) Figure 2. You just have to look beyond that pesty trend line. I try not to use trend lines for just that reason. They alter the appearance of the graph. (But sometimes I get carried away and throw them on, usually because I want to influence the viewer’s perception of the data.)
I’ve posted the above questions on the Nature website, but they have not been moderated yet.
Regards.

gary gulrud
January 22, 2009 9:14 am

“a good Christian? ( the left hand does not know what the right hand is doing).”
Anna, I’m crushed!
What does my nature have to do with my belief system?

D. Cohen
January 22, 2009 9:18 am

“Most ground-based temperature measurements from Antarctica began in 1957, and the data is largely from coastal areas. Gauging the vast interior by satellite didn’t begin until 1979. Steig’s team used mathematical models to establish the relationship between the ground and satellite measurements between 1979 and 2006 and then used the correlation they found to calculate temperatures for the interior going back to 1957.”
This makes sense if the statistical weather patterms — that is, climate pattern — does not change between the coast and the interior. Then the correlations between the coast and interior can, with some plausibility, be assumed to be constant. However, the correlations were from data taken during decades of a slight warming trend (1979-2000) and then used to estimate data in the interior during decades of a slight cooling trend (1957-1979). This sounds like it may be the hockey stick all over again. You should use correlations established for one climate-change pattern to estimate temperatures during an era of the opposite climate-change pattern only if you’re desperate for some sort of approximate result — or tryiing to baffle people with “science”.

Gripegut
January 22, 2009 9:26 am

Congratulations are in order for Anthony. This IS the best science blog in my humble opinion for topic quality and the astute postings by those who contribute to the discussion. Thank you again for an enlightening and entertaining site.
Steig et al appears to be another “hockey stick” paper. Just cherry pick the timeframe, use incomplete data, average the incomplete data, interpolate the results, and by using “new” mathematical techniques get the desired result.

foinavon
January 22, 2009 9:27 am

Flanagan (07:24:18) :
Yes it’s pretty dreary (a gift of $144 if registrants to the Heartland Institue pretend Climate “Science” meeting sign some petition devised years ago by a tobacco company propagandist nearly 10 years ago). I wonder who might consider that one can assess science by petition!
The list of cosponsers (click on the poster with the gallery of rogues on the Intro page of the meeting site) gives a pretty good indication of the purpose of this sort of “meeting”..
http://www.heartland.org/events/NewYork09/newyork09.html
It should be fun!

james griffin
January 22, 2009 9:30 am

I saw a report on BBC teletext early this morning and thought here we go again.
Interestingly it has now been removed, presumably because the likes of Anthony, Steve Mcintyre et al are already on the case.
Alex Jones on Info Wars.com has a piece today about a leading AGW site in big trouble as they know the mantra is falling apart.
He also reckoned that President Obama did’nt mention AGW either…I was out all day Tue so cannot verify this.

JP
January 22, 2009 9:36 am

Despite what Gavin has claimed, the SH in general and the Antartic in general have posed serious problems for the Alarmists. It just hasn’t cooperated with thier model projection and theories. What the MWP was to the paleos, the Antartic is to the Alarmists. Something had to be done.

foinavon
January 22, 2009 9:41 am

Flanagan (07:24:18) :
Yes it’s pretty dreary (a gift of $144 if registrants to the Heartland Institue pretend Climate “Science” meeting sign some petition devised by a tobacco company propagandist nearly 10 years ago). I wonder who they consider might be taken in by that!?
The list of cosponsers (click on the poster with the gallery of rogues on the Intro page of the meeting site) gives a pretty good indication of the purpose of this sort of “meeting” and perhaps helps to understand the dubious thinking that considers that dodgy petitions have anything to do with science…
http://www.heartland.org/events/NewYork09/newyork09.html
It should be a blast!

AnonyMoose
January 22, 2009 9:42 am

“In our own published work to date (Schneider and Steig, PNAS), we find that the 1940s [edit for clarity: the 1935-1945 decade] were the warmest decade of the 20th century in West Antarctica, due to an exceptionally large warming of the tropical Pacific at that time.”

So in the 1940s the warming was due to warming in the tropical Pacific, but now warming is due to global warming. And the cooling since 1998 is not relevant because 1998 was an El Nino year, and that exceptionally large warming of the tropical Pacific doesn’t count. So there hasn’t, yet there has been, tropical Pacific warming.
And from various comments, it sounds as if the history might have been:
1. Warm west Antarctica circa 1940.
2. Cooler west Antarctica 50 years ago.
3. Warmer west Antarctica until 20 years ago.
4. Cooler west Antarctica in last two decades (yet still warmer than 50 years ago).
I haven’t dug through the various sources above, but if this is the situation, then this latest paper cherry-picked the cool period 50 years ago as the starting point and found that the region warmed since then…without highlighting the variations.

Retired Engineer
January 22, 2009 9:50 am

Several questions: If the warming in the west exceeds the cooling in the east, shouldn’t there be less ice overall? How can Antarctica have more ice?
How do they measure temps? What equipment? surfacestations project has shown some big problems with measurements in this country. Do we believe that everything at the south pole is pristine and properly working?
0.1 degree C per decade? In industry, we wanted better measurement accuracy in our equipment than the thing we needed to measure. 10x was the goal. How in the (blank) can they measure 0.1 degree with equipment that is lucky to measure 1 degree with any confidence?

January 22, 2009 9:50 am

Anthony,
The link to the NASA article is from 2007, discusses a different study, and is rather vague if that 2-3 degree uncertainty range reflects the temperature of any given location or of the aggregate trend (given its magnitude, I suspect the former). I strongly doubt the aggregate uncertainty range of the 1950s-present trend is anywhere near the magnitude of 2-3 degrees, both because the time period in question is longer and the methodologies have been improved in the interim (hence the new paper).
That said, I’m still waiting for a friend to send me the full text of the paper (as I can’t get through the paywall at work), so I’ll have to withhold some judgment until I have a chance to get into the nitty gritty. However, Eric Stieg seems like an amiable enough chap, and I’m sure if you email him with your questions about both vulcanism and uncertainty ranges, he could give a far better answer than I could.

Pierre Gosselin
January 22, 2009 9:52 am

james griffin,
President Obama did’nt mention AGW probably because it was quite cold out there and thus avoided committing his first blooper.
I’m looking forward to what Mr McIntyre will uncover in this latest hockey stick, let’s-rewrite history report.

Arky32
January 22, 2009 9:55 am

1. I appreciate the unconventional thought that many of you including the author of this blog are contributing to the world.
2. I am led to believe that many of the readers of this blog probably did not consider the possibility that Steig already took the volcanic information into account before drawing his conclusions about the data.
3. As a scientists I typically despise a) the content of most “mass” press releases concerning the topics I study b) the fact that unless a scientific topic arouses controversy it tends to be dismissed by the public and c) that the press (including bloggers) seems to believe that all scientific ideas (evolution, global climate change, space exploration) are equally controversial.

Peter
January 22, 2009 10:12 am

Zeke:

The argument that West Antarctica is hotter because there are lots of volcanoes there is completely irrelevant (and rather misguided given the limited effect of volcanoes on local temperatures over the long-term) IF there is no trend in vulcanism.

No trend is needed. If you put a pot of cold water on a hot stove it will warm up gradually. And the larger the pot the more gradually it will warm up. The only way to disprove this would be to have accurate temperature records going back much longer than 50 years.

They seem to have crossed their Ts and dotted their Is on the analysis this time around

Yes, even to the point of quoting an uncertainty of 2-3 degrees on an estimation of 0.1 deg per decade.

Pieter F
January 22, 2009 10:13 am

Zeke: Volcanoes? Yes, really.
You are missing a fundamental point of the empirically based skeptics. We do not deny that there was a period of warming late last century culminating in the 1998 El Niño event. Warming trends are exaggerated at the poles. Therefore, a warming in Antarctica late last century is not surprising. However, since 1998 there has been an overall average global cooling and that too has been more profound in Antarctica. The AGW alarmists are having difficulty resolving the new trend (predicted, by the way, years ago by the solar scientists). So they turn to master alarmist computer modeler, creator of the hockey stick that served Mr. Gore so well.
West Antarctic has many very active volcanoes, even several below the ice sheet. It is warmer in the west than the rest of Antarctica where all indications are that it is distinctly cooler there. For a decade now, things are globally cooler. Why is it so difficult to understand that the West Antarctic volcanoes contribute to an anomalous warming in that area?

Simon Evans
January 22, 2009 10:26 am

Zeke and others
The author of the paper himself mentions the subglacial heat source in a response from “tallbloke” above. My issue is that they don’t even consider or investigate the possibility. Science is about excluding all potential candidates that challenge your hypothesis, and given the geographic correlation between their output map and the volcanic map, it seems a reasonable theory to investigate. They didn’t.

They’ve not presented a paper focused on attribution, so how is it reasonable to expect them to deal with all possible influences?
given the geographic correlation between their output map and the volcanic map, it seems a reasonable theory to investigate
A correlation with a map marking volcanos some of which have been extinct for how long? And where there is no evidence of temporal correlation in terms of vulcanism and temperature trend? A correlation which you suggest might account for continent-wide temperature trends? Do you apply the same hypothesis to vulcanism in the U.S., which is about two-thirds the size of Antarctica and has far more active and extinct volcanoes? A hypothesis does not seem reasonable unless it can be expressed in terms of plausible cause and effect, which can then be investigated. Perhaps it is plausible, but I’m not aware of any case that’s been put (with figures, that is) to suggest that local vulcanism could significantly warm an entire continent. It certainly seems unreasonable to me to expect Stieg et al to spend time in their paper addressing this, and it actually seems irrelevant for now. They’ve put forward an analysis of temperature trends (which I actually think it’s wise to treat with caution just as it would have been wise for all those trumpeting ‘Antarctic cooling’ to treat that analysis with caution!). If others wish to examine attribution then they can.
REPLY: the test is simple, if your data is measured over a weak point in the earth’s crust (as demonstrated by the volcanoes both active and dormant in the area) then it stands to reason that the area under you may be getting heat from that. I recall a news article from a couple of years ago where some group sent a submersible under the ice in areas around the Ross ice shelf and found vents, and a variety of marine life that was warmer water variety. To dismiss the possibility is reckless, and let’s face it, this press release (while the publicly funded paper itself paywalled) is about MEDIA ATTENTION. They would have to know that even if they made no attribution to cause in the paper, that a reversal in temperature trend for Antarctica would be assimilated into the entire “global warming” issue on the PR hit the news stands.
Here is an example from the AP story: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090121/ap_on_sc/sci_antarctica

“We can’t pin it down, but it certainly is consistent with the influence of greenhouse gases,” said NASA scientist Drew Shindell, another study co-author. Some of the effects also could be natural variability, he said.”

If they claim “we have no expectations on the cause”, then they are exposing themselves to be clueless of the process of a press release. Just look at Michael Mann’s comment to AP:

“Contrarians have sometime grabbed on to this idea that the entire continent of Antarctica is cooling, so how could we be talking about global warming,” said study co-author Michael Mann, director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State University. “Now we can say: no, it’s not true … It is not bucking the trend.”

Gosh, Mann’s and Shindell’s post facto reference to “the trend” in the context of the quote seems like attribution to me. – Anthony

Tom
January 22, 2009 10:28 am

[snip – none of that here]

Basil
Editor
January 22, 2009 10:29 am

wattsupwiththat (10:22:57)
You should add this as an “update” to your lead story, Anthony. It is priceless!

REPLY: I was doing that while you wrote this comment

Mary Hinge
January 22, 2009 10:30 am

The language of the paper is very confusing and seems to say that temperatures over Antarctic as a whole over 50 years are pretty much as they were 50 years ago. They don’t seem to know whats causing the temperatures to be the same as 50 years ago (or maybe slightly higher, they don’t say by how much). They also seem to suggest that when the ice melts hen sea levels will rise catastophically, as far as I know only the sea ice around the peninsular itself might be thinning, I haven’t seen any evidence presented to say that the land ice is melting at a more rapid rate.
To be honest this adds nothing to our understanding and seems to be a ‘filler’. I am no wiser after reading this arcticle than before just more confused.

January 22, 2009 10:30 am

From Wiki:
Principal component analysis (PCA) involves a mathematical procedure that transforms a number of possibly correlated variables into a smaller number of uncorrelated variables called principal components. The first principal component accounts for as much of the variability in the data as possible, and each succeeding component accounts for as much of the remaining variability as possible. Depending on the field of application, it is also named the discrete Karhunen-Loève transform (KLT), the Hotelling transform or proper orthogonal decomposition (POD).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Principal_components_analysis
In my view no (zero, zip, nada) inferences can be made from multivariate PCA eigen-vectors. The entire statistical method is heuristic at best, and is properly used to develop questions of interest, not analyze them. The Steig paper is yet another case of misuse of statistics because it creates imaginary “data” where there are none. Component vectors are not real, period.
It always behooves scientists to use actual data and straightforward analytical techniques. When scientists drift away from clarity and simplicity, they stumble.

Steven Hill
January 22, 2009 10:31 am

The study has major ramifications for sea level rise, said Andrew Weaver at the University of Victoria in Canada. Most major sea level rise projections for the future counted on a cooling — not warming — Antarctica. This will make sea level rise much worse, Weaver said.
Nice, beach front here in Ky!

realitycheck
January 22, 2009 10:32 am

Flanagan:
Lets see….$144 discount on my conference ticket or a $250,000 grant from the blind faith organizion to show that eating beans will contribute to man-made catastrophic warming of the planet.
Mmmm…
I think I’ll take the $144 dollars
NOT

George E. Smith
January 22, 2009 10:45 am

Well it is interesting to see all the flak this paper produced.
First off, I am NOT going to publish the back and forth I had with Prof Steig. he did not say anything in any alarmist or strident fashion. His answers to my very direct questions were also very direct and to the point. And I am not going to point any ad hominem fingers at any of the co-authors; alkthough I do blink when some of those names come up in reports.
Trenberth of the UN’s IPCC has already said he is “skeptical” of the methodology, and maybe the results. John Christy, (UAH) who has probably read more satellite surface temperatures than just about anybody, questioned the methodology.
I’m not too alarmed by the fact that they even attempted to do this.
I don’t know the age range of the population of Anthony’s club; but to me, the IGY earth lovefest of 1957/58 really marks the beginning of what I consider to be modern climate science. That time frame was specifically chose, because it was predicted to be a sunspot peak; and if you look at the previous sunspot maxima, you can appreciate that there was considerable interest in what the IGY peak would do. Nobody oculd have known that it was going to turn out to be the highest sunspot peak of all recorded history (of sunspots).
Antarctica was just beginning to be considered somewhat habitable. The late Edmund Hillary of NZ, climbed Mt Everest in 1953, and then did his crazy cross Antarctica dash not too long thereafter (I think Sir John Hunt was the leader of that expedition too), so the weather stations set up around the Antarctic Coast in those years are probably cinsidered to be of some importance, and their records, are probably well studied..
What I gather from Steig et al paper, is that they attempted to compare satellite measurements (surface temperature) of those very same weather station locations, with the measured data for the period since 1979 when the first polar orbit satellites went up; and then based on what they consider to be agreement of some sort (maybe after calibration), they applied whatever “transform” they had come up with to the much more extensive satellite data covering the whole of Antarctica, and then they extrapolated that data for the rest of Antarctica back to 1957, based on the coastal station data going back to 1957.
Now to me, that is better than a hipshoot, and a wild guess; they used available data to try and get some handle on what is unavailable; and therefor not data. So yes, that is a bit like skating out from the edge of the lake, on ice that is measured at a foot thick, and then progrssing all the way across the lake, on the basis of some pebbles dropped from a chopper across the lake, that didn’t break any holes in the ice. Maybe cleve, but maybe pretty scary assumptions too.
But back to what Steig et al say. Antarctica is warming at about the same rate as the rest of the world; or words to that effect.
Well that is BIG news. Conventional wisdom suggests that the polar regions are supposed to warm at a FASTER rate than the planet as a whole.
There’s good reason for that. I have asserted many times, that the earth DOES NOT cool from all the ice at the poles. The emittance of the earth surface goes roughly as the fourth poweer of temperature, somewhat following black body radiation laws, so the biggest cooling (loss of energy), actually is happening at the height of the noonday sun, in the hottest tropical deserts of the planet, where surface temperatures get up to +60C and maybe higher. The radiation rate there is over ten times the miserable emittance at the cooler polar regions.
Also the Wien displacement law comes into play, when you consider the CO2 greenhouse effect. At the coldest polar temperatures, the peak of the earth thermal radiation spectrum, is sitting at 15 microns; right on the CO2 14.77 micron absorption band; so the CO2 GH effect is maximised at the poles leading to even lower rates of energy loss.
On the other hand, at the hottest tropical Desert surface temperatures, the wien displacement has moved the peak of the thermal radiation all the way down to about 8.8 microns; which moves the CO2 absorption band even further down on the long wavelength tail of the spectrum, thereby greatly reducing the effect of CO2. Now the CO2 band will be wider due to the doppler broadening at the higher temperature; but the effect of CO2 absorption is lower in the tropics. The spectrum is even shifted below the 9-10 micron OZONE absorption line, which is right on the peak, at the global mean of about +15C. BB radiation theory shows that almost exactly 25% of BB radiation is emitted below the spectral peak, and 75% at wavelenghts longer than the peak. Never forget that earth thermal radiation is only approximately black body, but that is the safest base assumption. The range of temperatures from which near BB radiation is being emitted also complicates the spectral shape.
So bottom line is, if GHG effects based on CO2 are warming the planet, and for other reasons, the polar regions ought to warm FASTER that the rest of the earth. So if Antarctica is only warming at the same rate as the earth as a whole, it is reasonable to conclude that we are doing better than we are supposed to be as regards global warming.
I think Steig et al tried a clever idea at getting some pseudo data where there is none, and far too much is being made of it by the popular media. I have no basis to cast any clouds over Eric Steig.
Have you noticed where Larse A&B are ? Every day, the whole Atlantic ocean and Pacific ocean go sloshing back and forth through that gap between the Antarctic Peninsula and Tierra del Fuego, and when the tide goes Westerly those storm wavs come surging in right on A&B; which icidently are outside the Antarctic circle; so they never get 24 hour night time. so stuff melts there; big deal!
My Greenland Iceman, Svend Hendriksen, also studies antarctic glaciers, sinc ethe satellite comes chugging over his place all the time, and can download his pictures for him; and Svend sent me a photo of the Wilkins ice shelf breakup, and he circled an even larger area immediately adjacent to the broken piece, which stands out like a sore thumb, because it is encirceld by a big cliff that separates it from the main ice sheet. Reaosn for that cliff, is that that even larger piece all broke up around 50 years ago (almost IGY time), and grew back, but is shy of 50 years of accumulated precipitation; hence the ice cliff).
George

John Galt
January 22, 2009 10:57 am

foinavon (09:41:48) :
Flanagan (07:24:18) :
Yes it’s pretty dreary (a gift of $144 if registrants to the Heartland Institue pretend Climate “Science” meeting sign some petition devised by a tobacco company propagandist nearly 10 years ago). I wonder who they consider might be taken in by that!?
The list of cosponsers (click on the poster with the gallery of rogues on the Intro page of the meeting site) gives a pretty good indication of the purpose of this sort of “meeting” and perhaps helps to understand the dubious thinking that considers that dodgy petitions have anything to do with science…
http://www.heartland.org/events/NewYork09/newyork09.html
It should be a blast!

Why don’t people like Mann and Hansen attend and debate the issues publicly? I’m sure that since the science is clearly on their side, they’ll have no trouble persuading the deniers to get on board before it’s too late.

Simon Evans
January 22, 2009 11:03 am

Retred Engineer,
Several questions: If the warming in the west exceeds the cooling in the east, shouldn’t there be less ice overall? How can Antarctica have more ice?
It doesn’t have and, yes, the trend has been one of reducing ice mass at an increasing rate (I’d stress that there is uncertainty, but that’s the best judgment).
How do they measure temps? What equipment? surfacestations project has shown some big problems with measurements in this country. Do we believe that everything at the south pole is pristine and properly working?
No, there are clearly issues with surface-based measurements in such conditions. I’m rather puzzled as to why some here did not make the same point when previous analyses have suggested Antarctic cooling? It does seem to me that the accuracy of measurements, whether surface-based or satellite, only comes into question here when they are suggestive of warming.
0.1 degree C per decade? In industry, we wanted better measurement accuracy in our equipment than the thing we needed to measure. 10x was the goal. How in the (blank) can they measure 0.1 degree with equipment that is lucky to measure 1 degree with any confidence?
Hmm, well there’s long history here of people objecting to efforts that have been made to take account of, and adjust for, observational inadequacies, so I won’t attempt a brief answer, beyond saying that trend is of much more importance than the calibration of an instrument in a particular location, IMV.

AJ Abrams
January 22, 2009 11:12 am

I formally request Steve to look into the statistical method used here. This is a audit site, and here we have a great example of something that can be tested to see if it’s relevant. I think a good starting point would be the use of component vectors and to find out, yet again, if the level of uncertainty is again greater than the claimed trend (if it is, then the whole thing is toilet paper and yet another exercise on what ifs).
As I’m pretty sure that this is fluff – I think after it’s proven fluff it should be examined from a “why” standpoint.
I think I have a handle on the why. There is wordage at use in the summary that is rather telling when combined with Hansen’s comments about the paper.
In summary, I think this is why they did this and where the language is going to go: They aren’t saying this ridiculously small warming trend that ended some time ago is caused by global warming. In the summary it’s clear that they are deliberate in mentioning this. It’s my opinion that they did this because they understood that doing so would contradict previous declarations that cooling is predicted and expected. The whole paper was meant as a media piece. They seemed to understand that the media would link it to global warming and that they would see it as a debunking of skeptics major claim without actually looking at the work .
Pure PR magic. They get to debunk a claim by skeptics while at the same time not contradicting themselves. There is no way this is a winnable situation by critics of AGW. If we show that it’s wrong, then we are back as we were before, but the main stream media won’t report that. They gain 1,000,000 AGW robots saying that the cooling Antarctica was debunked…while specifically never saying it.

Simon Evans
January 22, 2009 11:17 am

Anthony,
In response to your reply to my post above: I think your issue is with comments made to the press rather than with the paper itself. I agree with you that those comments suggest the findings are consistent with AGW, and that is an attributive view. However, I maintain my view that it would be unreasonable to expect the paper itself to consider vulcanism.
I am not dismissing the influence of vulcanism on a local scale. What I am simply not aware of is any figures to suggest that it could be significantly warming on a continental scale (or semi-continental, if you like). Antarctica has some current volcanic activity, but it is hardly exceptional. If your notion is that vulcanism may account for Antarctic warming, then I presume that should be considered elsewhere also? In either case, it would need to be shown that vulcanism had increased in correlation with temperature increase. The consideration of localised effect tells us nothing about that.

bh
January 22, 2009 11:17 am

Protecting our environment is no doubt crucial to our existance, unfortunately the environmental movement is a little confused. Pollutants such as Nitrates, Sulfates, and other particulates are what needs to be targeted. Those are what results in smog, acid rain, and the poisoning of our water supply and soil. All this focus on CO2 is distracting from the real problems. The solution to the CO2 problem, if AGW alarmists are right, has an extremely simple solution. Stop cutting down the forests and start planting them. Ironically it is the “green” movement’s search for alternative fuel sources that is adding to the deforestation.

Fernando
January 22, 2009 11:24 am

This site is best science in the world. (I promise to be a quiet week)
Despite what Gavin has claimed …( naturally…)
Mary Hinge: The language of the paper is very confusing … I agree with you.(100%).
As an effective member of the peanut gallery:
I do not accept these results as valid. (and logic)
For a simple reason.
If IPPC 4 is wrong by definition;
Who writes:
As it happens, the average of the 19 models in AR4 is similar to our results.
Conclusion: This is not July 4
Much celebration for anything.

Alex
January 22, 2009 11:26 am

Absolutely ridiculous. After years of talk by these fools that “models predict cooling in Antarctica” now suddenly because no-one near the frigid Arctic circle believes their nonsense they move their campaign to a continent that has no population with common sense to debunk this filth they call science.
I am disgusted beyond belief, true science is dead.

Ed Scott
January 22, 2009 11:26 am

Computer models are not reality, Nature is reality.
—————————————
Will the Real Antarctica Please Stand Up?
http://www.dailytech.com/Will+the+Real+Antarctica+Please+Stand+Up/article14028.htm
“The real story here isn’t Antarctica. It’s the willingness to rationalize model results to fit any and all scenarios. To the modelers, their results are consistent with. . . well, everything. Whether warmer or colder, flood or drought, more storms or less — it’s all proof that global warming is real and happening now.”
“This, of course, isn’t real science. A true theory require something called falsifiability — a set of conditions under which it can be disproven. So far, this is something the modelers have failed to give. It allows them to maintain a facade of unflappable certainty– but it isn’t science.”
“Among researchers who work with actual climate data, skepticism is climbing. The modelers at least remain faithful. But as of now, their predictions are rather like the gypsy fortune teller who tells you, “You will live a long life — unless you die young.”

January 22, 2009 11:26 am

Flanagan said
“That’s it ! I finally discovered how some “skpetics” do to have those famous petitions of “scientists” agains AGW. They actually… pay them!
I’m not kidding, check this link http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/ethicallivingblog/2009/jan/19/1
Scientists who attend the International Conference on Climate Change to be held in New York, 8-10 March 2009 (organized by the Heartland Institute) get a $144 reward if and only if they sign the petition claiming skepticism against AGW.
Ahhh, this is science as we like it, isn’t it? Can we also receive a Macy’s card, please?”
So people who freely choose to attend a non taxpayer funded conference are entitled to get a 20% discount off a conference ticket if they sign a petition? Doesn’t it occur to you that most will be attending this conference in the first place precisely because they don’t believe the man made climate change hypotheses, and this is merely a well worn marketing promotion to bring the price down?
Do you seriously think people like Mcintrye, Spencer or Lindzen- or any of the others- are going to sign a petition they don’t believe in -and in the process bring heaps of abuse from warmists on their heads- merely to earn a paltry $144?
It seems to be ok though -as I’ve never heard you complain about it-for someone to mount a ‘man made’ climate change conference in which all the venue costs and the conference fees and the travel/accomodation costs and the research for the papers that will be presented are all paid for by the long suffering taxpayer- most of whom don’t believe in this stuff in the first place but aren’t given any choice as to the subsidy they provide. Which process are you saying is more corrupt?
If the govt funded a more balanced and rational climate change programme there would be no need for this conference in the first place would there?
TonyB

Gary Palmgren
January 22, 2009 11:29 am

Just for giggles I just went and recorded the temperatures from 11 glass thermometers that were all stored in one beaker in my lab. 23, 23.5 ,24 ,23, 24, 23.5, 23.5, 23, 23.5, 24, and 24. Ave=23.45 std. dev.=0.41°C Now these are not meant for Antarctica, measuring about -20 to +120 C instead of down to -80 C but the total range must be similar.
Can I scatter these throughout the building and and use them to calibrate my infrared thermometer to measure the difference in building temperature to 0.1 degrees from winter heating season to summer air conditioning?
They are claiming 0.1°C per decade with 1/2 degree total ?!?!? These are the same people who lost the entire Medieval Warming Period. I wonder how many different statistical methods they tried before they came up with one that indicated warming? If you only report the ‘successes’ it is fraudulent.

Bruce Cobb
January 22, 2009 11:30 am

foinavon (09:41:48) :
The list of cosponsers (click on the poster with the gallery of rogues on the Intro page of the meeting site) gives a pretty good indication of the purpose of this sort of “meeting” and perhaps helps to understand the dubious thinking that considers that dodgy petitions have anything to do with science…
Typical ad hom smear, laced with gratuitous sarcasm from a know-nothing AGWer. The science taking place at that meeting would blow any semblance of science taking place at any one of the UN’s confabs aka “conferences” out of the water.
“Gallery of rogues” – I guess that must be AGWer-speak for “scientists I despise because they threaten my AGW ideology, eh?”

George E. Smith
January 22, 2009 11:37 am

The WU paper is not a lot unlike things such as the Vostok, and other Antarctic ice cores and the “data” that is mined from them.
Ever notice how freely we extrapolate from Vostok to the whole darn planet.
Well we do look at some Greenland ice cores too, and if they give somewhat similar data to the Antarctic cores, we sleep in peace knowing that the whole earth must be like that.
With all the statisticians who visit here and post on trendlines, and standard deviations, and all manner of other statistical paraphernalia; why is it that there seems to be a total lack of understanding of the mathematics of smpled data systems; and specifically the Nyquist Theroem, that governs the whole sicence of sampled data systems. We know the theorem is valid, because the whole of modern digital communications technology depoends on it’s validity. Anyone who ahs ever lookes at analog signals with a sampling oscilloscope, is already aware, that they don’t always show you the truth; and you can get totally false results by misusing them.
On your TV set or at the movies, in your favorite horse opera, the reason why the damsel in distress on the runaway horse and carriage, is screaming her head off, is because clearly the wheels on her chariot are rotating backwards; who wouldn’t be alarmed.
That phenomenon, is a result of “aliassing noise” which corrupts ALL data, that is gathered in blatant violation of the Nyquist Sampling Theorm.
Nyquist was a scientist at Bell Telephone Laboratories, and his theorem is fundamental to data sampling.
Briefly it states, that “Any band limited continuous signal can be completely recovered from discrete samples of its instantaneous values; provided that the signal (a) IS band limited; meaning there are NO signal components at frequencies greater than B and that the continuous signal is sampled at a rate not less than 2B, or more importantly that the samples are spaced no further apart than 1/2B.
So regular spacing of samples is not required, but there must be no greater gap between samples than 1/2B.
If the signal were a simple sinusoid at a frequency (f), you would have to take one sample in each half cycle of the signal. Strictly speaking, a sinusoidal signla of frequency (f) can’t be recovered if the sampling rate is exactly 2f, because you could get every sample taken at a zero point, snd the signal would look like a DC of zero amplitude, or they could be anywhere on the rising and falling edges of alternate half cycles, so you would know there was a signal of frequency (f) but you have no idea what its amplitude is. But that is a degenerate academic case.
The wagon wheel problem results fromt he fact that movies sample the scene at 24 frames per second, and TV signals do it at 30 or 25 in some countries, and since the spoke frequency is much higher than that, you have a Nyquist violation and aliassing noise creeps in and corrupts the reconstruction, which is the movie you are watching.
If you violate Nyquist, by having a signal at a frequency B+b, the reconstructed signal will contain an errant component at a frequency B-b, so the spectrum folds around the Band limit frequency. Now B-b, is a fequency that is INSIDE the signal bandwidth (B), so you can’t get rid of it, without losing real signals too. As a practical matter, if you did have a single known out of band signal, you could put a notch filter at B-b, and jut eliminate that pesky signal.
Now what if the out of band signal is at a frequency 2B. (B+B). Well the aliassed noise signal will now be at (B-B), which is zeroi frequency and is in fact the average value of the continuous function.
So violation of the Nyquist criterion by a factor of 2 means that even the average value of the sampled data signal is now corrupted, and no amount of prestidigitation will get you a correct average for the function that was improperly sampled.
Central limit theroems and other such mathematical trickery cannot buy you a reprieve from crimes against Nyquist.
So global temperatures are a continuous function of both time and space, perhaps three variables, so you could construct some two dimensional map projection of the earth, and take snap shots of it, or at least of a bunch of thermometers spaced all over it in their own little gridded cells, and from that data,you can in principle reconstruct the whole map, and average it over time and space.
Well isn’t that what James Hansen does with his GISStemp owl box stations that Anthony escorted us around.
You see what is really wrong with GISStemp, and also with HADcrut is both of them grossly violate the Nyquist criterion, in both the time and space variables, sometimes by orders of magnitude; so there’s not a snowball’s chance in hell, that their machinations actually measure the real average surface or lower tropospheric temperature of the earth.
GISStemp anomlaies are a graph of GISStemp anomalies; they don’t even have any absolute temperature reference, and they don’t have any real scientific meaning at all, because the global sampling regimen is quite inadequate to determien the true average temperature of the earth surface.
George

Ed Scott
January 22, 2009 11:39 am

Three decades of 10 year predictions for climate change disaster “tipping-points”.
Urgent need for CYA testimony.
————————————————
Gore to make climate change case to US Senate
http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=CNG.24df0b15eec8bf3f1ea31a4bf41d7728.f1&show_article=1
“Al Gore has been sounding the alarm on climate change for over three decades, and he understands the urgent need for American engagement and leadership on this issue,” said Kerry.”

Mark
January 22, 2009 11:42 am

I wonder if that older ground data was adjusted in any way?

lulo
January 22, 2009 11:43 am

Oh, come on guys. I’m a skeptic, but Flanagan has a point about the discount for signing the petition. It’s hardly fair to charge higher admission to those who have a particular scientific opinion. If the IPCC were doing this, we would all be screaming ‘blue murder.’

Vernon
January 22, 2009 11:44 am

I think that everyone is missing the point! Namely that if 58 to present is better than 69 to present then using the authors own words at RC, 35-45 was the warmest period during the century. So even if his stats method was wrong, using his own data:
1935-1945 was the warmest period
1969-2000 was cooling
1958-2006 was warming
so we can infer from that the temperature curve was::
cooling from 45 to 58
warming from 58 to 69
cooled from 69 to 2000
* and this was not mentioned but all studies show cooling from 69 on to present *
ergo:
45 was warmer than 2000
69 was warmer than 2000
58 was cooler than 2000
if 58 – 2006 was better to use because it was a longer time period
then 45 – 2006 is even better since it is even longer
so while the antarctic temp curve fluxs, over all cooling predominated except for a brief warming between 58 and 69.
And on another fun note, anyone notice that the warmest period for the antarctic is the same as the warmest period for the longest rural surface termperature record we have?

hunter
January 22, 2009 11:46 am

Dr. Pielke, Sr. nailed this faux report completely in a set of observations.
The only question left is why the AGW promotion industry keeps pretending to be doing science?

January 22, 2009 11:46 am

Mary Hinge 10.30.22
I always enjoy your posts, although I rarely agree with your views. However if the govt does ever provide a more balanced climate change research programme than at present (see my comment above) I hope people like you are on it to provide an objective and reasoned ‘warmist’ viewpoint who can argue civilly against a different perspective to the one they hold.
It is a great shame that Dr Manns team did not have someone from the ‘opposite’ side to point out his work might be scientifcally clever but flew in the face of our knowledge of history. This has helped create a confrontational atmosphere which does not do science any favours and only helps to obscure the truth.
(Sorry if I’ve destroyed your credibilty!)
TonyB

Ron de Haan
January 22, 2009 11:46 am

This publication is part of a huge scam.
A simple look at the latest sat image from Antarctica tells you how hysterical the conclusions of the report really are.
Despite the fact that they are left without any scientific leg to stand on (thanks to the deniers and blogs like WUWT) the initiators of the AGW Doctrine initiated by the United Nations and the Club of Rome are almost on target now the World under Obama will surrender to the biggest scam in Human History.
Their tools:
1. Wide application of pseudo science, falsifications and indoctrination.
2. Domination of the Political Establishment, Media, Research Institutes, Governmental Institutions, Universities and Schools.
3. Isolation of the political decision making process (NO SKEPTICS ALOUD).
4. Intimidation of all opponents from scientists to politicians, from Institutions to companies, from Universities to entire Nations.
5. Infiltration of the AGW Doctrine within the educational system and society.
6. The current crises.
This is the start of a socialist coup on a Global Scale and it’s directed against humanity, the industrialized world and the freedom of man.
Although they will loose any scientific debate, they will achieve their political goal.
This will be a tough battle.
Fortunately the climate is on our side.

MartinGAtkins
January 22, 2009 11:48 am

I ran a linear line trend through the South pole (Sol Pol) data here:-
http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/t2lt/uahncdc.lt
Not surprisingly it showed a -0.2C fall over the entire data set. This is the same as the pre-doctored NASA graphic.
Next I wanted to see what the Eastern surface stations showed using some of the sites with reasonably long unbroken records. Trends are :-
Scott-Base 77.8 S 166.8 E 1957-2008 -0.5
Mcmurdo 77.8 S 166.7 E 1956-2008 -0.5
Vostok 78.5 S106.9 E 1958-2008 -1.5
Mirnyj 66.5 S 93.0 E 1956-2008 -0.3
Davis 68.6 S 78.0 E 1957-2008 -0.25
Amundsen-Scot 90.0 S 0.0 E 1957-2008 -1.25
Data here:-
http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/station_data/

tetris
January 22, 2009 11:48 am

Anthony:
-50F is approximately -46C. That means that even if temperatures did go up by .25C over 25 years [i.e. 1C per century], Antarctica would still be faced with temperatures of -45.75C. Until further notice, ice does not melt until temperatures reach approximately 0C, so assuming the published purported rate of “warming”, it would take 45 centuries to get there. Has anyone in the Steig, Mann, et. al. team ever sat down and done a “back of the envelope” calculation to “deduce” the calories necessary to get all that ice to melt so that it actually will raise sea levels?
REPLY: Whether the ice melts in Anarctica landmass, on the ice shelves, or as bergs or bergy bits, it would indeed require energy input. To my knowledge, the authors have not done this. But then they wouldn’t, since the paper (at least what we can read of it so far) doesn’t claim any Antarctic melting, only a warming. – Anthony

Gary Plyler
January 22, 2009 11:49 am

The only trend I see here is the AGW dogma,
1. The Medievel Warm Period was warmer than today? Get rid of the MWP with Manns “Hockey Stick” (which has been debunked)
2. Can’t find a tropical Lower troposphere warming using radiosonde balloon thermometers (required by the GCMs)? Invent a new principle where wind velocity is a component of thermal energy (even though it still will not radiate more long wave Infrared Radiation).
now:
3. Can’t account for GHG system not warming Antarctica? Blame it on the Ozone Hole and mathematically tease the temperature data to show warming.
What is Next?

January 22, 2009 11:49 am

0.5 °C would take the temperature of Antarctica up to 14.5 °C in Summer because the highest temperature has been 15 °C. The whole thing is just biased and an exaggeration.

January 22, 2009 11:50 am

Corrections: -14.5 °C and -15 °C. I forgot to write the “minus” sign… heh! 😉

foinavon
January 22, 2009 11:54 am

George E. Smith (10:45:01) :

Conventional wisdom suggests that the polar regions are supposed to warm at a FASTER rate than the planet as a whole.

and:

So bottom line is, if GHG effects based on CO2 are warming the planet, and for other reasons, the polar regions ought to warm FASTER that the rest of the earth.

That may be “conventional wisdom” but it’s not what the science has shown! It’s been known for 25 years that the expectation for polar warming in response to an enhanced greenhouse effect due to raised greenhouse gas concentrations, is for a strong warming in the high Northern latitudes with a reduced/delayed warming in the deep Southern latitudes particularly in Antarctica.
So in the 1980’s it was predicted from modelling that the Northern hemisphere should warm faster than the S. hemisphere, and that warming in the Southern Circumpolar regions would be delayed/suppressed relative to the far Northern latitudes due to the large excess area of Southern oceans and the deeper penetration of heat into the oceans.
e.g.:
Schneider SH, Thompson SI (1981) Atmospheric CO2 and Climate – Importance Of The Transient-Response. J. Geophysical Research-Oceans Atmos. 86, 3135-3147
Bryan K (1988) Interhemispheric Asymmetry In The Transient-Response Of A Coupled Ocean Atmosphere Model To a CO2 Forcing. J.Phys. Oceanography 18, 851 1988

And this became rather more refined in the 1990’s. So, for example, Manabe (1992) predicted (from modelling) a large Arctic Ocean warming in response to greenhouse enhancement, with small surface warming in the deep Southern latitudes, particularly in the Circumpolar regions around the Antarctic peninsula.
Manabe S (1992) Transient Responses Of A Coupled Ocean Atmosphere Model To Gradual Changes Of Atmospheric Co2 .2. Seasonal Response
Journal Of Climate 5, 105-113.

And so on. Whatever “conventional wisdom” may say, the science indicates that the very efficient heat transfer from the equator to the high Northern latitudes, together with albedo feedbacks, should give the largest warming in response to enhanced greenhouse warming, whereas the Southern polar regions with a massive ocean sink and more efficient transfer of surface heat to the deeper oceans should give a delayed and suppressed warming relative to the Arctic…

foinavon
January 22, 2009 12:06 pm

John Galt (10:57:12) :

Why don’t people like Mann and Hansen attend and debate the issues publicly? I’m sure that since the science is clearly on their side, they’ll have no trouble persuading the deniers to get on board before it’s too late.

Unfortunately that tends to be a particularly fruitless and unsatisfactory activity. Far better for scientists to publish their work in the scientific literature, attend scientific meetings and engage directly with other scientists and policymakers. These requests for “debate” tend to politicise/factionalise what are scientific issues…

Jeff Alberts
January 22, 2009 12:13 pm

Scientists who attend the International Conference on Climate Change to be held in New York, 8-10 March 2009 (organized by the Heartland Institute) get a $144 reward if and only if they sign the petition claiming skepticism against AGW.

Wow! $144!! Sign me up!! Who needs billions in grant money when you can get $144 to sign a petition which states how you feel about AGW?
Are you seriously saying that people were bought, for $144???

Jeff Alberts
January 22, 2009 12:17 pm

Stieg et al are not arguing that West Antarctica is warmer or colder than East Antarctica, rather that it has warmed faster over the past 50 years.

Faster than when, exactly? They can’t say, period, because they don’t know. They have nothing to compare any current warming to. It’s a complete non-statement.

E.M.Smith
Editor
January 22, 2009 12:21 pm

I would like to see before and after GISSification graphs of the temperatures from the stations used in this study. Under the Italy thread, the Pisa before and after is just awful. I ‘eyeball’ about 1.75 C of added rise in it totally from GISS processing. Did they do the same here?

Simon Evans
January 22, 2009 12:25 pm

Dear me, so much vitriol! I do wonder why the same commentators didn’t get their tails up about the analyses of Antarctic cooling in more recent decades? Is the idea here just to attack any warming analysis whilst avoiding expression of any reservations about cooling arguments? It certainly does seem so. Is this what some of you think ‘scepticism’ means?
Let’s deal with the now much-repeated assertion that the AGW-ers have changed their tune over recent cooling being explicable in terms of modeled response to ozone depletion, etc. Read the paper. It does not contradict this view at all. The more recent cooling in East Antarctica is there to be seen. Ozone depletion did not occur substantially until the late 1970s. The general warming that the paper’s analysis identifies is for the whole period 1957-2006. There is no contradiction, however much Tech Central linking to papers discussing more recent cooling might like to pretend that there is.

Harold Pierce Jr
January 22, 2009 12:27 pm

ATTN: Everbody!
Go over to “Projects” and read my post. Recent data from the Quatsino (B.C.) weather station confirm that the “global warming” that started in ca 1975, which Don Easterbrook called the “Great Climate Shift”, is over, and the Big Chill is setting in, and it is going get really cold like that from ca 1900 to 1930.
I have a set of data that reveal that the Tmax and Tmin metrics for the March, June and December for the years 2000-08 are the same as that for the years 1900-08.
For September, however, the years 2000-08 were much warmer than that for the years 1900-08. This is the same seasonal warming that A. Masterman found in his study of the CET. Link to his paper is given in my post.
The way to shut down the warmers tauting global warming gobblygook and climate change claptrap is to let rock solid, bullet-proof empirical data do the walkin’ and the talkin’! Go read the late John Daly’s essay “What the Station Say” and check out the many temperature-time plots that he prepared from unbiased data from remote weather stations (i.e., the really squeaky clean ones aka as “cherry”). His work flasified the AGW hypothesis, and I am quite surprised the Kiwis of the NZCC are unware of his work.

Jeff Alberts
January 22, 2009 12:29 pm

foinavon (09:27:57) :
Flanagan (07:24:18) :
Yes it’s pretty dreary (a gift of $144 if registrants to the Heartland Institue pretend Climate “Science” meeting sign some petition devised years ago by a tobacco company propagandist nearly 10 years ago). I wonder who might consider that one can assess science by petition!

Not different than science by proclamation from other organizations.

foinavon
January 22, 2009 12:34 pm

Bruce Cobb (11:30:57) :
These are relevant issues aren’t they? If one wants to understand the stance of the individuals at the Heartland Institute and their “climate” conference, and their attempt to pay people to sign a ludicrous petition, it’s useful to know that the instigator of the petition nearly 10 years ago was a propagandist for the tobacco industry during the period in which they were attempting to pursue an anti-science agenda (Steitz’s role is well-documented and in the public domain following the forced document release by the tobacco industry). Anyone with any interest in finding out the truth on these issues should reject that sort of nonsense.
Likewise it’s helpful to know that the meeting is massively co-sponsored by those sectors who stand to benefit most from muddying the issues on climate science. One doesn’t have to disagree with their stance/agenda….but we’d be silly to ignore the obvious! We don’t have to pretend that we don’t understand why the Competitive Enterprise Institute, or the Science and Environmental Policy Project…or the Frontiers of Freedom…or the Institute of Public Affairs (and another 30-odd of these).
And so on. There are many scientific meetings where climate science can be (and is) presented, discussed, debated, argued over . The idea that certain elements of the corporate sector feel the need to organize a “meeting” to present a contrived interpretation of what should be scientific issues is sad….but not surprising unfortunately.

E.M.Smith
Editor
January 22, 2009 12:42 pm

leftymartin (06:31:57) :
If your history
don’t match the faith….
Who ya gonnal call?
Michael Mann!

Now that was totaly uncalled for! giggle. Stop it right now. snicker.
It’s just completely unacceptable and you better not do it again. hehehehe.
Oh please, just ONE more?!?

Aussie John
January 22, 2009 12:50 pm

Professor Barry Brook has just appeared on Australian TV stating that we are in for metres of sea level rise based on this new ‘study’ (performed with a hang-dog expression which is not scientific (or relevant) but IS good TV).
As others have pointed out, it is irrelevant if the study is true or not, the hysteria over its claims will be enough to scare people into further believing the AGW hypothesis.

hunter
January 22, 2009 12:58 pm

foinavon,
Then, since the article claiming Antarctic warming actually shows cooling since 1986, that would leave AGW as, yet again, falsified.

E.M.Smith
Editor
January 22, 2009 1:00 pm

Brooklyn Red Leg (06:56:25) :
Hmm…could someone please point to any respectable definition of ‘Interpolate’ that does not mean ‘we made it up’? Furthermore, whenh was Interpolation accepted as a legitemate scientific method?

I was taught to use interpolation to fill in a missing data item value between two well established ones for the purpose of smoothing a curve. I don’t remember any other legitimate use, but it’s been a while.
My guess and that’s all it is: Given Mann’s prior work of gluing together disjoint datasets, along with interpolation, and stirring in some GISS with Sats data: I would expect the ‘cheat’ to be that when sat data are cooler than GISS they are ignored (we have ‘good’ land data) and when sat data are available near gaps in GISS they are ‘adjusted via interpolation’ to fit between the two adjacent GISS data points. This tosses the low sat data and lets you add more adjusted upward data points to the GISS series.
While that may not be exactly right, that is the kind of thing I would start with in doing a forensic review. If GISS is biased by manipulation (which I’m fairly certain it is) this lets you pollute the satellite data with the same ‘lift’ without it being too obvious.
No, I’m not paranoid, I just did computer security work for a fair while and sometimes there are bad guys out to get you…

foinavon
January 22, 2009 1:04 pm

George E. Smith (11:37:59) :
Your Nyquist theorem exposition is rather dubious. The Nyquist theorem relates to the ability to extract the individual frequency components and their amplitudes from analogue signals composed of superimposed sinusoidal signals. In spectroscopy this might be achieved by digitizing a signal and Fourier transforming this. The Nyquist theorem relates to the sampling requirements of the signal (inadequately sampled signals will be alaised and appear at the wrong frequency).
But if one considers ice core data, one needs to be very specific about what one is trying to achieve. If one is trying to extract variations resulting from true cyclic phenomena then it’s pretty clear that ice core data is rather well sampled. A very good example is the extraction of the major elements of the Milankovitch cycles from the ice core record. So if one Fourier transforms the ice core delta temp. or delta 18O records from the Vostock or Dome Fuji cores the Milankovitch cycles are rather well extracted, since their signatures are clear in the cores and the cores are adequately sampled. A good example is:
Kawamura et al (2007) “Northern hemisphere forcing of climate cycles in Antarctica overt he past 360,000 years” Nature 448, 912-919.
See Figure 2, where the ~100,000 (eccentricity), the 41,000 (obliquity) and the 23,000 (precession) year Milankovitch cycles are stronly defined in the power spectrum.
In general one needs to be very specific about the nature of the signal you are trying to extract. Clearly the Milankovitch cycles are well-sampled in cores. What specifically do you consider to be inadequately sampled?

Burch Seymour
January 22, 2009 1:12 pm

Here’s a link to R&D magazine’s report on this. You can comment, so please do.. 🙂
http://abrd-media.com/portal/wts/ccmc7iaVq7aqrErqEzixcr8ijCj

Ray
January 22, 2009 1:12 pm

From the first line of their publication (i.e. the title) it is clear that it was all for good AGW PR exercise.
I have serious doughts as to if really it is warming but one thing is certain, warm air picks up more moisture and increases precipitation in the area. That leads to a lowering of sea levels and not an increase.

Ray
January 22, 2009 1:18 pm

This is from Google Earth. It is interesting how they give other logical explanations… other than AGW for the break down of the ice shelves!
“Scientists have observed the ice along the Antarctic Peninsula disappearing in a series of retreats over the past 30 years. The climate in this area is warming at approximately 0.5 degrees Celsius per year following a trend that is believed to have been occurring for at least the past 50 years (NASA, 2006). Generally this retreat has occurred as icebergs break away from the oceanward edge of the ice. More recently a new pattern has been observed.
Scientists have been closely monitoring the Larsen Ice Shelf since 1995 when a large portion of it (Larsen A) dramatically disintegrated. In 2002 another similar event occurred at Larsen B which is captured in this remarkable series of MODIS images. In contrast to the slower pattern of calving – where pieces of ice break away at the edge of the shelf – these two events occurred over a large area and in a relatively short period of time. In the case of Larsen B 3,250 square kilometers of the ice shelf shattered into a plume of 1000s of icebergs in a little over a month. Over the last 5 years approximately 40 per cent of Larsen B has disintegrated – 5,700 square kilometers. Larsen A is believed to have been in place for over 2000 years at the time of its collapse and Larsen B is thought to have been still older (Portland State University, 2002).
Scientists have developed theories to explain Larsen B’s catastrophic collapse, linking it to summertime warming and the pooling of melted water on the surface of the ice (Scambos et al., 2000) as well as differences in the rates of movements of the several glaciers feeding into the ice shelf (Glasser and Scambos, 2008). The pooling water is believed to accelerate the expansion of crevasses and lead to the breakdown of the ice shelves. In addition, the differences in the rates of flow from various glaciers are believed to have created structural weakness in the ice shelf (Glasser and Scambos, 2008). In the case of Larsen B, ponds of melt water can be seen in the remote sensing images taken shortly before the collapse occurs (January 2002 image), lending credence to this theory. Melt water ponds have been seen forming on Larsen C in more recent images, however there appears to be less of the structural weakening from glacier flow on Larsen C and this may make it less vulnerable to catastrophic collapse.”

January 22, 2009 1:21 pm

Anthony et al,
When I read these stories in the press (like the New York Times, today, or the San Diego papers yesterday), I often wonder if any one of you skeptics out there actually contact the press articles and point them to WUWT or junkscience or McIntyre’s blog to have the mindless reporters read the opposing viewpoint on each and overy one of these papers with “new evidence” of climate change and global warming? We can blog all we want among ourselves as skeptics, but we need to ACTIVELY provide some retort and opposing view to educate the very-uninformed-press reporters, who often have little or no scientific training or experience. The only way to counter the IPCC, Al Gore and Hansen is to use the same techniques they do: i.e. press conferences, press releases, lobbying, open letters in the N.Y. Times, etc. We all sit here piling-on counter-evidence or skeptical dissent, but the real battle is winning over the media and the politicians, to stop the hype so I don’t get taxed for pouring a concrete driveway, burning wood in my fireplace or breathing to heavily. Again today, my governor (Arnold), in order to deflect the disaster here in California over the budget, deflected the financial crisis once again by mentioning he will lobby President Obama to consider giving the power back to the States on Carbon emissions limits to override the EPA’s regulations.

Steven Hill
January 22, 2009 1:27 pm

Old-Growth Forests Dying Off in U.S. West
I saw this in the Washington Post, you guessed it. Global warming is killing them and once they die, even more global warming will happen.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/01/22/AR2009012202203.html

West
January 22, 2009 1:28 pm

[snip- sorry can’t allow this, even though humorous, it opens too many doors to similar use of language we generally don’t tolerate here]

foinavon
January 22, 2009 1:31 pm

Gary Plyler (11:49:02) :

1. The Medievel Warm Period was warmer than today? Get rid of the MWP with Manns “Hockey Stick” (which has been debunked)

Really? Since the numerous plaeoproxy temperature analyses of the last 10 years are essentially compatible with Manns 1998 study, one would surely conclude that the original rather tentative study has been reinforced by a very large amount of new analysis in the intervening years:
http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/recons.html
Mann and coworkers have recently published a very extensive analysis comprising more than 1200 proxy series. Not a huge amount has changed other than that we’re rather more confident that late 20th century and current warming is anomalous in the context of the past 100-plus years.
M. E. Mann et al. (2008) Proxy-based reconstructions of hemispheric and global surface temperature variations over the past two millennia
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 105:13252-13257

2. Can’t find a tropical Lower troposphere warming using radiosonde balloon thermometers (required by the GCMs)? Invent a new principle where wind velocity is a component of thermal energy (even though it still will not radiate more long wave Infrared Radiation).

If the radiosonde data has well characterized spurious artefacts we’d be very silly indeed not to take these into account.
S. C. Sherwood et al. (2005) Radiosonde Daytime Biases and Late-20th Century Warming Science 309, 1556 – 1559.

3. Can’t account for GHG system not warming Antarctica? Blame it on the Ozone Hole and mathematically tease the temperature data to show warming.

We’re not really expecting that much Antarctic warming yet (see my post 11.54.32). The fact that there might be some warming in the (non-peninsular) vast regions of Antarctica is interesting and useful to know.

What is Next?

More science, happily! We certainly want to find out as well as we can what’s occurring in response to extraordinary enhancement of the atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations.

foinavon
January 22, 2009 1:37 pm

whoops! two typos:
foinavon (12:34:29)
“Steitz” should read “Seitz”
foinavon (13:31:48)
“anomalous in the context of the past 100-plus years” should read anomalous in the context of the past 1000-plus years”

E.M.Smith
Editor
January 22, 2009 1:46 pm

An Inquirer (07:26:50) : Steig explains that they established a relationship between two sets of variables in the last twenty five years and then based on that relationship estimated temperatures in areas of the continent without weather stations for the previous 25 years. That is extrapolation which is more prone to error than interpolation.
And even easier to pollute. OK, so they have (biased IMHO) GISS and now they can give the same ‘lift’ to 25 years worth of satellite data via extrapolation of the ‘relationship’… Nicely done.
Mann gets to say “See my technique is sound” since the ‘cheat’ is in the GISS data, others get to wring their hands over the ‘proven’ warming and apply for grants, Hansen gets to say GISS is the best around, the satellite folks get to claim they are Of The Body and contributing to The Canon of Received Science now. Everybody wins. And you can not detect the ‘fraud’ unless you deconstruct the GISS data manipulation, which they won’t let you do.
More and more this all looks to hinge on what GISS is doing to the raw data to turn it into pasteurized processed data food product…
(For those not in the USA: Cheese here comes in many strange and wondrous types. Real cheese is labeled ‘cheese’. As it gets adulterated with more and more non-cheese, additional qualifiers are added. The ‘bottom rung’ may be stored near cheese, but the actual relationship to cows and milk was lost long ago. That is “pasteurized processed cheese food product” and sometimes comes in aerosol cans, at others as slices that don’t melt when cooked on a burger…)

George E. Smith
January 22, 2009 1:54 pm

“” foinavon (11:54:32) :
George E. Smith (10:45:01) :
Conventional wisdom suggests that the polar regions are supposed to warm at a FASTER rate than the planet as a whole.
and:
So bottom line is, if GHG effects based on CO2 are warming the planet, and for other reasons, the polar regions ought to warm FASTER that the rest of the earth.
That may be “conventional wisdom” but it’s not what the science has shown! It’s been known for 25 years that the expectation for polar warming in response to an enhanced greenhouse effect due to raised greenhouse gas concentrations, is for a strong warming in the high Northern latitudes with a reduced/delayed warming in the deep Southern latitudes particularly in Antarctica. “”
Well when I said “Conventional wisdom”, I was referring to what the general public have beed told constantly via the lay media..
As to why the northern hemisphere should warm faster than the southern; that does not compute in my book.
Since the southern hemisphere is mostly oceans, which have almost total black body absorption for solar eenergy (maybe 97%), then the southern hemisphere wouldn’t contribute very much to the earth albedo, compared to what the Northern hemisphere contributes. also earth is further from sun during Antarctic winter, hence closer to sun during southern hemisphere summer; so total irradiance of the southern hemisphere is greater than for northern hemisphere.
All the land area in the northern hemisphere contibutes a much higher albedo component, than does the black southern hemisphere oceans, and with all that higher elevation land in the north, I would venture that there is more cloud cover in the northern hemisphere than in the southern, further increasing the albedo bias towards the northern hemisphere.
So I would say it is a slam dunk, that the southern hemisphere collects more solar energy than the northern hemisphere.
And since the surface temperatures of the land can get much higher than the surface temperatures of the ocean, then the radiative cooling of the northern hemisphere, is much greater than the radiative cooling of the southern hemisphere.
Well if you measure “warming” solely in terms of temperature; then oyu would favor the northern hemisphere; but if you measure warming in terms of retained energy from the sun, then that would favor the southern hemisphere.
If you put out two objects in the sun, and one has a much higher “heat capacity than the other then the one with the lower heat capacity will reach the higher temperature, but it won’t contain as much thermal energy as the other one.
George

fred
January 22, 2009 1:56 pm

Disclaimer, I have not read the comments above, but I did read this yesterday on Science Daily. Lets be clear “interpolate carefully” means that they made certain assumptions, possibly linear between points or perhaps they assumed some kind of non-linear realtionship. In my business we interpolate crap all the time. You’re a damn fool if you assign it more value than it deserves. Apparently, if you read the fine print, they have assigned statistical probabilities which, lo and behold, still allow that the bulk of the continent might have cooled.
No new data here, it’s just been massaged to get a headline.

JimB
January 22, 2009 2:09 pm

“Simon:
I’m rather puzzled as to why some here did not make the same point when previous analyses have suggested Antarctic cooling? It does seem to me that the accuracy of measurements, whether surface-based or satellite, only comes into question here when they are suggestive of warming.”
I have a different opinion. I believe that what gets questioned here is poor science, not just accuracy of measurements.
“Hmm, well there’s long history here of people objecting to efforts that have been made to take account of, and adjust for, observational inadequacies,…”
Again, I beg to differ. The objection to those efforts have centered on the fact that the adjustors refuse to release the means of the adjustment so that the means/methods can be understood, challenged, authenticated, or tossed.
Certainly you know this…so I don’t understand the swipe? Do you not believe that the work of publicly funded scientists should be released to the public?…or that other scientists should be given the opportunity to analyze methods and attempt to reproduce/recreate results of various experiments as a point of validation?
JimB

E.M.Smith
Editor
January 22, 2009 2:27 pm

Per ‘the volcano did it’, will Harvard and NASA do?
http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2003ESASP.535..393S
States that there is a well demonstrated correlation of more volcanism with solar minima and less with solar maxima. Given that there are volcanos under the ice down there, the heat output ought to cycle somewhat with solar periods of longer duration. Did the Mann paper allow for that?
I think there is at least a plausible confounder of their western heating by CO2 thesis…
Oh, and notice as we enter this Modern Minimum volcanos are starting to light up all over the place? I have a chart somewhere I can’t find right now that shows a significant ramp up in volcanism lately world wide. I doubt that the Antarctic would be immune…
Now if only there was a reasonable way to connect volcanism, crustal deformation, sunspot minima, earthquakes, et. al. without resorting to planetary orbit-spin coupling and solar barycentric orbits …

atmoaggie
January 22, 2009 2:30 pm

Hmmm, some possible warming in West Antarctic with volcanic ash (not usually as high an albedo as snow/ice) being produced just to the west (also known as upwind).
Maybe, just maybe, there is a reason that only West Antarctic is exhibiting some of the same behavior as the Arctic…they actually do have something in common. A source of non-white aerosols.

David Ball
January 22, 2009 2:36 pm

Stephen Hill, just wanted to add that Andrew Weaver is a climate modeler and has refused to debate the subject in an open forum.

AKD
January 22, 2009 2:37 pm

NPR has their take up now:
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=99681830&ps=bb4
Some excerpts:
“It’s like having data in San Francisco and New York and trying to say something about Arizona,” says Steig. “You really need some more information if you’re going to say anything reasonable about Arizona.”

“Temperatures have risen by about 1 degree near the equator to more than 5 degrees near the North Pole.
‘It’s much less than Arctic warming but it pretty much is on par with global average warming,’ Steig says.”

Re-Assuring Discovery
Previous studies have not found a warming trend in Antarctica. Steig’s conclusion is therefore a shift, but it’s not a total surprise.
“This one study should not cause anyone to suddenly get more worried. If they are taking it seriously already, then this should not make them change their view particularly,” he says.
In fact, Arctic scientist Richard Alley at Penn State University says he finds the new information reassuring — in a way.
“The world looks a little more sensible to me than it did before,” he says.”
My favorite bit of alarmism:
“…the coastlines of the world would be obliterated if Antarctic ice melted away and raised global sea level.”
The coastlines of the world are, of course, obliterated every day by the tides.

DJ
January 22, 2009 2:41 pm

The MSUlt data is pure fiction over the Antarctic. The surface ice sits far above the peak in the weighting function.

Jeff Alberts
January 22, 2009 2:44 pm

foinavon (13:31:48) :
Gary Plyler (11:49:02) :
1. The Medievel Warm Period was warmer than today? Get rid of the MWP with Manns “Hockey Stick” (which has been debunked)
Really? Since the numerous plaeoproxy temperature analyses of the last 10 years are essentially compatible with Manns 1998 study, one would surely conclude that the original rather tentative study has been reinforced by a very large amount of new analysis in the intervening years:
http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/recons.html
Mann and coworkers have recently published a very extensive analysis comprising more than 1200 proxy series. Not a huge amount has changed other than that we’re rather more confident that late 20th century and current warming is anomalous in the context of the past 100-plus years.

Oh, you mean these “independent” studies?: http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=4866

John Galt
January 22, 2009 2:45 pm

foinavon (12:06:17) :
John Galt (10:57:12) :
Why don’t people like Mann and Hansen attend and debate the issues publicly? I’m sure that since the science is clearly on their side, they’ll have no trouble persuading the deniers to get on board before it’s too late.
Unfortunately that tends to be a particularly fruitless and unsatisfactory activity. Far better for scientists to publish their work in the scientific literature, attend scientific meetings and engage directly with other scientists and policymakers. These requests for “debate” tend to politicise/factionalise what are scientific issues…
I’m not asking them to debate me, but to engage their peers who are skeptical of AGW. Public debate with (or between) laymen might be entertaining but it rarely solves anything. Just look at some of the internet sites where people can post their views. Nobody ever seems to be open-minded enough to really consider the other side’s arguments.
What I would really like all the climate modelers to do is release their input data and their source code for everybody to see. Hansen is a public servant. GISS is support by my tax dollars and short of national security issues, everything should be available to the public.
Do you suppose I could sue under the FOIA to get a full release of all of GISS notes, their inputs, the adjusts and the source code used to create their models?

AKD
January 22, 2009 2:46 pm

Ray,
Here is another excerpt from the NPR antarcticle for you:
“Forecast: More Snow
Up to a point, Antarctic warming can actually reduce sea level. Warming there can take water out of the ocean and deposit it on the continent, in the form of increased snowfall.
‘West Antarctica should be getting more precipitation along with this increased temperature. But I think the data to demonstrate that are not really available,’ Steig says.
In fact, the best data from Antarctica show that the continent is putting slightly more water into the ocean than it’s taking out.”

January 22, 2009 2:47 pm

Bob Tisdale (02:53:41) :
Anthony: I’m going to try to post on the Antarctic TLT sometime today or tomorrow as part of the series I was doing on the effects of ENSO and volcanic eruptions on TLT. Here are a few preview graphs of Antarctic temperatures from that future post.

I wouldn’t waste your time, MSU isn’t useful over Antarctica.
The following are graphs of Antarctic and Southern Ocean TLT [AHU MSU] created from data available through the KNMI Climate Explorer Website. Keep in mind that the MSU satellite data does not reach the entire Antarctic, which is something I found curious about the use of satellite data for the University of Washington study. (They must be supplementing the sparse surface measurements with it.) In fact, RSS only lists data as far South as 70S.
MSU is not the only satellite available, as clearly stated in the paper they used AVHRR to measure surface temperature!
http://wdc.dlr.de/sensors/avhrr3/

January 22, 2009 2:50 pm

Neil Hampshire (00:45:54) :
Does this mean that the satellite data is now considered to be a valid measurement of global temperature trends or is it only valid in Antartica?

In this case mainly the latter, read the paper and you’ll find out why.

foinavon
January 22, 2009 2:58 pm

George E. Smith (13:54:37) :

Well when I said “Conventional wisdom”, I was referring to what the general public have beed told constantly via the lay media..

really? I can’t say I’ve noticed! In any case we shouldn’t be listening to “conventional wisdom”…we should be following the science. And the science has long predicted (for 25 years or more) that the high Northern latitudes should warm earlier and faster than the deep Southern Circumpolar latitudes (see citations to early work on this issue in my post 11:54:32).

Well if you measure “warming” solely in terms of temperature; then oyu would favor the northern hemisphere; but if you measure warming in terms of retained energy from the sun, then that would favor the southern hemisphere.

How else does one measure warming? Clearly the parameter of interest to our selves, our agricultural production, the terrestrial biosphere and so on, is the surface temperature. As has been predicted for 25 years or so, enhanced greenhouse warming should result in an earlier and larger surface warming of the high Northern latitudes compared to the deep southern (especially Circumpolar/Antarctic) latitudes (see citations in my post 11:54:32, for example).
As for “retained heat”, yes the expectation is that the greatest amount of thermal energy will be retained in the Southern Oceans. That’s essentially what the papers cited in my post above 11:54:32 state. As I said:

foinavon: So in the 1980’s it was predicted from modelling that the Northern hemisphere should warm faster than the S. hemisphere, and that warming in the Southern Circumpolar regions would be delayed/suppressed relative to the far Northern latitudes due to the large excess area of Southern oceans and the deeper penetration of heat into the oceans.
It’s not sufficient to consider only the absorption of solar thermal energy. The distribution of this “heat” through ocean overturning and air and sea currents is a dominant factor in the distribution of excess thermal energy within the surface regions of the planet. If we are interested in the surface temperature (which we are, of course, since that’s where we live (!), and in any case, that’s what the paper under discussion on this thread is about), then that’s where we measure the temperature, even if we might also want to identify changes in the heat content of the oceans overall (as part of an analysis of the Earth’s “energy budget”),and what the tropospheric and stratospheric temperatures are doing…

January 22, 2009 3:00 pm

Foinavon 13.31.48
You linked to a long list of paleo proxies to support Dr Mann. Did you actually read them?
http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/recons.html
“ABSTRACT:
The precisely dated isotopic composition of a stalagmite from Spannagel Cave
in the Central Alps is translated into a highly resolved record of temperature
at high elevation during the past 2000 yr. Temperature maxima during the
Medieval Warm Period between 800 and 1300 AD are in average about 1.7°C higher
than the minima in the Little Ice Age and similar to present-day values.
The high correlation of this record to d14C suggests that solar variability
was a major driver of climate in Central Europe”
Similar to present day values and the sun is the major driver. Thanks for this gold mine, I am still digging through it.
TonyB

Graeme Rodaughan
January 22, 2009 3:01 pm

Senator Inhofe’s site gathers together a lot of the material debunking this report at http://epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Minority.Blogs&ContentRecord_id=fc7db6ad-802a-23ad-43d1-2651eb2297d6&Issue_id=
Of course, the media darlings have swarmed all over this in the hight of a SH Summer – perfect for photo ops of “melting ice”.
Deducing data? Result wiped by the margins of error? – just how will this result be tested? Where’s the science?
Scandalous.

E.M.Smith
Editor
January 22, 2009 3:02 pm

Simon Evans (11:03:24) :

0.1 degree C per decade? In industry, we wanted better measurement accuracy in our equipment than the thing we needed to measure. 10x was the goal. How in the (blank) can they measure 0.1 degree with equipment that is lucky to measure 1 degree with any confidence?

Hmm, well there’s long history here of people objecting to efforts that have been made to take account of, and adjust for, observational inadequacies, so I won’t attempt a brief answer, beyond saying that trend is of much more importance than the calibration of an instrument in a particular location, IMV.
This isn’t about ‘calibration’ it is all about “NEVER let your precision exceed your accuracy. – Mr. McGuire”
We have a precision of 0.1 put on data with an accuracy of 1.0. That is exactly backwards. My chemistry / physics teacher in high school would give you an “F” any time you did that, even if the rest of the problem was perfectly understood and computed. It was one of the things he stressed most because it was one of the most stupid of errors and made most often.
Then again, he also insisted that we learn to do problems with a slide rule so that we would have a basic understanding of what we were doing rather than putting blind faith in calculators with 10 digits of precision processing data with 2 digits of accuracy. I can not thank him enough. To this day the ‘order of magnitude’ sanity cross check used with slide rules still runs in my brain in the background of any math problem… Mr. McGuire, i salute you!
I can only assume that you and Mann both grew up in the calculator age where everyone uses 10 digits of imaginary precision so it’s ‘no problem’… the bottom line is that there is no trend because the result is lost in the error band of the data accuracy. The precision is false and you have no idea if the real number is -0.9 or +0.9 or anywhere in between.
I repeat: “NEVER let your precision exceed your accuracy.” Full Stop.
Sidebar: Mr. McGuire was a retired Lt. Colonel in the Air Force and a retired chemist from U.S. Steel. He taught high school because he wanted to. He also made most of the reagents we used by upgrading raw materials just to keep his hand in and to save the school some money. And yes, he had all the discipline in the classroom you would expect from a Lt. Colonel…

Graeme Rodaughan
January 22, 2009 3:12 pm

Leon Brozyna (02:58:58) :
So is this the way modern ’science’ works? Come up with a belief, then look for data that supports the belief while ignoring data that doesn’t conform? I think I’ll self-snip myself here before I let loose my frustrations on this latest display…

Leon – The technique described is typically used in “Humanities” departments at any typical University.
Perfect for “Opinions” – falls down if “Facts” are required.

foinavon
January 22, 2009 3:14 pm

Ray (13:12:50) :

I have serious doughts as to if really it is warming but one thing is certain, warm air picks up more moisture and increases precipitation in the area. That leads to a lowering of sea levels and not an increase.

You might hope so, but that seems not to be the case in Antarctica (and it certainly isn’t in the Arctic):
Monaghan AJ (2006) Insignificant change in Antarctic snowfall since the International Geophysical Year. Science 313, 827-831.
Abstract: Antarctic snowfall exhibits substantial variability over a range of time scales, with consequent impacts on global sea level and the mass balance of the ice sheets. To assess how snowfall has affected the thickness of the ice sheets in Antarctica and to provide an extended perspective, we derived a 50-year time series of snowfall accumulation over the continent by combining model simulations and observations primarily from ice cores. There has been no statistically significant change in snowfall since the 1950s, indicating that Antarctic precipitation is not mitigating global sea level rise as expected, despite recent winter warming of the overlying atmosphere.

Simon Evans
January 22, 2009 3:15 pm

JimB,
“Simon:
(Me)”I’m rather puzzled as to why some here did not make the same point when previous analyses have suggested Antarctic cooling? It does seem to me that the accuracy of measurements, whether surface-based or satellite, only comes into question here when they are suggestive of warming.”
(You)I have a different opinion. I believe that what gets questioned here is poor science, not just accuracy of measurements.

I wish I could agree. I’d find the site more interesting if I thought so. For example, I refer you to any discussion there’s been of Beck’s paper on historic C02 levels. I can’t immediately think of a more obvious example of ‘poor science’, yet AFAIAA it got very gentle treatment here (and indeed has been enthusiastically supported by some) from those who are virulent in their criticism of the likes of Mann and Hansen. This gives a very strong impression of partisan inclination rather than disinterested commentary upon good/poor science, in my view. As for this paper in question, there have been many negative comments made here by those who cheerfully say they’ve not read the paper – is that your notion of questioning poor science? It seems to me to be simply an expression of prejudice, which is hardly much use in science.
(Me) Hmm, well there’s long history here of people objecting to efforts that have been made to take account of, and adjust for, observational inadequacies,…”
(You) Again, I beg to differ. The objection to those efforts have centered on the fact that the adjustors refuse to release the means of the adjustment so that the means/methods can be understood, challenged, authenticated, or tossed.
Certainly you know this…so I don’t understand the swipe? Do you not believe that the work of publicly funded scientists should be released to the public?…or that other scientists should be given the opportunity to analyze methods and attempt to reproduce/recreate results of various experiments as a point of validation?

I didn’t mean it to be a swipe, actually – more a sense of exhaustion! You’ll recognise that I’m posting on a site where the overwhelming proportion of views are contrary to mine, so one can’t cover every point. I really can’t agree that objections here are “centered on the fact that the adjustors refuse to release the means of the adjustment”. Objection to the fact of adjustments at all seems to me to be far more frequently expressed. Naturally, I agree with the general principle of openness, though I’m not at all sure it is as easily achieved as one might think. As a counter example, how open was the UAH processing up to 2005, when Mears et al. finally figured out the error in their calculations? I trust that you would be as concerned about that as about any other matter. I actually think this is changing quickly, as scientists find themselves exposed to more widespread ‘review’ than has traditionally (pre-internet) been the case.
I’m rather surprised that you don’t recognise the central point I was making, which is that commentary here is highly partisan and suggestive of double standards. This is obvious when people object to ‘warming analysis’ when they have not objected to ‘cooling analysis’. You’re not simply saying, I trust, that ‘cooling analysis’ is good science whilst ‘warming analysis’ is poor science?

Graeme Rodaughan
January 22, 2009 3:18 pm

ROM (04:36:06) :
“Professor Brook said it had been thought Antarctica was cooling partly because of the hole in the ozone layer, which allowed the hot air out.”
I kid you not! Check for yourself!
“The Australian” 22 / Jan / 2009
http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,24946666-11949,00.html

Kinda provides a cartoon image of the Earth “Piffing” it’s way through space propelled by all the hot air escaping from the south pole…

foinavon
January 22, 2009 3:21 pm

TonyB (15:00:23) :

Foinavon 13.31.48
You linked to a long list of paleo proxies to support Dr Mann. Did you actually read them?

Well yes of course. But you’ve chosen to highlight a very nice highly localized stalagmite proxy from the Central Alps. The proxy temperature reconstructions of relevance are those that assess global or N. hemispheric averages. There are certainly local proxies (all proxies are local!) that show highish Medieval Warm Period reconstructed temperatures. These are usually in the highish Northern latitudes. There are local proxies that dn’t show MWP warming.The global or N. hemispheric averages based on multipe proxies are pretty much in line with the original Mann et al reconstruction of 1998…
Anyway, I’m glad you like that nice repository of data…

Simon Evans
January 22, 2009 3:23 pm

E.M. Smith,
This isn’t about ‘calibration’ it is all about “NEVER let your precision exceed your accuracy. – Mr. McGuire”
We have a precision of 0.1 put on data with an accuracy of 1.0.

I think you have misunderstood my point. If a bias in a station reading is consistent, then the trend can be accurately assessed, regardless of calibration. If it is not consistent then that, of course, is another matter, and precision is irrelevant (I agree).

January 22, 2009 3:25 pm

E.M.Smith (14:27:04) :
I have a chart somewhere I can’t find right now that shows a significant ramp up in volcanism lately world wide. I doubt that the Antarctic would be immune
This is not specifically what you are refering to, however;
In the fairly recent past I was looking into volcanic activity. The effect of volcanoes is short term and relative to the size and type of eruption. Part of my question was: is volcanic activity increasing and if it is are submarine volcanoes more active? If so, then would a significant increase in sub-surface volcanoes have an effect on ocean temperatures, thus, the climate.
Since monitoring of submarine volcanoes is limited I decided to focus on large eruptions. Those most likey to be noticed and recorded. Ultimately there was not enough data to work with. However, in the process I needed to know if there had been an increase in large eruptions (VEI 4 or greater) on land. Large eruptions also provide a better record since historic events are more complete.
That led to this graph of VEI 4 or larger eruptions:
http://penoflight.com/climatebuzz/MajorVol1.jpg
If you note…
1850 -1900 = 23 large eruptions
1900 -1950 = 34
1950 -2000 = 35
verses
1650 -1700 = 14

January 22, 2009 3:25 pm

George E. Smith
Now if only there was a reasonable way to connect volcanism, crustal deformation, sunspot minima, earthquakes, et. al. without resorting to planetary orbit-spin coupling and solar barycentric orbits …

The moon fits into this too. The Asian tsunami hit at full moon coincident with apogee on 27/12/2004. The recent swarm of earthquakes in Yellowstone and the rising of the dome on Chaiten was coincident with full moon at perigee on 12/1/2009. Both were near earth perihelion. New moon at perigee and earth aphelion due July 2009.
A combination of these gravitational factors and low earth magnetic activity at solar minimum perhaps?

foinavon
January 22, 2009 3:32 pm

Jeff Alberts (14:44:28)
Well yes, a number of paleoproxy temperature reconstructions done during the past 10 years (including a very comprehensive one just published by Mann et al [see my post (13:31:48)] ) have essentially tightened the confidence in the original rather tentative analysis by Mann et al (1998).
They’re all there in the scientific literature. It seems now to be a rather well-supported conclusion to the extent that one can make reliable conclusions from proxies. I don’t think scientists and policymakers are really that interested in the considerations of a blogger!

January 22, 2009 3:35 pm

foinaven
we’re rather more confident that late 20th century and current warming is anomalous in the context of the past 100-plus years.

And what about the rest of the flatline hockey stick shaft extending back to 1000AD?
Obviously less confident than before. 😉

January 22, 2009 3:40 pm

tetris (11:48:46) :
Anthony:
Has anyone in the Steig, Mann, et. al. team ever sat down and done a “back of the envelope” calculation to “deduce” the calories necessary to get all that ice to melt so that it actually will raise sea levels?

[snip]
REPLY: Phil. It is rude to answer a question posed to the host with a snide remark to the person posing the question. Please don’t do it again. I’ll answer my own questions, thank you. – Anthony

RH
January 22, 2009 3:43 pm

I haven’t read all of the responses above so hope I’m not repeating anyone’s comments. When I look at the anomalies, http://weather.unisys.com/archive/sst/, it looks like the Feb ocean temperatures near West Antarctica have been getting cooler since 2003. The Antarctic shore North of West Antarctica looks like an area where currents bring Tropical water from the North to cool, sink and release heat to the atmosphere. The satellites probably pick up this warm anomaly from the Pacific North of the Antarctic continent and Mann and company use those temperatures to raise West Antarctic temperatures just like they make assumptions in Siberia from the warmer temperatures North East of Finland. As I have said before, I think the reduced solar output, the constant clouds above the Poles almost to the Tropics is causing the Poles to cool. The cooling of the water at the Poles increases the rate of sinking of of the water and speeds up the ocean currents and heat transfer rates from the Tropics to the Poles. This looks to be apparent in the colder anomaly off the coast of Peru in SH Winter and contributes to LaNina. Also check out the currents in the Indian Ocean where the same pattern seems apparent. If solar conditions stay the same, then the Tropical oceans should continue to cool faster than they can accumulate heat. We may not see a lot of record low temperatures in the far North and South because warm ocean waters are bringing warmer temps to the Poles. As the mean ocean temperatures cool further, the Arctic ice should expand South of Iceland and closer the the UK. When this much Arctic is frozen a new Ice Age should begin because so much of the Northern Hemisphere is land which doesn’t store heat energy like the oceans. I think so far the theory has support because UAH data show the Tropical oceans cooled in December and NASA has also stated in the past couple of days that the oceans have been cooling. So for me, the “tipping point” occurs when the Arctic ice reaches an area large enough to keep warm water from circulating near the Pole. I think it’s all up to the sun.
The ice area in the Antarctic is above average this year – how can it be warmer? I have difficulty accepting anything climatologists have to say anymore, especially when Michael Mann is among the authors.

Ron de Haan
January 22, 2009 3:44 pm

Al Gore, the biggest promotor of Mann’s data will add the Antartic Warming report to the hockey stick fabel and present it to Congress next week.
http://www.boston.com/news/politics/politicalintelligence/2009/01/gore_to_talk_to.html

January 22, 2009 3:45 pm

PCA component vectors are NOT “interpolations.” That word is journalistic over-simplification of the actual mthodology. “Statistical voodoo” would be a more accurate phrase.

Pearland Aggie
January 22, 2009 3:46 pm

it’s interesting how it most of the time seems to boil down to “You’re not smart enough for them”! LOL

E.M.Smith
Editor
January 22, 2009 3:47 pm

Simon Evans (12:25:05) :
Ozone depletion did not occur substantially until the late 1970s.

Please enlighten me: How did they measure the ozone over Antarctica from 1900 to 1970? Or was some other baseline used to detect this ‘depletion’? If so, what base line was that and how was it measured?

January 22, 2009 3:47 pm

foinavon (15:32:40) :
I don’t think scientists and policymakers are really that interested in the considerations of a blogger!
Are you certain about that?

Peer review is simply a cursory check on the plausibility of a study. It is not a rigorous replication and it is certainly not a stamp of correctness of results. Many studies get far more rigorous peer review on blogs after publication than in journals.
I use our own blog for the purpose of getting good review before publication for some of my work now, because the review on blogs is often far better and more rigorous than from journals. This is not an indictment of peer review or journals, just an open-eyed recognition of the realities.

http://www.cejournal.net/?p=607
Denounce bloggers if you must, but, realize in this age a great deal of advancement, and at times correction, comes from those bloggers.

January 22, 2009 3:52 pm

And when all is said and done…
It would seem logical to conclude that the current bout of warming in the Western Antarctic could be attributable to the recent almost three-decade-long bout of ENSO activity that has been dominated by El Nino events.
http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/01/recent-antarctic-warming-attribution.html

foinavon
January 22, 2009 3:55 pm

John Galt (14:45:13) :
re: your request for climate scientists to “debate” the deniers”, and my comment about the frutlessness of that:
you said:

I’m not asking them to debate me, but to engage their peers who are skeptical of AGW. Public debate with (or between) laymen might be entertaining but it rarely solves anything. Just look at some of the internet sites where people can post their views. Nobody ever seems to be open-minded enough to really consider the other side’s arguments.

I wasn’t meaning them debating you John. I meant the climate scientists “debating” the “deniers”. First of all it really is fruitless (rather in the same vein as the fruitlessness of scientists “debating” creationists where a meeting of minds is not possible). After all the “deniers” have, and have had, plenty of opportunities to debate with scientists. The problem has been that they don’t seem to like the nature of debate within the scientific sphere (scientific literature/scientific meetings) and have chosen to remove themselves from the scientific debate. And so they organise their own pretend “meetings” and attempt to pursue agendas via the web.
A couple of examples: Roy Spencer (with John Christy) published a series of downright incompetent analyses of satellite temperatures from microwave sounding units (MSU) which repeatedly had to be corrected by other scientists (a series of papers in the scientific literature over 15 years culminating in a rather embarrassing critique in Science in 2005). Spencer seems to have taken himself completely out of the proper scientific arenas now and attempts to sell dubious messages direct from his web pages.
Or Dr Richard Lindzen. He pursued for a number of years the dubious notion that enhanced tropospheric water resulting as a feedback to greenhouse gas atmospheric warming would result in a cooling effect in complete contradiction to the predictions from our understanding of atmospheric physics. He pursued much of this by editorialising in articles posted on the websites of “think tanks” of the sort sponsoring the Heartland Institute “meeting” and newsaper articles, even ‘though he was quite clearly incorrect. At some point (early 2000’s and onwards) his position on this matter became unsupportable, even in non-science channels….unfortunately he still pursues deliberately contrary positions (as is his right if he so wishes, of course). But he’s taken himself out of the normal arena of scientific debate…

foinavon
January 22, 2009 4:01 pm

tallbloke (15:35:08) :

foinaven
we’re rather more confident that late 20th century and current warming is anomalous in the context of the past 100-plus years.
And what about the rest of the flatline hockey stick shaft extending back to 1000AD?
Obviously less confident than before. 😉

I corrected that typo on a post above [ see foinavon (13:37:27) ]. “100-plus years” should read “1000-plus years”
Incidentally, well done for getting the correct spelling for “foinaven” (the mountain) rather than “foinavon” (the horse and fence). “Foinaven” was already taken when I first used it as a webname so I’ve had to resort to “foinavon”…

foinavon
January 22, 2009 4:10 pm

Lee Kington (15:47:22)

Peer review is simply a cursory check on the plausibility of a study. It is not a rigorous replication and it is certainly not a stamp of correctness of results. Many studies get far more rigorous peer review on blogs after publication than in journals.
I use our own blog for the purpose of getting good review before publication for some of my work now, because the review on blogs is often far better and more rigorous than from journals. This is not an indictment of peer review or journals, just an open-eyed recognition of the realities.
http://www.cejournal.net/?p=607
Denounce bloggers if you must, but, realize in this age a great deal of advancement, and at times correction, comes from those bloggers.

I agree with you about peer-review. However peer review is only a small part of the process. The correctness/reliability/usefulness of a paper really starts to be assessed once it appears in the literature. It stands or falls in relation to subsequent research, analysis and publications. I think you’re absolutely right that blogs might be a very good way of obtaining pre-publication opinion/thought on a paper (I’ve never thought of doing so!).
However the problem with blogs in general is that unless one has the requisite knowledge one might not be in a position to assess the competing shower of opinions, nonsense, considered thought and so on, that constitutes blog message boards (like this one!). A good many of them are devised to pursue agendas.
I’ve no problem with any of that (other than that many people get taken in by nonsense I think, or at least choose to use them to reinforce their dodgy political positions). The value of peer-review and scientific publication is that the cream rises very noticeably and objectively to the surface…

Steve Hempell
January 22, 2009 4:19 pm

Bob,
This study uses a different satellite form RSS/UAH. If you can get the data, (maybe on CA website; comment 70) how would this look? Was going to leave a message on your website but not another login to remember !!

January 22, 2009 4:23 pm

foinavon,
You attack Spencer and Christy…. call their work incompetent. But the IPCC and others rely on the UAH data, despite the prior minor instrument error. Hence, are you saying that the IPCC and those who use UAH data sets are incompetent as well? Is it not incompetent to use the work of incompetents?
Which is more incompetent…. having an error in data while using fairly new technology (UAH) or just making data up (Mann, Briffa)?

Pearland Aggie
January 22, 2009 4:29 pm

Simon Evans (12:25:05) :
If that is true, why did Gordon Dobson devise the Dobson Spectrophotometer in the 1950s for ground-based study of an unusual stratospheric ozone concentration anomaly?

http://junkscience.com/Ozone/ozone_seasonal.html

Pearland Aggie
January 22, 2009 4:30 pm

Atmospheric ozone is measured in Dobson Units, named for the Oxford academic Gordon Miller Bourne Dobson (1889-1976), one of the pioneers of atmospheric ozone research and inventor of the Dobson Spectrophotometer, used to measure atmospheric ozone from the ground. During the International Geophysical Year of 1956 there was a significant increase in the number of these devices in use around the globe and the Halley Bay (Antarctica) anomaly was discovered. Yes, that’s 1956, three decades prior to the allegedly alarming “discovery.” There was a significantly different perspective then because interest was focused on the November increase – now called a “recovery” – in stratospheric ozone levels over Antarctica with the collapse of the South Polar Vortex.
In a paper titled “Forty Years’ Research on Atmospheric Ozone at Oxford: A History” (Applied Optics, March 1968), Dobson described an ozone monitoring program that began at Halley Bay in 1956.
When the data began to arrive, “the values in September and October 1956 were about 150 [Dobson] units lower than expected. … In November the ozone values suddenly jumped up to those expected. … It was not until a year later, when the same type of annual variation was repeated, that we realized that the early results were indeed correct and that Halley Bay showed a most interesting difference from other parts of the world.”

Ray
January 22, 2009 4:34 pm

So, if the air is not warmer and if it is not snowing more and there seem to be a little more liquid output than input in the antactica… then the heat source must come from the earth.

The Mayor of Galt's Gulch
January 22, 2009 4:35 pm

Nice write up. You must be hated for questioning something that is so accepted and using facts to base your argument on. I say keep up the excellent work and force those who believe blindly to ask questions and prove via experimentation again, and again, and again – the old school science way.

January 22, 2009 4:35 pm

Well the Goracle speaks to Congress next week, that clears up the timing issue. Had to get those headline lies out now.

E.M.Smith
Editor
January 22, 2009 4:37 pm

Simon Evans (15:23:38) :

E.M. Smith,
This isn’t about ‘calibration’ it is all about “NEVER let your precision exceed your accuracy. – Mr. McGuire”
We have a precision of 0.1 put on data with an accuracy of 1.0.

I think you have misunderstood my point. If a bias in a station reading is consistent, then the trend can be accurately assessed,
And you sir, have completely missed mine. THERE CAN BE NO TREND OF LESS THAN ONE DEGREE. PERIOD.
I don’t care what your calibration error is.
I don’t care how you do the measuring.
I don’t care how you process the data.
I don’t care how biased the data are.
Your accuracy is measured in degrees. There can be no precision that is valid in less than full degree increments. There can be no trend of less than full degrees. ANY claim of a trend IN EITHER DIRECTION of fractional degrees is a mathematical farce.
This isn’t up for debate, it is a fact of mathematics.
regardless of calibration. If it is not consistent then that, of course, is another matter, and precision is irrelevant (I agree).
Precision is always relevant, and it MUST be less than or equal to the accuracy of the data gathered. Always. For both warmers and coolers.
Frankly, I think the topic ought to be #1 on the ‘why the whole thing is bunk for both sides’ hit parade.
There can be no trend, for either warmers or skeptics, that is measured in less than full degree increments. The accuracy of the temperature data simply do not support it. Every single paper that makes any claim of fractional degree findings based on the full degree temperature record is simply playing in the error band of their calculations.
If I have 4 or 5 quarts of milk and I add 1 quart of milk, I can have anywhere from 5 to 6 quarts of milk, but I CANNOT say that I have 5.5 quarts. It is a lie.
(Strictly, I could have from 3.5 + .5 = 4 to 5.4+1.4 = 6.8 and still fit in the error band of my accuracy of full digits. Do you now see the fallacy of calculating with .x when X. is all you have? )

tetris
January 22, 2009 4:45 pm

Phil [15:40:04]
Scathingly, Trenberth says it all: “It’s hard to make data where none exist”. Unfortunately as we know all too well, that has never stopped Mike Mann from concocting whatever data he has needed for his pseudo scientific fantasies. The other authors must somehow have been desperate to consort with a confirmed cheat. [ref: McIntyre and Wegman’s Senate hearings, etc., etc.]
What has been completely lost is that the authors actually state that they can’t rule out that the results may simply be due to “normal, natural variations in the Antarctic weather” [sic] [ N.B.:not climate but weather ! ].

foinavon
January 22, 2009 4:55 pm

Lee Kington (16:23:20) :

foinavon,
You attack Spencer and Christy…. call their work incompetent. But the IPCC and others rely on the UAH data, despite the prior minor instrument error. Hence, are you saying that the IPCC and those who use UAH data sets are incompetent as well? Is it not incompetent to use the work of incompetents?
Which is more incompetent…. having an error in data while using fairly new technology (UAH) or just making data up (Mann, Briffa)?

I’m not attacking Spencer and Christy. I’m pointing out that they made a large series of rather disgraceful errors over a very long period that were repeatedly corrected by other scientists in the scientific literature (I’ll post a list if you like). That’s not really an “attack”…it’s a statement of fact.
These errors were not “minor”! For a long period they attempted to pursue the notion that tropospheric temperature showed a cooling trend. Their 2005 correction raised their tropospheric warming trend by 40%. These corrections were made following highlighting of serious errors by other scientists.
The UAH data is now reasonably in accord with other data (e.g. RSS) thanks to these series of corrections. It makes perfect sense for the IPCC to use all the relevant data.
As for Mann and Briffa “just making data up” I’d like to see the scientific papers that justify such an odd statement. After all one of the obvious conclusions from reading the scientific papers on this subject is how well Mann’s (was Briffa invoved in the 1998 study?) tentative analysis has stood the test of time.
That’s certainly not the case with Spencer and Christy’s initial study [Spencer RW, Christy JR (1990) Precise Monitoring Of Global Temperature Trends From Satellites. Science 247, 1558-1562], which was wrong at the time and continued to be wrong until the practitioners were guided towards a proper analysis during the subsequent 15 years…

E.M.Smith
Editor
January 22, 2009 4:59 pm

Lee Kington (15:25:11) : That led to this graph of VEI 4 or larger eruptions:
http://penoflight.com/climatebuzz/MajorVol1.jpg

Looks like the same data, though the one I was thinking of had a bar chart. Thanks!

Vernon
January 22, 2009 5:01 pm

I finally got mad that RC would not post my polite comments to discuss the study so I got mad and tried to get them to post this. I doubt it ever will be posted.

It must be really cold wearing the Emperor’s new clothes. Since nothing I am going to post is factually wrong it must be that your unwilling to address the real problem with your study. Namely that you have attributed 11 years of warming to the entire fifty years by doing what you keep telling ‘deniers’ is the wrong way of looking at things. The fact that you will not post this leads me to believe that you know that your wrong; that your position cannot be defended; that this is a religion not science.
Now why can I say that. Because the author of this post, one of the authors of the study says that 1935-1945 was the warmest time for Antarctica. He says that there was cooling from 1969 to the present. So what does that mean, that starting in the 35-45 period there was cooling as seen in the 1957-58 measurements. That 1969 was warmer that 1957-58 is a must since there was cooling to the present. That 1969 was cooler that 35-45 is a must since 35-45 was the warmest time in the century. So what we are left with is cooling from 45 to 57/58 and warming till 1969. From 1969 there is once again cooling which means that your applying an 11 year warming trend upon the whole time period and as it as be pointed out here many times, 11 years is weather, not climate. The climate will cooling for 12 years before it started warming and has been cooling for 40 years after the brief warming. I am pretty sure from what I have read here before, 11 years out of 60 is weather not climate.
But then, like my last two posts here on this topic, your not going to post it because you do not deal with difficult issues.

Using the AGW crowds own definitions, does anyone see where I made an error?

January 22, 2009 5:03 pm

Casual reader, most of what is on WUWT is way over my head.
I have had a short email conversation with one of the authors of the paper, I read about it in the Seattle Times a few days ago and was hoping I could pass the email on to someone that actually knows something more about this than I do. Did not feel comfortable posting it for the world to see. Was not able to find contact info for the site.
REPLY: info “at” surfacestations dot org

George E. Smith
January 22, 2009 5:03 pm

“”” foinavon (15:55:28) :
John Galt (14:45:13) :
re: your request for climate scientists to “debate” the deniers”, and my comment about the frutlessness of that:
<>
Or Dr Richard Lindzen. He pursued for a number of years the dubious notion that enhanced tropospheric water resulting as a feedback to greenhouse gas atmospheric warming would result in a cooling effect in complete contradiction to the predictions from our understanding of atmospheric physics. “”
Well foinavon, I would say that if that is”the prediction from (y)our understanding of atmospheric physics.” that clearly your understanding of atmospheric physics is incomplete.
Note the statement refers to “enhanced tropospheric water”.
As I am sure you know, atmospheric water is unique among green house molecules, since it alone in the atmosphere exists in all three phases, solid, liquid, and gaseous. Every other prominent GHG is present only in the gaseous phase.
While water in the gaseous phase is certainly a positive feedback warming influence (or else earth would be a frozen ball), in the liquid or solid phases, water forms CLOUDS, the result of which is a cooling negative feedback; and notably clouds are not fully modelled in the so-called GCMs.
It isn’t rocket science; nobody has ever observed it to warm up when a cloud passes between the sun and the observer; it ALWAYS cools down. Moreover the optics of the situation is 8th grade high school atmospheric physics. The sun is a narrow angle (0.5 deg) source, so clouds cast a direct shadow, with a narrow penumbral edge,a nd within that shadow zone, the surface irradiance is diminished by reflection from the top of the cloud, and absorption by the water in the cloud.
On the other hand the reduced thermal radiation from teh shadow zone, is diffuse; at least Lamberitan, and more likely closer to isotropic; so the cloud that formed the shadow, can never intercept more than a small fraction of the IR emission from that shadow zone.
So I would say that Lindzen is more likely to be correct than your “predictions from (y)our understanding of atmospheric physics.”
And Al gore’s eminent credentials as a climatologist are what ??

Bruce Cobb
January 22, 2009 5:09 pm

foinavon (12:34:29) :
Bruce Cobb (11:30:57) :
These are relevant issues aren’t they?

No, the only thing that’s relevant is the science. But you AGWers aren’t interested, preferring instead to go with the ad hominem argument and smear tactics, which prove absolutely nothing, except the emptiness of your argument.
The fact is, fonavon, your AGW ideology, which is based on nothing but pseudoscience is going down the tubes.

E.M.Smith
Editor
January 22, 2009 5:11 pm

foinavon (16:10:53) :
The correctness/reliability/usefulness of a paper really starts to be assessed once it appears in the literature. It stands or falls in relation to subsequent research, analysis and publications.

Odd that you left ‘replication’ off that list… Is that why we have not gotten publication of the raw data and methodology of GISS ?

JimB
January 22, 2009 5:18 pm

Simon,
You can address all the arguments here with word play for ever.
The point I was making, as I’m sure you’re aware, is that of turning over data and methods. You know this hasn’t been done, so why defend it? Why does McIntyre have to file a seemingly never ending stream of Freedom of Information Act requests and still not recieve data? Why aren’t Mann and Hansen required to release the methods they used to adjust data?
Sorry…I’m clearly not a scientist…but those actions don’t support scientific process, and do nothing but take away credibility.
You will always be able to single out specific responses on either side of this debate that are incorrect or inacurate. That is noise.
JimB

JimB
January 22, 2009 5:22 pm

Not just the Antarctic warming…
Death rate of trees in the Northwestern U.S. has doubled in the past 17yrs due to Global Warming:
http://www.cnn.com/2009/TECH/science/01/22/study.forests.dying/index.html
Is it me being overly cynical, or have the frequency of these articles increased since the inauguration?
JimB

Russ R.
January 22, 2009 5:22 pm

foinavon,
If you believe in Mann’s work, than you and him should move on up to Greenland, where the Vikings were able to live for several centuries. It is much warmer now than it was then, so raising enough food to support yourselves, should be no problem.
Let us know how that turns out. Don’t forget your sunscreen.

Dave
January 22, 2009 5:24 pm

Foinavon,
Proxy studies are essentially statistical exercises requiring a high level of statistical expertise. Steve McEntyre at ClimateAudit is an expert at statistics, and his site is regularly visited by other experts in the field. I can only surmise from your support of Mann, et al. that you’ve never given more than a cursory perusal of ClimateAudit.

JimB
January 22, 2009 5:29 pm

The article referenced in the above post is probably one of the worst pieces of journalism I think I’ve read.
It states that global warming is being blamed, it cites 50 years of data collection, but it never once explains what the data is, what the change in temps are that has brought about this cataclysmic change.
it is apparently a preview of an article to be published in Science.
JimB

Joel Shore
January 22, 2009 5:34 pm

foinavon says:

A couple of examples: Roy Spencer (with John Christy) published a series of downright incompetent analyses of satellite temperatures from microwave sounding units (MSU) which repeatedly had to be corrected by other scientists (a series of papers in the scientific literature over 15 years culminating in a rather embarrassing critique in Science in 2005). Spencer seems to have taken himself completely out of the proper scientific arenas now and attempts to sell dubious messages direct from his web pages.

Lee Kington says:

You attack Spencer and Christy…. call their work incompetent. But the IPCC and others rely on the UAH data, despite the prior minor instrument error. Hence, are you saying that the IPCC and those who use UAH data sets are incompetent as well? Is it not incompetent to use the work of incompetents?

I do think it is too strong to call Spencer and Christy’s satellite work “incompetent”. It is true that it was the first attempt to analyze the data and such first attempts often don’t get it right.
On the other hand, to call their errors “minor” is certainly not justified. For many years, their data seemed to suggest that the earth was cooling rather than warming, giving much cover to the point-of-view that the warming was an artifact…in fact, their study alone arguably might have been the single biggest piece of data that gave cover to delay action on global warming. As it turns out, they made several errors that mainly shifted the data in the cooling direction. (And, while it may be true to some degree that some part of the shift in the trend is due to a longer data record, you can use their current data to ascertain that even trends over considerably shorter periods starting at the beginning of the record have significant positive trends in the latest version of their data analysis.)
It is also worth noting that despite these errors, Spencer and Christy were thankfully never hauled before a Congressional committee like Mann and company were. And, this is true despite the fact that subsequent work by others has thus far changed the current understanding less in the case of Mann et al. than it has in the case of Spencer and Christy. Instead, the normal scientific course was allowed to proceed.
I’ll also defend Spencer by noting that he does seem to be working on publishing some of his recent analyses on cloud feedbacks and the like, so he is not strictly sticking to the web. On the other hand, while I will avoid harsh labels such as “incompetent”, some of the analyses he has posted on the web like his recent stuff on the origins of the CO2 rise have some frightfully glaring errors, as tamino and some of us commenters have been discussing on his blog.

Neo
January 22, 2009 5:36 pm

“The researchers devised a statistical technique”
After reading through a pile of this kind of stuff yesterday, I finally realized exactly here all the statistician jobs that disappeared from the Tobacco Institute had ultimately reappeared.

George E. Smith
January 22, 2009 5:37 pm

“” foinavon (09:41:48) :
Flanagan (07:24:18) :
Yes it’s pretty dreary (a gift of $144 if registrants to the Heartland Institue pretend Climate “Science” meeting sign some petition devised by a tobacco company propagandist nearly 10 years ago). I wonder who they consider might be taken in by that!?
The list of cosponsers (click on the poster with the gallery of rogues on the Intro page of the meeting site) gives a pretty good indication of the purpose of this sort of “meeting” and perhaps helps to understand the dubious thinking that considers that dodgy petitions have anything to do with science…
http://www.heartland.org/events/NewYork09/newyork09.html
It should be a blast! “”
Well foinavon; they had one last year; and all the leading AGW advocates were invited to attend, and present papers. Tehy even invited AL Gore and invited him to give a paper, and even offered to pay his $200,000 talk fee.
Stangely to a man, all the AGW fans declined the invitation; which would also have been an opportunity for “Debate” to take place.
Gore refuses to debate, in fatc he refuses to appear anywhere unless the sponsors pay his fee , and agree to a rule that he will accept, and answer NO questions.
So just who are the scientists, and who are the shysters ?
But the oldest two tricks in the debating handbook, are first off, the straw man argument; which can often be countered by another strawman argument, and failing that; the next tool of weak debaters is the ad hominem attack.
We have quite a few weak debaters attend here, and attack the messenger; but we get very little counter argument to the messages. Is the AGW thesis so weak, that its supporters can’t defend it with simple data, such as data showing a rising (or falling) atmospheric CO2 concentration, accompanied by, or followed by a rising or falling global surface mean temperature.
So far, all they have been able to show us (An Inconvenient Truth pages 66/67) are instances where rising and falling global mean surface temperatures are followed by rising and falling atmospheric CO2 concentrations.
In our normal predictions from our understanding of atmospheric physics, we are used to the idea of having the cause happen before the effect, rather than the other way round. this quirk of human nature would lead us to conclude that it is rising and falling global mean surface temperatures (however caused) that give rise subsequently to rising and falling atmospheric CO2 concentrations.
I know it is just a small point; but it is what our understanding of atmospheric physics leads us to believe.

Pearland Aggie
January 22, 2009 5:40 pm

The UAH data is now reasonably in accord with other data (e.g. RSS)
hmmm………..
Should RSS correct their lower troposphere satellite data ?
http://www.warwickhughes.com/blog/?p=196

budahmon
January 22, 2009 5:46 pm

“Professor Brook said it had been thought Antarctica was cooling partly because of the hole in the ozone layer, which allowed the hot air out.”
Is this statement really true….Did this guy say that. I’m just a little ole’ engineer but aren’t there high pressure areas at the poles? Thus, is not the air mostly subsiding at the poles? If the air is subsiding..then how can the ozone layer let the hot air out? Just my two cents!

January 22, 2009 5:55 pm

“The scientists estimate the level of uncertainty in the measurements is between 2-3 degrees Celsius.”
I do not know what this statement means. How does one estimate “uncertainty” and does it have anything to do with reproducibility or accuracy? Is this supposed to mean that a ground temperature measurement of “X” (with it’s inherent accuracy and reproducibility limitations) can be “estimated” by satellite observation to within +/- 2-3C of “X” 95% of the time? But the satellite temperature estimate is derived from a large area, not a discrete point. So does measuring apples and estimating oranges fall together within +/- 2-3C most of the time? Is that what this means?
“The scientists found temperature measurements from weather stations corresponded closely with satellite data for overlapping time periods.”
Again, I do not know what “overlapping time periods” means. Does this mean “time averaging” of the ground temperature measurements? What does “corresponded closely” mean? Are these same day determinations? Sounds to me like there is a whole lot of estimating going on.
And then by using this data, the authors arrived at an “estimated trend” at the level of 0.1C. And yet the prime data has an “estimated” 2-3C uncertainty.
How was this “study” ever published in a scientific journal? And even worse, why is anyone even paying any attention to it? In my “estimation” this is not science.

January 22, 2009 5:58 pm

Steve Hempell: The graphs of AHU MSU data I’ve been providing are only for reference. I haven’t said they were used in the study.
There doesn’t appear to be an easy way to download long term AVHRR data.
http://wdc.dlr.de/sensors/avhrr3/
And then it occurred to me: Once I got it, what would I do with it? Steig et al went through processes that would be difficult if not impossible to reproduce.
Regards

Bill Illis
January 22, 2009 6:21 pm

“Africa Cooling according to scientists”. – AP headline.
The continent of Africa has been cooling by 0.0569C per decade (+/-0.123C) over the last several periods ending in the autumn timeframe of the last simulation.
The results have been reviewed by 3 eminent individuals.
Reviewer #1 corrected the improper terminology of siting effects.
Reviewer #2 provided a climate simulation which reproduced the results except for the gridbox defined by -20,25 by -20,30 which was out of sinc on some non-lateral issues.
Reviewer #3 reacted vehemently to the proposition that aerosols forcings had been properly accounted for in the effect of spatial patterns of spring westerlies but this has been compensated for through atmospheric padding.
“The satellite data collected for the study has confirmed our worst fears” said John Holmes of the National African Atmospheric Studies Centre.
The data for this study will be made available (is available at the time of printing) through ftp at the next automation – site ACVS.

Chris V.
January 22, 2009 6:30 pm

Here’s a completely independent study that also shows the MWP to be cooler than today:
http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2008/2008GL034187.shtml
It’s a temperature reconstruction made using geothermal heat flux and borehole temperature data.

Ron de Haan
January 22, 2009 6:31 pm

The “Alarmists” part of the Arctic “warming” is all over the media, from CNN to BBC and most National Broadcasters and News Papers in Europe.
Mission Accomplished!

Derek
January 22, 2009 6:33 pm

I agree with Matty way up top. This has made some headlines on Reuters and elsewhere which is troubling. This headline makes a rather bold, one-sided claim. Amazing how easy it is to mislead.

hollowscribe
January 22, 2009 6:38 pm

Wow their scientific evidence is about as rock solid as the foundation for the tower of pisa… oh wait didn’t one side of those foundations crumble? Anyway, even if the climate was changing there would be no proof that it was because of polution. I agree polution can be bad and should be reduced with the right intentions, not just so more money can poor into the pockets of Government officials. However, the earth has natural cycles it goes through, we cannot really expect the climates to stay the same for all of eternity can we? I mean was the Ice Age because the humans back then weren’t using enough aerosol cans to keep the world warm? The problem with humans is that we think we are so powerful we can do anything and that we are the center of the universe and that every problem and solution somehow comes from amongst our ranks.

Allan M R MacRae
January 22, 2009 6:39 pm

foinavon (16:55:45) :
REPEATING MY POST FROM ANOTHER THREAD, AT
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/01/17/divergence-between-giss-and-uah-since-1980/#comment-74925
Allan M R MacRae (22:02:29) :
Jan 18 – foinavon (14:31:17) :
I think you are writing nonsense re Spencer and Christy’s UAH LT measurements.
Rather than just quoting all these papers, you should quote the magnitude of the corrections involved.
I think you will find the corrections are practically insignificant.
For plot of UAH LT global temperature anomalies in 2002, see Figure 1 in
http://www.apegga.org/Members/Publications/peggs/WEB11_02/kyoto_pt.htm
For a 2008 plot, see
http://icecap.us/images/uploads/uah7908.JPG
I cannot see any material difference – can you?
Also, UAH and RSS LT temperatures seem to be converging, and the corrections are not all at UAH – many are at RSS.
Please quote the actual numbers if you wish to make a valid point.
Regards, Allan

janama
January 22, 2009 6:45 pm

Is this statement really true….Did this guy say that.
apparently it’s NOT what he said.

Chris V.
January 22, 2009 6:45 pm

E.M.Smith (17:11:36) :
“Odd that you left ‘replication’ off that list… Is that why we have not gotten publication of the raw data and methodology of GISS ?”
GISS temperatures are replicated here:
http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/data/temperature/
The papers describing the GISS methodology can be found here:
http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/
That took me all of 30 seconds to find.
Don’t know where the raw data is, but I could probably find it in a few more minutes with Google…

timetochooseagain
January 22, 2009 7:05 pm

The 2009 pic totally lacks a scale, making it useless and suspicious.

hunter
January 22, 2009 7:24 pm

Budahmon,
Prof. Brook did not say that.
He states what he did say over at Jennifer Morhasy’s website on the thread about this same topic.
He was badly quoted.

January 22, 2009 7:30 pm

I’ve read the paper now fairly rapidly. The data was created using odd means of surface satellite measurement not lower troposphere, cutting out portions of the satellite data for what was assumed to be clouds. Ground stations were used in a low influence fashion according to one author and RegEm was used to interpolate the rest.
What I do know is that real data, not interpolated data shows a ring around the antarctic hasn’t warmed!
http://digitaldiatribes.wordpress.com/2008/11/30/2008-update-on-antarctic-temperatures-rss/
I am pretty skeptical about this paper because sat trends and ice have both shown cooling. Keep in mind Michael Mann will use anything as a proxy for temperature, as long as it has an uptick. The fact that Ice isn’t as good a proxy as some tree a hundred miles from the temperature it correlates with is a real head scratcher.

Ron de Haan
January 22, 2009 7:31 pm

Pieter F (10:13:33) :
“Zeke: Volcanoes? Yes, really.
You are missing a fundamental point of the empirically based skeptics. We do not deny that there was a period of warming late last century culminating in the 1998 El Niño event. Warming trends are exaggerated at the poles. Therefore, a warming in Antarctica late last century is not surprising. However, since 1998 there has been an overall average global cooling and that too has been more profound in Antarctica. The AGW alarmists are having difficulty resolving the new trend (predicted, by the way, years ago by the solar scientists). So they turn to master alarmist computer modeler, creator of the hockey stick that served Mr. Gore so well.
West Antarctic has many very active volcanoes, even several below the ice sheet. It is warmer in the west than the rest of Antarctica where all indications are that it is distinctly cooler there. For a decade now, things are globally cooler. Why is it so difficult to understand that the West Antarctic volcanoes contribute to an anomalous warming in that area?”
Pieter F,
There has been no warming at the SH.

VG
January 22, 2009 7:42 pm

Long term this paper in Nature will only help the skeptic cause as they desperately re-hash old data to prove a point. Nearly all polls are showing that a majority of people just aint believing it (AGW) any more. Only problem.. Journals like Nature may be hit permanently re credibility problem in the future