Natural Drivers of Weather and Climate

Note: The full PDF of this author manuscript was sent to me via an email contact of the author, Bob Foster. He says it has been published in E&E.  Energy & Environment · Vol. 20, No. 1&2, 2009. Online now here and now in print.- Anthony

EDITORIAL – NATURAL DRIVERS OF WEATHER AND CLIMATE
Bob Foster
Director, The Lavoisier Group, Australia
fosbob [- at -] bigpond.com

Will it be warmer or cooler? Policy-makers need to know; because human well-being depends on them being correctly informed. Confusingly, there are two plausible – but mutually-exclusive – hypotheses as to the direction of climate-change within the planning horizon of governments. Which will be proven right?

The scientific consensus invokes an autonomous Earth with a self-contained climate – stable and benign, until only now disturbed by people burning fossil fuels. In this people-driven-climate hypothesis, variability of external influences is minuscule – and in the policy sense, irrelevant. For planning purposes, Earth can be treated as if it were travelling in an empty Universe.

However, a substantial number of scientists disagree; and as the flow of satellite observations becomes a flood, their number grows apace. Contrarians assert that, at all human-relevant time-scales, factors external to our planet – some identified and, doubtless, some not – powerfully influence a climate that has always varied. The preindustrial Arcadia mourned by the scientific consensus is a myth. In this variable-Sun/Earth-connection hypothesis, external influences on weather and climate far outweigh those from people. Our climate is not self-contained.

If you find this double-issue to be an even handed treatment of the climate-change dichotomy, I will have failed. Indeed, it was my intention to select papers which cast doubt on the dominant paradigm of a people-driven-climate. I here set the scene by drawing on two from the legion of available examples of the solar-antipathy endemic among mainstream climate scientists.
For a mainstream assertion of the Sun’s irrelevance, I turn to Michael C. MacCracken1, the then President of the International Association of Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences. The Sun is evaluated in his chapter “Uncertainties Emphasized by the Special Interests”:

3. Twentieth century warming is primarily a recovery from the Little Ice Age and results largely from natural changes in solar output (or changes in cosmic rays, or solar field strength, or the lengths of sunspot cycles, or whatever curve one can construct) rather than the increase in greenhouse gas concentrations. Most of these claims are based on little more than correlations rather than on causal mechanisms supported by high quality, or even any quantitative, data.

1From Dr MacCracken’s presentation “Uncertainties: How little do we really understand?” at Rice University Science and Technology Conference on 1-2 November 2003.

And, in further trenchant condemnation,

A number of these results would require overturning all that science has learned about global and planetary energetics while failing to explain how the Sun possibly knows to initiate its unique changes at exactly the same time that human activities start having an influence .

The Chief of Science is the Royal Society of London; and it leads the Sun-freeclimate campaign from the front.

Back in 1801, the Astronomer Royal (Sir William Herschel) had already noted the Sun-climate connection. Indeed, he enjoys a more-fulsome inscription in Westminster Abbey than does his lying-in neighbour, Charles Darwin. But sadly, the Sun set connection-wise in 1892, when William Thomson (aka The Lord Kelvin, President of the Royal Society) announced2 that he had done the calculations, and was forced to conclude that the conjunction between events on the Sun and events on Earth could be nothing more than mere coincidence:

This result, it seems to me, is absolutely conclusive against the supposition that terrestrial magnetic storms are due to magnetic action of the Sun; or to any kind of dynamical action taking place within the Sun, or in connection with hurricanes in his atmosphere, or anywhere near the Sun outside. … [W]e may also be forced to conclude that the supposed connection between magnetic storms and sun-spots is unreal and that the seeming agreement between the periods has been mere coincidence.

Was this a scientific world-first – when Kelvin ranked calculations above observations?
The Royal Society has not yet resiled from that implausible dogma. As recently as 10 April 2007, the Society released its immodestly-titled “Man made climate change: the real science”, condescendingly sub-headed “CLIMATE CHANGE controversies – a simple guide”. This topical, and very influential, analysis adopts the ‘straw man’ debating technique; saying:

…the Society – as the UK’s national academy of science – responds here to six arguments that are currently in circulation by setting out, in simple terms, where the weight of scientific evidence lies.

By far the most fundamental of those straw-men is:

Argument 4: It’s all to do with the Sun – for example, there is a strong link between increased temperatures on Earth with the number of sunspots on the Sun.

A swingeing demolition follows; and sadly, I can here quote it but in part:

While there is evidence of a link between solar activity and some of the warming in the early 20th century, measurements from satellites show that there has been very little change in underlying solar activity in the last 30 years – there is even evidence of a detectable decline – and so this cannot account for the recent rises we have seen in global temperatures.

2Here quoting from Soon and Yaskell 2003, “The Maunder Minimum and the variable Sun-Earth connection”, World Scientific, 278 p. They give their source as: Kelvin, Lord W.T. Nature, No. 1205, Vol. 47, December 1, 1892.

Doubtless, many hands created the people-driven-climate behemoth. But my memory of those distant days accords with that of US Federal employee Dr James E.
Hansen, from NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Sciences in New York. His June 23, 2008 reminiscence “Twenty Years Later: Tipping Points Near on Global Warming” in The Huffington Post, says in part:

Today I testified to Congress about global warming, 20 years after my June 23 1988 testimony, which alerted the public that global warming was underway. Now, as then, frank assessment of scientific data yields conclusions that are shocking to the body politic. Now, as then, I can assert that these conclusions have a certainty exceeding 99 percent. The difference is that now we have used up all the slack in the schedule for actions needed to defuse the global warming time bomb. The next president and Congress must define a course next year in which the United States exerts leadership commensurate with our responsibility for the present dangerous situation. Otherwise it will become impractical to constrain atmospheric carbon dioxide, the greenhouse gas produced in burning fossil fuels, to a level that prevents the climate system from passing tipping points that lead to disastrous climate changes that spiral dynamically out of humanity’s control.

It is catastrophism such as that above, which spurred me to select papers supporting the case that many influences, other than people burning fossil fuels, are crucial to future weather and climate. Indeed, there may be sufficient knowledge already available to predict some natural trends – in direction and timing, albeit not in quantitative regional detail. Surely, it is too early for policy-makers to “pick winners” on a topic so vital to humanity as is climate-change.
The rock on which this double-volume is founded is The Sun’s role in regulating Earth’s climate dynamics by Richard Mackey. Indeed, his paper could well have adopted the title assigned to the entire issue – Natural drivers of weather and climate. Furthermore, spare a thought for the obliging and knowledgeable referee who provided a comprehensive and supportive peer-review for such a long, wide-ranging, and complex epistle. It is not practical for me to here encapsulate its contents in a few words; suffice it to say, it builds on the before-his-time insights of Rhodes Fairbridge half a century ago. Chauvinist that I am, let me point out that author, reviewer and Fairbridge are from the Southern Hemisphere.
Nevertheless, those from above the equator need not feel disenfranchised. Sunclimate linkage now confirmed, by Adriano Mazzarella, deals specifically with the Northern Hemisphere – because far more observations are available there. He recognises a series of anti-correlations, over the past century and more, between geomagnetic activity (externally-driven) and atmospheric circulation in the 35-55 0N zone, between zonal wind and Earth’s rotation rate, and between length-of-day and sea-surface temperature. He describes SST as “the true thermometer of the atmosphere-ocean system”. I asked this author to prepare a (slightly) dumbed-down version of the text he published earlier in 2008, so that people like me could understand it – while preserving all its Figures. For this reason, it is not presented herein as a refereed paper.
Sunspot numbers, and the lengths of solar cycles, were signally disrespected in quotations presented earlier in this Editorial. But no matter. The paper Solar Cycle 24: expectations and implications by David Archibald, if its predictions come to pass, will restore their climatic relevance. He uses the long-drawn-out tail of Solar Cycle
23, and correlation with another long cycle immediately preceding the Dalton Minimum (1800-1820), to predict an impending look-alike of that Little Ice Age cold period. Planners beware!
Now is the time to introduce the more-fearsome Maunder Minimum (conventionally 1645-1715), when it is said a third the population of Europe died of plague, famine or wars about food. Finnish author Timo Niroma in Solar behaviour, and its influence on Earth’s climate, curtails it slightly to 1645-1700. He is in broad agreement with Archibald about climate expectations in the decades ahead – but he divides his attention between now and the 1600s.
This is hardly surprising, in view of how Finland suffered3 then: I here quote: Temperatures during the “bad” decades of the seventeenth century (the worst occurring in the 1690s) may have fallen to an annual average of 0.9 0C below the norms for the warmer years 1920-1960. Cold winters and poor summers brought famine, killing off seeds and crops and affecting Scotland, France, and Finland especially in the fatal decade of the 1690s.
Timothy Ball warns us, in Climate Change: dangers of a singular approach and consideration of a sensible strategy, that cooling is likely to be worse than warming. In his support, I again invoke the Maunder Minimum. A painting by Abraham Hondius (1630-95), in the Museum of London, shows stranded ice-floes on the banks of the Thames in 1677. Judging from clambering figures, those floes were thicker than 17th Century man was tall. Below4 is a modern evocation of 1709 in France:

On 12 January the cold came down. In four days the Seine, all the rivers and the sea on the Atlantic coast were frozen solid. The frost lasted for two months, then there was a complete thaw; as soon as the snow which had hitherto afforded some protection to the land, melted away, the frost began again, as hard as ever. The winter wheat of course was killed, so were the fruit, olive and walnut trees and nearly all the vines; the rabbits froze in their burrows; the beasts of the field died like flies. The fate of the poor was terrible and the rich at Versailles were not to be envied …

Enough doom and gloom? Almost – but not quite. Can we predict the next Indian mega-famine? entitles Ian Wilson’s innovative look at a much-studied topic. By correlating past famines with “kinks” in the Sun’s irregular orbit around the centre-ofmass of the solar system, he can put an orbitally-related time to famines. An abrupt asymmetry in solar orbit is currently underway; and ominously, he finds a one-in–four chance of the next famine in about 2018-2020 (the last was in about 1900). His plots of solar orbit are not to be missed; and interestingly, he also has found a long-term correlation between solar asymmetry and Earth’s (climatically influential?) length-of-day variability. There is still much to learn, it seems.
Now is the time for a digression. I was at Adelaide University during the last decade of the half-century struggle between the then-dominant paradigm of

3Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie 1967, “Times of Feast, Times of Famine: A history of climate since the year 1000”, (translated from the French in 1971), The Noonday Press NY, 438 p. (see pp.312-13).
4Nancy Mitford 1966, “The Sun King”, Sphere Books, 256 p. (see p.222).

Hutton/Lyell Uniformitarianism, and Wegener’s theory of Continental Drift. If we students had admitted we preferred continents that drift, we may well have been failed. (Ironically, the overthrow of Flood Geology – all sediments were either pre-diluvian or ante-diluvian – by uniformitarianism, had itself been a giant step forward.) Scientists are herd-animals; they revere consensus, and are protective of the status quo. Here quoting noted geologist (and contributor to this volume) Cliff Ollier:


R.T. Chemberlin said geologists might well ask if theirs could still be regarded as a science when it is “possible for a theory like this to run wild” …

And:

Sir Harold Jeffreys disposed of continental drift as … “an explanation which explains nothing which we wish to have explained”.

Sadly, antipathy to new ideas is endemic in science. When John Maddox introduced peer-review to Nature, he found he had to exempt Fred Hoyle and Louis Leakey; because reviews of their papers were so trenchantly negative. Two of the authors I sought out for this issue suffered some (not all) negative reviews – to the point where higher authority has felt unable to grant them “Refereed” status. But, both papers survive – and both are interesting and thought-provoking.
The first of these “un-mainstream” works is by Oliver Manuel, entitled Earth’s heat source – the Sun. He asserts that the Standard Solar Model of a hydrogen-filled Sun cannot explain cycles of solar activity – a principal driver of Earth’s climate. Instead, he envisages that our Sun is the chemically-layered and iron-rich remnant of the
supernova which gave birth to our solar system. Discernible cycles arise on the Sun, because changes in solar inertial motion induce shifts in its heterogeneous internal structure. How plausible is this alternative to the SSM? I don’t know, of course. But my interest was piqued by the charts in Ian Wilson’s paper – showing abrupt asymmetries in the Sun’s irregular orbit. Surely, these would have a much bigger impact on a Sun with, say, an iron core than one which simply was a ball of hydrogen.

The other paper damned with faint praise was by Louis Hissink, entitled The Earth in an electric solar system. We may not have as long to wait for vindication of
Hissink’s championing of plasma, as might Manuel (above) for his objection to the Standard Solar Model. I here quote from an account5 of the Ninth International Conference on Substorms in Graz, Austria:

Geomagnetic substorms, responsible for creating brightly lit aurorae that can disrupt satellite communications and electric power grids, comprise a wealth of dynamic plasma processes. …


Meeting participants agreed that understanding will be further enhanced as new spaceborne and ground-based observational and computational capabilities evolve.

In his paper, Hissink quotes from a NASA press release at the Huntsville (Alabama)
Workshop6. Here is an extract from the Workshop (26-31 October 2008) Summary:

Complex processes govern magnetized plasma interactions between regions of differing magnetic fields. These boundary-layer interaction regions can be found at the Sun, at planetary magnetospheres, in the solar wind and in astrophysical plasmas. A variety of different processes … have been presented as mechanisms responsible for mass and energy transport across these boundaries, but the relative importance and interdependence of these process remain largely unresolved.

5R. Nakamura and W. Baumjohann 2008, “Tackling substorm problems: New observational and modelling
capabilities”, Eos v.89 no. 35, p. 324. (Conference 5-9 May 2008)
6″The physical processes for energy and plasma transport across magnetic boundaries”.

Plasma could be the Next Big Thing.

The paper by Adrian Kerton entitled Climate change and the Earth’s magnetic poles, a possible connection, notes a correlation between accelerating polar wander –
particularly for the North magnetic pole – over the past century, and a warming climate. Of course, correlation isn’t proof.
But there is at least a glimmer of a plausible underpinning for the observed correlation. Both magnetic poles have now moved out to sea. Furthermore, the observed auroral oval suggests that flux transfers from Sun to Earth enter the near- Earth environment near one or other magnetic pole. Is polar-wander yet another natural climate-related issue which should not be ignored?
A paper by Tom Quirk (one of his two), entitled The Australian temperature anomaly, 1910-2000, is of particular interest to me. I attended a lecture on 13 September 2007 by Dr Jim Peacock FRS from Australia’s CSIRO, while he served as Chief Scientist of Australia during the latter days of the Howard Government. Fortunately, this lecture – “The climate challenge”, at Royal Society of Victoria – was supported by a written abstract; otherwise, I may not have believed my ears. His abstract said:

The evolution of argument, discussion and data acquisition has established the reality of climate change, removing it from disbelief, debate, at least among rationally thinking people.

And later:

In the last 100 years the average surface temperature in Australia has increased by about one degree. Australia can expect average surface temperatures to rise by a further two to three degrees by the end of the century even if the world holds CO2 emissions. … We need urgent action to begin to reduce emissions and we need to prepare for the impact of the emission driven climate consequences that are already inevitable and with us whilst Australia attempts to reduce our footprint.

Happily, Quirk finds that much of that warming was associated with the Great Pacific Climate Shift – stemming from an abrupt reduction in upwelling of cold/deep water in the equatorial eastern Pacific in the mid 1970s. (This signal event appears unrelated to people burning fossil fuels; but instead, is related to an inflection-point in Earth’s ever-changing length-of-day – which, in turn, is related to an inflection-point in the change-of-radius of the Sun’s irregular orbit about the centre-of-mass of the solar system.)

Another ocean-related paper is Cooling of the global ocean since 2003 by Craig Loehle. He reports that up to 31% of the heat estimated to have been gained by the upper ocean (down to 900 metres) during 1993-2003, appears to have been lost in 2003-2008. Of interest is not just the trend he detects (which he warns may not be
real), but also a pronounced intra-annual cyclicity. This paper discusses a climatically important topic; and clearly, a longer run of good data is urgently needed.
The next several papers have at least some connection. Martin Cropp deduces, in his paper Earth-temperature/CO2-equilibrium prior to 1850, deviations from equilibrium in 150,000 years of Vostok ice-core records – between atmospheric CO2 concentration, and temperature. Martin Hertzberg builds on joint work with Prof. J.B. Stott (NZ), from as far back as 1994, in his paper Earth’s radiative equilibrium in the solar irradiance. I quote from his abstract:

Except for the influence of clouds on the albedo (ie. Earth’s reflectivity), no assumptions are needed regarding the detailed composition of the atmosphere in order to explain the observed small fluctuations in the 20th Century temperatures or the larger, longer-term, variations of Glacial coolings and Interglacial warmings.

Tom Quirk’s second paper, Sources and sinks of Carbon Dioxide, comes to the surprising, and perhaps important, conclusion that fossil-fuel-derived CO2 is mostly absorbed locally in its year of emission – implying that natural climatic variability is the main driver of increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations. David Douglass and John Christy present an analysis of very different method in Limits on CO2 climate forcing from recent temperature data. However, since the (ENSO-related) 1998 peak in the global atmospheric temperature anomaly, they also find only a small underlying positive trend that is consistent with CO2 climate-forcing.Cliff Ollier addresses a very different, but also topical, issue in Lysenkoism and global warming. This further quote from James Hansen (see more of it, above) sets the scene:

On June 23, 1988 I testified to a hearing, organized by Senator Tim Wirth, that the Earth had entered a long-term warming trend and that human-made greenhouse gasses almost surely were responsible. … CEOs of fossil energy companies know what they are doing and are aware of long-term consequences of continued business as usual. In my opinion, these CEOs should be tried for high crimes against humanity and nature. If their campaigns continue and “succeed” in confusing the public, I anticipate testifying against relevant CEOs in future public trials. His final words are particularly ominous. As Ollier tells us, the director of the Institute of Genetics at the USSR Academy of Science, Nikolai Vavilov, was a Mendelian theoretician of high-standing. But in1940, Vavilov was arrested; and after 11 months of interrogation, he and two colleagues were tried and sentenced to death. His sentence – only – was commuted; but he died in prison. Are we making too much of: these CEOs should be tried for high crimes against humanity and nature?

I certainly hope so.
When the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released its Third Assessment Report at Shanghai in January 2001, Sir John Houghton (head of IPCC, formerly with UK Met Office) stood at a lectern backed by the blow-up of Figure 1(b) in his Summary for Policymakers. It was a reconstruction of Northern Hemisphere surface temperature during the past 1000 years – comprising 900 years of gentle cooling, succeeded by a 100 years of abrupt warming. This infamous “hockey-stick” graph is anathema to palaeoclimatologists like me.
First, the Mediaeval Warm Period doesn’t appear. The MWP was a period of active Sun when Norse grain-growers colonised Greenland. Also, the fearsome North Sea was easily-enough crossed then, that stone-masons from Trondheim could build

Lincoln Cathedral – the first edifice to exceed in height the Great Pyramid of Cheops. Indeed, both intellectually and economically, the IPCC-abolished MWP transformed Europe.
Second, the subsequent series of Little Ice Age cold periods doesn’t appear either; and neither does the 300-year warming trend from the Maunder Minimum quiet Sun to the Modern Era hyper-active Sun of the 20th Century. Indeed, in FIGURE SPM-2 of the (Paris, February 2007) Summary for Policymakers of IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report, the only listed “Natural” Radiative Forcing Component (since 1750) is a minuscule increase of “Solar irradiance” of 0.12 Watts per square metre. In stark contrast, “Anthropogenic CO2” is awarded a forcing (aka warming) of 1.66 W/sq.m. – thirteen times as large!
Did IPCC, by writing the Maunder Minimum out of history, lose credibility among mainstream scientists? No – not if this7 dithyramb is any guide:

Since its assessment process began in 1990, each of the successive reports of (IPCC) has summarized the rapidly improving understanding of the science and strengthened the findings that human activities are having an increasing effect on the global climate and that the future will bring even more rapid change. The IPCC is not some patched together international committee, but a means of bringing together hundreds of the world’s best scientists as authors and thousands of reviewers to generate truly authoritative technical reviews of scientific understanding.

And,

While exceedingly time-consuming and intense, the process has, in a very real sense, worked miracles, producing documents that have been unanimously agreed to without dissent by all of the countries and all of the leading scientists serving as lead authors – and the agreement is not just about the main points and overall thrust, but with every word and phrase.

Finally, and with Pyongyang-like freedom from doubt,
If ever there was a process that should be viewed as providing authoritative results,
this was it.

But that “authoritative” process did not save the Maunder Minimum. Not all are convinced. In his paper Climate policy: Quo Vadis? a much-moresceptical view is adopted by Hans Labohm. He is also co-author of a book8 on this very topic. He tells us:


The IPCC is generally believed to be the single most authoritative body in the field of climate science; and its reports serve as scientific basis for climate policies of governments, which have profound implications for society. As such, the Panel occupies a quasi monopoly position. But, as its genealogy shows, it has been preconditioned by its mandate, in which ‘climate change’ equals man-made global warming…

And

Against this background, Europe should reconsider its position; (because) it is in grave danger of isolating itself from the rest of the world by its climate policy.

7Drawn from the “Background” section of Dr MacCracken’s Rice University presentation in 2003 (see
Footnote 1, above).
8Hans Labohm, Dick Thoenes and Simon Rozendaal 2004, “Man-made global warming: unravelling of
dogma”, Multi-science Publishing Co Ltd., 192 p.

Within the planning-horizon of governments, policy-makers are faced with mutually-exclusive hypotheses – warmer or cooler. We should know within a decade; but for now, the prudent course is monitor and analyse, but not commit to planning for just one of these two outcomes. Some papers in this issue present well-researched contrarian views as to what drives weather and climate. Others say it is premature to fight a threat which is as yet unestablished. I commend to you the papers herein, and thank all authors – and reviewers – for their hard work.

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91 thoughts on “Natural Drivers of Weather and Climate

  1. “Will it be warmer or cooler? Policy-makers need to know; because human well-being depends on them being correctly informed. Confusingly, there are two plausible – but mutually-exclusive – hypotheses as to the direction of climate-change within the planning horizon of governments.”

    The very point I’ve been trying to address for a year now.

    I contend elsewhere that the latitudinal position of the mid latitude jet streams (after accounting for seasonal changes) indicates whether the globe is warming or cooling overall.

    I propose that the latitudinal movement of those jets is the climate mechanism whereby the energy flow to space is accelerated or decelerated in order to maintain sea surface/air surface temperature equilibrium.

    The position of the jets represents the netted out product of all the other available variables in the climate system (in my humble opinion).

    The problem with science today is not the matter of protecting one’s novel ideas. Instead it is a matter of getting anyone to take them seriously.

  2. “people-driven-climate?” i’ve never heard this argument before, but it’s pretty easy to argue against. climate varied before humans were around – done.

    REPLY: You read too much into the statement. He’s referring to AGW. – Anthony

  3. This what I have felt too, there is no proof of a hydro ball!!!!!

    “un-mainstream” works is by Oliver Manuel, the Standard Solar Model of a hydrogen-filled Sun cannot explain cycles of solar activity Instead, our Sun is the chemically-layered and iron-rich remnant of the
    supernova which gave birth to our solar system. Discernible cycles arise on the Sun, because changes in solar inertial motion induce shifts in its heterogeneous internal structure. Ian Wilson’s paper – showing abrupt asymmetries in the Sun’s irregular orbit. Surely, these would have a much bigger impact on a Sun with, say, an iron core than one which simply was a ball of hydrogen.

    different metals at different speeds generate large amounts of magnetism.

  4. Stephen Wilde (10:31:19) :

    your right, of course no one cares :) lol
    I have been harping on FM verses AM! but again NO ONE CARES!!!!!

    God be with us all
    Tim

  5. Stephen Wilde –

    I have come to the same conclusion – jetstream is the pivotal factor, it controls the spatial disposition of cloud in relation oceanic heat stores which build up during the positive phases of the NAO and PDO – and I would suppose the 1980-2002 ocean warming period when both were positive has been added to by greenhouse gas emissions – but I doubt their effect is greater than 20% and may be as low as 10%.

    The jets were shifted south for almost a century in the Maunder Minimum – and as Prof Akasofu argues, we have been recovering from that time ever since.

    The question now is – who is monitoring the jets, storm tracks, and heat loss from these heat stores? Not the MetOffice in England, for sure – I asked them. How about NOAA? Anybody out there in the climate labs looking at this??? When the current heat store in the Atlantic is exhausted, as was the Pacific gyre at the end of 2006, Europe will experience similar depths of cold to the USA and Canada this last and the previous winter.

    But I disagree that anyone needs to know whether it will be warming or cooling in their particular region – what is required are policies of robustness to change in any direction – regionally things are not so readily predictable – we need urgent adaptation strategies – food supplies are very vulnerable, as are old people in uninsulated dwellings.

  6. I have no idea whether the sun is the answer. I don’t know whether man and his CO2 are having a substantial effect. I do know that the Global Warmmongers don’t know either and I am fed up that their incompetence or dishonesty precludes their admitting it.

  7. Never mind, Tim.

    I’ve put it in the public domain for good or ill in due course and that’s enough to be going on with. :)

  8. Does the sun’s distance from the barycenter also change the sun/earth distance? So can a change in barycentric location give virtually the same impact as a change in Earth’s orbital eccentricity?

    I believe that at maximum the barycenter will be something a little less than a million miles from the center of the sun. The earth’s eccentricity is low and the orbit only varies about 4 million miles between aphelion and perihelion. Is this change in distance from the sun significant? (not talking about the sunspot thing, more wondering how it changes the apparent eccentricity or our orbit around our primary heat source).

  9. It’s quite probable that people respond to the whims of the sun. What do you think the people did when the glaciers covered most of Europe? Do you think the people moved south and then the glaciers came? Or was it the opposite?

    Reminds me of this polar bear joke: It got warm in the Arctic and the brown bears moved north, Then it got cold in the Arctic and the brown bears turned white so they wouldn’t scare the seals. In the mean time, they learned to swim real good, and play on the ice bergs —- Then people came along and named them polar bears. People now say, the polar bears were there all along.

    I just saw a poll that said only about half of Americans knows the Earth went around the sun in a year. Not sure where the rest thought the Earth went.

  10. I’m just beginning my second read-through and have plucked two lines from the text >A & >B, with my thoughts following.

    >A.: Was this a scientific world-first – when Kelvin ranked calculations above observations?

    In the sense of favoring “calculations”, maybe, but not the first to disregard observations and state the “truth” as they saw it.

    >B.: The Royal Society has not yet resiled from that implausible dogma.

    Many of our institutions (government agencies, universities, public schools & teachers, magazines, newspapers, and so on), will suffer this same decline in reputation when the history of this sorry episode of scientific endeavor is known. (By “known”, I mean produced and presented in a manner that will engage a wide audience.)

    Back to reading>

  11. Hi Stephen

    I agree. In fact I had a conversation with someone on this very blog a few months ago about this subject. I post here the comment and would be interested in your thoughts. Two bad UK summers in a row were directly caused by the ‘wrong’ position of the jet stream.

    “A Wod (07:36:50) :
    Tony writes:
    I do not know of any scientific study looking for correlation of weather/climate to jet streams or any dominant weather system. A thread would be interesting.

    H Lamb’s book on Climate history and modern man, of which a part is here looks at how the Jet Stream has changed over England Lamb’s book. Page 54, figure 18,shows how westerly winds have changed over time over England since 1340

    http://books.google.com/books?id=0Nucx3udvnoC&dq=Lamb+climate+history&printsec=frontcover&source=bl&ots=5k7mMr3QN8&sig=dwRB-v7XRE-P5ZmbSV730bMt07Y&hl=es&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=3&ct=result

    See here
    http://www.islandnet.com/~see/weather/elements/jetstream1.htm
    for some really good info on the jet stream. It drives lots of weather patterns and when it shifts, so does the weather pattern. Large loops can fool you into thinking that weather drivers on the East Coast come in from the Northeast and are not a part of the energy coming from the West. The exception is this: As you travel closer to equatorial climates, one gets further away from the NH jet stream influence. Anyway, enjoy the site.”

    Tonyb

  12. Peter Taylor (11:02:10)

    Thanks, Peter.

    I have said elsewhere that no proper risk assessment in relation to possible cooling was carried out before the authorities decided that warming was the main threat so I agree with you that it is necessary to cover both possibilities as best we can.

    I also agree that human GHG’s would have an effect but if one accepts that the latitudinal movement of the jets performs the job of maintaining the sea surface/surface air temperature equilibrium then it follows that any such human warming would be neutralised by a tiny if permanent shift in the weather systems. The extra energy would be ejected to space instantly.

    The extra CO2 slows down the energy flow to space but the shift in the air circulation speeds it up again by the same amount.

    The speed of response of the air circulation and the hydrological cycle is such that any warming from extra human CO2 would be removed as fast as it arose and would not be available to help warm the oceans.

    If the oceans do not warm from human influences then the air cannot either.

  13. “A number of these results would require overturning all that science has learned about global and planetary energetics ….”

    I share with the author the fact that we both were undergraduate students when to espouse “Continental Drift” was virtually certain death for your geological career. This pompous type of condemnation of “Continental Drift” (read “plate tectonics” in modern terms) was uttered by the president of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) at their mid 1920s (1926?) meeting, to paraphrase:

    … If we were to accept this theory, we would have to consign to the waste basket all we have learned in geological science over the last hundred years….

    Well we had to wait another 50 years before we would consign much what we had learned to the waste basket. I apologize for not having a reference but for those connected to scientific libraries, it was a meeting of the AAPG to which Alfred Wegener was invited to debate his heretical theory. He declined, recognizing I’m sure that this was more like a lions’ den or synod of medieval bishops. I think the case history itself is worthwhile reading for every scientist, particularly those who may think that what happened to Galileo couldn’t happen in our enlightened world. Indeed, Hansen’s NKVD style prescription for dissent or “wrong-headedness” send a shiver down my spine:

    “I anticipate testifying against relevant CEOs in future public trials……………….. Nikolai Vavilov, was a Mendelian theoretician of high-standing. But in1940, Vavilov was arrested; and after 11 months of interrogation, he and two colleagues were tried and sentenced to death. His sentence – only – was commuted; but he died in prison. Are we making too much of: these CEOs should be tried for high crimes against humanity and nature?”

  14. TonyB (11:50:18)

    I’ve not yet seen any recognition of the real world themodynamic effects of a movement of mid latitude jet streams beyond ‘normal’ seasonal variability.

    Or any thermodynamic quantification of the global energy budget implications of expanding equatorial air masses which expand at the expense of polar air masses and vice versa.

    As far as I know there are no models reflecting such changes accurately because the data input is simply not available with current technology. The types of data that are required are the very categories of data that the IPCC admits it does not have,

  15. In the USA we had The Noble Experiment (aka, the 18th Amendment). That didn’t work out so well. Then the politicians realized they could repeal prohibition and allow a large taxable enterprise to develop. Not quite 100 years later we have another of these enlightened ideas about to become national (and global) policy. Again, the issue is someone wants to control what you do, how you do it, and make you pay for the privilege. They just won’t admit to a falsified theory nor to calling a tax – cap & trade – a tax.

    There is an issue of enlightened stewardship and there is an issue of raising funds to pay for useful things (think health care) but there is no science behind the “consensus” driving this topic. All should read Edward Blick’s “rant” for some background:
    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/EDBLICKRANT.pdf
    UN Infects Science with Cancer of Global Warming — Oct. 3, 2008

  16. To me, the AGW crowd’s studied effort to relegate the MWP to the memory hole has always been the element that is most revelatory of their true agenda. Even if we stipulate to their feebly reasoned proposition that CO2 is the primary driver of climate change and that humanity is solely responsible for increasing CO2 levels, none of the onerous and deleterious programs of carbon suppression that they demand can really be justified unless we are willing to simultaneously accept their implicit assumptions that the present climate is optimum, and warmer is never better, and in fact will be fatally catastrophic for all of life on the planet. The seemingly extraordinary lengths they are willing to go to to suppress any recognition or consideration of the MWP strongly suggests to me that they are driven far less by any concern for the future of humanity and much more by the lust for the power and control, both social and political that the successful demonization of carbon will grant them.
    That being said, while I find Mr. Foster’s article interesting, and somewhat persuasive, I think we are deluding ourselves if we choose to believe that logic and superior science are going to seriously deflect these people from there goals. If we are unable to translate this information beyond our insulated community and alert the wider populous to the future the alarmists have planned for them I can foresee two, equally distasteful scenarios developing. One where the socialist elites maintain their grip on power as liberty and prosperity follow a dwindling path down to Eliot’s predicted whimpering end. In the other, the broader populous at some point coming to realize how science and logic have been prostituted to scare them into servitude, arise to reject not only their elitist masters, but in a Luddite like rampage, all of science. I hope, for all our sakes, that my nightmares are the result of my personal preference for pepperoni pizza and habaneros, rather than any exceptional prescience on my part.

  17. : Anthony,
    At the top you have: Energy & Environment • Vol. 20, No. 1&2, 2009. Online now here and now in print. This seems to be a double issue of EE with only abstracts showing. Articles seem to cost $18 each and there are 19 parts. Or is it one price of $18 for the entire set? I could not be sure without going through the entire registration and order process.

  18. This site has taught me more about physics and climate and weather in the last six months than anything I’ve learnt in the last 60 years.
    Unfortunately it has also taught me that we can argue the case against AGW on grounds of bad science until we’re blue in the face.
    Friends, this is not about science. Hansen, Gore et al do not give a stuff about the SST or AMO or the PDO or La Ninas or El Ninos. Their objective, along with Greenpeace and Fiends of the Earth and their allies is to turn the clock back to a mythical idyllic age when everyone was in tune with nature and unless we can convince our electorates and their political lords and masters of just exactly how unpleasant such a state of affairs would be that is the road we will go down.
    They will fail eventually of course but the damage they will inflict on the poor of this planet (who will inevitably suffer far more than the effete middle-class intellectuals who espouse this insane cause) will be immense in the meantime.

  19. Gary Pearse (12:19:17) : This pompous type of condemnation of …
    A similar situation occurred with J Harlan Bretz and the explanation for the landscape of central and eastern Washington State. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Missoula_Floods)
    In both “continental drift” and the Missoula Floods the hang-up was the lack of an explanation of the force(s) that would produce the observations. Today, we seem to have plenty of drivers competing for the right to claim to be the “force”, including CO2. For me, CO2 has been shown to be of no particular importance, but I am interested in how all the other things get worked out.

  20. The oddest comment in the quotes of this piece is:

    “ … while failing to explain how the Sun possibly knows to initiate its unique changes at exactly the same time that human activities start having an influence.”(MacCracken)

    This person must have gotten his science degrees out of a Cracker Jack box. The sun has been puttering along for millions of years, so then, they take one miniscule stretch of years, apply their belief systems to it, ignore everything else, and go about making up elaborate computer models to justify their egotism. That’s not science!

    Okay, I’m done now! John

  21. As I have stated in other comments I have made on this site, I visit here and other climate/weather sites in order to learn. My interest was stimulated by the continued hysteria in the media about how catastrophe was about to overtake the human race.
    In just a few short months I have come to learn that there is no such thing as “scientific consensus”; that the relevant scientific fields are discovering more and more about what affects our planet’s climate/weather and that the degree of those effects is still open to discussion.
    Of one thing I am now completely convinced and that it is height of arrogance for mankind to presume that his miniscule (in comparison) release of CO2 has any effect whatsoever on the majestic wheel of this planet’s ever-changing climatic condition.
    It is frightening to consider that, in the light of a very recent decision by the Court of Appeals here in England, I could now be prosecuted for blasphemy by posting this statement. (Warmism is now legally a religion). I have spent most of today (Sunday) talking with two eminent lawyers who are both shocked at the probable (not possible) ramifications of this seemingly unimportant legal precedent. Both lawyers foresee a surge of actions being brought against journalists and other commentators who dare to oppose the Warmists in order to silence them.
    Freedom of Speech, anyone?

  22. “The scientific consensus invokes an autonomous Earth with a self-contained climate – stable and benign, until only now disturbed by people burning fossil fuels.” This has to be the stupidest statement by the AGW proponents. They must have a short memory or are selective in what they read in paleoclimate history. They completely and conveniently ignore the several ice ages our planet has experienced during the past million years and I can guarantee those episodes do not agree with “stable and benign…” There’s nothing benign about the ice ages since it causes mass starvation and death by a colder climate. There’s nothing benign when the northern hemisphere is buried in nearly a mile deep ice cap and civilization has to mass migrate to warmer regions of our planet or perish. CO2 global warming can’t even match the calamity the ice ages can cause.

  23. John F. Hultquist (12:47:58) :
    : Anthony,
    At the top you have: Energy & Environment • Vol. 20, No. 1&2, 2009. Online now here and now in print. This seems to be a double issue of EE with only abstracts showing. Articles seem to cost $18 each and there are 19 parts. Or is it one price of $18 for the entire set? I could not be sure without going through the entire registration and order process.

    Mr. Hultquist’s comment raises a point that I have also found to be an irritation. My interest here, while deep and sincere given the political implications of these topics, is purely avocational and the financial implications of trying to pursue in greater depth the many ideas raised can be onerous. The dead tree newspaper business is undergoing a severe contraction because of competition from the more accessible sources on the Internet. It seems to me, that the time is ripe, for the net to offer a challenge to the obsolete paradigm of scientific journals controlling what information is published. If an open access forum and archive for the publication of scientific papers and studies, some combination of wiki, youtube, MySpace, et al models, the opportunity it would provide for near instantaneous, and importantly crossdisciplinary criticism, would provide a much more potent impediment to the publication of pure balderdash than the peer review concept is in the current approach. In the past, many scientific breakthrough moments have occurred when the people involved had the opportunity to interact with others in seemingly unrelated fields and discovered that questions they were pursuing or data they were seeing suggested answers neither would likely have arrived at alone. Opening up the world of scientific publication would definitely present dangers, but the prospect of increasing the opportunity for more of these epiphanous encounters should offset some of the hazard. Anthony, you and many of the commenters here have much more experience of the difficulties of creating websites, even if on a much smaller scale than what I am suggesting, does anyone think this is possible or even desirable. I realize that many “scientists” more interested in the prestige of journal publication than in spreading knowledge would likely avoid such a forum, at least initially, but the increasing ease with which new internet media achieve viral status suggest that it might be worth the attempt.

    REPLY: I don’t know about the E&E charge structure, I was given the original manuscript, I did not get the article from E&E. – Anthony

  24. A note to Anthony, Charles the moderator and everyone else. I am the individual (bitterly clinging) formerly known as DaveM. I have decided to change my online moniker to protect the innocent! My name more accurately reflects my current state of mind…

    I should prepare a form response for this site that thanks the author and all those who have commented. I could save a lot of typing! (A challenge for my weary, scarred hands) Regardless, this article has been a very interesting read and it merits re-reading several times. Thank you.

    And Dave Wendt @ 12:40 23. Well put sir.

  25. Sam the Skeptic @13:00:18 :

    This site has taught me more about physics and climate and weather in the last six months than anything I’ve learnt in the last 60 years.

    Yes, it is good.

    Unfortunately it has also taught me that we can argue the case against AGW on grounds of bad science until we’re blue in the face. Friends, this is not about science. Hansen, Gore et al do not give a stuff about the SST or AMO or the PDO or La Ninas or El Ninos.

    You have it to a tee. However, do not despair. Only by hammering away at objective science can we defeat this political agenda. The Gorists are purveying their get-rich-quick-and-control-the-planet scheme under the auspices of science. This IS the battlefield.

  26. David Ball

    I think I am fair minded. I even defend warmists such as Joel and Mary who wander over here. Consequently I went to the original thread then the Al Gore one and read through all the 230 posts or so. Pamelas quote was directly under one of yours. They were seven minutes apart. You responded;

    “Pamela Grey, just wondering who your post regarding the 5th grader doing weather was aimed at. If it was me, I don’t believe I have done or said anything to draw your disrespect in such a manner. If it was not for me, then disregard. I have always enjoyed your posts as they seem to be very grounded and well thought out, so I was a bit taken aback.”

    IMHO I don’t think Papela was referring to your post at all, it was just juxtaposed to yours. Even if she was, it was a fairly innocous comment that I didn’t take as a dig at anyone-let alone a put down-it was just a remark.

    I don’t want to hijack this thread but Pamela seems a self deprecating poster with a good sense of humour and I don’t think any disrepect was intended even assuming the comment was aimed at you, which I don’t think it was when looked at in context. As you say we are all on the same ‘side’ and we need to direct our efforts at demolishing the science of the irrationalists, not fighting each other. Best regards

    TonyB

  27. The third paragraph of Bob Foster’s editorial uses the word “contrarians” to refer to us CAGW skeptics/deniers/resisters/whatever. I’ve seen the word contrarian used before, but never warmed to it until now for some reason. “Climate contrarian” is stronger than the wishy-washy (and obscure) “AGW skeptic.” Skeptic merely implies viewing askance–but our view is more oppositional than that. “Denier” is strong enough, but comes with baggage.

    “Climate curmudgeon” might be a good word term too. (Or heating heretic??)

  28. Stephen Wilde

    I agree with all you say. The jet stream is self evidently an important factor in determining weather. I think it all goes to illustrate that our knowledge of the various factors driving climate is at a very much lower level than we like to believe.

    Tonyb

  29. Stephen Brown said;

    “It is frightening to consider that, in the light of a very recent decision by the Court of Appeals here in England, I could now be prosecuted for blasphemy by posting this statement. (Warmism is now legally a religion). I have spent most of today (Sunday) talking with two eminent lawyers who are both shocked at the probable (not possible) ramifications of this seemingly unimportant legal precedent”

    As I live in the UK can you clarify what you mean by this statement. What court of appeals case are you referring to?

    tonyb

  30. Alan Cheetham (12:44:18) :

    “… the movement of the poles …”

    I theorize that the poles movements and periodic switching every 300K years (from changes in molten iron flow patterns may be influenced by solar/planetary gravitational “tugging”.

  31. Dave Wendt wrote:
    “I think we are deluding ourselves if we choose to believe that logic and superior science are going to seriously deflect these people from there goals.”

    A decidedly colder year or two would do the trick–and they may be on tap. Furthermore, cap-and-trade is “off the table” this year at the White House in favor of health care reform (because of the bad economy and the difficulty of getting two major measures through a congress in which the Republicans + some Democratic allies on the issue still have the ability to filibuster), according to a story I read yesterday on Bloomberg or Marketwatch.

  32. Dave Wendt (14:14:13) :
    REPLY: I don’t know about the E&E charge structure, I was given the original manuscript, I did not get the article from E&E. – Anthony

    Anthony
    In reviewing my comment, I was unclear that I meant no explicit criticism of E & E, their pricing is in line with most of the other journals I have attempted to access. But I’m troubled that in trying to access journal articles linked here and elsewhere, I’m often faced with the quandry of whether my curiousity merits doing mortal damage to a double sawbuck. Given that much of the work that generated these papers was publicly funded, I ask myself why the public must be asked to pay up again to review the resultant output. It it maybe, given the limited audience for most of this, that the price structure is completely justified to cover the publisher’s costs and profitability. Indeed, the single greatest bar I can see to providing the type of open access forum I suggested, would be successfully monetizing it to cover operating costs.

  33. I am also a geologist who qualified (BSc) at the end of the 60’s. Continental drift at Victoria University (NZ) was espoused – it helped that Harold Wellman was on the staff – 300km movement of the NZ Alpine fault in 2Myr, the magnetic striping of the sea floor. I avidly read the accounts of the Badlands, the Electron Mudflow and the counter arguments of their detractors – and the Establishment response to Wegener – heck, he was only a Meteorologist, what does HE know about Land Bridges et al.. As a student, I was not impressed by the failure to explain the Pleistocene Glaciation and the sequence of interglacials. Why did the 2km of ice over Europe melt only 15 000 yrs ago ? – let alone why it froze to begin with?. Were we in just a blip in a Glacial – big big question in the 1960’s and still unanswered.

    The warmists of today cling to their data as if it were the only evidence and become more and more strident in their effort to silence counter argument.

  34. John F. Hultquist (12:25:33) :

    “Again, the issue is someone wants to control what you do, how you do it, and make you pay for the privilege. They just won’t admit to a falsified theory nor to calling a tax – cap & trade – a tax. ”

    Correct. But don’t doubt the efficacy of sites such as this. By virtue of naming Cap N Trade a phony environmental tax meant to raise funds for a political agenda – it has been brought to bay. We apparently will NOT see cap n trade in 2009.

    http://tinyurl.com/c5jmpj

  35. Dave Wendt (14:14:1 ) It seems to me, that the time is ripe, for the net to offer a challenge to the obsolete paradigm of scientific journals …

    Some of this is happening anyway but the big issue is producing something that qualifies as a “publication or artistic work” within the context of faculty attempting to advance through the ranks. Some places have ranked journal types and require “one from column A” and “two from column B” sorts of things just to meet the minimum for advancing on the ladder of success. This might be obsolete but it is also codified and mentally entrenched.

    ~~~~~On a different issue: There are lots of acronyms around (SWAG ?) and I find this site handy: http://www.acronymfinder.com/

  36. John F. Hultquist (17:49:12) :
    Given the entrenched biases in favor of the current publication regime, it’s probable that the portal I envision would devolve into a port of last resort for those now most hindered, if not outright excluded, from getting their work published. On the other hand, this is not the only area of science where those having the most difficulty seeing their work published are also the ones doing some of the most interesting science. Unfortunately I lack the wherewithal, in either knowledge or finances, to attempt this project and if I could convince someone to try it, I’m not sure I wouldn’t be sending them on a fool’s errand.

  37. Tim L (10:42:28) :
    This what I have felt too, there is no proof of a hydro ball!!!!!
    […]different metals at different speeds generate large amounts of magnetism.

    Oliver Manual’s ideas are the purest quackery. All our data from helioseimology and Neutrino measurements indicate that, indeed, the Sun is the hydrogen ball we thought it was. Please, lets not start that discussion here. Barycentrism is bad enough. If you must revel with fellow believers the was a thread on the iron sun over at http://www.solarcycle24.com/

    crosspatch (11:17:32) :
    Does the sun’s distance from the barycenter also change the sun/earth distance? So can a change in barycentric location give virtually the same impact as a change in Earth’s orbital eccentricity?
    No it does not change the Sun-Earth distance one whit. We had a long discussion of that on this blog a while ago. Some people do not [will not?] understand reasoned logic, but may yield to cold, hard measurements. We find that both TSI and the F10.7 vary with the distance to the Sun. The observed variation is precisely that expected from the Sun-Earth distance if the barycenter was not here. From our earlier discussion I’ll cite two diagrams: http://www.leif.org/research/DavidA10.png that shows what the barycenter crowd predict should be the distance at various times of the year and therefore the resulting TSI. http://www.leif.org/research/DavidA11.png shows the actual observed TSI [black curve] versus the barycenter prediction [red dots]. Perhaps this can put the issue to rest.

  38. Leif Svalgaard (19:30:23) :
    No it does not change the Sun-Earth distance one whit. We had a long discussion of that on this blog a while ago. Some people do not [will not?] understand reasoned logic, but may yield to cold, hard measurements. We find that both TSI and the F10.7 vary with the distance to the Sun. The observed variation is precisely that expected from the Sun-Earth distance if the barycenter was not here. From our earlier discussion I’ll cite two diagrams: http://www.leif.org/research/DavidA10.png that shows what the barycenter crowd predict should be the distance at various times of the year and therefore the resulting TSI. http://www.leif.org/research/DavidA11.png shows the actual observed TSI [black curve] versus the barycenter prediction [red dots]. Perhaps this can put the issue to rest.
    In my limited exposure to the arguments concerning barycentricity I’ve never found the logic of the various proponents very compelling and your graphs strongly suggest that varying orbital distances caused by the Sun’s barycentric orbit aren’t a possible factor in the phenomena they think they’re observing. But since the Sun seems to be subject to so many cyclic patterns, I’m wondering if any have suggested a link to the barycentric orbit, or if you feel this is a question that has already been pursued to a dead end. I never like to presume that because I’ve decided someone is mostly wrong that I can safely assume that they’re entirely wrong, but I don’t want spend my limited time chasing questions that have limited prospects of providing useful information.

  39. The article states “there are two plausible – but mutually-exclusive hypotheses”, but what’s the evidence for that there be ONE dominant driver? Everybody seems to agree that the climate is driven by very complicated mechanisms, yet it is claimed that the recent warming
    is caused by one dominant driver. It sounds incredible, and the claim should require extraordinary proof. But all we hear is how plausible one of the hypotheses is and how much we should doubt the other. That discussion is wasted efforts if it turns out that the main premise is wrong: that there is this one driver that accounts for more than everything else added.

    What if, say, the human emissions at the current rate explain 10%, solar activity explains 10% of the recent warming, 50 other factors make up 75% while the remaining 5% are too numerous to count? Then science would be nowhere near being able to make predications about the climate decades ahead. I’m not sure science ever can adequately describe something as complex as this. And a breakdown into separate causes may be impossible, so my example is most likely nonsense anyway. If one factor accounts for 5% if everything else is the same, and another factor does the same, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the two accounts for 10% put together. It doesn’t work that way. Change one parameter, and the 50 others might behave differently.

  40. Dave Wendt (21:32:14) :
    “Perhaps this can put the issue to rest.”
    if you feel this is a question that has already been pursued to a dead end.

    I feel that this has gone beyond reason and not worth the trouble, but it is like discussing if the Earth is 6,000 years or 4,556,000,000 years old. That debate will never end either. The arguments for are of the same type of those that prevailed for 2000 years as to the laws of motion: “of course a heavy stone falls to the ground faster than a small pebble”.

  41. Leif,

    The debate will always occur when logic overides empiricism, when the practioners of the Deductive method try, by loudness, to shout their critics down.

  42. In response to Leif Svalgaard (19:30:23) and Dave Wendt (21:32:14) (regarding sun/barycentre/earth)

    The image to which Lief links is Figure 10 from:
    http://nzclimatescience.net/images/PDFs/alexander2707.pdf

    The error in Figure 10 has been acknowledged by the authors – see the details of the entry for “16 June. Australia” at:
    http://nzclimatescience.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=80&Itemid=1

    But that is just one part of a very complex story. Dave, if you decide to investigate the claims that have been made, I would advise you to expect a rough ride.

    Leif (or anyone else), if you can point towards the earlier thread(s) on this topic, I will appreciate it.

  43. With all due respect Dr. Svalgaard, as one who has not seen much at all about the subject of “Barycentricity” I nevertheless find it a fascinating read. I would second Paul Vauhan’s request for links to previous discussions on the topic. Far be it for me to request that you waste your truly valuable time, but I would count myself among the vast unwashed that have opened their eyes to the chicanery prevalent in the field of climate science, and have found that I really now need to “see it before I believe it”. Granted, I have a grand total of zero peer reviewed papers on the subject of climate science, but I am respected in my field (mechanical repair of rather sophisticated machinery) and have both instructed and written articles to trade publications and have had accepted new guidelines suggested by me for repair or design by manufacturers. That I suppose gives me what might be an weak equivalent to having been “peer reviewed”. To the point; I have not gotten to where I am in my trade by blindly following what others claim to be the only path; even when the path has been blazed by very talented and capable individuals very much like yourself sir. Regardless of the outcome, for me the journey of learning is often enlightening in some respect, and who knows, perhaps some other concept might be borne of such study? Even though it may be the same as pushing rocks up a hill only to have them roll down the other side. (Forgive me for preaching to the choir)

    I must restate however that I fully appreciate your frustration at what is undoubtedly much like an annoyingly broken record for you. I place a great deal of faith in the words you speak; I know they come from a respected and clearly knowledgeable source. I am willing to accept any caveats you might attach to any links you or others might provide. I would, though, be most interested in those articles you would deem worthy of a read.

    In short; I guess I just like to read, learn, and make up my own mind. You (among a few others here) have that rare gift of being able to impart knowledge in such a fashion as to allow folks to do just that.

    Thank you.

  44. Apologies for the poor grammar/punctuation in my previous post. It’s early here, and I should never write anything without first having imbibed some sort of stimulant!

  45. TonyB, thank you for taking the time to look through all those posts. I appreciate it. You may be right about it being coincidental, although Pamela never responded to the inquiry about who it was aimed at. It would be nice to hear from her on the subject, but I will pursue it no further. I am feeling that posting on this blog is a lot like “preaching to the choir”. I appreciate Leif’s neutrality, which is important from a scientific viewpoint, however we are dealing with a world that is moving forward and policies have to be made and implemented. I think it is crucial that the wrong policies not be put in place based on poor science and I feel that message is not getting “out there”. Human life spans are very short, and I intend to make the most of my time. Even Leonardo ( Da Vinci not Dicaprio ) said in his final days ” I have wasted my years” , and we are all familiar with his contribution. I am not equating myself to DaVinci, but to the desire to move myself and hopefully others as well into what I feel could/should be a very bright future. Once again, thank you for your time, as I am certain it is valuable, Cheers,……………………. Dave

  46. David Ball

    As you saying posting on this blog can sometimes be like preaching to the choir, which is why I try to be civil to Mary, Joel, Foinavon and others, who do not strike me as activists at any costs, but as people who believe the ‘science’ no matter how misguided I may feel it to be.

    Tonyb

  47. Louis Hissink (01:16:30) :
    The debate will always occur when logic overides empiricism, when the practioners of the Deductive method try, by loudness, to shout their critics down.
    This is very true. The shouts from the planetary crowd that deduces solar activity [and issues dire warnings about Hell freezing over] from precise astrological calculations can be deafening at times such as to override what empirical science has shown us.

    INGSOC (05:20:05) :
    that I really now need to “see it before I believe it”.
    The situation today can perhaps be covered by Yogi Berra’s immortal words: “If I hadn’t believed it, I wouldn’t have seen it”.

    I am willing to accept any caveats you might attach to any links you or others might provide. I would, though, be most interested in those articles you would deem worthy of a read.
    I’m afraid that I cannot recommend any [but assume that we’ll be flooded by links from others]. Some ‘negative’ links:
    http://www.leif.org/research/Rise-and-Fall.pdf
    http://www.leif.org/research/jagerversteegh-20063.pdf

    David Ball (06:34:44) :
    I think it is crucial that the wrong policies not be put in place based on poor science
    some of the skeptical ‘movement’ is based on dismal science or pseudo-science as several posting in this [and almost any other thread]. We should not combat the awful ‘science’ of AGW with even worse.

  48. John F. Hultquist (13:35:22) :

    The oddest comment in the quotes of this piece is:

    “ … while failing to explain how the Sun possibly knows to initiate its unique changes at exactly the same time that human activities start having an influence.”(MacCracken)

    This person must have gotten his science degrees out of a Cracker Jack box.

    Yes, that one stopped me in my tracks, too, as being nearly indecipherable if one tries to make any scientific sense out of it. But, turning it back on MacCracken himself, my interpretation so far is that MacCracken seems to think that burning enough fossil fuel magically stabilizes or freezes in place everything else in the Universe. Hooray, suddenly “we” not only know everything there is to know, “we” rule!

    Of course, I guess one could simply call MacCracken’s argument “begging the question” and have done with it. That’s all AGW “science” is, imo, a process wherein everything is designed to “prove” what has already been assumed as true.

    The fact that AGW “science” does not try in any significant way to disprove its own hypotheses, or at least meaningfully deal with contrary evidence, is telling as to the nature of its “science”, not to mention its apparently obsessive desire to control the World as its main priority.

  49. Sam the Skeptic (13:00:18) :
    Friends, this is not about science. Hansen, Gore et al do not give a stuff about the SST or AMO or the PDO or La Ninas or El Ninos. Their objective, along with Greenpeace and Fiends of the Earth and their allies is to turn the clock back to a mythical idyllic age

    Aptly renamed!

  50. INGSOC (05:20:05)
    “…as one who has not seen much at all about the subject of “Barycentricity” I nevertheless find it a fascinating read.”

    As I say, if you go down this path expect a rough ride. You will have to wade through mine fields of distortion, much of it bitterly partisan & well-camouflaged to the unsuspecting eye.

    Most camps currently exploring the topic have been influenced by T. Landscheidt & I. Charvatova:
    http://bourabai.narod.ru/landscheidt/publications.htm
    http://www.ig.cas.cz/en/structure/departments/geoelectricity/staff/index.php?action=section&section_title=Publications&pageaction=element_call&id=fafb83a83de5db9e264b53e4424fc254enpersonalPages1

    There is a site devoted to related discussion, but I will caution you that it is not hard to find a number of false claims on that site:
    http://landscheidt.auditblogs.com/

    I advocate that all people do the calculations for themselves – as an educational exercise – for the following reasons:
    1. It helps one develop intuition first-hand about acoustic (i.e. wave interaction) theory.
    2. It will cause one to get beyond thinking only linearly.
    3. It can revolutionize your view of spectral analysis of time series. (You may never look at the spikes on power spectrum plots the same way again.)

    Finally – for a recent twist that has entered the discussion, see the works of NS Sidorenkov – for example:
    http://images.astronet.ru/pubd/2008/09/28/0001230882/425-439.pdf

  51. INGSOC (05:20:05)
    “…as one who has not seen much at all about the subject of “Barycentricity” I nevertheless find it a fascinating read.”

    As I say, if you go down this path expect a rough ride. You will have to wade through mine fields of distortion, much of it bitterly partisan & well-camouflaged to the unsuspecting eye.

    Most camps currently exploring the topic have been influenced by T. Landscheidt & I. Charvatova:
    http://bourabai.narod.ru/landscheidt/publications.htm
    http://www.ig.cas.cz/en/structure/departments/geoelectricity/staff/index.php?action=section&section_title=Publications&pageaction=element_call&id=fafb83a83de5db9e264b53e4424fc254enpersonalPages1

    There is a site devoted to related discussion, but I will caution you that it is not hard to find a number of false claims on that site:
    http://landscheidt.auditblogs.com/

    I advocate that all people do the calculations for themselves – as an educational exercise – for the following reasons:
    1. It helps one develop intuition first-hand about acoustic (i.e. wave interaction) theory.
    2. It will cause one to get beyond thinking only linearly.
    3. It can revolutionize your view of spectral analysis of time series. (You may never look at the spikes on power spectrum plots the same way again.)

    Finally – for a recent twist that has entered the discussion, see the works of NS Sidorenkov – for example:
    http://images.astronet.ru/pubd/2008/09/28/0001230882/425-439.pdf

  52. TonyB,
    I apologise, it was not a Court of Appeal ruling. It was an employment tribunal ruling, which, if you follow English Law, is just as compelling as an Appeal Court precedent.

    “Tim Nicholson’s commitment to green causes was enshrined in law by an employment tribunal as a “philosophical belief” under the Employment Equality (Religion and Belief) Regulations.

    The landmark ruling could now pave the way for hundreds more discrimination claims against companies who have ridden roughshod over employees’ support for climate change. “

  53. The global cooling we observe, both as a result of proper measurements and glacier retreat, indicates that the issue is lower humidity in the atmosphere, not global warming.

    The most likely source of lower humidity is CO2, which causes lower temperatures and thus lower humidity (the reason a can of soda is cold is because it contains carbonation, namely CO2 in a dissolved state.)

    How do we make otherwise intelligent people understand that the world is cooling as a result of CO2? How do we make them visualize that the problem is dryness caused by lower humidity?

    I wish the media in general were as enlightened as this site! I wish the academy of sciences were *replaced* by people who really know their stuff! But no, entrenched interests make sure you don’t get to be nominated to the American Academy of Sciences unless you support the obvious myth of Global Warming!

    Please keep at it, fellows. The more of us bring up these issues, the more likely it is that so-called scientists (especially the ultra liberals who are nothing more than useful idiots in the hands of the Nobel committee and the UN) will come to their senses and admit that they are all in this hoax of global warming just for the money (your tax dollars!)

    Reply: This was approved by someone else, but I am done with this troll or very sad poster. Other moderators take note. ~ charles the moderator.

  54. “”” Tim L (10:42:28) :

    This what I have felt too, there is no proof of a hydro ball!!!!!

    “un-mainstream” works is by Oliver Manuel, the Standard Solar Model of a hydrogen-filled Sun cannot explain cycles of solar activity Instead, our Sun is the chemically-layered and iron-rich remnant of the
    supernova which gave birth to our solar system. Discernible cycles arise on the Sun, because changes in solar inertial motion induce shifts in its heterogeneous internal structure. Ian Wilson’s paper – showing abrupt asymmetries in the Sun’s irregular orbit. Surely, these would have a much bigger impact on a Sun with, say, an iron core than one which simply was a ball of hydrogen.

    different metals at different speeds generate large amounts of magnetism. “””

    Well you don’t need any metals to get magnetism; although I have heard it said that Hydrogen sometimes behaves as if it were a metal (whatever that means). At least it has an electrode potential just as real metal electrodes have.

    But the sun’s surface layers are presumably plasmas, so basically a mush of protons and electrons circulating around, which gives circulating electric currents, and hence magnetic fields. I don’t know that I have ever read that the sun is Ferro-magnetic; but that doesn’t mean it isn’t; only that I have never seen or heard of that.

  55. “”” Domingo Tavella (15:16:39) :

    The global cooling we observe, both as a result of proper measurements and glacier retreat, indicates that the issue is lower humidity in the atmosphere, not global warming.

    The most likely source of lower humidity is CO2, which causes lower temperatures and thus lower humidity (the reason a can of soda is cold is because it contains carbonation, namely CO2 in a dissolved state.) “””

    What is your mechanism for CO2 causing cooling, either by being in solution in water, or present in the atmosphere.

    The standard; and even non-standard theses about CO2 in the atmosphere is that individual CO2 molecules capture individual infra-red photons of about 15 micron wavelength, ( 0.083eV) in a resonant absorption molceular vibrational mode, and subsequently transfer some of that energy to ordinary atmosphere molecules (N2, O2, Ar) during thermal collision processes. In anybody’s book, that is a heating process.

    So what is your CO2 cooling process; since CO2 absorbs very little incoming solar spectrum energy, having very little absorption below 1.9 microns wavelength.

    And if dissolving CO2 in water actually cooled the water, then that would result in further CO2 dissolving, since the solubility is greater at lower temperatures.

    I’ve never actually observed soda drinks to be colder than non-soda drinks like say Gatorade; and the temperature depends mostly on where The refrigerator temperature is set.

    George

    Reply: George, please don’t feed the troll. Someone else let him slip this by as we have multiple moderators, but Domingo’s theories/opinions/fantasies on C02, AIDS, Prayer, or whatever have no place on this site ~ charles the moderator.

  56. Guess this is a good a place as any to ask this question.

    Does the atmosphere expand and contract around the Earth as it heats/cools? Is there a way to measure that?

  57. [snip]

    Reply: Seriously dude, just go away. Further posts like that will simply be deleted. ~ charles the moderator.

  58. Ohioholic (16:05:29) :
    Does the atmosphere expand and contract around the Earth as it heats/cools? Is there a way to measure that?
    yes it does. and yes it can be and is measured by many means. The upper atmosphere [60 miles up and more] expands and contracts a lot. This has very little effect on what happens below.

  59. Leif Svalgaard (16:39:18) :

    This has very little effect on what happens below.

    I imagine you tire of the same old theme, but how does it not have an effect? It seems that any thing striking closer to the surface would penetrate more. Is it a small fluctuation, or does it have something to do with density?

  60. Ok, Charles the moderator, it appears you are not willing to engage in serious scientific argument.

    You are just like the mainstream liberal elite, all books and no NASCAR. And to think that Sarah Palin was considering you for Scientific Advisor to the White House when she gets elected next time.

    Reply: I wasn’t willing to relocate ~ charles the moderator

  61. Ohioholic (16:52:49) :
    It seems that any thing striking closer to the surface would penetrate more. Is it a small fluctuation, or does it have something to do with density?
    The thing still has to penetrate the same amount of air, no matter how thick or thin it is.
    The fluctuation 60 miles and above is very large, but the atmosphere up there is a million times thinner [less dense] than at the surface.

  62. Paul Vaughan (01:56:08) :

    Leif (or anyone else), if you can point towards the earlier thread(s) on this topic, I will appreciate it.

    INGSOC (05:20:05) :

    With all due respect Dr. Svalgaard, as one who has not seen much at all about the subject of “Barycentricity” I nevertheless find it a fascinating read. I would second Paul Vauhan’s request for links to previous discussions on the topic.

    I was involved in some of the earlier barycenter threads too, and less so in later threads. Looks like the best links I find with Google are:

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/06/02/livingston-and-penn-paper-sunspots-may-vanish-by-2015/
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/06/28/astronomical-society-of-australia-publishes-new-paper-warning-of-solar-quieting-and-global-cooling/
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/09/04/even-doubling-or-tripling-the-amount-of-co2-will-have-little-impact-on-temps/
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/10/05/nasa-moves-the-goalposts-on-solar-cycle-24-again/

    The first link’s main topic is more important than barycenters and should be read by everyone.

    The second link mentions barycenter above the comments and has the biggest discussion.

    The third link has the “Morlet wavelet transform of smoothed sunspot numbers (SSN)” and is well worth a visit for that.

    The thing I don’t like about barycenters is I see them as a mathematical convenience that people have given gravitational fields to. (E.g. comments about orbiting around the barycenter.) They have no field, and they really fall down when people try to show tidal forces due to the barycenters. Only mass has a gravitational field, and that’s what you need to use for looking at tidal effects.

    The fourth link has a good note and link from Leif about that:
    Leif Svalgaard (12:42:00) :

    jonk (11:25:38) :
    How have the planet induced tides been calculated?

    Recycling one of my answerss at ClimateAudit:
    “instead of me going through a long explanation, I’ll just refer to a good one at http://mb-soft.com/public/tides.html
    Working through the math one gets that the tides by the Moon on the Earth is 367 mm high [mm = millimeter = 1/25.4th of an inch]. Inserting values for the Sun and Jupiter one gets a tide 0.47 mm high. Put all the other planets where you want, their individual times will be less that this. Venus’ is almost as high as Jupiter’s. All together, the tidal effects are of the order of 1 mm. Compare this to the convective overturning of the photosphere in Texas-sized granules moving at 1-2 km/sec [that is 1000,000-2000,000 mm/sec] and you might be able to see that planetary tidal effects can be ignored. Of course, there are always people that have problems with numbers, so, think of a large truck running over an ant at 100 miles/hour. The effect of the ant on the trajectory of the truck is relatively much larger than the tidal influence of the planets on the matter of the Sun. This much was known to Isaac Newton in the 17th Century. BTW, the tides by Jupiter on the Earth is 1/500 of a millimeter [at closest approach]

  63. The article above the comments section states:

    “A paper by Tom Quirk (one of his two), entitled The Australian temperature anomaly, 1910-2000, is of particular interest to me.” … “Happily, Quirk finds that much of that warming was associated with the Great Pacific Climate Shift – stemming from an abrupt reduction in upwelling of cold/deep water in the equatorial eastern Pacific in the mid 1970s. (This signal event appears unrelated to people burning fossil fuels; but instead, is related to an inflection-point in Earth’s ever-changing length-of-day – which, in turn, is related to an inflection-point in the change-of-radius of the Sun’s irregular orbit about the centre-of-mass of the solar system.)”

    I managed to find Quirk’s article:
    http://www.lavoisier.com.au/articles/greenhouse-science/temperature-data/Quirkaustemp.pdf

    Neither length of day (LOD) nor the sun’s orbit of the solar system barycentre are addressed in the article. I am wondering if anyone can/will provide links to support the statements after the semi-colon in the brackets in the quote. I am familiar with recent research in that area, but I am curious to know specifically which articles/presentations most directly influenced the claim. Thank you.

  64. Leif Svalgaard (17:18:24) :

    The thing still has to penetrate the same amount of air, no matter how thick or thin it is.
    The fluctuation 60 miles and above is very large, but the atmosphere up there is a million times thinner [less dense] than at the surface.

    Ok, I get that. We don’t actually lose any atmosphere to space then?

  65. Ohioholic (17:55:16) :
    Ok, I get that. We don’t actually lose any atmosphere to space then?
    Basically correct. We do lose a very, very small amount of the very lightest elements and of heavier ions sucked up from the ionosphere, but we also gain a very. very small amount from space. Over 4 billion years the atmosphere been there without much loss to space. Other planets have lost parts of their atmosphere, e.g. Mars.

  66. Once again I find myself seconding Paul’s comment! Many thanks for the links. They should keep me up until the wee hours as my math has taken the same course as my chest muscles. I will save Dr. Svalgaards “negative” links for afters… ;-)

    A most fascinating topic. Thank you.

  67. On June 23, 1988 I testified to a hearing, organized by Senator Tim Wirth, that the Earth had entered a long-term warming trend and that human-made greenhouse . As Ollier tells us, the director of the Institute of Genetics at the USSR Academy of Science, Nikolai Vavilov, was a Mendelian theoretician of high-standing. But in1940, Vavilov was arrested; and after 11 months of interrogation, he and two colleagues were tried and sentenced to death. His sentence – only – was commuted; but he died in prison. Are we making too much of: these CEOs should be tried for high crimes against humanity and nature?

    Lysenkoism is a metaphor or the suppression of alternative or contrarian hypothesis.

    Nikolai Bezroukov writes an excellent dissertion on this subject for the UN Sustainable Development Networking Programme

    “The main point of this paper is that Lysenkoism is not only about intellectual pogrom, destruction of real science by pseudoscience committed in the name of a particular political agenda and more or less openly supported by the ruling party/government officials. It is also (and probably more important) a self-sustainable cult-like system of distortions, omissions, and lies that are designed to support faulty or fraudulent research of the selected “politically correct” pseudo-scientists. In this sense it’s closely related to cargocult phenomenon that is better known in the Western hemisphere as well as science distortions that are associated with the military-industrial complex.

    The term “Lysenkoism” denote a very dangerous phenomenon: an effort to suppress and/or outlaw a field of research or opinions when they conflict with a dominant political agenda. the main emphasis in Lysenkoism is devoted on the total control of scientific press and media in general and ruthless elimination of even slightest dissent in press. It was named after Academician Trofim Lysenko who pioneered the use a totalitarian state to suppress all research in genetics for almost three decades(1935-1965). This can be considered an incredible achievement in the age of mass newspapers and radio.

    All-in-all Lysenkoism was probably the most successful and horrifying reincarnation of middle-age inquisition practice, but instead of Christianity “communist religion” was used as a hammer to crush opposition (communism can be considered as a unique flavor of Christianity; many prominent communist viewed it as a religious idea.).

    The Lysenkoism is about creation of cult-style scientific establishment that has been hostile to scientific progress and has nothing to do with the scientific method — it wanted to prosper by serving as a political force. This role of the cult-style “scientific establishment” in modern science is probably the newest social phenomenon closely connected with Lysenkoism. This system includes three major components
    :
    Control of scientific or techno press.
    Control of scientific appointments.
    Control of the education system.

    This is a well used practice at NASA and has some interesting historical precedents eg Tommy Gold

    As an interesting aside the Vavilov seed collection tells us that biodiversity is not uniform.

    http://www.ecobooks.com/authors/vavilov.htm

  68. Leif Svalgaard (18:43:46) :

    As interesting as all this science is, I may have picked the wrong major.

    Is there any relationship between the sun’s size fluctuation to our atmosphere’s?

  69. Paul Vaughan (17:51:22) :

    Re: “The Great Pacific Climate Shift – stemming from an abrupt reduction in upwelling of cold/deep water in the equatorial eastern Pacific in the mid 1970s.”

    The prior references to this that I’ve heard were from Joe D’Aleo, and he was referring to the Pacific Decadal Oscillation. It flipped to a warm mode around 1977, and flipped back to a cool mode a couple years ago. It’s not quite clear what triggers the flips, but flips occur every 30 years or so.

    This, plus the recovery from the Little Ice Age, is what’s behind
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/03/20/dr-syun-akasofu-on-ipccs-forecast-accuracy/

  70. Hi all,

    A paper by Tom Quirk (one of his two), entitled The Australian temperature anomaly, 1910-2000, is of particular interest to me.” …

    Actually it is the other paper which I find of particular interest (especially since I spend some time with Ferdinand discussing this issue without a conclusive result so far):
    http://climaterealists.com/attachments/database/A%20Clean%20Demonstration%20of%20Carbon%2013%20Isotope%20Depletion__0__0__1236440812.pdf

    Can anyone comment on this “irrefutible evidence”, that the CO2-raise cannot be manmade? Are there any followup studies or/and a published paper on it? How does the data after 2003 looks like?
    Thanks for any comment its a big puzle for me since a long time!
    __
    All the best regards
    LoN

  71. In response to Ric Werme (19:52:19)

    Clarification: I am requesting a link to the paper/presentation that supports this claim, which appears in the article that precedes this discussion:

    “…but instead, is related to an inflection-point in Earth’s ever-changing length-of-day – which, in turn, is related to an inflection-point in the change-of-radius of the Sun’s irregular orbit about the centre-of-mass of the solar system.”

    I am curious to know specifically which article(s)/presentation(s) most influenced this claim.

  72. Ohioholic (19:28:02) :
    Is there any relationship between the sun’s size fluctuation to our atmosphere’s?
    Not that has been established. I’m sure you can find claims that link the two, as well as claims for just about anything under the Sun.

  73. Many thanks Bob Foster for a very informative piece. The first time I’ve read someone take on the Royal Society.

    Over twenty years in publishing taught me that “Peer Reviewed” is just a way for publishers to cover themselves and protect the profits of a journal and it’s imprint.

  74. “The scientific consensus invokes an autonomous Earth with a self-contained climate – stable and benign…”

    No, it doesn’t.

    “Earth can be treated as if it were travelling in an empty Universe.”

    What self-respecting climatologist EVER made a statement like that? What kind of literature does this guy read?

    “factors external to our planet – some identified and, doubtless, some not – powerfully influence a climate that has always varied. ”

    And this is news to who? This view is certainly not the exclusive domain of self-styled-skeptics – it has been known for decades by all climatologists and is not a point of contention. Bob would certainly be getting a sore back by now erecting all these arguments if they weren’t made of straw.

  75. Mark N,
    FYI, you might not be aware of this but the Royal Society have acted like
    the crowd at Galileo’s Experiment at the Leaning Tower of Pisa in not
    believing their own eyes. The full article is here.
    http://www.rense.com/general42/genius.htm

    Briefly. Professor Eric Laithwaite was a highly respected electrical
    engineer who invented the linear motor. He gave a lecture at the Royal
    Society where he showed how he could, without effort, raise a 50 lb spinning
    gyroscope above his head on the end of a long handle. One end of the handle
    was on the floor.

    ” There was to be no Fellowship of the Royal Society, no gold medal, no
    ‘Arise, Sir Eric’. And, for the first time in two hundred years, there was
    to be no published ‘proceedings’ recording Laithwaite’s astonishing lecture.
    In an unprecedented act of academic Stalinism, the Royal Institution simply
    banished the memory of Professor Laithwaite, his gyroscopes that became
    lighter, his lecture, even his existence. Newton’s Laws were restored to their sacrosanct position on the altar of science. Laithwaite was a non-person, and all was right with the world once more.”

    I’m not sure about the copyright of my humble paper in Energy and Environment showing the correlation of drift of the magnetic poles and climate change but am happy to answer any questions via my website at http://www.akk.me.uk

    Peer review – before I got published in E&E I was peer reviewed by one journal who invited me to resubmit with some changes, but the editor changed to someone who seemed pro carbon and he refused to send it out for peer review. As an ‘amateur scientist’ I had lot of help from distinguished scientists before I submitted my paper, especially Prof. Jan Veizer who helped me considerably with the drafting of the paper to appeal to the scientific community. I do not know who peer reviewed my paper for Energy and Environment.

  76. Leif said;” some of the skeptical ‘movement’ is based on dismal science or pseudo-science as several posting in this [and almost any other thread]. We should not combat the awful ’science’ of AGW with even worse.” – I could not agree more, yet policies ARE being put in place using “poor science”. I have said before, the truth is we have no mechanism (as yet), but to let policies based on Co2 as the “driver” be implemented is not good. It is crucial to not “sit on the fence” trying to figure out what is going on in climate as these guys ( Hansen, Gore, Soros, Strong, ad naseum, ..) are pushing for policies while we battle it out on blogs about what is the driver. From a scientific standpoint you are 100% correct !! Unfortunately, the government is moving forward despite the fact that not all the science ( behind so-called “climate change”)has been established. Does this sit well with you? The general public has no idea what is going on thanks to a proliferation of poor science reporting in the media. As much as I wish there were no politics involved, the reality is, ….

  77. David Ball (07:48:13) :
    From a scientific standpoint you are 100% correct !! Unfortunately, the government is moving forward despite the fact that not all the science ( behind so-called “climate change”)has been established. Does this sit well with you?

    A people have the government they elect and deserve.

    The general public has no idea what is going on thanks to a proliferation of poor science reporting in the media. As much as I wish there were no politics involved, the reality is, ….

    I’m not sure bombarding the general public with barycenter theories or electrical iron suns will turn the tide. A general reader coming to this site and seeing some of the stuff peddled here might conclude that perhaps the skeptics are on the fringes. We must do correct science. I do not adhere to the Gore/Schneider line that it is OK to lie to save the planet.

  78. In response to Adrian Kerton (06:07:49)

    Adrian, I just read your recent paper. I have been investigating related phenomena. I will draw your attention to:

    a) The last 2 paragraphs at:
    http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/features.cfm?feature=15

    b) Section “3. Nature of the decades-long variations in the Earth’s rotation” in:
    http://images.astronet.ru/pubd/2008/09/28/0001230882/425-439.pdf

    I can also let you know that I found a 25 year lag in several relationships which I investigated last year.

    Leif Svalgaard (10:33:34)
    “A general reader coming to this site and seeing some of the stuff peddled here might conclude that perhaps the skeptics are on the fringes. We must do correct science.”

    Dr. Svalgaard is right. I urge all readers to consider exercising restraint in both postings & conversations. A small amount of diplomacy from each individual in a community can add up.

  79. Leif Svalgaard (21:58:48) :

    Not that has been established. I’m sure you can find claims that link the two, as well as claims for just about anything under the Sun.

    Or about it it seems. I haven’t read any claims about it, just a curiosity. One more thing, completely off the previous topic. What do you know about dark matter (I believe this is what it is called, but the old noodle doesn’t believe itself at the moment)?

  80. Also Dr.(I assume) Svalgaard, there was a piece on here about synchronized chaos, and I wondered if I could pose a curiosity of mine on that. Say that TSI stays constant, relatively speaking, and also assume that the climate is in the coupled state. Would a change in TSI that is normally irrelevant perhaps serve to destroy the synchronization in the climate and lead to a climate shift?

  81. Ohioholic (13:19:57) :
    completely off the previous topic. What do you know about dark matter (I believe this is what it is called, but the old noodle doesn’t believe itself at the moment)?
    It is good form to stay on topic [if possible]. Try to google ‘dark matter’

    Ohioholic (13:31:54) :
    Say that TSI stays constant, relatively speaking, and also assume that the climate is in the coupled state. Would a change in TSI that is normally irrelevant perhaps serve to destroy the synchronization in the climate and lead to a climate shift?
    I presume that it would depend on how big the change is. With a big enough change anything is possible, but with very small changes it is a lot harder.

  82. Leif Svalgaard (13:42:13) :

    I presume that it would depend on how big the change is. With a big enough change anything is possible, but with very small changes it is a lot harder.

    The way I understood it, the stronger the coupling, the more magnified ‘errors’ in the coupling become, which then destroys the coupling. Could this be a mechanism for small variances in TSI having larger than usual effects? Not driving climate, so to speak, but playing a role in synchronizing and then altering? Just a thought. I have no idea how to prove such a thing, or I would set about doing so. Is it worth learning how to prove such a thing, or is this barking up the wrong tree?

  83. Ohioholic (17:51:30) :
    Is it worth learning how to prove such a thing, or is this barking up the wrong tree?
    It is always worth learning something, and it may even not be the wrong tree. I haven’t personally explored this, so can’t tell.

  84. ********
    Ric Werme (17:30:27) :

    The thing I don’t like about barycenters is I see them as a mathematical convenience that people have given gravitational fields to. (E.g. comments about orbiting around the barycenter.) They have no field, and they really fall down when people try to show tidal forces due to the barycenters. Only mass has a gravitational field, and that’s what you need to use for looking at tidal effects.

    Recycling one of my answerss at ClimateAudit:
    “instead of me going through a long explanation, I’ll just refer to a good one at http://mb-soft.com/public/tides.html
    Working through the math one gets that the tides by the Moon on the Earth is 367 mm high [mm = millimeter = 1/25.4th of an inch]. Inserting values for the Sun and Jupiter one gets a tide 0.47 mm high. Put all the other planets where you want, their individual times will be less that this. Venus’ is almost as high as Jupiter’s. All together, the tidal effects are of the order of 1 mm. Compare this to the convective overturning of the photosphere in Texas-sized granules moving at 1-2 km/sec [that is 1000,000-2000,000 mm/sec] and you might be able to see that planetary tidal effects can be ignored. Of course, there are always people that have problems with numbers, so, think of a large truck running over an ant at 100 miles/hour. The effect of the ant on the trajectory of the truck is relatively much larger than the tidal influence of the planets on the matter of the Sun. This much was known to Isaac Newton in the 17th Century. BTW, the tides by Jupiter on the Earth is 1/500 of a millimeter [at closest approach]
    *******

    Yes, thank you. The “barycenter” is a mathematical construct — there’s no real “forces” associated w/it.

    Tidal effects by the planets on the sun are also negligible — too little mass & too far away.

    Note: I don’t know if intrinsic solar variability affects climate — but it’s not caused by the “barycenter” or tidal effects IMO.

    There is an interesting theory that changes in the moon’s tidal effect on earth may influence the turbulent “mixing rate” of surface ocean water w/cooler water hundreds of meters deep (Wheeling?).

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