New Ice Core Project in Greenland looks at Eemian period

From EurekAlert

International Greenland ice coring effort sets new drilling record in 2009

Ancient ice cores expected to help scientists assess risks of abrupt climate change in future

IMAGE: Atmospheric gases trapped in ancient ice recovered during the international North Greenland Eemian Ice Drilling, or NEEM, project are expected to help scientists better assess the risks of abrupt climate…

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A new international research effort on the Greenland ice sheet with the University of Colorado at Boulder as the lead U.S. institution set a record for single-season deep ice-core drilling this summer, recovering more than a mile of ice core that is expected to help scientists better assess the risks of abrupt climate change in the future.

The project, known as the North Greenland Eemian Ice Drilling, or NEEM, is being undertaken by 14 nations and is led by the University of Copenhagen. The goal is to retrieve ice from the last interglacial episode known as the Eemian Period that ended about 120,000 years ago. The period was warmer than today, with less ice in Greenland and 15-foot higher sea levels than present — conditions similar to those Earth faces as it warms in the coming century and beyond, said CU-Boulder Professor Jim White, who is leading the U.S. research contingent.

While three previous Greenland ice cores drilled in the past 20 years covered the last ice age and the period of warming to the present, the deeper ice layers representing the warm Eemian and the period of transition to the ice age were compressed and folded, making them difficult to interpret, said White. Radar measurements taken through the ice sheet from above the NEEM site indicate the Eemian ice layers below are thicker, more intact and likely contain more accurate, specific information, he said.

“Every time we drill a new ice core, we learn a lot more about how Earth’s climate functions,” said White, “The Eemian period is the best analog we have for future warming on Earth.”

Annual ice layers formed over millennia in Greenland by compressed snow reveal information on past temperatures and precipitation levels and the contents of ancient atmospheres, said White, who directs CU-Boulder’s Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research. Ice cores exhumed during previous drilling efforts revealed abrupt temperature spikes of more than 20 degrees Fahrenheit in just 50 years in the Northern Hemisphere.

The NEEM team reached a depth of 5,767 feet in early August, where ice layers date to 38,500 years ago during a cold glacial period preceding the present interglacial, or warm period. The team hopes to hit bedrock at 8,350 feet at the end of next summer, reaching ice deposited during the warm Eemian period that lasted from roughly 130,000 to 120,000 years ago before the planet began to cool and ice up once again.

The NEEM project began in 2008 with the construction of a state-of-the-art facility, including a large dome, the drilling rig for extracting 3-inch-diameter ice cores, drilling trenches, laboratories and living quarters. The official drilling started in June of this year. The United States is leading the laboratory analysis of atmospheric gases trapped in bubbles within the NEEM ice cores, including greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and methane, said White.

The NEEM project is led by the University of Copenhagen’s Centre of Ice and Climate directed by Professor Dorthe Dahl-Jensen. The United States and Denmark are the two leading partners in the project. The U.S. effort is funded by the National Science Foundation’s Office of Polar Programs.

“Evidence from ancient ice cores tell us that when greenhouse gases increase in the atmosphere, the climate warms,” said White. “And when the climate warms, ice sheets melt and sea levels rise. If we see comparable rises in sea level in the future like we have seen in the ice-core record, we can pretty much say good-bye to American coastal cities like Miami, Houston, Norfolk, New Orleans and Oakland.”

Increased warming on Earth also has a host of other potentially deleterious effects, including changes in ecosystems, wildlife extinctions, the growing spread of disease, potentially catastrophic heat waves and increases in severe weather events, according to scientists.

While ice cores pinpoint abrupt climate change events as Earth has passed in and out of glacial periods, the warming trend during the present interglacial period is caused primarily by human activities like fossil fuel burning, White said. “What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.”

###

Other nations involved in the project include the United States, Belgium, Canada, China, France, Germany, Iceland, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Other CU-Boulder participants in the NEEM effort include INSTAAR postdoctoral researcher Vasilii Petrenko and Environmental Studies Program doctoral student Tyler Jones. Other U.S. institutions collaborating in the international NEEM effort include Oregon State University, Penn State, the University of California, San Diego and Dartmouth College.

For more information on the NEEM project, including images and video, visit http://www.neem.ku.dk.

118 thoughts on “New Ice Core Project in Greenland looks at Eemian period

  1. “Evidence from ancient ice cores tell us that when greenhouse gases increase in the atmosphere, the climate warms,” said White.
    I thought previous work indicated that warming preceded CO2 by ~ 800 yrs. Why are they bothering to drill?

  2. I saw this earlier on Greeniewatch. As the commentator over there pointed out, the last sentence says it all:- ” What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.”
    Shades of Catlin methinks………

  3. OT – sun speck spotted….will it last or fetch a number….
    Back on topic, it appears they have already completed the study, before they even looked at the data. They already concluded that it the GHG are responsible….

  4. CU-Boulder Professor Jim White: “Evidence from ancient ice cores tell us that when greenhouse gases increase in the atmosphere, the climate warms,”
    I guess this new drilling will show that CO2 leads temperature and not vice versa?

  5. Opened my latest edition of Quaternary Today yesterday an noticed a couple of papers I haven’t had time to read yet. One of them indicates that we have been in a general cooling trend over the past 2000 years and is based on research of glaciers in the European Alps. Another article indicates the climate during the Holocene has been more unstable than in other interglacial periods. This is based on research in South America.
    I find this comment disturbing because there is no basis in fact for it:

    While ice cores pinpoint abrupt climate change events as Earth has passed in and out of glacial periods, the warming trend during the present interglacial period is caused primarily by human activities like fossil fuel burning, White said. “What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.”

    There has been to date nothing to indicate that there has been any period of warming in the present interglacial that is caused by humans. The most recent warming was not interesting in either its rate or extent. Temperatures have been warmer than today at several times in the past during this interglacial. To posit that any current warming is due to human influence is based on a leap of faith and is not based on any data.

  6. Don’t want to cast any aspersions but this research is under the auspices of the University of Copenhagen. No chance that they might be gearing up for a meeting in the near future is there?

  7. Why is this Professor White doing all this expensive research when he knows all the answers before his work is completed? I have always read that CO2 rise lagged temperature increase, not vice versa as he clearly states.
    It seems to me that all of the main stream research starts with the premise of
    continued global warming whether or not it is occurring or likely to happen.
    In my home town last Fall, a conference was held sponsored by a well known academic institution with participation by one of the largest cities, but……no discussion was allowed on whether or not global warming was actually happening.

  8. Coincidentally as this new thread popped up I was doing more research work on Arrhenius and Ernst Beck. Having already carried out considerable background work on co2 readings back to 1830, I am inclined to agree with Beck that co2 levels then were similar to todays.
    However, this is directly contradicted by the ice cores that state that co2 levels have been constant at around 280ppm until they started gently rising in the industrial age and were at 315ppm at the start of the 20th century.
    Having delved into the highly complex world of ice cores and fractionation I tend to believe the tens of thousands of historic co2 readings made by many competent scientists in the period 1830-1957 over the very new science that ice cores represent.
    No doubt Ferdinand will pop up to say otherwise.
    tonyb

  9. Professor Jim White is quoted in this article as saying, “If we see comparable rises in sea level in the future like we have seen in the ice-core record, we can pretty much say good-bye to American coastal cities … .”
    Such a scary scenario is something mankind has surely never faced before. Too bad no one has ever come up with an idea of putting some kind of embankment of dirt and rocks and other materials along the coastline to keep out the sea. I know it is a far-fetched idea, but I propose making such an embankment and calling it a “Dirt Is Keeping Everything-dry” or “DIKE” for short.
    Then again, maybe it would just be cheaper to let all those coastal cities be flooded. (I propose calling that strategy something like “Inundate Populated Coastal Cities” or “IPCC” for short.)

  10. I am just drilling holes to prove what we all know. – Prof. White
    He is not trying to understand NOW he is just looking for a doomsday event from warming… except that he is looking for it in the ice, which is all supposed to melt away… and if it had melted in the past then the proof would not be in the ice, but the ice is millions of years old and so has not all melted, but the climate catastrophe line is that the ice all melts…. fraazaaapp…my brain just popped a chip.

  11. I see the obligatory “We’re all going to burn up and die” statement was included:
    “The period was warmer than today, with less ice in Greenland and 15-foot higher sea levels than present — conditions similar to those Earth faces as it warms in the coming century and beyond, said CU-Boulder Professor Jim White, who is leading the U.S. research contingent.”
    I think the above is code for, “I’d like to get this tripe published and my funding continued.”
    Even a cursory look at the reconstituted global temperature record should convince most anyone that the odds heavily favor the position that we are now on the downhill side of the fifth cyclical temperature peak.
    CH

  12. What amazes me is that there is any ice to drill from 120,000 years ago since there were periods warmer than today.
    Todays Goreians tell us all of the ice in Greenland will slip into the sea and drown most of us or at least cause us to move. Apparantly it didn’t happen in the past’s warmer times. What’s the justification for it today?
    Happily on the coast of NH, 17 feet above sea level, and not planning to move.
    Norm

  13. So, what are the chances that they’ll hit a 120K year old coal-fired electrical generation plant? Must have been quite a few of them back then, since it was so warm.

  14. Ice cores exhumed during previous drilling efforts revealed abrupt temperature spikes of more than 20 degrees Fahrenheit in just 50 years in the Northern Hemisphere.

    Two points:
    20 degrees in 50 years? With no man made influence? Why do we think the rate over the last century is anything special?
    20 degrees in 50 years? Yet, the world survived? Including the polar bear? How did that happen?

  15. If the Holocene warming commenced about (give or take) 11,700 years ago, how are humans responsible for all of the warming? -thought it was only last 150 years?
    ‘White said. “What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.” ‘
    Yeah Copenhagen coming up, the Ipswichian (Eemian) was a lot warmer then the present warming (holocene), an interesting ice core drilling project nevertheless.

  16. How well do you think they are following the scientific method considering that they have already writen the conclusion to the study before doing the testing.

  17. White said. “What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.”
    I’m dumbfounded – “fundamentally different”; fine, then what’s the point? Just drill a core into my head.

  18. While ice cores pinpoint abrupt climate change events as Earth has passed in and out of glacial periods, the warming trend during the present interglacial period is caused primarily by human activities like fossil fuel burning, White said. “What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.”
    This study already involves doubtful “human responsibility, morals and ethics”….

  19. Chad Woodburn (12:46:23)
    …calling it a “Dirt Is Keeping Everything-dry” or “DIKE” for short….
    You are a funny guy!!! I have often considered a radical idea like this myself.

  20. Others are noting similar thoughts. It is clear that the project has a pre-determined result. Now all they have to do is massage the data they collect to conform to that determination.
    …..conditions similar to those Earth faces as it warms in the coming century and beyond, said CU-Boulder Professor Jim White, who is leading the U.S. research contingent.
    It is too bad the funding was not directed toward doing some actual scientific work.

  21. “The period was warmer than today, with less ice in Greenland and 15-foot higher sea levels than present —”
    How was this possible when there were few humans around to produce all the necessary greenhouse gases needed to raise temps this high?

  22. When I read such items as, ” … the warming trend during the present interglacial period is caused primarily by human activities like fossil fuel burning, ..” it is easy to realise that scientific objectivity has been thrown out the window. Pray tell me Professor White, what then caused warming trends in previous interglacials ?. I could go on but I fear for my blood pressure.

  23. “Evidence from ancient ice cores tell us that when greenhouse gases increase in the atmosphere, the climate warms,”
    I assume that these past CO2 increases were caused by the exhausts of visiting alien spaceships, every 100,000 years or so. Perhaps these ice cores should be studied for traces of little green men !

  24. This is what Prof. Zbigniew Jaworowski said about previous ice core studies:
    “Improper manipulation of data, and arbitrary rejection of readings that do not fit the pre-conceived idea on man-made global warming is common in many glaciological studies of greenhouse gases. In peer reviewed publications I exposed this misuse of science [3, 9]. Unfortunately, such misuse is not limited to individual publications, but also appears in documents of national and international organizations.”
    (Source: http://www.warwickhughes.com/icecore/)
    Why should the new study be any different? Why waste money on the new study at all? We already know what the findings will be. We already know the data presented will fit the pre-conceived findings. Prof. Jaworski shows how they do it.
    Jaworski’s work has made me very skeptical of ice core studies. I encourage WUWT readers to review his work, starting with the link above. Does anyone know how ice core researchers have responded to Jaworski’s criticisms? He seems to have ripped their methodology to shreds, but I am open to their counter-arguments.

  25. I think we all just can’t imagine to be so morally debased as to arrive to conclusions before research has been actually made. Is it so big the fear or the money?

  26. Chad Woodburn (12:46:23) :
    Professor Jim White is quoted in this article as saying, “If we see comparable rises in sea level in the future like we have seen in the ice-core record, we can pretty much say good-bye to American coastal cities … .”

    Like Merlin said in the 1980 John Boorman film Excalibur, “It is the doom of Men than they forget.”
    The “problem” espoused by Prof White is one which would happen with or without fossil-fuel burning. As shorelines have deepened over the centuries, we kept building further and further out. It is our ultimate lack of hindsight and foresight that we didn’t expect the seas to return. If the good professor expected “sea levels” to remain static, he’s simply not very bright.

  27. TonyB (12:39:23)
    It doesn’t appear to be complicated at all. Looking at
    ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/paleo/icecore/antarctica/vostok/co2.txt
    the ice that is 4050 years old contains CO2 gas that is an average of 1700 years old. Looking further down, ice that is 61790 years old contains CO2 that is about 4000 years younger.
    The simplest explanation is that CO2 diffuses through the ice for 1000’s of years until finally frozen into place. To back up the theory, at 160k years the CO2 is still about 4k years younger than the ice. This doesn’t address the problems of measurement once the cores have been extracted.

  28. Chad Woodburn (12:46:23) :
    Professor Jim White is quoted in this article as saying, “If we see comparable rises in sea level in the future like we have seen in the ice-core record, we can pretty much say good-bye to American coastal cities … .”
    Such a scary scenario is something mankind has surely never faced before. Too bad no one has ever come up with an idea of putting some kind of embankment of dirt and rocks and other materials along the coastline to keep out the sea. I know it is a far-fetched idea, but I propose making such an embankment and calling it a “Dirt Is Keeping Everything-dry” or “DIKE” for short.
    —————————————–
    Surely our great leaders have though of this and 100% of Cap and Trade money will go into an escrow account to pay for this type of mitigation ?? I mean, where else would it go ??

  29. 1. If Greenland was ice free during that period how come ice exists for that period?
    2. Where did he get the 15 feet higher sea levels from when there is no proxy indicating it? If they are gauging this from computer models then it is wrong. Land formations and coastlines were different back then, nobody knows how different and certainly no computer model has even estimated data. Water usage by lifeforms was also very different.

  30. When they hit bedrock, won’t that be a period when there was no ice on Greenland? I wonder what melted/prevented ice buildup before the ice started to accumulate? — John M Reynolds

  31. It’s sad to see a professor doing this.
    He should report what they have actually found – instead of speculating about stuff that may or may not be true but is not supported either way by this research.
    I would be fascinated to hear more about their findings and their methodology. How do they measure the gases ? How do they know if the gases are the same as they were all that time ago ? How do they date a layer ? How do they decide the air temperature in that region in the past ? What are their error bars like ?
    Instead we have to listen to some boilerplate stuff cut’n’pasted from the Book of Gore.
    It’s also sad that they have already reached their conclusion before they finished the work. Maybe they could just abort the mission if they have already found enough evidence. This would save money and reduce their own carbon emissions as well.

  32. Aron (14:03:35) :
    1. If Greenland was ice free during that period how come ice exists for that period?
    2. Where did he get the 15 feet higher sea levels from when there is no proxy indicating it? If they are gauging this from computer models then it is wrong. Land formations and coastlines were different back then, nobody knows how different and certainly no computer model has even estimated data. Water usage by lifeforms was also very different.

    I believe they said less Greenland ice, not ice-free.
    You can see ancient shorelines in the geologic record pretty clearly. When an ancient harbor settlement is now 200 feet from the shore, you know something has changed. And in other places those types of settlements are underwater. So it’s a crap shoot either way.

  33. “While ice cores pinpoint abrupt climate change events as Earth has passed in and out of glacial periods, the warming trend during the present interglacial period is caused primarily by human activities like fossil fuel burning, White said. “What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.”
    The current interglacial period, the Holocene, is about 10,000 years old. According to Vostok ice core data about 8 degrees C of the warming occurred occurred between 17,000 years ago and 10,000 years ago. Certainly mankind could not have had any significant effect that long ago. The temperature rise which the IPCC blames on man has occurred during the last 100 years and is only 0.7 C. So how is it that “the warming trend during the present interglacial period is caused primarily by human activities”? I think that statement is very misleading, or am I missing something?
    data source from wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Vostok-ice-core-petit.png

  34. Jack Green
    According to Douglas Adams the answer to the ultimate question is 42. But what is the question? Thats what we really need to know.

  35. OK , This is probably a stupid question , but how do we know that co2 contained in precipitation is an accurate measure of atmospheric co2 ? I haven’t seen this discussed anywhere .

  36. “”” eugene r wynsen md (13:30:49) :
    Are we to accept the statement by White that “when the Co2 goes up the temperature goes up and let it go unchallenged? “””
    Well it’s true, so we should accept that.
    It’s also true that when it is hot and humid at night there are high clouds in the sky.
    The trick is to see which is the cause and which is the effect.
    If you are a climatologist, the high clouds cause the humid warming at night, and the higher the clouds, the more warming there is. The more CO2 there is the more warming there is.
    One day we’ll get it sorted out; and people will discover that the warming produces the CO2 increase, and it also causes the high clouds at night; not the other way round.
    Does it seem silly to you that the higher and colder and less dense the clouds get, with a diminishing amount of water vapor (with height); the more surface warming and humidity you get.
    Next time you wake up at night and the temperature has risen since sunset, from high clouds; please give me a call and wake me up so I can experience that phenomenon.
    Every time I look it cools down after sunset; clouds or no clouds.
    George

  37. “When they hit bedrock, won’t that be a period when there was no ice on Greenland?”
    No. Ice melts at the earth/ice interface due to geothermal heat. While the surface temperature might be quite cold, it is some 6000-7000 feet more or less from the base of the ice to the surface over most locations on the interior of Greenland.

  38. White – “What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.”
    Again a crucial scientific project has a head who is an activist. Scientific objectivity is incompatible with prejudice and prejudgement.
    Uncover the evidence Prof White and present it honestly, freely and impartially and spare us your moralistic, opinionated sermon on the present warming trend, which the evidence indicates is not “fundamentally different” from the past.

  39. Just to agree with others above that when we hear an alleged scientist start to presuppose the existence and significance of what he is also dedicated to “proving” via his “science”, it can’t be a good thing for the conduct of actual science – a fact which real scientists already recognize to be a very serious impediment to their conduct of scientific inquiry right from its very start. And even hyping a particular expectation in order to acquire funding would itself also seem to imply a built-in bias which would only continue throughout the work.
    But, hey, “we all have agendas”, and ~ “it’s for the protection of Nature”, so I guess it’s ethically ok!

  40. Let’s start with the present sea level.
    During this interglacial, the sea level has been higher than now for most of the past 6,000 years. The average sea level during this period is around a meter higher than now with maximums hitting slightly higher than three meters higher than now. Not unlike the Eemian Interglacial, the early part of this interglacial was warmer than the later part. The Eemian had sea levels reaching nearly five meters higher than now.
    The report said the Eemian lasted from about 130k to 120kybp. I believe the warm part of the Eemian (with sea levels higher than now) persisted to around 105kybp.
    So, if the Eemian reached five meters higher than now naturally and the Holocene Interglacial reached three meters higher than now, why are we so enamored and fear full of a 0.7 meter rise in sea level from now?

  41. We actually have all the data from the Eem-time from the DYE 3 drilling… do they try to confirm themself or what?
    It was 5-6 degrees warmer in Grenland on that time a the Ice cap was intact far away South of DYE 3 (according to the drilling data)….but we don’t no much about the edge melting.
    KInd regards
    Svend

  42. “And when the climate warms, ice sheets melt and sea levels rise. If we see comparable rises in sea level in the future like we have seen in the ice-core record, we can pretty much say good-bye to American coastal cities like Miami, Houston, Norfolk, New Orleans and Oakland.”
    That’s right Prof White! And as it’s happening, we are all going to be sitting around with are thumbs hidden in our orifices not knowing what to do and blaming everyone but ourselves for our predicament. Should we be looking for sudden & predictable decreases in shore front properties values in conjunction with the inundation of many coastal cities?
    Of course you did say “if.” Was that a 50/50 “if” or maybe a 1000 to 1 “if”?

  43. I began reading a paper today:
    Tree-ring crossdates for a First Millennium AD advance of Tebenkof
    David J. Barclaya, Gregory C. Wilesb and Parker E. Calkinc
    The crux of it is that while the Tebenkof glacier (Alaska) has been receding since about 1900, it has been exposing trees (discovered in 1935) from a forest the glacier had advanced through. There were apparently two major periods of advance. The oldest of the trees discovered had started their growth in the AD 220s. They all ended their growth in the 710’s and 720’s. The ice apparently didn’t remain long at the terminal location of this advance as there is no moraine established there. Trees were recolonizing the area by the AD 950s.
    A more extensive advance occurred in two phases during the LIA. The first phase advanced through forest sometime between the 1280’s and 1320’s. The more recent second phase pushed through forest in the 1640’s and 1650’s. It apparently maintained this maximum extent for about 200 years before starting its retreat. There is an absolute boundary whereby the maximum extent could not have reached as there is an 800yo tree living just beyond the terminal moraine of the second LIA advance.
    The ice then began a retreat receding some 250-350m by 1910, 300m more by 1935, 500m more by 1964, and a total of 1.6km from its LIA maximum in 1984.
    The point being that as the glacier has receded since 1900 it has exposed trees that prove the area had been forested in the past. The area being exposed now has been exposed in the not-so-distant past. Also, this first millennium advance was not limited to Northern North America. The timing also coincides with glacial advances (also dated with growth ring correlation) in the European Alps.
    What we are experiencing is not “human induced warming”, it is “recovery from the Little Ice Age” that is happening at the same time as human population expansion.

  44. Of course this warming period is totally unlike all the previous warm periods!!! Just take our word for it :^)

  45. Lance @12:15:09
    Oh fer cryin’ out loud. At this point in time, you gotta be desperate to call that cycle 23 specklette a Sun spot.

  46. The paleo data shows that the Eemian peaked about 125,000 years ago with temperatures 1.5C higher than today and with CO2 levels peaking around the same time at 279 ppm.
    The ice age reached a low point about 157,000 years ago with temperatures -4.6C lower than today and CO2 at 185 ppm.
    The total contribution of CO2 to the temperature change of 6.1C in just 32,000 years ranges from a low of 0.9C to a high of 1.9C.
    Obviously, there are more issues to consider with the climate than just CO2 since more than two-thirds of the temperature change during that ice age was due to something else.

  47. “Evidence from ancient ice cores tell us that when greenhouse gases increase in the atmosphere, the climate warms,”
    “And when the climate warms, ice sheets melt and sea levels rise. …”
    Since the dawn of man, when the 1st fire was lit anthropogenically, the die was cast.
    Man had to first find his way across the world to populate it. Then he had to burn the land to support agriculture, civilization, industrialization, science and finally…
    doomed to extinction, man must find his way off the planet as the sands of AGW run out the hourglass. It all started with the invention of fire, the forbidden fruit. It ends in a roasted planet choked with Sulphuric Acid rain and 800F temps.
    Hmmm….did we originally come from Venus?
    Mars Colony or bust.

  48. New AGW scare film to be released this fall. It’s called, “The Age of Stupid.” It’s the story of an archivist in the year 2055 looking back at the climate change disaster caused by failure to act. Academy Award winner Pete Postlethwaite stars.
    Isn’t this film about 4 years too late? Of course, if it fails in theaters, they can always force all the little kiddies to watch (and induce as yet unnamed new childhood phobias).

  49. “What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.”
    This is the obligatory comment because the thinking person realizes that – wait – you mean to tell me that the climate was warmer, there was less ice & sea level was higher – all without the help of mankind in the past. So why are we so sure “it is mankind’s fault”? Yep, the thinking people will be the undoing of this whole AGW thing.
    And of course, this whole realization of past climates is why most geoscientists (myself included) are skeptics (and proud of it).

  50. How can this bloke seriously say: “There, there was a doomesday many thousands of years ago, and here we are, now, facing another doomesday” without seeing the error in his argument.
    Well, not error, exactly; rather an over-looked obvious consequence of his argument.

  51. As the little boy who said, “The Emperor has NO clothes on!” I will say,
    and continue to say..
    THE TEMPERATURE PROXY USED IN THE ICE CORES IS BOGUS!
    It is based on the O18 to 016 numbers.
    These ONLY indicate the number of tropical thunderstorms in costal regions and DO NOT REPRESENT “temperature” per see.
    THE EMPEROR HAS NO CLOTHES!

  52. White said……….. “What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.”
    ————————————————————
    What evidence does he base that statement on?
    ……and empirical evidence please. Not computer generated thought experiments based on manipulated data and fudge factors.

  53. Robert Wood (17:08:05) :
    Wooo there dude…
    I never stated it was solar cycle 23!! I merely mentioned that having checked http://www.solarcycle24.com mentioned a ‘speck’ was spotted.
    I believe you meant to quote crosspatch (12:47:51) :
    however, does anyone know if it faded?

  54. A new international research effort on the Greenland ice sheet with the University of Colorado at Boulder as the lead U.S. institution set a record for single-season deep ice-core drilling this summer, recovering more than a mile of ice core that is expected to help scientists better assess the risks of abrupt climate change in the future.

    They set a record for drilling speed?
    Anyone consider the contamination this might incur?
    DaveE.

  55. Bill Illis:

    The total contribution of CO2 to the temperature change of 6.1C in just 32,000 years ranges from a low of 0.9C to a high of 1.9C.

    It is not clear to me how you derived these numbers but the upper end of your estimate (that about 1/3 of the temperature change is due to CO2) is in almost perfect agreement with what James Hansen estimates for the contribution of CO2 on the basis of comparing the various forcings between the last glacial maximum (LGM) and now. And, from his estimates of the total forcings compared to the observed temperature change, he derives his estimate of the Charney climate sensitivity as being ~0.75 C / [W/m^2], or ~ 3 C per CO2 doubling.
    As to your musing about what the “something else” is that caused the other 2/3, the biggest contribution would be from the albedo change associated with the changes in the ice sheets and vegetation, with lesser contributions from changes in aerosol levels and changes in other greenhouse gases like methane and nitrous oxide. (The ice sheet growth and shrinkage itself is initiated by the Milankovitch oscillations in the earth’s orbital parameters, but these changes do not have any significant direct effect on the annual global mean forcing…It just changes the distribution of the solar irradiance in location and time of year.) See here for details: http://naturalscience.com/ns/articles/01-16/ns_jeh2.html

  56. OT On tamino’s blog open mind the following comment is made
    “But of course it’s possible sea level rise could be more; the simple model doesn’t allow for nonlinear behavior of the system, in particular it doesn’t anticipate accelerating disintegration of large ice sheets. ”
    To which I replied but equally it’s possible sea level rise could be less, particularly if there is no accelerating disintegration of ice sheets
    This comment however did not pass moderation. Why on earth not? It is hardly contentious just noting that it is equally possible that sea levels will not rise. Where is the harm in posting that?
    I doubt this will pass moderation either. If your readers don’t already I suggest they have a look at open mind which is a total misnomer and is home to the smuggest, self-satisfied, “we know best” brigade I have ever encountered anywhere

  57. “however, does anyone know if it faded?”
    According to the STEREO pictures, it looks about the same as it did earlier.
    And I based my presumption of it being a cycle 23 spot on its position, not on its magnetic signature.

  58. Ian (20:36:49) :
    OT On tamino’s blog open mind the following comment is made […]
    I doubt this will pass moderation either. If your readers don’t already I suggest they have a look at open mind which is a total misnomer and is home to the smuggest, self-satisfied, “we know best” brigade I have ever encountered anywhere

    You must not be familiar with Real Climate. Anthony has graciously included a link to that site in the right panel of this page.

  59. “Evidence from ancient ice cores tell us that when greenhouse gases increase in the atmosphere, the climate warms,” said White. “And when the climate warms, ice sheets melt and sea levels rise. If we see comparable rises in sea level in the future like we have seen in the ice-core record, we can pretty much say good-bye to American coastal cities like Miami, Houston, Norfolk, New Orleans and Oakland.”
    Wow. This….from a scientist.
    False assumptions.
    Predetermined outcomes.
    Emo soundbytes, slandering the chambers of commerce of a host of American cities.
    THIS anti-scientific, deductive approach is what our the taxpayer pays for???
    Meanwhile infrastructure [where science could really help us] across the country, collapses.
    Bridges fail. Water mains rust. Power grids fry.
    Talk about “jacked up.”
    Meanwhile….as a resident of one of the “doomed” cities….I regularly run in a nearby state park that has hills on the coastal plain.
    Except they are not hills. They are forested dunes….from an ancient sea boundary from the Holocene Optimum.
    Yeah sure….levels might return to that.
    But we, nor our children’s children’s children’s children’s children’s children’s children’s children’s children’s children’s children’s children’s children’s children’s etc. et al…..will probably not be around to see the change.
    Civilizations do not last that long.
    Stop the ****ing scaremongering, Professor White.
    Your scientific expertise could be better used elsewhere, like solving the current problems facing civilization.
    And Joel Shore….your sophistry is both tiring and amusing. Mostly amusing. Thanks for the laugh.
    The longer the observable data in the world continues to verify that the AGW religion is wrong on most counts of their dogma, the more defensive, aggressive and sophist-like, will the arguments of you and others like you, become.
    The burden of proof is on you.
    Not on us.
    You have heard the expression: **** happens.
    Well…in a similar vein: Climate CHANGES.
    That’s what it does.
    Chris
    Norfolk, VA

  60. “Jeff Alberts (14:29:11) :
    Aron (14:03:35) :
    You can see ancient shorelines in the geologic record pretty clearly. When an ancient harbor settlement is now 200 feet from the shore, you know something has changed. And in other places those types of settlements are underwater. So it’s a crap shoot either way.”
    I know it’s possible to see ancient shorelines, but I have not seen any evidence for 15 feet higher sea levels on a global scale anywhere!

  61. I read the article by Prof. Zbigniew Jaworowski linked by Mike Abbott (13:39:07), and it is intriguing. It is certainly relevant to the topic of ice core CO2 research. A search on the last name does not reveal anything on WUWT. His work seems pretty important, unless there’s something wrong with it….Is there?

  62. Ian (20:36:49) :
    That is what they do, Ian.
    They have EVERYTHING to hide….so they give the illusion of such with terms like “Openmind”.
    In reality, his blog should be titled “ShutMind” or something similar.
    It really has become a legalistic religion. Has anybody forgotten in our recent past mass delusions [say WWII Germany] or the Spanish Inquisition??
    Damn….and I thought we humans we evolving.
    We seem to just go in cycles like the rest of Nature.
    Think positive feedback thoughts…..positive feedback thoughts…….positive thoughts. LOL
    Here’s hoping for a better future.
    All your ice cores and the many unknowns there [thanks for that bit of info, Mike Abbott] do not scare me, Professor White.
    Rather, they and especially YOU [and Tamino]…galvanize me to change the way we do business.
    Thanks for that!!
    Chris
    Norfolk, VA, USA

  63. Geez, this White guy doesn’t sound too neutral on the whole project, that already makes it 95% sure they’ll find/interpret what they want to find!
    Thanks for coming out and keeping an open mind.

  64. I saw this earlier on Greeniewatch. As the commentator over there pointed out, the last sentence says it all:- ” What makes this warming trend fundamentally different from past warming events is that this one is driven by human activity and involves human responsibility, morals and ethics.”
    This is the new meme that I am seeing from AGW supporters as well.

  65. Did some digging on this Jim White. If he is particularly brilliant I couldnt find any references or his publications, but here are some ratings from his pupils:
    “Teaches out of the book, not very helpful, and gives ridiculous, nit-picky tests”
    “His class was like milk, it was good for 2 weeks. ….and lectures seem to come directly from the book. …and he is out of town all the time, leaving the terrible TA’s to teach. ENOUGH ALREADY!”
    “Good teacher. Funny.”
    (Yeah I think he’s funny too. Probably chosen by Hansen because he is a true believer)
    http://ratemyprofessors.com/ShowRatings.jsp?tid=918593

  66. On the other hand Dorthe Dahl-Jensen, a lady, has been awarded the prestigious Swedish ‘Vega Medal’, has 72 peer reviewed publications, numerous honours and awards, currently Professor, at the Niels Bohr Institute and visiting Professor University of Hobart
    From what I can gather is that the Eemian Period was the name of the last interglacial before our present one, from 130,000 to 120,000 years ago, that it was 5 degrees warmer then than today, that the global sea level was 4-5 m higher than at present.
    Here is some of the stuff she has written:
    “The deep NGRIP ice core from North Greenland (75N, 42W) is 3090m deep and reaches 125.000 years back in time….It can be concluded that the there was an significant ice sheet covering Greenland during the warm Eemian period and that the reduction of the Greenland ice sheet at most contributed with a sea level rise of 1-2 m of the observed 5 m… ice covered south Greenland during the Eemian period.”
    http://cires.colorado.edu/events/lectures/dahljensen/

  67. TA (21:40:29) :
    I read the article by Prof. Zbigniew Jaworowski linked by Mike Abbott (13:39:07), and it is intriguing. It is certainly relevant to the topic of ice core CO2 research. A search on the last name does not reveal anything on WUWT. His work seems pretty important, unless there’s something wrong with it….Is there?

    I misspelled his last name the first time I used it in that post. It should be “Jaworski.” Try searching for that name. Also, try searching for that name on Real Climate and Tamino. If there is something wrong with Jaworski’s work, you’ll read about it there. Even if there is nothing wrong with Jaworski’s work, I’m sure they trashed it. Let us know what you find.

  68. “When an ancient harbor settlement is now 200 feet from the shore, you know something has changed. And in other places those types of settlements are underwater. So it’s a crap shoot either way.”
    Yeah. Well known Viking ports are now over a kilometer inland. Go figure.

  69. Oops, part of the reason some of those ports are so far inland now is due to post-glacial rebound. But sea levels are currently about 2 meters lower than they were 5000 years ago.

  70. Professor Jim White is quoted in this article as saying, “If we see comparable rises in sea level in the future like we have seen in the ice-core record, we can pretty much say good-bye to American coastal cities … .”
    That is a most remarkable piece of newspeak. For years we have been assured that the sea-level during the MIS-11 (Holsteinian) interglacial was 10-20 meters than at present, but miraculously there is not the slightest trace of this in any of the ice-cores.
    By the way the 15 feet sea-level rise during the last interglacial also referred to is very doubtful. The best records from the most tectonically stable areas like the Gawler Craton of Australia actually suggests something like 6-7 feet (which incidentally fits much better with the indisputable fact that there has been ice from the Eemian at the bottom of EVERY ice core that has been drilled on Greenland). So while the Greenland icecap is supposed to have largely melted then, we have yet to find a place where this actually happened. Even the small isolated Renland icecap in Eastern Greenland that is only a few hundred meters thick has Eeemian ice at the bottom (to be fair it is possible that this is only late Eemian, and that the Renland icecap actually did melt very briefly during the very warmest part of the Eemian).
    Incidentally both ice-core records and fossil data from ice-free areas of Greenland agrees that temperatures there were about 5 degrees warmer than now during the Eemian.

  71. They are quite right to paint a picture of doom. If all our society can muster in the the 21st century is science by consensus, then heaven help us. . .

  72. I find it profoundly depressing that one of the senior scientists in charge of what should be a great scientific enterprise is a blithering idiot. It looks like his knowledge of climate science was obtained entirely from a viewing of An Inconvenient Truth.
    .
    He says: ““Evidence from ancient ice cores tell us that when greenhouse gases increase in the atmosphere, the climate warms,”
    As we know, the truth is the exact opposite. As other posters have said, it would be great if he could be publicly challenged on this false statement.
    Chris

  73. TonyB (12:39:23) :
    Coincidentally as this new thread popped up I was doing more research work on Arrhenius and Ernst Beck. Having already carried out considerable background work on co2 readings back to 1830, I am inclined to agree with Beck that co2 levels then were similar to todays.
    However, this is directly contradicted by the ice cores that state that co2 levels have been constant at around 280ppm until they started gently rising in the industrial age and were at 315ppm at the start of the 20th century.

    Beck’s compilation of CO2 measurements shows the great variability of CO2 values geographically. This makes sense since a lot of CO2 depends on the biota of the region.
    Ice core records are records of ice cores, i.e. regions where little life can be seen. As the AIRS maps show, even high in space there is large variability in the distribution of CO2. CO2 is not a well dispersed well mixed chemical in the air.
    Thus even if there are no errors in the CO2 measurements from ice cores, the values are just the values that existed at the time the ice was settling, in a region with no biological activity.

  74. Joel Shore (19:47:58) :
    How do we know that Hansen’s watt/m^2 estimates are correct?
    We know the temperature record is probably correct but Hansen’s watt/m^2 estimates are “tuned” to arrive at 0.75C/watt/m^2.
    Hansen’s ice sheet feedback in the ice ages increases the Planetary Albedo by 0.015 (which is too low to start with) which would then translate into reduced solar energy of -5.1 watts/m^2 going by the standard formula.
    But in Hansen’s magic climate box, the ice sheet feedback (and the further negative vegetation feedback) is somehow reduced to just -3.5 w/m^2.
    Sorry, that is called changing the values to match what one wants to show.
    http://europe.theoildrum.com/uploads/465/cv_hansen_fig3.png
    http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/1984/1984_Hansen_etal_1.pdf
    http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/1993/1993_Hansen_etal_1.pdf

  75. Was my question at (15:00:35) really that stupid , or is it unanswerable ? anna v ‘ s comment above was some help , but…..

  76. Anna v
    Thanks for your reply. I know we are both interested in Becks work and also the lack of mixing of co2, as shown in the AIRS maps. Can you provide a link to the most relevant of those again for the benefit of others here?
    I don’t think I have ever seen a thread here on AIRS, lack of mixing and the lack of biological activity at the poles that would impact on ice cores. I must say I still remain unconvinced about these cores although Ferdinand has gone through them in great detail with me. 🙂
    tonyb

  77. P Walker (15:00:35) :
    OK , This is probably a stupid question , but how do we know that co2 contained in precipitation is an accurate measure of atmospheric co2 ? I haven’t seen this discussed anywhere .
    Supposedly ice cores have air bubbles trapped in the ice and it is these air bubbles that give the CO2 measurements, not the CO2 dispersed in the former liquid that became ice.

  78. Bill Illis (06:33:37):
    What is the evidence for your claim that he has “tuned” the forcings? Why do you think the albedo estimate is too low to start with?
    And, is it possible that the albedo number that you quote is a change just in ground albedo, which would not act on the full 342 W/m^2. (It seems a bit extreme to me to assume that Hansen has made an elementary math mistake or tuned the numbers and no fellow scientist has found this!)
    At any rate, my original point still stands, which is that Hansen’s estimate of how much of the temperature change CO2 was responsible for is not in disagreement with yours (which you got from who-knows-where). It is basically at the upper end of your estimate.

  79. P Walker
    You will regret asking your question after you see what you have to wade through in order to unearth the secrets of fractionation of gases in ice cores.
    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6V61-4JCBM1K-2&_user=10&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&_docanchor=&view=c&_searchStrId=997456000&_rerunOrigin=google&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=88c979727c5b3e9e0f2ad469f0ce386e
    To be honest, after reading all the literature I am not at all convinced that ice cores are able to measure co2-albeit in a very indirect and complex way.
    Personally I would rather stick with what our brilliant forefathers measured directly during the period 1830 onwards-co2 concentration at similar levels to today. If joel or Ferdinand are lurking however I am sure they will have a very different opinion.
    Happy reading!
    Tonyb

  80. anna v – thanks , that jogged my memory .
    TonyB – thanks also . I will try to wade through this today . Like you , I prefer actual , observed data over proxies as they don’t lend themselves to speculation .

  81. TonyB – I’m too much of a cheapskate to pay for the article , but in searching for a freebee on the web , I learned a few things about one of the co-authors . Interestingly , given his AGW positions , one of his articles was linked to another stating that co2 lagged temperature rise . Also from the abstract to your linked article , he doesn’t include co2 per se in his analysis . Apparently he specializes in inferring temperature changes from ice core samples . (Lousy sentences , but the P Walker household is is disarray this afternoon – sorry .)

  82. Mike Abbott and TA:
    More on Prof. JAWOROWSKI (right first time):
    Climate Change: Incorrect information on pre-industrial CO2
    Statement written for the US Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation
    March 2004
    Statement of Prof. Zbigniew Jaworowski
    Chairman, Scientific Council of Central Laboratory for Radiological Protection
    Warsaw, Poland
    I am a Professor at the Central Laboratory for Radiological Protection (CLOR) in Warsaw, Poland, a governmental institution, involved in environmental studies. CLOR has a “Special Liaison” relationship with the US National Council on Radiological Protection and Measurements (NCRP). In the past, for about ten years, CLOR closely cooperated with the US Environmental Protection Agency, in research on the influence of industry and nuclear explosions on pollution of the global environment and population. I published about 280 scientific papers, among them about 20 on climatic problems. I am the representative of Poland in the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR), and in 1980-1982 I was the chairman of this Committee.
    For the past 40 years I was involved in glacier studies, using snow and ice as a matrix for reconstruction of history of man-made pollution of the global atmosphere. A part of these studies was related to the climatic issues. Ice core records of CO2 have been widely used as a proof that, due to man’s activity the current atmospheric level of CO2 is about 25% higher than in the pre-industrial period. These records became the basic input parameters in the models of the global carbon cycle and a cornerstone of the man-made climatic warming hypothesis. These records do not represent the atmospheric reality, as I will try to demonstrate in my statement.
    Relevant Background
    In order to study the history of industrial pollution of the global atmosphere, between 1972 and 1980, I organized 11 glacier expeditions, which measured natural and man-made pollutants in contemporary and ancient precipitation, preserved in 17 glaciers in Arctic, Antarctic, Alaska, Norway, the Alps, the Himalayas, the Ruwenzori Mountains in Uganda, the Peruvian Andes and in Tatra Mountains in Poland. I also measured long-term changes of dust in the troposphere and stratosphere, and the lead content in humans living in Europe and elsewhere during the past 5000 years. In 1968 I published the first paper on lead content in glacier ice[1]. Later I demonstrated that in pre-industrial period the total flux of lead into the global atmosphere was higher than in the 20th century, that the atmospheric content of lead is dominated by natural sources, and that the lead level in humans in Medieval Ages was 10 to 100 times higher than in the 20th century. In the 1990s I was working in the Norwegian Polar Research Institute in Oslo, and in the Japanese National Institute of Polar Research in Tokyo. In this period I studied the effects of climatic change on polar regions, and the reliability of glacier studies for estimation of CO2 concentration in the ancient atmosphere.
    False Low Pre-industrial CO2 in the Atmosphere
    Determinations of CO2 in polar ice cores are commonly used for estimations of the pre-industrial CO2 atmospheric levels. Perusal of these determinations convinced me that glaciological studies are not able to provide a reliable reconstruction of CO2 concentrations in the ancient atmosphere. This is because the ice cores do not fulfill the essential closed system criteria. One of them is a lack of liquid water in ice, which could dramatically change the chemical composition the air bubbles trapped between the ice crystals. This criterion, is not met, as even the coldest Antarctic ice (down to -73°C) contains liquid water[2]. More than 20 physico-chemical processes, mostly related to the presence of liquid water, contribute to the alteration of the original chemical composition of the air inclusions in polar ice[3].
    One of these processes is formation of gas hydrates or clathrates. In the highly compressed deep ice all air bubbles disappear, as under the influence of pressure the gases change into the solid clathrates, which are tiny crystals formed by interaction of gas with water molecules. Drilling decompresses cores excavated from deep ice, and contaminates them with the drilling fluid filling the borehole. Decompression leads to dense horizontal cracking of cores, by a well known sheeting process. After decompression of the ice cores, the solid clathrates decompose into a gas form, exploding in the process as if they were microscopic grenades. In the bubble-free ice the explosions form a new gas cavities and new cracks[4]. Through these cracks, and cracks formed by sheeting, a part of gas escapes first into the drilling liquid which fills the borehole, and then at the surface to the atmospheric air. Particular gases, CO2, O2 and N2 trapped in the deep cold ice start to form clathrates, and leave the air bubbles, at different pressures and depth. At the ice temperature of -15°C dissociation pressure for N2 is about 100 bars, for O2 75 bars, and for CO2 5 bars. Formation of CO2 clathrates starts in the ice sheets at about 200 meter depth, and that of O2 and N2 at 600 to 1000 meters. This leads to depletion of CO2 in the gas trapped in the ice sheets. This is why the records of CO2 concentration in the gas inclusions from deep polar ice show the values lower than in the contemporary atmosphere, even for the epochs when the global surface temperature was higher than now. (etc.)
    —–
    try also:
    http://www.21stcenturysciencetech.com for his “CO2: The Greatest Scientific scandal of the Century.”
    sounds like a skeptic to me!

  83. Joel Shore (11:29:52) :
    “(It seems a bit extreme to me to assume that Hansen has made an elementary math mistake or tuned the numbers and no fellow scientist has found this!)”
    I didn’t say he accidently made a math mistake. I’m saying he “tuned” his math mistake to be what he wanted it to say. I’m saying he locked himself into a certain way of thinking about the issue long ago and he can’t get out now.
    Here is another way of looking at the mistake.
    Ice sheet and vegetation impact => effectively changes in the Albedo which have their effect through Solar Forcing => [240 W/m2 (today) – 3.5 W/m2 (ice age)] * 0.75C = 177.4K
    Greenhouse Forcing => [150 W/m2 (today) – 2.4 W/m (ice age)] * 0.75C = 110.7K
    Add together (and throw in the small aerosols impact) => voila, 288K just what it is supposed to be – so 0.75C is right after all?
    WRONG.
    The solar forcing is supposed to be 255K (not 177K) and the greenhouse forcing is supposed to be 33K (not 110K)
    You cannot just average the two numbers with a 0.75C and get the result. That is a elementary shortcut math mistake. The solar forcing needs to be calculated with the Stefan Boltzmann equations (not an averaged “tuned” book the cooks climate model).
    You can actually fit the ice age into the Stefan Boltzmann equations and get the right numbers (and a proper greenhouse component can still give you 3.0C per doubling if you want) BUT you do not have a marginal temperature impact per Watt of 0.75C.
    http://img524.imageshack.us/img524/6840/sbearthsurfacetemp.png
    http://img43.imageshack.us/img43/2608/sbtempcperwatt.png
    I think you have played around with this stuff enough before to see what I am saying.
    And the Albedo of the Earth during the last glacial maximum was almost certainly higher than 0.330 (compared to today of 0.298 and Hansen’s fake 0.313 (which would be 0.326 if he used the Stefan Boltzmann equations properly)).
    I know lots of math, and lots of places to take shortcuts and still get close to the right numbers (like Hansen did) but that still leaves a marginal Temp change per watt as a residual which is calculated wrong.

  84. Sorry, I also made a simple shortcut math mistake.
    Hansen’s forcing numbers work out to be 288K, which is today’s temperature, not the ice age temperature which is supposed to be around 283K.
    So, not only does his averages not work out to the proper Solar Forcing numbers and the proper Greenhouse Forcing numbers, he actually doesn’t simulate an ice age at all – he simulates today’s temperatures.

  85. Bill Illis says:

    Here is another way of looking at the mistake.
    Ice sheet and vegetation impact => effectively changes in the Albedo which have their effect through Solar Forcing => [240 W/m2 (today) – 3.5 W/m2 (ice age)] * 0.75C = 177.4K
    Greenhouse Forcing => [150 W/m2 (today) – 2.4 W/m (ice age)] * 0.75C = 110.7K
    Add together (and throw in the small aerosols impact) => voila, 288K just what it is supposed to be – so 0.75C is right after all?
    WRONG.

    I agree that this argument is wrong. But, could you please show me where Hansen has made this argument? I don’t know of anybody who assumes the 0.75 C / [W/m^2] holds over the whole scale all the way down to absolute zero.
    Just because you can come up with a silly argument that miraculously reproduces the Hansen’s result does not mean that Hansen’s arguments or conclusions are incorrect…It just means that your argument is incorrect.

  86. By the way, Bill, you are of course never going to come up with 0.75 C / [W/m^2] using the Stefan-Boltzmann Equations since these equations will give you only the “bare” response in ABSENCE of feedbacks (which is somewhere around 0.25-0.3 C / [W/m^2], as I recall, when the calculation is done correctly).
    The 0.75 C / [W/m^2] result is what Hansen estimates in the presence of (relatively fast) feedbacks…and it is obtained simply from the empirical observations of what the temperature difference was during the LGM along with estimates of what the forcings were. I imagine that one could conceivably make arguments that Hansen hasn’t estimated these forcings well. However, you haven’t made any here that don’t seem to rely on incorrect assumptions about how you think Hansen might have estimated them.

  87. However, you haven’t made any here that don’t seem to rely on incorrect assumptions about how you think Hansen might have estimated them.
    Huh????
    soph·is·try (sf-str)
    n. pl. soph·is·tries
    1. Plausible but fallacious argumentation.
    2. A plausible but misleading or fallacious argument.
    The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition

  88. Joel Shore (19:33:35) : “I imagine that one could conceivably make arguments that Hansen hasn’t estimated these forcings well.”
    Yeah, for good reasons.
    Legally insane people can not sign contracts….why should they be relied upon for scientific information?
    Chris
    Norfolk, VA, USA

  89. Joel Shore (19:33:35) :
    “I imagine that one could conceivably make arguments that Hansen hasn’t estimated these forcings well. However, you haven’t made any here …”
    I am just testing out some parts of a post I am working on – trying to see if there are valid arguments against it.
    So, let’s say I have calculated that the Albedo of the Earth during the last glacial maximum was about 0.333 (versus today of 0.298).
    Solar forcing at the surface would therefore have changed by -12.0 watts/metre^2 (versus Hansen’s -3.5).
    = [1366 watts^m^2 * (1-0.333)/4] – [1366 watts^m2 (1-0.298)/4 = -12.0 watts/m^2
    So yeah, I am saying Hansen’s -3.5 watts^2 is a very bad estimation. To get that kind of number you’d have to assume there was no change in Albedo beyond 60 degrees latitude or the southern tip of Greenland (ie. no glaciers in Churchill Canada, Chicago, New York, Scotland or Moscow and no sea ice at Newfoundland, or any increase in sea ice around Antarctica).

  90. In the last ice-age I presume that the southern ice-cap joined to South America. Surely this would have blocked the circum-polar current and done weird things to the Humboldt current and El Nino?

  91. Sandy (08:08:56)
    The reconstructions do not show sea ice extending through the Drake Passage to South America. There is a moderate increase around the rest of Antarctica and glaciers would have pushed past the coast but at the Drake Passage, there is enough biologic evidence to show there wasn’t sea ice here (probably ocean currents and winds kept it ice-free).
    Of course, on South America, glaciers built up on the Andes so the Drake Passage would have had mile-high glaciers on both sides.

  92. TonyB – OK , I read it or , rather , slogged through it . As a layman , I’m not sure how he reached some of his conclusions but I wish I had ten bucks for every time he used the word assume . Also , Is tortuosity really a word ?

  93. “”” savethesharks (20:27:42) :
    However, you haven’t made any here that don’t seem to rely on incorrect assumptions about how you think Hansen might have estimated them.
    Huh????
    soph·is·try (sf-str)
    n. pl. soph·is·tries
    1. Plausible but fallacious argumentation.
    2. A plausible but misleading or fallacious argument. “””
    Which leads one to the observation that people who think they are sophisticated, often truly are !

  94. “”” S.E.Hendriksen (15:55:28) :
    We actually have all the data from the Eem-time from the DYE 3 drilling… do they try to confirm themself or what?
    It was 5-6 degrees warmer in Grenland on that time a the Ice cap was intact far away South of DYE 3 (according to the drilling data)….but we don’t no much about the edge melting.
    KInd regards
    Svend “””
    Good to see a post from you Svend; nothing like getting the scoop right from ground zero.
    Are you going to help them drive stakes into the ice to pin it down this winter so it doesn’t all fall off; or are you going home to the mainland to wait it out.
    Do keep us posted on what these folks are up to with this new ice core. My prediction is that you do not have to worry about having no ice on Greenland any time soon.
    Cheers.
    George

  95. P Walker
    You have learnt your lessons well grasshopper…The words ‘assumed’ ‘modelled’ or ‘interpolated’ will get you far in the settled world of climate science.
    Ice core methodology pushes the boundarie of my credulity too far, I much prefer the actual readings unearthed by Ernst Beck. If you have not already done so a visit to his site is well worth while.
    tony b

  96. If we see comparable rises in sea level in the future like we have seen in the ice-core record, we can pretty much say good-bye to American coastal cities like Miami, Houston, Norfolk, New Orleans and Oakland.”

    This has grated with me since I first read it a couple of days back!
    Have we ever seen sea level rises in the ice core record?
    DaveE.

  97. TonyB – don’t know if you’re still checking this post , but I have one of Beck’s papers on file . I tried to enter another , more succinct one , but it didn’t go . I also found a paper bt Jaworski (Jakowski ? ) thae ripped ice core methodology , particularily in regard to extraction .

  98. Bill Illis says:

    So, let’s say I have calculated that the Albedo of the Earth during the last glacial maximum was about 0.333 (versus today of 0.298)…

    Well fine, but how did you get that estimate for the change in albedo? Are you properly accounting for issues such as the less solar radiation per unit surface area (due to obliquity) in the high latitudes as opposed to the low latitudes…and the fact that ice underneath dense cloud cover will not significantly change the albedo?
    You are making grand statements about how Hansen is wrong while providing no evidence to back them up.

  99. Bill:
    By the way, a little bit of google searching turned up this paper http://www.springerlink.com/content/657k8yf6e6ml5c8y/fulltext.pdf which may be a useful source into the literature on modeling the LGM vs the current climate. (You can also use google scholar to find 6 more recent papers that cite it: http://scholar.google.com/scholar?cites=13237043494166736609&hl=en ) Interestingly (if I understand it correctly from a quick skim), this paper seems to conclude that more the temperature change was caused by CO2 than by the icesheet+other albedo effects, which implies even less role for ice sheet albedo changes than Hansen assumes.

  100. Joel Shore (16:44:21) :
    “Are you properly accounting for issues such as the less solar radiation per unit surface area (due to obliquity) in the high latitudes as opposed to the low latitudes…”
    The area between 40N-50N is 6.2% of the surface area of the Earth and receives 89.2% of the average solar radiation … so that is all accounted for properly.
    “… and the fact that ice underneath dense cloud cover will not significantly change the albedo? ”
    Clouds are definitely an issue but the climate models can’t simulate clouds or cloud cover properly so there is no reason to believe the climate models can do this any better than assuming there is no change in the average cloudiness of the Earth.
    If one wanted to make the argument that cloud cover decreases (lowering the Albedo) during an ice age then one is dangerously close to accepting Lindzen’s “Iris” proposition which the climate science community has soundly rejected. If cloudiness increases during an ice age, then we have vastly understated the Albedo increase.
    We do have an increase in continental glaciation which should increase the cloud cover on the margins of the glaciers. There is also an increase in desert conditions (and much more grassland due to the lower CO2) so that should lead to less cloud cover over these regions etc. etc. The increased dust levels in the ice cores do not neccessarily indicate that it was dryer since the biggest increase in dust levels happens during the periods when the glaciers were melting back (probably the loess left behind when the glaciers stop moving forward and melt back).
    But nobody should ever mention the positive ice-albedo-feedback due to global warming again if the same researchers nearly completely discount the effect for the massive increase in snow and ice during the ice ages.
    I just cannot accept the climate model simulations since all the impacts just seem so schizophrenic like the above points indicate. (Albedo only matters when it is a positive temperature impact – clouds only matter when they point to high CO2 sensitivity – a mile of ice on 20 million km^2 of land and an increase in 20 million km^2 in sea ice has almost no impact on Albedo – we use the Stefan Boltzmann equations to set all the parametres and formulae for the greenhouse effect but we don’t use it all in climate models or when the Albedo changes – etc. …)

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