Pielke Senior: Arctic Temperature Reporting In The News Needs A Reality Check

http://osopher.files.wordpress.com/2009/05/reality-check.jpg?resize=180%2C198Arctic Temperature Reporting In The News Needs A Reality Check

Their new articles that claim the Arctic is rapidly warming. These articles are an excellent examples of the cherrypicking of particular published papers to promote the very narrow perspective of the journalists.

These include

An Associated Press news article by Randolph E. Schmid titled “Arctic reverses long-term trend”.

A New York Times article by Andrew C. Revkin titled “Humans May Have Ended Long Arctic Chill”.

The Schmid article has the text

“The most recent 10-year interval, 1999-2008, was the warmest of the last 2,000 years in the Arctic, according to the researchers led by Darrell S. Kaufman, a professor of geology and environmental science at Northern Arizona University.

Summer temperatures in the Arctic averaged 2.5 degrees Fahrenheit (1.4 degrees Celsius) warmer than would have been expected if the cooling had continued, the researchers said.

The finding adds fuel to the debate over a House-passed climate bill now pending in the Senate. The administration-backed measure would impose the first limits on greenhouse gases and eventually would lead to an 80 percent reduction by putting a price on each ton of climate-altering pollution.”

Revkin reinforces this extreme view in his September 3 2009 article with his figure of  2000 years of Arctic surface temperatures, with each decade having the same temporal resolution as the last 10 years.

The publication of these news articles are clearly meant to influence the political process, as evident in the last paragraph, where Schmid writes “The finding adds fuel to the debate over a House-passed climate bill now pending in the Senate.”

The documentation of their biased reporting is easy to show.  For example,  they do not report on observational data which does not show this rapid recent warming; e.g. see that the current high latitude temperatures are close to the longer term average since 1958

The Danish Meteorological Institute Daily Mean Temperatures in the Arctic 1958 – 2008 [and thanks to the excellent weblog Watts Up With That for making this easily available to us!]

There are also peer reviewed papers which show that the Schmid and Revkin articles are biased; e. g. see

i) the areal coverage of the coldest middle tropospheric temperatures (below -40C)  have not changed radically as shown in the Revkin figure; see

Herman, B., M. Barlage, T.N. Chase, and R.A. Pielke Sr., 2008: Update on a proposed mechanism for the regulation of  minimum mid-tropospheric and surface temperatures in the Arctic and Antarctic. J. Geophys. Res.-Atmos., 113, D24101, doi:10.1029/2008JD009799.

and

ii) there is a warm bias in the Arctic surface temperature measurements when they are used to characterize deeper atmospheric warming; see

Klotzbach, P.J., R.A. Pielke Sr., R.A. Pielke Jr., J.R. Christy, and R.T. McNider, 2009: An alternative explanation for differential temperature trends at the surface and in the lower troposphere. J. Geophys. Res., accepted.

At least the news Editors of the newspapers are starting to recognize that these journalists are presenting slanted news. The Schmid article appeared only on page 12 of my local newspaper.

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181 thoughts on “Pielke Senior: Arctic Temperature Reporting In The News Needs A Reality Check

  1. “At least the news Editors of the newspapers are starting to recognize that these journalists are presenting slanted news. The Schmid article appeared only on page 12 of my local newspaper.”
    Not at the Guardian and London Metro who ran the news as lead stories for millions of Britons to read on the way to work.

  2. It was on the front page of the SF Chronicle. This is San Francisco after all. Our Academy of Science is also biased when it comes to climate issues. They get taxpayer funds: The Academy of Politically Correct Science.

  3. This article shows up as #1 if I search for “Global Warming” in Google News right now:
    http://features.csmonitor.com/innovation/2009/09/04/hey-global-warming-skeptics-take-your-heads-out-of-the-sand/
    and contains FUD based on the Kaufman et al. paper and Ban Ki Moon’s recent visit to Norway: “General Ban Ki-moon has seen the meltdown of the Arctic for himself”, the article says. Ironically, the part of the arctic sea ice rim that Ban Ki Moon visited (northwest of Svalbard), is as normal as it gets – it’s almost exactly at the median, according to NSIDC: http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_daily_extent_hires.png

  4. The only question is whether newspapers are going to suffer a well deserved death before or after permanent damage is done. Unfortunately, it currently appears the answer is after. Then the won shuts down the Internet, and all news is forever stopped.

  5. “The Schmid article appeared only on page 12 of my local newspaper.”
    But it appeared on the front page of the San Francisco Chronicle’s website and at Weather Underground as some sort of gospel.

  6. Summer temperatures in the Arctic averaged 2.5 degrees Fahrenheit (1.4 degrees Celsius) warmer than would have been expected if the cooling had continued, the researchers said.
    The finding adds fuel to the debate over a House-passed climate bill now pending in the Senate.

    However, the US government itself in the form of NOAA has recently said the recent Arctic warm temperatures are due to reduced sea ice coverage which in turn was caused by weather factors. That is, the recent Arctic warm temperatures have little or nothing to do with ‘global warming’.
    The lesson here is of the dangers of letting politicians and political activists (including political activists who also happen to be scientists) decide complex scientific issues. The worst offender being of course the United Nations.
    Although it begs the question, how else can we decide?
    My proposal is to give each side an equal opportunity to make its own case and rebutt the other sides case, as in a court of law. Then let people decide for themselves through a referendum. Although this proposal has its problems.

  7. The news reflects on todays science.
    Al Gores consensus of scientists are a partisan lot interested in promoting their beliefs, with little interest in the actual science.

  8. Here’s the reality check:
    There no coverage in any English-language publication except Science Daily of the new 2,000-year-long sediment reconstruction by Oppo, et.al. in Nature concerning sea surface temperatures (SST) from the Indo-Pacific warm pool (IPWP) which suggests that temperatures in the region may have been as warm during the Medieval Warm Period as they are today. The lead author suggests that Northern Hemisphere reconstructions which indicate the MWP wasn’t as warm as today may need to be re-examined. This is important peer-reviewed science in one of the premiere journals, yet there’s no coverage. A Google News search for “indo-pacific warm pool” yields only the Science Daily article, yet a search for ” artic cooling” returns 684 stories on the Kaufman paper alone. I can only conclude that there is overwhelming media bias in advance of the Copenhagen climate conference against any real science by real scientists that gives any suggestion that modern temperatures are not unique.
    See http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090827131832.htm

  9. The DMI temperature graphics certainly do no indicate a rise in the annual summer highs, but is there any dataset on arctic temperatures that would put a stake in the heart of this? Also, I might have missed this in the earlier thread, but is there any rationale provided for the step function jump in the 30’s and 40’s? Obviously this is the bulk of the claimed temperature increase.

  10. This article also appeared on Tucson’s Arizona Daily Star. I added comments to the article presenting the “The Hockey stick controversy” to the readers. I made them aware of the Steve Mcintyre HADCRU controversy. I directed them to an article that demonstrated when using non tree ring proxys the Medieval Warm period and the little ice age reappeared. I believe the comments section attached to these articles is the only way to counter this propaganda.
    The most powerful reference I provided IMHO was the new Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution article on the temperature reconstruction of paleo SST data that has been discussed on this forum recently:
    http://www.whoi.edu/page.do?pid=7545&tid=282&cid=59106&ct=162
    This article reveals that the MWP was the same temperature as today’s SST for the Indo Pacific Warm Pool. The graph illustrated is overlaid on top of Mann’s Northern Hemisphere ‘hockey stick’. The authors are clearly challenging the Mann reconstruction. Oppo comments, “Although there are significant uncertainties with our own reconstruction, our work raises the idea that perhaps even the Northern Hemisphere temperature reconstructions need to be looked at more closely.” As Roger has pointed out heat generated from global warming must primarily reside in the ocean due to the higher heat capacity of water and the greater extent of the oceans than land. If the MWP and LIA are alive and well in the historic ocean SST then frankly these land based atmospheric reconstruction do not really even count. I would enjoy hearing Roger’s comments about the Woods Hole article.

  11. Looking at the ASMR-E ice extent, I see an alarming trend. The summer ice extent has been increasing at an alarming rate since 2007. IF this trend continues, there MIGHT be ice as far south as the equator within 10 YEARS.

  12. Has the Kaufman paper actually gotten published ? I was under the impression that this was all pre-pubilcation hype .

  13. Adventurer Ola Skinnarmo follow in the wake of Nordenskiöld(in Nordenskiöld’s footstep) is now traveling the Arctic journey most critical point.
    The ship Explorer of Canada has reached Cape Chelyuskin, the continent’s northernmost point, and is halfway to the goal Bering Strait.
    A 50 percent chance
    Even before his departure in June warned that the Russian scientists a chance to sail through the Northeast Passage was only 50 percent. An unusually cold winter and late spring in the Arctic have risen at ismassorna. It’s a paradox, because the expedition is made partly to draw attention to global warming and melting icebergs. Translated from Expressen 17 augusti 2009
    When the map and reality don’t match, reality rules.
    We are not yet close to the warming of the Arctic that was … .. 980-1450 🙂

  14. I can confirm that this year has been the hottest on record. It is 57F at the moment here in London. The peak was 65F. The average was 61F, Thus it felt like a fairly representative day, given that its neither hot summer or cold winter. Since the UK is fairly representative of the globe, London in particular this represents a whopping increase on the previous hottest year on record, which was only 52F.
    Isn’t it clever what we can do with mathematics and presumptions?
    Its much worse than we thought it could be. We’re done for.

  15. Dr. Pielke Sr.,
    I understand that posting on WUWT may appeal to you because this blog reaches so many people. When you post here you certainly raise the credibility of this blog but, at the same time, you severely undermine your own.
    Regarding the “news” about climate change, most journalists attempt to present “both sides of the story” even if one side (AGW) has overwhelming support by the experts. They are trained to do so and in that regard, the news has been decidedly unfair with regards to AGW.

  16. disclaimer to previous post:
    Under no circumstances can this temperature information be copied, requested or reproduced, do to its sensitivity as private/commercial information.
    despite the fact that the temperature record began in 1850, no possible breaches of it from previous years can be taken into account. It is therefore held that prior to 1850, no such evidence of warmer periods exists.

  17. Scott A. Mandia 16:45:10
    You should worry about your own reputation instead of Pielke Pere’s.
    That you think the world’s journalists have given a fair hearing to the skeptics is extremely damaging to your reputation. On what planet do you read the news?
    ======================================

  18. Once you concede that warming is bad you have lost half the battle. It is not enough to point out the bad science and bias in the reporting. We need to remind people that CO2 and warming increases the growing season and is good for humanity and civilization flourished during the Medieval and Roman warm periods.
    I just finished Ian Plimer’s book, Heaven and Earth. He does a wonderful job of discussing the climate changes and the effect on humanity in chapter 2, History. Everything I thought I knew about world history has to be reconsidered after reading this chapter. He also points out that the dust in the ice core records shows more dust and therefore more desertification during the cold periods when reduced evaporation of the oceans results in more droughts. If the Earth would warm up as much as it did during the MWP, it would be good. A northwest passage through the arctic ocean would also be a good thing. It’s a strange world we we live in where half the people are afraid of warming and the other half are afraid of what the first half will do in their fear. We are not much different from those who burned witches when the crops failed during the LIA.

  19. Scott Mandia:
    The Pielkes allow Anthony to post what they post elsewhere. Most journalists are ignorant of basic logic, let alone science. They do not “attempt to present both sides of the story”. That’s sooo old school.
    Today’s journos merely report self-reinforcing stories; those that support their, or their editor’s, opinions.

  20. Scott A. Mandia:
    “(…)most journalists attempt to present “both sides of the story” even if one side (AGW) has overwhelming support by the experts.”
    Are you kidding? Most journalists don’t even attempt to present both sides of the story, and therefore it only has the appearance that one side (AGW) has overwhelming support by the experts.
    By the way, this article is taken from Pielke’s own website and is does NOT constitute a contribution from him to WUWT, contrary to what you claim.

  21. Kaufman, D.S.; Schneider, D.P.; McKay, N.P.; Ammann, C.M.; Bradley, R.S.; Briffa, K.R.; Miller, G.H.; Otto-Bliesner, B.L.; Overpeck, J.T.; Vinther, B.M.; & Arctic Lakes 2k Project Members. (2009). Recent Warming Reverses Long-Term Arctic Cooling. Science 325, 1236-1239. doi: 10.1126/science.1173983.
    “Orbitally driven summer insolation continued to decrease through the 20th century, implying that summer temperatures should have continued to cool.”
    They’re cherry-picking one oscillation, process, & timescale. What concerns me most is what I don’t see in the references; the authors appear oblivious to major branches of the literature.
    Clearly there are untold behind-the-scenes politics going on when even right-wing sites like ctv.ca are running this & related stories. (The right-wing forces in Canada wouldn’t let this stuff through ctv.ca to the public unless they believed such scare-mongering would benefit them somehow.) This is getting really weird. The top players aren’t showing their cards, but they’re getting sloppy at hiding them.
    It’s not unusual for WUWT readers to be jadedly suspicious of political interference in science, but I think we can admit that this paper occupies what might best be described as an alternate dimension of distortion on some weird new political spectrum that does not fit our traditional right-left model. Extreme-greens and extreme-capitalists appear as one with their common interest of encouraging speculation on Arctic melt. Watching this orgy of emotion & speculation from a neutral perspective is getting more than a little sickening for anyone who is simply interested in the truth about climate.
    There is little hope for rational discourse about Arctic climate spatiotemporal patterns. (People won’t leave their politics & aspirations out of the discussion.)

  22. Re journalists, I read once that the average reporter has a knowledge of science equal to that of a grade six student. At times I wonder if it is that high.
    IanM

  23. Robert, you are making my case for me. It is precisely BECAUSE these journalists do NOT know sceicne that they are NOT representing the real science. How is a journalist to know that folks like S. Fred Singer, Ian Plimer, Lord Monckton, etc. are out in left field, especially when folks like Singer are so well-credentialed. (Of course, a background check on these guys would reveal quite a bit.)
    Let us take a look then at the research of media coverage of climate science:
    BoykoV, M.T., BoykoV, J.M., Climate change and journalistic norms: A case-study of US mass-media coverage, Geoforum (2007), doi:10.1016/j.geoforum.2007.01.008
    available at: http://www.eci.ox.ac.uk/publications/downloads/boykoff07-geoforum.pdf
    There are countless references at the end of this article to keep you busy.
    An older article, but also of interest, is:
    BoykoV, M.T., BoykoV, J.M., 2004. Balance as bias: global warming and
    the U.S. prestige press. Global Environmental Change 15 (2), 125–136.
    available at: http://sciencepolicy.colorado.edu/admin/publication_files/resource-2747-2004.33.pdf
    This paper demonstrates that US prestige-press coverage of global warming from 1988 to 2002 has contributed to a significant
    divergence of popular discourse from scientific discourse. This failed discursive translation results from an accumulation of tactical media responses and practices guided by widely accepted journalistic norms. Through content analysis of US prestige press— meaning the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and the Wall Street Journal—this paper focuses on the norm of balanced reporting, and shows that the prestige press’s adherence to balance actually leads to biased coverage of both anthropogenic contributions to global warming andresultant action.

    To summarize the data: the Boykoffs analyzed 636 articles and found that 52.7% gave equal coverage to the scientific consensus and to the opposed natural fluctuations claims. 35.3% emphasized the scientific consensus but did mention the opposing view. Only 5.9% reported on just the scientific consensus. Most astonishing 6.2% only reported on the opposing view. Apparently a scientific consensus meant nothing.
    I am not making this stuff up. Just consider here in the US if one watches Fox News vs. MSNBC. Neither of these are providing an honest assessment of anything, let alone climate change, although I would state that Fox News is the worse offender of the two.

  24. kim (17:17:39) :
    Scott A. Mandia 16:45:10
    You should worry about your own reputation instead of Pielke Pere’s.
    That you think the world’s journalists have given a fair hearing to the skeptics is extremely damaging to your reputation. On what planet do you read the news?

    Did you confuse the word “unfair” with the word “fair”?

  25. I apologize to Dr. Pielke, Sr. for believing that he posts here. I should have known better.
    REPLY: No apology needed. Actually he gives me a blanket license to repost any of his essays here. I also setup and manage his blog for him. – Anthony

  26. “The finding adds fuel to the debate over a House-passed climate bill now pending in the Senate.”
    I hate to say it but many here are missing the point. The time to deal with this fantasy world using science is over. See – House of Cards (HOC)
    HOC works like this – I say the Arctic has lost 50% (over the 50% mean of the 20% proxy x a number I just pulled out of my ass) coverage this year. You (quite rightly) call BS. By the time you have proved your point (using actual data) there are another 1000 newspaper articles quoting my numbers and it is now common knowledge that 50% is correct.
    The Science HOC – I create a hockey stick (or GISS) – thousands of papers are built on my HS (or many more on GISS) – I’m correct, after all I have Sum(peer reviewed my HS (or GISS) based papers) on my side. Even if, after a year, you can prove that my HS (or GISS) is made of bogus statistics and data smearing and divining of entrails, so what? The (news/scientific) papers have sold and, “reality” wise, who cares?
    In England we call it “chip wrapping” – yesterdays news keeping fish and chips warm on your way home from the Pub.
    I hear “happening much faster than we thought”. As far as I see the only thing that qualifies on that score is Copenhagen. By the time the western MSM is celebrating “a new global era” people will start to feel the cold during NH winter.
    If you are old or poor in the NH – you will die. It is simple. I (artificially) put up the price of energy – (to the point where) you can’t afford it (note where ETS kicked in (p.50)) – you die when it gets cold. Simple.
    OK let’s try it another way (for the LOR (Lord of the Rings) fantasy greens). You have traditionally collected wood from the local forest to burn in winter and stay warm. The local Warlord and his Goons now decide to start charging you, by way of a tax, Goon bonus and bribes, way more than you can afford to take wood out of the forest. Do you (a) fight back or (b) die shivering before the peace of hypothermia sets in.
    Those of you that answered (b) can leave now.
    Take a close look at the comments sections of some of our favourite warmer sites. It has nothing to do with CO2, it is all about anti human activity/ population reduction (although they always assume they will be left among the chosen few).
    The (western) MSM feeds people what they want to hear. In my work life (for another week or two) I have to put up with a couple of Greenshirts (married, Guardian reading, public sector employed, Green party activists). Boy GS thinks the population of the UK should be 2 mil (58 mil down on current). His wife thinks that the roads will be much better once the “rest” can’t afford to drive any more (or have “gone away”). You can’t reason with these people – they are lunatics with a vote, a secure University position and a full pension.
    Pielke Senior – you are far to polite to these people. I appreciate that in your position you must be careful when speaking publicly. I, however, have no such restrictions – Greens, you will not be part of the 2 mil and I will not be part of the 58 mil for I have 9 mil (.350 US)
    BTW – did I get it right that the public sector employee “IOU’s” from the green paradise of California are due to be “cashed” at the end of the month (oct. 1st)?
    Did I also get it right that they (coupons) are to be cashed at “market value”?
    — Californians correct me please – sounds like a recipe for riots —

  27. Scott A. Mandia 18:00:32
    Ah, I see, it’s Planet Boykoff. I hear Naomi Oreskes singing a siren song for you.
    Frederick Michael 18:02:45
    Perhaps I misunderstood him; I interpreted Mandia’s point to be that the journalists had given the skeptical view a fair hearing, to which he objects. My point, and he just reinforces it with his link to the Boykoff work, is that he hasn’t been reading this world’s newspapers well enough to understand their horrendous bias in favor of climate alarmism.
    Good heavens, Scott, did you not read above in this thread the differential treatment given the bogus Arctic story compared to the legitimate Sea Surface Temperature one?
    ========================================

  28. Dear not-a-doctor Mandia,
    Thank you for your concern about the reputation of folks doing science. We need more community college professors to beat the drum of consensus and whistle-blow on all those who dare question it.
    After all, those who dare veer from the politically approved science are doing a disservice to science which is a consensus-based endeavor, much like theology and barbershop quartettery.
    How kind of you to be the arbiter of science orthodoxy for us mere mortals who can’t read and need your help to understand which sceicne is approved and/or disapproved, and to steer journalists in particular onto the proper straight and narrow. All of humanity should congratulate you for your orthodox sceicne policing, from which we can only benefit.

  29. Scott A. Mandia (18:00:32) :
    I have not scrutinized the studies that you referenced, so I will accept your summary of them. But they just amaze me — that summary does not match my personal experience. Observations in professional and personal life have taught me that it is wise to question the experts when there is mismatch between the experts and my personal experience. (I will emphasize that I do not discard the experts, but rather I examine why there is a mismatch.) Just consider two recent studies — a study from Indian Ocean proxies confirmed the centuries-old understanding of the Medieval Warm Period bugt received no coverage in the Popular press. Yet the Arctic study arguing for 2000 years of Arctic cooling was widely /universally reported in the MSM without mention of its grevious flaws. About 3 months ago, there was that ridiculous paper by Kofi Aman that global warming was killing 300,000 people year. CNN carried it in their Science News; Fox carried it their opinion; but no popular press examined the fallacies of the paper. We could talk about lack of symmetry in MSM treatment of Arctic and Antarctic. We could talkabout how the MSM carried the over-the-top propaganda of the CSSP . . . the list goes on and on. So it would be interesting to reconcile the Boykoffs with personal experience.

  30. Scott A. Mandia (16:45:10) :
    Frankly, Professor, I think you are on the wrong track with your sniping at Dr. Singer and others, but I’d also encourage you to ignore the ad-hom comments here about community college professors, etc… after all, I do teach at a community college, and despite the best wishes of my students, I’m not a “Dr. Phelan”…. sigh… (I coulda been!)
    On the other hand, I’ve got a quadrant of my house that was repaired in 1938 and now needs to be torn up to replace joists and boards that were simply laid on top of tamped-down sand because there was not enough labor to remove it. Help me excavate the Hurricane of 1938 and, free of charge, I’ll supply the beer, hot dogs, and an endless rant about why you are wrong about AGW. Whaddayasay? Anthony and his moderators have my permission to release my e-mail address to you.

  31. Scott Mandia: Here’s a way to sample media coverage of the issue: Consult The Reader’s Guide to Periodical Literature for the topics Global Warming & Climate Change. Examine a random sample of the articles and see in how many of them both sides of the issue are presented. Or just examine the tilt in their headlines.
    “How is a journalist to know that folks like S. Fred Singer, Ian Plimer, Lord Monckton, etc. are out in left field, especially when folks like Singer are so well-credentialed. (Of course, a background check on these guys would reveal quite a bit.?
    AD homs–a favorite CAWGer tactic. (PS: Similar checks on many leading CAWGers are also revealing.)

  32. I noticed a positive sign in the NYTimes comments:

    “The study’s Abstract mentions the [warm] ‘Middle Ages’ and the [cold] ‘Little Ice Age.’ Both are well established; for example, C. Loehle (and many other researchers) show the Medieval Warm Period with higher temperatures than even the past 30 years. But Fig 3 of this paper doesn’t show these; it goes back to the discredited ‘Hockey-Stick’ temp curve of Mann (which even the IPCC no longer uses) that shows no Medieval Warm Period (MWP) or Little Ice Age (LIA),” Singer said. [Editor’s Note: In addition, a 2006 peer-reviewed analysis showed the 20th century was not unusually warm.]

    Note how the editor weighed in with an accurate addendum!

  33. Scott A. Mandia (18:00:32) :
    From the link you provided to the article you reference
    4.1. Sampling
    The empirical evidence in this study comes from a
    systematic reading of newspaper articles—the unit of
    analysis—which were randomly selected from four
    major US newspapers: the New York Times, the Los
    Angeles Times, the Washington Post andt he Wall Street
    Journal. For reasons of geography, influence, and
    circulation, we consider these newspapers to be an
    important andpower ful swathe of the prestige press in
    the UnitedStates. 7
    Our sample consists of prestige-press news stories from
    1988 to 2002.

    Cherry picking, anyone?
    Also it stops at 2002. I wakened to the fact that something fishy was going on with all this AGW business in 2007, after Al Gore’s spectacular “documentary” which predicted 6 meter rises of the sea level. I am a retired particle physicist and live half my days next to the sea. I started counting up the level my cottage is and the possible inundation; I tended at the time to accord other scientists the integrity to be reporting real science and not video game speculations, as I would expect you and any other scientist to accept claims from particle physicists about gluons and quarks at face value.
    I was rudely awakened from my beliefs in scientists on the main being non deludable. I have read the physics justification of the last IPCC reports and during that time I kept getting up from reading the screen and pulling my hair, at the bad use of scientific methods and the cursory way data were used.
    The report you site, by the choice of samples and the choice of dates is a whitewash trying to clear the bulk of so called scientists in climate disciplines who will be really in a mess to justify themselves if the climate trend since 2000 continues.

  34. anna v (23:58:23) “[…] so called scientists in climate disciplines who will be really in a mess to justify themselves if the climate trend since 2000 continues.”
    They’ll just go with the “anthropogenic climate chaos” theme and capitalize on the opportunity to get more funding.
    anna v (23:58:23) “video game speculations”
    Well-said.

  35. ‘I did not have sexual relations with that woman’
    ‘There was no contact between the UK Government and the Scottish Government over the release of Al Megrahi’
    ‘Arctic temperatures are increasing dangerously due to human-induced global warming’
    ‘If I challenge climate change orthodoxy using the scientific method, I will soon be made a Professor in the United States’
    Yeah right…….

  36. “Scott A. Mandia (16:45:10) :
    Dr. Pielke Sr.,
    I understand that posting on WUWT may appeal to you because this blog reaches so many people. When you post here you certainly raise the credibility of this blog but, at the same time, you severely undermine your own.”
    Prof. Mandia seems to be an honorable person, follows his own advice and only posts on blogs nobody reads. But thanks to WUWT I now know not only that there is a Suffolk County Community College, I know there is a Suffolk County. Even if it is not, as I guessed, home of the famous Jean Butler.
    As for Prof. Pielke Sr., might it be that his reputation stems from WHAT he writes?

  37. Scott A. Mandia “This paper demonstrates that US prestige-press coverage of global warming from 1988 to 2002 has contributed to a significant
    divergence of popular discourse from scientific discourse.”
    Why have you picked a study that ends in 2002? What about post AR4? I personally have experienced a dramatic shift towards alarmism in the MSM since that time. It’s almost a feeding frenzy to see who can put out the most hysterical nonsense. I only hope that the first victims of cap and trade will be the newspapers – putting out all that CO2 to truck thousands of tons of paper that nobody needs thousands of miles each day!
    “How is a journalist to know that folks like S. Fred Singer, Ian Plimer, Lord Monckton, etc. are out in left field, especially when folks like Singer are so well-credentialed.”
    By “left field” I presume you mean AGW skeptic? Well, allow me to explain. You don’t need to know anything about science to see which article is critical of the AGW model and which is supportive. It’s all in the Abstract, and I assume even journalists have basic enough understanding of language to see which way an article tilts.

  38. Scott A. Mandia (16:45:10) :
    Dr. Pielke Sr.,
    I understand that posting on WUWT may appeal to you because this blog reaches so many people. When you post here you certainly raise the credibility of this blog but, at the same time, you severely undermine your own.
    Regarding the “news” about climate change, most journalists attempt to present “both sides of the story” even if one side (AGW) has overwhelming support by the experts. They are trained to do so and in that regard, the news has been decidedly unfair with regards to AGW.

    Well, I just read the explanation regarding climate models on your blog link, and I find that anyone who believes in current climate models, based on reasoning such as, we know the statistics of coin tosses, undermines their own credibility.
    Whilst you seem to have a low opinion of the credibility of this blog, and I a reader here have a low opinion of your blog, how do you suppose such an impasse could be resolved? Coin tosses aside, is there anything that can resolve these debates about whether climate predictions are credible or not?
    I for one became a skeptic about climate science by listening to climate scientists themselves. Your own blog is typical of the material I used to read which left me wondering…. wait a minute… this does not add up to a coherent, elegant, testable, verifiable piece of knowledge… so how come the world talking about capping CO2 and all that? The worst advert for the credibility of climate science is usually the climate scientists themselves, I find.
    I take particular interest in the comments here by engineers who, if they don’t understand something, people may die. Where is the evidence, even anecdotal, even intuitive, that climate science has that degree of rigour? And we are talking about people dying, we’re talking about the development of billions of people for centuries to come.

  39. Mr Mandia, I’ve just read Ian Plimer’s book and find it exceptionally reasoned and well referenced throughout. It will quite rightly influence many people who are undecided on the issue. His demonstration of how current climate and rate of change (if there is indeed any change) is not unknown by any means. As a geologist he understands and explains past climate history which generally has to be ignored to believe in AGW. He also understands and explains well the politics of AGW which is the key thing in climate debate
    Could you please, given the settled and overwhelming science that supports AGW, explain or link me to anything which gives such overwhelming evidence that it is real and as much a threat that the catastrophists would have us believe. I accept nothing predicted by climate modelling or increases in atmospheric CO2 just simply Anthropogenic CO2. I also don’t accept agreement between government sponsored establishments as proof of anything.
    If you can show me a piece of genuinely credible evidence that AGW is happening as opposed to just natural climate change I will become a believer immediately. If you can’t, which I sincerely doubt, you should stop diminishing your credibility by believing in AGW.

  40. The real science is discussed in the peer-reviewed literature. During the time frame considered by these studies AGW became increasingly clear in the literature. Since then there are few if any legitimate journal articles that refute AGW.
    My point is that the coverage of climate change should not present “both sides of the story” to the general public if the sides are not even close to being even. Because many journalists are not as science literate as we would like them to be, and because they are taught to be “fair and balanced”, they often lead the public to believe that there is still reasonable debate about the causes of global warming. There is not in the literature.
    When they put folks like S. Fred Singer on TV or quote him in the press, they confuse the public. When they quote the Pielkes they are quoting what I would call “The Loyal Opposition”. The Pielkes and the Singers/Plimers/Moncktons, etc. are not in the same category.
    BTW, when I left Penn State in 1991 I was not convinced of AGW. I figured it was part of the trend but not the dominant forcing mechanism. In the years since then, I have been convinced by the data supporting AGW and now I believe we need to move on to impacts and mitigation.
    I created my site as a service to the public because it is quite clear to me that they are not getting the real science because the real science is typically out of their reach.
    REPLY: Well be assured, starting your web page with a quote from Oreskes is not the way to impress anyone who knows the woman and her agenda. – A

  41. Alaska may be only a part of the Arctic, but seems they have trouble finding much warming since 77…
    http://climate.gi.alaska.edu/ClimTrends/Change/TempChange.html
    The period 1949 to 1975 was substantially colder than the period from 1977 to 2008, however since 1977 little additional warming has occurred in Alaska with the exception of Barrow and a few other locations. The stepwise shift appearing in the temperature data in 1976 corresponds to a phase shift of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation from a negative phase to a positive phase. Synoptic conditions with the positive phase tend to consist of increased southerly flow and warm air advection into Alaska during the winter, resulting in positive temperature anomalies.
    Chart for 77-08
    http://climate.gi.alaska.edu/ClimTrends/Change/7708Change.html

  42. Whenever warming in the Arctic is mentioned I hope everyone will recall the Sun.
    As has been documented in other discussions on WUWT, the Sun periodically warms the Arctic in two ways both of which are extensively documented in the scientific literature.
    One of these ways is the Sun’s gravitational field via the Lunar Nodal Cycle (LNC).
    There is substantial evidence that the LNC is a significant contributor to our planet’s climate dynamics. I include a carefully written and illustrated explanation of the LNC and review a lot of the published literature about its contribution to climate dynamics in my paper “The Sun’s role in regulating the Earth’s climate dynamics” published in the Journal of Energy and Environment Vol 20 No 1 2009.
    Amongst other things I wrote:
    “The ocean currents generated by the northward movement of the tidal bulge, in conjunction with the rotation of the Earth through the bulges in the normal manner creating our experience of the tides, brings warmish equatorial water to the Arctic accelerating the warming that had being going on there because of other forms of solar activity as discussed below.
    The LNC has maximum effect at higher latitudes, resulting in higher sea levels at these latitudes. It creates tidal currents resulting in diapycnal mixing, bringing the warmer equatorial waters into the Arctic. The LNC is therefore a major determinant of Arctic climate dynamics, influencing long term fluctuations in Arctic ice. As a result, it is a key driver of European climate.”
    There is also a very good paper accompanied by useful discussion and web links about the LNC on WUWT here:
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/05/23/evidence-of-a-lunisolar-influence-on-decadal-and-bidecadal-oscillations-in-globally-averaged-temperature-trends/#more-7965
    (aka http://tinyurl.com/mrjq9e )
    The effect of the LNC is amplified by the distinct geography of the high latitude oceans, e.g. the North Pacific and the Bering and Okhotsk Seas.
    Here are some references:
    Da Silva, R. R., and Avissar, R., 2006. The impacts of the Luni Solar Oscillation on the Artic Oscillation. Geophysical Research Letters 32, L22703, doi:10.1029/2005GL023418,2005.
    Mazzarela, A., 2007. The 60-year solar modulation of global air temperature: the Earth’s rotation and atmospheric circulation connection, Theoretical and Applied Climatology 88, 193-199; DOI 10.1007/s00704-005-0219-z.
    Mazzarela, A. and Palumbo, A., 1994. The Lunar Nodal Induced-Signal in Climatic and Ocean Data over the Western Mediterranean Area and on its Bistable Phasing, Theoretical and Applied Climatology 50, 93-102.
    Yndestad, H., 2006. “The influence of the lunar nodal cycle on Arctic climate”, International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) Journal of Marine Science, vol 63, pps 401-420.
    Please note (eg Scott Mandia re previous posts above) that da Silvia and Avissar note:
    “…. that the current generation of global climate models that are broadly used to produce various climate change scenarios do not account for long-term tidal dynamic effects. This may be a significant flaw worth investigating carefully.”
    The other aspect of the Sun’s role in the solar system that contributes to Arctic warming impact of please see:
    Soon, W. W.-H., 2005. Variable solar irradiance as a plausible agent for multidecadal variations in the Arctic-wide surface air temperature for the past 130 years, Geophysical Research Letters, 32, L16712, doi:10.1029/2005GL023429.
    Of course when both roles function together the interaction effect amplifies.
    The last LNC maximum happened on September 16, 2006.
    In a paper published in March this year, Dr. Ichiro Yasuda, Professor, Ocean Research Institute, The University of Tokyo showed that the Luna Nodal Cycle drives the PDO.
    The citation is: Yasuda, I. (2009), ‘The 18.6-year period moon-tidal cycle in Pacific Decadal Oscillation reconstructed from tree-rings in western North America’, Geophysical Research. Letters, 36, L05605, doi:10.1029/2008GL036880.
    Here is the Abstract:
    Time-series of Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) reconstructed from tree-rings in Western North America is found to have a statistically significant periodicity of 18.6- year period lunar nodal tidal cycle; negative (positive) PDO tends to occur in the period of strong (weak) diurnal tide. In the 3rd and 5th (10th, 11th and 13rd) year after the maximum diurnal tide, mean-PDO takes significant negative (positive) value, suggesting that the Aleutian Low is weak (strong), western-central North Pacific in 30–50N is warm (cool) and equator-eastern rim of the Pacific is cool (warm). This contributes to climate predictability with a time-table from the astronomical tidal cycle.
    According to Prof Yasuda’s finding the PDO should now be taking a significant negative value, as is being found. The climate consequences are therefore as expected.
    The PDO is now in its negative phase and that this means a colder climate for North America.
    As has been shown elsewhere, cold means dry and this means fires in California. This is just one of the many consequences of the LNC; one of the many climate consequences of the Sun. Phenomena which is predictable so long as one listens carefully to what Nature is telling us.

  43. So Mr Mandia, what you mean is that despite now being a believer and the evidence being “overwhelming” you can’t quite say why and that is all I ever see in the AGW argument. AGW is based in the end on politics and predictions from simplistic models that have no predictive capability. Just the same hackneyed peer reviewed papers “proof” and “consensus”. You then come on to this here and you disparage and question the credibility of good honest scientists like Mr Pielke Senior and Ian Plimer and even this board itself. Go and read Plimer’s book (my bet is that you haven’t) and then come back and criticise it. I doubt that you’ll accept the challenge because Plimer falsifies AGW at every step in a reasonable manner. Nobody could read it and stay an unconditional believer.
    I believe that there is no real evidence to support the hypothesis that man made carbon emissions have caused the warming observed since the LIA (although I accept that it may have had some influence and I fully support developing credible alternative energy supplies) or that atmospheric CO2 levels cause any threat to mankind or the environment. If I see any evidence to the contrary then I’ll change my mind.

  44. Paul Vaughan (17:49:07) :
    ‘Clearly there are untold behind-the-scenes politics going on when even right-wing sites like ctv.ca are running this & related stories. (The right-wing forces in Canada wouldn’t let this stuff through ctv.ca to the public unless they believed such scare-mongering would benefit them somehow.)’
    CTV right-wing? What planet do you live on? (Or perhaps…only in Canada could such a left-wing organization be considered right-wing?)

  45. Christopher Booker
    I still take the Sunday Telegraph because it allows your articles to be seen – a beacon in a sea of falsehoods. However, I no longer buy the weekday Telegraph since their recent introduction of intelligence insulting articles by Geoffrey whatsisname, full of alarmist nonsense and lacking the basic principles of economic and engineering understanding. These are usually accompanied by other unresearched before printing AGW articles, which together spread over a page of what used to be a well respected paper.

  46. Before the recent economic nosedive the consensus of economist said it wouldn’t happen. Now the same ones are declaring it over. The consensus was wrong.
    The consensus of scientist clamouring for AGW means absolutely nothing. The consensus is wrong.

  47. Mandia:

    When they put folks like S. Fred Singer on TV or quote him in the press, they confuse the public

    You’re not trying hard enough. With just a little more effort you can be really sickeningly condescending.

  48. This “interrupting the cooling” idea has a considerable amount of genius to it if its objective is to neutralize opponents to AGW. Yes, it is an admission that that the science wasn’t settled and some of the evidence contrary to AGW and that showing the shortcomings of AGW science have been compelling. Now with this new theory, it is safe to let the LIA and the MWP exist, to let the tree rings not be so decisive and I’m sure they will be happy to give up on other hard fought ground because they will still have their AGW cake. Its the same cake – AGW prevented a rise by 2.5C – the fire and floods have been postponed a bit. Now you have to deal with this “new” science to get to the underbelly of AGW.

  49. I think we have strayed from the topic of media coverage and I suppose I drifted as well. BTW, I have the utmost respect for the Pielke, Sr. and have said nothing to the contrary.
    In large part, mass media and Internet resources shape the opinions of the general public instead of the scientific literature. For example, there is a large group of parents who believe that vaccinations are linked to autism when the research clearly shows no such link. This mirros the topic of causes of global warming.
    48% of Americans think most climate scientists do not agree that the Earth has been warming in recent years, and 53% think climate scientists do not agree that human activities are a major cause of that warming (Doran and Zimmerman, 2009). A poll performed by Peter Doran and Maggie Kendall Zimmerman at Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago of 3,146 Earth scientists showed 96.2% of climatologists who are active in climate research believe that mean global temperatures have risen compared to pre-1800s levels, and 97.4% believe that human activity is a significant factor in changing mean global temperatures. Among all respondents, 90% agreed that temperatures have risen compared to pre-1800 levels, and 80% agreed that humans significantly influence the global temperature. Petroleum geologists were among the biggest doubters, with only 47 percent believing in human involvement.
    Doran and Zimmerman conclude:
    Debate on the authenticity of global warming and the role played by human activity is largely nonexistent among those who understand the nuances and scientific basis of long-term climate processes. The challenge, rather, appears to be how to effectively communicate this fact to policy makers and to a public that continues to mistakenly perceive debate among scientists.
    In another smaller survey via email, Brown, Pielke, and Anaan (2007) contacted 1807 climate scientists and received responses from 140 of those scientists. In the poll scientists were asked to discuss their opion about the role of human-caused radiative forcing of CO2 in climate change and how climate science was represented in the IPCC’s WG1 Report. The response is summarized below:
    No scientists were willing to admit to the statement that “global warming is a fabrication and that human activity is not having any significant effect on climate” – [0%].
    82% expressed the opinion that the IPCC WG1 Report was accurate [65%] or actually underestimates the consequences of anthropogenic CO2-induced AGW and the associated risks [15%].
    The most often chosen response in the survey was “The scientific basis for human impacts on climate is well represented by the IPCC WG1 report. The lead scientists know what they are doing. We are warming the planet, with CO2 as the main culprit. At least some of the forecast consequences of this change are based on robust evidence.”
    So why do a majority of Americans believe otherwise? It is because they are NOT getting the correct information from mass media and Internet sources.

  50. Forgot the citations:
    Doran, Peter T. & Zimmerman, M. K. (2009, January). Examining the scientific consensus on climate change. EOS 90 (3): 22–23. doi:10.1029/2009EO030002
    Brown, F., Peilke, R. Sr., Anaan, J. (2007). Is there agreement amongst climate scientists on the IPCC AR4 WG1?. Retrieved August 27, 2009, from Climate Science: Roger Pielke Sr. Research Group News Web site: http://www.climatesci.org/publications/pdf/Brown.pdf
    Notice that these are very current.

  51. Anthony,
    You state: “Well be assured, starting your web page with a quote from Oreskes is not the way to impress anyone who knows the woman and her agenda. – A”
    Even if she has an agenda, her quote still stands because there are few peer-reviewed articles that refute AGW. Her quote:
    “Scientific knowledge is the intellectual and social consensus of affiliated experts based on the weight of available empirical evidence, and evaluated according to accepted methodologies. If we feel that a policy question deserves to be informed by scientific knowledge, then we have no choice but to ask, what is the consensus of experts on this matter.”
    If you have a medical situation and nine out of ten well-established and well-respected doctors tell you what the cause is and how to cure it and they all agree, do you instead choose to see the one doctor that has a completely different solution? I am certainly not willing to gamble with my life in that medical situation just as not with my children’s future with regard to the impacts of climate change.

  52. Anthony, you can delete this if you want but this is a Blogg from Scott Mandia which speaks volumes about his integrity. Those of us who go to WUWT for data and information strongly disagree with Scotts comments below. Notice that there is no scientific substance to his comments.
    Also I went to his site and found links that are absent of fair and balanced.
    The scarey part is that he is apparently teaching at a College level and misinforming the students.
    “DBA,
    Of course, one does not need a degree to be able to read the literature and understand the information. For example, I hold an M.S. of Meteorology (Go Nittany Lions) and I do discuss climate change on my Website and in blogs for the general public but I am certainly NOT an expert because I have no peer-reviewed literature on this topic. However, I have enough schooling to understand and to communicate what the experts are saying in the literature.
    This latest post by Watts is fairly typical. He does NOT read the journal article but he still attempts to discredit it. He posts the abstract but then, in his own words with a reply to RW, he states that he is really criticizing the press release of the article where there is an obvious typo (mid 1990’s instead of mid-1900s). Furthermore, his analysis is flawed – a common occurrence on WUWT.
    He has no real interest in the truth. Everything Watts does is to promote himself. A perfect example is his surfacestations.org work which has attempted to discredit the global temperature record. NOAA’s analysis of Watts 70 reliable stations even proved that Watts’ claims were false because the rising tide of AGW lifted all boats. Does this NOAA paper appear on on his surfacestations.org site?
    Watts is doing is a huge diservice to his readers because the implications of climate change are so immediate and so important. Confusing the public on this matter borders on being “soul-less”.”

  53. Scott A. Mandia (16:45:10) :
    I have no idea what personal experience you have with S. Fred Singer, probably none at all, but I first met Singer in 1980 at the University of Utah, where he made a presentation and predictions about future usage of energy and gasoline. This was 1980, remember, and approaching the end of the big energy crisis, although none of the energy experts in attendance that day realized we were nearing the end of the crisis. Singer’s predictions, mocked by the “experts” that day, were absolutely correct for the next 20+ years. You earn no points by cheap sniping at him.
    Next, you give far too much credit to the peer-review process. While often helpful, peer review can be exasperatingly unhelpful at times for a variety of reasons which I summarized on another thread some time ago. When it comes to matters of climate science, the Hockey Stick in particular, I have personal experience that journals and reviewers play a game of “defend the fort”.

  54. Accepted methods of testing research climate models is to work out a set of scenario predictions and then correlate with observations. This necessarily means that one must wait to for that final step: comparing a model’s predictions with actual observations. To make policy decisions on predicted scenarios before said scenarios are subjected to the accepted and completed method of research is scientifically unacceptable at best, and utterly irresponsible at worst. Such base behavior in the scientific community is akin to private guards in the theater of war acting irresponsibly (as we have seen in the news lately) and thus placing at extreme risk the very people they are being paid to keep safe.

  55. Dr. Mandia, no offense, but “consensus,” as described by Oreskes, is useless as a basis for science.
    To quote the late Michael Crichton,
    “Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you’re being had.
    Let’s be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. In science consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus.
    There is no such thing as consensus science. If it’s consensus, it isn’t science. If it’s science, it isn’t consensus. Period.
    In addition, let me remind you that the track record of the consensus is nothing to be proud of. Let’s review a few cases.
    In past centuries, the greatest killer of women was fever following childbirth . One woman in six died of this fever. In 1795, Alexander Gordon of Aberdeen suggested that the fevers were infectious processes, and he was able to cure them. The consensus said no. In 1843, Oliver Wendell Holmes claimed puerperal fever was contagious, and presented compelling evidence. The consensus said no. In 1849, Semmelweiss demonstrated that sanitary techniques virtually eliminated puerperal fever in hospitals under his management. The consensus said he was a Jew, ignored him, and dismissed him from his post. There was in fact no agreement on puerperal fever until the start of the twentieth century. Thus the consensus took one hundred and twenty five years to arrive at the right conclusion despite the efforts of the prominent “skeptics” around the world, skeptics who were demeaned and ignored. And despite the constant ongoing deaths of women.
    There is no shortage of other examples. In the 1920s in America, tens of thousands of people, mostly poor, were dying of a disease called pellagra. The consensus of scientists said it was infectious, and what was necessary was to find the “pellagra germ.” The US government asked a brilliant young investigator, Dr. Joseph Goldberger, to find the cause. Goldberger concluded that diet was the crucial factor. The consensus remained wedded to the germ theory. Goldberger demonstrated that he could induce the disease through diet. He demonstrated that the disease was not infectious by injecting the blood of a pellagra patient into himself, and his assistant. They and other volunteers swabbed their noses with swabs from pellagra patients, and swallowed capsules containing scabs from pellagra rashes in what were called “Goldberger’s filth parties.” Nobody contracted pellagra. The consensus continued to disagree with him. There was, in addition, a social factor-southern States disliked the idea of poor diet as the cause, because it meant that social reform was required. They continued to deny it until the 1920s. Result-despite a twentieth century epidemic, the consensus took years to see the light.
    Probably every schoolchild notices that South America and Africa seem to fit together rather snugly, and Alfred Wegener proposed, in 1912, that the continents had in fact drifted apart. The consensus sneered at continental drift for fifty years. The theory was most vigorously denied by the great names of geology-until 1961, when it began to seem as if the sea floors were spreading. The result: it took the consensus fifty years to acknowledge what any schoolchild sees.
    And shall we go on? The examples can be multiplied endlessly….
    Finally, I would remind you to notice where the claim of consensus is invoked. Consensus is invoked only in situations where the science is not solid enough. Nobody says the consensus of scientists agrees that E=mc2. Nobody says the consensus is that the sun is 93 million miles away. It would never occur to anyone to speak that way.”

  56. From Mandia’s blog:

    NOAA’s analysis of Watts 70 reliable stations even proved that Watts’ claims were false because the rising tide of AGW lifted all boats

    Mr. Mandia, doesn’t it strike you as a bit odd that NOAA’s analysis of the 70 said stations yielded a graph which is a virtual carbon-copy of that of the full ~1200 stations? And over such a large and climactically diverse area as the USA?
    Didn’t it even raise an eyebrow?
    I reckon it says more about their ‘homogenization’ and other ‘adjustments’ of the data than anything else.

  57. Scott A. Mandia
    “The real science is discussed in the peer-reviewed literature. During the time frame considered by these studies AGW became increasingly clear in the literature. Since then there are few if any legitimate journal articles that refute AGW.”
    AGW cannot be “refuted” because it is a non-falsfiable hypothesis to begin with. By the same token, the warmists cannot provide any serious evidence that the warming after the little ice age is largely caused by CO2. Having said that however, AGW theory does make some predictions.
    1) There should be a radiative imbalance. According to Hansen (2001), the forcings caused by CO2 lead to a radiative imbalance that increases each year, reaching 0.85 Watts per metre squared by 2010. This results in “warming the air, melting the ice and warming the oceans.” This prediction has spectacularly failed since there has been no ocean warming since 2003 as measured by the argo network. This “missing” energy is such a problem that Hansen is refuting the data. See link below to the “royal opposition” which explains this in some detail.
    http://climatesci.org/2009/05/18/comments-on-a-new-paper-global-ocean-heat-content-1955%e2%80%932008-in-light-of-recently-revealed-instrumentation-problems-by-levitus-et-al-2009/
    2) The role of water vapour feedback that is central to the GCM outputs of catastrophic warming predict a temperature hotspot in the tropical mid troposphere. No such fingerprint has yet been found, but there is still time I suppose.
    3) The hypothesis has no explanation as to why the warming apparantly stopped in 1998. This would normally be a serious stumbling block in any scientific theory.
    “My point is that the coverage of climate change should not present “both sides of the story”
    The fact that you even countenance such a view is alarming in itself. What you are saying is that the public should be “shielded” from “heretical” ideas, that is, ideas that differ from your own particular take on truth. This, despite the basic tennet that democracy is founded on debate. You can try and justify your Orwellian stance by saying only the AGWers are in position of the truth, and everyone else is in error if you like, but I will never follow you down that particular road.
    “When they put folks like S. Fred Singer on TV or quote him in the press, they confuse the public.”
    Same as the point above. The public will be “confused” by hearing “heretical” ideas and this must be prevented at all costs to maintain the illusion of consensus. Goebbels be praised!
    “In the years since then, I have been convinced by the data supporting AGW.”
    Which data in particular, I would be interested in some references. Do you mean the Mannian Hockey stick? If you have this evidence you say exists, please share it with us, you might even make some converts.

  58. Well said, Paul Manner! As an engineer, It has never occurred to me or any of my colleagues to use the “consensus” argument.
    As for Scott Mandia, it seems to me that he is looking for answers. He is not a closed-minded troll and should be treated with courtesy and respect, as Anthony would insist.
    I am Canadian, but I would suggest that if a significant percentage of Americans have not swallowed the AGW line, it is simply because the US population remains the most cautious and skeptical on the planet. Australia would be next in line. Canada might come before Denmark.
    Thank god there are some people who can resist brainwashing.

  59. Scott Mandia:

    In large part, mass media and Internet resources shape the opinions of the general public instead of the scientific literature. For example, there is a large group of parents who believe that vaccinations are linked to autism when the research clearly shows no such link. This mirros the topic of causes of global warming.

    I think you’ll find that it was a certain Dr. Andrew Wakefield – a so-called ‘expert’ – who first suggested a link between MMR and autism.
    The media simply reported ‘expert opinion’.

  60. “Scientific knowledge is the intellectual and social consensus”
    This is not nonsense, this is rubbish.

  61. Dr. Manner, you could add a relatively recent example: until very recently the consensus held that gastric ulcers could only be treated by surgery, and pooh-poohed the idea that they could be caused by bacteria.
    Nowadays, ulcers are treated with antibiotics.

  62. Vincent points out the problem that occurs when people like Mandia, who is obviously unaware of how the scientific method works, get their feet tangled up trying to justify the failed CO2=AGW conjecture.
    As climatologist Dr Roy Spencer notes, the theory of natural climate variability has never been falsified. That is the hurdle that needs to be overcome by those flogging the AGW conjecture. So far, they have failed to falsify natural variability. The climate is well within its historical parameters. There is nothing unusual happening. In fact, every one of the unending lists of alarming claims [ocean acidification, rising sea levels, the ozone hole disappearing, global ice cover diminishing, glaciers retreating, etc., etc.] has turned out to be a false alarm. None of them need to be explained by anything except natural variability. In any other branch of science, anyone still pushing something so clearly wrong as catastrophic AGW would be laughed out of their profession. But since AGW is politics, not science, and since such enormous dollar amounts are being shoveled out, some folks still talk about AGW with a straight face, as if it’s actually been verified through honest peer review.
    According to the scientific method, any new conjecture or hypothesis that comes along is required to prove itself through a means to falsify it, which requires complete transparency — something that is missing from the bogus “studies” of those pushing the hockey stick, etc. The long accepted theory of natural climate change has predictive ability, unlike CO2=AGW. It is the upstart conjecture that must always prove itself, not the accepted theory. So far, CO2=AGW has failed.
    Because the climate peer-review process has been so thoroughly corrupted, skeptical submissions have a great deal of trouble getting published, while AGW-friendly papers are simply waved through rigor-free by those pushing their pet CO2=AGW conjecture [see the link above].
    AGW is a failed conjecture, at odds with the long established theory of natural climate variability. There is no real world proof of AGW. None. The conjecture comes entirely out of GCMs; computer models that are programmed by people who are looking for a particular result. GCM results are then converted into peer reviewed papers by rent-seeking grant hogs who have both front feet in the public trough. AGW provides grant money, but it isn’t science.
    Science requires adhering to the scientific method, which in turn requires transparency of all data and methodologies so the claimed results can be reproduced by others.
    But climate ‘science’ is different from real science. In climate peer review, pro-AGW papers need not provide data, methodology, or transparency, even when paid for by the taxpayers. We are expected to accept their results on faith alone.
    That is why non-scientists like Mandia hang their hats on “consensus”. It’s all they’ve got. But it’s not science.

  63. Scott Mandia, I understand it can be easy and attractive to go along with the AGW ‘evidence’ and peer-review but scientifically, ideas and observations need to be repeated and repeated until you run out of ways to falsify them before they are taken as ‘fact’. I hope that you already know that. This means doing experiments and getting data. Lots of boring stuff. So if Co2 forcing is real where are all the lab experiments showing it? Where are all the detailed experiments showing how tree rings can tell temperature like thermometers? Where are all the data sets of people repeating key characteristics of AGW not inside a computer. Stuff what the media says, just do the work and see where it leads. I’ve said this before on this site. It’s been over 20 years since Hansen’s idea of forcing and I don’t see anyone doing any experiments on it in a lab. Now that’s something to report about. I mean, testing AGW in controlled conditions isn’t like looking for dark matter, is it.

  64. Mr Mandia, you certainly are straying. You’ve been asked to show credible evidence for AGW to back up its consensus status and the urgent need for drastic action to limit its effects. Please, just one piece of evidence that credibly backs up the hypothesis for us the great unwashed of the climate world.
    It is bordering on frightening now that so many people who believe in AGW but don’t know why are in positions where they can spread the propaganda to developing adults. Long live sites like this and books like Plimer’s that will give people a sensible alternative view.
    Paul Manner, Ian Plimer’s book references a Soviet Agricultural Scientist called Lysenko who claimed he could double wheat production and he developed a consensus such that anybody in disagreement was fired and sent to the Gulags. The result was starvation and that is where we are at now.

  65. Dr. Manner and others,
    You all do realize that when you are treated by a doctor you are being treated with the drug and the method that is the consensus view in the medical literature at the present time. To do otherwise would be unprofessional and unethical. Have mistakes been made? Of course and the scientific method roots them out because it is the job of scientists to prove something is wrong.
    Yes, there have been great discoveries by bucking the mainstream (eg. Galileo) but keep things in perspective. For every Galileo that broke with the mainstream and was correct, there are probably thousands who did so and were wrong. We do not recall the wrong ones, of course.

  66. Micky C,
    Therein lies the problem. We cannot create an alternate Earth, ratchet up the CO2 and see what happens. Instead, scientists use models to simulate the climate and how forcings influence the change. They are not perfect but, IMO, are very good and getting better all the time.
    Models are used in all areas of science. Think of the models used to predict how H1N1 would spread. Can we test that in a lab?

  67. Scott A. Mandia (11:44:26) :
    “You all do realize that when you are treated by a doctor you are being treated with the drug and the method that is the consensus view in the medical literature at the present time.”
    But I don’t recall anyone ever trying to shut down the debate about the efficacy or safety of a drug, and I don’t recall any claims in medicine about “the science is settled”.
    In addition, last I checked, individuals still do have the choice of following the consensus or not, even with health care.

  68. True. My point is that we cannot disparage consensus because that is how we make informed decisions. Just as in releasing a drug, we also cannot wait for 100% certainty or the drug never helps anybody.

  69. Scott A. Mandia (11:44:26) :

    For every Galileo that broke with the mainstream and was correct, there are probably thousands who did so and were wrong. We do not recall the wrong ones, of course.

    Like many climate alarmists, Mandia still doesn’t get it:
    The CO2=AGW runaway global warming conjecture is one of those ‘thousands’ that ‘were wrong.’ It is a failed conjecture, and public grant money is the only reason AGW isn’t dead and buried.
    Once again: it is not the responsibility of the existing, long established theory of natural climate variability to falsify anything. It is the burden of those promoting a new hypothesis or conjecture [like AGW] to falsify the existing theory. So far, the CO2=AGW conjecture has failed miserably. The alarmists’ response is to shout “consensus!” But consensus isn’t science. Neither is AGW.

  70. At last. I’ve worked all weekend to get most of John Daly’s Arctic temperature records onto one page, Circling the Arctic.
    .
    NOT A SINGLE TEMPERATURE RECORD SHOWS A HOCKEY STICK. Many show no temperature rise at all over the last century and more. These are all the oldest, finest, least UHI-distorted temperature records we have, simple, direct, unequivocal evidence, preserved with great love by the late brilliant climatologist and skeptic, John Daly.
    The temperature record “going back to basics” is precisely where we can see that the Emperor has no Clothes. Funny thing is, the data is all NASA GISS and CRU.

  71. masonmart (03:44:06) :
    Mr Mandia, I’ve just read Ian Plimer’s book and find it exceptionally reasoned and well referenced throughout. It will quite rightly influence many people who are undecided on the issue. His demonstration of how current climate and rate of change (if there is indeed any change) is not unknown by any means. As a geologist he understands and explains past climate history which generally has to be ignored to believe in AGW. He also understands and explains well the politics of AGW which is the key thing in climate debate.

    It’s unfortunate that you’ve been taken in by Plimer, it’s not an auspicious start when two of the first three figures in his book are either distorted or contain fabricated data. For a detailed critique see http://www.complex.org.au/tiki-download_file.php?fileId=91
    There are others but this one is very well written and researched with a good index (the necessity for an index should tell you something).

  72. “Just as in releasing a drug, we also cannot wait for 100% certainty or the drug never helps anybody.”
    A person presumably has the option if they take an unproven drug or not. I don’t have to take unproven drugs if I choose not to. I wouldn’t take any drugs at all if I was not sick.
    The earth is not sick. It doesn’t need unproven remedies for imaginary problems.
    Andrew

  73. quote from climate audit:
    “Carl Gullans:
    September 4th, 2009 at 2:57 pm
    It remains remarkable to me… that this ridiculousness is continuing six years after congress looked into it is absurd. That so many simple and easy to understand violations of basic statistical laws can remain after that many years is astounding.”
    this is an article, where comments should by substantianted by facts and not opinions or general world visions. some people really should start to study the basics first, before trying to push others to save the world at unprecedented cost.
    – start with the truly unbelievable violation of mathematics with the ex-post data selection
    http://motls.blogspot.com/2008/12/ccnet-eight-articles-about-climate.html
    – then look at all the issues related to the proxy selection of this and other papers
    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=6932
    – and don’t forget the wegmann report, of course
    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2322

  74. Peter (10:54:13) :
    Dr. Manner, you could add a relatively recent example: until very recently the consensus held that gastric ulcers could only be treated by surgery, and pooh-poohed the idea that they could be caused by bacteria.
    Nowadays, ulcers are treated with antibiotics.

    He couldn’t use that because it isn’t true.
    Within a few years of the first papers demonstrating the role of helicobacter pylori the scientific consensus was that this the main cause and could effectively be treated by a combination of antibiotics and ‘Peptobismol’. For some time afterwards the drug companies who were earning a major part of their profits from anti-ulcer patents continued to promote them with physicians!

  75. Scott A. Mandia (11:47:39)
    “Therein lies the problem. We cannot create an alternate Earth, ratchet up the CO2 and see what happens. Instead, scientists use models to simulate the climate and how forcings influence the change. They are not perfect but, IMO, are very good and getting better all the time.”
    Which ones do you judge as “very good” and by what criteria?

  76. Anthony,
    Just to set the record straight, I do not possess a PhD so you probably shouldn’t address me as Dr. but I did enjoy the brief promotion. 🙂
    I also never stated anything about a runaway temperature condition. Of course, long before that could happen there would still be serious consequences.
    I appreciate your comments to me and that you let me post here in light of the fact that you and I disagree about AGW and that I did criticize you personally on another blog. I should try to be less emotional and stick to the science.
    REPLY: No problem. We welcome opposing points of view here, just so long as questions and debate don’t fall into the snark and name calling traps. My experience is opposite yours in that I once believed CO2 was very much the main issue, now I don’t, partly due to graphs like the one I showed. It all boils down to what information we are exposed to and how we react to it. The trick is to remove the emotional component. – Anthony

  77. Phil. (12:46:17) :
    Have you accepted the fact that Antarctic Sea Ice Extent is currently trending above average?
    http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/S_timeseries.png
    http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/s_plot_hires.png
    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/current.anom.south.jpg
    For those of you who don’t know Phil., he has a history of throwing out unsubstantiated refutations of valid arguments and then running away when he is proven wrong.

  78. Phil, it took more than ten years before the Marshall and Warren hypothesis was generally accepted by the medical community.

  79. Phil – yes of course – now he quotes Enting’s paper which supposedly “proves” that Plimer is so mistaken that it’s not worth opening Plimer’s book. Now I did both. I examined Plimer – great rollicking read, he’s an iconoclast, but the main drift is right IMO. If you don’t stop to examine Enting’s “debunks” carefully, Enting looks impressive – but they are all hair-splitting and/or relying on faulty AGW “science”. Enting is empty of any challenge of real value. My problem with Plimer is that his book feels a bit of a rush job. Far too few pics – a fantastic opportunity lost. But heck, he knows so much! and perhaps, he felt speed was essential and had to be weighed against likelihood of minor errors.

  80. Warmists often suggest that climate skeptics must believe in a conspiracy in order to account for the prevailing scientific consensus on AGW. But these warmists presume that current science is working according to an out-dated and idealistic picture of a free market in ideas by disinterested and idealistic practitioners and gatekeepers, which is not how science functions nowadays. Nowadays, it is much more susceptible to fads, bureaucratic inertia, and groupthink than previously. Here are extracts from an article by a scientist and scientific administrator with inside knowledge of the dark side of science:
    **************
    Science in the 21st Century: Knowledge: Monopolies and Research Cartels
    By HENRY H. BAUER
    Professor Emeritus of Chemistry & Science Studies
    Dean Emeritus of Arts & Sciences
    Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University
    Journal of Scientific Exploration, Vol. 18, No. 4, pp. 643–660, 2004
    http://henryhbauer.homestead.com/21stCenturyScience.pdf
    ………….
    Supposedly authoritative information about the most salient science-related matters has become dangerously misleading because of the power of bureaucracies that co-opt or control science.
    Science as an Institution
    Dysfunction and obsolescence begin to set in, unobtrusively but insidiously, from the very moment that an institution achieves pre-eminence. The leading illustration of this Parkinson’s Law (Parkinson, 1958) was the (British) Royal Navy. Having come to rule the seas, the Navy slowly succumbed to bureaucratic bloat. The ratio of administrators to operators rose inexorably, and the Navy’s purpose, defense of the realm, became subordinate to the bureaucracy’s aim of serving itself. The changes came so gradually that it was decades before their effect became obvious.
    Science attained hegemony in Western culture toward the end of the 19th century (Barzun, 2000: 606–607; Knight, 1986). This very success immediately sowed seeds of dysfunction: it spawned scientism, the delusive belief that science and only science could find proper answers to any and all questions that human beings might ponder. Other dysfunctions arrived later: funding through bureaucracies, commercialization, conflicts of interest. But the changes came so gradually that it was the latter stages of the 20th century before it became undeniable that things had gone seriously amiss.
    It remains to be appreciated that 21st-century science is a different kind of thing than the ‘‘modern science’’ of the 17th through 20th centuries; there has been a ‘‘radical, irreversible, structural’’ ‘‘world-wide transformation in the way that science is organized and performed’’ (Ziman, 1994). Around 1950, Derek Price (1963/1986) discovered that modern science had grown exponentially, and he predicted that the character of science would change during the latter part of the 20th century as further such growth became impossible. One aspect of that change is that the scientific ethos no longer corresponds to the traditional ‘‘Mertonian’’ norms of disinterested skepticism and public sharing; it has become subordinate to corporate values. Mertonian norms made science reliable; the new ones described by Ziman (1994) do not.
    Symptoms
    One symptom of change, identifiable perhaps only in hindsight, was science’s failure, from about the middle of the 20th century on, to satisfy public curiosity about mysterious phenomena that arouse wide interest: psychic phenomena, UFOs, Loch Ness Monsters, Bigfoot. By contrast, a century earlier, prominent scientists had not hesitated to look into such mysteries as mediumship, which had aroused great public interest.
    My claim here is not that UFOs or mediumship are phenomena whose substance belongs in the corpus of science; I am merely suggesting that when the public wants to know ‘‘What’s going on when people report UFOs?’’, the public deserves an informed response. It used to be taken for granted that the purpose of science was to seek the truth about all aspects of the natural world. That traditional purpose had been served by the Mertonian norms: Science disinterestedly and with appropriate skepticism coupled with originality seeks universally valid knowledge as a public good.
    These norms imply that science is done by independent, self-motivated individuals. However, from about the middle of the 20th century and in certain situations, some mainstream organizations of science were behaving not as voluntary associations of independent individuals but as bureaucracies. Popular dissatisfaction with some of the consequences stimulated ‘‘New Age’’ movements. ….
    A more widely noticed symptom was the marked increase in fraud and cheating by scientists. In 1981, the U. S. Congress held hearings prompted by public disclosure of scientific misconduct at 4 prominent research institutions. Then, science journalists Broad and Wade (1982) published their sweeping indictment, Betrayers of the Truth: Fraud and Deceit in the Halls of Science. It has become almost routine to read in the NIH Guide of researchers who admitted to fraud and were then barred from certain activities for some specified number of years. In 1989, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) established an Office of Scientific Integrity. So prevalent was dishonesty that the new academic specialty of ‘‘research ethics’’ came into being. Professional scientific organizations drafted or revised codes of ethics. Various groups, including government agencies, attempted to make prescriptive for researchers what had traditionally been taken for granted, namely, something like the Mertonian norms.
    This epidemic of cheating in the latter part of the 20th century meant, clearly enough, that an increasing number of scientists were seeking to serve their personal interests instead of the public good of universal knowledge.
    ………………………..
    Throughout the history of modern science, the chief safeguard of reliability was communal critiquing (Ziman, 2000). Science begins as hunches. Those that work out become pieces of frontier science. If competent peers think it worthy of attention, an item gets published in the primary research literature. If other researchers find it useful and accurate, eventually the knowledge gets into review articles and monographs and finally into textbooks. The history of science demonstrates that, sooner or later, most frontier science turns out to need modifying or to have been misleading or even entirely wrong. Science employs a knowledge filter that slowly separates the wheat from the chaff (Bauer, 1992: chapter 3; see Figure 1).
    This filter works in proportion to the honesty and disinterestedness of peer reviewers and researchers. In the early days of modern science, before knowledge became highly specialized and compartmentalized, knowledge-seekers could effectively critique one another’s claims across the board. Later and for a time, there were enough people working independently on a given topic that competent, disinterested critiques could often be obtained. Since about the middle of the 20th century, however, the costs of research and the need for teams of cooperating specialists have made it increasingly difficult to find reviewers who are both directly knowledgeable and also disinterested; truly informed people are effectively either colleagues or competitors. Correspondingly, reports from the big science bureaucracies do not have the benefit of independent review before being issued.
    …………………..
    Causes
    Price (1963/1986) saw the exploding costs of research after WWII as a likely mechanism for bringing to an end the era of exponentially growing science. The mentioned symptoms may indeed be traced to the escalating costs of research and the continuing expansion of the number of would-be researchers without a proportionate increase in available funds. The stakes became very high. Researchers had to compete more and more vigorously, which tended to mean more unscrupulously. The temptation became greater to accept and solicit funds and patrons while ignoring tangible or moral attached strings.
    ……………..
    Unrealistic expectations coupled with misunderstanding of how science works led to the unstated presumption that good science could be expanded and accelerated by recruiting more scientists. Instead, of course, the massive infusion of government funds since WWII had inevitably deleterious consequences. More researchers translate into less excellence and more mediocrity. Journeymen peer-reviewers tend to stifle rather than encourage creativity and genuine innovation. Centralized funding and centralized decision-making make science more bureaucratic and less an activity of independent, self-motivated truth-seekers. Science attracts careerists instead of curiosity-driven idealists. Universities and individuals are encouraged to view scientific research as a cash cow to bring in money as ‘‘indirect costs’’ for all sorts of purposes, instead of seeking needed funds for doing good science. The measure of scientific achievement becomes the amount of ‘‘research support’’ brought in, not the production of useful knowledge.
    ………………….
    Knowledge Monopolies and Research Cartels
    Skepticism toward research claims is absolutely necessary to safeguard reliability. In corporate settings, where results are expected to meet corporate goals, criticism may be brushed off as disloyalty, and skepticism is thereby suppressed. As Ziman (1994) pointed out, the Mertonian norms of ‘‘academic’’ science have been replaced by norms suited to a proprietary, patent- and profit-seeking environment in which researchers feel answerable not to a universally valid standard of trustworthy knowledge but to local managers. A similar effect, the suppression of skepticism, results from the funding of science and the dissemination of results by or through non-profit bureaucracies such as the NIH or agencies of the United Nations.
    While the changes in the circumstances of scientific activity were quite gradual for 2 or 3 centuries, they have now cumulated into a change in kind. Corporate science, Big Science, is a different kind of thing than academic science, and society needs to deal with it differently. Large institutional bureaucracies now dominate the public face of science. Long-standing patrons—private foundations like Rockefeller and Ford, charitable organizations like the American Heart Association and the American Cancer Society—have been joined and dwarfed by government bureaucracies like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the NIH, and the National Science Foundation, which, in turn, are being overshadowed by international bodies like the World Bank and various agencies of the United Nations—the World Health Organization, the Food and Agricultural Organization, UNAIDS, and more. Statements, press releases, and formal reports from these bodies often purport to convey scientific information, but in reality these releases are best viewed as propaganda designed to serve the corporate interests of the bureaucracies that issue them.
    …………………….
    The upshot is that policy makers and the public generally do not realize that there is doubt about, indeed evidence against, some theories almost universally viewed as true, about issues of enormous public import: global warming; healthy diet, heart-disease risk-factors, and appropriate medication; HIV/AIDS; gene therapy; stem cells; and more.
    ‘‘Everyone knows’’ that promiscuous burning of fossil fuels is warming up global climates. Everyone does not know that competent experts dispute this and that official predictions are based on tentative data fed into computer models whose validity could be known only many decades hence (Crichton, 2003).
    ……………………….
    What ‘‘everyone knows’’ about the science related to major public issues, then, often fails to reflect the actual state of scientific knowledge. In effect, there exist knowledge monopolies composed of international and national bureaucracies. Since those same organizations play a large role in the funding of research as well as in the promulgation of findings, these monopolies are at the same time research cartels. Minority views are not published in widely read periodicals, and unorthodox work is not supported by the main funding organizations. Instead of disinterested peer review, mainstream insiders insist on their point of view in order to perpetuate their prestige and privileged positions. That is the case even on so academic a matter as the Big-Bang theory of the universe’s origin.
    ……………………….
    It is not that knowledge monopolies are able to exercise absolute censorship. Contrary views are expressed, but one must know where to look for them; so one must already have some reason to make the effort. That constitutes a vicious circle. Moreover, the contrarian view will often seem a priori unreliable or politically partisan, as already noted. Altogether, people exposed chiefly to mainstream media will likely never suspect—will have no reason to suspect—that there could exist a credible case different from the officially accepted one.
    The conventional wisdom about these matters is continually reinforced by publicly broadcast snippets that underscore the official dogma. What other reason might there be to publicize, for example, the guesstimate that global warming will cause an increase in asthma attacks (Daily Telegraph, 2004)? This is just another ‘‘fact’’ to convince us that we must curb the use of coal, gas, and oil.
    …………………………..
    Reform?
    The ills of contemporary science—commercialization, fraud, untrustworthy public information—are plausibly symptoms of the crisis, foreseen by Derek Price (1963/1986), as the era of exponentially growing modern science comes to an end. Science in the 21st century will be a different animal from the so-called ‘‘modern science’’ of the 17th to 20th centuries. The question is not whether to reform the science we knew, but whether society can arrange the corporate, commercialized science of the future so that it can continue to expand the range of trustworthy knowledge. Ziman (1994: 276) points out that any research organization requires ‘‘generous measures’’ of
    _ room for personal initiative and creativity;
    _ time for ideas to grow to maturity;
    _ openness to debate and criticism;
    _ hospitality toward novelty;
    _ respect for specialized expertise.
    These describe a free intellectual market in which independent thinkers interact, and there may be a viable analogy with economic life. Economic free markets are supposed to be efficient and socially useful because the mutually competitive ventures of independent entrepreneurs are self-corrected by an ‘‘invisible hand’’ that regulates supply to demand; competition needs to be protected against monopolies that exploit rather than serve society. So, too, the scientific free market in which peer review acts as an invisible hand (Harnad, 2000) needs to be protected from knowledge monopolies and research cartels. Anti-trust actions are called for.
    Where public funds are concerned, legislation might help. When government agencies support research or development ventures, they might be required to allocate, say, 10% of the total to competent people of past achievement who hold contrarian views.
    ………………….
    It should also be legislated that scientific advisory panels and grant-reviewing arrangements include representatives of views that differ from the mainstream.
    ……………………….
    Where legislation is being considered about public policy that involves scientific issues, a Science Court might be established to arbitrate between mainstream and variant views, something discussed in the 1960s but never acted upon.
    Ombudsman offices might be established by journals, consortia of journals, private foundations, and government agencies to investigate charges of misleading claims, unwarranted publication, unsound interpretation, and the like. The existence of such offices could also provide assistance and protection for whistle-blowers.
    Sorely needed is vigorously investigative science journalism, so that propaganda from the knowledge bureaucracies is not automatically passed on. To make this possible, the media need to know about and have access to the whole spectrum of scientific opinion on the given issue. The suggestions made above would all provide a measure of help along that line. A constant dilemma for reporters is that they need access to sources, and if they publish material that casts doubt on the official view, they risk losing access to official sources.

  81. Scott, my point is not to test the whole lot but to provide some sort of verification of the forcing as used in models at a mesoscopic scale. All CGMs use a layered model of the atmosphere where they work out the radiation in and out based on what gets reflected back and what passes through. A lot of the ‘physics’ is parameterization (a lot of which is due to computation limitations). However a simple model can be constructed and compared to experiment which would still include all the physics. This would bound the range of parameterization which would then lead to the models better representing reality. As a minimum experimentation would show that some key statements about AGW namely CO2 forcing is a real effect rather than a conjectured effect. Remember that the atmosphere relies on radiative-convective coupling as one of the processes in transfering heat from the surface. Coupling processes rarely mimic all the same behaviours as the individual components. So the measured IR absorption of CO2 may not be the same when coupled with differing amounts of water vapour.
    This marrying of experimentation to parts of the modelling process is standard technique in material science and plasma physics (using PIC codes for example to compare to measured plasma parameters). The bottom line is that you cannot state errors and accuracies for models if you haven’t provided evidence of the processes going on at some scale. And you can’t broadbrush the physics and say that AGW is obvious as the planet is heating up. Not after 20 years.

  82. Thank you Lucy Skywalker (12:25:35) for the “real data”. That must have taken some time to assemble, but it is greatly appreciated.

  83. Seconded – nice work Lucy.
    Please can I suggest you put a paragraph up on the page referencing the actual data sources as well as the link to “What the Stations Say”?

  84. Paul Manner, MD (10:09:22) :
    “There is no such thing as consensus science. If it’s consensus, it isn’t science. If it’s science, it isn’t consensus. Period. ”
    Well said!! Mandia doesn’t seem to understand or accept this as the fundamental basis of science.

  85. Re: Lucy Skywalker (12:25:35)
    Thanks for this:
    http://www.greenworldtrust.org.uk/Science/Scientific/Arctic.htm
    I also spent a fair amount of time updating these graphs (& others of Daly’s for other regions) using the following website (which a contributor pointed out in a recent, related thread):
    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/station_data/
    The site is easy to use. You just click a location on the map to get a list of nearby stations. You can then recentre the list (geographically) by clicking the asterisk beside a station-name.
    One cautionary note: The time-frame and aspect-ratio of the timeplots can be manipulated to create the illusion of a steep trend in recent years. If people present such plots as ‘proof of CO2 impact’, they’re not showing much respect for natural variation, nor are they showing much care in their pursuit of ‘truth’. I taught stats for years and I assure you people struggle with the concept of confounding. A fairly substantial proportion of even the university-educated population seems almost hard-wired to not be capable of retaining whatever they learned about lurking variables & confounding in Stat 101.

  86. Scott A. Mandia (11:47:39) :

    “We cannot create an alternate Earth, ratchet up the CO2 and see what happens.”

    There is no need for an “alternate Earth.” The planet we are on shows exactly what happens to the temperature when there is a large increase in CO2:
    click1
    click2
    click3
    click4
    click5
    click6
    click7
    click8
    click9
    click10
    click11
    click12
    click13
    click14
    click15
    click16
    click17
    click18
    click19
    click20
    click21
    click22
    click23
    click24
    click25
    I have plenty more if you like. But these are enough to tell the story of what’s happening in the climate, with regard to increases in the very minor trace gas CO2.
    Planet Earth herself is falsifying the CO2=AGW conjecture. Skeptics tend to listen to what the planet is clearly telling us, rather than believing those with a vested financial interest in promoting their pet AGW conjecture.

  87. “Author: hmccard
    Comment:
    Paul Manner, MD (10:09:22) :
    “There is no such thing as consensus science. If it’s consensus, it isn’t science. If it’s science, it isn’t consensus. Period. ”
    Well said!! Mandia doesn’t seem to understand or accept this as the fundamental basis of science.”
    I second that. What I do find hard understanding is if Mandia passed courses in Theories of Science at all. It simply doesn’t seem that way in his ‘argumentation’……

  88. Peter (13:17:11) :
    Phil, it took more than ten years before the Marshall and Warren hypothesis was generally accepted by the medical community.

    Exactly that’s when the patents expired (1994) as I said, the World Congress of Gastroenterology recommended eradicating H. pylori to cure duodenal ulcers in 1990. The results of Marshall’s self-induced infection were published in 1985. Ten years after their letters to Lancet the WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer declared H. pylori a Group 1 carcinogen.

  89. For those who are bashing the concept of “scientific consensus,” what is your counterproposal of how to gauge the current state of the science in order to have science inform public policy? (And no, “Look at the empirical data…” or some other such thing is not the answer. The way we look at and interpret the data is through the scientific process.)
    Basically, as near as I can tell, those who are arguing against the idea of consensus seem to implicitly be saying, “If the scientific consensus agrees with my biases / preconceptions, we go with it; if it doesn’t, then that consensus is likely wrong and we go with my biases / preconceptions.”

  90. Smokey: Throwing up a bunch of deceptive graphs, some of which are plain wrong and some of which are conveniently truncated to remove data that would go against your party line, does not constitute a scientific argument. It constitutes an embarrassment.
    This is the reason why you have reached conclusions at odds with almost all of the scientists working in the field. (No, it is not because you are smarter or less biased than them.)

  91. Joel Shore (15:56:33) :
    How about another option.
    The science evolves with open debate and is allowed to “self-correct”, and the policy issues go where they belong—to the political process.
    Hopefully, despite what some seem to believe, we can maintain some semblance of democracy while we do this.

  92. Joel Shore
    If you want to know about the state of the science, or lack of it, and the famous consensus over AGW I suggest you take a look at the New Scientist’s report on the IPCC Geneva climate change convention.
    Note what it says and who it quotes. And remember New Scientist has been pushing the AGW agenda very hard for nearly twenty years.
    Is it the road to Damascus do you think? or just reality dawning and everybody running for cover?.
    http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn17742-worlds-climate-could-cool-first-warm-later.html?DCMP=OTC-rss&nsref=online-news
    Kindest Regards

  93. Joel Shore,
    As usual, you made a vague, cite-free, drive-by comment, which does little for your credibility. Want to change that?
    Then you must refute every chart that shows rising CO2 along with falling global temperatures. Why every chart? Because as Albert Einstein said to the 100 Soviet scientists who signed a letter claiming that relativity was wrong: ”To defeat relativity one did not need the word of 100 scientists, just one fact.” I’ve provided a lot of facts refuting CO2=AGW in my last post. You need to falsify every one of them — or admit that the ones you can not falsify are correct. Expect pushback on that, in addition to more charts. Cherry-picking one or two un-named charts that you believe aren’t perfect isn’t good enough. You must deconstruct every chart… if you want your side to have credibility. If not, then continue on like you have been.
    I’ve posted plenty of CO2/Temperature charts here. They all show exactly the same thing: rising CO2, along with falling temperatures. There is no measurable cause and effect between increased CO2 and rising temps, which is what the alarming CO2=AGW, runaway global warming, climate catastrophe conjecture is based on.
    I understand that it makes you very uncomfortable to see what the planet is clearly telling us. Inconvenient, isn’t it? Carbon dioxide does not cause measurable global warming. If CO2 has any effect at all, that effect is so tiny that it can be completely disregarded as inconsequential. Certainly there is no rational justification for spending more tax money on this non-problem, when there are many more pressing concerns.
    Rather than taking lazy pot shots from the sidelines like you always do, why not accept Anthony’s offer to write a guest post? Then you can see what real peer review is like — instead of the kissy-face cronyism of climate peer review that you’re used to, where anyone selling the AGW canard is hand-waved through by their fellow back scratching rent seekers, waiting their turn at the grant trough.

  94. John M,
    What you propose is essentially what we have now. The only thing that I would argue is that while it may make sense to have the policy issues worked out through the political process, isn’t not still best to have them informed by the science?
    Smokey,
    I don’t have to refute every one of your cherrypicked charts…and why should I? I’ve explained to you at least 10 times why charts such as #1 are deceptive; you have no counterargument but continue to post them anyway. If you want to continue on in your own little world believing what you want to believe, there is little I can do to convince you otherwise. In the meantime, the real science will march on and you and your “skeptical” friends will make yourselves essentially irrelevant to the scientific debate, which is sad in a way because there are interesting questions that one could be discussing but instead you show no ability to distinguish between real scientific arguments and false ones.

  95. Joel Shore:

    I don’t have to refute every one of your cherrypicked charts… you have no counterargument but continue to post them anyway.

    No, you don’t have to refute what I’ve posted. In most cases, you can’t. And you’re still being completely vague about which charts you’re referring to. That’s OK, I understand. Really, I do. It stems from the same reluctance to write a guest post: you know you’ll get skewered from stem to stern here… where real peer review takes place. Frankly, you don’t have what it takes. Prove me wrong, and I will stand corrected.
    Finally, I notice you’ve cleverly turned the scientific method on its head again, by demanding that I need to counter your wacky AGW conjectures. No, I don’t have to do that; I’m a skeptic. You will have to falsify every chart I cited, from all those different authors and organizations. Maybe they’re all wrong, eh, Joel? Maybe you’re right, and they are all wrong, every one of them. But the fact is you’re trying to prop up and unsupportable conjecture.
    You can’t refute all of them, of course, or even a handful, because CO2=AGW is a load of horse manure. I’ve demonstrated that a couple of dozen times here already. CO2 does not cause runaway global warming. And any *slight* warming it might cause is insignificant, and is overwhelmed by many other factors. Also, I have plenty of similar charts. Lots more. When does my posting of CO2/Temp charts stop being ‘cherry picking’? At a dozen? Two dozen? Fifty? A hundred?
    You’re supposedly a smart guy, Joel. Show us, by writing an article supporting your CO2=AGW belief system. If you dare. And include the names of everyone here that you’ve converted from being a skeptic, to being an AGW true believer. That would be very interesting, enlightening, and informative.

  96. What you propose is essentially what we have now.

    Note quite. We have it from the highest level of government that “the science is beyond dispute and the facts are clear”. (Not to mention “…storms that are growing stronger with each passing hurricane season…”)
    That’s not what I mean when I refer to open debate.
    He might as well have said “the science is settled”, although I must admit that all but the densest of AGW proponents don’t use that phrase anymore.

  97. Dr. Mandia wrote:
    You all do realize that when you are treated by a doctor you are being treated with the drug and the method that is the consensus view in the medical literature at the present time. To do otherwise would be unprofessional and unethical. Have mistakes been made? Of course and the scientific method roots them out because it is the job of scientists to prove something is wrong.
    The last sentence is where the problem for many of us come in. Many of the climate scientists we question do not seem to operate in this fashion. When a data gathering or statistical problem is pointed out, they either tell the world the problem doesn’t matter, and the science has moved on (Mann’s hockey stick), or they say other independent studies confirm the validity of the studies, even though the studies used for validation use the same data and methodologies that are pointed out to be flawed. Since you bring up, I would like to point out that if we saw this same sort of thing happen in the medical industry, we would still have a drug like Vioxx on the market. or the Taxus stent recall would never have happened, as the manufacturers would continue to churn out scientific studies using the same data sets and flawed methodologies to support the claim that nothing is wrong with the product.
    Somewhere along the line, climate science seems to have gone off the rails of the scientific process, because the hypothesis is tied to the goofy environmentalist notion that the Earth’s ecosystem is infinitely fragile and life hangs in the balance, even though paleo-ecological / geological history shows that the organism that is life is a robust thing and most of the fora and fauna on Earth is, with a few exceptions, much more hardy and much more elastic than the neo-environmentalists are willing to admit.
    That said, I am one who greatly appreciates that you have been willing to civilly communicate your views here on WUWT.
    PS. I wonder if you have read the rebuttal to the 70 sites bit from NOAA. If not, please give it a look and tell us what you think.
    Signed:
    The slightly above average / non PhD holding / former Geology student Michael J Alexander (calc killed the dream).

  98. “…I would remind you to notice where the claim of consensus is invoked. Consensus is invoked only in situations where the science is not solid enough. Nobody says the consensus of scientists agrees that E=mc2. Nobody says the consensus is that the sun is 93 million miles away. It would never occur to anyone to speak that way.” – Michael Crichton
    Any scientist who invokes the notion of consensus and/or ‘settled science’ is in serious need of a science history lesson. And needs to look up ‘hubris’ in the dictionary.

  99. Graeme Rodaughan (17:39:02),
    Thanx for the correction. I was going by memory, and you know what they say: three things start to go as you get older. The first is your memory, and, um… I forgot the others.
    [Actually I didn’t forget, it’s just too depressing to contemplate.]

  100. John M:

    Note quite. We have it from the highest level of government that “the science is beyond dispute and the facts are clear”.

    Well, what I think that person is saying essentially is that the scientific community is telling him that there are certain things that we now believe we know with high confidence. He is not mandating that there be no further debate in the scientific community; rather, he is saying that politicians should not be second-guessing the scientists (which can consist of trotting out the few scientists who happen to agree with them and disagree with most of their scientific colleagues).
    This is the thing that seems difficult for people to understand: In science, nothing is ever settled with 100% certainty because science is inductive, not deductive. However, if you are going to use science to inform public policy, then scientists have to get together and review the current body of the scientific literature and explain to the policymakers where the science currently stands. There is no 100% money-back guarantee that the scientific consensus is correct; however, history has shown that the scientific process has been our best way of understanding how the world works and that it is much wiser to bet with the current scientific consensus than to bet against it. (This admittedly varies some from field-to-field; e.g., the physical sciences probably have a better track record on this than the medical sciences because the mechanistic understanding tends to be better.)
    DaveC:
    As often with Michael Crichton, there is a certain bit of trivial correctness behind what he says but the whole crux of his argument is very misleading. Sure, people are going to be most interested in what the consensus is regarding issues closer to the forefront of current scientific study. If the word “consensus” gets Crichton so upset, he can substitute another word or words for it. We could say, “The overwhelming predominant view in the peer-reviewed scientific literature on the subject is that …”

  101. Oh, and by the way, if policymakers want to prepare for the possibility that scientists are underestimating uncertainties and thus are being overconfident in their “consensus” (which I think is a reasonable possible to consider in formulating policies), then you should really do so in both directions. I.e., they should design their policies with the possibility not only that things might turn out to be not as bad as scientists generally believe but also that they might be worse. (For example, that arctic sea ice might disappear faster than the models predict and that the disintegration of the land ice sheets might occur faster than models predicts, as both current and paleo data suggests may be the case.)
    It is interesting that those challenging the notion of “consensus” almost always seem to assume that “consensus wrong” equates to “CO2 is not a problem” rather than “Carbon cycle feedbacks will turn out to be worse than we could ever have expected” or “We might cross tipping points that we hadn’t even thought about”!

  102. Extracts from Flavor of the Month: Why Smart People Fall for Fads (2006)
    By Joel Best (U. of California Press)
    p. 4: In our society, most serious intstitution—medicine, science, business, education, criminal justice, and so on—experience what we can call institutional fads.
    p. 16: Consider three cases from the 1980s: [the author cites the widespread diagnosis of multiple personality disorder, quality circles, and cold fusion.]
    p. 18: While the innovation is spreading, it is easy to believe, to dismiss the skeptics. … Their proponents often are respected figures in their professions, and their claims receive serious, deferential attention in the media.
    p. 36: Often there are overtones of urgency—we must act now, we can’t afford to wait, because things will soon get worse and we’ll fall further behind. This is what many institutional fads offer—the promise of a sudden, wonder-working, paradigm-shifting, revolutionary, quantum-leap breakthrough.
    pp. 82-83: Fads … can be fun. When people are aware that an innovation is spreading, they often feel excited. There is a widespread sense that being part of a big, important change has something thrilling, even joyful about it.
    pp. 84-85: It is easy to find excitement in doing something different, if only because change breaks the boredom of routine. … There is pride in being a pioneer, one of the early adopters—the first kid on your block.
    ………
    This enthusiasm may cause a rush toward wholesale adoption. …
    ……….
    People also find comfort in being part of the in crowd, in joining with other adopters. To the degree that you admire the trend-setters, you will be pleased to join them. … You’re now an insider, a status that is part of the appeal of stylishness. The feeling that you have made the right choice is not just personal (“it’s the right choice for me”) but also social (“Others will see that I’ve made the right choice”).
    Pp 88-89: Adopters often also feel a sense of superiority because they have opportunities to exercise power. Once an organization’s leaders have adopted some innovation, they may require their subordinates to get with the program—to attend training workshops, adopt the new lingo, and so on.
    …………
    [Summing up,] institutional fads spread because individuals within organizations experience boredom, hope, pride, status seeking, status anxiety, and other feelings, and then decide to adopt the novelty that promises to improve things and make them feel better. As a result, members bring their organizations onto the bandwagon …. Organizations experience two sorts of bandwagon pressures, both of which have their parallels among individuals: first, the knowledge that other organizations have adopted a novelty pulls us to think we ought to do the same; second, worries that our competitors may be taking advantage of the innovation to get the jump on us pushes us to act.
    pp. 90-92: In addition, they [people] may calculate that adoption [of a novelty] offers advantages to them personally. Consider the plight of Professor Alice, this chapter’s imaginary figure; she has just received her Ph.D. … [but] she will not receive tenure and promotion to associate professor unless she publishes some articles in scholarly journals.
    …………..
    Scholarly journals won’t publish anything that doesn’t say something new … . But there are already bookcases full of studies of Shakespeare and jane Austen. What’s left for Professor Alice to write about?
    …………
    Professor Alice has seen an article in a newsmagazine about physicists studying something called “chaos theory.” The name sounds promising. Professor Alice hasn’t taken physics since high school, but she already has ideas for a title—something along the lines of “Kingdoms in Chaos: The Physics of Royal Courts in Shakespeare’s Tragedies.” Professor Alice’s tenure is virtually assured.
    Individuals often find advantages in hooking their wagons to some rising enthusiasm. … Becoming associated with a trendy novelty suggests to others that you are with it, on top of things, in the know, progressive, forward-looking—and all of those other chichés that assign approval to pioneers of novelty. Often, there are intimations of generational rivalries: those advocating changes are young lions, willing to stand up against the old guard. Institutional fads offer a rationale for turning the reins over to a new generation that is not mired in the past, one that welcomes the future.
    pp. 94-95: Professor Alice … illustrate[s] the importance of careerism—making choices that will advance one’s career—in the spread of such fads.
    …………
    Whenever an organization adopts an innovation,, there is the possibility that parts of the organization will change. Maybe new jobs, such as director of appraisal planning, will appear. … The organization will be—at least to some degree—in flux, which will almost certainly create opportunities. … And, of course, if a novelty comes endorsed by your supervisors … actively resisting the change may put your career at risk. It can be much easier to go along with the changes.
    p. 113: We can think of diffusion—the enduring spread of some novelty—as taking two forms. One form involves the choices of many individuals …. The other form of diffusion involves the establishment of institutional arrangements that make it harder to drop the innovation.
    p. 127: People … are much less inclined to publicize their decision to abandon a fad. There are too many embarrassing interpretations. Did they make an unwise choice? Didn’t they know what they were doing? Were they sufficiently prudent, or did they rush into something they didn’t understand?
    p. 19: These fads aren’t free. Just as “fashion victims” waste their money on unattractive clothing styles, there are fad victims. … Alternative uses for these resources fall by the wayside. … Alienation and cynicism can result.

  103. 3×2 (18:29:53) :
    Dear Three By,
    Actually they’re called registered warrants, but they commonly referred to as IOU. They’re not being used for salary (although that did happen during Gov. Wilson’s budget stalemate in the 80s)., just reimbursements like travel claims. Vendor’s who supply supplies and services to the state have been getting them to pay invoices. They were to be redeemed after Oct. 2nd with around 3% interest, but last week the state controller announced that he is cashing them as of Sept. 4 because state income has improved. I suspect it has more to do with the California’s bad credit rating and his need to sell billions in bonds. Between our state debt and our federal debt, Californian citizens may not be solvent for generations. And that’s those of us who still have jobs. Neither politicians nor bankers are held in much (any) esteem in these parts. Can you spare a mil or two from your stash?
    Your best buddy,
    David

  104. Mr Mandia, you posted only the IPCC reports which don’t at any point give credibility to AGW only that we have had climate change (the reason of course why MMGW transformed into Climate change). The IPCC is a political organisation mandated only to prove AGW and its financing depends on that. Increasing CO2 at the same time as increasing teemperature occured is not a causal relationship especially when the relationship isn’t consistent and is often reversed.
    Joel, It is far better to give no advice to policy makers rather than give them wrong advice as the AGW influenced scientific community is doing now. I have read the so called rebuttals to Ian Plimers book and they are spelling mistakes and opinion compared with the big message of the book which is that AGW is falsified at every turn. I will asssume of course, as with Mr Mandia, that you haven’t actually read the book. Now, will one of you take up the challenge to write a guest post or otherwise let us people into the secret of why AGW is such a threat outside of model land and why you feel current climatic conditions are different to those seen in the past with massively higher CO2 where the tipping points so beloved of catastrophists didn’t happen and will not happen as beautifully explained by Plimer. I’ve been alive for 58 yearsand there has been no significant change in climate (other than above average temperatures in the late 90’s) in the areas that I’ve lived during that time and no observable rise in sea levels (I’ve been a keen boat owner for that period). Put something down for us to get our teeth into and stop posting links to peer reviewed consensus and organisations that have zero credibility.
    When you do your guest articles please address the collapsing pillars of AGW such as no tropospherical hot spot, no temp rise or ice loss in Antarctica, stabilising ice levels in the Arctic and widespread cooling.

  105. Steve (Paris) (10:13:41), Re Catlin:
    The ice thickness measurements that Pen Hadow and the Survey team (Ann Daniels, and Martin Hartley) reported during the winter/spring expedition imply that they were travelling predominantly over thicker First Year Ice.
    The fact that ice thickness results indicate that they have been travelling over First Year Ice, almost right from the start, indicates that the extent of the multi‐year ice is much reduced

    The fact that there is so much first year ice means that it is rebounding “much faster than expected”, and even better, it is “much thicker than expected”
    Yay!
    Because it is thicker, multi‐year ice is more likely to survive the summer season than thinner First Year Ice, so multi‐year ice extent in the winter gives a guide to the next summer minimum. Ice modellers have recently suggested that winter ice extent is a more influential on the following summer minimum than spring and summer meteorology.
    In direct contradiction of the observed facts, of course. And with a blinkered view of the minima when the maxima seem to have little or no trend.
    Snow thickness, measured by the team averaged 0.172m, but during the early part of the Survey, in first 2 weeks of March, snow depths averaged around 0.11m.
    Snow reflects solar radiation, slowing ice melt. It’s an important factor used in many ice thickness prediction models.

    But it does not matter how think the snow is surely? If it is 1cm thick it will reflect just as much as 100 cm, won’t it?
    And the real kicker is, however:
    One further consideration, when interpreting the
    Arctic Survey team, may be navigational bias. Typically, the surface of First Year Ice floes are flatter than that of multi‐year ice floes and because the team systematically seeks out flatter ice which is easier to travel over and camp on, there is a risk that the ice surveyed will not be representative.

    So they would have been pretty much forced to stick to this evil ‘first year ice’ (that is really very good news for the polar bears et al).
    Also the phrase ‘first year’ turns up 28 times.

  106. Scott,
    “Yes, there have been great discoveries by bucking the mainstream (eg. Galileo) but keep things in perspective. For every Galileo that broke with the mainstream and was correct, there are probably thousands who did so and were wrong. We do not recall the wrong ones, of course.”
    By the time of Galileo, it was obvious the Ptolemic model was wrong. AGW is a hypothesis that initially appeared to be reasonable . Towards the end of the last century and beyond, a vast new array of insrumentation has been deployed, from the argo network of submersibles to radiation balance, altimetry and gravitmetry satellites to enable empirical data to be collected “at unprecendented levels of precision.” Yet the new data has been at variance with the theory. I have already given you two failed predictions in my last post. We are now at the point where Newtonian mechanics was at at the beginning of the twentieth century when measurements of the changes in the perehelion of Mercury was at variance with Newtons laws.
    Now here’s the problem. A whole generation of scientists, bureaucrats and journalists have built their careers around this new “industry” and they have to protect their rice bowels. Are they going to risk their rice bowels by telling their paymasters that they may be wrong about CO2 or are they going to say that the theory of man made climate change is broadly correct and everything going forward is about more and more precise measurements?

  107. “Graeme Rodaughan (17:46:29) :
    It was the NAZIs, as opposed to the Soviets.”
    The Soviets had their problems with scientific consensus too.
    I still own a (translated) book by D. I. Blochinzew about Quantum Mechanics (1963). There is a whole chapter comparing probability in QM and certainty that dialectic materialism must win, based on writings by their great thinker Wladimir Iijitsch Uljanow (Lenin, who lived in Switzerland at the same time as Einstein. And they agreed about probabilty).

  108. Joel Shore,
    “It is interesting that those challenging the notion of “consensus” almost always seem to assume that “consensus wrong” equates to “CO2 is not a problem” rather than “Carbon cycle feedbacks will turn out to be worse than we could ever have expected” or “We might cross tipping points that we hadn’t even thought about”!
    The reason sceptics challenge the notion of AGW (and reject the hypothesis that CO2 is dangerous) is because it is not supported by the current crop of data (they say), and the null hypothesis is not rejected. That is, empirical evidence does not reject the null hypothesis that natural cycles are largely responsible for the twentieth century warming. Now you may disagree entirely with their conclusion but this is basically what they are saying.
    Right, so if the null hypothesis is not rejected by data, then the alternative hypothesis, that the warming is largely caused by CO2 warming the planet must be rejected instead. But the alternative hypothesis is saying precisely that CO2 IS a problem and CO2 feedbacks WILL get worse and worse and that there WILL be tipping points. Therefore it is not merely “interesting” that those challenging AGW assume that CO2 will not be a problem, but follows as a logical conclusion to the null hypothesis remaining intact.
    Do you see how that works, Joel Shore?

  109. Joel Shore,
    “This is the thing that seems difficult for people to understand: In science, nothing is ever settled with 100% certainty because science is inductive, not deductive.”
    People on this blog understand that perfectly well.
    “However, if you are going to use science to inform public policy, then scientists have to get together and review the current body of the scientific literature and explain to the policymakers where the science currently stands.”
    This is the bit that people are having a problem with. Who decides where the science stands? Who decides what the consensus even is? The public are presented with a continual drip feed of articles predicting dire consequences unless we “act now” and endless pictures of melting ice caps and polar bears. They are bombarded by adverts by companies extolling us to buy their products and lower our carbon footprints. We hear every day that world leaders are struggling to nail down an agreement by December that will make us limit our CO2 emissions in order to save mankind. The policy makers themselves are continually cajoled by the IPCC, Ban Ki Moon et al and their own GISS or Hadley centre scientists to act now before it’s too late. Learned societies have also jumped on board with their own doomsaying pronouncements. Given this picture, no wonder the public are all convinced that there is an overwhelming consensus that man made CO2 is leading to a climate catastrophe. That is all they hear. But behind that fascade, all is not as it seems.
    The “pronouncement” of so called learned societies are no more than the dogma’s of handfull’s of board members. We know they do not represent the views of their members as witnessed by the rebellions of members of the APS, ACS and others. Meanwhile behind the serene fascade of unity the IPCC tries so hard to maintain, there is open dissent and even revolt among scientists and the elite who sit on the committees. The situation among the big government research institutes is even worse, with so-called scientists continually obstructing the scientific method by refusing to release raw data and algorithms (scientists who work in this new “industry” will do nothing that might jeapordise their livelihoods). Surface data is often manipulated by GISS without explanation in order to make trends appear more pronounced. And while all this is going on, scientist after scientist is publishing papers that call the AGW hypothesis into question.
    Yet the myth of consensus remains intact.

  110. @Joel Shore (18:29:36) :
    ” However, if you are going to use science to inform public policy, then scientists have to get together and review the current body of the scientific literature and explain to the policymakers where the science currently stands.”
    And, if policymakers want to accept the consensus, they should save the taxpayers’ money and cut off grants for any future research into AGW. After all, the science is “settled.”

  111. Joel Shore (18:29:36) :

    This is the thing that seems difficult for people to understand: In science, nothing is ever settled with 100% certainty because science is inductive, not deductive.”

    Fine. I would just like to hear you and other AGW proponents say it:
    “The science is not settled.”
    Shout it from the roof tops so there can be no misunderstanding. Write letters to the editor when journalists and politicians use the phrase. It would be refreshing.
    Also, it would be nice if there were a similar push for the “consensus” for things like food and drug safety, genetically modified crops, use of animals in research, etc., etc., but for some reason, the drum beat for consensus by certain parties seems to be limited to climate science.
    Why is that?

  112. David in Davis (20:49:40) :
    Thanks for that.
    Perhaps you could organise a “live aid” type of event. Copenhagen is coming up soon so you could get in line there – victims of AGW (just don’t be too specific about how)

  113. DaveC:

    And, if policymakers want to accept the consensus, they should save the taxpayers’ money and cut off grants for any future research into AGW. After all, the science is “settled.”

    This is the sort of all-or-nothing thinking that isn’t very useful. The fact that some things are known to a very high degree of certainty (e.g., that the rise in CO2 levels are due to us…and in particular mainly to our burning of fossil fuels, and that the radiative forcing due to doubling CO2 is approximately 4 W/m^2) and some things to a fairly high degree of certainty (e.g., that most of the last ~50 years warming is due to the rise in greenhouse gases and that additional rises is expected to produce significant additional warming) does not mean that there is nothing left to understand. There is plenty that needs to be understood, including narrowing down the range of climate sensitivity, understanding the regional changes that are expected to occur, better understanding possible carbon cycle feedbacks and potential tipping points, …)
    John M says:

    Fine. I would just like to hear you and other AGW proponents say it:
    “The science is not settled.”
    Shout it from the roof tops so there can be no misunderstanding. Write letters to the editor when journalists and politicians use the phrase. It would be refreshing.

    Should we be doing the same in regards to gravity? I have a better idea, why don’t we write scientific reports where we try to quantify the degree of certainty we have about various aspects of the science? Oh wait, that has already been done in the IPCC reports.

    Also, it would be nice if there were a similar push for the “consensus” for things like food and drug safety, genetically modified crops, use of animals in research, etc., etc., but for some reason, the drum beat for consensus by certain parties seems to be limited to climate science.

    I support the work of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and other similar bodies to write such consensus reports on all those sorts of things and believe that such reports should be used to inform policy decisions. Do you…and, if so, why does your belief in such a process break down when it comes to AGW?
    Vincent says:

    This is the bit that people are having a problem with. Who decides where the science stands? Who decides what the consensus even is?

    The scientists do by reviewing the peer-reviewed work in the field. This is why organizations like the National Academy of Sciences came into being. It was precisely to try to separate the political issues from the politics. And, I would say that it has worked very well for us but there is always the temptation for those on the losing side of the scientific argument to say “the referees are biased” particularly when it comes to a scientific issue with important policy implications, including potential solutions that go against many people’s financial interests, religious beliefs, or political philosophies.

    The “pronouncement” of so called learned societies are no more than the dogma’s of handfull’s of board members. We know they do not represent the views of their members as witnessed by the rebellions of members of the APS, ACS and others.

    (1) How is it that all of these societies have been taken over by the same sort of handful of board members? Does this make any sense?
    (2) All that you can conclude from the “rebellions” that have occurred is that the views do not represent 100% of the members. Given that these societies have thousands…probably tens of thousands…of members, is that at all surprising to you? In fact, I would say that the smallness of such rebellions is quite consistent with the notion that the overwhelming majority of the members do share the views of the board. And, in fact, if a significant fraction (a majority…or even a vocal and motivated minority) did not, it would be easy enough for them to run and elect candidates for the board positions on a platform of overturning the supposedly-misguided statements that these boards have issued on climate change.

  114. Joel Shore (12:15:32) :

    Should we be doing the same in regards to gravity?

    The science of climate change is at the same level understanding as the science of gravity? I have an apple tree in my back yard. I can tell you with a great deal of certainty what will happen if an apple lets loose. Can you tell me with the same certainty what the climate in my backyard will be in a 100 years?
    With regard to “consensus committees” and “informing public policy”? Sure I support that. What I don’t support is such committees dictating public policy, and I sure don’t support the output of those committees being treated as if it’s been chiseled onto two stone tablets.

  115. John M says:

    The science of climate change is at the same level understanding as the science of gravity? I have an apple tree in my back yard. I can tell you with a great deal of certainty what will happen if an apple lets loose. Can you tell me with the same certainty what the climate in my backyard will be in a 100 years?

    I am not claiming that the quantitative level of understanding is exactly the same. It is the job of reports such as the IPCC report to detail what the level of understanding of various aspects of the science is. That being said, if the theory of gravity had policy implications that were as distasteful to some people as the policy implications of AGW seem to be, I imagine you would have lots of people pointing out various deficiencies in gravitational theory, such as the fact that we still don’t understand how to make it consistent with quantum theory.

    With regard to “consensus committees” and “informing public policy”? Sure I support that. What I don’t support is such committees dictating public policy, and I sure don’t support the output of those committees being treated as if it’s been chiseled onto two stone tablets.

    I don’t think they are dictating public policy, nor are the outputs being treated as perfect received wisdom. However, the further one goes along the road of not accepting the scientific conclusions of such committees, the further one allows politicians to essentially not believe scientific conclusions that they don’t like and instead to find a few “pet scientists” who tell them what they want to hear instead.

  116. Joel Shore (13:11:45) :
    So here’s where we agree:
    The science is not “settled”.
    Our understanding of climate is nowhere near as solid as our understanding of gravity.
    “Consensus” bodies are useful, but not infallible.
    The policy implications with regard to climate are distasteful.
    Scientists should not dictate policy.
    I guess the only thing we don’t agree on is whether or not dissenting voices have a right to be heard.

  117. 3×2 (08:48:08) :
    re: Live-Aid for California
    Good idea. Maybe the Governator can come. I’m sure all those rich warmer groups like WWF will contribute once he explains how he ruined the California economy by forcing business to cut carbon emissions 50% by the day after tomorrow (and without any new nuclear power plants to boot)! The Gov and I will be sure to wear our hair shirts. (Maria can wear her hair skirt.)
    Yours in piety and suffering for the common good,
    David

  118. Climate Change vs Gravity?
    Let me see…
    In the case of the one, it started with an observable phenomenon, for which science is seeking a theory to fit.
    In the case of the other, it started with a theory, for which science is seeking an observable phenomenon to fit.
    I’ll leave you to decide which is which.

  119. @Joel Shore (12:15:32) :
    “This is the sort of all-or-nothing thinking that isn’t very useful. The fact that some things are known to a very high degree of certainty (e.g., that the rise in CO2 levels are due to us…and in particular mainly to our burning of fossil fuels, and that the radiative forcing due to doubling CO2 is approximately 4 W/m^2) and some things to a fairly high degree of certainty (e.g., that most of the last ~50 years warming is due to the rise in greenhouse gases and that additional rises is expected to produce significant additional warming) does not mean that there is nothing left to understand.”
    You’re sh*ttin’ me, right?

  120. I forgot to add to my last posting….
    …it’s a bit like Victor Borge’s doctor uncle, who discovered a cure for which there’s no disease 🙂

  121. “This is the sort of all-or-nothing thinking that isn’t very useful. The fact that some things are known to a very high degree of certainty (e.g., that the rise in CO2 levels are due to us…and in particular mainly to our burning of fossil fuels, and that the radiative forcing due to doubling CO2 is approximately 4 W/m^2) and some things to a fairly high degree of certainty (e.g., that most of the last ~50 years warming is due to the rise in greenhouse gases and that additional rises is expected to produce significant additional warming) does not mean that there is nothing left to understand.”
    Would you care to put error bars on your certainty?

  122. John M says:

    I guess the only thing we don’t agree on is whether or not dissenting voices have a right to be heard.

    I don’t see where we disagree on this point either. (Having a right to be heard and having one’s opinion given inordinate weight relative to the opinions of most of the rest of the scientific community is, however, two different things.)

  123. And while your working on that definition of “inordinate weight”, make sure it captures metrics extractable from this page
    wrt “pro-warming” vs. “skeptical” reporting.

  124. Joel Shore (17:50:15) :
    I don’t see where we disagree on this point either. (Having a right to be heard and having one’s opinion given inordinate weight relative to the opinions of most of the rest of the scientific community is, however, two different things.)
    Science isnt a democracy, it shouldnt matter one iota about the majority or the minority of “opinions”. Its about observations(evidence) proving theories, or disproving theories. Thats it. That is all that should matter. Going by your stated belief in scientific process, we would still be living in the centre of the universe!

  125. Of course, we should trust the U N implicitly and transfer all decision making to this august body. We are much too stupid to direct our own steps and it is self-evident that all our ill-gotten gains should immediately be transferred to the less fortunate… of course the U N should keep approximately 99% of the funds to make sure that the little dictators understand who’s the boss…
    Also serving mankind in humility and love,
    Mike Bryant

  126. Joel Shore:
    “…having one’s opinion given inordinate weight relative to the opinions of most of the rest of the scientific community…”
    Some folks are so thoroughly deluded that they presume to know the ‘opinions’ of the majority of scientists, even though the ruling clique in the various organizations have hijacked the headlines, and they refuse to ever allow a true, secret ballot to even ascertain the actual views of their membership.
    This situation is analogous to the climate alarmists’ hiding out from any real, honest, moderated debate with skeptics. When Gavin Schmidt took time out of his busy daily chore of running a propaganda website on the taxpayers’ dime, to debate his much more knowledgeable opponents, he not only lost the debate badly — he exposed himself as being ignorant of much of the science. Viscount Monckton gave the pathetic Schmidt such a hard spanking that Gavin has hidden out from debates with skeptics ever since.
    Before that debate, it was harder for skeptics to argue that ‘the science is settled,’ because of the constant claims of ‘consensus’.
    But now thanks to that Alarmist/Skeptic debate, we know the truth: the only ‘settled science’ shows that steadily rising levels of a *very* minor trace gas do not cause runaway global warming — or any other kind of global warming, from what the planet itself is telling us. Any tiny effect from CO2 is obviously being overcome by many other factors, since the planet is steadily cooling as CO2 steadily rises. Who are you gonna believe, Al Gore? Or Planet Earth?
    Now, if an independent polling outfit acceptable to both sides were to conduct a secret ballot of the entire membership, asking a simple question such as: “Will a rise in CO2 cause runaway global warming and climate catastrophe?”, then the truth would emerge, and there would be no fatuous comments presuming to know what’s in the hearts of dues paying members. The world would see that the small clique in control of these professional organizations are totally out of synch with the large majority of their membership.
    And that is why we never see an honest secret ballot question polling the rank-and-file membership. Instead, we’re shown a Potemkin village with happy peasants, and they assure us with a straight face that the whole country is exactly like it.

  127. MikeE says:

    Science isnt a democracy, it shouldnt matter one iota about the majority or the minority of “opinions”. Its about observations(evidence) proving theories, or disproving theories. Thats it. That is all that should matter. Going by your stated belief in scientific process, we would still be living in the centre of the universe!

    Yes, science is about those things (more or less, given that it is impossible to prove a theory). However, the people who are capable of judging these things are the scientists in the field themselves, hence why the opinions of the scientists matter.
    Smokey says:

    Now, if an independent polling outfit acceptable to both sides were to conduct a secret ballot of the entire membership, asking a simple question such as: “Will a rise in CO2 cause runaway global warming and climate catastrophe?”, then the truth would emerge, and there would be no fatuous comments presuming to know what’s in the hearts of dues paying members. The world would see that the small clique in control of these professional organizations are totally out of synch with the large majority of their membership.

    (1) Various polls of scientist have in fact been conducted and the results presented (see, e.g., http://stats.org/stories/2008/global_warming_survey_apr23_08.html ) and the “skeptics” find reason to doubt them (ostensibly because they don’t like the wording of the question or the way the respondents were chosen but, more likely, because they don’t like the results).
    (2) How do you propose that small cliques have taken control of ALL of these various different professional organizations that are so totally out of synch with the large majority of their membership?
    (3) Your proposed wording of the question is ludicrous. I wouldn’t answer YES to such a question. First of all, few climate scientists that I know of other than James Hansen have suggested that the rise in CO2 will lead to “runaway” warming in the definition of that word used by scientists (and even Hansen himself has limited the cases and likelihoods under which he thinks that would occur). [And, I think I have told you this at least 10 times now.] Second of all, the term “climate catastrophe” is ill-defined. A better, more balanced wording of the question would be something like, “Is the rise in CO2 likely to lead to dangerous interference with our climate system and thus should we invest significant resources into reducing or capturing our emissions in order to mitigate these effects?” OR “Does the IPCC report accurately reflect the current state of our understanding of climate change, including its causes, effects, and mitigation?” (with follow-up questions to probe whether those that say no think the effects of greenhouse gas emissions will be less severe or more severe than the IPCC report outlines).

  128. Yes, Joel, I would say that the IPCC report quite accurately reflects the current state of their understanding of climate change. And anyone with eyes and a decent outdoor thermometer would have to come to the conclusion that they don’t know much.

  129. I posed a question regarding something that has repeatedly been claimed, ad nauseum: “Will a rise in CO2 cause runaway global warming and climate catastrophe?” That, after all, is the central conjecture of the alarmist crowd. Without a good alarmist scare, what have they got? A few tenths of a degree warming? What’s scary about that? So they must take the runaway global warming/climate catastrophe position… or the grants stop.
    And how does Joel answer my question? :
    Joel Shore: “I wouldn’t answer YES to such a question.”
    See? The question gives the answer. Those formulating the questions already know what answers they want. Otherwise, they would ask some smart skeptics for their help in designing the questions, so everyone is on the same page. But they never do. It’s all alarmist hype, all the time.
    Those polls are paid for by those interested in using them for propaganda. You knew that, I suspect. The questions are super vague. Otherwise you couldn’t get 84% of scientists to agree on any subject as new as climate science. You could hardly get 84% of scientists to agree that today is Monday. The polls you refer to are total rubbish. He who pays the piper calls the tune — and the rank-and-file members didn’t get a say in any of it.
    You think you have better questions? How about this: no question may refer to CO2 without giving equal weighting to at least half a dozen other possible factors, starting with the sun, the ocean, and the clouds. As it is, the questions are all about CO2=AGW, as debunked as it is. [And it would be interesting to see a current poll, instead of one almost a year and a half old. Attitudes are changing.]
    Those proposing the language of the question are just like GCM model programmers, who [subconsciously or not] write programs anticipating a desired outcome. And you know what? They get the outcome they want. It’s just bogus, that’s all. It doesn’t conform to reality.
    The day that the AAA$, or any similar professional organization gives equal weight to skeptics’ and alarmists’ input [and truth be told, skeptic views should be over-weighted in science], wake me. ‘K?
    This deck is stacked. I’ve provided a hint about how to falsify my hypothesis. Watch the AAA$ ignore it. They prefer stacked decks.

  130. Joel Shore (19:42:26) :
    “Yes, science is about those things (more or less, given that it is impossible to prove a theory). However, the people who are capable of judging these things are the scientists in the field themselves, hence why the opinions of the scientists matter.”
    Well i guess this is an area were we differ considerably, i dont believe a word a car sales men tells me. If he says “shes a got a good solid body, no rust here” ill assume the super structure is primarily made of bog. “One old lady owner only, took it for groceries once a week” would translate too, i picked it up of some boy hoons who thrashed the c#$p out of her, but i wound the clock back. I take anything from some one who stands to gain out of their view with a grain of salt…. My view on AGW hasnt come from a political ideology. And i admit i am but a humble farmer(ex soldier, ex engineer/aqua culture water systems dude) But i havnt come to my views out of ignorance on this subject. And admit my brother is where my scepticism has really been born. He is a scientist, not a climatologist(his PHD is computer biology, lectures computer sciences, physics/calculus etc) He has nothing to gain from his stance on it, and has worked on climate models. I’ll take his word that “they have absolutely no idea how much much of the warming is due to us, we’re just not that good at chaotic systems” over someone whos employment depends on it, or stands to gain out of their opinion.
    “Evidence” contrary to my beliefs will cause me to alter my beliefs… But essentially the word of someone whos livelihood depends on their opinion is worthless in my opinion.

  131. Joel
    Your problem is that you quote opinion as fact even on the point of man made CO2 being the main driver of increase and especially so on the actual climatic radiant forcing of CO2. Gravity and relativity are theories but theories that haven’t as yet been falsified. AGW is nothing more than a weak hypothesis that is falsified on a daily basis everywhere. I have asked you to give some solid weight to this weak hypothesis and apart from the normal “believe the IPCC” you have given nothing. AGW theory works when the temperature is rising and looks stupid when it falls or levels for long periods as it has at many points in the last century. The tide is turning now on AGW and the shrillness of its advocates looks ever sillier. The people don’t believe it and to be honest the politicians don’t. Oil and Gas developments are rushing ahead based on economics and not what the eco-loonies want, more reserves are being found and the earth is awash with plentiful cheap hydrocarbon energy which we should use or basically shutdown our productive sectors and deny our children any right to prosperity, mobility and freedom from the control of left wing politicians and their army of parasitical advisors. In the UK we will have blackouts within 7-8 years and the nuclear option has passed. My bet is that we will build a pile of gas fired and coal fired power stations to plug the gap and absolutely correctly so given the paucity of the case against doing so.

  132. jeez:
    onslaught: n. A fierce or destructive attack.
    Nah. Just holding Joel’s feet to the fire based on his own statement. No name calling, just a different point of view. And I stand by it. I’ve subscribed to the AAAS journal Science for over twenty years. I’m familiar with their shenanigans, one of which is to disregard, marginalize, and ignore skeptics. That’s not science, that’s anti-science. How can anyone find the truth, when they only hear one side?
    Joel’s ‘reasonable’ questions were still entirely one sided. I proposed that both the skeptic [correct, IMHO] and the alarmist [wrong, IMHO] sides should get together and formulate mutually agreeable poll questions. But as we see, that is not allowed. Skeptics are considered the enemy; they consider skeptics to be a horrendous threat to the entrenched rent-seeking grant recipients.
    The entity paying for a poll gets exactly what it pays for; they get to call the tune. The tune is CO2=AGW. Very little dissent or contrary opinion is allowed. The rank-and-file membership is expected to just pay their dues and stfu.
    When a politician commissions a poll, he does it in order to get a specific result. That’s happening here. The pre-paid result: “AGW is gonna getcha! We need more grant money!!”
    My proposal was clear and crossed no lines: it was simply a suggestion to have both sides reach an agreement regarding the poll questions.
    What’s wrong with that?

  133. Joel,
    I was prepared to debate the science with you but each time you post you regurgitate the same mantra, namely that we must except what these scientific mouthpieces tell us.
    Didn’t anyone tell you that these are just “appeals to authority?”

  134. jeez:

    Smokey, Joel gave reasonable alternate questions. In my opinion your rhetorical onslaught is misplaced.

    Thanks, jeez.
    Smokey says:

    Joel’s ‘reasonable’ questions were still entirely one sided.

    I told you specifically what was wrong with your question. You haven’t explained what were wrong with either of mine…or, for that matter, what were wrong with the various questions asked by the STATS.org / Harris Interactive survey of members of the AGU and the AMS.

    I proposed that both the skeptic [correct, IMHO] and the alarmist [wrong, IMHO] sides should get together and formulate mutually agreeable poll questions.

    I have no problem with such an approach. However, what I do have problems with is when propose some hypothetical best-case for polling and then refuse to look at what polling evidence is out there that may not be quite the ideal but may well be good enough to get at least an approximate view of what scientisits think. Instead, you bash every poll that has been done whose conclusions you don’t like without even explaining what you think were wrong with the questions. And, you impune the integrity of the organizations who did the poll and who commissioned the poll (even if you don’t know who they are).
    And, by the way, that STATS.org poll that I linked to was not done at the behest of the AGU or the AMS according to the press release; rather, it was carried out by Harris Interactive on behalf of the Statistical Assessment Service (which is STATS.org). And, while this STATS organization may have some bias, there is good evidence that the bias is actually in the conservative direction as discussed in here: http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Statistical_Assessment_Service .
    Vincent:

    I was prepared to debate the science with you but each time you post you regurgitate the same mantra, namely that we must except what these scientific mouthpieces tell us.
    Didn’t anyone tell you that these are just “appeals to authority?”

    In other threads, I have discussed many aspects of the science ad nauseum. However, the discussion in the comments to this thread seemed to have evolved to the issue of consensus and how science should be used to inform public policy, so that is what I have been discussing. And, the fact is that the public policy decisions are going to be made, as they should be, by looking at what the scientific authorities do say. What you or I have to say about the science is largely irrelevant from that point-of-view.

  135. Re: Jennifer Hubbard (06:19:18)
    It is difficult to appreciate your comment without knowing more about your perspective. I welcome elaboration.

    Lucy Skywalker, the GISTEMP graphs are not of presentation value. However, you will note that underneath them there is a “Download monthly data as text” option, which can quickly be popped open in a new tab, copied/pasted to Excel, and graphed nicely. It will be tedious work to produce presentation-quality graphics for all the sites, but if someone (else – I don’t have time for this) goes to that trouble, it will be easy to do future updates with the resultant template on-file. [Note: GISTEMP only goes back to 1880, so it will be necessary to track down original records for sites with records that go back further.]
    I should clarify my primary interest in the Arctic warming of 1920-1940:
    http://www.sfu.ca/~plv/ChandlerPeriod.PNG
    There is an anti-phase relation with Antarctica (that is detectable in anomalous regional ENSO-echoes), which has been pointed out by Sidorenkov. Bob Tisdale’s post on the Southern Ocean tells the same story. The time-integrated aa index record tells the same story. Basil did a post on Hurst exponents – the paper he featured tells the same story. Ian Wilson’s recent work – same. There are just too many “same”s. Keep an eye on the message and the framing of the communications of Yu.V. Barkin if you want to get a sense of how things have to go to slowly gain acceptance. It is unlikely that we will be able to speed up the transition to appreciation of truth, but we can prepare for the day when the dishonesty-fad is torn apart by a flood of defections. (It could be many years from now, as there is still opportunity for many in the deception. The important thing during the present era is to keep interest in the truth thriving in the face of forces that are aggressively determined to thwart, suppress, deride, crush, annihilate, …)

  136. Lucy Skywalker – a few more notes for you & the many others who are pursuing the whole truth:
    Ponyavin, D.I.; & Zolotova, N.V. (2004). Nonlinear analysis of climatic time series with cross recurrence plots.
    http://geo.phys.spbu.ru/~ned/Ponyavin_and_Zolotova_2004.pdf
    The following global synchrony existed after but not before the major shift they highlight in their cross-recurrence plots:
    http://www.sfu.ca/~plv/(J,N)o2&Pr.png
    Here is the unusual event:
    http://www.sfu.ca/~plv/1931UniquePhaseHarmonics.png
    The warming in the North Atlantic coincided with Arctic melt & severe drought in North America at a time when Antarctic ice peaked and Southern Oceans were frigid.
    http://i41.tinypic.com/29zxus7.jpg
    [credit: Bob Tisdale]
    At present, Barkin appears to be the best hope of framing communications regarding the nature of such phenomena in a manner that can reach hard-wired, closed-minded traditionalists who are more-than-reluctant to abandon their untenable assumptions.
    Supplementary – for those wishing to see the relevant patterns before 1940:
    http://www.sfu.ca/~plv/Pr,JN4,r..,m4..png
    In the days ahead I may introduce to WUWT peculiar relations between the solar cycle, regional precipitation, regional temperature statistics, & ENSO.
    Note to the wise:
    Expect more questions than answers if you are on the right track in your investigation of complexity. (It is fear, not truth, that drives the masses to the embrace of those who project a simple (“everything is well-understood already”) alternative.)

  137. Interesting reply, Paul, thanks a lot.
    (1) I note you and (?)GS discussing Yu V Barkin elsewhere, and I really do understand the (generally) slow process of adoption. More than you might think. But that doesn’t mean I’m not learning in that area – I am. So I’ve scanned YVB in Google, forgotten most but not all… One more “coincidental” mention of him and I shall know it’s time to dig deeper.
    (2) ha, you show up nicely my scientific inadequacy, and challenge me to learn more. I’ve checked the NASA data – really unfortunate they only go back to 1880; but learning to make Excel graphs is a project I need to take breath for! or do I do better just staying as a reporter of science?
    (3) the anti-phase pattern… is this related to what I just pointed Invariance to, elsewhere, Alan Cheetham’s work?
    Now like the best of scientists, I’m thoroughly a mystic at heart, and like Kepler I look for the “harmony of the spheres” in scientific realms as well as in poetic ones…
    “…Look, how the floor of Heaven
    Is thick inlaid with patines of bright gold ;
    There’s not an orb, which thou behold’st,
    But in its motion like an angel sings,
    Still quiring to the young-ey’d cherubins :
    Such harmony is in immortal souls
    But whilst this muddy vessel of decay
    Doth grossly close it in, we cannot hear it.”

  138. Also:
    Ponyavin, D.I. (2004). Solar cycle signal in geomagnetic activity and climate. Solar Physics 224, 465-471.
    Ponyavin, D.I.; Barliaeva, T.V.; & Zolotova, N.V. (2005). Hypersensitivity of climate response to solar activity output during the last 60 years. Memorie della Societa Astronomica Italiana 76, 1026-1029.
    http://geo.phys.spbu.ru/~ned/P_B_Z_2005MmSAI..76.1026I.pdf
    Zolotova N.V.; & Ponyavin D.I. (2005). Recurrence and cross recurrence plot analysis of natural time series, Educational and methodical materials. St. Petersburg University Press. (in Russian)
    http://geo.phys.spbu.ru/~ned/ZP_methodology.pdf
    (Those who can’t read Russian can at least look at the figures.)
    The following will also be of interest to a subset of WUWT readers:
    Zolotova N.V.; Ponyavin D.I.; Marwan N.; & Kurths J. (2009). Long-term asymmetry in the wings of the butterfly diagram. Astronomy & Astrophysics 503, 197-201.
    http://geo.phys.spbu.ru/~ned/Zolotova_Ponyavin_Marwan_Kurths_2009.pdf

    Lucy, Graphing in Excel is a breeze (we’re talking seconds) – no need to be intimidated …and there’s plenty of opportunity to be artistic. Feel welcome to ask the occasional question – (and don’t sit for more than 5 minutes stuck!)
    It shouldn’t be too hard to track down the Arctic series online since so few countries border the Arctic and all of them are developed. If you find links, please share.
    You can find the Canadian series here:
    http://climate.weatheroffice.ec.gc.ca/climateData/canada_e.html
    Click on the province or territory you want (on the map), switch the “Interval” to “Monthly”, click a site, and then click the ‘Bulk Data’ “CSV” hyperlink.
    Hopefully it is equally easy for Alaska, Norway, Iceland, Greenland, Russia, +. (It’s probably just a matter of finding the right pathway on some government websites.)
    I will likely have more to share & say about Barkin in the weeks & months ahead… (I’m still making my way through dozens of his papers…)
    Thanks to WUWT for providing a place to swap notes.

  139. Let me remind you again that a poll by Pielke, Sr. and others in 2007 showed:
    No scientists were willing to admit to the statement that “global warming is a fabrication and that human activity is not having any significant effect on climate” – [0%].
    82% expressed the opinion that the IPCC WG1 Report was accurate [65%] or actually underestimates the consequences of anthropogenic CO2-induced AGW and the associated risks [15%].
    The most often chosen response in the survey was “The scientific basis for human impacts on climate is well represented by the IPCC WG1 report. The lead scientists know what they are doing. We are warming the planet, with CO2 as the main culprit. At least some of the forecast consequences of this change are based on robust evidence.”
    BTW, even the Pielkes believe in AGW as significant but they think it is less significant than most other experts. So what do you say to the Pielkes?
    Of course a larger poll performed by Peter Doran and Maggie Kendall Zimmerman at Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago of 3,146 Earth scientists showed 96.2% of climatologists who are active in climate research believe that mean global temperatures have risen compared to pre-1800s levels, and 97.4% believe that human activity is a significant factor in changing mean global temperatures. Among all respondents, 90% agreed that temperatures have risen compared to pre-1800 levels, and 80% agreed that humans significantly influence the global temperature. Petroleum geologists were among the biggest doubters, with only 47 percent believing in human involvement.
    Doran and Zimmerman conclude:
    Debate on the authenticity of global warming and the role played by human activity is largely nonexistent among those who understand the nuances and scientific basis of long-term climate processes. The challenge, rather, appears to be how to effectively communicate this fact to policy makers and to a public that continues to mistakenly perceive debate among scientists.
    This discussion thread certainly bears that out.

  140. Lucy Skywalker (15:29:27) “(3) the anti-phase pattern… is this related to what I just pointed Invariance to, elsewhere, Alan Cheetham’s work?”
    It’s going to be a piece of work sorting through that:
    “Earth’s Magnetic Field and Climate Variability”
    http://www.appinsys.com/GlobalWarming/EarthMagneticField.htm
    …so no comment at this time.
    What I will say for now: Be alert for a see-saw relationship between the North & South Pole at a variety of time-scales (including decadal). (Also: Watch out for arguments to the contrary that are not telling the whole truth.)

  141. Scott Mandia (16:31:49) :
    Not to beat a dead horse, but how many of those climate scientists think the consequences are likely to be catastrophic and think it’s worth draconian measures to change the World’s economy?
    Even Joel thinks climate policy is likely to be “distasteful”.
    Do you? And do you think there’s enough evidence of impending catastrophy to merit forcing citizens of democratic countries to live with “distasteful” policies?

  142. @Scott Mandia (16:31:49)
    Nice. Now could you perhaps give us some instances in recent scientific history where polls would have shown the vast majority of scientists taking what ultimately proved to be the wrong side of an issue or theory?

  143. John M,
    Many folks believe that conservative stakeholders would be much more amenable to AGW if it didn’t require the economic regulations which are likely not going to be cheap. These folks’ core belief is less government regulation of business and of their lives. I can certainly understand their position. I am not an expert in solving the problem but I think we are remiss if we deny that there is a big problem to be solved simply because admitting it means accepting a price tag we do not like.
    This same “debate” happened with the cause of the ozone destruction but fortunately a relatively cheap solution was offered so all nations were able to sign the Montreal Protocol in a timely fashion.
    So in the end, it comes to down to good old-fashioned $$$ that motivates folks to ignore the obvious evidence for AGW. As a parent of two small children, I often wonder what the world would be like if we treated the world as our child instead of as our bank account. If so, I think we would be moving forward instead of standing still.
    DaveC,
    No, but I am confident there are proportionally very few. Scientists by nature are very skeptical and usually hesitate to be “convinced”. More importantly, scientific progress cannot be made if we refuse to act for fear of a mistake.

  144. As a parent of two small children, I often wonder what the world would be like if we treated the world as our child instead of as our bank account.

    That’s a false analogy. I can influence how my children are raised a lot more (at least for now) than I can the world’s climate.
    In addition, I don’t have to force another family to live the way I want them to live in order to raise my kids the way I want to raise them.
    And all this is predicated on the premise that the climate is changing catastrophically (I presume that’s what you mean by a “big problem”), not just by a minor warming.
    Just because you say it’s so doesn’t make it so.

  145. John M says:

    Even Joel thinks climate policy is likely to be “distasteful”.

    Actually, I think you are quoting me out-of-context. If you look at the full context of what I was saying when I used that word, I was talking about the fact that there are some people who, because of their political philosophies, find the policy implications particularly distasteful (and hence that it is not surprising that these people then convince themselves that the science isn’t correct so they have an easy way to argue against these policies).
    I don’t think that I would say that I personally find the policy implications “distasteful”, although there are certainly certain aspects of the policy implementation that I might apply that to (e.g., how the apportioning of the emission credits get politicized). And, certainly, there will be a certain amount of sacrifice on all of our parts. However, I think there will also be great opportunities for people who develop the new technologies that will transition us to a low carbon society. And, in the end, I think that once things get rolling, the costs will be lower than most people expect…and certainly far less than the fear-mongering (shall I say “alarmism”?) that one often hears from the crowd who is talking about emissions reductions leading to the destruction of our industrialized societies. [In fact, I sort of find such talk amusing, since many of the very same people who say that believe that the market system can handle any problem…presumably including running out of fossil fuels. But they somehow feel that it can’t handle what is essentially creating an artificial scarcity of fossil fuels by putting a tax or a cap on CO2 emissions. The only difference that I can see as far as the market is concerned is that this artificial scarcity gives the market more options since in this case one can still use fossil fuels if one captures the emitted CO2.]

  146. Scott, have you been in the Ivory Tower? I have. Right in the middle of research. Please believe me. It is a dog eat dog world where anything goes to prove your point. Seldom have I seen a scientist who is the head of a department be described as a skeptic. They usually are at the head because they sold their product better than the next guy in a white coat. There is a very fine line between a snake oil salesman and a scientist. You need to take your rose colored glasses off and view the world in its harsh light.

  147. Joel, there are also many who very much like the idea of dictating how others will live their lives and pay their taxes. No, not like, they absolutely wallow in it and this is the crux of the matter. Also remember that the people driving the issue, the political left, could not drive the agenda via the ballot box where they had become a busted flush so hijacked the eco movement.
    Just remember that there is no evidence of AGW above a very circumstantial, unscientific and inconsistent level. How can all of this hysteria, propaganda and often blatant lying be generated on the basis of climate models that can be debunked in 5.

  148. Lucy, 2 last notes:
    1.
    You will find notes related to our exchange and a link to Bob Tisdale’s Southern Ocean work at Paul Vaughan (13:07:02) [Aug. 25, 2009] here:
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/08/22/spencer-something%E2%80%99s-fishy-with-global-ocean-temperature-measurements/
    (If/when reading that, keep in mind that Antarctic Bottom Water is not included in surface measurements.)
    2.
    Eventually (months from now) I may need to make graphs for a number of Arctic, Southern Ocean, & NorthEast Pacific sites. I’ll let you know if/when this happens. In the meantime, please feel welcome to request Excel tips.

  149. Scott, here are testimonies from many top scientists (including Nobel prizewinners) who always were, or who became, climate skeptics. Scientists move from warmist to skeptic; never the other way round AFAIK. Ask yourself why. Many here were once warmists on what looked like good evidence, myself included.

  150. Paul, thanks for all those notes. I see we crossed posts. For now I’ve simply copied them to look at later, as I need to attend to replies on today’s thread! You can always email me at the website if it’s OT for WUWT.

  151. Lucy Skywalker says:

    Scientists move from warmist to skeptic; never the other way round AFAIK.

    Not according to the STATS poll carried out by Harris Interactive:

    Changing scientific opinion
    In 1991 the Gallup organization conducted a telephone survey on global climate change among 400 scientists drawn from membership lists of the American Meteorological Association and the American Geophysical Union.
    We repeated several of their questions verbatim, in order to measure changes in scientific opinion over time. On a variety of questions, opinion has consistently shifted toward increased belief in and concern about global warming. Among the changes:
    * In 1991 only 60% of climate scientists believed that average global temperatures were up, compared to 97% today.
    * In 1991 only a minority (41%) of climate scientists agreed that then-current scientific evidence “substantiates the occurrence of human-induced warming,” compared to three out of four (74%) today.
    * The proportion of those who see at least a 50-50 chance that global temperatures will rise two degrees Celsius has increased from 47% to 56% since 1991.

  152. Joel, you keep posting that lame poll, which also says:

    Only 29% express a “great deal of confidence” that scientists understand the size and extent of anthropogenic [human] sources of greenhouse gases,” and only 32% are confident about our understanding of the archeological climate evidence.

    The poll wording is atrocious, no doubt at the instigation of the organization that paid for the original push poll.
    To recap: the large majority of scientists do not understand the extent [if any — the poll didn’t ask that] of AGW. Is it 98%? 60%? 0.00031%? They don’t say. And most scientists freely admitted that they don’t even understand the evidence. Anthony has probably forgotten more about the climate than these folks ever learned.
    You’ll have to come up with a lot better poll than that one.
    Which reminds me, how’s that article coming along?

  153. Joel Shore (20:15:19) :

    Actually, I think you are quoting me out-of-context. If you look at the full context of what I was saying when I used that word, I was talking about the fact that there are some people who, because of their political philosophies, find the policy implications particularly distasteful (and hence that it is not surprising that these people then convince themselves that the science isn’t correct so they have an easy way to argue against these policies).

    So as long as we’re on the general subject of polls, how do you think the general public feels about how “distasteful” your version of climate policy would be?
    I know, I know, the general public is too stupid to realize how serious the problem is and has been manipulated by all the Exxon money and Fox News.

  154. I know, I know, the general public is too stupid to realize how serious the problem is and has been manipulated by all the Exxon money and Fox News.

    I can’t stand Fox News, Exxon doesn’t pay me squat, but I’ve seen no evidence that CO2 is a problem, at all.

  155. Smokey:
    That poll also shows that a total of 85% of the scientists surveyed believe that global climate change will pose either a very great danger (41%) or moderate danger (44%) to the earth in the next 50 to 100 years while only 13% see relatively little danger.
    And, of course, you can always play the game of dismissing the mountains of evidence concerning the scientific viewpoints on AGW just as you dismiss the evidence on AGW itself. You can say that any poll that shows results that you don’t like is biased (even if done by an organization who, if anything, leans right..and with a methodology for selecting the scientists surveyed that probably included more “skeptical” views that if they had restricted their sample to scientists actively working and publishing on global climate change). And, you can say that all 13 of national academies of science for the G8+5 nations, plus the AAAS, the APS, the AMS, and the AGU have all been taken over by a small band of AGW-believers that their membership somehow voted for even though the membership of all of those organizations feels differently.
    It is impossible for me to argue against such logic. You are basically just not convinceable. So, why should I waste my time trying…And, furthermore, why should I let you dictate to me what I should do (e.g., about writing that article)? You won’t even stop posting misleading graphs after I call you out on them and explain very explicitly what is wrong with them.

  156. Joel. Please.

    “…you can always play the game of dismissing the mountains of evidence…”

    What ‘mountains’ of evidence? Computer models?
    You don’t admit it, but what you really mean is ‘evidence’ other than empirical, real world evidence; flimsy evidence. In many cases, fake evidence.
    GCMs are not physical evidence.
    Papers hand-waved through the climate peer review process are not empirical evidence.
    Year-and-a-half-old push polls are not empirical evidence, and a lot has changed since then.
    Real world, empirical evidence shows that as the Earth cools, CO2 continues to rise. That is real evidence, and it trumps polls, computer models, and the cronyism endemic to the corrupt climate peer review process.
    Your whole argument always comes down to an appeal to various authorities. As time goes on, it is more and more clear that those authorities are wrong.
    Also, there are plenty of comments from others all over this site who say they originally accepted the CO2=AGW conjecture, but then rejected it as they got up to speed on the subject. The comments of AGW believers who later became AGW skeptics has been ramping up. But where are all the comments from those who were skeptics, but then became AGW believers? I can’t recall any [although I don’t read every post]. Got any? Show me.
    As usual, you are the one out of step with almost everyone else. I really don’t know what you think you’re accomplishing. Aren’t you just wasting your boss’s time here?
    It appears that you really believe you know something that we don’t. Please tell us the way things really are, Joel, without simply referring to what others say.
    I look forward to your article. If you have what it takes to stand and deliver. Do you?

  157. But where are all the comments from those who were skeptics, but then became AGW believers? I can’t recall any [although I don’t read every post]. Got any? Show me.

    You are not verlikely to find such people frequenting this site.

    As usual, you are the one out of step with almost everyone else.

    Again, this is a conclusion that is true on this site. In the larger scientific community, I am not out of step with almost everyone else, in fact, quite the opposite.

    I really don’t know what you think you’re accomplishing.

    That is a fair question and one that I have certainly asked myself from time-to-time. There are people here who disagree with me on the science but have still expressed that they find value in my contributions. And, I guess I find value in reading what people here write and in learning more about the science and how to communicate it in order to respond to what people write.

  158. Good answer in your last paragraph, let’s leave it at that for this very interesting thread. I’m moving on to the current articles.

  159. Joel Shore (13:23:37) : Joel Shore (13:23:37) :
    In the larger scientific community, I am not out of step with almost everyone else, in fact, quite the opposite.

    From what I have discerned from other polls that have been shown on this site, that sentence is only true if written as:
    In the scientific community composed only of scientists drawn from membership lists of the American Meteorological Association and the American Geophysical Union, I am not out of step with them, in fact, quite the opposite.</

  160. Tim:
    It may be true in terms of polling data that I know of. But, certainly, scientific societies in other disciplines like the American Physical Society have issued supportive statements on climate change. Admittedly, the Councils of these societies didn’t formally poll their organizations (as far as I know) but I think the fact that there has been no attempt to oust them from office…and only pretty limited protests of the statement…I would guess that a large majority of the members agree with the statement. (That guess is also based on anecdotal knowledge for the case of APS members.)

  161. Some here had better try to explain why they missed historic facts instead of refering to an assumed consensus. Consensus means NOTHING if the reached consensus missed facts from reality. Doesn’t help if 95 or 51% of the so called scholars ‘reach’ a consensus if the consensus reached isn’t supported by hard facts and history. AWG isn’t.

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