Video of Lindzen's recent presentation

On Monday, October 26th, the Cooler Heads Coalition hosted Dr. Richard S. Lindzen, the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The video is now available in addition to the powerpoint. Thanks to CEI’s

Video link of Dr. Lindzen’s presentation, “Deconstructing Global Warming”

Here is part 1 through 6 as a play list

(thanks to “therightscoop”)

Power point Presentation

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Daryl Ritchison
November 4, 2009 9:14 am

I was able to find the raw file (the link didn’t work for me) and if you go here:
you should be able to watch the presentation.
I’m currently downloading the file (it is 288 mb) and if no one else can, I can try to post it to YouTube later today.

November 4, 2009 9:18 am

The Quicktime link doesn’t work even with Quicktime. CEI needs to test the evidence that their technology works after they post their files.

November 4, 2009 9:19 am

Thanks for posting the video Anthony.
Good to see the Cooler Heads Coalition doing their stuff and here’s hoping it encourages some other climate scientists to pluck up the courage to join the AGW sceptics.
Provided the sceptics keep chipping away over the next few weeks, I don’t think Copenhagen will go through. Big lies cause big problems when the authors get found out.

November 4, 2009 9:41 am

do you still need the video on youtube? I’ve got it split and ready to upload.
REPLY: yes please, I’ll be able to embed it here, and it will get widespread play on Youtube whereas in the current format it will not. Thank you for your efforts! – Anthony

Daryl Ritchison
November 4, 2009 9:52 am

Thanks “therightscoop”, I can’t get the file to download very fast, so I wouldn’t be able to post until this afternoon, but again, I’ll have the video to upload to youtube if necessary, but for now, I’ll wait.

November 4, 2009 10:13 am

Anthony, here you go. I’ve even created a playlist that you can insert if you so choose.
REPLY: Thank you ever so much!

Indiana Bones
November 4, 2009 10:15 am

Appropriately Doc Lindzen spends as much time educating the viewer on propaganda technique as the actual science. The public needs to hear about repetition, appeal to authority and false logic as much as the radiation budget.
His inclusion of the Eisenhower warning of a federal technology elite is telling and probably more germane than any of the science.

November 4, 2009 10:52 am

Dear Anthony or anyone who can edit it,
there is a simple way to embed the whole playlist into the webpage.
In the HTML code, simply replace
It’s there twice, and you should erase all the mess that follows “HQ” up to the apostrophe (which should stay there).
The embedded video has the “tape” button which allows you to choose the part, 1 through 6, but it also automatically jumps to the next part when one of them finishes.

Ron de Haan
November 4, 2009 11:30 am

Keeping in mind the critical remarks, a.o. from Spencer, Motl and the earlier discussions of the Lindzen Coi 2009 paper her at WUWT, Lindzen entirely destroys the AGW claims and clearly explains not only that the subject has been kidnapped but also how they do it:
Most important conclusions:
1. The entire AGW concept is entirely bogus.
2. AGW is pure propaganda which has NOTHING to do with science..
3. We should all call ourselves AGW deniers instead of skeptics because we oppose a doctrine which lacks the science and gains credibility if it is confronted by people who are skeptic to the theory. Since there is NO CREDIBLE SCIENCE behind the theory, denying the claims is the only logical way to go.
So, I agree, we should deny the AGW doctrine, which at the same time is the best position to fight it.
We don’t deny science, we must always be skeptic to any science.
But we deny the claims made by the AGW crowd.
So, now you can shoot me.

November 4, 2009 1:13 pm

Yes, it’s official – Richard Lindzen is a [snip]. This is pretty much the symbolic drawing of the line in the sand. The big question becomes, who else will cross over from being a mere skeptic to a fully fledged [snip]?

D Gallagher
November 4, 2009 1:37 pm

I always enjoy Dr. Lindzen’s presentations, this one is no exception.
I particularly liked his response to the last question. He remarks that people ask him if he is a skeptic, he answers no, that to the degree possible he is a denier, calling someone a skeptic implys that the other side has a reasonable argument, but that you have doubts about some aspects of it. In the this case, the other side doesn’t even have a reasonable case.
Perhaps it would be more accurate to describe Lindzen as a “refuter”.

November 4, 2009 1:42 pm

My non-scientific take-away from LIndzen: much is happening and has happened in the world’s climactic and weather systems and these multiple datasets and datapoints have been sewn together by people of the alarmist bent into a monster, just like a person who takes a Rorschach inkblot test and sees demons in the ink shape. But to truly discern a logical pattern, if one even exists, you need to have a truly comprehensive and mature knowledge of all of the natural systems that go into creating that pattern. And the state of science today is far from that point of maturity. So the void is filled with an expecially strong dogma and opportunism that exploits this massive gap in understanding. A little bit of knowledge and perpective is being sold as if the scientific community knows conclusively a lot more than it does. I think this summarizes his point. We are being told to see a monster when we can only begin to see an inky mess. And we are being told to sell out our lifestyle, our wealth, our material comforts and happiness to appease this purported creature. And to top it off, it is the ones who don’t buy the monster meme who are told to prove that it does not exist versus the other way around.

November 4, 2009 1:56 pm

W. Earl Allen (09:18:44) :
The Quicktime link doesn’t work even with Quicktime.

It worked fine in Firefox for me. Took a little time to load, but worked.

November 4, 2009 2:04 pm

Please note that the scientific “consensus” view of climate change is a consensus because of the overwhelming amount of scientific findings that defined it in the first place.
I respect Lindzen for challenging the views of thousands of other scientists, but I find it startling that he uses the very same concepts of propaganda, false logic and repetition that he accuses others off here to express his own opinions. The concept of of “ask not what you can do for climate change, but ask what climate change can do for you” seems especially applicable for this scientist.
In the light of the recent inconsistencies found in his ERBE data analysis papers, I wished he would spend less time on his own propaganda campain and spend more on honest scientific work.

November 4, 2009 2:08 pm
Eric Anderson
November 4, 2009 2:35 pm

Good presentation. However, he should drop the lazy intelligent design soundbite and stick to his own field, as he obviously does not understand the intelligent design argument (I don’t care whether or not he agrees with it, but at least present it correctly) and thus the resulting analogy to CAGW argumentation is invalid.

November 4, 2009 2:41 pm

Rob (14:04:43) :
“In the light of the recent inconsistencies found in his ERBE data analysis papers…”
Cite please? I’d like to understand what those inconsistencies were.

November 4, 2009 3:01 pm

Rob (14:04:43):
Heck I’d be happy to see a short listing of the “overwhelming amount of scientific findings”.

November 4, 2009 3:32 pm

On a previous thread about the PDF presentation I postulated that basically what Lindzen did was take the amount of energy coming in as light, and using the ERBE/CERES satellites work out how much energy was leaving the planet as heat, and by subtracting that from the energy in, he was able to work out the forcing of greenhouse gases, paying attention to what the sea surface temperatures were. Is that still right? And how does Roy Spencer’s work counter that. I would have thought that it would complement it.

Kjell T Ringen
November 4, 2009 3:44 pm

Nice speech! Good to see he had some sience in there too. Unlike Mr Gavin Schmidt who seems to be travellig the world teaching how to “win us over” instead of discussing the science.
Looking forward to Lindzen’s answer to R. Spencer’s comments on his recent ERBE paper.

Douglas Taylor
November 4, 2009 3:46 pm

I was surprised to see that Prof. Lintzen besides being a chaired professor at a first rate University MIT, also appears to be a “Renaissance Man”.

D Gallagher
November 4, 2009 3:51 pm

What overwhelming amount of amount of scientific findings? As Lindzen points out – it’s primarily based on models that can’t predict things that we know occur.
As he stated, all of the models predict that given warmer temps, the earth will reject less heat due to positive feedback. The satellite data, with over 15 years of data, shows that when it’s warmer, the earth radiates more heat – negative feedback. That means AGW isn’t going to be meaningful, perhaps not even measureable.

November 4, 2009 4:18 pm

Lindzen is apparently wrong about the negative feedbacks. It appears he made some serious flaws, which Spencer and Motl and others have pointed out.
However, correcting his work does show that the feedback from CO2 forcings are close to 0; much lower than AGW theory claims.
It is significant and telling that the flaws were found by skeptics, and that, unlike the AGW promotion community, skeptics confronted the mistakes openly and dealt with them.
The same cannot be said for the many serious problems in AGW promotion work wheich the AGW comunity has avoided completely.

David Jay
November 4, 2009 4:45 pm

RE: Mike86 (15:01:23), D Gallagher (15:51:10)
Rob – About that list…
Rob? Rob???

November 4, 2009 5:03 pm

Thank you Hunter,
Indeed, once the mistakes in Lindzen’s ERBE paper are corrected, the negative feedback disappears, possibly turning into a mild positive feedback, and the observations are consistent with the climate model results.
Besides that, since Lindzen’s analysis was done over short periods (months) of changes in sea surface temperature, Dr. Spencer gently points out that Lindzen’s conclusion regarding (decade-long) effects needed for “climate sensitivity” feedback determination to CO2 forcing are highly speculative.
Since this essentially eliminates all major conclusions of the Lindzen and Choi paper, this puts the recent euforia over this paper, including a presentation of Lindzen’s result on Fox News into an entirely different perspective.
All scientific findings (not just ‘skeptics’ papers) go through a rigorous process of review and corrections until the ‘consensus’ is reached on their correctness.
Looks like for this paper, the party is over….
Reply: Why is it that neither side of the ideological fence can spell euphoria? ~ charles the head shaking moderator

Indiana Bones
November 4, 2009 5:14 pm

Rob (14:04:43) :
Please note that the scientific “consensus” view of climate change is a consensus because of the overwhelming amount of scientific findings that defined it in the first place.
The consensus is falling apart nearly every day now. With guru Algore admitting that CO2 plays a far smaller role in warming than the consensus claims.
“Carbon dioxide – while the focus of the politics of climate change – produces around 40% of the actual warming. Gore acknowledged to Newsweek that the findings could complicate efforts to build a political consensus around the need to limit carbon emissions.”
I think you’ll also find that Dr. Lindzen’s appearances in mass media to repeat his message is a fraction of one percent of the AGW publicity campaign.

November 4, 2009 5:53 pm

In the light of the recent inconsistencies found in his ERBE data analysis papers, I wished he would spend less time on his own propaganda campain and spend more on honest scientific work.

I will let Dr. Lindzen know that a guy named Rob wants him to do honest scientific work…

November 4, 2009 8:54 pm

can anyone explain to me (us), in simple terms what is the problem with the Lindzen paper? thanks

`Tor Hansson
November 4, 2009 9:12 pm

The skeptic side does not have a deficit of facts, it has a deficit of communication. This presentation works for people at a certain intellectual level, for most people it is nearly useless. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot of good information, but nothing sticks.
The closest we have had to a good communicator on climate skepticism was Michael Crichton, who had the storytelling ability to enlighten a more mainstream audience. As for the field today I would say that the closest we have to someone who can make the arguments stick is Bob Carter (AU). Burt Rutan isn’t too bad either, but as more of a maverick and an outsider his credibility is lower.
There is a need for a skeptic version of Al’s presentation which can be given to as many people as possible and do what has been mentioned on this thread—not raise objections, but refute. Al’s presentation uses memes—easily graspable units of communications that stick in the audience’s mind. Carter’s presentation on YouTube does some of the same, but needs further development. This is a propaganda contest, instigated and perpetuated by the alarmist side. The least that must happen on the skeptic side is to use the tools of rhetoric and repetition to make the case.
This aspect of the discussion is near to my heart. I would welcome an initiative from this site and would gladly help to create a presentation that communicates effectively. This could be made available to people who speak on the topic.
It’s an important project, and deserves the dedication and effort necessary.

anna v
November 4, 2009 9:21 pm

Rob (17:03:00) :
Thank you Hunter,
Indeed, once the mistakes in Lindzen’s ERBE paper are corrected, the negative feedback disappears, possibly turning into a mild positive feedback, and the observations are consistent with the climate model results.

Can you please give a link where this assertion of mild positive feedback if CMIP model outputs are used is given as clearly as in the figures of page 45 46 of Lidzen’s presentation?
In addition, if this gross discrepancy exists that the figures show, it does not matter if what is displayed is good for extracting long range feedback numbers or not , as far as deconstructing the models.
It is an x-ray of the innards of the models that shows how contrary to the laws of physics they are constructed and exposes them as video games at worst, as fits to data with no connection to the underlying physics at best.

`Tor Hansson
November 4, 2009 9:23 pm

Let me take some randomly chosen examples:
Has anyone ever seen a slide in a presentation that visualizes the growth in polar bear populations?
Has anyone ever seen a slide in a presentation that visualizes the actual tenths of a degree of temperature fluctuations we keep talking about, and how they relate to the range and rate of temperature change in the paleoclimatic record over the Holocene?
Has anyone ever seen a slide with a photograph of YAD 061, and heard the story of how it has become the “most influential tree in the world?”
Has anyone ever seen a convincing slide that shows the actual scale of the human contribution to atmospheric CO2, and its share of the total greenhouse effect?
The list goes on.

anna v
November 4, 2009 9:51 pm

OKE E DOKE (20:54:41) :
can anyone explain to me (us), in simple terms what is the problem with the Lindzen paper? thanks
From what I have gathered as a simple particle physicist reading up on the climate business Spencer is critical of
a) the model runs Lindzen has been using to show gross inconsistency between models and data : AMIP versus CMIP model runs
b) on whether the computed sensitivity in Lindzen’s presentation is computed on data that have a meaning for long term feedbacks or is just short term feedbacks
On b) I say that it does not matter if the sensitivity discrapancy between model runs and data is short term, it is an x-ray of gross inconsistency between model outputs and data, and data trumps models.
On a) I have been asking to see links to a scatter plot from the CMIP outputs that is the same as the scatter plots shown by Lindzen that show a trend consistent with the data, and have not seen one at the moment of writing this.
In my opinion, in a complicated construct that is supposed to depend on physics if the component parts are shown not to depend on physics this means that the final output is the result of a fit to data and has no predictive power. We know this, except this presentation is an x-ray proving this knowledge.

Gene Nemetz
November 4, 2009 10:19 pm

Vincent (13:13:01) :
Mensch would be a better word than your snipped word.

Jimmy Haigh
November 5, 2009 2:37 am

I’m not a betting man but if I were I would bet that feedback is neither positive nor negative but exactly zero. The earth is 4.5 billion years old – that is a loooooooong time. Even longer than that in fact. Surely if it was anything other than zero we wouldn’t be here? Am I being too simplistic?

November 5, 2009 3:08 am

You lept from saying there is zero positive feedback to a statement that observations are consistent with the models. Not true! Without feedbacks we get 1K of warming per doubling, which is still less than the lowest of IPCC projections.
As for not using long term data, exactly the same is true about all papers dealing with positive feedback, Spencer and Dessler included.
If you want to accept 1K as a sensitivity number then you might get a lot of agreement from lukewarmers but you’ll get none at all from the catastrophists – more’s the pity.

November 5, 2009 4:09 am

2Rob (17:03:00) :
….and Choi paper, this puts the recent euforia over this paper, ……
Reply: Why is it that neither side of the ideological fence can spell euphoria? ~ charles the head shaking moderator”
More evidence of CO2 having an effect on the pH?
cheers David

Rob Dekker
November 5, 2009 4:18 am

Anna (21:21:21) :
“Can you please give a link where this assertion of mild positive feedback if CMIP model outputs are used is given as clearly as in the figures of page 45 46 of Lidzen’s presentation?”
Here is the link to Spencer’s report :
The assertion of mild positive feedback is not from the models. It is from Spencer’s analysis of ERBE data. He found 2 – 4 W/m^2/K feedback parameter, which means 0 – 2 W/m^2/K below the Stefan Boltzman derivative. That means a feedback factor 0 – 0.5 which is neutral to mildly positive feedback.
The long term CMIP feedback parameters are 1 – 2 W/m^2/K, which is in line with what Spencer found.

November 5, 2009 4:29 am

Anna v: I would hold off fixing on a conclusion until the debate between Drs Spencer and Lindzen runs its course – privately or hopefully publicly. I am hopeful that we will all then be more enlightened. The issue is really about your point (b) as an argument to refute the validity of the models. Since Dr Lindzen is looking at input/output radiation intensity (over the tropics), his observations need to be compared with the net or final input/outputs over the tropics from the GCMs, not outputs from intermediate steps in the calculation of such results. I believe that your X-ray argument becomes valid only when it can be demonstrated that the final outputs inferred from the GCMs are incompatible with observations.
I do agree with you that this X-ray argument is legitimate even if one accepts Dr Spencer’s assertions about the impossibility of accurately extracting a feedback parameter. But we have to ensure apples and apples…

November 5, 2009 5:50 am

The oceans surface temparatures in the tropics have been increasing during the later part of the 20th century. The air above the tropical oceans has increased in temperature as well. Now imagine for a second that we accept that the atmosphere/oceans are getting warmer because of increasing levels of CO2 bolstered by strong positive feedback due to water vapor etc.
What are some of the net effects of this gradual heating upon the air in the troposphere?
The first thing that will happen is that warming will be spread uniformally throughout the troposhere, since the temperature at all levels in the troposphere are linked by the wet-adiabatic lapse rate. This is simply due to the fact that the rate at which moist air cools as it is moved to higher altitude is fixed by the atmospheric physics.
Now, it is well know that specific heat capacity (SHC) of air in the upper troposphere is significantly lower than the SHC of air in the lower troposphere, since the SHC of air drops off with decreasing air density.
What this is telling you is that similar amounts of heating will warm up the air faster in the upper troposphere (with a lower SHC) than the lower troposphere (with a higher SHC). The net effect of this is that it should produce a temeprature anomaly hot spot in the upper tropical troposphere.
[Note: The temperature anomaly hot-spot is the result of a warming atmosphere and it would be present irrespective of the source of that warming. However, for arguements sake we are assuming that the warming
is being produced by CO2 that is being amplified by a postive H2O feedback loop.]
However, the observed data conclusively shows no such temperature anomaly hot-spot exists. So what is wrong with the CO2 arguement?
Simple, there is a slight warming due to CO2 but it is NOT being amplified by a positive H20 feedback loop.
Why isn’t there a positive H20 feed back loop? Because it would require a increase in the specific humidity of the air (i.e. the amount of water vapor per kilogram of air) in the upper troposhere over the tropics, and this is in direct contradiction to the actual observations.
Trends in middle-[level] and upper-level tropospheric humidity from NCEP reanalysis data
Garth Paltridge, Albert Arking and Michael Pook
Theoretical and Applied Climatology
Volume 98, Numbers 3-4 / October, 2009
who find that:
“….the face-value 35-year trend in zonal-average annual-average specific humidity q is significantly negative at all altitudes above 850 hPa (roughly the top of the convective boundary layer) in the tropics and southern midlatitudes and at altitudes above 600 hPa in the northern midlatitudes. “

W. von Witsch
November 5, 2009 6:27 am

re: can anyone explain to me (us), in simple terms what is the problem with
the Lindzen paper?
In my opinion, there is no “problem”. Dr. Spencer used a different way of averaging the ERBE data, and a different set of temperature anomalies (UAH instead of SST), and, consequently, got a different result for (delta F/delta T). Dr. Lindzen has repeated his analysis including the better CERES data, and verified his previous results. Of course, the two will have to discuss their respective findings to resolve any discrepancy.
I am sure that Dr. Lindzen is fully aware of the fact that the AMIP models which he used for comparison are utter nonsense – not even conserving energy – and it would have been better to use “state of the art” coupled ocean-atmosphere models instead. However, this has no bearing on the (measured) ERBE/CERES results, which stand by themselves. The deduced negative feedback does not depend on any comparison with models.

November 5, 2009 7:08 am

Anna v,
On rereading one of your earlier posts, I now realise that it is possible that you did not catch the Spencer comments on the Lindzen paper. Spencer does explain in some detail why he has concerns about the magnitude of the “f-value” estimated by Lindzen, and also the use of the AMIP models for comparison rather than the CMIP models. The post is on this site under: “Spencer on the Lindzen and Choi climate feedback paper”.

Jimmy Haigh
November 5, 2009 8:55 am

Well it took me a few hours to download the cpmplete talk but it was worth it even if just to see him totally ‘dissing’ AGW. I’m also with him in proudly claiming to be a denier. No wonder they – the AGW followers – don’t like him.
I’ve also just watched Gore on Jon Stewart’s show. No wonder he (Gore) doesn’t debate – he’d probably be worse than Gavin Schmidt. And that is saying something.

November 5, 2009 9:22 am

Ninderthana: I honestly do wish the situation was as simple as you imply. You are probably aware that the important word in your quote from Dr Paltridge’s paper is “face-value”. Dr Paltridge’s paper is impeccable in my view, but he does NOT conclude that there have been SH reductions in mid and upper troposphere – only that the NCEP Reanalysis data suggest that there have been such reductions. There are numerous problems with the dataset itself, which are highlighted in his paper. His main conclusion is that we should not throw out the only long-term dataset we have (just) because it has known problems – rather the data should be thoroughly reworked to correct for known problems and to separate the good from the bad. I personally believe that such work would tend to confirm the “face-value” conclusion in broad terms, and for that reason, will probably not get done, at least not by its current custodians.

anna v
November 5, 2009 9:47 am

Paul (07:08:56) :
I have seen dr Spencer’s concerns, but to me they are tangential to the crux of the argument from the delta(radiationflow) versus delta(SST) plots.
It may be true that feedback comes out differently using different data variables, and of course it should be cleared up for climatology reasons.
The discrepancy with the model outputs using the same variables though, is what deconstructs the use of the models for predicting further climate effects, imo, and is what is important.
Now in the parallel thread
quote from Bart (19:57:04) :
Re AMIP vs. CMIP: AMIP is not part of CMIP, but it is used to validate it.
CMIP and AMIP agree closely in their fundamental predictions. If you remove the positive feedback from the AMIP, they will diverge considerably.
The CMIP typically diverges from AMIP. To bring them in line, researchers use fudge factors. Or, they find a CMIP which agrees with AMIP. Therefore, the veracity of AMIP is fundamental.

I cannot evaluate whether the CMIP ( seems these are protocols) really depends on the AMIP protocol, but if it does, as this comment says, then it is a waste of time to require the same delta(radiation flux) versus delta(SST) scatter plots from CMIP protocol model runs, though it would be good to see them in Lindzen’s analysis.

November 5, 2009 1:13 pm

My experience with presenting data which shows contrary results has met with only classic appeal to authority and that from a senior academic (who is actually nothing but a figure head). Here is the actual email that I received. I have pulled out names because they are not important. Just note that I was a junior faculty member at the time of writing and the respondent here is the head of a large academic institution and actually was a participant in the IPCCs Nobel prize along with Saint Albert.
here is the response I got when I wrote showing contrary data
” (Name removed), You obviously know much more than me on this, but my impression is that only a few companies and a few scientists still believe that GHGs are not having a discernible effect on climate. The ppm level may be low, but everything I read suggests that weather patterns can be perturbed relatively easilty. A doubling or so of CO2 plus other gases, while small on a ppm scale, seems to be one of those “small” changes that can cause large shifts. But I’m a strict amateur on this with no pretensions to expertise. But I do report what the scientific community seems to believe, and it sure seems firmly on the side of gases causing increasing climate perturbances.”
What in the world happened to healthy skepticism (oops I mean denialism)?
I am heartened that Lidzen has had the same response from MIT admin

November 5, 2009 3:07 pm

I’m not sure if you guys really get the biggest problem with Lindzen’s paper.
Let me try this one last time, since the issue is much more disturbing than anyone above describes here.
This issue is that Lindzen found feedback factor close 0 from his data analysis, but then turned this into feedback factor -1 by inserting it in a his formulas. In doing so he ignores the zero-feedback radiation, or in other words he violates Stefan Boltzmann law.
It’s that simple, and it’s that bad.
For those interested, Motl’s blog gives a reasonable explanation of the problem :
I pointed out this mistake to him in an email and asked him for an explanation. He pointed me to a newer publication where he does not make the same mistake, but still insists that zero-feedback radation does not apply for the tropics, and that “details of this matter will be presented in a separate paper”.
I think that Dr. Spencer did not want to be associated with such violation of scientific ethics and I admire his courage to present his own analysis, where he only points out that he could not reproduce Lindzen’s claim of negative feedback.
Now, I think I have said enough now, so I’ll leave you guys with whatever opinion you may have about Lindzen and Choi 2009 or about me as a whisleblower. But as far as I’m concerned, Lindzen has lost his last credibility.

November 5, 2009 5:12 pm

Anna v,
Thanks for your last comment. I think I see where you (and Bart) are coming from now, but I still believe one should hold off on drawing any firm conclusions until the picture clears.
The atmospheric models (which formed input to the Atmospheric Model Intercomparison Project (AMIP)) all have prescribed boundary conditions in the form of (inter alia) SST and sea-ice over the period of the simulation. All of the Coupled ocean-atmosphere GCMs (which formed input to the CMIP) contain an atmospheric model and a series of submodels, the most critical of which is an ocean modelling component for dynamic calculation (over time) of the SST and sea-ice. In the coupled GCMs, over each time-step, the SST and sea-ice is updated, and is then used to dynamically update the input boundary conditions for the atmospheric model.
Your point above, if I understand you correctly, is that if the atmospheric models used in the AMIP (and which are used in coupled GCMs) with input actual SST and sea-ice data can be shown to be not working against observed Deltaflux/DeltaSST , then there is no hope for the coupled GCMs?
Well you may be right, and this conclusion certainly seems to be supported by the observation (made by Covey et al in the paper that Bart references) that “replacing the observed SSTs and sea ice amounts in the AMIP simulation with the [calculated values from the] interactive sub-models used in the CMIP simulations tends to degrade the level of agreement with climate observations”. (My clarifying addition in square brackets.) This seems to bear out that the AMIP models with observed SST and sea-ice data used as input boundary conditions are used as benchmarks for the coupled GCMs, and not the other way around.
However, there is a paradox appearing here. Dr Spencer states in his post:
“As mentioned above, the corresponding climate model computations they [Lindzen et al] made had the opposite sign [relative to the observed outgoing flux and SST data], but as I have pointed out, the CMIP models do not, and the real climate system cannot have a net negative feedback parameter and still be stable.” (Again, my clarifying additions in square brackets.)
So the apparent paradox is that, on the one hand, the coupled GCMs, according to Dr Spencer, show a positive gradient of delta flux against delta SST, which he notes is essential for stability of the system, while, on the other hand, the atmospheric models which are embedded in the coupled GCMs and which are the platforms for the radiative flux calculations in those coupled GCMs show, according to Dr Lindzen, a negative gradient.
I admire both Spencer and Lindzen for their courage and integrity, and restate my hope that they can enlighten us all with some further communication on the apparent discrepancies in their findings. In the meantime, I would still recommend being cautious for the moment about drawing too bold a conclusion from Dr Lindzen’s work, until he has had an opportunity to respond to the challenge.

November 5, 2009 6:23 pm

The truth is always welcome from whichever source. I’m not sure why Lindzen’s credibility is suspect even if he has made a mistake. I presume by the same token Mann’s and Briffa’s mistakes give them little credibility in your eyes too. However Lindzen has usually only ever stuck to the line that 1 degree per doubling is to be expected and any positive feedback is speculative, unproven and may be balanced by negative feedbacks. This is the first time he has calculated/measured any net negative feedback. However, even if he has managed to find zero feedback then that is still a huge drop from the IPCC estimates. The important thing is that he, Spencer and Christy are trying to use empirical data – which is how science is supposed to work. Most other estimates are not based on empiricism.

November 5, 2009 7:10 pm

Rob (15:07:50) : Thank you for the link. I agree with JamesG – truth is always welcome. It does seem that Lindzen has made an elementary error in his definition of F. If he replaces it with F = 1 – Go*DeltaFlux/DeltaTemp, then I think the rest of his linearised equations work. No doubt he will issue a corrigendum in due course.
However, as a number of people have pointed out, the conclusions about the estimated magnitude of the feedback factor pale into insignificance if it can be demonstrated that the atmospheric models are producing a negative correlation between DFlux and DTemp. This would completely undermine any credibility in not just the atmospheric GCMs, but also the coupled ocean-atmospheric GCMs which they service. In the same article that you linked to, it appears that Dr Spencer apparently confirmed such a correlation in an AMIP model which he examined! As I said in my previous post, I believe that we need to wait till this picture clears before drawing any profound conclusions.

November 5, 2009 7:45 pm

Whoops. The equation in my above post got scrambled. It should read:
“If he replaces it with
F = 1/Go – DeltaFlux/DeltaTemp, then I think the rest of his linearised equations work.”

anna v
November 5, 2009 10:37 pm

Paul (19:10:00) :
As I said in my previous post, I believe that we need to wait till this picture clears before drawing any profound conclusions.
Well, as far as I am concerned,if a CMIP scatter plot is produced that shows a significant discrepancy with the data there would be no need to wait until the exact AMIP CMIP relationship is established in order to discredit all models.
As far as Rob (15:07:50) : concerns about feedback factors, they are valid for climatology purposes, but beside the point, if for these scatter plots data and models disagree strongly, IMO..

November 6, 2009 3:35 am

Unfortunately [or fortunately for the planet], it is that simple. I cannot disclose the source that backs up my assertion at his stage. However, you will soon find out that Paltridge’s work has been confirmed by independent observational evidence.

November 6, 2009 6:34 am

Ninderthana (03:35:27),
Well I hope you’re right.
There have been some serious attempts to improve SH measurements – notably since the launch of the AIRS system (2002), but not enough data have been collected for this to provide definitive evidence yet. Comparisons with AIM data support the view that the models are overpredicting SH in upper troposphere, especially in the tropics, but the errors are not dramatic enough to kill off the models given the data uncertainties in the abstracted SH measurements. So I am curious about your mystery independent observational evidence. I wait with curiosity…

November 7, 2009 2:54 pm

As I recollect, the Armstrong et al paper showing the lack of a hot spot was stating only that it showed the H2O feedback was not present – which is what Ninderthana is repeating and which isn’t or shouldn’t be controversial since it agrees fine with the theory and the positive feedback has always been an unjustified assumption. G Schmidt and others ignored that and instead asserted that all warming would cause a hotspot, including solar warming, so therefore Armstrong et al were wrong. Of course it was just another strawman. All warming, including solar warming do not necessarily have to have a positive feedback. The only caveat to that, as Andrew Dessler pointed out is that the solar theory perhaps needed that feedback too. But you don’t have to have an alternative cause to find that there is no positive feedback. The evidence against it comes from 2 different sources and Santer’s supposed rebuttal was a disgrace, full of post-hoc data adjustments, a cherry picked time period and incoherence about data error bars overlapping the obs error bars. Lindzen, error or not, makes it a 3rd source finding zero feedback. What is causing the warming who knows but as far as i can tell at least half to 2/3’s of it is from upwards adjustments anyway, especially from that totally guessed and nonsensical TOBS adjustment.

%d bloggers like this: