IPCC AR4 Commenter: “I do not understand why this trend is insignificant – it is more than three times the quoted error estimates”

Yet Another Incorrect IPCC Assessment: Antarctic Sea Ice Increase

antarctic_fig1

Figure 4.4.1b from the IPCC AR4 Chapter 4 First Order Draft.

by Chip Knappenberger
March 8, 2010

Another error in the influential reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports has been identified. This one concerns the rate of expansion of sea ice around Antarctica.

While not an issue for estimates of future sea level rise (sea ice is floating ice which does not influence sea level), a significant expansion of Antarctic sea ice runs counter to climate model projections. As the errors in the climate change “assessment” reports from the IPCC mount, its aura of scientific authority erodes, and with it, the justification for using their findings to underpin national and international efforts to regulate greenhouse gases.

Some climate scientists have distanced themselves from the IPCC Working Group II’s (WGII’s) Fourth Assessment Report (AR4), Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability, prefering instead  the stronger hard science in the Working Group I (WGI) Report—The Physical Science Basis. Some folks have even gone as far as saying that no errors have been found in the WGI Report and the process in creating it was exemplary.

Such folks are in denial.

As I document below, WGI did a poor job in regard to Antarctic sea ice trends. Somehow, the IPCC specialists assessed away a plethora of evidence showing that the sea ice around Antarctica has been significantly increasing—a behavior that runs counter to climate model projections of sea ice declines—and instead documented only a slight, statistically insignificant rise.

How did this happen? The evidence suggests that IPCC authors were either being territorial in defending and promoting their own work in lieu of other equally legitimate (and ultimately more correct) findings, were being guided by IPCC brass to produce a specific IPCC point-of-view, or both.

The handling of Antarctic sea ice is, unfortunately, not an isolated incident in the IPCC reports, but is simply one of many examples in which portions of the peer-reviewed scientific literature were cast aside, or ignored, so that a particular point of view—the preconceived IPCC point of view—could be either maintained or forwarded.

Background

The problems with the IPCC’s handling of the trends in Antarctic sea ice was first uncovered and presented a week or two ago in an article posted over at the World Climate Report—another blog with which I have been involved with for a long time.

The First Order Draft of Chapter 4 contained the following illustration of Southern Hemisphere sea ice, along with the caption “Sea Ice extent anomalies … the Southern Hemisphere based on passive microwave satellite data… [l]inear trend lines are indicated for each hemisphere….the small positive trend in the Southern Hemisphere is not significant. (Updated from Comiso, 2003).”

antarctic_fig1
Figure 1. Figure 4.4.1b from the IPCC AR4 Chapter 4 First Order Draft.

Notice two things, 1) the figure depicts monthly ice extent anomalies from November 1978 through October 2004, and 2) the trend through them seems to be statistically significant (i.e. the confidence range does not include zero), given in the illustration as 9089.2 +/- 2970.7 km2/year or 0.735 +/- 0.240%/dec.

Yet, for some reason, the accompanying text claims that the trend in Figure 4.4.1b is insignificant (AR4 First Order Draft, page 4-14, lines 9-10):

The Antarctic results show a slight but insignificant positive trend of 0.7 ± 0.2% per decade.

This inconsistency was brought to the IPCC Chapter 4 authors’ attention by several IPCC commenters. Commentor John Church wrote “I do not understand why this trend is insignificant – it is more than three times the quoted error estimates” and Stefan Rahmstorf wrote “How can a trend of 0.7 +/- 0.2 be ‘insignificant’? Is not 0.2 the confidence interval, so it is significantly positive?” The IPCC responded to both in the same manner “Taken into account in revised text.”

And boy did they ever!

===================

Read the entire article here: Yet Another Incorrect IPCC Assessment: Antarctic Sea Ice Increase

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90 thoughts on “IPCC AR4 Commenter: “I do not understand why this trend is insignificant – it is more than three times the quoted error estimates”

  1. Sorry, the S.D. of this data is TOO HIGH. There is NO statistically discernable trend in this data.

    ANYONE saying there IS, is a STATISTICAL MORON.

    Use Student’s T or Mann-Whitney (Non parametric) and analyze by year or by decade.

    NOT significant.

    The fact that none of these so called “experts” do this, makes their work COMPLETELY INVALID!

  2. Many people often confuse ‘statistical significance’ and ‘significance for whatever practical purpose’. This may be the case here as well.

    However, while laymen can sometimes be excused for being careless with terms, scientists never can.

  3. After all we’ve learned in the past few months , this should come as no surprise . What else will come up ?

  4. Does anyone really believe we can measure sea ice area or extent within an accuracy of +/-0.2%.

    If these measurements are accurate to within 3% I would be impressed. Especially given the measurements go back 30 years and likely use different methods of measurements (or different satellites).

    It’s enough to say we see no evidence of any decrease in sea ice. The latest assessments reduction in confidence is actually more believable to me (of course, their tactic of reporting less confidence in data they don’t agree with, and reporting higher confidence in data they agree with is disturbing).

    Climate Science really needs to do a better job in estimating and reporting the uncertainty of their measurements, as well as their assumptions underlying any calculated data in their algorithms. This goes for those on both sides of the debate.

    Even with temperature, we are arguing over tenths of a deg C over a century with poorly sited equipment, land use changes, equipment changes and all subject to cherry picking . In 30 years lets see where we (you) are ( I won’t be around).

    This month to month, year to year, even decade to decade comparisons is not very productive., and takes away from the real issue, the science behind warming attributed to CO2 (more specifically, anthropogenic CO2)

  5. I’ve not read this story yet but the first thing to jump out is the date.2004 The last time I checked it was 2010 What happened to the last 5 plus years???

  6. Presumably, similar forensic analysis is required for the whole of AR4 WG1.
    I can’t wait for the dissection of the papers which show that CO2 is the main climate driver and the papers which consider and rule out ‘natural’ climate forcing. Oh, I forgot, maybe they don’t exist.

  7. Nothing to see here, we all know that evidence for man-made global warming is overhelming. The debate is over and we must act NOW [before we uncover more reasons not to act…] in order to avoid the catastrophic consequences.

  8. Oy. When faced with a series of choices they just “happened” to pick the right set of individual choices to end up with a minimization.

    Hey, the good news is next time they’ll admit in AR5, with loud rejoicing, that since their previous report the antarctic pack is now in recovery mode. Right? Riiiight?

  9. I do mediations. Some small and some large (millions). Perhaps instead of this winner takes all situation we should propose a middle ground. Propose the release a statement that: ‘… the AGW scientists and the Skeptical Scientists have agreed that, using PNS sources, the AGW theory is 98% BS but that the 2% is significant and further studies should continue but at a reduced scale’. We could site PNS sources such as: Postman Pat(Sociological), The Day of Triffids(Biological), Day the earth Stood Still(physics),

  10. Do the climate modellers have a rate of decline they are predicting for the antarctic ice? Shouldn’t we also be comparing the rate of actual incline against the predicted rate of decline, not just against zero?

  11. You’ve heard of Doctors without Frontiers (Sans Frontiers)….’
    Have you heard of ‘Scientists Sans Data’?

  12. I suspect there may be some confusion here about error bars and statistical significance. If the sea ice was measured perfectly then the error bars of the ice measurement could be zero, but given the up and down fluctuation of the ice from year to year, an increase over a few years still might not be significant, it might still just be the random increase and decrease of the ice. Though this whole story still seems to be very hurtful to the IPCC’s credibility.

  13. This is one of the reasons that I find the proclamation that the Southern Hemisphere is undergoing unprecedented warming is highly suspect. The Warmists know that there are very few weather stations in the Southern Hemisphere, and the ones in New Zealand and Australia are manned by radical warmists, so they can draw such conclusions with little accoutabiliry and in spite of Antarctic and oceanic satellite data that is contradictory.

  14. Forgive me if it’s already been answered before, but why has it taken so long for the above-mentioned as well as other recent inaccuracies to be discovered?

  15. Max Hugoson (14:05:08) : ….”Use Student’s T or Mann-Whitney (Non parametric) and analyze by year or by decade.
    NOT significant.”

    Correct me if I’m wrong, (I’m not a statistician.) but didn’t they run it monthly as opposed to yearly or decade? And doesn’t that alter the statistical significance? Again, IDK, but I believe that was the complaint in the full article.

    At any rate, statistical or not, I would attach significance to it because any increase in sea ice in the SH at all, by inference, runs counter to a lot of the alarmist claims.

  16. we need to have a common label for the AGW crowd.

    Start calling them “WARMERS”.

    Reply: No. We explicitly recommend not calling people derogatory names. I personally use the term AGW proponent. ~ ctm.

  17. Ahh, here it is….. an excerpt from the full article…

    “Notice two things, 1) the figure depicts monthly ice extent anomalies from November 1978 through October 2004, and 2) the trend through them seems to be statistically significant (i.e. the confidence range does not include zero), given in the illustration as 9089.2 +/- 2970.7 km2/year or 0.735 +/- 0.240%/dec.

    Yet, for some reason, the accompanying text claims that the trend in Figure 4.4.1b is insignificant (AR4 First Order Draft, page 4-14, lines 9-10):

    The Antarctic results show a slight but insignificant positive trend of 0.7 ± 0.2% per decade.”

  18. EPA says 100,000 km2 per decade is statistically insignificant.

    In the Greenhouse Gas Endangerment Finding, Response to Comment 2-111, EPA says this (Volume 2 of Responses to comments available here: http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/endangerment.html)

    In the April version of the TSD, EPA stated: “Antarctic sea ice extent shows no statistically significant average trends according to IPCC (2007d). However, the U.S. National and Snow and Ice Data Center [NSIDC] states that Antarctic sea ice underwent a slight increase from 1979 to 2007 (NSIDC, 2009).” EPA acknowledges these two sentences, taken together, may confuse the reader. And we are also aware of updated data from NSIDC. So we have revised the TSD to provide more clarity. It now reads: “For the period 1979––2008, Antarctic sea ice underwent a not statistically significant increase of 0.9% (about 100,000 km2; 42,000 mi2) per decade (NSIDC, 2009).”

  19. This is from the article,

    “Notice two things, 1) the figure depicts monthly ice extent anomalies from November 1978 through October 2004, and 2) the trend through them seems to be statistically significant (i.e. the confidence range does not include zero), given in the illustration as 9089.2 +/- 2970.7 km2/year or 0.735 +/- 0.240%/dec.”

    Just because the confidence range does not include zero, does not mean that the result is statistically significant.

  20. Max Hugoson (14:05:08) :
    Sorry, the S.D. of this data is TOO HIGH. There is NO statistically discernable trend in this data.

    I can accept this statement, but does the same apply to global temperature anomalies? It would appear to me that there is a similarly large standard deviation in that data, too.

  21. “Max Hugoson (14:05:08) :

    Sorry, the S.D. of this data is TOO HIGH. There is NO statistically discernable trend in this data.[…]”

    Oh, i guess we could use your argument very well to argue against a statistically significant rise in worldwide temperatures… just take monthly figures… Is that the official party line? Thanks!

  22. Why is Arctic sea ice trend of 2.9% per decade widely accepted while the positive 3.1% trend in Antarctica is not?

    From NSIDD:

    Sea ice extent in the Antarctic has been unusually high in recent years, both in summer nd winter. Overall, the Antarctic is showing small positive trends in total extent. For example, the trend in February extent is now +3.1% per decade.

    The average ice extent for February 2010 was the fourth lowest February extent since the beginning of the modern satellite record. It was 220,000 square kilometers (85,000 square miles) higher than the record low for February, observed in 2005. The linear rate of decline for February is now 2.9% per decade.

  23. Max Hugoson,
    Question as someone who admittedly tried his best to learn as little as possible during my statistics classes while getting an A in it.. I think what you’re saying is that because of the amplitude of the signal up and down the trend is statistically insignificant. Am I reading you right?

  24. >>Reply: No. We explicitly recommend not calling people derogatory names. I personally use the term AGW proponent. ~ ctm.

    Fair enough. But I’m done calling these AGW advocates scientists. That’s insulting to actual scientists.

  25. Well any day now the great Arctic Sea Ice Melt Off of 2010 should begin; well who knows; maybe not since the temperature is still -30 deg C up there.

    Well it can’t hod off forever so one of these days the fun should start; maybe they need to send some ice breakers up there to start things off.

    As to the Antarctic sea ice growth; how much of that is due to the whole Antarctic ice sheet slipping off into the ocean, versus growth of new marginal sea ice from freezing.

    To what extent is the march of the land ice assisted by the increased weight of deposited ice up in the highlands; and how much lowering of the ocean level occurrs because of that deposition.

    Does anybody know just what differential land ice melt vs deposition from the ocean, is expected to occur while the sea level is rising this 20 ft that we are all waiting for ?

    I hear a lot of talk of the slideing and melt-off, due to global warming, but nothing much about increasing precipitation up higher going on at the same time.

  26. BUT… BUT… 100,000 km2 a decade is like 5 times the state of Texas!

    So in 20 years we’ve net gained 10 times Texas on top of the peninsular loss of 1 Texas… but the loss is significant and proof of AGW. The gain is statistically insignificant and probably just weather. What don’t you get about that?

    /sarcoff

    Replace Texas with New Jersey and read the USGS Ferrigno/NPR article from a few days back if you don’t get the joke

  27. “”” crucilandia (15:28:30) :

    Why is Arctic sea ice trend of 2.9% per decade widely accepted while the positive 3.1% trend in Antarctica is not?

    From NSIDD:

    Sea ice extent in the Antarctic has been unusually high in recent years, both in summer nd winter. Overall, the Antarctic is showing small positive trends in total extent. For example, the trend in February extent is now +3.1% per decade.

    The average ice extent for February 2010 was the fourth lowest February extent since the beginning of the modern satellite record. It was 220,000 square kilometers (85,000 square miles) higher than the record low for February, observed in 2005. The linear rate of decline for February is now 2.9% per decade. “””

    Well would somebody like to clarify how come the trend in February is now at +3.1% per decade, while the linear rate of decline is actually 2.9% per decade (as in minus trend)

    I don’t get it; up or down; which is it ?

  28. The first scientist submitting to this website with a curved line should get the Nobel Prize.

  29. pft
    Quote”This month to month, year to year, even decade to decade comparisons is not very productive., and takes away from the real issue, the science behind warming attributed to CO2 (more specifically, anthropogenic CO2)”

    I agree
    I don’t think anyone really believes we can measure temperature or ice, or anything else for that matter.
    When the past records have all been so manipulated, whatever the temperature, ice, or anything else is now, does not matter.

    If you told people the moon was made out of green cheese, they would ask you to prove it.

    But yet, tell people we’ve reached a tipping point and they fall for it.

  30. What is really keen here, is that all these “gates” in the IPCC reports were spoken of and complained about at the time, or even before the report’s release. Only NOW, following Climategate, are they being taken up.

  31. I am beginning to wonder if the IPCC has any correct predictions in the 2007 annual report. Who reviewed this document? Did they think that no one would read it? Did they read it? This is the group that wants to set standards for CO2 production based on very shoddy science.

  32. terry46,
    Not sure on the details but there was a submission freeze for AR4 in 2005 or 2006, which was published in 2007. The research used for it was probably didn’t use any data past 2004 and this post covers what was used and discussed for AR4.

    I believe Antarctic sea ice coverage has continued its up trend since.

  33. bob (15:08:45) spoke:
    Just because the confidence range does not include zero, does not mean that the result is statistically significant.

    OK bob, please don’t leave confusion in your trail. Since you object and speak as if you have statistical knowledge, please post back stating exactly what would mean it has significance. What is the significance statistical threshold you weigh this article against?

  34. May I ask a question?

    Why are so many getting so worked up over a degree C of change?

    The temperature here has swung over 47 degrees F today. No one has died. Nothing has been destroyed. It’s a huge swing and it’s harmless.

    Yet I’m supposed to get myself worked up over a 3 degree C or thereabouts change in average?

    Please help me understand. None of the AGW proponent sites I’ve visited has been willing to answer.

    Thanks! And another great expose on the fraud that is the IPCC.

  35. Yo, ctm. . .seriously, why *is* “warmers” or “warmists” considered derogatory? I get it with “Deniers”, but for the life of me I can’t figure out why “AGW proponent” is okay and “warmers” isn’t. If it were, say, “brimstoneites” or somesuch I could see it.

    Labels are handy, y’know, and for far more than insult. That’s why the race bothered to invent them.

  36. AEGeneral (14:49:27) :

    “Forgive me if it’s already been answered before, but why has it taken so long for the above-mentioned as well as other recent inaccuracies to be discovered?”

    The same reason it takes a husband years to discover his wife is having an affair. There is a sense of trust, and the various excuses seem plausible.

    Once the trust is broken, then he finds hundreds of bits of evidence that had been there all along.

  37. NickB. (15:41:53) :
    “Replace Texas with New Jersey and read …”

    Even with 31 New Jerseys a Texas make not! <):-)

  38. 8 March: Miami Herald: CAMMY CLARK: Big chill killed large swathes of coral, scientists say
    Analysis of the data collected by 31 scientists from 13 organizations has not been completed to determine the amount of coral damage throughout the island chain. But James Byrne of The Nature Conservancy said it is more severe than the die-off from South Florida’s last cold-water event in 1977 that killed hundreds of acres of staghorn and elkhorn coral.
    Microbiologist Kim Ritchie of Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota saw many casualties of the recent cold, including boulder-sized star and brain corals that she estimated were growing when Henry Flagler built Florida’s overseas railroad a century ago.
    “It’s very sad,” she said.
    Scientists know much more about the affects of extreme warm water on corals…
    http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/03/08/1519444/big-chill-killed-large-swathes.html

    8 March: Business Week: Simon Lomax: EPA Has No Plans for Own Carbon-Trading Program, Jackson Says
    Editors: Romaine Bostick, Larry Liebert
    Some people are “over reading” the EPA’s budget request for fiscal 2011, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson said in remarks at the National Press Club in Washington.
    Cap-and-trade legislation, which is stalled in Congress, would create a market for carbon dioxide permits that lets companies buy and sell the right to pollute. The agency’s Feb. 1 budget request, which is subject to congressional approval, calls for $7.5 million to examine greenhouse gas regulations that may include “market-oriented mechanisms.”..
    Jackson said she believes Congress will pass cap-and-trade legislation “hopefully sooner rather than later.”
    http://www.businessweek.com/news/2010-03-08/epa-has-no-plans-for-own-carbon-trading-program-jackson-says.html

  39. George E. Smith (15:43:41) :
    crucilandia (15:28:30) :

    I suspect they are confusing Arctic and Antarctic. Feb Antarctic sea ice shows a 30 year increasing trend of 3.1% +/-4.6 per decade:

    For Jun it is increasing at 1.1% per decade:
    ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Jun/S_06_plot.png

    For the Arctic in Feb -2.9% per decade

    This shows the current value at the 4th lowest.

    What is most interesting is the trends in the increasing Antarctic sea ice in different months (% per decade):
    Jan 2.3
    Feb 3.1
    Mar 4.7
    Apr 3.0
    May 2.1
    Jun 1.1
    Jul .8
    Aug .4
    Sep .7
    Oct .8
    Nov .5
    Dec 1.1

    Based on these figures from NSIDC (links above), the IPCC’s claim of an overall 0.7 ± 0.2% per decade would seem to be in error !

  40. To George E. Smith and crucilandia

    The -2.9% applies to the Arctic, the +3.1% applies to the ANTarctic.

    There are two poles, and the sea ice behavior at each is different.

  41. Also to add: the sea ice behavior at the south pole is different than that at the north pole. While there is a significant amount of ice remaining through the summer melt season in the Arctic ice, nearly all of the Antarctic ice tends to melt. Perhaps the extra noise by tracking monthly data makes it more difficult to discern a trend?

  42. terry46 (14:34:23) :

    I’ve not read this story yet but the first thing to jump out is the date.2004 The last time I checked it was 2010 What happened to the last 5 plus years???

    When you do read it you’ll note the graph is from the IPCC’s AR4 report,
    released in 2007. The IPCC only evaluates research, it claims not to
    do any, so the delays between producing the graph and printing it the
    AR4 report can be good for a year or two.

  43. Graeme,
    I think you nailed it – and beat me to it as well : )

    I wish Max would reply, because if we can confirm that… we might be able to get to the bottom of a mystery/riddle Dr. Spencer exposed the other day in his post announcing the beginning of work towards a satellite based surface temp (not lower troposhpere) record in which he also posted a comparison of raw surface temp records vs. CRU. I think he might have known full well the implications but didn’t want to say out loud… while there was general agreement on trends, his reconstructed record was 20% more variable (both up and down) than CRU.

    Now we shouldn’t go crazy shouting conspiracy… but what would be the impact to the statistical significance of CRU’s temperature trend if the variability in the temp record was, in fact, 20% greater than the CRU, GISS, etc records indicate.
    Maybe nothing, maybe something… I’m not sure myself, nor do I necessarily prescribe to statistics as a replacement for observation, nor am I qualified to analyze it, but I do think it’s an interesting question that maybe someone here could answer.

  44. JackStraw (15:35:22) :

    >>Reply: No. We explicitly recommend not calling people derogatory names. I personally use the term AGW proponent. ~ ctm.

    Fair enough. But I’m done calling these AGW advocates scientists. That’s insulting to actual scientists.

    —–

    OK. They may have been educated in a science-based faculty but they are clearly not using any objective scientific method so, true, we should not call them ‘scientists’ out of respect for the real ones.

    But, given what we now know, the term “AGW proponents” may be fair to the herd of researchers that simply followed them but is far too kind to their leaders.

    In the past I have referred to Al Gore as a “greasy used planet salesman.” Yes, I know that wasn’t nice.

    So how about calling the lead “scientists” from the IPCC gang “used AGW theory salespersons”?

    Its gender neutral and suggests the truthiness and high pressure sales tactics that used car salespersons are famous for (e.g., trust me its supposed to do that, buy now before its too late, etc.)

    Would that be nice enough?

  45. If it’s an “insignificant trend” they’re looking for, they needn’t look any further than the GLOBAL sea ice time series I link to above.

  46. Why are so many getting so worked up over a degree C of change?

    The same reason why people get worked up over a 1% difference in pay rise. Sometimes small movements are very significant, if only to our comfort.

    The city north of me has, on average, a +1 C higher temperature (average for winter and summer). They can grow things sensitive to frost, whereas we cannot.

    A degree difference is significant.

    If the earth was to warm a couple of degrees the changes would be very large indeed.

  47. George E. Smith,

    Are you the Nobel prize winning physicist or just honoring the great man?

    thanks, Steve

    Reply: He’s a real person with the same name, but not the Nobel winner. ~ ctm

  48. We need to use alphanumerics to keep track of the various gates –
    We could use 1 a i gate for #1 Arctic Ice and
    2 aa i gate for #2 AntArctic Ice
    and so on…

  49. Al Gored (20:05:42) :

    In the past I have referred to Al Gore as a “greasy used planet salesman.” Yes, I know that wasn’t nice.

    May not have been nice, but I sure got a laugh out of it. :)

    harrywr2 (16:20:34) :

    The same reason it takes a husband years to discover his wife is having an affair. There is a sense of trust, and the various excuses seem plausible.

    Once the trust is broken, then he finds hundreds of bits of evidence that had been there all along.

    Guess that makes sense, but for me the trust was broken years ago.

    And with that, I just noticed:

    IPCC has now launched the Call for Nominations for the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5).

    Governments and participating organisations are invited to nominate experts to participate in the preparation of the three Working Group contributions to the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) as coordinating lead authors, authors and review editors. Click here to access the IPCC AR5 Nominations Portal, which routes IPCC Focal Points and representatives of participating organisations to the individual working group nomination pages.

    Nominations for the WGI AR5 may be submitted until 5pm CET on 12 March 2010. For more information about WGI AR5, click here.

    So….they’re moving on to the next assessment. Perhaps there will be a more timely, thorough review this time. I can only imagine what nonsense we’ll be fed.

  50. Reading the extract of the article piqued my interest, so I spent the time to read the full piece and found it so much more interesting. It shows that, “it’s worse than we thought.”

    The IPCC report, that is.

    They chose to include in AR4 a study with results that were more in line with AGW thinking, using the Comiso “Bootstrap” algorithm rather than the Cavalieri “NASA Team” algorithm. And the differences between the two approaches appear to have been well known in the literature of the time.

    Rather than using this divergence as a point for further study, the IPCC chose the “Bootstrap” algorithm which showed a smaller increase in the Antarctic sea ice. To make matters worse, rather than going with the original figure, as shown in the above extract, which uses an anomaly based on monthly data, they used a newer figure using anomaly data based on annual data, which gave an even smaller increase in the sea ice (the confidence range is so great as to suggest that the trend could even be negative!). Skewing the data in this fashion is, at the very least, intellectually dishonest.

    Gee now, I wonder why the IPCC and their supporters are finding their credibility vanishing.

  51. Even the NASA GISS scientists begrudgingly acknowledge the expansion of Antarctic sea ice at about 3.1 percent since 1979. But they do so in such a bumbling way as to be pathetic:

    “What’s Holding Antarctic Sea Ice Back From Melting?”
    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/antarctic_melting.html

    Gosh. Could it be the evil Kracken blowing it’s chilly breath across the continent? NASA admits they really don’t know and have recently gotten on the ozone depletion kick – bad humans still polluting with CFCs – even though they’ve been banned for twenty years.

  52. geo (16:20:25) :

    Yo, ctm. . .seriously, why *is* “warmers” or “warmists” considered derogatory? I get it with “Deniers”, but for the life of me I can’t figure out why “AGW proponent” is okay and “warmers” isn’t. If it were, say, “brimstoneites” or somesuch I could see it.

    Labels are handy, y’know, and for far more than insult. That’s why the race bothered to invent them.

    I agree. “Hothead” would be (mildly) insulting, Warmist is merely informally brief.

    harrywr2 (16:20:34) :

    AEGeneral (14:49:27) :

    “Forgive me if it’s already been answered before, but why has it taken so long for the above-mentioned as well as other recent inaccuracies to be discovered?”

    The same reason it takes a husband years to discover his wife is having an affair. There is a sense of trust, and the various excuses seem plausible.

    Once the trust is broken, then he finds hundreds of bits of evidence that had been there all along.

    This is why Climategate was so damaging, even though (as I wrote at the time) it only took the shine off their halos — but that’s enough to start a chain reaction.

  53. Regarding labelling warmists and skeptics … the labelling scheme must be balanced on both sides with each label similar to its opposite – thus (in reference to the hockey-stick chart): Big-endians and Little-endians.

  54. OK . . let’s call them Warmistas then.

    You know , like Bruno is a fashionista.

    Reply: Seriously tone it down. We are going to try and get along if serious discussions are to happen. ~ ctm

  55. I was reading the article linked to above, and I realised I had heard this all before when trying to edit wikipedia. It’s as if the same mindset is in charge of both the IPCC and wikipedia, people play along with the rules, they go along with being sidelined because you can’t insist your view gets prominence, but somehow at the end of the day, only one view ever gets to be heard.

    Is there some kind of training course for global warmers in how to subvert the system to make it into their propaganda mouthpiece?

  56. “Codeblue (17:38:06) :

    Also to add: the sea ice behavior at the south pole is different than that at the north pole. While there is a significant amount of ice remaining through the summer melt season in the Arctic ice, nearly all of the Antarctic ice tends to melt. Perhaps the extra noise by tracking monthly data makes it more difficult to discern a trend?”
    Never underestimate the intelligence of the common man who has always understood that they are poles apart.
    However, I would appreciate a grant to facillitate a comparitive study of the long term survival strategies of penguins and polar bears.
    Charles’ use of the term AGW proponent rather than more lurid descriptions, demonstrates that he is without doubt moderate in all things and not least a gentleman.

  57. geoff pohanka (14:54:49) :
    we need to have a common label for the AGW crowd.

    Start calling them “WARMERS”.

    Reply: No. We explicitly recommend not calling people derogatory names. I personally use the term AGW proponent. ~ ctm.

    Isn’t the word proponent defined as: “a person who argues in favour of something”? Some synonyms: advocate, champion, supporter, backer, promoter, protagonist, campaigner, booster, cheerleader.
    An AGW proponent is none of those since they are not in favour of global warming, on the contrary.
    More precise would be: an AGWTproponent, where T stands for Theory. Or else call them “AGW opponents”?

    {Reply: note the term “lukewarmers” on the WUWT blog roll. ~dbs, mod.]

  58. The false claims of the IPCC regarding Antarctic sea ice have been noted on my website for nearly two years, and probably at other sites. I noted there that the IPCC relied on a single book chapter and ignored several peer-reviewed papers that showed a much larger rate of increase. So Chip is not correct to say it was first uncovered a couple of weeks ago.

    It is interesting that the papers Chip found (that the IPCC ignored) are different from the ones I found.

    The point about the first draft and the comments is very interesting, I had not noticed that. This makes the IPCC manipulation much more blatant and transparent. I’ll add a comment to my page.

  59. {Reply: note the term “lukewarmers” on the WUWT blog roll. ~dbs, mod.]

    I have no clue what your reply has to do with the inappropriate term “proponent” for those who oppose the warming of the globe by human emissions of CO2. By the way, if the term “warmers” is banned on WUWT, being a derogatory name, why would you use on your blog roll the name “lukewarmers”. Isn’t that equally derogatory?

    [Reply: “proponent” was not my term. “Warmers” refers to those who believe that anthropogenic global warning explains climate change. It is a widely used label, not intended to be insulting. ~dbs, mod.]

  60. the statement that sea ice does not affect sea levels is incorrect. The formation of sea ice does raise the level of sea. You can test this concept by simply putting
    ice cubes in a glass of water and observe the decrease in water level as the ice melts. therefore, the sea level will actually decrease with sea ice melt and increase with sea ice formation.

  61. visceralrebellion (16:15:50) :

    “May I ask a question?

    Why are so many getting so worked up over a degree C of change?

    The temperature here has swung over 47 degrees F today. No one has died. Nothing has been destroyed. It’s a huge swing and it’s harmless.

    Yet I’m supposed to get myself worked up over a 3 degree C or thereabouts change in average?….”

    It is a tempest in a teapot. Supposedly this is an increase per unit time. The temperature is supposed to continue rising and rising until a “tipping point”is reached. Then all the glaciers would melt, the reflection of sunlight from ice would drastically change, cities flood etc etc and it would become too hot to sustain life or whatever.

    The problem is the climate is ALWAYS changing. Here are some good graphs to illustrate

    Temp in Greenland

    Global Temperature Trends From 2500 B.C. To 2040 A.D.
    http://www.longrangeweather.com/global_temperatures.htm

    The best set of graphs showing global warming in a geological context. (thank you Mr. Hall for the graphing.)

    John L. Daly’s list of graphs. Listed here are a set of historical temperature graphs from a large selection of mostly non-urban weather stations in both hemispheres. You can click on them and see the actual graphs for specific places.
    http://www.john-daly.com/stations/stations.htm

    This is the real history of CO2 measurement from 1826 to 1960 complete with error bars.
    http://www.biomind.de/realCO2/

    CO2 vs Temp over geologic time

    One thing to keep in mind. The Volstok Ice cores yielded CO2 measurements that do not agree (they are too low) with measurements taken from other methods.
    http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/stomata.html
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/01/30/co2-temperatures-and-ice-ages/

    I hope that helps.

  62. miklos treiber (05:41:38) :
    The sea ice is not being PUT IN the sea (as in a drink) it is converting sea wtaer to ice.

  63. Mike Haseler (02:08:32) :

    “I was reading the article linked to above, and I realised I had heard this all before when trying to edit wikipedia. It’s as if the same mindset is in charge of both the IPCC and wikipedia, people play along with the rules, they go along with being sidelined because you can’t insist your view gets prominence, but somehow at the end of the day, only one view ever gets to be heard.

    Is there some kind of training course for global warmers in how to subvert the system to make it into their propaganda mouthpiece?”

    In a word YES there is.

    We farmers ran into it while dealing with the United Nations and World Trade Organization insisting we were “stakeholders” – third parties hold property in trust for the REAL owner – of our farms and livestock. The USDA tried to use this technique on farmers to get them to agree to placing Premises Identification (PI) on their deeds. PI is a permanent Encumbrance on the deed that removes Constitution protections from the property forever.

    “Here’s how it works, they use the Hegellian Dialectic. This is “problem, reaction, solution”. They create the problem, watch the reaction and then provide the solution. They use seminars and the Delphi technique to bring leaders into line with their solutions.

    A lot of times, the problem is completely false. They will create a problem in OUR MINDS. (Think of all the hoopla surrounding global warming recently), and then they will watch the hue and cry from the public and provide the solution via ‘policy’ for us. Inevitably, those policies are such that they contract our ability to
    1) profit from our labor
    2) be accountable for ourselves
    3) manage our own lives and children

    The group pushing this thought control is called the Aspen Institute. Their origins are in “German Intellectualism” and they have been working concertedly behind the scenes with the leaders of business, the legislators, and the judiciary since 1947 to forward their plan of nothing less than ‘global collectivism and humanism’. They have been very, very successful…”
    http://truth-farmer.blogspot.com/

  64. “Codeblue (17:38:06) :

    “….Also to add: the sea ice behavior at the south pole is different than that at the north pole. While there is a significant amount of ice remaining through the summer melt season in the Arctic ice, nearly all of the Antarctic ice tends to melt…..”

    ERRrrr if that is true than where did all that Ice Core data come from???

    Climate and atmospheric history of the past 420000 years from the Vostok ice core, Antarctica. 1999
    http://www.daviesand.com/Choices/Precautionary_Planning/New_Data/

  65. Gail Combs (07:25:43) :
    “ERRrrr if that is true than where did all that Ice Core data come from???”

    From km’s thick continental ice – not from our bartenders’ ice cubes in his/her room-temp, non-salty drink :-)

  66. miklos treiber (05:41:38) :

    “You can test this concept by simply putting ice cubes in a glass of water and observe the decrease in water level as the ice melts. therefore, the sea level will actually decrease with sea ice melt and increase with sea ice formation.”

    That, milos, contradict Archimedes law.

    The waterlevel will neither increase nor decrease. Just try it yourself. Make sure the level is completely level with the top of the glass.

  67. To those saying this is not a statistically significant trend. First, the measurements are not necessarily within +/- .02. That just refers to the slope of the linear regression model fit. Which basically tracks the mean trend. A mean can be statistically significant even if the raw data is highly variable because the mean (or mean trend) is very stable if enough data is gathered. Assuming these guys did the stats correctly then I have no trouble believing a statistically significant trend exists and the best estimate of that trend is 0.735% per decade. Which sounds like a pretty small trend to me.

  68. There seems to be a lot of focus on sea ice, and it is all misplaced. The atmosphere has virtually no ability to influence sea ice. The variations in sea ice are totally due to ocean temperatures. Ocean temperatures are mysterious. The source of ocean heat is solar energy, which accumulates for decades, and geothermal heat, which accumulates for millennia. The atmosphere does not have the heat capacity to influence sea ice, and the 0.6C claimed temperature increase is miniscule compared to seasonal variations.

    Gary Novak
    http://nov55.com/gbwm.html

  69. Gee if I read the grap hcorrectly + 200,000 sq km of sea ice can’t be seenor measured ?

    Get Real!!.

  70. Gary Novak (11:43:53) :

    There seems to be a lot of focus on sea ice, and it is all misplaced. The atmosphere has virtually no ability to influence sea ice. The variations in sea ice are totally due to ocean temperatures.

    Likely you are correct except of course during normal warming e.g. Arctic summer when ambient temps do contribute to SST increase and sea ice melt.

    The gripe here is with IPCC, NASA, NOAA, GISS, etc. who continually play down expansion of Antarctic sea ice. They do so at the expense of scientific integrity – which is why increasing numbers of people disbelieve AGW theory.

  71. “, were being guided by IPCC brass to produce a specific IPCC point-of-view, or both”

    Did you mean “, or were being guided by IPCC brass to produce a specific IPCC point-of-view, or both”?

    keep up the great work!

  72. [Reply: “proponent” was not my term. “Warmers” refers to those who believe that anthropogenic global warning explains climate change. It is a widely used label, not intended to be insulting. ~dbs, mod.]

    Well, in that case the moderators on WUWT have opposite views since moderator ctm opposed the name “warmer” as derogatory and preferred “proponent”:

    No. We explicitly recommend not calling people derogatory names. I personally use the term AGW proponent. ~ ctm.

    Personally, I couldn’t care less.

  73. “”” Steve Koch (20:53:30) :

    George E. Smith,

    Are you the Nobel prize winning physicist or just honoring the great man?

    thanks, Steve “””

    I’m just the one on every street corner. Actually, our careers have criss-crossed at least since the early 1970s; when he was doing his thing at the late great Bell Telephone Laboratories. Every time I showed up at a tech conflab, I found I was already enrolled; well on the Bell labs chap’s nickel. I happened to be VP of Reading and Dreaming for a significant (at the time) LED company. Turns out the veep for Beckman Instruments at the time also had the same name. When I worked for Fairchild in the late 60s, there were three of us at the company, and when I started work at the fore-runner of my present employer; there were two of us. We once visited a company in Toledo Ohio together; he was a sales chap (also black), which was a scream when we both introduced ourselves. But the one I honor most was a young US sailor, who dived off a capsized and burning battleship on Battleship row on the morning of Dec 7th 1941, and swam under a surface fuel fire to his survival; but horribly burned. He’s the one to remember.

    But I have never actually met my Nobellist alter ego; but I am very familiar with his career, and know folks well who also know him well.

  74. Cooler weather in Antarctica was accounted for and even predicted in IPCC IV, including floating ice increase. However, the continent itself is shedding ice through moraine drainage at an unprecedented rate, especially on the West Shelf and Pine Island.

    IPCC is not a “point of view”. It is a collection of the best available science, and extensively peer reviewed. I agree that there is a problem with it, however: effects of global warming are accelerating faster than IPCC can keep up with them. We need a more nimble and contemporaneous organization.

    [snip]

  75. mike roddy (06:21:32) :
    Why do you bother saying that on a site like this, don’t you read any of the Articles on here?
    There are more problems accelerating faster with the IPCC than there are with Global Warming.

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