2010 – where does it fit in the warmest year list?

Guest post by Dr. Don J. Easterbrook

1934 has long been considered the warmest year of the past century. A decade ago, the closest challenger appeared to be 1998, a super-el nino year, but it trailed 1934 by 0.54°C (0.97°F). Since then, NASA GISS has “adjusted” the U.S. data for 1934 downward and 1998 upward (see December 25, 2010 post by Ira Glickstein) in an attempt to make 1998 warmer than 1934 and seemingly erased the original rather large lead of 1934 over 1998.  The last phases of the strong 2009-2010 el nino in early 2010 made this year another possible contender for the warmest year of the century. However, December 2010 has been one of the coldest Decembers in a century in many parts of the world, so 2010 probably won’t be warmer than 1998.  But does it really matter? Regardless of which year wins the temperature adjustment battle, how significant will that be? To answer that question, we need to look at a much longer time frame‒centuries and millennia.

One of the best ways to look at long-term temperatures is with isotope data from the GISP2 Greenland ice core, from which temperatures for thousands of years can be determined.  The ice core isotope data were obtained by Minze Stuiver and Peter Grootes from nuclear accelerator measurements of thousands of oxygen isotope ratios (16O/18O), which are a measure of paleo-temperatures at the time snow fell that was later converted to glacial ice. The age of such temperatures can be accurately measured from annual layers of accumulation of rock debris marking each summer’s melting of ice and concentration of rock debris on the glacier.

The past century

Two episodes of global warming and two episodes of global cooling occurred during the past century:

Figure 1. Two periods of global warming and two periods of global cooling since 1880

1880 to 1915 cool period.  Atmospheric temperature measurements, glacier fluctuations, and oxygen isotope data from Greenland ice cores all record a cool period from about 1880 to about 1915. Many cold temperature records in North America were set during this period. Glaciers advanced, some nearly to terminal positions reached during the Little Ice Age about 400 years ago. During this period, global temperatures were about 0.9 ° C (1.6 ° F) cooler than at present.  From 1880 to 1890, temperatures dropped 0.35 ° C (0.6° F) in only 10 years. The 1880 –1915 cool period shows up well in the oxygen isotope curve of the Greenland Ice Sheet.

1915 to 1945 warm period. Global temperatures rose steadily in the 1920s, 1930s, and early 1940s. By the mid-1940s, global temperatures were about 0.5 °C (0.9° F) warmer than they had been at the turn of the century. More high temperature records for the century were recorded in the 1930s than in any other decade of the 20th century. Glaciers during this warm period retreated, temperatures in the 1930s in Greenland were warmer than at present, and rates of warming were higher (warming 4°C (7° F) in two decades). All of this occurred before CO2 emissions began to soar after 1945, so at least half of the warming of the past century cannot have been caused by manmade CO2.

1945 to 1977 cool period.  Global temperatures began to cool in the mid–1940’s at the point when CO2 emissions began to soar. Global temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere dropped about 0.5° C (0.9° F) from the mid-1940s until 1977 and temperatures globally cooled about 0.2° C (0.4° F). Many of the world’s glaciers advanced during this time and recovered a good deal of the ice lost during the 1915–1945 warm period. Many examples of glacial recession cited in the news media show contrasting terminal positions beginning with the maximum extent at the end of the 1880-1915 year cool period and ending with the minimum extent of the recent 20 year warm period (1977-1998).  A much better gauge of the effect of climate on glaciers would be to compare glacier terminal positions between the ends of successive cool periods or the ends of successive warm periods.

1977 to 1998 global warming The global cooling that prevailed from ~1945 to 1977 ended abruptly in 1977 when the Pacific Ocean shifted from its cool mode to its warm mode in a single year and global temperatures began to rise, initiating two decades of global warming.  This sudden reversal of climate in 1977 has been called the “Great Pacific Climate Shift” because it happened so abruptly. During this warm period, alpine glaciers retreated, Arctic sea ice diminished, melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet occur.

The abruptness of the shift in Pacific sea surface temperatures and corresponding change from global cooling to global warming in 1977 is highly significant and strongly suggests a cause-and-effect relationship.  The rise of atmospheric CO2, which accelerated after 1945 shows no sudden change that could account for the “Great Pacific Climate Shift”.

1999 to 2010 global cooling. No global warming has occurred above the 1998 level and temperatures have declined slightly.

The past 500 years

Temperature oscillations recorded in Greenland ice cores over the past 500 years (Fig. 2) are truly remarkable. At least 40 periods of warming and cooling have occurred since 1480 AD, all well before CO2 emissions could have been a factor.

Figure 2. Warming and cooling periods from 1480 to 1960 AD - click to enlarge

The past 5,000 years

Figure 3 shows oxygen isotope ratios from the GISP2 Greenland ice core for the past 5,000 years. Note that temperatures were significantly warmer than present from 1500 to 5000 years ago.

Figure 3. Oxygen isotope ratios for the past 5,000 years. Red areas are warm periods, blue areas are cool periods - click to enlarge

The past 10,000 years

Most of the past 10,000 have been warmer than the present. Figure 4 shows temperatures from the GISP2 Greenland ice core. With the exception of a brief cool period about 8,200 years ago, the entire period from 1,500 to 10,500 years ago was significantly warmer than present.

Figure 4. Temperatures over the past 10,500 years recorded in the GISP2 Greenland ice core. (Modified from Cuffy and Clow, 1997)

Another graph of temperatures from the Greenland ice core for the past 10,000 years is shown in Figure 5. It shows essentially the same temperatures as Cuffy and Clow (1997) but with somewhat greater detail.  What both of these temperature curves show is that virtually all of the past 10,000 years has been warmer than the present.

Figure 5. Temperatures over the past 10,000 years recorded in the GISP2 Greenland ice core - click to enlarge

So where do the 1934/1998/2010 warm years rank in the long-term list of warm years? Of the past 10,500 years, 9,100 were warmer than 1934/1998/2010.  Thus, regardless of which year ( 1934, 1998, or 2010) turns out to be the warmest of the past century, that year will rank number 9,099 in the long-term list.

The climate has been warming slowly since the Little Ice Age (Fig. 5), but it has quite a ways to go yet before reaching the temperature levels that persisted for nearly all of the past 10,500 years.

It’s really much to do about nothing.

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TomRude
December 28, 2010 5:18 pm

Why continuing to give any credence to the recent global surface temperature calculations?

latitude
December 28, 2010 5:20 pm

With the exception of a brief “warm” period about 8,200 years ago,
===========================================
Don, shouldn’t that be “cool” ?
thanks for this, more good news!

December 28, 2010 5:22 pm

Excellent post by Dr. Easterbrook. Anthony, can you invite him to post again — on his projections of the Earth’s climate for the next 2 decades or more? Those who have solid understanding of the past will have better grasp of giving intelligent forecast of the future.

Brian H
December 28, 2010 5:23 pm

“This sudden reversal of climate in 1977 has been called the “Great Pacific Climate Shift” because it happened so abruptly.”
Yes, funny, that abruptness, isn’t it?
http://www.canadafreepress.com/images/uploads/ball120610-2.jpg
Well, that accounts for about 1.5°C of the warming world-wide since 1989; deduct that from the 2010 number, and probably it will be in contention for the top 100 Warmist Years Club. Maybe.

Brian H
December 28, 2010 5:26 pm

P.S. Just to clarify the graph, 1990 was the date that the Great Station Slaughter took place, causing world temperatures to surge so spectacularly.
Who says sympathetic magic doesn’t work?

Jantar
December 28, 2010 5:34 pm

While I agree with the overall theme about temperatures past, there are a couple of issues right at the start.
The first one is The age of such temperatures can be accurately measured from annual layers of accumulation of rock debris marking each summer’s melting of ice and concentration of rock debris on the glacier. How accurately are temperatures measured by the isotope ratio? Shouldn’t that be “estimated” rather than measured?
The second point relates to graph 1. It appears that you have used Hansen’s trick of making 1934 appear cooler, not just cooler than 1998, but even cooler than 1937 – 1939. Is there a data source for this graph? An incorrect graphic this early in the paper may turn people off from reading further.

Anything is possible
December 28, 2010 5:34 pm

The cool periods identified by the GISP2 Ice Core centred around 8350BP, 4750BP, 1250BP and 400BP all coincide with periods of low sunspot activity as identified by Solanki (2004).
Check for yourselves here, noting that Solanki’s data is based on Years Before Present (1950), so has to be adjusted by 50 years to tie-in with Figure 5 above :
ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/paleo/climate_forcing/solar_variability/solanki2004-ssn.txt
Could it be the Sun after all?

December 28, 2010 5:41 pm

Could SOMEONE explain how the O18 ratio can be used to measure TEMPERATURE?
Sorry, as an “old Nuke guy”, (with considerable isotopic and radiation background), I’m still FLUMOXED trying to figure this out.
The number of TROPICAL THUNDERSTORMS in coastal regions, controls that “enrichment” (this is by OBSERVATION, and there IS NO GOOD THEORETICAL REASON WHY known to DATE..)
So I regard the ratio as a good index of thunderstorm activity.
But of atmospheric energy? Of temperature? NO.
Thus, although it is TEMPTING to fall into this trap (as a “skeptic” of using these reconstructions), having made a judgement that they may be FICTICIOUS, I find myself being a skeptic of being a skeptic, on this basis!
I guess that makes me even more of a “climate agnostic”. (That’s OK, I prefer my DOGMA in religion, not “science”.)
Max

John F. Hultquist
December 28, 2010 5:42 pm

http://www.canadafreepress.com/images/uploads/ball120610-2.jpg
Returns:
Forbidden
You don’t have permission to access /images/uploads/ball120610-2.jpg on this server.
WUWT?
[Reply: I don’t know why you can’t access the image, but it’s this one.~dbs]

John F. Hultquist
December 28, 2010 5:45 pm

Nonoy Oplas says:
Go here, click on publications:
http://myweb.wwu.edu/dbunny/

Frank K.
December 28, 2010 5:47 pm

But does it really matter? Regardless of which year wins the temperature adjustment battle, how significant will that be?”
The answer to this question is quite straightforward – WARMEST YEAR = CLIMATE CA$H FOR CLIMATE SCIENTISTS.
Simple as that. The global surface temperature anomalies are thermodynamically meaningless anyhow…

LazyTeenager
December 28, 2010 5:48 pm

I’m confused. Is that first graph global temperatures or Greenland glacier temperatures?

maz2
December 28, 2010 5:58 pm

AGW seer peers into the future, snaps, and finds …. >>> “greenhouse warming” and acronyms. Some crystal ball.
“I found that even up to 2040 and 2050, you can still get cold snaps under greenhouse warming.”
But, the Danes* have lost an island. Call for help.
…-
“Floods, freeze not the end of global warming: CSIRO”
http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/12/29/3103161.htm?section=justin
…-
Danes*:
“Snow-bound Danish island of Bornholm calls for help”
COPENHAGEN, December 28, 2010 (AFP) – Authorities on the Baltic Danish island of Bornholm called for help to clear the roads on Tuesday as some of the island’s 43,000 snowed-in inhabitants are running short of fuel and medicine.
“You can’t even imagine how bad this is. The roads are closed, and they are digging and digging, and they just can’t get through,” said Helle Skov Olesen, who lives on the island nestled between Sweden and the northern coasts of Germany and Poland.
“They don’t even know where to put the snow,” she told daily Politiken.”
http://www.swedishwire.com/nordic/7860-snow-bound-danish-island-of-bornholm-calls-for-help-

Anything is possible
December 28, 2010 6:12 pm

Max Hugoson says:
December 28, 2010 at 5:41 pm
Could SOMEONE explain how the O18 ratio can be used to measure TEMPERATURE?
_____________________________________________________________
It’s actually a proxy for Ice sheet volume..
This explains it in full :
http://science.jrank.org/pages/47942/oxygen-isotope-records.html

latitude
December 28, 2010 6:18 pm

[Reply: I don’t know why you can’t access the image, but it’s this one.~dbs]
======================================================
Doing science the way climate scientists do it………
FAIL

John Finn
December 28, 2010 6:21 pm

A couple of issues

1934 has long been considered the warmest year of the past century. A decade ago, the closest challenger appeared to be 1998, a super-el nino year, but it trailed 1934 by 0.54°C (0.97°F).

Only in the US has 1934 ever been “considered the warmest year”. Globally 1998 is/was the warmest year. A number of bloggers posters still confuse US and global records, but this is sloppy from a prominent researcher.

1999 to 2010 global cooling. No global warming has occurred above the 1998 level and temperatures have declined slightly

Which dataset (UAH, RSS, GISS or HadCrut?) shows that Temperatures “have declined slightly” between 1999 and 2010. I know this “decline” fits with Don Easterbrook’s hypothesis but it just isn’t true.

Bill H
December 28, 2010 6:27 pm

more fun to use against the EPA and its takeover by fiat of our economy..

December 28, 2010 6:34 pm

Thank you Dr. Easterbrook, I am also a big believer in the power of the PDO driven by solar modulation. Interesting to see that the PDO even had some influence during the Maunder Minimum just as it did when we saw a century class high solar cycle around 1950.
The long term temperature graph does not look to allow for the recent temperatures but it matches up very nicely with the Holocene isotope record further strengthening the Sun/climate link. My research is complimentary to yours, click on my name to access my paper and research.

December 28, 2010 6:42 pm

I have said it in other treads and will repeat it here. All these GISS people and most climate modelers and all climatologists are simply [getting significant mental pleasure from unlikely written fantasies] with a highly selective set of data. I know, because I have been one of them, that geologists have been trying to remind everyone of our history today back to the Pleistocene and before that. Obviously far to many have selective hearing and the selective understanding that accompanies it.
[Edited for taste. And accuracy. Robt]

December 28, 2010 6:52 pm

John Finn says:
December 28, 2010 at 6:21 pm
Which dataset (UAH, RSS, GISS or HadCrut?) shows that Temperatures “have declined slightly” between 1999 and 2010. I know this “decline” fits with Don Easterbrook’s hypothesis but it just isn’t true.

Assuming he meant “1998 and 2010”, all but GISS:
http://tinyurl.com/ybvwog9
Believe WUWT as already addressed why GISS is higher than the others.

December 28, 2010 6:55 pm

I want what the Met Office promised, Please why can’t I have the warm temperatures that the Anthropogenic Global warming [snip] promised?

Christopher Hanley
December 28, 2010 7:06 pm

A comment on the notation on figure 1. “warming without CO2 increase”.
The CO2 concentration began to rise steeply from ~280 ppm around 1880……
http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/co2/graphics/lawdome.gif
…… while the steep climb in CO2 from fossil fuel use began 70 years later around 1950, when the concentration was already ~310 ppm…..
http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/emis/graphics/global_ff_1751_2006.jpg
The discrepancy is puzzling.

FrankK
December 28, 2010 7:12 pm

This post would be improved if Figures 1 and 2 were brought up to date. It will always gives some the impression that there is something to hide. Isn’t there any data beyond the years shown ??
Otherwise a valuable contribution.

James Sexton
December 28, 2010 7:16 pm

LazyTeenager says:
December 28, 2010 at 5:48 pm
I’m confused. Is that first graph global temperatures or Greenland glacier temperatures?
========================================================
Given the recent focus on Greenland temps by our climatologists and their propensity to give significant weight to small areas, I’d say tomorrow they’d be one and the same. Related in anomalies, of course.

December 28, 2010 7:20 pm

Anything is possible says:
December 28, 2010 at 6:12 pm
Max Hugoson says:
December 28, 2010 at 5:41 pm
It’s actually a proxy for Ice sheet volume..
The very link you showed further down also states:
“Temperature is also known to influence the δ18 O record; becoming more negative with warmer temperatures.”

James Sexton
December 28, 2010 7:21 pm

[Reply: I don’t know why you can’t access the image, but it’s this one.~dbs]
http://www.uoguelph.ca/~rmckitri/research/nvst.jpg
is the same as
http://www.canadafreepress.com/images/uploads/ball120610-2.jpg <— that?
If so, I hope that helps.
[Yes, same original source. ~dbs.]

savethesharks
December 28, 2010 7:47 pm

Excellent presentation, Don.
I did see a type-o though:
“With the exception of a brief warm period about 8,200 years ago, the entire period from 1,500 to 10,500 years ago was significantly warmer than present.”
Should say “brief COOL period.”
Chris
Norfolk, VA, USA
[Fixed, eagle-eye. Thanks. ~dbs, mod.]

December 28, 2010 7:54 pm

Geoff Sharp says:
December 28, 2010 at 6:34 pm
The long term temperature graph does not look to allow for the recent temperatures but it matches up very nicely with the Holocene isotope record further strengthening the Sun/climate link.
Unfortunately the records do not match very nicely: http://www.leif.org/research/MisMatch-Geoff-Don.png

December 28, 2010 7:55 pm

Thanks Brian H, James Sexton and dbs, I don’t believe I’ve seen that graphic before.
I’ve read it referenced here but had no idea the jump in temp and decline in station count was that dramatic.
Is anyone aware of a reconstruction from 1990-2010 that includes the stations axed in 1990? Surely, they are still collecting data and just deemed not worthy by the gate keepers?

December 28, 2010 7:57 pm

Your all wrong! The world is in fact warming, the snow and wintry conditions that you apparently see are only signs of the warming global temperatures, Your stealing all the perception from Africa! Yes you are! you are all evil and you hate Africans and Nazi Jews and polar bears.
/classic! sarc off

carbon-based life form
December 28, 2010 8:09 pm

So which is better for us, to go back to the higher temperatures of the last 10,000 years, or to go back further to the most recent ice age?
In any case, I guess we should thank the antediluvians for burning so much fossil fuel that they brought us out of the ice age. Nothing else could have done it, obviously.

Jack Greer
December 28, 2010 8:09 pm

@JohnWho who said on December 28, 2010 at 6:52 pm
Yes, John, he meant 1998 … quintessential cherry-picking – just like a Lindzen/Choi study – which makes his comment not very credible. The lack of understanding of what the “G” stands for in “GW” on display in this thread is stunning.

John F. Hultquist
December 28, 2010 8:19 pm

Okay. So returning from dinner I was able to get the image via the link provided by ~dbs. Thanks. Google Chrome still returns the “forbidden” message and Internet Explorer hangs and claims it can’t open that page. Compared to establishing a global temperature for thousands of years ago this ought to be a piece of cake. Maybe I’ll take the side off the computer and blow the dust out – That’s the equivalent of opening the hood of a car that won’t start and wiggling things. No help, but makes one feel better.

Neville
December 28, 2010 8:27 pm

I’m a bit confused about your comment here—
1915 to 1945 warm period. Global temperatures rose steadily in the 1920s, 1930s, and early 1940s. By the mid-1940s, global temperatures were about 0.5 °C (0.9° F) warmer than they had been at the turn of the century. More high temperature records for the century were recorded in the 1930s than in any other decade of the 20th century. Glaciers during this warm period retreated, temperatures in the 1930s in Greenland were warmer than at present, and rates of warming were higher (warming 4°C (7° F) in two decades). All of this occurred before CO2 emissions began to soar after 1945, so at least half of the warming of the past century cannot have been caused by manmade CO2.
Shouldn’t the rates of warming be 0.4C/ 0.7F in 2 decades?
Also are the graphs attributed to Alley etc or are they drawn by yourself using his numbers or by some one else? Thank you.

Michael
December 28, 2010 8:34 pm

When you die, there must be a prominent individual you must go after and destroy.
I plan on going after and destroying (Jay) John D. Rockefeller when I die, even if prematurely.
These people have more sway over your lives that you can possibly imagine. The way to deal with them is in the afterlife and make sure they never come back.

Jack Greer
December 28, 2010 8:43 pm

Aside from not knowing what “global” means, does anyone have a comment about Earth’s orbital features over the periods discussed by Dr. Easterbrook? Milankovich Cycle? Holocene Climate Optimum? Impact on Greenland data?

December 28, 2010 8:45 pm

1934, 1998 and 2010 have something else in common that I see by looking at the Smithsonian volcano eruptive history. A clear or recently cleared stratosphere and a troposphere with plenty of volcanic aerosols. A smoke filled greenhouse under the sun is just plain hotter than one with clean, clear air in it. Think about it.

hotrod (Larry L)
December 28, 2010 8:49 pm

John F. Hultquist says:
December 28, 2010 at 8:19 pm
Okay. So returning from dinner I was able to get the image via the link provided by ~dbs. Thanks. Google Chrome still returns the “forbidden” message and Internet Explorer hangs and claims it can’t open that page.

It probably has to do with where you are trying to load the page (ie business IP or consumer IP). I am at work and if I click on the link I get the “forbidden” error you talk about, but if I cut and past the original link into a new browser window (so it is not a re-direct from WUWT) the image loads just fine.
Larry

Doug in Seattle
December 28, 2010 8:57 pm

Michael says:
December 28, 2010 at 8:34 pm
The way to deal with them is in the afterlife and make sure they never come back.

Far better to deal with them in the here and now rather than in an assumed afterlife, which may or may not provide such an opportunity.

Terry Jackson
December 28, 2010 9:18 pm

Thanks for letting Don put up a post. He usually gets disqualified since he has actually done things like ‘measurements’ and ‘field work’. And he has a track record of making forecasts which can be compared to the observed record.
Also of interest is how well these graphs seem to track with a lot of the material originally presented by HH Lamb in his book (Climate History of the World? Away from home and can’t reach for it right now, sorry).
Terry

December 28, 2010 9:21 pm

A couple of comments.
1. The temperature reconstruction of greenland needs error bars.
2. Folks who moan about the “existence” of a global average should moan now.
3. Greenland is not the world. If you want to characterize the whole world by one spot then take it up with the people who complain that 7000 stations is not enough.
That said, proxies of winter seasons are better than proxies of summer seasons.
The operative question is not “has it been this warm before” the operative questions are.
1. What’s our best estimate of the temp over the next 100 years.
2. Can we do anything about it
3. should we, if we can.

Paul Vaughan
December 28, 2010 9:22 pm

Jantar wrote, “[…] graph 1. It appears that you have used Hansen’s trick of making 1934 appear cooler, not just cooler than 1998, but even cooler than 1937 – 1939. Is there a data source for this graph? An incorrect graphic this early in the paper may turn people off from reading further.”
Jantar, did you notice the word “Global” on the y-axis?
You appear to have accidentally conflated the USA with the globe.

Michael
December 28, 2010 9:37 pm

Barack H. Obama has presided over the formation of the largest police state ever created in the history of man. [snip]

Paul Vaughan
December 28, 2010 9:37 pm

FrankK wrote, “This post would be improved if Figures 1 and 2 were brought up to date. It will always gives some the impression that there is something to hide. Isn’t there any data beyond the years shown ??”
Regarding Figure 2: That’s from an ice core (that’s not growing).

Bob of Castlemaine
December 28, 2010 10:03 pm

Floods, freeze not the end of global warming: CSIRO. Once more their ABC leads the chant – high temperatures mean climate change/global warming, cooler temperatures are just natural weather variability. So 2010 may or may not prove to be the warmest year in the last 100 years, why should that surprise. After all, wide spread temperature records started only about 100 years ago during a rising planetary temperature trend that commenced at the low point of the little ice age about 300 years ago. Clearly that was long before man made CO2 emissions could have influenced planetary temperature.
Also problematic for the man made warming hypothesis, observational evidence has invalidated the warming projections of the gaggle of grants financed climate models including that of CSIRO. During the last 10 – 15 years there has been no statistically significant planetary warming (a point agreed by Professor Phil Jones of “Climategate” fame) while during that same period man made CO2 emissions have continued unabated?

Michael
December 28, 2010 10:04 pm

“Pet Death Wish Rocks” are my idea and may become very popular in the future. Please give me credit for the idea.

John F. Hultquist
December 28, 2010 10:12 pm

Scott Ramsdell says:
December 28, 2010 at 7:55 pm

There is a post with comments on the station dropout issue:
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/03/08/on-the-march-of-the-thermometers/
————————————————————–
hotrod (Larry L) says: “cut and paste”
That worked. Thanks. John

T.C.
December 28, 2010 10:41 pm

Christopher Hanley says:
December 28, 2010 at 7:06 pm
“A comment on the notation on figure 1… ” etc.
“The discrepancy is puzzling.”
Even more puzzling when you actually look at real-time measurements of carbon dioxide from real scientists instead of creative interpretations from government-funded lackeys:
http://www.biomind.de/realCO2/
http://www.warwickhughes.com/icecore/

December 28, 2010 10:43 pm
MVB
December 28, 2010 10:45 pm

AWEFUL
GRISP2 Ice Core drilling was completed in 1992.
What year is “the present” in its “before present” timeline(s)?
Figure 1. is biased. Atmospheric CO2 ppm (on year average) has been rising since at least 1900 AD, with no periods of “without change / without increase” since. While CO2 soared during the pre-1980 global cooling period, it ‘soared’ also and even more so during the warming period that followed, but the text just says “CO2 increase”, which makes it sound like it increased less than the previous period, which isn’t the case. In short: Fig. 1. is both biased and factually incorrect (a.k.a. bullshit).
Please state exact sources for any graph, and if possible where the data for a graph came from (especially when datasets are combined with different smoothing, etc. – we know how easily one can manipulate perceptions doing this).
For instance, it would be nice to know what “the present” is in Fig. 4. Is it 2000 AD in Figure 4? “Modified from Cuffy and Clow, 1997″… how modified? Were years of temperature data added after 1992, after 1997… after… when? If so, how many years and where did the other data (of an additional 8-18 years) come from?
Figure 5. at least shows that “the present” is 2000 AD, though it also doesn’t say where the additional 8+(?) temperature data came from, and at which point they’re grafted onto the ice core data. Or did they send the snow to the lab for isotope analysis as it fell since?
You wrote: “Figure 3 shows oxygen isotope ratios from the GISP2 Greenland ice core for the past 5,000 years. Note that temperatures were significantly warmer than present from 1500 to 5000 years ago.”
Than present? You’re talking about 2010! The timeline ends in 2000, and… -wuwt- the data actually end in… doesn’t say, but it looks like around 1850, not showing ANYTHING about the last century, let alone “the present”. Note THAT.
One of the worst science (?) postings I’ve seen here at WUWT.

Chris
December 28, 2010 11:01 pm

I’m a bit flummoxed. With a La Nina now, and also very weak period of solar activity for a few years, I expected global temperatures to be much cooler. But even if you just use uncontaminated satellite data (UAH MSU) and ignore Hansen, we’ve had a pretty warm year. I know that air temperature is a bad metric, and ocean heat content would be much better measure of global temperature, but still…
What gives?

Anon
December 28, 2010 11:04 pm

Don´t Miss Climate´s Big Picture!!!
1. “Earth on the Brink of an Ice Age,” by Gregory F. Fegel, January 14, 2010, at http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig11/fegel1.1.1.html .
2. “Burt Rutan´s comprehensive new report on Global Warming science fraud: Version 4.0 dated 3 July 2010,” at http://rps3.com/Pages/Burt_Rutan_on_Climate_Change.htm .
3. “Science bulletin: ´Sun heats Earth!´, Russian research forecasts global cooling,” by Jerome R. Corsi, October 27, 2009, at http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=114261 .
4. “´Hottest Year On Record´Myth Based On Fabricated Temperature Data,” by Christopher Booker, London Telegraph, Sunday, December 19, 2010, at http://www.prisonplanet.com/hottest-year-on-record-myth-based-on-fabricated-temperature-data.html .
5. The Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) theory has produced zero reproducible scientific data since its inscription, and should therefore be rejected. (The AGW theory is not science, it is an anti-science ideology, driven foremost of anti-human population control, manipulation, and socialism.)
Say no to Climategate, Junk Science, and Cap and Trade.

MVB
December 28, 2010 11:06 pm

WORSE THAN AWEFUL
Forgot to point out how nightmarishly BS your narrative for Fig. 5 is too.
You wrote: “Another graph of temperatures from the Greenland ice core for the past 10,000 years is shown in Figure 5. It shows essentially the same temperatures as Cuffy and Clow (1997) but with somewhat greater detail. What both of these temperature curves show is that virtually all of the past 10,000 years has been warmer than the present. [ Figure 5. Temperatures over the past 10,000 years recorded in the GISP2 Greenland ice core] So where do the 1934/1998/2010 warm years rank in the long-term list of warm years? Of the past 10,500 years, 9,100 were warmer than 1934/1998/2010. Thus, regardless of which year ( 1934, 1998, or 2010) turns out to be the warmest of the past century, that year will rank number 9,099 in the long-term list.”
Actually, the Fig 5 Graph is in ‘years before present (2000 AD)’, but it doesn’t end at zero years before present (THAT would be 2000), but at “95” (years before present), in other words the graph ends in 1905 AD. Nice work, Don! [sarc on] 1934, 1998, or 2010 are not even on the graph in Figure 5! The graph ends before we’d see the temperature surge of the modern warm period.
effed up.

AndrewG
December 28, 2010 11:22 pm

Nice premise, it needs an explanation on why isotope ratios are reliable temperature indicators (why should we belive them and not a single tree in Siberia or a half metric ton of coral or incidence of mcDonalds wrappers at each geological layer for that matter).
Also that first graph looks seriously shifty, measuring an 1890 temperature on an axis marked “global Temp deviation 1960-91” makes my hackles rise, so does a text about how hot 1934 was when attached to a graph that dosn’t show it.

MVB
December 28, 2010 11:32 pm

Hi moderator, combining my two comments (AWEFUL and WORSE THAN AWEFUL) into just one below this line, better organized by shredding every figure’s narrative in following order:
———————————————————-
SIMPLY AWEFUL
Figure 1. is biased. Atmospheric CO2 ppm (on year average) has been rising since at least 1900 AD, with no periods of “without change / without increase” since. While CO2 soared during the pre-1980 global cooling period, it ‘soared’ also and even more so during the warming period that followed, but the text just says “CO2 increase”, which makes it sound like it increased less than the previous period, which isn’t the case. In short: Fig. 1. is both biased and factually incorrect (a.k.a. [/SNIP]).
Figure. 2 indeed illustrates beautifully that “At least 40 periods of warming and cooling have occurred since 1480 AD, all well before CO2 emissions could have been a factor.”, but that’s another matter than 2010’s place on the temperature record. If temperatures were off the charts during any year since 1960 (like perhaps 1998, 2004 or 2010?), in comparison to the temperatures shown on this 480 year graph (what you call “500 years”), it doesn’t show. It ends in 1960.
Fig 3. “Figure 3 shows oxygen isotope ratios from the GISP2 Greenland ice core for the past 5,000 years. Note that temperatures were significantly warmer than present from 1500 to 5000 years ago.”
Um… “Warmer than present?? It is presently 2010, the year you’re talking about. Yet the timeline ends in 2000, and… -wuwt- the data actually end in… doesn’t say, but it looks like around 1850, not showing ANYTHING about the last century, let alone “the present”. Note THAT.
Fig 4. It would be nice to know what “the present” is in Fig. 4. Is it 1905 AD? 2000 AD? 1992? 1997? 2010? “Modified from Cuffy and Clow, 1997″ And IF years of data were added after 1992 (when GRISP2 Ice Core drilling was completed.), where did the other data (of who knows how many years) come from? Please state exact sources for any graph, and if possible where ALL the data for a graph came from (especially when datasets are combined with different smoothing, etc. – we know how easily one can manipulate perceptions doing this).
Figure 5. at least shows that “the present” is 2000 AD, though it also doesn’t say where the post-1992 temperature data came from, and at which point they’re grafted onto the ice core data. Oh wait… it’s much worse! The graph doesn’t end in 2000!!! For Figure 5., you wrote: “Another graph of temperatures from the Greenland ice core for the past 10,000 years is shown in Figure 5. It shows essentially the same temperatures as Cuffy and Clow (1997) but with somewhat greater detail. What both of these temperature curves show is that virtually all of the past 10,000 years has been warmer than the present. … So where do the 1934/1998/2010 warm years rank in the long-term list of warm years? Of the past 10,500 years, 9,100 were warmer than 1934/1998/2010. Thus, regardless of which year ( 1934, 1998, or 2010) turns out to be the warmest of the past century, that year will rank number 9,099 in the long-term list.”
–> The Figure 5 Graph, Dr., is in ‘years before present (2000 AD)’, but it doesn’t end at zero years before present (THAT would be 2000), but at “95″ (years before present), in other words the graph ends in 1905 AD. Nice work, Don! [sarc on] 1934, 1998, or 2010 are not even on this graph! The graph ends before we’d see the temperature surge of the modern warm period.
[/SNIP]. One of the worst science (?) postings I’ve seen here at WUWT.
[Vulgarities removed… bl57~mod]

December 28, 2010 11:39 pm

Another prediction comes in…you fell for my bait.
You are not learning Leif, temperature cannot be compared directly with solar output without allowing for the ocean cycles….this is one of Dr. Easterbrooks main platforms. Think PDO.
The overall trend of both graphs matches nicely but don’t expect an exact match.

December 29, 2010 12:09 am

The article confuses US temperatures (1934 vs 1998) vs global temps. More, the GISP ice core record ends in 1905. But the double-peaking modern warm period (with warm peaks in 1940 and 2005) is lower than the medieval or Roman warm period.
Concerning global temperatures, HadCRUT has several issues. First, the HadSST dataset has been artificially increased in 1998 by 0.1 °C, thus gaining 0.07 °C since (see Bob Tisdale blog). Second, the CRUTEM station record trend is estimated to be doubled because of UHI in 1993-2008 (McKittrick, Pielke, Spencer etc.). So the real difference between warm 40ties and 2000s is less than 0.4 °C what HadCRUT says today, maybe 0.2 °C.

Doug in Seattle
December 29, 2010 12:13 am

The purpose of DR. Easterbrook’s essay is to look beyond recent temperature measurements and thus view climate as it should be seen – at the millennial and larger scale. Where the real patterns can be viewed and perhaps compared to solar and other phenomena that also occur on those scales.
He uses oxygen isotopes, as a proxy as have many others for analysis of anything to do with water. The isotope chemistry of water is reasonably well understood as are the variations in isotopic composition due to temperature and other factors.
The of oxygen isotopes as a temperature proxy is not without errors, but the errors and their sources are also reasonably well understood – unlike the errors associated with treemometers, particularly those treemometers from certain abnormal forms of coniferous trees found in harsh climates (i.e. split-bark bristlecombs in CA or stunted larch in Siberia).
What the Greenland ice core isotopes provide is a tool for identifying a pattern of climate change in Northern Hemisphere covering the last 10,000+ years. It shows, as Dr. Easterbrook has patiently been saying for many years, that climate change is normal, natural, and not particularly tied to anthropogenic CO2 emissions.
While the isotope data don’t pinpoint exact temperatures (no proxy that I know, not even alcohol in glass or electronic temperature proxies can do that), they do provide very good evidence that temperatures have fluctuated a great deal since the last ice age, with the Greenland ice core ones showing the greatest range (much like the arctic temperature amplification we have seen over the last 30 years and during the 1930’s and 40’s). And they also show that the current warming is not unique or special, and can be better described as really quite insignificant in comparison with other far more spectacular periods of warming.
We as individuals have the freedom of either believing Dr. Easterbrook’s essay as a reasonable interpretation of the data, or we can dismissing it as the senile ramblings of a retired scientist, as some in the climate alarmist business have done.
My own training as a geologist, with experience in glacial processes and isotope geochemistry, biases my own views and predisposes me to weigh in favor of Dr. Easterbrook.
I look forward to seeing him on the news after January, when Congress might ask his opinion on a few things of great importance.

jorgekafkazar
December 29, 2010 12:18 am

MVB says: WORSE THAN AWEFUL [sic] Actually, the Fig 5 Graph is in ‘years before present (2000 AD)’, but it doesn’t end at zero years before present (THAT would be 2000), but at “95″ (years before present), in other words the graph ends in 1905 AD. Nice work, Don! [sarc on [sic] ] 1934, 1998, or 2010 are not even on the graph in Figure 5! The graph ends before we’d see the temperature surge of the modern warm period.
Not even up to nitpicking quality, MVB. See Figures 1 and 2 for the modern curves. The 1934, 98, 2010 data are extensively covered elsewhere. You probably don’t know that, because you’ve been spending all your time at porn sites.
[/SNIP]
Indeed, you are.
[No reason to repeat his conveyed vulgarity…bl57~mod]

jorgekafkazar
December 29, 2010 12:25 am

Steven Mosher says: “…The operative question is not “has it been this warm before” the operative questions are.
1. What’s our best estimate of the temp over the next 100 years.

There isn’t any.
2. Can we do anything about it
No.
3. should we, if we can.
No.

MVB
December 29, 2010 12:32 am

Use of irrelevant graphs for the topic make this article total [/snip]:
– Figure 1. is erroneous and deceptive in its wording. Atmospheric CO2 ppm (on year average) has been rising since at least 1900 AD, with no periods of “without change / without increase” since. And temperature graphs that smoothened wouldn’t show record years anyhow.
– Figure. 2 has no bearing on 2010′s place on the temperature record since it ends in 1960. And it’s a 480 year graph , not 500 years.
– Fig 3. ‘s data end somewhere before 1900 AD (doesn’t even say), but in any case giving no information about the present, so comparison statements about any year since are worthless in.
– Fig 4. doesn’t state when its “present” is, either, but the arrow pointing at the “present temperature” appears to point at the coldest of the Little Ice Age.
– Fig. 5’ s data end in 1905 AD (95 years before present with the present at 2000 AD), making all you say about Fig 5’s implications absolute [/snip].
Seriously, no one else here having an issue with erasing almost the entire Modern Warm Period from a graph and adding “The climate … has quite a ways to go … before reaching the temperature levels that persisted for nearly all of the past 10,500 years.”???

Martin Mason
December 29, 2010 12:33 am

I recently wrote to my Conservative (supposedly RW) MP to ask about their policy on climate change. I’d mentioned the failure of Copenhagen and this was part of the response.
“Although no legally binding deal was secured at Copenhagen I do not agree that other states are doing nothing. As we continue to seek global agreements, there is rapid action in China and Japan. In the USA where prospects of early cap and trade legislation are slim, the US Government plans to push businesses hard through the EPA.”
It doesn’t matter what skeptics find in articles like this, the outcome is already settled.

Neville
December 29, 2010 12:35 am

Steven Mosher what does the hmmm mean in reference to the Alley holocene graph?

morgo
December 29, 2010 12:45 am

don,t worry about the graph being up to date, just put your head out the window ,you will soon know the temp at that time and date you put your head out the window, if you are a greeny you will not know what date it is or time you put your head out of the window ????

MVB
December 29, 2010 12:49 am

Re: [Vulgarities removed… bl57~mod]
BS is BS and, as I recall, it’s okay to call it that. If you need an example:
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/07/27/penn-and-teller-on-carbon-credits/
And F is not a vulgar letter, either. How about:
PATHETIC posting!
[I need not approve a comment; I can simply move it to the spam cache or trash it. So if you want to argue… it will be with yourself. … bl57~mod]

Jimbo
December 29, 2010 12:54 am

What baffles me is that after all these DECADES they suddenly feel the need to ‘adjust’ 1934 downward while ‘adjusting’ 1998 upward. Can’t the agency that sent man to the moon read a thermometer? We here on WUWT know the crap these people are up to but the vast public don’t have a clue they are being tricked.

MVB
December 29, 2010 1:12 am

jorgekafkazar says:
December 29, 2010 at 12:18 am
Not even up to nitpicking quality, MVB. See Figures 1 and 2 for the modern curves.
You’re wrong, jorgekafkazar. Fig 1. isn’t calibrated to the other graphs, so comparing it to the rest of the Holocene doesn’t fly. And Dr. Don J. Easterbrook’s narrative, such as for Fig 5., implies a ‘present’ that is not on the graph he’s talking about.
And 1934 was an American record, not a global one; ’98 and el nino year, 2004 not mentioned here, and the data for 2010 isn’t actually in yet. [SNIP what I’d like to call you.] I’m familiar with the information. I just find it ‘a shame’ [if that’s still an okay word to use] when an article drops to similarly low standards as those that are constantly critiqued here.
[And “vulgarities removing moderator” [sic] bl57~mod, I think you missed the baseless ad hominem attack “You probably don’t know that, because you’ve been spending all your time at porn sites.”]

Rhys Jaggar
December 29, 2010 1:33 am

It is clear from the graphs presented that the climate of Greenland is not representative of other parts of the world, notably Europe. This is seen totally clearly by the fact that the ‘Little Ice Age’ temperatures in Greenland were higher than in the late 19th century.
It is extremely stupid to try and correlate one place’s data with ‘global trends’. The only thing this data represents is the history of Greenland which, as we know, shows an inverse correlation in general with Western Europe.
I don’t think this argument has any more merit than those of the warmers and I suggest that both sides stop their grandstanding and return to doing science properly.

Peter Miller
December 29, 2010 1:43 am

It is always good to have a rant from someone like MVB, as it serves to remind us all exactly what alarmist ‘logic’ is all about.
The fact that GISS has grossly manipulated historic temperature data is completely irrelevant, so is the fact that most of this inter-glacial period has been warmer than now. AGW cult members have been taught that because “grants are good”, then anything from Mannian maths to distorted science is also good.
It is possible a very inconvenient truth is now occurring for those trumpeting that “2010 is the warmest year ever”. The global temperature anomaly -as measured by satellites -has been decreasing over the past few months. In the last couple of days it has started to plunge:
http://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=1&sqi=2&ved=0CBoQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fdiscover.itsc.uah.edu%2Famsutemps%2F&rct=j&q=daily%20temperatures%20AMSU&ei=UAAbTZTOEMSIhQf-saS3Dg&usg=AFQjCNHwDnwlQaZ_ZNRZ6HA-8L7ugy5xIw&cad=rja

oldseadog
December 29, 2010 1:50 am

Ed Murphy,
You say that a smoke filled greenhouse is warmer than one with clear air.
Has anyone done the experiment to find out if a greenhouse with 2,000ppm CO2 is warmer than one with 400ppm, everything else being equal?
Or is that not relevant?

E.M.Smith
Editor
December 29, 2010 1:54 am

Chris says: I’m a bit flummoxed. With a La Nina now, and also very weak period of solar activity for a few years, I expected global temperatures to be much cooler. But even if you just use uncontaminated satellite data (UAH MSU) and ignore Hansen, we’ve had a pretty warm year. I know that air temperature is a bad metric, and ocean heat content would be much better measure of global temperature, but still…
What gives?

The problem is that we can’t really measure the “Average temperature” of the planet very well for several rather well understood but consistently ignored fundamental reasons.
The first, and most basic, involves some math that most folks don’t know. The math of fractals. Fractals are all around us and involved in a huge number of common things, but most folks just think they are pretty pictures like Mandelbrots. But mountains are fractile as are coastlines.
How long is the coastline of Britain?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coastline_paradox
The only correct answer is “It depends on the length ruler you use when measuring”.
Mountains are fractal as well. As are many (most all?) natural surfaces. So it ought to come as no surprise that temperatures of those surfaces have fractal properties as well. I’ve measured a 30 F or so difference between my back porch and fence on a rainy day. Where you measure determins the answer you get.
Then GISS and UEA and others spend loads of hours turning all this into homogenized data cheese food product. That does NOT improve it.
OK, the land data are sucky. So go with the sats…
Except the surface is still fractal, the IR emissions are widely variable, and now you are measuring different stuff. IMHO, the reason they are still reading high while land has gone low is heat flow
Heat is leaving the planet. Fast.
The uv level has dropped, the air thickness has shrunk, we’ve not had sats watching during this kind of thing, and it’s flummoxed THEM. They are seeing the cloud TOPS and those are warm as that’s where the heat is being DUMPED as it leaves the planet. This will take about a decade to get the oceans cold and during that time the oceans will continue to drop while the tops of the clouds keep announcing “more heat to leave the planet today, nice and warm”. The basic problem here is that HEAT is not TEMPERATURE but everyone measures temperature and pretends it’s heat. Just wrong.
So, what’s a person to do?
In my opinion there are two things you can reasonably do. Find long lived thermometers that have not changed and are still being recorded. Look at them. Now you are not changing the size of your ruler as you measure the fractal. When they are looked at, they show cooling. Slight, but present. The other thing you can do is watch the snows and rains. Clouds convect heat to their tops, then dump it to space when the water condenses (or hail and snow freeze) and it falls back to earth. As the rains fall and snow accumulates, you can count every drop has “HEAT left the planet”. If that count goes up, we’re cooling. Over the last 30 years we heard a lot about AGW induced droughts. I think that properly causality runs the other way. Something (probably high solar UV output or few clouds ala Svensmark) caused lower precipitation, that then meant less heat left, that results (eventually) in higher temperatures. Now we’ve got less solar output (less UV and thinner atmosphere, and / or more clouds) and we’re getting more precipitation. That’s heat leaving (makeing warm cloud TOPS in the process). Eventually the land will show lower temps everywhere, but for now it’s mostly just under the precipitation areas (i.e. the N.H. snows and Australian rains) and some years after that, the sats will catch up as heat transport reduces and clouds cool off.
This GEOS sat picture has a nice color indication of a warm cloud top. The green splotch over N. America:
http://chiefio.files.wordpress.com/2010/12/ir-28dec2010-na_goes20152010362jp2qbd.jpg
I’m under the rain from that cloud and it’s cold down here underneath. Rain and cloud radar from below here:
http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/12/29/storm-coming-you-say/
so you can see what it’s like from below where I can personally tell you it has been cold and wet all day. That article also includes a very cold sea surface chart / graph as seen from space. It is cold UNDER that “warm cloud top” (thats how that color is described in the legend to that picture in this article):
http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/12/28/ignore-the-day-at-your-peril/
which also covers a bit about the daily nature of heat flow off the planet and into warm cloud tops on the way to space.
Yes, this description is somewhat ‘speculative’ in that I can’t cite a reference for each bit of it. I’ve not “done the foot notes”. But all the parts are there for you to see. The GEOS sat seeing a “warm cloud top”. The cold rain below. The patterns of heat flow off planet via convection and condensation releasing heat. The basic physics of the whole thing.
So yes, it’s a bit speculative to say that the temperature reporting would do things the same way GEOS does and be fooled by cloud tops. Then again, they do measure higher in the air than “land surface” …
Hope that helps.

Rob R
December 29, 2010 1:55 am

Max Hugoson
If I remember correctly there are three primary isotopes of Oxygen being O16, O17 and O18. Of these O16 is the most common. The three isotopes behave almost identically in terms of their chemistry, almost being the important rider here. Water that incorporates O18 or O17 is heavier than water that incorporates O16. When water evaporates from any surface (land, plants, lakes, rivers etc) the molecules containing the lighter isotope tend (slightly) to preferentially end up in the resulting vapour. When water condenses from vapour it is the molecules containing the heavier isotope that tend (slightly) to preferentially end up in droplet form (rain, hail, snow).
The result is that oceans become enriched in O18 relative to precipitation.
Rain falling on coastal areas is enriched in O18 relative to rain in continental interiors.
Precipitation on an ice sheet at low elevation is enriched O18 relative nearby areas at higher elevation.
As total ice volume increases worldwide during an ice age the ocean becomes more enriched in O18 because the growing land-based ice tends to be relatively rich in O16.
As an ice sheet expands in basal area, water has to travel further to get to the central region, so with time the O18 content of precipitation (mainly snow) here is expected to decrease. As the elevation of the ice increases the O18 content of new precipitation also decreases. O18 tends to drop out in the “first squeeze” leaving the O16 to precipitate out later.
But on top of elevation, distance and time factors the O18 content of precipitation is also a function of the temperature of precipitation. The O18 tends to drop out of water vapour at a warmer temperature than the O16 or O17.
So the basic answer to your question, when stripped back to bare essentials, is that O18 is easier to precipitate than O17 or O16.
Please note that unlike most of climate science, the essential behaviour of the isotopes of oxygen is well established science. It has been thus for decades. The known behaviour of isotopes of oxyen has been a tool for physicists, chemists, geochemists, archaeologists, oceanographers, palaenotologists and others for decades. There is a substantial literature available on the geochemistry of the isotopes of oxygen. There is a vast literature available on the isotopic ratios of a varaiety of marine microfossils. These fossilised ratios, measured from ocean floor cores painstakingly centimetre by centimetre reveal the changes in the volume of both the oceans and the ice sheets in great detail. Similarly the isotopic ratios measured directly from ice-core samples reveal the temperature of precipitation, so long as the distance from the nearby oceanic evaporative source is known and so long as the altitude of precipitation is known. Naturally some estimation is required as the ice may move from its original altitude, and there may have been a wide evaporative source area, with varying surface conditions. So numerous ice cores and pits, both deep and shallow, have been undertaken to get a good handle on the important variables. Within realistic error bands the raw results are reasonably convincing. Similarly the isotopic signature of rivers, lakes, streams and groundwater has recieved considerable attention. The modern and ancient isotopic signature of oceanic water has also been investigated in detail, both surface water, intermediate water and bottom water (based on fossilized planktonic organisms and sea-floor dwelling organisms). Cyclical changes in the ratio of oxygen isotopes in seawater has been tied conclusively to cycles in the obliquity and precession of the earths spin axis and somewhat more arguably to the eccentricity of the earths orbit around the sun. This is the major line of evidence connecting long-term climate fluctuation to orbital-scale mechanics.

Neville
December 29, 2010 2:12 am

Peter Miller I just wish I could get that software to draw the graph at Roy Spencer’s site. It never seems to work for me.

marcus25
December 29, 2010 2:16 am

“I don’t know why you can’t access the image,”
If anyone ever gets the 404 error, just copy and paste the address into the address bar.
And no, I don’t know either why this works and the direct method does not

Kev-in-UK
December 29, 2010 2:25 am

I agree with the basic premise of the article – i.e. that the ‘warmest year’ title is somewhat irrelevant and also, that it is demonstrably so. Even allowing for errors in the ice cores, tree rings, NH and SH variations, etc, etc – it (palaeoclimatology) still all points to one thing – climate has and will continue to vary, by quite large amounts – lets say +/- 5deg C – and ALL without any anthgropogenic influence ! (I am assuming that folk aren’t going to believe that aliens came in the past and burnt fossil fuels! )

Alasdair Fairbairn
December 29, 2010 2:48 am

While we all appear to be arguing the toss over GISSes, HADCruts, Graphs and things, has nobody, but nobody noticed that the IPCC definition of GHG Forcing flux does NOT comply with the laws of thermodynamics? Surely a flux which crosses a boundary between two systems without a ‘Change of State’ occurring in the recipient system is just nonsense? This sort of flux wouldn’t even boil a kettle let alone warm up the planet.
This has created great confusion with me as I am quite unable to follow the logic of the IPCC thereafter.
For instance: Where do I put this IPCC Forcing Flux [IPCCFF] into the Stefan-Boltzmann equation? After all, this, I understand, is used as a basis for the calculation of the temperature of all the heavenly bodies; is it not? Putting it in as an addition to Insolation offends my intuition; so where? This could perhaps be called the ‘Stefan Anomaly’
Secondly I have grave doubts about the way the Arrhenius derivative equation has been used. Implicit in this equation is the ‘All things being equal’ assumption, which is manifestly untrue; and it further suffers from ‘Argument from the particular to the general’.
Thirdly I find that the IPCC treatment of the Bode equation does NOT concur with engineering textbooks on feedback control design. However I am no expert in that field; but merely note that when the graph is plotted for various feedback parameters, using IPCC figures, it results in a totally unstable situation where, if applied to our climate would have resulted in the planet blowing up a couple of times in past history.
If, as I suspect, the IPCC logical route is so flawed then why do we not deal with this instead of looking at the trees instead of the wood?
Would it not be preferable to define the GHG effect in terms of ‘Change of State’, rather than as a flux?
Meanwhile I remain in contempt of the IPCC stance; but would dearly like to have the opinion of others on these matters.

Jantar
December 29, 2010 3:03 am

Paul Vaughan says:
December 28, 2010 at 9:22 pm
Jantar, did you notice the word “Global” on the y-axis?
You appear to have accidentally conflated the USA with the globe.

Paul, you may be right. I seem to recall shortly after the initial Y2K error was pointed out to GISS that the global temp for 1934 was only 0.14 C lower than the USA temp. However I have been unable to find that data now, so maybe my memory is incorrect on that point.

SandyInDerby
December 29, 2010 3:09 am

Rob R says:
December 29, 2010 at 1:55 am
Thanks for the explanation.

AusieDan
December 29, 2010 3:13 am

There are two sets of problems in dealing with this information.
The first is in establishing the accuracy of this method of estimated temperatures from very old ice samples.
The second problem is in establishing how much the instrumental global indexes are contaminated by the UHI effect at the different locations from which the indexes are drawn and whether there are other systematic errors in these indexes, as some critics suggest.
I have found a great disparity in the rate of temperature change between global indices and certain widely disbursed individual Australian locations after adjusting for UHI (which I have been able to identify specifically). After adjustment for UHI, there is no trend in temperature over periods well in excess of 100 years. Yes I know, Australia only occupies a tiny part of the globe, but isn’t it strange that more and more individual locations in different countries and continents show the same pattern?
So I think that we all need to keep quite calm with clear heads and examine what happens in the next few years, before being absolutely, definitely sure that the earth is about to burn up (AGW) or turn into one giant deep freezer (sunspot minimum).
Now like everybody else reading this blog, I have a definite view on these matters. But in evaluating evidence we must strive to keep an open mind.
The temperature is either going up or down or staying much the same. We certainly do live in interesting times as the direction will very likely soon become obvious and at least half of us will be wrong.
Let’s hope when that comes we have the guts to acknowledge the truth.

December 29, 2010 3:22 am

this is interesting but just one location, why choose one ice core when there are many available now, and why call 1934 the warmest year when that was only the case in the US?

Stevo
December 29, 2010 3:55 am

To say “1934 has long been considered the warmest year of the past century” without understanding that this refers to the US only is unforgivably ignorant.

December 29, 2010 4:10 am

The global cooling that prevailed from ~1945 to 1977 ended abruptly in 1977 when the Pacific Ocean shifted from its cool mode to its warm mode in a single year and global temperatures began to rise, initiating two decades of global warming.
Professor Easterbrook
Current state of understanding is that causes of PDO and AMO are not known.
I think there may be a plausible cause to both.
According to my research the PDO driver reached minimum in 1973
1969 – 19
1970 – 17
1971 – 17
1972 – 15
1973 – 12
1974 – 14
1975 – 17
1976 – 17
1977 – 17
1978 – 19
1979 – 20
1980 – 25
1981 – 28
1982 – 30
Change took some 4 years (ref. your date of 1977) to propagate across Pacific. Similar minimum value (11) was previously recorded in 1942, and has not reoccurred since 1973. Although PDO is de-trended, there is a gradient to the driver as in y = 0.172x for 1860-2010.
For more details see:
http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/NPG.htm
http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/NAP-AMO.htm
Any comment welcome.

1DandyTroll
December 29, 2010 4:23 am

Some hippies don’t seem to realize what the higher temperatures in Greenland’s history indicates. which apparently, essentially, is that the ice didn’t melt.
However, maybe, the hippies are so mind boggled by the sheer enormity of the red bars they all went into timed manic crescendo of O. M. F. G. But it must really have been cold someplace else!

John Finn
December 29, 2010 4:27 am

JohnWho says:
December 28, 2010 at 6:52 pm

John Finn says:
December 28, 2010 at 6:21 pm
Which dataset (UAH, RSS, GISS or HadCrut?) shows that Temperatures “have declined slightly” between 1999 and 2010. I know this “decline” fits with Don Easterbrook’s hypothesis but it just isn’t true.

Assuming he meant “1998 and 2010″, all but GISS:
http://tinyurl.com/ybvwog9
The UAH trend since January 1998 is positive (~0.06 deg per decade) so he’s still wrong. It’s no longer cooling since 1998.
Believe WUWT as already addressed why GISS is higher than the others.
To the satisfaction of a few perhaps.

DocMartyn
December 29, 2010 4:45 am

Has anyone measured the Ar/N2 ratio in the ice cores?
Keelings Ar/N2 data is rather interesting and appears to act as a signal for ocean heating. The difference in the temperature dependent partition coefficients of Ar and N2 between the atmosphere and the oceans may be a better temperature proxy that oxygen ratios.

Buzz Belleville
December 29, 2010 4:49 am

Just to be sure everyone understands the graphs they’re seeing.
The first one purports to show two periods each of cooling and warming over the past century. Two things. First, it stops in 2000, so does not capture the 0.18 degree C rise since then. Second, the two “cooling” periods are actually closer to neutral (temps stayed the same in one, and went down 0.1 degree in the other). In contrast, the “warming” periods saw serious temp increases. Hence, the overall trend remains warm >> we’re warming during warming periods a lot more than we’re cooling during cooling periods.
The second graph stops in the mid-1900s, therefore omitting the near one degree rise since. It does not have a reference, and appears to be based on the now debunked Loehle reconstruction.
The third graph stops even earlier, it looks like around 1900, completely omitting the temp increase of the past century.
The fourth graph is based on a 1997 paper by Coffey (not “Coffy”) and Clow. Although the author labels the base line as present temp, C&C actually defined “present” as 1950 in their paper. So this graph again fails to capture recent warming. This is also a graph solely of ice core data, recording temps high up on the summit of the Greenland ice sheet. It is not a depiction of global temps.
The 5th graph from Alley is also cherry-picked. That article was considering solely the Greenland ice core data in order to analyze the Younger Dryas cold period, which occurred 12-13,000 years ago. Here’s a link to the abstract and the key graph: http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/pubs/alley2000/alley2000.html. Yet the graph here stops some 10,000 years ago. More important, THE MOST RECENT DATA POINT IN THE ALLEY GRAPH IS 1905!! Again, the author is ignoring the last 105 years of warming (and he’s doing so in a deceptive way by labelling the last data points as the “present”).
None of the graphs show anything like the author wants you to believe, and provide very little insight into current temps.

John Finn
December 29, 2010 4:56 am

Stevo says:
December 29, 2010 at 3:55 am
To say “1934 has long been considered the warmest year of the past century” without understanding that this refers to the US only is unforgivably ignorant.

Either “ignorant” or misleading. That apart, I think there are problems with the Easterbrook prediction of Cooling. For what it’s worth I do believe in cycles (PDO, AMO AO etc) and it’s quite possible that we have entered a “cool phase” of the PDO as Don suggests. However, if you look closely at Figure 1 it’s clear that the ‘cooling’ takes place in the first decade of the shift. See ~1880 and ~1943. There is very little cooling after, say, 1890 or 1953. If, as Don Easterbrook suggests, the shift began in 1999 we may have already had all the ‘cooling’ there is – which simply amounts to a lack of significant warming (The UAH trend since Jan 1998 is positive).
Perhaps the increase in GHGs is amplifying the warming phase while effectively negating the cooling phase. Just a thought. However, I doubt things are as simple as all that which is why we should treat these posts (even anti-AGW ones) with total scepticism.

December 29, 2010 5:01 am

E.M.Smith says:
December 29, 2010 at 1:54 am
A good wrap by “chiefio” that describes the heat flow that is currently occurring. This can be seen on Dr. Spencer’s blog where satellite temperatures are taken at different levels. The current sea level graphs are showing a sharp decline in temperature which is not showing yet in the higher atmosphere records.

Jim
December 29, 2010 5:01 am

Check out the AMSU global temp, it has fallen off a cliff.
http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/

December 29, 2010 5:07 am

Geoff Sharp says:
December 28, 2010 at 11:39 pm
The overall trend of both graphs matches nicely but don’t expect an exact match.
There is not even a ‘nice’ match.

December 29, 2010 5:11 am

John Finn says:
December 29, 2010 at 4:27 am
The UAH trend since January 1998 is positive (~0.06 deg per decade) so he’s still wrong. It’s no longer cooling since 1998.
Is this another AGW cherry picking exercise?
Leveraged on the 2010 El Nino values that will surely drop off dramatically in the next few months. Come back to us in 12 months and we will review the figure.
The sad fact is after continued growth of CO2 output the temperature record is still fixed at 1998. Why is it not climbing as the AGW models predicted?

December 29, 2010 5:13 am

Leif Svalgaard says:
December 29, 2010 at 5:07 am
There is not even a ‘nice’ match.
Perhaps not… in your universe.

Ben D
December 29, 2010 5:19 am

Steven Mosher:
I am generally a fan of your science and I think you do a great job at doing what you do for instance, however, I think your questions are mis-placed. I think overall you put too much faith in so-called climate scientists and too much faith in their methodology. I am not a person to say that CO2 does not warm up the Earth and I do believe humans do have an impact on the Earth which we should strive to minimize as much as possible. After that, I think global warming or cooling is nothing more then a long-term weather forecasting method. It should never be used to advocate policy.
But to answer a couple of your points:
1. The temperature reconstruction of greenland needs error bars.
This is very true. It would help to have this information. Although unless they are huge I don’t think it would change this century’s status as a rather cool century.
2. Folks who moan about the “existence” of a global average should moan now.
This is not a global average though. Its just Greenland as you say in the next point…But if we are figuring out climate or long-term weather averaged out over a long-term, heck global average temp. might be as good of a way as any. Guess I agree with you on that one…
3. Greenland is not the world. If you want to characterize the whole world by one spot then take it up with the people who complain that 7000 stations is not enough.
Very true. But as GISS shows, greenland being warm means that a good portion of the world map becomes red suddenly. I am not one to say that Greenland is either good or bad as a place to measure global temperature, but if you put any stock of faith in GISS (which I admit you do not….then this might be a starting point of some sort.) Greenland’s temperature versus the rest of the world might be a better comparison with our known temperature records. I think that might be the better question here regarding assumption of Greenland being the entire world.
1. What’s our best estimate of the temp over the next 100 years.
Barring any major changes in solar output etcetc, probably a warming of .7 – 1 degrees like the previous century. I put in .3 as possible for CO2 increases. Biosphere might just take care of a lot of it, I think its something to think about anyway. Regardless, this is something we could argue about, and it would be rather fruit-less as this is nothing more then “an educated guess” with some being more educated then others.
These 2 questions are political, and are not scientific whatsoever…
2. Can we do anything about it
Yes. Depends on what your political ambitions are. We could go entirely carbon free for the most part except the air we breathe without ruining society with wind-mills. Nuclear plants and electrical cars all around, combined with very limited air travel and you have it done. This is a political question though….so its opinion based.
3. should we, if we can.
I think Nuclear is a good option. For one, its just as cheap as any other power source and two we should strive to minimize our impact no matter what it might be. Electrical cars are something that we can think about after nukes are online, I don’t subscribe to peak oil, but it would be nice to have oil and petroleum around for stuff that we make out of it instead of using for fuel.

December 29, 2010 5:21 am

Thank you Don Easterbrook for this post. I really do appreciate all of the graphs.

MVB
December 29, 2010 5:21 am

On December 29, 2010 at 1:43 am, Peter Miller said: “It is always good to have a rant from someone like MVB, as it serves to remind us all exactly what alarmist ‘logic’ is all about.”
No clue what you mean by that. In my opinion, CAGW alarmists lack both logic and integrity. But my critiques were about the posted article (“2010 – where does it fit in the warmest year list? 12/28/2010 by Don J. Easterbrook), IN AND OF ITSELF. I do not disagree with the conclusion (that 2010 the warmest (even if it were so, which is unlikely) is much ado about nothing, because we have evidence that it has been similarly warm or significantly warmer during most of the last 10,000 yrs (not to mention how much warmer it was at climatic optimums in previous interglacials; also all without AGW), but I do not see a way to scientifically arrive at the conclusion from what is presented in the article above. The Fig 1 Temp graph is not calibrated to the proxy graphs for even a basic visual comparison to be made. For starters, the last 10 decades are not even on ANY of the graphs Dr. Easterbrook chose to debunk the fuss about 2010 warmth. I take issue with comparing differently smoothened datasets, comparing measured Temps and proxies, and comparing local estimates based on proxies with the estimates of ‘global average temperature’ (and the enormous uncertainties that comes with). Not putting these sorts of issues in context, or -as is the case in the article- not even mentioning these issues, I find deceptive. Two periods supposedly on a graph being compared to each other when one of the discussed periods isn’t actually on the graph is hitting a low. Just admit it.
But – for the conclusion itself- in Fig. 5: IF recent measurements were incorporated I would expect the last decade to be akin to the peak of the MWP, but – for that location where GISP2 data were collected – who knows? GISP2 was drilled at 72 36′ N, 38 30′ W, and when you look at the temperature anomaly maps….: for that particular spot both NASA GISS and NASA MODIS pretty much say the same: a value close to or slightly cooler than to the 1951-1980 mean. In other words: even if the Fig. 5 graph extended all the way to today, it’s clear that 2010 could not beat warm periods such as Roman or Minoan Warm Periods (let alone the likely peak years within those periods).
If months or even a year jump out as warmer (or cooler) in sattelite-era measurement records, then it would be helpful to show THOSE corresponding graphs, and NOT graphs on which such recent extremes are neither shown, nor comparable to the obviously smoothened proxy data, which even if similar extremes happened in included years, they wouldn’t show up.
And, as far as Peter Miller’s comment that “GISS has grossly manipulated historic temperature data is completely irrelevant”, I disagree with as well. One can make the point using paleoclimatology, but if science wasn’t being manipulated for political agenda’s, one may not even need to look so far back to illustrate the record-breaking nonsense, that is being used to “proof” AGW dogma.
“the fact that most of this inter-glacial period has been warmer than now” is not irrelevant either. It’s very relevant to the science and it does debunk the “warmest ever” nonsense well. But that “AGW cult members have been taught that because “grants are good”, then anything from Mannian maths to distorted science is also good.”, THAT is an opinion that has absolutely nothing to do with the actual science (even though it may be true; it with be more fitting in a sociology thread perhaps.). Trumpeting some global average temperature decrease over the past few months (or days – gimme a break) is as ridiculous as trumpeting the first half of 2010 (or 2010 itself – who cares) as being oh-so-unusually warm.
In about 5 years we’ll already have a much better idea how significant the effect of the most recent ocean current changes and cosmic ray influx changes are on global climates. I doubt keeping all cars running 24/7 would make a difference to keep the wrath of global cooling at bay.

December 29, 2010 5:22 am

John Finn says:
December 29, 2010 at 4:56 am
For what it’s worth I do believe in cycles (PDO, AMO AO etc) and it’s quite possible that we have entered a “cool phase” of the PDO as Don suggests. However, if you look closely at Figure 1 it’s clear that the ‘cooling’ takes place in the first decade of the shift. See ~1880 and ~1943. There is very little cooling after, say, 1890 or 1953. If, as Don Easterbrook suggests, the shift began in 1999 we may have already had all the ‘cooling’ there is
A strange comment….looking at the shift in the PDO at 1945 (which was during high solar activity) we can see a gradual decline in temperatures that deepened towards the late 70’s. Later in the PDO cycle the solar output dropped dramatically and the AMO also went negative to provide the perfect storm which brought the science world to a “next ice age” situation. The current situation is very close to the same scenario but this time the solar output will be greatly sustained. I don’t think you have a grasp on what controls climate.

December 29, 2010 5:25 am

Steven Mosher says:
December 28, 2010 at 10:46 pm
http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/pubs/alley2000/alley2000.gif
hmm.

If your “hmm” means that even NOAA shows that it was much warmer than it is now many times in the past 10,000 years, then “hmm” indeed!

BillD
December 29, 2010 5:28 am

Where is peer review when you need it? This post conflates the global climate record with regional records for the US and Greenland. Then it fails to point out that “present” only goes up to 1905. Over the last 21 years, I have been the editor or reviewer for over 600 manuscripts submited for publication in peer-reviewed scientific journals (I need to keep a record for my employer). I have to say that I have never seen a submitted manuscript with such blatant errors as in this post. Even submitting a manuscript such as this would be damaging to one’s career and would certainly cause the loss of all credibility with the journal’s editor and the reviewers if any (In most cases the editor peruses a manuscript to check it’s suitability for the journal and to decide on expert reviewers. These kinds of errors and misleading comparisons would almost certainly lead to rejection by the editor, without even sending the ms. out to reviewers).
[This is a BLOG rather than a science journal. Though some entries may contain errors at least here they are not hidden. … bl57~mod]

December 29, 2010 5:35 am

John Finn says:
December 29, 2010 at 4:27 am

JohnWho says:
December 28, 2010 at 6:52 pm
John Finn says:
December 28, 2010 at 6:21 pm
Which dataset (UAH, RSS, GISS or HadCrut?) shows that Temperatures “have declined slightly” between 1999 and 2010. I know this “decline” fits with Don Easterbrook’s hypothesis but it just isn’t true.

Assuming he meant “1998 and 2010″, all but GISS:
http://tinyurl.com/ybvwog9
The UAH trend since January 1998 is positive (~0.06 deg per decade) so he’s still wrong. It’s no longer cooling since 1998.
Wow, now who is “cherry picking”?
Since the highest temps of 1998 we have not exceed them, so by any normal reconning we’ve slightly cooled (Except for GISS, as noted).
Believe WUWT as already addressed why GISS is higher than the others.
To the satisfaction of a few perhaps.
I’d say to the satisfaction of many. I’m just wondering why you don’t question GISS’s figures when they are not in line with the others?
If you want to continue this line of discussion, you are welcome to meet me here:
http://www.globalwarmingskeptics.info/forums/index.php

December 29, 2010 5:37 am

Dang.
I can’t edit my previous post to correct the “bold” tags.
🙁
[Reply: It was a WordPress glitch. I’ve fixed it. ~dbs, mod.]

December 29, 2010 5:37 am

Old Sea Dog, 12/29/10 @ 1:50 AM
I suspect there are a lot of variables in solar brightness, I’m not aware of this type of study.

Dave Springer
December 29, 2010 6:25 am

@Easterbrook
Your graph labels “without CO2 change” and “without CO2 increase” are wrong.
CO2 was on a steady rise during those time periods and because of the logarithmic nature of CO2’s LWIR absorption curve the early period increases, while being smaller in absolute ppm measure, have the same effect as the later period increases of larger absolute magnitude.
That’s an amateurish error, doctor, and reveals a large gap in your knowledge of this subject area.

Bill Illis
December 29, 2010 6:35 am

This is a great post by Dr. Easterbrook.
The pro-AGW’ers hate it when real data is presented. It brings out an emotional reaction in them (see MVB above). They would prefer it if no actual data is presented and that we just continue on perpetuating the myth that today’s temperatures are the warmest ever.
Well, they are not.
No matter how angry that makes one. But that is an emotional reaction versus a factual data-based reaction.
The d018 isotopes are the best temperature proxy we have. It has been proven in hundreds of examples to reasonably reflect the temperature of the time. And this goes back hundred of millions of years. It might not be perfect, but it is the best proxy we have got.
It needs to be properly calibrated to the location however. The isotope change per 1C temperature change varies with the latitude, altitude, and proximity to the ocean. The fact that they also vary with ice volume means it does accurately reflect the general temperature of the time. More ice, the colder Earth has been. Rather straightforward in my opinion versus a reason to question it.
The Greenland GISP2 isotopes, however, have not been calibrated properly to date (including by Richard Alley) to the latitude and altitude they were laid down. Hence, Dr. Easterbrook using just the isotope numbers for the most part versus the temperature implied by them.

BillD
December 29, 2010 7:03 am

[This is a BLOG rather than a science journal. Though some entries may contain errors at least here they are not hidden. … bl57~mod]
Of course I know that this blog is not a science journal. However, the inference is that focusing on a few graphs from journal articles that are presented in a misleading and confusing way somehow trumps the work of hundreds of journal articles.
Note that RB Alley, whose data are cited in this post is a noted and senior “warming” professor at Penn State. No doubt he had something to do with bringing that fast rising star, Michael Mann, to his department. If I were “editor” for this posting by Easterbrook, I would have sent it to Alley to ask for his comments on the interpretation of his data. Recently Alley has testified before the US Congress on the threat of rapid warming caused by human activities. Somehow, I expect that he would be very surprised that his data could be interpreted to show that Greenland has been warmer than present over most of the last 10,000 years. People here should be more skeptical about how Easterbrook has replotted Alley’s data. Since Easterbrook is a professor of geology, he should try to publish these new intrepretations in a scientific journal. If accepted, they would certainly attract a lot of scientific interest and acclaim.

Dave Springer
December 29, 2010 7:11 am

Ben D says:
December 29, 2010 at 5:19 am
I like your reply. I’m pretty much in agreement with it. Near as I can tell there is a steady 0.5C rise in temperature, on average around the world, during the industrial era on top of which rides variations of +- 1.0C. The 0.5C rise correlates well with a calculated rise of 1.1C per CO2 doubling. That is the low end of the IPCC estimate for climate sensitivity to CO2 doubling. The flaw in CAGW ointment isn’t the warming caused by CO2 alone which appears to be well supported in the observations (measured temperatures and CO2 content of the atmosphere) and is consistent with what the basic physics predicts should be observed. The flaw in the CAGW is the so-called “amplification” i.e. a 1 degree rise from CO2 causing an additional 2 degree rise from increased water vapor. That amplification is entirely fictional and not at all supported by observations. This is a fatal flaw for CAGW as it removes the “C” from CAGW turning catastrophic warming essentially into beneficial warming so long as the warming is predominantly at higher latitudes during the nights and winters which in effect merely lengthens the growing seasons where such lengthening is a great boon to the biosphere in general and agriculture in particular.
I’m no AGW skeptic I’m a CAGW skeptic. My position is best described as BAGW – Beneficial Anthropogenic Global Warming. I expect the benefits to continue until there’s no longer enough fossil fuel left to keep it going and therein lies the heart of the problem – what do we do when the fossil fuel reserves are used up? There’s enough to keep going for a century or maybe two at most then the proverbial shit is going to hit the fan. We need a less expensive, abundant, sustainable source of energy in place. The sun is ultimately that source. We need a means to harvest it and I have every confidence that technologic progress will meet that challenge in a timely manner without draconian conservation measures, without massive changes in infrastructure away from liquid hydrocarbon transportation fuels, and in general without great inconvenience or disruption in the way we live. The future is bright and while the landscape might be further defaced by more apartment buildings it won’t be defaced by wind turbines which IMO are a boondoggle only exceeded by diversion of corn meal from food products into ethanol fuel production.

Marlow Metcalf
December 29, 2010 7:20 am

It would be nice if the scientists would remember that in their articles posted to WUWT they are not just writing to their fellow scientists but are helping us layman get up to speed. I am griping about the charts. They are easy to understand unless you don’t understand the the measurements being depicted. It is the little details. For example -31.50c is what, the average temperature of the planet? Triangle O18 o/oo means? The assumption of prior knowledge of the reader often results in a failure to communicate. Usually it would only take a sentence to explain the less than obvious.
[Reply: 0/00 is per mille, or a tenth of a percent; one part in a thousand. O18 is an oxygen isotope. Triangle (∆) means change, and is usually called delta, such as ∆T = change in temperature. –31.5°C refers to the temperature at a location such as Vostok Antarctica, or Greenland. It is not the average planetary temperature, but the changes show whether the planet was in a warming or cooling trend at the time, such as the MWP or LIA. ~dbs, mod.]

Dave Springer
December 29, 2010 7:31 am

The new guest author program, which include myself as one of those new guest authors, appears to have fostered a greater need for internal peer review before the articles are published. Anthony and Willis and guest authors like Spencer and Lindzen didn’t seem to need much in the way of peer review but with this new influx of guest authors the comments are now stuffed with repetitious exposure of errors in the articles.
A call for volunteers to do basic fact checking of article drafts prior to publication might be in order. A great example of what wouldn’t make it into print is the erroneous labels attached to figure 1 claiming no increases in CO2 from 1880-1940. CO2 did indeed increase during those periods according to the best available observations and the logarithmic LWIR absorption curve of CO2 (which is basic physics first demonstrated experimentally 150 years ago) makes those early industrial period increases every bit as effective as the increases from 1940-2010.

Tom in frozen Florida
December 29, 2010 7:32 am

When looking at temperature graphs covering thousands of years you must remember the changes in Earth obliquity and eccentricity and the resultant surface insolation differences. My understanding is that currently both obliquity and eccentricity are declining which will take us back into a long glacial period. In that light, shouldn’t we be encouraging anything we may be able to do that will help keep the the planet warmer?

Dave Springer
December 29, 2010 7:42 am

Geoff Sharp says:
December 29, 2010 at 5:11 am
“The sad fact is after continued growth of CO2 output the temperature record is still fixed at 1998. Why is it not climbing as the AGW models predicted?”
Yeah, it’s a travesty alright. The problem is that the CO2 driven surface warming is only ~1.0C per CO2 doubling and it’s lost in the noise of much larger non-anthropogenic variations. It’s no travesty at all if the CAGW boffins would simply admit that water-vapor amplification of CO2-driven warming is a narrative fiction that does not exist in the real world.

Richard Sharpe
December 29, 2010 7:48 am

Looks like someone has been very bold!

Bill Illis
December 29, 2010 8:11 am

Here are two charts calibrating the GISP2 data in the proper manner.
In central Greenland, the formula is 0.7‰ per 1C (don’t ask me why Richard Alley used 0.35‰).
So, here are the temperature anomalies compared to today. First, where the X-axis (time) is in text so you can see all the datapoints better. This is from 1987 AD to 110,000 BC.
http://img827.imageshack.us/img827/4488/gisp2temperature.png
And then, with the X-axis on the proper timescale.
http://img802.imageshack.us/img802/7913/gisp2temperaturexaxispr.png

BillD
December 29, 2010 8:25 am

I took a look at the RB Alley paper that is the basis of important conclusions of this posting. The article is about rapid changes in climate in Greenland during the Dryas warming, that occured over 10,000 years ago. Evidently, Easterbrook some how plotted data from this study and spliced on what he considers comparable data for recent times.
In order for anyone to assess the appropriateness of his analysis, he would need to provide much more information on his methods. Since his conclusions are seemingly completely unrelated to those of the author of the study, it is really important that Easterbrook provide enough of his methods so that they could be repeated. The fact this his reasults disagree with all of the published record makes this more important. In a scientific analysis it is also important to cite contrary data and to explain why the current analysis is more valid.
The paper being cited is from 2000. Surely, if this paper by a prominant scientist with a “pro warming” record is contrary to other more recent studies, climate scientists would have resolved the issue by now. The author’s main conclusions focus on the potential for “rapid climate change” and have no direct comparisons with recent climate.
In my view, this posting by Easterbrook completely lacks credibility and transparency. The main characteristic of a skeptical scientist is that he or she considers the data carefully, whether the conclusions agree or disagree with his or her world view. As a scientist, I am just as likely to call for the rejection of a paper that generally supports my own view as I am to call for the rejection of a paper contrary to my view of the evidence. The credibility of the support of conclusions by the presented data is the main criterion for assessing a scientific analysis.

John Finn
December 29, 2010 9:07 am

Geoff Sharp says:
December 29, 2010 at 5:22 am

John Finn says:
December 29, 2010 at 4:56 am
For what it’s worth I do believe in cycles (PDO, AMO AO etc) and it’s quite possible that we have entered a “cool phase” of the PDO as Don suggests. However, if you look closely at Figure 1 it’s clear that the ‘cooling’ takes place in the first decade of the shift. See ~1880 and ~1943. There is very little cooling after, say, 1890 or 1953. If, as Don Easterbrook suggests, the shift began in 1999 we may have already had all the ‘cooling’ there is


A strange comment….looking at the shift in the PDO at 1945 (which was during high solar activity) we can see a gradual decline in temperatures that deepened towards the late 70′s.
Do you have any evidence that the decline in temperatures “deepened towards the late 1970s”? I’m sorry if the “cooling 1970s” fits with your theory but the fact remains that there was very little cooling after the mid-1950s. The 1970s were marginally – though not significantly – warmer than the 1960s. The 1955-80 trend is flat, i.e. neither warming nor cooling.

MVB
December 29, 2010 9:12 am

Hey Bill Illis (of ludicrous claim “The pro-AGW’ers hate it when real data is presented. It brings out an emotional reaction in them (see MVB above). They would prefer it if no actual data is presented and that we just continue on perpetuating the myth that today’s temperatures are the warmest ever.”), I suggest you actually read my comments. I’ve mode not one pro-AGW statement. I don’t even comment on AGW blogs, as they appear not interested in facts, precision, nuance, appropriate graphs, or ever admitting any mistake, no matter what is discovered or going on outside. So why throwing such nonsense at me?
To educate folks I often recommend these two documents (one by Easterbrook, one by Svensmark):
http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/reprint/multidecadal_tendencies.pdf
http://www.scribd.com/doc/338170/svensmark-2007cosmoclimatology
As well as WUWT’s science postings. But the one I’m critiquing (above) just wouldn’t hold up to basic ‘peer-review’ (and I do not mean review by club members by that) and if the low standard continues, I simply won’t feel good about recommending WUWT to warmistas anymore.
Currently enjoying the view of a RAGING snow storm. 😉

jakers
December 29, 2010 9:12 am

People here really lap up anything they agree with, totally uncritically lap it up.

Bill Illis
December 29, 2010 9:35 am

I guess some people above do not know that Richard Alley published his numbers and Dr. Easterbrook is just using them. (Yes, that means an apology is in order).
ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/paleo/icecore/greenland/summit/gisp2/isotopes/gisp2_temp_accum_alley2000.txt
Now, as I said above, Richard Alley in his (peer-reviewed) publication used an improper formula in converting the do18 isotope data to temperature. As BillD noted above, that was done so that everyone would properly scared by the scary Younger Dryas event (even though it was only one-half to one-quarter as big as Alley said it was and it was just one of about 30 such events in the Greenland ice cores – ie a normal periodic decline in temperatures on top of the 3 km high Greenland glacier).
I encourage anyone to use the actual GISP2 isotope data and make their own charts.
ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/paleo/icecore/greenland/summit/gisp2/isotopes/gispd18o.txt

Dave H
December 29, 2010 9:36 am
John Finn
December 29, 2010 9:37 am

JohnWho says:

John Finn says:
The UAH trend since January 1998 is positive (~0.06 deg per decade) so he’s still wrong. It’s no longer cooling since 1998.


Wow, now who is “cherry picking”?
Err – you are. Every year since 2001 has been warmer than every other year in whatever record you choose – apart from the hugely anomalous 1998. Even using 1998 as the start peiod and using the correct method (Least Squares fit) to calculate the trend we get a positive slope. Don Easterbrook for some reason specified the 1999-2010 period in his post. You, somewhat charitably, decided to overlook this and decided to interpret his statement in the best light possible. However you inerpret it, the fact is there is no cooling. The last 10 years have been ~0.2 deg warmer than the previous 10 years. Even if you (incorrectly) decide to use ranking as your criteria, Roy Spencer has said there is not a statistically significant difference between 1998 and 2010. In other words they are, to all intents and purposes, equal.

Dave Springer
December 29, 2010 9:41 am

jakers says:
December 29, 2010 at 9:12 am
“People here really lap up anything they agree with, totally uncritically lap it up.”
In some cases it appears that agreement with the conclusion automatically means uncritical agreement with any argument leading to it. That shouldn’t be surprising. I dare say it’s a more prevalent thing in the climate disruption camp.

BillyBob
December 29, 2010 9:46 am

If you draw a line from Minoan peak to Roman peak to MWP peak to now …. we are screwed. The interglacial is coming to an end.

December 29, 2010 9:46 am

BillD says:
December 29, 2010 at 8:25 am (Edit)
I took a look at the RB Alley paper that is the basis of important conclusions of this posting. The article is about rapid changes in climate in Greenland during the Dryas warming, that occured over 10,000 years ago. Evidently, Easterbrook some how plotted data from this study and spliced on what he considers comparable data for recent times.
########
made all the more mysterious when you actually look at greenland temperatures over the last 100 years.

December 29, 2010 9:54 am

#
#
JohnWho says:
December 29, 2010 at 5:25 am (Edit)
Steven Mosher says:
December 28, 2010 at 10:46 pm
http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/pubs/alley2000/alley2000.gif
hmm.
If your “hmm” means that even NOAA shows that it was much warmer than it is now many times in the past 10,000 years, then “hmm” indeed!
#######
no my hmm had to do with the easterbrook chartmanship, and the fact that the record stops 100 years ago. and the cold temps.. -31C.. and looking at actual temps in greenland.. and wondering what alley has done and what easterbrook has done.
Fact is, its been warmer in the past. That’s not the question.

December 29, 2010 9:59 am

I wonder if all the climateheads could agree to an experiment. An idea about building three or more identical greenhouses, side by side, but far enough apart not to affect each other in any way. Humidity the same with thermometers calibrated and locations the same. One greenhouse has low ppm CO2, the next has high ppm CO2 and a third with smoke. More could be made for other gasses, such as methane. Wouldn’t the data solve the debate? Or is getting together not possible?

Dave Springer
December 29, 2010 10:12 am

Tom in frozen Florida says:
December 29, 2010 at 7:32 am
“When looking at temperature graphs covering thousands of years you must remember the changes in Earth obliquity and eccentricity and the resultant surface insolation differences. My understanding is that currently both obliquity and eccentricity are declining which will take us back into a long glacial period. In that light, shouldn’t we be encouraging anything we may be able to do that will help keep the the planet warmer?”
No kidding. We’re standing on the edge of a cliff looking at a sign that says “Holocene Interglacial Ends Here” and people are worried about backing away from the edge. Incredible.
Just to point out how close to the cliff we are the axial tilt change that begins and ends interglacial periods doesn’t change total solar insolation to the planet at all, per se. The only thing it does is increases the difference between average winter/summer temperatures as the tilt angle increases and decreases the difference when the angle is decreasing. Cooler summers with milder winters when angle is smaller and hotter summers plus colder winters when angle is larger. And we’re only talking a small change from 24 degrees tilt to 21 degrees and back again.
That small change in the seasons is enough for more snow to accumulate on northern hemisphere land masses when summers are cool and winters are mild. That ends up extending the range of year-round snow cover which in turn lowers the amount of sunlight absorbed by the surface helping the snow persist through the cooler summer season. This becomes a vicious cycle that doesn’t end until there’s a mile of ice covering every land mass north of Kentucky.
With the current arrangement of the continents this favors snow accumulation in the northern hemisphere

Doug in Seattle
December 29, 2010 10:19 am

Dave H says:
December 29, 2010 at 9:36 am
Easterbrook continues to hide the incline then?
http://hot-topic.co.nz/cooling-gate-the-100-years-of-warming-easterbrook-wants-you-to-ignore/
Shameless.

Your link is to a graph that uses “Mike’s Nature Trick” of grafting the modern instrumental temperature to the Greenland oxygen isotope proxy.
While this “trick” might be acceptable in climate alarmist circles, it is typically considered fraud in most science, economic and other fields.
Shamelss? Yes, but its not Dr. Easterbrook who is guilty – its you and the site that you link.

Baa Humbug
December 29, 2010 10:27 am

I think MVP especially and some others have made some very good points that need to be addressed and addressed by the author.
I assume the author reads at least some of these comments and will/is in the process of answering them in due course.

richcar 1225
December 29, 2010 10:31 am

I think everybody can agree that temps the last ten years globally have been flat. However, the cooling is just beginning. Check out UAH ch 4 (surface) which has just fallen off a cliff. It is now .8 degrees F below the same day last year.
http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/execute.csh?amsutemps

Peter
December 29, 2010 10:45 am

The Greenland ice sheet data points used in Figures 3, 4 and 5 both end in roughly 1900. (95 years before the year 2000) Therefore it doesn’t reflect any of the warming in the past 100 years. How does that data support the author’s statement that “most of the past 10,000 have been warmer than the present”?

Ben D.
December 29, 2010 10:51 am

There seem to be a lot of issues in these graphs that people are taking seriously. The CO2 increase versus decrease is possibly something that should be addressed, as should the dates in the proxies. but those are more or less labeling issues which do not detract from the message of the article. It might be fair to remember that in peer review, people are allowed to change their articles based on fair criticism.
And this is not really a peer-review article, its simply put, an article. I think there needs to be more labeling and corrections put into it.
The only real issue I see is the question of splicing should be cleared up. As someone who has seen first-hand how under-handed data splicing can be used to manipulate people, this is a dangerous thing to use in the first place. It needs to be labeled well so that we all know where its done.

richcar 1225
December 29, 2010 11:29 am

From the Little Ice Age Thermometer : Iceland:
http://climatereason.com/LittleIceAgeThermometers/Stykkisholmur_Iceland.html
This appears to be the closest long term record to greenland. It shows the 1930’s as warmer than 1998.

vigilantfish
December 29, 2010 11:39 am

@ JohnWho December 29, 2010 at 5:37 am
Dang.
I can’t edit my previous post to correct the “bold” tags.
🙁
John Who
——————–
Please do something, John! The entire thread after that post has been affected by your mistake! (It makes for weird reading). Or – Mods, WUWT?
[It wasn’t John’s mistake, it was a WordPress error that I’m familiar with. Fixed now. ~dbs]

December 29, 2010 11:42 am

I like this post!
I like Ed Murphy’s idea (he is the actor??!)
To summarise what I just said on another post:
Just to be clear on this:
If someone claims that global warming is caused by an increase in carbon dioxide it is up to that person to provide me with the evidence. In this respect I would need to see clear results in the relevant concentration range and it must show how much cooling and how much warming is caused by the CO2. This would have to include the radiative cooling caused by CO2 and the cooling by CO2 caused by taking part in the process of photo synthesis.
Just because someone or some entity makes a claim it is not up to me to”prove” that it is not so. A good lesson from the bible it is that you should never follow the crowd if you are not sure they are doing the right thing(s).
So if someone makes the claim (to me) that carbon dioxide is the cause of global warming, it is up to that person to provide me with that evidence. (Al Gore! Why does no one ask him?)
For that, I would expect to be shown me exact test results and the method and instruments used to get those results.
People I corresponded with like Weart and Alley, all claim that those results
do actually exist. Well, I could not find them.
IPPC and them used a system whereby the increase of CO2 and other GHG’s were measured from 1750 to 2005 and then a value of forcing was attributed to each of them according to the warming observed. This would make sense if we knew for sure that GHG’s are the cause of modern warming.
But, surely, that is looking at a problem from the wrong end? That is assuming you know what is causing warming and then working your way back. It is the worst mistake any scientist can make.
To be completely truthful, I did make a similar mistake myself in the past. It happens when you get carried away too much with what you think is right or what you think ought to be.
So, I think I know what went wrong and why the CO2 being branded as bad…
I now think the opposite of what I thought when I started my investigations….
http://www.letterdash.com/HenryP/more-carbon-dioxide-is-ok-ok

pwl
December 29, 2010 11:47 am

“ABSTRACT:
Greenland ice-core records provide an exceptionally clear picture of
many aspects of abrupt climate changes, and particularly of those
associated with the Younger Dryas event, as reviewed here.
Well-preserved annual layers can be counted confidently, with only 1%
errors for the age of the end of the Younger Dryas 11,500 years before
present.”
ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/paleo/icecore/greenland/summit/gisp2/isotopes/gisp2_temp_accum_alley2000.txt
So the alleged error bars are within 1% for the GISP2 data set.
NOAA paper inadvertently confirms the findings of Dr. Don J. Easterbrook (http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/12/28/2010%E2%80%94where-does-it-fit-in-the-warmest-year-list) by showing that 9,100 of the the past 10,500 years were warmer than any of the last 100 years!!! Of course the NOAA paper fails to mention that fact… It also shows MWP and the Little Ice Age… so just why are people freaking out over a little welcomed warmth when even warmer seems to be the planetary norm over the last 10,500 years?
It would be good for someone to do a detailed comparison with other Ice Core Data Sets from around the globe. Let’s see ALL the Ice Core Data in ONE graph (or set of graphs) please. Dr. Easterbrook, are you up for that? Thanks.

pwl
December 29, 2010 11:48 am

The comment http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/12/28/2010%e2%80%94where-does-it-fit-in-the-warmest-year-list/#comment-561508 forgot to turn bold highlighting off. Please fix if possible.

pwl
December 29, 2010 11:54 am

The NOAA paper abstract goes on about the error confidence and global climate synchronized with the Greenland Ice-Core data within 30 years. Interesting for it’s asserting that this data set has global relevance.
“ABSTRACT: Greenland ice-core records provide an exceptionally clear picture of many aspects of abrupt climate changes, and particularly of those associated with the Younger Dryas event, as reviewed here. Well-preserved annual layers can be counted confidently, with only 1% errors for the age of the end of the Younger Dryas 11,500 years before present. Ice-flow corrections allow reconstruction of snow accumulation rates over tens of thousands of years with little additional uncertainty. Glaciochemical and particulate data record atmospheric-loading changes with little uncertainty introduced by changes in snow accumulation. Confident paleothermometry is provided by site-specific calibrations using ice-isotopic ratios, borehole temperatures, and gas-isotopic ratios. Near-simultaneous changes in ice-core paleoclimatic indicators of local, regional, and more-widespread climate conditions demonstrate that much of the Earth experienced abrupt climate changes synchronous with Greenland within thirty years or less. Post-Younger Dryas changes have not duplicated the size, extent and rapidity of these paleoclimatic changes. ”
ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/paleo/icecore/greenland/summit/gisp2/isotopes/gisp2_temp_accum_alley2000.txt

pwl
December 29, 2010 12:04 pm

By the way, thank you Dr. Don J. Easterbrook for your excellent analysis. Keep up the great work. As mentioned earlier I’d love to see additional Ice Core Data Sets graphed and analyzed as you’ve done with the Greenland Ice Core Data Set.

richcar 1225
December 29, 2010 12:09 pm

This site has temperature histories for many Greenland sites:
http://www.rimfrost.no/
All the long term series make the 1930’s warmer than today.

pwl
December 29, 2010 12:14 pm

Dr. Don J. Easterbrook speaking on the Greenland Ice-Core data set.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXUTYPZd_84

pwl
December 29, 2010 12:16 pm

Dr. Don J. Easterbrook speaking on the Greenland Ice-Core data set.

harrywr2
December 29, 2010 12:35 pm

Ed Murphy says:
December 29, 2010 at 9:59 am
“I wonder if all the climateheads could agree to an experiment. An idea about building three or more identical greenhouses, side by side, but far enough apart not to affect each other in any way.”
You wouldn’t be able to measure the difference. ‘Green Houses’ have almost nothing in common with ‘Greenhouse Gas Theory’. The roof of a greenhouse stops convection and the amount of heat trapped by the roof would far exceed any heat trapped by any additional CO2. Of course if you want to grow larger tomato’s then pumping CO2 into a greenhouse is a good idea. 🙂

Dave H
December 29, 2010 12:37 pm

@Doug in Seattle
Make your mind up.
Either you cannot meaningfully compare the instrumental record and the proxy record, in which case Easterbrook is wrong to say anything at all about temperatures in 2010 relative to reconstructions.
Or you *can* compare them, in which case Easterbrook is wrong to completely ignore the modern temperature record while claiming 2010 is cooler than the vast majority of the last 10k years. How you or anyone else thinks it is valid to not look at data past 1905 when making that claim is beyond me.
Either way, the article is misleading hogwash, irrespective of all the other issues raised in this thread, and your empty attempt at misdirection rather than an honest engagement with genuine criticism is duly noted.

December 29, 2010 12:42 pm

Quick!
Someone archive the GISP2 Temperature data, before Dr. James “Thumbs On The Temperature Scale” Hansen ‘homogenizes’ the data and 2010 becomes the warmest year ever.

jakers
December 29, 2010 12:49 pm

richcar 1225 says:
December 29, 2010 at 10:31 am
I think everybody can agree that temps the last ten years globally have been flat. However, the cooling is just beginning. Check out UAH ch 4 (surface) which has just fallen off a cliff. It is now .8 degrees F below the same day last year.
http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/execute.csh?amsutemps
Yeow! We’re down to the level of 1998, and everyone knows how cold that was! The Ice Age is coming…

Dave Wendt
December 29, 2010 12:58 pm

Steven Mosher says:
December 28, 2010 at 9:21 pm
The operative question is not “has it been this warm before” the operative questions are.
1. What’s our best estimate of the temp over the next 100 years.
2. Can we do anything about it
3. should we, if we can.
1. What’s our best estimate of the temp over the next 100 years.
The best we have is none too good. There are at least a half a dozen hypotheses currently in play, which are at least arguable, regarding what is driving global climate and, by extension, global temperatures. Unless you’re an epistemological mattress back, none of them can be classified at a level higher than suggestive.
2. Can we do anything about it
Since we don’t really have a grip on what’s happening, probably not. But even if we stipulate to the AGW paradigm as “settled science” the almost complete failure of several decades of present attempts and the unimaginative nature of proposals for future action suggest that, even if the alarmists are mostly successful in implementing their plans, it will require a couple of order of magnitude improvement in our ability to measure global average temperature to detect any improvements that might occur.
3. should we, if we can.
Even rudimentary economic analysis of cost/benefit ratios and opportunity costs suggests that virtually everything currently being touted as potential solutions are horrendously bad usages of the planet’s finite wealth and resources. There are many actions humanity could be taking to protect and expand its well being and that of the planet as a whole. Trying to limit the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere in the vague hope that it will produce a state of global climate that might possibly be more benevolent is probably the least efficient and least likely to succeed use of our efforts and resources that could be imagined. Given that the people driving the climate agenda are the direct philosophical descendants of those who have been inflicting almost immeasurable misery, death, and repression on their fellow man for well over a century, in an effort to enforce their top down directed utopian delusions on the world, it is hardly surprising that this is the case.
Should we then do nothing? If the only alternative is to accept the proscriptions of the IPCC and its now vast bureaucratic machine, doing nothing would probably be the best choice. But human history has provided clear and almost incontrovertible evidence of a wiser path. Human well being has been on a real hockey stick like path of improvement over recent times. The two elements most responsible for that slope are cheap, reliable, and abundant energy and increasing individual freedom. Delivering as much of these two things to as many of the people of the world as possible should be our primary focus. Bringing most of the world to middle class levels of discretionary income would put short term stress on the Earth’s resources, but over the long term would alleviate environmental issues, which are mainly a middle class concern, population growth, which is driven by the portion of the human community living in the worst poverty, and increase our adaptability to whatever disasters do befall us in our uncertain future, because freer, wealthier societies have always shown themselves to almost infinitely more responsive and adaptable than poorer, more totalitarian, cultures.

December 29, 2010 1:04 pm

BillD says:
“…this posting by Easterbrook completely lacks credibility and transparency. The main characteristic of a skeptical scientist is that he or she considers the data carefully, whether the conclusions agree or disagree with his or her world view.”
That last is surely projection. It is the alarmist crowd’s mind that is already made up. Skeptics still have questions. And there is voluminous evidence showing that the climate peer review process is thoroughly corrupt. See:
http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2008/8/11/caspar-and-the-jesus-paper.html
Prof Easterbrook has written an article of general interest. It is not intended as a peer reviewed, refereed article, in which every nit is picked. It has helped educate readers about natural climate cycles, myself included.
There is plenty of peer reviewed, physical evidence showing that the planet has naturally warmed and cooled to a much greater extent than currently; the null hypothesis remains un-falsified:
click1 [deueterium isotope records, from 740K ybp]
click2 [Vostok, 420K ybp]
click3 [another Vostok view]
click4 [Vostok, 140K ybp. Warm is good. Cold is bad]
click5 [it has been much warmer than now many times during the Holocene]
click6 [We are currently in a warm interglacial]
click7 [Younger Dryas, per Alley]
click8 [the climate has rarely beeen as beneficial as it is now]
click9 [Greenland, based on Alley’s data]
click10 [Holocene, major warming/cooling periods]
Global harm as a result of rising CO2 has never been observed. The more we look at the past temperature record, the less influence CO2 has. The only definitive result of the recent rise in CO2 is beneficial: increased agricultural productivity.

richcar 1225
December 29, 2010 1:10 pm

The GISP2 graph shows only a 1.5 degree drop from the MWP to the Little ice age yet the temperature record for Upernavkik (1873-2010) shows a decrease of 6 degrees from a high in 1943 to a low in 1963. Clearly the ice cores is either not properly calibrated or is not high frequency enough to show rapid changes that have been observed in the instrument record.
http://www.rimfrost.no/

TJS
December 29, 2010 1:19 pm

Clearly current temperatures are about average for the last 10k years, even if they have warmed in the last 150 years. Debate over.
There is no need to say any more. This article itself beats around the bush for too long, sidetracked, distracted by by warmist whoppers.
The entire warmist argument is that temperatures are high and skyrocketing higher, relatively speaking. Relative to what? The history of the past 10k years, and 100k, and 1 million show that temperatures are well within historic trends. We must switch the whole debate to examining temperature history, and thus soothing alarm.

MVB
December 29, 2010 1:38 pm

@ Ben D. (December 29, 2010 at 10:51 am)
I’d say that bad and incomplete labeling DOES detract from the message of the article. But “…the question of splicing should be cleared up. ”
Yes, absolutely. That appears to be the main obstacle here.
If I were to cut Easterbrook A LOT of slack, though, and pretend that wherever he was comparing ‘the past’ in a graph to ‘the present’ that he wasn’t actually referring to ‘the present’ in (Fig 2, 3, 4 or 5.) graph, but always to ‘the present’ in Fig 1 (the end values of Fig 1. do resemble those of the past decade, including 2010), then I think the following clarifications would greatly improve the article:
-clearly indicate what exactly is meant for “the present”, and in what year shown data end if it’s not the same; ideally have every graph end in the same present (even if you have to leave a period blank for lack of comparable data)
– wait a week for the year you’re discussing to be actually over, so at least the rough data is in.
– put BOTH isotope and derived corresponding temperature values on the Y-axis
– Presentation-wise (visually): use the same vertical graph-plotting, so spikes are visually comparable (to a lay person) without having to double-check the Y-axis for every graph
-have the horizontal line (for a present or base period to see positive and negative anomalies) at the same value in every graph; and either have all graphs anomaly graphs (with deviation from a base period), or all actual values, just for consistency.
– Clearly list location, data sources used, statistical smoothing used and a word about uncertainties for each graph. (a brief disclaimer paragraph for each graph, basically)
– And perhaps make it so that both X-axix and Y-axis on the graphs can be put next to each other both vertically as well as horizontally.
THEN we may still technically be looking at what amounts to little more than ‘anecdotal evidence’ (which I do think can hold validity when presented honestly), at least it wouldn’t be deceptive.
It’s good to see others (Buzz Belleville, Rhys Jaggar, John Finn, Juraj V., Christopher Hanley, BillD, Dave Springer, John Finn, Jantar, Steven Mosher, Dave H, and others) apparently also prefering (or insisting on, as I do) decent scientific standards being upheld here, blog or not.
[You may be violating blog policy. The IP address comes from Utah, to an NGO, while the email address, “smeltendeijstijd@…” which looks like gobbledygook, points to the UK – please provide a valid email address. A valid email address is required to comment on this blog. -moderator]

MVB
December 29, 2010 1:40 pm

typo in previous post:
-have the vertical line…
I meant horizontal.
Hope you can fix that. tx!
[Fixed. ~dbs, mod.]

Don Rodrigo
December 29, 2010 1:42 pm

Thank you for this. That “Warmest Year Ever!” crap dating back 131 years (or something) makes the most hidebound creationist look like Einstein by comparison.

Peter Miller
December 29, 2010 2:40 pm

Rant versus realism.
MVB’s comments versus those of Dave Wendt
I would ask the moderator that if you have a ranter, you insist on knowing that person’s name before publishing his or her comments. Tedious anonymous rants by those too cowardly to reveal their identity are obviously beneath contempt.

1DandyTroll
December 29, 2010 2:58 pm

[You may be violating blog policy. The IP address comes from Utah, to an NGO, while the email address, “smeltendeijstijd@…” which looks like gobbledygook, points to the UK – please provide a valid email address. A valid email address is required to comment on this blog. -moderator]
To be fair all the potential trolls in the vicinity you do know, or so I presume you at least ought to, that people don’t always reside or work in the country they have their email addy servers located right? And there’s always the possibility of proxies, and even NGO’s use ’em
And what you might be calling gobbledygook other people call Dutch, the only proper hippie language if there ever was one. :p

MVB
December 29, 2010 3:00 pm

Moderator, I’m in a ski town in UT and used/am using the NGOs computer, using my long-time UK address; what policy could I be breaking? If your intention is keep me from commenting, because I express some critiques (that many other commenters share, actually), you’re well on your way to ruin the high regard I’ve had for WUWT.
And the email address is only gobbledygook if you speak only English, I suppose.
——————–
And please quit the baseless picking, Peter Miller. It’s not helpful. For one, I mostly agree with Dave Wendt’s answers to Steven Mosher’s questions. My comments are in direct response to the article this is a tread on, however, and my previous comment are merely some suggestions of how the article’s quality could be raised. I’m not “ranting”, I’m commenting to the point. You should give it a try, “Peter Miller”.

Doug1
December 29, 2010 3:05 pm

To address the complaints of many critics of this presentation, yes it would be fairer if e.g. the graph of ice core temperature proxy results was brought up to 2010 and presumably be shown to currently be at a little lower than the peak of the medieval warm period.
The point would remain thorough made however, that there’s much thoroughly misleading noise about unprecedented recent temperatures.
Yeah the rise in temps since 1977 has been rapid, but so was it in the early parts of the medieval warm period.

December 29, 2010 3:20 pm

John F. Hultquist says:
December 28, 2010 at 10:12 pm
Thank you, John! I’ll check that out.

Bob from the UK
December 29, 2010 3:24 pm

Excellent post.
Generally the standards on WUWT are very high but quite a few very poor comments here from “pseudo” scientists.
For those who have strong views on this, it is not acceptable just to simply use vulgar language to support whatever hypothesis you have.
This is NOT science.
I haven’t seen one qualified statement that refutes anything Don Easterbrook has written. Some of it is simply derived from the rather “unscientific” critique from the rather theological Skeptical Science Blog.
Just one major point, that always comes up about Don Easterbrook’s thesis on global cooling. The HADCRUT does show cooling from 1999 onwards, and even Professor Phil Jones admits it. 2010 hasn’t finished yet! (though I wouldn’t expect a pseudo scientist to wait for their experiment to finish before drawing a conclusion). The dispute on this is whether it is statistically significant. If the cooling continues, which it is (just check the current satellite surface temperatures), the cooling would have started around about 1998.

Bill Illis
December 29, 2010 3:54 pm

The GISP2 isotope data goes up to 1987 which is about as far as it can go – ice needs to form up first.
It is exactly the same number as 95 years ago when Richard Alley’s subset of the data ends. So no warming in the last 95 years – some ups and some downs but no real change.

Editor
December 29, 2010 3:56 pm

“December 2010 has been one of the coldest Decembers in a century in many parts of the world, so 2010 probably won’t be warmer than 1998. “
In calculating the Global MetAnn Temperature (Giss/NCDC etc), December 2010 will contribute to 2011 as calculations run Dec to Nov. As far as they are concerned Dec 2009-Nov 2010 means the 2010 MetAnn year has finished.

Editor
December 29, 2010 4:12 pm

Hi Verity
Perhaps you-or someone else here- knows whether this statement is true-I have seen it repeated several times over the last few months.
“As for this being the warmest decade ever – yes, since it is measured by means of an algorithm that is different to that used in any previous decade and therefore incomparable to anything else. That said, an anonymous troll in the UK Met Office (Think CRU with a supercomputer they have to justify!) announced that they only use the highest recorded temperatures and select the highest 15 of these in any three month period to calculate the “average” for the period. If that is true, then their figures are right – except they are ignoring the lowest temperatures recorded which would lower this figure considerably.”
Anyone able to throw any light on this?
tonyb

Editor
Reply to  tonyb
December 29, 2010 4:21 pm

Hi Tony,
I’ve seen that oft repeated here since it came up a week or so a go but who knows!

Dave H
December 29, 2010 4:29 pm

@Bob from the UK
Amazing. So you don’t see anything valid in the numerous responses that point out that Easterbrook cannot support this statement:
> Of the past 10,500 years, 9,100 were warmer than 1934/1998/2010.
by using a graph that *does not show* the temperature in 2010?
Go back to his figure 5.
Mentally draw a horizontal line across the graph at -29C which is approximately the current annual average temperature for Greenland.
Do the three peaks above that line *really* constitute 9100 years out of 10,500? Or is Easterbrook pretending that the temperature where the graph stops (1905) is the current temperature today?
How can you look at a graph like that and defend it? Seriously, how? Once again, this is utterly shameless.
I have a growing respect for the people who have put a huge amount of time and effort into investigating these things for themselves, with a far deeper knowledge than I will ever possess, and while I may strongly disagree with some of their methods, conclusions or opinions (particularly on politics and jockeying away from the science itself), healthy skepticism, constructive effort and honest, diligent analysis of data is always to be applauded, loudly. OTOH, giving blatantly dishonest stuff like this a free pass is not.

Manfred
December 29, 2010 4:38 pm

TomRude says:
December 28, 2010 at 5:18 pm
Why continuing to give any credence to the recent global surface temperature calculations?
=====================================================
A very helpful comment !
I would propose to attach a disclaimer to all scientific essays, whenever the GISS temperature reconstruction is used or displayed:
WARNING:
GISS temperature is under strong suspicion of a warming bias because of:
1. Multiple undocumented temperature adjustments, warming recent and cooling former temperature history.
2. Extrapolation of faster warming land based temperatures into ocean areas with no data available.
3. A disfunctional UHI correction at least for the world excluding the USA.
4. A much higher warming trend than the tropospheric trend measured with satellites, despite all climate models expecting the troposphere to warm faster instead.
5 Conviction of GISS author J. Hansen of unlawful acts related to climate change activism.

BillyBob
December 29, 2010 5:10 pm

While some claim that 1900 to 1998 warmed by .8C, another recent paper on this site showed UHI can be as much as 7C-9C in Northeast USA Urban centers.
The assumption that the .8C warming actually occurred is, I think, just an assumption and unproven.

DeNihilist
December 29, 2010 5:11 pm

Tony B, re the MET using only the Nov. 15 highest days, it is Bunkum.

From Peru
December 29, 2010 5:26 pm

Very funny how Dr. Don J. Easterbrook is “hiding the incline” of Greenland temperatures.
Here is stated:
“Another graph of temperatures from the Greenland ice core for the past 10,000 years is shown in Figure 5. It shows essentially the same temperatures as Cuffy and Clow (1997) but with somewhat greater detail. What both of these temperature curves show is that virtually all of the past 10,000 years has been warmer than the present.”
In this post the graph:
“Figure 5. Temperatures over the past 10,000 years recorded in the GISP2 Greenland ice core – ”
Is based on the GISP2 Ice Core Temperature data. You can download it here:
ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/paleo/icecore/greenland/summit/gisp2/isotopes/gisp2_temp_accum_alley2000.txt
What is notorious is that the data end in … 1905!
Yet Dr. Don J. Easterbrook does not warn us that the graph, instead it is stated:
“What both of these temperature curves show is that virtually all of the past 10,000 years has been warmer than the present.”
That is true only if you call “present” the year 1905!
After this, it is claimed:
“Of the past 10,500 years, 9,100 were warmer than 1934/1998/2010. Thus, regardless of which year ( 1934, 1998, or 2010) turns out to be the warmest of the past century, that year will rank number 9,099 in the long-term list.
The climate has been warming slowly since the Little Ice Age (Fig. 5), but it has quite a ways to go yet before reaching the temperature levels that persisted for nearly all of the past 10,500 years.”
Really?
Well, we can access the GISTEMP dataset to show how much has Greenland warmed since 1905:
GISTEMP map of temperature anomaly (250 km grid) of the decade 2000-2010 relative to the period 1900-1910:
http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/do_nmap.py?year_last=2010&month_last=11&sat=4&sst=1&type=anoms&mean_gen=1212&year1=2000&year2=2010&base1=1900&base2=1910&radius=250&pol=reg
Between 2ºC and 4ºC warming! (let’s take the middle value, +3ºC)
“So where do the 1934/1998/2010 warm years rank in the long-term list of warm years? ”
Well, leaving behind 1938 that was record warm ONLY in the United States, 1998 and 2010 are, in Greenland, in the range of the peaks of the warmest periods in the last 10 000 years! (if you take +3ºC value the last decade was the warmest in the Greenland Holocene, but given the range of uncertainty, is more correct that is tied with the Minoan Warming and the Holocene Maximum).
If you check the data, you find the degree at with the central conclusion of this post is wrong. This has been exposed here:
“Cooling-gate: the 100 years of warming Easterbrook wants you to ignore”
http://sciblogs.co.nz/hot-topic/2010/05/27/cooling-gate-the-100-years-of-warming-easterbrook-wants-you-to-ignore/
And here:
“Cooling-gate! Easterbrook fakes his figures, hides the incline”
http://hot-topic.co.nz/cooling-gate-easterbrook-fakes-his-figures-hides-the-incline/
What about the claim that Global Warming has stopped in 1998?
Well, a synthesis of the warming trend can be found here:
http://tamino.wordpress.com/2010/12/16/comparing-temperature-data-sets/
And here:
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1979/offset:-0.15/mean:12/plot/gistemp/from:1979/offset:-0.24/mean:12/plot/uah/mean:12/plot/rss/mean:12/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1979/offset:-0.15/trend/plot/gistemp/from:1979/offset:-0.24/trend/plot/uah/trend/plot/rss/trend
And here:
http://www.drroyspencer.com/wp-content/uploads/UAH_LT_1979_thru_Nov_10.gif
The year 2010 so far is the warmest on record on GISTEMP and NCDC datasets and tied for warmest with 1998 in the UAH dataset, all this despite that the 2009-2010 was not a Super El Niño like the 1997-1998 one.
The 2000-2009 decade was the warmest on record, so talking about “global cooling” now is ridiculous, in the warmest year of the warmest decade on record!
What about Greenland?
Well, 1998 (250 km grid, baseline 1900-1910):
http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/do_nmap.py?year_last=2010&month_last=11&sat=4&sst=1&type=anoms&mean_gen=1212&year1=1998&year2=1998&base1=1900&base2=1910&radius=250&pol=reg
Greenland anomaly: between +1ºC and +2ºC
Global anomaly: +0.79ºC
And 2010(250 km grid, baseline 1900-1910):
http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/do_nmap.py?year_last=2010&month_last=11&sat=4&sst=1&type=anoms&mean_gen=1212&year1=2010&year2=2010&base1=1900&base2=1910&radius=250&pol=reg
Greenland anomaly: between +2ºC and +5.5ºC
Global anomaly: +0.75ºC
Result a whole decade (the most recent) warmer (in Greenland) than the “record warm” year of 1998!
For those that note that in the maps given 1998 is warmer than 2010, this ius because of the missing data in the Arctic. If you suppose that here the temperature is like the global anomaly, then youy get that result. If you suppose that temperatures there are similar to the nearest meteorological station (a much more reasonable assumption, that is fullfilled with a 1000 km smooting radius) you get:
2010:
http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/do_nmap.py?year_last=2010&month_last=11&sat=4&sst=1&type=anoms&mean_gen=1212&year1=2010&year2=2010&base1=1900&base2=1910&radius=1200&pol=reg
Global anomaly: +0.89ºC
1998:
http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/do_nmap.py?year_last=2010&month_last=11&sat=4&sst=1&type=anoms&mean_gen=1212&year1=1998&year2=1998&base1=1900&base2=1910&radius=1200&pol=reg
Global anomaly: +0.82 ºC.
Clear warming. If you don’t trust GISTEMP methods, you could use the RSS, UAH, and NCDC data that show clear warming after 1998 as well.

Manfred
December 29, 2010 6:24 pm

From Peru says:
December 29, 2010 at 5:26 pm
Clear warming. If you don’t trust GISTEMP methods, you could use the RSS, UAH, and NCDC data that show clear warming after 1998 as well.
======================================================
wrong:
GISS: uptrend
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1998/to:2010/plot/gistemp/from:1998/to:2010/trend/plot/none
UAH: downtrend
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/from:1998/to:2010/plot/uah/from:1998/to:2010/trend
RSS: downtrend
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/rss/from:1998/to:2010/plot/rss/from:1998/to:2010/trend
(WARNING:
GISS temperature is under strong suspicion of a warming bias because of:
1. Multiple undocumented temperature adjustments, warming recent and cooling former temperature history.
2. Extrapolation of faster warming land based temperatures into ocean areas with no data available.
3. A disfunctional UHI correction at least for the world excluding the USA.
4. A much higher warming trend than the tropospheric trend measured with satellites, despite all climate models expecting the troposphere to warm faster instead.
5. Conviction of GISS author J. Hansen for unlawful acts related to climate change activism.)

MVB
December 29, 2010 6:48 pm

@ From Peru says: December 29, 2010 at 5:26 pm
Thanks for the links, ‘From Peru’! And points well made, as well.
In my 5:21 am comment (MVB says: December 29, 2010 at 5:21 am) I mentioned something about the temperature anomaly for the GISP2 location having a value close to or slightly cooler than to the 1951-1980 mean. And concluded that “In other words: even if the Fig. 5 graph extended all the way to today, it’s clear that 2010 could not beat warm periods such as Roman or Minoan Warm Periods (let alone the likely peak years within those periods).” We seem to agree on some key problems with the article, but you point out that the past decade could actually be in the ballpark of the Roman or even Minoan Warm Periods. For that particular aspect, I must admit: you’re right, and I was wrong. I had mistakenly looked at Nov 2009 anomaly map (which was relatively cold in central Greenland then), and not the 2010 annual value, which does indeed raise the possibility your state. And that does make Easterbrook’s narrative around Figure 5. even worse than I thought (again).
@ 1DandyTroll says: December 29, 2010 at 2:58 pm
😉 It was originally meant both literally (tijd van smeltend ijs / age of melting ice) and metaphorically (smeltende ijstijd / melting ‘ice age’, with the latter referring to Joy Division’s ‘Ice Age’: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mGPBlsnOF5k
If I keep digressing, perhaps some not-very-scientifically-inclined folks will become nicer to me. …Nothing will hold, … Nothing will fit, … Into the cold,… No smile on your lips, Living in the Ice age…
I think what needed to be said (that Easterbrook missed the mark on this port and precicely why) has been said in different words several times today.
Peace out –

December 29, 2010 6:50 pm

Even the disreputable Phil Jones [you know he will never get his former reputation back] admits that the current rise in temperature is completely natural: click
So another climate scare is debunked: that the current temperature rise is alarming, when Jones shows that it is routine and ordinary. Scientific skeptics are still batting a thousand, while the alarmist crowd can’t point to one single verifiable bit of harm done to the planet due to the ≈40% rise in beneficial CO2.
That’s a big increase, isn’t it? If CO2 caused catastrophic harm, you would think we’d be seeing a little of it by now. But not one warmist claim about damage from CO2 stands up to scientific scrutiny. Every scare has been debunked in turn.
Leon Festinger’s theory of cognitive dissonance explains the close similarities between Mrs Keech’s flying saucer cult, and Jehovah’s Witnesses, and CO2=CAGW true believers: in the face of overwhelming contrary evidence, they believe even more strongly in their fantasy. Each one of them is a doomsday cult.
Orwell called it “doublethink”: holding two contradictory ideas at the same time. It’s a form of mental illness, and no doubt when the glaciers are once again descending over the Great Lakes and northern Europe, there will still be true believers in the cult of AGW among our descendants, waiting for harmless and beneficial CO2 to cause runaway global warming.
Fortunately, scientific skeptics are relatively immune from cognitive dissonance. The reason is that skeptics simply ask questions about a hypothesis. They have no hypothesis of their own, except for the null hypothesis – that the climate is currently well within its historical parameters, and that everything occurring now has happened repeatedly before. The climate null hypothesis has never been falsified.
Festinger said that if you provide evidence that someone is wrong, they will question your sources. A while back Joel Shore questioned the source of a graph I had linked to, which contradicted his position. In response I posted fifty (50) similar graphs, all showiing the same thing, from many different peer reviewed sources. Joel’s response? He went through every single graph, and claimed to find something wrong with each one. He could not show that he was right, so he questioned the sources that showed he was wrong.
Scientific skeptics are dealing with cognitive dissonance-afflicted CAGW doom cultists. Their minds are closed to reason. That is why they constantly morph their arguments whenever one of their pet examples of CAGW is debunked. They operate based on faith, not on reason. That’s why it’s turned into a Whack-A-Mole effort by skeptics. As each CAGW belief/mole is whacked, another one pops out. Against all rational evidence, they are still convinced that CO2 emissions will lead to planetary catastrophe.

A man with conviction is a hard man to change. Tell him you disagree and he turns away. Show him facts and figures and he questions your sources. Appeal to logic and he fails to see your point… presented with evidence – unequivocal and undeniable evidence – that his belief is wrong, he will emerge not only unshaken, but even more convinced of the truth of his beliefs than ever before. Indeed, he may even evince new fervor about convincing and converting others to his view.
– Leon Festinger, “When Prophecy Fails”

December 29, 2010 7:35 pm

From Peru,
You dispute that the climate has been warming since the LIA. What planet are you reporting from? The planet of Skeptical Cognitive Dissonance ‘Science’? The blog run by the cartoonist?
In fact, the climate has been warming since the LIA, although it has quite a way to go before reaching the the numerous highs of the Holocene. For necessary enlightenment, see my post @1:04 above.
Here is an example [current temperature at left side of chart]. Here’s another. We’re pretty much in the sweet spot right now.
Until/unless you can falsify the climate null hypothesis with your alternate CO2=CAGW conjecture, then the long held theory of natural climate variability remains standing, and what we’re currently observing is no different than what has happened naturally countless times before.
Observation supports natural variability. As Dr Spencer, whom you reference, puts it:
No one has falsified the hypothesis that the observed temperature changes are a consequence of natural variability.
It’s time you learned how the scientific method works. Your conjecture has been debunked because it is primarily based on completely inaccurate computer models.
Models are not evidence, They are programs. Testable, replicable, empirical [real world, raw data] evidence are required by the scientific method.
But instead of using the rigorous scientific method, the alarmist crowd falls back on its phony claims of consensus. Which is why WUWT leaves your sparsely trafficked echo chamber blogs in the dust. The scientific method rules here.
Try using real science for a change. If you do, your conclusions regarding CAGW will inevitably change 180°.
Or, you can remain trapped in your doomsday cult.

From Peru
December 29, 2010 7:43 pm

Manfred says:
December 29, 2010 at 6:24 pm
“From Peru says:
December 29, 2010 at 5:26 pm
Clear warming. If you don’t trust GISTEMP methods, you could use the RSS, UAH, and NCDC data that show clear warming after 1998 as well.
======================================================
wrong:
GISS: uptrend
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1998/to:2010/plot/gistemp/from:1998/to:2010/trend/plot/none
UAH: downtrend
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/from:1998/to:2010/plot/uah/from:1998/to:2010/trend
RSS: downtrend
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/rss/from:1998/to:2010/plot/rss/from:1998/to:2010/trend
Nice cherry-picking is what you have done.
You started from the Super El Niño year of 1998, and then you DELETED 2010.
Beginning with you cherry-picked 1998, but including your cherry-deleted 2010:
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/from:1998/to:2011/plot/uah/from:1998/to:2011/trend/plot/rss/from:1998/to:2011/plot/rss/from:1998/to:2011/trend
Warming trend!
Unless you use outdated data. At least you are outdated one YEAR, the author of this WUWT post is oudated one CENTURY.

Jack Greer
December 29, 2010 7:50 pm

Manfred said December 29, 2010 at 6:24 pm:
“wrong:”
————–
Do you know what “after 1998” means, Manfred? Plot 1999-2010, or for that matter you could plot 1997-2010 and get upward trends in all three sets … Jones clearly said that even a 15 year timeline was sometimes too short to establish a meaningful trend.
… yet another prime example of non-robust cherry-picking. When is that weak tactic going to stop around here?

December 29, 2010 8:01 pm

BillD says:
December 29, 2010 at 5:28 am
Where is peer review when you need it? This post conflates the global climate record with regional records for the US and Greenland. Then it fails to point out that “present” only goes up to 1905. Over the last 21 years, I have been the editor or reviewer for over 600 manuscripts submited for publication in peer-reviewed scientific journals (I need to keep a record for my employer).
The Mann Hockey Stick graph was peer reviewed. Peer review didn’t help, did it.

Manfred
December 29, 2010 8:07 pm

“Beginning with you cherry-picked 1998…”
Actually, it was your proposal to skip 1998.
You try to compare 1998 and 2010 by skipping 1998 completely, and start in 1999 right in the middle of the deepest La Nina dominated temperatures of the decade. On the other side, however, you prefer ending in 2010, mostly dominated by another El Nino.
That’s a bit unsporty.
I left out 2010. Sorry for that. In a few months this tiny increase will be gone as well, though not in dubious GISS data, I suppose.

From Peru
December 29, 2010 8:08 pm

Smokey says:
December 29, 2010 at 7:35 pm
From Peru,
“You dispute that the climate has been warming since the LIA.In fact, the climate has been warming since the LIA, although it has quite a way to go before reaching the the numerous highs of the Holocene. ”
I do not dispute that there was warming from the LIA. What I have shown is that in just a century Greenland has warmed a whole 2-4ºC , equating the levels seen in the Holocene Maximum.
“Here is an example. Here’s another. We’re pretty much in the sweet spot right now.”
Well, in your example of Greenland you have chopped off an entire century of warming. You have committed the same mistake that the author of this WUWT post. The GISP2 Ice Core Temperature data ends in 1905, so you MUST obtain the last 100 years from the instrumental temperature record (weather stations). And they show a warming between 2ºC and 4ºC, and this is equal to the peak warming of the Holocene Maximum.
Now the question:
How do you explain that in just a century Greenland warmed to levels seen in the Holocene Maximum (when Milanktovich cycles, that is orbital, precessional and Earth inclination were giving a bigger insolation than today) despite the cooling trend in Milanktovich cycles ?

From Peru
December 29, 2010 8:13 pm

Smokey says:
December 29, 2010 at 7:35 pm
“From Peru,
Your conjecture has been debunked because it is primarily based on completely inaccurate computer models.
Models are not evidence, They are programs. Testable, replicable, empirical [real world, raw data] evidence are required by the scientific method”
I was not referring to climate models. I was citing DATA.
And the DATA show warming, a warming that is comparable to what seen in the Holocene Maximum. Evidently SOMETHING has warmed the Earth, erasing millenia of Orbital-Earth inclination induced cooling.

December 29, 2010 8:17 pm

From Peru.
A correction to what you did with your ending point:
Starting at 1998 at the peak of an El Nino and ending with the first 1/2 of 2010 doesn’t give an accurate picture as to whether there has been a warming, flat, or cooling trend since 1998. The La Nina that followed the 1998 El Nino ran its course. But the La Nina that is following the 2009/10 El Nino hasn’t run its course yet. So to pick an ending point before it does is imbalanced since the trough of the 1999 La Nina is in it but the completed trough of the 2010/11 La Nina is not. It is easy to predict that when the current La Nina finishes there will be a cooling tend in the data since 1998.

December 29, 2010 8:22 pm

From Peru,
Watch these two videos and tell me if GISS is 100% trustworthy:
Does GISTemp change?
part 1

April E. Coggins
December 29, 2010 8:22 pm

Manfred: Have you read this 2009 paper titled “If It’s That Warm, How Come It’s So Damned Cold”? authored by James Hansen, et al?
http://www.columbia.edu/~jeh1/mailings/2010/20100115_Temperature2009.pdf
It seems to fit today’s theme.

December 29, 2010 8:22 pm

Does GISTemp change?
part 2

From Peru
December 29, 2010 8:23 pm

Manfred says:
December 29, 2010 at 8:07 pm
“Actually, it was your proposal to skip 1998.
You try to compare 1998 and 2010 by skipping 1998 completely, and start in 1999 right in the middle of the deepest La Nina dominated temperatures of the decade. On the other side, however, you prefer ending in 2010, mostly dominated by another El Nino.
That’s a bit unsporty.”
I did not mentioned at all 1999. I started from 1979, the year that began the satellite record. I ended in 2010 because that is the present year.
“I left out 2010. Sorry for that. In a few months this tiny increase will be gone as well, though not in dubious GISS data, I suppose.”
This not so tiny increase will be offset by La Niña cooling, but the trend will not, as it hasn’t all those years since 1998.

December 29, 2010 8:34 pm

Jack Greer says:
“Jones clearly said that even a 15 year timeline was sometimes too short to establish a meaningful trend… yet another prime example of non-robust cherry-picking. When is that weak tactic going to stop around here?”
It is you and your alarmist cronies who constantly cherry-pick. So let’s look at the entire Holocene, shall we? click
Nothing unusual is happening with the climate. Nothing. But continue your cognitive dissonance-induceced scare, for what it’s worth.
The rest of us know better.

December 29, 2010 8:47 pm

From Peru says:
“How do you explain that in just a century Greenland warmed to levels seen in the Holocene Maximum?”
You just don’t understand. It is only natural climate variability, which has occurred numerous times throughout the pre-SUV past. Greenland is far from the warmer temperatures of the past. And CO2 has very little to do with any of it.
Quit trying to scare yourself and the children.

December 29, 2010 10:55 pm

Harrywr2, I thought CO2 was also about reflecting solar energy back to the surface and radiating absorbed heat at nighttime so the convection shouldn’t be a real issue. The only reason you wouldn’t be able to measure a difference in greenhouses is because CO2 has no effects.

December 29, 2010 11:28 pm

Ben D.
What I am urging is that people practice some consistency in the skeptical arguments.
For my own part I try to maintain a consistent approach.
1, if you don’t show your data and tour methods (code) I am not obligated to take your results seriously. skeptic or non skeptic.
2. If you argue on one thread that we cannot estimate a global temperature from 7000 stations then I fully expect you to question ANY reconstruction based on proxies from limited areas.
3. if you argue about the accuracy of thermometers I expect to see you demanding error bars on all reconstructions.
now to your points
“But as GISS shows, greenland being warm means that a good portion of the world map becomes red suddenly. I am not one to say that Greenland is either good or bad as a place to measure global temperature, but if you put any stock of faith in GISS (which I admit you do not….then this might be a starting point of some sort.)”
actually if polar amplification is accurate greenland would warm more rapidly than the rest of the world. So it would not be a good place to start unless you could accurately assess the amount of amplification. 2nd. In some recent work with greenland ice cores its been shown that they do correlate differently with different grid cells.
“Greenland’s temperature versus the rest of the world might be a better comparison with our known temperature records. I think that might be the better question here regarding assumption of Greenland being the entire world.”
I guess my point is this. We complain when Mann shows a chart of the NH reconstruction of say summer month temps. We say ” what about the other months, what about the SH, etc etc. I expect the same kind of responses when I see a chart of greenland ice cores. Measured, systematic, consistent, principled skepticism. NOT selective skepticism.
“1. What’s our best estimate of the temp over the next 100 years.
Barring any major changes in solar output etcetc, probably a warming of .7 – 1 degrees like the previous century. I put in .3 as possible for CO2 increases. Biosphere might just take care of a lot of it, I think its something to think about anyway. Regardless, this is something we could argue about, and it would be rather fruit-less as this is nothing more then “an educated guess” with some being more educated then others.”
there is nothing wrong with educated guesses. the key point would be documenting your assumptions and presenting the case.
On your other points, I’d agree that nuclear seems to be a win win. But most AGwers are so tied to a prefferred solution that they seem incapble of seizing the moment to make a big nuk push. odd.
anyway, thanks for your balanced and thoughtful comments

Bob from the UK
December 30, 2010 1:39 am

From Peru says:
December 29, 2010 at 5:26 pm
Very funny how Dr. Don J. Easterbrook is “hiding the incline” of Greenland temperatures.
………..Is based on the GISP2 Ice Core Temperature data. You can download it here:
ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/paleo/icecore/greenland/summit/gisp2/isotopes/gisp2_temp_accum_alley2000.txt
What is notorious is that the data end in … 1905!

I see on the graph in figure 5 that the bottom axis ends in 1905 (95) so what exactly is your point?
I get the impression you went on the “Skeptical Science” blog and copied verbatim the criticism without actually reading Don Easterbrook’s post, the point of which is to demonstrate large temperature swings through the last few thousand years, i.e. the current temperature rise is quite normal.
What many don’t realise is that the debate is not about whether we have had warming. No-one disputes it. The debate is whether the warming is unnatural. This post answers that argument, by examining temperature changes over the past few thousand years.

Bob from the UK
December 30, 2010 1:48 am

I get the impression that this post is a bit above the heads of some readers who seem to be posting inane comments that demonstrate they haven’t really understood it.
Maybe we need a “dumbed down” version that they understand.
we’re getting comments to the effect “I don’t see a dangerous hocky stick so therefore it must be rubbish”.
It would have been nice to have had an intelligent debate about temperature swings through the millenia rather than this rather mindless ranting.
I think unfortunately many posters are not really up to a scientific debate.

December 30, 2010 3:46 am

John Finn says:
December 29, 2010 at 9:07 am
Do you have any evidence that the decline in temperatures “deepened towards the late 1970s”? I’m sorry if the “cooling 1970s” fits with your theory but the fact remains that there was very little cooling after the mid-1950s. The 1970s were marginally – though not significantly – warmer than the 1960s. The 1955-80 trend is flat, i.e. neither warming nor cooling.

The one off records of deep lows and snow levels, cold winters etc occurred in the 70’s, the yearly global GISS record shows the 70’s as flat across the PDO negative phase of 1945-1975. But the big events happen in the winter when the low solar output, neg PDO and neg AMO were present, this was the time when science was suspecting another ice age. We are in a similar point now, the AMO is edging negative already and the solar output will be lower than SC20. Dont forget that the era I am referring to had the highest solar cycle on record which explains the small world wide recovery at 1955. Solar is important but the oceans rule.

John Finn
December 30, 2010 4:05 am

Amino Acids in Meteorites says:
December 29, 2010 at 8:17 pm
From Peru.
A correction to what you did with your ending point:
Starting at 1998 at the peak of an El Nino and ending with the first 1/2 of 2010 doesn’t give an accurate picture as to whether there has been a warming, flat, or cooling trend since 1998. The La Nina that followed the 1998 El Nino ran its course. But the La Nina that is following the 2009/10 El Nino hasn’t run its course yet. So to pick an ending point before it does is imbalanced since the trough of the 1999 La Nina is in it but the completed trough of the 2010/11 La Nina is not. It is easy to predict that when the current La Nina finishes there will be a cooling tend in the data since 1998.

I see – so you want to use a short term trend which begins with an El Nino and ends with a La Nina. This tactic should enable you to build up a series of cooling trends throughout the last century. The fairest way is to go peak to peak or trough to trough (not peak to trough) so use 1998-2010 or 1999-2011 (or 2009) – take your pick. It doesn’t matter which both show a positive trend.

December 30, 2010 5:37 am

John Finn says:
December 30, 2010 at 4:05 am
I see – so you want to use a short term trend which begins with an El Nino and ends with a La Nina. This tactic
Whatever. You can manipulate data any way you’d like to come up with the results you’d wish for. My point was not about peak to peak and trough to trough. That is what you characterized it as. If you wish to say the world is warming then good luck to you.

December 30, 2010 5:37 am

John Finn
I see you didn’t comment on the videos I posted.

December 30, 2010 5:40 am

John Finn says:
December 30, 2010 at 4:05 am
take your pick
Shouldn’t you have said “take your pick from the options I have supplied, that way you’ll come up with the answer I want you to come up with” ?

Dave Springer
December 30, 2010 7:30 am

oldseadog says:
December 29, 2010 at 1:50 am

Ed Murphy,
You say that a smoke filled greenhouse is warmer than one with clear air.
Has anyone done the experiment to find out if a greenhouse with 2,000ppm CO2 is warmer than one with 400ppm, everything else being equal?
Or is that not relevant?

The concentration doesn’t matter for how much LWIR absorption occurs. The only thing that matters is the total number of molecules. In a greenhouse with a gas column depth of perhaps 12 feet (floor to ceiling) a concentration of 2000ppm is only equivalent to a 60 foot column of normal atmosphere.
In order to simulate the CO2 LWIR absorption of just the lower 6000 feet of atmosphere inside a greenhouse would require a concentration of 200,000ppm (20%) which is toxic to animals and maybe (I’d have to look it up but I know that beneficial effect for plants stops at about 2000ppm) for plants too. Even then the greenhouse would only be warmer by about a single degree C. I don’t think you’d be able to measure the effect at 2000ppm because you couldn’t adequately control the experiment to compare 400ppm vs 2000ppm down to a hundredth of a degree difference in temperature. Any tiny difference aside from CO2 between the two setups could cause a 0.01 degree divergence.
John Tyndall discovered this 150 years ago along with the logarithmic curve in total absorption with increasing number of molecules of absorptive gases. Tyndal performed literally thousands of experiments on a score of different gases and with each gas he varied just about everything he could from the length of the column containing the gas to the partial pressure of the gas to the temperature of his thermal IR heat source. Tyndall “wrote the book” on this subject and his results, although refined in precision and accuracy since then, have withstood the test of time.

December 30, 2010 10:05 am

Henry@from Peru
I think you might be confused here on this site.
Here we want more warming, we like it, we take our holidays where it is warm.
and we want more carbon dioxide
because it is better for forest growth
You are welcome to check my blog as to why I think that modern warming is natural and has nothing to do with the carbon dioxide
http://www.letterdash.com/HenryP/more-carbon-dioxide-is-ok-ok
OK?

R. de Haan
December 30, 2010 11:44 am
Oregon Perspective
December 30, 2010 12:41 pm

Dr. Easterbrook would never be able to publish this analysis in a peer-reviewed journal on climate change. There are several reasons for that.
He presents the GISP2 data as if it is new, and surprising, and sufficient in itself to discredit countervailing work on climate change.
He never mentions that this is 17-year-old data that has been reviewed and analyzed in tens of publications on climate change over the past 15 years, including the IPCC reports.
He doesn’t mentions the many publications that show that this northern-hermisphere, GISP2 data is contradicted by southern-hemisphere ice core data, revealing a millennial seesaw of warming and cooling between the poles (e.g. Steig, Alley, 2002).
He doesn’t mention the publications that show GISP2 data in the context of global processes and other types of climate data from around the world (e.g. Barker, 2009 or Sigman, 2010).
Instead, Easterbrook publishes this intellectually dishonest analysis, which would not pass peer review, in this public forum, where readers don’t have the background to recognize its flaws?
Why?

From Peru
December 30, 2010 2:27 pm

Bob from the UK says:
December 30, 2010 at 1:39 am
“I see on the graph in figure 5 that the bottom axis ends in 1905 (95) so what exactly is your point?”
My point is that Dr. Don J. Easterbrook used the data as if the end of the timeseries is the present (it is no clue in text about it, that text argument as if the graph end in the present. The only clue is in the small labels in the x-scales that easily are lost. This is the “small letters trick”, a common commercial trick used to deceive the consumer).
It isn’t, and if you include the last 100 years of warming you found that we are now at the levels of the Holocene Maximum warming, erasing millenia of natural cooling.
“I get the impression you went on the “Skeptical Science” blog and copied verbatim the criticism without actually reading Don Easterbrook’s post”
Nope. Skepticalscience was absolutely not used as my source, only the GISP2 ice core data , and the meteorological temperature record in Greenland
“the point of which is to demonstrate large temperature swings through the last few thousand years, i.e. the current temperature rise is quite normal”
Do you consider “normal” a 2-4ºC warming in just 100 years?
“What many don’t realise is that the debate is not about whether we have had warming. No-one disputes it”
Really? What about all the nonsense about the “post-1998 global cooling”?
“The debate is whether the warming is unnatural. This post answers that argument, by examining temperature changes over the past few thousand years.”
This post don’t answer that argument, only shows temperature variations, not the causes of warming and cooling. What is clear, once you include the last 100 years of warming (from meteorological data) is that in a century we are back, in Greenland, to the warmth of the Minoan Warming and the Holocene Maximum. That is, modern warming erased millenia of cooling.
Now, what caused this warming?
Whatever it is, it must act against the cooling caused by Milanktovich Cycles (orbital, earth inclination and precessional cycles) that are causing since 10 000 years ago a gradual cooling in the Arctic.
You can visualize Milanktovich Cycles here, along with CO2, CH4 and temperature from ice cores in the Interactive Vostok Viewer:
http://www.brightstarstemeculavalley.org/science/climate.html
Now check, what has varied so much in last 100 years?(clue, it has nothing to do with Earth inclination, precession or orbital variations)
Play with the interactive Vostok Viewer, then comment!

Bill Illis
December 30, 2010 2:49 pm

I continue to find it interesting at how a simple presentation of the data is so unsettling/disturbing for the pro-AGW’ers.
To continue on with that reaction, here is some more data for you.
Antarctica versus Greenland ice core proxy temperatures over the last 22,000 years – the transition out of the last ice age until today. [Please note the Older Dryas Event at 14,300 years ago so that one can get some perspective on the Younger Dryas Event which was smaller and less significant than its Older version].
http://img46.imageshack.us/img46/9509/transitioniceagegrlndan.png
And then Antarctica and Greenland over the last ice age – 120,000 years. [Please note how Greenland has much more variability – the 25 Dansgaard-Oeschger events of which the 3 Dryas Events are just examples of].
http://img841.imageshack.us/img841/9484/lasticeageglant.png
And then the North Atlantic proxy temperatures versus Antarctica and CO2 and global solar irradiance over the last 800,000 years. [Please note how small the CO2 influence is especially considering it lags behind the temperature changes by 800 to 2000 years thoughout the entire record].
http://img218.imageshack.us/img218/4670/last800knaant.png

December 30, 2010 3:05 pm

From Peru says:
“…in a century we are back, in Greenland, to the warmth of the Minoan Warming and the Holocene Maximum. That is, modern warming erased millenia of cooling.”
That is just not true. Currently we are 2 – 3° below the Minoan Optimum. The temperature has risen by a mild 0.7°C over the past century; something that has occurred repeatedly and often throughout the Holocene.
Natural climate variability completely explains the rise, with no need for an extraneous variable such as CO2 — which follows rises in temperature. Effect cannot precede cause, and the climate null hypothesis has never been falsified. What we are observing is natural and routine.
It is coincidental that there has been a 0.7° rise which overlaps the ≈40% rise in CO2 [that is a substantial rise, but there is no evidence that any global harm has occurred as a result. The only observable result is increased agricultural productivity]. The rise in CO2 probably caused a fraction of that warming. But there is no testable evidence showing that the effect is more than minuscule. And the GCMs that are the basis for the bedwetters’ fright can’t predict their way out of a wet paper bag.
So, who to believe? Drs Alley and Easterbrook, who have forgotten more about climate history than someone from Peru will ever learn? Or should we believe From Peru, who makes up his facts as he goes along, and wouldn’t know the scientific method if it bit him on the ankle?
Inventing flat-out wrong statements are fine at realclimate [just so long as they support the belief system that says CO2 will cause climate catastrophe]. But making up facts doesn’t pass muster here at the internet’s “Best Science” site.
Cognitive dissonance does strange things to members of the CAGW Doomsday Cult.

December 30, 2010 3:19 pm

Dave Springer, this crackerhead [me] thanks you for clearing that up!

Editor
December 30, 2010 3:24 pm

Bob from the UK says:
December 30, 2010 at 1:39 am
From Peru says:
December 29, 2010 at 5:26 pm
Re the GISP2 data

“What is notorious is that the data end in … 1905!”

It is possible to match it to present day data – it has been done previously, but I’ve just put up a guest post from a guy who wanted to investigate it himself, and got a few pointers – from NCDC no less! http://diggingintheclay.wordpress.com/2010/12/30/dorothy-behind-the-curtain-part-2/
From his analysis GISP2 the temperature in Central Greenland approximates to that of the Minoan Warm Period, although I did find an older paper with the GRIP and DYE 3 ice cores where the current temperature is closer to the Medieval Warm Period.

“Do you consider “normal” a 2-4ºC warming in just 100 years?”

Do you? According to the GISP2 data we had warming from -46C to -36C in the 200 years from 9750 to 9550 BC. That makes the 2.5C warming of the Greenland coastal regions in the 50 years from 1880 to 1930 look pretty normal.

Oregon Perspective
December 30, 2010 3:57 pm

Smokey, you and others quote Richard Alley approvingly, implying that he agrees with Don Easterbrook. He does not.
This is what Richard Alley said earlier this week in a correction to a story in the NY Times:
“I continue to believe that the assessments of the IPCC, and the National Academy of Sciences, provide our best guide to the effects of carbon dioxide on climate. My statements were intended to communicate the assessed science.
The interested reader might start with Figure 1 in Box 10.2 in chapter 10 of the I.P.C.C. Working Group 1 Fourth Assessment Report. The best estimate of climate sensitivity is near 3 degrees Centigrade of warming, or 5 to 6 degrees Fahrenheit, for equilibrium response to doubled CO2, but with an uncertainty range that extends further to higher values than to lower ones. As shown there, if one wants to be highly confident that the stated uncertainty range includes all possibilities, sensitivity as high as 8 or 9 degrees Centigrade, or 14 to 16 degrees Fahrenheit, is at least slightly possible based on some analyses. Proper quantification is given there and in the references cited by the I.P.C.C. report.”
As you ask: “So, who to believe?” You’ve got to choose between Alley and Easterbook.

Oregon Perspective
December 30, 2010 4:16 pm

You can see a video as Alley describes how the GISP2 ice cores from Greenland were drilled, collected, analyzed, and interpreted at: this link
Easterbrook wants to use Alley’s data, while saying that Alley completely misinterprets it.
Again, Smokey, “Who to believe?” Listen to Alley and tell me what you think.

Bill Illis
December 30, 2010 4:24 pm

Oregon Perspective: Let’s do some basic math for Richard Alley (since he has a few problems in this area).
If 9.0C per doubling was correct, what should the temperature have increased so far?
Temp C Increase = +4.3C = 9/ln(2)*ln(390/280)
So Alley is only off by a factor of 6 so far.
He gave the Bjerknes lecture last year at the fall AGU meeting on the CO2 sensitivity based on the paleoclimate data. One can only see less than 3.0C per doubling (more like 1.5C per doubling) in that data so why would he now try to quote a figure which is more than three times higher. It is disingenuous at best.

gallopingcamel
December 30, 2010 4:39 pm

When I plotted the GISP2 data, my numbers all came out 0.5 degrees Centigrade lower than the ones shown in Figure 5. Is there an adjustment I missed?

Oregon Perspective
December 30, 2010 4:42 pm

Bill, why do you use a sensitivity of 9 degrees F for a doubling of CO2 that is 3 times the sensitivity of 3 degrees C that you yourself say Alley endorses.
Apparently, just to smear him.
Again, “Why?”

Oregon Perspective
December 30, 2010 4:43 pm

Sorry, “9 degrees C”

December 30, 2010 4:46 pm

Oregon Perspective,
Sorry I didn’t make my response clearer. I was referring to both the article, and to the chart from the Journal of Quaternary Science Reviews, which is based on Alley’s data. I agree that Alley flip-flops, which wrecks his credibility.
But I was responding to Peru, who flatly stated that “in a century we are back, in Greenland, to the warmth of the Minoan Warming and the Holocene Maximum.” The chart based on Alley’s data shows that isn’t true. And in the article Dr Easterbrook also shows that it isn’t true.

December 30, 2010 5:09 pm

Oregon,
The way I read his post, I don’t think Bill Illis is using a 9° sensitivity. Bill said 1.5°C. He knows more than I do about this particular subject, so I’ll defer to him. But if I were to make a SWAG, I would say <1°C.

Oregon Perspective
December 30, 2010 5:20 pm

Smokey, do you review your sources?
That chart is not “from the Journal of Quaternary Science Reviews”, as you claim. The chart was supposedly put together from Alley’s data by David Lappi, a petroleum geologist from Alaska without any experience in ice cores or climate science. The chart has never been peer-reviewed for publication, so don’t imply it has.
Even if we accept it without review, the chart does not include the last 105 years of temperature change in Greenland, which is likely greater than the global temperature change of 0.79 degrees C over that period.
As noted elsewhere, Easterbrook’s data has the same flaws. It is missing the last 100 years of temperature change and has never been peer-reviewed.
Again, “Why?”

Phil.
December 30, 2010 5:35 pm

From Peru says:
December 30, 2010 at 2:27 pm
Bob from the UK says:
December 30, 2010 at 1:39 am
“I see on the graph in figure 5 that the bottom axis ends in 1905 (95) so what exactly is your point?”
My point is that Dr. Don J. Easterbrook used the data as if the end of the timeseries is the present (it is no clue in text about it, that text argument as if the graph end in the present. The only clue is in the small labels in the x-scales that easily are lost. This is the “small letters trick”, a common commercial trick used to deceive the consumer).

It’s actually worse than that because the legend of the graph has had ‘2000AD’ added to indicate ‘present’ which is incorrect, in this context ‘years before present’ means years before 1950′! Consequently the last data shown is for 1855AD.

Oregon Perspective
December 30, 2010 5:50 pm

A larger problem for Bill, Smokey, and Easterbrook is that you all are just cherry picking charts and data that support your case. That’s not science, that’s propaganda.
As I noted above, 15 years of peer-review of Alley’s GISP2 data shows that GISP2 temperatures are not very representative of global temperature, as noted in tens of publications over the last 15 years, including a 2002 review by Alley.
You and Easterboork also choose to ignore the other publications that put the GISP2 data in a global context or other data and confounding climate processes. See Barker in Nature 2009, and or Sigman in Nature, 2010 as examples. Pdfs of these are available online.
Again, why do you cherry pick data and ignore contrary evidence?
Are your interests science or propaganda?

Bill Illis
December 30, 2010 5:51 pm

Oregon Perspective:
You are the one who quoted Richard Alley’s assertion that the CO2 sensitivity could be as high as 9.0C per doubling. In fact, you are just quoting the quote he gave in the New York Times no less (“the New York Times” no less to say it again). He even started with a 20 degree number before correcting it twice.
I’m sorry, but your hero has a problem with basic math (either that or he has a serious problem with exaggeration including in his peer-reviewed papers).

December 30, 2010 5:53 pm

Oregon Perspective,
I read the provenance of the chart, which is right in the chart itself; center near the bottom. It also states that the data is from Alley.
And I didn’t “imply” that the chart is peer reviewed – not that climate peer review is anything but “pal review”: Michael Mann’s recent paper based on the Tiljander proxy was hand-waved through peer review, even though it is documented that Mann knew before he submitted his paper that the Tiljander proxy changed the sign; it was corrupted from road grading. But Mann used it anyway, knowing his referee pals could be counted on to chalk up another bogus climate paper. Climate pal review is important to you. To me, not so much.
Dr Easterbrook’s chart also confirms that the Holocene had numeous temperature rises just like the one we’re going through. Occam’s Razor says that the current rise is simply natural variability.
And the question of the last century has been addressed to my satisfaction, and that of most other commentators. So why is it so important to you that the current *mild* 0.7° rise must equal the Minoan? That proves nothing, even if it were true. Your contention isn’t supported by the data I’ve seen and posted, but you seem rather desperate to alarm the populace.
Relax, CO2 isn’t gonna getcha. If you have to worry, then worry about asteroids. Unlike CAGW, that is a real threat.

jamadan
December 30, 2010 6:19 pm

I realize that James Hansen is both incompetent and criminally liable for faking data and fueling the false fires of AGW, but why is NASA in general becoming more and more involved in climate and temperature discussions? Is it because they have nothing to do these days and they need a purpose of crisis to justify their existence and umm budget? Every few months or so, they come out with some assinine statement about pretty much nothing just to make people remember they are there. So has the head of NASA decided to give Hansen more visibility or something to garner a greater role in “fighting AGW”? Just trying to analyze what they have been up to lately.

From Peru
December 30, 2010 9:20 pm

Smokey says:
“Currently we are 2 – 3° below the Minoan Optimum. The temperature has risen by a mild 0.7°C over the past century; something that has occurred repeatedly and often throughout the Holocene”
Mr Smokey, that “mild 0.7ºC” is the GLOBAL average.
The GISP2 data if from an ice core in GREENLAND, so you must compare the ancient temperatures in Greenland to modern temperatures THERE . In Greenland the warming between the 1900-1910 decade and the 2000-2010 decade is between 2ºC and 4ºC. And the Holocene Maximum and the Minoan Warm Period were 3ºC warmer than in 1905. So we are back to the temperatures seen in those ancient warm periods.
If you want the graph, it is here:
http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/do_nmap.py?year_last=2010&month_last=11&sat=4&sst=1&type=anoms&mean_gen=1212&year1=2000&year2=2010&base1=1900&base2=1910&radius=250&pol=reg
Based on the stations in Greenland:
http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/findstation.py?datatype=gistemp&data_set=1&name=&world_map.x=291&world_map.y=42
“But I was responding to Peru, who flatly stated that “in a century we are back, in Greenland, to the warmth of the Minoan Warming and the Holocene Maximum.” The chart based on Alley’s data shows that isn’t true. And in the article Dr Easterbrook also shows that it isn’t true”
What is not true is your the conclusions you draw from a mutilated graph that ends in 1905, ignoring 105 years of warming, that clearly show a warming between 2ºC and 4ºC. You are clearly wrong, and you refuse to recognize that. You claim I am “desperate” but clearly that is a description for yourself as you refuse to accept the reality of this planet, specifically the reality of the last 105 years in Greenland.
Omitting the last 105 years of warming is clearly a deception. I do not know is it is voluntary (in that case this a blatant lie) or just self-deceptive willful ignorance.

December 30, 2010 9:34 pm

From Peru can’t think straight. Cognitive dissonance in action.
He claims there was a 2 – 4° temperature rise over the past century, when even the IPCC says the rise was only 0.7°. Contradicting himself, he admits that the 0.7° [natural] rise is a “GLOBAL average.”
Well, DUH!
CAGW alarmists belong to a doomsday cult, the same as Mrs Keech’s flying saucer cult, or the Jehovah’s Witnesses doomsday cult. There is no reasoning with such cognitive dissonance-afflicted alarmists.
CO2 is a total non-problem. But True Believers’ minds are made up and closed tight.
The scientific method would clear things up for them, but nothing can penetrate their belief systems.

December 30, 2010 10:26 pm

Henry@From Peru
Just to be clear on this:
If someone claims that global warming is caused by an increase in carbon dioxide it is actually up to that person making the claim to provide me with the evidence. In this respect I would need to see clear results in the relevant concentration range and it must show how much cooling and how much warming is caused by the CO2. This would have to include the radiative cooling caused by CO2 and the cooling by CO2 caused by taking part in the process of photo synthesis. In fact, I am puzzled why no one, even if it were Anthony or Willis or someone, does not sue people like Al Gore and them in a court of law for making false claims.
So if you make the claim (to me) that carbon dioxide is the cause of global warming, it is up to you to provide me with that evidence. For that, I would expect you to show me exact test results and the method and instruments used to get those results.
People I corresponded with like Weart and Alley, all claim, like you, that those results
do actually exist. Well, I could not find them.
IPPC and them used a system whereby the increase of CO2 and other GHG’s were measured from 1750 to 2005 and then a value of forcing was attributed to each of them according to the warming observed. This would make sense if we knew for sure that GHG’s are the cause of modern warming.
But, surely, that is looking at a problem from the wrong end? That is assuming you know what is causing warming and then working your way back. It is the worst mistake any scientist can make.
To be completely truthful, I did make a similar mistake myself in the past. It happens when you get carried away too much with what you think is right or what you think ought to be.
So, I know what went wrong here. There is a complete lack of actual test results and everybody thought that it must be the CO2, “because what else can it be? There must something that we are doing wrong….” Well actually my finding is that carbon dioxide is good for life and more of it is better….
By saying that CO2 is not the cause of modern warming, I am not saying that warming is not happening. Modern warming could have natural causes or it could have some element being manmade, that is what we have to figure out. If you have read my blog,
http://www.letterdash.com/HenryP/more-carbon-dioxide-is-ok-ok
and you understand what I am saying there, then it seems that modern warming is definitely not caused by GHG’s, as in that case the minimum temps should show a higher increase. I could not find this in the two examples of weather stations that I looked at (that had some relevant data going back 50-100 years)
Do you have data from stations in Peru? Was Peru not having a very bad winter this year? How many died? Aren’t you worried about that happening again?

Oregon Perspective
December 31, 2010 12:03 am

Henry, claims: “If someone claims that global warming is caused by an increase in carbon dioxide it is actually up to that person making the claim to provide me with the evidence.” “Well, I could not find them.”
Henry you’ll find it here: https://www.ipcc-wg1.unibe.ch/publications/wg1-ar4/wg1-ar4.html
For this 2007 Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reviewed 14 global climate models from all major climate centers, and ran many simulations on those climate models using both natural and anthropogenic forcings.
Henry, you’ll find the models reviewed in Chapter 8 (pp. 589-662) and the simulation results with both natural and anthropogen forcings in Chapter 9 (pp. 663f-746).
You’ll find the final conclusions on p. 727: “No known mode of internal variability [that is, natural forcing] leads to such widespread, near universal warming as has been observed in the past few decades.” “Greenhouse gas forcing is the dominant cause of warming during the past several decades.” And also in the executive (https://www.ipcc-wg1.unibe.ch/publications/wg1-ar4/ar4-wg1-spm.pdf) and technical (https://www.ipcc-wg1.unibe.ch/publications/wg1-ar4/ar4-wg1-ts.pdf) summaries.
Ah, but I suspect you’ll say the 89 scientists that authored Chapter 8 and the 54 that authored Chapter 9, or the 10s of scientist that compiled the summaries, don’t know what you know.
As Smokey said, the question is, “Who to believe.”

gallopingcamel
December 31, 2010 6:31 am

Oregon Perspective, you said:
“That chart is not “from the Journal of Quaternary Science Reviews”, as you claim. The chart was supposedly put together from Alley’s data by David Lappi, a petroleum geologist from Alaska without any experience in ice cores or climate science. ”
If you are talking about the data that went into Figure 5 of this post, I got essentially the same data (although with a 0.5 Centigrade bias) from NOAA:
ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/paleo/icecore/greenland/summit/gisp2/isotopes/gisp2_temp_accum_alley2000.txt
In order to bridge the gap between 1905 (the end date for the GISP2 data) and the present day, one can use the instrumental record for the last 140 years by the Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI). Take a look:
http://diggingintheclay.wordpress.com/2010/12/30/dorothy-behind-the-curtain-part-2/

BillD
December 31, 2010 6:36 am

The first sentence of this post by Easterbrook starts with a misleading comparison about the 1930s. It then moves on to some slights of the hand, in which 1905 is described as “the present.” I just don’t see how anyone with a skeptical bone in their bodies would trust the following calculations for which no methods are given. One might also ask whether proxies other than O18, give the same results. O18 may be a useful proxy for temperature, but I would like to see comparisons between O18 and other proxies and even, recent instrumental data, if possible. Would you accept the O18 data so readily and completely if the analysis supported ACW? I like to go back to the original data, where possible. However, Easterbook does not give enough methods to make this possible.

December 31, 2010 8:23 am

BillD,
While you were typing, gallopingcamel gave the answer to your question. And you are presuming that Dr Easterbrook is being sly just because he didn’t write his article exactly as you want. That lame argument is simply alarmist projection. Why not write him and ask for his comment? You might learn something.
OTOH, if you want to see outright, provable dishonesty and scientific fraud, you need look no further than MBH98/99, upon which the AR-4 conclusions are based [along with plenty of amateur input from the WWF and other NGOs]. Read A.W. Montford’s The Hockey Stick Illusion, available along the right sidebar. Then report back on your view of Mann’s outrageous scientific misconduct.
Oregon Perspective says:
“No known mode of internal variability [that is, natural forcing] leads to such widespread, near universal warming as has been observed in the past few decades.”
That is a classic Argumentum ad Ignorantium: “We don’t know what causes climate variability. Therefore…
“Greenhouse gas forcing is the dominant cause of warming during the past several decades.”
Translation: “We do not understand how the climate really works. But we’re getting paid big bucks to conclude that the cause of current climate activity, which cannot be discerned from entirely natural past variability patterns, must be ‘greenhouse’ gases this time around.” That’s about it, eh?
Once again: zero scientific method employed, prominenet appeals to [well paid, biased] authority, rampant conjecture, and claimed consensus. The IPCC puts out anti-science hogwash and calls it science. But science without the scientific method is pseudo-science.
Doomsday cultists are nothing if not gullible.

Anthony P.
December 31, 2010 8:32 am

Thank you for a most informative interpretation of climate cycles I believe I may have ever seen that the average person can easily understand. Armed with this info, my kids will be better prepared to defend themselves against the brainwashing attempts of many of their peers and teachers!

December 31, 2010 8:59 am

Hi Oregon perspective
I am so glad you know and understand what is going on here.
I am sure you think 89 scientists must be able to somehow come up to you with the answers that you and I have been looking for.
Well, all I need you to tell me eaxactly is how much (radiative) warming and how much (radiative) cooling is caused by the increase of 0,01% CO2 that occurred in the past 50 years.The snag is; I don’t need assumptions, models, and mathematical calculations. I don’t trust those. I want to see actual test results obtained during a real experiment.
The unit is a giveaway:
it must be in W/m2/0.01% CO2/unit of time, for the (radiative) warming and it must be in W/m2/0.01 % CO2/unit of time for the (radiative) cooling
We would also need to know how much cooling is caused by the CO2 by taking part in the process of photo synthesis. Because at the end of the day: the question is what is the net effect of the cooling and warming caused by CO2?
As I said before, the IPCC evaluated “forcing” of each GHG by comparing the increase of GHG’s with the modern warming taking 1750 as the zero point. (see chapter 2 of your quote to me). It is just like they “knew” exactly what was causing warming and started working from there, namely an increase in GHG’s.
they do not have the actual test results that I am looking for.
So it is back to zero (Start). I am saying that GHG’s did not cause modern warming, because of what we see at weather stations: No increase in average minimum temps that matches modern warming. If GHG’s caused modern warming it would have been minimum temps. that should show a steeper increase (heat being trapped during the colder part of the day – night time). Yet, those are flat.
http://www.letterdash.com/HenryP/more-carbon-dioxide-is-ok-ok

From Peru
December 31, 2010 9:30 am

[Snip. Per the Policy page, comments that contain the pejorative “denialists”, “deniers,” etc. will be snipped. ~dbs, Mod.]

From Peru
December 31, 2010 10:05 am

Smokey says:
December 30, 2010 at 9:34 pm
“From Peru can’t think straight. Cognitive dissonance in action.”
That sentence describes you. Because you say:
“He claims there was a 2 – 4° temperature rise over the past century, when even the IPCC says the rise was only 0.7°. Contradicting himself, he admits that the 0.7° [natural] rise is a “GLOBAL average.”
Well, DUH!”
We are talking about GREENLAND, since the GISP2 data is from an ice core in GREENLAND. If you compare the ice core temperature proxies from Greenland and then you compare it with the global average instrumental temperature record, you are comparing apples with oranges.
I give you a map that shows a warming between 2ºC and 4ºC in GREENLAND, and a list of the stations in GREENLAND that measured that warming.
It is not clear?
Then you go to say:
“CAGW alarmists belong to a doomsday cult, the same as Mrs Keech’s flying saucer cult, or the Jehovah’s Witnesses doomsday cult. There is no reasoning with such cognitive dissonance-afflicted alarmists.
CO2 is a total non-problem. But True Believers’ minds are made up and closed tight.
The scientific method would clear things up for them, but nothing can penetrate their belief systems.”
You talk abou the scientific method, but you use abundantly half-truths (like mutilated graphs) and flawed comparisons that have nothing to do with the scientific method.
I will wait until your response. If you still doesn’t undestand the difference between GREENLAND and the GLOBE, you really will show that “nothing can penetrate your belief system.”

Ray
December 31, 2010 10:14 am

That explains why there were forests in the far north of Canada back 5000 years ago.

Oregon Perspective
December 31, 2010 10:49 am

Henry-
I referred to the IPCC report because it represents the latest global consensus on climate modeling and CO2..
But each year the United States two major modeling labs, GISS and NCAR also publish 10s of papers in both popular and technical scientific journals describing their approaches to climate modeling, including the impact of CO2. GISS 2010 publications are available here: http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/abstracts/2010/
One of the latest from GISS is “Atmospheric CO2: Principal Control Knob Governing Earth’s Temperature” in the 10/15 issue of Science, which can be found at: http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/2010/2010_Lacis_etal.pdf
This article supplies or links the information you claim to want, but claim you are unable to find, including this summary: “Of the 2.9 W/m2 of GHG radiative
forcing from 1750 to 2000, CO2 contributed 1.5 W/m2, methane 0.55 W/m2, and CFCs 0.3 W/m2, with the rest coming from N2O and ozone (15). All of these increases in noncondensing GHG forcing are attributable to human activity.”
But I suspect that is still not enough for you.

December 31, 2010 10:51 am

Ray,
Correct observation. The planet has been warmer many times during the Holocene, as tree lines all over the globe show. The current *mild* warming is indistinguishable from those numerous prior warmings.
All the emotional hand-wringing over what is clearly natural climate variability sends some members of the CAGW Doomsday Cult over the edge.
The only verifiable effect of the increase in harmless, beneficial CO2 is increased agricultural productivity. There is no evidence of global harm due to the ≈40% increase in that minor trace gas.
A 40% increase is not insignificant. You would think that there would be some major evidence of global harm as a result. The fact that there is no such verifiable, testable evidence is a strong indication that CO2 is harmless. But some folks are fixated, and they just can’t let go of their repeatedly falsified conjecture.

MVB
December 31, 2010 11:02 am

Smokey says:
December 30, 2010 at 3:05 pm
“Natural climate variability completely explains the rise, with no need for an extraneous variable such as CO2 — which follows rises in temperature. Effect cannot precede cause, and the climate null hypothesis has never been falsified. What we are observing is natural and routine.”
Totally. 100% agree with you, and that point could be made with the provided graphs, and I think Dr. Easterbrook has made an excellent contribution to this, particularly the importance of cool/warm phases in the big climate change picture. See here for that:
http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/reprint/multidecadal_tendencies.pdf
But that’s NOT so in the article this a thread for. Dr. Easterbrook was making comparisons about 2010, while none of the graphs even show the last decade. And as far as Figure 5, the critiques are valid. Dr. Easterbrook very clearly made the statement: “So where do the 1934/1998/2010 warm years rank in the long-term list of warm years? [ referring to Fig. 5 graph!] Of the past 10,500 years, 9,100 were warmer than 1934/1998/2010. [–> FALSE, they were warmer than 1905; check the graph] Thus, regardless of which year ( 1934, 1998, or 2010) turns out to be the warmest of the past century, that year will rank number 9,099 in the long-term list.” [–> false statement].
Pointing this out does NOT make one a “Pro-AGWer”, “alarmist” or what not.

Oregon Perspective
December 31, 2010 11:08 am

Henry-
An example of an NCAR publication which supplies the information or links you claim to want is the the 4/16/2010 issue of Science, “Tracking Earth’s Energy”, and available here: http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/Trenberth/trenberth.papers/T_SciencePerspectiveApril10.pdf
It contains the information you claim to be unable to find, including this summary: “Increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases have led to a post-2000 imbalance at the top of the atmosphere of 0.9 ± 0.5 W m–2 ( 5); it is this imbalance that produces “global warming.””
Additional supporting information is available here: http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/Trenberth/trenberth-publish.html#2010
But I suspect that is still not enough for you.

e. c. cowan
December 31, 2010 11:12 am

I remember walking to school in the fall/winter of 1948 and gathering ice off the tops of the cars and making ice-ball to throw at the other kids. This was in Santa Monica, California, about 1 1/2 miles from the Pacific Ocean…….
I’m pretty sure is was that New Years Day parade in Pasadena, that a neighbor girl rode on one of the floats – in a bathing suit – and thought she would freeze to death before it was over!
Found this Online:
“I have a picture of the snowfall (in Pasadena) taken January 1949.”
I guess all those war-time factories had stopped producing C02, so things cooled off.

December 31, 2010 11:52 am

Oregon P says:
“Of the 2.9 W/m2 of GHG radiative forcing from 1750 to 2000, CO2 contributed 1.5 W/m2, methane 0.55 W/m2, and CFCs 0.3 W/m2, with the rest coming from N2O and ozone (15). All of these increases in noncondensing GHG forcing are attributable to human activity.
But I suspect that is still not enough for you.”
It seems you know why I would not be satisfied? yes, those are the results. But I wanted to know how the experiments were done to get to these results.
The reality I had to consider, is: there are no such results from any such experiments, that gave those measurements, other than the one experiment called ‘planet earth”..
So it is a dudd. From AS to IPPC 2007. The horse is behind the carriage, everywhere.
So my question started with: what if there is nothing wrong with CO2 and my carbon footprint? What if modern warming is not caused by GhG’s?
and that is why I am now here:
http://www.letterdash.com/HenryP/more-carbon-dioxide-is-ok-ok
Here in South Africa we are now just a few hours away from 2011 so I don’t think I will be back here with you again in 2010
Have a wonderful 2011 you all!
may God be with us all, this 2011
(especially those that believe in honesty and truth)

Dave Wendt
December 31, 2010 12:58 pm

Oregon Perspective says:
December 31, 2010 at 10:49 am
Henry-
I referred to the IPCC report because it represents the latest global consensus on climate modeling and CO2..
You seem to have some difficulty coming to grips with the concept of “evidence”. Even the creators of all those GCMs freely admit that they are all almost completely inadequate at modeling any part of the role of H2O in the planet’s climate. H2O in its myriad aspects, impacts and influences is, as the primary mediator of the energy that the Sun provides to the Earth, responsible for almost everything that constitutes what we speak of when discussing the weather and climate, including the dubious positive feedbacks which are at the core of the catastrophic projections of the CAGW hypothesis. Until the GCMs model H2O with much more thoroughness than they presently provide for CO2, which despite decades of effort and billions invested is in itself nothing to brag about, running endless iterations of them from now to the next millennium may suggest some new questions to pursue, but will never provide a substantial answer to any of the questions which have already been asked.

Oregon Perspective
December 31, 2010 2:18 pm

Ray and Peru-
Smokey, Henry, Bill, and even Easterbrook are is just [snip] you on this. They are saying that hundreds of climate research scientists, who have published their methods, data, and analysis in 1000s of research articles are wrong. But Smokey, Henry, Bill, and Easterbrook, who have done none of that, are right. They’re not.
The giveaway is in the first sentence of Easterbrook’s article, which begins “1934 has long been considered the warmest year of the past century.” Easterbrook is either [snip ~ ad hom]. 1934 was only one of the warmest years of the past century in the United States. 1934 was not a warm year around the world. You can see that difference in figures 1 and 4 at http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/2007/
[Really? – try this: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/09/04/in-search-of-cooling-trends/ it uses GISS data too, and compare it with the figure labelled (b) on the GISS page]
So Easterbrook either, unknowlingly cherry-picked his data, or [snip]. That’s propaganda, not science.
The same is true of his use of the GISP2 data. Easterbrook, Smokey, and Bill pretend that the Greenland ice core temperatures are representative of global temperatures. Even Alley, who gathered that data says they are not. Again, [snip].
I don’t think this individuals are interested in testing their ideas against the evidence, which is what science does. They are merely cherry-picking or misrepresenting evidence to make their ideas (whereever they come from) seem respectable, without publishing them where knowledgeable peers can respond.
[Professor Easterbrook knows what publication requires: here is his publications list.]
Neither Easterbrook’s first sentence nor his paper would survive peer-review. Not because of a conspiracy of climate research scientists. But because some people care about honestly testing ideas against evidence, and other people don’t.
GISS and NCAR have 100s of publications with methods, data, and analysis to back up there conclusions. This bunch doesn’t.
It doesn’t usually take long to figure out who your talking to.
[And your grammar would not survive peer-review in fourth grade. On the other hand read this posting, which hardly commends peer review.
Note – your comment above has been languishing in the spam queue. Continued postings in this vein are likely to earn similar treatment. Commenters here are expected to adhere to the blog policy (under About WUWT tab at top) about Ad Hominem and to add to the discussion, not just rubbish the guest author’s and other commenters’ opinions ~jove, mod]
[Reply from another moderator: Dr Easterbrook is well respected professionally, and has generously offered to write this article. Having read your comments that were snipped by moderator jove, please take this as a warning. Further vicious personal attacks like the ones snipped will result in your future posts being sent straight to the spam bucket. ~dbs, mod.]

Not Another Architect
December 31, 2010 6:10 pm

Dr. Easterbrook,
Thanks for a great post.
Have you ever studied the volcanic activity – relative to the warming – cooling, over the past 10,000years?
As a design professional, attempting to use the best possible information in my practice, I am deeply appreciative of your efforts.
I have been pleased (so far) with my ‘overgain’ passive solar designs.
I design in ‘overgain’ to force natural ventilation – if global cooling becomes an issue – these structures will no longer be quite so independent of the back-up heating systems.
I will continue my study.
Have a great new year!
Not Another Architect

Merovign
December 31, 2010 8:30 pm

Someone reminded me recently that I used to point out we were far below the 10,000-year average, so wake me up when we get *that* high… and this was back in the late 1990s.
I wish I knew where I’d got that data, though I did a big research project on the subject about 1998, I don’t have the source for that factoid handy.
My only point was that the general fact of where we lie in the long term has been known (and ignored by CAGW boosters) for quite a long time. I got it from someone else’s research, I didn’t come up with those facts on my own.
So many people have made CAGW a career, however, that even if it’s debunked it will be like ending the income tax – most the accountants and the IRS would be out of work, so they fight like heck against the very idea.

January 1, 2011 8:07 am

Henry@oregon P
You now resort to name calling because you feel threathened.
I am guessing here that your livelyhood depends on the lies about global warming being true. I do understand that you are angry. Unfortunately I cannot change the truth. It is all here. All the facts.
http://www.letterdash.com/HenryP/more-carbon-dioxide-is-ok-ok
The average temps. we have today is still lower than the average temperature of the last 10000 years during which most of humanity developed.
Our (religious) forefathers tried to stop the truth from spreading, that the earth was a round ball and not in the centre of the universe. In the end they did not succeed. ..
they forgot that Jesus (God) is the truth. The truth does have this habit of making an appearance every so often. Better be prepared for that. Look for another job while you still can?
If you do not accept my findings, bring your arguments.
Otherwise those here who know the truth are simply going to shrug and say: there are none so blind as those who do not want to see…..

propitiousmoment
January 1, 2011 10:06 am

Reading the sceptics of climate science is like reading the sceptics of evolution for me, a non-scientist. Ya’ll are nitpicking to find any little thing to scream “discrepancy” and ignoring the larger picture. In the case of evolution, the larger picture is “what can we learn about human nature and how can we use that to improve our condition?” In the case of climate science, it is “how have we humans impacted our environment and what can we do to lessen the impact or turn it into a neutral or positive rather than a harmful effect?” It doesn’t seem to me (again, I am a non-scientist) that the effluents we have been spewing into our atmosphere, oceans, and land for the last 150 years especially, are particularly benign whether they result in overall warming or not. The point is to clean up our act, not to split hairs over data that may or may not be ambiguous. If you LIKE breathing smog or absorbing radiation or ingesting toxic chemicals, fine. If you make money off of activities that result in these ill effects, your bias is noted. However, the rest of us have a vested interest in our own and the planet’s continued good health and survival. So nitpick all you want, the vast majority of us want the industrialized world to clean up our act and the time to begin it is a couple or five decades ago, or at the latest, NOW, but not “never.”

January 1, 2011 12:12 pm

henry@p-moment
It appears you missed the point that CO2 is not a pollutant.
http://www.letterdash.com/HenryP/more-carbon-dioxide-is-ok-ok
Everything you ate and drank today (except if it were pure water)
depends on carbon dioxide.
We need more of that, not less.
You can filter out all other evils
(CO,SO2, heavy metals)
but please put more CO2 in the air
not less.

Rob
January 2, 2011 3:12 am

Milankovitch clearly explained that 10,000 year until now shows a decrease in Northern Hemisphere summer irradiance. Greenland thus received significantly more solar energy in the summer than it does not. It’s actually surprising that the reduction in solar irradiance over the past 10,000 years did not cause more cooling. Now that the Arctic is warming up 4 C in the past couple of decades, after cooling according to Milankocitch cycles for a few degrees over 10,000 years, it is clear that something truely profoundly different is diving the recent warming in the Arctic.

January 2, 2011 6:19 am

Henry@Rob
It appears to me that the entire Holocene — the period over which, by some odd coincidence, humanity developed agriculture and civilization — the temperature has been higher than now, and the trend over the past 4000 years is a marked decline. From this perspective, it’s the LIA that was unusual, and the current warming trend simply represents a return to the mean.
Perhaps do some real research yourself?
http://www.letterdash.com/HenryP/more-carbon-dioxide-is-ok-ok

January 2, 2011 10:26 am

However I agree with the premise of this article, I think the years at the bottom of these charts aren’t right, you can’t assume that ice core rings are annual rings.
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ue8rVSmrmZ0&fs=1&hl=en_US]

January 2, 2011 11:52 am

Henry@elmer
They must have worked out some calibration method
e.g. the last graph in the article clearly shows the Roman warm period,
at the correct year hundred
which was known in England,
it was why the Romans could conquer England
If the rings are not years, then what do they represent?

From Peru
January 2, 2011 12:42 pm

And now using the data missing in the mutilated graph (the last 100 years that show a warming of 3ºC), temperatures in Greenland now are 2ºC warmer than in the Medieval Warm Period and 1ºC warmer than in the Roman Warm Period, and tied with the temperatures in the Minoan Warm Period and the Holocene Maximum.
That is, temperatures unprecedented (in Greenland) in the last 3400 years!
This is a point that is missing in the Dr. Don J. Easterbrook post.
Now I make this question again (nobody has even tried to answer it, someone just denied* that there has been 3ºC of warming in Greenland, showing that he cannot tell the difference between regional and global warming):
(NOTE: when I used the verb “denied*”, I do NOT call “denier” someone, only decribe what has been doing in his comments, that is negating the evidence.)
Why has Greenland warmed to levels near those seen in the most warm periods in the Holocene, given that Milanktovich Cycles has been in a cooling trend for millenia?

Dave H
January 2, 2011 12:48 pm

@Henry P & Merovign
Care to actually put a figure on what you think the average global temperature of the last 10k years is and how you derived it? So we can, you know, check your working, compare it to today and see if your claim stands up?

bgood2creation
January 2, 2011 2:37 pm

The irrational nonsense that is perpetuated on this site is alarming. It has already been noted in various comments that 1934 is not one of the warmest years on record globally. Confusing USA with the globe is an ignorant mistake. At least make a correction when it is pointed out. Just as the USA is not the world, neither is Greenland. And why do you perpetuate the bogus contention that the globe has cooled since 1998? This past decade was the warmest in the instrumental record. Every global temperature record shows a warming trend since 1998. For those of you who are confused, no climate scientist predicts a monotonic warming inline with CO2 increase. You are cherry picking data and arguing with straw men. Stop it and get back to reality!

From Peru
January 2, 2011 3:51 pm

bgood2creation says:
January 2, 2011 at 2:37 pm
“The irrational nonsense that is perpetuated on this site is alarming. (…) And why do you perpetuate the bogus contention that the globe has cooled since 1998? This past decade was the warmest in the instrumental record. Every global temperature record shows a warming trend since 1998. For those of you who are confused, no climate scientist predicts a monotonic warming inline with CO2 increase. You are cherry picking data and arguing with straw men. Stop it and get back to reality!”
Well said!
It seems that some people simply can’t (or more precisely, doesn’t want to) undestand this facts!

January 2, 2011 6:21 pm

bgood2creation says:
“You are cherry picking data and arguing with straw men.”
If picking 1998 is cherry-picking [which I agree it is], then to avoid that problem we should look at various, and longer, time frames. [Incidentally, picking “the instrumental record” is no different than cherry-picking 1998.]
My preference is the Holocene, which is generally accepted as the beginning of the current interglacial. It covers the past ≈10,000 years, and so avoids picking one particular year, or even a few decades.
Also, I agree that Greenland is a specific region. So to make the discussion global, we will add the Antarctic. The Vostok ice cores correlate well with GISP-2 in Greenland [as do other ice core locations], so we can be reasonably certain that unusually warm or cold periods like the MWP and the LIA were global events.
Looking at a chart of Greenland’s temperatures during the Holocene, we see that it was considerably warmer than up to a century and a half ago, when the ice core record stops due to the fact that annual snow cover has not yet compacted into ice.
Keep in mind that the temperature rise over the past ±150 years is widely accepted to be ≈0.7°C. That shows us that Greenland has been significantly warmer than today during much of the Holocene.
Likewise, temperatures in the Southern Hemisphere [at Vostok in Antarctica] have been much warmer than now many times throughout the Holocene.
In addition, there is physical evidence showing that rises in CO2 follow rises in temperature. There appears to be an ≈800 year lag between temperature rises and CO2 rises at millennial time scales. That would attribute much of the curent CO2 rise to the MWP.
And although increased CO2 will cause some minor global warming, it must be kept in mind that the past century’s 0.7°C rise was caused at least in part by the planet’s emergence from the LIA. It is baseless conjecture to attribute 100% of that relatively insignificant rise entirely to CO2. And there is no doubt that more CO2 has resulted in increased agricultural yields; more CO2 is clearly beneficial to the biosphere.
Further, the IPCC’s own figures show that the anthropogenic portion of CO2 emissions is dwarfed by the planet’s natural emissions.
Next, the climate’s sensitivity to CO2 must be a small number, very likely less than 1°C per doubling. If the sensitivity number were large [eg: the IPCC’s preposterous 3 – 6°C], then the temperature would closely track changes in CO2. This is obviously not the case. There is little correlation between temperature and CO2 at short time scales, therefore climate sensitivity to CO2 must be small. QED
So we see a few things in these graphs. First, we are in an interglacial period, where global temperatures have routinely been much higher than they are now. We see that the normal condition of the planet is glacial. We see that natural variability fully explains the current climate, with no necessity for a minor extraneous variable such as CO2. We see that during the Holocene temperatures have been much higher than today’s pleasant climate. And by adding the 0.7°C warming since the Industrial Revolution onto the GISP-2 evidence, we see that temperatures of 2 – 3°C higher than curent were commonplace; the claim that current temperatures were anywhere near the Minoan Optimum are baseless nonsense.
Therefore, your statement that “The irrational nonsense that is perpetuated on this site is alarming” is falsified. The facts that have been presented in these graphs are neither irrational, nor are they nonsense.
The question that must be answered by the alarmist crowd is this: what empirical, testable evidence shows that actual global harm has resulted from the [not-insignificant] ≈40% rise in CO2? With such a large increase, if CO2 were harmful, there would already be noticeable damage to the planet.
Yet there is no such evidence.
The conclusion: CO2 is both harmless and beneficial at these levels. The CO2=CAGW scare is debunked, and all the references to “carbon”, “carbon footprint”, “carbon credits”, and so on, are based on pseudo-science, and on the refusal to adhere to the scientific method.
Cold kills. Warmth is good. And more CO2 is beneficial.

January 2, 2011 7:20 pm

Henry@Smokey
I could not have said it any better! God bless you!
Henry@those who do not want to hear the truth:
What Smokey just said here on this site would simply have been wiped at any pro-AGW site. I know. I have been there, done that. They just did not give me the T-shirt.
So if you find the irrational nonsense perpetuated on this site alarming, why don’t you go back there? Any type of story will be allowed there, as long as it supports the argument that man made carbon dioxide is evil. Unfortunately it will change nothing to the truth. I hope you realize that?
http://www.letterdash.com/HenryP/more-carbon-dioxide-is-ok-ok

From Peru
January 2, 2011 8:56 pm

Smokey says:
January 2, 2011 at 6:21 pm
“Keep in mind that the temperature rise over the past ±150 years is widely accepted to be ≈0.7°C.”
You are again confusing GLOBAL temperatures (that have indeed warmed 0.7ºC) with REGIONAL temperatures in Greenland, that have warmed between 2ºC and 4ºC. It is so difficult to understand?
“That shows us that Greenland has been significantly warmer than today during much of the Holocene”
This is quite false, now we are at temperatures as high as in the Minoan Warm Period and the Holocene Maximum in GREENLAND.
“And by adding the 0.7°C warming since the Industrial Revolution onto the GISP-2 evidence, we see that temperatures of 2 – 3°C higher than curent were commonplace; the claim that current temperatures were anywhere near the Minoan Optimum are baseless nonsense”
What is nonsense is comparing the GLOBAL temperatures with the REGIONAL paleoclimate data in GREENLAND. You are comparing apples with oranges. The temperatures in Greenland are near the temperatures of the Minoan Warm Period (or even warmer).
“In addition, there is physical evidence showing that rises in CO2 follow rises in temperature. There appears to be an ≈800 year lag between temperature rises and CO2 rises at millennial time scales.”
That is a positive, amplyifing feedfack. What it shows is that warming (that in the past was caused by Milanktovich Cycles) liberates CO2 from the ocean. This in turn generates more warming. This is one of the mechanisms that explains why the mild forcing from Milancktovich cycles can drive the planet from ice ages to interglacials and viceversa.
“That would attribute much of the curent CO2 rise to the MWP”
This is total nonsense. The current rise, equal to the difference between glacial and interglacial periods, cannot be explained by the small warming of the MWP. The oceans now are net absorbers, not emitters, of CO2; as a result, the ocean acidity has increased by 30%. If the ocean warming were the cause of the rise of CO2 , the acidity would have dropped, not increased. Obviously this monstruous rise in CO2 is caused by the emission of CO2 from fossil fuel burning, that is ocurring at a rate not seen in billions of years.
“The question that must be answered by the alarmist crowd is this: what empirical, testable evidence shows that actual global harm has resulted from the [not-insignificant] ≈40% rise in CO2? With such a large increase, if CO2 were harmful, there would already be noticeable damage to the planet.
Yet there is no such evidence. ”
Have you read the extensive literature about the alarming events that are happening right now in the planet?
Are you aware that summertime Arctic sea ice volume has dropped by 80%?
http://psc.apl.washington.edu/ArcticSeaiceVolume/images/BPIOMASIceVolumeAnomalyCurrent.png
What about the accelerating meltdown of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, 100 years ahead of what climate models predicted?
“Increasing rates of ice mass loss from the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets revealed by GRACE”
http://thingsbreak.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/increasing-rates-of-ice-mass-loss-from-the-greenland-and-antarctic-ice-sheets-revealed-by-grace.pdf
And the rate of sea level rise, that is at the top of the range predicted by the IPCC?
And much more. A good review is here:
http://www.ccrc.unsw.edu.au/Copenhagen/Copenhagen_Diagnosis_LOW.pdf

January 2, 2011 9:52 pm

Careful, there, Peru me boy, you’ll frighten yourself to death. Your arguments are the usual warmist Argumentum ad Ignorantium: “If I can’t think of any other reason than CO2 to blame, then the cause must be CO2!” You’re simply ignorant of the many other possible causes of fluctuating temperatures.
There is not one event that can conclusively be blamed on the rise in CO2. It is entirely speculation, based on your Argumentum ad Ignorantium. When you return to the echo chamber you came from, you will feel comfortable, because they don’t believe in the scientific method. Here, you will get set straight.
See, we’re talking about global warming on this “Best Science” site. By disregarding the numerous charts from various sources that I posted, you can’t understand that I was showing various global locations that all show the same thing: the planet was warmer many times in the past.
All available evidence [as opposed to models, which are not evidence] shows that during the Holocene there were numerous times when global temperatures were significantly higher than they are today. Since that fact destroys the CAGW argument, you simply ignore the evidence, and fall back on your ridiculous assertions that this is as warm as it has ever been in the Holocene. Cognitive dissonance at work.
The alarmist contingent still refuses to avbide by the scientific method, but relies instead on a mythical “consensus” to support their true belief. Thirteen years after MBH98, serial liar Michael Mann still refuses to disclose his data, methodologies and metadata that he based his Hokey Stick chart on. Mann’s chart has been repeatedly debunked, and only his credulous followers still believe in it. Mann’s chart attempted to erase the MWP and LIA, against mountains of evidence to the contrary.
You are doing the same thing, by preposterously claiming that the Minoan Optimum was no warmer than today. CO2=CAGW is your conjecture. You own it, and you have the onus of proving it. Yet you cannot demonstrate any harm that CO2 has caused the planet.
You complain about regional examples – then you use the Arctic region as global evidence. Global ice cover is about average because the Antarctic holds almost 90% of the world’s ice — and Antarctic ice is expanding. Global CO2 affects temperature everywhere. But you cherry-pick one lame example: the Arctic region. Is that the best you can do?
Keep in mind that scientific skeptics have nothing to prove. The onus is entirely on the alarmist crowd to convincingly show that their conjecture explains reality better than the null hypothesis – which has never been falsified – while the alternate CAGW hypothesis has been repeatedly falsified. That is why it has been downgraded to the level of conjecture.
Trying to claim that today’s mild temperature is as warm as the Roman, Minoan and Holocene Optimum makes you sound like a raving lunatic. It is a ridiculous and erroneous statement with no basis in fact. Best to stop digging before you reach China, and have to turn around.

Rob
January 2, 2011 11:24 pm

@Henry,
You may have misunderstood my comment. Milankovitch cycles clearly a decline in Northern Hemisphere summer solar irradiance over the past 10 millennia, which is consistent with the decline in Greenland temperatures. The LIA is only the end of that decline, where it may be noted that probably the Mounder Minimum contributed (some -0.2 C) to the already low NH temperaratures.
So it is no surpise that temperatures in Greenland declined over the past 10 millennia, and during the LIA as well.
So the 20th Century warming (of +0.8 C globally) is the real ‘unusual’ period during the Holocene, and especially the current rate of increase (some +0.2 C/decade global, and +0.3 C/decade in the NH) is completely inconsistent with the Milankovitch cycles and solar activity alike.

bgood2creation
January 3, 2011 12:40 am

Smokey says:
January 2, 2011 at 9:52 pm
“All available evidence [as opposed to models, which are not evidence] shows that during the Holocene there were numerous times when global temperatures were significantly higher than they are today. Since that fact destroys the CAGW argument, you simply ignore the evidence, and fall back on your ridiculous assertions that this is as warm as it has ever been in the Holocene.”
No, the fact the globe was possibly, or even likely warmer during certain periods compared to now during the Holocene does not in any way refute the CO2 induced global warming theory. The globe has warmed and cooled for various reasons in the past, but the current warming is most likely caused by increases of GHG, especially CO2. Your assertion that the current rise in CO2 concentrations was caused by the MWP is preposterous! You linked to a graph of temperature and CO2 variations derived form Antarctic ice cores. It shows that in the last 400,000 years CO2 levels did not rise above 300 ppm in the midst of big temperature swings, and you think a little bit of warming a few hundred years ago caused the recent 100 ppm spike! We are upsetting the equilibrium of the carbon cycle by pulling carbon that has been sitting in the earth for millions of years and pumping it into the atmosphere. WE are causing the spike in atmospheric CO2 concentration! We need to reign in this massive global experiment by reducing our output of GHG.
Thankfully Peru already noted many of false notions that you entertain. I am sorry for sounding a little harsh, Smokey. U