Another climate billboard

Of course we all know about that other ill-fated unabomber billboard last year that went over like a lead radiosonde balloon, but I like this one by CFACT (minus the date controversy of course).

Drive by this!

Science tells us that there is nothing out of the ordinary about today’s weather. There have always been droughts, floods, fires and storms and they will continue no matter what we do. A little historical research shows us that today’s weather is not even particularly extreme and by some measures is unusually tame.

NOAA and the U.K. Met Office, the two main sources of temperature data the UN’s IPCC rely on most, report that any warming there may have been has been limited to only three quarters of a degree in a century! Three quarters of a degree! Hardly the sort of thing to make a noticeable difference in extreme weather.

Further, the Met Office’s data shows no warming for the last 16-17 years! Our new billboard plasters the Met Office data in an easily understood graph right up in the sky. 

It shows no warming for over 16 years 15 years. I’ve sent them a correction notice.

billboard16yrsgraph

If you want to chip in to get one in your area, visit the link below. Billboards are surprisingly inexpensive.

http://www.cfact.org/donate/support-cfacts-billboard-campaign/

UPDATE: the 15/16 year issue discussed in comments is a matter of perception. If you count years, 97,98,99,00,01,02,03,04,05,06,07,08,09,10,11,12 you get a count of 16 years.

If you do the math, you get 15 years:

http://www.timeanddate.com/date/durationresult.html?m1=08&d1=31&y1=1997&m2=08&d2=31&y2=2012&ti=on

Note the extra day in that report. The issue has to do with defining the start point as zero or one. Counting years, like counting days, can give you can extra day. The timeanddate.com website allows for this by allowing you to not count the end day:

http://www.timeanddate.com/date/durationresult.html?m1=08&d1=31&y1=1997&m2=08&d2=31&y2=2012&ti=off

Either way, te lack of warming over the time period is a compelling argument.

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I am not paranoid; I just can’t be bothered to give out my details as well as my money. If there’s a PayPal tip-jar somewhere I’ll contribute. Not otherwise.

Sean Houlihane

If they can’t accept a donation without telephone number matching their arbitrary validation process, they loose. In my part of the globe, phone number is 12 or 13 digits depending if you include the internationalisation.

I think calling out Al Gore by name seems a tad unprofessional. I would have liked the billboard more if it had left personalities out of it.

Werner Brozek

If they want a huge billboard, they should at least be internally consistent. They say “No global warming for 16 years!” But then they show a graph clearly labelled from August 1997 to August 2012. That is only 15 years!
If they want to show 16 years, they should use RSS:
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/rss/from:1997/plot/rss/from:1997/trend

DesertYote

oldspanky says:
February 27, 2013 at 7:56 am
Sean Houlihane says:
February 27, 2013 at 7:57 am
###
I guess you guys are a bit clueless about the lefties propagandist tactics that necessitate the processes that you are whining about. Think a little bit before posting next time.

The tip jar is awkward. I definitely agree with oldspanky.

DGH

AW: “Billboards are surprisingly inexpensive.”
CFACTS: “This kind of advertising is expensive”
You might want to align the message.
REPLY: Well right there is proof there is no organizational aligned messaging as some people assert. Compared to television advertising (which I’m most familiar with) billboards are in fact quite cheap. – Anthony

That ‘inconvenient truth’ tag was bound to bite him in the derriere again and again!
Now that the Arctic ice has rebounded be ready for, ‘it’s the wrong’ type of ice alarmism from the Warmistas!

@DesertYote: I disagree. It is very important to be objective and precise when trying to get your message out. Otherwise you are no better than the side you are criticizing.
I also would contribute if PayPal were an option, if the billboard took out the ad hominem attack on Mr. Gore, and the data that was presented showed the same time period as the text. Otherwise the “message” looks mean-spirited and foolish.

bones

The interval from Jan 1997 through Dec 2012 IS 16 years, as advertised.
REPLY: no, it isn’t. Read the inset box lower right for dates, then see the results of this date calculator:
http://www.timeanddate.com/date/durationresult.html?m1=08&d1=31&y1=1997&m2=08&d2=31&y2=2012&ti=on
Anthony

rogerknights

That billboard will will look better in a couple of years, if it starts cooling, because then the “start” date can be kicked back further.

PRD

When you include the year 1997, it does add up to 16 years. Or figure it this way, 2000 to 2012 is 13 years, then add 97 – 99. So the billboard is actually – correct.
REPLY: no, it isn’t see http://www.timeanddate.com/date/durationresult.html?m1=08&d1=31&y1=1997&m2=08&d2=31&y2=2012&ti=on
-Anthony

Ben

” …should at least be internally consistent.”
There is no contradiction. Obviously the graph highlights two points with the identical temperature, while the statement is supported. The dates are clearly marked, and the intent of supporting the statement has been achieved.
Any message can be nit picked, and total agreement will never found.
I like the billboard, it sends the message loud and clear, and discussion about internal consistency will serve to underscore the main message. As far as mentioning Al Gore, as someone else commented on, he was not just the producer of the misleading movie “An Inconvenient Truth”, he was also the star actor and is identified with the message of doom that is the point of the movie. The image that comes to mind is AG standing in front of a graph just like this one, except on his the tail sticks up like an exxxxxxx and is coloured red.
A bit of controversy doesn’t hurt, provided it doesn’t insult the very people it is designed to persuade, it actually helps.
Well done on the billboard.

kindlekinser

If it is not warming, why has the temperature stayed at a high level for the last decade and a half? Shouldn’t it be cooling? I really don’t understand the skeptic argument here. Since it got really, really warm in 1997, we haven’t seen cooling. Seriously, what do you think is happening?

PRD says:
February 27, 2013 at 8:45 am
When you include the year 1997, it does add up to 16 years. Or figure it this way, 2000 to 2012 is 13 years, then add 97 – 99. So the billboard is actually – correct.

If it was including yearly averages from 1997 thru 2012 then it would in fact have 16 years worth of data. But it is not – it is starting with the month of August of 1997 and going through the month of August of 2012 which comprises 180 months of data – 15 years worth of monthly data.
Good that this gets corrected before the billboards go up. Otherwise, the error would become the CAGW focus and divert from the inconvenient truth.

DirkH

batpox says:
February 27, 2013 at 8:33 am
“I also would contribute if PayPal were an option, if the billboard took out the ad hominem attack on Mr. Gore, and the data that was presented showed the same time period as the text. Otherwise the “message” looks mean-spirited and foolish.”
Could you show us the ad hominem attack, batpox? I don’t see it. Is “An Inconvenient Truth” a mortal insult in Amerenglish?

Graham Green

In some respects the actual technical ‘correctness’ of the ad is irrelevant since it is well within the spirit of post normal science but wouldn’t it be nice if they could actually get it right. It makes us look incompetent.
It’s right to name Gore as, I guess, this is aimed at the chattering classes not the true believers, the rent boys of cake science or someone who might know what Svante Arrhenius contributed to the state of affairs.
I’m using the term ‘chattering classes’ in it’s original meaning as the educated left liberal elite who believe that they have the right to be the arbiters of consensus (the meaning of the term in the U.S. is a bit different). The rent boys of cake science are the likes of Mann and Jones.
Perhaps the glorified disc jockey’s presenting BBC programmes might start to think before calling us deniers.

john robertson

The 16 year error is brilliant, 15 or 16 years, the warmists will slam this “error”, while failing to realize they concede there has been no warming.
2nd I am amazed by their misery over the planets failure to warm.
If I had been deeply concerned that catastrophic harm through warming was a real consequence and then reality showed me to be mistaken, I would be giddy with joy.
What is the mood from team global warming?
Happy? Joy Joy?

klem

Wow if I put up a billboard like that where I live, the greenie protesters would haul out the pitchforks, the local tv station would show videos of the blasphemous billboard, the police would be called and my son would do a face-palm. The face-palm is the worst.

Scott

I suspect it doesn’t really matter, but there are 16 Augusts in the 15 years since August 1997. I will leave it to the folks who deal with this data set whether that is 16 or 15 years. I do know that when you compare annualized data such as crime statistics you would compare 2012 data to 1998 data for a 15-year trend.

Justthinkin

“I think calling out Al Gore by name seems a tad unprofessional. I would have liked the billboard more if it had left personalities out of it.”
There is just no response to this.The Gorbull calls us crazy,and you think it is fair? And how much is he paying you?

Phobos

This billboard may have set a record for the ultimate cherry pick — I wonder why they didn’t pick April 1997 to April 2012 (+0.24 C) or May 1997 to May 2012 (+0.24 C)?
And actually, HadCRUT4 has Aug2012 – Aug1997 = 0.1 C.
And actually the surface temperature (“14 C”) isn’t computed, only the anomalies. But then, there isn’t the impression this billboard really cares about the science. Too bad.

Dave

He who sows (Gore) shall reap. What`s wrong with that? Send the graph around widely.

Dan in Nevada

kindlekinser says:
February 27, 2013 at 9:01 am …. I really don’t understand the skeptic argument here…
The message might have been more clear if the graph also included the undoubtedly rising CO2 levels over the same time period. CAGW theory says that as CO2 levels rise, temperature will rise as well. Skeptics argue that all we are seeing is natural variation, which can include rising, falling, or even temperatures.

kim

kindlekinser @ 9:01
I read it. I read it again. I don’t understand.
=================

Kindlekinser, think about this for a second. If the possibilities are warming and cooling, then perhaps we are doing neither and temperatures are stagnant. Isn’t this a good thing? I thought after all was that everyone has been worried about climate change since the 1970’s and if the Climate ain’t changing doesn’t that mean we have nothing to worry about? Read the billboard again if you need to but I think the stagnant temperatures are rather obvious.

bill

Amazing how whenever a punchy bit of advertising is created, all sorts of people pop up saying “ooh, thats going a bit far”; “be better if (it were toned down in some way as to make it less effective)”. Now no-one could believe that an outfit like, say, Fenton Communications keeps a roster of people who are told to go leave a certain kind of comment on sites like this when something effective happens……. that would suggest that there’s an organised warmist conspiracy out there, what could be further from the truth. Everyone knows that warmists are just good people who really, really care…….

Eustace Cranch

kindlekinser says:
“Since it got really, really warm in 1997, we haven’t seen cooling. Seriously, what do you think is happening?”
Out: “Global Warming”
In: “Global Not Getting Cooler”
Stand by for further developments.

Mark Bofill

Phobos says:
February 27, 2013 at 9:20 am
This billboard may have set a record for the ultimate cherry pick — I wonder why they didn’t pick April 1997 to April 2012 (+0.24 C) or May 1997 to May 2012 (+0.24 C)?
And actually, HadCRUT4 has Aug2012 – Aug1997 = 0.1 C.
And actually the surface temperature (“14 C”) isn’t computed, only the anomalies. But then, there isn’t the impression this billboard really cares about the science. Too bad.
————————————————————————————
Cherry picking. Tell me, have temperatures plateaued over the past 16 years or haven’t they?

DesertYote writes; “I guess you guys are a bit clueless about the lefties propagandist tactics that necessitate the processes that you are whining about. Think a little bit before posting next time.”
I’ve thought quite hard now, and I have decided my posting was just fine. In fact I will repeat myself: make it easy for people to fund the billboard ‘cos it’s too easy not to bother.

Miket

Kindlekinser
Think about it as walking up a hill (warming) then the ground levels out (the last fifteen years, no warming, no cooling). Where does it go next? Up, down or straight on? Who knows.

Richard deSousa

I’m glad the billboard has Al Gore’s name on it. He’s the leading propagandist, a Baghdad Bob, for the Climate war.

Bruce Cobb

kindlekinser says:
February 27, 2013 at 9:01 am
If it is not warming, why has the temperature stayed at a high level for the last decade and a half? Shouldn’t it be cooling? I really don’t understand the skeptic argument here. Since it got really, really warm in 1997, we haven’t seen cooling. Seriously, what do you think is happening?
By what measure is the temperature “high”? It was, for example, .5C higher during the MWP, back when warmer was better, and agriculture and mankind thrived. Why do we have to be either warming or cooling? Don’t worry though, cooling is in the cards. Meanwhile, we should just enjoy the warmth instead of kvetching about it.
What is happening is that the much-ballyhooed GCM’s have been shown to be useless. You see, it turns out that in fact, C02 isn’t at all like a thermostat for our climate. It is not only not a major driver, it is a very minor one. We knew that, but it took mother nature to show it to the carbon-goggled Warmists.

MarkD

c’mon people… think it through…. it’s 15 years, because you’re not counting the first year, it’s your base point. If you stated that the avg temp in Aug 97 was 14.5 and in Aug 98 it was 14.5 (just for arguements sake), you wouldn’t say that was 2 years of no warming, right? of course not. It’s 1 year. Of course, that wouldn’t be true in all cases. If you were measuring something independent, like, ‘how many years with an avg temperature below 16 (again, for arguments sake), then you could include the first year. But because you’re measuring ‘warming’ the first year doesn’t count – it’s a base point.

Bill Parsons

It is ineffective to address Gore. He and his movie just helped focus the hysteria of aimless greens and misguided youth. Gore was just a highly-paid (but technologically-challenged) marketing agent of global warming paranoia. It little serves to give the deluded marketers of doom a public nose-thumbing. “How’s that sky-falling thing going, there, Chicken Little?”
I would superimpose this graph against one showing the hockey stick shaped curve of spending on AGW over the same period. Use the simple heading “15 Years of Global Warming”.

TRM

” kindlekinser says: February 27, 2013 at 9:01 am
If it is not warming, why has the temperature stayed at a high level for the last decade and a half? Shouldn’t it be cooling? I really don’t understand the skeptic argument here. Since it got really, really warm in 1997, we haven’t seen cooling. Seriously, what do you think is happening? ”
Sine wave. Nothing unusual at all. If you look at the data in this link (my favorite post here at WUWT over the years and that says a lot) you will see it has been cooling for thousands of years.
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/12/09/hockey-stick-observed-in-noaa-ice-core-data/
Get yer parka out 🙂

Ben

I agree with bill at 9:28, disagree with Bill Parsons at 9:53.
If I, a non scientist, non climatologist, ordinary person, hears or reads two opposing arguments about whether a graph supports 15 or 16 years of non warming, when I thought it had been warming all along, what is then the main takeaway message for me? The best thing would be that this becomes an issue that gets publicized.
In fact the louder the cry that it is warming, as per some comments above, the greater the perception that either 15 or 16 year graph should support that statement. If it doesn’t warm for another year then it can be milked further at that time. When it comes to persuasion then perception is everything, just look at the impact that AG’s movie had on public perception.

It’s 15 years cardinal and 16 years ordinal I think. If CFACT used 16 years cardinal and 17 years ordinal it would have shown a cooling trend because of the El Nino year. I think the billboard is honest.

Roger

Referring to the math: no, it is not arbitrary. You can’t claim either 15 or 16. For 15 consecutive years (assuming it is correct), there was no observed warming. For 16 years, you would have to move the origin back 1 further year. You could claim that we are NOW in the 16th year of no warming, but to make the claim that 16 years have PASSED with no warming, you would have to complete the current year, observing no warming.
So, no. It’s not semantics; it’s mathematics. I’m not correcting the science here, btw; I have no data to suggest that the 15 year no warming claim is either accurate or inaccurate. I’m just pointing out that you can’t just use, “When in Rome,” or “Let bygones be bygones,” or some other not-applicable platitude, to appease people who can’t be bothered to figure out basic math.
Those are the same people who thought the year 2000 was the beginning of the new millennium, vice the final year of the previous millennium (since the current calendar began AD reckoning in year 1, not year 0). 🙂

MikeN

Aug 2012 was 6 months ago. At this point, I think 16 years is acceptable, if temperatures have stayed at the same flat level.

Scott Basinger

You need month and day for the dates to see if the claim is correct. From January 1, 1997 – December 31st 2012 would be 16 years.

RockyRoad

MarkD says:
February 27, 2013 at 9:51 am

c’mon people… think it through…. it’s 15 years, because you’re not counting the first year, it’s your base point. …
But because you’re measuring ‘warming’ the first year doesn’t count – it’s a base point.

But your “base point”, as you admit, IS a year wide–so you can count it as a valid year, Mark–whatever the temperature it shows.
May I suggest YOU think it through?

Phobos

Mark Bofill says: “Tell me, have temperatures plateaued over the past 16 years or haven’t they?”
Asked, and answered.
If you mean surface temperatures, there is a statistically significant warming trend: 0.07 (0.04) C/decade according to GISS, 0.04 (0.04) C/decade according to HadCRUT4.
If you mean ocean temperatures, there is a statistically significant warming trend in the 0-700 m layer, and insufficient data in the 0-2000 m layer.
If you mean ocean surface temperatures, there has not been a statistically significant nonzero trend in that time.
If you mean the lower troposphere, there has been a statistically significant trend according to UAH data, but not according to RSS.
The stratosphere has significantly cooled in the last 16 years according to both RSS and UAH.
But why 16 years? No climatologist would ever make a judgement about climate based on 16 years. Would you judge the Medieval Warm Period based solely on what was happening from 997 AD to 1013 AD?

Roger says:
February 27, 2013 at 10:23 am
“Referring to the math: no, it is not arbitrary. You can’t claim either 15 or 16. ”
The chart shows an ordinal value of 16 years of no warming, the claim is that there is no warming for 16 years, there is no semantics here, the chart is correct. The cardinal value of 16 in this case is 15.

Peter in Ohio

Bill Parsons says:
February 27, 2013 at 9:53 am
——————————————
I respectfully disagree with the notion that “He (Gore) and his movie just helped focus the hysteria of aimless greens and misguided youth.”
Gore’s movie was portrayed by the US media (in my opinion) as the ultimate authority on climate change. Sadly too many “average” people in the US still consider the mainstream media to be a reputable source of information. Add to this the fact that the MSM insist on portraying skeptics as deluded fools, flat-earthers on the fringes of reality, it’s not surprising how few average folk even question the warmist dogma.
Sometimes it takes a billboard with a very simple and direct message that conflicts with peoples beliefs to make them actually put down the Angry Birds game and do a little investigating on their own.

Bill Parsons

Re:

Ben says:
February 27, 2013 at 10:08 am
I agree with bill at 9:28, disagree with Bill Parsons at 9:53.
If I, a non scientist, non climatologist, ordinary person, hears or reads two opposing arguments about whether a graph supports 15 or 16 years of non warming, when I thought it had been warming all along, what is then the main takeaway message for me? The best thing would be that this becomes an issue that gets publicized.

Hi Ben,
I don’t agree with your post, which seems to saying that AGW believers can willfully misunderstand the graph’s message, and claim that “it actually shows…” I don’t see any room for ambivalence about the graph. 15 years: no warming.
However, it is often repeated that it is impossible (and unnecessary) to prove a negative, or the “evidence of an absence”. The rule of rhetoric applies here because CO2-induced warming, man-made CO2-induced warming, and indeed warming itself are all bogus claims about non-events. Refuting them gives them credence.
What no one can refute are the levels of spending which have been growing over the same period. That is why I proposed “superimpos(ing) this graph against one showing the hockey stick shaped curve of spending on AGW over the same period. Use the simple heading “15 Years of Global Warming”.
Nobody likes to see currency being incinerated, but that is what our government is, in effect, doing.

Peter in Ohio

It really doesn’t matter if its 15 or 16 years, or 17 for that matter if we can simply reach a consensus on what number fits the narrative best.

Mark Bofill

Phobos says:
February 27, 2013 at 10:52 am
———————————————–
Come on Phobos. Are you playing games here? Yes, 0.04 C/decade is warming, no, 0.04 C/decade isn’t important warming. 0.4 C/century isn’t worth talking about, and it isn’t what the IPCC predicts, obviously. You know this as well as I do, so what’s the point in an answer like that?
Why 16 years? Again, you know perfectly well why. Temperatures have been pretty darn flat for that period, and that fact doesn’t do much to support the IPCC’s position on CO2 and temperature.

RACookPE1978

Phobos says:
February 27, 2013 at 10:52 am

But why 16 years? No climatologist would ever make a judgement about climate based on 16 years.

Funny ….
Hansen – in 1988 – used a shorter 13 year trend to BEGIN his crusade and his requests for funding FOR his theory of CAGW.
Then again, I would then be assuming Hansen is somehow, a “responsible scientist” instead of a screaming CAGW dogmatic extremist, er, criminal.

TRM

Pedantic bunch aren’t we? 🙂
Seriously folks ask one question: Is it effective? Heck yea is my vote.
Do all future versions more accurately? Sure. But you have to admit that is one very effective sound bite that makes a point in the space of time most people will actually spend analyzing things.