Another paper blames ENSO for global warming pause, calling it '… a major control knob governing Earth's temperature.'

English: This animation shows sea surface temp...

English: This animation shows sea surface temperature anomalies during the 1997-98 El Niño. Note the areas along the equator shown in red, where temperatures were warmer than average. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

UPDATE: Chris de Freitas responds to comments with an addendum below – Anthony

Readers may recall the recent paper that blamed “the pause” in global temperature on ENSO changes in the Pacific Ocean.

Recent global-warming hiatus tied to equatorial Pacific surface cooling

Yu Kosaka & Shang-Ping Xie Nature (2013) doi:10.1038/nature12534

Dr. Judith Curry called the paper “mind blowing

Now there’s another paper that reaches a similar conclusion:

Update of the Chronology of Natural Signals in the Near-Surface Mean Global Temperature Record and the Southern Oscillation Index

de Freitas and McLean, 2013, p. 237 (Int J Geosciences – open access):

“All other things being equal, a period dominated by a high frequency of El Niño-like conditions will result in global warming, whereas a period dominated by a high frequency of La Niña-like conditions will result in global cooling. Overall, the results imply that natural climate forcing associated with ENSO is a major contributor to temperature variability and perhaps a major control knob governing Earth’s temperature.”

ABSTRACT

Time series for the Southern Oscillation Index and mean global near surface temperature anomalies are compared for the 1950 to 2012 period using recently released HadCRU4 data. The method avoids a focused statistical analysis of the data, in part because the study deals with smoothed data, which means there is the danger of spurious correlations, and in part because the El Niño Southern Oscillation is a cyclical phenomenon of irregular period. In these situations the results of regression analysis or similar statistical evaluation can be misleading.

With the potential controversy arising over a particular statistical analysis removed, the findings indicate that El Nino-Southern Oscillation exercises a major influence on mean global temperature. The results show the potential of natural forcing mechanisms to account for mean global temperature variation, although the extent of the influence is difficult to quantify from among the variability of short-term influences.

Since the paper is open access, and available here: http://www.scirp.org/journal/PaperInformation.aspx?PaperID=27382

Here is the link to the PDF:

deFreitas_&_McLean_IJG_2013_SOI_&_Mean_Global_Temp

This figure is interesting:

SOI-hadcrut

Figure 1. Four-month shifted SOI anomalies with monthly MGT anomalies shown for periods 1950 to1970 (a), 1970 to 1990 (b) and 1990 to June 2012 (c), where the Y-axis scale is identical in each case. The dark line indicates SOI and light line indicates MGT. Periods of volcanic activity are indi-cated (see text).

Discussion and Conclusions

The results show that, by and large, the Southern Oscilla- tion has a consistent influence on mean global tempera- ture. Changes in temperature are consistent with changes in the SOI that occur about four months earlier. The rela- tionship weakens or breaks down at times of major volcanic eruptions. Since the mid-1990s, little volcanic activity has been observed in the tropics and global average temperatures have risen and fallen in close accord with the SOI of four months earlier; although with the unexplained divergence of NH and SH average temperature anomalies modifying the earlier relationship.

The strength of the SOI-MGT relationship may be indicative of the increased vigor in the meridional dispersal of heat during El Niño conditions and the delay in the temperature response is consistent with the transfer of tropical heat polewards. The mechanism of heat transfer is likely the more vigorous Hadley Cell Circulation on both sides of the Intertropical Convergence Zone distributing warm air from the tropical regions to higher lati- tudes. The process of meridional heat dispersal weakens during La Niña conditions and is accompanied by a lower than normal MGT. Hadley Cell Circulation is weakened when the Southern Oscillation is in a state associated with La Niña conditions (i.e. positive Troup SOI values), but strengthens as the Southern Oscillation moves to a condition consistent with El Niño conditions (that is negative SOI values) [6,7].

The precision of the 4-month lag period is uncertain, but the credibility of a lag of some length is not in dispute. Researchers [31] found that mean tropical temperatures for a 13-year record lagged outgoing longwave anomalies by about three months, while [32] found warming events peak three months after sea surface temperature (SST) in the Niño-3.4 region. On the same theme, [33] found lags between 1 – 3 months with SST in the Niño-3.4 region for the period 1950-1999. Along the same lines [14] determined that the correlation between SST in the Niño-3 region and the MGT anomaly was optimum with a time lag of 3-6 months. The sequence of the lagged relationship indicates that ENSO is driving temperature rather than the reverse. Reliable ENSO prediction is possible only to about 12 months [34], which implies that improved temperature forecasting beyond that period is dependent on advancements in ENSO prediction.

The reason for the post-1995 period shift in the SOI- MGT relationship illustrated in Figure 1(c) is puzzling. An explanation may lie in changes in global albedo due to changes in lower-level cloud cover. In an analysis of Australian data, [34] found positive values of SOI anomalies to be associated with increased cloudiness and decreased incoming solar radiation. Data from the International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project (ISCCP) indicate that, from 1984 to 2005, mid-level cloud cover in the tropics was relatively constant but both lower and upper level cloud cover declined slightly. In the exotropics (latitude > 20 degrees, low-level cloud progressively decreased from 1998 onwards. It is not clear whether the change is a cause or an effect of a parallel temperature change [35]. The post-1995 shift appears unrelated to carbon dioxide increase because it occurred long after atmospheric CO2 was known to be rising. It is important to see the shift as more of discrete (i.e. step) change rather than a divergence, with the relationship reestablished after 2 – 3 years. Another possibility is that there are problems with the HadCRUT4 1.1.0 data. For example, we note that the published monthly average global temperature anomalies are not equal to the mean of the two published corresponding hemispheric values.

The approach used here avoids a focused statistical analysis of the data, in part because the study deals with smoothed data, which means there is the danger of spu- rious correlations, and in part because the ENSO is a cyclical phenomenon of irregular period. In these situations, the results of regression analysis or similar statisti- cal evaluation can be misleading. With the potential con- troversy arising over a particular statistical analysis re- moved, the findings reported here indicate that atmos- pheric processes that are part of the ENSO cycle are col- lectively a major driver of temperature anomalies on a global scale. All other things being equal, a period dominated by a high frequency of El Niño-like condi- tions will result in global warming, whereas a period dominated by a high frequency of La Niña-like condi- tions will result in global cooling. Overall, the results imply that natural climate forcing associated with ENSO is a major contributor to temperature variability and per- haps a major control knob governing Earth’s temperature.

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

UPDATE: 9/5/13 4:15PM PDT Chris de Freitas asked for this addendum to be posted in response to comments/discussion – Anthony

I understand concerns of the global warming alarmists. I too have been looking high and low for evidence that human-caused carbon dioxide increase is a major driver of mean global temperature. Our current is not part of that quest.

The intention of the work reported in the paper (de Freitas and McLean, 2013) was to stay as far away as possible from statistical massaging of the data. The reason is that, in our earlier 2009 work (McLean, de Freitas and Carter – references below), we were roundly criticised for the statistical methods we used. It detracted from the main finding of the work (i.e. Fig 7), which was free from statistical massaging; namely, that ENSO accounted for a great deal of the variability in mean global temperature; similar to that reported in the more recent paper in Nature (Kosaka and Xie, 2013).

In de Freitas and McLean (2013) we also stayed away from looking for trends. Determining trends and implementing detrending procedures can be important steps in data analysis. However, there is no precise definition of ‘trend’ or any ‘correct’ algorithm for extracting it. Consequently, identification of trend in a time series is subjective because a trend cannot be unequivocally distinguished from low frequency fluctuations. For this reason, a variety of ad hoc methods have been used to determine trends and to facilitate detrending methods (which are also subjective).  As regards the correlation routine (Table 2 of our IJG 2013 paper), the idea there was to look for guidance in aligning the X-axis of Figures 1 and 3. It could have (even) been done by eye.

The overriding message is this. Climate is never constant; it is always cooling or warming. Various things cause these trends. Ever since I began studying climate 40 years ago I have been looking for patterns along with possible mechanisms and explanations. I have not had great success; if fact nobody has, and we have all been wrong once or twice. Notwithstanding that, our IJG (2013) paper shows that ENSO correlates well with global temperature. A possible reason (as described) is enhanced (or reduced) Hadley circulation, which increases (or decreases) the effectiveness of meridional heat transfer from the vast tropical zone of surplus towards the poles. It could be that the same process causes vast amounts of stored ocean heat to be fed into the atmosphere over extended periods (or moved back into the ocean over lengthy periods) The result is planet-wide warming (or cooling). If this persists, we get decadal scale global warming (or cooling) trends.

Like the work of Kosaka and Xie (2013), our IJG (2013) and earlier work (2009) shows that the current (or past hiatus), or multi-decadal-scale cooling or warming (‘climate change’), are possibly a reflection of natural climate variability tied specifically to ENSO decadal-scale processes. I assume these are superimposed upon what seems for the moment to be the less potent CO2-caused warming, and likely other less potent mechanisms as well.

Whether the ENSO-caused multi-decadal trends are internal or forced is unknown. My guess is that cooling and warming trends we see, or hiatus, are probably due to natural internal variability rather than a forced response. But we don’t know.

Chris de Freitas

de Freitas, C.R. and McLean, J.D., 2013. Update of the chronology of natural signals in the near-surface mean global temperature record and the Southern Oscillation Index. International Journal of Geosciences, 4(1), 234-239.

Open access at:

http://www.scirp.org/journal/PaperInformation.aspx?paperID=27382&

McLean, J. D., C. R. de Freitas, and R. M. Carter, 2009b. Correction to ”Influence of the Southern Oscillation on tropospheric temperature”, Journal of Geophysical Research, 114, D20101, doi:10.1029/2009JD013006. ISSN 0148-0227

McLean, J. D., C. R. de Freitas, and R. M. Carter, 2009a. Influence of the Southern Oscillation on tropospheric temperature, Journal of Geophysical Research, 114, D14104, doi:10.1029/2008JD011637. ISSN 0148-0227

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Good to see some professional climatologists waking up to what Bob Tisdale and many more of us have been telling them for years. ENSO is cumulative on longer timescales than modelling parameters allow. Which means 50 years of strong solar forcing and it’s amplification by cloud changes in the late C20th are the primary cause of the now ended warming period.

expect lots of scrambling wrt CO2 emissions affecting ENSO…

Stephen Richards

I haven’t found the obligatory ” the warming will resume 50 fold” at the end. Did I miss it?

Michael Gersh

Apparently the effort to blame the recent warming on human activities took too long, and natural variability is asserting itself, thus falsifying the AGW dream of the watermelons to use a natural warming period as a route to global socialist domination.

Peter Miller

Hmm, natural climate cycles, who would have thought it?
Remember, these are banned by global warming fanatics.

An out of ordinary English (CET) early summer in somwhat less ordinary year
http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/CET-Dmax.htm

Green Sand

“Another possibility is that there are problems with the HadCRUT4 1.1.0 data. For example, we note that the published monthly average global temperature anomalies are not equal to the mean of the two published corresponding hemispheric values.”

Shouldn’t this have been clarified with the compilers of the data set prior to publication? If the authors are thinking of taking up this issue with the UKMO they might also consider checking for any variability in the relationship of land to ocean in the data, hemispherical and/or global.
Overall very interesting should provoke a few “debates”!

“The mechanism of heat transfer is likely the more vigorous Hadley Cell Circulation on both sides of the Intertropical Convergence Zone distributing warm air from the tropical regions to higher lati- tudes. ”
and
“Data from the International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project (ISCCP) indicate that, from 1984 to 2005, mid-level cloud cover in the tropics was relatively constant but both lower and upper level cloud cover declined slightly.
According to my New Climate Model high solar activity such as was observed in the late 20th century causes the jets and climate zones to shift poleward and the circulation to become more zonal.
The subtropical high pressure cells widen latitudinally and the enhanced descent within those regions reduces cloud cover as was observed.
Now the opposite is occurring and the changes are correlated to the decline in solar activity from the late 90s onward.
The climate shift of 1995 or thereabouts was the opposite of the late 70s climate shift.
The sun is clearly driving changes in global air circulation and thus global albedo as per my model:
http://www.newclimatemodel.com/new-climate-model/
Doesn’t the 1995 shift also fit with our HenryP’s observations?
Anyway, there is now a plethora of recent papers which are consistent with my hypothesis but inconsistent with CO2 having the primary influence.
The fact seems to be that higher solar activity gradually skews ENSO in favour of warm El Ninos due to lower global albedo and more solar energy getting into the oceans.
The opposite when the sun is quiet.
And it operates in accordance with the millennial solar cycle as per the Roman Warm Period, Dark Ages, MWP, LIA and the Current Warm Period.
It is no coincidence that all those strong El Ninos of the recent warming spell have now faded away at the same time as the sun became less active, the jets became more meridional, global cloudiness increased, the tropospheric warming stalled and the stratosphere stopped cooling.

“All other things being equal, a period dominated by a high frequency of El Niño-like conditions will result in global warming, whereas a period dominated by a high frequency of La Niña-like conditions will result in global cooling. Overall, the results imply that natural climate forcing associated with ENSO is a major contributor to temperature variability and perhaps a major control knob governing Earth’s temperature.”
A step in the right direction! Let’s see if The Team jumps all over this as they did with McLean et al (2009). That would be more difficult now since the same thing is implied by Kosaka & Xie (2013) and the two recent Meehl et al papers.

Reblogged this on Bob Tisdale – Climate Observations and commented:

A step in the right direction! Let’s see if The Team jumps all over this as they did with McLean et al (2009). That would be more difficult now since the same thing is implied by Kosaka & Xie (2013) and the two recent Meehl et al papers.

Thousands of archaeological and other science’s papers showing mass global evidence of all the classic warm and cold periods did NOT dissuade Michael Mann in the SLIGHTEST. But this still might dissuade actual scientists…

Friends:
The paper says:

All other things being equal, a period dominated by a high frequency of El Niño-like conditions will result in global warming, whereas a period dominated by a high frequency of La Niña-like conditions will result in global cooling.

That is a self-evident truism.
El Niño provides a peak to global temperature and La Niña provides a dip to global temperature.
Hence, the average global temperature over a period will be raised if “dominated by a high frequency of El Niño-like conditions”.
And,
similarly, the average global temperature over a period will be lowered if “dominated by a high frequency of La Niña -like conditions”.
Because peaks raise the average while dips lower the average.
Three issues require investigation.
1.
Why has investigation of this self-evident truism been ignored by cliamastrologists so the work of people such as Tisdale has been side-lined?
2.
There is no obvious mechanism which would enable anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG, notably CO2) emissions to alter ENSO effects, so is it possible that the emissions could alter ENSO in the observed manner?
3.
If ENSO has such a large effect on warming and cooling then how much warming can be attributed to atmospheric CO2 concentration when there is no clear mechanism by which atmospheric CO2 concentration can alter ENSO?
These issues should have been addressed years ago and long before the “pause” in global warming forced consideration of the self-evident truism.
Richard

rogerknights

More pressure on the IPCC from “revolutionary” science findings.

Greg Goodman

I thought Bod Tisdale’s hypothesis was that it was both sides of the Nino/Nina cycle that produced global warming not just more El Ninos, so this is not really saying the same thing. Though, like he says, it’s a step in the right direction.
He may correct me if I’m misrepresenting his ideas but I thought the Tisdale hypothesis was periods of increased El Nino/Nina amplitude or frequency caused more solar to be captured by the oceans and then put out into atmosphere.
As I’ve said many times, that sounds very credible and leads to some further questions:
What frequency of Nino/Nina is climate neutral, above which warming occurs, and then the key question : what is causing / controlling El Nino.
This is the mechanism , not the cause.

Sceptical lefty

Pardon me for being sceptical, but the recent run of “It’s not quite as bad as we thought” papers suggests to me an attempt to construct an escape route. If timed correctly, there should be enough papers predicting an impending cold snap to salvage the shaky credibility of the climate-change industry when it becomes impossible to deny (you need to be careful with that word) that warming has ceased. Somehow, whatever happens will be bad and ALL OUR FAULT.
I suppose I need to work on my faith.

steveta_uk

Mr Lefty, I suspect that a sufficient weight of papers will shift the length of the allowable “hiatus” to 30-40 years, and as already implied by Patchauri, this means we cannot say “global warming is finished” until about 2035, by which time most of these scam artists will be retired.

Greg Goodman

“The relationship weakens or breaks down at times of major volcanic eruptions. Since the mid-1990s, little volcanic activity has been observed in the tropics and global average temperatures have risen and fallen in close accord with the SOI of four months earlier; ”
…. except for the biggest event : Pinatubo when it did not diverage at all but had show a strong divergence just before in 1989-90 , oops. And in 1998 when there was not volcanoes.
As I’ve show in detail before any correlation between climate and volcanism is greatly exaggerated and is more likely due to coincident changes happening at the same time and often just _before_ major eruptions.

Greg Goodman

http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=312
Effect of volcanism is restricted to extra-tropical zones and is far less than what is usually attributed.
The approximate coincidence in time of other natural cycles and El Chichon and Mt P events has provided an excuse to exaggerate volcanic impact that thus pump up AGW to compensate.
This idea is so entrenched now that a study including graphs that do not show a consistent correlation still manages to report one.
At least they are broadening the scope of investigation and its getting published. A step in the right direction, as Bob says.

mycroft

Now we see why Jones was wishing for STRONG El Nino in ClimateGate emails,the team knows what exactly cause’s warming but ideology getting in the way of science!

……the ENSO is a cyclical phenomenon of irregular period. In these situations, the results of regression analysis or similar statistical evaluation can be misleading.
Greg Goodman says:
September 3, 2013 at 2:20 am
and then the key question : what is causing / controlling El Nino.
the ENSO is indeed a cyclical phenomenon of irregular period, but it is the cause?
Not exactly known, since there is a strong random component to it, which may not be fully understood, but for time being ignored by the climate ‘scientist’ (with an odd but notable exception).
Simple analysis of the subequatorial tectonics points towards real driver of the ENSO events:
http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/ENSO.htm
It is my view that the science of geology will eventually provide the answers.

Greg Goodman

We start with 12-month running means of the data. This
approach can minimise significant data and give undue
emphasis to insignificant data, so it is used here simply to
establish a contextual record. To allow for the radiative
effects of atmospheric aerosols and particulate matter
from volcanic emissions, data for the period of volcanic
eruptions was removed along with the data for the sub-
sequent 12 months; the latter being required in order that
the 12-month running means do not include data from
periods of volcanic activity. These omissions are made
because we have reservations about the accuracy of
compensatory temperature adjustments for the cooling
influences of emissions of sulphurs and silicates, and the
period of that compensation, which according to [30] can
be for up to 3 years after eruption.
Derivatives of the Troup SOI and MGT are used to
=========
Oh man. When will climate science ever get beyond running means as their sole data processing technique.
They are at least aware that it’s bad (glimmer of hope) but still use it ! 12m running means of monthly running means. Shakes head.

Gary Pearse

richardscourtney says:
September 3, 2013 at 1:48 am
“Friends:
The paper says:
All other things being equal, a period dominated by a high frequency of El Niño-like conditions will result in global warming, whereas a period dominated by a high frequency of La Niña-like conditions will result in global cooling.
That is a self-evident truism.”
Richard, the “all other things being equal” makes it a truism but don’t jump so high. What I see here is that ENSO is a very strong driver of world temps, even though all things are NEVER equal. “Ceteris parabus” is used so much in economics that it has spilled over into this paper. The authors are being unnecessarily pedantic here. You should be aware of the ceteris parabus fallacy.
“A ceteris paribus fallacy is based on an assumption that all else is equal in a particular analysis or will remain equal if a particular variable is changed. An “all else is equal” reduction is sometimes a useful way to predict the impact of making a particular change, but in the real world, there are many times when it can’t even assume a hint of a shade of a glimmer of validity. There are simply too many variables with inter- and co-dependencies. One example is comparing the events of two different slices of time to come to the conclusion that one person was a better President than another.”
http://boards.fool.com/ceteris-paribus-fallacy-26270295.aspx
Now, good paper, but shame shame on De Freitas and McClean for not referencing Bob Tisdale who has been the lone voice in the wilderness for over a decade on this. Gentleman, drop the pompous and unnecessary “all other things being equal” (your discomfort in NOT using the term ceteris paribus shows by using the awkward wordy substitute) and add Bob Tisdale’s name as a reference (several times)- it is your biggest reference. I’m always suspicious of plagiarism when such a well known player in this game is ignored. I’ve taken to calling the tropical thunderstorm air conditioning that cools hot bands in SST the “Eschenbach Effect” and from now on I will be referring to the ENSO “control knob” as the “Tisdale Effect” and I want all other serious skeptics to do the same. A raspberry also for Judith Curry for being “blown away” without also mentioning the “Tisdale Effect”. Comon’, after all the ugly abuse heaped on skeptics who have been rebuilding a totally corrupted and broken science, are we just going to hand all these fruits over???

Greg Goodman

“The method avoids a focused statistical analysis of the data, in part because the study deals with smoothed data, which means there is the danger of spurious correlations, and in part because the El Nino Southern Oscillation is a cyclical phenomenon of irregular period.”
So knowing they may be introducing “spurious correlations” they do a study of correlation coefficient to establish the lag and correlation of the two datasets.
Three does appear to be a correlation, it’s unfortunate that they leave it so open by not employing a better method.

Bloke down the pub

The reason for the post-1995 period shift in the SOI- MGT relationship illustrated in Figure 1(c) is puzzling. An explanation may lie in changes in global albedo due to changes in lower-level cloud cover.
Or, heaven forbid, the explanation may lay with someone at the Met having put a thumb on the scales post 1995 in order to keep the meme alive.

Gary Pearse

Another note. What are the GACS (golden age of Climate Science – the hockey team fantasy, IPCC, etc.) going to do now? Are they going to continue to sit on the sidelines as spectators of the development of real climate science, their grotesque contributions going out in pieces with the tide? Since climategate, followed by realization of the dreaded hiatus and the emergence of real science, these guys have been deafeningly quiet in the field of climate literature (a few painful, hysterical cameo appearances and a lot of gassy speeches with tin badges and awards). I don’t think they have it in them. Science wasn’t their specialty anyway.

“Bob Tisdale who has been the lone voice in the wilderness for over a decade on this”
Not the lone voice but certainly the most industrious and influential voice as regards ENSO.
I think Bob has avoided stretching the thermal effects of the ENSO phenomenon to longer multidecadal periods of time and so far as I know does not propose solar influences affecting the changing relative dominance of El Nino and La Nina over successive positive and negative phases of the Pacific Multidecadal Oscillation ( PMO – not PDO which latter is merely an artefact of surface pressure differentials).
It is that changing longer term relative dominance between El Nino and La Nina over centuries that gives upward stepping from one positive phase of the PMO to the next (LIA to Current Warm Period) and, presumably downward stepping from one negative phase to the next ( MWP to LIA).
That longer term relative dominance on a multidecadal and centennial timescae is what appears to be linked to solar activity with the shorter term interannual ENSO oscillation itself being merely an internal system phenomenon with no necessary long term thermal implications.

Gary Pearse:
Thankyou for your post addressed to me at September 3, 2013 at 3:03 am
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/09/03/another-paper-blames-enso-for-global-warming-pause-calling-it-a-major-control-knob-governing-earths-temperature/#comment-1406574
It is too long for me to quote it here but I have provided a link to it so others can jump to it for reference.
Firstly, I am fully aware of the ceteris paribus fallacy. Indeed, I stated – and explained – that the point I quoted is a “self-evident truism”, and if all other things were not “equal” then (as you agree) it could not be self-evidently true.
However, that does not diminish my concluding point which was

These issues should have been addressed years ago and long before the “pause” in global warming forced consideration of the self-evident truism.

And you emphasise the work of Bob Tisdale. But I did that, too. It was the first of my “These issues”.
I wrote:

Three issues require investigation.
1.
Why has investigation of this self-evident truism been ignored by cliamastrologists so the work of people such as Tisdale has been side-lined?

So, I welcome your interest in my post, but I fail to see what you think was wrong about it.
Your post concludes by asking

Comon’, after all the ugly abuse heaped on skeptics who have been rebuilding a totally corrupted and broken science, are we just going to hand all these fruits over???

On this I think we disagree.
I don’t care who gets the credit for correcting the science.
I care that the science gets corrected.
For example, Salby has raised awareness of the uncertainties concerning the carbon cycle. But, except for a minor point concerning soil moisture, his work only repeats some of the work we (i.e. Rorsch, Courtney & Thoenes) published in 2005. I don’t care that few refer to our work: I applaud that Salby has raised the awareness which our papers failed to raise.
And credit often does not go where it is most deserved in science. For example, most people know the Nobel Prize was awarded to Crick & Watson for unravelling the DNA molecule, but Rosalind Franklin did the most important part of that work and few remember her.
I say REJOICE at our starting to get the science corrected, and don’t cavil about who gets credit for what because that could hinder the correction.
Richard

Greg Goodman

” The reason for the post-1995 period shift in the SOI-
MGT relationship illustrated in Figure 1(c) is puzzling.
An explanation may lie in changes in global albedo due
to changes in lower-level cloud cover. In an analysis of
…Another possibility is that there are
problems with the HadCRUT4 1.1.0 data. For example,
we note that the published monthly average global tem-
perature anomalies are not equal to the mean of the two
published corresponding hemispheric values.
The approach used here avoids a focused statistical”
Ah, at last some recognition that there may be “issues” with these much adjusted datasets.
And the recognition that changes in cloud cover may be a player.
I think the method is poorly constructed but this paper is probably more important for throwing the door open to searching for real causation.
Finally and end to “stochastic plus CO2” mantra and an acknowledgement that maybe all “internal variation” doesn’t just average out.

They would have found if they had investigated it, that global temperature anomalies are also closely correlated to LOD Length Of Day. This is because LOD and tidal forcing are major component of ENSO.

bit chilly

could someone please head over to the septic science blog,and advise them over the implications of the paper.even the authors seem to be pushing it supports cAGW in some way.
my own personal opinion after reading many abstracts on climate related subjects recently is very little credence should be given to any of them.
the fact a layman can see glaring errors and inconsistences in most of them suggests if there were active research going on by unbiased scientists ,the rebuttals of these papers would severely out number the papers themselves.
the utter garbage assumption written about supposed ocean acidification (largely model based as usual ) is the current cause of my current state of near apoplexy 🙂
instead of performing ice smashing rescues,the admiral makarov should be dropping off a whole bunch of pseudo scientists including the septic science team to commiserate with the pair of french idiots that believed the hype about arctic ice melt and require rescuing,at someone elses expense.

Ian Wilson

De Freitas and McClean have not cited the huge contribution that Bob Tisdale has made to our understanding of the ENSO phenomenon and its effects on the world mean temperature.
Unfortunately, De Freitas and McClean scientific ethics are also called into question by other things that they have done in relation to their 2013 publication.
I believe that De Freitas and McClean obtained a copy of a manuscript that I had submitted for inclusion a special edition of Energy and Environment to be published in 2013. I submitted this manuscript to E & E in September 2012. I believe that De Freitas and McClean were given access to this manuscript sometime in either September or October 2012, without my knowledge or permission.
A month and half after they were given access to my manuscript, they submitted their paper for publication. Here is the chronology for their 2013 paper.
Received November 22, 2012; revised December 20, 2012; accepted January 15, 2013
In their 2013 paper, De Freitas and McClean DID NOT mention a link between the relative frequency of El Ninos/La Ninas and global temperature until the last couple of paragraphs of their paper repeated here:
“With the potential controversy arising over a particular statistical analysis re- moved, the findings reported here indicate that atmospheric processes that are part of the ENSO cycle are collectively a major driver of temperature anomalies on a global scale. All other things being equal, a period dominated by a high frequency of El Niño-like conditions will result in global warming, whereas a period dominated by a high frequency of La Niña-like conditions will result in global cooling. Overall, the results imply that natural climate forcing associated with ENSO is a major contributor to temperature variability and perhaps a major control knob governing Earth’s temperature.”
Nor did they make any OVERT effort in their paper to provide evidence that would required to establish such a link. {Note: I acknowledge that their paper presents evidence that establishes a link between the SOI and world mean temperature – but it does not establish a link between the relative frequency of El Ninos/La ninas and world mean temperature}.
I believe that De Freitas and McClean added these concluding remarks after seeing my submitted manuscript.
My paper was eventually published in June 2013 in a special edition of E & E entitled:
Mechanisms of Climate Change and the AGW Concept: a critical review
Edited by [the late] Arthur Rörsch and Peter A. Ziegler
Are Global Mean Temperatures Significantly Affected by Long-Term Lunar Atmospheric Tides?
Ian R.G. Wilson
Volume 24, Number 3 – 4 / June 2013
In my paper, I gave full recognition to Bob Tisdale’s important work. Something that De Freitas and McClean completely failed to do. The main purpose of my E & E paper was to highlight the work that Nikolay Sidorenkov and I had done on lunar atmospheric tides in the Southern Hemisphere. I decided to present this work in a context that was based upon Bob Tisdale’s and some of my own work on the relationship between the relative frequency of El Ninos/La Ninas and global temperature.
ABSTRACT
Wilson and Sidorenkov find that there are four extended pressure features in the summer (DJF) mean sea-level pressure (MSLP) anomaly maps that are centred between 30 and 50° S and separated from each other by approximately 90° in longitude. In addition, they show that, over the period from 1947 to 1994, these patterns drift westward in longitude at rates that produce circumnavigation times that match the 18.6 year lunar Draconic cycle. These type of pressure anomaly pattern naturally produce large extended regions of abnormal atmospheric pressure that pass over the semi-permanent South Pacific sub-tropical high roughly once every ~ 4.5 years. These moving regions of higher/lower than normal atmospheric pressure increase/decrease the MSLP of the semi-permanent high pressure system, temporarily increasing/reducing the strength of the East-Pacific trade winds. This leads to conditions that preferentially favor the onset of La Niña/El Niño events that last for approximately 30 years. Wilson and Sidorenkov find that the pressure of the moving anomaly pattern changes in such a way as to favor La Niña over El Niño events between 1947 and 1970 and favor El Niño over La Niña events between 1971 and 1994. This is in agreement with the observed evolution of the El Niño/ La Niña events during the latter part of the 20th century. They speculate that the transition of the pattern from a positive to a negative pressure anomaly follows a 31/62/93/186 year lunar tidal cycle that results from the long-term interaction between the Perigee-Syzygy and Draconic lunar tidal cycles. Hence, the IPCC needs to take into consideration the possibility that long term Lunar atmospheric tides could be acting as a trigger to favor either El Niño or La Niña conditions and that these changes in the relative frequency of these two type of events could be responsible for much of the observed changes in the world mean temperature during the 20th century.

bit chilly

sorry forgot to add reference link to discussion between papers authors and judith curry.
http://www.staatvanhetklimaat.nl/2013/08/30/xie-reacts-on-curry/

Greg Goodman

richardscourtney says: “I don’t care who gets the credit for correcting the science.
I care that the science gets corrected.”
Totally agree. There’s not limit to what a man can achieve so long as he does not mind who gets the credit. 😉
For example, Salby has raised awareness of the uncertainties concerning the carbon cycle. But, except for a minor point concerning soil moisture, his work only repeats some of the work we (i.e. Rorsch, Courtney & Thoenes) published in 2005.
Do you have a link to Salby’s work? His Hamburg vid was interesting but after years of talk I’ve not found anything published (even on the internet).
Don’t be too humble to provide a link to you paper if it covers similar ground.

MattN

Once again, this surprises NO ONE who has actually been paying attention. But you know that they will just say that CO2 is influencing, if not outright controlling ENSO. I am 100% positive I remember reading a statement from Gavin on Reallywrong Climate years ago where he stated that the PDO was permanently positive now due to CO2.

Bruce Cobb

So, how many “major control knobs” are they talking about now? Surely (to them) CO2 is still one, but what else? Volcanoes? Soot? Sun? I mean, what’s the hierarchy now? Climastrology just got a whole lot more confusing, with CO2 having to give up at least part of its “control knob” duties.
On a related note, they can’t seem to decide whether Sandy-type storms in the future will become more prevalent or less. I mean, what good is Climastrology if it can’t decide these things?

bit chilly

ian wilson,i fear that mere observed events without support of some sort of model with spurious inputs may not sit well within modern climate “science”.
is your full paper available online,this is a subject that interests me greatly as someone that is a lifelong angler.

Ian Wilson

Here is the Introduction to my paper:
1. INTRODUCTION
The El Niño/La Niña–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is a quasi-periodic climate pattern
in the sea-surface temperatures (SST) and sea-levels of the tropical Pacific Ocean that
takes place roughly once every three to seven years [1], [2], [3]. The IPCC AR4 WG1
report [2] readily accepts that ENSO events involve large exchanges of heat between
the ocean and atmosphere that have an effect upon global mean temperature.
An El Niño event occurs whenever the sea-surface temperature anomaly in the zone
of the eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean referred to as Niño 3.4 [extending from 5 S to
5 N and 120 W to 170 W] is ≥ +0.5 °C for a period longer than seven to nine months
[1], [4], [5]. These events are considered to be an abnormal state of the ENSO [1]. In
contrast, a La Niña event occurs whenever the sea-surface temperature anomaly in the
Niño 3.4 zone is ≤ -0.5 °C for a period longer than seven to nine months [1], [4], [5].
These events are considered to be an exaggerated state of the ENSO neutral phase [1].
The PDO index is defined as the leading principal component of the North Pacific
monthly sea-surface temperature variability north of 20N latitude, for the period from
1900-93 [6], [7]. The PDO resembles a long-lived El Niño/La Niña-like pattern in the
sea-surface temperatures of the North Pacific Ocean [8], [9], [10], [11]. Long-term
observations indicate that it is characterized by positive and negative phases. During,
its positive phase, sea-surface temperatures are unusually warm in the Eastern
Equatorial/Tropical Pacific, while they are unusually cold in the far Northern Pacific
Ocean. In contrast, during its negative phase, the reverse is true.
Some [1], [12], [13] have argued that the PDO is a low [temporal] frequency
residual of random changes in ENSO activity on multi-decadal timescales. Indeed,
Power et al. [13] have used simple stochastic AGM models with built-in non-linear
climate processes (e.g. the integrating effect of upper ocean mixing layers in the North
Pacific) to show that the PDO can appear to modulate ENSO tele-connections with
other climate systems, even if the PDO itself largely reflects unpredictable random
changes in the relative frequency and/or strength of El Niño and La Niña events over
inter-decadal timescales [14].
This paper argues that the IPCC needs to consider the possibility that the relative
frequency and/or strength of El Niño and La Niña events is not random on interdecadal
timescales but that it is significantly influenced by long-term Lunar
atmospheric tides.
In section 2, we investigate the claim by Wilson [15] , Tisdale [1], and subsequently
by de Freitas and McLean [16], that much of the observed changes in the global mean
temperatures during the 20th century can be explained by changes in the relative
frequency and/or strength of El Niño compared to La Niña events. In section 3, we
discuss the results of Wilson and Sidorenkov [24] that shows that there is a large N=4
longitudinal standing wave-like pattern in the mean sea-level pressure (MSLP)
anomalies of the Earth’s Southern Hemisphere that is propagating around the Earth
from east to west, once every 18 years. Wilson and Sidorenkov [24] claim that this
standing wave-like pattern is associated with long-term lunar atmospheric tides that
are being driven by either the 18.0 year Saros cycle or the 18.6 year lunar Draconic
cycle. They propose that interaction between this propagating standing wave-like
pattern in the MSLP and the semi-permanent South Pacific sub-tropical high is
498 Energy & Environment · Vol. 24, No. 3 & 4, 2013
responsible for the observed changes in the relative frequency and/or strength of El
Niño events compared to La Niña events. Finally, in section 4 the conclusions are
discussed.
The IPCC now recognizes that the apparent modulation of ENSO events by the
PDO significantly modifies regional tele-connections around the Pacific Basin in such
a way that they affect the evolution of the global mean temperature on inter-decadal
timescales [2]. They also acknowledge that long-term changes in global surface
temperature caused by the PDO/ENSO phenomenon considerably complicate the
process of identifying and quantifying that part of the global mean temperature
increase that is caused by anthropogenic factors [2]. Hence, it of the utmost
importance to determine the mechanism that is responsible for these changes.

Ian Wilson

bit chilly says:
September 3, 2013 at 4:13 am
You can get my [open access] paper on lunar atmospheric tides at
Wilson, I.R.G., Long-Term Lunar Atmospheric Tides in the
Southern Hemisphere, The Open Atmospheric Science Journal,
2013, 7, 51-76
http://www.benthamscience.com/open/toascj/articles/V007/TOASCJ130415001.pdf;
Unfortunately, the E & E paper is behind a pay wall at:
http://multi-science.metapress.com/content/03n7mtr482x0r288/?p=4f7ceeef456146b5947dffa1622b0a9c&pi=11

This ‘relative dominance’ aspect is not new.
“The ENSO (El Nino Southern Oscillation) Cycle has been heavily investigated for many years but seems to be looked at as a freestanding phenomenon that just redistributes heat around the globe, sometimes warming and sometimes cooling.
I think that is wrong. I believe that ENSO switches from warming to cooling mode depending on whether the sun is having a net warming or net cooling effect on the Earth. Thus the sun directly drives the ENSO cycle and the ENSO cycle directly drives global temperature changes. Indeed, the effect appears to be much more rapid than anyone has previously believed with a measurable response occurring within a few years of a change in solar energy input. Indeed I see some evidence for the proposition that for various reasons cooling occurs faster than warming but I will save that for another time.
It was no coincidence that during the years from 1975 to 2000 we had a strong emphasis on El Nino with warming-also known as a period of positive Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), and now, with an emphasis on La Nina we have cooling or at least a stall in the warming (a period of negative PDO).
As regards the Pacific Decadal Oscillation that is simply a periodical change in the predominance either of El Nino (positive mode) or of La Nina (negative mode). El Nino events can occur in a positive PDO mode and vice versa.
I believe that both ENSO and PDO are manifestations of the same process and are directly driven by shifts in the balance of heat output from the sun as it switches to or from net warming and to or from net cooling effects on the Earth.”
from here:
http://www.newclimatemodel.com/global-warming-and-cooling-the-reality/
originally published 2008 at climaterealists.com
Though now I would say that the change in relative dominance of El Nino / La Nina is attributable not to solar power output per se but to the way atmospheric chemistry involving ozone changes so as to affect global cloudiness and albedo.
The idea of relative dominance of El Nino / La Nina being carried across successive Pacific Multidecadal Oscillations over centuries as a result of solar influences is I think new and unique to me but I will stand corrected if someone else can be shown to have said it sooner.

Greg Goodman says: “I thought Bod Tisdale’s hypothesis was that it was both sides of the Nino/Nina cycle that produced global warming not just more El Ninos, so this is not really saying the same thing.”
From the Introduction of “Who Turned on the Heat?”:
Climate models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) cannot match the sea surface temperature records that show how often and how strongly ENSO events have occurred since 1900. Climate models can’t even simulate the ENSO events since the start of the recent warming period in the mid-1970s. However, the models need to be able to mimic the historical instrument-based ENSO records. In fact it’s critical that they do, and it’s easy to understand why. The strength of ENSO phases, along with how often they happen and how long they persist, determine how much heat is released by the tropical Pacific into the atmosphere and how much warm water is transported by ocean currents from the tropics toward the poles. During a multidecadal period when El Niño events dominate (a period when El Niño events are stronger, when they occur more often and when they last longer than La Niña events), more heat than normal is released from the tropical Pacific and more warm water than normal is transported by ocean currents toward the poles—with that warm water releasing heat to the atmosphere along the way. As a result, global sea surface and land surface temperatures warm during multidecadal periods when El Niño events dominate. They have to. There’s no way they cannot warm. Conversely, global temperatures cool during multidecadal periods when La Niña events are stronger, last longer and occur more often than El Niño events. That makes sense too because the tropical Pacific is releasing less heat and redistributing less warm water than normal then.
See the preview of “Who Turned on the Heat” here:
http://bobtisdale.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/preview-of-who-turned-on-the-heat-v2.pdf
That was also discussed in the following post:
http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2012/12/20/el-nino-southern-oscillation-myth-3-enso-has-no-trend-and-cannot-contribute-to-long-term-warming/
PS: Thanks for the typo “Bod Tisdale”. It made me laugh. It’s actually “Round Bod” Tisdale, but I’m trying to lose the roundness.

This 2009 WUWT thread from Bob Tisdale is highly pertinent:
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/04/28/misunderstandings-about-the-pacific-decadal-oscillation/
especially my post thus:
Stephen Wilde says:
April 29, 2009 at 9:56 am
“I think this is still skating round the issue.
That issue is whether the ENSO cycle is sufficient on it’s own to account for observations without requiring any separate input from independent oceanic variations.
From the links provided I get the impression that there is doubt and that there are differences of opinion on the matter.
For my part I cannot envisage there being no independent input from ocean variability.
Nor can I see how ENSO variability alone could give rise to phase shifts at 30 year intervals with a complete cycle of twice that.
It seems to me that the logical solution is that ENSO contributes air induced variations over short periods of time, separate oceanic cycles contribute their own independent variations over longer periods of time and the general underlying trend is dependent on slow long term changes in solar output over many solar cycles.
On that basis one can explain the short term climate consequences of individual El Nino and La Nina events, the 30/60 year longer term variations in the dominance of El Nino and La Nina and also the slow rise in global air temperatures since the little ice age.
Indeed, one can also account for the stepped upward temperature movement when each positive longer term oscillation leaves the air temperatures a little higher than the one before as during the 20th Century.
Now if the sun were to go into a long term cooling trend (albeit very slow) then I would expect to see stepped downward temperature movements develop but it would take two more 30 year phase shifts for that to become apparent.
In the meantime a coincidence of weaker solar cycles and negative oceanic phases (especially if in all the oceans at the same time) would be capable of giving us a large a downward shift in temperatures as we saw a large upward shift in temperatures during the recent warming when we had both a more active sun and positive oceanic phases.
‘Large’ being a relative term of course. I’m quite sure that natural forcings can do far more than our records to date have ever noted.”

Ian Wilson

Stephen Wilde said:
“Nor can I see how ENSO variability alone could give rise to phase shifts at 30 year intervals with a
complete cycle of twice that.”
But the natural Lunar Perigee cycle of 31 years (1/2 cycle) / 62 year (full cycle) can!

Ian Wilson:
I am replying to your post at September 3, 2013 at 4:03 am
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/09/03/another-paper-blames-enso-for-global-warming-pause-calling-it-a-major-control-knob-governing-earths-temperature/#comment-1406594
You say

I believe that De Freitas and McClean obtained a copy of a manuscript that I had submitted for inclusion a special edition of Energy and Environment to be published in 2013. I submitted this manuscript to E & E in September 2012. I believe that De Freitas and McClean were given access to this manuscript sometime in either September or October 2012, without my knowledge or permission.

At this point I need to state that I am a member of the Editorial Board of E&E.
E&E maintains the highest standards of conventional peer review and demands disclosure of source data.
An author accepts that a paper will be put to peer review by submitting a paper for publication in E&E. An E&E Editor presents a submitted paper for peer review to experts in the field discussed in the paper. It is proper practice for the reviewers to be anonymous and, therefore, the authors of papers are not informed of whom the reviewers may be.
Some less scrupulous journals have adopted the practice of informing authors of reviewers prior to peer review. This has corrupted the review process by enabling authors to object to reviewers or to engage directly with reviewers instead of engaging with review comments. The corruption has resulted in what is often called ‘pal review’.
You also say

I believe that De Freitas and McClean added these concluding remarks after seeing my submitted manuscript.

I acknowledge your belief but I do not know how you, I or anybody else could verify it. It is a serious accusation.
And you say

My paper was eventually published in June 2013 in a special edition of E & E entitled:
Mechanisms of Climate Change and the AGW Concept: a critical review
Edited by [the late] Arthur Rörsch and Peter A. Ziegler
Are Global Mean Temperatures Significantly Affected by Long-Term Lunar Atmospheric Tides?
Ian R.G. Wilson
Volume 24, Number 3 – 4 / June 2013

Yes, it was, and I think it is a good paper.
Arthur Rörsch is yet another of the deceased colleagues I have been privileged to know. We conducted joint research and co-authored scientific papers. I consider it to be an honour to have been associated with him.
Arthur was one of the greatest and most honoured scientists of his nation, the Netherlands. He had extreme integrity. I would require much clear evidence before I would countenance the idea that he was involved in anything less than the highest form of propriety in the process of publishing your paper.
Richard

Ian Wilson said:
“But the natural Lunar Perigee cycle of 31 years (1/2 cycle) / 62 year (full cycle) can!”
Yes indeed but it doesn’t do anything for the longer term cycling from before the Roman Warm Period to date.
For that centennial scale background trend leading to steps up or down in global air and sea surface temperatures we have to vary the amount of solar energy entering the oceans and since TSI varies so little we have to look at the effect of cloudiness and albedo and infer that they can be solar driven.

Greg Goodman:
I am replying to your post at September 3, 2013 at 4:04 am.
I hope you will accept that this is a brief reply because a more serious matter has arisen in this thread and I want to be careful not to confuse anything I say in this thread with that.
You ask

Do you have a link to Salby’s work? His Hamburg vid was interesting but after years of talk I’ve not found anything published (even on the internet).
Don’t be too humble to provide a link to you paper if it covers similar ground.

Salby’s paper passed peer review more than a year ago but has not been published. I do not know why, but I do know that nefarious methods can be used to block publication of papers; see
http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmselect/cmsctech/memo/climatedata/uc0102.htm
I have good reason to suspect any blockage to publication would be removed if he were to withdraw it and then submit it to E&E.
Our pertinent paper is behind a pay wall and was published in E&E. I am now on the Editorial Board of E&E so I cannot provide a copy of it. However, I gave a presentation on it at Heartland 1, and that paper is almost entirely a ‘cut & paste’ from the paper which interests you. I will send you a copy of that if you email me at richardscourtney@aol.com . It covers everything (and more) in Salby’s later work except that Salby makes a novel investigation of soil moisture.
Richard

Richard M

I’ve been a big supporter of Tisdale for a long time because his ideas are logical and supported by the data. I would hope he gets the recognition he deserves.
As a little addendum I have stated a theory a couple of times that is relevant. The periods of higher frequency El Niño events (generally tied to +PDO) actually cool the oceans while the opposite, more La Niña events (-PDO), warms the oceans. It’s just a simple extension of Bob’s claims for individual ENSO events. Essentially, it just says there’s a longer term residual effect from the individual events.
The reason this may be important is the alarmists have been trying to claim the energy from the CO2 GHE has been going into the deep oceans recently. However, if I am right, the warming of the deep ocean warming is simply another effect of the coupled ENSO/PDO phenomena.

Jay Pugh

I truly enjoy these papers stating that cooling in the Tropical Pacific, more La Nina events, are responsible for the pause (or dare I say a reversal) in Global Warming. However, it this were true wouldn’t the opposite also be true, that more El Nino events would be responsible for Global Warming.

Thanks, Anthony.
Yes, finally we have proof!
I have shown this using the Multivariate ENSO Index (MEI).

Bill Illis

The ENSO is, indeed, a very important process impacting Earth’s climate.
But it does not have an accumulating impact or step changes. An El Nino or a La Nina phase only lasts for 3 months to 12 months at a time. After which, the opposite phase often occurs.
The ENSO provides its impact on an continuous basis with a 3 month lag with no accumulation. All of the major atmospheric processes including water vapor, OLR, temperatures, cloud cover, precipitation, follow this pattern.
Now there can be a little extra impact (just a small amount) when there is a series of El Ninos or La Ninas in a row. But there are only 3 or 4 short periods when this has occurred – (1906-1911), (1939-1944), (1974-1979) (perhaps 1987-1998).
This paper does not go far enough back into the temperature history to see this.
So this chart below is the actual Nino 3.4 Index going back to 1871 (let me know if you find periods which provide a multi-decadal trend). It is up and down so fast, it does not result in long periods of warming or cooling.
http://s12.postimg.org/t38c0hril/Nino_3_4_1871_2013.png
If one wants to ascribe longer cycle impacts, one needs to move to the AMO 30 year up and down cycle (or the PDO which is not that good at representing the temperature history but is used by some).