Video: Comments on Human-Induced Global Warming – Episode 1 – The Hiroshima Bomb Metric

With much fanfare from the faithful (a grand total of 15 comments as of this writing), SkepticalScience recently released their 4-Hiroshima-Bombs-per-second widget. Their claimed intent is to “raise the awareness of global warming”.

Nonsense.

Their intent is to scare people—children and adults—into believing that something must be done about global warming. It’s nothing but propaganda—plain and simple. It’s based on estimates of the radiative imbalance caused by human-induced global warming.

Without thought—nothing new there—SkepticalScience has now opened the door for people to illustrate (1) the diminutive size of the radiative imbalance in relation to the amount of sunlight and infrared radiation that warms the planet every day, and (2) the massive uncertainties behind the imbalance.

So that’s the foundation for the first of a series of YouTube videos titled “Comments on Human-Induced Global Warming”. Episode 1 is “The Hiroshima Bomb Metric”.

SkepticalScience has used spambots in the past. I wonder whether they’ll use them again for this offensive widget. So, if you see links to that widget around the blogosphere, please feel free to leave a link to this video:

As you’ll note, the video is about 6 minutes long. My goal is to limit the lengths of all of the videos in this series to 5 to 6 minutes.

The paper referenced in the video is Stephens et al. (2012) An update on Earth’s energy balance in light of the latest global observations.

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bobbyv

what a silly metric. [snip]

Frank K.

It is always useful to remember that these morally reprehensible SkepticalScience “children” are part of the public face of AGW climate science today. To all you practicing climate scientists – are you going to put up with this? When do you all say “enough is enough”?

Bruce Cobb

Oh-oh, the Skepkidz are gonna throw a tant when they see this video.

Bloke down the pub

Sorry Bob, but you just don’t sound scarey enough to get the attention of some people.

son of mulder

How many deaths from cold weather is the supposed 0.6 W/M^2 preventing? I suspect quite a lot.

johnmarshall

Thanks Bob.
The sunlight at the TOA is 1370W/m2 which SkS spread over the whole planet. Reality dictates that the insolation warms one hemisphere and the revolving earth carries this round to the night side, yep, reality has a night time and day time. aking out the atmospheric losses the surface insolation is, in the zenith position, ~1000W/m2 which can be measured thus confirming reality. The planet radiates heat to space from both day and night sides which is 250/m2, conforming to the 1st law of thermodynamics as 4×250= 1000.
But that 250W/m2 does not come from the surface, as assumed, because heat is transported aloft by convection not radiation. The height that the alarmist’s claim is at the surface is at 5-6Km above the surface, ie the cloud tops.
The energy budget graphic in AR4, by K&T is total rubbish, not only is it not reality based it violates 1st and 2nd laws of thermodynamics so cannot work.

Lance Wallace

If 0.6 watts/sq meter = 4 Hiroshima bombs per second, the uncertainty of +-17 W/m^2 would be on the order of 100 H-bombs per second. Could we ask SkS to add the uncertainty to their widget?

Box of Rocks

Unfortunately the world has been down this pathway before, just a different ideology.
We are condemned since we have not learned from history.
Ironically, it will be the kids that suffer the most.

The energy imbalance is 0.6w/m^2 +- 17w/m^2. Give the size of the error bars, it is more likely the imbalance is 0.0w/m^2. Occam would certainly agree.
Funny how the energy budget is all in whole numbers, except for downward LWR. That has 0.6w/m^2 tacked on the end to create the imbalance. It is a manufactured value. Created by humans. Human created global warming indeed.

David Ball

As mentioned many times on this site by myself and others, the warmistocracy are getting desperate. This is one more indicator.
My father’s website (Dr. Tim Ball) has been hacked and many of the links replaced with links to articles on tobacco and such. This is so cowardly, yet is to be expected as the vitriol is ramped up. The alarmosphere is painting itself into a corner and they have to resort to subterfuge.

dccowboy

Dr Tisdale, Happy early Thanksgiving to you as well.
I viewed the video and would like too make a suggestion. Since the Skeptical Science boys are trying to scare people with the ‘Hiroshima Bomb’ metric, you might put the total radiation reaching the surface into that metric in order too emphasize just how silly the metric is. I’d also suggest you spend a bit more time explaining the significance of the uncertainty range, perhaps giving an American football score as a comparative, i.e., an uncertainty of +- 17 to a .6 figure is like reporting that the points scored by a team in football game was 6 +- 170 or the points scored could have been -164 to +176. That shows just how meaningless the .6 figure is.

“To all you practicing climate scientists – are you going to put up with this? When do you all say “enough is enough”?”
You can use a very simple syllogism to cut to the heart of things, based on your observation/question.
No practicing scientist with integrity would put up with this kind of mindless propaganda, or welcome this as something that advanced his argument.
No practicing climate scientist has been heard to utter a peep of disapproval. (observation)
Therefore, there are no practicing climate scientists today who have even a shred of either personal or professional integrity.
But then Peter Gleick, supposedly the most “ethical” of them all, already proved that, didn’t he?
.

Minor quibble: 0.11% is not “one tenth of one percent”. It’s “one ninth of one percent”.
With error of +/- 17 W/m^2, it would seem that an honest scientist would conclude “The imbalance, if any, cannot be accurately measured.”

Numbers are brilliant. The fact that 0.6w/m^2 +- 17w/m^2 has somehow made it somewhere, as a science statistics in climate science is amazing. Perhaps we ought to start paying People $2000 a month $+-100 depending on how we felt, and see how far that sort of accuracy would get those of us whom work in payroll and financial systems.
Actually that’s a genius idea. If you ask any climate scientists how sure they are on measuring the global temperature of the earth, ask them what the error bars. Then ask them if would be ok if that error could be applied to their wage slip every month. So some months they might get paid $1,800, others $2,200 a month…..
Just depends what the system feels like.

klem

I find that metric to be insulting. Carrying it on your device demonstrates you have a lack of scientific fundamental understanding, not even at the basic high school level. I wonder what high school science teachers think about the Hiroshima metric?

Excellent post, Bob. I liked the video. The alarmists have to keep up the skeer or they would fade into the mists (of no funding?). The really surprising things is that these expert scientists shamelessly claim great significance of numbers that are absolutely swamped by the uncertainties.

Alan the Brit

Can I ask a question please? (No that’s not it!) What is a Climate Scientist when he & or she are at home? Last I read, there were some 80 branches of science that went into studying climate. Let’s assume that a student has to do a Masters/PhD, lasting 4 years. Let’s be generous & assume that there is an overlap in studies of say 3½ years (unlikely, 95% confidence level – well if the IPCC can do it then so can I). That leaves 80 subjects x ½ years of study = 40 years at least of study before somebody can call themselves a Climate Scientist! No? 😉 Perhaps it’s just me then.

James Strom

Like many others, I suppose, I doubt that we can measure the actual energy flows with the degree of accuracy implied by the 0.6 figure. However, if we take the warming over a long period, such as the 20th century, assume that it’s all due to an energy imbalance, and convert it to watts/m^2, how close is the result to SkS’s bombs-per-second figure?

Snotrocket

I’m sorry Anthony. I’ve read much about this ridiculous metric and really want realists to succeed in defeating the lies beneath it’s scary cloak. However, I gave up on the video because the voice-over was so amateur and of such a depressing tone [sigh].
For a start, it seemed to me that the narrator had not rehearsed the script too well, stumbling at critical moments and so changing the emphasis (say) of what he was trying to get across. It would have helped if you’d had auditions for the voice-over. Remember, it needs to be slicker than Gore (which, I guess, sounds like a measure of some kind of slimy viscosity: sorry.)

JimS

Well done, Bob Tisdale. Well done!

Pamela Gray

I have a far more important question from the nose bleed seats on this topic. I was a teenager when all phones were black and heavy. At our school we were mesmerized by a desk sized calculator. I know what a Commadore 64 is. I knew what an Apple computer was BEFORE they were called a Mac. I cut my science teeth on a Wang computer (a Portland-based computer company) and cleared chads from data punch cards before I stuck them in the machine. Floppy disks were indeed floppy. So what the hell is a “widget”????

Sisi

What about the energy imbalance at the top of the atmosphere? In the same article, see the top part of the figure that you use? What was that you said about “Failing to Tell Their Faithful Followers”?

JohnB

> Bloke down the pub says:
> November 27, 2013 at 6:33 am
> Sorry Bob, but you just don’t sound scarey enough to get the attention of some people.
He sounds like Santa Claus to me.
Thank you, Bob
This whole business is upside down.
The Climate System is obviously so noisy they’re trying to find a cricket in a working factory an acre in size (I loved Bob’s mulling over the .6)
It reminds me when I realized that the human “normal” temperature of 98.6
(sounds so precise) is actually just what you get translating F from 37 C
(37 doesn’t sound so precise, does it?)

dipchip

S H Ice extent has now had a 2 year positive ice cover anomaly dating to November 24 2011. Since 1979 there has never been a year without a negative anomaly until now.
The second link is the data.
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.anomaly.antarctic.png
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/timeseries.south.anom.1979-2008

Nik

Any time now I expect them to say.
Since 46% of Americans do not believe in AGW they should be euthenised as they are just expelling CO2 and contributing to AGW at your expense.

Marcos

unfortunately, 5-6 minutes will be too long for most people to get through.

JimS

@Pamela Gray
A widget within this context, is really a “web widget” with which code for the widget can be copied, and that code placed upon “your own website” and thus the widget will be displayed to those who visit your website. (btw, we must be around the same age, given your description of your journey through the tech world.) Take care.

lurker, passing through laughing

Every once in a while I run across this amazing essay describing the traits of bad science.
That list includes things like barely discernable responses being given great importance, trends only being detectable by extreme statistical manipulation, data from differing sources recklessly spliced together.
The Hiroshima ploy is a rather entertaining way for the SkS gang to hide from the reality that their position contains nearly every aspect of bad science.
The irony that they pushed a blog claiming to describe the bad science of skeptics only makes this better.

My Organic Chemistry Instructor, Chris Russell, demonstrated that a 1/4 inch of rain falling on NY city released as much energy as the Hiroshima bomb. This of course leads me to the question “So what’s your point Scep Sci?”

RichardLH

You mean we could be sucking energy OUT of the system up to 96 atomic bombs per second and still be correct (as per the error bars)!
All that lost energy!. We need it back to keep out houses warm in this Northern Winter. 🙂
Find the 96 atomic bombs per second and use them productively, please.

NikFromNYC

Since all absorbed (versus reflected) radiation converts to heat, if the traditional (non supercomputer amplified) thin band (infrared) greenhouse effect adds heat in a way that results in more humidity that instead of acting as an additional greenhouse gas acts as broadband full spectrum radiation reflecting water vapor (clouds), then emissions might cool the planet, overall, or at least be moderated in warming effect.
-=NikFromNYC=-, Ph.D. in carbon chemistry (Columbia/Harvard)

upcountrywater

A Big Thank You to George Washington, for making Thanksgiving a great day…
-To promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the encrease of science among them and us–and generally to grant unto all Mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he alone knows to be best.
http://lcweb2.loc.gov/ammem/GW/gw004.html

Hmmm … don’t we need a “widget” too?
.

Thanks Bob, nicely done.

Jquip

jamesibbitson: “So some months they might get paid $1,800, others $2,200 a month….. ”
Right idea, wrong scale. Assume the average climate scientist make 60k per annum. Then if they were paid by the error bars their patron would pay them between 230k per annum, and -110k per annum. That is, some years the climatologist would be paying his employer almost twice what he expected to be paid by the employer.
Good career advice: Don’t accept wages with such an error bar.

Jquip

Ha! And I misplaced the decimal point… You get the idea anyways: Negative wages.

When the natural embalance returns to it’s negative long term trend, we will need more of that nuclear energy to stay alive.

JimS says:
November 27, 2013 at 7:57 am
@Pamela Gray
A widget within this context, is really a “web widget” with which code for the widget can be copied, and that code placed upon “your own website” and thus the widget will be displayed to those who visit your website. (btw, we must be around the same age, given your description of your journey through the tech world.) Take care.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Widget is a placeholder name for a manufactured device, or web widget, small app.
Young kids, I was buying that stuff for my kids.

Pamela Gray

Ah. Thanks Jim. In my own words then, a widget is specific to a clickable web picture with an embedded specific program, and different than a thingamajig, which is different from a dohinky. And definitely not a whatsamacallit. I see that “A” has a bunch of widgets down the right side of the screen. I’ve been calling them icons all this time.
The human language is such a colorful changing entity. I often wonder if it is sentient. When new words are birthed for new concepts (or new meanings given to old words/new words given to old meanings), I am reminded of the Tower of Babel and its consequence. That consequence has multiplied, sending its babies to each individual language, intent on confusing every last human being on Earth.
I long for the return of Latin.

Pamela Gray

Bob, how did they ever cart around that calculator?

lurker, passing through laughing

An average thuderstorm is releasing more energy than the Hiroshima bomb. An average hurricane is converting more energy than the Hiroshima bomb ever minute. http://teachertech.rice.edu/Participants/louviere/hurricanes/facts.html

ossqss

Nice job decoupling reality from propaganda Bob!
I do have a related question.
What impact does all of the man made electrified use of technology do to the energy balance on earth. We have 700-800 satellites beaming their constant 1/4 watt or more signals 24/7/365, millions of miles of high tension lines, and a gazillion cell towers, wireless routers scattered globally like ants, microwave ovens and on and on.
What impact could all of that stuff in aggregate have on the energy balance.
Just curious if anyone has ever calculated that piece of the puzzle, or even considered it, or if I am way off target?
It has been a few years since i asked that question and I have yet to ever get an answer.
Happy turkey day folks in the US.

James

@jquip
Ok so your climate scientist is paid randomly between $740 and -$300 a day. Assume it’s a normal distribution.
What is the average amount of pay your climate scientist will accumulate in 18years? What is the 1 standard deviation range? Is what Mr Tisdale is saying correct?

Bruce Cobb

They do seem to like the “bomb” metric. Weepy Bill referred to the Keystone Pipeline as “the fuse to the biggest carbon bomb on the planet”.

Eustace Cranch

ossqss says:
“What impact does all of the man made electrified use of technology do to the energy balance on earth. ”
All the broadcast electrical energy on Earth, combined, does not equal- excuse me for getting technical here- a speck of dust on a gnat’s rear end.

ossqss says November 27, 2013 at 9:29 am
Nice job decoupling reality from propaganda Bob!
I do have a related question.
What impact does all of the man made electrified use of technology do to the energy balance on earth. We have 700-800 satellites beaming their constant 1/4 watt or more signals 24/7/365, millions of miles of high tension lines, and a gazillion cell towers, wireless routers scattered globally like ants, microwave ovens and on and on.
What impact could all of that stuff in aggregate have on the energy balance.

Little; since the sources you cite are intended for terrestrial ‘targets’ or audiences (subscribers in commercial wireless industry vernacular) much effort and engineering resources are expended to insure coverage of the earth’s surface with said RF energy from cited RF sources (e.g. cell sites, satellites et al) through (in the ‘old’ days of cellular) through antenna ‘down-tilting’ of the physical antenna or by ‘beam-forming’ (through phased elements, although not dynamic) the RF dissipates as ‘heat’ (through dielectric losses) in the soil, roadways and buildings (those with tinted windows for instance).
This, from an RF (Radio Frequency) Engineer’s point of view (involved RF planning and system ‘coverage’) as having been involved in both cellular (and paging!) industries at one time.
The efficiencies of RF ‘site’ equipment (for AC power in vs RF energy output overall; there is overhead for network gear e.g. line/fiber interface equipment and site controller, plus A/C and heat considerations) can generally on considered to be less than 20%. Actual transmitter efficiency can approach 70% (individual device perhaps 80 to 90%, aside from bias circuits and supervision circuits), but overall system efficiency really has to be considered.
We would talk differently about the ‘losses’ (directly to space) in SW (shortwave) as in ham and SW broadcasters below, saw 30 MHz, however.
.

TomR,Worc,MA,USA

On a past thread about the “Hiroshima bomb” metric, one poster, I don’t remember who said something like ……
“I find the hiroshima bomb metric to be very useful. It points out that the speaker has abandoned scientific measurement terms, and moved into advocacy. Everything else the speaker says can safely be ignored.
Something along those lines anyway.

Colin

Pamela Gray says:
November 27, 2013 at 7:28 am
Thanks for dating me. I too recall all of those items. I have a vague notion of what a widget is NOW. But during early business classes a widget was a fictional item a company produced in case studies. All of a sudden the term became more common and I was left wondering what was going on.
Referring to another comment, I too have wondered exactly what a Climate Scientist was/is. My son-in-law was talking about the 97% of all scientists the other night. I said “noboday asked me”. He looked at me blankly. Stpooed him dead. Did it change his mind – no idea.

Jquip

@ossqss: “It has been a few years since i asked that question and I have yet to ever get an answer. ”
Satellites I’ve never heard of, actually. But all terrestrial issues are simply the dissipation from the initial energy production. Which is where the normative consideration steps in and we consider only the power plant itself, rather than all the various places it can and does dissipate the energy at.
@James: “What is the 1 standard deviation range? Is what Mr Tisdale is saying correct?”
Unless there’s some funky miscommunication going on, then ‘+-‘ as a statement of error is a statement of uncertainty about the mean, and what range of values it falls in. But is not a statement of standard deviation. So the average over 18 years of employment could quite trivially be the employee paying 18 times the lowest bound to his employer. Which is, frankly, a rather enthusiastic notion of a minimum wage.