Fatally Flawed Marotzke Climate Science Paper 'Should Be Withdrawn'

Climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics

Marotzke-Foster-NatureFrom the GWPF – London, 6 February: A recent paper in Nature has received worldwide media attention because of its claim to have shown that the recent hiatus in surface temperature rises was the result of natural variability. The lead author, Jochem Marotzke of the Max Planck Institute, also claimed that his work dealt a fatal blow to suggestions that  computer simulations have systematically overestimated the global warming caused by rising carbon dioxide concentrations.

However, Nic Lewis, an expert in this area of climate science, today pubished an article demonstrating that there are serious errors in the paper, and that its conclusions cannot be sustained.  Lewis said:

“As well as having some basic statistical errors, Marotzke’s study can be shown to utilise circular logic. This means that its conclusions are unsound. Moreover, the stability of estimates for at least one of the two key structural model properties used is so poor that even were he able to rework his paper without the circularity  – which appears impracticable – it would very likely be impossible to draw meaningful conclusions. I think the authors have no scientifically-defensible choice but to withdraw the paper.”

Lewis’s findings, which have been published at the influential Climate Audit blog, have been reviewed and confirmed by two statisticians: Professor Gordon Hughes of Edinburgh University and Roman Mureika, formerly of the University of New Brunswick. Professor Hughes said of the Marotzke paper:

“The statistical methods used in the paper are so bad as to merit use in a class on how not to do applied statistics. All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.”

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279 thoughts on “Fatally Flawed Marotzke Climate Science Paper 'Should Be Withdrawn'

  1. “All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.”
    _________________________________
    Ohh, that’s gotta hurt. Do you think Nature will pal-review this comment before publishing it? After the appropriate amelioration and homogenization has been applied to the original data, the new ‘warmer’ quote will then read:
    “This paper demonstrates that climate scientists should give advanced courses in statistics, and Nature has some highly competent referees.”
    R

  2. Quote:-
    ‘Professor Gordon Hughes of Edinburgh University and Roman Mureika, formerly of the University of New Brunswick. Professor Hughes said of the Marotzke paper:
    “The statistical methods used in the paper are so bad as to merit use in a class on how not to do applied statistics. All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.” ‘
    Ouch Ouch Ouch……………………..and Ouch again!
    Wouldn’t it be nice if the Scientific Community and the MSM at last say enough is enough.
    How long do we have to have this sort of absurd idiocy masquerading as science foisted upon us?

    • I did my undergraduate degree at the Univeristy of Adelaide, and – years later – post-graduate work at the University of Reading. In both universities there was a tiny office with a tame statistician trapped inside. Staff and students could take the results of their study to him, and the poor devil (pathetically grateful that someone had come to see him) would happily do all the requisite analysis.
      I find it hard to believe that the Max Planck Institute does not have a similar arrangement.

  3. Nice work Nic.
    “The statistical methods used in the paper are so bad as to merit use in a class on how not to do applied statistics. All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.”
    Come on Prof Hughes, come out and say what you really mean.

  4. When Nature Magazine emailed my father, Dr. Aden Meinel, about his paper, ‘The Sun Is A Variable Star’ where he explains we are entering a low-sunspot Maunder Minimum, they said, ‘This is too scary and we don’t want to read about this right now.’
    Seriously! My poor dad was flabbergasted. He tried having Scientific American publish his paper and they, too, rejected it. And my father is the person who pushed through the entire Kitt Peak Observatory and Chile observatory complexes and helped found the first solar observatory.
    These publications are frauds at this point and my dad wasn’t the only one censored by these publications.

    • I bet that he was fuming inside, as well as being flabbergasted. I have been into the global warming story for over 6 years now, a newbie. After around 3+ years of reading, I found myself wondering why there wasn’t much current discussion about the potential for another grand minimum event. My first comment here at WUWT was in regard to why there was so little discussion on this issue. Since then, there has been some good posts on the subject.
      My take on it was “why does it look to be so obvious to someone like me, yet none of the climate science, global warming scientists give it any credence?”. Your father,s paper will be proven to be correct in the not to distant future. I hope he is still around for that. I also look forward to seeing what the next decade brings in regards to natural climate change.

      • “why does it look to be so obvious to someone like me, yet none of the climate science, global warming scientists give it any credence?”
        If they do, all those government grants to prove that the government needs to do something about it, dry up.

      • because the the plot is co2 causes global warming thus control co2 in other words control every living thing on earth

      • “I found myself wondering why there wasn’t much current discussion about the potential for another grand minimum event.”
        It’s because no “scientist” seeking grant money has yet figured out how to turn it into a cash flow machine.

        • What has caught my attention of late is the tone of the warmist articles. Iget the impression that they are trying to head off the consequences of the natural changing conditions by laying a warming claim over the changes that are likely to occur with a cooling down of the NH/global temps. The recent articles on future droughts is the latest meme.

  5. If Nick Lewis truly thinks he has found a fatal flaw in the paper he should submit a rebuttal to Nature. Sniping from the safety of an obscure blog site doesn’t move the debate forward.

    • You haven’t really been following how anyone outside of orthodox thought is shut down by the current publishing process.

    • I disagree. The debate moves forward when corrections are published in a timely manner. I expect Nature wouldn’t bother to publish the rebuttal.

      • If Lewis’s criticisms have a strong statistical foundation, I am sure that they would be published if he submitted a rebuttal to Nature.

      • Reformatted (sorry): Luke, you say,

        If Lewis’s criticisms have a strong statistical foundation, I am sure that they would be published if he submitted a rebuttal to Nature.

        Why are you sure of that?
        The debunking of the paper has been made – publically.
        It will be disputed, or not, depending on the folly of the authors. Nature will have no reason to publish science that is already in the public sphere.
        Of course, Nic Lewis could have waited a year to two to try and get it through the snail-press but how does that advance knowledge?
        And how would it benefit Nature to admit that they have blundered in organising peer review?
        They have blundered, haven’t they?
        Can you see any defence of this paper?

        • Nature has published responses of many of their papers. If Nic’s criticisms have merit, I am sure they would allow him to publish a response and would probably allow the authors to respond to his comments. If Nic is interested in moving the discussion forward, he has to do it in the scientific arena- e.g. peer-reviewed publications.

      • Luke says:
        If Nic’s criticisms have merit, I am sure they would allow him to publish a response…
        You’re sure, are you? Go and tell that to McIntyre and McKittrick, who tried several times to have their ‘response’ published — and those two always have their ducks in a row…
        …unlike you. You just emit your opinion as if that’s the way it is. I think you’re wrong. And as you can see, you don’t have much support.

      • Luke,
        Please, please read the article first. There is a very clear critique of the statistics in the paper by “Professor Gordon Hughes of Edinburgh University and Roman Mureika, formerly of the University of New Brunswick. Professor Hughes said of the Marotzke paper:
        ‘The statistical methods used in the paper are so bad as to merit use in a class on how not to do applied statistics. All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.’”
        It is not just Nick Lewis picking on the paper, and the odds that Nature will actually address the problem are odds you could take to Las Vegas.

      • I wholeheartedly agree with Luke, and also would have liked Anthony to have provided a summary of the technical issues in question, in layperson’s terms, rather than just picking out the “punch” lines of Lewis’ blog.

    • And what debate will ever be made in the pages of “Nature”, a journal used for propagandist publication?

    • Yeah, smart guy like Nick Lewis probably hasn’t thought of that… S/off
      And sniping from a well known blog site does?
      Are you defending the Nature paper and if so, where do you disagree with Nick?

    • A public rebuke is a heck of a lot more effective than a private submission, especially when the matter is of an embarassing nature. The tendency of people is to sweep these things under the rug, which has been done for years in this game, and Nature is among the worst offenders in ignoring people that do not agree with them. Even actual criminal activity such as the theft of Heartland’s financial records by Peter Gleik has been quietly ignored AFTER it has been made public. Even in the unlikely case that they publish a rebuttal, it will almost certainly be a back-page line item designed to be quickly forgetten.
      The best disinfectant is sunlight, and exposure is the only meaningful weapon against falsehood when the authorities are corrupt.

    • Given previous form by the gatekeepers in these journals to inconvenient discoveries by outsiders of flaws in important on-message papers, I wouldn’t blame Nic for thinking that it’s not worth the time and effort. Take, for example, the last minute addition of a third pal referee to kibosh M&M’s decisive 2004 Nature reply to Mann, and the ease with which Mann got away with his sneeringly dismissive and erroneous reply to M&M’s entirely legitimate point about the fatal error in his 2008 PNAS paper concerning the upside-down non-dendro network.
      In any case, virtually the entire climate “community” will know about this car-crash paper by now, simply by virtue of its appearance on Climate Audit, and now, of course, here at WUWT.

    • C’mon guys – we all know that every time there is a paper by a “climate scientist” regarding “climate change” and it is shown to be seriously flawed, a rebuttal is printed almost immediately and the original paper is withdrawn immediately. Further, the corrected information then becomes that which is often quoted in further “climate science” discussions.
      Oh, question:
      should I use the “/sarc” tag or the “/cynic” tag for this remark?
      Or both?

    • “Obscure”??? I’d love to see your definition of ‘obscure’. I mean, based on readership, where WUWT can enjoy 220M+ views against Nature supposed 3M readers per month (Wiki), I would hardly call it obscure.
      Of course, if you add in all the readers of all the science-award-winning blogs that have read this story…

      • Of course both should be done. The flaws in this particular paper are so egregious that the chance of getting a rebuttal published is much higher than would normally be the case.

    • And I am sure that if you wish really hard and flap your arms hard enough you can fly .
      Nature soft-balled a seriously poor paper through ‘peer review’ for a reason , given that what chances do you think there are that they will publish an article that points this out given worldwide media attention it got ?

    • Climate Audit is not “obscure”. Nic Lewis’ essay will receive attention. Hopefully, Prof Marotzky will care to write a strong rebuttal if he thinks is paper is defensible, say if he thinks that Nic Lewis misunderstood an important detail.

    • Luke:
      Nic did a full analysis with true expert peer review and published the entire paper, data and reviewer’s comments on a very well known and top listed science blog. Unlike those rather low listed false science propaganda blogs where the ‘climate team’ sycophants congratulate each other.
      Nic found far more than one fatal flaw that badly researched and written paper.

      “Luke February 6, 2015 at 7:17 am
      If Lewis’s criticisms have a strong statistical foundation, I am sure that they would be published if he submitted a rebuttal to Nature.”

      Luke:
      There seems to be a lot of incorrect and false things you are sure of.

      “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.
      Mark Twain”

      • You need independent peer-review by qualified statisticians to know whether Nic’s criticisms have any merit. I don’t think there are many people who have sufficient grasp of the complex statistical issues to know if Nic’s comments are worthy of consideration. That is what independent peer review is all about. Words are cheap, truth is hard.

      • … have been reviewed and confirmed by two statisticians: Professor Gordon Hughes of Edinburgh University and Roman Mureika, formerly of the University of New Brunswick. Professor Hughes said of the Marotzke paper:
        “The statistical methods used in the paper are so bad as to merit use in a class on how not to do applied statistics. All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.”

        Lukey, when your teacher wrote in your report, “Luke should pay more attention in class.” this is what your teacher meant. Now pay attention or disappear yourself.

    • Luke, come on into the 2000s! Why should Nic wait to critique the paper through what is undoubtedly a long process with Nature? Information spreads much faster today Luke. The real question is will Nature reciew Nic’s work as quickly as Nic reviewed their paper and act accordingly!

    • “” Sniping from the safety of an obscure blog site doesn’t move the debate forward.””
      Is this “debate” like the “pause”?
      It doesn’t exist but it can be invoked at any time.
      What are you characters doing here? You repeat the same puny point, over and over, as though we haven’t all seen it hundreds of times before.
      Barry wants a “… for Dummies” version but he agrees with Luke wholeheartedly.
      Really, WHY are you here? You think there’s a pause in the debate and the debate will come back and bite you in the ass? The debate’s over, kids and you’re the lost platoon, wandering around behind enemy lines with no ammo. Even Elpis has left the building.

  6. “The statistical methods used in the paper are so bad as to merit use in a class on how not to do applied statistics.”
    “All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.”
    “The paper is methodologically unsound and provides spurious results. No useful, valid inferences can be drawn from it. I believe that the authors should withdraw the paper.”
    I wonder how many “climate papers” could end with the same? 97%?

  7. Nature used to be a respected scientific journal. Real scientists need to stand up publicly and oppose these phony climate “scientists” before science as a whole loses its respect and credibility in the public eye.

  8. I gave up on Nature, Science, Popular Mechanics, and National Geographic in the 1980’s when I learned in industry what was really going in in science and industry which was not taught in the University of California educational system.

  9. What Luke said. Taking potshots in climate “skeptic” echo chambers isn’t going to accomplish anything. Address the question directly with the publishing journal.

    • Not what Luke said. Publishing the corrections in a blog like Climate Audit is the best way to move the debate forward. Good luck getting any rebuttal published in Nature.

    • Ahhh, the trolls are out today… Crawl back in your troll-hole surehairyflesh. Oh, and for the record, please call us deniers… at least you put “skeptic” in quotes… close enough troll.

      • Sorry, but that’s just rude. You may disagree with what these posters said, but that doesn’t make them ‘trolls’.

      • Martin Hall,
        The cited anonymous trolls have a long history in these pages and have deservedly earned the moniker.

      • Martin’s right. I get really fed up of people accusing others they disagree with of being “trolls”. I see it happening all the time at both sceptic and alarmist blogs. It’s tiresome and rude.
        Do I agree with Flashman and Luke? No, I think they are seriously misguided. .
        Do I want to stop them from commenting? No, otherwise we truly will have an echo-chamber like they have over at the nutty and nasty SkS blog.

      • David Smith
        You are right that discussion of alternate views is important and that presentation of opposing views is not trolling.
        Trolls attempt to divert a discussion from its subject often by use of ad hominem remarks. And failure to rebuke trolls permits them to destroy discussion of a thread’s subject.
        The characters who have been cited as trolls in this thread have a history of being trolls. And their posts in this thread are trolling: none of them has presented an alternative opinion and/or understanding but they have attempted to troll the thread onto the significance of WUWT; for example, this from SHF

        What Luke said. Taking potshots in climate “skeptic” echo chambers isn’t going to accomplish anything. Address the question directly with the publishing journal.

        Posting here and/ or at Climate Audit does not prevent submission to the journal, but the claims of “potshots” and “climate “skeptic” echo chambers” are defamatory comments clearly intended as trolling.
        Richard

      • But someone is not a troll when CORRECTING a posties comment about a particulral subject, brough up OT, within thread.

    • Flashy.
      For a Climate Scientist™ to find that his latest paper is being dissected at Climate Audit is approximately equivalent to being told that the Eye of Sauron has found him.

      • “Flashman was taken aback, and retreated two steps. East looked at Tom. “Shall we try!” said he. “Yes,” said Tom desperately. So the two advanced on Flashman, with clenched fists and beating hearts. They were about up to his shoulder, but tough boys of their age, and in perfect training; while he, though strong and big, was in poor condition from his monstrous habit of stuffing and want of exercise.” 😉

    • SHF: And if Nic had submitted his story to your mates at SkS, would it have been ‘published’? Or disappeared?

    • I predict the following strategy by Nature: the rebuttal is delayed by two years, and a reply by the original authors is printed in the same issue. Then the reply will be used in the next IPCC report.

    • Harry, c’mon man, it’s the 2000’s and the archaic processes and timelines of i stations like Nature are dying fast. They just don’t know it yet. Better to simply post on line and let other critique away. Much faster science that way.

      • Yes, and better, too. If folks would pre-release papers online for independent review — before — publication (as Anthony has), maybe more than one in five would not fall flat, usually within a week of publication.

  10. Professor Hughes of Edinburgh University does sum it up nicely.
    A certification board for circular reasoning would be a nice idea also. Before anyone can edit, peer review or publish on climate science they would have to get certification that they understand circular reasoning. I have seen too many peer reviewed papers that employ this logical fallacy. The paper begins with an assertion that then becomes the conclusion of the paper. Ironically circular argument are always logically valid, but of course of no value. For example, “AGW causes changes to wildlife. Since our study showed a change in the mating habits of the pumpernickel squirrel we conclude AGW affects the mating habits of wildlife.”

    • Unfortunately, it sometimes happens on articles written for this site.
      For example Willis’s article on Radiating the Oceans. He starts with the premise of the gross energy flow budget for the ocean and then concludes that the oceans would freeze unless they receive DWLWIR. He could equally have started withe the premise of the net energy budget and then be led to the concluded that DWLWIR was not a necessary component preventing the oceans from freezing.

    • Actually your example isn’t so much circular reasoning as it is bad logic. If the first sentence were “All changes to wildlife are caused by AGW,” then the last sentence would be circular. But your sentence is equivalent to “Some changes to wildlife are caused by AGW” so the last sentence is simply an incorrect conclusion.

    • Better watch that. One of the most damning of the c-g emails proposed setting up a committee (Star Chamber?) that would act as universal gate-keeper, invalidating all climate articles that did not cite articles that the committee listed.
      (That is worse than it sounds.)

  11. “pal-review this comment”
    are you referring to Nature or to
    “Lewis’s findings … have been reviewed and confirmed by two statisticians: Professor Gordon Hughes of Edinburgh University and Roman Mureika.”
    So that critique works both ways. Except in Nature the review is blind.

    • Yes, for sure the reviewers in Nature were blind. They let through such a third rate abomination of a paper. They sure must’ve been blind.

    • Pippen said, “So that critique works both ways. Except in Nature the review is blind.”
      If the paper fits Nature’s narrative, then whether the review is blind or not is irrelevant…n’est-ce pas?

    • But it should be doubly blind: neither reviewer nor author should be known. With Nature, the author is and therefore a bias can be introduced when peer review equates to pal review.
      At a more basic level, the assumption in any reviewing process is that the reviewers are knowledgeable. Gordon Hughes points out that in this case they demonstrably were not. That should worry any editor.

      • That simply isn’t realistic. Most of the time, it is easy to figure out who wrote a paper. From the specific comments made by referees, it is often enough also possible to guess who the referees were.


    • Pippen Kool
      February 6, 2015 at 7:01 am
      …. Except in Nature the review is blind.

      You can’t possibly actually believe that and work in any field in science let alone climate “science.” One of the nastiest aspects of “anonymous peer review” is how easily it is manipulated. The “team” was kind enough to actually document the process for us. See the Climategate emails. Other, worse examples, that do not involve Climate “science” visit Retraction Watch.

    • Pal review is a terrible disservice — to the authors, themselves. It results in articles that do not hold up to independent review. You can fiddle peer review, but you can’t fiddle independent review.

      • evanmjones

        Pal review is a terrible disservice — to the authors, themselves. It results in articles that do not hold up to independent review. You can fiddle peer review, but you can’t fiddle independent review.

        But “I” don’t want “unfriendly” may-be-critical., may-not-like-me, honest reviews by potentially unfriendly unknown people!
        They are MY IDEAS!!!!!!! I OWN THEM!!!!! MYIDEAS ARE ME!!!!!!
        If “you” (an unworthy unknown unfriendly person) address MY IDEAS in a public forum you are attacking ME personally! !!!!! RANT, RANT, RANT ….
        (And, besides, if you (the un-friendly unknown person) address my ideas critically and if you (the unfriendly, unknown critic) don’t like my ideas, “I” have to address your unworthy, unfriendly, unwanted questions! AND I DON’T WANT TO!!!! More RANT!!!!

  12. About a century ago, Andrew Lang wrote “He uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp posts…..for support rather than illumination.”

  13. I noticed the sks has a post on the Morotske paper. Here is a comment and moderator reply.
    “””bjchip at 22:51 PM on 6 February, 2015
    This may or may not have been hasty.
    I see that there is some information on climateaudit that the statistical methods used are flawed. I do not have the background to double check that. I hope the authors can check it out and act appropriately…. quickly.
    0 0
    Moderator Response:
    [JH] Your comment appears to be a thinly-disguised attempt to castr a shadow on the information presented in the OP. If so, please cease and desist playing such a game on this website. “””
    The boys at sks won’t allow any statistical review of their religious beliefs. The moderator doesn’t seem to moderate his spell-check either.

    • I just commented there suggesting I’d be interested in seeing a response as well. If they ban me I guess I’ll have to spend all my time here :).

      • SHF:
        You got a reply.
        “Tom Dayton at 03:17 AM on 7 February, 2015
        Sir Harry, a professional statistician who has published climate science peer reviewed papers goes by the name Tamino on his blog, which is outstanding.”
        Let us know what Tamino has to say. I’m sure it will entertaining. Good luck with getting a adequate answer though.

      • DCA
        Thanks for providing the laughable statement of SkS saying

        Sir Harry, a professional statistician who has published climate science peer reviewed papers goes by the name Tamino on his blog, which is outstanding.

        The “professional statistician” posts stuff as being from “Tamino” on his blog when wants to promote nonsense which he is too ashamed to put his name to and which he cannot publish as “climate science peer reviewed papers”.
        Richard

      • DCA:

        Let us know what Tamino has to say. I’m sure it will entertaining. Good luck with getting a adequate answer though.

        Of course, whatever Tamino has to say will merely be:

        Sniping from the safety of an obscure blog site [which] doesn’t move the debate forward. (cf Luke)

    • “Your comment appears to be a thinly-disguised attempt to castr a shadow on the information presented in the OP”
      Let me translate that for everybody:
      “How dare you try to raise potentially valid criticisms of the Gods of Climate Science! We’ll have no skepticism here at Skeptical Science! Denier, Denier, Denier!”

    • Lid came off because I forgot that suggesting any alternative to the party line here quickly leads to scorn, dismissal, heavy sighs and reminders that due to the Great Green Conspiracy, only information found here or at a select group of skeptic/denier blogs can be trusted. So that’s fun.

        • And you’re an ignorant prick. Is that ad hominem enough for you? I keep forgetting that there’s no use coming here for useful information knowing the calibre of response any honest questioning will get.

      • Mods
        Troll ad hominem nasty post alert!

        “Sir Harry Flashman February 6, 2015 at 10:09 am
        And you’re an ignorant p****…”

        It’s bad enough that trolls just try and screw up topics; is it necessary that WUWT must suffer their total lack of social courtesy?
        [Reply: Normally it would be snipped, but it was left for a different reason. SHF will probably regret it, too. ~mod.]

        • I stand by that. I can be a smartass, but that’s the first time I’ve been that rude. However, look what I was responding to, and then search the threads and see what people say to me – I get tired of being constantly abused for not toeing the party line, or even asking a legitimate question. They can always ban me if they want.
          [Reply: others are so-called “abused”. But they do not resort to labeling people like you did. ~mod.]

      • Normally, after a couple of interactions with individual trolls, I just skip their worse than useless comments as they are a major waste of time.
        I may choose to respond to troll droppings when they’re way off base as the only way to combat a lie is with the truth.
        The best interaction with ordinary troll droppings is silence. With false troll claims, stick with knowledge. With troll abuse, ask for help.
        History eventually identifies all fools who willingly spread false knowledge and outright lies. Anonymous names are only temporary protection from identification.

      • Let’s look at what has actually happened.
        1. There’s a post referencing a rebuttal to a peer reviewed article (from Nature) on Climate Audit (as well as the rebutter’s blog.
        2. Luke, supported by SHF, claims the rebuttal should be done on Nature.
        3. All of us who have been in the “climate change” debate for a while (I’m at 20 years +) know that Nature won’t publish such a paper.
        4. Were the rebutter to submit the article to another journal which would publish it, it would be dismissed by Luke, SHF and the rest of their ilk.
        5. SHF (especially if he is indeed Tamino) knows this perfectly well. But he sticks to his guns nevertheless.
        6. This is the textbook definition of being a Troll. QED
        + Note that there hasn’t been the hint of an actual criticism of the original rebuttal here. If and when there is, you’ll see a real scientific discussion here.

      • The relevant question is merely whether Dr. Lewis’ analysis is correct or incorrect. Conspiracy theories (from either side) are inapplicable.

    • It’s simple, really. The trolls are quickest to make their appearance in any thread which undermines the latest “paper” with which they had hoped to buttress their CAGW claims.

      • A troll only takes a few minutes to comment. A serious comment would take some time, at least a few days if someone got serious and right on it. I am willing to wait for a serious response. Though I am not holding my breath.

  14. “The common denominator they all share is that they’re all activists who’re quite prepared to trash the perceived integrity of whatever profession they’re supposed to be practising in order to advance the “cause”, as it’s referred to in the climategate emails. They’re quite happy to distort, deceive, spin, destroy, pervert and simply lie their heads off because they just know the end justifies any means, and that’s something so many skeptics still find hard to get their head around.”
    https://thepointman.wordpress.com/2015/02/06/a-climate-of-hate-and-a-license-to-kill/
    Pointman

  15. “All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.”
    I had an few exchanges on another thread with joeldshore on “impact factors” of journals in which he was denigrating th Chinese Science Bulletin as a way to marginalize the article by Monckton et al on a simple climate model. I explained that impact factors suffered the same flaws as pal review. Naturally, Nature would be cited by the throngs of climate scientists who have been welcomed there with their tawdry wares plus the effect of any hundred papers at random would include all the team authors in the world. Yeah, they cite each other a lot.
    The quote above more eloquently makes my point. And would you believe, this paper will be cited by the usual hundreds of teamsters if it isn’t disappeared? It would be a nice diabolical flourish to let the paper stand for a year so that it is cited by the climate “masses” and then pull the rug out from under them all. The Max Planck Inst., Like the Wegener Institute (?) has developed a reputation in all this disgraceful climate syndicate era, like that of Penn State, the Boulder gang, UEA, UK Met, Nature Climate Science, the media’s Guardian, BBC and colonial clones, NYT, etc, that they are becoming a useful filter to help ignore the BS.

  16. As usual, individuals such as Luke, Pippen and Sir? Harry attack the person and not the facts. Its a guess whether they actually read the article in Nature like Nic did. And at least they have a forum to express their opinions (however flawed they might be) as compared to skeptics trying to submit and get published a fact-filled rebuttal in Nature. Pippen, Luke and Sir Harry should appreciate the freedon of speech this “obscure” blog provides them. The AGW skeptics don’t enjoy such freedom. And if this blog is so obscure why do their alarms go off on their troll-meter do that they can comment on this “obscure” blog?

    • I have no intention of reading it because it’s almost certainly beyond my understanding, at least not based on the amount of time I’d be willing to spend learning about stats. But I would like to see a spirited discussion leading to a conclusion, rather than everyone moaning in isolation.

      • The papers methods were badly flawed. Nic showed how and why. But this is evident in both the abstract and the conclusion from an absurdly illogical conclusion that anyone can grasp without knowing the statistics. Even you. This should have been caught by the reviewers and editors. And provides strong evidence of pal review trying to walk back model falsification by the now 18 year pause (BAMS 2009 said 15 years, Santer 2011 said 17 years).
        The paper’s statistics purportedly showed that paper’s self selected two most important emergent structural features of CMIP5 models (climate feedback ~1/ECS and ocean heat uptake) have NO statistical impact on the resulting temperature series. Absurd. It is a screaming siren with flashing red lights that the statistics were somehow fatally flawed.

      • I have no intention of reading it because it’s almost certainly beyond my understanding, at least not based on the amount of time I’d be willing to spend learning about stats.

        Fair enough. We all have other things to do. Me too.

        But I would like to see a spirited discussion leading to a conclusion, rather than everyone moaning in isolation.

        There can be no debate if no-one will (or can) dispute the findings of Nic Lewis and the statisticians.

      • Ah, so you will choose ignorance and depend on the kindness of strangers to lead you out of your (chosen) darkness? Well, Blanche, you just go with the nice man, he’ll take you to the padded spirited discussion room you seek.

        • If I get sick I’ll do some research and get a number of opinions, but ultimately I’ll rely on the experts. I don’t try to teach myself brain surgery off the internet then go around bragging about how much more I know than the people who’ve been working in the field for years.

        • I don’t know about experts. But I don’t come here just to be a jerk, I usually learn things.

  17. Thanks, Nic, Anthony. This paper’s methods are unsound, if not deceiving.
    I gather that the CMIP5 simulations are correct and nature is wrong.
    I’m not referring to Nature, which have chosen to be a mouthpiece for a flawed CAGW hypothesis.

  18. Matt Briggs weighed in on this yesterday:

    I wept when I read that. Real tears.

    He’s been saying that a lot regarding climate science papers. We may need to chip in and buy him a supply of tissues.

  19. It appears that Nature is now unabashedly a mouthpiece for contrived science that supports The Narrative.

  20. This is nothing new. Using the equations/math and statistics programmed into a computer model to get the results you want is the same thing that has been going on for a couple of decades. It supports the theory.
    The only way to completely negate the theory is with observational/empirical data over a long enough time period. So far 16 years(or whatever number close to that you are using) is not long enough.
    Since the PDO cycle is 60 years, then a case could be made for as long as 30 years(of natural cooling) to negate greenhouse gas warming, so we have a ways to go.
    That said, I guess you would call me a luke warmer but my mind is open to what new information we obtain and learn from. There are 2 things that bother me the most.
    1. Scientists acting like they know for sure and have high confidence of things that are really just theories or of things that have possible explanations other than what they are sure of……..and especially when evidence suggests they might not have it completely right, they start interpreting new information with bias that keeps them from adjusting the old position.
    2. Outright lies about the real world. That tornadoes, hurricanes, droughts, storms, blizzards, extreme cold and such are getting worse because of human caused climate change(from greenhouse gas warming that hasn’t been happening the last 16 years). That animals doing great are suffering. That crops and plants will do worse from an increase in CO2. That CO2 is pollution.
    There are hundreds of papers that one can use to site evidence on these completely delusional beliefs or in some cases, fraudulent uses of manipulating information to use to convince readers of what you want them to think.
    I am proud to be a denier……………..of dangerous warming and of the belief that CO2=pollution.
    So far, all the overwhelming evidence/science is that both the modest warming and increase in CO2 has been greatly beneficial to life on this planet.
    I deny anything and everything in climate science/meteorology and biology that is a blatant falsehood and I have all the proof.
    Those that have veered in a direction getting farther and farther from the scientific method have the problem. But then, I like to say that this is like living in the Twilight World of science.
    Where theories and made up facts and beliefs/papers that are the complete opposite of the authentic truth are the basis of their truth. Where governments, agenda based groups, the media and money/grant money have hijacked science(climate and biology) and redefined them so they line up with an ideology.
    This group think ideology is being passed on to our children who are being taught in school that carbon dioxide is pollution and humans are ruining the planet. At the 4 great schools that I’m a volunteer chess coach at, this is the case.
    This sort of brainwashing is almost impossible to overcome. When they graduate, these false assumptions are completely brainwashed in. It’s impossible to view the world objectively when your starting point is a fatally flawed, false assumption.

  21. Nice one, thanks to Nic and Anthony. The 18 year pause in global warming, and the over-estimation AGW propaganda machinery seems themselved to be a resulta of some logical eroor in their reasonings. But of cource, we have all known that from the start.

  22. There seems to be a complaint about the work of Nic Lewis that is hasn’t been published in Nature and therefore shouldn’t be privileged the same respect as the original paper. This attitude is wrong for several reasons.
    1) The standard of peer review at Nature is far lower than at Climate Audit – especially the crowd audit after the publication. Compare the two Nature and Climate Audit and try to argue from the sources that he standard of science is higher in the paper journal.
    2) No-one can argue with the criticism of the statistics or the circular logic. No-one has even tried. Therefore the work of Nic Lewis is unarguably more robust than the Nature paper – that is being criticised.
    3) Being wrong happens. Being out of your depth is another. This paper has been recommended for retraction and no-one can see why it shouldn’t be so retracted (except that Nature is “peer reviewed” and so correct by divine right). Clearly the peer review at Nature was embarrassingly inadequate.
    Missing the green is unfortunate. Going out of bounds is very unfortunate. But your caddy not noticing when you do is a bigger problem. Would you trust that caddy to pick your clubs when you next play? Nic Lewis is right not to.

    • “This paper has been recommended for retraction and no-one can see why it shouldn’t be so retracted (except that Nature is “peer reviewed” and so correct by divine right). Clearly the peer review at Nature was embarrassingly inadequate”
      Agree M Courtney but nothing will come of it. This paper will just be added to the massive list of papers that are evidence to show that the theory is valid.
      Moving of the goal posts can go on for some time. The -PDO, global cooling effect can be used for close to 30 years since in the past, this has been the periodicity.
      My position is that if the -PDO or other natural force is capable off stopping the warming, while CO2 levels accelerate higher, for such a long time, then clearly CO2 is not causing the dangerous warming speculated by the theory.
      But, the theory will not die as long as those convinced of it can justify it with papers like this one and we know that this has always been what matters most.

    • Briggs has written a comment letter to Nature. Who,knows whether they will dare publish it. I suspect Nic is preparing a formal retraction request to Nature’s editors and to authors Marotzke and Forster. He knows Forster. That process will take a bit of time.

  23. Rud Istvan February 6, 2015 at 8:09 am
    Has it exactly right. The circular reasoning is clear even in the abstract. I noticed it when I first read the abstract, I didn’t mention it here, because I thought it was too obvious and Nature would never publish a paper with such clear flaws. I guess I was wrong about that.

    • You have your answer. You cannot trust Nature (journal), and you cannot trust MPI because they produced and at the link you provide, promote a falsehood that’s absurd on its face.
      But its worse. You cannot trust Science (journal) because they did not retract Marcott 2013. See essay A High Stick Foul in ebook Blowing Smoke: essays on energy and climate.. You cannot trust Scientific American (journal) who published Mann’s denial of the pause April 2014. See essay Unsettling Science. You cannot trust NASA GISS and Gavin Schmidt, who ‘forgot’ to mention there was only a 32% chance 2014 was really the hottest evah!
      You certainly cannot trust IPCC meta analyses. For WG1 examples, see the climate chapter in ebook The Arts of Truth and essay Hiding the Hiatus. For a WG2 example, see essay No Bodies.
      In fact on climate change trust no one and verify everything. Climategate showed the unsavory games being played. That most people cannot or will not is what has allowed this nonsense to gain so much traction and momentum.

      • Rud,
        As always I thank you. I was already there with Dr. Schmidt.
        I do not understand why MPI would reiterate. There was no benefit that I can see and it puzzles me.
        The evidence stands. I understand a bit more of the skeptical nature.
        Sigh.
        Regards.

      • Danny, MPI in Germany is like NOAA NCAR in the US. Dependent on funding for climate models. Anything to prevent the well from drying up. Their web PR was blasted to main stream media; it has gotten press coverage in Deusche Welle, Sidney Times, Washington Post. It is a big deal at SKS now that even they have been forced to admit model/temp divergence. Most people don’t read Nature or Climate Audit. It was the PR value of the paper that counted for COP21 later this year. Even if Nature retracts (I agree with Nic Lewis it will have to), the Washington Post won’t run a story based on another PR MPI won’t put out about the embarassing retraction. Regards.

  24. The sad takeaway is that too many climate scientists are “activists” first, with a personal belief that clouds their objectivity, even if they’re trying to be sincere scientists. Statistics is a dispassionate field, and that’s how climate science should also operate. Otherwise it’s not science at all.

    • There is a deeper problem. Too many climate scientists aren’t minimally competent scientists. Mann’s hockey results automatically from an improper statistical process (centered principle components). Martozke’ abstract is simply illogical. Dessler (2010) claiming to have shown observational positive cloud feedback with an r^2 of 0.2! (essay Cloudy Clouds). University of Arizona claiming to show ecological climate change impacts over 50 years along a transect (AFH 39, the famous Catalina Highway outside Tucson) that was completely devastated by major forest fires in 2002 and 2003. (essay Burning Nonscience, pun intended). And on, and on.

  25. …that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.”

    Our university, and I assume most others, offer a course in statistics to researcher graduate students, post-docs , and faculty. It is not mandatory, and I do not know the participation rate. As to the second point, good luck accomplishing anything in this regard. Journals view those person most competent to review a paper as being members of the same club as the authors. It is a bandwagon effect to some degree, and it is also part of the circular thinking in grants and publication that Wm. Briggs spoke to last week.

  26. WUWT reported,

    {bold emphasis mine – JW}
    Professor Hughes [Edinburgh University] said of the Marotzke [of the Max Planck Institute coauthored by Piers M. Forster of the University of Leeds] paper [January 29 2015 in the journal Nature],
    “The statistical methods used in the paper are so bad as to merit use in a class on how not to do applied statistics. All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.”

    To infer that Nature, in the case of the publication process of the Marotzke and Forster research, doesn’t have normally plentiful access to the most competent referees is being unreasonably charitable to the journal Nature.
    The least charitable, but more plausible case is that the journal Nature has access to the highest qualified competent referees in any field but could not get them to engage in consideration of this piece of junk research by Marotzke and Forster; so Nature used instead ‘useful’ referees. The highly reputable referees are more plausibly keeping their integrity and distance from Marotzke and Forster work product.
    John

    • John Whitman
      You suggest

      The highly reputable referees are more plausibly keeping their integrity and distance from Marotzke and Forster work product.

      That suggestion makes no sense.
      Highly reputable referees would keep their integrity by pointing out the flaws in the paper and commending the paper be rejected for publication because the flaws are so serious.
      Richard

    • richardscourtney on February 6, 2015 at 11:04 am said @ John Whitman
      February 6, 2015 at 10:56 am ,

      richardscourtney,
      I do not understand how your comment can actually apply to what I said. Enlighten please.
      John

      • John Whitman, I got the point of what you meant.
        And I quite agree.
        Nature obviously does have access to the highest qualified, competent referees but perhaps it doesn’t have access to the highest qualified, competent editors?

      • John Whitman
        I am at a loss to explain how my comment can be more clearly responsive to your comment, but you ask me

        I do not understand how your comment can actually apply to what I said. Enlighten please.

        I will try to explain, but I don’t really know how to get you to “understand” the bleedin’ obvious.
        You wrote and I quoted

        The highly reputable referees are more plausibly keeping their integrity and distance from Marotzke and Forster work product.

        And I commented on that suggestion saying

        That suggestion makes no sense.
        Highly reputable referees would keep their integrity by pointing out the flaws in the paper and commending the paper be rejected for publication because the flaws are so serious.

        You are suggesting the referees maintain their “integrity” by refusing to provide reviews when they see a paper that is not worthy of publication. Your suggestion makes “no sense” because the “integrity” of “highly reputable referees” is founded on – and is displayed by – their providing honest reviews.
        A clear lack of “integrity” is demonstrated by refusal to provide a review because the review would be negative.
        All honest referees (n.b. not only “highly reputable” ones) keep their integrity by pointing out the flaws in a paper and commending a paper be rejected for publication when its flaws are so serious as to merit rejection for publication. (Incidentally, I most recently gave a review which recommended a paper be rejected for publication earlier this week).
        Richard

      • MCourtney on February 6, 2015 at 12:09 pm
        MCourtney,
        Yes.
        The journal Nature has access to objective referees and editors with professional honor, so one wonders why they chose ‘useful’ ones for processing the junk research by Marotzke and Forster.
        I do not think they need to get some competent referees; they need to get rid of their ‘useful’ referees and editors.
        John

      • richardscourtney on February 7, 2015 at 1:54 am said @ John Whitman,
        “[. . .]
        All honest referees (n.b. not only “highly reputable” ones) keep their integrity by pointing out the flaws in a paper and commending a paper be rejected for publication when its flaws are so serious as to merit rejection for publication. (Incidentally, I most recently gave a review which recommended a paper be rejected for publication earlier this week).
        Richard”

        richardscourtney,
        I appreciate you expanding further per my request.
        My original comment pointed out that the journal Nature appointed a ‘useful’ team of referees (and editor as pointed out by MCourtney) for the processing of the junk research of Marotzke and Forster. Yet, they did not appoint a top of the field objective and high integrity team which they obviously have access to.
        I inferred that the journal Nature cannot force any teams of referees and editors to process such junk research as Marotzke and Forster. I therefore think that top of the field objective and high integrity teams of editor and referees are intellectually voting with their feet away from participation on processing certain kinds of damaged ‘climate change’ research which they know are being advocated with bias by the intellectual leadership at the journal Nature. We will know what I said is true when the community that supplies referees and editors to the journal Nature start speaking out that they condemn the journal Nature’s recurring habit of ‘useful’ teams of referees and editors to process certain junk research.
        Therefore, I still do not understand the thrust of your two comments claiming ‘non-sense’ of my original post.
        John

      • John Whitman
        Your post I answered said

        To infer that Nature, in the case of the publication process of the Marotzke and Forster research, doesn’t have normally plentiful access to the most competent referees is being unreasonably charitable to the journal Nature.
        The least charitable, but more plausible case is that the journal Nature has access to the highest qualified competent referees in any field but could not get them to engage in consideration of this piece of junk research by Marotzke and Forster; so Nature used instead ‘useful’ referees. The highly reputable referees are more plausibly keeping their integrity and distance from Marotzke and Forster work product.

        That clearly and without any caveat says the “more plausible case” pertains to behaviour(s) of “the highest qualified competent referees” and resulting use by Nature of ” ‘useful’ referees”.
        I replied saying in total

        That suggestion makes no sense.
        Highly reputable referees would keep their integrity by pointing out the flaws in the paper and commending the paper be rejected for publication because the flaws are so serious.

        In response to your request for clarification of my reply I bothered to explain it, but you still say you don’t understand my response. I will try a different tack; i.e.
        You spouted illogical nonsense and you are now trying to disguise that by attempting to claim your post I rebutted was about journal Editors and not about behaviour(s) of “the highest qualified competent referees”.
        I will not be bothered to reply to any more of your nonsense in this sub-thread.
        Richard

      • richardscourtney on February 8, 2015 at 1:06 am

        richardscourtney,
        Show me the illogic. Apparently that is the basis for you stating non-sense in each of your three comments.
        John

      • John Whitman
        Your daft post at February 8, 2015 at 4:13 pm demands of me

        Show me the illogic.

        I have shown you repeatedly. I will here do it again.
        Your first post was about the behaviours of “highly reputable referees” which you asserted were caused by their actions “keeping their integrity”.
        I pointed out that your assertion was – and is – nonsensical because their asserted behaviour would negate their “integrity”.
        You now compound your nonsense by claiming your first post was about journal Editors whom it did not mention, and it was not about the behaviours of “highly reputable referees” which you asserted.
        Richard
        PS I have only provided this reply to your demand because I am curious as to what your next daft response will be and I enjoy laughs.

    • It might be so. In my experience, which is not recent nor especially extensive, reviewers do one of the following:
      1) Avoid confrontations over contentious topics, especially when their opponents are highly regarded and on the “correct” side of the contention.
      2) Try to help the authors correct deficiencies and make a stronger product.
      3) Give the paper a superficial review because they barely understand the topic themselves, but cannot bring themselves to admit as much.
      4) State, without further elaboration, that the paper is awful and shouldn’t be published, leaving editors and reviewers to wonder if the opposition is substantive or derives from other factors like personal issues or viewpoint.
      5) Review the work with a eye to aiding their own citation record, i.e. make suggestions about potential additions to the bibliography.
      6) Reveal to interested third parties the essence of the paper, long before it can emerge from review and be published.
      Number 2) occurs more often than one might think.

      • Kevin Kilty
        Yes, thankyou.
        Each of your points is worthy of discussion and they all happen but – as you say – your point 2 is most common.
        Richard

      • Kevin Kilty on February 6, 2015 at 12:45 pm

        Kevin Kilty,
        Your overview of possibilities was well done, thanks.
        In the case of the junk research by Marotzke and Forster it is obvious that “2)” did not occur at the journal Nature. Also, over the past several years it is not uncommon to find that it doesn’t occur on a certain type of research papers being processed by journals like Nature.
        John

  27. I have read Nick Lewis’s summary on the Climate Audit site, and all I can say is OMG. In addition to all of the other problems, is there not also the following problem with the model? To wit: The term representing feedback is not independent of the term representing forcing, and should be made an integral part of it.
    This leads to an interesting question I have regarding any attempt to find alpha from the time series temperature data. Many feedback systems are not observable in the sense that the output data do not reasonably allow one to determine the parameters of the system’s internal workings. Has anyone ever discussed this concept (observability) in terms of the input(s) and output of the computer models, or the real climate system?

    • Read Nic Lewis (yes, that Nic Lewis) and Judith Curry’s recent paper on AR5 climate sensitivity in ClimateDynamics. It provides at least partial answers. Easiest access is through Judith’s blog Climate Etc and her post on 9/24/14. Regards

  28. If global warming has stopped, it’s “natural variability.” If the globe is warming, it’s Man’s fault.
    Sound familiar? If it’s cooler, it’s weather. If it’s hotter, it’s climate.
    Despite the statistical analysis, whether good or bad, once you ascribe observations to “natural variability,” you must recognize the role of natural variability in ALL outcomes. “The warming in the late 20th century was natural variability, and the “hiatus” Man’s fault,” is an EQUALLY VALID assertion.
    This is further proof of what I’ve said for years, that regardless of whether Man has an affect or not, it is clear that such affect is overwhelmed by natural processes, to the point that Man’s influences are irrelevant. To whit, there is no need to know what the natural processes are. A few dozen climate scientists are all we need to study such esoterica.

  29. Could someone explain the meaning of the following sentence in the paper:
    “Furthermore, the period
    1998–2012 stands out as the only one during which the HadCRUT4
    15-yearGMST trend falls entirely outside the CMIP5 ensemble (if only
    narrowly), suggesting that theCMIP5 models could be missing a cooling
    contribution from the radiative forcing during the hiatus period (ref12,15,16,46–48),
    or that there has been an unusual enhancement of ocean heat uptake
    not simulated by any model( ref19.)”
    The last part , ocean heat uptake is presumably the Trenberth “missing heat” postulate , but it is the bit about a cooling contribution from the radiative forcing that I do not understand .,During the hiatus period the CO2 concentration has increased by 30 – 40 ppm Are the authors implying a concentration dependent mechanism involving the excitation – deexcitation of CO2 that effectively limits the degree of warming due to CO2?
    That has been suggested here I think on several occasions. So is it now an acceptable idea? or have I misunderstood their meaning?

    • I don’t think they are claiming that. They say the models do not react too sensitively to increases in CO2, but that the discrepancies are due to “random variation.” At least that’s what Science Daily wrote about this study:

      Using a statistical method, Marotzke and Forster analysed the contributions of the individual factors and found that none of the physical reasons explains the distribution of predictions and the deviation from the measurements. However, random variation did explain these discrepancies very well. In particular, the authors’ analysis refutes the claim that the models react too sensitively to increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide: “If excessive sensitivity of the models caused the models to calculate too great a temperature trend over the past 15 years, the models that assume a high sensitivity would calculate a greater temperature trend than the others,” Piers Forster explains. But that is not the case, despite the fact that some models are based on a degree of sensitivity three times greater than others.

      • Louis , thank you . Obviously I need to look at their opening equations again to understand the “random variations”.

  30. Eric Sincere February 6, 2015 at 7:14 am
    “Ahhh, the trolls are out today… Crawl back in your troll-hole surehairyflesh. Oh, and for the record, please call us deniers… at least you put “skeptic” in quotes… close enough troll.”

    Eric Sincere,
    Congratulations on being the initiator of a lengthy engagement in name-calling people as trolls on this thread.
    I think this following quote by George Orwell applies to such taunting as you initiated and which others sustained;

    “It appears to me that one defeats the fanatic precisely by not being a fanatic oneself, but on the contrary by using one’s intelligence.”
    – George Orwell

    John

  31. Its may be full of BS , but its certainly been ‘effective ‘ has a piece of science by press release which in the end you get the feeling was the whole point of the paper .

  32. Does all this mean that skeptics have not been stripped of their last-ditch argument? The summary for this study in Science Daily claimed that just 4 days ago:
    Summary:
    Skeptics who still doubt anthropogenic climate change have now been stripped of one of their last-ditch arguments: It is true that there has been a warming hiatus and that the surface of Earth has warmed up much less rapidly since the turn of the millennium than all the relevant climate models had predicted. However, the gap between the calculated and measured warming is not due to systematic errors of the models, as the skeptics had suspected, but because there are always random fluctuations in Earth’s climate, according to a comprehensive statistical analysis.
    (Jochem Marotzke, Piers M. Forster. “Forcing, feedback and internal variability in global temperature trends”)

    • That summary is indicative of their continued wishful thinking that nature will come to it,s senses and return to glorious warming, which will lead to the downfall of mankind somewhere in the far off future.
      To my mind the random and not so random fluctuations in Earth,s climate is what caused the warming between the late 1970s and 1998 approx. The same fluctuation has caused this plateau, and will most likely now lead into at least a dozen years of cooling, if not longer that that.

  33. Thank You (!) Nic Lewis, Professor Gordon Hughes of Edinburgh University, and Roman Mureik formerly of the University of New Brunswick!

  34. Louis,
    Do you think Science Daily understands the difference between causation, and coincidental corellation?
    It looks like they don’t have a clue. Until there is an agreed-upon measurement quantifying AGW, it is just a conjecture [one that I personally think is valid, but still…].
    Without a measurement, AGW might be 50% of total global warming. Or 5%. Or 0.05%. We just don’t know, because AGW has never been measured. It could be zero for all anyone knows.
    If we had a verified empirical, testable measurement quantifying AGW, we would know what the climate sensitivity number is, and then we could accurately predict future global temperatures.
    But after decades of intense investigation by many thousands of scientists, and the IPCC, and government agencies, and universities, no one knows what AGW is. It has never been quantified.
    So in fact, Science Daily’s “last ditch” argument hinges on a measurement of AGW. Without that, the climate alarmist crowd is speculating. They need to put up or shut up.
    I was a lukewarmer back in the ’90’s. But with every year that passes without any global warming, the AGW conjecture becomes harder to justify.
    As for catastrophic AGW (CAGW), anyone who still believes in that needs to show at least some global harm due to the rise in CO2. Without any harm, the default position for reasonable scientists is that CO2 is ‘harmless’. And the more time that passes, the more beneficial CO2 is shown to be.
    So far, there is no downside — and plenty of upside to adding more of that beneficial trace gas — which has anyway gone from just 0.00003 of the atmosphere, to only 0.00004 in a century and a half. Since CO2 has been up to twenty times higher in the geologic past with no runaway global warming, current levels are not worth worrying about.

  35. “received worldwide media attention because of its claim to have shown that the recent hiatus in surface temperature rises was the result of natural variability.”
    Well, yes. we know it is.
    Just like the slight warming period before 2000.
    And just like the coming cooling period.
    ITS ALL NATURAL VARIABILITY !

    • AndyG55,
      That’s what Occam’s Razor says, and that’s what the climate Null Hypothesis says. What we are observing now is fully explained by natural variability. There is no need for invoking any extraneous variable such as CO2, methane, etc. There is nothing either unusual or unprecedented happening. Everything observed now has happened in the past, and to a much greater degree.
      In fact, we have been enjoying a true “Goldilocks” climate over the past century and a half. But instead of appreciating that, the alarmist crowd has gone all Chicken Little. But the sky isn’t falling; it was only a tiny acorn. Not even that, really.

    • I just love the comments, and how desperate you’re getting.
      The answer is right here. But you just cannot bring yourself to say a simple ‘thanks’ if I post it.
      Keep commenting, junior. I am immensely enjoying your impotence, and your juvenile attempts to get what you want without any quid pro quo, and your consternation that I won’t give you what you want, gratis.
      BTW: what’s a “flok“? You never did say. It doesn’t sound very nice.

    • David Socrates February 6, 2015 at 2:00 pm
      I hope you enjoy your link.
      ..
      The rest of the scientific community understands that there are no direct measurements of the atmosphere having “20x” the amount of CO2 it has today. Your “link” is based on suppostions and/or models of the carbon cycle. There isn’t even a proxy that would show the atmosphere having that much CO2 in it.
      ..
      Okay, that one made me laugh. David, are you aware the whole “Climate Change” movement is based on models. So by your reasoning, Climate Change is rubbish as well. Finally, we find something we can agree on.

        • I saw the pea and understood what he was trying to do.
          Socrates paints himself into a corner again and again, because there is no “direct measurement” of global surface temperature in 80% of the world prior to 1979, and certainly none going back to 1850, and more certainly none with the precision of tenths of a degree accuracy going back that far.
          So, if Socrates insists that direct measurement is a requirement, he is basically arguing against himself.
          Trolling is easy. Logic is hard (for some like Socrates).
          [Note: “David Socrates” is a sockpuppet name for a banned commenter. He has gone by other screen names such as ‘beckleybud’, ‘juan’, ‘Gordon Ford’, ‘Edward Richardson’ and many others. ~mod.]

      • tty,
        I thank you for those links. In fact, in the Nature discussion I found this: “Here we present data for goethites from an ironstone in the Upper Ordovician Neda Formation (Wisconsin, USA)8, which suggest that 440 Myr ago atmospheric P Co2 was ~ 16 times higher than today. However, this enhanced level of atmospheric CO2 does not seem to have been accompanied by unusually warm temperatures in the tropics, and in fact may have been contemporaneous with high-latitude continental glaciation on Gondwanaland9,10.”
        Unfortunately the links to supporting (9,10) did not work. But, this would reasonabley support Db’s contention presuming “unusually warm temperatures” are in a range near today’s.
        This is why I’m here. To learn. It’s appreciated.

        • OK folks, I’m back now.
          It’s been fun, but now that several readers have posted sources saying CO2 was up to twenty times higher than now, I can’t have fun with socrates any more.
          Just FYI, none of the links posted so far were the one I was originally referring to, which was this one [note the sources in the chart]. Notice that CO2 has been around 20X higher than the current 400 ppm.]
          This has been going on for a couple of weeks now between us. I have always been willing to post that citation, but since ‘socrates’ has never said ‘thanks’ for anything I’ve ever posted, even after he has endlessly demanded ‘citations’, I agreed to post it if he would simply say “Thank you”. But he could never bring himself to show any appreciation for answering his demands. Expressing any appreciation would kill him, it seems.
          There are other citations I’ve seen showing that CO2 has been twenty times higher. But ‘socrates’ has stated that there are none. He said he searched, but could not find any. So for the record, I reject any and all future demands from ‘socrates’ for citations of any kind. I will change my mind completely, of course. All he has to do is agree to say a simple “Thank you” if I give him what he demands. But so far, as we see, he won’t agree. “Thank you” is a step too far for him.
          Finally, I want to say thanks to Danny Thomas for saying “I’ve not seen Db post a link to a falsehood”. We all have our faults, and we are all wrong on occasion. But truth is important to me. I would never fabricate anything.
          Thanks to Reg Nelson and tty, too. I was just having fun with socks, but your citations are appreciated, too. I had not seen some of them before.

    • @ dbstealey
      Odd .. you would think that an alarmista would accept stuff from NOAA/NCDC far more than we do…
      NOAA/NCDC being one of the ring-leaders of the AGW temperature adjustment farce ! 😉

  36. Post your citation and stop being a turd.
    [try fixing your email address to make it viable (a requirement for commenting here) or find yourself on permanent moderation – Anthony]

    • You apparently have been visiting here under many names, sockpuppeting.
      “Socrates” has posted under the following names:
      Gordon Ford
      ∑ (Sn) Wong
      beckleybud
      juan
      joy147
      pyromancer76
      Edward Richardson
      There are others.
      So yes, by policy, you are banned.

  37. Not to mention the tactic of redacting crucial portions of any rebuttal, printing the rest, and claiming purity of execution. I’ve had that happen to my letters-to-the-editor sent to various publications. Why bother? Public humiliation (“the widely-discredited Marotzke paper”) is the only real kind of humiliation. It may even lead to (wait for it)…humility!

  38. David,
    I can only find back 800k years via this: http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/ccgg/trends/history.html
    Assume this must come from ice cores, but source is unknown.
    Wish we could tag CO2 like wildlife is done so it could be followed.
    I’ve not seen Db post a link to a falsehood, but I’ve only been here a few months. I’d love to see the data too as this chart at about 3:13 mark (800k yrs ago) doesn’t show 20 times higher.

  39. Stop being a “turd” ??
    I seem to recall soxy getting his/her panties in a twist over less derogatory name-calling.
    I’ll just save that comment for future reference. ☺
    [Not that it bothers me, it doesn’t. And it’s very amusing watching you try to weasel out of saying a simple “Thank you” for posting whatever you demand.]

  40. Ah. I just noticed:
    You don’t make the rules here.
    I make my rules when you start demanding that I do what you want. Obey my rules, or go pound sand.
    Prove you aren’t “making up facts”
    LOLOL! It’s Alinsky junior!
    I don’t need to post citations to keep you happy, and I don’t have to prove anything to you. Prove that I am making up facts, junior.
    Once more, for the hard-headed: a simply “Thank you” without anything else, will get you what you are demanding. <— My rule. Take it or leave it.
    That citation is sitting right here, waiting… ☺

  41. What’s a “flok”?
    And deflecting again, I see. This right here isn’t science, this is you demanding that I do something for you. I can do it, no problem. But first you agree to my condition. It’s called a quid pro quo.

  42. There is a way to comment on some of the news articles in Nature if you are a subscriber, which I did in commenting on the obituary of my undergraduate advisor as did others. However, there does not appear to be a way to comment on a scientific article in Nature.
    So it’s time for Nic Lewis and/or Professor Gordon Hughes of Edinburgh University to write a letter to Nature.

  43. If commentators like Luke and Sir Harry Flashman are pushing Nic Lewis to submit the article “Marotzke and Forster’s circular attribution of CMIP5 intermodel warming differences” to Nature as a rebuttal, is that an implicit endorsement of its validity? Maybe these commentators would secretly like it if Nature published a rebuttal to a flawed paper….

  44. “The statistical methods used in the paper are so bad as to merit use in a class on how not to do applied statistics.
    All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees”.

    This statement in the cited article is unnecessarily incendiary. It may be true, but it would be better to save the incendiary bombs for the comments and keep the paper itself analytical.

  45. From UCSD: “In very general terms, long-term reconstructions of atmospheric CO2 levels going back in time show that 500 million years ago atmospheric CO2 was some 20 times higher than present values. It dropped, then rose again some 200 million years ago to 4-5 times present levels–a period that saw the rise of giant fern forests–and then continued a slow decline until recent pre-industrial time.”
    http://earthguide.ucsd.edu/virtualmuseum/climatechange2/07_1.shtml

    • David,
      Mr. Thomas? Formal.
      I see that it’s a reconstruction based on the link. But I’m interested in the interpretation of the data provided and this: “Since CO2 has been up to twenty times higher in the geologic past with no runaway global warming, current levels are not worth worrying about.” as Db stated. The chart I found seems a bit warm at the time of 20X concentrations.

    • @ David Socrates February 6, 2015 at 2:52 pm
      Mr D Thomas
      ..
      There is no direct evidence that CO2 has been 20x higher in the past.
      ————–
      There’s plenty of evidence: White Cliffs of Dover, The Great Barrier Reef. Limestone etc. You might see some of it, if you pulled your head out and had a look around.
      BTW The University, UCSD, is a very liberal institution. It was Lefties like you that were making this claim.

    • David,
      Pls call me Danny.
      The sentence just after the one you quoted: “In very general terms, long-term reconstructions of atmospheric CO2 levels going back in time show that 500 million years ago atmospheric CO2 was some 20 times higher than present values.” http://earthguide.ucsd.edu/virtualmuseum/climatechange2/07_1.shtml
      And I’ve provided a chart showing “reconstructed” temps from that approximate time. And in that chart the temps were a bit warmer than today. I believe our questions for Db are different. But, all this assumes that the link provided by Reg Nelson is that which Db based his claims:”“Since CO2 has been up to twenty times higher in the geologic past with no runaway global warming, current levels are not worth worrying about.”
      Interestingly, temps nor CO2 levels 500,000,000 years ago have nothing to do with today’s CO2 levels and/or if they’re “worth worrying about” but Db posted it. He’s taught me if I post it I own it so I assume that applies to all (unless retracted).

  46. Wow! This challange:

    “There is no direct evidence that …”

    coming from av (C)AGW-believer or at at least -hopeful, is really a bit rich, wouldn’t you say? Or just from a ‘consensus adhering hang around’ ..
    🙂

    • Jonas –
      You make an important point. Since the CAGW believers haven’t shown “direct evidence that…”, why would any serious scientist, climate or otherwise, even engage in discourse with them?
      Of course, I am being naïve and ignoring the political and financial aspects of CAGW believers, but from only a scientific standpoint, why do we even respond to their lack of direct evidence belief?
      FWIW – I believe the answer to my question is “because if we don’t, their lie becomes truth”.

  47. Real scientists need to stand up publicly and oppose these phony climate “scientists” before science as a whole loses its respect and credibility in the public eye.

    I am afraid it is far too late for that. Science as a whole has allowed this travesty to unfold and seriously damage whole economies. The poor have suffered greatly. I don’t think there is any “respectable” science left at this point.
    This has been a major propaganda effort and anyone who has not been fighting back is complicit.

  48. From Lewis “One of Marotzke’s conclusions is, however, quite likely correct … : it seems reasonable that differences between simulated and observed trends may have been dominated – except perhaps recently – by random internal variability over the shorter 15-year timescale.”
    So, that is half of the reason it’s in Nature, and he agrees.
    The other, from the abstract: “the claim that climate models systematically overestimate the response to radiative forcing from increasing greenhouse gas concentrations to be unfounded”. That is what Lewis goes after with all of his Greek symbols.
    If you look at the article, half of the models runs go north and half go south. So, to normal people (e.g. most reviewers) it’s hard to see the problem. I am waiting for a critique by a statistician who is not a retired economist that writes books complaining about why solar farms don’t work.

    • Ooooh, all those complicated greek symbols.
      Math is s-o-o-o hard.
      Hmmm, let’s see, if we regress dT on dT….

    • Pippen Kool goes back to school:
      Another attempt to twist a statement into supporting the consensus Pippen? You posit a straw man ‘half’ of the reason the paper was in Nature? All it takes is a statement without context and your false spin on the meaning?
      Context: (my highlights and bolding)

      “Conclusions
      I have shown that there are no valid grounds for the assertions made in the paper that ‘For either trend length, spread in simulated climate feedback leaves no traceable imprint on GMST trends’ and that ‘The claim that climate models systematically overestimate the response to radiative forcing from increasing greenhouse gas concentrations therefore seems to be unfounded’.
      Marotzke conclusion that for periods ending in the last few decades the non-noise element of 62-year GMST trends in models is determined just by their ERFs is invalid, since he hasn’t used an exogenous ERF estimate. Indeed, if the models are working properly, their GMST trends must logically also reflect their feedback strengths and their ocean heat uptake efficiencies.
      The interesting question is how much the large excess of model ensemble-mean simulated GMST trends relative to observed trends over the satellite era is attributable to respectively: use of excessive forcing increases; inadequate feedback strength (excessive ECS); inadequate ocean heat uptake efficiency; negative internal variability in the real climate system; and other causes. The Marotzke and Forster paper does not bring us any closer to providing an answer to this question. It certainly does not show the claim that climate models systematically overestimate the response to radiative forcing from increasing greenhouse gas concentrations to be unfounded.
      One of Marotzke’s conclusions is, however, quite likely correct despite not being established by his analysis: it seems reasonable that differences between simulated and observed trends may have been dominated – except perhaps recently – by random internal variability over the shorter 15-year timescale.
      Gordon Hughes had some pithy comments about the Marotzke and Forster paper:
      The statistical methods used in the paper are so bad as to merit use in a class on how not to do applied statistics.
      All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.
      The paper is methodologically unsound and provides spurious results. No useful, valid inferences can be drawn from it. I believe that the authors should withdraw the paper.”

      Note Pippy’s use of an ellipsis to hide the fact that Marotzke’s accidental conclusion was not established and therefore not even a tiny part of why Nature published the toilet paper work. Marotzke’s accidental conclusion was not expanded nor expounded on by Marotzke.
      Nic Lewis only accepts that Marotzke’s accidental conclusion is reasonable, not proved.

  49. “Socrates”,
    We have been over this several times now. I keep telling you that I have that citation right here. But since I’ve given you the citations you demand over and over again, with never a ‘thank you’ and most often with no acknowledgement other than nitpicking and carping about them, I attached a couple of conditions this time, as you well know. But you ignore the conditions, and continue to demand that I do what you want.
    In the past when I’ve posted the citations you demanded, your response has been to either set up a strawman and knock him down without ever responding to what I provided [deflection], or you completely ignored what I posted because it destroyed your position. You have never once said ‘thanks’ for all the times I helpfully provided what you demanded.
    I see your Alinsky tactic now: you incessantly demand citations, trying to imply that I’m making up facts. I never do that. But I’m not going to be your chump. The answers are online, go find them yourself. I’ve done enough homework for you, those days are over.
    All you have to do is to acknowledge that I posted a citation you demanded, and post a simple, “Thank you,” without your usual incessant arguing and nitpicking. If you agree to do that when I post the citations you constantly demand, I’ll post this one. If not, go look it up yourself.
    That goes for all future demands from you — I’ve explained this to you a couple of times now. Either learn the rules, or get lost.

  50. I guess the statistically-challenged authors want to invoke natural variability for the lack of warming in last 15 years and anthropogenic forcing for all the warming in 62 years. No matter how much you torture the numbers, it’s still a dumb idea.

  51. Nature will withdraw a paper which helps their cause, seriously? Did they ever withdraw the Mikey Mann hockeystick paper?

  52. This has probably been pointed out above, and might be what the article’s reviewers meant by “circular logic”, but it was obvious as soon as I saw the headline: if natural variability has affected the data so much, then isn’t the paper concluding that natural variability > AGW?

    • My thoughts, exactly, if the goal of a model is to explain variance in the data, and the model fails to do that then the model, in the words of Drew Carey, is “Craptastic!”

    • Yes.
      But that is evident from the Pause.
      It’s reality that confounds the Alarmists.
      Observation, not Opinion.

  53. In a way it is unfortunate that the paper is junk. There is a priceless sentence in the summary:
    “For either trend length, spread in simulated climate feedback leaves no traceable imprint on GMST trends or, consequently, on the difference between simulations and observations”
    This means that differences in climate sensitivity has no discernable effect on modelled Global Mean Surface Temperature, and since GCM:s are supposed to reliably simulate actual climate, it implies that, at least for periods up to 60+ years climate sensitivity has no traceable effect on climate either!
    Now you would have thought that this alone should have rung a warning bell somewhere, but no.

  54. In December 2014, Willis posted GMT series generated by 42 CMIP5 models, along with HADCRUT4 series, all obtained from KNMI.
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/12/22/cmip5-model-temperature-results-in-excel/
    We were able to analyze the temperature estimates of CMIP5 models and compare them with HADCRUT4 (1850 to 2014), as well as UAH (1979 to 2014). The models estimate global mean temperatures (GMT) backwards from 2005 to 1861 and forwards from 2006 to 2101.
    Bottom Line:
    In the real world, temperatures go up and down. This is also true of HADCRUT4.
    In the world of climate models, temperatures only go up. Some variation in rates of warming, but always warming, nonetheless.
    The best of the 42 models according to the tests I applied was Series 31. Here it is compared to HADCRUT4, showing decadal rates in degrees C periods defined by generally accepted change points.
    Periods HADCRUT4 SERIES 31 31 MINUS HADCRUT4
    1850-1878 0.035 0.036 0.001
    1878-1915 -0.052 -0.011 0.041
    1915-1944 0.143 0.099 -0.044
    1944-1976 -0.040 0.056 0.096
    1976-1998 0.194 0.098 -0.096
    1998-2013 0.053 0.125 0.072
    1850-2014 0.049 0.052 0.003
    In contrast with Series 31, the other 41 models typically match the historical warming rate of 0.05C by accelerating warming from 1976 onward and projecting it into the future.
    Over the entire time series, the average model has a warming trend of 1.26C per century. This compares to UAH global trend of 1.38C, measured by satellites since 1979.
    However, the average model over the same period as UAH shows a rate of +2.15C/cent. Moreover, for the 30 years from 2006 to 2035, the warming rate is projected at 2.28C. These estimates are in contrast to the 145 years of history in the models, where the trend shows as 0.41C per century.
    Clearly, the CMIP5 models are programmed for the future to warm more than 5 times the rate as the past.

  55. To the “Lukes” out there … Nic Lewis is accomplished in the climate science field. Others have noted his recent paper on the climate model subject with Judith Curry. In a matter of NINE days from publication Nic has compiled a detailed review and analysis of the paper, invited two top statisticians to review his work, and written a strong rebuttal shows the serious/fatal flaws. Climate Audit published this article and a number of other noted experts in the field have commented, largely supporting Nic’s work and findings.
    In NINE days, in a PUBLIC source, there has been more ‘science’ accomplished – more expert scientific and statistical review, than obviously was done by Nature, its peer reviewers and editorial staff in the likely months of publication “process.”
    The “Luke’s” of the world always have an excuse and/or attack ready – in fact the kooky SkS kidz are in full excuse-making attack mode – melting down with insults etc. – over this topic in their forum. Yet despite all their ‘experts’ weighing in, not a SINGLE ONE offered ANY rebuttal or even comment about Nic’s work. Nothing but the ad hominem attack, and appeals to authority they so judiciously condemn when coming from a “denier.”
    Publication in a blog – especially a highly rated scientific blog like Climate Audit, with its large group of folks who DO have proven, specific domain knowledge and experience – is in no way inferior to publication in a professional journal.
    It eliminates entirely the “pal review” and strips away partisan biases. Steve McIntyre, Anthony Watts, Judith Curry, Lucia and similar all will and do allow critical comments – and encourage them – especially when from other experienced individuals in the field. If anyone disagrees with Nic’s work they are free to post a rebuttal which will get the same critical review – conducted in the OPEN – without partisan censorship.
    The ridiculing by “Luke” and the like of Nic’s posting in a lowly blog as opposed to attempting to fight the biases, partisanship and secrecy of a reply or separate paper submitted to an official publication – shows their lack of any real rebuttal of work like Nic’s.
    ANY person with the requisite skills can comment on and or rebut Nic’s work here or at Climate Audit (or at the similar blogs). The authors can come here or CA and respond & rebut. Any of the warmist crowd can come here or CA and make a rebuttal. Yet for the most part not a one of them will. They know they cannot control the medium, cannot censor so as to control the discussion. And do not have the secrecy and protection of the generally “friendly” journals.
    “Crowd review” – conducted in the open – is the far better review than the closed journal system. It is increasingly the future of science. Bad work is quickly identified as such. Good work is built upon and improved.
    Claims that its posted on a blog so it has no legitimacy or value are simple laughable – the mark of desperate people with no rational intelligent response.

    • The problem is you need people that are qualified to do the review. You can have thousands of comments on an article on a website but they mean nothing if the person making the comments is not qualified to truly understand the analyses and provide an unbiased review of the science. In the case of a paper like this, I imagine there are only a few dozen people in the world that have sufficient understanding of the approaches being used to provide a thorough review. It comes down to this, I trust the editors of Nature to vet the paper with the best scientists in the world, most of the people who comment on this site do not share that point of view.

      • Luke,
        Are you serious? Do you really believe that out of 6 billion+ people, that there are “only a few dozen people in the world that have sufficient understanding of the approaches being used to provide a thorough review“??
        Well. There goes your credibility.

      • Luke,
        There has been a tremendous amount of evidence presented by highly qualified persons operating in concert, which disproves the conclusions reached in this thread’s subject paper. In face of that evidence, your statement of trust in the editors of Nature signals that your stance in regard to this matter, is made rigid by your beliefs.
        We all operate within the bounds of belief, doubt and knowing. Once made aware of mistakes, the choice then becomes to correct our error, or proceed as before. It’s your life, now what will you do?

      • Luke –
        From your comment: “I imagine there are only a few dozen people in the world that have sufficient understanding of the approaches being used to provide a thorough review” I surmise that you are admitting that YOU are not one of your supposed few dozen. Indeed I have never understood why a personal lack of understanding does not advise adequate caution in making comments on blogs.
        However, there are far far more than you suppose who DO understand the basic problem, particularly as such persons as Ross McKitrick over at the CA blog clearly and unassumingly summarized the circularity. You didn’t even read this I suspect, and probably, so It seems, wouldn’t have understood it if you had read it (I could be wrong). But a lot of people here and at CA, etc. do have sufficient analytical tools to recognize that a valid (and fairly elementary criticism) has been brought forward.
        Instead, you say “I trust the editors of Nature to vet the paper with the best scientists in the world.” Your FAITH is foolishly misplaced. What a sorry basis for commenting here, where so many people do have a pretty good idea what is being discussed.

      • Luke,
        You have the right to your opinion, but consider it this way. Marotzke & Forster produced a paper. Nature chose to vett & publish said paper in a public forum. Every consumer of that paper has the right to read (or not), digest, and use as they see fit. Others can agree, disagree, or ignore that use.
        It’s a public document. We’re all “the public”. So any positive or negative critique is fair game. I don’t have the chops to review the statistics and can only presume that Nic Lewis had good reason to bring in experts that do. They’ve reviewed, dissected, and made public their views. And the cycle (can) continues. Critique their criticism. It’s fair game.
        To your point of who’s qualified to understand and review the science. It’s been said that if one can’t explain their offering so that a 6th grader can understand it, then they don’t understand it that well themselves. That makes much sense to me. I perceive that Ross McKitrick in the comments did a pretty good job. And there are many folks here with substantial qualifications so to assume appropriate standing does not exist here might just be a mistake. Would you agree that a bachelor’s degree is sufficient? Masters? PHd? I’d be willing to be some of each might just be found.
        My, unrequested, 2 cents.
        Best,

      • “I imagine there are only a few dozen people in the world that have sufficient understanding of the approaches being used to provide a thorough review”
        You have a somewhat über-reverent view of the complexity of the paper. Anyone with a university-level knowledge of mathematics and statistics and some familiarity with atmosphere physics should have no difficulty in understanding it. The most demanding part is probably to trace the formulation of ΔF back to an earlier paper in order to realize the fatal circularity of the reasoning. Most reviewers unfortunately don’t bother to check citations, they take the ability to read and understand earlier work as a given. Personally I mostly do check them, since I have found both citations missing in the reference list and citations that do not say what they are supposed to say to be disconcertingly common.

      • Luke – you clearly are purposely or cluelessly ignorant on both the science and the qualifications of those who are commenting on blogs such as WUWT and Steve McIntyre’s Climate Audit, along with sites like Judith Curry’s, Lucia’s etc. Many are highly skilled and accomplished people with specific domain experience in the field – they are MORE THAN qualified to do the review.
        You claim there are “only a few dozen” people in the world qualified to review shows your complete lack of knowledge on the topic.
        When it comes to an article like Nic Lewis’ it does not matter on iota WHERE it is published. Journal or web blog – the CONTENTS and the SCIENCE are unchanged. There HAS been review of his work by experienced and reputable peers – statisticians – who know and understand the science and more importantly the math. WHERE these comments are made is once again irrelevant.
        Blog publishing is as I noted in many ways superior. It is open and transparent. There are no hoops – no partisanship, no elitism, no attempts to block any comment. Unlike a source like the Journal Nature and others who are highly biased against dissenting views, no matter how well founded, NOTHING prevents the authors of the original paper or any other person from rebutting Nic Lewis’ work here, or at Climate Audit, where it is posted.
        Blog publishing insures the widest distribution – no hiding behind paywall’s – for work paid for with public dollars. It also insures the widest review – there is no suppression of dissenting views.
        I suggest you spend more time educating yourself and learning about the topic and less time insulting and denigrating. Perhaps with knowledge you can either see the silliness of your attacks or at least contribute intelligently.

    • You might be right that there are few people who can look at the original paper and then do an analysis and pick apart the flaws in the paper. However your mistake is in believing that others, many others, can not look at what Nic presents and be able to follow along with his logic and be able to understand how the paper is flawed.
      For example, I would not have been able to find the flaw in the paper at this time, but I am in the middle of studying statistics and just happen to have reviewed Regression Modelling just the other day and I recognize the math laid out by Nic. I also have a strong mathematical background and can follow the math fairly easily, including the Greek and Latin symbols.
      And then there’s my computer science background and the studies I am conducting in GCM’s.

  56. So this is excuse # which now for the 18+-year halt in warming? Are we up to the magic #97 yet? And THIS one is absolutely, positutely the “fatal blow” to the idea that the GCMs are fatally flawed?
    The desperation level of the Climate Liars has been cranked to 11 now for quite a while. Something’s gotta give.

  57. For the most part, I’ll wait to see what Nature does with the Lewis critique, if he is confident enough to submit it. It will go to the Editors and then to the original authors, and they will comment on it. then back to the Editors, and, believe it or not, out to reviewers to ask if the critique and the rebuttal should be published.
    It will only be published if the flaw is real _and_ if it changes the major points of the paper. Remember, when this happened to the famous Mann 98 paper, they admitted that some minor things could have been done better, but it wouldn’t have changed the main point of the paper.
    My reading of the paper and Lewis’ comments is that it will fall into that later “if”, but who knows.

    • Nothing stops the authors of the paper from responding to Nic Lewis’ strongly vetted work in public instead of hiding behind the protection and delays of the journal and its processes. Nic prepared his detailed review of their work, arranged for review of his conclusions by a number of highly experienced “peers” and wrote the article and published it – all with 9 DAYS FROM PUBLICATION of the paper.
      Certainly the authors of the paper can support their work and rebut Nic’s claims if they are not accurate in a similar timeframe. Or they can hide behind the journal process which will take months to a year – and may never be accepted for publication.
      Anyone want to guess the odds which path they choose?

  58. Always OT, but-On the Matter of Trolls and labeling same, the A team of the opposition all stayed off this post-to their credit, they sometimes recognize when they got nuthin’. Luke made a one-sentence substance-free complaint, and never gets around to the article itself. A couple other B teamers chime in, repeating Luke’s complaint while avoiding the issues in the article. They then feign ignorance of the issues, refuse to engage, and will look to experts. In the end, they briefly take us OT, but in the entire string, there is NO defense of Marotzke & Forsters math, and no substantial disagreement with (never mind attack of) Lewis’s math. Maybe the A team stayed out for a reason, at least they’re not trolls. To John Whitmore, I say flushing this out is time well spent, so long as it doesn’t overwhelm the article. Here, it shows with emphasis that the latest attempt to prop up the cause is simply and plainly based on bad math.

    • Nic’s criticisms are a nonsequitor. He claims that the regression analysis is invalid because delta T is included on both sides of equation 3. However, the point of Marotzke and Forster’s analysis is not to develop a novel regression models between two independent sets of data but examine the relative contribution of the various model covariates to the output of a predictive model. This is a common approach to the evaluation of predictive models and it is perfectly appropriate. Nic’s mistake is conflating standard regression modelling with evaluation of predictive models. Both approaches are appropriate but they are used to answer different questions.
      Lewis’s claim that Marotzke and Foster inflated the degrees of freedom in their analysis by assuming multiple runs of the same model are independent may have some merit but I do not have the background to evaluate how they addressed this problem. Lack of independence is a common issue in many regression analyses and can be addressed using mixture models and I imagine M&F were aware of that and did the appropriate analysis but I would like a independent statistician with more experience in these to weigh in on that.

      • Wow – Luke – you DO understand more than you were leading us to believe. You said:
        “Nic’s mistake is conflating standard regression modelling with evaluation of predictive models. “
        So if we write:
        X = X
        or perhaps better:
        X = aX + bY + cZ
        where we shake the data and subsequently find that a is approximately 1 and that b and c are approximately 0, is this (1) a regressive or (2) a predictive model? Choice (3): It’s just a riddle any 7th-Grader would decipher.

      • luke:
        if you dont have the background to evaluate how M&F addressed the problem that multiple runs of the same model are, in fact not independent, and therefore by treating as such, they inflated the degrees of freedom in their analysis, I submit that you dont know your ass from a hole in the ground when it comes to statistical analysis. Simply put…multiple runs of the same model aren’t independent, and never should be treated as being independent.
        Regressing a variable on itself doesn’t really prove anything.

      • Hey, Luke, your kid evidently got hold of your laptop and put up a substantial post. Any chance you could let him/her keep the laptop?

      • Ahhh Luke – so you aren’t as clueless as you’d like us to believe. You show you either understand the topic, or you copy and pasted someone elses comments. Yet you show you clearly have not bothered to read Nic’s article. Which answers your question. A number of highly accomplished statisticians have reviewed and confirmed Nic’s work – both those who did so at his request in a formal review, and a number of others who responded in comments to the article.

      • So I post a response and davideisenstadt responds with “I submit that you dont know your ass from a hole in the ground”. I thought there might be a chance for a real dialog on this site but I see I was wrong. Just a couple of points and then I am done. davideisenstadt- statisticians have been developing approaches to deal with nonindependence of data for years. Random and mixed effects models are ideal for this kind of situation. In addition, there is information on running a model multiple times. Because of differences in model structure, beta values, and stochastic terms, different models will display different variance structures which is key to the analysis that M&F were doing.
        One final thing, Lewis did not address the heart of M&F’s analysis which was that climate models do not overestimate the response to radiative forcing from increased greenhouse concentrations.

        • Luke
          One final thing, Lewis did not address the heart of M&F’s analysis which was that climate models do not overestimate the response to radiative forcing from increased greenhouse concentrations.

          So, you claim the current climate models DO UNDERESTIMATE the impact (none) of Co2 on future global average temperatures?

      • Luke said:
        “One final thing, Lewis did not address the heart of M&F’s analysis which was that climate models do not overestimate the response to radiative forcing from increased greenhouse concentrations.”
        There has been classically, and presumably still is, legitimately, a logical fallacy called “begging the question” which means assuming the result as an input (premise) and marveling when it reappears as the output. Today almost daily someone (like in the media) misuses the term “begs the question” to suggest that a question needs to be asked, usually in rejoinder. Many of us cringe each time we hear the term (usually) misused.
        M&F are (classically) begging the question by putting delta-T on both sides of the equation. Thereafter, ANYTHING goes, including needing less weight on a radiative forcing term (if you wish).
        They succeeded in replacing a terrible model result with a terrible model AND terrible excuse (Mother Nature is currently in joke-mode) for its failure. Progress? – I think not.

  59. Luke
    February 8, 2015 at 8:00 am
    “Nic’s criticisms are a nonsequitor.”
    ——————–
    So you are aware of the concept of logical fallacies.
    Any imaginings aside, at this point, your call for an “independent” analysis reads like a statement that you will only accept an analysis which supports your position.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Ps
    “Luke February 6, 2015 at 7:17 am
    If Lewis’s criticisms have a strong statistical foundation, I am sure that they would be published if he submitted a rebuttal to Nature.”
    ——————
    Was that a declaration that you have influence over Nature’s future actions in re this matter?

    • Has Lewis responded to this yet? Seems that Marotzke and Forster do not agree with him. Maybe they did understand their stats after all.

      • Stop being an ass. This response, which I commend Jochem Marotzke & Piers Forster for quickly undertaking, was posted in the last few hours.
        Of course simple realities like that are lost on trolls such as yourself, aren’t they?

      • But they did respond, and now it’s up to Lewis to comment.
        You, Mr. Scott, said “Nothing stops the authors of the paper from responding to Nic Lewis’ strongly vetted work in public instead of hiding behind the protection and delays of the journal and its processes. Nic prepared his detailed review of their work, arranged for review of his conclusions by a number of highly experienced “peers” and wrote the article and published it – all with 9 DAYS FROM PUBLICATION of the paper.”
        Marotzke and Forster responded within 3 days, and who knows when they found out about the blob er blog entry. The folks at climate audit are just starting to respond, so it should be a fun watch.
        While Marotzke and Forster spent most of their text explaining their approach, they did get one or two subtle cuts on Lewis: “This also supports the physical explanation as to why α and κ have a small role in determining model spread that Lewis did not understand.”

        • So, who were the ones who “peer-reviewed” this error?
          What did they check, and when did they check it? What were their credentials – other than blindly being able to accept errors in the sake of furthering Big Government’s agenda and taxes?

    • Steve McIntyre responds (h/t Bishop Hill) :
      http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2015/2/8/the-absence-of-mathematics.html
      “I’ve done a quick read of the post at Climate Lab Book. I don’t get how their article is supposed to rebut Nic’s article. They do not appear to contest Nic’s equation linking F and N – an equation that I did not notice in the original article. Their only defence seems to be that the N series needs to be “corrected” but they do not face up to the statistical consequences of having T series on both sides.
      Based on my re-reading of the two articles, Nic’s equation (6) seems to me to be the only logical exit and Nic’s comments on the implications of (6) the only conclusions that have a chance of meaning anything. (But this is based on cursory reading only.)”

      • Perhaps Luke should go to CA and explain to McIntyre, et al, that the math doesn’t matter, it’s the thought that counts. He’s done such a fine job of it, here.

      • And Forster replies to McIntyre
        “No, this really misses the whole point of the paper
        The point of the paper is to compare variability with the forced response. This is why Nic’s eqn. 6 is not the correct starting point for our analysis”
        Further discussion ensues. I am unqualified to pronounce on this, but glad to see the conversation.

  60. While they are about it they should get some from gardening specialists with a knowledge of gardening history to see what was grown where and when, geologists and biologists with a knowledge of CO2 sources and sinks, engineers with a knowledge of signal analysis to know what the expected pattern really should be form the data available, data acquisition engineers to know the certification practices needed for reliable data, computer modellers to learn that at least the most significant variable needs understanding rather than making superficial assumptions of man’s dominance.

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