Study claims there is no significant natural component to global warming, i.e. ‘it’s all your fault’

From the “language gives away the intent of the study” department comes this clear attempt at a headline.

Long-term global warming not driven naturally

Study “debunks” argument that warming is driven by natural factors

The Earth's thin atmosphere as viewed from space. A new study from NASA and Duke finds natural cycles alone aren't sufficient to explain warming trends observed over the last century. CREDIT Credit: NASA

The Earth’s thin atmosphere as viewed from space. A new study from NASA and Duke finds natural cycles alone aren’t sufficient to explain warming trends observed over the last century. Credit: NASA

DURHAM, N.C. — By examining how Earth cools itself back down after a period of natural warming, a study by scientists at Duke University and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory confirms that global temperature does not rise or fall chaotically in the long run. Unless pushed by outside forces, temperature should remain stable.

The new evidence may finally help put the chill on skeptics’ belief that long-term global warming occurs in an unpredictable manner, independently of external drivers such as human impacts.

“This underscores that large, sustained changes in global temperature like those observed over the last century require drivers such as increased greenhouse gas concentrations,” said lead author Patrick Brown, a PhD student at Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment. Natural climate cycles alone are insufficient to explain such changes, he said.

Brown and his colleagues published their peer-reviewed research Feb. 1 in the Journal of Climate.

Using global climate models and NASA satellite observations of Earth’s energy budget from the last 15 years, the study finds that a warming Earth is able to restore its temperature equilibrium through complex and seemingly paradoxical changes in the atmosphere and the way radiative heat is transported.

Scientists have long attributed this stabilization to a phenomenon known as the Planck Response, a large increase in infrared energy that Earth emits as it warms. Acting as a safety valve of sorts, this response creates a negative radiative feedback that allows more of the accumulating heat to be released into space through the top of the atmosphere.

The new Duke-NASA research, however, shows it’s not as simple as that.

“Our analysis confirmed that the Planck Response plays a dominant role in restoring global temperature stability, but to our surprise we found that it tends to be overwhelmed locally by heat-trapping positive energy feedbacks related to changes in clouds, water vapor, and snow and ice,” Brown said. “This initially suggested that the climate system might be able to create large, sustained changes in temperature all by itself.”

A more detailed investigation of the satellite observations and climate models helped the researchers finally reconcile what was happening globally versus locally.

“While global temperature tends to be stable due to the Planck Response, there are other important, previously less appreciated, mechanisms at work too,” said Wenhong Li, assistant professor of climate at Duke. These other mechanisms include a net release of energy over regions that are cooler during a natural, unforced warming event. And there can be a transport of energy from the tropical Pacific to continental and polar regions where the Planck Response overwhelms positive, heat-trapping local effects.

“This emphasizes the importance of large-scale energy transport and atmospheric circulation changes in restoring Earth’s global temperature equilibrium after a natural, unforced warming event,” Li said.

###

Jonathan H. Jiang and Hui Su of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, managed by the California Institute of Technology, co-authored the new study.

Funding came from the National Science Foundation (#AGS-1147608) as well as the NASA ROSES13-NDOA and ROSES13-NEWS programs.

CITATION: “Unforced Surface Air Temperature Variability and Its Contrasting Relationship with the Atmospheric TOA Energy Flux at Local and Global Spatial Scales,” Patrick T. Brown, Wenhong Li, Jonathan H. Jiang, Hui Su, Feb. 1, 2016, Journal of Climate; DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-15-0384.1

292 thoughts on “Study claims there is no significant natural component to global warming, i.e. ‘it’s all your fault’

      • .If I create a model that continuously tells me that you are an idiot, does that make it an accurate ” MODEL ” ??

      • Wagen, there are few to no El Nino-related, coupled ocean-atmosphere processes that climate models simulate properly. Many have difficulty with the basic ocean-atmosphere feedback in the tropical Pacific called Bjerknes feedback…and last time I checked, they do not properly simulate teleconnections associated with El Ninos.

        Again, Climate model-based study: disregard.

      • If I make a model of a B52 using a mass manufactured kit, does the model in question which only uses their prefabricated parts at a scaled size make it any more accurate?

        No not at all, but that’s what they’re asking us to do.

        There’s a fine line between the ‘digital world’ and ‘reality’, the sooner you realize that…

      • Marcus, based on all of the empirical evidence, yes! LOL Models that imitate actual events accurately=good. Models that cannot imitate actual events=”better than throwing darts” but not a whole lot.

      • @Bob

        “ocean-atmosphere processes that climate models simulate properly.”

        Well apparently they don’t if we lack the data to properly simulate them to the point in which policies are being generated.

      • Bob, you say:

        “Climate model-based study: disregard.”

        Meanwhile you present your own models. Should I disregard you? Can’t have it both ways.

      • So humans are having wonderful success in keeping the earth’s Temperature constant for the last 18 years and eight months, despite natural force efforts to drive it up; like a 30% increase in atmospheric CO2 which is a well known natural driver upper of Temperature.

        Now I’m not saying we humans aren’t entirely responsible for any increase in CO2; we are of course [responsible] for all of it.

        Yet despite that behavior by some of us (Not me; hell no) the rest of us are able to keep it constant. (especially me).

        G

        [“all of it”? .mod]

      • So Aphan, are you saying that my model that tells me that he is an idiot is correct ? Woohooo , where’s my grant money !!

      • Sorry honey. It’s already been proven here. So no grant money necessary. But I’m sure you’ll come up with some other model…:P

      • Wagen – what Bob Tisdale was saying is that not the least of the deficiencies of climate models is that they cannot accurately predict El Ninos. That’s not ‘having it both ways,’ it’s ‘knowing what you’re talking about’. Try to upgrade your comments from little sister snark.

      • Don’t have it both ways Wagen, disregard both. Should you keep one and not the other, lets discuss the reasoning.

      • Wagen-

        Let me keep this simple for you. Simple models work relatively to extremely well. Like models that only have one or two well understood, known, predicable factors. This is how specific scientific principles like gravity and physics and thermodynamics are tested. You control all of the factors except one, and then you ONLY adjust that one factor to see how that adjustment plays out in the system. Then you control that factor, and adjust another one. The more factors the model involves, and the more each of those factors can and does vary in and of itself, the less accurately we can control it and the less accurate it becomes.

        There IS NO CURRENTLY EXISTING global climate model. We simply do not have the ability, at this current time, to accurately MODEL (and thus accurately predict) how a change in one specific “factor” of our climate system is going to affect every other uncontrollable, highly variable factor. So ANY “study” done that contains the words “global” or “earth’s climate” or ANYTHING that involves all of Earth’s system simply cannot determine anything to the degree of certainty that such a study claims it does. Period.

        Bob Tisdale, as far as I know, rarely (if ever) uses models at all, but I KNOW he never uses “global” ones. He tracks and plots temperature measurements/data using the data that other sources provide, but he does not, as far as I know, “model” interactions between say the oceans and the atmosphere.

        But thanks for the irrelevant accusation directed at Bob. It permitted me a chance to teach you something.

      • Aphan,

        Bob is using models. At the same time he says “Climate model-based study: disregard.”

        Your choice who to defend, Bob or models.

      • A model is nothing more than a mathematical implementation of your current understanding of a given process. It is not the process. Using models is fine, such as for decision making purposes (like whether to bring an umbrella tomorrow). However, using the output of the model to conduct further analyses gives you no further insight into the process itself. That’s what a “climate model-based study” does, and that’s why it can be disregarded.

      • Sounds like it’s time once again to bring out the Dyson quote:

        “In desperation I asked Fermi whether he was not impressed by the agreement between our calculated numbers and his measured numbers. He replied, “How many arbitrary parameters did you use for your calculations?” I thought for a moment about our cut-off procedures and said, “Four.” He said, “I remember my friend Johnny von Neumann used to say, with four parameters I can fit an elephant, and with five I can make him wiggle his trunk.” With that, the conversation was over.”

      • “Bob is using models. At the same time he says “Climate model-based study: disregard.”Your choice who to defend, Bob or models.”

        Wagen…do you know the difference between a “model” and a “climate model”? Because only climate models model climate. Other models, model other things. SO….when Bob says “Climate model-based study:disregard”…..he’s only talking about disregarding what….come on…you got this….CLIMATE MODELS. Wagen, the man wrote a book called “Climate Models Fail”. That one word…”climate” is an important descriptor word.

        I believe that in my post I defended the use of models…simple ones. I have NOTHING against basic models in which parameters can be controlled and upon which REPLICATIONS are possible by other people. Models are valuable for many things.

        Climate models are NOT controllable, replications are NOT possible, and at this point in time, are of limited, if any value. Bob may or may not use simple models. I don’t know. This is why I said :

        “Bob Tisdale, as far as I know, rarely (if ever) uses models at all, but I KNOW he never uses “global” ones. He tracks and plots temperature measurements/data using the data that other sources provide, but he does not, as far as I know, “model” interactions between say the oceans and the atmosphere. ”

        A climate model, in MY view/definition Wagen, would have to be a global model. So I very easily and logically can, and did, and will continue to defend Bob from your idiotic insinuations, AND defend the use of simple, basic models, while rejecting “climate models/global models”. And you will most likely continue to lie and make stupid statements about Bob.

      • So a model of how La Nina causes global temperatures to go down is not a model?…. Circular arguments are just that.

      • @Wagen,
        From the paper in my link above (and this a paper by Warmers reviewing a MET Model).

        p. 3894

        “Even today’s powerful computers take a long time to make a run of ϕCt (x; α), and so a less complex model is used for most calculations. To this end an ocean model consisting of a so-called slab model is adopted (i.e. an ocean with no currents and a uniform effective depth of 50 m). The role of the oceans in transporting heat is nevertheless represented by an applied atmosphere/ocean heat flux. The result of this manoeuvre is HadSM3, a computationally less demanding model.”

      • It’s a model that has zero value until verified by observation. The scientific method is rather simple
        1) You study some phenomena
        2) A hypothesis is developed that may explain it, this is where your model sits
        3) The results of your hypothesis are tested against observation
        4) If observation verifies your hypothesis then its proven and may considered a theory.

        To date all climate models have failed at step 4

        As Richard Feynman said rather eloquently

        “It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong.”

      • All models are wrong. Some are useful. Attributed to George Box, who said of the PV=nRT model for ideal gasses “For such a model there is no need to ask the question “Is the model true?”. If “truth” is to be the “whole truth” the answer must be “No”. The only question of interest is “Is the model illuminating and useful?”.

        So there we are. No point asking is the model true or is the model completely accurate. The answer is always NO, even for the well used and extremenly useful gas equation. If we need closer to reality models for gases we use Van Der Waals or Peng Robinson models. But even these are not exact. They are wrong, but they are very useful.

        Aphan says “We simply do not have the ability, at this current time, to accurately MODEL (and thus accurately predict) how a change in one specific “factor” of our climate system is going to affect every other uncontrollable, highly variable factor.” Yet exactly the same is true for the behavior of any real gas. Do we abandon the gas models? No, of course not, because they are very useful and they are accurate enough to obtain useful results.

        All models will be wrong, but are they useful?

        Keith Willshaw says “1) You study some phenomena
        2) A hypothesis is developed that may explain it, this is where your model sits
        3) The results of your hypothesis are tested against observation
        4) If observation verifies your hypothesis then its proven and may considered a theory.

        To date all climate models have failed at step 4”

        All models fail step 4 as they are not supported exactly by observations. Even the gas equation.

        Look at two approaches to this argument. First the “warmists”.
        1) On studying the climate, it is observed to change over time.
        2) Hypothesis. The climate changes due to forcings and movement of energy. Invent models that try to replicate these energy inputs, outputs and movements, one of which is CO2.
        3) Test against observation – do the models accurately fit the observations? Not exactly, but a reasonably good fit. We can explain some things but not others.
        4) Go back and refine your hypothesis.

        Now those that say climate change it is natural.
        1) Observe that climate changes over time
        2) Hypothesis: “it is natural”. Climate will change, always has and always will. We do not need to ask why because, er, well, it is natural.*
        3) Test against observation. This hypothesis has zero explanatory power because any observation can be explained. Temperature goes up? It is natural. Temperature goes down? It is the natural cycle. Sea ice melts? Natural cycle. Sea ice grows? Natural. Always has and always will grow and shrink. Something that explains everything explains nothing.
        4) Er, thats it. The hypothesis is not disprovable, as it is not really a hypothesis at all. It cannot be refined because it explains everything.

        If anyone disagrees, please explain what the “null hypothesis” actually is. And if you could do so without reference to a model of the climate that would be consistent and avoid instant rejection under Bob’s criteria.

        *I have seen this written here many, many times. The “null” hypotheses that change is natural. The hypothesis that some claim removes the need to support the claim with evidence.

      • Since climate models are unable to accurately reflect any aspect of the real climate, they qualify as both wrong, and not useful.

      • “Since climate models are unable to accurately reflect any aspect of the real climate, they qualify as both wrong, and not useful.”

        All models fail to predict accurately the real world. Did you read my comment? Do you believe that climate models fail utterly to predict anything? Do they predict the world gets colder if solar irradiation reduces? Why, yes they do! Clearly they do in fact reflect some aspects of the real climate.

      • Seaice1 (06.18): an excellent comment but flawed in my view. The two sides of the argument cannot be neatly partitioned between those supporting the anthropogenic hypothesis and those who take the view that climate is driven by natural forces. Few skeptics would argue that Carbon Dioxide and human emissions are not important – the argument is about how important. I accept as my prior that temperature changes and other climatic events are not unusual given the history of the planet of the last 2000 years. I would need very strong evidence to change my view. The contrary position is that human emissions have driven excessive climate change over the last 50 years and therefore even very weak evidence is all that is needed to reinforce your conviction. Where we differ is that I have used historical evidence and data to inform my prior where you have used the prevailing theoretical orthodoxy embedded in various models to inform yours. That for me sums up the ‘warmist’ versus the ‘skeptical’ positions.

      • Bob Ryan – I was careful to say “two approaches” rather than “the two sides”. There are of course other views, as you have expressed. However, I don’t see how we can have some intermediate view without using some sort of model for the global climate.

        “Few skeptics would argue that Carbon Dioxide and human emissions are not important – the argument is about how important. I accept as my prior that temperature changes and other climatic events are not unusual given the history of the planet of the last 2000 years. I would need very strong evidence to change my view.”

        There must have been some reason for the climate to change in the past. In order to explain these changes we must use a model. The alternative is to just say “it is all nature” and leave it at that.

        It follows that we cannot dismiss any conclusion that uses a climate model

      • Seaice1 – thank you for the courtesy of your reply. I do see where you are coming from but from my perspective I do not need a model to explain past variability. It is an observable fact that I do not try to explain, it just is. Given that, I would need, as I said, very strong evidence to convince me that something extraordinary has occurred over the last 50 years that requires any further explanation. As a strong empiricist I prefer to start from what is observed, much of climate science comes from the opposite direction and is based on the idea that the product of human reason in the form of theories or models is where true knowledge lies. What is being played out here is that old debate between Plato and Aristotle, between Rationalists and Empiricists and, as in so many of the quasi-sciences, it is where the debate has stuck.

      • Wagen that’s a really flippant remark. Most readers will take Tisdales flippant remark over yours because he goes to great lengths to inform with carefully compiled data from cited sources in his ongoing El Niño updates among other useful articles while you have none, at least that I can see.

      • @seaice,
        GCM’s are fundamentally different from applied science models (ex. mechanical engineering).

        You have to remember, we built heat engines and flew airplanes long before we could model them with any rigor. We can tune applied science models by building engines and airplanes and then measuring whether or not the goals were met. An exhaustive model of a system is NEVER done in engineering – you only model those aspects that you have learned, through trial and error, to be important. Yes, the models are idealized (as you noted), but they work. And the DATA used to construct these types of models is both empirically gathered and replicable anyone, anytime, anywhere.

        Climate Science and GCM’s have inadequate, non-replicable historical temperature records, no ability to physically make changes to the earth’s climate or measure feedback. GCM’s are ab initio models (models constructed from first principles). In some highly controlled, linear systems, models of this type can be of used in expanding knowledge. However, the climate is not highly controlled. The output of GCM’s are not capable of being used to set CO2 emission targets, with the intent of controlling the earths temperature. Nor will they ever be.

        The issue is much more fundamental than just needing better GCM’s.

      • Bob Ryan and jmarshs. Thank you also for a considered reply and engaging in constructive discussion. To jmarshs, we are not trying to make a new Earth, so comparing this to systems we are trying to build is not appropriate. The climate is more like the behavior of gases- it happens whether or not we understand it. The model for gas behavior is close to being accurate. It describes much behavior but fails in the fine detail. The climate models are vastly more complicated, and hence they fail in more of the detail. Yet they do replicate the broad brush behavior of the climate. The paper that is the subject of this post used actual measurements to confirm the model prediction about the Planck Response: “Using global climate models and NASA satellite observations “. It is observed in both the measurements and the models.

        The gas equation assumes molecules occupy no volume and do not have forces acting between them. The improved gas equations such as Van der Waals takes the basic one and adds components for volume taken by molecules and for forces to exist between molecules. This is how climate models have evolved. Take a simple system like a sphere in space and add the complications on top. We are confident that we can model the temperature of an Earth sized black body sphere in space 1AU from the sun. That is our basic model.

        Bob Ryan says no model is needed to observe previous climate fluctuations, which is true. No model is needed to observe that bodies fell in the past. We need some model if we want to say things will fall in the future. Say I let go of my pen and it rose to the ceiling. Is that extraordinary? Well. I have seen things rise before. Rockets, thrown things, aeroplanes. Is my pen one of those, or has something extraordinary happened? I decide because I have a model. In my model there is gravity, and things must have a means of overcoming this force if they are to rise. The pen rising is extraordinary. Without the model it is exceedingly hard to say. I must perhaps list everything I have seen rise, and try to classify them, then see if my pen fits into these categories. It is the same with climate.

        You may argue that our models are not good enough, but I don’t see how you can dispense with models if current conditions are. And it is certainly not correct to say that the models fail in all respects, as this paper itself demonstrates.

      • @Seaice1,
        When we are told that reducing CO2 emissions to ‘X’ that it will result in a temperature reduction of ‘Y’ over a time ‘T’, we are engaging in Geoengineering – but doing so with First Principle Models, something that Engineers never do. The following is from Kevin Trenberth’s climategate email. And the word that truly stood out to me at the time was “geoengineer”. In this, Trenberth was prescient, but not for reasons that I would agree with:

        ““We can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t,” and “any consideration of geoengineering [is] quite hopeless as we will never be able to tell if it is successful or not!” – Kevin Trenberth

        CO2 reduction is about Geoengineering.

      • seaice1,

        I think there are some weaknesses in your arguments.

        Your opening comment all “models are wrong, some are useful” was responded to by another commenter’s outline of the scientific process ending with…

        To date all climate models have failed at step 4”

        You then contrasted different approaches concluding that the natural causes approach is not valid because its hypothesis is not provable. I think you mean not falsifiable, but that’s not my point.

        2) Hypothesis. The climate changes due to forcings and movement of energy. Invent models that try to replicate these energy inputs, outputs and movements, one of which is CO2.
        2) Hypothesis: “it is natural”. Climate will change, always has and always will. We do not need to ask why because, er, well, it is natural.*

        The hypothesis “It is natural” is not specific enough to be falsifiable. Had you specified natural causes that drive climate change, such as cloud and solar effects, a more equitable comparison of the hypotheses would be achieved.

        To jmarshs, we are not trying to make a new Earth, so comparing this to systems we are trying to build is not appropriate.

        Regardless of whether something is being built or already exists, a model can be useful for evaluating the thing. The problem is different models can correlate the same data. That doesn’t mean either one is a correct model. The models have to be tested against new data to see if they continue to be consistent.

        The paper that is the subject of this post used actual measurements to confirm the model prediction about the Planck Response: “Using global climate models and NASA satellite observations “. It is observed in both the measurements and the models.

        Am I correct in assuming that you and I have not read the paper? If so, we don’t know whether or not the model was created apriori, as opposed to being developed by correlating it to the existing data. There are plenty of models that correlated past data, but failed to predict more recent temperatures. To use the ideal gas equation as an example, what contribution does it make to show that model fits data for an ideal gas? What would be worthy of publication is are new models predicting the behavior of non-ideal gases.

      • seaice1 says:

        All models will be wrong, but are they useful?

        GCMs are very useful — for misdirecting funds to universities and their pet scientists. But since they can’t even model clouds, the answer is: No.

        And Wagen, you need to define ‘model’. By one definition, 2+2=5 is a model.

        Those blessed with common sense know that climate models are failures. Not one GCM was able to predict the most significant temperature event of the past century: the fact that global warming has stopped.

        Lots of skeptics are amused by the consternation this has caused among the true believers in the ‘dangerous AGW’ scare. The climate alarmist crowd was flat wrong, but very few of them will admit it. Instead, you’ve turned into serial liars, claiming that satellite data is no good, that the so-called “pause” never happened, and insisting that skeptics have something to prove.

        You have no credibility left. But the entertainment value is worth something. Every honest scientist knows you will Say Anything, in hopes of keeping the Narrative going. But it’s a false alarm — as everyone here knows, whether they admit it or not.

    • “Using global climate models…”

      Planck? No big deal. Using GCMs I could undermine Newton, Einsteinian relativity and cosmological red shift theory too.

      • Amazing, isn’t it? They completely disregard all the past billions of years of climatic changes and temperature variations and claim that without man’s influence, the planet would be in a “steady state”. The only people who could claim this is valid science is the insane, the stupid, and liars.

      • Andyj, “The only people who could claim this is valid science is the insane, the stupid, and liars.”

        I would only note that when discussing CAGW, that there is a very high amount of overlap among those three sets.

    • Tamino has a model that removes el niño and la niña and volcanic influences, and smooths the surface and satellite records. Pretty interesting stuff.

      • Hey, my model does the same thing, traf… It consists of a pencil, paper, and straight edge. I’m drawing all sorts of “smooth” lines.

        However, I wouldn’t call it interesting.

    • That’s not a very sensible answer. Why not highlight and discuss any errors/contentious points there may be in the paper? Or do you just assume all “climate model-based” studies are wrong? If so that is also not a very sensible approach without explaining why they are wrong.

      • Here’s why they are wrong.

        20,000 years ago there was a mile of ice sitting over Chicago, New York City, Toronto, London, and Stockholm.

        18,500 years ago, that ice began to melt. Planet warmed 10C over the next 6500 years.

        During that entire time, a small population of humans were living in caves, wearing animal skins, with banging on rocks and carving bone and antlers as their highest technology.

        How in the HELL can all warming be man’s fault?

    • I’d just like to know who these folks are and if I’m supposed to be one of their number:

      …skeptics’ belief that long-term global warming occurs in an unpredictable manner, independently of external drivers such as human impacts.

      • I want to know when we became external to the Earth system, It seems humans are actually INTERNAL drivers.

      • Funny but I’m a skeptic and my understanding is that long term global warming occurs in a predictable manner. Every 100,000 years or so, the Earth warms and that lasts about 10,000 years and then goes back to glaciation.

        I love it when they put words in my mouth that are totally divorced from reality.

    • Wagen, there is always a moley who pops up when a model is criticized. Unwritten is “a model that has shown no signs of working, so therefore it is not a model of the system”. I can make a paper airplane model in 3 minutes that could form the basis of a crappy design that could work. Climate models aren’t that good. If they were, why is there so much arguing about it? If they were predicting the temperature we’d have to shut our mouths. ‘Model’ in itself is not a sacred thing, sorry. It has to work like the system it’s supposed to be designed for.

    • I disregarded it half way through. I have a degree in physics, yet can make no sense of what they were trying to say. I don’t think they have proven anything.

      • T. Gednalske- Prove? Oh, I see you’re in Physics, there things are proven. Well, in CliSci, nothing is proven (but things are settled).
        Another hint on CliSci, you can gauge the quality of the latest “study” such as this one by the quality of the trolls who come here to defend it (or more precisely, to change the subject). Here we see Wagen and Trafy, so that tells us the Study from NASA is low quality.

    • Well, you might mention that since climate never changed before, then this model showing that the current change must not be natural, must be correct.

      /sarc

      • Exactly James the Elder! Do these people NOT realize…..think through their declarations?….Let’s see…either the climate never, ever changed at all prior to the human species learning how to manufacture stuff, or it did, but whatever changed it were alien, freaky, “outside” influences. (outside of WHAT? Earth’s system? The solar system? The atmospheric system?…but all of those would be idiotic and unscientific assumptions in the first place….)

        And then there’s this little blurb of stunning genius-

        “This emphasizes the importance of large-scale energy transport and atmospheric circulation changes in restoring Earth’s global temperature equilibrium after a natural, unforced warming event,” Li said.

        A climate forcing is defined as-“Climate forcings are different factors that affect Earth’s climate. These “forcings” drive or “force” the climate system to change, according to NOAA. There are natural forcings and man-made forcings.”

        What the crap? It’s not POSSIBLE for there to be a “natural unforced warming event!!!!”

      • Now I’m trying to figure out what sculpted Yosemite valley. Maybe it was carved by bulldozers instead of ice.

    • Yes, rgb must know why they think @Duke that without external forcings temperatures meander around a balance, and when there is external forcing they do not.

      • I was looking if Patrick Brown was directly family of Robert G. Brown, our regular guest here. It seems not the case (and I hope not for Robert’s sake)… Robert has a son Patrick O’Dowd Brown, b. 1987, but this Brown is Patrick T. Brown…

        On the other side Patrick T. Brown made an interesting opening towards the more skeptical side at Judith’s blog:
        https://judithcurry.com/2013/07/13/unforced-variability-and-the-global-warming-slow-down/
        with lots of comments…

      • I am not really interested in rgb’s family, just why he has not been able to tell the other people @Duke that they are wrong.

      • Some definitions-

        “Forcing factors are environmental processes that influence Earth’s climate. They may be:
        – external to Earth and its atmosphere or may be
        – internal to the planet and its atmosphere.”

        Biosphere-“The part of the earth and its atmosphere in which living organisms exist or that is capable of supporting life. The living organisms and their environment composing the biosphere.”

        So, by definition that human beings are part of Earth’s biosphere. We are biological, carbon based mammals that evolved as part of Earth’s biosphere, and are thus, a natural part of the Earth’s system.

        So, are forcings that come from the biosphere considered to be “external to Earth and its atmosphere” or “internal to the planet and its atmosphere”?

  1. What they’re basically saying is that they can 100% predict snd analyse chaotic fluctuation. That is, thay can predict in advance the exact signal from a Geiger counter.
    M.
    0.
    R.
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    N.
    S.

    Zika virus strikes climate science!

  2. How to make a complete and utter fool of yourselves and the various places they work for.
    I am embaressed for them.

    • It’s a student-generated piece of felgercarb. Lower your expectations. I sure did. Before reading the article, I searched it for “model.” Bingoid! “Using global climate models and [other stuff], the study finds that…” I stopped reading at that point. No matter how good the [other stuff] may be, once you add global climate models to the mixture, it’s no longer science; it’s a witch’s brew. The models have never been validated; they consistently read too high. Drivel in, drivel out.

      • When I did my PhD in physics quite a bit ago, there was a rule: if it’s a study then it’s a good bet t’s theory and it should be treated as “meh, might be interesting”. If it’s experimental and actual measurements have taken place it’s “ummm, might be interesting”. You always listen for more “umms” than “mehs”.

        Sadly this skill of seeing through to the heart of what a paper is, or even recognising what a paper is in the body of scientific knowledge is lost on a lot of people. Hence the “it’s peer reviewed so must be true” crowd.

        I’m sure this nugget will appear as scientific confirmation of AGW in some report coming soon.

  3. So, natural warming such as the MWP leads to cooling, due to this “Planck Response”, but “manmade warming” doesn’t. Different type of warm particles, I guess.
    Warmist “physics”.

    • Different type of warm particles, I guess.

      Correct! Crimatologists stuff their models with Phlogiston, a tasty breakfast food for normal people, but a weapon of obfuscation in the climate masters’ hands.

      • I’ve been thinking for some time that phlogiston might be to blame. I’m sure that the MSM would welcome a new proof that CAGM is real and dangerous. Phlogiston is scary stuff.

    • Did they just discover than human Co2 molecules produce an entirely different degree/type of warming that “natural CO2” molecules do?*insert image of insane person rubbing hands together and cackling* MUhahahahahahahahha now we can control the world!

    • This is the Achilles heel of the paper.
      To respond the Earth climate cannot ‘see’ the source of CO2 or sulphates to ‘know’ how to respond.
      If it reflexively responds, the response must be the same to the atmospheric change independently of its origin.
      Unless you tell the computer algorithm that this is not the case.
      Which brings us back to the problem, do the GCM’s Model the Earth’s climate, or just what they are told to do in some virtual world?

  4. I saw the word m-o-d-e-l and that tells me everything about nothing.
    They just used another bad model to verify a bad model.
    Similarly Audubon used the (bad) climate models to make a (bad) forecast suggesting that birds will lose habitat due to “warming”

    • Yes. On a serious note, they create models based upon their warming theories and then point to their output as proof of warming.

    • It’s not their habitats that birds might lose to warming, but their heads they lose to whirlygigs.

  5. Using global climate models and NASA satellite observations of Earth’s energy budget from the last 15 years, the study finds that a warming Earth is able to restore its temperature equilibrium through complex and seemingly paradoxical changes in the atmosphere and the way radiative heat is transported.

    Global climate models that are clearly broken and “seemingly paradoxical changes” suggests that the results would have been binned if they were real scientists.

    • Not to mention, isn’t the granularity of the flux measurements too coarse to establish the trends with sufficient precision to support this claim?

  6. How does one publish this with a straight face? We have, as per the “consensus”, only about 65 years during which global temperatures might have been influenced by human generated CO2, and only a few decades of satellite measures. The geologic, fossil, ice core, and sedimentary records however show dramatic swings in global temperature and biosphere productivity that all precede human civilization. How can they claim any significant global temperature shifts must have unnatural external forcing to blame?

      • “The researchers say that there are significant uncertainties in the range of their findings – The 43% figure for the increase in the risk of a once-in-a-century wet January is a best estimate in a range that runs from 0-160%.”

        This is amazing to me. This is from the link above. Well, I guess it’s not all that surprising, is it.

    • Simple.

      Warmists would believe that duck farts in Canada are going to cause tidal wives that will wipe out all of Italy, leaving the Appenines as islands… in the next ten years.

      You can sell those morons anything if you make a doomsday scenario out of it. Make it into the fault of mankind or fossil fuels and they eat that crap up like a bunch of frat boys at a pizza party.

      Armageddon addiction.

  7. ..My only question is….How long will it take to repair the damage these morons have caused to the reputation of actual science ??

    • A very long time. It could take a hundred years or more to escape from the descent into superstition and mumbo jumbo.

  8. ‘A new study from NASA and Duke finds natural cycles alone aren’t sufficient to explain warming trends observed over the last century.’

    The first assertion of an Argumentum ad Ignorantium.

    They can’t figure out how natural cycles do it, so it MUST BE Man!

  9. “…there are other important, previously less appreciated, mechanisms at work too… restoring Earth’s global temperature equilibrium after a natural, unforced warming event,”

    I thought a ‘forcing’ could be either natural or man-made. But who am I to argue with…

    …Wenhong Li, assistant professor of climate at Duke ?

    An ‘assistant professor of Climatology’! My, my. That boy is on the fast track.

  10. 15 years is an extremely short period time for climate change. The results are almost entirely model-based.

      • There is. Can you not read graphs? See that horizontal part on the graph from 1998-2016?

        The article states-“Using global climate models and NASA satellite observations of Earth’s energy budget from the last 15 years, the study finds that a warming Earth is able to restore its temperature equilibrium through complex and seemingly paradoxical changes in the atmosphere and the way radiative heat is transported.”

        See? In the past 15 years, Earth was able to restore it’s temperature equilibrium!

      • I got the feeling from the above that the ONLY real data was from the radiation balance measuring satellites. If I am correct, they only used the CERES data and not the microwave sounder data. They appear to have been testing Trenbreth’s cartoon of the energy budget by comparing model outputs to the measured energy outflows. Of course they forget that there are some pretty significant error bars on the real data and that the models don’t reflect the actual Earth, but other than that I am sure it was a good effort (to please advisers and gain favor in the department).

  11. I like how they keep saying Planck Response, Planck Response over and over again yet climate science goes out of its way to ignore this reality or sweep it under the carpet. As energy/forcing goes up, temperatures go up but then the outgoing radiation from Earth will also go up, to the fourth power even. This is the missing energy (it is only missing because climate science tries to ignore.

    On the lead author’s homepage, there is summary of the paper.

    http://patricktbrown.org/2016/01/31/the-stability-of-unforced-global-temperature/

    Quoted ” It is accepted that ΔT should be stable in the long run mostly because of the direct blackbody response of outgoing longwave radiation to ΔT change, which is often referred to as the Planck Response,

    where Te is the effective radiating temperature of the Earth (≈255K) and σ is the Stefan-Boltzmann constant (12). The negative sign indicates increased energy loss by the climate system with warming. λPlanck is typically incorporated into λ in [1] as the reference sensitivity, e.g., λ=(1−fa)λPlanck, where fa denotes the feedback factor sum of the fast-feedbacks in the system (i.e., water vapor, lapse rate, surface albedo, and cloud feedbacks)”

    So can the feedbacks overwhelm the Planck Response. Well only if the feedbacks are very strong (which does appear to happening so far to date) and the the theory is based on carefully crafting the expected feedback values so they are higher than the Planck. But then climate science ignores it in the first place.

    • Nobody ignores the Plank response. Not the warmists and not the skeptics. The Plank response is the reason why temperature will not go up forever, but only until some new equilibrium is reached, which warmists and skeptics put at a different temperature for sure.

      • They don’t ignore ? Maybe. So why do some of them write such nonsense as “where Te is the effective radiating temperature of the Earth (≈255K) […]. The negative sign indicates increased energy loss by the climate system with warming. ” ?
        “effective radiating temperature of the Earth (≈255K)” is a rather simple function of earth geometry, solar constant (not so constant, but, still…), and albedo ; you may add quite a few things (*) that DO affect the way equilibrium is, or is not, reached, most of them for effects too small to be seen.
        So Te won’t change with climate warming ! It may change only insofar as “climate change” affects the sun (?), the earth geometry (?), or its albedo (which may happen or not), but warming in itself has no part in it.

        (* geothermal energy, energy in living or dead things, energy in oceans …)

    • As important to the discussion is the energy distribution of that power response. Planck only gives the absolute power in the frequency distribution, the Maxwell-Boltzmann tells at what frequencies most of the energy will travel in. In the greenhouse gas game, energy is absorbed in very narrow bands, and it doesn’t take much temperature change to move a band from a major impact (because it sits in the narrowish peak area of the M-B distribution) to not a factor (because the peak shifted away so not much energy is there to absorb). Of course water is kind of the exception here since it has many absorption lines across the infrared band.

  12. An unforced warming event I suppose is some rearrangement of the state of the atmosphere, oceans, land surface in a way that changes equilibrium temperature (i.e. earth mean temperature) without change of input. The very thing that most of the CAGW crowd tell us can’t possibly happen, and that is why the insist CO2 must be invoked as the cause of warming (of which we are no longer certain of magnitude because of endless fudging and adjustment).

    I am not sure that this research, if summarized accurately in the news article, has bolstered CAGW, or bolstered the view of skeptics, or just added more noise into the debate.

  13. .. I have a model of a model that tells me that my model is better than your model !! So there…Pluthhhhhhht ………….!!

  14. Another pal reviewed paper where they ignore real data in favor of bogus models. The CFSR data are showing a downward global temperature trend this century so far despite what is probably an El Niño associated upward spike from October 2015 through January 2016.

    So I guess all that increasing CO2 lately is causing a downward global temperature trend? It couldn’t possibly be natural causes.

    Based on the man-made CO2 induced global warming hypothesis, Mt Washington should have rapidly rising temperatures since it is at high latitude where most of the warming is supposed to take place. Instead, Mt Washington shows a slight downward trend since 1949.

    Here’s a preliminary January 2016 CFSR global temperature update:
    https://oz4caster.wordpress.com/2016/02/01/cfsr-global-temperature-january-2016-preliminary/

  15. Announcements of the results of this “study” appear to be the bullshit du jour, here in the U.K.
    Once again, the contents of a computer model are mistaken for reality, and reported on accordingly. Actually the uncertainty range provided with the study results is absurdly large – but that detail is not clearly explained by the BBC. Cryptically mentioned perhaps. Since the people don’t need to be shown the uncertainty in the science. Confident declarations and the steady trickle of mass brainwashing are all that is required in service of the grand project…
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-35444838

    • Your link is to an item on a paper dealing with winter rainfall in the UK, not the above paper. It’s still garbage though:

      “We found that extreme rainfall, as seen in January 2014, is more likely to occur in a changing climate,” said lead author Dr Nathalie Schaller, from the University of Oxford.
      “This is because not only does the higher water-holding capacity lead to increased rainfall, but climate change makes the atmosphere more favourable to low-pressure systems bringing rain from the Atlantic across southern England.”

      But, but, but, this year the rainfall in the South has been normal whilst the North and Scotland have got soaked. Back to the models….

      • Hi Old’Un. Yes apologies for not being clearer. I simply intended to draw attention to this not dissimilar topic and its presence today in the media.
        I expect that somebody here will post a header article on the specific study that I linked to.
        At least I hope that they will.

      • I am intrigued as to where or how the atmosphere will be more favourable for low pressure across the Atlantic and anywhere in the mid latitudes for that matter. AGW theory states the poles should warm faster than the tropics. This means weaker thermal gradient, weaker jet streams and weaker and probably fewer low pressure systems although there is some argument for the jet streams becoming less zonal. Dr Schaller is from the Uni of Oxford and probably has a great academic CV, but I suggest she knows very little about the actual processes that bring rainfall to S England like a lot of these so called experts. I once sat through a presentation by a PhD at Reading Uni in the UK which covered at new model simulation for predicting rainfall and at the end he said “and that is why it is dry outside today” …..there was a pause and someone yelled out from the back of the room ” its been raining for 3 hours non stop outside”…..his response was……”that shouldn’t be happening because my model says it should be dry” . Enough said.

    • I got a computer model that says you are all going to die tomorrow unless you all send me lots of money via Palpal. Can I publish it? Please…

  16. “Our analysis confirmed that the Planck Response plays a dominant role in restoring global temperature stability, but to our surprise we found that it tends to be overwhelmed locally by heat-trapping positive energy feedbacks related to changes in clouds, water vapor, and snow and ice,” Brown said. “This initially suggested that the climate system might be able to create large, sustained changes in temperature all by itself.”

    That’s a start..

    “This emphasizes the importance of large-scale energy transport and atmospheric circulation changes in restoring Earth’s global temperature equilibrium after a natural, unforced warming event,” Li said.

    Well we have been saying that.

    Then they arrive at the politically correct (wrong) conclusion. Sigh…

  17. The Pleistocene must have been extremely cold, despite the plant life fossils all over the planet. They had to have survived because of the low levels of CO2, which is great for plants, as we all know.

    Sorry, mods, but this deserves extreme sarcasm.

  18. You are watching a Ph.D climate student prostrated on the alter floor of the church of warmunism, taking his priestly warmunist vows and then offering climate model communion. Nothing more.

    Cause the fact (per Lindzen) that the ~1920 to -1945 warming (not CO2) and ~ 1975-2000 ( all CO2) are statistically indistinguishable, or the fact of the now near 20 year pause (except in karlized temps) falsifying all climate models are noticeably missing in action. No doubt expunged by copious warmunist incense dispensed at the J. Climate ‘ceremony’.

    Gosh, every month warmunism gets more ridiculously detached from reality.

      • Neville, Yes. Is explained with graphic illustrations and IPCC references in my essay C?AGw in my ebook Blowing Smoke.
        For another accessible explanation, visit judithcurry.com/2015/12/19/week-in-review-science-edition-29/.
        Or just google around with some pointed keywords like Lindzen, comparisons, early 20th late 20th century, global warming. You will find several of Lindzen’s own online observations in various speeches and presentations. If I recall correctly, the most recent was to the British Parliament in 2012. The year I visited him for a day at MIT in early June to get his feedback on the climate chapter of The Arts of Truth, two weeks before he retired.

  19. “…. said Wenhong Li, assistant professor of climate at Duke.”

    I’ve been wanting to get a definition of “climate scientist” for a long time now. I guess Mr. Lee is it.

  20. So, we’re are back to the Mann Myth that the Medieval Warming Period, Roman Warming Period, Minoan Warming Period, and what is probably a warming period at the end of the Old Kingdom in Egypt (~2050 BCE) never happened. Oddly, stuff like the C14 age calibration curves say there was less C14 produced during those warming periods.

  21. ” Natural climate cycles alone are insufficient to explain such changes, he said.”

    What like we entered the Little ice Age by magic and came out of the Little ice age as fossil fuels grew and hence SO2 induced cooling occurred? And then we got warming as SO2 was reduced by the clean air acts.

  22. Oh – grabbing my popcorn!
    This is the precise reason why when Duke called last night to ask me to donate to my PhD-mater, I told them to go pound sand. RGB was one of my professors, and he was one of the most fascinating sources of knowledge there. I highly respect him.
    I’s long been known that the Nichols School is where you wind up when you can’t get into any other prestigious reeducation camp.

    • Dr. Sandman, the day Harvard hired Oreskies was the day I stopped giving until she is gone. Have made that quite plain. Wish I had been able to take a Duke RGB course. My sub major thing was and remains math modelling. Biology, ecology, probability, economics… About which he knows a lot.

    • “you can’t get into any other prestigious re-education camp”. It came out of nowhere. And now I’m cleaning beverage off of everything in range…lol!

  23. Humans came from the earth, they manipulate materials found on the earth ie coal, oil, natural gas. Therefore any warming caused by humans is natural.

    • Ah, but you see, humans are flawed thus most of what they do is evil. And using ‘Original Sin’ as a guilt inducing mechanism doesn’t work so well any more.

  24. This emphasizes the importance of large-scale energy transport and atmospheric circulation changes in restoring Earth’s global temperature equilibrium after a natural, unforced warming event

    OK. They admit that natural unforced warming effects occur. Therefore, there must also be natural unforced cooling effects. The temperature of the globe will not be uniform. The question is whether the globe can even out these unforced effects faster than they can occur. Judith Curry’s work on stadium waves indicates that is not the case. I think their whole premise is wrong.

  25. “Unless pushed by outside forces, temperature should remain stable.”

    Well duh! Of course the only constant in the environment is change. The did change long before man. So yes there are forcing functions.

    The mere fact that change has occurred slow enough that life thrives on the earth is evidence that small changes in the ghg concentration are not going to cause the climate to become unstable.

  26. “Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment.” Well what would you expect them to say? It is their whole reason for being. If they were to say anything else, they would no longer exist.

  27. So let me get this straight. “By examining how Earth cools itself back down after a period of natural warming”, they are able to prove that there is no natural warming.

    Got it.

    w.

    • Willis, if you take an 8=oz ball-peen hammer and hit yourself in the head in just the right spot with precisely the right amount of force, it all makes sense. (Don’t ask how I know this to be true.)

      • “if you take an 8=oz ball-peen hammer and hit yourself in the head in just the right spot with precisely the right amount of force, ”

        Oh! Now I get it! THAT is what they mean when they say “climate forcing”!!

    • Wait…

      You went too fast, could you type that again – but not so fast – so I can read it slower to help me avoid becoming confused?

      I’m getting “a study on natural warming confirms there is no natural warming”.

      Does that leave only natural cooling? Or will that too go away once they complete their next study?

    • tss Willis. this is unfair.
      Would you make a sarcasm on a sentence like
      “By examining how human body cools itself back down after a period of fever”, they are able to prove that there is no fever
      ?
      Of course this make sense only if you can distinguish beforehand between fever and, say, sun stroke, and assess that human body cools itself differently in each case (which is true regarding fever Vs sun stroke) so that you can, indeed, distinguish between the two.
      I doubt that our student did this assessment …

  28. “Using global climate models and NASA satellite observations of Earth’s energy budget from the last 15 years…”
    Hardly need to read any further. Model…..Fifteen years is not even enough to establish a trend according to some climate scientits.

  29. From the press release:

    The new evidence may finally help put the chill on skeptics’ belief that long-term global warming occurs in an unpredictable manner, independently of external drivers such as human impacts. . .

    So how did the Medieval Warm Period get us out of the cold? Maybe the Norse god Thor drove it away so the Vikings could settle in Greenland. Then of course they became Christians, so he gave up in disgust and the Little Ice Age began.

    “External drivers,” you know.

    /Mr Lynn

    • They actually love Thor who is an Ice Age god. When it got warmer, the Vikings tossed out Thor and got a new god who immediately made it very cold again. Now that it is warming up, fewer Norse people worship the new god and more are signing up with Thor again.

      The gods are all confused about these climate changes! :)

  30. The fleas on the EPA tail want to wag the dog.
    Time to play the trump card of the 10th Amendment:

    The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

    Control of state economies is NOT delegated in the Constitution to the EPA nor the United States.

    • Ahh, but at the Roberts court they will say: “Your state sells products to your neighboring states so we can take over your economy under the guise of regulating interstate commerce!”

      See all tidy and constitutional now. (Though I wonder how many states will resist – would this trigger a new civil war?) Perilous times when the federal government completely stops caring about federalism.

  31. Carbon dioxide is not the cause. All the IPCC, Trenberth and NASA energy budget diagrams (and the computer models) clearly imply that back radiation can be added to solar radiation and the total (after deducting non-radiative losses) used in Stefan Boltzmann calculations to obtain the surface temperature.

    We can see that this conjecture is false just by considering a location like Singapore which is close to the Equator and has a tropical rain forest climate with more than twice the average concentration of the greenhouse gas water vapor.

    On a clear day around noon in April or September the solar radiation reaching the surface could be easily two-thirds of the Solar constant – let’s say at least 800W/m^2. We’ll deduct about twice the average loss by non-radiative processes, reducing the net to about 600W/m^2 for which the black body temperature is 52°C. This could easily on its own explain the maximum temperature (which is virtually always less than 34°C) because the average solar radiation during daylight hours is a little less. But, if we add the backradiation (which could easily be another 600W/m^2 because of the high humidity) we get temperatures above 100°C. Hence it’s totally wrong to do so, and physicists have explained why such back radiation is mostly just pseudo scattered.

  32. Ahh sweet, totally understand the earths energy budget now from 15 years of data in a single study. The debate is finally over!!!

  33. “Our analysis confirmed that the Planck Response plays a dominant role in restoring global temperature stability, but ……. to our surprise ….. we found that it tends to be ….. overwhelmed …… (No poop, really?) locally by heat-trapping …. positive ….. (IPCC AR5 -20 W/m^2RF for clouds, 2 RF for CO2) energy feedbacks related to changes in clouds, water vapor, and snow and ice,” Brown said. “This initially suggested that the climate system might be able to create large, sustained changes in temperature …. all by itself (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!).”

    Well, where have they been? Plus this seems to contradict the paper’s very title?

  34. “global temperature does not rise or fall chaotically in the long run”? They have certainly risen and fallen chaotically in the last century, if words have any meaning, and if we can trust the temperature record at all. Building models is an essential part of science: look at something interesting, dream up an idea about how it might work, turn it into a model, then CONFRONT THE MODEL WITH REALITY. It’s the last step that makes it science. We don’t have to understand the models to look at the temperature record and say “large fluctuations at all scales”. Models can NEVER trump observations.

    • Jamal Munshi, thank you for the link to your paper. It is already known that statistically independent autoregressive processes tend to be correlated with each other over finite time spans.

  35. The title is interesting: Unforced Surface Air Temperature Variability and Its Contrasting Relationship with the Anomalous TOA Energy Flux at Local and Global Spatial Scales*

    Contrasting flows from the surface and flows from the TOA is a step forward, in my opinion. Too bad it is behind a paywall. They use data from a 15 year span during which there has been little change in anything. That makes it impossible to account for any observed changes since 1880.

    • If any scientist gets a taxpayer funded grant to do a study, doesn’t the results of that study belong to the people that paid for it…aka…the taxpayers ?? How can it be pay walled ?

  36. The new evidence may finally help put the chill on skeptics’ belief that long-term global warming occurs in an unpredictable manner, independently of external drivers such as human impacts.

    “evidence” ? Were they really surprised to find positive feedback associated with cloud cover in models? They’ve not been keeping up, clearly…

    There is another possibility for the hiatus and that is that TCS > ECS except perhaps over the very longest (and irrelevant to us) time-scales.

    So hypothetically, the earth rapidly increase its CO2 levels and that causes a spike in temperature and earth’s accumulation of energy…and eventually the atmosphere and ocean adjusts to the new processes as entropy maximisation wins out, leaving us with a little surface warming.

  37. All that stuff about Ice Ages? Even better… we ran our computer model and it showed that Neanderthals caused them and the Neanderthals are now extinct. More evidence that our computer models are valid. Can’t argue with facts.

  38. Ahhh fellas, this is a brilliant illuminating essay to warm the heart of any skeptic. You see it states

    “Scientists have long attributed this stabilization to a phenomenon known as the Planck Response, a large increase in infrared energy that Earth emits as it warms. Acting as a safety valve of sorts, this response creates a NEGATIVE RADIATIVE FEEDBACK that allows more of the accumulating heat to be released into space through the top of the atmosphere.” (capitals mine). It is thus admitting, nay stating!, that earth’s climate system exhibits net negative feedback but CAGW relies on Earth’s climate having strong positive feedback. After all, both sides agree what without feedbacks the impact of doubling CO2 is about 1C of warming. Its positive feedback that is claimed to take it to 3C, 4C …………….. – pick a number. So if the overall climate system exhibits negative feedback then doubling CO2 will give LESS THAN 1C of warming. Would you like me to replace your cup of storm with tea or coffee?

  39. The warming in the last 150 years is not due to internal climate changes which some call chaos. The planet resists forcing changes.

    The warming due to a doubling of atmospheric CO2 is less than 0.1C.

    Comments:
    1) The base so called 1 dimensional without feedbacks warming calculation for a doubling of atmospheric CO2 neglected to take into account the fact that the absorption spectrum of water vapor and CO2 overlap. As the planet is 70% covered with water there is a great deal of water vapor in the atmosphere. Taking the overlap of water vapor and CO2 into account reduces the warming for a doubling of CO2 to roughly 0.15C.

    2) The second deliberate error in the 1 dimensional without feedbacks warming calculation for a doubling of atmospheric CO2 is the lapse rate was held constant which is equivalent to assuming convection cooling no longer functions in the atmosphere. As it is fact not a theory that hot air rises which causes cold air to fall an increase in atmospheric CO2 will reduce the lapse rate which reduces the surface warming due to doubling of atmospheric CO2 by roughly a factor of four.

    3) Due to issue 1 and issue 2 the warming due to a doubling of atmospheric CO2 is less than 0.1C, which is so small, the without feedbacks warming is the same with feedbacks warming.

    The warming in the last 150 years is due to solar cycle modulation of planetary cloud and reduced wind speed over the oceans due to solar cycle changes.

    Observations continue to support the assertion that solar cycle has been interrupted as opposed to a slowdown in the solar cycle.

    If the above assertions are correct, global warming is reversible. The planet will significantly cool.

    • Unfortunately, we are preparing for the wrong thing ! Global Cooling will wipe out Canada as a nation !!

    • William Astley says:
      The warming in the last 150 years is due to solar cycle modulation of planetary cloud and reduced wind speed over the oceans due to solar cycle changes.

      Observations continue to support the assertion that solar cycle has been interrupted as opposed to a slowdown in the solar cycle.

      If the above assertions are correct, global warming is reversible. The planet will significantly cool.
      ——————-
      Those are some big ifs.
      I’d be interested in your proofs, as they would seem to be unique and sure to win you some sort of prize.

      • While we wait for observational evidence of in your face cooling.

        As the planet had warmed, we all assumed the cult of CAGW’s fundamental calculation (done more than 20 years ago by a half dozen specialists led by the founding father of CAGW, Hansen) of how much surface forcing a doubling of atmospheric CO2 will produce without ‘feedbacks’ is reasonable, in the right ball park. We all assumed the problem why the IPCC’s general circulation models (GCMs) predicted warming does not agree with measured warming is due to incorrect modeled cloud feedback, incorrect assumed water vapor amplification of the forcing, and delay in forcing response not the fundamental AGW calculation, itself. The general circulation models have more than a hundred adjustable ‘feedback’ parameters so any answer is possible (i.e. A key parameter that is adjusted is reduction of wind speed over the oceans which causes 30% of the warming.)

        The without ‘feedbacks’ cult of CAGW’s calculation (this is the calculation that predicted 1.2C to 1.4C surface warming for a doubling of atmospheric CO2) incorrectly held the lapse rate constant to determine (fudge) the estimated surface forcing for a doubling of atmospheric CO2 and did the calculation with a dry atmosphere (no water vapor). There is no scientific justification for fixing the lapse rate to calculate the no ‘feedback’ forcing of greenhouse gases and as the planet is 70% covered with water there is a great deal of water vapor in the atmosphere.

        Convection cooling is a physical fact not a theory and cannot be ignored in the without ‘feedbacks’ calculation. The change in forcing at the surface of the planet is less than the change in forcing higher in the atmosphere due to the increased convection cooling caused by greenhouse gases (reduction in the lapse rate). We do not need to appeal to crank ‘science’ that there is no greenhouse gas forcing to destroy the cult of CAGW ‘scientific’ argument that there is a global warming crisis problem to solve.

        There is a forcing change due to the increase in atmospheric CO2 however that forcing change is almost completely offset by the increase in convection. Due to the increased lapse rate (3% change) due to convection changes (the 3% change in the lapse rate, reduces the surface forcing by a factor of four, the forcing higher in the atmosphere remains the same) therefore warming at the surface of the planet is only 0.1C to 0.2C for a doubling of atmospheric CO2, while the warming at 5 km above the surface of the planet is 1C. As a warming of 0.1C to 0.2C is insufficient to cause any significant feedback change, the zero feedback change for a doubling of CO2 is ballpark the same as the with feedback response.

        Comment: The 0.1C to 0.2C warming is reduced to less than 0.1C as the 1 dimensional calculations were done (fudged) with a dry no water vapor atmosphere and with a fixed lapse rate. As there is a great deal of water vapor in the atmosphere and as absorption spectrum of water vapor and CO2 overlap doing the calculation correctly (with water vapor rather than without water vapor) reduces the surface forcing again by roughly a factor of 4.

        http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.ca/2015/07/collapse-of-agw-theory-of-ipcc-most.html
        https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B74u5vgGLaWoOEJhcUZBNzFBd3M/view?pli=1

        Collapse of the Anthropogenic Warming Theory of the IPCC

        4. Conclusions
        In physical reality, the surface climate sensitivity is 0.1~0.2K from the energy budget of the earth and the surface radiative forcing of 1.1W.m2 for 2xCO2. Since there is no positive feedback from water vapor and ice albedo at the surface, the zero feedback climate sensitivity CS (FAH) is also 0.1~0.2K. A 1K warming occurs in responding to the radiative forcing of 3.7W/m2 for 2xCO2 at the effective radiation height of 5km. This gives the slightly reduced lapse rate of 6.3K/km from 6.5K/km as shown in Fig.2.

        The modern anthropogenic global warming (AGW) theory began from the one dimensional radiative convective equilibrium model (1DRCM) studies with the fixed absolute and relative humidity utilizing the fixed lapse rate assumption of 6.5K/km (FLRA) for 1xCO2 and 2xCO2 [Manabe & Strickler, 1964; Manabe & Wetherald, 1967; Hansen et al., 1981]. Table 1 shows the obtained climate sensitivities for 2xCO2 in these studies, in which the climate sensitivity with the fixed absolute humidity CS (FAH) is 1.2~1.3K [Hansen et al., 1984].

        In the 1DRCM studies, the most basic assumption is the fixed lapse rate of 6.5K/km for 1xCO2 and 2xCO2. The lapse rate of 6.5K/km is defined for 1xCO2 in the U.S. Standard Atmosphere (1962) [Ramanathan & Coakley, 1978]. There is no guarantee, however, for the same lapse rate maintained in the perturbed atmosphere with 2xCO2 [Chylek & Kiehl, 1981; Sinha, 1995]. Therefore, the lapse rate for 2xCO2 is a parameter requiring a sensitivity analysis as shown in Fig.1.

        The followings are supporting analyses (William: In peer reviewed papers, published more than 20 years ago that support the assertion that convection cooling increases when there is an increase in greenhouse gases and support the assertion that a doubling of atmospheric CO2 will cause surface warming of less than 0.1C) for the Kimoto lapse rate theory above.
        (A) Kiehl & Ramanathan (1982) shows the following radiative forcing for 2xCO2.
        Radiative forcing at the tropopause: 3.7W/m2.
        Radiative forcing at the surface: 0.55~1.56W/m2 (averaged 1.1W/m2). (William: Four times less surface warming)

        This denies the FLRA giving the uniform warming throughout the troposphere in the 1DRCM and the 3DGCMs studies.
        (B) Newell & Dopplick (1979) obtained a climate sensitivity of 0.24K considering the evaporation cooling from the surface of the ocean.
        (C) Ramanathan (1981) shows the surface temperature increase of 0.17K with the direct heating of 1.2W/m2 for 2xCO2 at the surface.

        Transcript of a portion of Weart’s interview with Hansen.

        Weart: This was a radiative convective model, so where’s the convective part come in. Again, are you using somebody else’s…
        Hansen: That’s trivial. You just put in…
        Weart: … a lapse rate…
        Hansen: Yes. So it’s a fudge. That’s why you have to have a 3-D model to do it properly. In the 1-D model, it’s just a fudge, and you can choose different lapse rates and you get somewhat different answers (William: Different answers that invalidate CAGW, the 3-D models have more than 100 parameters to play with so any answer is possible. The 1-D model is simple so it possible to see the fudging/shenanigans). So you try to pick something that has some physical justification (William: You pick what is necessary to create CAGW, the scam fails when the planet abruptly cools due to the abrupt solar change). But the best justification is probably trying to put in the fundamental equations into a 3-D model.

        In addition to ignoring the fact that ‘greenhouse’ gases increase convection which reduces surface warming by a factor of 4, the without ‘feedbacks’ calculation also ignored the fact the absorption spectrum of water vapor and CO2 overlap. As the earth is 70% covered with water there is a great deal of water vapor in the lower atmosphere particularly in the tropics.

        Redoing the double atmospheric CO2 level, no feedback calculation with a atmospheric model that takes into account the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere and the radiation effects of water/CO2 absorption overlap reduces the surface forcing for a doubling of atmospheric CO2 from 3.7 watts/meter^2 to 1.1 watts/meter^2 ( also reduces surface for a doubling of CO2 by a factor of four). The increase in convection cooling and the reduction in the lapse rate both reduce the surface warming due to a doubling of atmospheric CO2 to reduce the surface warming due to a doubling of atmospheric CO2 to less than 0.1C.

        Check out figure 2 in this paper.
        http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/1520-0469%281982%29039%3C2923%3ARHDTIC%3E2.0.CO%3B2

        Radiative Heating Due to Increased CO2: The Role of H2O Continuum Absorption in the 18 mm region
        In the 18 mm region, the CO2 bands (William: CO2 spectral absorption band) are overlapped by the H2O pure rotational band and the H2O continuum band. The 12-18 mm H2O continuum absorption is neglected in most studies concerned with the climate effects of increased CO2.

        Comment:
        This paper notes there are 342 warming events in the paleo record. The planet warms cyclically. Other papers note the cyclic warming correlates to solar cycle changes.

        https://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/davis-and-taylor-wuwt-submission.pdf

        Davis and Taylor: “Does the current global warming signal reflect a natural cycle”

  40. “While global temperature tends to be stable due to the Planck Response, there are other important, previously less appreciated, mechanisms at work too,”

    So, the existing climate models have not included important mechanisms. Go on…

    • It’s so easy to shred this stuff, eh? Don’t forget, they were “less-appreciated” mechanisms. Verbiage as grout, between the tiles of speculation.

  41. Then the ending of ice ages over the past 800,000 years was caused by Man’s use of fossil fuels and the ice ages themselves were caused by Man’s conserving on the use of fossil fuels. Sounds great but Man has not been using fossil fuels for that long. How was the Eemian warmer then today yet CO2 levels were lower?

  42. Hallelujah! 15-years of “Model Data and a bit of Data” and a splash of Vodka in RockStar add a dash of Cocaine injected by an enema pump refute 4.85 Billion years of Earth History.

    No.

  43. From the definition of IPCC that the increased global average temperature anomaly since 1951 has two parts, namely (1) one caused by the greenhouse effect and (2) the other caused by non-greenhouse effect. The former’s contribution to the global average temperature since 1951 is extremely likely that more than half; and thus the latter’s contribution is less than half. Also, at the same time the anthropogenic greenhouse effect component has two components, namely (1a) the anthropogenic increase in greenhouse gas concentrations and (1b) the other anthropogenic forcings. (1b) is associated with volcanic erruption associated aerosols — a natural phenomenon — and man induced aerosols. (2) for this a new entry is filth — covering oceans & land surfaces –. However, IPCC is not sure of the quantitative contribution of these three groups on the global temperature. Also, the global average is not a global phenomenon but it is sum and total of location-region specific changes in temperature associated with the local conditions including the impact of natural cycle in precipitation. Even the greenhouse gases are location-region specific. We don’t have good global network prior to 1950 for both temperature [surface and ocean] and greenhouse gases. They were extra-intra-polated. Also, IPCC goes on changing the sensitivity factor but reports suggests that all the light emitted by the surface in the strongest carbon dioxide bands was completely absorbed at pre-industrial levels and thus the Earth stabilized at 15 oC. Over and above, what we observed at some places are associated with changes at local conditions only.

    Thus, global average temperature contains natural variation component also.

    Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

  44. “Large, sustained changes in global temperature like those observed over the last century require drivers such as increased greenhouse gas concentrations”:

    “Proxy temperature reconstruction and forecast from the GISP2 ice core, Greenland. The current temperature rise attributed to the modern warm period does not look out of place set in the context of past climatic fluctuations referred to by Richard Lindzen. We strongly suspect that a component of recent warming is down to CO2 but we do NOT know what that proportion is compared with the natural warming cycle”.
    On the face of it nothing about the global temperature changes of the past century needs explanation.
    The effect of human CO2 emissions on the global av. temperature can only be a concern if there is an a priori belief that whatever the effect it must be necessarily ‘unnatural’ and therefore dangerous.

  45. “global temperature does not rise or fall chaotically in the long run. Unless pushed by outside forces.
    The new evidence may finally help put the chill on skeptics’ belief that long-term global warming occurs in an unpredictable manner, independently of external drivers such as human impacts.”

    Who got to make the determination that humans are “outside forces”? Are we not a part of nature? What planet did the scientists at Duke University and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory come from?

  46. This is just another, start with the result you want and work backwards, study. There are hundreds in the trash bin already.

  47. “Unless pushed by outside forces, temperature should remain stable” Should it? And what kind of outside forces? Basically a constipated study from the first paragraph.

  48. Anthony, i love this statement of yours:

    * From the “language gives away the intent of the study” department *

    Its so true, very often you can just see in the headline or the first words if there is an intent in a “study” or if an article is actually science.

    Bob T, i love your statement as well:

    “Climate model-based study: disregard.”

    And then George E Smith with a brilliant phrase:

    “So humans are having wonderful success in keeping the earth’s Temperature constant for the last 18 years and eight months”

    Spot on: If nature cannot alter temperature trends, then the pause is suddenly hard to explain.

  49. I am sure that in the long and varied history of the earth (measured in the billions of years) there has never been a situation found outwith the conditions measured in the past 15 years……

    To say that any self-regarding referee to such a paper should make the word ‘coruscating’ seem rather conciliatory is perhaps to forget that the term ‘science’ no longer applies to funding publication writing in the area of weather studies…….

    Note my use of the words: ‘funding PUBLICATION WRITING’.

    Not ‘funding science’.

    All administrators of taxpayer funding dollars should ask whether that is what they wish to fund or not……

  50. Very Strong earthquake – Kamchatka Peninsula, Russia on January 30, 2016
    Most important Earthquake Data:
    Magnitude : 7.2
    Local Time (conversion only below land) : 2016-01-30 15:25:10
    GMT/UTC Time : 2016-01-30 03:25:10
    Depth (Hypocenter) : 162 km
    It causes explosions of the volcano.
    http://earthquake-report.com/2016/01/30/very-strong-earthquake-kamchatka-peninsula-russia-on-january-30-2016/
    Fears of the ‘big one’: Volcano explodes 1.8 miles high hours after massive earthquake
    http://www.express.co.uk/news/science/640052/Fears-of-a-big-one-Volcano-explodes-1-8-miles-high-hours-after-massive-earthquake

    January 24, 2016 (10:30:30 UTC)
    Quake Location
    Magnitude 7.1 Southern Alaska

    A magnitude 7.1 earthquake knocked items off shelves and walls in Alaska early Sunday. The earthquake was widely felt because it was close to Alaska’s population centers.

  51. “to our surprise we found that it tends to be overwhelmed locally by heat-trapping positive energy feedbacks related to changes in clouds, ….” are they claiming to have sorted out cloud feedback?

    Does this mean we can expect an update to all GCMs and they will now hindcast and forecast?

  52. “Unless pushed by outside forces, temperature should remain stable.”

    That was the hope of the Old Kingdom in Egypt. Not to mention the Ming in China and all those people who got chilled (and droughted) from their homes in the migration periods and Bond Events through history.

    Now it’s the hope of some guys who are supposed to be propelling jets?

  53. Turncoat has announced there will be a federal election here in Australia within 6 months. Wave goodbye to the head job Turncoat ‘coz Labor (Democrat (I think) in US speak) are likely to win (Sadly).

  54. “The new evidence may finally help put the chill on skeptics’ belief that long-term global warming occurs in an unpredictable manner, independently of external drivers such as human impacts.”

    Meh..,not so much….

    Skeptics fully understand climate can be influenced by external drivers, and also appreciate: 1) climate is not overly sensitive to tiny changes in earth’s energy budget, 2) any drivers that may occur are somewhat mitigated by feedbacks, 3) CO2’s tiny logarithmic forcing effect is too insignificant to worry about…

    What this paper actually shows is that earth’s climate is MUCH less sensitive than CAGW hypothesizes because of the Planck Response it refers to..

    The strongest 63-yr string (1933~1996) of solar cycles in 11,400 years is certainly sufficient to account for most of 20th century’s warming recovery, and it’s interesting to see when ended, so did the global warming trend….

    It’ll be very interesting to see what happens to global temp trends during the next solar cycle starting around 2022, which is expected to be as weak as the Dalton Minimum (1790~1820)…

    It should also be hilarious to see what happens when both the PDO and AMO are in their 30-year cool cycles from 2020….

    CAGW is so screwed..

  55. “Study claims there is no significant natural component to global warming, i.e. ‘it’s all your fault’ “

    Well, since all the warming comes from faked data produced by the minions of the western governments, I guess the “warming” does come from mankind. Or is that coward-kind?

  56. How did the earth ever manage to cool from a molten ball? How id we ever warm from ice ages? How do these idiots keep their jobs?

  57. The authorless piece reviewing this paper seems very incomplete with quotations out of context making lots of elementary holes for snipers to shoot at – and the snipers have certainly been busy to judge by preceding comments . Has anyone read the original paper ?

  58. There is one set of skeptics that have been saying that the changes in global temperature could be due to simple random variation. I think even RGB has mentioned this possibility so I would think he is reading this paper in depth.

    This doesn’t say a thing about other skeptic theories that claim natural forcing such as solar and ocean could be responsible for the changes. In fact, this paper gives as much strength to those theories as it does man made forcing. While they are natural, they still provide a forcing in the sense of more energy input to the atmosphere.

  59. “a warming Earth is able to restore its temperature equilibrium through complex and seemingly paradoxical changes”
    Basically,we have no freaking idea what’s going on, but it’s certainly not natural!

  60. “This initially suggested that the climate system might be able to create large, sustained changes in temperature all by itself.”

    But this suggestion disappeared with a wave of our hand and a wag of our model.

  61. They say that climate resists change by negative feedbacks to all forcings except CO2.
    In what sense has CO2 driven the temperature changes over the Holocene:

    In the last 7000 years temperature has declined while atmospheric CO2 has steadily risen.

  62. When people talk about cloud cover, water vapor and snow and ice, you can directly point to the activity of the sun. When the sun produces less sunspots, cloud cover increases. This is what happened during the last mini-ice age we had in the late 1800s. The sun was dormant and increases in cloud cover, water vapros and snow and ice occurred. How does this relate to human activity?

  63. From the press release:

    The new evidence may finally help put the chill on skeptics’ belief that long-term global warming occurs in an unpredictable manner, independently of external drivers such as human impacts.

    It’s a common formulation in such press releases about new studies, and a holwer every time I see it. My experience, anecdotal and therefore non-representative it may be, is that so-called climate “skeptics” are largely impervious to logic, reason, well-established and long-standing first principles of physics and especially empirical evidence which runs contrary to their oft-repeated but thinly-evidenced claims that nature is mostly (or in some cases, completely) responsible for secular trends in temperature since the Industrial Revolution.

    The easiest deflection of all occurs when so much as the word “model” appears in a given study (unless the model “confirms” what they believe to be true) and as this particular study relies heavily on global climate models, the knee-jerk reaction was swift. Very first post in the comments:

    Bob Tisdale
    February 1, 2016 at 2:04 pm

    Climate model-based study: disregard.

    Never you mind that the press release says …

    Using global climate models and NASA satellite observations of Earth’s energy budget from the last 15 years, the study finds that a warming Earth is able to restore its temperature equilibrium through complex and seemingly paradoxical changes in the atmosphere and the way radiative heat is transported.

    Not surprisingly, there was some pushback about the short time period considered by this study:

    manicbeancounter
    February 1, 2016 at 2:48 pm

    15 years is an extremely short period time for climate change. The results are almost entirely model-based.

    katherine009
    February 1, 2016 at 2:50 pm

    Fifteen years of data? They can tell all that from just 15 years of data?

    … apparently forgetting that satellite-observed trends of lower tropospheric temperatures over the past 18 years have already “falsified” the “AGW meme”, as a fellow-traveller alludes by way of response:

    Wagen
    February 1, 2016 at 3:46 pm

    Don’t you know there is a pause in satellite data from 1998? /sarc

    Followed by a classic example of completely missing the point …

    Aphan
    February 1, 2016 at 4:30 pm

    There is. Can you not read graphs? See that horizontal part on the graph from 1998-2016?

    The article states-“Using global climate models and NASA satellite observations of Earth’s energy budget from the last 15 years, the study finds that a warming Earth is able to restore its temperature equilibrium through complex and seemingly paradoxical changes in the atmosphere and the way radiative heat is transported.”

    See? In the past 15 years, Earth was able to restore it’s temperature equilibrium!

    … as well as distorting one conclusion of the study by apparently not realizing that “is able to restore” is distinctly different from “was able to restore”. Verb tense matters.

    That all said, manicbeancounter and katherine009 do actually raise a good point that 15 years is not really sufficient to draw any firm conclusions about climate trends. The lede paragraph of the press release doesn’t much help matters:

    DURHAM, N.C. — By examining how Earth cools itself back down after a period of natural warming, a study by scientists at Duke University and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory confirms that global temperature does not rise or fall chaotically in the long run. Unless pushed by outside forces, temperature should remain stable.

    “Confirms” is an awfully strong word, on par with “proves” both of which imply absolute certainty in a result. Rare is it that one single paper about non-trivial natural phenomena “proves” something, and I think it is proper to be skeptical about such strong claims made of one paper. The lead author of the study is apparently aware of this:

    This underscores that large, sustained changes in global temperature like those observed over the last century require drivers such as increased greenhouse gas concentrations,” said lead author Patrick Brown, a PhD student at Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment. Natural climate cycles alone are insufficient to explain such changes, he said.

    “Underscores” implies that the present results constitute additional evidence on top of prior findings. So, “this study provides further confirmation” would have been more true to Brown’s actual language.

    The abstract of the paper contains no such language, but it’s paywalled so I can’t read the whole thing. Primary literature tends to be drier and more cautious about overstating claims which is why I prefer to read conclusions in the original rather than the press release.

    From what I have read, I wouldn’t say this “Study ‘debunks’ argument that warming is driven by natural factors,” as Anthony put it. More that it’s one study in a long-running succession of empirical evidence and modelling which rather clearly demonstrate that anthropogenic forcings are the dominant factor in the long-term accumulation of retained solar energy since the mid-19th century.

    On decadal and inter-annual timescales, natural variability (esp. internal variability as manifest in say, El Nino) is clearly the more dominant cause of the wiggles in the temperature record.

    • BGates,

      What are …so-called climate “skeptics”… ?

      I’m a Feynman-type skeptic, like most commenters here. You’re not a skeptic, I get that.

      The same paragraph you wrote that in shows why you’re so confused. You’re not a skeptic. You believe that skeptics have to prove something, and skeptics have to provide “evidence”. Wrong. Skeptics have nothing to prove.

      We like Occam’s Razor, and the climate Null Hypothesis, too. The simplest explanation is usually the best explanation: there is nothing unusual or unprecedented happening, so the most reasonable explanation is natural variability.

      If/when you can produce verifiable, testable measurements quantifying AGW, I’ll sit up straight and pay attention. But whenever I ask, all you do is post excuses. The real reason is a lot more mundane: AGW is simply too small to measure. It is a non-problem; as Willis says, it’s a minuscule 3rd order forcing that is swamped by 2nd order forcings, and both of those are swamped by 1st order forcings.

      I think you write your interminable essays in order to convince yourself. Because you sure aren’t convincing anyone else here.

      • dbstealey,

        What are …so-called climate “skeptics”… ?

        Was what I already wrote unclear?

        My experience, anecdotal and therefore non-representative it may be, is that so-called climate “skeptics” are largely impervious to logic, reason, well-established and long-standing first principles of physics and especially empirical evidence which runs contrary to their oft-repeated but thinly-evidenced claims that nature is mostly (or in some cases, completely) responsible for secular trends in temperature since the Industrial Revolution.

        I’m a Feynman-type skeptic, like most commenters here. You’re not a skeptic, I get that.

        I’m so PROUD of you DB, here’s your recognition:

        The same paragraph you wrote that in shows why you’re so confused. You’re not a skeptic. You believe that skeptics have to prove something, and skeptics have to provide “evidence”. Wrong. Skeptics have nothing to prove.

        Sounds like a tough job.

        We like Occam’s Razor, and the climate Null Hypothesis, too. The simplest explanation is usually the best explanation: there is nothing unusual or unprecedented happening, so the most reasonable explanation is natural variability.

        Congrats, you’ve just demonstrated that Newton’s laws of motion are more reasonable than Einstein’s. Send your abstract off to Nature, no possible peer-review could ever reject it. Heck, you might win a Nobel Prize.

        If/when you can produce verifiable, testable measurements quantifying AGW, I’ll sit up straight and pay attention. But whenever I ask, all you do is post excuses.

        I’ve posted the estimates, or “guesstimates” as you call them, and then dismissed them for not meeting you arbitrary standards of verifiable and testable. When I ask you to produce a full-blown GCM that better explains temperature trends invoking only natural causes you either post a thunderously silent nothing, or go back to chanting “skeptics have nothing to prove”, which is an excuse.

        The real reason is a lot more mundane: AGW is simply too small to measure.

        That’s a claim, Stealey. I am skeptical of it. One might say I’m a so-called Stealey “skeptic”. Produce verifiable, testable evidence that you are correct. Come now, no excuses.

        It is a non-problem; as Willis says, it’s a minuscule 3rd order forcing that is swamped by 2nd order forcings, and both of those are swamped by 1st order forcings.

        That’s very impressive-sounding, and if Willis says so, it must be true. I’m so glad to know that the science has been settled.

        I think you write your interminable essays in order to convince yourself.

        And I think you like speculating about my motives because it’s pretty much the only argument you’ve got.

        Because you sure aren’t convincing anyone else here.

        It is admittedly difficult to convince someone of anything who claims to already have everything figured out.

      • Ha! I just knew that would spin up Gates. It’s so easy…

        Re: measurements of AGW, Gates sez:

        “I’ve posted the estimates”

        I could hit just about every comment of his out of the park. But where’s the challenge? In this case, though, I’ll point out:

        Estimate = guesstimate = opinion = conjecture, etc.

        I’m still waiting for a measurement of AGW. I think I’ll have to wait a long time.

        There’s something fishy going on when the climate alarmist crowd can’t quantify what we’re supposed to be panicking over.

      • dbstealey,

        Re: measurements of AGW, Gates sez:

        “I’ve posted the estimates”

        I could hit just about every comment of his out of the park. But where’s the challenge? In this case, though, I’ll point out:

        Estimate = guesstimate = opinion = conjecture, etc.

        Oh, you mean like this one?

      • dbstealey-
        “It’s clear that Gates doesn’t believe in radiative physics.”

        Well, he WOULD (and most likely does) if they prove his point, but he doesn’t when they prove someone else’s. Kind of like how he believes in models, even though the models have never proven what he insinuates that they have:

        (BG)”When I ask you to produce a full-blown GCM that better explains temperature trends invoking only natural causes you either post a thunderously silent nothing, or go back to chanting “skeptics have nothing to prove”, which is an excuse.”

        See, he apparently thinks that there is some kind “full blown GCM” that has been verified to undeniably capture every single influence of every single source of “nature” so successfully and accurately that it’s simply a “given” that humanity MUST be causing the climate to change because there simply cannot be another explanation.

        Since he’s the one saying that humans ARE causing it, by the definition of logic, HE has to prove his conclusion. All we have to do is examine his evidence and if it doesn’t actually PROVE anything, we get to say “keep trying”. It’s not an excuse, it’s the demands of both logic and the scientific method. It’s called:

        “SHIFTING THE BURDEN OF PROOF”

        “The burden of proof is always on the person making an assertion or proposition. Shifting the burden of proof, a special case of argumentum ad ignorantium is the fallacy of putting the burden of proof on the person who denies or questions the assertion being made. The source of the fallacy is the assumption that something is true unless proven otherwise.”

    • Aphan,

      dbstealey-
      “It’s clear that Gates doesn’t believe in radiative physics.”

      Well, he WOULD (and most likely does) if they prove his point, but he doesn’t when they prove someone else’s.

      I see no “proof” in that plot.

      Kind of like how he believes in models, even though the models have never proven what he insinuates that they have:

      Well yes, that plot is the product of a model of radiative physics. How was it validated?

      See, he apparently thinks that there is some kind “full blown GCM” that has been verified to undeniably capture every single influence of every single source of “nature” so successfully and accurately that it’s simply a “given” that humanity MUST be causing the climate to change because there simply cannot be another explanation.

      Well I do declare, you stomped the stuffing out of that strawman. Good work.

      Since he’s the one saying that humans ARE causing it, by the definition of logic, HE has to prove his conclusion.

      I agree that it’s my duty to substantiate my claim with evidence, logic and appeals to demonstrably correct physical principles. Whether you consider it “proof” or not is entirely up to your personal standards of “proof”.

      All we have to do is examine his evidence and if it doesn’t actually PROVE anything, we get to say “keep trying”.

      I know, it’s such a fun game, isn’t it. A toddler can run around chanting “that doesn’t actually PROVE anything” as well. Usually though, they just ask “why” a lot … and mostly in earnest.

      It’s not an excuse, it’s the demands of both logic and the scientific method. It’s called:

      “SHIFTING THE BURDEN OF PROOF”

      Perhaps missed his equivocation fallacy on the meaning of the word “skeptic”?

      “The burden of proof is always on the person making an assertion or proposition. Shifting the burden of proof, a special case of argumentum ad ignorantium is the fallacy of putting the burden of proof on the person who denies or questions the assertion being made. The source of the fallacy is the assumption that something is true unless proven otherwise.”

      Oh good, we agree. Alright then, here are Stealey’s claims again:

      The real reason is a lot more mundane: AGW is simply too small to measure. It is a non-problem; as Willis says, it’s a minuscule 3rd order forcing that is swamped by 2nd order forcings, and both of those are swamped by 1st order forcings.

      Where’s his “proof” of these claims? Hmmm?

      • This is almost irresistible! I can make a few short observations, and Gates goes ballistic. I can get him so spun with a few words that he writes paragraph after paragraph of globaloney.

        I like to pull the wings off flies, too. ☺

      • dbstealey-
        I know right? He’s like one of those wind up Jack in the Box toys that only needs to be cranked one more note…and then SPOING! I’ve seen crack addicts with more control.

        *pulling the wings off flies….if you’d do it to mosquitoes you could probably save the work from Zika! *grin*

      • Yawn. I said nothing about the graph. Was talking about you and observations of your propensities.

        BG-“I agree that it’s my duty to substantiate my claim with evidence, logic and appeals to demonstrably correct physical principles. Whether you consider it “proof” or not is entirely up to your personal standards of “proof”.

        No evidence. And a lot of flawed logic. Whether or not you use physically correct principles depends on the argument you are making at any given time. Being able to correctly spew scientific principles is great, but that skill hasn’t proven AGW exists to anyone who understands them.

        “I know, it’s such a fun game, isn’t it. A toddler can run around chanting “that doesn’t actually PROVE anything” as well. Usually though, they just ask “why” a lot … and mostly in earnest.”

        I’ve never seen a toddler say that, but I suppose it’s possible. If you equate skeptics with toddlers, then let me ask, in earnest “WHY?” (are you here at all?)

        “Perhaps missed his equivocation fallacy on the meaning of the word “skeptic”?”

        You mean when he corrected your “anecdotal and therefore non-representative” (aka illogical) definition that AGW skeptics (get it right idiot…no no here is skeptical of “climate”) “are largely impervious to logic, reason, well-established and long-standing first principles of physics and especially empirical evidence which runs contrary to their oft-repeated but thinly-evidenced claims that nature is mostly (or in some cases, completely) responsible for secular trends in temperature since the Industrial Revolution.”????

        You calling it an “equivocation” doesn’t make it so. You keep declaring yourself to be logical-which means that HIS arguments are irrelevant to the fact that:
        “The burden of proof is always on the person making an assertion or proposition. Shifting the burden of proof, a special case of argumentum ad ignorantium is the fallacy of putting the burden of proof on the person who denies or questions the assertion being made. The source of the fallacy is the assumption that something is true unless proven otherwise.”

        “Where’s his “proof” of these claims? Hmmm?”

        Probably in the same place yours is. Maybe you should check there rather than acting like a “toddler running around chanting “that doesn’t actually PROVE anything”???

      • Aphan,

        “Where’s his “proof” of these claims? Hmmm?”

        Probably in the same place yours is.

        Ambiguity, the first cousin of equivocation: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equivocation

        Equivocation (“to call by the same name”) is an informal logical fallacy. It is the misleading use of a term with more than one meaning or sense (by glossing over which meaning is intended at a particular time). It generally occurs with polysemic words (words with multiple meanings).

        Albeit in common parlance it is used in a variety of contexts, when discussed as a fallacy, equivocation only occurs when the arguer makes a word or phrase employed in two (or more) different senses in an argument appear to have the same meaning throughout.[1][2]

        It is therefore distinct from (semantic) ambiguity, which means that the context doesn’t make the meaning of the word or phrase clear, and amphiboly (or syntactical ambiguity), which refers to ambiguous sentence structure due to punctuation or syntax.[3]

        A common case of equivocation is the fallacious use in a syllogism (a logical chain of reasoning) of a term several times, but giving the term a different meaning each time.

        1) The burden of proof is always on the person making an assertion or proposition.
        2) (A) claims AGW is a real phenomenon.
        3) (B) is a skeptic of (A)’s claims.
        4) By (1) “[AGW] skeptics have nothing to prove”.
        5) (B) claims “AGW is simply too small to measure. It is a non-problem; as Willis says, it’s a minuscule 3rd order forcing that is swamped by 2nd order forcings, and both of those are swamped by 1st order forcings.”
        6) By (2), (3) and (4) it is (A)’s burden of proof to refute (5).

        Something is wrong with (6).

      • BG-yes I know what the fallacy is. Now, which word or phrase are you accusing dbs of using repeatedly, but changing the meaning of, in this thread?

        You seem to be offering a grown up version of “I’m rubber, you’re glue…”. If dbs is guilty, becomiisg irrational yourself discredits your argument too.

        Now, the quote from dbs states that the anthropogenic is too small to measure. If it’s too small to measure, how exactly do you anticipate dbs being able to prove that? How would he measure something to small to measure, in order to prove it’s literally too small to measure? His statement, even if it’s hypocritical or weak logically, does NOT strengthen YOUR weak, illogical argument. That’s not how logic works. If you were able to crush every single thing he says, it wouldn’t solve the problems YOUR arguments have.

        Perhaps if you simply responded with an empirical measurement, rather than an estimate, or a modeled guess etc showing that it actually is large enough to be measured, you’d have a stronger argument. But you can’t, because one does not exist. Which is, if you’re paying attention, is and always has been, his point.

      • Aphan,

        yes I know what the fallacy is.

        I’ll take that to mean you agree with the definition, which was my intent in posting it.

        Now, which word or phrase are you accusing dbs of using repeatedly, but changing the meaning of, in this thread?

        As I have written several times now, the word is “skeptic”.

        If dbs is guilty, becomiisg irrational yourself discredits your argument too.

        If my argument is irrational.

        Now, the quote from dbs states that the anthropogenic is too small to measure. If it’s too small to measure, how exactly do you anticipate dbs being able to prove that? How would he measure something to small to measure, in order to prove it’s literally too small to measure?

        I don’t expect him to be able to. That’s the point.

        If you were able to crush every single thing he says, it wouldn’t solve the problems YOUR arguments have.

        Begging the question that my argument has a problem. It does, but it’s not uniquely mine — it’s ubiquitous to all of humanity and has a name: the problem of induction.

        Perhaps if you simply responded with an empirical measurement, rather than an estimate, or a modeled guess etc showing that it actually is large enough to be measured, you’d have a stronger argument.

        Prior experience suggests otherwise.

        But you can’t, because one does not exist.

        You cannot prove a negative. As you say, “Logic doesn’t work that way.”

        Rejecting estimates based on evidence is not the same as those things not existing.

        Which is, if you’re paying attention, is and always has been, his point.

        I understand his point because I do pay attention. Me disagreeing with him is not the same as me missing the point.

      • Aphan,

        I wasn’t talking about what you think or premises or anything else.

        con·jec·ture

        noun:

        1. an opinion or conclusion formed on the basis of incomplete information.
        synonyms: speculation, guesswork, surmise, fancy, presumption, assumption, theory, postulation, supposition; inference, (an) extrapolation; an estimate;
        informal a guesstimate, a shot in the dark, a ballpark figure

        I was talking about taking specific actions that harm others based on questionable conclusions.

        I interpret “questionable conclusions” as an attack against the premises of my argument. I neglected to mention that “taking specific actions that harm others” is a presumption on your part. So let me make this clear; I do not want the cure to be worse than the disease.

        But we all know how well versed in logic you are.

        A perfectly logical argument can reach wrong conclusions if one of its premises is wrong. You have a habit of disagreeing with my premises, then accusing me of reaching illogical conclusions based on them. Here’s a recent example:

        https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/01/02/24-days-to-al-gores-10-years-to-save-the-planet-and-point-of-no-return-planetary-emergency-deadline/#comment-2113371

        Earth science is where I came into the climate debate from. It’s my foundation. And because of what I KNOW and UNDERSTAND about the Earth, the physical planet, it’s so much easier to see the logic fails in trying to think that the AIR controls anything on this rock. Putting the past 150 years of “temperatures” into it’s proper context, which is MILLIONS of years old, one realizes darn quick that in all of the geological physical records-rocks, trees, ice cores, sediment cores, fossils, Co2 has never, not once, been guilty of changing the climate.

        BG”For about the past million years, atmospheric CO2 levels have ranged 120 and 280 ppmv. They are presently just north of 400.”

        Which is SO ODD…because the temperature proxy records, like ice cores etc, demonstrate that it’s been as warm, or warmer than today 4-5 times in JUST the past 12,000 years! With MUCH lower CO2 than is currently in the air now!

        There’s a lag between the time you light the burner and the tea kettle whistles.

        BG-“And just like that we’re back to pretending we know everything there is to know about climate.”

        Really? Nice false dichotomy you stuffed me into there. *wink*

        Annoying isn’t it. However, when you write things like “… because of what I KNOW and UNDERSTAND about the Earth, the physical planet, it’s so much easier to see the logic fails in trying to think that the AIR controls anything on this rock …” it’s fairly difficult for me to not observe that you’re all but absolutely confident that YOU know enough about climate to conclude that anyone who disagrees with you is illogical, a moron and/or an outright liar.

        I really would be a damn liar if I said I don’t feel more or less the same way about the average WUWT denizen.

        BG-“You only “know” this because of paleoclimate studies. Rational people read what else they say in those papers.”

        Well duh big bruh! And? I LIKE paleoclimate studies. I like proxy records. I like geological studies. That some paleoclimate studies are done by biased morons who had no idea what they are doing doesn’t mean they all are. So don’t make assumptions about how I feel about paleo anything ok?

        I like living dangerously; I think it’s fair to conclude any paleoclimate study that attributes some part of temperature change to the radiative effects of CO2 was written by a biased moron in your book.

        Rational people read ALL of the studies and note the error margins and methods used and see how accurate or inaccurate they are.

        Rational people understand that nobody has time to read ALL the studies — much less evaluate ALL their methods and tally up ALL the error margins.

        BG- “Um, that’s called governance.”

        WHAT?

        Name any major policy decision in the history of the United States that everyone thought was a good idea, and that someone did NOT think was going to ruin the country or otherwise harm someone.

    • Brandon,

      I interpreted your comment as having three points:
      1. Skeptics are ignorant of climate physics as you understand it, especially regarding natural variability.
      2. Skeptics distrust models disagreeing with their views and are confirmationally biased towards those that do.
      3. Anthropogenic forcings outweigh natural factors.

      My experience, anecdotal and therefore non-representative it may be, is that so-called climate “skeptics” are largely impervious to logic, reason, well-established and long-standing first principles of physics and especially empirical evidence which runs contrary to their oft-repeated but thinly-evidenced claims that nature is mostly (or in some cases, completely) responsible for secular trends in temperature since the Industrial Revolution.

      As an old fart brushing up on long-standing physics, I’m waiting to be convinced that you have the background to make such a claim stand up. To me it seems that claims that anthropogenic forcings primarily cause global warming are also thinly-evidenced only by models which appear to vaguely correlate the past, but largely fail to predict the future.

      The easiest deflection of all occurs when so much as the word “model” appears in a given study (unless the model “confirms” what they believe to be true) and as this particular study relies heavily on global climate models, the knee-jerk reaction was swift.

      Conformational bias applies equally to all. More importantly, unless the model is a mechanistic one formulated prior to curve fitting, which subsequently withstands further testing, it is essentially a correlation insufficient to show causation.

      From what I have read, I wouldn’t say this “Study ‘debunks’ argument that warming is driven by natural factors,” as Anthony put it. More that it’s one study in a long-running succession of empirical evidence and modelling which rather clearly demonstrate that anthropogenic forcings are the dominant factor in the long-term accumulation of retained solar energy since the mid-19th century.

      Perhaps you could submit an article to WUWT exhibiting your review of such a succession of empirical evidence backed up by your own modelling that will demonstrate (clearly show the existence or truth of (something) by giving proof or evidence). Seriously, from what I’ve seen of it, it could be enlightening.

      • Chic Bowdrie,

        I interpreted your comment as having three points:
        1. Skeptics are ignorant of climate physics as you understand it, especially regarding natural variability.
        2. Skeptics distrust models disagreeing with their views and are confirmationally biased towards those that do.
        3. Anthropogenic forcings outweigh natural factors.

        1. My experience at WUWT is that knowledge of physics runs the gamit from basically nothing to quite advanced (as in better than my self-assessed comprehension). By “largely impervious” I actually meant “largely rejects” explanations I agree with, no matter who is giving the explanation.

        2. In general, yes.

        3. With qualifications. From 1950-present, yes. The shorter the time scale, the more natural effects explain variability of trends. For inter-annual time scales, natural variability is clearly dominant.

        “My experience, anecdotal and therefore non-representative it may be, is that so-called climate “skeptics” are largely impervious to logic, reason, well-established and long-standing first principles of physics and especially empirical evidence which runs contrary to their oft-repeated but thinly-evidenced claims that nature is mostly (or in some cases, completely) responsible for secular trends in temperature since the Industrial Revolution.”

        As an old fart brushing up on long-standing physics, I’m waiting to be convinced that you have the background to make such a claim stand up.

        I’m confused by that statement, let me see if I can sort it. Going by your numbered list above, (1) and (2) are my subjective personal opinions which don’t easily lend themselves to bombproof substantiation. (3) is the physics and I claim no particular expertise, but from what you write below, you’re open to me formally extending my arguments in the form of a complete essay. Is that about correct?

        To me it seems that claims that anthropogenic forcings primarily cause global warming are also thinly-evidenced only by models which appear to vaguely correlate the past, but largely fail to predict the future.

        This is the point where I want you to produce a better model. (Cue Stealey, “skeptics have nothing to prove”.)

        Conformational bias applies equally to all.

        Everyone has cognitive biases. I would not say that they affect everyone equally. My own biases obviously affect my perceptions differences.

        More importantly, unless the model is a mechanistic one formulated prior to curve fitting, which subsequently withstands further testing, it is essentially a correlation insufficient to show causation.

        Again, I’m wanting a model done in a way which you consider more proper and which you believe delivers better results than whatever model(s) it is you’re critiquing. In the sense that I don’t believe you can provide one, my challenge is a rhetorical tactic. On the other hand, that’s my personal view of the normal course of how science advances knowledge, e.g. Newton to Einstein.

        This is probably more topical on the thread about Dr. Christy’s recent Senate testimony …

        https://andthentheresphysics.wordpress.com/2016/02/03/transparency/#comment-72186

        … but beneath my sarcasm, snark, venting and harsh language is a fair amount of sincerity. I really do want to see non-CO2 hypotheses put through rigorous testing by their most-qualified promoters on my own taxpayer dime.

        Perhaps you could submit an article to WUWT exhibiting your review of such a succession of empirical evidence backed up by your own modelling that will demonstrate (clearly show the existence or truth of (something) by giving proof or evidence). Seriously, from what I’ve seen of it, it could be enlightening.

        Proofs I cannot offer, arguments and evidence suggesting some truth perhaps. If anything it would be a good exercise in checking my own assumptions and reasoning. I’ll give it a think.

      • Brandon,

        “As an old fart brushing up on long-standing physics, I’m waiting to be convinced that you have the background to make such a claim stand up.”
        I’m confused by that statement, let me see if I can sort it. Going by your numbered list above, (1) and (2) are my subjective personal opinions which don’t easily lend themselves to bombproof substantiation. (3) is the physics and I claim no particular expertise, but from what you write below, you’re open to me formally extending my arguments in the form of a complete essay. Is that about correct?

        With respect to (1), had you said “some” skeptics instead of “so-called,” your statement wouldn’t have raised a red flag. In (1) and (3), you clearly profess enough expertise to judge anthropogenic vs. natural factors. You may have it and that’s why I encourage you to write up your modelling data. I would if I had the data and more time or money.

        This is the point where I want you to produce a better model. (Cue Stealey, “skeptics have nothing to prove”.)

        I’m not in a position right now to provide an alternative model. Want to throw some funds my way? Nevertheless, does failure to provide an alternative make my criticisms of IPCC models invalid?

        Everyone has cognitive biases. I would not say that they affect everyone equally. My own biases obviously affect my perceptions differences.

        Huh?

        This is probably more topical on the thread about Dr. Christy’s recent Senate testimony … [link to the ATTP Christy post]

        Wow. Tell us what you really think.

        From your comment on the ATTP post:

        So, on the other hand, let’s get some serious research for our serious amount of money instead of paying them to “express” themselves … something which they’re already abundantly capable of doing without me having to foot the bill for it.

        This is how many, if not all, of us so-called skeptics feel about our tax dollars going towards current IPCC modelling efforts. You seem resentful of even 5-10% spent on opposing hypotheses. Why not an equal 50-50 split? If AGW conformational bias is in effect among those producing IPCC models, how long will it take for any objective results to emerge showing that more CO2 will have no major effect on global temperature?

      • Chic,
        It really only takes a couple of exchanges with Brandon to catch on. He wants others to view his arguments as logical and evidence based, but often breaks the rules of logic. He’s willing to admit his own side of the argument is unproven, while demanding proof from others that they PROVE him wrong! He admits his perceptions are tainted by his own biases, while insinuating that some people are more influenced by their biases than others -Freudian slip or projection or insinuation?

        Modeled results are the only thing that the AGW crowd has left to hang their opinions on, because every other KNOWN “natural” factor in the global warming/climate change debate has been shown to include error margins large enough to contain the temperature increase, either individually, or in simple combinations. Man made computer models are the last resort for man made warming believers.

        Brandon Gates, despite his claims for pure scientific results, cannot ignore his own biases long enough to demand 50-50 research. I suspect there is a great deal of fear in him at this point. He’s invested so much time and effort into “being right about this”, and left so much personal evidence on every online battlefield, that to welcome defeat, even if pure science could be declared saved and triumphant, could quite literally be his undoing. Having what he might consider to be the greatest achievement humanly possible-helping to save mankind-torn from his grasp, could lead to something far worse than climate change depression/anxiety.

      • Aphan,

        Whatever Brandon’s motives are, our discussions are helpful to me as I seek a clearer understanding of the science underlying climate change. My attempts at discussions with AGW supporters on pro-AGW websites were discouraging because of comments removed, but mostly a preponderance of ad hominem comments. Obviously Brandon is not being censored here, but he might be experiencing similar denigration.

        I haven’t followed your discussions with him, but from your comment to me you must be able to supply the alternative model results he desires showing how natural factors explain temperature trends without a major contribution from human emissions. If so, I would be interested in them as well. BTW, have you seen his model work? He has invested time and effort. Whether or not that is to prove himself right or to find the truth is his problem.

        Bottom line for me, being as it is probably too late to do my own research, is to learn as much as possible from experts (not saying Brandon is), ask questions to clarify misunderstandings, and remain open as possible to all arguments both pro and con.

      • Chic,

        I appreciate your response.

        “Whatever Brandon’s motives are, our discussions are helpful to me as I seek a clearer understanding of the science underlying climate change.”

        I was merely trying to give you a heads up that Brandon’s motives often color his perception of what can actually be called “empirical” in the realm of the “science of climate change” and what can actually only be called estimations, projections, guesses etc.

        “My attempts at discussions with AGW supporters on pro-AGW websites were discouraging because of comments removed, but mostly a preponderance of ad hominem comments. Obviously Brandon is not being censored here, but he might be experiencing similar denigration.”

        Denigration is a subjective term. Everyone here gets critiqued, corrected, cross examined, and questioned, especially when they employ logical fallacies or cognitive biases as part of their arguments. Whether or not Brandon feels denigrated here is up to him, but any real denigration here almost always only happens after someone else throws the first punch, or attempts to insinuate something irrational. And it’s almost always all out, in-your-face-unmistakable denigration and not subtle, hidden, logical fallacies when it happens. For example, you picked up BG’s propensity to throw subtle, illogical little darts here-
        “With respect to (1), had you said “some” skeptics instead of “so-called,” your statement wouldn’t have raised a red flag.”

        “I haven’t followed your discussions with him, but from your comment to me you must be able to supply the alternative model results he desires showing how natural factors explain temperature trends without a major contribution from human emissions.”

        I don’t make models. But I read a LOT of scientific papers and research that use them. There are hundreds, if not thousands of them discussed here on WUWT in the archives. Here’s a link to a list of 1350+ of them-
        http://www.populartechnology.net/2009/10/peer-reviewed-papers-supporting.html

        I believe it’s entirely possible to reasonably understand certain things using models that give you the ability to constrain or control for one or two variables at a time. If your results are replicatable by others, you’re onto something. But a global climate model simply does not exist that can take all of the factors involved globe wide and couple them together accurately enough to predict the future with. The more factors you cannot control, the more chaos and inaccuracies are built into your model. There are hundreds of scientific studies that focus ONLY on one or two factors-such as the Sun’s influence, or the water cycle’s or solar rays, or gravitational cycles that show that the error bars, or estimates, are wide enough that ALL of the “human CO2 related” influence disappears inside those error margins. THAT is the scientific reality of where our actual “science” of the climate is TODAY, but some idiot declared way back in the late 90’s that “the science was settled” and the powers that be in the “scientific community” allowed that statement to stand. It’s stunning.

        “BTW, have you seen his model work?”
        He doesn’t make or have one himself either.
        “He has invested time and effort. Whether or not that is to prove himself right or to find the truth is his problem.”
        When I said “He’s invested so much time and effort into “being right about this”…I was referring to the amount of time he spends arguing with skeptics online.

        “Bottom line for me, being as it is probably too late to do my own research, is to learn as much as possible from experts (not saying Brandon is), ask questions to clarify misunderstandings, and remain open as possible to all arguments both pro and con.”

        This website is a great resource for that. The “experts” and non-experts examine everything here and pull out insights all the time. The more “eyes” the merrier for most of us. Questions asked are usually responded to by a variety of people and many here try to look at BOTH the pro and the con side of everything, no matter how hard it might be to discard our own biases or give up a preconceived idea for something better. People like BG come here to tell US that we DO NOT do that, to declare that how he views us or our arguments is more accurate than how we view ourselves, and Brandon has even stated here, in his own words, that he keeps posting here because he might just convince readers here that his point of view is the correct one.

        Obviously no one here is intimidated by that, and he’s allowed to do his best. And I have no doubt that he will with you too. :)

      • Chic Bowdrie,

        With respect to (1), had you said “some” skeptics instead of “so-called,” your statement wouldn’t have raised a red flag.

        I understand. My thing is, I’m not willing to completely cede the label “skeptics” to a group I think are more properly called “AGW contrarians”

        In (1) and (3), you clearly profess enough expertise to judge anthropogenic vs. natural factors.

        Truth is I’m not a know-it-all, I just play one on the Internet.

        You may have it and that’s why I encourage you to write up your modelling data. I would if I had the data and more time or money.

        I appreciate the compliment. Rather than model a specific case, write it up and defend it here (which I have done plenty of in comments), I might feel more comfortable cleaning up and documenting my regression model then publishing it on GitHub as tool with some pre-loaded data for others to fiddle with.

        I’m not in a position right now to provide an alternative model. Want to throw some funds my way?

        When I say that I don’t generally mean “you” personally. AGW contrarian working scientists like Christy, Spencer, Curry, etc., yes actually.

        Nevertheless, does failure to provide an alternative make my criticisms of IPCC models invalid?

        In and of itself, no. I’m just generally weary of alternative mechanisms not being put through the crucible of formal modelling and peer-reviewed publication. Naysaying is an important skeptical trait, but science doesn’t advance knowledge by saying “no” to the experimental hypothesis.

        “Everyone has cognitive biases. I would not say that they affect everyone equally. My own biases obviously affect my perceptions differences.”

        Huh?

        I bunged that one up eh? Most people apparently think of their own views as unbiased. I’m no exception. Conclusion: we’re all biased to some degree, “measuring” that is not easy, but I’m pretty sure bias affects everyone equally.

        From your comment on the ATTP post:

        “So, on the other hand, let’s get some serious research for our serious amount of money instead of paying them to “express” themselves … something which they’re already abundantly capable of doing without me having to foot the bill for it.”

        This is how many, if not all, of us so-called skeptics feel about our tax dollars going towards current IPCC modelling efforts.

        I don’t doubt it. I cross-posted my comment at ATTP’s on the Dr. Christy thread: https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/02/03/in-defense-of-satellite-temperature-data-dr-john-christys-powerful-senate-testimony-yesterday/

        … and responded to your points there with some extensions (and yes, repetitions) of my original post. It’s in moderation so I can’t link the comment directly.

      • Chic Bowdrie, PS:

        I bunged that one up eh? Most people apparently think of their own views as unbiased. I’m no exception. Conclusion: we’re all biased to some degree, “measuring” that is not easy, but I’m pretty sure bias affects everyone equally.

        Bunged it again. I don’t think everyone is equally affected by biases. But we do have “bias bias” in that we generally think it’s the other guy who’s crocked, not ourselves.

        Mod nixed my cross-post on Dr. Christy’s testimony for being long (it was) self-serving (aren’t we all to some extent?) and because “we simply aren’t interested”. But … Mod’s house, Mod’s rules. I’d be happy to continue that discussion at ATTP’s.

      • Brandon,
        blockquote>Bunged it again. I don’t think everyone is equally affected by biases. But we do have “bias bias” in that we generally think it’s the other guy who’s crocked, not ourselves.
        Now that’s pretty close to exactly right.

        Mod nixed my cross-post on Dr. Christy’s testimony for being long (it was) self-serving (aren’t we all to some extent?) and because “we simply aren’t interested”. But … Mod’s house, Mod’s rules. I’d be happy to continue that discussion at ATTP’s.

        So you want me to be a glutton for punishment?

      • Chic Bowdrie,

        … you must be a glutton for punishment.

        One wonders what that says about my tormentors. ;)

        I’ll put it to you this way: I’ve found it better to spend more time in harm’s way than my own echo chamber.

        Now that’s pretty close to exactly right.

        I thought so too, which is why I shamelessly filched it from someone on that ATTP thread.

        So you want me to be a glutton for punishment?

        I thought I’d seen you post over there before and not get too roughed-up. Let me see if I can pare it down.

        https://science.house.gov/sites/republicans.science.house.gov/files/documents/HHRG-114-SY-WState-JChristy-20160202.pdf

        Summary

        Climate change is a wide-ranging topic with many difficulties. Our basic knowledge about what the climate is doing (i.e. measurements) is plagued by uncertainties. In my testimony today I have given evidence that the bulk atmospheric temperature is measured well-enough to demonstrate that our understanding of how greenhouse gases affect the climate is significantly inadequate to explain the climate since 1979. In particular, the actual change of the fundamental metric of the greenhouse warming signature –the bulk atmospheric temperature where models indicate the most direct evidence for greenhouse warming should lie is significantly misrepresented by the models. Though no dataset is perfect, the way in which surface datasets have been constructed leaves many unanswered questions, especially for the recent NOAA update which shows more warming than the others. Finally, regulations already enforced or being proposed, such as those from the Paris Agreement, will have virtually no impact on whatever the climate is going to do.

        No, I’m not willing to give him 1% of the US climate research budget to test the one and only one alternative hypothesis he presents in his testimony: … regulations already enforced or being proposed, such as those from the Paris Agreement, will have virtually no impact on whatever the climate is going to do.

        How he could write that with such certainty after leading with …

        Our basic knowledge about what the climate is doing (i.e. measurements) is plagued by uncertainties.

        … boggles the mind.

        The 5-10% he’s asking for for a Red Team to do actual research and not an “assessment report”? Yes, I support that. The main output of that research needs to be an integrated climate model up to CMIP5/6 specifications and compatibility. It would be judged by a pre-determined skill score metric applicable to all similar models. Guaranteed funding in exchange for a guaranteed carbon tax or other mitigation/replacement program.

        If 5 years isn’t enough time, extensions granted on the basis of progress and/or extending the mitigation/replacement program. Both sides get something they’ve been asking for but not obtaining.

      • Brandon-
        Sigh…why must you do these things?

        In the second paragraph of his remarks, Christy explains-“It is a privilege for me to offer my analysis of the current situation regarding (1) the temperature datasets used to study climate, (2) our basic
        understanding of climate change and (3) the effect that regulations,such as the Paris agreement,might have
        on climate”.

        So in his speech, he addressed those three specific points. In his summary, (which you posted) he’s merely mentioning that his remarks COVERED all three, so when he says “regulations already enforced or being proposed, such as those from the Paris Agreement, will have virtually no impact on whatever the climate is going to do” he’s already backed up why he thinks that in his actual remarks.

        BG-“How he could write that with such certainty after leading with …
        ‘Our basic knowledge about what the climate is doing (i.e. measurements) is plagued by uncertainties.’
        … boggles the mind.”

        I believe you, it might indeed boggle YOUR mind, but anyone who understands what a summary is and does (and does not do) should not have a boggled mind at all. We’ve discussed many times how you like to assume/insinuate/presume to know what someone else’s motivations are, with absolutely NOT evidence to support those assumptions, insinuations, presumptions and how it taints your arguments. Every time you take one statement made in, or about, a specific context, and attach it to another statement made in or about, a different context and then declare that they contradict each other, I’m going to call you on it. You MISREPRESENT people when you do that. I don’t care if it’s on purpose or just a mistake. It’s wrong.

        BG also says “No, I’m not willing to give him 1% of the US climate research budget to test the one and only one alternative hypothesis he presents in his testimony: … regulations already enforced or being proposed, such as those from the Paris Agreement, will have virtually no impact on whatever the climate is going to do.”

        You did it again in the above statement you made. Christy never expresses that his statements on regulations should be viewed as an “alternative hypothesis” of anything, so you saying that you would not be willing to fund research to test what is really YOUR opinion of HIS opinion is illogical and irrelevant!

        What boggles my mind, is that you posted the actual link to Christy’s remarks, and THEN attempt to misrepresent him using your own interpretation of what he said! Is it that YOU don’t see the difference yourself, or that you think no one else will?

      • Aphan,

        He’s willing to admit his own side of the argument is unproven, while demanding proof from others that they PROVE him wrong!

        No, that is not my position. This is my position: One does not simply “prove” anything in non-trivial empirical sciences. See again, the problem of induction. One thing I am willing to say with absolute certainty: no human being is omniscient.

        Modeled results are the only thing that the AGW crowd has left to hang their opinions on, because every other KNOWN “natural” factor in the global warming/climate change debate has been shown to include error margins large enough to contain the temperature increase, either individually, or in simple combinations.

        Emphasis mine. Your claim, your burden of “proof”. Honor your own paradigm and PROVE it already.

        In the face of your claim of such great uncertainty and in the name of self-consistent logic, one wonders how it is you are so certain AGW theory is wrong.

        He admits his perceptions are tainted by his own biases, while insinuating that some people are more influenced by their biases than others -Freudian slip or projection or insinuation?

        Gosh Aphan, I don’t honestly know for sure. That’s the pernicious thing about cognitive biases — they tend to hinder objective self-analysis, to say nothing of non-distorted evaluation of others.

        Is the fact that you didn’t answer the question you raised a tacit “admission” of your own imperfect perceptions and biases, or an example of you criticizing me for insinuating with insinuation? Is the latter a double-standard or simply just you attempting to give me a taste of my own medicine? Something else entirely?

      • BG-“In the face of your claim of such great uncertainty and in the name of self-consistent logic, one wonders how it is you are so certain AGW theory is wrong.”

        I’m not certain it is wrong. I am certain that as of today, it has not been proven correct. And until all of the uncertainties can be addressed, it won’t be. I’m a SKEPTIC, not a denier. The AGW side of the debate hasn’t given me anything solid to DENY at this point.

        BG-“Emphasis mine. Your claim, your burden of “proof”. Honor your own paradigm and PROVE it already.”
        *** Oh the delicious irony…..of being able to type ***It “boggles the mind” that BG could say that after leading with the following-
        BG-“This is my position: One does not simply “prove” anything in non-trivial empirical sciences.”

        LOL see? You JUST did exactly what I claimed you did in the post you are picking apart! Thank you! (You first claimed that “One does not simply prove anything in non-trivial empirical sciences” and then demanded “Honor your own paradigm and PROVE it already”. AND after you JUST posted about how it “boggled the mind” that Christy would say one thing, and then contradict himself (which he did not), you actually DID the exact thing you accused him (falsely) of doing.)

        Here’s a list of peer reviewed papers to chew on from which I have formed my position that:
        “… every other KNOWN “natural” factor in the global warming/climate change debate has been shown to include error margins large enough to contain the temperature increase, either individually, or in simple combinations.”

        http://www.c3headlines.com/peer-reviewed-research-studies-climate-change-related-other.html

        When you’re done with that list, I’ll give you another one.

        BG-“Is the fact that you didn’t answer the question you raised {about BG’s comment being a Freudian slip, or projection, or insinuation} a tacit “admission” of your own imperfect perceptions and biases, or an example of you criticizing me for insinuating with insinuation? Is the latter a double-standard or simply just you attempting to give me a taste of my own medicine? Something else entirely?”

        I didn’t answer the question Brandon because there is no logical way to do that. It could be one of those three things, or none of them. I try to IGNORE/DISREGARD my own biases whenever possible, which is why I asked a question (which I’m allowed to do) and didn’t even attempt to answer it. YOU are the only person who can answer it. But if you employ cognitive biases, we’d never know whether you answered it honestly or not.

        See, I actually THINK about the way I think. I ask myself questions and examine my own positions and run them through the logic processor all the time. I’m not afraid to be wrong, or make a mistake, I want to eliminate them in my own thought processes as fully as I can. My research in critical thinking, cognitive biases and logic makes me FIRST, highly suspect of my OWN opinions and ideas. I learn something new about myself all the time. Which is why I don’t go into AGW forums and attempt to convince THEM that I’m right about this debate….I can’t be 100 percent sure that my own positions are 100% accurate.

        But YOU aren’t like that are you? You are so SURE about your positions that you come here to attempt to do what I wouldn’t dare to….talk people out of their skeptical, wary, naturally suspicious natures to a point where they might agree with YOUR positions. I NEVER want the responsibility for what someone else ultimately decides. I mean, what if I did that, and I ended up being WRONG? That’s just too much weight to carry around. But you? Naw….you seem to be perfectly FINE with it! But yet, when I point out that the least you could offer them is the most logical, rational, unbiased arguments possible (because isn’t that the most correct, most moral, most respectable thing to offer another person?) it upsets you. And your reaction is the loudest, most accurate alarm bell I personally know of, that something’s not right.

      • Aphan,

        So in his speech, he addressed those three specific points. In his summary, (which you posted) he’s merely mentioning that his remarks COVERED all three, so when he says “regulations already enforced or being proposed, such as those from the Paris Agreement, will have virtually no impact on whatever the climate is going to do” he’s already backed up why he thinks that in his actual remarks.

        Here’s the first part of his summary again:

        Climate change is a wide-ranging topic with many difficulties. Our basic knowledge about what the climate is doing (i.e. measurements) is plagued by uncertainties. In my testimony today I have given evidence that the bulk atmospheric temperature is measured well-enough to demonstrate that our understanding of how greenhouse gases affect the climate is significantly inadequate to explain the climate since 1979.

        I don’t care if UAH TLT v6.0beta4 is perfect, 37 years of one climate parameter is not the sum total of observations available for drawing conclusions. His summary continues:

        In particular, the actual change of the fundamental metric of the greenhouse warming signature –the bulk atmospheric temperature where models indicate the most direct evidence for greenhouse warming should lie is significantly misrepresented by the models. Though no dataset is perfect, the way in which surface datasets have been constructed leaves many unanswered questions, especially for the recent NOAA update which shows more warming than the others.

        Dr. Pielke Sr. disagrees: https://pielkeclimatesci.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/r-247.pdf

        I don’t agree with Sr. on a lot of things, including some statements in this particular paper. I do agree with his main argument here because they make absolute physical sense:

        1) Net energy gain/loss is the central prediction of rising/falling atmospheric GHG concentrations, from which temperature change follows
        2) We would reasonably expect the largest heat sink in the climate system, the oceans, to absorb/release the bulk of energy flux during a regime of rising/falling pertubation in radiative forcing.

        From those physics it follows that the largest model/observation deviations over the short-term are going to be seen in the part of the system with the least mass and lesser specific heat capacity.

        As for, … the way in which surface datasets have been constructed leaves many unanswered questions, especially for the recent NOAA update which shows more warming than the others.

        Karl et al. (2015):

        UAH TLT v5.6 to v6.0beta4:

        Not peer-reviewed, not published, no-code beta product being used in Senate testimony, but it’s NOAA that have “unanswered questions”. Pull my other one.

        Let’s quantify “significantly misrepresented by the models”:

        Using a regression to scale CMIP5 to HADCRUT4, it would appear “the models” run 8.7% hotter than this non-“Karlized” surface temperature time series.

        Christy never expresses that his statements on regulations should be viewed as an “alternative hypothesis” of anything, so you saying that you would not be willing to fund research to test what is really YOUR opinion of HIS opinion is illogical and irrelevant!

        It’s my tax money I’m offering him to fund his Red Team. I get a say in what I would want him to do with it, same as YOU WOULD.

      • Brandon
        Do you understand the difference between temperature measurements taken by satellites and the temperature reconstructions done by NOAA using ERSST????? (the following from the NOAA-ERSST website (bold mine):

        “The Extended Reconstructed Sea Surface Temperature (ERSST) dataset is a global monthly sea surface temperature analysis derived from the International Comprehensive Ocean–Atmosphere Dataset with missing data filled in by statistical methods. This monthly analysis begins in January 1854 continuing to the present and includes anomalies computed with respect to a 1971–2000 monthly climatology. The newest version of ERSST, version 3b, is optimally tuned to exclude under-sampled regions for global averages. In contrast to version 3, ERSST v3b does not include satellite data, which were found to cause a cold bias significant enough to change the rankings of months.”

        NOAA’s newest tweaks might not bother you, but they bother a whole lot of other people, including congress and 300+ scientists. Infilled data, anomalies computed with respect to a 30 year period that ended 15 years ago, excludes under-sampled regions, and does not include satellite data because the data caused a COLD bias.

      • Aphan,

        I made an error in my last post. Dr. Christy did not present TLT v6.0beta4 temperatures to the Senate, but rather TMT v5.6:

        … which makes the models look worse. Shocker. Ever hear of stratospheric cooling?

        (Data: RATPAC-A radiosonde)

        Do you understand the difference between temperature measurements taken by satellites and the temperature reconstructions done by NOAA using ERSST?????

        Yes. One is sea surface temperatures taken mostly in situ, the other is upper air temperatures taken from orbit.

        “The Extended Reconstructed Sea Surface Temperature (ERSST) dataset is a global monthly sea surface temperature analysis derived from the International Comprehensive Ocean–Atmosphere Dataset with missing data filled in by statistical methods. This monthly analysis begins in January 1854 continuing to the present and includes anomalies computed with respect to a 1971–2000 monthly climatology. The newest version of ERSST, version 3b, is optimally tuned to exclude under-sampled regions for global averages. In contrast to version 3, ERSST v3b does not include satellite data, which were found to cause a cold bias significant enough to change the rankings of months.”

        You’re one version behind, the latest is ERSST v4.

        NOAA’s newest tweaks might not bother you, but they bother a whole lot of other people, including congress and 300+ scientists.

        No, they don’t bother me, I look at data sans the blinders for anything older than the past 18 years and isn’t measured from orbit.

        300+ scientists, huh. You sure you want to play the consensus game here?

        Infilled data, anomalies computed with respect to a 30 year period that ended 15 years ago, excludes under-sampled regions, and does not include satellite data because the data caused a COLD bias.

        The switch from ERSST v3b to v4 was … (drumroll) … net cooling:

        If you don’t like Karl (2015) you could use HadISSTv3, but, um, it runs hotter than ERSSTv4. Dunno what to tell you other than, well, you’re striking out here.

        If you don’t like an anomaly baseline which is 15 years old, it’s simple enough to recompute one to suit your personal tastes.

        If you don’t like infilled data, you can get the raw SSTs from ICOADS and do your own analysis.

        Why shouldn’t under-sampled regions be excluded, especially if you don’t like infilling?

        If you think satellite temperature products are not full of similar sausage-making, I have some oceanfront property in Paraguay to sell you.

      • BG-“If you think satellite temperature products are not full of similar sausage-making”

        And yet you believe in GCM’s that are just computers stuffed full of different types of sausage? Weird. Do you believe that land based “in situ” temperature products are pure?

        BG-“No, they don’t bother me, I look at data sans the blinders for anything older than the past 18 years and isn’t measured from orbit.”

        So, to clarify…you DO look at data WITH the blinders for anything younger than the past 18 years that is measured from orbit? That would include sea level rise measured from orbit, ice thickness, sea ice coverage, atmospheric CO2, methane, clouds, SST, Earth’s energy balance, and global atmospheric temperatures. Gotcha.

        BG-“300+ scientists, huh. You sure you want to play the consensus game here?”

        Wow. Where did that come from? Oh….I forgot….no one really has to tell you anything do they? You’re so adept at reading the minds of total strangers, divining their motives and anticipating their next move that you can argue all sides of any debate all by yourself! Sure, obviously, everyone who disagrees with a theory you embrace thinks the exact same thoughts, ignores all the exact same “facts”, and grazes in the exact same field growing wool for their masters. That’s the only possible reason I can think of for why you so freely apply your version of “logic” to everything anyone here says.

        Have fun Chic!

      • Brandon,

        Some thoughts after catching up on the last few comments.

        Finally, regulations already enforced or being proposed, such as those from the Paris Agreement, will have virtually no impact on whatever the climate is going to do.

        How [Christy] could write that with such certainty after leading with …
        Our basic knowledge about what the climate is doing (i.e. measurements) is plagued by uncertainties.

        … boggles the mind.

        I think Christy was making the point that the Paris agreement doesn’t have enough teeth to curtail emissions, therefore global temperatures are not likely to be effected much regardless of what CO2 sensitivity turns out to be. In any case, he argues, climate knowledge uncertainties don’t justify costly and potentially unwarranted mitigation efforts.

        Guaranteed funding in exchange for a guaranteed carbon tax or other mitigation/replacement program.

        Get real. That’s heads you win, tails we lose.

        This is my position: One does not simply “prove” anything in non-trivial empirical sciences.

        Not sure what you mean by this. Neither side has sufficient proof at this time. However, the burden of proof remains on those like you who are proposing drastic measures, who haven’t improved model correlations, sensitivity estimates, and natural vs. anthropogenic attribution.

        Though no dataset is perfect, the way in which surface datasets have been constructed leaves many unanswered questions, especially for the recent NOAA update which shows more warming than the others.

        Dr. Pielke Sr. disagrees:

        I don’t think he does. For one thing, Christy is comparing datasets. Pielke is asserting that heat content is a better measure of any radiative forcing than temperature.

        1) Net energy gain/loss is the central prediction of rising/falling atmospheric GHG concentrations, from which temperature change follows.

        Not exactly. Pielke is saying energy gain/loss results from radiative forcing irrespective of its source. Sun, clouds, etc. Could have nothing to do with IR active gases.

        2) We would reasonably expect the largest heat sink in the climate system, the oceans, to absorb/release the bulk of energy flux during a regime of rising/falling pertubation in radiative forcing.

        This is unclear. Energy is absorbed and released. The flux is the rate at which it occurs. Obviously the bulk of the heat content will go into oceans, but atmosphere temperatures parallel ocean temperatures pretty well, so I’m not sure about this:

        From those physics it follows that the largest model/observation deviations over the short-term are going to be seen in the part of the system with the least mass and lesser specific heat capacity.

        You could be right, but I’m not sure what it has to do with Christy’s beef with Karl et al. (2015).

        I made an error in my last post. Dr. Christy did not present TLT v6.0beta4 temperatures to the Senate, but rather TMT v5.6 … which makes the models look worse. Shocker. Ever hear of stratospheric cooling?

        You should recheck yours and Christy’s sources. I don’t see where he used TMT v5.6 in his senate testimony. And your RATPAC data shows the surface warming a lot less than the troposphere. My analysis shows it being the same. I think the reason the troposphere warmed that much is because of an increase in water vapor beginning around 1992.

        The switch from ERSST v3b to v4 was … (drumroll) … net cooling:

        From 1850 something that may be the case. However, Christy showed that since 1995, that change biased NOAA trends upwards relative to Hadcrut4 and UAH sea surface measurements.

        BTW, have you seen Monchton’s latest WUWT post? He asks if the surface has warmed, where did it come from warming of the troposphere. I would be interested in your take on it.

      • Aphan,

        And yet you believe in GCM’s that are just computers stuffed full of different types of sausage? Weird.

        As I showed you previously, I believe that the CMIP5 ensemble mean …

        Has a 2-sigma uncertainty (error) in 12-month running means of about +/- 0.21 K, and runs 8.7% hotter than HADCRUT4 over the hindcast portion. Forward-looking uncertainty is even greater because we cannot predict in advance what the actual external forcings are going to be.

        Rational people, upon realizing these awful truths, tend to think that making changes to a system we obviously do not fully understand is the epitome of Bad Ideas. YMMV.

        Do you believe that land based “in situ” temperature products are pure?

        What a nice false dichotomy you’ve stuffed in my mouth. We’ve been through this before, on this thread, starting with this comment: https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/01/18/monday-mirth-old-reliable/#comment-2122673

        Me thinking that surface temperature estimates are less uncertain than satellite upper-air temperature estimates is NOT the same as thinking that the surface record is “perfect”.

        So, to clarify…you DO look at data WITH the blinders for anything younger than the past 18 years that is measured from orbit?

        To clarify: no.

        That would include sea level rise measured from orbit, ice thickness, sea ice coverage, atmospheric CO2, methane, clouds, SST, Earth’s energy balance, and global atmospheric temperatures. Gotcha.

        Wrong again: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Consilience

        BG-“300+ scientists, huh. You sure you want to play the consensus game here?”

        Wow. Where did that come from? Oh….I forgot….no one really has to tell you anything do they? You’re so adept at reading the minds of total strangers, divining their motives and anticipating their next move that you can argue all sides of any debate all by yourself!

        Irony.

      • BG-“Rational people, upon realizing these awful truths, tend to think that making changes to a system we obviously do not fully understand is the epitome of Bad Ideas. YMMV.”

        My mileage does vary. I’m not always logical, but I easily accept and admit that and try to be. I also know when someone else is being or acting in an illogical manner.

        Rational people think it’s absurd to create economic hardship and refuse to elevate the lives of people living in 3rd world countries based upon CONJECTURES that we ARE responsible for ANY of the changes happening in a system we obviously do not fully understand! The changes that are occurring are ALL within normal boundaries that can be derived from geological and physical data. Temperatures are NOT rising faster than they ever have on planet Earth. Sea Levels are NOT rising faster than they ever have on planet Earth. Climate on Earth CHANGES-it’s the only constant thing about it! Rational people see this and accept it. It is paranoid, irrational, and cognitively challenged people that obsess about and fear the unknown, desire to control the future, and condemn others who choose to think/live/believe differently than they do.

      • Aphan,

        Rational people think it’s absurd to create economic hardship and refuse to elevate the lives of people living in 3rd world countries based upon CONJECTURES that we ARE responsible for ANY of the changes happening in a system we obviously do not fully understand!

        I don’t think AGW is simply a conjecture. Someone who uses different premises than you do may very well be wrong, but that doesn’t make their argument illogical. Someone as allegedly well-versed in logic should understand that.

        The changes that are occurring are ALL within normal boundaries that can be derived from geological and physical data.

        For about the past million years, atmospheric CO2 levels have ranged 120 and 280 ppmv. They are presently just north of 400.

        Temperatures are NOT rising faster than they ever have on planet Earth.

        And just like that we’re back to pretending we know everything there is to know about climate.

        Climate on Earth CHANGES-it’s the only constant thing about it! Rational people see this and accept it.

        You only “know” this because of paleoclimate studies. Rational people read what else they say in those papers.

        It is paranoid, irrational, and cognitively challenged people that obsess about and fear the unknown, desire to control the future, and condemn others who choose to think/live/believe differently than they do.

        Um, that’s called governance. If you don’t like it, take a vacation in Somalia some time. Then come back and let’s see how much you blather on and on about how unfair it is that some of your fellow voting taxpayers don’t see the world the same way you do.

      • BG-“I don’t think AGW is simply a conjecture. Someone who uses different premises than you do may very well be wrong, but that doesn’t make their argument illogical. Someone as allegedly well-versed in logic should understand that.”

        I wasn’t talking about what you think or premises or anything else. I was talking about taking specific actions that harm others based on questionable conclusions. But we all know how well versed in logic you are.

        BG”For about the past million years, atmospheric CO2 levels have ranged 120 and 280 ppmv. They are presently just north of 400.”

        Which is SO ODD…because the temperature proxy records, like ice cores etc, demonstrate that it’s been as warm, or warmer than today 4-5 times in JUST the past 12,000 years! With MUCH lower CO2 than is currently in the air now!

        I made a statement related to the speed of current temperature rise and you replied-
        BG-“And just like that we’re back to pretending we know everything there is to know about climate.”

        Really? Nice false dichotomy you stuffed me into there. *wink*

        BG-“You only “know” this because of paleoclimate studies. Rational people read what else they say in those papers.”

        Well duh big bruh! And? I LIKE paleoclimate studies. I like proxy records. I like geological studies. That some paleoclimate studies are done by biased morons who had no idea what they are doing doesn’t mean they all are. So don’t make assumptions about how I feel about paleo anything ok? Rational people read ALL of the studies and note the error margins and methods used and see how accurate or inaccurate they are.

        I said-“It is paranoid, irrational, and cognitively challenged people that obsess about and fear the unknown, desire to control the future, and condemn others who choose to think/live/believe differently than they do.”

        BG- “Um, that’s called governance.”

        WHAT?

      • I’ve just read the comments in this sub-thread for the first time. For my erudite, incisive, prescient, and always fascinating point of view, see the post below, at the end of the main thread…

  64. What’s the definition of “chaotic” climate? As I recall there was a warming and refreezing at the end of the last age which certainly looks chaotic. It must have been the last coordinated effort by human counterparts, namely mammoths, generating one gigantic fart – hoping to impact climate to forstall warming !

  65. What’s wholly implausible in the authors’ claims is the notion that the changes seen during the last century necessarily require an anthropogenic forcing. None of the recorded changes are even close to being outside the range of Holocene-era variability indicated by various proxies.

  66. Anthony,
    Are we to be lectured to by a pre-doctoral student? Haven’t we said all along that just about anything can
    be proved or disproved by modelling using the right assumptions and coefficients to obtained a pre-determined outcome? I thought so.
    HL

  67. If there is no significant natural component to global warming, how do they explain the ‘pause’? And why hasn’t the earth warmed as fast as climate models said it would?

  68. There are external drivers other than human GHG forcings. That big bright ball in the sky for instance? Hello? Any neurons home in those empty consensoid skulls?

  69. “This underscores that large, sustained changes in global temperature like those observed over the last century require drivers such as increased greenhouse gas concentrations,” said lead author Patrick Brown, a PhD student at Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment.

    Had I been this student’s advisor I would have advised against characterizing past century global temperature change as large and sustained. Compared to the likely pre-instrumental temperature record, the past century changes are modest and erratic. Furthermore, was anything shown to rule out other drivers than increases in IR absorbing gases?

    Natural climate cycles alone are insufficient to explain such changes, he said.

    How do you rule out known natural phenomena (eg clouds) that haven’t been characterized properly, let alone unknown natural cycles?

  70. …oh, there you are. Hi.

    Now, isn’t this better? There should be a better way to post comments, but I don’t know what it would be. I know Anthony has experimented with some of them. But until something better comes along, this will have to do.

    So when a sub-thread gets über long, it’s time to start a new one, wouldn’t y’all agree? ☺

  71. Chic Bowdrie,

    Posted out of sequence b/c of scroll.

    BTW, have you seen Monchton’s latest WUWT post? He asks if the surface has warmed, where did it come from warming of the troposphere. I would be interested in your take on it.

    I did, and attempted to respond to his assertion masquerading as a question: “Why is the ocean warming not from above but below?” WordPress told me my response could not be processed. I’m not terribly motivated to try again given the number of threads I already have open. Long and short was, none of what he wrote below that question substantiated his assertion, and if the oceans were warming from below not above it would probably be obvious from the inevitable vertical convection that would evolve from the bottom … just as it’s obvious that the atmosphere is being heated mainly from the surface and not from the bulk of solar energy being absorbed within the first few hundred meters near TOA.

    I submitted a longer response to this post from you last night, thus far it has not come out of moderation.

    • Brandon,

      I get the notices by email and will keep my eye out. I think our discussions here and on the Briffa post are converging on the reliability of the surface and satellite measurements. Perhaps we should continue here exclusively?

      I was interested in your response to the following exchange earlier:

      The switch from ERSST v3b to v4 was … (drumroll) … net cooling:
      From 1850 something that may be the case. However, Christy showed that since 1995, that change biased NOAA trends upwards relative to Hadcrut4 and UAH sea surface measurements.

      The changes to ERSST, whether justified or not, do constitute a warming trend since 1995.

      Now concerning the Monckton issue,

      I did, and attempted to respond to his assertion masquerading as a question: “Why is the ocean warming not from above but below?”

      But it wasn’t an assertion. It was a question that deserves an answer. I would answer that there is insufficient evidence to know where the warming comes from. The errors in measurement are too large to say with confidence that warming comes from increasing CO2, or excess solar insolation, or from ocean warming originating from who knows how long ago. Solar insolation is greatly affected by clouds and I’m not aware of any definitive data indicating how much SW radiation is actually absorbed by the surface.

      Long and short was, none of what he wrote below that question substantiated his assertion …

      Had the intent been an assertion, I surmise that it would have been something like “global warming can’t be caused by fossil fuel emissions, because the troposphere hasn’t warmed as it would have had to according to AGW theory. His substantiation was that you would have to deny satellite data to claim that the troposphere is warming the surface.

      … and if the oceans were warming from below not above it would probably be obvious from the inevitable vertical convection that would evolve from the bottom …

      Vertical convection in the ocean is not favored, because the temperatures are lower and density greater with depth. Turbulence at the surface and thermohaline circulation are other phenomena.
      If the circulation is causing the warming, what does that have to do with fossil fuel emissions?

      … just as it’s obvious that the atmosphere is being heated mainly from the surface and not from the bulk of solar energy being absorbed within the first few hundred meters near TOA.

      If that were obvious there wouldn’t be such a debate about it, as you and I are having. So what mechanisms and magnitudes do you attribute to the sources that are heating the surface(s) of the Earth?

    • Brandon,

      This was a request you made over on the Briffa post.

      It could be all solar insolation.

      … so, ok, “prove” it to me like you want me to substantiate my own case for you.

      Lest you ask me again here, I will give you my proof that all observed warming in the ocean and atmosphere could be explained by variability in the sun’s SW radiation that is absorbed by either the atmosphere or the ocean and land surfaces.

      I already referred to evidence from Stephens et al. (2013) reporting that incoming SW radiation (gross minus reflected) is 240 +/- 2 W/m2. They also report outgoing as 240 +/- 3.3 W/m2. Trenberth et al. (2009) report incoming and outgoing from various sources ranging from 225 to 245 W/m2 for incoming SW and 236 to 254 W/m2 for outgoing LW. By your own calculations, the increase in ocean heat content is approximately 0.34 W/m2 which constitutes to over 90% of the increase in global heat content. Therefore we can account for less than 0.5 W/m2 of the energy imbalance whatever it may actually be. Since the imbalance from solar is possibly several times greater than that, I conclude that all of the increase in heat content could be due to the amount of solar SW insolation absorbed by the planet.

  72. Chic Bowdrie,

    I get the notices by email and will keep my eye out. I think our discussions here and on the Briffa post are converging on the reliability of the surface and satellite measurements. Perhaps we should continue here exclusively?

    I don’t think that post is coming out of limbo any time soon, but I saved some of it which I use below.

    I was interested in your response to the following exchange earlier:

    The switch from ERSST v3b to v4 was … (drumroll) … net cooling:

    From 1850 something that may be the case. However, Christy showed that since 1995, that change biased NOAA trends upwards relative to Hadcrut4 and UAH sea surface measurements.

    The changes to ERSST, whether justified or not, do constitute a warming trend since 1995.

    And my counterpoint remains: it’s the trend over the entire interval which figure more into climate sensitivity estimates. So if the IPCC are trying to pump up CO2 potency for political leverage, and NOAA are complicit in helping them do it, the last thing they’d be expected to do is reduce the overall trend.

    Now concerning the Monckton issue,

    I did, and attempted to respond to his assertion masquerading as a question: “Why is the ocean warming not from above but below?”

    But it wasn’t an assertion.

    “The ocean is warming not from above but below” is implicit. It’s an assertion which has been loaded into the question.

    It was a question that deserves an answer.

    It’s an assertion that wants substantiation before it can be answered. I’ll demonstrate:

    1) Why does CO2 warm the planet?
    2) Why will AGW be catastrophic?
    3) Why are you still beating your wife?

    It’s one of the oldest rhetorical tricks in the book. People who habitually do it are not to be trusted in my opinion.

    I would answer that there is insufficient evidence to know where the warming comes from.

    Welllll … maybe you should give an earful to Monckton in addition to me.

    The errors in measurement are too large to say with confidence that warming comes from increasing CO2, or excess solar insolation, or from ocean warming originating from who knows how long ago. Solar insolation is greatly affected by clouds and I’m not aware of any definitive data indicating how much SW radiation is actually absorbed by the surface.

    My standard response: all I can do is present evidence I find compelling. If it doesn’t meet your standards of “definitive” or “confidence” there isn’t much else I can do other than appeal to theory.

    Had the intent been an assertion, I surmise that it would have been something like “global warming can’t be caused by fossil fuel emissions, because the troposphere hasn’t warmed as it would have had to according to AGW theory. His substantiation was that you would have to deny satellite data to claim that the troposphere is warming the surface.

    The troposphere’s absolute temperature is cooler than the surface. Surface warms the troposphere, not the other way around. 2nd law of thermodynamics.

    Vertical convection in the ocean is not favored, because the temperatures are lower and density greater with depth.

    Bingo.

    Turbulence at the surface and thermohaline circulation are other phenomena.

    Yes.

    If the circulation is causing the warming, what does that have to do with fossil fuel emissions?

    I don’t assert circulation is causing the warming. Here’s the basic argument: Sun warms first few tens of meters. GHGs modulate the rate at which oceans radiatively dissipate energy. Turbulent mixing carries some of that heat to further depths, thermohaline circulation also moves some of it, the balance is diffusive.

    CO2 is a GHG, and burning fossil fuels is what’s causing the rise.

    If that were obvious there wouldn’t be such a debate about it, as you and I are having.

    Yes that’s true. I was arguing that point as if you were Monckton, whom I don’t consider to be acting in good faith. It’s bloody well obvious to me; however, I should not impose that on you just because of my animus toward him.

    So what mechanisms and magnitudes do you attribute to the sources that are heating the surface(s) of the Earth?

    I had a bunch of calcs and scribblings for a previous post that ended up on the cutting room floor, let me see … ah. Some of this is has been covered already:

    —————

    sea water (290 K) 4.006 kJ/kg K 
    air (300 K)       1.005 kJ/kg K
    
    mass of oceans     1.35E21 kg
    mass of atmosphere 5.15E18 kg
    
    energy to change ocean temps by 1 K = 1 K * 4.006 kJ/kg K * 1.35E21 kg = 5.41E+21 kJ
    energy to change atmos temps by 1 K = 1 K * 1.005 kJ/kg K * 5.15E18 kg = 5.18E+18 kJ

    From Bintanja (2008) I estimate that the ratio of temperature change at the surface to deep ocean is ~5:1 so a 1 K change to surface would be expected to change ocean temps by 0.2 K, thus:

    5.41E+21 kJ/K * 0.2 K = 1.08E+21 kJ to oceans for every 1 K change in surface temps. We can check this assumption against instrumental observation since 1955:

    Regressing that against HADCRUT4 surface temps over the same interval, I get a slope of 7.60, R^2 = 0.76, so the deep ocean model from Bintanja (2008) is in the ballpark with modern instrumental observation.

    The oceans are deeper than 2,000 m; average depth is 3,682.2 m according to a 2010 estimate: http://www.livescience.com/6470-ocean-depth-volume-revealed.html (satellites again), so the 2,000 m layer works out to about 54% of the ocean’s total volume, and therefore mass. We can check this another way by doing some math against ocean heat content estimates for the 2000 m layer:

    Mean ΔOHC works out to 5.47E21 J/yr, and ΔT works out to 0.0019 K/yr on average, so:

    4.006 kJ/kg K * 1,000 J/kJ * 0.0019 K/yr / 5.47E21 J/yr = 1.39E-21 1/kg = 7.19E+20 kg
    7.19E+20 kg / 1.35E21 kg = 0.53

    That checks out within 1% of the expected result, which is rather better than I thought I’d get. From the same uppper 2,000 m OHC data, more calcs:

    5.47E21 J/yr / 3.16E07 s/yr = 1.73E14 J/s (W)
    1.73E14 W / 5.10E14 m^2 = 0.34 W/m^2

    Using HADCRUT4 over 1957-2015 as a proxy for net atmospheric temperature change:

    0.0130 K/yr * 5.18E+18 kJ/K * 1,000 J/kJ = 6.72E19 J/yr
    6.72E19 J/yr / 3.16E07 s/yr = 2.13E12 J/s (W)
    2.13E12 W / 5.10E14 m^2 = 0.004 W/m^2

    Given that the uncertainty of Stephens (2013) is +/- 0.4 W/m^2, 0.004 W/m^2 is looking like nothing more than rounding error no matter whether surface, radiosonde, or satellites are used to estimate the temperature change. However, noting that 0.004 / 0.6 * 100 = 0.7%, it’s in line with the 1% of net energy absorbed by the system the IPCC say we should expect.

    My 0.34 W/m^2 calculation from 2,000 m OHC estimates is 0.26 W/m^2 lower than the 0.6 central estimate, and as such falls within the +/- 0.4 W/m^2 uncertainty interval. However it still wants an accounting. What “should” OHC’s contribution be? According to the IPCC (going by memory here), the estimated relative fluxes are as follows:

    0.93 oceans
    0.05 land
    0.01 latent heat (surface evaporation/ice melt)
    0.01 atmosphere
    ----
    1.00 total
    
    0.6 W/m^2 * 0.93 = 0.56 W/m^2 - 0.34 W/m^2 = 0.22 W/m^2

    Given that the upper 2,000 m accounts for just over half of the oceans’ mass, it seems plausible to me that my missing heat is diffusing/circulating to lower layers. OTOH, the imbalance could be on the lower end of the Stephens (2013) central estimate. Some of both.

    Mechanisms.

    First the Sun. Here’s Lean’s monthly TSI reconstruction from 1882 through October 2015:

    The average annual change over the entire interval is 9.06E-03 W/m^2/yr. However, that does not account for the fact that only half the planet is illuminated at any given time, nor that the angle of incidence is < 90 on the sunlit side everywhere except where the sun is directly overhead, so we need to divide by 4, giving 2.27E-03 W/m^2/yr. We've then got to knock off 30% to account for albedo, which gives 1.59E-03 W/m^2/yr. Or, to be fair, the ocean's mean albedo is 0.06, not 0.30, so call the maximum plausible upper bound 2.13E-03 W/m^2/yr.

    0.34 W/m^2 / 59 yr = 5.76E-03 W/m^2 yr (upper 2km oceans)
    2.13E-03 W/m^2 yr / 5.76E-03 W/m^2 yr = 2.7

    … so AT BEST the increase in TSI since the late 19th century could only account for between a quarter and a third of the observed OHC increase in the upper 2 km layer over the past ~60 years.

    CO2:

    ΔCO2 = 1.5 ppmv/yr
    Δln(C/C0) = 4.21E-03 1/yr
    4.21E-03 1/yr * 5.35 W/m^2 = 2.25E-02 W/m^2/yr

    The net change over 1958-2015 is:

    ln(400 ppmv/315 ppmv) * 5.35 W/m^2 = 1.28 W/m^2

    And for parity with the solar calcs since 1882:

    ln(400 ppmv/290 ppmv) * 5.35 W/m^2 = 1.71 W/m^2 :CO2
    9.06E-03 W/m^2/yr * 135/yr = 1.21 W/m^2 :TSI
    1.21 W/m^2 * (1-0.06) / 4 = 0.29 W/m^2 :TSI accounting for albedo and geometry

    Ratio comparison to solar forcing:

    1.28 W/m^2 / 0.29 W/m^2 = 4.4 (CO2:1958-2015 / Solar:1882-2015)
    1.71 W/m^2 / 0.29 W/m^2  = 5.9 (CO2:1882-2015 / Solar:1882-2015)

    … which gives a lot of wiggle room for CO2 vis a vis the energy imbalance estimate uncertainty and magnitude IF the 5.35 W/m^2 forcing coefficient is correct. I haven’t accounted for negative anthropogenic forcings (mainly aerosols) which have the effect of reducing solar influence. There’s also methane, albedo change (ice/snow loss, black carbon), water vapor feedback, etc., to consider. This is wayyy to long already and I’m too tired to get to it in this post anyway.

    We could attempt to juice solar by going all the way back to the Maunder Minimum:

    … problem is, the shape of the OHC curve is all wrong.

    TSI peaked ~1960 and has been in a slight decline. If the runup from 1700-1960 caused most of the observed imbalance, we might still expect to see OHC rising, but at a decelerating rate. The data above show the exact opposite. The shape of the OHC curve best matches the shape of ln(CO2). I find it very difficult to call that sheer coincidence.

    I already referred to evidence from Stephens et al. (2013) reporting that incoming SW radiation (gross minus reflected) is 240 +/- 2 W/m2. They also report outgoing as 240 +/- 3.3 W/m2. Trenberth et al. (2009) report incoming and outgoing from various sources ranging from 225 to 245 W/m2 for incoming SW and 236 to 254 W/m2 for outgoing LW. By your own calculations, the increase in ocean heat content is approximately 0.34 W/m2 which constitutes to over 90% of the increase in global heat content. Therefore we can account for less than 0.5 W/m2 of the energy imbalance whatever it may actually be. Since the imbalance from solar is possibly several times greater than that, I conclude that all of the increase in heat content could be due to the amount of solar SW insolation absorbed by the planet.

    Emphasis added. A lot of things are possible. I know of no TSI reconstructions that match OHC from 1957 and surface temp change from 1850. It doesn’t work. If it’s not CO2 and not the Sun, it’s something else we haven’t found, and that seems extremely unlikely to me. Logically I cannot rule it out, OTOH, I don’t think it irrational to believe what the consilience of multiple lines of evidence and radiative physics suggest: it’s CO2.

    To change my mind requires that someone identifies the … Force X … applies a plausible physical model for it, and demonstrates it with empirical evidence such that it is a better “predictor” of the past than the CO2 model. I wasn’t kidding about supporting a Red Team to do such a thing. I found it curious that I met with such resistance in this forum when I expressed that sentiment.

    I cannot write another word. I hope some of the above makes sense.

    • BG-“TSI peaked ~1960 and has been in a slight decline. If the runup from 1700-1960 caused most of the observed imbalance, we might still expect to see OHC rising, but at a decelerating rate. The data above show the exact opposite. ”

      You don’t seem to be including any lag time for ocean temperatures to respond to whatever could be increasing (or decreasing) at the surface. The 2000 m layer does not respond in lock step with atmospheric (air) or land surface warming or cooling. In fact, if TSI peaked in 1960, we’d still see increasing OHC at the same rate (not decelerating) for another 100(or more) years after that as the ocean plays catch up. The way the ocean absorbs and releases heat is like a very delayed echo of what happens on the surface.

      And long wave radiation sent back to the surface by CO2 molecules in the air is so weak it can only affect a few microns of the surface layer anyway.

      • Aphan,

        BG-“TSI peaked ~1960 and has been in a slight decline. If the runup from 1700-1960 caused most of the observed imbalance, we might still expect to see OHC rising, but at a decelerating rate. The data above show the exact opposite. ”

        You don’t seem to be including any lag time for ocean temperatures to respond to whatever could be increasing (or decreasing) at the surface.

        It’s implicit in the statement you quoted. The only way for rate of change to stay constant when net external forcing changes is if there is a feedback process of sufficient magnitude to sustain it. The implication there is that the feedback process is not instantaneously responsive to net forcing. Ice albedo feedback is the first example that comes to mind.

        The 2000 m layer does not respond in lock step with atmospheric (air) or land surface warming or cooling.

        I would think the top 2 km of ocean barely responds to land or atmospheric temperature changes much at all.

        In fact, if TSI peaked in 1960, we’d still see increasing OHC at the same rate (not decelerating) for another 100(or more) years after that as the ocean plays catch up.

        Only if there is some feedback mechanism sustaining the rate, otherwise you’re creating energy out of nothing, which violates the 1st law of thermodynamics.

        The way the ocean absorbs and releases heat is like a very delayed echo of what happens on the surface.

        Only because the surface and atmosphere have less thermal inertia than the oceans, and are therefore more responsive to external forcing.

        And long wave radiation sent back to the surface by CO2 molecules in the air is so weak it can only affect a few microns of the surface layer anyway.

        The Sun heats the oceans. LW-emitters in the atmosphere modulate the rate at which they dissipate that absorbed energy.

        In other news, a brick is opaque to all frequencies of sunlight.

  73. Brandon,

    Don’t worry about the other post. I got the gist of it here and from where you posted elsewhere. Also there is a good discussion relating to surface vs. sats measurements on a recent post at Climate etc.

    And my counterpoint remains: it’s the trend over the entire interval which figure more into climate sensitivity estimates. So if the IPCC are trying to pump up CO2 potency for political leverage, and NOAA are complicit in helping them do it, the last thing they’d be expected to do is reduce the overall trend.

    I think the allegation is that the intention was to eliminate the pause. If the overall trend has to be sacrificed, so be it. I’m not taking that position, because I haven’t been looking closely at the data. Based on the divergence between surface and satellite data, I have to wonder.

    “The ocean is warming not from above but below” is implicit. It’s an assertion which has been loaded into the question.

    You’re right. I was thinking of the previous question of where the warming comes from, which leads to that next question. BTW, his assertion was contingent on data that he is still looking for confirmation of. So it’s more of a hypothetical question. Take another look at his post.

    I don’t assert circulation is causing the warming. Here’s the basic argument: Sun warms first few tens of meters. GHGs modulate the rate at which oceans radiatively dissipate energy. Turbulent mixing carries some of that heat to further depths, thermohaline circulation also moves some of it, the balance is diffusive.

    CO2 is a GHG, and burning fossil fuels is what’s causing the rise.

    Are you claiming that IR active gases dominate energy transfer at the surface, in particular, increases in CO2 from fossil fuels? Because from our previous exchanges, I was under the impression that you were aware that the atmosphere is opaque near the surface. This means that increases in IR absorption have no further effect. What mechanism are you proposing for CO2 to cause a rise in temperature above that which would normally result from the combination of solar heating, ocean turbulence, thermohaline circulation, evaporation, diffusion, convection, and wind?

    Given that the upper 2,000 m accounts for just over half of the oceans’ mass, it seems plausible to me that my missing heat is diffusing/circulating to lower layers. OTOH, the imbalance could be on the lower end of the Stephens (2013) central estimate. Some of both.

    Your calculations are admirable, but IMO you miss the big picture. Yours and Stephen’s estimates are less than 1 W/m2 imbalance in energy. The errors in measuring incoming and outgoing energy are greater than that. Then you have to consider all the other processes involved in getting that energy distributed. The purpose of weather is to redistribute the heat. The ocean is a huge reservoir and your calculations are too ballpark for anything other than confirmation that the ocean is warming somewhat.

    … so AT BEST the increase in TSI since the late 19th century could only account for between a quarter and a third of the observed OHC increase in the upper 2 km layer over the past ~60 years.

    I didn’t hear any mention of cloud cover. TSI is only one factor that contributes to the 161 or so W/m2 actually absorbed by Earth surfaces.

    … which gives a lot of wiggle room for CO2 vis a vis the energy imbalance estimate uncertainty and magnitude IF the 5.35 W/m^2 forcing coefficient is correct.

    “IF” is big one. To the degree I’ve looked into it, the numbers come from programs that convert changes in the spectra of an atmosphere of given composition to changes in radiation absorbed and emitted from the atmosphere at that point in time. IOW, all else being equal, a change in CO2 produces a log proportional change in radiation. The problem I have with this is that all else isn’t equal because of all the other processes involved in atmospheric energy transfer.

    The data above show the exact opposite. The shape of the OHC curve best matches the shape of ln(CO2). I find it very difficult to call that sheer coincidence.

    Why is your TSI plot baseline increasing? Is it sunspot index like the one below? There is reason to believe the OHC plot results from smoothing and lag effects from the sun’s idiosyncrasies. This is the conventional wisdom, not necessarily mine. There are also the magnetic effects and cosmic ray hypothesis out there as well. JoNova has a recent post on the former.

    If it’s not CO2 and not the Sun, it’s something else we haven’t found, and that seems extremely unlikely to me. Logically I cannot rule it out, OTOH, I don’t think it irrational to believe what the consilience of multiple lines of evidence and radiative physics suggest: it’s CO2.

    It’s not irrational. I just think it more rational to continue to pin down the uncertainties and remain open to the ongoing research into the “something else we haven’t found.”

    To change my mind requires that someone identifies the … Force X … applies a plausible physical model for it, and demonstrates it with empirical evidence such that it is a better “predictor” of the past than the CO2 model.

    Not only demonstrating a force X. The CO2 model must be supported with something other than a correlation or a computer model. There was the contradictory Wood experiment back in 1909 and a few conflicting reproductions since. Nothing experimental that I know of.

    I wasn’t kidding about supporting a Red Team to do such a thing. I found it curious that I met with such resistance in this forum when I expressed that sentiment.

    I missed that, but you’ve painted a target on yourself. I don’t think you can expect much support here by pushing the AGW pov. I appreciate it though, because it forces me to remain skeptical of my own biases.

    • Chic Bowdrie,

      Don’t worry about the other post. I got the gist of it here and from where you posted elsewhere. Also there is a good discussion relating to surface vs. sats measurements on a recent post at Climate etc.

      Thanks for the heads up.

      I think the allegation is that the intention was to eliminate the pause. If the overall trend has to be sacrificed, so be it. I’m not taking that position, because I haven’t been looking closely at the data. Based on the divergence between surface and satellite data, I have to wonder.

      I understand the allegation. I have no other different answer to give you on this; as it’s come full circle several times I think it best to table it and leave it unresolved between us.

      Are you claiming that IR active gases dominate energy transfer at the surface, in particular, increases in CO2 from fossil fuels?

      You need to be specific about the time component. Instantaneous, no. Change over long periods of time, yes.

      Because from our previous exchanges, I was under the impression that you were aware that the atmosphere is opaque near the surface.

      Yes.

      This means that increases in IR absorption have no further effect.

      From our previous exchanges you know that I disagree with that and should know why, even if you disagree with it.

      What mechanism are you proposing for CO2 to cause a rise in temperature above that which would normally result from the combination of solar heating, ocean turbulence, thermohaline circulation, evaporation, diffusion, convection, and wind?

      Here it is again. The atmosphere is constantly emitting LW in all directions. The main thing carried all the way to the top floor by convection is latent heat. That’s why upper air is expected to warm faster under ANY external forcing than the surface and/or atmosphere near the surface. All else pretty much nets out because convection goes both ways simultaneously all the time.

      Your calculations are admirable, but IMO you miss the big picture.

      Thank you, and I don’t think so.

      The errors in measuring incoming and outgoing energy are greater than that.

      Think about it more. Do you really think the true imbalance is further away from zero than published?

      Then you have to consider all the other processes involved in getting that energy distributed.

      We’re never going to be able to consider everything. Literature considers far more than I have, which I alluded to in my comments. Here’s GISS’ take on all radiative forcings they have considered: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/modelforce/

      You are free to provide evidence of some other positive forcing which explains OHC increase and temperature trends over the entire respective periods those data are available. Until then, anyone, including me can always say, “it could be something else”. Hypotheses want testing, I have tested mine in about as much detail as I am capable of doing at present.

      The purpose of weather is to redistribute the heat. The ocean is a huge reservoir and your calculations are too ballpark for anything other than confirmation that the ocean is warming somewhat.

      Pedantry alert: I don’t know about purpose, but yes, heat redistribution and dissipation are manifestations of what we call weather.

      Somewhat warming? I would say massively, and the subjective qualifier only makes sense to me as a comparative:

      0.34 W/m^2 oceans / 0.004 W/m^2 atmosphere = 85

      Nearly two orders of magnitude difference. If you’re looking for rounding error, look no further than the change in atmospheric energy content.

      I didn’t hear any mention of cloud cover.

      Paleoclimate variability across tens of thousands of years suggests:
      a) neutral or weakly negative cloud feedback, or
      b) higher climate sensitivity to any external forcing than current estimates.

      The IPCC are more supportive of (a).

      TSI is only one factor that contributes to the 161 or so W/m2 actually absorbed by Earth surfaces.

      Indeed. However, the main reason supposed for more cloud cloud coverage in a warming climate due to any cause is an increase in specific humidity, which would also tend to cause a positive radiative feedback. Speaking in terms of central estimates, direct forcing from CO2 is ~1 K/2xCO2 while total climate sensitivity to CO2 is ~3 K/2xCO2. My understanding is that most of the difference is feedback gain due to increased specific humidity.

      All indications I’m aware of are that wv feedback swamps any cloud feedback which exists.

      “IF” is big one.

      In terms of the formalities of our debate, it’s the main IF.

      To the degree I’ve looked into it, the numbers come from programs that convert changes in the spectra of an atmosphere of given composition to changes in radiation absorbed and emitted from the atmosphere at that point in time. IOW, all else being equal, a change in CO2 produces a log proportional change in radiation. The problem I have with this is that all else isn’t equal because of all the other processes involved in atmospheric energy transfer.

      In terms of what literature has to say, the 5.35 W/m^2 forcing coefficient is one of the best constrained estimates of the lot. It’s the climate sensitivity of temperature to any forcing that is the problematic one because the temperature response is a function of all the non-linearities in the system.

      Why is your TSI plot baseline increasing?

      I don’t understand the question. To me, baseline in this context means a time period used to establish normals for purposes of computing an anomaly value. Both solar plots give absolute values.

      Is it sunspot index like the one below?

      It’s been a while since I read how those reconstructions were done and I don’t have the gumption at the moment to look it up again. Leif Svalgaard collects papers on solar activity reconstructions here …

      http://www.leif.org/research/

      … and as you’re probably aware he frequently participates here and is responsive to questions when the Sun is the topic of the head post.

      There is reason to believe the OHC plot results from smoothing and lag effects from the sun’s idiosyncrasies.

      So long as the climate sensitivity parameter to any forcing remains uncertain, you’re going to have trouble nailing down temperature response to changes in insolation.

      There are also the magnetic effects and cosmic ray hypothesis out there as well.

      Yes I know. There are many other possibilities. If you think one is better than CO2, you need to show me.

      It’s not irrational. I just think it more rational to continue to pin down the uncertainties and remain open to the ongoing research into the “something else we haven’t found.”

      I’m all for further research to reduce uncertainties. I’m not for waiting around to know everything with absolute certainty because that will never happen.

      The CO2 model must be supported with something other than a correlation or a computer model.

      Such as what? Support any of your above listed hypotheses without resorting to models or correlations and we’ll talk. Every science with which I’m somewhat familiar is heavily reliant on both of those things.

      I missed that, but you’ve painted a target on yourself. I don’t think you can expect much support here by pushing the AGW pov.

      I never expected to, and long experience has reinforced that.

      I appreciate it though, because it forces me to remain skeptical of my own biases.

      I appreciate it too, however we may have reached a point where those returns are diminishing from me. Your main objections to evidence or calculations I provide are typically met with “too uncertain” or “have you considered X”. Yet you have not provided much in the way of evidence or calculations to support X, or given me any reason to consider that the uncertainty of X is less than what I have already provided. As well, any alternate model you come up with is likely going to rely on empirical evidence which contains uncertainties. Yet you still believe the CO2 model to be incorrect. Those are your apparent biases as I see them, but it could be bias bias on my part as well. :)

      Cheers.

      • Brandon,

        You need to be specific about the time component. Instantaneous, no. Change over long periods of time, yes.

        Take as much time as you need. The problem is, with all the other conflating factors, you may never see a clear CO2 signal amongst all the noise.

        This means that increases in IR absorption have no further effect.
        From our previous exchanges you know that I disagree with that and should know why, even if you disagree with it.

        Sorry, if I missed something earlier, but that is why I’m bringing it up again. I don’t think you’ve been explicitly clear on this. Perhaps it’s because up to now I haven’t been asking my questions clearly enough. Here’s your answer to the question about the mechanism for CO2 affecting temperature rise:

        The atmosphere is constantly emitting LW in all directions. The main thing carried all the way to the top floor by convection is latent heat. That’s why upper air is expected to warm faster under ANY external forcing than the surface and/or atmosphere near the surface. All else pretty much nets out because convection goes both ways simultaneously all the time.

        There’s nothing in that statement that explains how CO2 modifies LW or increases latent heating of the upper atmosphere. Indeed, any external forcing should increase latent heating and that signal should be evident in elevated precipitatable water vapor in the shorter term, not from rising CO2 in the longer term.

        I don’t see how convection going both ways changes anything. The net energy flux is upward. Convection cools. Are you saying CO2 reduces convection?

        Do you really think the true imbalance is further away from zero than published?

        No, probably closer to zero.

        Pedantry alert: I don’t know about purpose, but yes, heat redistribution and dissipation are manifestations of what we call weather.

        All the forcings represented in your GISS diagram, except for solar irradiance, are to a large degree retroactive. They all depend on what the solar input is. The forcings affect how weather is able to redistribute the heat which is trying to escape. One way or another it has to go through the atmosphere. Due to the existence of IR active gases that emit radiation to space, the atmosphere is not a good reservoir for storing any heat.

        Somewhat warming? I would say massively, and the subjective qualifier only makes sense to me as a comparative:

        0.34 W/m^2 oceans / 0.004 W/m^2 atmosphere = 85

        Nearly two orders of magnitude difference. If you’re looking for rounding error, look no further than the change in atmospheric energy content.

        There are two ways to look at this. Either the atmosphere is warming more than the 0.004 W/m2 reflects, or the ocean is not warming as much as the 0.34 W/m2 reflects. I suspect the latter.

        Paleoclimate variability across tens of thousands of years suggests:
        a) neutral or weakly negative cloud feedback, or
        b) higher climate sensitivity to any external forcing than current estimates.
        The IPCC are more supportive of (a).

        a) Is there cloud data going back that far?
        b) Are you invoking a circular argument based on CO2 having some known relationship to temperature?

        However, the main reason supposed for more cloud cloud coverage in a warming climate due to any cause is an increase in specific humidity, which would also tend to cause a positive radiative feedback.

        There is no definitive evidence that CO2 increase is the cause of humidity increase. And AFAIK no definitive evidence that cloud feedback is positive. I am surprised to learn IPCC agrees with that.

        All indications I’m aware of are that wv feedback swamps any cloud feedback which exists.

        We should take that up on a future discussion. Are you aware of the Spencer/Braswell work in this area? My view is that the humidity cloud relationship is thermostatic.

        In terms of what literature has to say, the 5.35 W/m^2 forcing coefficient is one of the best constrained estimates of the lot. It’s the climate sensitivity of temperature to any forcing that is the problematic one because the temperature response is a function of all the non-linearities in the system.

        5.35 W/m2 is the theoretical forcing calculated by taking the deriviative of the SB equation and plugging in an average temperature about 288K. It has nothing to do with CO2. Of course, the temperature response depends on all the contributions, some of which oppose each other. But the theoretical basis for isolating the CO2 sensitivity comes from spectroscopy. This is what the climate science community has to nail down. IOW, demonstrate a temperature affect from a given increase of CO2.

        So long as the climate sensitivity parameter to any forcing remains uncertain, you’re going to have trouble nailing down temperature response to changes in insolation.

        Precisely. Well said.

        The CO2 model must be supported with something other than a correlation or a computer model.
        Such as what? Support any of your above listed hypotheses without resorting to models or correlations and we’ll talk. Every science with which I’m somewhat familiar is heavily reliant on both of those things.

        Models and correlations are helpful. But direct experimental challenge is required to remove inevitable doubt when relying on indirect methodology. This is a problem for the atmosphere because the lab is so large and uncontrollable. However, I don’t think it impossible for a definitive Wood 1909 type experiment to be worked up. It’s just not something I can do now or maybe never.

        Yet you still believe the CO2 model to be incorrect.

        No, just inconclusive. In contrast, your approach is to assume the circumstantial evidence for CO2 is conclusive and dismiss contradictory evidence that doesn’t conform to your current understanding. I prefer to continue to look for more convincing evidence of any effect that CO2 has and be open to other evidence that better accounts for all physical phenomena in play.

        … we may have reached a point where those returns are diminishing from me.

        Perhaps for me too. I can’t devote any more time now to go deeper into the subjects which IMO are crucial for the AGW debate. The realization of any particular degree of warming has to be verified. If not by experiment, then by better radiative convective models. As I mentioned before, the influence of clouds on forcing and feedbacks is another area I am interested in.

    • Yes, I’ve seen similar plots … actually I probably have that data. Sunspot number correlates well with TSI.

  74. Chic Bowdrie,

    “… we may have reached a point where those returns are diminishing [for] me.”

    Perhaps for me too.

    You wrote about things which sustain my interest, so I will reply.

    The problem is, with all the other conflating factors, you may never see a clear CO2 signal amongst all the noise.

    With evidence in hand, full-period instrumental records are clear to me, and I can account for some of the major known confounding factors in the residual. You’ve seen this before:

    LOD (Length of Day anomaly) is the only parameter which does not have a solid theoretical underpinning, but I have read plausible explanations. CO2 is clearly dominant over the entire interval:

    Sub some observed Force X (or combined effects of multiple ones) for CO2 for me to plug into that model, and I’ll pay more attention if I get back an R^2 value on the order of 0.9.

    There’s nothing in that statement that explains how CO2 modifies LW or increases latent heating of the upper atmosphere.

    It’s implicit in the observation that re-emitted LW is omni-directional, something which is quite independent of directionality of any absorbed flux. Going back to the 1D model, 50% of thermalized LW will be re-emitted up, 50% down. IOW, some of the thermalized energy will be “bounced” back from whence it came and re-thermalized at a lower altitude. The converse is true of the upward-emitted LW, however, the higher a LW photon goes, the smaller the absorption cross-section, thus the greater (on average) distance it would be expected to travel before absorption and thermalization again. As well, higher = closer to TOA, meaning greater probability of escape to space.

    The net result can be thought of as an infinitely-layered onion, with each successively higher layer having an increasingly negative LW loss. Or conversely, each successively lower layer has an increasingly positive LW loss.

    Thus, lower atmospheric layers will tend to be warmer than upper layers because the ratio of radiative gain to radiative loss will be higher the nearer any given layer is to the surface: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2871903/

    (a) illustrates the temperature gradient as a function of altitude
    (b) illustrates net LW loss at all altitudes, but becoming increasingly less negative as altitude decreases

    See note [1] below for details and caveats.

    I don’t see how convection going both ways changes anything.

    This goes all the way back to your comment on the Lindzen thread: https://wattsupwiththat.com/2015/12/26/lindzen-a-recent-exchange-in-the-boston-globe-clearly-illustrated-the-sophistic-nature-of-the-defense-of-global-warming-alarm/#comment-2108876

    The way I see it, those six photons get on the next elevator and therefore 94% of the energy is going up by convection. Also increasing CO2 doesn’t slow down the rate at which the energy is going up. That is determined by how much solar insolation gets on at ground level.

    To which I replied in my very next post:

    Keep in mind that for every up elevator in the world there is one which is going down.

    The net energy flux is upward.

    Not at (pseudo-)equilibrium — don’t forget the Sun. Otherwise, yes.

    Convection cools.

    Upward convection is a cooling process. We’re dealing with an equilibrium system here. You cannot leave out one side of the relationship and expect to get the correct answer.

    Latent heat is the main thing that makes it to the top floor before being released, at which point it has a warming influence at that layer. Hence more warming at altitude than at the surface, especially in the warmer and wetter tropics.

    Your notion that convection carries thermalized LW from the first few meters to the top and dumps it off as LW does not work because:

    a) the atmosphere is always emitting at every level
    b) convection goes both ways

    Are you saying CO2 reduces convection?

    No. The argument is that LW-active species increase convection over what would be seen in, say, a pure nitrogen atmosphere. Think about the Carnot cycle and what happens when the temperature difference between the hot reservoir and cold reservoir increases. This is why you’ll also see lapse rate response discussed in literature.

    No, [energy imbalance is] probably closer to zero.

    Makes sense for an equilibrium system to tend toward that value. It also makes sense to me that uncertainty in downward flux estimates would be offset by uncertainty in the upward direction, thereby reducing the uncertainty range of the net imbalance estimate.

    I would also expect flux estimates from multiple sources to converge on the “true” values, so we use OHC estimates combined with satellite observation, etc.

    All the forcings represented in your GISS diagram, except for solar irradiance, are to a large degree retroactive. They all depend on what the solar input is.

    Yes and no; there’s an absolute temperature dependency in there as well. However, mostly yes I’d say.

    One way or another it has to go through the atmosphere.

    Yes, that’s a KEY point.

    Due to the existence of IR active gases that emit radiation to space, the atmosphere is not a good reservoir for storing any heat.

    Partially true. The main reason is as I’ve already demonstrated; the atmosphere’s mass is negligible wrt the oceans, and only has 1/4 the specific heat capacity to boot. That the oceans only allow LW penetration to a few microns, but SW penetration to tens of meters makes them a much better “greenhouse” than the atmosphere.

    “0.34 W/m^2 oceans / 0.004 W/m^2 atmosphere = 85”

    There are two ways to look at this. Either the atmosphere is warming more than the 0.004 W/m2 reflects, or the ocean is not warming as much as the 0.34 W/m2 reflects. I suspect the latter.

    Or both estimates are reasonably correct. I don’t understand why you suspect the latter to be more off, especially since you just wrote above that “atmosphere is not a good reservoir for storing any heat”.

    a) Is there cloud data going back that far?
    b) Are you invoking a circular argument based on CO2 having some known relationship to temperature?

    a) If there are, certainly not with the same fidelity as modern instrumental estimates.

    b) No. It’s an inference I’m making that relies strictly on temperature response to ANY external forcing. If cloud feedback were strongly more negative than present estimates, paleoclimate temperature reconstructions either show too much amplitude, or the climate sensitivity parameter to ANY external forcing is higher than presently estimated (possibly implying that various feedback gains are higher than present estimates).

    There is one relationship between CO2 and temperature which should not be controversial: its partial pressure in aqueous solution. Hence, CO2 atmospheric concentration tends to lag ocean/atmospheric temps in the paleo records.

    There is no definitive evidence that CO2 increase is the cause of humidity increase.

    We’re back to the “definitive” qualifier when it comes to evidence. Your statement above is consistent with “there’s no definitive evidence that increased CO2 in the atmosphere causes temperature rise”.

    My questions to you then are:

    1) Do you think temperature rise due to ANY cause would be expected to increase specific humidity?
    2) Do you think there is definitive evidence suggesting that specific humidity has increased?

    And AFAIK no definitive evidence that cloud feedback is positive. I am surprised to learn IPCC agrees with that.

    In my view, they don’t just “agree with it”, they’re how I know about it to begin with! Sorry to say, I’m not surprised you’re that surprised by this.

    Are you aware of the Spencer/Braswell work in this area? My view is that the humidity cloud relationship is thermostatic.

    No. I am aware that Spencer recently wrote a blog post wherein he said that near-surface humidity is a good proxy for sea surface temperatures:

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2015/12/2015-will-be-the-3rd-warmest-year-in-the-satellite-record/#comment-203356

    5.35 W/m2 is the theoretical forcing calculated by taking the deriviative of the SB equation and plugging in an average temperature about 288K.

    Citation?

    I believe that Myhre et al 1998 is the canonical reference for that value: http://folk.uio.no/gunnarmy/paper/myhre_grl98.pdf

    It has nothing to do with CO2.

    Tut. After all the time you’ve spent saying that none of my conclusions have been “definitively” demonstrated in literature, whence your apparently high confidence that it isn’t CO2?

    Apropos to all the null hypothesis talk upthread, this is what was drilled into my head in Stats for Dummies: rejecting the experimental hypothesis only means that the observed phenomena do not support it at the stated level of significance. That does not necessarily mean that it is false, nor that the null hypothesis must be true.

    Of course, the temperature response depends on all the contributions, some of which oppose each other.

    Exactly. This is a key point of agreement between us, because it is central to the reason that the IPCC 1.5-4.5 K/2xCO2 estimate is so wide, and why it has remained virtually unchanged since the FAR.

    But the theoretical basis for isolating the CO2 sensitivity comes from spectroscopy.

    Yes, backed by empirical lab-controlled experiments, e.g., MODTRAN and HITRAN databases, which are also used in applied sciences and engineering fields having nothing to do with climate.

    This is what the climate science community has to nail down. IOW, demonstrate a temperature affect from a given increase of CO2.

    The only place that is “debated” is by people who reject the theoretical basis for LW atmospheric radiative forcing. For everyone else it’s a question of magnitude of the forcing, and magnitude of the temperature response to that forcing … the latter of which is just as salient when discussing any other external radiative forcing.

    I doubt very seriously you will accept any evidence, however “definitive”, until you get over your objections to the theoretical basis. I’m very willing to continue our discussions about that.

    “So long as the climate sensitivity parameter to any forcing remains uncertain, you’re going to have trouble nailing down temperature response to changes in insolation.”

    Precisely. Well said.

    That you acknowledge such points when I make them is one reason I continue to enjoy discussing things with you.

    Models and correlations are helpful. But direct experimental challenge is required to remove inevitable doubt when relying on indirect methodology. This is a problem for the atmosphere because the lab is so large and uncontrollable.

    Ok good. So, correlations help most when there is a theoretical model to explain them. Otherwise, they only hint at cause at best. You ever seen this website?

    http://tylervigen.com/spurious-correlations

    Some of them are hilarious.

    No, just inconclusive.

    Ok. I have some trouble believing that’s the only reason as you continue to challenge the theoretical underpinning. OTOH, I have no choice but to take you at your word, so I will.

    In contrast, your approach is to assume the circumstantial evidence for CO2 is conclusive and dismiss contradictory evidence that doesn’t conform to your current understanding.

    I understand that it may look that way to you. Can you actually think of any contradictory evidence I outright reject? I’m big on consilience of evidence. I see that as a very different thing from conformationally-biased cherry picking. But of course I would think that, right?

    I’m not saying I don’t have other biases either. One of the big ones is my acceptance of the theoretical basis, which I spent a lot of time learning from first principles, with an emphasis on getting them from literature not directly related to climate science.

    Public opinion polls tell me that my mostly liberal politics are the best predictor of my beliefs about AGW, so I can’t rule that out either.

    Thing you might not understand about me is that I don’t want AGW to be real and resisted believing in it for over a decade. The latter one you couldn’t possibly know about me, and have no reason to believe either, any more than the former. But both are true.

    As I mentioned before, the influence of clouds on forcing and feedbacks is another area I am interested in.

    Not one I know much about, so that might be interesting. As I lead with, this post got back to topics I’m more interested in discussing should you feel the same way.

    Regards.

    [1] The image is output from a 1D model that only considers radiative effects, but explicitly ignores sensible heat, convective/advective and latent heat transfers, as well as scattering effects and wavelength-specific emissivity (i.e., they use grey body/black body models for atmosphere and surface respectively). The authors cite the reason for such a simplified model as:

    The philosophy for choosing such an idealized Earth system is that it retains enough physics and can still be described by a simple one-dimensional vertical climate model to allow analytical evaluation of the vertical profiles of temperature, radiation energy and entropy fluxes.

    They don’t propose to use it as a substitute for AOGCMs or other complex climate models which do appropriately take other quite important non-negligible physical processes into account.

    I like the model because its simplicity is illustrative of the central premise of atmospheric radiative forcing.

      • Aphan,

        I’ve read my Briggs, and by him am all too aware of the false confidence inspired by wee-pee values. Please explain how that rebuts what I said about null hypothesis testing. Also please explain how you would do things differently. Finally, please tell me how it is you are so confident about your own conclusions. Thanks.

      • BG- What does Briggs have to do with anything? I didn’t set out to “rebut” what you said about null hypothesis testing, in fact, I have no idea exactly what you would define as the null hypothesis in this particular discussion right now, and all I do differently is not put my faith in statistical correlations or consensus thinking. That I am not confident in your conclusions does not automatically make me “so confident” in my own. That False dichotomy is yours, not mine.

    • Brandon,

      First, I repeat, my compliments on the model work you’ve done. I wish I had the time to do it myself, but then I’d have to give up commenting on blog sites. I have a vague feeling I’ve seen some candidates for a factor X that would replace the dependency on CO2. I’ll see if I can find anything.

      I do have a question about where your CO2 data prior to 1958 comes from. Notice that between 1910 and 1980, the correlation of HadCRUT and CO2 is terrible even allowing for substantial discontinuity before 1958.

      Moving on to the mechanics of CO2’s influence on temperature. Before I respond specifically to any of your comments, I want to clarify a few concepts. Local temperature equilibrium or LTE means that at any level of the atmosphere the incoming and outgoing radiation must balance. Logically, the outgoing must be equally 50% up and down. Because of the change in density which affects path length, it is also logical that slightly more absorption comes from below than above. The magnitude of the discrepancy increases with altitude. I believe this is consistent with your view and the Wu and Liu paper.

      However, the atmosphere is not always in LTE. When the sun shines the surface and atmosphere are warming. There must be more absorption than emission otherwise there would be no temperature change.

      A pseudo-equilibrium condition can occur when there is no sun shining. At some point the LW from the surface will be approximately the same as the LW emitted to space. The temperature gradient at that point is not caused by radiative effects. The addition of solar energy produces a temporary deviation from the pseudo-equilibrium lapse rate which is primarily determined by gravity.

      The net result can be thought of as an infinitely-layered onion, with each successively higher layer having an increasingly negative LW loss. Or conversely, each successively lower layer has an increasingly positive LW loss.

      I think you mean decreasingly negative LW loss. Increasingly positive is not the same thing.

      Thus, lower atmospheric layers will tend to be warmer than upper layers because the ratio of radiative gain to radiative loss will be higher the nearer any given layer is to the surface.

      First of all, the lower atmospheric layers are warmer because of the lapse rate as I explained above. And the ratio of radiative gain vs. loss at the TOA is practically zero. The question is how much the gain vs. loss is at the surface. The paper you referenced has about 320 W/m2 gain vs. 460 W/m2 loss. That’s a discrepancy of 140 W/m2 that either comes from solar heating of the atmosphere or sensible and latent heat. Compare that to the Trenberth diagram. The gain vs. loss ratio is much closer to one. I would argue that it could be even closer to one. I didn’t read the details in the paper, but I noticed your footnote where the authors ignore sensible and latent heat and convection. So I don’t understand what new information this provides or what central premise of radiative forcing it illustrates.

      “The net energy flux is upward.”
      Not at (pseudo-)equilibrium — don’t forget the Sun. Otherwise, yes.

      I was confused by this and that’s why I expressed my view of pseudo-equilibrium above. When is energy flux ever downward? Maybe some local eddy where warm air sweeps over a cold surface somewhere. Otherwise the planet is constantly shedding the daily dose of sunlight.

      Your notion that convection carries thermalized LW from the first few meters to the top and dumps it off as LW does not work because:
      a) the atmosphere is always emitting at every level
      b) convection goes both ways

      Convection is a cooling process because it transports warm air up in exchange for cold air down. Not that complicated. The atmosphere absorbs and emits at every level while convection goes both ways. I don’t have the calculations demonstrate, but my guess is a diagram similar to Wu and Liu (2010) picturing zero difference between upward and downward LW until you get to upper troposphere illustrating the possible share of the flux contributed by convection and atmospheric heating as altitude increases. The upper troposphere is where convection peeters out, latent heat dumps its energy, and any contributions from atmospheric SW end up.

      I would also expect flux estimates from multiple sources to converge on the “true” values, so we use OHC estimates combined with satellite observation, etc.

      I’m happy to let the uncertainty argument go and also accept your estimates of OHC and warming rates, etc. Let’s focus on the CO2 model.

      Or both estimates are reasonably correct. I don’t understand why you suspect the latter to be more off, especially since you just wrote above that “atmosphere is not a good reservoir for storing any heat”.

      No big deal. It just seems more likely to me that the OHC estimates are high. But there’s no point in belaboring it because there just estimates and I’m happy to work with them as they are. I’m more interested in how and how much CO2 contributes to the warming.

      1) Do you think temperature rise due to ANY cause would be expected to increase specific humidity?

      I would expect some short term influence of temperature on humidity. Eg, in 1998 there was a spike in water vapor. Now which came first, the chicken or the egg? That humidity spike relative to long term monthly averages was in April 1998. UAH temperature spike occurred on same month. Same thing happened in 2010. Mind you, a spike is from 24 up to 25 inches or whatever the units are.

      In the long term, extra humidity leads to more clouds, hence cooling. Therefore, there is a thermostatic effect at play IMO.

      2) Do you think there is definitive evidence suggesting that specific humidity has increased?

      Awhile back, I downloaded some data, probably at your suggestion, and did see some indication that periods of high precipitatable water vapor correspond to trends. Could be anecdotal, but it seems that water vapor was relatively constant during the 70’s and 80’s and then gradually increasing up to present. Relatively wide swings prior to 1975.

      “Are you aware of the Spencer/Braswell work in this area? My view is that the humidity cloud relationship is thermostatic.”
      No.

      Don’t ask me to explain it, but here is some interesting stuff on water vapor feedback which is related to cloud feedback somehow.

      http://www.drroyspencer.com/2014/04/enso-sst-ceres-forcing-and-feedback-the-travesty-continues/

      Spencer: “We have three papers published on this (Lindzen has others), and as far as I can tell, the climate community still does not understand the implications of our work.”

      “Citation?”
      I believe that Myhre et al 1998 is the canonical reference for that value [5.35 W/m2]

      Yes, that‘s what Wiki and IPCC both refer to. Hmm. Do you think it’s a coincidence that 5.35 = 0.988 * 4 * sigma * 288^3? I did some surfing to figure out where I got the idea for this calculation. Couldn’t find anything, but I did find several references which indicate how murky the 5.35 number is. I’m putting those references in a separate comment.

      “It has nothing to do with CO2.”

      Tut. After all the time you’ve spent saying that none of my conclusions have been “definitively” demonstrated in literature, whence your apparently high confidence that it isn’t CO2?

      I was referring to the constant 5.35. You stated it was “the climate sensitivity of temperature to any forcing that is the problematic one because the temperature response is a function of all the non-linearities in the system.” Either you are confused or Myhre et al. (1998) are. I know I am.

      I doubt very seriously you will accept any evidence, however “definitive”, until you get over your objections to the theoretical basis. I’m very willing to continue our discussions about that.

      The theoretical basis includes two parts. One is experimentally verified dF = 5.35 * ln(C/Co), which relates the change in radiation intensity due to a change in CO2 concentration. The other is dT = lamda * dF which relates a change in radiative intensity to a change in temperature. I’m not aware of any experimental verification of the latter, but would like to be if you know of anything.

      Ok good. So, correlations help most when there is a theoretical model to explain them. Otherwise, they only hint at cause at best. You ever seen this website?

      Funny those. Take home point is that model correlation is no substitute for experimental verification.

      . Can you actually think of any contradictory evidence I outright reject?

      Not really. I may have exaggerated a bit. I’ll keep my eye open from now on though. Heh.

      Thing you might not understand about me is that I don’t want AGW to be real and resisted believing in it for over a decade.

      That’s helpful to know. I was immediately skeptical, possibly because of my conservative bent. But I’m more interested in knowing the truth than being right. I hope that’s your bottom line as well. But regardless of what your motive is, having to clarify my position is helpful to me.

      To summarize then, we have two open issues, the theoretical basis of CO2 sensitivity and water vapor/cloud forcings and feedbacks. These comments will probably close soon and we may have to pick up elsewhere.

    • Brandon,

      I may have been a bit premature in assuming that the 5.35 factor was experimentally verified. It may be just calculated from spectra using the MODTRAN and HITRAN programs. The first link I read, http://nov79.com/gbwm/equations.html , referenced several places discussing climate sensitivity and radiative forcing. The source given for that page was comments by Norm Kalmanovitch at Climate Etc.:

      https://judithcurry.com/2011/06/10/lindzen-and-choi-part-ii/#comment-74715

      The subsequent responses by other commenters are fascinating.

      It’s too late in the evening for me to pursue this any further, but I get the feeling I’ve only scratched the surface.

Comments are closed.