Tipping point 10 years on: Who won the Armstrong-Gore 'bet' on the climate?

Kesten C. Green University of South Australia (kesten.green at unisa.edu.au)

The Challenge

In 2007, University of Pennsylvania Professor J. Scott Armstrong challenged former U.S. Vice President Albert Gore to a bet on what would happen to global average temperatures over the next 10 years. Professor Armstrong’s challenge was in response to Mr. Gore’s warning of a looming dangerous “tipping point” in temperatures. But when even scientists who are expert in a field make predictions about complex situation without using scientific forecasting methods, their forecasts have no value. The proposed $10,000 bet, then, was intended to draw attention to the need to assess the predictive validity of climate forecasts in an objective manner.

Emails to Mr. Gore were unproductive: after several attempts at engagement, his staff informed Professor Armstrong that Mr. Gore did not take bets. The important question of whether public policies should be based on the alarming projections had not gone away, however, and so Armstrong commissioned theclimatebet.com site to track how the bet would have turned out had Gore accepted.

At the time of the challenge, Mr. Gore had been warning that climate was warming at such a rate that large public expenditures were needed in great haste in order to prevent disaster. His book Assault on Reason—published in April 2007—stated on p. 204: “Many scientists are now warning that we are moving closer to several ‘tipping points’ that could – within as little as ten years – make it impossible for us to avoid irretrievable damage of the planet’s habitability for human civilization.”

Formulating The Climate Bet

Mr. Gore did not quantify his dangerous warming forecast, and so the “business as usual” projection provided by the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Third Assessment Report in 2001 was used to represent his forecast. Using the IPCC projection of 3°C per-century warming favored Mr. Gore’s side of the bet because it was considerably less dramatic than the “tipping point” claims he was articulating and some of the IPCC’s own more extreme projections.

Professor Armstrong’s side of the bet was that the global average temperature would not change. The no-change forecast is consistent with a statement in the body of the aforementioned IPCC technical report. The report stated, “In climate research and modeling, we should recognize that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.” In other words, forecasting long-term trends in climate is impossible and, by implication, forecasting long-term changes in global mean temperatures is impossible.

The IPCC statement is also consistent with Green, Armstrong and Soon’s (2009) conclusion that the forecast of no-change in global temperatures over the long term would be hard to beat in terms of accuracy, even when applied to the U.K. Met Office Hadley Centre’s questionable annual average temperature data—based on adjusted thermometer readings from selected sites from 1850—that is used by the IPCC. Green, Armstrong and Soon found that no-change forecasts were so accurate for practical purposes—e.g., average errors of only +/- 0.24°C for 50-year-ahead forecasts—that there would be no point in trying to do better.

The IPCC 3°C-per-century projection not only ignored their own authors’ conclusion about the inability to predict long-term trends, their procedures violated 72 of 89 relevant forecasting principles (Green and Armstrong 2007). As a consequence, there is no reason to expect the IPCC dangerous warming projection to be accurate over the long term, and thus no good reason for using it as the basis for policy.

Global temperatures have always varied on all time scales, however, so it was quite possible that Armstrong would lose a ten-year bet when temperatures have commonly drifted up or down by 0.3°C over ten-year periods in the past. A 150-year simulation of the bet suggested that his chance of winning was only about 70%.

Determining The Winner

In the end, the bet was offered, and monitored, on the basis of satellite temperature data from the University of Alabama at Huntsville (UAH). In contrast to surface data, the lower troposphere satellite data covers the whole Earth, is fully disclosed, and is not contaminated by poor maintenance and location of weather stations, changes from mercury to electronic measurement, and unexplained adjustments.

The cumulative absolute error (measure 1 in the table) was the key criterion for assessing accuracy. That measure has been tested and shown to be the best way to compare the accuracy of forecasts from different forecasting methods (Armstrong and Collopy 1992). By that measure, the no-change forecast reduced forecast errors by 12% compared to the IPCC dangerous warming projection. Forecasting models that cannot provide forecasts that are more accurate than the no-change forecast have no practical value.

The finding is consistent with Green and Armstrong’s 2014 analyses that compared the predictive validity of the no-change and IPCC forecasts over different time periods. The Loehle AD16 to 1935 temperature series was used to compare the accuracy of the global warming, global cooling, and no change forecasts over horizons from one to 100 years ahead; the no-change hypothesis was much more accurate than the global cooling hypothesis of 1°C-per-century cooling, which, in turn, was much more accurate than the global warming hypothesis of 3°C-per-century warming.

Alternative Measures of Winning

There are other ways that one might assess accuracy, especially since the bet was tracked each month, but the outcome is clear: there was no dangerous “tipping point” over the ten-year period. Global temperatures fell well within the range of natural variation. Seven alternative measures are presented in the table below so that readers can make their own assessments.

Armstrong v Gore on Global Temperatures: From 2008 through 2017
  Outcome for…

No Change

% better

Measure No

Change Forecast

Dangerous Warming Projection
1. Cumulative absolute error (°C) 20.2 22.8 12
2. Median monthly absolute error (°C) 0.139 0.169 18
3. Mean monthly signed error (forecast minus actual, °C) 1 -0.029 0.136 79
4. Forecast warmer than actual (% of forecasts, less 50 points) 2 -5 31 84
5. Mean absolute difference from OLS trend, 2007 base (°C) 3 0.085 0.080 -5
6. Mean absolute difference from LAD trend, 2007 base (°C) 4 0.059 0.106 44
7. Months with smaller absolute error (number out of 120) 82 38 116
8. Years with smaller absolute error (number out of 10) 7 3 133

1,2 Measures of forecast bias, with zero being totally unbiased and a positive number indicating a bias towards warming.

3,4 The commonly used Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) procedure for estimating relationships violates the “Golden Rule of Forecasting” by failing to be sufficiently conservative. The lack of conservatism arises because the method’s use of squared errors gives extra weight to extreme values. The Least Absolute Deviation (LAD) procedure avoids that problem, and is consistent with our primary criterion for assessing accuracy: the relative cumulative absolute error. The OLS trend for the 120 months of the bet was 1.53°C per century, and the LAD trend 1.17°C per century. Note that the LAD trend over the last 10 years is somewhat lower than the trend for the whole 469 months of the UAH series to date, at 1.28°C per century: the opposite of a “tipping point”.

The second and third measures in the table provide measures of bias in the forecasts. By both measures, the no-change forecast is substantially (18% and 79%) less biased.

Another way to look at bias is shown in the chart: the blue shading indicates the difference between the Armstrong/no-change forecast and the actual temperature when the forecast was too warm, and the red shading indicates the difference between the Gore/IPCC projection and the actual temperature when the projection was too cold. A perfectly unbiased forecast would have 50% over- and 50% under-forecast errors. The sum of the Armstrong/no-change over-forecast-errors was 41% of the corresponding total absolute error, whereas the sum of the Gore/IPCC under-forecast-errors was only 14%. In other words, the Armstrong/no-change model produced forecasts that were close to unbiassed over the 10 year period, whereas the Gore/IPCC model projection was grossly biassed to forecast too warm, to the extent that the Gore/IPCC error from forecasting too warm was six times larger than the error from forecasting too cool.

How would planners who had relied on the official IPCC projection have fared? Looking again at the chart, planners would have expected “extra” warmth represented by the area of the triangle between the red IPCC line and the green no-change line (19.8). The extra warmth actually experienced over the period is represented by the area between the black actual temperature line and the green line: the area above the green no-change line, less the area below the no-change line (3.47). In other words, planners relying on the IPCC projection would have experienced less than 18% of the extra warmth that they had planned for.

Those who insist on looking for a trend in the decade of seesawing temperatures will find no support for either a “tipping point,” or the IPCC’s dangerous warming trend projection, in the best-fit line, which runs at a rate of little more than 1°C per-century[a]. As the footnote to the table explains, the fitted ordinary least squares (OLS) trend from the 2007 annual average base was 1.53°C per-century, and the least absolute deviation fitted (LAD) trend was 1.17°C per-century. When the bet forecasts are assessed against the OLS trend, the Gore/IPCC 3°C per-century projection is slightly closer (measure 5 in the table), but the Armstrong/no-change forecast is 44% closer to the more relevant LAD trend (measure 6). (Why would decision makers want to minimize squared errors?) Moreover, the trend line for the period of the bet was closer to no-change than was the trend over the entire UAH temperature anomaly series to the end of 2017.

The arbitrariness of fitting a trend—by whatever method—to such a series is reinforced by the fact that if the bet had been for five years, rather than 10, the fitted trend would have been negative: -1.13°C per century (LAD), or -1.61°C per century (OLS). Note also that on 10 February 2007, Sir Richard Branson was accompanied by Mr. Gore when he stated that the “world may already have crossed a ‘tipping point’”, and so one might ask whether the temperature at the end of the bet was dramatically higher that it was then, when the January 2007 UAH figure of 0.43°C had just been released. The answer is no: the December 2017 figure was lower at 0.41°C.

Global Temperatures from 2007 through 2017 v No-Change and 3°C/Century Warming

(Temperature deviation from 1981-2010 average, in degrees C*)

image

*www.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/v6.0/tlt/uahncdc_lt_6.0.txt (updated January 4 2018 from Version 6.0 as of April 2015)

The Future of The Climate Bet

Longer is better for assessing climate forecasts, and so theclimatebet.com site will monitor the “bet” in line with Scott Armstrong’s offer to extend the challenge for another ten years by sticking with the original 2007 annual average global temperature as the starting point. Extending the bet is intended to help further publicize the important role of scientific validation of forecasts that influence public policy. Policymakers should reject forecasts that fail to reduce errors compared to an appropriate no-change benchmark.


[a] Technical note to facilitate replication: The Climate Bet was framed in terms of what would happen to temperatures relative to the 2007 average, the year in which Mr. Gore warned of a “tipping point” and Professor Armstrong tried to get him to engage in a bet. Logically, then, if one insists on fitting a line through such a volatile time series, the starting point should represent the situation at the time the claim (tipping point) and challenge (offer of bet were made). The Gore tipping point claim was made in early 2007, so one could make a case for fitting trend lines with an origin at .43C (January 2007) but, given that discussions proceeded over the 2007 year and that monthly temperatures are so volatile, the 2007 average was chosen as the base for the bet; hence, also, as the value of Professor Armstrong’s no-change forecast, and the origin for trend line fitting. Given that the data are monthly and the origin was an annual average, lines are fitted with the origin located in mid-2007. A close look at the chart reveals that the red IPCC/Gore +3°C per century line is also projected on that basis: it is slightly above the green no-trend/2007-average line at the beginning of 2008.

Advertisements

  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Louis

“By that measure, the no-change forecast reduced forecast errors by 12% compared to the IPCC dangerous warming projection.”
That may tell me that Professor Armstrong’s prediction was more right than Gore’s, but it doesn’t tell me if he would have won the bet. Can someone smarter than me wade though all the long verbiage and tell me who, if anyone, would have won the bet? The title of this article led me to believe there would be an answer, but I couldn’t decipher it.

I suppose that would depend on whether you favor the OLS method of 1.53 C, or the LAD method which shows 1.17C. A case could be made to split the difference. That would favor Armstrong, but what were the details of the original bet? How close did one have to be to win their side of the bet?

“who, if anyone, would have won the bet?”
See below. The UAH slope for the period was 0.45°C/Decade. Armstrong/Green would have lost on any accounting. By a mile.

paqyfelyc

You mean, Gore was right, there WAS a tipping point indeed ?
That’s what you say, Nick?
LOL

TA

What if there is a tipping point and nobody notices?

MarkW

Once again, the warmists have to cherry pick their end points in order to win.

Chris

“Once again, the warmists have to cherry pick their end points in order to win.”
What on earth are you talking about? Armstrong issued the challenge and the time period.

Bryan A

The solution is simple…
Like Guam, has the Climate Tipped?
Yes…Al Gore won.
No…Professor Armstrong won.
Me thinks Professor Armstrong won hands down.
and Al Gore fell flat on his words

Sun Spot

. . . but Nick, where is the accelerated warming like the models predict, it’s just not happening is it !

Sun Spot

. . . I’m just not feeeeeeeling the acceleration . . . . . .

Kaiser Derden

there was no bet … this is just the usual academic hand waving with statistics and obtuse words …

scraft1

Kaiser Derden. You are correct. There was no bet. Maybe we can move on to something else.

RWturner

I heard it snowed in Moscow.

scraft1

RW Turner – nice try.

Caligula Jones

Easier bet to prove: when Gore will sell his ocean-front properties and move inland (no, New York or Los Angeles doesn’t count).
As for no bet:
http://www.seinfeldscripts.com/ThePonyRemark.htm

LdB

The real tipping point is going on in the German Coalition talks, Merkel has narrowly avoided agreement to explicity postpone the 2020 climate target. What it looks like they will agree to “is an intention to reduce the gap as much as possible, admitting only indirectly the target will not be reached”.
The news from the golden card holder of the lunatic green fringe has already drawn dismay
https://www.cleanenergywire.org/news/coalition-talks-go-easy-carmakers-confidence-germany-shaken/international-dismay-germanys-2020-climate-target-lapse
Now all that is needed is for France and China to struggle and all bets are off.

Alan Tomalty

China will never reduce anything if it harms their ability to rule the world

Alan Tomalty

A communistic system is always in danger if there is any opposition to their rule no matter where it is. Therefore it always tries to suppress that opposition no matter where. That means we are all targets of China.

Hivemind

China will never struggle because it only promised to continue on building power plants until 2030, when it will look at CO2 emissions.

A long time ago I wanted to start a section on the Wikipedia article outlining the various forecasts and current status (i.e. a Pause as I put it). Of course the biased editors which undoubtedly were pseudonyms for people like Mann didn’t want any discussion at all of assessing the theory on how well it had performed.

Flynn

Speaking about the global mean temperature, isn’t it going down lately ?comment image
(from https://moyhu.blogspot.fr/p/latest-ice-and-temperature-data.html#NCAR)

jorgekafkazar

Coming down off an El Nino.

knr

All good points which mean ‘nothing’, for the author is fighting on the wrong battlefield. St Gore claims were very about science nor facts, they never are.
It’s PR and BS all the way, that and ego with personal enrichment. And the really bad news is, he won those bets.

paqyfelyc

Seems to me that the “bet” article is ALSO public relation, not science. science makes no bet, and scientist do not bet, either. Einstein didn’t challenge anyone on his Mercury perihelion prediction, he just predicted what would happen according to his theory that was different form Newton’s theory.

Ben of Houston

Einstein might not have made any bets, but other notable scientists have. Hawking has notably been involved in several.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_wager

This is an absurd headline and post. There was no bet made or discussed. Kesten Green is making up terms of a bet entirely out of his imagination. And they are ridiculous.
The IPCC has not by any stretch of the imagination forecast that UAH lower troposphere temperatures would rise by 0.3 °C in the next decade. They made no forecast about lower troposphere temperatures at all. They did make a forecast, in a way, about surface temperatures in the AR4, which was about the time of the bet. That would amount to about 0.2 °C/decade, although the decades don’t quite match. And the reality turned out a lot higher. The numbers are, for trend diff Jan 2008-Dec 2017:
GISS 0.433°C
NOAA 0.388
HADCRUT 0.367
An AR4-based bet would have undershot. Kesten’s forecast would have been a total failure.

Actually, UAH turned out even worse. Armstrong/Green would have lost by a mile. The WFT plot is here.
Here is the WFT output:
#Time series (uah) from 1978.92 to 2017.92
#Selected data from 2008
#Selected data up to 2017
#Least squares trend line; slope = 0.0460856 per year
2008 -0.0379929
2017 0.376778

The slope is 0.461 °C/Decade

“The OLS trend for the 120 months of the bet was 1.53°C per century”
I’ve no idea where they get that from. As noted, WFT gets 4.53. My Trendviewer gets 4.50 °C/Century.

paqyfelyc

@Nick
As usual, you are writing before thinking.
Do you believe anyone in his sane mind really cares what you write? Not even your fellow warmunist cultists do.

zazove

Curious you cared enough to respond yourself.

Doug

Nick, why is it still cold?
It’s -9 I thought we would be warmer now 🙁

commieBob

Thanks for pointing me to the WFT graphing tool. Based on the period 2008 to 2017, I don’t see why you’re not right.
Slightly off topic: If we extend the time series back to 1979, the resulting plot shows a trend of about one and a quarter degrees per century.

> Thanks for pointing me to the WFT graphing tool.
http://www.woodfortrees.org/
This is a good time to remind people to occasionally check out the WUWT nav bars, The Wood for Trees link has been in the right-side nav bar for nearly as long as I can remember. Great tool, everyone here should know about it.

paqyfelyc laments :
@Nick
As usual, you are writing before thinking.
Do you believe anyone in his sane mind really cares what you write? Not even your fellow warmunist cultists do.
Still poking your tongue out out paqyfelyc ! It would good to see why Nick’s points have upset you, on what evidence have you based your responses ? Baseless insults are the last refuge of the oppressor.
Many of us from all sides are interested in considered responses. Childish insults though add nothing to the debate.

Chris

Instead of adding something to the conversation, paqyfelyc reverts to his standard pit bull attack mode. Sad.

RWturner

Doug, it’s still cold because CO2 hasn’t decided to pump the heat your way. You need to construct an alter: http://c-pol.com/Fun/Blog/Nat_Post_Al_Gore.jpg
And pray harder for the magic molecule to pump the heat your way.

paqyfelyc

@Gareth Phillips
“It would good to see why Nick’s points have upset you, ”
Well, you told yourself: “Many of us from all sides are interested in considered responses. Childish insults though add nothing to the debate.”
“Nick’s points”, as you called them, may be childish and may be insults, but certainly not “considered responses”. He himself didn’t even considered them before writing, do you seriously expect me to do it, when he didn’t?
@Chris
Numerous comments of mine proves you wrong. Again. Actually being wrong looks like your standard, to me, so I feel comfort in your comment.

Joel Snider

‘Baseless insults are the last refuge of the oppressor.’
Jesus – read bumper stickers much?
And let’s let history decide where ‘baseless insults’ abound.

Hivemind

Or, taking a more reasonable time period, like 1998 to 2018 (2 decades), we get ~0.1 degrees per decade.

Hivemind
Chris

paqyfelc said: @Chris
Numerous comments of mine proves you wrong. Again. Actually being wrong looks like your standard, to me, so I feel comfort in your comment.
Wow, so because you think your comments are constructive, it must be so. Perhaps that’s true in your mind, but not in the real world where others are involved.

paqyfelyc

@Chris
Wow, so because you think my comments are not constructive, it must be so. Perhaps that’s true in your mind, but not in the real world where others are involved.
So let just others make their mind about my comment constructiveness. Yours, we all already know

Chris

I’ve read their comments about you both on this thread and elsewhere. They’ve already drawn their conclusions – – but continue to pretend they are complimentary conclusions.

Phoenix44

No, it is attempting to quantify what the bet would have looked like.
You know, a bit like attempting to quantify say global average temperature, a thing that also doesn’t exist but which you seem to be greatly attached to.
And comparing a long run trend, forecast over many decades with just one decade? Now that really is nonsense.

“just one decade”? They chose the bet. Those were the terms.

Philip Schaeffer

Andy, is that you?

RWturner

But just above you say

There was no bet made or discussed. Kesten Green is making up terms of a bet entirely out of his imagination.

Usually you go at least a few posts without a contradiction.

Chris

RW Turner – a bet can be proposed but not be consummated. “Proposed bet” would have been more accurate, but anyone not looking to nit pick knew exactly what Stokes meant.

“without a contradiction”
No contradiction, except maybe leaving the quotes off ‘bet’. They chose everything about it. And with nothing agreed in advance, had the luxury of filling in details after the period completed. But they did specify the time period in advance.

S. Geiger

Assuming I understand this, I have to agree with Mr. Stokes…..folks would blow a gasket if a ‘warmer’ retroactively made up statistical terms/rules to a (hypothetical) bet. Looking at the graphics it sure looks like the warming persisted at a fair clip over the 10 year period (sure, maybe lacking a ‘tipping point’, whatever that would look like). Everyone needs to ditch their tribes and be more objective. There seems to be plenty to be genuinely sceptical of in the climate biz….but this stuff is insane.

Bryan A

Nick Stokes
February 6, 2018 at 1:17 am
This is an absurd headline and post. There was no bet made or discussed. Kesten Green is making up terms of a bet entirely out of his imagination. And they are ridiculous.
The IPCC has not by any stretch of the imagination forecast that UAH lower troposphere temperatures would rise by 0.3 °C in the next decade. They made no forecast about lower troposphere temperatures at all. They did make a forecast, in a way, about surface temperatures in the AR4, which was about the time of the bet. That would amount to about 0.2 °C/decade, although the decades don’t quite match. And the reality turned out a lot higher. The numbers are, for trend diff Jan 2008-Dec 2017:
GISS 0.433°C
NOAA 0.388
HADCRUT 0.367
An AR4-based bet would have undershot. Kesten’s forecast would have been a total failure.

Nick Stokes
February 6, 2018 at 3:25 am
“just one decade”? They chose the bet. Those were the terms

Nick Stokes
February 6, 2018 at 9:18 am
“without a contradiction”
No contradiction, except maybe leaving the quotes off ‘bet’. They chose everything about it. And with nothing agreed in advance, had the luxury of filling in details after the period completed. But they did specify the time period in advance.

Now you have me confused Nick at time stamp 1:17am you say there was no bet yet both at time stamps 3:25am and 9:18am you make references to the existance of the bet. Exactly which camp are you in?
There was a bet
There wasn’t a bet

You can choose a wife. You can organise a wedding. The lady may be real, but if she won’t turn up, you don’t have a wife.

DonM

where’s Freud when you need him?

Michael Stevens

Blimey…

paqyfelyc

as knr pointed out above, Gore won the relevant bet: the pouring of moneys from rich country poor people, to rich people riding the climate scheme intensified all over the world (Although you may argue that Trump election put it on “pause” in USA)

Joel Snider

Hence the hatred and ‘baseless insults’ of the would-be ‘oppressors’ strew all over the media like particularly offensive graffiti.

Alasdair

All good fun; but a load of nonsense. I love it!

In the end, the bet was offered, and monitored, on the basis of satellite temperature data from the University of Alabama at Huntsville (UAH). In contrast to surface data, the lower troposphere satellite data covers the whole Earth, is fully disclosed, and is not contaminated by poor maintenance and location of weather stations, changes from mercury to electronic measurement, and unexplained adjustments.
And yet during the period of the bet the UAH data was subject to a large adjustment to allow for drift in the orbits of the satellites!

Geoff Sherrington

Nick,
Seems that the IPCC stated ECS was in the range 1.5 to 4.5 degrees C and that they did not disagree with the Mauna Loa CO2 concentration change that over the relevant time period would give an inferred temperature change that was easy to calculate. Is this not close enough to being a prediction of a temperature change? If not, why not? Geoff

Geoff,
“Is this not close enough to being a prediction of a temperature change?”
No. Nothing like it. That is an estimate of change when equilibrium is regained (and CO2 doubled). Not over a decade.
In fact, the IPCC did make a forecast just before the bet was made. In the AR4 SPM, 2007 they say:

For the next two decades, a warming of about 0.2°C per decade is projected for a range of SRES emission scenarios.

toorightmate

Nick,
That’s terrific – they were only 50% over the odds – much better than normal.

Phil. didn’t provide quantitative numbers to describe “large adjustment.” More recently, RSS also had a large, somewhat controversial adjustment. They produced this handy graph comparing their old and current schemes with UAH and NASA:
http://images.remss.com/figures/blogs/2016/msu_update_march04_02.png
None of the lines are close to the 3 K/century IPCC reference. I’m not sure where RSS got the data, the UAH value is low compare to what Roy Spencer reports.
The point here is that “large adjustment” is still pretty much down in the noise.

“quantitative numbers to describe “large adjustment.””
I’ve plotted the version differences of both UAH and RSS here (more details and graphs here). I’ve also shown, on the same anomaly base (1979-2008) the difference between the current GISS and archived versions from 2005 and 2011, for comparison. The satellite changes are large in comparison.comment image
“UAH and NASA” I think you mean NOAA.

zazove

So in a clumsy attempt at character assassination Mr Green gives himself an uppercut. All good fun.

David J Wendt

From Dr. Spencer’s pot on the Jan’18 anomaly
“The linear temperature trend of the global average lower tropospheric temperature anomalies from January 1979 through January 2018 remains at +0.13 C/decade.”

John harmsworth

Then anyone with a brain would run the numbers backward to approximately 1930 and draw a a line from there to 2018. The resulting trend line would be approximately 0! Catastrophic!

Ryddegutt

Here is another forecast. I bet the CO2-heads will continue to “adjust” historical temperature series to fit their models and agendas for as long as the money are flowing to the climate-ayatollas.
The probability for every year in 150 years with temperature data are wrong and needs to be adjusted in the direction of the models can be calculated to 0.5^150 = 7E-46.
This is a number so small that it can be used to as fuel for Infinite Improbability Drive in starship Heart of Gold…

NorwegianSceptic

And it seems to be an infinite number of monkeys adjusting the data 😉

toorightmate

Kesten Green,
Be very careful.
Look what has happened to the late Bob Carter, Jennifer Marohasey, Prof Peter Ridd, Willie Soon, Judith Currie and numerous other wise people who have strived for the truth to be told and for the science to be objectively debated.
This left wing monster is something to be very fearful of.

Trebla

In an article that appeared in WUWT several months ago, a statistical analysis showed that the meanderings of the Earth’s annual average temperatures since the beginning of the industrial revolution were consistent with a random walk. I haven’t seen a refutation of that conclusion.

Windchaser

A random walk model would eventually have the Earth temperature go below 0K or above 10,000K. It’s non-physical. It is contradicted by physics.
Don’t use models that are known to be contradicted by physics.

fizzissist

Mr. Gore does not take bets. … He does, however, own Generation Investment Management, a company that plays the stock market….
The stock market, as everyone knows, is never a gamble…

bit chilly

there appears to be a privileged select few that it never is a gamble.

ResourceGuy

I like the cartoon Al instead of a real photo, especially in the morning while having breakfast or drinking.

Javier

Ridiculous article over a non-existent bet under not-agreed conditions.
Meanwhile the world has warmed in this decade, sea level rise continues but shows no acceleration, and summer Arctic sea ice is stable. In this decade everybody, including believers in the CO₂-hypothesis, has come to know that Al Gore was full of BS, but got away with an Oscar, a Nobel medal, and a fortune. The world, as always, is chock full of ingenuous people, and plenty of people that are going to exploit them.

paqyfelyc

+1

homeys44

Yep Not sure why we want to promote this. Not only did this guy somehow choose almost the worst 10 year window possible for his bet……he also bet Gore, who is filthy rich and is sure to decline. Go bet Michael Mann for real next time.

JohnWho

“Many scientists are now warning that we are moving closer to several ‘tipping points’ that could – within as little as ten years – make it impossible for us to avoid irretrievable damage of the planet’s habitability for human civilization.”
So, “the bet” could have been “We will not reach a ‘tipping point” in the next 10 years”.
If so, Gore would have clearly lost since he is still saying we can still “save the world for humanity”.

Bertrand

“In the end, the bet was offered, and monitored, on the basis of satellite temperature data from the University of Alabama at Huntsville (UAH). In contrast to surface data, the lower troposphere satellite data covers the whole Earth, is fully disclosed, and is not contaminated by poor maintenance and location of weather stations, changes from mercury to electronic measurement, and unexplained adjustments.”
Maybe not. But it has measurement issues of its own and has had to be revised upwards at least three times previously due to errors on the part of Christy and Spencer. It also shows a trend that is anomalous with just about every other indicator of global temperature. The simplest explanation is that it’s probably wrong.

John harmsworth

How exactly does this correction process work? They find an error which always, and I mean always, lowers past temperatures without affecting present temperatures. Don’t measurement problems ever affect present readings? Now what are the odds on that?

Windchaser

They find an error which always, and I mean always, lowers past temperatures without affecting present temperatures.

The satellite adjustments have gone both ways. UAH dropped quite a bit in changing to v6.0, while RSS rose about an equal amount in the opposite direction. (And no, they don’t agree with each other).
The problem is that the satellites were not designed to measure temperature but something else entirely, and the temperatures are extrapolated from those other readings. And their orbits degrade over time, and we’re constantly switching from one satellite to another (each with different measurement tech), and there’s little overlap for calibrating between satellites.
Until we actually put satellites in orbit designed to measure temperature, and until we reliably have more than one up there so that we can cross-calibrate them reliably, the satellite series is going to be a lot weaker than the surface series.

donb

Last night I watched Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth on Turner Classic Movies (TCM). It contained a mixture of truth, half (misleading) truth, and totally false claims. Although professionally done, it clearly was a propaganda film, laced with tear-jerking appeals to all the “unfair” trails and tribulations that Gore had suffered. Unfortunately the type of thing many members of the public enjoy and are influenced by.

joelobryan

An Inconvenient Truth should be a regular feature on SyFy Channel, sandwiched in between “Lost iin Space” and Dr Who. All quackery.

Harry Passfield

Done, having so recently watched this over-produced propaganda movie you should immediately go and watch the disaster movie, ‘The Day After Tomorrow’ and see how much of the CGI in it – of glaciers calving, etc, etc appears in Gore’s film. Clue: He shamelessly lifted it without giving credit for it.

This article is tedious and
so bad I can’t get through it.
Reading this article
is like watching snow melt
on a warm winter day.
If the author “teaches”
at a college, then I am
reminded of how happy
I am that I completed
my six years of college
in 1977 and never had to
listen to a boring lecture again!
The bet is irrelevant,
if your goal is to learn
some real climate science.
Al Gore is irrelevant,
if your goal is to learn
some real climate science.
I read the Armstrong paper
over ten years ago, about
climate forecasting,
and always saved a copy.
It’s at the link below:
https://repository.upenn.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1169&context=marketing_papers
I should be more interested
in the “science” of forecasting,
since I have an MBA, but am not.
No one knows what causes climate change
beyond a list of likely suspects.
Those who chose CO2 as the
climate controller have had 30 years
of wrong predictions to show
they were wrong.
We don’t need any bets to prove anything.
The most important thing anyone can
learn about the climate is to ignore
predictions of the future climate.
My climate blog:
http://www.elOnionBloggle.Blogspot.com

joelobryan

The CO2-Warming scam is a bust for the Alarmists.The alarmists are returning to Ozone Holes. Worked before. So why not try it again?


Ozone Layer May Be Thinning Over Earth’s Heavily Populated Areas
“Among their suspects are unregulated chemicals used in paint thinner and solvents, and in production of a safer substitute for the ozone-destroying chemicals banned decades ago. Global changes in high-altitude winds due to climate change could also be at fault by altering the distribution of ozone throughout the atmosphere, the scientists said.”
https://www.wsj.com/articles/ozone-layer-may-be-thinning-over-earths-heavily-populated-areas-1517896800

The obvious problem that always existed with the Antarctic Ozone Hole is no one lives there except a few scientists in special habitats. Seasonal South Pole ozone hole at 20 miles up in stratosphere is not scary enough. There are no polar bears to show starving or reefs dying or tropical islands endangered by an Ozone hole over the South Pole.
So now we have Ozone Holes over heavily populated areas. Bwah-ha-ha-ha-ha. Brought to you by Mr Evil Carbon.
What a load of crap.

Leftists are losing their mojo.
They always came up with something new
for their next boogeyman.
Something really scary,
like exploding silicone
breast implants — that would
scare me — could poke you
in the eye.

co2islife

Al Gore lost a bet, the public lost trillions on his lies.
TRILLIONS of PUBLIC Dollars Spent on Conclusions Reached Based Upon “Made Up Data.”
According to the IPCC, the oceans are by far the most “dominant” influence on global climate energy balance. No other influence even comes close. Ocean warming dominates the increase in energy stored in the climate system, accounting for more than 90% of the energy accumulated between 1971 and 2010 (high confidence), with only about 1% stored … Continue reading
https://co2islife.wordpress.com/2017/05/14/trillions-of-public-dollars-spent-on-conclusions-reached-based-upon-made-up-data/

Harry Passfield

Nick Stokes: At the top of the thread you claimed there was no bet, then later you said there was. In any case, you were asked, if the bet was lost then Gore won – on the basis there would be a ‘tipping point: so where’s the tipping point?
You haven’t answered.

Windchaser

Armstrong proposed a bet. Gore did not accept it.
There was no accepted bet, but we can look at what would’ve happened to the original bet if it had been accepted. (Short story: Armstrong loses).
Comparing the loose IPCC projections for the next couple decades, of 0.2C/decade for surface temperatures, the actual surface temperatures rose by ~0.45 C/decade over that time.

“on the basis there would be a ‘tipping point'”
Do you think a bet was made?
But the tipping point is another thing they had to make up, since they couldn’t quantify anything on the basis of what Gore was supposed to have said. And neither can I, since nothing useful is quoted.

Harry Passfield

Although Gore was quoted in hearsay, this para from the post seems to nail that Gore was predicting a tipping point – and described it:-

At the time of the challenge, Mr. Gore had been warning that climate was warming at such a rate that large public expenditures were needed in great haste in order to prevent disaster. His book Assault on Reason—published in April 2007—stated on p. 204: “Many scientists are now warning that we are moving closer to several ‘tipping points’ that could – within as little as ten years – make it impossible for us to avoid irretrievable damage of the planet’s habitability for human civilization.”

Now, there well not have been a bet, but if there had been…

Joel Snider

Bottom line – beyond all your double-talk – Gore’s propagandistic crap was just that.
But please do continue to argue how many angles can dance on the head of pin.

Harry,
“seems to nail that Gore was predicting a tipping point”
It doesn’t nail anything. Tipping point in what? Temperature? Arctic ice? “Several” tipping points?
What it does nail is that the tipping point wasn’t to be 2007, as Kesten Green claims. Maybe 2017…

Paul Penrose

So Mr. Gore won’t bet, but he expects the public to make a massive multi-trillion dollar bet that he and his friends are right. Typical elitist control freak. They never put any skin in the game, but expect everybody else to.

Windchaser

…would he somehow be immune to a carbon tax?
I’m pretty sure that Gore would be subject to the same taxes or increased energy prices as the rest of us.

Harry Passfield

And he is in a much better situation to afford ’em.

Windchaser

Sure, they can more easily afford to pay up, because they’ve got more disposable income. But they have skin in the game, just like the rest of us.

zazove

Irony alert: he would have won the bet.

brians356

FWIW Turner Classic Movies (TCM) ran “An Inconvenient Truth” last night, and evening of award-winning documentaries. I missed it, but later watched much of “Woodstock”.

Bryan A

You definitely watched the better of the two documentaries

Jamie

I have to agree with Nick Stokes on this one…Looks to me that Gore would have won that bet…

Uncle Gus

Somebody once made a similar bet with Ralph Nader (or it may have been Alvin Toffler) for $1million about the price of metals in ten years time. Of course, they are a “scarce resource” and so should get more expensive, right? The price went down, the doomsayer lost.
The difference here is that Al Gore actually *has* a million dollars, and would be expected to pay up!
(Also, he’s notably mean…)

Uncle Gus: Someone once made a similar bet with Ralph Nader (or it may have been Alvin Toffler) for $1 Million about the price of metals in ten years time.
Gus: I think you’re referring to the famous wager on commodity prices that the economist Julian Simon offered to make with the Malthusian biologist Paul Erhlich, author of The Population Bomb. The following is quoted from Simon’s book The Ultimate Resource II, p35.1996.
Simon’s motivation in offering the wager was that “False scares are not cost less and benign; far from it.”
” So now it was time for me to put my money where my mouth is. Will the doomsdayers who say that minerals and other raw materials will get more scare do the same?”
“The first edition of this book contained this statement: This is a public offer to stake $10,000, in separate transactions of $1000 or $100 each on my belief that mineral resources ( or food or other commodities) will not rise in price in future years, adjusted for inflation. You can choose any mineral or other raw material ( including grain or fossil fuels) that is not government controlled, and the date of the settlement.”
“…. In 1970 Paul Erlich wrote, ‘If I were a gambler, I would take even money that England will not exist in the year 2000.’ In an exchange with him in 1980 I offered to take that bet or more realistically, wager that natural resources would become cheaper rather than more expensive. Professor Erhlich and two other colleagues said they would “accept Simon’s astonishing offer before other greedy people jump in.” And he said that “the lure of easy money can be irresistible.” They chose 5 metals-copper, chrome, nickel, tin and tungsten- and a ten year period.”
“At settling time in September 1990, not only the sum of the prices, but the price of each individual metal, had fallen.”
Simon writes that he knew the odds were heavily in his favor because the prices of metals have been falling throughout human history and that the bet was like shooting fish in a barrel. The economic principle of the encyclopedic Ultimate Resource II is that human ingenuity, intellectual capital, will over come resource shortages and scarcity in response to rising prices, thereby increasing supply and driving down prices to the cost of production. Humanity is the ultimate resource, not a plague or affliction on the earth.

Steve Zell

Al Gore reached a Tipper point of no return.

DWR54

The outcome of the ‘bet’ seems simple enough:
After some adjustments, ArmstrongGreen finally settled on staking that temperature rise between January 2008 and December 2017 in the UAH TLT data set would be closer to ‘zero’ than it would be to continued warming along IPCC forecasts, which they deemed to be 0.3C/dec. (As noted by Nick Stokes above, the actual IPCC 2007 forecast was for ~ 0.2C/dec averaged over the next 2 decades and this referred to surface, not lower troposphere data.)
Nevertheless, even proceeding with their fantasy terms, Armstrong & Green lost heavily. The observed trend in UAH from January 2008 to December 2017 was 0.45 C/Dec. Much faster even than Armstrong & Green’s wrongly attributed IPCC ‘forecast’.
That Mr Green is apparently claiming victory in this bet is ludicrous on its face; perhaps borderline delusional.

DonM

Why would Gore accept such a bet.
If he won, he would need to acknowledged that the “tipping point” occurred and he would lose out on future income associated with the gorescam.
If he lost, and there was no acknowledged “tipping point” in the mandated return period, then he would lose credibility (although it is hard to believe he has any left to lose).

Russ R.

Armstrong won, because he was willing to put his money and reputation on the line, to refute political spin, dressed up as science. AlGore lost because he was unwilling to commit his funds and reputation on speculation, but was trying to convince us that we should commit our funds and resources to that same speculation.
The time period was too short for actual determination of “AGW warming” on a climate that varies naturally. A proper bet, would have framed it, as the change in climate, from 1950 to present, and how that compared to natural variations in past climate measurements and proxies.
That would be a proper bet based on the differences of their views.
Either way, if you want others to invest in what you are unwilling to invest in, you are a con man.