Yesterday’s Climate Debate of the Decade: a summary from an attendee

Summary of the event Conversations on Climate Change held in Charleston, WV, Geary Auditorium, on June 12th, 2018.

By Brian Lindauer

“Our premise was this: Climate change is undeniable, but there is disagreement as to whether human activity is causing it, and if so, to what degree.”

So states the informational material provided by Spilman Thomas & Battle to the attendees of their privately organized forum on climate change. It’s quite curious that the evening was put together by, of all things, a law firm. One might expect this sort of event to have been put together by a university’s science department, or perhaps one of the national scientific organizations, such as our own David Middleton’s favorite, American Association for the Advancement of Science in America. In this case, however, it was a confluence of interests that prompted Spilman Thomas & Battle to organize the evening.

They describe themselves as a super-regional law firm based in the mid-Atlantic, but given that they’re headquartered in Charleston, their client base includes businesses in the energy sector, manufacturing, and related industry. As such, climate change and its potential regulatory impacts are of deep concern to them. Adding to this, several of the partners hold a personal interest in the subject. So when it came time for the firm to choose a subject for one of their periodic public forums, climate change seemed an obvious choice.

So the organizers arranged for two sides to be represented, with Dr. Michael Mann and Dr. David Titley on one side, and Dr. Judith Curry and Dr. Patrick Moore on the other.

The event was held at University of Charleston’s Geary Auditorium, but just to be clear, was not actually an official university event.

With Spilman partner, Nicholas Preservati, moderating and introducing the topic and speakers, the attendees were informed that the position of the organizers was simple: it’s not IF there’s climate change, but rather, how much has man contributed to it through the addition of CO2 into the atmosphere. This was to be the framework under which all the presenters agreed to speak.

The format for the evening’s discussion was simple. Each speaker would have fifteen minutes to present. After the four presentations, a question and answer session would follow, in which the moderator would present previously vetted questions to the speakers. The speakers each addressed three questions during this phase. Finally, the speakers were provided with the opportunity to give a final comment, limited to two minutes each. The order of speakers for the presentations was Mann, Curry, Titley, Moore, with this order being maintained through each of the phases.

What was promised was a collegial discussion, “a fascinating and enlightening conversation” between world-renowned scientists on an issue that has been divisive, and at times, vitriolic. This was largely what was delivered. Not a debate. But rather the presentation of a diversity of viewpoints.

Now, in the interest of completeness, I’ll offer a synopsis of each speaker and their main points below. But before I do, I think it might be useful to offer some overall thoughts regarding the event. Going in, I think it’s unlikely that anyone would find an event such as this sufficient to change a mind that’s already made up. What it can do, however, is introduce a topic, or suggest an idea, that might lead an individual to do some deeper exploring. I know this was the true hope of the organizers. And listening to the information presented, I do believe there was enough there for a curious mind to be intrigued.

The forum presented information ranging from Mann’s hockey stick to the paleoclimate record. We heard claims of induced ice melt causing irreversible sea level rise, as well as a counter-claim showing a completely natural explanation that has nothing to do with CO2 driven warming.

National security concerns were discussed related to a potential “500 million people in play,” migrating due to sea level rise. (As a point of reference, we were reminded of the staggering impact on Europe that one million Syrian refugees had, with it being left up to us to infer the impact of 500 times this number.) And extreme weather events, such as droughts and flooding were repeatedly referenced.

In the end, I think Dr. Curry was most accurate when she described the CO2 control knob theory as “overtly simplistic.” The idea that man is responsible for permanently harming the climate is an easy thing to believe. We burn fossil fuels. This releases CO2 which warms the atmosphere. This warming makes all these other bad things inevitable. It’s simple. Direct. And there’s enough evidence easily available to convince an unwary scientist of its veracity.

It’s only when you dig deeper though, and eschew the seductive easy explanation, that you begin to note that the evidence might not be so easily explained by your theory after all. This can be hard for people to accept, though, and there’s no telling what will trigger it for each individual. Did people walk away from the event believing Dr. Mann’s claim that there’s “no worthy debate to be had” on the science? Or did they hear Dr. Curry’s scientific questioning and Dr. Moore’s unfettered passion and wonder, if there’s no debate to be had, how is it these two incredibly intelligent individuals, and noted scientists in their fields, don’t agree?

No one can answer this for sure, but we can certainly hope…after all, besides wanton destruction of the earth’s climate, isn’t hope what we humans do best?

Speaker Summaries:

Dr. Michael Mann, at ease and confident at the podium, led off the evening by stating his hope for “a robust conversation” on how to address climate change. His presentation was based around the idea that the only debate to be had is on what to do about man-made climate change. Indeed, he stated this position several times, reinforcing it by clarifying that there’s no worthy debate to be had on whether there’s a problem, or that man has caused it. As a justification for this, Dr. Mann explained that the science behind anthropogenic climate change is verifiable fact. Incontrovertible. Well known and agreed upon for over a hundred years.

Of all the claims made throughout the evening, this is the one I found to be the most personally problematic. Clearly scientists such as Curry and Moore aren’t, to borrow a tired phrase, “denying” the basic science of atmospheric and radiative physics. To claim otherwise, or even to imply through omission, that they do so is unfair, untrue, and frankly, does nothing to increase the credibility of the presenter.

At any rate, moving on, as anyone familiar with this subject could guess, Dr. Mann’s presentation centered on his “iconic” hockey stick graph, noting that this year marks the 20th anniversary of its publication. The point he made sure to emphasize with the hockey stick was the “warming spike” of the late 20th century is unnatural, and unprecedented in tens of thousands of years. He noted that 2014, 2015, and 2016 were each record-breaking years for global temperatures, and cited his 2017 paper which ostensibly demonstrated there was only a 1 in 3000 chance that three consecutive years of global warming would be due to natural causes. In the course of his presentation, Dr. Mann made two specific claims: temperatures were now likely to rise by 4 to 5 degrees Celsius and sea levels by 6 to 8 feet.

Dr. Judith Curry’s careful and precise approach was an interesting contrast to Dr. Mann’s. Whereas he spoke engagingly, but quickly, Dr. Curry never broke stride from her measured and deliberate pace. I’m not sure how much lecturing she did during her tenure at Georgia Tech, but she certainly seemed practiced and poised at the podium during her presentation.

In it she systematically described how she moved from agreement with the IPCC to a skeptic position. She noted the areas where there is agreement between scientists: that global temperatures have increased, that humans have contributed to the rise in CO2, and that CO2 is a greenhouse gas. She also pointed out the crucial point of disagreement was not related to these basic scientific premises, but rather, was in how much of the temperature increase can be attributed to CO2. She pointed out that upon deeper investigation, many of the observations used by scientists, such as Dr. Mann, to support the man-made climate change theory had natural explanations, and needed no help from CO2 to understand. Seal level rise made its second appearance for the evening, when Dr. Curry used it as a specific example that had natural explanations.

She also presented a clear delineation between the two competing understandings of the climate: CO2 Control Knob versus Natural Variability. If you were interested in summarizing Dr. Curry’s general position on from this one brief presentation, you would conclude that she strongly believes “you get what you get” with the earth’s climate, and that’s it’s unlikely that mankind has forced any significant perturbation.

It’s interesting to note that Dr. Curry took the time in her short presentation to describe the madhouse effect, and how it’s being played out in the climate science community. I found her most scathing critique of the night summed up in her first point on this: a “rampant overconfidence in an overly simplistic theory of climate change”. Without claiming to know her personally, I would describe this as classic Curry. Precise. Sharp. And to the point.

Dr. David Titley, was next, and was clearly a gifted speaker, with light jests and humor sprinkled throughout his presentation. Interestingly, in this crowd his jokes seemed to miss more often than they hit, despite it being what he described as a “target rich environment”. All I can say is, tough crowd doc! Keep at it and you’ll find your groove eventually.

In all seriousness, Dr. Titley, like Dr. Mann, attempted to conflate the uncontested scientific premises of John Tyndall and Svante Arrehnius with the claims of man-made climate change. In doing this, he drew an analogy between a three-legged stool and the three bases for his scientific convictions: fundamental theory, observations, and predictions. In Dr. Titley’s estimation, we have a fundamental theory that matches our observations, and as for our predictions, if anything, they’re too conservative.

As evidence, Dr. Titley showed a graph which purported to demonstrate Dr. James Hansen’s analysis from 20 years ago (apologies for the vague description…my notes are a bit unclear here) and how it had fared against observations. In the analysis presented by Dr. Titley, Hansen actually under-predicted the warming (or sea level rise…again, I’m unsure what the chart actually was). With this three-legged stool thus secured comfortably beneath him, Dr. Titley was able to focus on the implications for national security, as well how we as society can alleviate the economic stress our mitigation efforts will necessarily cause.

On this point, credit is given where due; Dr. Titley expressed a clear and unambiguous concern for those whose livelihoods might be impacted due to policy choices and increased regulations. His conclusion, though, was that we have the capacity to help those impacted, and should not let it stand in the way of moving away from fossil fuels.

Dr. Patrick Moore was the final presenter, and spoke with passion about the increase in CO2 being a wonderful boon to all life. If you ever wondered why or how he got into environmental activism, you understood immediately upon hearing him speak. This is an individual who feels strongly, and believes fervently, in his message. His presentation began with some pictures of himself from the heady days of free love, cheap drugs, and…Russian whaling? Yes. Our dear Patrick Moore, in his life on the edge, has pictures of himself in an inflatable boat pulling a Tiananmen Square with a Russian whaler. Oh, and he also had hair…but that’s a different topic.

With regards to his actual discussion, Dr. Moore began by running through what we know of paleoclimate history, showing charts that indicated temperatures and CO2 were not in sync throughout the record. It was a whirlwind tour through some five hundred million years of the earth’s climate history, with his basic premise being that CO2 has never been the cause for the earth’s many, and significant, climate fluctuations, so there’s no reason to assume it is today either. Furthermore, he clarified that despite the warming of the last 150 years, it’s still colder than during the peak of the last five interglacials. Neither had there been any single climate or weather events that were out of line from those experienced in the last ten thousand years.

Dr. Moore moved on from the paleo record quickly, though, and spent a good portion of the remaining time discussing all the benefits of CO2, concluding with his charge to “celebrate CO2”. (If I were in his marketing department, I’d suggest making this even more catchy by saying, “Celebrate, Don’t Regulate!”)

As Dr. Moore’s time ran out, it was clear that there were several other points he wanted to make, and my opinion is he may have tried to fit too much in.

As noted, following the presentations, there was a Q&A session and a closing comment opportunity. Here are my notes on interesting points made:


  • The Pages 2K project validated the results of his original hockey stick
  • We don’t have any confidence in the paleo climate record more than 30K – 40K years old
  • Recent warming is unprecedented in totality of known climate record (the 30K – 40K year)
  • 350 – 380ppm is ideal CO2 level
  • No honest debate can be had about the basics of the science
  • Visit for more info on how to talk to skeptics


  • Risk mitigation strategies must match the level of the risk
  • The precautionary principle is dangerous because it may set you down the wrong path
  • Beware the cure that’s worse than the disease
  • Man is not capable of controlling the climate, we will get what we get
  • IPCC set a range of 1.5 – 4.5 degrees Celsius for ECS, but GCMs seemed tuned to about 3.2C (high-end)
  • There’s too much uncertainty in our understanding to make broad sweeping claims
  • We have no idea what the optimal CO2 level should be


  • Droughts and temperatures are the specific components of climate change most attributable to CO2
  • Extreme weather events will get worse
  • Sea level rise is the single biggest concern, with up to 25′ – 30′ likely (100 – 200 years out)
  • Orlando could be the southern most point of a future Florida
  • The optimal CO2 level is the level that caused climate stability, which in turned allowed mankind to flourish (starting 8,000 years ago)…so mid-300’s ppm is ideal.


  • Consensus is a political word, not a scientific one
  • The impact of 2C increase would be equivalent to moving to Florida (insignificant)
  • Civilation began to flourish during holocene maximum, which was warmer than today (glacier advance and subsequent retreat since then demonstrates that it was warmer then that it is today)
  • Total reduction of man-made CO2 emissions is not only impossible, but it’s undesirable
  • Man’s accidental intervention into the carbon cycle may have inadvertently halted the slow death of plant life by reintroducing needed CO2 into the cycle
  • Ideal CO2 levels for plants are around 1000ppm, and there’s no reason to seek to avoid this level

Although I’ll provided expanded details for each presenter below, in the interest of keeping this digestible, I think it’s fair to provide my overall take on this up front, with a more detailed summary following at the end.

Dr. Mann’s key points and claims could be summarized as follows:

  • CO2 has now reached 410ppm, a level not seen in millions of years
  • There is now a veritable “hockey league” of graphs validating his original hockey stick graph
  • Based on current projections and “business as usual”, 4 to 5 degrees C warming is likely, and twice that in the Arctic
  • The models are wrong on sea ice…it’s melting FASTER than they projected (it’s not clear if the graph Dr. Mann displayed was global, arctic, or antarctic sea ice projections and observations)
  • The melting of the ice sheet represents a tipping point. Once it starts, it’s impossible to stop, and will represent substantial feedbacks kicking in
  • Climate change is now changing the jet stream, inducing large meanders into it
  • Sea level rise expectations have increased from 3′ – 4′ to 6′ – 8′

During the Q&A phase Dr. Mann addressed three questions:

1) Why don’t we move towards clean coal?
Dr. Mann’s position is that clean coal is not currently economically competitive against natural gas, but otherwise is perfectly acceptable as an energy source from a climate change perspective as long as it “keeps the genie in the bottle”.

2) What, if anything, would he do differently on his hockey stick graph if he were doing it today?
Dr. Mann noted that his hockey stick graph was the first time this type of analysis had been attempted. And like any “seminal piece of work”, there were things to improve. However, though much has been learned in the intervening years, the hockey stick has been validated, most notably by the Pages2K project. See here for Willis’ take on it at the time it was published:

3) What is the optimal level of CO2. (Note: This last question was a general question addressed by each of the speakers.)
Dr. Mann’s original answer to this question was a bit evasive, or perhaps it’d be fairer to categorize it as equivocal. Either way, Nick (the moderator) pressed him to give a concrete answer. Upon being pressed Dr. Mann hypothesized that 350 – 380 ppm were optimal. He also stated that CO2 levels greater than 400ppm could result in up to 60′ to 80′  6′ to 8′ of sea level rise.

Footnote by Anthony:

I offer my sincere thanks to Brian for his excellent summary.

As many WUWT readers know, the live video feed yesterday was a disaster. The organizers recognized this, and to their credit, sent this email:

We are aware of technical challenges that made it very difficult to hear the live broadcast and are so sorry for the disappointment. We did have a separate professional recording made of the event and will share a copy of that with you as soon as it is available. Please accept our sincere apologies for the sound quality during the live event. Thank you for your patience as we work to get this remedied.

I hope that when the video is made available, we’ll be able to share it here on WUWT.

263 thoughts on “Yesterday’s Climate Debate of the Decade: a summary from an attendee

  1. Thank you, Brian.
    It would be nice if the presenters offered their assessment of your summary.
    (Of course, we know The Ring Master won’t.)

    • I don’t see any value in that. But thanks to Brian for going to this paywalled event and providing this summary. Very objective and fairly presented.

      As usual Mann refused to debate the essential question he was invited to debate and instead pretends that he has already won that one and we should just talk about how we are going to apply his politics.

      It is sickening that this arrogant and disingenuous jerk is ever taken seriously as a scientist.

      • Greg
        When your assumptions are unproven, and unprovable,
        you must start several steps up the “assumption ladder”
        … and focus your “debate” on how bad the coming
        climate catastrophe will be !

        Of course the future is not predictable, so you’d think most people
        would just look at the past: The average temperature of
        our planet changed since 1880 , somewhere from near zero to about + 2 degrees. C.
        Most people pick +1 degree C. as the “right number”.

        Question: Would anyone have noticed a +1 degree C. warming spread over
        137 years unless they were constantly being lectured by smarmy
        leftists that the world is coming to an end (from CO2 runaway warming)?

        Answer: People would have just enjoyed the climate — slightly warmer
        at night, maybe from CO2, maybe not, and lived happily ever after …
        but leftists won’t allow that — they want everyone to be as miserable
        as they are — fearing the future, and sure the only “solution” is a more
        powerful government and more regulations!

  2. Thank you Brian.

    I have to chuckle over this absurd statement from Dr. Mann

    “Upon being pressed Dr. Mann hypothesized that 350 – 380 ppm were optimal. He also stated that CO2 levels greater than 400ppm could result in up to 60′ to 80′ of sea level rise.”

    60-80 feet rise?

    We got all that and 250 feet more when Meltwater Pulses came along around 15,000-10,000 years ago to refill a lot of those glacier melts back into the ocean waters, all while the CO2 supposedly went up from around 180 to around 250 ppm when the big melting dropped way off.


    • Mann is a science denier!
      He denies that:
      * there has been no statistically-significant warming since 1995.
      * the rate of the current warming is statistically indistinguishable from earlier warm periods?
      * Minoan, Egyptian, Roman and Medieval times were probably warmer than recently?
      * CO2 follows, not leads temperature.
      * H2O causes much more greenhouse effect than CO2?
      * 95% of the annual CO2 emission is from nature?
      * the glaciers retreated FASTER in the 1930s than recently
      * the current ocean rise is within historical norms.
      * solar cycles are a better fit to climate than CO2?
      * man’s CO2 has never been proven to cause dangerous warming?

      • So far in the Modern Warm Period, the Holocene Optimum (5 Ka), Egyptian (4 Ka), Minoan (3 Ka), Roman (2 Ka) and Medieval (1 Ka) WPs were definitely all warmer than the current relatively balmy cycle.

        The downward trend however is disturbing.

        • It often seems to me, that Mann and all the other global warming clowns, are a bit like the orchestra playing as the Titanic went down. In the wider scheme of things, what they are doing is totally bizarre – but at least they keep the populace’s mind from considering things about which we can do almost nothing.

      • We must also remember the previous interglacial period, the Eemian, where temperatures were higher than today and there was more icecap melting and higher sea levels yet CO2 levels were lower than today. Clearly mankind’s use of fossil fuels did not cause the Eemian. Clearly the greater ice cap melting of the Eemian was not Irreversible because the last ice age followed.

        • Mann dismisses that by claiming we don’t have any reliable knowledge of conditions beyond 35-45,000 years ago, clearly a blatant lie but he has quite a few of those. Of course doesn’t mention that his “iconic” hockey stick was dropped like a hot potato by the IPCC when they realized McIntyre and McKitrick’s analysis completely debunked it. Mann’s graph denies the existence of the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age. He is a total fake like Gore and Hansen, but a clever one who knows how to fool a lay audience.

          • When populating the platoon of total fakes, I wouldn’t overlook Bill Nye. His cookie jar “demonstration” of global warming should have been the end of his involvement in this political movement. But celebrity is more useful to the demagogues than competence.

          • Patrick,

            If Mann’s hockey stick has been validated by other studies, then, the down-tick in temperatures that is indicated by his data from 1982 onward also must have been replicated by those studies. However, instrumental measurements record a continuing increase in temperatures until the end of the 20th century. In essence, Mann is saying that the entire concept of trees being at all useful as thermometers has been invalidated by other studies, hence the subsequent need for “Mike’s Nature trick” to splice instrumental measurements after 1982 on to his tree-ring proxy.

            Sneaky guy.

          • There is a difference in the cutting down 70 something trees until you get a fit for your temperature record, which I believe Mann did, and isotopic bonding in trees that clearly reflect temperature changes that have been validated by other sources. Of course Mann was probably aware of that and didn’t use isotopic bonding in trees since it wouldn’t have supported his position. ( it would have negated it )
            I am surprised that nobody in the biology field didn’t say anything about the width of tree rings as a proxy for temperature. If anything tree ring growth is affected by any number of things, but most certainly the amount of water. It’s hot in the desert, but few grow there. Maybe they did and were told to be quite…. we can find somebody else to do your job.
            All in all, AGW does appear to be a scam.

          • rishrac, Mann didn’t cut down any trees. He didn’t even sample any, as far as I know. He used samples take by others.

          • It doesn’t matter whether he cut them down or someone else did or when. The university backed him and he used the width of the trees deceptively. Any number of issues determine the width of the rings… water, sun light, altitude, latitude, in which climate zone, nutrients, competition, on which side of the slope. what other tress were growing next to it.. ( some trees help and others hurt)
            There is no ideal tree to compare it to.
            It was widely discussed, I think it was on this site, that he had 76 cut down. But that is really immaterial.

          • “hence the subsequent need for “Mike’s Nature trick” to splice instrumental measurements after 1982 on to his tree-ring proxy.”

            It was more like 1960.

          • Assuming you are the real Patrick Moore, PhD — I have enjoyed your climate papers for two decades so far, and consider you a top expert on understanding and communicating that more CO2 in the air would be a blessing for C3 plants and the people and animals who eat them..

            One thing Mann (and fellow warmunists) have, and would like to forget, is a track record of wrong predictions, that for some reason are not thrown back at him often enough.

            One could do a whole presentation, Saul Alinsky style, ridiculing the wrong predictions by “climate scientists” over the past century.

            I don’t believe there were enough local climate proxy studies to absolutely prove the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age were global climate trends.

            On the other hand, there ARE enough climate proxy studies to show that a very long period of a very stable average temperature — like the flat line shown on the Mann Hockey Stick fraud, er … I mean chart — would be very unusual for a planet that is not in thermodynamic equilibrium.

      • “man’s CO2 has never been proven to cause dangerous warming?”

        Dangerous warming of the atmosphere has never been proven to have happened in the history of the Earth, from any CO2 source, or any other source. CO2 in the atmosphere has not been shown to be a danger to anything.

        • “Well known and agreed upon for over a hundred years.”

          …. before there was any, or barely any anthropogenic CO2 in the atmosphere.

          The conjecture that failed.

    • I think that might have had something to do with Milankovich cycles…the ones that should be heading us for an ice age right now. Oh, and there weren’t any humans to worry about their cities getting flooded. Mmmmm…

    • Sunset…

      See my comments below on Nick’s comments. I have low confidence that I heard him correctly on the 60′ to 80′ feet thing, and have asked Anthony if that line can be edited or deleted. He did clearly stated 6′ to 8′ feet during his presentation.

      (a.k.a. Brian Lindauer)

  3. Thanks for the blow-by-blow account. Since the live electronic presentation was so badly done, it helps to have that.

    If Mann ever lets go of his clutch-fisted grasp of his hockey stick and other such things, I will be very surprised. He is very stubborn.

    Still, they were at least civil towards each other. That’s some progress, isn’t it?

    • If Mann ever lets go of his clutch-fisted grasp of his hockey stick and other such things, his professional career will be finished.

      He is a cornered rat and has no defense but to bare his teeth and and chitter.

    • Why let go of something that is proven to be true over and over? I guess you could call him stubborn with keeping this fact straight.

      What else should he be doing? Pretending that every organization that comes to the same conclusion is wrong?

      • What do you imagine has been “proven to be true over and over”?

        There is not a shred of evidence in support of the repeatedly falsified hypothesis of dangerous man-made global warming. All the evidence in the world shows it false.

        If you suppose that it has been “proven”, please share that proof with us. Thanks!

      • “Why let go of something that is proven to be true over and over?”

        probably because it hasnt been proven to be true over and over.

        See Steve McIntyre critique of the HS, pages 2K, gergis, etc.

        in summary, the Mann HS.s provide very little insight into prior temps.
        Secondly , The MWP and the current temps are just mole hills in comparisons to the rest of the holcene period.

      • Alley—“that is proven to be true over and over? ”
        Don’t try to feed us that crap:
        1. He is “Mike’s nature trick”
        2. He “hid the decline”
        3. He used proxies known to be unsuitable for temperature.
        4. He used one proxy up side down (if I recall correctly.)
        5. His algorithm was shown to produce hockey sticks from red noise.
        6. His hockey stick DOES NOT show the Medieval warm period.
        7. He misapplied principal components.
        8. He did not consult statisticians, although his paper depends on statistics.
        9. His proxies showed cooling in the mid-20th century, but that was not shown.

        Wegman report:
        “Overall, our committee believes that Mann’s assessments that the decade of the 1990s was the hottest decade of the millennium and that 1998 was the hottest year of the millennium cannot be supported by his analysis.”
        Our findings from this analysis suggest that authors in the area of paleoclimate studies are closely connected and thus ‘independent studies’ may not be as independent as they might appear on the surface. This committee does not believe that web logs are an appropriate forum for the scientific debate on this issue.
        It is important to note the isolation of the paleoclimate community; even though they rely
        heavily on statistical methods they do not seem to be interacting with the statistical
        community. Additionally, we judge that the sharing of research materials, data and results
        was haphazardly and grudgingly done. In this case we judge that there was too much
        reliance on peer review, which was not necessarily independent. Moreover, the work has
        been sufficiently politicized that this community can hardly reassess their public positions without losing credibility.
        http://climateaudit.files.wordpress. com/2007/11/07142006_wegman_report.pdf
        Also see many, many posts on

        Critic, McIntyre pointed out (in MM03/05a/05b) that:
        1. You can take red noise and put it into the algorithm used in MBH98 and get the famous hockey stick.
        2. You can remove the bristle cone pines from the data set and the hockey stick disappears.
        3. If you use the correct data centering methodology, the hockey stick disappears.
        Here is a link to the Wegman report that found Mann’s hockeystick paper “somewhat obscure and incomplete and the criticisms of [Mann’s papers] MM03/05a/05b to be valid and compelling. http://climateaudit.files.wordpress. com/2007/11/07142006_wegman_report.pdf

        Here is a good debunk of Mann’s fatally flawed “hockeystick”:
        climateaudit .org/2007/11/06/the-wegman-and-north-reports-for-newbies/

        Here is what many other scientists think of the author of this article, Dr. Mann:
        “A Disgrace to the Profession”
        Amazon (Dot) com/22A-Disgrace-Profession-22-Steyn-editor/dp/0986398330

        • “His algorithm was shown to produce hockey sticks from red noise”

          M & M found that they could take random data, feed it into mann’s model and get hockey sticks EVERY time. Is this what you’re talking about here, Jim?

          • It was also found that as long as one of the proxies used to feed the algorithm had a hockey stick shape, the result would have a hockey stick shape.

          • Actually they did nothing of the kind. They used a noise model with a strong autocorrelation to achieve their results. They certainly didn’t get ‘hockey sticks’ every time, out of 10,000 samples they only showed the 12 with the highest ‘hockey stick index’

          • Yes, after thousands of runs, there were a few that randomly produced a similar shape.

            Not something that would ever convince a scientist.

            I see “fonzie” is on the prowl.

          • Alley, read some history. Mann’s hockey stick is not supported by the accounts of those who were there, it’s really that simple.

            Climate is possible the ONLY science that doesn’t ask Historians or Archaeologists about conditions 2,000 years ago. Why is that?

      • The above account of the evening which seems fair and reasonable stands is stark contrast to your blatantly one sided view posted earlier today.

      • Acolytes using the same data and same method get the same result.
        Not surprising. However the scientific evidence against the hockey stick is irrefutable.

      • Alley those of us who don’t believe co2 produced by humans is raising Earth’s average temperature to a dangerous degree don’t have anything to prove. It’s not our idea. It’s up to those who make this claim to prove it. So go beyond just telling us so and prove it. e.g. if you think those who don’t understand Dr. Mann’s hockey stick graph and the important contribution it makes to climate science please enlighten us.

        • It has been proven. More CO2 (proven), earth warming (proven) and the fingerprints of warming by CO2 are there (proven.)

          Sorry about your “beliefs” about science, but they would not pass a simple science quiz.

          • Yes, and feedbacks proven as well. Thanks.

            CO2 is a forcing, something like water vapor is a feedback that is also a forcing.

          • I see. So water is not a feedback (warmer air does not hold more water vapor) and albedo is not a thing anymore.

            Interesting take on science!

          • So where is the extra tropical tropospheric warming? That, according to AR4 is a “fingerprint”, where is it?

      • Using the same garbage data to repeatedly arrive at the same deceptive conclusion is not the sort of validation most people seek.

    • If Mann ever lets go of his clutch-fisted grasp of his hockey stick …

      He’s a one trick pony. If he lets go, he’s dog meat.

  4. The thing that surprises me in all the climate discussions is that there is no recognition, particularly on the skeptic side, that there is no one size fits all explanation. There are so many different climatic regimes in the world that defy a simplistic solution. A look at a map of the Koppen-Geiger classification illustrates my point and should be the perfect counter-argument to Mann and his ilk.

    • > particularly on the skeptic side, that there is no one size fits all explanation

      Excuse me? The entirety of near every skeptic position turns on precisely that there is no pay model. You owe every skeptic a retraction.

      • Not at all. I admit recognition was the wrong word to use, emphasis would have been preferable. However, you missed my point that the counter to the argument that a 2C rise in global temperature will be dangerous made by the warmists is to consider the wide range of climatic regimes in the world – and, indeed, the range of surface temperature. At 0200 UTC today the recorded spread was about 124C, from +50.1C to -73.8C.

    • So David, which exactly of those climatic regions defy a “simplistic solution” It is hot and wet in the tropics, dry and hot a bit further away (due to the width of the hadley cells) then gets colder the closer you get to the poles. Other variations are due to the presence of land masses/ mountains and/or ocean currents (i.e. Europe is warmer than you would expect due to the gulf stream).

      • The “simplistic solution” to which I referred is the key warmist argument that there is only one solution to the alleged problem of climate change worldwide, regardless of the regional variations.

        • David, I do not think anyone has claimed that there will not be winners and losers from climate change – clearly farmers in Siberia or Canada will probably do well out of it. But there are losers as well and so the question is whether it is a net benefit or a net loss and the models predict that there will be more losers than winners.

          • You missd his point. David was talking about the impossibility of averaging any data of the world to come to any conclusion.

          • Countries lose in trade and economic transactions as well, it’s call how the world works. That is why CAGW has become the home for all those on the left who think it should be about wealth re-distribution because we should all be winners or losers to the same degree in there bleeding hearts.

            Guess what there are lots of people who don’t agree and they vote and have military muscle and that is why nothing has happened or is going to happen. CO2 emissions will keep going up regardless they rose 4% first quarter this year.

        • “The “simplistic solution” to which I referred is the key warmist argument that there is only one solution to the alleged problem of climate change worldwide, regardless of the regional variations.”

          That’s not true. IPCC predictions are that some areas will see drought, others more intense precipitation. Drought resistant seeds are not being prescribed for areas expected to get heavier rainfall. Coastal defense mechanisms against rising waters are not being prescribed for inland countries. There certainly is an overall push to reduce CO2 emissions everywhere, but not to prescribe the exact same mitigation/adaptation solutions regardless of location.

          • I live a few hundred meters from the Med, and I don’t think I’ll need a coastal defense in the next 100 years. I think we’ll get by crushing carbonate rocks into sand and letting natural drainage build up sand on existing beaches. Further away, by downtown, there may be a need to build the avenue about 50 cm higher in say 50 years. It’s not something which can’t be handled over time.

    • I have said it before, but I think that it bears repeating. Instead of focusing on a single number — the annual average global temperature — the seasonal diurnal temperatures for the major climate zones should be compared and contrasted to verify that a single number captures the change. If it does not, which I suspect will be the case, then the analysis has to be regional and not global.

      • The whole concept of a “mean global temperature” is physically illegitimate. You can not add or average temperature of different media. It is just not permitted in physics.

        The whole concept is politics. It is simply idea to stuff in front of the ignorant masses to get them on side with what you really want to do for other reasons that you do wish to go into.

        Very analogous to Rumsfelts explanation of the WMD excuse for going into to Iraq. He openly admitted it was false but they needed a simple argument to get public approval.

        • Greg,
          Yes, global temperature is akin to calculating the average colour of the global Koppen map that David showed above.
          Plain silly and mathematically indefensible.

          • no it isn’t. Calculating a trend of invalid averages leaves you with a meaningless trend and scientific analysis

          • You can have the same average for something that has twice the range. Now if you believe CAGW we get more extremes and thus you average and trend is pretty much meaningless. Sure your average is going up but some places will actually be colder and that is the point people are making.

            To put it in context lets say I live on the beach. Do I really care whether the waves in the Atlantic are getting bigger as some average. Couldn’t care a less the only thing that matters to me is what the waves are doing on my beach.

          • Surprisingly useful for showing something useless, you mean? The trend being upwards or downwards tells you nothing about the world’s different climates becoming on average better or worse for us, let alone for “life”.

          • Global temperature has about as much meaning as a Global telephone number.

            One cannot calculate the mean of an intensive variable as it is utterly meaningless.

          • Gramethecat,
            Actually, if you measure an intensive variable from a substance with consistent extensive properties, the mean will have a semi-quantitative meaning. It is when one averages intensive property measurements from substances with different extensive properties that all meaning is lost.

          • zazove,
            If you want to see the long-term trends, it would be more useful to just look at the ocean temperatures. Your suggestion does not justify averaging the two regimes.

        • I have said several times that I think it is inappropriate to average sea surface temperatures (SST) with land air temperatures, even if there appears to be a high correlation between SST and air temperatures over the water. The water act as a low-pass filter because of its thermal inertia. Thus, whatever is happening short-term is hidden by averaging the two physically different regimes.

  5. The very fact that Mann is now sharing the podium with people of opposing views is an indicator of just how much power the Warmists have lost. That total confidence in the ‘settled science’ he displays, might not be as robust as he lets on!

    • Refusing to debate the question he was invited to discuss is NOT a “robust” position. It is a weak and dishonest one.

  6. Brian,

    I see the Q&A phase for Mann in the article, but not for Curry, Titley or Moore. Weren’t they asked any questions?

    • RicDre,

      Good question. I had initially began writing a detailed description of each speaker’s comments, questions, and answers. However, after my write-up became too long I decided to simply summarize the main points. Unfortunately, the file I sent Anthony last night included the original long version of Dr. Mann’s questions (basically, I forgot to delete it). Just went back through my notes and I suppose there are some finer details that could be interesting…but I believe my summary bullets at the end capture the most interesting points already.

      (a.k.a. Brian Lindauer)

  7. So Mann is (the D word) paleoclimatology more than 40-50 thousand years ago? Isn’t there a consensus on past temperatures? And past CO2 levels?/sarc
    Paleoclimatology is what makes Mann’s assertions so weak. There are varying proxies at least as robust as those used by Mann to construct his hockey stick that do not fine much if any of a relationship between CO2 levels and temperatures, let alone runaway feedback.

    • We really know extremely little about past temperatures. Proxies are nothing but confirmation bias and curve fitting.

      • And yet, Mann et al. are not in the least hesitant to proclaim that we are seeing unprecedented changes. How can one make such a statement with a straight face if they have just claimed the prehistoric data are unusable?

        • Why does prehistoric data matter? All that matters is 1) Are CO2 emissions a substantial contributing cause to rising temperatures? 2) Are those temperature increases are going to cause net adverse impacts for the world? 3) Do those adverse impacts warrant taking action to reduce CO2 emissions?

          That’s it. So what if CO2 was at 5,000 ppm before? So what if oceans were much higher before? That is not relevant nor required information to make a decision based on what is happening today.

          • Alan, fine, you disagree with the majority of climate scientists, the Fortune 5000 globally, most governments, insurance companies and the largest investment funds. Go convince them.

            And your answer is irrelevant to my point about prehistoric data.

          • There you go with that consensus lie again.
            Can’t you at least come up with some new ones?

          • It’s not a lie, it’s factual. Go ahead cite a source that disproves me, especially about the Fortune 5000.

          • Let’s see, an internet survey to 10000 people.
            About 3000 returned. This is further filtered down to 73 out of 75 stating a position.
            That’s just for one.

          • Climate scientists lack the education and training to estimate properly whether climate change will be positive or negative 50 years from now. My sense is that you haven’t really asked companies what they think. My understanding is that they are afraid of the repressive atmosphere and nutty ideology that’s proliferating due to panic mongering by Mann et al. As for insurance companies, other than storm and flood trends in the USA and Europe over the next five years, I don’t think they really worry about it.

          • Chris,

            Because they tend to falsify the IPCC hypothesis that CO2 at, say, 1000ppm would initiate positive feedback that would cause dangerous warming. The laws of physics haven’t changed.

          • Chris
            Been there, to 1,000 ppm CO2, done that:
            The average CO2 level as C3 plants evolved
            was about 1,000 ppm, and those same plants,
            which are very important for food,
            have optimum growth today at CO2 levels
            in the 800 to 1,200 pom range. There are
            thousands of real science experiments
            to prove that. And that’s why smart
            greenhouse owners enrich interior CO2
            to about 1,000 ppm.

            Nothing in “modern climate science” can be falsified,
            unlike real science, so it is very much like a religion.

            The average temperature increased + 1 degree C.,
            +/- 1 degree C., since 1880, measured haphazardly
            with a majority of our planet’s surface grids having no
            thermometers, so the temperature for those grids
            is wild guessed by government bureaucrats
            who WANT to show lots of warming
            because they’ve been predicting that for decades …
            and of course their wild guesses are never verified
            and can never be falsified …
            … and all that haphazard “science” adds up to:
            “Ho Hum, it’s slightly warmer at night today, than in 1880″.

            The future can not be predicted, so you should ignore
            wild guess predictions of the future climate,
            especially because the ‘predictors” have
            a long, sorry track record of grossly over-predicting
            the actual warming in the past 30 years!

          • CO2 can’t reach 1000 ppm. We don’t come close to having enough fossil fuel to burn to get that high. My estimate is peak CO2 of 630 ppm.

          • If CO2 was 5000ppm before with no significant increase in temperature, that proves that going from 300ppm to 500ppm won’t cause any significant increase in temperature either.

            That’s why paleo records are important.

          • Chris,
            You said, “That is not relevant nor required information to make a decision based on what is happening today.”

            Au contraire mon ami!
            1) Prehistoric data are important because they can be used to determine if the apparent correlation between recent temperatures and CO2 levels is spurious. That is, they can be used to prove or disprove whether “CO2 emissions a(re a) substantial contributing cause to rising temperatures…”

            2) If the CO2 emissions are not responsible for the temperature increases, then there is little if anything (other than remediation or geoengineering) to reverse the trend. That is, reduction of fossil fuel consumption will not prevent “… net adverse impacts for the world…”

            3) As so well documented by David Middleton recently in his article on ocean ‘acidification,’ it would appear that prehistoric data make a case that impacts will unlikely be adverse enough to “warrant taking action to reduce CO2 emissions…”
            4) Prehistoric data are important to demonstrate that claims of “unprecedented change” are nothing more than hyperbole to scare people.

          • Well, Captain Obvious, that was exactly the the point that Mann was implying to discredit prehistoric data. Nor were there any people around to record the non-existent thermometer’s readings! Therefore, one has to rely on proxies to estimate things like temperature and CO2 concentrations. Even Mann has used tree ring proxies to estimate past temperatures. However, when it doesn’t suit his purpose, he denigrates proxy data. Certainly the temporal resolution is inversely proportional to the amount of time that has passed, and the older something is, the greater the possibility that something has been altered in, say the chemistry. But that doesn’t mean that all prehistoric data should be dismissed with a wave of the imperial hand.

          • My answers would be:
            1. Partially
            2. Yes, in about 40-50 years conditions will be better, but if things change for the worse in a broad sense, by 100 years from now the world would have lost the economic plus from co2 we should see 40-50 years from now, and things will be roughly the same as today (but technology will be really different and GDP ought to be much higher than now, unless we start running out of fossil fuels and can’t find a decent replacement.
            3. It would be useful to develop safe and cheap nuclear power, research geoengineering just in case, and strive to reduce wars and conflict, improve governance, reduce corruption, fight communist dictatorships, neoMarxist ideologies, and do something reasonable to reduce drug use. The COP21 and the dogmatic drive to subsidize renewables are a waste of effort and time.

          • “Why does prehistoric data matter?” For you Chris I suppose the world is only 6000 years old and evolution is total nonsense. I cannot see how one could believe in evolution and buy into CAGW. These two cases would falsify each other.

    • There are varying proxies…that do not fine much if any of a relationship between CO2 levels and temperatures.

      Such as?

      • Pirate numbers is a good proxy there is a good inverse relationship to global warming.
        Rhino numbers also have a good inverse relationship to global warming.
        GDP growth of the world has been increasing in the same way as global warming.

        You can proxy anything which is why it isn’t allowed in hard sciences. Social and biological sciences are the only things that allow proxies and in most of those fields like medicine people have the good sense to be aware things can go wrong.

        However in the stupid world of climate science proxies are infallible as long as they make a positive case.

  8. Many thanks for this summary. I was bitterly disappointed in the feed, so turned the thing off. Looks like Judiths Climate Etc. control knob slide requests for comments,and her new SLR series requests for feedback (done for CFAN, with lots of denizen comments) have influenced not just her thinking but her presentation of it. Good show.

    • Rud: “Looks like Judiths Climate Etc. … denizen comments) have influenced not just her thinking but her presentation of it. Good show.”

      I advised her there, in contrast to most others, who were calling for an aggressive, take-it-to-the-enemy style of debate, that she should instead follow Stephen Potter’s rule of gamesmanship: “My fast to your slow and vice versa” and just be her normal self. That’s what she did (and likely would have done without my advice), according to the synopsis above:

      “Dr. Judith Curry’s careful and precise approach was an interesting contrast to Dr. Mann’s. Whereas he spoke engagingly, but quickly, Dr. Curry never broke stride from her measured and deliberate pace.”

    • Rud,

      I agree about the feed. And honestly, Judith really wanted this recorded as well. She wanted people to have a chance to see it. The organizers told me they’re working to see if they can salvage a recording, though, so we’ll see.

      As for Dr. Curry’s presentation, as I wrote in my summary, her criticisms of the CO2 control knob theory are sharp and precise. Additionally, her explanation of SLR was awesome, following as it did on the heels of the outrageous claims by Dr. Mann and Dr. Titley. I’m sure you know already, but her entire presentation can be found on her blog:

      One observation that I didn’t include in the write-up above was the difference between a true scientists and a political advocate… As anyone who’s spent time around scientists or engineers can tell, Dr. Curry is a true scientist. She doesn’t claim knowledge or certainty if she doesn’t have it. She doesn’t make broad sweeping generalizations that could be as false as they are true. She is cautious in extending what the data says too far. These are the hallmarks of a true scientist. I’ll leave it to your imagination to draw the appropriate contrast with certain of her fellow speakers…

      (a.k.a. Brian Lindauer)

  9. Per the summary of the event:
    “To what extent is the use of fossil fuels affecting climate change?
    What can and should be done to offset those effects?”
    The first question seems to be under debate, thus the “conversation”.
    The second question seems to be an affirmation that fossil fuels are affecting climate change and that a recourse is needed to “offset those effects”, not yet to even be determined.

    So much for innocent till proven guilty.

  10. Michael Mann is absolutely wrong. The huge discrepancy between the humongous increase in CO₂ of the past 200 years and the small increase in temperature is actually strong evidence that the CO₂ increase has a very small effect on temperature. Much smaller than what is generally assumed and included in models.

    Figure 110. Antarctic ice cores temperature–Ln(CO₂) discrepancy. a) Temperature curve (blue) for the past 800,000 years from EPICA Dome C Ice Core 800KYr Deuterium Data. Source: NOAA, contributed by Jouzel et al., 2007. CO₂ curve (red) from Antarctic Ice Cores Revised 800KYr CO₂ Data (to 2001). Source: NOAA, contributed by Bereiter et al., 2015; and from NOAA annual mean CO₂ data (2002–2017). Due to the logarithmic effect of CO₂ on temperatures, the comparison is more appropriately done with the Ln(CO₂). The correlation shows a very big discrepancy over the last 200 years. b) CO₂ curve (red) as in a). Temperature curve (blue) for the past 200 years from 5 high resolution Antarctic ice cores. Source: D.P. Schneider et al. 2006. Geophys. Res. Let. 33, L16707. No temperature change is observed in response to the massive increase in CO₂.

  11. Migration due to sea level rise is way overblown. This, iffen it happens as claimed, will be a very slow process. And, let’s face it, people move anyway. Here in the states we’ve experienced relatively rapid migration due to demographic changes. (the city of detroit alone has seen a net loss of over 1 million people) Sea level rise will be just one more reason that people move. And unlike demographic migrations, it will be a comparitively slow process…

    • Worrying about sea level rise is just another example of failing to study history. How many ancient ports are either way inland, or completely underwater?

      • Even if sea levels do continue to rise, the solution is simple.
        As the buildings closest to the ocean reach the end of their useful life, tear them down and do not rebuild them on site, but instead rebuild them a few feet further back from the ocean.
        Lather, rinse, repeat.

    • yup,… one generation may lose ‘title’ to underwater RealEstate,.. buildings (with old ‘ building code’) get destroyed (we ‘implode’ dynamite them today),… and we move on. Literally and figuratively. Man adapts. Wasting Trillions and untold human misery on a ‘maybe’, ‘what if’, ‘imagine if’ problems is not just wrong but immoral. All animals, … humans included adapt and flourish. Any attempt to hold fast mother nature is like controlling ‘reality’ — buddhists laugh at we hu-mans trying to grasp and control what is always changing and way beyond our understanding. The act of trying to control is what causes us ‘suffering’, and in the political case ‘strife’ and ‘struggle’ . Just makes everyone ‘unhappy’ and angry at all around us including the natural world. Bad Karma all round —

  12. “He (Mann) also stated that CO2 levels greater than 400ppm could result in up to 60′ to 80′ of sea level rise.”

    What?!? 60 to 80 FEET of sea level rise? Is Mann deliberately trying to crush his credibility with that nonsensical claim? Oh wait, he says “up to” so perhaps that includes under 1 foot of SLR. And of course he gives no time frame, so “up to” 60′ to 80′ of SLR could occur over the next million years or so. Ah, maybe it’s OK after all (sarc)

  13. Most people miss the fundamental point that Judith Curry made – that the risk of abrupt, potentially extreme and adverse climate change comes from both anthopogenic and natural causes. The rational response is the same – climate pragmatism.

    The fundamental mechanism of the Earth system is deterministic chaos.

    • compare Brian Lindauer’s summary with this trivial nonsense from Metro News, which claims they were “one of the event’s partners”:

      13 Jun: WV Metro News: Alex Thomas: Climate change discussed at Charleston forum
      ***MetroNews was one of the event’s partners.

      Michael Mann, distinguished professor of atmospheric science at Pennsylvania State University, said it is important to talk about climate change as well as the related scientific research.
      “Climate change is real. It’s caused by scientific activity, the burning of fossil fuels, it’s already presenting some real challenges to us,” he said. “There’s a worthy debate over what we do and how we solve this problem, and I hope we can have that conversation.”…

      Judith Curry, president and co-founder of the Climate Forecast Applications Network, said she believes climate change is a natural occurrence that cannot be altered by human activity. She added the current view scientists have regarding climate change does not consider numerous factors.
      “You find what you shine a light on,” she said. “In other words, we’ve only been looking at one part of the element.”…

      Mann said climate change is something that will affect weather patterns, noting the 2017 hurricane season and the June 2016 floods in West Virginia as examples…

    • Robert,

      I agree, and actually think it would be beneficial to explore Dr. Curry’s “climate pragmaticism” point more fully. She didn’t expound upon it much during the event, and thus I didn’t include much on it in my write-up…but it’s certainly a worthy topic.

      (a.k.a. Brian Lindauer)

  14. There is a debate to be had. It’s only those who know they have the weaker position that don’t want to have the debate. Science can not be based on those fears.

    • 13 Jun: WV Gazette: Panelists face off on climate change issues
      By Kate Mishkin
      “If you wait for 100 percent certainty, you’ll be 100 percent dead,” said David Titley, director of Penn State’s Center for Solutions to Weather and Climate Risk, referencing a saying he heard often in the military, where he spent his career as a naval officer and later rear admiral…

      Asked about solutions to climate change, Judith Curry, president and co-founder of the Climate Forecast Applications Network, said the cure might be worse than the disease.
      “We just have to learn to live with any climate we get, and to the extent we can control it is probably futile,” Curry said…

      “‘Live with it’ was what Europe did with the plague,” (Titley) said. “We don’t have to do that anymore. We’re smarter than that.”…
      Sea level rise is a good example of a bleak surprise, said Michael Mann, director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State…
      “Uncertainty is not our friend,” Mann told the room of about 100 people Tuesday…

      Though organizers said the event was a conversation, not a debate, Patrick Moore, co-founder of Greenpeace, said he believed Mann and Titley painted him as dishonest, and he “took umbrage” with the portrayal.
      He agreed with Curry — there’s a lot of uncertainty surrounding climate change, and it’s good to disagree on issues.
      A consensus, he said, refers to the political and social world.
      “A consensus is not about how many people will jump off a bridge with you,” he said…

      • ““‘Live with it’ was what Europe did with the plague,” (Titley) said. “We don’t have to do that anymore. We’re smarter than that.”…”

        Who’s “we,” white man?

        (Says the developing world, moving heavily toward coal-based power plants; and Chinese regulators, who have just terminated a $15 billion per year subsidy for domestic solar panel installations.)

        Nothing “we” do in reducing CO2 emissions will matter by 2030 or 2050 or 2100. Imagining that our moral example will motivate China, Indonesia, etc. to follow in our economically disastrous footsteps is a foredoomed attempt to “hustle the East.” As Monckton put it, “Whatever is affordable will be ineffective; whatever will be effective is unaffordable.”

      • Uncertainty may not be your friend, but there is only so much that can be done to limit uncertainty.

        Mann strikes me as someone who is so afraid of the unknown, that he invents a certainty that he can cling to. Such a person strikes out viciously towards anyone who threatens his sense of security.

  15. Michael Mann is an absolute BS artist. 60-80 feet?! Really? This guy has his head firmly planted up his keester.

        • Nick,

          This is a fair comment. I’m not entirely sure what point Dr. Mann was trying to make. According to my notes, the 60′ to 80′ remark was made during his response to the question on optimal CO2 levels, and was related to his thought-stream on CO2 levels higher than 400ppm (ish).

          It could be that he misspoke, or I could have heard him incorrectly. (This surprised me when I heard it and in retrospect, as someone with hearing loss, “60” and “6 to” do sound similar to me.)

          Either way, you’re correct in that he clearly stated earlier that his estimated projection was 6′ to 8′.

          Given my uncertainty, I’ll ask Anthony if it’s possible to change or delete.

          Thanks for the catch. I’m not interested at all in stirring up drama through faulty understanding, and certainly don’t want to misquote someone.

          (a.k.a. Brian Lindauer)

  16. AGW or what ever you want to call it comes to an end this year and it is not coming back.

    I can say it with confidence because AGW theory is a sham while my theory is based on what really controls the climate which is the sun, moderated by the geo magnetic field.

    Those are now pointing to colder temperatures for the first time since the Dalton Solar Minimum Ended.

    What has to be monitored is overall sea surface temperatures and albedo. This is what governs the climate and what governs them is the sun.

    They can manipulate all they want which is all that has been done with AGW theory. Not one of the basic premises this theory was originally based on materializing.

    This is why it is so easy to forecast the end of AGW along with the theory.

    So much wasted time on theory. It has set climate science way back but maybe it all changes as reality sets in over the coming years which will be the absence of any global warming.

    I am being direct here and I wish even a stronger stance against Mann and what he is trying to convey was taken.

    This site is where the climate debate really is as far as I am concerned.

    • I said the same thing 7-8 years ago, “AGW or what ever you want to call it comes to an end this year and it is not coming back.”
      Too much money/ego/and uncertainty involved.

      The ultimate conundrum.

    • A distinct cooling trend that counter-balances the recent El Niño and restores The Pause will indeed “settle” (debunk) “the science.”

      • Yes, if natural forces and cycles can overwhelm what humans are doing then the theory of AGW will need to be significantly modified — or jettisoned.

        We’ll need a statistically significant cooling TREND (decades?) and we’ll need to determine what caused it. I don’t think this falsification of the theory will happen in our lifetimes unless dramatic cooling begins soon.

        • “We’ll need a statistically significant cooling TREND (decades?) and we’ll need to determine what caused it. I don’t think this falsification of the theory will happen in our lifetimes unless dramatic cooling begins soon.”

          We’ll certainly need years well below the baseline to counter-balance the 2016 el niño, maybe five years, but if that occurs and the Pause is re-established with a longevity of 20-some years, “the science” will be debunked in the court of public opinion and among politicians. Subsidies and mandates will dry up, or start to. Many bandwagoneers will drop off, and the current consensus crusaders will be reduced to pathetic special pleading—or to diversion about acidification and endangered wombats, or whatever. There won’t be many more scientific societies weighing in on the alarmist side. Most will hold their tongues, from prudence.

          We won’t need to determine what caused it. The null hypothesis will win by default.

  17. Dr. Titley’s 3-legged stool is broken. CO2 driven models fail to hindcast Holocene temperatures, sea ice, North American droughts, etc. The models failed to forecast the degree of Arctic sea ice loss, because the models fail to accurately represent the amount of warmer more equator-ward waters that are transported into the Arctic and stored at 100-900 meter depths. Instead of acknowledging their models gross failure, they misleadingly claim “it is worse than models predict”, an assertion which not only inadvertently acknowledges their models are flawed, but reveals their bias towards fear mongering!

  18. Here is an unusual datapoint on trustworthiness of paleoclimate from before 40k-50kya…actually from 53 million years ago. Classic geological detective work established long ago that the Eocene was a particularly warm period.

    Then along came diamond discoveries in the Arctic Circle region of northern Canada. About 10 years ago chunks of redwood logs were found at 300m depth in the Ekati Diamond mine (google redwood chunks found in Ekati mine). These fossils were actual wood and the wood was red and splintered showing seams of hardened sap fully preseved.

    A redwood forest in Arctic Canada! During the Eocene, the latitude of the locale was pretty much what it is today. I call your “unprecented warmth” and raise you one California climate in northern Canada.

    • The Arctic was much warmer during the early Holocene and treeline reached the Arctic Ocean shores hundreds of kilometers further north than today!

      • No it wasn’t. It was about this warm. Its just that it was warm for a thousand years. In a thousand years time you’re going to see hippos back in the Thames.

        • You are wrong about everything, zazove. The treeline in altitude responds very fast to warming, as new tree seedlings get a chance to establish every year, and we have been measuring the treeline raise for the past 150 years. However the treeline was a lot higher during the Holocene Climatic Optimum nearly everywhere it has been measured, so it was significantly warmer then.

          From Reasoner et al., 2009

  19. Mann’s argument that ‘CO2 has now reached 410ppm, a level not seen in millions of years” is an irrelevant fear tactic and inadvertently an argument against any CO2 mediated temperatures. Temperatures were higher during the Holocene Optimum and during past interglacials when CO2 was lower.

    Curry and Moore demolished Mann and Titley’s arguments!

  20. Mann: 400ppm CO2 will cause 60 to 80 feet of sea level rise! Thats one foot a year, my friend. Such a gross overestimate (currently 2mm a yr) is an own goal that reinforces growing acceptance that exaggeration of clumate change is on a preposterous scale.

  21. The audio and video were absolutely atrocious, btw. It was a complete waste of money to join the webcast. I could barely tell who was speaking by their voice, barely, much less understand what they were saying, and the video was so out-of-focus and overexposed people were mostly unrecognizable. They also failed to share the slides even though they had appropriated a screen for it, so watching the presentation was impossible. All-in-all, I should have just waited for this summary on Watts.

  22. MODS: Please delete the previous one (currently in moderation) with the botched &lt/a> tag, and appprove this one in its stead. Thanks! -DB

    re: “Dr. Titley showed a graph which purported to demonstrate Dr. James Hansen’s analysis from 20 years ago (apologies for the vague description…my notes are a bit unclear here) and how it had fared against observations. In the analysis presented by Dr. Titley, Hansen actually under-predicted the warming (or sea level rise…again, I’m unsure what the chart actually was).”

    If that was 30, rather than 20, years, then it was presumably Hansen et al 1988, “Global Climate Changes as Forecast by Goddard Institute for Space Studies Three-Dimensional Model” (doi:10.1029/JD093iD08p09341) — arguably the most influential climate paper of all, because it underpinned the case for creating the IPCC.

    If Dr. Titley claimed that paper’s predictions were accurate, or under-predicted warming, he told a real whopper.

    Hansen and seven co-authors considered the effects of five GHGs: CO2, CFC11, CFC12, N2O and CH4, the main one being CO2, of course.

    The predicted “a warming of 0.5°C per decade” if GHG emissions were not curbed. That was their “scenario A,” to which they devoted the lion’s share of the discussion in their paper, and which they described as follows: “Scenario A assumes that growth rates of trace gas emissions typical of the 1970s and 1980s will continue indefinitely; the assumed annual growth averages about 1.5% of current emissions, so the net greenhouse forcing increases exponentially.”

    It was eye-rolling nonsense.

    In the first place, the claim that a an annual 1.5% (i.e., exponential) increase in GHGs causes an exponential “net greenhouse forcing” is simply idiotic. Really, there’s no nicer way to put it.

    The major GHG, CO2, has logarithmically diminishing effect, so an exponential increase in level causes a less than exponential (asymptotically approaching linear) increase in forcing. It boggles my mind that none of those eight authors noticed that glaring blunder!

    Emissions of the primary GHG, CO2, went up much faster than their “worst case” “business-as-usual” “scenario A,” yet temperatures went up much more slowly.

    Under their “scenario A,” emissions would have increased by 1.5% per year, totaling 47% in 26 years. In fact, CO2 emissions increased much faster than that: by an average of 1.97% per year, totaling 66% in 26 years. Ref:

    Yet temperatures did not increase by anything close to their 0.5 °C per decade “scenario A” prediction. Even though CO2 emissions rose faster than in their Scenario A, temperatures rose only about 1/4 as fast as in their Scenario A projection (at most 1/3 as fast, depending on whose figures you use). Here’s a graph:

    In fact, it wasn’t just their temperature projections which were wrong. Despite soaring CO2 emissions, even CO2 levels nevertheless rose more slowly than their “scenario A” prediction, because of the strong negative feedbacks which curb CO2 level increases, which Hansen et al did not anticipate.

    In other words, Hansen et al were wildly wrong about almost everything. One of the reasons was their inexplicable failure to realize that an exponential increase in CO2 levels would not result in an exponential increase in forcing. Another was the too-high climate sensitivity that they assumed. But the biggest reason is that they didn’t anticipate the large negative (stabilizing) feedbacks which reduce the effect of CO2 emissions.

    Dr. Titley’s whopper was probably unintentional. He was probably misled by one or more of the widely-cited articles which falsely claim that paper’s predictions were accurate, like this one at RC, this one at SkS, and this one at CarbonBrief. (They all conflate CO2 levels with CO2 emissions, and then pretend that Hansen’s “Scenario B” was the closest to reality.)

    • Hansen and seven co-authors considered the effects of five GHGs: CO2, CFC11, CFC12, N2O and CH4, the main one being CO2, of course.

      Your first mistake, CO2 was not the main one, read the paper (fig 2b).

      In fact, it wasn’t just their temperature projections which were wrong. Despite soaring CO2 emissions, even CO2 levels nevertheless rose more slowly than their “scenario A” prediction, because of the strong negative feedbacks which curb CO2 level increases, which Hansen et al did not anticipate.

      Another mistake by you, Hansen’s prediction for 2018 CO2 levels was:
      Scenario A 410ppm, Scenario B 404ppm, Scenario C 368ppm
      Clearly he anticipated extremely well!
      2017-2018 Max 411ppm Min 403ppm

      • Hansen forgot fossil fuels don’t last forever. We are getting close on relying mostly on pounding old fields to get a bit more oil, drilling really lousy rocks, and doing other tricks which require ever increasing prices. At some point the nag will just refuse to keep running faster.

      • Phil, you apparently didn’t understand what I wrote:

        Despite soaring CO2 emissions, even CO2 levels nevertheless rose more slowly than their “scenario A” prediction, because of the strong negative feedbacks which curb CO2 level increases, which Hansen et al did not anticipate.

        The reason CO2 levels rose more slowly than their “Scenario A,” despite the fact that emissions rose much more rapidly, is not that they “anticipated extremely well.” The reason is that negative feedbacks removed about half of the CO2 that mankind emitted—which they did not anticipate.

        And if you think Hansen et al didn’t believe CO2 was the main anthropogenic GHG, and you think they were right about that, then, pray tell, why are y’all clamoring to cut CO2 emissions?

        Fernando L, Hansen didn’t actually forget that fossil fuels don’t last forever. They just ignored it.

        They wrote, “Scenario A, since it is exponential, must eventually be on the high side of reality in view of finite resource constraints and environmental concerns, even though the growth of emissions in scenario A(=1.5%/yr) is less than the rate typical of the past century (=4%/yr).” Nevertheless, much of their discussion was about the effects of its projected 0.5°C/decade rate of warming (which, thus far, has proven to be about 4× the actual rate of warming, even without significant constraint from dwindling supplies).

  23. “IPCC set a range of 1.5 – 4.5 degrees Celsius for ECS, but GCMs seemed tuned to about 3.2C (high-end)”


    GCMs range from 2.1 to 4.4 in terms of ECS. the “average” of all GCMs ( a meaningless average) is 3.2
    GCMs are not Tuned to 3.2. ModelE from Nasa GISS, for example, is 2.7

    GCMs do not give you much “evidence” about the true value of ECS. What they demonstrate is this.
    You can build a physics model of the climate that does a fair representation of the history within this
    range of ECS.

    • Next question: Can a physics model of the climate (sic) be constructed that does not include CO2?

    • The GCMs are worse than worthless GIGO. If they have any value at all, it’s to show that increasing CO2 has no discernible effect on global temperature, since they all assume it does, yet are pathetically wrong, ie unskillful, in representing observed reality.

    • @Steven Mosher …

      The ensemble average of the 102 total model runs is, as I understand it, and as you note … appx 3.2 deg C. While I don’t disagree this number is of limited usefulness as an ECS data point, it is not meaningless.

      It IS useful as an general representation of the Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity of the models as a whole. It becomes more useful when compared to the single CIMP5 model that closely matches the measured, real world data (from multiple lower tropo sat’s and radiosonde data sets) … the Russian INMCM4 model.

      From memory I believe the INMCM4 ECS number was 1.4 deg C …

      Which shows the ensemble average ECS of the 101 CIMP5 models that do not come close to accurately predicting real world temps, to be appx 2.28 times larger than the INMCM4 models ECS.

      If we compare the INCM4 models 1.4 deg C ECS to the numbers at the top and bottom of the range of ECS you noted – 2.1 to 4.4 – we find those other models range from 1.5 to 3.14 times higher ECS than the Russian INMCM4.

      Many papers, perhaps none more surprising and notable than the Santer, Mann, Mears etal “Causes of Differences in Model and Satellite Tropospheric Warming Rates,” are finding ECS is overestimated – by a factor of 2 times or more … the IPCC if I recall also addressed ECS overestimation in AR5.

      It sure seems the Russian INMCM4 model is pretty good at supporting the accuracy of the reported claim that models overestimate ECS by a factor of appx. 2 times or more?

      Climate Models graphic:

        • @Steve Mosher …

          Steve – I asked a simple question, and provided support for my question … becasue I wanted your input. Instead of simply addressing the question, you responded with snark – and a non-answer.

          That ticks me off – since I am one of those who criticizes others when they treat you with similar disrespect.

          I re-read the Ron Clutz article I thought I’d seen the 1.4 deg C number in, and found it referenced the predicted warming, not the ECS …

          That said Ron does note what was essentially my point – that the INMCM4 model had the lowest ECS of the bunch:

          “INMCM4 has the lowest CO2 forcing response at 4.1K for 4XCO2. That is 37% lower than multi-model mean.”

          As a side note, to be fair, he also noted two other differences:

          “So the model that most closely reproduces the temperature history has high inertia from ocean heat capacities, low forcing from CO2 and less water for feedback.

          I went and looked up the info from AR5, which you could have simply provided … which shows the INMCM4 model’s ECS at 2.1 … which puts the CIMP5 ensemble average at 1.5 times larger, and the top model ECS (4.4) at 2.1 times greater.

          Perhaps this time you could offer some meaningful insight, based on your clear knowledge of the subject – which is why I asked – of why the INMCM4 model is the only one that fairly accurately predicts observed warming, while pretty much every other one of the 102 model runs fails – by a wide margin.

          • you were wrong.
            i was right.
            you didnt check your memory before writing.
            i have the page memorized.
            page 818
            table 9.5

            when soneone who works with this stuff tells you something, chevk your memory.

            read the science, not blogs.

            i will take your apology for being wrong.

          • @Steven Mosher … why is it you ALWAYS have to be an ass? You could have simple pointed me to Table 9.5.

            But while you were so busy denigrating, you still did not address my core question … which was regarding the accuracy of the INMCM4 model vs the other 101 model runs.

            As I pointed out … despite my inaccurate recollection, my base point is still accurate … the INMCM4 has one of the smallest ECS numbers of all the models … instead of the ensemble average being 2.2 times larger, it was only 1.5 times larger.

            The INMCM4 model is the only one that appears to come close to accurately predicting observed temperatures. Numerous papers, including Santer 2017 – with Mann and a big cast of largely warming proponent authors, found climate models overestimate ECS … by a significant amount.

            This issue of overstated ECS has been an ongoing process … discussed in AR4 and AR5 …

            My point is it seems that the INMCM4 model with its decent agreement with observed, is something we should look at closer … and its low ECS may be one of the reasons for its accuracy.

            You have a far better understanding of the models … which is why I asked for your insight.

          • Steve Mosher is a very intelligent man for whom I have a lot of respect. But, he often falls into self-made traps of his own making when he interacts with people here. I wish it was different.

          • “The INMCM4 model is the only one that appears to come close to accurately predicting observed temperatures.”
            GCMs are models of the Earth. They have been constructed to respond to changes in the same way that the Earth might behave. And like the Earth, they have a great deal of natural variation. But the natural variation is not synchronised with the Earth (or with other GCM runs).

            The GCMs calculate climate states consisting of many quantities. Global surface temperature, and certainly temperature just over the last decade, are just one aspect. And the Christy plot you showed isn’t even that. But they are not making short term predictions. They are not initialized to do that. They have ENSO events etc, but they are not expected to coincide with those on the real Earth. What is expected is that they will mimic the long term effect of changes such as adding GHGs.

            The fact that INMCM4 got a correspondence over a decade with what JC says is observed tropospheric temperature is therefore just a coincidence. It isn’t because of the ECS they find for surface temperature, which is the same as for GISS E2. Any other GCM could have had the same result if it happened to have a run of La Ninas in that time.

          • So what you are saying is the INMCM4 model got it forcing and assumptions correct. And ALL of the others did not. And that any other model COULD have accurately predicted observed conditions if they happened to get the climate parameters correct.

            The GISS E2 model did not get remotely similar results, despite it have the same ECS.

            Please explain the value of a climate model if it does not ACCURATELY predict actual OBSERVED conditions?

          • i think what nick is saying is that models have to be given more time. (lots more time) So, we may not actually know the value of the models for many more decades. The russian model may have been the inaccurate one, but lucky…

          • “The russian model may have been the inaccurate one, but lucky”
            No, there is no inference about accurate. It just isn’t what they were trying to predict.

            You could have another, identical Earth in orbit, with exactly the same forcings. It would not have the same weather. The extent of agreement over a decade would be no better than a GCM.

          • “So what you are saying is the INMCM4 model got it forcing and assumptions correct.”
            Absolutely not. Let me go through it again. GCMs model worlds with climate trends and natural variations. The variations are not synchronised. They happen at unpredictable times. INMCM4 just got lucky.

            Think of deciding which fund to put your money in. One got very good results last quarter. Does that mean it has brilliant management and a super predicting algorithm? Are they a sure bet for the next quarter? Or did they just get lucky?

            “Please explain the value of a climate model if it does not ACCURATELY predict actual OBSERVED conditions?”
            It doesn’t predict weather. No-one ever said it would predict weather. It predicts the long-term response to changes in forcing.

            “Then explain what the Christ plot shows. And why it should be disregarded.”
            It shows the progress of mid-tropospheric temperature. I would not put too much faith in it until it appeared in a publication, where reviewers would check whether he really is correctly computing a comparable mid-troposphere measure for the GCMs, and could check on his calculation of an average of unstated satellite and balloon measures. And of course there is the cherry-pick effect. Why are we always seeing mid-troposphere here? Not even lower? Was it because it shows the biggest contrast they could find?

            Of course, the ECS values you compare with are for surface, not mid-troposphere.

          • First, I believe Christy is more than competent enough that his work is accurate – as is that graphic.

            If the graphic, which has been widely disseminated, is wrong … I expect it would have been thoroughly rebutted by the cabal.

            I also suspect Charity uses lower troop because it’s an area he is a top expert in… and because the lower troop more accurately reflects “climate” compared to surface – which has a myriad of legal caliber issues.

            If the ability to accurately predict future actual conditions is irrelevant then why does every model closely agree with the past?

            If the ability to accurately predict future observed conditions is irrelevant – then how would anyone ever confirm the models actually work?

            Last, have you read the Santer, Mann, Mears etal “Causes of Differences in Model and Satellite Tropospheric Warming Rates,” paper? They , somewhat amazing for warmest zealots, find the models fail to accurately predict 21st century OBSERVED warming … and that ECS is overestimated – by a significant factor?

            If accurately predicting future observed conditions is irrelevant why is this large group of top names on the warming side writing papers about it?

          • “First, I believe Christy is more than competent enough that his work is accurate – as is that graphic.”
            Do you extend that faith to the very large numbers of other competent scientists who actually submit their work for peer review?

            “and because the lower troop more accurately reflects “climate” compared to surface”
            He isn’t using lower troposphere. Look at the graph you posted. It is mid-troposphere. That range goes further into the stratosphere.

          • “And the Christy plot you showed isn’t even that.”

            Then explain what the Christ plot shows. And why it should be disregarded.

          • yes. if you work in the field you would have known. and not have made a mistake.

            you can be excused. curry? not excused.

          • Steve,

            Bear in mind that this was simply my version of Curry’s point, which could have been simply that GCMs have an effective ECS of 3.2, rather than being explicitly (intentionally) tuned to 3.2. This is definitely an example of my poor writing, rather than an error on her part.

            For Dr. Curry’s response to the question of ECS, my notes say exactly:
            “IPCC 1.5 – 4.5”
            “Evidence for higher and lower”
            “GCMs avg 3.2 – very high end”
            “Too much uncertainty”

            From these notes I wrote “tuned”. Poor word choice probably, since, in retrospect, that apparently wasn’t what Dr. Curry actually said.

            Final point, not to excuse any error on my part, but I was very tired when I finished writing this, as I had driven home that night (4 hours) and then spent an entire day in a meeting for work. The point being, it wasn’t an intentional misrepresentation, but rather an artifact of sloppiness due to fatigue.

            Hope this helps, and perhaps demonstrates that Dr. Curry may not need to be “excused” after all.


            (a.k.a. Brian Lindauer)

    • The key word is “history” All the models can do is predict the immediate past. Trying to predict the far or intermediate past is too much for them; let alone predict the short term, intermediate term, or long term future. Computer climate models are a colossal waste of time and money.

        • Please explain how the CIMP5 climate models predict the future well?

          Just 1 out of 102 model runs seems to come close to matching the observed temps?

    • the models are not tuned to 3.2
      they range from 2.1 to 4.4.
      details matter, remember.

      • Hey, moshpit, are you aware that your “go to guy on solar” doesn’t believe that the oceans are warming? (you’re sure gonna look dopey standing there next to svalgaard on climate change judgement day)…

      • The AR5 Table 9.5 you’ve cited shows the ensemble average is 3.2 …. while they may not be intentionally ‘tuned’ to 3.2 – effectively that statement is not incorrect.

        It seems to amount to picking nits.

        • See my note above for a more precise account of what Dr. Curry actually said. “Tuned” is my word choice… and a poor one at that, apparently. Apologies to all for this unnecessary side show diversion…

          (a.k.a. Brian Lindauer)

  24. Lo dije antes del debate y lo repito hoy… cometen muchos errores porque NO SABEN CON EXACTITUD QUE CAUSA EL CALENTAMIENTO GLOBAL. Para evitar el AUMENTO DEL NIVEL DEL MAR hay una SOLUCIÓN SIMPLE y esta ahí,a la vista de todos,pero no quieren ver……nosotros Suarez & Suarez SOLUCIONES SIMPLES estamos aumentando datos,bibliográfica y escribiendo como la Comunidad Científica exige a nuestra Hipótesis sobre Calentamiento Global – Cambio Climático que lo van a publicar en una prestigiosa Revista Científica.
    El Calentamiento Global se da por causas naturales,empieza 15 a 20 años antes de fin de siglo y termina en los primeros 15 a 20 años del nuevo siglo………

    • From Google Translate

      I said it before the debate and I repeat it today … … many mistakes are made because they DO NOT KNOW EXACTLY WHAT CAUSES GLOBAL WARMING. To avoid the INCREASE IN THE SEA LEVEL, there is a SIMPLE SOLUTION and it is there, in view of all, but they do not want to see … we Suarez & Suarez SIMPLE SOLUTIONS are increasing data, bibliography and writing as the Scientific Community demands our Hypothesis about Global Warming – Climate Change that will be published in a prestigious Scientific Magazine.
      Global Warming occurs by natural causes, begins 15 to 20 years before the end of the century and ends in the first 15 to 20 years of the new century ………

  25. Michael Mann said

    “The Pages 2K project validated the results of his original hockey stick
    We don’t have any confidence in the paleo climate record more than 30K – 40K years old
    Recent warming is unprecedented in totality of known climate record (the 30K – 40K year)
    350 – 380ppm is ideal CO2 level
    No honest debate can be had about the basics of the science
    Visit for more info on how to talk to skeptics”

    1) The Wegman commission inquiry report was a damning indictment of Dr. Mann’s thesis and methods within it.
    2) 8000-5000 years ago the Greenland ice sheet melted 20%. Yes it took 3000 years to do this and the ice core temperatures show that they were 0.5 to 2C higher than today.
    3) the 1930’s in the US were just as warm as today. If CO2 is an evenly mixed gas the warming if any should affect all parts of the globe.
    4) 1200 ppm CO2 is ideal for plants Humans can survive levels of over 10000 ppm
    5) The basics of the science is settled. CO2 has had no influence on climate in the history of the earth.
    6) Skeptical science is a site with no experts in radiative transfer nor much expertise on anything to do with climate science. It is a site that claimed that each CO2 molecule that exited the atmosphere changed places with a CO2 molecule that exited the oceans. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Skeptical Science is a propaganda site that banishes anyone who disagrees with the hosts narative.

  26. Titley said :

    “Droughts and temperatures are the specific components of climate change most attributable to CO2
    Extreme weather events will get worse
    Sea level rise is the single biggest concern, with up to 25′ – 30′ likely (100 – 200 years out)
    Orlando could be the southern most point of a future Florida
    The optimal CO2 level is the level that caused climate stability, which in turned allowed mankind to flourish (starting 8,000 years ago)…so mid-300’s ppm is ideal.”

    1) and 2) Every government agency in the world that collects stats on extreme weather events shows that there are no more tornadoes, no more hurricanes, no more tsunamis, no more droughts, no more floods, and no more fires (unless set by man), than there ever were.
    3) An engineer has mathematically proved in an article on this site that even if you blowtorched all of Antarctica at the same time, it would take 105,000 years to melt. In 8 temperature stations representing 97% of Antarctica there has been no temperature increase in the whole ~60 years of record keeping. If all 200000 glaciers in the world melted sea level would rise 400 mm. If the whole Arctic ocean melted sea level would rise only 20mm. Greenland is losing only 1/1000 of its ice mass every year and it had lost more ice in the 1930’s

    4) Ridiculous
    5) Plants die at levels of 150PPM and thrive at levels of 1200ppm

  27. The CO2 knob explanation is too simplistic – but the answer to combating the idea of man-made climate change is also simplistic, because it requires a return to the basics – that CO2 doesn’t determine climate; location does. Once people understand that, they understand that CO2 can’t change the climate because it doesn’t determine it to start with. A one or two degree increase in temperatures doesn’t change the climate. The temperatures vary by a degree or two in all climate biomes from year to year – and it doesn’t change that biome.

  28. During the previous interglacial period, the Eemian, temperatures were warmer than today with more ice cap melting and higher sea levels yet CO2 levels were lower than today. Clearly the Eemian could not have possible been caused by mankind’s use of fossil fuel. Apparently the higher temperatures and more ice cap melting during the Eemian did not cause an irreversible tipping point because the warming reversed itself and the last ice age happened. The end of the last ice could not possible have been caused by mankind’s use of fossil fuels. The warmup from various cool periods during the Holocene could have not possible have been caused my mankind’s use of fossil fuels. The current warmup from the little ice age to the Modern Warm Period looks much like other warm ups during the Holocene. The AGW conjecture is clearly not supported by the paleoclimate record.

    There is also plenty of scientific rational to support the idea that the climate sensitivity of CO2 is really zero but the people present failed to present that rational.

  29. I was there. This is a fair and thorough summary. Nice job.

    Here’s the Cliff Notes version:

    THE MANN was insufferable. He did everything he could to make sure you knew you were in the presence of a preeminent scientist whose pronouncements are beyond question, including hard selling his books (copies of which were available for purchase and could be personally signed in the hallway before and after the event). Titley’s avuncular style and weak attempts at humor detracted from the gravitas that should accompany the dire nature of his claims. Curry was measured and surgical. Moore was passionate and threw some well placed uppercuts.

    Mann’s and Titley’s presentations were bald appeals to authority (themselves, the “consensus” and “the intelligence and military community”) and full of dodgy declarations and model based speculations of disaster assailable on the facts.

    Curry presented the most fulsome and rational analysis, including a challenge to the sea rise claims made by Mann and Titley. She’s posted her PowerPoint here: Moore punctuated his attacks on the CO2-as-control-knob theory with easily understood charts to illustrate the lack of correlation between CO2 and temperatures and the overwhelming effects of long term climate cycles. His shot to the heart of the notion that science is a consensus exercise was fatal.

    For me, the highlight was Mann’s closing advice to the audience: Check out the SkepticalScience blog for debunking of the myths being concocted by skeptics. It was hard to pay attention to anything after that as it took all the effort I could muster to not laugh out loud.

    • “Curry presented the most fulsome and rational analysis, …”

      “fulsome” isn’t the word you want! (It means negative things, like, “coarse, excessive.)

      • Well if they freed me from this prison
        If that railroad train was mine
        I bet I’d move it on a little farther down the line
        Far from Folsom prison, that’s where I want to stay
        And I’d let that lonesome whistle blow my blues away

        I’ll get me coat …

      • “Fulsome” is a mixed bag and, of course, the intended meaning is “being full and well developed”. Perhaps “well developed” would have been a better choice of words but that was the best I could do at 4:00 in the morning. Consider my comment so amended. Any objective observer would have come away thinking Curry is a real climate scientist who presented a rational, fact based case with a degree of class that far exceeds that exhibited by those who are desperate to take her down because she presents a significant threat to their narrative.

    • Rick,

      Well met! I was sitting up front and couldn’t help but simply shake my head when Dr. Mann mentioned SKS. I probably even snorted out loud.

      I can tell you that Dr. Curry’s opinion of SKS is, well, less than optimal…

      Regarding Dr. Titley’s claims that the IC was concerned about climate change, I couldn’t help but laugh. Maybe there’s a footnote in some report somewhere about it, but are we seriously expected to believe that amidst the drama of an imminently ascending, and seemingly hostile, East, our intelligence community is spending resources on model-driven prognostications of doom 100 – 200 years out? Preposterous!!!

      (a.k.a. Brian Lindauer)


    Solar smashed wind in 1st fair auction of renewables in Germany. Sooooooooo ,what was the response from the 2 industry groups?


    Wind Power Monthly BWE president Herman Albers states:

    “Pitting two most important pillars of our future energy system against each other is inefficient and not effective. Instead, we need an intelligent mix of the two technologies.”


    His counterpart at BSW-Solar, Carsten Körnig, agrees:

    “We are happy for the many solar winners, but consider the experiment a failure. The auction results prove the excellent price-performance ratio of new solar power plants, but not the suitability of joint tenders.”


    • What they mean is that solar doesn’t work at night, or in winter after snow fall. Wind on the other hand works on an irregular basis. So between the two generstion can be properly erratic and intermittent.

  31. So according to Mann, 401ppm CO2 is bad but 380ppm would be okay. My, the CO2 control knob is very sensitive.

    • Same with Bill McKibben. 350 good, 400 causes hurricanes.

      You couldn’t make it up. It’s embarrassing to be a human at times.

  32. Mann always claims his opponents are funded by fossil fuel industry. It is because he is projecting, and he is the one being paid to be alarmist. I have heard him say in an audience of scientists, ‘There is a reputation out there that I am some sort of climate alarmist, but actually I think there is a missing negative feedback.” This was in response to a question about whether the talk he just gave meant that warming in climate models is ‘vastly overstated’. He said he agreed with that.

  33. In a previous thread an ecofasc1st “Alley” claimed to have been present in person and gave an “account” of the debate that is unrecognisable as the same one in Brian Lindauer’s excellent summary here.

    • So you’re saying that only one of us was present? Great. Then apparently I was there and the author of this article is a liar.

      Funny how rational science becomes “ecofascism” to people who have no understanding of fascism.

      • Given the number of whoppers you’ve been caught telling, why should we assume that this time you were telling the truth?

        • Since you appear to be a science aliterate, I suggest you pretend that all others who think they know more about climate than climate scientists are always telling the truth, but that climate scientists are lying.

          You should sleep better.

  34. Mann’s dishonesty is so egregious as to be laughable if it were not so politically influential.

    He says like a creationist, “no palaeo data can be trusted prior to 30-40kya.” (Mann does not believe in dinosaurs.)

    Then he says “present day 410ppm CO2 is the highest for millions of years.”

    So he deleted the geological record showing CO2 in the thousands of ppm for most of earth’s history, and replaces it with a pure fiction of stable 300ppm CO2 for “millions of years”.

    And the climate research, media and political communities are completely happy with this.

    This is how fasc1sm starts – on a river of lies.

  35. We all argue about temperature; but this is only one indicator of the enthalpy of a body. There are others which must be included if an understanding of the flows of energy is to be achieved.

    The internal enthalpy of a static parcel of gas can be calculated by a temperature measurement. However, once it starts moving or alters it’s position with regard to gravity the enthalpy calculation becomes very different. Energy is a fascinating subject as it morphs from state to state with temperature being merely but one indicator of the true position.
    A simple example of this is in the temperature readings of air passing through a venturi tube, where the temperature alters but the enthalpy remains more or less constant.

    I suggest this is often forgotten where climate matters are concerned. The question being: If the global temperature rises by say one degree what has happened to the global enthalpy and what is the source of the additional energy required for this to happen?

    • The troposphere’s enthalpy should rise. The energy comes from trapped infrared photons captured by co2, methane, and water vapor. The ocean enthalpy also ought to rise a bit. But I don’t know for sure by how much.

  36. “His presentation was based around the idea that the only debate to be had is on what to do about man-made climate change. Indeed, he stated this position several times, reinforcing it by clarifying that there’s no worthy debate to be had on whether there’s a problem, or that man has caused it. As a justification for this, Dr. Mann explained that the science behind anthropogenic climate change is verifiable fact. Incontrovertible. Well known and agreed upon for over a hundred years.”

    I’m not a scientist and know very little about the actual technical things, but if this really were true, then why the hell was he sitting there? Why was anyone there? Why have this event in the first place? If someone, even a scientist, says that “there should be no debate”, then that is exactly when you should have a debate. I thought science is about trying to understand things, asking questions etc. and not about authoritarianism or “SHUT UP! THIS IS HOW IT IS. THE END!”. Especially when it’s about something as complex as Earth’s climate.

  37. CAGW FAILS*****************************************************************************

    Dr Pierre Robitaille has demonstrated that non conductors like a CO2 molecule and an H2O molecule decrease their emmisivity as temperature goes up. So there can be no CAGW because CAGW demands an increasing emissivity of back radiation with increased temperatures. This has now been 4 years since this 1st appeared and all is silence on this. It appears that CAGW is dead . If CAGW is dead that means we can afford to wait and see how high the temperatures go to determine if it is natural or AGW caused. Therefore no action required and especially not carbon taxes. In the meantime we have to prove that AGW is dead.

  38. Thanks to Brian for this work.
    Maybe first small steps towards an actual debate. Not much new here I think. No surprises as such, just everyone making unchallenged assertions. So what ever side you happen to be on, got a reasonably fair hearing. Good that it happened though.

  39. The event is a net positive except it propagates the public misperceptions that it’s centrally a legitimate science debate when in fact it’s orchestrated pseudoscience for a globalist political agenda of a massive regulatory orthodox central planning agenda. Without the motives of “consensus” belief systems the debate is half baked.

    It’s always political from the academic green inception on. “Science” only debates only enable the broader deception. If the debate was comprehensive Mann would never show up. In that sense the Dr. Curry post normal skepticism is a hazard as are the many science idol worshippers who can’t cope with climate agenda political underpinnings. The useful idiot factor.

    If you can’t as Dr. Curry can’t acknowledge the long sordid history of leftist agenda setting under the climate theme from inception the core narrative is corrupt beyond repair. If this is what “consensus” skepticism is it’s complacent rubbish to be rejected. Uncertainty in data is the least important tool considering how far the junk science fear monger results have taken the world.

    Science only arguments have to acknowledge the political motive of the carbon control agenda setting as painful as that may be to their political compass as the stakes are that high. Massive carbon rationing under climate premises fantastically inflates carbon pricing with huge anti-growth policy effecting the worlds poor in particular. Climate control is Ehrlichian socialism for an Earthday low information proletariat that is misguided at best and genocidal in policy practice. Science only skepticism are to the debate what large government RINOS are to the GOP, destructive rotting while losing in practice. Narratives win political conflicts and that at the core is what CO2 claims actually are.

  40. Roll up roll up, come see the circus.
    The Romans did a lot of circus didn’t they. Fat lot of good that did.

    Only one thing we need to know from these 4 people. Only one thing.

    Would they continue their work if they were not being paid to do it?
    As, for example, Mr Trump

    And that question will be asked in a bare empty room apart from 2 chairs and a desk, face-to-face, nose-to-nose point blank.
    And no. No matter how heartfelt the apology from the legal team, jeez, this little event will NOT use any technology apart from a very basic camera microphone, ‘for the record’

    If there is ANY hesitation, any attempt to change or avoid the subject, any attempt to pass the buck, nerves or twitching, shifty eyes etc etc then the case for man-made climate change is thrown out.

  41. California has the solucion final.

    “The Berkeley City Council on Tuesday night declared what it called a “climate emergency” with more global significance than World War II, and demanded an immediate effort to “humanely stabilize population” and “reverse ecological overshoot.””

    “another thinning of the herd might be needed”

  42. Just one correction. Where my comments are described as:
    “Civilization began to flourish during holocene maximum, which was warmer than today (glacier advance and subsequent retreat since then demonstrates that it was warmer then that it is today)”
    It should say “(glaciers advanced very little during the Holocene Maximum but have advanced considerably during the Neoglacial with a peak during the Little Ice Age only 300 years ago.”
    Here’s a link to the graph by Javier:

    • Thank you for the clarification, Patrick. I was hitting a wall, so to speak, by the time I finalized my write-up. And clearly I short-shifted you.

      Additionally, I trust you got that my light teasing about your early days as an activist were intended in good fun. You seemed like you have a good sense of humor, so I thought you wouldn’t mind the “color” I added there.

      All the best,

      (a.k.a. Brian Lindauer)

  43. If we “move away from fossil fuels” before certain conditions are realized we will have no ability to help those impacted because everyone will be impacted. Even Dr. Mann.

  44. This was an exceptionally well written summary.

    I have always admired the work by Patrick Moore.

    Ms. Curry seems to be capable of saying “we don’t know”,
    which is rare in climate science.

    Mann is a Hockey Stick fraud, making scary wild guesses
    about the future climate … that will be wrong … just like
    the predictions for the past 30 years have been wrong !

    I suppose the speakers thought they were debating science,
    but there is little real science included in “modern climate science”.

    We have experiments to demonstrate CO2 is a greenhouse
    gas in a laboratory — everything else is one assumption on top
    of another assumption, plus the magical, unproven, illogical
    water vapor positive feedback theory
    that takes CO2 from a minor greenhouse gas
    to a CO2 BoogeyMan that will eventually kill all
    life on our planet.

    How many decades of wrong average temperature
    predictions are required before it becomes obvious
    the future climate is not controlled by CO2 levels,
    and can’t be predicted … or is this a global warming
    “religion”, based on faith, where no theory can ever
    be falsified ?

    I’ve been waiting for an answer to my two major questions
    since I started reading about the climate in 1997:
    (1) What caused 4.5 billion years of natural climate change
    to stop in the middle of the 20th century, and allowed
    humans to take over as the “climate controller”?, and
    (2) How can anyone “know” that the 1975 to 2000 warming
    was “man made from CO2” when there was a similar warming
    in the same century, from 1910 to 1940,
    that is said to have natural causes?
    My climate change blog:

  45. the position of the organizers was simple: it’s not IF there’s climate change, but rather, how much has man contributed to it through the addition of CO2 into the atmosphere. This was to be the framework under which all the presenters agreed to speak.

    Seeing as how the organizers were a law firm, the focus on “who’s to blame” isn’t surprising. But what seems to be always missing is, “Is there blame or credit to be apportioned?”

    Yes, there is undoubtedly Climate Change going on. Earth’s 4 billion years of history is a study in climate change. Some climate change leads to massive extinctions, some lead to ice ages, some lead to incredibly rich ecosystems. So it is very much an open question whether the current trajectory in climate change is a net benefit or detriment to the various nations, ecologies, and species on this planet. For instance, were there a representative of the conifers on the panel its message may have been: “Whatever man is contributing to an increase in CO2 — we like it. Keep it up.”

  46. Good summary and I thank the author for their work.

    Dr. Mann noted that his hockey stick graph was the first time this type of analysis had been attempted. And like any “seminal piece of work”, there were things to improve.
    Oh yes the classic 1984 style approach of good or double good , bad or wrong or course being impossible to even consider as existing .

    Mann of course is hanging by one finger over the cliff of irrelevance and all he has to hold on to is his infamous stick . So I would expect him act in the manner he did in this presentation.
    After all such an approach has brought a third rate academic, at best , the lifestyle and professional standard that could normally only dream about and his be no means the only one .

  47. Actually, the evidence is explained quite easily by AGW theory. It’s what the theory *predicts*, for goodness’ sake! It’s amazing the difficulty people go through to find an alternate explanation that is consistent with the laws of physics.

  48. “The impact of 2C increase would be equivalent to moving to Florida (insignificant)”

    Try moving to Florida and saying that.

  49. So Dr Mann is proud that the hockey stick is now almost 20 years old. How many of us imagined 20 years ago that 20 years on; after nothing happening, even a pause while co2 emissions went up, up, up, that the hockey stick would not be consigned to the dust bin of history?

    • Because temps went up. Did you know that the last three years are the warmest three?

      Seems like warming to everyone else.

      • And how do those temps compare to the 1930s given an unmanipulated with data set? How does Arctic sea ice compare to the 1930s and 40s? Back when co2 was estimated at 310ppm? How do the last three years compare with the MWP? What should the longer term trend coming out the LIA be? What should we do about El Nino spikes? What correlation, not that a correlation means anything? Do we need a nature trick here? Should we combine unrelated data sets? Should we reverse the signs on certain sections of the data set?

        • KT, temps are warmer than 1930s. Everyone knows this.
          Arctic sea ice is lower. Thanks to science we know this.
          Last three years are warmer than MWP. We know this.

          What do we do about El Nino spikes? We draw lines between them and see that each successive one is warmer. What do we do with La Nina years? Draw a line between them to show that they have become warmer. What do we do with other years? Draw a line…

          • “KT, temps are warmer than 1930s. Everyone knows this.”

            No, that is not accepted by everybody. Are you talking before or after adjustments/tampering?

            According to DMI data (the best we have), there was less sea ice in the 1930s than now.

          • “No, that is not accepted by everybody. Are you talking before or after adjustments/tampering?”

            Correction: Everyone with a science background knows this. A small portion of the US public seems to have been convinced that the 1930s were warmer.

            Did you know that taking temps at noon is difference than taking them at 3:00 p.m.? It’s true! Adjustments to the rescue!

            Did you know that you must change the math in determining global temps for a station that is moved to another location? Adjustments for the win!

            What’s that? You want to add all station temps and divide by the number of stations? That’s not science, but give it s shot, let’s have a laugh.

          • Well did Dr. Curry opine:

            “rampant overconfidence in an overly simplistic theory of climate change”

            You have a lot of catching up to do, as you seem to be unaware of or deliberately ignoring several of the complexities pertaining to this issue.

            BTW, If properly adjusting for the reduction of rural stations of past data sets and the undeniable and significant UHI effect on modern data sets, you would not cool the past and warm the present.

          • Overall, adjustments “cooled” the planet. Most adjustments are to ocean temps, which were raised significantly for past temps. You really don’t wan to use raw data.

            Rural temp recordings show the same rate of increase as urban recordings. Interesting. No UHI is apparent, because of… adjustments!

            So why do you want to use raw data? That’s something no scientist would do. Curry is well aware that adjustments are proper.

          • They are making the data what every they need it to be. It’s meaningless now. They have no credibility.

          • DMI shows that a lot of melt happened in the 1930s, but the extent is lower today. Sorry, but there was so much more ice that pretending that some rapid melting in the 30s means there was less ice. Simply not true.

          • No there was not a lot more ice in the 1930s. There was much more navigable water, meaning the ice extent was less. This is not guess work. The ships’ logs operating up there during that period leave no question about it.

          • So you didn’t read the actual ice extent for both periods?

            That’s a junior mistake. There is less ice now. The graphs for last year’s low and the lows of the 1930s are readily available.

          • Have you, I see no evidence in those maps for less ice extent in the 1930’s, quite to the contrary. Care to post one which shows what you state?

      • Imagine a step function where the measured variable jumps from one level to another and stays there indefinitely. It would be accurate to say that the last three measurements were among the warmest in the last x measurements (since the step event). However, that is not proof that the values are increasing. Indeed, there could even be a slight decrease in the recent values and it would still be accurate to say the values were among the warmest in the entire time series. These are all word games that the MSM (and some climate scientists) play. I suspect that people like yourself don’t give much thought to exactly what is said and how it is said. When in doubt, look at the graph of the temperature record.

        • Looking at the graph. Shows warming. All of them show warming. Satellite graphs show warming.

          When in doubt, look at actual global graphs of temperature records.

  50. Anthony pardon my skeptical mind but my question is, was the Live Video feed disaster Anthropogenic or due to natural causes. It seems the alarmists might have planned the disaster as insurance to provide an opportunity to doctor the recording.

    • Are you referring to the first published reconstructions? There has been enough work done since to confidently go back 30-40K years.

      We don’t have any confidence in the paleo climate record more than 30K – 40K years old
      Recent warming is unprecedented in totality of known climate record (the 30K – 40K year)

  51. When you see how Pages2k have screened out series with high medieval values, yes they can “validate” Mann’s hockeystick, by simply deleting all data that disagrees.

    This is exactly what the Pages2K folks did, McIntyre detailed some of that.

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