Hump Day Hilarity – How Science vs. Climate Science works

The other day, I was in a conversation related to the climate science, and I was trying to explain the scientific method, I was looking for a flowchart of steps, and found one. I also found one that compared the scientific method with the “science worshiper” method. While not exactly right, it struck me as being a good representation of climate science.

I’ve updated and enhanced the flowchart to accommodate the Popper Mannian method of climate science.

click to enlarge

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June 3, 2020 10:10 am

The Climate “Science” Method has a missing step(s): Some iterative procedure to keep the grants flowing.

Reply to  Franz Dullaart
June 3, 2020 10:29 am

That’s built in

Reply to  Franz Dullaart
June 3, 2020 11:00 am

communicate results —-> needs further research

Scouser in AZ
Reply to  Franz Dullaart
June 3, 2020 11:05 am

I notice the word “model” only appears in the right hand side… (^:

Reply to  Scouser in AZ
June 3, 2020 6:22 pm

I noticed the word “Sue/Litigate” does NOT appear on the right hand side.

Reply to  Franz Dullaart
June 5, 2020 1:32 am

I like the new word “sciency”, as in:

My friend’s wife, who is a high school sciency teacher, will insist that the huge temperature swings observed on the moon are due to fossil fuel combustion and the global warming crisis.

She gets quite agitated when anyone questions her illogic. Apparently a lot of high school and university teachers think this way. I don’t want anyone this stupid teaching my kids.

Peter John
June 3, 2020 10:17 am

They should be called Climate Scienticians NOT scientists

Reply to  Peter John
June 3, 2020 12:12 pm

White House Budget Director comfirmation hearing live on C-Span right now. Very first “question” from Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D, Rhode island):

“Tell me about climate change.”

Tom Abbott
Reply to  brians356
June 4, 2020 7:15 am

Whitehouse is a real gem. A totally clueless gem.

Reply to  Peter John
June 3, 2020 5:00 pm

Actually, Climate Scientologists

Tiger Bee Fly
June 3, 2020 10:19 am

This is perfect. By coincidence, I’m reading a fantastic essay by Gary Saul Morson at The New Criterion:

Here’s a criticism of socialist radicalism from the 1850s that ought to resonate very nicely for anyone paying attention in the 2020s:

“Science is not a special school or doctrine, and so it can become neither a government, an arbitrary law, nor a persecution…
Could you please explain to me why belief in God is ridiculous and belief in humanity is not; why belief in the kingdom of heaven is silly, but belief in utopias on earth is clever? Having discarded positive religion, we have retained all the habits of religion, and having lost paradise in heaven we believe in the coming paradise on earth.”

I’m not a theist myself, but – yeah.

Reply to  Tiger Bee Fly
June 3, 2020 1:31 pm

It strikes me that there is at least one false equivalence being made. Belief in humanity is reasonable based on physical evidence of its existence.

Robert B
Reply to  Scissor
June 3, 2020 2:06 pm

It’s definition of benevolence or higher morality than simply surviving to pass genes on.

Tiger Bee Fly
Reply to  Scissor
June 3, 2020 4:26 pm

Don’t think Herzen meant belief in the existence of humanity…

Reply to  Scissor
June 4, 2020 9:43 pm

Definition of humanity

1 : compassionate, sympathetic, or generous behavior or disposition : the quality or state of being humane bespeaking humanity for the enemy in the midst of a bloody struggle— C. G. Bowers

Scissor, what is the “physical” evidence of the above definition? It speaks to the population in general and for every piece of evidence about the whole of humanity one can show their is counter evidence. Example, the bad dudes in WWII and then their victims attacking each other for food, while at the same time some of their victims sharing food even though they were starving. For socialism to work it requires the vast majority to practice humanity, especially those given the unchecked power. Other issues w/socialism such as even with humanity it still requires effort(work) regardless of lack of any reward or disincentive is why it has never worked and belief in it is akin to belief in religion.

Reply to  Tiger Bee Fly
June 3, 2020 1:42 pm

– Religion demands faith in the absence of evidence.
–Skepticism is viewed as heretical with a congregant of adherents (i.e aka the Faithful).
–Skeptics (aka, heretics) are then given names like “deniers.”

-Science on the other hand demands skepticism in the absence of strong, independent lines of evidence.
— Science demands exploration of alternative explanations.
— Observations that don’t agree with hypothesis or theory are all that is needed to discard a theory.

It is from those two distinctions that we can be sure that most of what masquerades a climate science is merely climate religion today. Even an establishment of a hierarchy of climate clergy and a faithful laity of climate change adherents is similar to more traditional religions like Catholicism. Climate practices such as the buying of carbon offsets is similar to church sold indulgences. Even thend paying penitences after (climate or mortal) sin confessions is similar. Climate Change has its alarmism and claims of apocalyptic future, just as the Bible has its Revelations and damnations by the mark of the beast.

Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
June 3, 2020 3:02 pm

IPCC – International Preachers of the Church of Climatastrophe

Crispin in Waterloo
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
June 3, 2020 7:56 pm

Science demands skepticism in the face of strong evidence. Strong evidence may not be adequate – so conclusions drawn using it as “true” are conditional – even if they remain so for century.

Acceptance of any evidence is no different from religious people accepting some things are true and proceeding on that basis. It is conditional.

Many people find confirmations in signs a reliable guide. Some want different levels or types of proof. Some accept miracles, some logic, some prayer, some inspiration. Some require peer reviewed publication and reject all else even when it is highly convincing from a logical standpoint.

When it comes to HCQ, some trust doctors, some their own experience, some internet quacks. What constitutes proof for materialists or religionists is up the them. If we try to set standards for others we inevitably fail.

Also, every scientific theory ever developed in history has been overthrown and replaced by a new one, and no doubt this will continue for thousands of years.

Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
June 4, 2020 6:51 am

Continuing the religious metaphor, heretics were burned at the stake, nowadays skeptics and their assets are vaporized in the courts.

Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
June 4, 2020 12:07 pm

I would argue that science also requires a regular or even continual dose of scepticism. It is part of the overall recipe.

Walter Sobchak
Reply to  Tiger Bee Fly
June 3, 2020 2:13 pm

Gary Saul Morson taught Russian Literature at Northwestern University. My son who is a mathematician, took his Introduction to Russian Literature, one of the most popular courses on the Northwestern campus. The readings were the K novels (Anna Karenina and Brothers Karamazov). He said it was the best course he had ever taken.

Morson wrote a book: “And Quiet Flows the Vodka: or When Pushkin Comes to Shove: The Curmudgeon’s Guide to Russian Literature with the Devil’s Dictionary of Received Ideas” under the nom de plume Alicia Chudo

Russia has fascinated outsiders for centuries, and according to Alicia Chudo, it is high time this borscht stopped. In this hilarious send up of Russian literature and history, Chudo takes no prisoners as she examines Russia’s great tradition of unreadable geniuses, revolutionaries who can’t hit the broad side of a tsar, and Soviets who like their vodka but love their tractors.

Written in the tradition of 1066 and All That, The Pooh Perplex, and The Classics Redefined, And Quiet Flows the Vodka will, with any luck, be the final word on the ghastly first two millennia of Russian literature, history, and culture.

Reply to  Tiger Bee Fly
June 4, 2020 8:05 am

Tiger Bee:
paywalled, so I did not read.
However, the teaser intro seems to indicate the essay is about radical socialists who eventually figured out how foolish their political system was.

Two very impactful reads for me:
Ronald Radosh “Commies.” very engaging and easy reading. Many touchstones / cultural overlap for many of us. Radosh was raised as a Commie by his Commie parents, and was a Commie for a long time. He developed a career in a few areas, including being involved with publishing Commie rags. And so became a part-time investigative journalist. He decided to do a great dig to show that Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were not Russian Commie spies, but that this story was pure Murica Red-Bating McCarthyism.

He actually did what he intended. To his surprise, he learned that the Rosenbergs were Commie Spies.

His attempts to reveal this ran into True Believer opposition: his fellow Commies were not interested in the truth. This was a yarn he began to pull on. He discovered that his Comrades were more enamored of an imaginary world than the truth. He ended up being a conservative commentator. [I claim that there still is a hypothetical American Democrat party, although I may be the Last Democrat in said party; as an American, and capitalist, and Christian – as the (D) party used to be, I have a lot of overlap with “conservatives,” but am not switching to that affiliation, as Radosh did.]

Emma Goldman, “My Disillusionment in Russia.” Born in pre-Revolution Russia and moved to US before Revolution, and was a young adult who fell in love with the Commie Russian Revolution, and all things Soviet. Wanted America to be Commie / Soviet. In her burning enthusiasm, she took a trip to Mother Commie Russia to go talk her comrades. THis was around 1920 – 1923, around the time the Bolshevisks really revealed major problems with Top-Down Programmed Commie Government.

She eventually became “disillusioned.” This is really funny to read. Fake facade parades, Commies not in the central group living in banishment, trains not running, poverty and failed crops all over the place from planned economy, etc., etc.

She greatly revised her glowing views of Commie to be one of those who decides that the Commie had not been implemented well – and we should just give them another try.

I grew up very active in (D) party politics, including having very negative views of conservatives, while also believing that there is not any Commie in America / any claims are “red-baiting.”

Fifteen years ago, I became very interested in the “vaccine0autism” issue, since I was to get my toddler vaccinated. I was skeptical of this claim, but when you face it as a parent, it is different. So, using what I know of science and data, I dug up and read several original-data studies. I was reassured by these that vaccines did not cause autism.

Having tackled this question, I saw something about the Global Warming. I thought that since I had examined the vacccine-autism question with a good review of some literature, I could surely do the same with this Global Warming issue.

I dug into a search for original-level data. I soon discovered “surfacestations” project, and got connected with WUWT in that way. It was eye-opening. I also figured out that MBH1998 was one of the central articles, and so read it. –Not great math. Very obtuse in describing methods. A bit loose with the PCA (I already knew how to do PCA – so I had a major head start over most people.)

From that, puzzled over how “my” “democrat” colleagues could be so rabid about “Global Warming.” This was really a heyday of Global Warming among Libs. Maybe 2007 – 2009. A decade ago. When I exchanged spars on Face book with my long-time democrat cronies, I realized that they were True Believers, and weird stuff was going on.

To grasp this, I was reading and thinking. I came across Radosh, and Goldman, among many other things – “original Port Huron Statement,” etc. I figured out that the Democrat Party had decided to unofficially ally with the Commies so much, disguised by hiding behind the “red-baiting” canard so no one could reveal this shift, that the Democrat Parry had little difference from the Commies. Oh – sorry – many of you all prefer the term “democratic socialists.”

I also figured out that there is something of a Cult strategy to unify beliefs and silence dissent. Since open discussion of facts and ideas is no longer allowed in the “Democrat Party,” I feel American civics has had a great loss, but I really don’t care what happens to the (D) party now, and I am optimistic about the (D) party self-destructive course the (D) are now running.

[I have this idea that there eventually will be a renewed (D) party – maybe a “Constitutional Democrat” parry, to contrast against the Commie D party.]

All of this serves to illuminate how “science” and politics have been deceitfully used to advance mutual agendas by a “cultural hegemony” of fascists and commies.

If anyone is interested in reading about the limits of the Commie, follow my suggestions, and maybe someone can reveal the list offered in that paywalled article.

June 3, 2020 10:22 am

Dress well.

Get a PhD.

Get a government job.

Proclaim a coming climate crisis every year.

In mid-year, announce that the future climate will be worse than you previously thought.

Present your temperature tipping point with three decimal places — anything less is junk science.

Mention that you lnow Greta “thundering” Thunberg personally.

Ron Long
Reply to  Richard Greene
June 3, 2020 10:51 am

And wait for a hot summer day and turn off the air conditioning when you present your results.

Reply to  Ron Long
June 3, 2020 1:20 pm

No, YOU do not present the results. Rather, enlist the help of an emotionally challenged child to present them.

June 3, 2020 10:24 am

The climate ‘science’ method needs significant connections with advocacy groups, pal reviewers, and media contacts with headline writer ‘journalists’.

June 3, 2020 10:28 am


Carl Friis-Hansen
June 3, 2020 10:35 am

Anthony, very useful flow chart, will print it, frame it and hang it inside the local bus stop booth.

Tiger Bee Fly, the words are so clever and universally true.

James McGinn
June 3, 2020 10:38 am

This is also how meteorology approaches storm theory:
For example, do you concur with the notion that moist air contains gaseous H2O? Yes? No? Do you dispute my assertion that this notion is nonsense? Yes? No? Undoubtedly we will never know because, like all science pretenders, you are determined to ride the fence, play it safe. And that is too bad. Science isn’t about looking or even being right. It’s about being specific so that if you are wrong you can realize you are wrong when you are wrong. Because realizing you are wrong when you are wrong is the hardest part of any scientific endeavor. More than anything else, science is about defeating your minds desire to take the easy path and just believe.

June 3, 2020 10:45 am

Just one possible correction. I believe climate scientists like to PUBLICIZE before publishing.

John B
June 3, 2020 10:57 am

I think there are too many steps in the Climate Science (😂) Method… only one: SHUT UP.

Al Miller
June 3, 2020 10:58 am

I LOVE it!! Will definitely use this to illustrate the point as alarmists don’t seem to understand words that aren’t “yes, I’ll send more taxpayer grant money”.

June 3, 2020 10:58 am

Because there are still some honest climate scientists that actually do try to be faithful to the scientific method, I prefer to use the term Climate Dowsing now to describe the Mannian Method.


From the Wiki:
“Dowsing is a type of divination employed in attempts to locate ground water, buried metals or ores, gemstones, oil, gravesites, malign ‘earth vibrations’ and many other objects and materials without the use of a scientific apparatus. Dowsing is considered a pseudoscience and there is no scientific evidence that it is any more effective than random chance. Dowsers often achieve good results because random chance has a high probability of finding water in favourable terrain.”

Climate dowsing is a type of divination employed in attempts to identify future global climates without the use of a scientific instrument. Climate dowsing future climate with climate models and past climate with pre-selected tree rings are both a pseudoscience and there is no scientific evidence that they are anymore effective than random chance. Climate dowsers achieve good results because random chance has a high probability of finding changing climate in sufficiently long periods of time.

Paul Penrose
June 3, 2020 11:01 am

Most people don’t really know what “science” is. You can tell when they say things like “science tells us…” or “the science is settled”.

Reply to  Paul Penrose
June 3, 2020 12:35 pm

Paul Penrose,

Indeed. Not only do they not know what science is, their false idea of science is something someone on TV said that some anonymous group of scientists said somewhere at some unspecified time.


Reply to  Paul Penrose
June 3, 2020 4:33 pm

Well, now, science does tell us things. Things like I = V/R and F = ma. Unfortuantely, our political masters use science to validate their preconceptions, and ignore everything Ohm and Newton.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  PaulH
June 3, 2020 6:26 pm

PV = nRT does not explain the surface warmth – except in Wiki articles.

Q = 1/R A dT does – everyday – in every insulated house – in every Home Depot aisle full of R values.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  PaulH
June 3, 2020 6:28 pm

PV = nRt does not explain the surface warmth.

Q = 1/R A dT does – everyday – in every insulated house – in every Home Depot aisle with bags full full of R values.

Reply to  PaulH
June 4, 2020 7:00 am

PaulH: No. Science does not tell you any of those things.

A human, or humans, come up with a theory about how the recognizable physical universe works: a cause and effect relation.
A human, or humans, come up with a way to test this theory.
If this cause-and-effect hypothetical relation is true, then when I institute cause A, I should observe the outcome B.

If I fail to observe Outcome B, there are a couple main conclusions about my theory of what causes what in the physical world.
-my theory will be assumed to be wrong.
-my test will be assumed to have been not good enough to test the theory (poorly measured, wrong proxy outcome, etc.)

A human, or human, then proceeds to carry out this test.
The planned observation is made.
The test logic is applied:
-do results match the prediction;
-the planned implications are applied (if the observations failed to mathc the prediction, then you consider the two implication-options: A does not cause B, or my test was insufficient in some way).

Scientific hypothesis testing, AKA hypothetico-deductive hypothesis testing. thus involves two main parts:
observation of the natural world doing what it does (this is what you mean by :”science tells us something),
our complex logic-based “test.”

The logic-based test -“if this result is observed, then I conclude this or that ” – is FULLY in the mind. Sure, it makes sense, and is arguably a defensible method for ascertaining knowledge.

But it never is “nature” or “science” “telling” us anything.

Old joke:
“Hey, does that watch tell time well?”
“No, it won’t tell me the time at all; I have to read it.”

Why be pedantic?

Because this illuminates how we can be wrong.

We might assume A causes B. If we assume that when we have supposed cause A that B will result, we could be wrong.

Only by including logic that allows us to be wrong can we include the detail that we could be wrong.

The deaf frog story fits here.
I test auditory “jump” command on frog trained to jump when hearing the command.

I cut off one leg. Frog jumps less. I cut off 2nd leg, frog jumps less. I cut off third leg, frog jumps less. I cut off fourth leg, and conclude that frog has now gone deaf.

By the simple “science tells us” mantra, the frog has gone deaf.

By building in more caveats, more specific logic, we are open to more ideas:
Maybe there are coincident situations; maybe “A” is coincident with “C.”

In popular use, the “science tells us” meme is applied to push an answer by acting as if some authoritative conclusion has been reached, and argument is no longer valid.

Paul Penrose
Reply to  PaulH
June 4, 2020 9:56 am

Science is a process, a set of steps, used to learn how the natural world works. As such, it can’t “tell us” anything, people that follow the process can. This is an important distinction because you can trust the process, but not always the practitioner. It also means that anybody that follows the Scientific process can be called a “Scientist” regardless of education level.

June 3, 2020 11:08 am

May I please use the image for non-commercial purposes?

John Garrett
June 3, 2020 11:13 am

× 1,000,000

Well done, Mr. Watts !!

It is possible, though I wouldn’t bet on it, that your flow chart might penetrate some of the thick skulls of the sanctimonious but hypocritical, self-proclaimed non-partisan arbiters and pundits of the Fourth Estate.

June 3, 2020 11:27 am

Astrology is more a science than is Climate Divination.

Right-Handed Shark
June 3, 2020 11:33 am

Sorry, but there is an error.. “Find data that agrees with models” should read:

“Adjust data to agree with models”

Your version implies that a climate scientist would actually get off his ass and do something.

Robert B
Reply to  Right-Handed Shark
June 3, 2020 2:22 pm

I might jump in here. Not enough is made of the stupid swapping of hemispheres in the reconstruction of sea-surface temperatures. Yes, we all make mistakes, but it really highlights that none of these highly paid “climate scientists” bothered with the “check procedure step” or has this “denialism” become so synonymous with leprosy that nobody wanted to correct it?

And if you delve in deeper, the early part of the base period gets changed dramatically while either side of the 1940-1980 period is essentially identical going from v2 to 3 in HadSST NH and SH. Then there is a seasonal signal after 2000 in the NH (or was it south?) With an amplitude that grows linearly with time.

Never mistake what could be due to incompetence as a conspiracy, but surely there has been too much incompetence.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Robert B
June 3, 2020 2:24 pm


Do you mean like this complete with an experimental demonstration, the gold standard of classical science.

By reflecting away 30% of the ISR the atmospheric albedo cools the earth much like that reflective panel behind a car’s windshield.

For the greenhouse effect to perform as advertised “extra” energy must radiate upwards from the surface. Because of the non-radiative heat transfer processes of the contiguous atmospheric molecules such ideal BB upwelling “extra” energy does not exist.
Backed by an experimental demonstration, the gold standard of classical science.

There is no “extra” energy for the GHGs to “trap” and “back” radiate and no greenhouse warming.

With no greenhouse effect what CO2 does or does not do, where it comes from or where it goes, becomes moot.

Equally moot are temperatures, ice caps, glaciers, polar bears, sea levels, hurricanes, nuclear power, solar minimums, ….

Robert B
Reply to  Nick Schroeder
June 3, 2020 8:04 pm

My own scepticism is not that there is no GHE. There would have to be some accumulation of heat until a new equilibrium is reached if the effective radiating surface changes from a warmer to a cooler surface e.g. sea surface to tropopause. Some arguments that there is no GHE are actually arguments that a new equilibrium would be reached without the oceans warming significantly. The description of the GHE is designed to get a result of the oceans, hence the land surfaces, warming up catastrophically.

I have to get back to work, so I can’t read what you wrote in detail. If you are saying that if anything was fundamentally wrong with this model that has to, because of funding, predict Thermaggeddon, then it would be overlooked no matter how many award winning climate scientists were hired, then we are in full agreement.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Robert B
June 3, 2020 8:21 pm

The sun heats the surface, water & land.
The surface heats the atmosphere.
Obvious in USCRN data that includes soil temperatures. (not IPCC/WMO “surface” 1.5 m above soil.) I like the La Junta, CO & Monahans, TX data sets.

The elliptical orbit (delta 91 W/m^2 perihelion to aphelion), tilted axis (700 W/m^2 any given point ToA solstice to solstice) and albedo control the net ISR aka Q. Minor fluctuations in these change the surface temperature per Q = U A (Tsurf – Ttoa) just like the thermostat in you house. Long term changes modify climate.

Dynamic changes in the thermal resistance of the atmosphere change U aka 1/R and that also changes dT, (Tsurf – Ttoa). Ttoa is constant so changing the dT is changing T surf.

Physics and chaos controls the weather.

Reply to  Right-Handed Shark
June 4, 2020 12:01 am

Right-Handed Shark:

“Corrupt and debase historical temperature records to erase inconvenient warm periods”.

June 3, 2020 11:38 am

Pandemic researchers — recruit your own best critics

Finding ways to prove ourselves wrong is a scientific ideal, but it is rarely scientific practice. Openness to critiques is nowhere near as widespread as researchers like to think. Scientists rarely implement procedures to receive and incorporate pushback. Most formal mechanisms are tied to the peer-review and publishing system. With preprints, the boldest peers will still criticize the work, but only after mistakes are made and, often, widely disseminated.

It is time to adopt a ‘red team’ approach in science that integrates criticism into each step of the research process. A red team is a designated ‘devil’s advocate’ charged to find holes and errors in ongoing work and to challenge dominant assumptions, with the goal of improving project quality. The team has a role similar to that of ‘white-hat hackers’ hired in the software industry to identify security flaws before they can be discovered and exploited by malefactors. Similarly, teams of scientists should engage with red teams at each phase of a research project and incorporate their criticism.

Even scientists who invite criticism from a red team acknowledge that it is difficult not to become defensive. The best time for scrutiny is before you have fallen in love with your results. And the more important the claims, the more scrutiny they deserve. The scientific process needs to incorporate methods to include ‘severe’ tests that will prove us wrong when we really are wrong.

Left without comment…

June 3, 2020 11:48 am

Fourier’s hypothesis needs to be reexamined, especially since he himself debunked it.

No amount of glass made the surface temperature exceed what the sun provided, yet mainstream climate scientists think GHGs add 33C beyond the sun.

When are lukewarmers going to finally wake up and crush alarmists’ false premise?

Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 1:04 pm


Which statement is nearer to the truth?

a) Unicorns are causing serious damage to the environment.

b) Unicorns may cause some damage to the environment but most environmental changes are natural.

Tough one, this.

Reply to  leitmotif
June 3, 2020 1:38 pm

Unicorns are not corporeal.

Reply to  leitmotif
June 3, 2020 2:09 pm

Unicorns, if solid, probably absorb and emit IR … That means unicorns can warm unicorns by preventing them from cooling into colder space!

I honestly think lukewarmers are COWARDS. They fear being ridiculed by dummies/liars.

The government sponsored lukewarmers are probably concerned about feeding their families. Understandable, but

Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 3:26 pm

Well, Zoe, I am currently looking at an article from WUWT, 2011, by Willis Eschenbach entitled “Radiating the Ocean”.

“Once again, the crazy idea that downwelling longwave radiation (DLR, also called infra-red or IR, or “greenhouse radiation”) can’t heat the ocean has raised its ugly head on one of my threads.

There are lots of good arguments against the AGW consensus, but this one is just silly. Here are four entirely separate and distinct lines of reasoning showing that DLR does in fact heat the oceans.”

And it goes on in that vein – in fact it gets worse – all assertions, no experimental evidence, no measured data. It would bring a tear to a glass eye.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  leitmotif
June 3, 2020 3:37 pm

There MUST be DLR.
Because if there is no DLR there can be no ULR.
No DLR leaves ULR no place to go except ToA which is clearly not possible.
And DLR MUST be measurable – and so, by golly, it is.
Besides, nobody would admit to measuring nothing.

But as I have demonstrated by experiment, the gold standard of science, there is no ULR.

So, measurements are measuring a DLR that does not exist.
SURFRAD and USCRN both claim to do it.

The sun heats the surface, both air and water, the surface heats the atmosphere just like those IR heaters over the check out stands at Home Depot.

“Science is everywhere.” Mr. Wizard

Reply to  leitmotif
June 3, 2020 4:15 pm

The DLR is fake. The ULR is more real, though not perfect.

The DLR doesn’t have 8-14 (except a little at ~9.6) micron radiation, and yet ULR has this radiation at a brightness temperature of ~15C.

You are correct that ULR is not actually 398 W/m^2. That is only an emis=1 equivalent. The actual transfer is much much smaller.

To space there is no transfer at all, because matter can only send EM waves to other matter. Earth only sends EM to the moon, satellites etc. And all this radiation is further reduced by inverse square law. Space does not drain Earth’s energy.

The Earth doesn’t even emit 0.2 W/m^2 to space. But a satellite will detect ~240 W/m^2 because it is matter.

leitmotif is correct. DLR is mostly fake. It occurs rarely and briefly – if at all. I can’t make up my mind.

If scientists could place those DLR sensors on top of a lava flow, they would measure incredible “Downwelling” IR. Where else could that Upwelling IR and lava temperature come from? They deny geothermal. They flipped geothermal into DLR.

They can only explain surface temperatures with sun and IR active gases. It’s their assumption and conclusion.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 6:21 pm

“But a satellite will detect ~240 W/m^2 because it is matter.”
This is a spherical ISR average calculation assuming a 30% albedo.
Power flux is not measured.
Temperature is measured based on the instrument’s on board reference and calibration that assumes a BB calibration source. Since this calibration occurs in air, the assumption is wrong.
The IR temperature is “adjusted” to 240 W/m^2 by assuming a BB 1.0 emissivity.
As discussed earlier and demonstrated – this is incorrect.

Reply to  leitmotif
June 3, 2020 8:58 pm

“This is a spherical ISR average calculation assuming a 30% albedo.”

I think you are referring here to the refected 240 SHORTWAVE.

I was talking about the outgoing 240 LONGWAVE seen on satellite.

But I’m intrigued. Is this chart a fake?:

comment image

I can believe that 294K without those notches really could be ~240 W/m^2.

I heard that the Earth really is ~-20C when viewed from space.

Is that wrong? What’s your view.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 4, 2020 5:55 am

Viewed from space is not the same as the surface.

There is the intervening atmosphere.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 4, 2020 6:05 am

294 K? Is that the new average.
The graphic assumes the earth radiates an average in all directions 24/7.
This is not reality.
The graphic is some kind of averaged model not reality.

The lit side of the earth must radiate more than 240 W/m^2 and the dark side must radiate less.
Using averages is simplistic and misleading.

And this is interesting but beside the point.

Any explanations & arguments of how GHGs warm the atmosphere and earth are pointless.

1) the atmosphere makes the earth cooler not warmer.
2) “extra” BB LWIR energy upwelling from the earth is not possible.
3) There is no “extra” energy for the GHGs to “trap,” “back” radiate or “warm” anything.


Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 4, 2020 7:56 am

I don’t know much about the chart though I have seen it before.
What does it represent? explain?
What are the equations behind its creation?
Where did the data originate?
-20 C is 253 K = 232 W/m^2
Where? ToA? “surface”? Ground?
Balloon sondes?
Have a link to the Wiki article?

Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 5:17 pm

“The DLR is fake.”

So in the Scientific Method we “Construct a Hypothesis” for the DLR

Then we “Test with an Experiment”. Did we ever test the DLR with an experiment? Feldman et al (2015) wasn’t that convincing was it?

What happened then? Was the DLR hypothesis stored away in the too-hard-draw?

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  leitmotif
June 3, 2020 6:38 pm

DLR requires energy to flow from the cold troposphere to the warmer surface without the addition of work.

There is a lot of handwavium hocus pocus about how this is supposed to work.

However, if it were a real thang there would be refrigerators without power cords.

I haven’t seen any.


Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 1:46 pm

288 K w/ – 255 K w/o = 33 C cooler is total rubbish.

288 K is the WMO/IPCC surface (1.5 m above the ground) average. The ubiquitous K-T unbalanced diagram uses 289 K. UCLA Diviner mission uses 294 K.

255 K is the naked earth S-B spherical averaged equilibrium assuming the 30% albedo remains behind.

That assumption is scientific if not criminal malfeasance!

Nick Schroeder
June 3, 2020 12:08 pm

Then how ‘bout some actual science including the gold standard, experimental demonstration.

Hypothesis: RGHE violates actuarial check book balancing among other problems.

According to the NASA heat balance computer model graphic (attached and/or linked) 163.3 W/m^2 make it to the surface.
18.4 W/m^2 upwell from the surface through non-radiative processes, i.e. conduction and convection.
86.4 W/m^2 upwell from the surface through latent processes, i.e. evaporation and condensation.
The balance upwells 163.3-18.4-86.4-0.6 = 57.9 W/m^2 as LWIR.

That’s it!
The energy balance is closed!

But what about this!?
LWIR: 398.2 total upwelling – 57.9 from balance – 0.6 absorbed = 340.3??
An “extra” 340.3 W/m^2 have just appeared out of thin air!!!???
So where does this 398.2 W/m^2 upwelling “extra” energy come from?
Well, actually the 398.2 W/m^2 is a theoretical “what if” S-B heat radiation calculation for an ideal, 1.0 emissivity, Black Body with a surface temperature of 289 K or 16 C.

The SINGLE amount of LWIR energy leaving the surface has just been calculated by TWO different methods!! and then combined to effectively double the amount!!!! much like entering your paycheck twice in your checking account register.

398.2 is THEORETICAL!!!!!
340.3 is NOT REAL!!!
340.3 VIOLATES conservation of energy!!!!!

And, no, it is NOT measured except by amateurs who don’t understand how IR instruments work or emissivity and assume 1.0 when emissivity is in theoretical fact 57.9/398.2=0.145 or in actual fact 57.9/163.3=0.355

There is no 398.2 upwelling “extra” energy, there is no 340.3 “trapping” and “back” radiating “extra” energy, no RGHE, no GHG warming and no CAGW.

As demonstrated by experiment, the gold standard of classical science:

Reply to  Nick Schroeder
June 3, 2020 2:02 pm

The 340 W/m^2 is the equivalent flux of what geothermal provides in kineric energy. This flux does not exist, as you say, but that’s not the point.

The heat budget you describe is correct, but a heat budget doesn’t explain surface temperatures.

Why is the surface ~15C?
Geothermal provides a 5C base. The sun adds 163 W/m^2. ~107 W/m^2 of the sun goes into Latent and Sensible Heat, the other 56 W/m^2 gets added ontop of the 5C base, that is 340+56 W/m^2, and this yields 15C.

The sun is an enhancement to Earth’a natural energy. The Earth is an infrared star.

What do you think?

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 2:18 pm

“The 340 W/m^2 is the equivalent flux of what geothermal provides in kineric energy.”

No, it isn’t.

“Why is the surface ~15C?”

Q = U A dT same as the insulated walls of a house.

To move fluid through a hydraulic resistance requires a pressure difference.
To move current through an electrical resistance requires a voltage difference.
To move energy, i.e. heat, through a thermal resistance requires a temperature difference.
Physics is physics.

Energy moves upwards through the 32 km of contiguous atmospheric molecules participating through a complex interaction of conduction, convection, advection, latent and radiation. These must sum to 1.0. For instance, increased radiation comes at the expense of one or all of the others. (Max Planck)

btw near earth space is not 5 K cold, but 394 K, 121 C, 250 F and sans atmosphere would bake like the moon not freeze. That’s why ISS has redundant ammonia coolers.

Reply to  Nick Schroeder
June 3, 2020 3:11 pm

I think we agree on a lot. But consider this:

There is 0 W/m^2 flowing between 5C and 5C object. That is the heat budget here.

But I don’t think there is anything wrong with saying 5C can have an equivalent ~340 W/m^2 radiating potential. That is what is determined by SB Law.

Knowing the heat flux between 5C and 5C is 0 W/m^2 doesn’t tell you much information. You can have 0 W/m^2 between any two equal temperatures.

Add the sun’s 163 W/m^2. Now explain why the surface is 15C. You can’t. Sure ~56 W/m^2 will go directly towars translational energy. So what? Doesn’t explain surface temperature.

But adding the 56 W/m^2 to the geothermal’s 5C – 340 W/m^2 equivalent does.

Your heat budget calculations are correct. But the heat budget doesn’t care about the base nor predict final surfacr temperature.

Best regards, -Zoe

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 3:25 pm

“You can’t.”
I’m pretty sure I clearly did.

For a 5 C surface to radiate 340 W/m^2 per S-B requires a 1.0 emissivity and that can only do so into vacuum. For naked surfaces: The moon, check. The sun, check. The ISS check.

The earth with an atmosphere – not check.

With a contiguous participating media, i.e. molecules contributing non-radiative heat transfer processes, 1.0 emissivity is not possible.

As I demonstrated by experiment, the gold standard of science.

Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 4:00 pm

I didn’t say anything about radiating 340.

I specifically said a 340 equivalent radiating POTENTIAL. It’s a maximum.

Sure, emissivity is not 1. I found the broadest measure to be ~0.936

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 4:11 pm

It’s not 0.936 either.

It’s 63/160 or 0.39. (K-T)

“…sivity is in theoretical fact 57.9/398.2=0.145 or in actual fact 57.9/163.3=0.355.” (NASA)

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Anthony Watts
June 3, 2020 2:21 pm

Well, it’s simple.

Follow the scientific method and ‘splain how & why I’m wrong.

It is, after all, as difficult as showing that the check book balances – or not.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Anthony Watts
June 3, 2020 3:06 pm

Like I said, how often do I actually do that?
Got data?

“…it IS about your behavior.”
Like I haven’t heard that lame excuse to dodge my issues before.
Challenging some lying VP in public is the “wrong venue.”

I have demonstrated by experiment, the gold standard of science, that “extra” BB LWIR upwelling from the surface is not possible.
If that doesn’t work, none of it works.

So, rather than a science based rebuttal you’re going to get Ridd of me. (get it?)

Hey, it’s your house.

Rainer Bensch
Reply to  Anthony Watts
June 4, 2020 4:15 am

Two blind talk about color.

Reply to  Nick Schroeder
June 3, 2020 3:20 pm

Being right is annoying. You have to watch your behavior.

Alarmists agree.

If you’re right less often or not at all you will be more likeable. Being likeable is the number one rule of pursuasion.

/Devil’s advocate off

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 3:28 pm

“If you succumb to other’s rules, you will lose.”

Sun Tzu

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 4:01 pm

Rest assured my preferred response to your behavioral counseling would get me banned.

So, just fill in the blanks.

Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 4:25 pm

Lose small to win big.
– Casino Strategy

Here’s a complementary $50 of chips with your room, ma’am.

Another free drink, ma’am?

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 6:23 pm

A KAL jetliner flew into the mountainside because the crew was “likeable” and didn’t dare ask the caption WTF he had in mind.

Reply to  Zoe Phin
June 3, 2020 4:34 pm

I was joking, Nick.
You’re not the only one at risk of being banned.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Anthony Watts
June 3, 2020 2:28 pm

Like what, maybe twice a month?
As opposed to many of you I have a life.
And after RGHE and CAGW collapse you’ll all have to find something useful to do.
I’m retired and clipping coupons.

June 3, 2020 1:11 pm

Thanks, Anthony, that made me smile.

Stay safe and healthy, all.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Bob Tisdale
June 3, 2020 1:51 pm

No problem.

I’m not 80 years old with high blood pressure, COPD and renal failure in a shit hole NYC nursing home.

Reply to  Nick Schroeder
June 3, 2020 4:35 pm

80 year old in a long term care home KNOWS they don’t have long or they’d be living in their own homes and dying in their own beds from other natural causes, like most of my elder relatives have done.
The numbers never came close to the scare they put into people to lock down the globe.
Stupidity has gone global.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  Nick Schroeder
June 4, 2020 11:58 am

And per USA Today
I don’t weigh 300 pounds
and have diabetes
and high blood pressure
and renal failure.

smart rock
June 3, 2020 1:17 pm

No offence, Anthony, but in those branches of science that study the natural world “designing an experiment” is usually not part of the scientific method. What takes its place is “design a program to collect new data that will test your hypothesis”

A really good example of what I mean is the Alvarez’s testing the hypothesis that a meteorite impact caused the end-Cretaceous extinction. They went out and found places where there was a continuous sedimentary sequence that straddled the K-T boundary (which we’re now supposed to call the K-Pg boundary), collected a load of samples and did exhaustive chemical analysis on them. And they found the now-famous iridium anomaly, which upgraded the hypothesis to a theory with supporting evidence that has no obvious alternative explanation.

In the Popperian world, if they had not found the iridium-enriched layer, the Alvarez hypothesis would not have been totally falsified, but it would have become a much more tentative hypothesis.

Pardon me for promoting the methods of observational science to the same level as those of experimental science.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  smart rock
June 3, 2020 1:48 pm

Experiment and observations are kissin’ cousins.

Mark Broderick
June 3, 2020 1:52 pm


“The other day, I was in a conversation related to the climate science, and and I was trying….
Double word…
Great post .

old engineer
June 3, 2020 4:25 pm


Thought your flow charts were great. And while I agree that the “Scientific Method” one expresses the ideal, there is one area where it differs from what actually happens in most research organizations. That is the arrow down to “communicate results” from the box that says “Results align partially or not at all with hypothesis.”

As a young engineer working in industrial research, I found something that was widely thought to work, but didn’t ( I can’t remember what it was, it was 50 years ago). I went to my boss and told him that we should publish the results. I still remember his response though: “We don’t publish negative results.” I found his idea to be the rule in most areas.

Over the 30 years I worked in this area, I began to appreciate this approach. In any field there is so much to read to keep current, that negative papers would get put on the bottom of the stack. Bottom line is that results that don’t align with the hypothesis, don’t get published.

Chris Hanley
June 3, 2020 4:57 pm

In 2012 The BBC did a program on the scientific method.
The final five minutes or so revealed fundamental differences.
John Worrall Professor of the Philosophy of Science at the London School of Economics had a conventional ‘normal science’ view that there is one scientific method aimed at establishing approximate truths about the world (in the broadest sense).
On the other hand Simon Schaffer Professor of the History of Science at the University of Cambridge seemed to belong to the Naomi Oreskes school of the history of science saying there is no single scientific method, that ‘the important questions of our time are where trust and authority should vested’ and that the role of science was to ‘make [up?] stories about the world that compel’.

John Bruyn
June 3, 2020 6:44 pm

Now, where did you get that idea? 🙂

John of Cairns
June 3, 2020 10:37 pm

I probably am an atheist, but I am prepared to accept that all kinds of people of all types of political beliefs need to be part of something bigger themselves. To me ,Christianity stands out because of its excellent value system that is based on consideration of others. When compared to militant unionism, antifa, ku klux clan, political greens or any other belief in a deity, the benefit seems to outweigh the harm.

Nick Schroeder
Reply to  John of Cairns
June 4, 2020 6:07 am

“…excellent value system that is based on consideration of others. ”

Other Christians.

Non-Christians not so much.

June 4, 2020 7:18 am

A major problem in all of this is the issue of: to what types of situations can science be applied?

Science is a method for ascertaining knowledge of the physical world. By “physical,” I include energy and matter; I guess I also include “space” as well. That covers all of everything except for time and the spiritual/supernatural. Time gets wrapped up in this as well, in an interesting way.

Science applies to regular cause and effect relations in the physical world. A classic example is how so many of us have repeated the exact same chemistry “labs” and had the same results.

In high school, we did a “lab” where we combined this chemical and that chemical in certain way, and produced “esters:” chemical compounds that often imbue “scents;” fragrances or smells.

As each of several lab groups, at slightly differing paces, gets to the point where the esters are created, the scent wafts up across the room.

when we did this, we knew we were to produce “esters” but we did not know a fragrance would result.

The first group gets to the scent stage, and all of us are pleasantly surprised. The second group produces the scent, and we are all convinced that the chemistry stuff is true; is reliable. Cause and effect: given the atomic theory, and what is known about chemical interactions, when you do this, you get that fragrance.

Over and over and over. A hundred classes year after year. A hundred years in the future, the scent will be the same, if the same steps are followed with the same materials.

This is the limit of science. Cause and effect in the natural, physical domain of our universe.

The Climate issue is a matter of projection. Projecting what will happen in the future can build on science knowledge, such as gas laws and laws of radiation, but it is more – it involves taking what might be “known” per science, about what reliably causes what in the known physical world, and builds something that is far beyond that – it builds a projection.

A projection is something entirely different from any piece of “science.”

We can quibble about the semantics of “projection,” “forecast,” “model,” “prediction,” and so on, but they ALL are something beyond science.

Therefore, we can never rely on the “B” assumed to follow the “A” of a projection to be the same type of “B” we can assume will follow “A” in the known, physical world, year by year for each successive chemistry class.

The science type A – > B is timeless, in a sense. It is not dependent on time-based conditions.
A projection always is sensitive to time based circumstances.

The best we can do is to form hypotheticals:
“in a hypothetical world with these initial values, a reduction in sunspots would reliably always lead to [projection: warmer planet, colder planet, etc.]”

Therefore, scoence cannot tell us what the climate will be in 50 years if we continue to use fossil fules as we do;
science can help us develop a projection that is better than a WAG (wild-assed guess).

Paul in uk
June 4, 2020 4:32 pm

The problem, I think, is that climate science is producing in effect a product, like engineering does; a product we all need but one with massive implications for us all if it’s right or wrong so I think a different approach is needed and we should be asking: Why should we believe the data, analysis, conclusions and implement the recommended actions if climate science was done with climate science methodology vs same question for engineering methodology?

Climate science answer? Peer review, consensus of a large number of experts, data and facts, numerous lines of evidence all pointing to same conclusion, logical explanation (in our view), no other explanation (in our view). Precautionary principle. Today’s vehicle reliability shows how good we are at getting science right.

Engineering’s answer? Lessons learned from failures (e.g. air crash investigations) leading to; procedures, independent audit, certifications, structured approaches like failure modes and effects analysis, concerns logs, many other groups with different perspectives and motivations checking our design, methods, product, covering our data (measurement systems etc), analysis, conclusions.


What does climate science do that engineering does to improve validation of its output if some people are claiming vehicle reliability as an indication how science is now so good at getting it right?

If done under engineering procedures would it be allowed to get away with not auditing its major measurement systems like the surface temperature network?

Have we done a proper analysis before putting faith in the precautionary principle? e.g. if it’s wrong doesn’t that mean we have failed to understand longrange weather/climate and there may be a very different change underway we fail to forecast with disastrous consequences, we have dangerously weakened our ability to survive that having taken wrong actions and wouldn’t reducing CO2 in that case have little impact on extinction?

Peer reviewed papers – What drives what work gets done and then included or not to ensure balance when forming conclusions from reviewing the peer reviewed literature in climate science?

Experts – don’t we say a little knowledge is a dangerous thing; so what if it turns out that even if our experts are brilliant, know a lot it’s still too little? In engineering failures (e.g. air crash investigations) I presume we are learning that failures will happen the consensus of experts said could not happen; we change the system, does climate science have same learning and improvement process?

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