Cascading fallacies in climate risk assessment

Reposted from CFACT

By David Wojick |August 10th, 2020|

As a logician, I am always on the lookout for fallacies and there is no lack of them in climate change alarmist policies. New Zealand’s newly released climate risk assessment not only has multiple fallacies, they build on one another in a cascade.

North Island Brown Kiwi, Apteryx mantelli

This is not about New Zealand. The authors of the assessment make clear that theirs is a new approach which they hope will be used globally. So this is about the world, including America.

The massive report is titled “First national climate change risk assessment for New Zealand.” Under New Zealand’s climate law, these assessments are supposed to be done every five years and this is the first.

The scope is breathtaking. The idea is to identify all of the significant risks due to human caused climate change that will be present in 2050 and 2100. Moreover, these supposed risks are prioritized.

Unfortunately this elaborate procedure is just a cascade of fallacies. Some of the major ones are listed below.

First, they use computer models to say precisely what the average weather will be in 2050 and 2100. This includes short and long term temperatures, precipitation patterns, and other climate features.

The fallacy is that there is no computer model today that can accurately make such forecasts. Different major models disagree strongly in predicting all of these features. For example the model sensitivity to doubling CO2 ranges from 1 to 6 degrees C, which is a huge range.

Second, they use the average of what is called the CMIP5 climate model runs. These are runs on a large number of climate models that are made to feed into the IPCC process. (Here there are several problems. In particular the models are all constrained so that all the significant forces are human, but that is a different issue.)

The fallacy is that there is no reason to believe that the average of a bunch of bad models is good. In fact the CMIP5 average has been shown to run very hot compared to observed warming. (CMIP6 is even worse.)

Third, they then choose to use the modeling of a wildly worst case emissions scenario called “RCP 8.5”. This scenario for future emissions is so high that it has been criticized as impossible. Using RCP 8.5 is certainly a fallacy.

Fourth, they do what is called “down scaling” of these questionable modeling results. Down scaling means taking the crude modeling results for a large area and somehow generating results for specific places. There is no scientific way to derive fine scale forecasts from the model’s large scale ones. The data simply is not there. However it is done is arbitrary.

New Zealand is geographically pretty small with a land area of just over 100,000 square miles, roughly the size of Colorado. The risk assessment divides New Zealand into 8 tiny zones, with a unique climate forecast for each. This is a glaring fallacy.

Fifth, these impossible fine scale forecasts were then discussed by a large number of people, in a variety of ways, to define all the significant risks. This is an exercise in imagination, not science. It is well known in decision theory that the results of group gropes like this depend heavily on who is there, what they are given and how they are guided.

The fallacy here is to pretend that this is a systematic inventory of risks, suitable for policy making.

Sixth, the supposed risks were ranked based on polling the participants. In addition to the group grope problem there is the pesky fact that risk is a two dimensional concept so risks cannot simply be ranked in one dimension. Each risk has both a severity and a probability.

Generally speaking, high severity but low probability risks are not worth addressing. Meteor strikes are a standard example (the impact really is an impact). The same is true for high probability but low severity risks. What one looks for are risks that combine relatively high severity and probability.

This 2-value ranking was not done, giving the fallacy of the single ranking of risks.

The seventh fallacy is yet to come. This wrongly ranked list of imagined risks based on arbitrary down scaling of an average of questionable computer model results running an impossible scenario is supposed to lead to a National Adaptation Plan in two years. That would be a mega-fallacy.

On the amusing side, I think they got the highest ranked risk right. This is the risk that the government will do the wrong thing. I agree completely, especially if they use this risk assessment.

Also very funny is the “Give us a lot more money” risk. It goes like this:

Risk of delayed adaptation and maladaptation due to knowledge gaps resulting from under-investment in climate change adaptation research and capacity building.
Risk summary:
Under-investment in research and capacity building to inform understanding of climate change risks and impacts is undermining New Zealand’s ability to develop evidence-based adaptation policy. Critical research gaps relate to:
–atmospheric processes
–hydrological cycle impacts
–ecosystem responses
–biodiversity and biosecurity
–New Zealand’s rural and urban communities
–the economic costs of climate change
–impacts on the primary sector
–impacts on heritage
–effects on health and health services
–use of mātauranga Māori to inform adaptation
–cascading impacts
–how to govern climate change adaptation at a number of scales.
These research gaps are a critical barrier to informed decision-making. While these gaps remain, maladaptive actions are a key risk.
” (Page 188)

Given all these significant gaps one would think that an accurate assessment would conclude that no risk assessment is possible at this time. That is my assessment.

Conclusion:

The New Zealand climate risk assessment is a cascade of fallacies, unfit for policy making.

Author

David Wojick Ph.D. is an independent analyst working at the intersection of science, technology and policy. For origins see

http://www.stemed.info/engineer_tackles_confusion.html

For over 100 prior articles for CFACT see

http://www.cfact.org/author/david-wojick-ph-d/

Available for confidential research and consulting.

111 thoughts on “Cascading fallacies in climate risk assessment

      • I think probably one of them was a climate “scientist”, and deserves the respect due to his status.
        None.

      • It would be low risk and high probability that all of them bar the professor were students of social studies

    • I assume those 400 people kept “socially distant” from each other, because it’s clear they kept themselves socially distant from reality.

  1. Many thanks for this useful assessment.

    Unfortunately our NZ Prime Minister Jacinda Adern (aka. Queen Jacinda), the former head of the International Union of Socialist Youth, is likely to be reelected this September. So I fully expect this Green agenda will be codified into law and we will all have to pay the price for being climate sinners.

    I’ve made several presentations to governmental select committees on this nonsense but it’s actually a waste of time…their minds are made up and they don’t want to be confused with facts.

    • Well, she did dig in to the lolly bag and announced a NZ$300mil deal to rebuild the economy she destroyed, so she is bound to win. I pity you guys if she and Peters form Govn’t again.

      • Patrick
        The other parties are all singing the same tune, to the letter. There is no democracy in NZ on the subject of climate change.

    • Visited NZ for a month in 1972. Fell in love with what I saw except for the mosquitos and sand flies on the South Island. There were helicopters flying slaughtered deer out of the mountains to be frozen and shipped as venison to Europe. Deer were quite the pest then.

      Germaine Greer got arrested for saying “bullschitt” and “phuc” while I was in Auckland. Thought that was a bit prudish and authoritarian at the time. What would Queen Jacinda say to that today? Times change I presume.

        • First they take you into their soft beds, which is not so bad, then they take you into their soft heads which is the fukin nightmare, de-education is the culprit, that and multi-media propaganda, constant bombardment of bullshit on every channel, now i know why the Taliban hung T.V.s on poles outside villages.
          The Talking Heads are your enemy

    • The Zero (nett) Carbon Act is already law, which is why they are doing it .
      This was supported unanimously by the centre right opposition party, who were of course the same party while in government in 2016 signed up the Country to the Paris Accord.
      So Alistair you are wasting your time and it won’t depend on the election result

  2. I wonder why the magnetic attraction of iron meteorites by ultra-hot plasma gas CO2 atoms was not considered? Surely that is a risk someone could dream up? I mean…it doesn’t have to be based in any science, just stated as a fact and entered into a computer model.

    On a more pragmatic note…who the h*ll is paying these people’s salaries? Why are we wasting so much money on lunatic fantasies?

    I know, how about we address problems as the occur, if they ever occur? Incrementally. Like serious people would do.

  3. Understanding climate change
    Earth’s atmosphere is made up of oxygen, a large amount of nitrogen and a small amount of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and methane.

    Greenhouse gases act like a blanket around the Earth. They trap warmth from the sun and make life on Earth possible. Without them, too much heat would escape and the surface of the planet would freeze. Increasing the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere causes the Earth to heat more and the climate to change.

    This process is often called global warming, but it is better to think of it as climate change. It is changing other aspects of climate as well as temperature (eg, frequency and intensity of extreme weather events).

    I would have thought a greater understanding than this would have been a prerequisite?

      • You answer that very good question with a link to a 2 year old blog post of some nobody claiming there has been no global warming for 40 years? Wow. crakar24 was right to pose the question.

        • Can you produce any real evidence of human cause global climate change?

          Or will you remain an empty ultra-marxist sack as usual. !

        • Actually it was the perfect answer to crakar’s point.

          crakar was pushing the belief that COs must be causing warming, and this warming must be bad.

          David refuted the first part of the claim.

    • You forgot water, which is the most important green house gas and which also forms clouds and precipitation, and you didn’t mention that about 70% of the surface of earth is water.

      • The annual increase in downward radiation from man-made CO2 is about 0.035W/m^2. The annual ERROR in the radiation from the cloud models are about +-4W/m^2.
        Can you see the problem here??? Do you think more water vapor just might produce more clouds that have been shown to cool rather than heat the earth as the model presume?
        It ain’t the CO2 that’s the problem. The problem is the models are demonstrably wrong and won’t be discarded.
        Tell me again why the MWP and the RWP were warmer than today when they lacked all that forcing CO2.

    • “Without them, too much heat would escape and the surface of the planet would freeze.”

      Demonstrably untrue. Try heating a bucket of water from above with a blowlamp. Report back when you have achieved any significant temperature increase in the water.

    • Pre-industrial levels of CO2 and water vapor combine to effectively trap very nearly all the radiation in CO2’s absorption spectrum. There is no evidence that increasing the concentration of CO2 has made any perceptible change in Earth’s temperature. There is also no evidence for a change in the frequency or intensity of extreme weather events- they remain within the normal variation bands and in the case of tornadoes and Atlantic hurricanes have actually decreased over the last two decades. The process you describe is hypothetical, and actually countered by data from ice core records, which show multiple instances where changes in CO2 levels were in opposition to the changes in temperature.

    • Greenhouse gases, GHG, don’t act like a blanket. GHG traps no more heat than other atmospheric gases. No more than nitrogen and oxygen. Climate consensus models of how GHG work make many assumptions. For example, they assume the atmosphere becomes more opaque to infrared, IR, when GHG concentration rises. No observations show increasing atmospheric opacity to IR with more CO2.

      Supposed GHG warming the climate can be modeled several different ways. Many of the models don’t give any significant surface warming. Who’s to say which basic GHG atmospheric model is right? If any. For all we know: they are all wrong. Assuming all untested, non-validated models are wrong is the safest assumption. Every untested, non-validated model, or hypothesis is wrong. Not one single scientific theory was ever guessed, without empirical evidence. That’s basically what the climate consensus GHG atmospheric model is – a guess, unsupported by evidence. The climate consensus people misrepresent their model as “simple physics”. It’s not simple. Adding a bizarre feedback mechanism to it (which is also untested and invalid) just makes it more impossible to test. Nor is it physics; it contradicts the second law of thermodynamics.

    • crakar24

      ‘There is no such thing as a global climate. The term ‘Climate’ was used to describe varying weather patterns across regions of the planet to schoolchildren when I was at school, since when, nothing has changed.

      If there were such a thing as a Global Climate we would all be baking like the Sahara Desert or freezing like the Antarctic, or, everywhere would have exactly the same weather.

      Regional weather patterns vary as they bump into each other, transferring or absorbing energy between each one causing an incredibly complex series of dynamic events atmospheric CO2 couldn’t hope to influence.

      Nor are there sufficient temperature measuring devices, from earths orbit, to deep oceans to even come close to determining warming that’s in any way significant.

      These are Janet and John realities scientists must overcome before even pretending to understand the a fraction of a percentage of what’s going on with the planet’s weather systems and ‘global temperature’.

      And almost nothing is known of the biggest ‘weather’ system of all – Oceans, which cover 70% of our planet.

      No wonder people laugh at you alarmists when you run around with your hair on fire, having not even thought about what you’re saying.

  4. “New Zealand is geographically pretty small with a land area of just over 100,000 square miles,”

    OK. That gives us the size.

    “roughly the size of Colorado.”

    That doesn’t help. How big is Colorado?

  5. The so-called experts are a joke. The NZ Ministry for the Environment don’t appear to have a Physicist or anyone else who is competent to look at the climate. Last time I looked, they were advertising for one.

    NIWA are well known for publishing alarming stories about the hottest temperatures ever, whenever the average at one or two sites goes up by 0.1 of a degree. Recently they started using a new temperature gauge for Auckland which is hotter than the old gauge.

    Most of the announcements about climate from anyone at Victoria University are wrong and should be ignored.

    Tonkin & Taylor did a study that: “considered four scenarios: 0.5 metres of sea level rise, 1m, 1.5m and 3m. NASA scientists predict a rise of between 30cm and 1.3m by 2100. NIWA estimates between 40 centimetres and roughly 1 metre.” when the sea has been rising in Auckland at 1.7mm per year for over 100 years, i.e. 13.6 cm by 2100.
    https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/climate-news/110114994/this-moment-will-not-come-again–councils-8bn-climate-change-warning?

  6. Look at the names of two of the institutions, Victoria University and NIWA. I was going to read the report but I won’t bother now as I know it will be crap. Thanks for the analysis, models all the way down.

    • NZ may be the size of Colorado, yet the sea views are far superior. 🙂

      Here in the North Island, I’m in boardshorts lapping up the sun’s Vit D (15*C) while in the South Island, friends are shivering in near freezing temps with snow to 500m (1,500 ft) on the way: ’tis a game of two halves – or two islands.

      And as for NIWA or Vic Uni – expletive deleted – they’re ground zero for climate propaganda in these parts, the perfect model of failure. Cheers David.

  7. There is an Ad here in Australia by “belong” an ISP, they carp on about being environmentally aware therefore if you sign up with them you will be doing your bit to save the planet. The Ad is complete with Greta Thunberg type visions of clumps of CO2 floating in the air (depicted by dark cloud looking things) at about the height of a 20 plus story building.

    I explained to my 10 year old, if the Ad were true then a vast majority of plant life on earth would die due to CO2 starvation.

    My question is if a 10 year old child can see through the BS with a little education then why do adults fail? Is it case of NIWA et al driven by faith produce ridiculous reports that the general public blindly accept with out reading, or is a case of blatant fraud by NIWA et al and pure apathy by the general public that allows then to get away with it?

  8. Always a risk overlooking ones own fallacies, even for someone actually writing about them. So I wondered how long it would take David to smash a fallacy of his own out of the park. Not long; “First, they use computer models to say precisely what the average weather will be in 2050 and 2100.”

    Straw man; when did anyone ever claim to be doing such a thing? Citation? Quote? Link to anyone actually using these words? No of course not.

    But this is the author’s foundational argument, so alas no point reading any further. I did of course and wished I hadn’t, cascading fallacies from beginning to end.
    Well done.

    • Loydo,

      Please provide detail to explain what the actual point of a model is, rather than simply denigrating the author.

    • First, they use computer models to say precisely what the average weather will be in 2050 and 2100.

      Well, what are they doing if they aren’t doing that?

    • Does David at any time claim he is direct quoting?

      Read the actual report, Loydo. The authors make no secret, in fact seem quite proud of the fact, that they are using IPCC projections as the base framework and that they are assessing both 2050 and 2100 in their projections.

      As a counter point to your argument, if the report writers are not using ‘computer models’ for their projections, then what are they using? To suggest they are not using IPCC data suggests they do not trust the IPCC and have instead managed to obtain projections from a different source.

      If this is true the extension is that NZ reject the IPCC’s recommendations and are going alone.

      Would you like to retract your criticism and try a new one? How about “The risk of doing nothing is greater than the risk of acting, so at least NZ is showing some direction”? That is normally a good one to throw out there. Sounds logical. Difficult to counter. Lots of words without actually meaning anything. Perfect one to throw out there to deflect from criticism. Why didn’t you led with that one?

      • “Does David at any time claim he is direct quoting?”

        ” they…say precisely what the average weather will be in 2050 and 2100.”

        Um, yes. And that is why its straw man nonsense and that is why David is kicking a walk-in, own goal, fallacy and giving himself an uppercut.

      • “The cost of acting is immensely greater than the cost of doing nothing.”
        There fixed it for you. The costs are a known , the risk is a doubtful assumption.

    • “Always a risk overlooking ones own fallacies”

      From Loy-DOH ! that is hilarious

      Your every post is just one huge pack of fallacies, and you are too scientifically illiterate to know it.

    • Climate “risk” ONLY EXISTS in those un-validated, provable inadequate models.

      There is no REAL climate risk from warming, only from cooling

    • Straw man; when did anyone ever claim to be doing such a thing? Citation? Quote? Link to anyone actually using these words?

      IPCC, AR5, Annex III (Glossary), page 1450 :

      Climate : Climate in a narrow sense is usually defined as the average weather, or more rigorously, as the statistical description in terms of the mean and variability of relevant quantities over a period of time ranging from months to thousands or millions of years.

      If you haven’t read at least one IPCC (WG1) report cover-to-cover then you haven’t lived … allegedly …

    • I see the trolls are dragging the bottom of the barrel to come up with arguments today.

      David said that the author’s of this paper did that. He didn’t say the modelers did.

      • David said that the author’s of this paper did that. He didn’t say the modelers did.

        I picked up on LOYDO asking “Link to ANYONE actually using these words?”, and the use of the specific phrase “… the average weather …”.

        The OP didn’t limit it to “Link to THE AUTHORS using those EXACT words ?”, which is indeed a more problematic ask.

        – – – – –

        The IPCC uses the (“narrow”, but “usually” used) definition “Climate = The average weather”.

        Most media outlets use GMST (and/or SLR) numbers as “the” proxy measurement for “the climate”.

        The authors looked at the risks associated with projections for “the climate” around 2040 and 2090.

        In the “Methods” file (the “Main” report and “Technical” document show different numbers), Table 6 (on page 14) gives “confidence intervals” for the “Change in NZ mean annual temperature” as follows :
        RCP8.5 : 0.9–1.1°C by 2031–2050, 2.8–3.1°C by 2081–2100
        RCP4.5 : 0.7–0.9°C by 2031–2050, 1.3–1.4°C by 2081–2100

        Is an “error range” of 0.1°C (to 0.3°C …) for a “projection” of what “the average (NZ) weather” will be like in 70 years time “precise” enough for you ?

    • So here is proof of the downscaling fallacy. Read the report Loydo before you attack.
      From Page 21 of the Technical Report
      NIWA developed the New Zealand climate change projections used in this report by downscaling higher-resolution global climate models released in the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report (IPCC, 2013). These statistically and dynamically downscaled data help local decision-makers and researchers better understand current and potential changes in New Zealand’s climate.
      Downscaling techniques include up to 41 different global climate models for ‘statistical’ methods, and 24 simulations for ‘dynamical’ methods (six global models run through a regional climate model for the four RCPs).

    • “But this is the author’s foundational argument, so alas no point reading any further.”

      It’s too bad you don’t challenge the fundamental argument for Human-caused Climate Change like you do this argument, Loydo.

      It hasn’t been established yet if CO2 heats or cools the Earth’s atmosphere, after feedbacks are included, yet you and your fellow alarmists go merrily along assuming it heats the atmosphere, without any evidence, and go even further and assume it heats the atmosphere so much it causes the Earth’s climate to change, again, without any evidence.

      Talk about not challenging a foundational argument. If CO2 ultimately cools the Earth’s atmosphere, or barely heats it, then all the alarmist endless speculation about Catastrophic Human-caused Global Warming/Climate Change is just so much expensive junk cluttering up the human thought process.

      Take off the blinders, Loydo. Require that the fundamentals of the interactions between CO2 and the Earth’s atmosphere be established. How about starting out with finding out what the real ECS/TCS of CO2 is. Currently, our glorious Climate Change leaders have it narrowed down to between 1.5C to 4.5C. It’s been in this range since speculation started on CO2 (decades), yet the alarmists can’t even narrow this down.

      It’s a joke to claim Human-caused Climate Change has been established. Everything about Human-caused climate change is based on speculation.

      If anyone has any evidence establishing the existence of Human-caused Climate Change, they are invited to submit it here. You, too, Loydo. Got any?

      I love asking that question, btw. I never get an answer. That’s why I love asking that question. It demonstrates the fallacy of Human-caused Climate Change. If its proponents can’t supply evidence of the existence of Human-caused claimate change when directly challenged, then what does that say about the state of climate science? It says the alarmists who promote this narrative are either liars, or just don’t have the mental capacity and abilty to logically examine the issue properly, and are deluded into believing something that has no basis in fact.

      • See.

        I wrote the challenge on Aug. 11, and here it is two days later and no alarmist has stepped up to the challenge.

        One would think alarmists would be eager to shoot down a skeptic’s challenge about Human-caused Climate Change. And you would be correct, they *are* eager to shoot down skeptics, but the problem they have is they don’t have any ammunition (evidence). Their ammunition magazine is empty. So, we get Silence from the alarmists when they are challenged to show evidence.

        For people undecided about whether Human-caused climate change is real or not, the fact that alarmists can’t produce any evidence when challenged ought to speak volumes.

        The alarmists have no evidence, people. They claim they do, but when challenged, they run for the hills. Here’s another example of that

        If I were an alarmist, I would be embarrassed..

  9. David
    Thanks for this analysis. We may be almost Covid free, but we appear to have more Climate Kooks per sq km than any other country. Terrorism takes many forms, and this is one of the worst forms.

    Our country appears to be one of the easiest to reduce CO2 emissions, with good geothermal, hydro and some wind etc. Cars are the problem. There is talk that when the aluminum smelter closes in Bluff they may introduce a hydrogen production plant, as it will cost $500m to reroute the energy to the national grid.

    The Green party Co-Leader James Shaw is promoting putting solar power cells on 60,000 state owned houses. Importing the solar units and batteries. Then shut down two Gas generation sites. In effect he is exporting the CO2 component to other countries that manufacture the required components. Sleight of hand and no mention of the exporting of CO2, just the benefits for New Zealand.

    • Great….dont forget to tell Shaw the solar panels cant push voltage back across the transformers so the voltage will increase above 250V within the network area causing the solar inverters to shutdown in turn causing a sudden and large demand spike placed upon your recently shutdown gas generation sites.

      • Pointless telling Shaw anything. His ears are ornaments, unless you speak the sacred language of CC.

          • Well I’m at a loss to understand what you are getting at…

            I’ve given you an example of the world’s largest active solar and saying it doesn’t seem to have a problem with demand spikes…

            Perhaps you can tell me how or if what you are saying might affect a grid with a large amount of solar?

      • “solar panels cant push voltage back across the transformers”

        Nonsense, tranformers work in both directions, one as a step down, the other as a step up.
        Most have been designed to be more efficient in one direction or the other, but they still work in both directions.

    • Tell them about the issues we have here in South Australia with too much power being generated so they are proposing to shut off roof-top solar systems and/or charge homeowners for the problem they are creating by doing what the government have encouraged and subsidised them to do.

  10. What is the Man Made contribution to the warming of the planet now – 0.5, 1.0, 1.5 degrees? Or more?. And what was it 5, 10, 20 and 30 years ago. The data is in. If the climate modelers cannot answer then what worth is their projections for 20 to 100 years hence.
    Claims have been made for man made warming for 30+ years, where is the actual graph displaying the man made contributions to that warming.

  11. Climate ” risk “. Another meaningless term from the Green lobby. Like climate emergency, climate justice, and the granddaddy of the lot, climate change. Only 20,000 years ago ice sheets a mile thick covered Chicago. Isn’t it fortunate that the climate DID change. Thank you, climate. Way to go.

    • LOL Funny! Australia borrows from New Zealand and New Zealand Borrows from Australia. It’s actually quite funny when you look in to it!

  12. “This is an exercise in imagination, not science.” It seems much of what passes for science these days is.

  13. You wrote: “. . . a wildly worst case emissions scenario called “RCP 8.5” ”

    The “Representative Concentration Pathway” (RCP) assumes an end-time CO2 concentration. The tabled value for 8.5 is 936ppm. An “emissions scenario” ought to describe how that is accomplished. I don’t think they do. It is described as “business as usual” and that is the real falsehood.
    Mother Earth might accomplish 936 ppm in 2100. Current trend might get the atmosphere to 636, or it might be significantly less.

    I wonder about the opportunity cost of all this climate risk assessment and related cow dung.

    • ‘RCP 8.5—A scenario of comparatively high greenhouse gas emissions’, Riah et al (not paywalled) describes the scenario but doesn’t describe it as ‘business as usual’.

      BAU is mentioned twice:

      “Compared to the scenario literature RCP8.5 depicts thus a relatively conservative business as usual case with low income, high population and high energy demand due to only modest improvements in energy intensity.” and
      “RCP8.5 depicts, compared to the scenario literature, a high-emission business as usual
      scenario.”

  14. The fallacy is that there is no computer model today that can accurately make such forecasts.

    The fallacy is that we employ people to author such models. If we employed ten times as many people there would still be no working computer model to make such forecasts. Likewise: Had soviets employed ten times as many central planners their economy would still have been broke.

  15. This is a short parable to explain why climate models fail.

    In computer programming there are two fundamentally different approaches to program design.

    top-down programming
    bottom-up programming

    Top-down programming is the more natural programming approach. It works well for simple problems. One begins with a high-level problem which one iteratively breaks down into simpler problems. When the problem has been broken down at a suitable level of complexity one writes it in computer code. Sounds simple eh? Many people work this way. There are entire schools devoted to top-down. Jackson structured programming, Model-driven architecture, Unified modeling language, Object-oriented Analysis and Design are all associated with top-down design. There’s nothing wrong with studying this kind of design but all of the most expensive software failures are all associated with it!

    Plans are worthless, but planning is everything
    — Dwight D. Eisenhower

    Bottom-up programming is far simpler, yet more difficult to explain! Both programming methods share iteratively breaking down the problem into simpler problems. I can explain top-down programming in a lecture. I can probably only explain bottom-up programming by doing it and showing you. It must be seen to be believed. It’s very easy to write miles of junk code with bottom up programming. There’s a key method which makes bottom-up programming work called test-first development (AKA test-driven design, TDD). Take away TDD and you’re authoring junk spaghetti code. Do TDD, study programming itself, and your code will at least deliver some value. TDD is very simple: before writing code one writes tests to show the code works. One runs tests constantly. That way, one detects code which once worked but is now broke. As soon a broken code is detected, it’s fixed: by suitably modifying the tests and the code

    The whole point of that little parable is: Everywhere and every time we con themselves into thinking the plan (and the top-down models) will work. “If all the little cogs just do their jobs“. In fact, the plan will always fail unless we put systems in place to give participants immediate feedback. That’s the key to bottom-up design. Getting quick accurate feedback and knowing the line of code one just authored works. That’s what the tests tell the programmer. Good learning happens when students get quick feedback from their teachers (that they’re doing it right). That’s what the Socratic method is. The market economy works because the market price system gives us good immediate feedback.

    If there’s no feedback, when hypotheses are untestable; that’s when climate models must fail.

    • What you have just described, in another form, is the difference between Socialism (top down) and Capitalism (bottom up). In a free enterprise system, ideas are quickly tested in the market, and the deficient are either fixed or they disappear. In contrast, the socialists have a master plan, deviation from which will not be tolerated. The elegance of bottom-up is that the innovation happens rapidly all the time and in places you often don’t expect. In top-down, innovation is stifled, unless it conforms with ‘the plan’.

  16. New Zealand a giant crack covered with hobbit print wallpaper.

    The South Seas Tyrant is on record claiming that the Australian economy can only be fuelled with New Zealand jobs. So basically her big promise is that Australia will solve all their employment problems.

    That of course assumed firstly that trans-Tasman travel is allowed to occur (good luck with that, we can’t even get interstate for ‘Essential’ work without first offering up a firstborn) and the second is that Australia will still have an economy to spare considering Chairman Dan is doing his loyal best to prepare his part of Victoria for Belt and Road assimilation.

    The fact that our government has been shipping New Zealand criminals back to their birth country recently should give them another reason to worry.

    Face it, under the current NZ government New Zealand is all set to become the new California.

    • What Ardern forgets is that there are some 500,000 NZers here in Australia working or on welfare as the case may be. Very unlikely anyone will be heading to the long white cloud any time soon even if the borders were open.

  17. For me the most fundamental fallacy in the whole debate is the omission of the basic fact that for any force or influence, for equilibrium, there is an equal and opposite force.
    The science shows that greenhouse gases tend to warm the planet. By how much can only be established once ALL counter influences have been considered.
    The models do NOT do this and merely concentrate on the radiation aspects involved to the exclusion of other thermodynamic processes which also transport and alter the form of enthalpy involved when determining the temperature.
    The behaviour of water in its various phases is a supreme example of this, which gets relegated to a mere feedback influence in terms of radiation; but IGNORES its strong cooling reaction to increases of energy input .
    This is surprising as the cooling reaction of water here back on earth is totally apparent in our daily lives.; so, why not in our atmosphere? Why do the models exclude this in their calculations?

    IMO water provides a major reactive influence to that of the purported GHE and the assumption by the IPCC that, by being a greenhouse gas itself , it acts as a positive feedback to the GHE is a fundamental error. An error generated by the fallacy described above.

  18. “The New Zealand climate risk assessment is a cascade of fallacies, unfit for policy making.”

    Given what seems to guide policy lately, it’s perfect for policy making. Fits in with all the rest.

  19. From the article: “The New Zealand climate risk assessment is a cascade of fallacies, unfit for policy making.”

    The entire field of Human-caused Climate Change is a cascade of fallacies.

  20. These risk assessments are now bound into legislation and are going to form the basis of all planning and consenting activity. The costs are horrendous. New Zealand is inflicting massive impositions on its economy to save 0.004 of one degree while the world’s biggest emitters laugh and carry on.

  21. This report on climate change risks is a load of hogwash or worse .
    I have not read the whole paper but here are some of the points which makes absolutely no sense at all .
    It starts with listing New Zealands emissions 35% from agriculture mostly methane from livestock .
    Enteric methane emissions do not add one atom or molecule containing CARBON to the atmosphere over any time span .
    All fodder consumed by livestock has absorbed CO2 from the air and the small amount of methane released during digestion breaks down rapidly in the upper atmosphere into CO2 and water vapour.
    The process is a cycle and no GHG is added to the atmosphere.
    The report then calls timber that has grown absorbing CO2 all the time emissions once the trees are harvested .
    Not one molecule of CO2 is added to the atmosphere over the life time of the trees and the subsequent burning or decay of the timber, paper or the forest debris.
    The theory of global warming states quite specifically that the burning of fossil fuels is releasing carbon dioxide and methane that has been locked up for millions of years .
    How much warming that we will experience from CO2 increasing from 300 ppm to 600 ppm has not been proven .
    We now have virtually every activity that man kind undertakes classified as emissions .
    This is blatantly wrong and it shows that the global warming threat is not about controlling future warming but it is about controlling the worlds population ,you and me while the elite carry on as usual.
    This government is committed to planting a billion trees to absorb CO2 and good pastoral farmland is being planted in perpetuity and the investors will be paid in carbon credits instead of growing food to feed the world .
    Eventually these forests die or are burnt and if that happens will the investors pay the carbon credits back?
    Whole districts will be come derelict as the populations decline once the trees are planted work becomes scarce and people are forced to move to find employment .
    Growing trees are an offset as eventually all the absorbed CO2 is released back to the atmosphere BUT this cannot be counted as emissions .
    This report is not based based on facts and has been cobbled together to fix the supposed threat of climate change when there are many more urgent problems facing New Zealand at this time .
    Sea level rise is 1.5 mm per year with no sign of acceleration and by the year 2100 the sea will have risen by 1.5 x 80 = 12 cm in metrics or less than 5 inches over the next 80 years.
    No need to get you knickers in a twist LLoydo and Griff .

  22. Our current politicians have no understanding of science and the party in power derives most of it’s ideas from Karl Marx. Our current PM is very obviously in thrall to the UN and sees a position of authority with the UK as her ultimate destination, stepping up from being merely an acolyte.

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