PAGES 12K: The Ice Age Goeth

Guest “damning with faint praise” by David Middleton

Kaufman, Mckay, Routson, et al., 2020

In my previous post, I noted a “funny pattern” in the latest Holocene climate reconstruction (Kaufman, McKay, Routson, et al., 2020). In this post, I will go into more detail as to why I chose the composite plus scale (CPS) method rather than the other four methods employed by the authors.

I think the paper represents a good faith effort to reconstruct global climate change over the past 12,000 years. The authors were very transparent about data and methods, even noting that no one really knows how to reconstruct climate at this sort of scale. While not a Mannian hockey stick or a Marcottian mess, they sill insisted on muting the low frequency component of the climate signal and directly comparing the high resolution instrumental record to the very low frequency, heavily smoothed multi-proxy reconstruction. That said, one of their five reconstruction methods did preserve the low frequency climate signal (yes, I am using the word “signal” correctly). This post will point out two things:

  1. Direct comparisons of the instrumental data to the reconstruction violate the basic principals of signal theory.
  2. Only the composite plus scale (CPS) method is consistent with the observations.

Signal theory violation, 15-yard penalty and loss of down

This is from the paper’s introduction:

The database is the most comprehensive global compilation of previously published Holocene proxy temperature time series currently available. It comprises a quality-controlled collection of high-resolution time series (average sample spacing of 164 years) with well-established time scales (average of 1.0 age control points per 1000 years) that was selected from a much larger collection of temperature-sensitive proxy records. The multi-proxy database includes a total of 1319 paleo-temperature records from 470 terrestrial and 209 marine sites where ecological, geochemical and biophysical proxy indicators have been used to infer past temperature changes. Among the variety of proxy types, alkenones and isotopes are the dominant sea-surface temperature proxies, whereas pollen and chironomids are the most common terrestrial temperature proxy types. Most of the records (97%) are available as quantitative temperature reconstructions calibrated to °C, whereas the remaining 42 records represent non-quantitative temperature-sensitive proxy records.

 Kaufman, D., McKay, N., Routson, C. et al., 2020

This is from “Timing and magnitude of peak Holocene global temperature”:

To bracket the likely range of the temporal resolution of the GMST reconstruction, we focus on intervals of 1000 and 200 years, and quantify the difference in their magnitude and timing of peak warmth (Fig. 4).

 Kaufman, D., McKay, N., Routson, C. et al., 2020

In my previous post, I treated the reconstruction as if it had a 100-yr resolution…

Figure 1. Ron White: “And I was wrong” (Meme Generator)

The resolution of the reconstruction is no better that 164 years… I should have treated it as if it had a 200-yr resolution. At a 200-yr resolution, HadCRUT4 looks like this:

Figure 2. HadCRUT4 2400 month (200-yr) mean. (Wood For Trees) (Yes, it’s supposed to look like this.)

While I still think the paper is a very good paleoclimatology effort, this paragraph is not supportable in any scientific manner.

The distribution of peak global temperatures during the Holocene can also be compared with recent temperatures. The GMST of the past decade (2011–2019) averaged 1 °C higher than 1850–190011. For 80% of the ensemble members, no 200-year interval during the past 12,000 years exceeded the warmth of the most recent decade. For the other 20% of the cases, which are primarily from the CPS reconstruction, at least one 200-year interval exceeded the recent decade. This comparison is conservative in context of temperatures projected for the rest of this century and beyond, which are very likely to exceed 1 °C above pre-industrial temperature12. Such projections place the temperature of the last decade into a long-term context that is more comparable with the Holocene GMST reconstruction. Furthermore, if the reconstruction is influenced by a Northern Hemisphere summer bias (discussed below), then the peak warmth would be overestimated and the recent warming would therefore stand out even more in comparison.

 Kaufman, D., McKay, N., Routson, C. et al., 2020

The reconstruction can’t resolve decadal scale temperature changes. At closest possible resolution to that of the reconstruction, HadCRUT4 would be a single data point at 0.23 °C.

The Ice Age Goeth

This is what the authors had to say about the CPS reconstruction method…

Among the five reconstruction methods, CPS stands out prominently with its large temperature changes (Fig. 3), especially in the Northern Hemisphere (Figs. 1 and 2). For example, the median ensemble member of the CPS reconstruction shows that GMST warmed by about 3.9 °C between 12 and 10 ka compared to about 1.1 °C for the other methods. The median GMST during the period centered on 6 ka, the long-standing mid-Holocene target for paleoclimate modeling experiments (e.g., ref. 15) was 1.1 °C warmer than the 19th Century in the CPS reconstruction compared to about 0.4–0.5 °C for the other methods (Table 1).


Although it is an outlier, we do not have irrefutable evidence to exclude the CPS reconstruction, and cannot rule out the possibility that the other reconstruction methods underestimate the overall variance. The outcome of the CPS method depends on the validity of the target used for scaling, which is difficult to verify. The high amplitude of temperature changes reconstructed by CPS might reflect chronological and other uncertainties that average out century-scale temperature variance during the compositing, thereby increasing the relative magnitude of millennial-scale variance in the composite. When the composite is then scaled to the reconstructions of the past two millennia, which have more realistic century-scale variance, the millennial-scale variance (and thus the long-term trends) are artificially inflated. Nonetheless, as an independent approach, CPS contributes to a more complete sampling of the uncertainty space. We therefore retain CPS as one-fifth of the multi-method ensemble, and we focus on the median rather than the mean as the best representation of the ensemble central tendency. Excluding CPS from the ensemble does little to influence the median GMST reconstruction. For example, the mid-Holocene (6.5–5.5 ka) ensemble median is only 0.05 °C cooler when excluding the CPS members; namely, the five-method median is 0.51 °C (0.19, 1.35) versus 0.46 °C (0.17, 0.79) when excluding CPS members.

 Kaufman, D., McKay, N., Routson, C. et al., 2020

They grudgingly left CPS in the mix because: “Although it is an outlier, we do not have irrefutable evidence to exclude the CPS reconstruction, and cannot rule out the possibility that the other reconstruction methods underestimate the overall variance.”

However, they could have easily found evidence “that the other reconstruction methods underestimate the overall variance.” CPS is the only method that clearly resolved the Holocene Climatic Optimum, the Roman Warm Period, the Medieval Warm Period and Neoglaciation…

Figure 3. CPS with historical climate periods and Neoglaciation (Grosjean et al., 2007)

I generated a plot of CPS as an overlay of Figure 3 from the PAGES 12K paper and replaced the 2K inset with the historical climate periods and Neoglaciation from Grosjean et al., 2007 and a North America ice extent map from Dyke et al., 2003. I also included a 2σ confidence band from the 500 ensemble members. My version of the CPS mean is the dashed orange curve…

Figure 4. CPS with historical climate periods and Neoglaciation (Grosjean et al., 2007) and Early Holocene ice extent map (Dyke et al., 2003)

Does the North American ice extent at 12,000 calendar years ago look more like 1 °C cooler than 1800-1900? Or 4 °C cooler?

OK… geophysical inertia might explain how there could have still been that much ice with temperatures only 1 °C cooler than 1800-1900, but I don’t think it could explain this:

Figure 5. CPS with historical climate periods and Neoglaciation (Grosjean et al., 2007), Early Holocene ice extent map (Dyke et al., 2003) and Alps tree line altitude (Bohleber et al., 2021).

The other four methods show very little temperature change from 9,500 years ago up until 1850 AD… A period when we know that there was massive ice retreat over the first 5,000 years and ice advance (Neoglaciation) over most of the next 4,500 years. CPS is the only one of the four methods consistent with the Holocene evolution of ice sheets and glaciers in the Northern Hemisphere.

It’s also consistent with the Holocene evolution of Arctic sea ice.

Figure 6. CPS (right) with sea ice extent profiles (Stein et al., 2017)

The CPS method is clearly consistent with the nearly ice-free conditions from 10,000 to 5,000 years ago and the neoglacial expansion of sea ice from 5,000 years ago to the mid-1800’s. The other four methods indicate very little temperature change over this time period.

What about Northern Hemisphere summer bias?

Three of the four methods are all flat in the Arctic. Only the PAI (Pairwise Comparison) method indicates adequate temperature change for the sea ice evolution. However, CPS is the only method that has significant ΔT in the Northern Hemisphere temperate latitude band.

Figure 7. Figure 2 from  Kaufman, D., McKay, N., Routson, C. et al., 2020.

The vast majority of alpine/valley glaciers (like the Alps and Glacier National Park) are in the temperate latitudes, formed after the Holocene Climatic Optimum, reaching their peak extents in the mid-1800’s and then generally retreating to their current positions. CPS is the only method that appears to be consistent with this.

Confirmation bias!

If a multiple choice question has five answers:

  1. Looks correct.
  2. Possibly looks correct.
  3. Obviously wrong.
  4. Obviously wrong.
  5. Obviously wrong.

Would you pick the answer that looked correct? Or would you average the five answers to come up with a consensus?

Cancelling inconvenient truths

Climate cancel culture has been actively trying to erase the low frequency climate signal ever since the days of Climategate. This is not a new battle:

So, what would it mean, if the reconstructions indicate a larger (Esper et al., 2002; Pollack and Smerdon, 2004; Moberg et al., 2005) or smaller (Jones et al., 1998; Mann et al., 1999) temperature amplitude? We suggest that the former situation, i.e. enhanced variability during pre-industrial times, would result in a redistribution of weight towards the role of natural factors in forcing temperature changes, thereby relatively devaluing the impact of anthropogenic emissions and affecting future predicted scenarios. If that turns out to be the case, agreements such as the Kyoto protocol that intend to reduce emissions of anthropogenic greenhouse gases, would be less effective than thought.

Esper et al., 2005

Hockey sticks are usually the result of muting the amplitude of the low frequency climate signal and then splicing on the high resolution instrumental data. The Hockey Team invented cancel culture:

CRU email #1140039406. This email, dated February 15,2006, documented exchanges between several climate scientists, including the Deputy Director of CRU, related to their contributions to chapter six ofthe IPCC AR4. In one such exchange, the Deputy Director of CRU warned his colleagues not to “let [the Co-Chair of AR4 WGl] (or [a researcher at Pennsylvania State University]) push you (us) beyond where we know is right” in terms of stating in the AR4 “conclusions beyond what we can securely justify.” 


The CRU’s Keith Briffa was warning his colleagues to not allow NOAA’s Susan Solomon or Penn State’s Michael Mann to coerce them into going along with unsupportable conclusions. This particular e-mail exchange dealt extensively with paleoclimate reconstructions. Briffa also urged his colleagues not to “attack” Anders Moberg, who had recently published a climate reconstruction which actually honored the data and used proper signal processing methods.

Susan Solomon is the NOAA official who claimed that NOAA work related to the IPCC was not subject to FOIA. Michael Mann was the lead author of the thoroughly debunked original Hockey Stick. The late Keith Briffa was the lead author of one of the problematic reconstructions in which “Mike’s Nature Trick” was employed to “hide the decline.” Fortunately scientists like Jan Esper, Anders Moberg, etc. did not succumb to the bullying.

So… Kudos to Kaufman, McKay, Routson and the et al for not deleting the CPS reconstruction to hide the rise and decline of the Holocene Climatic Optimum… 👍👍


Bohleber, P., Schwikowski, M., Stocker-Waldhuber, M. et al. New glacier evidence for ice-free summits during the life of the Tyrolean Iceman. Sci Rep 10, 20513 (2020).

Dyke, A.S., Moore, A. and L. Robertson. [computer file]. Deglaciation of North America. Geological Survey of Canada Open File 1547. Ottawa: Natural Resources Canada, 2003.

Esper, J., R.J.S. Wilson,  D.C. Frank, A. Moberg, H. Wanner, & J. Luterbacher.  2005.  “Climate: past ranges and future changes”.  Quaternary Science Reviews 24: 2164-2166.

Grosjean, Martin, Suter, Peter, Trachsel, Mathias & Wanner, Heinz. (2007). “Ice‐borne prehistoric finds in the Swiss Alps reflect Holocene glacier fluctuations”. Journal of Quaternary Science. 22. 203 – 207. 10.1002/jqs.1111.

Kaufman, D., McKay, N., Routson, C. et al. Holocene global mean surface temperature, a multi-method reconstruction approach. Sci Data 7, 201 (2020).

Stein, R. , Fahl, K. , Schade, I. , Manerung, A. , Wassmuth, S. , Niessen, F. and Nam, S. (2017), Holocene variability in sea ice cover, primary production, and Pacific‐Water inflow and climate change in the Chukchi and East Siberian Seas (Arctic Ocean). J. Quaternary Sci., 32: 362-379. doi:10.1002/jqs.2929 stein2017

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Steve Richards
March 26, 2021 6:05 am

Fig 2 not showing

Reply to  Steve Richards
March 26, 2021 6:09 am

Neither lhe link

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 6:36 am

No change, plot graph, no success

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 11:53 am

chuckle.. well done David 😉

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 1:43 pm

It’s not showing there, either.

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 6:28 am


Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 6:43 am

Nope, I followed “raw data” – nor raw data to find

#Data processed by
#Please check original source for first-hand data and information:
#Data from Hadley Centre
#For terms and conditions of use, please see
#File: hadcrut4_monthly_ns_avg.txt
#Time series (hadcrut4) from 1850 to 2020.92
#Averaged with 2400-sample running mean
#Data ends
#Number of samples: 0
David A
Reply to  David Middleton
March 27, 2021 3:06 am

Lol, yep!
Mr Middleton, your
…”However, they could have easily found evidence “that the other reconstruction methods underestimate the overall variance.” CPS is the only method that clearly resolved the Holocene Climatic Optimum, the Roman Warm Period, the Medieval Warm Period and Neoglaciation…”

is well reinforced by Andy Mays excellent post on the mixed ocean level temperatures here…
and by historic Sea level estimates.

Thanks for another keeper!

Mario Lento
Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 8:10 am

Thanks guys. Yes, I had the same issue. There is a broken image showing… which made me think there was an issue with a graphics driver or something.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 9:07 am

It’s instructive to view the range of values displayed as one changes the sample size. At a sample of “1”, the range is approximately -1C to +1C, at “10”, -0.6C to +0.8C, at “100”, -0.5C to +0.65C, at “1000”, -0.325C to +0.15C, and at “2000”, -0.125 to -0.075. This progression clearly illustrates how longer intervals lower the proxy resolution. The highest value that doesn’t break the program is 2,051, which gives a straight line from about -0.0820C to -0.0814C in 1935

Last edited 1 year ago by D. J. Hawkins
Mario Lento
Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 9:30 am

The reasoning you gave makes sense. thank you!

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 2:12 pm

Sometimes, my sarcasm is too subtle…

When Jack benny used to just stare at the audience until they laughed, that sarcastic stunt often failed.
Even with Jack Benny flagrantly parading his smirk at the audience as a hint.
I suspect many audiences forced laughter just to move the show along since Jack would wait for many minutes.

That same blank stare usually fails for other comedians whose audiences do not understand that it’s a joke.

It’s not sarcasm.
As far as I can tell, your got a lot of people wasting time with many of us still confused

Dead air is dead air, a piss-poor waste of space and reader’s time.
It would have been far clearer with one of your graphic pictures of Josh images. At least they are humorous!

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 9:43 am

Yo might want to elucidate that in the post. Because it looks like a missing image.

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 10:20 am

I saw that (supposed to look like this) but it still didn’t convey that there was a broken image. I took it to mean that the results looked off, not that there were no results.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Jeff Alberts
March 26, 2021 11:01 am

i.e. This graphic purposely left blank.

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 1:45 pm

Still no graphic!

David A
Reply to  David Middleton
March 27, 2021 3:17 am

For what it’s worth, many of us got it in one, and considered it a cogent comment on alarmists annual T graphics being
compared to centennial scale plus resolution proxies.

Even the many studies that show the Holocene Climatic Optimum, the Roman Warm Period, and the Medieval Warm Period, do not resolve at a daily, monthly, annual, and sometimes even a decadal scale, Meaning we probably missed the warmest synchronized El Nino, AMO etc… during those past warm periods.

Another point is that multi decadal flux is itself a very large percentage of the total millennial flux seen in the Mannian graphics.

Last edited 1 year ago by David A
Rich Davis
Reply to  David Middleton
March 27, 2021 5:33 am

Oh my, skeptics team. Please drink your morning coffee before commenting.

But David, Just to let you know, I still can’t see anything on that graph. 😜

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 1:44 pm


Jeff Alberts
Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 9:41 am

I don’t see the image in your comment or the head post. Only the Data Sources portion on the right is showing.

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 1:54 pm

So, no graphic on the left.
But you claim the image is correct because the data source block to the right shows

Data source:  


HADCRUT4 global mean

Processing Steps – Value 

mean samples – 2400

That is all that shows.

No graphic to the left. No actual data to the right.

A large window with zilch information graphical or data.

Gunga Din
Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 6:28 pm

Figures of speech are often used to call attention to what is said or written. There are figures of omission, such as Ellipsis, where a word or phrase is purposely omitted to call attention to what is missing in the sentence. The reader/hearer is to supply what is missing.
David used a visual “Ellipsis” to call attention to the fact that there is nothing to supply.

An OT PS I was watching an old Sherlock Holms movie on YouTube. There was an option to turn on “auto-generated” captions.
Watson bought a bottle of wine for the local postman. The postman declined saying, “Alcohol gives me hiccups.”
The auto-generated caption: “Alcohol gives me B-Cups.”
(Sorry. I had to pass that on.8-)

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 9:46 am

I see it fine.

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 11:55 am

Maybe too early in the morning for some? 😉

Well play, David. 🙂

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 6:34 pm

I saw exactly what I expected to see, .

But then again, not everyone had my stats professor that pulled the same thing on his class, when he got to the point of making it clear when all of that pretty math is absolutely useless.

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 9:45 pm

They didn’t read this part well:

“The resolution of the reconstruction is no better that 164 years… I should have treated it as if it had a 200-yr resolution. At a 200-yr resolution, HadCRUT4 looks like this:
comment image?w=1110Figure 2. HadCRUT4 2400 month (200-yr) mean. (Wood For Trees) (Yes, it’s supposed to look like this.)”

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 11:54 am

Funny about that, and very illustrative 🙂

Joseph Zorzin
March 26, 2021 6:28 am

Sorry, off subject, but:

‘Pray, learn, act, advocate’: Massachusetts bishops declare climate emergency
Yes, the climate thing has risen to the level of religion, now getting support from the Episcopal bishops. I started to deconstruct that item line by line and had fun doing it- but deconstructing religious leaders might be considered impolite and sacrilegious- not that I’m worried Saint Peter might chew me out when I arrive at the Pearly Gates. If he does, I’ll reply to him that my lifetime carbon footprint was very low due to poverty while carefully managing forests for over half a century- while those whining the most about the climate live in big homes, drive big cars, fly in carbon spewing jets and enjoy excessive salaries and pensions and funding while billions of people live in poverty. I suspect Saint Peter dislikes hypocrites even more than those who dare challenge unproven fantasies about this new demon, the evil molecule CO2, otherwise known as plant food. I won’t mention to Pete that the Church has spent fortunes building cathedrals while becoming the biggest landowner on the planet – and that it said little about slavery, the Holocaust, and the destruction of Native America civilizations in the New World- because he already knows these facts.

Jay Willis
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
March 26, 2021 9:31 am

In the UK people worried about climate change are being urged by Climate Census UK to declare their religion as Climate Concerned on the recent official census! You couldn’t make it up.


“As you complete the census, look out for the “What is your religion?” section.”

“Select or tick the ‘Any other religion, write in’ option and add in “CLIMATE CONCERNED”.”

Apparently this will work because…”The census presents a simple, covid-safe opportunity to hold the government accountable.”

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  Jay Willis
March 26, 2021 11:11 am

Amazing! The new religion has priests and prophets- and doomsday predictions- and a Demon, CO2. It battles against heretics. It has its holy scriptures such as the hockey stick testament. Ale Gore replaces St. Paul. It has its scholastics like Jimmy Hansen and Galvin Schmidt who’ll debate how many CO2 molecules it’ll take to trigger a tipping point turning the heaven of Earth into hell. I’d love to see a theologian draw the comparison far better than I can. Somebody who deeply understands comparative religion and who has a fair understanding of the climate debate. Or I should say the debate that doesn’t happen- leaving serious discussion of the subject to sites like this and with qualified climatologists ignored by the phony consensus and the MSM.

Elle Webber
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
March 26, 2021 2:34 pm

Ah. You forgot that we also have indulgences again to pay for sins in the form of “carbon taxes”. And we have the return of the Spanish Inquisition in the form of Cancel Culture to root out climate heresies. To say nothing of a slate of hypocritical climate priests and saints intent on controlling the peasantry while living carbon-rich lives themselves (Gore, Obama, Suzuki, St. Greta, et al). Which begs the question, if we did have to go religious on this, why was Medieval Christianity chosen as the model?

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  Elle Webber
March 27, 2021 3:35 am

recently, Saint Greta and 2 climatastrologers met with the Dalai Lama on Zoom- so I guess they’re covering all the bases

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  Elle Webber
March 27, 2021 5:19 am

I think it’s just because you know more about Medieval Christianity and can find the similarities. If you studied other religions it would become apparent to you that the people in charge always act the same.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Elle Webber
March 28, 2021 5:53 am

Study the tactics of your enemy, and imitate the effective ones.

For generations, communists have understood that Christianity was the biggest obstacle to their success, and thus their most important enemy.

They understand that what they think of as the false promises of heaven and empty threats of hell are very effective in controlling the actions of the public. What better way to destroy the obstacle blocking them than to set up a wholly-owned new religion that has its own perverted characteristics mimicking every feature of the enemy?

It should not be too surprising that after obsessing over what causes the proletariat to cling to their “irrational superstitions” and why those beliefs were so effective in thwarting them, that they would try this approach.

Richard M
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
March 26, 2021 11:19 am

So, these Bishops believe God was not smart enough to design his creation to take into account the natural evolution of humans? In reality, it’s pretty easy to see that humans would start using fossil fuels in their technological advances.

In years past I suspect these Bishops would have quickly been shown the door.

You either believe there is an all knowing God or you don’t. To accept the climate crisis as real you cannot believe in God.

In reality our physics does understand the function of CO2 in our biosphere. It provides for slightly more energy (radiation window reduction) and water (enhanced convection) when CO2 increases to optimize all the necessary components of life.

Reply to  Richard M
March 26, 2021 6:40 pm

Please note that these were Episcopalian Bishops. They tore up their Pearly Gates Entry Passes quite a long time ago. (Not that the RCC is not following them straight to the same place; they’re just a bit behind.)

David A
Reply to  writing observer
March 27, 2021 3:23 am

Except the RCC leader, he is right with Greta and Megan in sounding the doom alarm.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Richard M
March 28, 2021 6:01 am

Episcopal bishops from Massachusetts! Who woulda thunk that they would espouse trendy nonsense given their reputation for prudence.

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
March 26, 2021 3:09 pm

Bishops declaring worldwide climate emergency can only mean Jesus is returning very soon. That’s what the bishops want, isnt it?

Reply to  Doonman
March 26, 2021 4:58 pm

Only if he brings cash

Rich Davis
Reply to  Doonman
March 28, 2021 6:06 am

Wow, I’m sure that thought never entered their minds. You can’t seriously entertain the idea that they believe in a Second Coming?

March 26, 2021 6:34 am

The neo-glaciation is a matter of historical written record, in particular during the Little Ice Age. It is unambiguous and doesn’t rely on proxies. It’s hard to refute. Any climate reconstruction that doesn’t indicate neo-glaciation should be summarily rejected.

Last edited 1 year ago by commieBob
Ron Long
Reply to  commieBob
March 26, 2021 7:16 am

commieBob, you get a gold star for the day for this Reality Check comment. Thanks.

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  commieBob
March 26, 2021 7:31 am

an Ötzi approved comment.

Reply to  commieBob
March 26, 2021 3:23 pm

Resident trolls Griff and Loydo will be along in a minute to dispute the existence of the MWP and the LIA.

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  commieBob
March 27, 2021 10:45 am

I recently read “A Cultural History of Climate Change”, when I recommended it online a climate scientologist helpfully said that since the author is not a climate scientist and so the book can be ignored.
Standard attack posture.

I pointed out it is not a science book, it is history relying on historical records of villages in mountain valleys that are now under ice, innumerable records that show the MWP must be warmer than today. Same with the RWP.

I did thank the scientologist for pointing out the author is not a climate scientist and that we can then disregard the final chapter where he dribbled into AGW with no backing, just accepting it is true like Lomborg does.

A good read except for the last bit

Laws of Nature
March 26, 2021 8:04 am

It might be worthwhile to read Jeff Id´s posts on this topic:
(It does look like a good mechanism to create arbitary results.. )

While at it, it might be interesting to remember the discussion about decentered PCA, which were used in the original Hockeystick publication. M.Mann cited I.Jolliffe as an expert for principal components and espezially decentered PCA, but he seemed more than sceptical about this new method:”it seems unwise to use uncentered analyses unless the origin is meaningful. Even then, it will be uninformative if all measurements are far from the origin. [..] it’s less clear what we are optimizing and how to interpret the results”

March 26, 2021 9:59 am

Enjoyed your charts clear illustration of various versions of —- “ice-age-to holocene optimum – thru LIA – to modern times”- can not see Fig 2 either downunder

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 1:07 pm

Well, you really shouldn’t post “The Spanish Inquisition” – no one expects it.

Reply to  wazz
March 26, 2021 11:56 am

You wouldn’t expect to. Think ! 😉

Last edited 1 year ago by fred250
Smart Rock
March 26, 2021 10:07 am

In defence of the Holocene Climatic Optimum, there is a good deal of evidence (raised beaches in tropical areas where isostatic adjustment would be negligible) that sea levels were about 6 metres higher during those long-lost Arcadian times. This would have been impossible without the global mean temperature being higher than in recent years because it would have meant that significant parts of the Greenland Ice Cap and/or West Antarctica had to have melted Another inconvenient truth for the climatistas.

Which they can afford to ignore because they are winning.

March 26, 2021 10:38 am

Since I don’t know much about subject, had a look at the google-scholar references, while large number is related to the higher latitudes, I’ve got interested in one during LIA in the Spanish Pyrenees. Interesting reading
with Fig.7 showing wide spread of events in the middle ages.

Last edited 1 year ago by vuk
March 26, 2021 10:55 am

The big mistake in trying to compare modern high resolution measurements with low or very low resolution proxies is like comparing first dervatives to second or third dervatives. It is not a valid comparison.Maybe integrating the long-term data or using a second derative of the modern data woud provide a better comparison.

Reply to  Fred Haynie
March 26, 2021 11:47 am

I would think a period integral ( Σ , sum) would be a good analogy as long as we are not talking about periodic functions in either case, derivative or integral.

Last edited 1 year ago by vuk
Reply to  Fred Haynie
March 26, 2021 11:59 am

We have said this MANY times you cannot combine low resolution data with high resolution data.

It is a meaningless exercise

Mathematically, its a big NO-NO. !

Reply to  fred250
March 26, 2021 12:57 pm

In practice you might be forced to do it in order to make estimated historical data continuity (‘It can’t be done’ often is not acceptable excuse by the paymaster), so you could do following:

  • calculate standard deviation or variance for the low resolution data
  • low-pass filter high resolution data to achieve nearest standard deviation (or variance)
  • splice graphs together with appropriate comment and ‘hey presto’, your successful compilation trick is worthy of distinguished professor of atmospheric science at Penn State University
Reply to  Vuk
March 26, 2021 1:09 pm

Problem is that you don’t know what isn’t shown by the low resolution data.

Reply to  Vuk
March 26, 2021 2:27 pm

Make it like Mann, hide the decline 😀

Rich Davis
Reply to  Vuk
March 28, 2021 6:13 am

I believe you meant State Penn University?

Reply to  David Middleton
March 26, 2021 1:07 pm

Yes, but the AGW clowns DON’T KNOW THAT.

They use it “as is”.

Reply to  fred250
March 26, 2021 1:39 pm

On less serious note, this low-high resolution non-splicing has existential consequences for our civilisation.
We have been doing radio transmutations barely 120 years and hope somehow to talk to friendly aliens with our low res technology.
However, it is not only possible but even likely that ‘they’ or their high res devices are sitting anywhere, and communicating behind our back with the ‘neutrino’ or ‘tangled particles’ trans-receiver signals floating all over the place and all the time. In such a case we would have no slightest idea about it, and even less what ‘they’ might be on about. Fermi paradox is not a paradox at all, just that their ergosphere is impenetrable to us.

Last edited 1 year ago by vuk
Reply to  fred250
March 26, 2021 3:50 pm

That hasn’t prevented Fred from completely ignoring his own sage advice and hysterically claiming – at least a couple of hundred times, with shouted certainty laced with insults – that today is cooler than the Holocene max. What a turnaround.

Reply to  Loydo
March 26, 2021 5:01 pm

How else does Fred get through someone who is so obtuse?

Reply to  Loydo
March 26, 2021 8:28 pm

Today IS COOLER than the Holocene Optimum, by a long shot.

Why are you so determined to show your ABJECT IGNORANCE at every post you make, loy-dodo.

Reply to  Loydo
March 26, 2021 8:47 pm

What do you find SO HARD TO COMPREHEND about

… trees under glaciers

… FAR less sea ice

… crops in Greenland

Do you REALLY in your wildest hallucinogenic-fueled fantasies believe these are because it was colder !!

David A
Reply to  fred250
March 27, 2021 3:35 am

The resolution of crops is pretty good!

Reply to  fred250
March 26, 2021 3:57 pm

Mathematically, its a big NO-NO. !”

Only if you don’t know enough about these resolutions. We do. Yes, temp data from 150 years ago is not as “resolute” as is modern data. But they and we know pretty much ALL of the sources of it’s variability. From parallax error, to time of day variability, to the frequency of transcription errors and coffee stains on the logs. Since we do, then we can reliably sort out the bad data and find the distributed error of the rest. After that, it’s just a matter of applying the whole settled set of statistical laws that allow us to trend data with varying resolution, and then to find the variability of that trended data.

Reply to  bigoilbob
March 26, 2021 5:01 pm

Thanks for the chuckle Big Oil

Reply to  bigoilbob
March 26, 2021 8:30 pm

WRONG as always.

You have NO IDEA what range the actual past may have actually had between data points. Especially if timing errors flatten out that data.

YOU, in particular, KNOW NOTHING, and keep proving it.

Reply to  bigoilbob
March 26, 2021 8:49 pm

Whatever you are taking….. try getting the script altered to something that doesn’t cause manic delusions and fantasies..

David A
Reply to  bigoilbob
March 27, 2021 3:38 am

Wow and your talking thermometer data, with wide speculation about that, and ignoring extremely poor global coverage.

Reply to  David A
March 27, 2021 5:51 am

All of these alt. fact whines about old data are (1) mostly, not based in fact, (2) belie the relatively tiny magnitude of the errors in the old data, compared to how it has trended over time. This is why you won’t discuss is quantitatively.

Bigger pic, thanks in part to your ability to live in a world full of alt,statistics, without the the ground up mathematical proofs used by above grounders for theirs, you all have been reduced to talking to a population of each others that is diminishing daily. From the whines about “Why won’t any scientific organization listen to me?”, to the ever growing list of technical and disciplinary groups leaving you all behind*, AGW denial, your cult population is trending the same way as those of Piltdown Man and flat earth. Face it folks, the law of Raylan is immutable.

*Mr. Middleton breast beat about his beloved SEG seeing the light earlier. Wonder how he feels about the API – THE ****ING API OF ALL GROUPS!! – doing the same.

Last edited 1 year ago by bigoilbob
Reply to  David Middleton
March 28, 2021 6:52 am

“Carbon pricing is the least destructive dumb thing government can do in regards to reducing the carbon intensity of energy production… A concept I agree with and have made clear in numerous posts. ”

A position you disagreed with, when you were pimping the government corporate welfare (largely to E&P’s) for carbon capture, to avoid the inevitable source reduction from an equally, fully, regularly redeemable, carbon tax. “Oh what a tangled web we weave…”

“The only specific tax feature mentioned in API’s actual statement was the 45Q tax credit.”

Irrelevant. The actual take away is their acceptance of AGW,

“API and its members commit to delivering solutions that reduce the risks of climate change while meeting society’s growing energy needs. We support global action that drives greenhouse gas emissions reductions and economic development.”

thereby continuing the shrinking of your already insular world. Said it a thousand times, the Rule of Raylan is immutable….

Last edited 1 year ago by bigoilbob
Reply to  David Middleton
March 28, 2021 8:05 am

A total bald face lie. I have consistently supported CCS.”

Not a lie, since that’s what I actually said. We agree:

(1) that you are a paid up “supporter” of a nonproven, grossly inefficient technology proposed to avoid the real source reduction available from a carbon tax, and to funnel public $ into your coffers while doing so.

2) that you have made fact free assertions against the best method of free market AGW minimizations, a carbon tax, per the current line of your handlers..

“Oh… A carbon tax would just be a more economically destructive way to fund CCS than with tax credits.”

Written lies, follow you David…..

Reply to  David Middleton
March 28, 2021 2:44 pm

Furthermore, no one pays me to support CCS.”

Actually, I can believe this, and that such future gain from this scheme is just hopeful. You claim to work for a mid sized GOM indie. So, odds are you are working for an entity that:

  1. Is a fraction of it’s market cap of a few years ago.
  2. Is accruing debt hand over fist.
  3. Has diminishing R/P’s with little hope of improving them this decade.
  4. Is making deals with shady entities in desperate bids to remain tits ahead.
  5. Has largely unfunded asset retirement obligations.
  6. Has little or nothing available in the way of actual “exploration” opportunities.
  7. And therefore, has little current need of your services.

So, you want to bail in time to get on the CCUS corporate welfare gravy train. If you truly believed that it was anything more than the latest E&P tax redux scheme, then you wouldn’t be afraid of it’s ability to compete for carbon tax $ with source reduction.

Bottom line, your favored outcome is some consulting $ thrown your way, or a similar private sinecure, funded with my tax $.

Said it before. You should’a saved up, David…

Rich Davis
Reply to  bigoilbob
March 28, 2021 6:29 am

Count on Big oil boob when you’re looking for hubris of the longwinded bafflegab variety.

I guess he just schooled us on why the past needs to be consistently adjusted down while the present is consistently adjusted up. It’s all a matter of appropriate cherrypicking and settled science.

Reply to  Rich Davis
March 28, 2021 6:59 am

I guess he just schooled us on why the past needs to be consistently adjusted down while the present is consistently adjusted up. It’s all a matter of appropriate cherrypicking and settled science.”

With the usual vaguity about any changes in trends from changes changed invalidly by actual, science based evaluative techniques. Nick Stokes has shown you all over and over how bad averaging, versus good spatial interpolation perverts real trends. But since those valid techniques invalidate your prejudgments, basic statistical laws are disregarded, and unfounded methods are used instead, in these fora.

Reply to  Fred Haynie
March 26, 2021 2:57 pm

For a back of the envelope calculation, we can take the average of the instrument record anomaly and plot it on the end if the reconstruction. Doing that we see that there has been no real warming, since the modern average is approximately zero.

Mike Dubrasich
March 26, 2021 1:12 pm

Excellent and perceptive review. More could perhaps be said about the proxies, however. A super abundance of evidence suggests the HCO was quite a bit warmer in northern latitudes, and neoglaciation since is also well evidenced. I question their proxies (proxies are always difficult to quantify with accuracy).

It might also be noted that the modern “high resolution instrumental data” is fraught with error and bias. If proxies suffice for the rest of the Holocene, then the same proxies should be used for recent temperatures.

I also question the concept of GMST. Global average is a false statistic. It is well known that polar temps in the Pleistocene have changed far more than tropical temps. If the GMST rises 1°C in the next 80 years, as they speculate, it will be largely in polar regions and not in lower latitudes.

Lastly, so what? The planet did not burn up in the HCO. Indeed, life abounded. Warmer was and is the preferred, more productive condition. Let us appreciate and celebrate warmth, instead of having a collective cow about it.

Chris Hanley
March 26, 2021 2:04 pm

Thanks, that’s a great explanation of a problem with reconstructions that has baffled me for some time.

Abolition Man
March 26, 2021 2:22 pm

Figure 2 is obviously a picture of the Emperor’s new clothes, but you neglected to mention which emperor! Did you mean Emperor-for-life Xi, the recently installed Emperor Zhao Bai Den, or Empress-in-waiting Commie la Harris?
Other than that minor question your post is another in the string of hits that elucidate with humor and data; a welcome recipe in these trying times!

Rich Davis
Reply to  Abolition Man
March 28, 2021 6:40 am

Zhao Bai Den

Very clever! Aka Dementia Zhao

Chris Hanley
March 26, 2021 2:33 pm

Even worse is indicating a single year’s supposed global average average temperature for general public consumption.
comment image

March 26, 2021 6:29 pm

97% again. Where have I heard that number before

March 27, 2021 5:56 am

Thank you for another excellent, thought provoking post David.

I interpret this post as one answer to the quandary “How might I influence other people to ask questions that don’t normally occur to them?”

Confirmation bias is not a human cognitive anomaly, it is the natural outcome of “group think”, to which we partially owe our evolutionary success.


Ethan Brand

March 27, 2021 6:20 pm

Did you notice that the Southern Hemisphere low corresponds to the Holocene optimum? It would be nice to see a few examples of where actual data plots on the theoretical calculated means. Here’s Antarctic Dome C in red and Greenland Agassiz-Renland in, well, green.

Reply to  Renee
March 27, 2021 6:25 pm

The pic.

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