Roaring And Screaming

Guest Post by Willis Eschenbach

Among blue-water sailors like myself, the area of the ocean from 40° South to 50° South is called the “Roaring Forties” because of the strength of the winds that blow there so often.

And the next ten degrees south of that? They are called the “Furious 50’s”, followed by the “Screaming 60’s” (thanks to the commenters who corrected my names). There, the winds can blow unimpeded around the globe.

Figure 1. The cold pole.

Compared to the South Pole, the North Polar weather is far less complex. The North Pole is underlain by the Arctic Ocean, ice-covered most of the time. The South Pole, on the other hand, has a continent in the middle. And it’s mostly a high elevation permanently frozen chunk of rock. It sheds icy winds and glacial chunks into the surrounding ocean. Due to the constant winds and storms, the “mixed layer” around Antarctica is deeper than anywhere in the world.

Figure 2. Mixed layer depth.

And why is this of note? Well, I was asked to take a look at a recent peer-reviewed study called “Simulated Twentieth-Century Ocean Warming in the Amundsen Sea, West Antarctica“.

And where is the Amundsen Sea when it’s at home? It’s off of the coast of Antarctica, down below 60°S.

Figure 3. Oceanic warming trends, showing the Amundsen Sea.

A short digression. Roald Amundsen was one of my heroes when I was a kid. He was a famed polar explorer. He led the first expedition to reach the South Pole. He was also the first man to sail the Northwest Passage from the Pacific to the Atlantic over the top of Asia and Europe. As a boy I remember seeing his ship “Gjøa”, the one that he used for the Northwest Passage, up on blocks in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. Even as a young inexperienced sailor, I was amazed at how small it is, only 70 feet (21 meters) long. Amundsen definitely had albondigas of pure brass … but I digress

The press release about the study is”Researchers demonstrate new link between greenhouse gases and sea-level rise“. Inter alia, it says (emphasis mine):

A new study provides the first evidence that rising greenhouse gases have a long-term warming effect on the Amundsen Sea in West Antarctica. Scientists from British Antarctic Survey (BAS) say that while others have proposed this link, no one has been able to demonstrate it.

Well … in a word, no. The study doesn’t provide any evidence at all, not one scrap. What it provides instead are the results of computer models using another computer model as input.

Sigh. Look, if computer models were “evidence”, I’d be a very rich man based on my 1980’s evolutionary-based computer model of the stock market … but computer model results are not evidence. They are merely the understandings and more importantly the misunderstandings of the programmers made solid.

The study itself says:

Our simulations are performed using the Massachusetts Institute of Technology general circulation model including components for the ocean, sea ice, and ice shelf thermodynamics. Here we build on the Amundsen Sea configuration, which has been updated and re-tuned to provide best agreement with observations when forced with the latest ERA5 atmospheric reanalysis.

The “ERA5 atmospheric reanalysis” is a computer climate model which is forced with whatever data is available. The model then fills in the blanks where there is no actual data … like say the Amundsen Sea, where people only venture very rarely, and even then only in modern times.

Let me take a heel-turn to the question of the performance of the climate models. This study is about sea levels and ocean temperatures. Folks keep telling me that the climate models have done well for decades. So I looked at the first IPCC Assessment Report. Here are their sea-level projections:

Figure 4. Sea level projections from the IPCC AR1 Report.

And here is a close-up of that figure, with the actual sea level rise overlaid on the graph.

Figure 5. Actual sea level rise, compared to the IPCC projection.

Oops …

Moving to more modern models, here are model estimates of the post-1981 sea surface temperature (SST) rise from a number of CMIP6 models. These are the computer outputs of the sea surface temperature identified in the CMIP6 models as the variable “TOS”, the temperature of the ocean surface. Below I’ve compared them to the Reynolds OI SST observational dataset.

Figure 6. Modeled and observational sea surface temperature (SST) rise, 1981 – 2021

As you can see, the models are … well … let me call them “much less than accurate” and leave it at that.

To return to the Amundsen Sea, here are some of the complexities that affect the weather there.

Figure 7. Amundsen Sea.

As you can see, the sea temperature and the weather are affected by the Circumpolar Current, circumpolar winds, the Antarctic Slope Current, the Amundsen Sea Polyna (open water) in the middle of the Amundsen Bay sea ice, the varying ocean depths, and the ever-changing sea ice. It’s a most intractable and complex area to model.

To return to RealWorld from ModelWorld, here’s a look at just where and how the ocean has warmed and cooled since 1981.

Figure 8. Decadal trends in sea surface temperature (SST), Reynolds OI observational dataset.

As you can see, there’s been a bit of cooling in the SST in Amundsen Sea in this 41-year period.

Moving on, how well do their model results agree with the ERA5 reanalysis? Here’s their graphic:

Figure 9. Original Caption: “Timeseries of conditions in the Pacific Pacemaker Ensemble (PACE) simulations (blue) and the ERA5 simulation (red). Thinner blue lines show the 20 PACE ensemble members, while the thicker blue line is the ensemble mean. (a) Zonal wind (m/s) averaged over the shelf break. (b) Temperature (°C) averaged over the Amundsen Sea continental shelf between 200 and 700 m. (c) Basal melt flux (Gt/y) for ice shelves between Dotson and Cosgrove inclusive.

YIKES! Their own models don’t even begin to approximate the ERA5 reanalysis, which is the information that is used as an input to the models. And like the Reynolds OI SST, the ERA5 reanalysis shows slightly cooling temperatures in the Amundsen Sea, where the models claim warming … bad models, no cookies!

Oh, yeah, almost forgot. I did an analysis looking for what I call “weasel words” in their study. These are words that show their conclusions are weak. They include “could”, “may”, “might”, “possibly”, “plausibly”, “potentially”, “suggests”, and “assumed”. Those words are used a total of 34 times in their study … no bueno.

In closing, the study itself says (emphasis mine);

Rapid ice loss is occurring in the Amundsen Sea sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. This ice loss is assumed to be a long-term response to oceanographic forcing, but ocean conditions in the Amundsen Sea are unknown prior to 1994. Here we present a modeling study of Amundsen Sea conditions from 1920 to 2013, using an ensemble of ice-ocean simulations forced by climate model experiments.

“Simulations forced by climate model experiments” for a location where ocean conditions are “unknown prior to 1994” … it’s models on top of models all the way down, what could possibly go wrong? It’s clearly destined to be a lead article in the “Journal of Irreproducible Results“.

I weep for the death of science.

Finally, let me mention that the Amundsen Sea is only 0.085% of the total ocean area … it appears that what we have here are scientists with models looking for funding. Not saying that’s a bad thing, just that it can easily lead to … well … this kind of study.

Here, I’ve just spent three days (well, part-days, I’m retired) mowing a couple of acres of steep hillside in our opening in the forest … and today, rain, marvelous rain. Life is good, what’s not to like?

My best wishes to you all,


AS USUAL: When you comment, please quote the exact words you are responding to, so we can all be clear on your subject.

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John Garrett
April 15, 2022 10:09 am

“…Them was the days, sonnies,
Them was the men.
Them was the ships,
as we’ll never see again.

Oh, but it was somethin’
Then to be alive—
Thrashin’ under royals
South o’ forty-five…”

“What The Old Man Said”
-C. Fox Smith

Frank from NoVA
April 15, 2022 10:13 am

‘I weep for the death of science.’

As do we all. If there ever is a coroner’s report, the cause of death will simply be ‘corruption’.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Frank from NoVA
April 15, 2022 11:12 am

Possibly, “senile dementia”.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  D. J. Hawkins
April 15, 2022 12:32 pm

More like “premature senile dementia.” All those ‘Young Turks’ that have drunk of the kool aid and received so many participation trophies that they have an unrealistic view of their abilities.

Jim Gorman
Reply to  Clyde Spencer
April 16, 2022 5:28 am

The more I see, the more I think that these are people who have grown up with and have been immersed in computer games of all kinds. I have seen kids who play Call of Duty who have convinced themselves they are “shooting” people and that war is where you can be killed and come back to life after a few seconds.

As we move further and further away from nature, i.e., farming, the less able we are to be able to appreciate the REAL world. I suspect these so-called scientists have never been to sea let alone in this area. Computer games are real to them and therefore words like “experiment” or “data” do have meaning for them.

It is a sad state of affairs and explains why measurement error and uncertainty mean less and less to folks who conduct their experiments based on computer programs.

Reply to  Frank from NoVA
April 15, 2022 11:45 am

Assisted suicide

Reply to  Frank from NoVA
April 15, 2022 11:46 am

But always wrong wild guess predictions are not science.
They are presented as science because they are
said and written by people with science degrees.
That doesn’t make them science.

Real climate science is not dead.
The problem is that climate junk science is thriving.

Gary Pearse
Reply to  Frank from NoVA
April 15, 2022 12:28 pm

We are seeing what Max Planck observed, that (climate) science advances one funeral (or retirement) at a time. More and more, we are seeing studies by newbies contrary to the falsified fossilized stand of the remaining old guard clinging on to the end. New papers still drop in a non sequitur re the danger of global warming to help getting published. These may even be requirements of editors and reviewers now.

Those currently hanging on to the end, will be handing over an almost virginal science wide open for real science to be done. Willis’s studies should be a rich trove for the coming generation seeking to advance climate science.

Doc Chuck
Reply to  Gary Pearse
April 16, 2022 12:02 am

At a time of systematic silencing of unauthorized views, Gary, I’m afraid yours is as rosy an expectation as that Easter eggs adequately address what this weekend recalls in promise. An uncompromising insistence on truth-telling initiates in a sole Source with its attribution ignored to our increasing peril. The competing controlling motives are so foundational that they are identifiable in the specific reasons pitched to Eve that above all we should simply look to please ourselves as portrayed in the Eden account. These include a slanderous inversion of the truth-teller’s heart-felt concern for our best interests, implying on the contrary that some grand personal gain is being unduly denied us.

Six years ago I felt obliged to write a letter to the editor of my alumni magazine after a representation therein by a long-tenured journalism professor that reportage to inform fellow citizens of facts needed for them to fulfill their essential role in a republic can be superseded by a journalist’s own inclinations of what to promote instead. Neither have such influences over a number of operatives now in the death spiral of an essential profession left the reporting of the sciences untouched.

Gary Pearse
Reply to  Doc Chuck
April 16, 2022 2:43 pm

Doc, the squeals are louder, but that is symptomatic of beginnings of the end of days for a thoroughly debunked political climate science. I take the trouble to note changes in what is being published by new entrants into climate science whose names are not yet known.

The old guard is shrinking and they’ve retreated to publish in op eds of the Wapo or NYT now about the death spiral upon us, 5 years to stop the juggernaut of terminal climate breakdown, etc., not in the science journals anymore. They used to believe in the cause but they now know they are wrong (but how, after a dozen years of university and 35 yrs of research -a whole career and a whole wasted life – do you deal with this).

Did you know that Gavin Schmidt of NASA’S GISS, a climate modeler, admitted last fall that models were running a way too hot and they didn’t know why? Did you know that Gavin’s former boss, The Father of Global Warming, James Hansen, after an 18yrs ‘Pause’ in warming interrupted by the 2015 el Niño, which is then followed by the 8yrs of declining temperatures, has opined that we may be going into a 30 year cooling phase! Recall he predicted in 1988 that the Westside Highway, then 10 feet above the sea, would be under water by 2000. He said he meant by 2030 when the water had come up only a few inches. After James is gone for a 100 yrs there’ll still be 8½ feet of freeboard.

So yeah, noise levels are up, but this is the athletic bounding of the chicken whose had his head chopped off.

Reply to  Frank from NoVA
April 16, 2022 3:05 pm

The death of science is religion. Not Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism and all the other minor ones that generally teach people to be moral, respectful, gracious, and kind. I mean the religion of environmentalism: the one that sees humans as an infestation destroying the earth. Its various creeds like overpopulation, acid rain, ozone hole, global warming, sixth mass extinction are founded on that article of faith: humans are bad and there are too many of us. Every single one of their tenets can be easily disproved but they bitterly cling to their religion and their pseudoscience which is, yes, another branch of their religion and the most insidious because they pervert the scientific method to virtuously pontificate that “science tells us” or “the science is settled”. What the scientific method actually tells us is that the they, the zealots and misanthropes, are wrong, and when we show it to them they stop their ears and shut down debate.

John Garrett
April 15, 2022 10:28 am

Thank you Mr. Eschenbach for your always thoughtful and useful contributions to WUWT.

I apologize for the off-topic comment below; mere mention of the “Roaring Forties” provokes a near-Pavlovian remembrance of the excerpt from C. Fox Smith’s wonderful poem “What The Old Man Said.”

Coeur de Lion
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 15, 2022 2:24 pm

Kindred. Willis. I was a yacht person supported by a brave wife impervious to sea sickness. Venue France Ireland. 40 years in the navy. AND a member of the Kipling Society!! Weep over ‘My Boy Jack’

Steve Case
Reply to  John Garrett
April 15, 2022 11:20 am

Here’s a YouTube of a sailing ship in 1929 rounding Cape Horn.

Reply to  Steve Case
April 15, 2022 12:12 pm

How come no Heath & Safety inspectors on board?

Reply to  Mr.
April 16, 2022 3:13 am

They got washed overboard?

Reply to  Steve Case
April 15, 2022 12:36 pm

Thank you.

Mike Lowe
Reply to  Steve Case
April 15, 2022 12:52 pm

Thanks – what a wonderful film. Showed just what complex machines those sailing ships were!

Reply to  Steve Case
April 15, 2022 1:37 pm

OMG! Maybe the best youtube video I’ve seen.

Reply to  Steve Case
April 15, 2022 2:01 pm

That is an awesome video, Steve.

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  Steve Case
April 15, 2022 7:07 pm

Wait. They had Youtube back then??

Reply to  Steve Case
April 16, 2022 7:05 am


That is an incredible film footage! The ship and crew are truly incredible also! They don’t make ’em like that anymore.

Ron Long
April 15, 2022 10:40 am

Good report, Willis. I live at about 33 deg S. latitude, and have worked extensively in the roaring 40’s, in the south of Argentina. I have spent a day in the field when the average 24 hour wind speed was over 100 mph (Manantial Espejo weather station). The skies were cloud-free, but soon built up a lot of flying dust and volcanic ash. This was during an El Niño year. During La Niña years the winds don’t roar so much, more like a whimper. When you say the South Polar region is complicated, that is true in spades.

April 15, 2022 10:45 am

Roaring And Screaming

And I thought this post was going to be Musk v Twitter.

April 15, 2022 10:55 am

Just to say I used to read Willis’s pieces in the blog Plaza Moyúa, and loved them, and what I could not understand properly ( I have a problem with charts ) Lois (Plazaeme), would explain. He died last July , so I have to come to WUWT, and read directly. And make the effort to understand the colour lines by myself, but I still love all.
And I do not usually comment, as I am just a doubter and an ” aficionada” , and I know it is not my place to do so.
Today is Good Friday , a day of rememberance so I dare send this, and say
Thank You

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 15, 2022 1:38 pm

Un abrazo y gracias

April 15, 2022 11:02 am

Great story, thank you Willis.

Regarding the Northwest Passage, the final link of which was discovered by John Rae circa 1854:

Dr John Rae was the most dauntless and self-sufficient of Canada’s great explorers.

In 2001 Ken McGoogan wrote a well-researched book about Dr John Rae entitled “Fatal Passage – The Untold Story of John Rae, the Arctic Adventurer Who Discovered the Fate of Franklin”. McGoogan states that Rae, among his other accomplishments, was the true discoverer of the Northwest Passage. Rae Strait bears his name.

The Northwest Passage was navigated several times in the 1940’s, when it was clearly WARMER THAN TODAY.

A small wooden ship, the St. Roch, sailed through the Northwest Passage and across the high Canadian Arctic twice, in 1942 and 1944.

These voyages followed soon after the global warming period that ended circa 1940. What was the ice extent and thickness then? Probably less than, or no greater than today.


Built in British Columbia, named after a parish in Quebec, captained by a Norwegian immigrant, crewed by farm boys from across the country, and helped by the Inuit, the St. Roch was the first vessel to sail the Northwest Passage from west to east (1940-1942), the first to complete the passage in one season (1944), and the first to circumnavigate North America.

Reply to  Allan MacRae
April 15, 2022 1:51 pm

Matt Rutherford completed a solo nonstop circumnavigation of the Americas in 2011. A truly heroic effort

I always called them the Roaring 40s, Furious 50s and Screaming 60s.

Reply to  Drew
April 15, 2022 6:54 pm

Me too! 🙂

Steve Case
April 15, 2022 11:10 am

And it’s [Antarctica] mostly a high elevation permanently frozen chunk of rock.

A very short Google (past week) News search on [Antarctic melting] turns up 32 news stories. A [Ctrl F] search on “melt” for the first ten turns up results on all and multiple results on most.

<sarc>Looks like Willis is wrong, it’s not permanently frozen!<sarc/>

I’ll bore you with one of the links that comes up where you can find the following:

Antarctica: The Melting Continent
The Lancashire Post

    Antarctica: The Melting Continent – a fantastic, illustrated guide
    to the vast, cold and mysterious continent – comes from What on
    Earth Publishing which specialises in the art of telling stories through
    timelines, helping to encourage young readers into a lifelong love of
    enquiring and discovering.

How many young readers follow Watts Up With That? I hope some, but most are being brain washed by the so-called popular press, What on Earth Publishing in this case.

The insanity is not going to stop any time soon.

Reply to  Steve Case
April 17, 2022 2:44 am

The main stream propaganda machine is stupid as well as insane – ice cleaving off the main glacier is not a sign of melting but excess ice breaking off. When does ice get a chance to melt in Antarctica where for the most part it’s always below freezing even in summer – though West Antarctica is warmer, which like Iceland, sits above the Ring of Fire.

Shame on them for lying or shame on them for believing and passing on the lame lies they were told by climate crisis propagandists.

Reply to  PCman999
April 17, 2022 1:14 pm

How did they ever decide what “West” Antarctica was, when every direction from the pole was north?

April 15, 2022 11:12 am

The most boring course (required) I ever took was labelled something like “Cognitive Psychology”. It consisted of box diagrams, dozens of them, that purported to do what the brain did. That was before computer models of climate got going, but the roots were there. 20 years on a colleague’s student was proudly presenting his thesis work: models of how neural networks built by computers could produce decisions.

I think this fascination with models is an escape from the real world which is messy and not easily subject to control.

Richard Page
Reply to  Fran
April 15, 2022 1:57 pm

I can’t help feeling you might be correct in that – these people understand computers where things are simple, orderly and straightforward, and are trying to impose that onto the real world which they don’t really understand and can’t really cope with very well.

Gary Pearse
Reply to  Fran
April 16, 2022 1:18 pm

Two huge barriers to high grade AI are: a) the creative mind makes connections using seemingly non-connected thoughts and experiences. How do you load the millions of experiences into the computer? b) not having the right kind of non-linear thinkers doing the the AI research. Having a ‘learning’ computer chess program is essentially the basic model.

I’m sure Einstein played a decent game of chess, but he also played the violin AND conceived of relativity, E=mc², the nature of gravity, etc. See the problem?

April 15, 2022 11:13 am

Roald Amundsen is one of my heroes too.
On his journey over the Nord-West Passage he established a geomagnetic observatory at Gjoa Haven and measured the variation of the magnetic field during 1903. That data we have used to infer what the interplanetary magnetic field was back then, see
Slide 11 shows the hut they build for the measurements.
See also:

Simultaneous Geomagnetic and Auroral Observations in the Northern
and Southern Polar Cap During the Winter of 1903-04.
Alv Egeland and Charles Deehr
Nesoddtangen, Norway (
During the 1903-06 Gjøa Expedition, Roald Amundsen established an observatory at Gjøahavn, Canada (geographic coordinates: 68o 37’10”N; 95o 53’25”W; geomagnetic coordinates: 245◦W, 81◦N). In the opposite hemisphere, at the nearly geomagnetic conjugate location was the base observatory for Richard Scott’s 1902-04 Discovery Expedition at Cape Armitage (geographic coordinates: 77.85◦S, 166.76◦E; geomagnetic coordinates: 260◦E,
81◦S) . The first systematic magnetometer measurements and visual auroral observations inside the polar cap were carried out at these stations. The observations at Gjøahavn have been compared with simultaneous measurements at the Scott station. There is a large difference of nearly seven hours in solar time, but hardly any difference in magnetic time, between the two stations. The significance of this is clearly marked in the comparisons of the
observations. A survey of Amundsen’s visual auroral observations from the central polar cap during the winter of 1903-04 indicates very high activity with visual auroras nearly 50 % of the days in December 1903, and, not surprisingly, auroras were simultaneous at both stations. Auroral forms that have much later been categorized as sun-aligned arcs, auroral patches, and poleward-moving auroral forms were described in the records left by the
expeditions. The average daily variations of the intensity and direction of the H-component at both stations mimic one another almost exactly. The disturbances in the Antarctic were generally more intense, due to a more highly conducting ionosphere during the southern summer. The Svalgaard-Mansurov Effect (SME) is manifested both at Gjøahavn and Cape Armitage near noon geomagnetic time. Thus the SME is entirely a magnetic phenomenon and not a solar, or UT feature. These data offer much more than a glimpse of the solar wind-magnetosphere-ionosphere interaction 60 years before it was discovered.

Bruce Ranta
April 15, 2022 11:14 am

I’ve just spent three day watching, and shoveling, snow. I’m envious. And yes, envy is a sin, but it is what it is.

April 15, 2022 11:34 am

Whenever I see he model name CMIP (e.g. CMIP6) my brain always parses it as CHIMP.
I thus have a mental vision of an increasing number of chimps (4, 5, and now 6) working on producing these results.

I fear that my mental vision may actually be close to reality.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Philip
April 15, 2022 12:08 pm

Very close to the infinite number of chimps typing. I always pictured them as producing infinite bullshit.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Philip
April 15, 2022 12:36 pm

Same for me, and CMIP5 always looks like the plural CHIMPS.

Reply to  Philip
April 15, 2022 5:51 pm

I fear that my mental vision may actually be close to reality.

Your vision is the dead opposite of reality. Chimps would likely produce a random result that would be far closer to reality.

All climate models start with random temperatures but the upward trend in temperature is universal across the globe in all models. They are based on a preconception that small amounts of CO2 can actually warm the planet, Chimps are not driven by the same misconceptions.

The “model” applied to the current computer games is an abuse of the term.

Bill Parsons
Reply to  Philip
April 15, 2022 11:50 pm

So, I’m not the only one around here with Dick’s lexia.

Dave Fair
April 15, 2022 11:39 am

Thank you, Willis, for one of your usual fine postings.

The fact that all of this data, and more, is available to the CliSciFi practitioners but is not reflected in their studies nor the UN IPCC reports is criminal.

Rud Istvan
April 15, 2022 11:39 am

Fun Amundsen factoid. First Northwest Passage transit (e => w) took him three years. He wintered over with the Inuit. Second transit (w-e) was Larsen in two years 41-42. Larsen finally did it on third overall try in just 86 days summer of 44.
Illustrated essay Northwest Passage in ebook Blowing Smoke, really about Arctic ice cycles as revealed by the Northwest Passage. Ice free does NOT mean what you think it means.

That AGU would publish this paper on simulations which cannot be compared to anything real shows how far ‘climate science’ has fallen. Nice demolition, WE.

April 15, 2022 11:42 am

I have posed a question about the extraordinary results of my table 2
Does anyone have an explanation different to the one I gave? I am all ears.
you can click on the blue result to find the origin
figure 8 must be wrong, partly?

April 15, 2022 11:43 am

My old computer rarely loads the Post Comment button, for at least 19 out of 20 articles.
So this is your lucky day, WE, because I have a few complaints. Let me get out my list:

Should be a brief summary of the article.
What’s up with “Roaring and Screaming”
Were you drinking?
Or was that a Charles Rotten joke?
I’d title your article::
“Computer Models Say Whatever They are Programmed to Say, by Willis Eschenbach”
It’s about time WUWT included your name in the title, because you write the best articles here.

Too many charts, with some not easy to read too.
We trust you WE, so you don’t need a chart to back up every point you make!
You can refer to the charts in a short article, and then place them at the end of the article
with labels “Chart A”, “Chart B”, and “Chart C: etc.

Impressive that you have power washed your house, mowed three acres, sailed across the Pacific in a dinghy, or even climbed Mount Everest in your spare time, whatever … but such bragging annoys those of us who are proud members of the Over 65 Retired Lazy Bums Union. Slow down! Hard work causes heart attacks, or maybe it prevents them, I forget which. I told the wife “causes”.

Mark BLR
Reply to  Richard Greene
April 16, 2022 3:58 am

You can refer to the charts in a short article, and then place them at the end of the article

with labels “Chart A”, “Chart B”, and “Chart C: etc.

I was unaware that the WUWT “Policy” page had been updated to add :

  • The poster using the ID “Richard Greene” gets to decide the posting style of all article authors ATL [ and commenters BTL ? ]
  • The poster using the ID “Richard Greene” gets to decide was is, and is not, covered by the term “a sense of humour”

When did that happen ?

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 17, 2022 3:07 am

Full speed ahead!

Don’t listen to Richard, your articles are always clear and the placement of graphs or other visual aids in the flow of the article perfect.

I don’t know why Richard wants you to adopt some old archaic formatting from the days of having to print pictures separately from the text and so necessatating picture ‘plates’ being appended to the end of the article or book.

It makes it difficult to follow the logic, having to jump from text to pictures and back again.

Keep on doing what you are doing, you get way more complements than cranky, nonsensical complaints so you must be doing something right!


Reply to  Richard Greene
April 17, 2022 2:54 am

Don’t listen to Richard, Willis! Your articles are the best here and are a perfect mix of fact, graph, theory and, yes, even a touch of whimsy.

Please don’t change a thing!

Richard’s guardian angel has been messing with his computer for a reason!

April 15, 2022 11:44 am

Try as they might in faraway places and safely removed from actual data interference, they cannot hide from Willis.

J Cuttance
April 15, 2022 12:00 pm

An old saying…Below 40° there is no law. Below 50° there is no God.

Reply to  J Cuttance
April 17, 2022 3:10 am


Well, I’m not really shocked – Dante saw fit to portray Satan frozen in Hell.

April 15, 2022 12:02 pm


I thought the latitudinal descriptors were:
“Furious Fifties”
“Screaming Sixties”

Reply to  Gordo
April 15, 2022 1:32 pm

Sledge pulling seventies
Eye balls freezing eighties

Reply to  Vuk
April 17, 2022 3:11 am

Tombstone Nineties

Reply to  Gordo
April 17, 2022 10:50 am

Gordo, that is what I was taught as a first trip apprentice.

April 15, 2022 12:47 pm

“I suddenly remembered that I could not swim.” 
― Joshua Slocum, Sailing Alone Around the World

Reply to  Pablo
April 15, 2022 2:20 pm

One of my favorite books. I have memorized quite a few passages.

I had Moby Dick and Animal Farm as required reading in my school days English literature.

I wonder what kids have as required reading these days.

Reply to  Mr.
April 15, 2022 5:53 pm

I just re-read Animal Farm, and noted that I had remembered most of it since the first time over 50 years ago. The Cold War and Communism made it very relevant back then. Perhaps Russia invading Ukraine will make it popular again. Only about 85 pages

Reply to  BobM
April 17, 2022 3:16 am

Relevant in any modern context! We’re continually being lied to by government, whether yours is communist, socialist, or ‘liberal’ (pretending to not be socialist).

I left out conservative – that species doesn’t exist anymore, and not for a long while.

April 15, 2022 1:12 pm

Not being a sailing man, never been south from the Med, I still found it good read but modelling considerations I’ll leave to experts to comment.
So what would be sailing like today in the “Roaring Forties”?
It looks like that the south-east of Tasmania might be a bit challenging for a novice sailor with wind wave swells height in excess of 6m.;156.0;4&l=swell
Much further north looks like that Japanese sailing enthusiasts should be heading for shelter, since there is a typhoon with waves around 11 meters height is heading for Tokyo.;142.9;4&l=swell

Alec Rawls
April 15, 2022 1:50 pm

So many unscientific alarmist “studies.” I came across another variation on the theme just yesterday, a paper claiming that the feedback process that drove de-glaciation 18,000 years ago could be re-ignited by human increments to CO2 today:

I wrote up a comment (slightly angry, haha) before I realized there was no place to post it, but yay, I can post it here:

What an abominably stupid and dishonest article. 18,000 years ago most of the temperate regions of our planet were buried under thousands of feet of ice. The white surface of these glaciers reflected a large fraction of incoming sunlight back into space, so that when the snow and ice began to melt the warming feedback effects were huge.

The areas of the planet from which the glacial retreat commenced covered large land masses that received fairly direct insolation. Thus the glacial retreat allowed much more sunlight to be absorbed, creating further warming, melting more snow and ice, in a big de-glaciating virtuous circle.

As that process progressed snow and ice retreated to latitudes of shrinking area where the solar insolation is much more oblique to begin with, causing the warming feedback to get smaller and smaller until the warming cycle petered out, which is where we are today: in the middle (or towards the end) of our current Holocene inter-glacial.

Thus we are now at the extreme weak end of the warming feedback cycle, compared to 18,000 years ago when we were at the extreme strong end of this cycle, yet the article tries to suggest to readers that the relatively tiny warming feedbacks of today are threatening to somehow become suddenly become large again because … human greenhouse gases.

No. It doesn’t matter what the change in the forcing comes from. Warming feedbacks in our current situation are small, making the total effect small. Likening today’s relatively tiny warming feedbacks to the onset of deglaciation is a radical lie.

The warming feedbacks can only get smaller, and they are already as nothing compared to when de-glaciation was first underway. CO2-warming alarmism is absolute rotten phony-science from top to bottom.

April 15, 2022 2:05 pm

Again and again we see these warmunist assertions supported by their models that it is the air that warns the earth rather than the earth that warms the air, or cools the air, as the case may be, across the planet’s surface … while completely ignoring the laws of physical science.

The fact is that liquid water has one of the most, if not the most, specific heat capacity of any natural substance on Earth. About 4,100 J/G deg C … or 4.1 kJ/kG deg C. It takes a helluva lot of heat energy input to cause liquid water to warm up by one deg C, or loss of energy to cool down by one deg C.

On the other hand, vegetation has a specific heat of 1,400-1,500, while solid rock, steel, concrete, asphalt runs about 500-900. Meaning that for a given heat energy input, these substances rise in temperature anywhere from 3 to 8 times as much as would liquid water. Hence the “urban heat island” effect. It is the temperature differential, not the heat energy differential, that drives energy transfer from one mass to another mass.

Air also has a far lower specific heat content than liquid water – about 1 kJ/kG deg C, or less than 1/4 that of liquid water. So even very hot air, relative to SST, could transfer a great deal of heat energy to the water while the change in SST would be very much smaller. Amd vice versa. And that does not account for the thermodynamics and mixing effects. And ditto with vegetated land surfaces.

A warming bare earth or rock land surface that absorbs the solar radiation will heat up a lot and thus drive energy transfer to the air during the day as compared to vegetated surfaces, because it heats up more than the air for a given heat energy input … yet conversely bare earth and rock cools down very fast at night with no solar energy input, and serves to cool the desert air.

That’s why deserts heat up much more during the day and cool down much more at night than does either a vegetated surface or the air above a water body.

In effect, both water and vegetated land surfaces tend to act a temperature dampers as compared to desert land surfaces.

April 15, 2022 2:40 pm

Thanks Willis for reminding us about the circumpolar Southern Ocean, whose isolation of Antarctica creates the dominant feature of earth’s climate – the frozen south polar continent.

In SST anomaly maps there is almost always a cold anomaly around Antarctica – a consistent feature that however attracts very little comment or attention.

comment image

Chris Nisbet
April 15, 2022 2:51 pm

I wonder if the word ‘will’ could be added to the list of weasel words.
Lots of bad things apparently _will_ happen because of our evil FF burning ways. I take that to mean these bad things _haven’t_ happened.

Curious George
Reply to  Chris Nisbet
April 15, 2022 4:34 pm

How would you then write a honest prophecy?

Julian Flood
April 15, 2022 3:20 pm

Willis, you look at Figure 8 (Decadal trends in sea surface temperature (SST), Reynolds OI observational dataset) and see the cooler bits. I see the areas with excessive warming. You will notice that the cooler areas are big and if I were to guess it would be that cooler deep water is being brought to the surface. Cooling is easy.

Look instead at the warming areas. In particular look at the little red patch that is the Black Sea, warming at 5 deg C per century, five times faster than can be explained by the CO2 warming hypothesis. Next to the Black Sea is the Sea of Marmara (not visible) which is warming even more rapidly. The large warming patches in the Pacific look like gyres, but most of the really anomalous areas are associated with civilisation: the Sea of Japan, a very industrialised shoreline; the Red Sea, a lot of tanker traffic; the Eastern Med; the Arabian Gulf, ditto. The River Plate has a warming area where it flows into the South Atlantic. Etc, etc.

A poster above carried out an experiment to see if oil pollution on water led to warming but found nothing, With all due respect – a commitment to experiment is an attitude that the IPCC could well emulate – I suggest that the experiment was on too small a scale. Oil/surfactant/lipid from oleaginous phytoplankton warms by albedo reduction and reducing evaporation. (There’s some odd data somewhere about falling pan evaporation rates in the 20th century which I would attribute to airborne pollution, see SeaWifs ‘Up in Smoke’) Israeli fish farmers use the effect on fish ponds and Chinese farmers used to warm their rice paddies using the same.

Marmara is in a hell of state with vast blooms of diatoms. Wonderfully oily little beggars, diatoms when they die release their lipids – I have an image of a smooth running from abeam Porto to a couple of hundred miles short of Madeira which I can’t imagine came from human pollution, unless the blooms are aided by dissolved silica run-off from modern agriculture, sewage and associated nutrients. Thank you, Dr Haber.

Enough. Let’s have a Feynman guess. There is a contribution to global warming from localised pollution by oil/surfactant/lipids which lower albedo, warming, reduce evaporation, warming, and by suppressing wave breaking reduce the availability of salt aerosols so less low level stratus, warming. [Note for old maritime people: the Madeira smooth suppressed wave breaking up to Force 4/5: personal observation from 40,000ft.]

There are two educational/research establishments I’d love to see involved in explaining these local warming areas, Michigan U because it’s right next door to them and UEA because Broad Lake in their grounds shows a beautiful smooth in a readily available image – right under their noses. As Sherlock tells us, ‘you look but you don’t see.’ Let’s dub the results ALW, Anthropogenic Local Warming.

Some measure of pollution smoothing is now possible – see Ruf and Evans and a paper Effects of microplastics and surfactants on surface roughness of water waves, Sun, Ruf, Bakker, Pan.

Anomalous warming areas cannot be caused by the well-mixed CO2, so there are other warming factors. Perhaps those factors will constrain the more extreme predictions of AGW.

Anthony has a lot more in this vein from me, including a couple of nice images.


Reply to  Julian Flood
April 15, 2022 11:05 pm


Have you read my report.? I Did do a test with oil but it was a small scale experiment. I just checked and it appears that there are many mud volcanoes in and around the Black Sea. This further strengthens my theory about the origin of global warming.

Julian Flood
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 16, 2022 2:08 pm

For lakes there might be a correlation between warming and population density on their shores but it would be very flaky. Michigan U could usefully send some undergrads out in canoes with some blotting paper to test for pollution.

I can’t post images, but the Broad Lake smooth at UEA makes me chuckle — to think of Tom Wigley hammering down the blip and never seeing the reason outside his window. He’s not alone, there are smooths everywhere and I can’t look at a seascape without scanning it for the giveaway shades. Most people just don’t see them.

Ruf and Evans have the ability to measure large smooths all over the oceans — they were looking at microplastic pollution and got side-tracked into surfactants as they occur together — the most significant advance in decades: if someone ties in total area of big smooths with some sort of measured SST on an experimental lake then we might have some estimate of the total amount of ALW. The other paper I referenced has shown the albedo effect in a tank — I think — so that could be a place to start. Salter’s cloud ships had maths behind them, but without aerosol sampling over smoothed and unsmoothed ocean there’s no read across.

It’s all out of my league. I make the Feynman guess and others look at the data. My work here is done.


Julian Flood
Reply to  Julian Flood
April 16, 2022 2:09 pm

Hi-yo Silver! Away!


David L. Hagen
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 16, 2022 2:52 pm

Willis Compliments on insightful explorations.
On detecting lipids on the Sea of Marmara, may I suggest exploring the potential for using Quad-Polarimetric SAR data to detect Oil Spills. Researchers Wang D. et al. ~75% accuracy using deep learning models.
Wang D et al BO-DRNet: An Improved Deep Learning Model for Oil Spill Detection by Polarimetric Features from SAR Images.
Remote Sensing. 2022 Jan;14(2):264

April 15, 2022 3:23 pm

Good posting.
Wouldn’t it be interesting to know exactly when in the process, from proposal through final report, that the summary was written?
Models are software. Software that doesn’t provide correct resuts is a failure–for a given value of correct.

Floyd Looney
April 15, 2022 4:05 pm

What a gorgeous image to retire to.

April 15, 2022 4:40 pm

In your figure 8, there is a small patch off the SE coast of Australia where the SST has risen 1.2C in the last 40 years. Now that baffles my tiny mind given that the current flows south down the East coast. What am I missing?

Reply to  Robtin
April 15, 2022 11:24 pm

Check for volcanic activity.

Julian Flood
Reply to  Robtin
April 16, 2022 10:23 pm

Look for run-off from agriculture. Dissolved silica is a limiting nutrient for lipid releasing diatoms. Look for run-off from urban development. Oil and surfactant smoothing lower ocean albedo.

Is that what is happening? Until someone looks we’ll never know.


Reply to  Robtin
April 17, 2022 3:30 am

Is it possible that the current is bring warm equatorial water south and then the current is slowed down or turned when it interacts with the strong currents around Antarctica – letting the heat affect the area more?

4E Douglas
April 15, 2022 4:48 pm

Thank you, Willis.
“I must go down to the Seas again, to the lonely sea and sky.
and all I ask is a tall ship, and star to steer her by.”
_John Masefield -”Sea Fever.”
Fair winds, sir.

April 15, 2022 5:14 pm

Thank goodness for Willis’ intelligent data analysis article after what seems like dozens of anti-media-hype caterwaul articles. Thanks W.E.

Paul Milenkovic
April 15, 2022 5:23 pm

Ah, simulations!

There was a recent article on Slashdot about some online forum called Pinterest was seeking to cleanse itself of Climate Disinformation.

This provoked a spirited discussion because there remain a non-trivial number of people who question received wisdom on Slashdot, whether of climate or other scientific and social controversies.

Slashdot bills itself as “News for nerds”, and among largely computer nerds there is a strong, highly opinionated faction claiming “you are an uninformed moron if you question Climate Change — it is a fact.” Some may have experienced this attitude in the workplace when asking for help with an office computer — many on Slashdot live up to that stereotype. I took a chance that I too would be labeled a moron and risked responding to such a comment.

My three responses to claims that climate skepticism is flyover-country Know-Nothingism were 1) yes, temperatures are increasing but at the low end of the ensemble of computer models, 2) claims of temperature proxies not showing the Medieval Warm Period and the Roman Climatic Optimum may be the result of careless (to put it charitably) application of Principal Components Analysis (PCA) and 3) whereas CO2 trapping heat can be considered a fact, the dire predictions of Climate Emergency are derived from computer models that assume a substantial multiplier effect from increased atmospheric moisture content, the magnitude of which is largely speculative at this point.

What is interesting is that my post was up-moderated to a 5, the highest level. There must be people on Slashdot receptive to these arguments. What was also interesting was that I was subsequently down-moderated to a 4, still a high level, but the down-moderation suggesting suppression of this viewpoint.

What is also of note that a reply to my post dismissed my claim of actual temperatures being at the low end of the model ensembles, counter-claiming another source “fact-checking” this as false. I also got a “citation please” regarding the Steve McIntyre critique of the Hockey Stick along with ’tis ‘taint back-and-forth regarding the accuracy or lack-thereof of Hansen’s 1998 predictions.

There are many other arguments to make about climate alarmism, but in giving a short answer as to why “denial of climate change” is not necessarily “misinformation”, do I have those three main points right, or would people here express them differently? I hate it when people support a position in a controversy with glib “talking points”, but I think a small number of defensible points are useful when engaging someone who insists there is no basis to question claims of a Climate Emergency.

I am not going to bother with this at the Thanksgiving dinner table, but I am talking about a setting like Slashdot that hasn’t yet become completely dominated with climate alarmism. If you cannot discuss scientific controversy with people who self-identify as “nerds”, where can you have such a discussion?

What say others here on WWUT?

Reply to  Paul Milenkovic
April 15, 2022 6:02 pm

What do people who are digging their own graves do when their shovels reach the center of the earth?

Reply to  Phil Salmon
April 16, 2022 11:28 am

Carry on chaps, we’re half way there now.

Jim Gorman
Reply to  Paul Milenkovic
April 16, 2022 5:56 am

I say you make good, defensible points that “fact-checkers” would have a hard time disproving. There are innumerable graphs on the internet and her at this site to show how models are not following current temps properly. Water content in the atmosphere MUST show an increase if GHG theory is correct, and the fact checkers should be able to show that is the case.

Reply to  Paul Milenkovic
April 17, 2022 3:43 am

For fun, go the opposite route – tell them they are doomed! According to IPCC data any of the Herculean climate emission reductions demanded by Kyoto, Paris, or COP26 or Net-Zero 2050 will lead to microscopic temperature attenuations. Since we are already at the 5 minutes to doomsday level of about 1.2°C, and since there is a huge amount of reliabled fuelled power plants planned or already under construction, enough to dwarf all the current emissions of so-called developed countries, then there is no chance of of holding things down to 1.5, or 2.0 or any number you like.

So it’s not worth the trouble of protesting or other political action if it has no effect.

See if their heads explode.

April 15, 2022 5:56 pm

It’s interesting to note a recent swarm of 85,000 volcano-tectonic earthquakes since August 2020, observed occurring at a location close to the Orca submarine volcano near Antarctica:

Jeff Alberts
April 15, 2022 7:06 pm

Scientists from British Antarctic Survey (BAS)”

Well there’s yer problem. The Brits are still pissed that Amundsen handily beat Scott, and didn’t lose a single man.

Jon-Anders Grannes
April 15, 2022 9:04 pm

A Beautiful Idea Murdered by Ugly Facts?

April 15, 2022 10:46 pm

“Under the wide and starry sky,
Dig the grave and let me lie.
Glad did I live and gladly lie,
And I laid me down with a will.

This be the verse you grave for me:
’Here he lies where he longed to be;
Home is the sailor, home from the sea,
And the hunter home from the hill.’”

-Requiem,Robert Louis Stevenson.
Great poem.
Thanks again for your contributions,Willis.

April 15, 2022 11:07 pm

Hi Willis, as sharp as ever, as usual.

my 1980’s evolutionary-based computer model of the stock market” Attracted my special attention. I recently published my modelling of such which I did 50 years ago. I produced a formula for prices of investment quality stocks. This is it’s first presentation.
This may be of interest:

another ian
April 15, 2022 11:24 pm


Somewhat O/T

Eric Newby (a UK writer of a book or four on travel and other things) was a midshipsman on one of the clipper ships in the last great grain race from Australia to the UK towards the end of the 1930’s.

another ian
Reply to  another ian
April 16, 2022 1:11 am

Such nautical leanings got him into the SBS in WW2

And into a POW camp

Reply to  another ian
April 17, 2022 10:59 am

Not a Midshipman, an Apprentice.In the Merchant Navy I believe the only British company to have Midshipmen was Blue Funnel, all others were Cadets or Apprentices.

Ireneusz Palmowski
April 16, 2022 8:43 am

The strong temperature drop of the Peruvian Current promises to strengthen La Niña.comment image

Reply to  Ireneusz Palmowski
April 16, 2022 10:21 pm

Salvacetti et al 2018 showed the Humboldt current to be at its coldest in the entire Holocene, having sharply cooled in the last century:

michael hart
April 16, 2022 4:03 pm

“Oh, yeah, almost forgot. I did an analysis looking for what I call “weasel words” in their study. These are words that show their conclusions are weak. They include “could”, “may”, “might”, “possibly”, “plausibly”, “potentially”, “suggests”, and “assumed”. Those words are used a total of 34 times in their study … no bueno.”

This was published before your article about peer review, but is a good demonstration of why no amount of changes to peer review can improve bad science.
There is no substitute for doing the leg work and using the brain, even briefly, to actually assess what is presented. Expecting others to “fact check” is just mental laziness.

April 17, 2022 2:27 am

Funny how the video gamers, er, I mean climate scientists chose to zero in on that tiny region of warming in the shallow bay and ignored all that light blue cooling wrapping its way all around the continent and reaching northwards to Africa and especially South America.

True science is dead, long replaced by political science propping up the party line.

Bouna Pasqua Willis and same to everyone here who you graced with your intelligence and wisdom.

Dr K.A. Rodgers
April 17, 2022 9:54 am

A good friend and frequent visitor to The Great Southern Ocean referred to them as the Furious Fifties and The Screaming Sixties.

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