Guest Essay by Kip Hansen — 4 February 2023
NOTE: I wrote this original two-part series nearly five years ago now. This reprise has been prompted by a conversation with a colleague who’s only understanding of Climate Change or Global Warming has been gleaned from NPR/CNN/PBS and Main Stream Media. I thought to update this essay to see if I would have the same opinions today as I did five years ago. Updated text will be in this lighter blue color. Changed or added images will be clearly labelled.
I have often been asked “Why do you deny climate change?” I am always stumped by the question. It is rather like being asked “Why do you torture innocent animals?” The questioner is not merely asking for information, they are always making an accusation — an accusation that they consider very serious and a threat to themselves and others.
The reason it stumps me is that, as you have guessed already, I do not deny climate change (and I do not torture innocent animals — nor even guilty ones). And there is nothing about me or my behavior, present or past, that I am aware of, that would lead any reasonable person to think such a thing of me.
I am thoroughly guilty though of being very skeptical of what is generally referred to as the Climate Consensus — usually said to be represented by the latest reports and policy recommendations put out by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and its supporters; political, ideological and scientific. I suppose it is this that leads to the false accusation of “denying climate change”.
Note: My colleague had been indoctrinated to believe that the two sides of the issue consisted of only two positions: The IPCC Consensus team opposing those who think Global Warming is a hoax.
And there is the crux of the matter — it is something in the mind of the accuser, not any action of the accused, which leads to the false accusation.
I deny that I am a Climate Denier, a Global Warming denier or any other kind of a “denialist”. And I do not think that Global Warming is a hoax.
WHY I DON’T DENY:
I do not deny either of the two primary claims of the Global Warming Movement:
1. Global Warming is happening
2. Human activity causes [some of] it.
Here’s why I don’t deny #1: Global Warming is happening.
There is no need to update this section very much as it is long-term historical data – though at end of section I will put in a current Global Temperature graphic for completeness.
I am perfectly happy to accept that the “world” (the “global climate”) has warmed since the late 1800s. We know that the date of 1880/1890 is picked for the starting point of most of the contemporary consensus view plots — purportedly because it represents “the start of the modern industrial era”, this despite the fact that even the IPCC does not claim that “CO2 induced global warming” started at that date. Let’s take a closer look at Lamb and ”Lamb_modified_by_Jones”:
Note: This image cleaned up a bit. CET is Central England Temperature, which is used because the record is actual measurements continuous since mid-17th century.
We know that Lamb was showing a stylized “schematic” view of Central England temperatures — and Jones 2007 re-does the analysis with very slightly different results, then overlays (in blue) the measured Central England through 2007. This graph contains the seed of my certainty that “global warming is happening” — which, in un-politicized language would be something like: “The Earth’s general climate has warmed since a bit before 1700 CE — i.e., for the last 300+ years.” Here’s Spencer 2007:
And if you prefer, here’s the NOAA version with comparisons of various reconstructions :
Note: The link to the file above is no longer valid. But there is a similar graphic used in the report of the National Research Council’s Committee on Surface Temperature Reconstructions for the Last 2,000 Years below:
This graphic is new to this essay.
They all show cooling to approximately 1650 – 1700 and general warming since then.
From where does my skepticism arise then? Well, there is no more — general warming started about 1650-1700, maybe a little earlier, and has been ongoing. When warming doesn’t start is 1880/1890 — it starts one hundred and fifty to two hundred years earlier — earlier than the start of the increased CO2 output of the modern Industrial Revolution. This makes me very skeptical indeed of the claim that the industrial revolution and modern warming are intrinsically entwined.
And I think that it is a good thing that it has warmed since 1700. The Little Ice Age years, up thru the 16 and 17 hundreds, were hard times for farmers (and thus whole populations) in North America and Europe, as attested to by contemporary accounts of crop failures and hard winters.
To my knowledge, this point is not controversial or even contested. In the Consensus Worldview, it is simply over-looked and not mentioned. Truthfully, since the facts don’t match the narrative — the narrative that global warming was caused by the start of the Industrial Revolution and its subsequent CO2 emissions — this fact seems to have been down-played or ignored.
Most current temperature graphics:
The above is Global Temperature Anomalies since 1880, with the vertical scale set to a spread of 5°C – the range recommended by U.S. OSHA for office temperature comfort.
What does the IPCC say? “Warming of the climate system is unequivocal.” — IPCC AR5 SPM 1.1
Well, I couldn’t agree more — moreover, it has been warming since about 1650-1700, two hundred years before the Industrial Revolution starts pouring out CO2.
What else does the IPCC say? “ … recent anthropogenic emissions of green-house gases are the highest in history.” — IPCC AR5 SPM 1
Again, I don’t disagree:
Without arguing about when “history” began, and looking at atmospheric CO2 concentrations rather than emissions, we can stipulate that the graph the European Geophysical Union gives us is an “accurate enough” picture of CO2 concentrations over the last thousand years. CO2 remains a shaky 275-290 ppm for 800 years and then begins to show a rise around 1850, finally breaking into new territory circa 1880-1890 — the start of the modern Industrial Era. The Wiki offers us the following, again confirming that CO2 does not begin to rise until 1890-1900, long after temperatures begin to rise.
It is simply a fact that atmospheric CO2 concentration has been rising since 1880-1890-1900 (close enough for my purpose today) and that it is now higher than it has been in a long time. Some think that this is a good thing, as it has brought about a resurgence in plant life on Earth’s surface and some think it is a bad thing.
Atmospheric CO2 has been rising — but is there doubt about this? — “ … recent anthropogenic emissions of green-house gases are the highest in history.” ?
While it is not easy to measure atmospheric CO2 concentrations, it has been being done for quite some time….and we have been able to guess about human greenhouse-gas emissions and their sources. [These are naturally abject guesses, but we needn’t argue with them on that account — they are our “best guesses”).
The IPCC’s AR5 includes this graphic:
We see that recent emissions are highest, at least in this history, but notice that cumulatively up to 1970 (see the right hand inset bar graph), Forestry and other land use accounts for more than 50% of all CO2 emissions. This surprised even me — I was expecting a pretty big contribution from the clear-cutting and conversion into pasture and farmland of much of Europe and North America east of the Mississippi River — but I had no idea that Forestry and Land Use accounts for >50% all the way to 1970 –and that’s nineteen seventy, not eighteen seventy. By some proxies, global surface temperature had been rising for 300 years by 1970.
Keeping that fact in mind, let’s see what else the IPCC has to say about causes:
IPCC AR5 SPM 1.2 — “Anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions have increased since the pre-industrial era, driven largely by economic and population growth, and are now higher than ever. This has led to atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide that are unprecedented in at least the last 800,000 years. Their effects, together with those of other anthropogenic drivers, have been detected throughout the climate system and are extremely likely to have been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.”
This language is not found in AR6 – the most recent Assessment Report. AR6 Summary for Policy Makers says “It is unequivocal that human influence has warmed the atmosphere, ocean and land. Widespread and rapid changes in the atmosphere, ocean, cryosphere and biosphere have occurred.” AR6 stands by the AR5 statement above without changes.
The IPCC in their synthesis report for policy makers says that human emissions of greenhouse gases and “other anthropogenic drivers,” are “extremely likely to have been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.”
Well, OK. This is where my Climate Skepticism begins to gain some traction. Dr. Judith Curry, president and founder of Climate Forecast Applications Network, recently offered the following graphic in an essay entitled “Fundamental disagreement about climate change”:
I would have used slightly different points and alternate wordings — but the essence would be the same.
The IPCC Consensus general position is shown on the left — CO2 (and other greenhouse gases) are the primary “forcing” of climate — with changes in CO2 causing changing climate (basically warming) — this warming amplified by feedbacks, like increased water vapor and clouds.
On the right is Dr. Curry’s general view — I share much the same viewpoint. I would have placed more emphasis on this:
(corrected typos h/t John H)
Climate is Chaotic: It is composed of highly complex, globally coupled, spatio-temporal chaotic, resonant systems.
So far, I agree with all the facts, but don’t agree with recent CO2 (and other) emissions being “the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.” — I agree neither with the attribution or the effect size.
Today, five years later, I still find myself with the same position: There is no scientific reason to accept the IPCC position and the IPCC offers only that global temperatures have risen (stipulated: the factual matters are not in dispute) and CO2 concentrations have risen (also stipulated).
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If you aren’t yet bored to tears, you can find out more on my reasons for that in Part 2, to be published in the next day or so.
The reprise of Part 2 should appear here in about a week.
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Author’s Comment Policy:
I have tried to use examples, graphs, that would be generally acceptable to both sides of the Climate Divide, and to avoid controversial minor or fringe sources. I didn’t need to — I am happy with the data presented and that’s Why I Don’t Deny.
I suppose that many readers will disagree with my lack of denial or agree but have different reasons. That is how it should be in a new young field of science like Climate. Feel free to tell all in your comments. I may reply to rational, collegial remarks, questions and requests for clarification.
I am, however, too old to argue. (and five years older now)
The latest IPCC assessment report, AR6, adds nothing that changes my opinions from those of five years ago. There are no new facts that show anything other then the simple “the climate has warmed” and “atmospheric CO2 concentrations have risen” and “are higher than they have been in a long time” – both of which I am happy to agree with. In fact, I think that both are “good things”.
I invite your comments on anything I have written above or on the data presented.
Address comments to “Kip…” if you expect a response.
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I bet the story would have been different if just one of the charts were NOT FAKE!
Are you saying they are all fake, one of them is or none of them are? Your wording doesn’t make it clear to me.
I think you’re saying they are fake, in which case Where’s your proof?
There is a fake – roaldjlarsen.
Roald J. Larsen is a Twitter Twit, a Facebook junkie, and a constant harbinger of Doom. It looks like he is from Norway, where a little CAGW would be welcome. Just saying.
One of my Facebook Friends is a “Roald J Larsen,” a man living in Norway I’ve known for years as an ardent CAGW skeptic and supporter of my work exposing enviro-activists’ smear efforts against skeptic climate scientists. More info is needed, as we may be seeing one of two possible situations: Either the WUWT commenter here is an imposter posing as the real Roald J Larsen in order to discredit him in some way, or else Roald’s comment above was meant as satire, something an idiot CAGW believer would say. If the latter, it would be another example of “Poe’s Law” where lately it is ever more difficult to distinguish parody of the extreme liberal left from what such folks would actually say.
Over at CFact, Mr. Larsen’s comments present his own unique climate science, that makes Climate Realists look bad, even compared with the pesky Climate Howler Global Whiners who comment there.
So, the charts are all fake?
Is the writer a fake?
is this website a fake?
The cake my wife baked is fake, for heaven’s sake
Eating it was a mistake
Now I have a stomach ache
And a headache, from reading your comment
Give us a break.
But do we know for certain that the comment account over there is real? I glanced at those CFACT comments for the first time in around a year a few days back, yes the supposedly skeptic commenters (who obviously have no life) are still there, but the “Roald” comments did not resemble the person I’ve long known in Disqus comment sections. Something might be amiss in this whole situation ….
You are a good detective, and I was Inspector Clouseau on this subject.
Pink Panther Strikes Again – Peter Sellers as Clouseau, “Does your dog bite”? – YouTube
Correction and apology:
I confused Roald Larsen with a different commenter on CFACT called RealOldOne2.
CFACT has some good articles, but I stopped commenting there many weeks ago. Just a street battle there between several skeptics with bad climate science, and several Climate Howlers with worse climate science.
Roald Larsen is a rare exception there. I just read many of his comments archived on Disgust, and now do not believe the comment here is something Mr. Larsen would have written.
Roald J. Larsen · Profile · Disqus
A recent Mr. Larsen comment at CFACT,org was
“Downwelling of energy as heat is impossible, the atmosphere is like a wall to infrared radiation below 1 km. for several reasons, increased density, convection and higher temperature.”
I don’t agree with him, but people can disagree.
Heat is defined as the form of energy that is transferred between two systems (or a system and its surroundings) by virtue of a temperature difference.
Based on Mr. Larsen’s use of the word “heat” he is correct in his statement.
The definition I gave was from a thermodynamics book.
I did my own investigation in the interim – first, his Facebook page is marked as disabled, so I emailed him and got a quick reply. He’s having a war with FB censors over some post(s) on Clima-Change™ that the Zuck’rberg Thought Police didn’t like (which proves he is one of us!), and second, his initial post here at this thread is indeed genuine ……… . . . except I fear he was speaking in much too broad of a generality, and further might not be completely aware that Kip Hansen knows the planet is warming, but was illustrating here how the question is how much and to what degree humans have any significant effect. Point being, the CAGW nuts out there say we all deny that the warming is happening at all, as though we are brain dead. Back in 2014 at one of Heartland’s climate conferences, Lord Monckton demonstrated to comical effect that there was a 100% consensus among us ‘global warming deniers’ in that room – at a ‘deniers conference,’ no less – that the Earth was indeed warming.
We are all on the same side. I suggested to Roald that he drop back in here to clarify what he meant to imply with that first comment.
Regardless, the fact that you have no viable solution indicates that all of your pontification is nothing more than virtue signaling, proclaiming virtue without doing the work necessary to be virtuous.
You’ve made an accusation. Now it’s your job to show why each and every one of those charts is fake. Get working on it bucko. If you don’t do that, everyone will think you’re a pimple faced fat troll covered in Cheeto dust living in his mother’s basement.
Climate is +/- weather.
“Here’s Spencer 2007:”
Yes, that’s the “skepticism” we know. Of all the reconstructions that have been created, it features one by a fringe scientist (Loehle) in a fringe journal (E&E) with poor review standards. And so, of course it had to be corrected (scroll down). But it is still good in the “skeptic” world.
The key effect of the correction was that it had to be acknowledged that the recon was only good to 1935, not 1980. So it really includes very little of the current warming. The revised graph ends there a bit above zero. HADCRUT 5 says that we have had about 1°C warming since then. That takes it right off the chart (which only goes to 0.8).
The Loehle graph shows warming since 1700. Drawn up to present it would end in 0.8, 1.4 C higher than 1700, but only 0.6 C of that is anthropogenic.
That takes it right off the chart (which only goes to 0.8).
Your point is?
If the chart went to 10 it would barely be noticeable, if it went to 3.5 which was one of the many tipping point targets, I think, it would be a small bump.
What was the point of the plot of retracted data in Kip’s article? To try to show that modern warming wasn’t much compared to medieval.
Here is the plot with the corrected Loehle data:
From this graph you have to ask the obvious questions. We know that human CO2 emissions cannot be a factor before 1900, maybe 1950.
So what caused the rise on the left of this chart, looks like about 200-800? And what caused the rise on the right side from about 1650 up to 1900 or 1950?
Equally to the point, what caused the fall from 800 to 1650? It cannot have been CO2 fluctuations, so what was it?
This does not look like a chart of CO2 changes driving global temperatures. It looks like a chart of natural variation due to unknown causes. And it also leaves the open question, are we looking in recent decades as a spike which will reverse in the same way that the 800 peak reversed, and due to the same causes?
Or are we looking at a spike which will continue at the same rate to unprecedented levels?
I am skeptical about the predictions of acceleration and disaster, but the really important issue is policy, and there I am quite certain. None of the policies being taken up in the West (EVs, conversion of the grid to wind and solar etc) will have the slightest effect on global emissions. None of the big fast growing emitters are going to change and reduce.
We shall see in coming decades if the alarmed are correct. But if they are, they need to stop trying to make everyone in the West spend huge amounts of money dismantling working electricity grids and get focused on protecting their own citizens from the consequences of what is inevitably coming.
If you are Holland, for instance, raise the dikes. Don’t start banning methane emissions from livestock and trying to convert power generation to wind and solar. It is not going to help.
And don’t send anyone to COP28 and following. Its a distraction from what should be the main objective.
“This does not look like a chart of CO2 changes driving global temperatures. It looks like a chart of natural variation due to unknown causes.”
Who said otherwise? Again the period of CO2 driving coincides with our putting it in the air, so mostly since about 1950.
The cause of changes before that are debated, but even if we don’t know, so what? The fact is that we started burning carbon and temperature took off.
As has been stated repeatedly over the last few decades, the data from tidal gauges don’t correspond to the sky rocketing temperatures you believe have happened since 1950 and you show on your graph. You and I know that the vast majority tidal gauge charts show minimal if any acceleration, and there are dozens of recent papers saying such. The satellite data is a joke. The only reliable source on what is a direct measure of SLR is what is shown on the NOAA graphs.
We have been in a warm phase of the AMO for the last few decades, and we should expect some warming. Based on numerous articles here and other sources I am starting to even question the reliability of contemporary readings. I hadn’t questioned that previously.
With the LIA, AMO, UHI, centennial land use changes, possible solar influences, big issues with pre 1900 temperatures used in the IPCC documents and now even today’s temperatures, whatever CO2 contributes can’t be catastrophic. Every .1 or fraction thereof, of C counts for something. If you start adding the possible influences of the various factors by fractions of .1 then what do you have left? Not much.
So what were the other causes and why is it different now?
You need to explain all warmings and cooling since Younger Dryas to show complete understanding otherwise you’re just waffling
“You need to explain all warmings and cooling since Younger Dryas to show complete understanding otherwise you’re just waffling”
What nonsense. The further back we go the less certain we are, but that doesn’t mean we can’t and don’t have a good level of understanding of what is happening now. It’s a card often played here along with “tell me exactly how much warming there will be going forward otherwise you clearly don’t know what you are talking about.”
”What nonsense. The further back we go the less certain we are, but that doesn’t mean we can’t and don’t have a good level of understanding of what is happening now.”
What nonsense. Firstly, we are no more certain about the present than the past. The difference now is that we don’t understand what is going on in a much more exhaustive way. Secondly, stop making moronic statements.
“Firstly, we are no more certain about the present than the past. The difference now is that we don’t understand what is going on in a much more exhaustive way.”
Ummm… you may not get it, but “hello” that doesn’t mean others don’t, so some advice… don’t use the word moron to describe others, when clearly you seem to think ignorance is a virtue.
I didn’t use the word moron but if you think I ”clearly seem think ignorance is a virtue”, perhaps I should….
You had noth’n then and you got noth’n now.
“but that doesn’t mean we can’t and don’t have a good level of understanding of what is happening now”
So tell us precisely, what is happening now? with the climate. Maybe we should ask the climate — r u OK? – Yep that’s how politically dumb and corrupt the whole show has become.
I tell you what, I’ll answer the question for you — nothing, zip, zero, nothing is happening now. Simon, go out and enjoy a real nice day in the sun, have beer, enjoy the fruits of the world FF built for you..Or not….
Spot on. Waffling is one of Nick’s great strengths.
Tell us what cased changes in the past before you tell us what causes changes in the present.
“The fact is that we started burning carbon and temperature took off”.
Took off, like a big jet plane – burning aviation kerosene. You are one scared individual aren’t you. Are you afraid of the future? – Do you think we are doomed if humans do not stop “burning carbon”? Do you want total de-carbonization of the planet?
Its a yes or a no..
So CO2 drove the global average temperatures down from 1950 to 1975, as reported in 1975, drove them up from 1975 to 2015, and had no effect from 2015 to 2023. CO2 can do everything, it seems. You arer tap dancing, Nick the Stroker, and not very well.
Yes, apparently every possible temperature outcome – rising, falling, and staying about the same – are ALL caused by rising CO2.
Truly the magic molecule.
Nick ==> The chart is about the start of the modern warming — all dozen or more charts, several with multiple reconstructions, from NOAA, IPCC, and the report of the National Research Council’s Committee on Surface Temperature Reconstructions for the Last 2,000 Years — show the point I am making.
Warming began in the period 1600-1700 — NOT 1890.
Your beef about the MWP is entirely in your own mind. It just happens to be shown on some of the graphics (that’s the way they came).
There is a series, temps, which seems to fluctuate chaotically over a period of 2,000 years. We know for sure that its fluctuations were not caused by CO2 changes for about 1,980 years of this period.
We now have a fairly sharp rise in temps over the last 30 or so years. We do not know whether there were earlier episodes of this magnitude because we do not have the same instrument measurements that we have for the last 150 or so years.
It may be that if we had been measuring during the MWP or RWP in the same way as we are now, we’d have found similar rises. Or at other periods in the last 2,000 years. The series of temperature measurements that we have is not homogenous.
So now we look at the last 70 years, we note that temps have fluctuated during them too, but that in the last 30 they have risen. So we look at CO2 levels, see they have risen, and conclude that this rise, unlike all the other rises we have some kind of records of over the last 2000 years, was caused by that.
Yule 1926, the famous example showing that the proportion of Church of England marriages correlated with the English death rate. Or the large number of spurious correlations here:
Its simply not a valid argument. You’d have to rule out that the same thing that caused the earlier fluctuations caused the most recent one too – if only we knew what that was! Its the most likely explanation. Just like the fluctuations in mortality in Yule’s example was probably due to whatever had been driving such fluctuations for centuries before he plotted the last 50 years.
I don’t see anyone has even tried to explain what caused the sharp temp rise of the 1920s, or made any attempt to show the same cause could not have ben active since 1990.
More worrying still, I have never seen any explanation of the MWP and RWP rises, or any explanation of their equally puzzling decline. Which, if you are trying to argue for CO2 as control knob, you have to account for, just as much as the rises.
The hypothesis that invokes CO2 rises as the driver of recent warming is certainly a reasonable possibility and worth enquiry. But the sort of evidence that we would require if trying to explain, for instance, the arrival of he last in a series of regular epidemics, seems totally lacking.
More spurious correlations, some quite amusing:
michel ==> Yes, some are quite amusing!
“Which, if you are trying to argue for CO2 as control knob, you have to account for, just as much as the rises.”
No, you don’t. There is one simple proposition here. If you add CO2 to the air, it will get warmer. The air might also have become warmer or cooler for other reasons, maybe even for reasons you can’t account for. But extra CO2 will warm the air.
“…extra CO2 will warm the air.”
The question is, how long and with what result? The post 1700 warming shown in your chart is about 1.5C.
About half of that occurred before the modern rise in CO2 ppm, so its certainly not due to that. Just like the other warming episodes were not due to that.
We know that absent any other changes a doubling of CO2 ppm will raise air temperature by about 1C. So far we haven’t had a doubling since pre-industrial times. We seem to have risen from about 280 to about 415.
We have about 0.75C rise to account for since this rise started to take effect. I don’t see why you would attribute more than one third or one half of this to the rise in CO2. There has not been enough of a rise in CO2 to do more than this. The rest must be natural fluctuation.
I realize of course that the argument is usually that the CO2 warming is amplified. The CO2 warming is said to lead to increased water vapor (and other minor effects) which in turn leads to another warming effect taking the total warming higher.
I’ve never found this a credible argument, because if it is going to happen it should have happened with every previous warming, whatever its cause. It should have happened with the rise of about 1C in the MWP. Also with the RWP. It should have happened with the recent rise from 1700 to 1950.
Your argument cannot show that the recent rise in CO2 is the cause of the recent rise in temperatures. All it can show is that the rise in CO2 may have caused a natural fluctuation, or a fluctuation from unknown causes, to reach slightly higher levels than it would otherwise have done.
We shall find out together in the next 10-20 years. But I cannot see, based on this, that there is any justification for the drastic policy changes which the alarmed are demanding. If we had remained at negligible emission levels post 1950 it would have had very little effect on temperature, and there is no reason to think that if we go to zero now it will have any great effect.
On the other hand, the history of the MWP shows that, even at constant CO2 levels, quite rapid and large falls in temperature are to be expected for reasons we don’t understand. This is why the declines in your chart matter. There has to be a good chance of seeing another of them in the coming decades.
A degree isn’t even noticeable to animals and plants that have evolved on this planet.
And, to go to “extremes”, if it was a 3 degree increase, the Planck feedback of increased IR leaving the planet at higher surface temp becomes a significant sea surface temperature reduction mechanism with a continental temperature time constant of ocean current circulation rates of a few years and surface to deep water turnover rates of centuries.
“Again the period of CO2 driving coincides with our putting it in the air, so mostly since about 1950.”
Correlation is not causation – except to a statistician!
Correlation is not causation – except to a faux statistician!
FIFY. Real statisticians know this quite well – one of the major things they look for before shooting their mouths off.
That isn’t correlation. It is accounting.
Couldn’t have said that better
i lost any and all faith i might have had for noaa (world leader ) temp data after they made the absolutely preposterous claim that summer ( JJA ) 2021 in the US was hotter than summer 1936 . completely ludicrous claim
Nick ==> Honestly, you obviously didn’t READ, you only glanced down at the “pictures” to find something to carp about.
IF you had actually read the text (and I have it from a good source that you can read) you would have know that the whole section of more than a dozen graphics is only about the issue: “The Earth’s general climate has warmed since a bit before 1700 CE — i.e., for the last 300+ years.”
From the “corrected” paper linked to by you :
Please redo your graph with 29-year (/ 348-month ?) smoothing of HadCRUT5 (Infilled / “Analysis” or “Non-infilled” ???) to allow a genuine “apples-to-apples” comparison.
Any bets on “off the chart” numbers — and note that the “corrected” Figure 2 goes from -1.0 to +1.0, not 0.8 — after doing that ?
No reconstruction is correct. Loehle’s reconstruction is not very different from Ljungqvist’s 2010 reconstruction of the northern extra-tropics temperature change. And then, we have others that say essentially the same, Moberg 2005, Hegerl 2007. They all show a strong natural contribution is very likely. The question about being warmer than the medieval optimum is of little importance.
“They all show a strong natural contribution is very likely.”
Of course. Before we started putting carbon in the atmosphere, it was all natural.
It could even be a 980 year cycle. That isn’t going to explain the rise since 1950.
It won’t explain the rise since 1950, but it might explain an important part of the rise. Let’s not forget the Modern Solar Maximum. The IPCC has this funny idea that without human climate change, the climate should be cooling. It shouldn’t. It is time for warming in natural climate change. Luckily, if I may say so. Natural climate cooling is a bitch.
And the world population has shot up since 1950, and so has the percentage of people who live in cities compared to rural settings. Perhaps all that extra hot air from humans has caused the warming.
Besides the warming has been far from evenly spread across the world, if CO2 was the primary driver , everywhere would be warming, and that is not the case at all.
“if CO2 was the primary driver, everywhere would be warming, and that is not the case at all.”
CO2 emissions do not affect Antarctica.
In other areas: Since CO2 emissions are only one of many local, regional and global climate change causes, their actual climate change can not be the same everywhere.
Climate change is always the net result of all global, regional and local climate change variables — CO2 is one of many variables, and obviously not the climate control knob.
Ah but don’t forget CO2 is a “well mixed greenhouse gas.” So if it WERE the “driver,” we SHOULD see a pretty consistent “global” temperature response.
But we don’t, since CO2 is NOT the “driver.”
temps fell from 1950 to 1980
1940 to 1975 global cooling was “adjusted away” to a flat trend because falling temperatures with CO2 rising were inconvenient, Nick the Stroker loves that science fraud.
Honest Climate Science and Energy: Watch climate history change to better support the false CO2 is evil — it’s magic science fraud
As did atmospheric aerosols. To diminish starting soon after 1975….
Aerosols up from 1975 to 1980
Temperature up from 1975 to 1980
Aerosols down from 2015 to 2023
Temperature flat from 2015 to 2023
Or don’t bother.
Here’s the answer:
SO2 emissions are one of many climate change variables. They do not control the climate.
And SO2 did not magically fall out of the sky in 1975, to allow the 1940 to 1975 cooling trend to end, and a 1975 to 2015 warming trend to begin.
garboard ==> Quite right, I include today’s Global Temps graph a few comments above. I don’t know why Stokes, who is a smart guy, ignores these obvious and uncontested facts.
Because Nick the Stroker likes to argue with you. K. Hansen. and Willie E. He gets upset three seconds after he reads your byline. Nick the Stroker is a defender of all government pronouncements and official data. On the other hand, I don’t like anything official.
“Because Nick the Stroker “
Ahh childish put downs. Now we are getting up to speed.
I thought that was clever, Rhymin’ Simon.
So Simon Says.
I guess we’re “out.”
“temps fell from 1950 to 1980″
AS so often, said without evidence, even a link, And it isn’t true. Here is GISS since 1900:
The plot comes from the gadget I linked to above, which will actually tell you the trend from 1950 to 1980:
Temperature Anomaly trend
Jan 1950 to Dec 1980
CI from 0.217 to 0.920;
And it hasn’t been erased. I calculate the global average using raw GHCN data. It makes very little difference:
Something boosted temperature briefly in the 1940’s. People have theories, but even if you say we don’t know why, it doesn’t change the picture of continual rise since 1900.
Nick ==> The current (up to Dec 31, 2022) at the NOAA site is:
I gave the link several times elsewhere in comments. However, your graphic proves my point — temperatures do not rise from 1950 but only get going in 1979 or 1980. This nit is far too small for even you to pick.
Nick and Javier ==> There is no sense speaking of “the rise since 1950″…the Global Surface Temperature was FALLING slightly, in any case, not rising, from about 1945 until about 1980.
Here is today’s official graph from NOAA NCEI:
Global average temperature was falling a lot from 1940 to 1975 when reported in 1975. The peak to trough within that period was over 0.5 degrees C. (that’s not from 1940 to 1975 — just the largest change within that 35 years period)
Honest Climate Science and Energy: Watch climate history change to better support the false CO2 is evil — it’s magic science fraud
Now 1940 to 1975 nearly a flat trend. In time it will become a rising trend. The most important rule of government climate science: The temperature is whatever we tell you it was, so shut up and don’t ask any questions.
In 20 years, the US 1930s Dust Bowl will have been revised into the 1930s US Snow Bowl.
“when reported in 1975″
Global temperature was not reported in 1975. They had data for a few hundred land stations in the Northern Hemisphere. The average over those was what they reported.
Nick, you are making a logical fallacy. If you have a regular series of fluctuations of a quantity, for instance pre-industrial epidemics in a region, you cannot simply take the last episode, look for something new that has happened, and conclude that is the cause of the latest ones.
Its like when climate activists take the latest in a series of floods or storms and claim that this one, unlike all the others, has been caused by global warming. This happened with the German floods a year or so back, despite the fact that the regions of Germany that were said to be suffering the consequences of catastrophic climate change had regularly experienced such floods going back to the middle ages. Same with the drought of last summer, which revealed markers in the Rhine showing that the fall in levels there was a normal though infrequent occurrence.
If you want to make the case that the latest in a series is caused by something different from all the earlier cases you cannot just point to the fact that your proposed cause was not present earlier. You have to give some explanation of all the similar events, and explain why the previous cause was not operating. You have to show that the latest episode is really different.
The way you’re proceeding is the classic way that the superstitious explain bad epidemics by invoking divine intervention and useless remedies which will have no effect. When they would do better to promote better sewage treatment and washing of hands!
The takeaway from this commentary thread is that for all his usual “sciencey” comments, Nick’s faith in the AGW conjecture comes down to just one strand of CORRELATION, viz –
The rise since 1950 has numerous contributing factors. UHI being a primary one. And the UHI is not just from population growth but also from siting issues, such as more and more measuring devices being ill-sited. Not even UAH is immune to this.
Freeman Dyson said long ago that the problems with the Climate Models is not necessarily their math but that they are not holistic. The *entire* biosphere must be considered when judging any change in climate. If some small warming mean fewer global deaths from starvation and cold then that *must* be included in any judgement concerning warmer temperatures. Of course the CAGW advocates are adamant that rising temperatures will kill food production – and they have been adamant about this for 30 years or more. And yet every year global harvests go up. I.e. gaslighting from the CAGW advocates. See the attached graph. I might see if I can download the actual data and graph it against climate model projections of temperature.
I would just love to see the IPCC someday graph their climate model temperature projections against global food harvests or deaths from cold. But I know it will never happen – there is too much money at stake in the “climate fear” industry for it to actually happen.
Nick ==> Explain why we need to explain “the rise since 1950” separately from the rest of the rise since 1600-1700. (Well, really, the rise you refer to starts in late 1970s, maybe 1978 or 1980.)
What event or condition makes that rise different from the rest requiring a different cause? We need a scientific answer here — not just “because”.
It doesn’t require a different cause. We know the timing of the cause, and we are seeing the results.
Nick ==> egads….I have seldom read something quite so illogical. The warming from 1890 to 1950 (really 1978-1980) was natural and after 1950 (really 1978-1980) was caused by mankind’s CO2 emissions? Natural switched to CO2 at that point in history?
I refer to yours “Again the period of CO2 driving coincides with our putting it in the air, so mostly since about 1950. … The cause of changes before that are debated, but even if we don’t know, so what? The fact is that we started burning carbon and temperature took off. ”
Maybe I don’t quite understand what you are trying to say — but it sounds like “natural or unknown to 1950 — CO2 after that”. (paraphrased) If that isn’t what you meant to be saying, clarify — many others here read you the same way I do.
“ Natural switched to CO2 at that point in history?”
No switch. Natural has always been with us, although there is a general view that the natural change since 1950 would have been slightly cooling.
But we know the timing of CO2. We put it there.
Nick ==> “But we know the timing of CO2. We put it there.” What/which timing? CO2 began rise in 1890-1900 — it did not begin to rise in 1950. The IPCC is clear — Global Warming is the rise in temperatures since around 1890. But the IPCC insists, as you seem to do, that the rise since 1950 is 100% human caused. Which means ZERO percent natural variability.
That, I am afraid, is totally illogical. And, I’m afraid, in my mind, just amounts to the saying “Because we say so…”
(Which is not very scientific…)
Kip, here’s the key phrase: “The cause of changes before that are debated, but even if we don’t know, so what?“
It’s the narrative, not the science that is important.
Supported by: “there is a general view that the natural change since 1950 would have been slightly cooling.”
Why would 1950 on be “cooling” without man-made CO2? That’s just religious dogma with no actual physical support behind it. If natural CO2 cause a temp rise prior to 1950 then why not after 1950?
Nick: I don’t like the way you’ve started to use the term “carbon” as shorthand for carbon dioxide. “CO2” is better shorthand, and if you really want to type “CO2” and don’t like the fact the WordPress won’t let you type a subscript, you can always write your comment in Word and copy/paste into the comment box.
“Carbon” makes you sound like one of those demented catastrophists, which you are very clearly not (but perhaps you’re trending that way?).
Smart ==> Like many, he uses carbon as a shorthand for the various carbon compounds that are considered GHGs. CO2, CH4, and (not a carbon compound) N2O. And the minor GHGs — HFCs and PFCs (the fluorocarbons).
This is often said to be an intentional propaganda-by-definition trick to redefined gases as “carbon” as if it were a pollutant like carbon soot.
It’s an argumentative fallacy known as “Equivocation”. Change the definitions to fit your argument at the time.
I speak of carbon because it is the conserved quantity. When we emit CO₂, it may subsequently pass through stages of carbonates in the sea (in equilibrium with CO₂, or in biological materials (which will later oxidise). But if we put 1Gt C into the environment, it will stay there, in its various forms.
Nick ==> Humans cannot and do not create carbon thus we cannot and do not put carbon into the environment. Any carbon in the form of CO2 or CH4 that enters the environment from burning fossil fuels was already in the environment. It is not like we are creating new carbon in a factory somewhere and spraying it into the atmosphere, or importing carbon from some other planet.
“But if we put 1Gt C into the environment”
That 1Gt C *CAME* from the environment and just winds up getting put back into the environment.
Do *you* have a fusion reactor in your basement that can create C from H? That’s the only way you are going to add C to the environment!
”Of course. Before we started putting carbon in the atmosphere, it was all natural.”
It still is. Humans, unless I am mistaken, are part of the ecosystem of this planet.
I don’t understand your point here. The suppressed premise seems to be that natural fluctuations have not occurred since 1950, therefore the only explanation of the rise in temps since then is CO2 emissions and the rise in CO2 ppm.
This isn’t reasonable. Natural fluctuations have been occurring for a couple of millenia that we know of. We know there was a Roman Warm period, when grapes grew in the North of England. We know there was a Medieval Warm Period, a Little Ice Age, a decade or more of rising temps in the 1920s and 0930s.
There is no reason to think these fluctuations stopped in 1950. If you want to argue that there has been no recent natural rise in temps, you have to show it. If you think natural fluctuations have stopped, you have to give evidence and a mechanism.
It may be that CO2 rises have caused some of the recent warming, but the question is how much. This is what is important for policy. If, as I suspect, its a very small proportion of recent warming, then first we may expect temperatures to regress to the mean as they have so often in the past. But to a slightly higher mean than previous because of the CO2 contribution.
The second reason this impacts on policy is that if CO2 rises have only accounted for a small proportion of recent warming, it lowers the justification for spending large amounts of money on limiting emissions. It may be worth spending a lot to reduce a 4C rise to 1C. Its not worth spending much or anything to reduce a 1C rise to 0.5C.
If you want to argue for a large contribution of emissions to the warming of recent decades you have to give evidence and make the argument. Just asserting that there is something different doesn’t cut it and isn’t a justification for policy.
Javier ==> And, for my purposes, the only important thing is that warming starts in 1600-1700 — far before any great output of CO2 from industrialization.
Central England average temperature (3 weather stations) up about +3 degrees C. from the coldest period in the 1690s (during the Maunder Minimum) and England is still not warm!
People living back them would have LOVED today’s climate in England.
Based on proxies the global temperature is up about +2 degrees C. since the late 1600s. And that is very good news, because people thought the late 1600s were too cold. Most of that roughly +2 degrees C. warming had to be from natural causes. Some portion of the last +0.7 degrees C. warming after 1975 was probably from manmade causes. You pick a number. I have no idea. It’s between zero and 100%.
Nick, now that you are engaged and attentive, would you please explain to this geologist, who believes sea level is the general marker for world climate, how 180 meters of sea level change (plus 40 m and minus 140 m from current) is normal, but 1 meter of sea level change is anthropogenic?
“Nick, now that you are engaged and attentive”
Translation: Awake and babbling.
Nick ==> You may not like Loehle — but your objection does nothing to take away from my point- which of the other dozen or so reconstructions, many of them showing multiple reconstructions, do you object to? Or it is just Loehle? You don’t like that one? OK — there are plenty others — from IPCC ARs to chose from.
The graphic you object to is NOT about current temperatures, but about the start date of modern warming.
I think well of Loehle. He did get math reinforcements and revised his text. I think less well of the sloppy journal.
But there is no excuse for using retracted results fifteen years later.
Nick ==> I believe the word is corrected….the corrected version, published as Loehle 2008 — ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT VOLUME 19 No. 1 2008 starts with:
“ABSTRACT — “A climatic reconstruction published in E&E (Loehle, 2007) is here corrected for various errors and data issues, with little change in the results.”
Again, your complaint would have been correct — Spencer should have used the corrected version in his graph, if he had made the graph AFTER 2008 – but he made it in 2007 — contemporaneously with the original Loehle. So I must admit that it is my fault for not realizing that Spencer’s original source (clearly stated) had been corrected the next year (which I did not).
Of course, I was not using it for any purpose that would have been changed in the corrected version — only for the start date of the Modern Warm Period which is identical in both versions.
Readers ==> Those interested in Nick Stokes’ irrelevant objection to the reference to Loehle’s 2004 temperature re-construction (it is irrelevant since he has misunderstood the purpose of my using it — which is only to show when modern warming started), here is Loehle’s “Corrected” graph:
The corrected version more clearly makes my point: Warming starts in 1600-1700.
Sir, I cannot thank you, Anthony, and others enough for such valuable information. I wonder if almost all this alleged warming of late is due to siting issues, as here in my neck of the woods (country), we can safely assume the official temperature from the local airport is 5 to 10 degrees F warmer than the surrounding uninhabited countryside.
Ditto on Chad Jessup’s comment from me, Kip. Well done!
Bill ==> Thank you, sir.
Readers here will enjoy Bill’s book: A Tale of Two Climates: One Real, One Imaginary
Thanks for the reverence. I will try to find the book somewhere other than Amazon since I don’t use kindle.
BTW: ONE one star review, 5 5 star with reviews, and one 4 star without a review.
The one star, not a verified purchaser, but with a picture of the book shown, is by a Ben Abbott, a PHD who works at BYE and has his own “Ecological Lab”.
His review mentions “ocean and lake acidification” and the “increase in wildfires since 1984”.
Yep, no historical context with the wildfires predating 1984 (funny year to pick when you think of the book) and using terms such as “ocean and lake acidification.
Ben Abbott, True believer. His job depends on the narrative to continue.
Drake ==> The Climate Team® has a amorphous group that seeks out and pans (writes negative reviews) of all skeptical climate books.
They never buy them and they don’t read them either — they just write bad reviews. Amazon should ban the practice but….
“extremely likely to have been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.”
Now, at a ‘half doubling’, temperature has gone up 1.09 C, but if the climate senstivity is 3, it should have been 1.8 C (and 1.2 C from the next ‘half doubling’) – With a climate sensitivity of 1 it works better: 0.6 C of the 1.09 C are ‘anthropogenic’ (and dominant) – but the next ‘half doubling’ of CO2 will only give 0.4 C more warming.
Double CO2 all you want, it’s the cause of no temperature increase. Ten times as much couldn’t stop the Earth’s climate from plummeting from a “hot house” period to an “ice house” period. Where was its “climate driving” power then?
Once you don’t believe in Father Christmas, or gods, then you look at those who do with a sort of condescending amusement – which is OK until they are in power.
I see similar behaviour with the climate alarmists – they “own the science” and if you deny or question it – it is you who are sinning.
And there is the straight forward re-writing or denial of the past. As example is the view that a new ice age was coming that was popular in the press in the 1970s. If you scroll to the bottom of the page on this site, wittily called Just Stop Net Zero https://www.juststopnetzero.com/ you will see a copy of the front page of The Times 1st December 1976. The “moderators” or “fact checkers” or “censors” at The Times – will ban you for drawing attention to this item – even though it is in their own archive.
If you go to that website you will also see a screenshot from the web-archive (Wayback Machine) of NASA’s website in April 2010 which also contains (end of second paragraph) the notion that a new ice age may be coming.
These things are inconvenient to the true believers.
There was a time when people who like to use the D-word might also occasionally use the phrase “lukewarmer” but it seems to have disappeared from their vocabulary.
Well said. I think the same. However, when I don’t feel like committing a lengthy explanation when dealing with climate zealots, I revert to the more simple explanation offered by Donald Trump: climate change is the biggest hoax in history. The caveat is that I’m using the term “climate change” with the same meaning thar the zealots do: catastrophic warming caused almost entirely by humans. That’s objectively and demonstrably a hoax as thousands of articles here have shown. And I am happy to be a “denier”. I deny that there is any validity to the “climate change” consensus of the zealots.
The zealots make extraordinary claims. Make them defend them with data. Computer models (virtual reality) that have never come close to observations (reality) are not data.
There are no data for the future climate
There are no observations of CAGW in 4.5 billion years
Lying, arm waving, brainwashing in school and censorship of opposing views.
Supported by the appeal to government authority logical fallacy. and personal confirmation bias.
“indoctrinated to believe…”
And they do…
“Carbon dioxide negatively impacts plants by contributing to the greenhouse gas effect and global warming. “
I interact with the most indoctrinated. It’s difficult to estimate, but somewhere around 50% remain very fearful of covid and are still “working” from home. Of the ones that come into work, more than 10% are still masking.
They are mentally broken. Academics and government workers belong to a class of people who can live in this fantasy.
Builders, mechanics, plumbers, sales people, restaurant workers, etc., must deal with reality.
I continue to hope that the mentally broken are refusing to reproduce for various alarmist reasons, with a consequent uptick in the common sense level of the human population, as a whole.
strat ==> The USA Today Fact Check is really an OPINION check. They read up on opposing opinions and treat them as if they were facts. They quote those opinions as facts. They misrepresent the original TRUE claim that more CO2 s better for plants. They DON’T QUOTE official sources like NASA and NOAA that support the claim about CO2.
The the “fact” checkers pat themselves on the back for being good Climate Team members.
But can we trust an author who denies being a climate denier?
That is even worse than a plain old climate denier.
You are a denying denier.
Now don’t respond to my malarkey by denying that in this article you have denied being a denier, Hansen. That would make you a triple denier. And the Biden FBI would arrest you.
crop yields tell the truth
Kip, I’ll add something I said yesterday to somebody:
Mark your calendar for a reprise in another five years time.
“It is not possible to change people’s beliefs.”
If that were true, sales people would be out of business. It is the method of attempting to change people’s beliefs that counts. Most people have emotional ties to their beliefs. In order to change the belief, you must address the emotion that supports their belief. (sales 101). So far, the “climate change is dangerous” crowd is winning that battle. You can present all the technical facts at your disposal but it will not do any good to most people because, first, they won’t understand those technical facts so they will reject them, and second, those facts will not by themselves influence their emotions.
People have been lead into believing a warmer climate is bad. Until they are lead into believing a warmer climate is better for them, they will not change.
So using effective sales skills to change the narrative is the only way.
“Warmer is better”. Now show them why they benefit from that.
Certainly, there are sales people who are exceptionally persuasive, who could sell ice to Eskimos, but changing one’s “belief system” is a higher order challenge.
Most climate change beliefs have been instilled via indoctrination and brainwashing. Javier Vinós recognizes this.
Nevertheless, there are signs that the movement lacks enthusiasm.
I think Javier is on the right track – people don’t change their beliefs. The intellectual and scientific curiosity necessary to drive fluidity in beliefs simply doesn’t exist in most of us, and government and media militate against it.
(Remember, Anthony Fauci “is” the Science, and his pre-packaged conclusions are convenient, and available off the shelf.)
My hopeful side tells me that the accelerating destruction of human independence and thriving that is being enforced by governments, in the mis-guided effort to stave off an imaginary “climate crisis”, is much more likely to change not beliefs, but the population’s tolerance of an ever-declining quality of life. Eventually the hypocrisy of the John Kerrys and AOCs of the world will become evident to all but the most severely unhinged.
But then, I thought the whole Solyndra scam was revealing, so what do I know?
Javier ==> I shall mark my calendar.
When my wife read the above reprise — she remarked: “HasiIt already been five years?!”
Par 2 will be harder to update as it covers more issues — but I don’t think my understanding will have changed much.
I much prefer to characterize what most people mean when they say “I believe” as meaning “As I understand it” — which is what I am writing about in the essay — my understanding.
I have no expectation that others will agree with me.
We deniers don”t have to prove anything. The climate zealots do. They make extraordinary claims that are inconsistent with observable reality. Make them prove it.
Ask them what the global average temperature increase has been since 1850 (~1 °C). Ask them what global sea level rise has been since 1900 (~20 cm). Ask them what the trend has been over the last 30 years (1.3 °C and 26 to 34 cm per century). Ask them what their predictions are and why they’re so much higher than observed trends. Ask them how high sea level was at the peak of the previous warm interglacial period 125,000 years ago (4 to 6 meters higher than today). Ask them how long it will take to reach that level again at current rates if the planet continues to warm (1,200 to 2,300 years). Ask them why the planet warmed and cooled by up to 15 °C and sea levels rose and fell by up to 120 meters every 100,000 years over the last million years. Ask them why global temperatures were warmer for hundreds of years during the Medieval Warm Period and cooler for hundreds of years during the Little Ice Age. Make them explain how the current global average temperature and sea level are unprecedented and unique in the context of natural climate change over the last million years. There’s a lot more to ask about CO2 levels and trends (currently slowing) and how it supposedly affects temperature (logarithmically, not exponentially or linearly), and how it appears to be a lagging indicator of atmospheric temperature rather than a leading indicator but that will suffice for now. Oh yeah, and ask them the difference between weather and climate.
Can one deny ‘cars turning right, changing direction’? If not, how then does one deny ‘climate change’? Both car and climate are nouns.
What you can know is that mankind has little influence on ‘the climate’. For those who are ignorant of that simple fact stating it may come as a surprise.
Ed ==> I like people who think — Thank You.
Yes, the claim that some “deny climate change” really means that some people deny that the climate is changing, which they do not (at least, not very many do). some understand that the changes we have been seeing are just the climate doing what it has always done, so, in that sense, not changing.
There is no rationale for not accepting the points which I accept in the essay.
Mankind has a huge influence on the climate
Not on the actual local climate
But on the statistic called the global average temperature
A temperature that no one ives in
No one would have any idea what the global average temperature was, or care about it, if not for humans.
Winters are warmer in Michigan in recent years than in the 1970s. Still cold, especially today, but not as cold. That I care about
I would never even think about a global average temperature if that statistic was not highlighted by the Climate Howler Global Whiners. Nor do I think it is an accurate number before UAH in 1979.
Global average temperature up +1.1 degrees C. since 1880
Michigan winters not as cold as in the 1970s.
Give us more of that please.
Kip, I fear the non-stop CAGW drumbeat has greatly influenced a generation. I recently was in the field and later at dinner with several geologists, including one recent (3 years?) geology graduate, and she firmly believed in the CAGW meme, but begged off answering my question about 180 meters of sea level change being normal, non-anthropogenic. I fear we have a generation of Doomsters, and here’s the real problem: a lot of them vote.
Encouragingly, many college students do not accept that a woman can have a scrotum and skepticism is born.
“And I do not think that Global Warming is a hoax.”
But, it could be argued that there are SOME GW hoaxers out there, beginning the climategate crowd.
Joseph ==> Well, I have a different understanding of what a hoax is — but I will grant that there has been some unscientific giggering of data sets and a lot of altering the facts in public statements and propaganda campaigns: polar bears, kids will never see snow, etc.
I should think it’s in the interest of the wind and solar industries to push the cause so, though many climate alarmists are just dumb, others see a gold mine thanks to trillions of dollars of public money thrown at this “problem”.
Very good well written article easy to understand article that easily makes my list of the best climate science and energy articles I read and recommend today: Honest Climate Science and Energy
I kept thinking that Hansen denies he is a denier.
Real science = denier
Coming climate crisis claptrap = junk science
The only issue I had with the article is this statement:
“We see that recent emissions are highest, at least in this history, but notice that cumulatively up to 1970 (see the right-hand inset bar graph), Forestry and other land use accounts for more than 50% of all CO2 emissions.”
That makes no sense to me. The manmade CO2 emissions since 1850 were much larger than the total increase of atmospheric CO2. Therefore, it is correct to say that nature (oceans, land and plants) must be a net CO2 absorber in that period.
It is true that cutting down trees reduces nature’s ability to absorb manmade CO2 emissions. And the gradually warming oceans also reduce the ocean’s ability to absorb CO2 emissions. But blaming CO2 emissions since 1850 on nature makes no sense, when manmade CO2 emissions were in the +200ppm to +300ppm CO2 range (I doubt if estimates are more precise than that range) while atmospheric CO2 increased only +140ppm, from 280ppm, estimated in 1850, to 420ppm measured in 2023.
Richard ==> I was surprised myself. It is an AR5 IPCC graphic — I guess you could get the AR5 report, look up the figure (it is numbered) and see if the text gives a better explanation.
I only read non-fiction.
No time for fiction
I also have often been asked “Why do you deny climate change ?”
As it’s a form of bullying…( I hate bully’s so they get appropriate treatment )
My normal reply, loudly, particularly in a crowded place is ‘the same reason you keep abusing children’ (then add quietly) ‘I don’t’ , room goes silent & the instigator normally leaves totally embarrassed.
As a former juvenile delinquent, I love that response.
I set a school record for after 3pm detention hours
School record for false repeated claims “I’ll never be back in detention again”
School record for getting detention with one word: In a roll call we were supposed to say “Present”. I said “President”, and everyone laughed.
School record for upsetting the guidance counselor when I seriously announced in junior high school that I wanted to become a “Garbageman, because there will always be garbage”. And those are only things I’m willing to talk about, that did not involve accidental fires, broken windows and outrunning police cars two times to avoid speeding tickets.
It was a worthy effort Kip.
Bob ==> Thanks….I do try.
Good points, Kip!
The false accusation in the form of the “denier” labeling is pernicious in its effect on civil discourse on the climate topic.
And as you say, the core issue is attribution of observed climate system conditions to human emissions of CO2 and an increased concentration in the atmosphere.
On this question, on technical grounds, I do not see how CO2 or any other GHG in the atmosphere can cause heat energy to accumulate on land or in the oceans to harmful effect. That is not a “denier” position. It is based on evidence, especially the evidence from space from the CERES and GOES missions, about which I have often posted comments here at WUWT. The performance of the atmosphere as the working fluid of its own heat engine operation is just too overwhelming to expect the static warming effect to control the end result.
I quite agree. The hoax part is that it is a crisis and that extreme intervention is indicated
Mark ==> Here’s what the Wiki gives for HOAX:
“A hoax is a widely publicized falsehood so fashioned as to invite reflexive, unthinking acceptance by the greatest number of people of the most varied social identities and of the highest possible social pretensions to gull its victims into putting up the highest possible social currency in support of the hoax.
Whereas the promoters of frauds, fakes, and scams devise them so that they will withstand the highest degree of scrutiny customary in the affair, hoaxers are confident, justifiably or not, that their representations will receive no scrutiny at all. They have such confidence because their representations belong to a world of notions fundamental to the victims’ views of reality, but whose truth and importance they accept without argument or evidence, and so never question. “
What does “spatio-temporal chaotic” mean in simple English.
Dean ==> Dr. Curry is a scientist. I understand it, as I have written about Chaos Theory many times.
“spatio” — refers to space, location in space. (Not Outer Space) just spaces, like North America or Asia…or my county versus your county. So the “where” of things.
“temporal” — refers to time — locations in time — the past, the present, the future.
“chaotic” — refers to Chaos Theory effects and causes. The best I can offer is my own four part series here at WUWT and the reading lists they offer.
So, “spatio-temporal chaotic” means exhibiting chaotic effects (in the sense of Chaos Theory) across various space and time combinations.
Remember, it is the IPCC that has insisted, correctly, that:
“…we should recognise that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.”– IPCC TAR Chap 14, Exec Summary
To be more precise, what the IPCC should have written was –
“…we should recognise that we are dealing with coupled non-linear chaotic systems, and therefore that the long-term prediction of future climates’ states is not possible.”
Because there is not just one singular climate, there are 100s of distinct, unique climate areas around the world, all with their own particular behaviors.
The Pacific North-West area, about which Prof. Cliff Mass writes and reports prolifically, is but one recognized example.
Mr. ==> I’ll have to go back to the original source and check the precise words….
Mr. ==> The correct quote is:
“The climate system is a coupled non-linear chaotic system,
and therefore the long-term prediction of future climate states
is not possible.”
The exact reference is: IPCC Third Assessment Report, Chapter 14, Executive Summary (page 771). It is the first sentence in the section headed: “Improve methods to quantify uncertainties of climate projections and scenarios, including development and exploration of long-term ensemble simulations using complex models.”
The link will download Chapter 14.
Note that it is “a coupled non-linear chaotic system” (not plural).
Kip, I wasn’t doubting the accuracy of your quoted text.
My point was the absurdity of “the science” treating this planet as just having one ubiquitous climate system, and purporting to understand how this works.
Reality is that there are numerous distinct climates all around the world, each with their own unique characteristics.
Mr. ==> Just wanted to clarify for the readers exactly what the IPCC said. I have written several times about Koppen Climate Zones etc. The quote is about Earth’s “climate system” as a whole…all the atmosphere, all the oceans and lakes, all the land. I think you are talking about local sub-climates, and you are not wrong.
I spend 40 years as a consulting engineer writing so nontechnical people could understand. Scientists write to prove they are smarter than you. Their biggest failure is new words or worse new meanings to old words.
long way of saying thankyou
Dean ==> Thank you — I had the pleasure, when a young man — of working for a full-on narcissistic megalomaniac who brooked no nonsense. But he demanded clear and concise writing — and rejected anything not up to his standard. Also he didn’t care what any report looked like….pages cut and taped together, then xeroxed were fine. Learned in the school of very hard knocks.
Too complicated to figure out, in Ph.D. English.
Ancient tree stumps found under Breiðamerkurjökull glacier in Southeast Iceland are confirmed to be roughly 3,000 years old. RÚV reports.
Stumps have been found under other receding glaciers.
I think this is sufficient to demonstrate humans aren’t the cause of the present warming.
mkelly ==> At least evidence that glaciers have been shorter than now, implying that it has been warmer in the past, long enough for forests to grow and later be covered by ice as the glacier grew in a cooler period.
First, I enjoyed the posting and generally agree with what is proposed.
A quibble I have generally, is when we adopt the terms and language of those with whom we disagree. It is conceding the argument from the beginning. For example, some people denigrate our “captialist” society. Instead, I talk about our market economy.
Finally, the Planck Principle applies here:
An important scientific innovation rarely makes its way by gradually winning over and converting its opponents: it rarely happens that Saul becomes Paul. What does happen is that its opponents gradually die out, and that the growing generation is familiarized with the ideas from the beginning: another instance of the fact that the future lies with the youth.
Or, as it is commonly paraphrased:
Science advances one funeral at a time.
Godelian ==> Unfortunately, it is the skeptic side that is dying out — common knowledge that academics cannot (or at least seldom can) risk speaking out on the climate issue or they re treated to the Pielke Jr.-style attacks (political and social trashing). The major academic skeptics are retired — their jobs and income no longer at risk — and, one by one, they die off — being replaced by brainwashed, go-along-to-get-along hungry younger scientists who MUST agree or be crushed.
But the Climate Howler Global Whiners do not control the actual climate.
They control the predictions of climate doom that have been wrong since 1979. Someone is bound to notice that. Especially if there are a few cold years in a row.
In the discussion of climate, isn’t it better to state that the case for CO2 having an outsized influence on climate is not adequately proven. Certainly not to the extent of spending trillions of dollars and upending society. That is the point of the article, and I fully agree.
Godelian ==> It most certainly has NOT been proven that CO2 has an outsized influence on climate.
It has not been proven that CO2 has ANY influence on climate.
“Hypothetical bullshit” is not proof of any influence, and hypothetical bullshit is all they have.
AGW ==> But we can say, and it is also my understanding, that CO2 is a greenhouse gas and that more CO2 (an increase) will cause some, if not much, warming.
Which I think is a good thing — a little warmer and Earth will classify as a planet suitable for human life (according to NASA).
“the climate has warmed” and “atmospheric CO2 concentrations have risen” and “are higher than they have been in a long time”
Agreed! However, the IPCC stated assumption that the CO2 concentration increase is entirely due to man is well contested and needs to be explored in the process of discussing “climate denial”. “Climate Change” as it is used in the accusation of denial implies the anthropogenic and dangerous type yet there is no scientifically sound reason to believe that the recent increase of atmospheric CO2 is mostly man caused.
The author must have gotten tired toward the end:
“On the right is Dr. Curry’s general view — I share much the same viewpoint. I would have placed place more emphasis this: “
omit “place” ; add “on”
Now to read the comments.
John ==> Thank you — appreciate careful detailed readers….typos are he bane of us older gentlemen who have “happy fingers” (they type whatever they want, not what they are told to type).
(Corrected with h/t to you)
I’ve seen the argument that the first XX parts of CO2 (the radiatively active gas of concern) is the most important and that after that small percentage its contribution to the greenhouse effect is negligible.
Then I read that somewhere around 1950 the use of carbon-based fuel caused a major increase in atmospheric CO2, and this was the start of the current problem. Nick wrote: “so mostly since about 1950″. (Feb 4, 2023 1:10 am)
I’m wondering what happened during the Iron Age, classically, it is said that this era occurred in the 12th century BC. [Wiki] Then there is the occupation of Europe with forests cut and peat burned. Then in North America the need for fuel spurred the building of canals to Boston, followed by “the big cuts” in Pennsylvania and other regions (to Wisconsin), the use of wood charcoal to make iron until the mid-1900s, followed by coal use. And don’t forget petroleum use following Drake’s well in 1859.
Should I assume that the argument about the first 20 or 30, or 50 ppm is wrong?
Or is there something wrong about the 1950 date?
Maybe I need a drink!
John H ==> There is “something wrong about the 1950 date.” See the latest (today) image:
“Curiouser and curiouser!”
John H ==> I usually call it 1980 — but any date after 1975 to 1980 is close enough for CliSci.
Hmmm…wrong graph — not today. Here’s today:
See full size at the NOAA NCEI site:
A thermostat oscillating around a set point?
“after that small percentage its contribution to the greenhouse effect is negligible”
Exaggerated. The contribution is logarithmic. At 600ppm a Gt C has about half the effect it has at 300ppm. But not negligible.
“I’m wondering what happened during the Iron Age”
Burning wood does not introduce new C to the system. It just speeds up the oxidation of C that came from the air, and was going to be oxidised anyway.
Nick ==> Are you saying that burning fossil fuels (petroleum and coal) puts NEW CO2 into the atmosphere, thus has a different effect than CO2 from my wood burning stove?
The effects of atmospheric CO2 do not depend on when that CO2 was last in the atmosphere — be it ten years or a thousand years.
Yes. The molecules are the same, but the total behaves differently. We have had for past millennia a fairly fixed amount of C in circulation, about 2000 Gtons. It moves between air, biosphere and ocean. A glaciation shifts some to the sea, whence it emerge when the sea has warmed. Photosynthesis, by reducing C, puts some in the biosphere for a while, but it oxidises again.
Burning wood, say, just shifts the timing of this inevitable oxidation. It doesn’t add to the 2000 Gt. But digging up and burning C (or hydrocarbon) does make a long term change.
Nick ==> Yes, on short time scales, burning “fossil” carbon returns carbon (CO2) back into the present environment…from which it is inevitably turned into plant and animal and mineral forms, some of which are recycled on short time cycles, some on long-term time cycles. That is called Nature.
But that is no answer to why you and others have set an arbitrary date for “human caused” warming.
It seems to me that a very simple observation disproves all the codswallop about CO2 driving the climate. Look at a chart of the historically observed and researched relations between temperature and CO2 over many thousands and millions of years of the paleoclimatology record. You see that 3 things jump out.
1. Most, if not all, of the prior interglacial warming periods were warmer than today.
2. Throughout that time, CO2 was high sometimes when temps were low, and low sometimes when temps were high.
3. Perhaps most important, if the chart has sufficient horizontal resolution, you see that CO2 levels follow temperature levels, not lead. The warmistas have pushing their crap by showing charts with low time axis resolution so the temps and CO2 appear jammed together.
Net net here, we are in an interglacial, temps should be rising. Too bad they are only rising very little.
” many thousands and millions of years ”
I don’t see much use in going back into “Deep Time.”
The configurations of oceans and land was not the same prior to the closing of the Isthmus of Panama at ∼3.5 Ma. Going back further there are complications of the Columbia River flood basalts 17-14 my, Deccan Traps 66.25 my, and other such. Or go back to when the microbes that ingest lignin and cellulose were not present (before 300my ago) and great Carboniferous Forests grew and fell with nothing to consume them. Pangea was the main topic around the water cooler.
Do any of the IPCC reports mention ocean temperatures in regard to ocean-atmosphere CO2 exchange ratio?
Sam ==> I don’t know — but generally, warmer water retains less gas — any gas. But CO2 enters the water at the surface mixing levels (as does oxygen) and CO2 interacts with other chemical compounds in a very complex manner (not simple, in other words). Read some of my earlier essays on Ocean Acidification (and look for links to papers discussing the actual chemical processes.)
Nick Stokes stated that,”The fact is that we started burning carbon and temperature took off.”.
That is not a fact, it is two facts, 1. we started burning carbon and 2. temperature started to rise (sort of). Nick has not demonstrated a causal link between the two or explained why temperature has risen, fallen and remained unchanged all whilst we burned carbon and the residual result, CO2, went its merry way.
As the IPCC’s climate change narrative goes, most of the warming before 1950 was caused by natural variation, while most of the warming after 1950 was human-caused as a consequence our massive post-1950 carbon emissions.
Looking at the NOAA graph, we see a +0.17 C per decade rise in GMT over the thirty-year period between 1910 and 1940. We see another +0.17 C per decade rise over the thirty-year period between 1975 and 2005. One occurs before 1950; the other occurs after 1950.
Given that two nearly identical thirty-year periods of +0.17 C per decade warming occur — one pre-1950 and one post-1950 — then several questions naturally arise:
A) Before 1950, when the IPCC states that natural variation dominated:
A1) Natural versus Human Causation, 1910-1940: What combination of causes from natural variation and from our carbon emissions were responsible for the +0.17 C per decade warming between 1910 and 1940?
A2) Natural variation 1910-1940: What specific kinds of warming processes associated with natural variation were active between 1910 and 1940? What were their characteristics and their physical effects?
A3) Carbon emissions 1910-1940: What specific kinds of warming processes associated with our carbon emissions were active between 1910 and 1940? What were their characteristics and their physical effects?
A4) In rough terms, what proportion of the +0.5C of warming 1910-1940 was caused by natural variation versus that which was caused by our carbon emissions?
A5) If between 1910 and 1940, carbon emissions played some role, what kinds of factors allowed natural variation to dominate within the aggregate warming process?
B) After 1950, when the IPCC states that carbon emissions dominated:
B1) Natural versus Human Causation, 1975-2005: What combination of causes from natural variation (if any) and from our carbon emissions were responsible for the +0.17 C per decade warming between 1975 and 2005?
B2) Natural variation 1975-2005: What specific kinds of warming processes associated with natural variation (if any) were active between 1975 and 2005? What were their characteristics and their physical effects?
B3) Carbon emissions 1975-2005: What specific kinds of warming processes associated with our carbon emissions were active between 1975 and 2005? What were their characteristics and their physical effects?
B4) In rough terms, what proportion of the +0.5C of warming 1975-2005 was caused by natural variation (if any) versus that which was caused by our carbon emissions?
B5) If between 1975 and 2005, natural variation played some role, however small, what kinds of factors allowed carbon emissions to dominate within the aggregate warming process?
In the space of a hundred years, two thirty-year periods of a +0.17 C per decade rise in GMT occur.
One occurs before 1950, the other occurs after 1950. The pre-1950 rise occurs in a timeframe where natural variation is said to dominate. The second occurs in a timeframe where carbon emissions are said to dominate.
If natural variation dominated before 1950, but natural variation post-1950 didn’t play nearly as much of a role, why didn’t it play as much of a role?
Did those natural processes simply disappear for the most part? Or are they still present to some extent but are either being overwhelmed by carbon emissions, or are possibly being actively suppressed by carbon emissions?
For purposes of making Net Zero energy policy, having a reasonably defensible explanation for pre-1950 warming is just as important as having a defensible explanation for post-1950 warming.
Without those two defensible explanations in hand, it isn’t possible to predict where the earth’s global mean temperature might go if human carbon emissions were to be either reduced substantially or ended altogether.
”As the IPCC’s climate change narrative goes, most of the warming before 1950 was caused by natural variation, while most of the warming after 1950 was human-caused as a consequence our massive post-1950 carbon emissions.”
And notice the RATE of warming from around 1910 to 1940 is exactly the same as the rate from 1980 to 2000. So somehow the Earth managed to warm (with ”natural variation” – IPCC) at the same rate earlier on without the help of co2. Amazing that!
“Looking at the NOAA graph,”
I suppose it is just coincidence that this graph, which terminates in 2014, keeps cropping up. I suppose.
Kip did correct and give the plot to 2022:
The warming to 1940 is much smaller.
Nick ==> “The warming to 1940 is much smaller.” That is incorrect.
The NOAA graph to 2014 shows a 0.5°C rise `1910 to 1945 and the NOAA graph through 2022 shows (the binomial filer line, green) shows closer to 0.58°C.
Not that any of that matters — just pointing this out.
Does anyone think that the 1910-1945 historical data should change from 2014 to 2022? The past does not change.
“the NOAA graph through 2022 shows (the binomial filer line, green) shows closer to 0.58°C”
So you’re saying that the early warming has increased? I thought the story here was that NOAA was erasing it.
But what I meant is that the warming to 1940 is much smaller than the later warming, which is about 0.9°C and still rising.
Nick ==> Well, factually, the warming started in 1600-1700 — from there the rise from the end of the LIA to 1940 is at least 1°C (though it is hard to put numbers on it, as most of the graphics don’t include what base period they are operating on) — about what we’ve seen in the modern Global Land and Sea calculations…(which I am not confident are commensurable with reconstructed temperature estimates).
Nick Stokes, climate is said to be the thirty-year average of weather.
Whichever of the two NOAA graphs you look at, the original or the updated, two periods of a +0.17 C per decade rise in GMT occur which are at least thirty years in duration.
One occurs before 1950, the other occurs after 1950. The pre-1950 rise occurs in a timeframe where natural variation is said to dominate. The second occurs in a timeframe where carbon emissions are said to dominate.
And so I repeat the basic question:
If natural variation dominated before 1950, but natural variation post-1950 didn’t play nearly as much of a role, why didn’t it play as much of a role?
Did those natural processes simply disappear for the most part? Or are they still present to some extent but are either being overwhelmed by carbon emissions, or are possibly being actively suppressed by carbon emissions?
Let’s hear an answer to a question which needs to be answered by those who bill themselves as the experts in climate science.
“Did those natural processes simply disappear for the most part?”
They didn’t disappear. They would have proceeded much as in the earlier part of the graph. And you’ll notice that they sometimes go up, sometimes down, and sometimes don’t to very much.
The best estimate is that since 1950, natural variation had a slight cooling effect. AGW added to that.
Beta: “If natural variation dominated before 1950, but natural variation post-1950 didn’t play nearly as much of a role, why didn’t it play as much of a role?”
“The best estimate is that since 1950, natural variation had a slight cooling effect. AGW added to that.”
Why is assuming natural variation was warming pre-1950 and is cooling since 1950 the “best estimate”?
What caused the change? Answer the question. Don’t hand wave about “best estimate”.
”I have often been asked “Why do you deny climate change?””
You answer that by saying …. ”you do not understand your own question. Now go away and stop bothering me until you do”.
The inverse response of the AMO to changes in the solar wind strength is not chaos!
The discrete solar forcing of major heat and cold waves is not chaos!
Ulric ==> I seemed to have missed our comment. I suggest you read my four-part series on Chaos and Climate.
In this sense, Chaos refers to (and ONLY to) the concepts of Chaos Theory and related topics.
It does not imply that everything climate is entirely random — in fact in many cases, Chaos-Theory_chaos implies stability even when perturbed.
Anyone Still Following Here ==> How does the CO2 graph from AR5 (grey and amber in the essay) make sense as the cause of this temperature graph from NOAA?
NOAA graph larger here.
Temperatures drop from 1880 to 1910 (a 30 year climate period), the rise to 1945 (another 30 year climate period) then drop or mostly flat to 1978 (another 30 year climate period) and ONLY THEN begin a substantial rise to present.
Any guesses better than “because”?
All you are going to get is Nick Stokes “natural variation should have started cooling the globe in 1950”. No reason why. Just “because”
This looks exactly to me what I would see if I were to record the on-off times for my HVAC system. An oscillation around a set point.
Tim ==> Have you ever heard that idea — “natural variation should have started cooling the globe in 1950” — anywhere else?
Not directly. Only an oblique reference that it was man-made CO2 after that date that has been the only reason for an increase in temp – implying that without that it would cool.