Kevin Trenberth et al

Sinclair has discussed a couple of paragraphs from the Trenberth op ed, but forgive me for offering my two cent’s worth.

The 456 words of this op ed, presumably written by Trenberth and signed by 37 of his friends and colleagues is dwarfed by the 532 words used to list the author and his co-signers and their various credentials. It is typical of the folly of appealing to authority / credentials rather than mounting a sensible argument.

That 38 people would put their names to such a pathetic attempt at defence says a lot about their character and aptitude. After studying a second-rate ‘science’ and enjoying a long period of excessive returns for that study, they are now finding life is becoming a little more difficult and their views are coming under attack by scientists considerably more intelligent than these 38. Is this the best they can do?

So pathetic is the piece, it is irresistible to pull it apart.

Do you consult your dentist about your heart condition?

Well, yes. Dental health is an excellent indicator of one’s heart condition.

In science, as in any area, reputations are based on knowledge and expertise in a field and on published, peer-reviewed work.

In any area? I think not – I would tend to trust a plumber with proven results and competency rather than one who has written in a peer-reviewed journal. Was Winston Churchill a bad Prime Minister because he didn’t write in a peer-reviewed journal? Peer-review is neither necessary nor sufficient to judge the competence and ability of an individual whether in science or elsewhere. It is an indicator, yes, but subject to abuse.

If you need surgery, you want a highly experienced expert in the field who has done a large number of the proposed operations.

Indeed, but such a surgeon has probably not written in a peer-reviewed journal. Moreover, the results of the surgeon’s past operations are an excellent indicator of his or her qualities. Climate change scientists have to date failed to provide predictions which have proven accurate / testable. They have no results from which one can judge: computer models are not evidence, but a tool.

The opinion piece “climate change ‘heretics’ refute carbon dangers” ((Wednesday)) was the climate-science equivalent of dentists practicing cardiology.

Not at all. Having people challenge the views of climate-scientists is a healthy part of the scientific method, not to mention a fundamental democratic right. Expertise in climate science is not required and may blind adherents to evidence that is running counter to the claims. These are not disinterested scientists – they have invested their life in the particular field and will naturally resist if evidence mounts that CO2 is not so important in climate change as is asserted. The metaphor is invalid: of course one would not want a non-surgeon to operate on a live person.  Climate science should be compared with history, physics, economics etc where anyone should be welcome to provide comment and to challenge views. As in any science, evidence, reason and experimentation will persuade people as to where the truth lies. Only one who is unsure of oneself should fear such challenges.

Climate experts know the long-term warming trend has not abated in the past decade. In fact, it was the warmest decade on record. Observations show unequivocally our planet is getting hotter.

This is where climate scientists go wrong. These lines read like blind faith rather than science which should acknowledge doubt and not over-egg the evidence. The evidence on warming is not ‘unequivocal’.

Thus, climate experts also know what one of us, Kevin Trenberth, meant by the out-of-context, misrepresented quote used in the opinion piece. Mr Trenberth was lamenting the inadequacy of observing systems to fully monitor warming trends in the deep ocean and other aspects of the short-term variations that always occur, together with the long-term human-induced warming trend.

Nice shift to the third person. But Trenberth’s words were

The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t

Didn’t Trenberth just say that warming was ‘unequivocal’? I can see only two ways to interpret this quote whether of not it is ‘out of context’:

  • Trenberth thinks that the planet is warming but the physical evidence is not supporting the claim (hence it is a ‘travesty’); or
  • it is a travesty that we don’t have sufficient good quality physical evidence on which to assess whether the planet is warming or not.

If the latter, that’s fine, but then one cannot also assert that warming is ‘unequivocal’. Again, climate models are not evidence: only physical measurements of the actual climate provide evidence and if (as Trenberth is now stating) the measurement techniques are insufficient or inadequate then, yes, we should improve the measurement. But, then, the extant measurements (which are acknowledged to be inadequate) should be treated with caution.

The National Academy of Sciences of the US (set up by Abraham Lincoln to advise on scientific issues) and major national academies of science around the world and every other authoritative body of scientists active in climate research state the science is clear: the world is heating up and humans are primarily responsible. Impacts are already apparent and will increase. Reducing future impacts will require significant reductions in emissions.

Research shows more than 97 per cent of scientists actively publishing in the field agree climate change is real and caused by humans. It would be an act of recklessness for any political leader to disregard the weight of evidence and ignore the enormous risks climate change clearly poses.

Again, assertion and appeal to authority. How tiresome. They would say that, wouldn’t they?

There is also clear evidence the transition to a low-carbon economy will not only allow the world to avoid the worst risks of climate change, but could also drive decades of economic growth. Just what the doctor ordered.

After writing that only climate scientists should opine about climate science, we should take notice of climate scientists writing about economics? Has Trenberth and his 37 friends written in a peer-reviewed economics journal such as the AER? Fortunately economists do not feel threatened when people hold forth on economics.

I would put my trust in Harrison Schmidt, the Apollo 17 astronaut and geologist, than Kevin Trenberth and his 37 colleagues. He has been able to see the earth from a perspective denied to Trenberth.

About Samuel J

Samuel J has an economics background and is a part-time consultant
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73 Responses to Kevin Trenberth et al

  1. Rococo Liberal

    Well said Samuel.

    On the basis of the warmists own arguments, climate scientists are also not qualified to pronounce n climate change, because it involves the evaluation of evidence, and that is a skill that only we lawyers are trained to do professionally.

  2. JC

    Good call Samuel.

    Perhaps, while we have Kev here he may want to explain exactly why Chris Landsea was forced to resign, as a result of Kev’s dishonest attempts to spike the IPPC report with bullshit.

    What’s with the third person crap too? He’s even more deplorable than I first thought he was.

  3. JC

    Well, yes. Dental health is an excellent indicator of one’s heart condition.

    Lol So true. The moron screws up the very first analogy. Of course dental health is important to the condition of the heart, Kev, you nimbus.

    Someone please get the stretcher Kev’s out for the count at the beginning of the letter.

  4. Winston Smith

    Why is deconstructing an argument not taught in school?
    It would have to be an important tool to enable kids to see through these charlatans.

    Oh. Now I get it.

  5. m0nty
    Do you consult your dentist about your heart condition?

    Well, yes. Dental health is an excellent indicator of one’s heart condition.

    I am concerned for Samuel J. Clearly, he needs to consult a heart specialist, since a dentist would not be able to diagnose or treat his heart condition. Also possibly a brain specialist, since he doesn’t seem to be thinking straight.

    Climate science should be compared with history, physics, economics etc where anyone should be welcome to provide comment and to challenge views.

    History and economics are soft sciences. Physics and climatology are hard sciences. There is a big difference.

  6. JC

    Monster:

    Presumably, you don’t know direct the connection between dental care and cardio problems. Perhaps you’ve never had your teeth cleaned and scraped. Please do, monster as plaque and rotten teeth are tragic to cardiac health.

  7. JC

    History and economics are soft sciences. Physics and climatology are hard sciences. There is a big difference.

    Monster,

    Kev is telling us that if we swap to higher cost energy production methods it will provide economic growth for decades.

    Monster, this is perhaps one of the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to Trenberth or that the twit has said since Chris Landsea was forced to resign from the IPCC inner circle because of Kev’s attempted lying and general dishonesty.

    This is so embarrassingly stupid, I still can’t believe he wrote it and it may have been a hacker using his name to defame him. Lol.

  8. ar

    Do you consult your dentist about your heart condition?

    Hmm. Not at first.

    But if my doctor prescribed a tax on using deodorant to prevent catastrophic heart change disease at some stage in the future, maybe I would ask my dentist.

  9. On your Marx

    Do you consult your dentist about your heart condition?
    Well, yes. Dental health is an excellent indicator of one’s heart condition.

    Sorry but these two sentences are about different things and thus not connected.

    If someone is worried about their heart or merely curious they are not going to a dentist to find out answers to their questions. This is because the Dentist has not the expertise to answer their questions.

    Yes it would be very surprising not to find someone who is neglecting the health of their teeth are also neglecting their overall health.

  10. dave owen

    The author is ignorant in that there are at least three connections with cardiac disease in realtion to dental health. Firstly, there is a connection with gum disease and cardiac health. Secondly there may be a problem with rheumatic fever which can cause heart problems unless the dentist does prescribe antibiotics before certain proceduires. Then there is the problem of anticoagulants ( prescribed witth certain heart conditions) which may complicate dental treatment or even cause the death or severe risk to the patient. Lastly there is the problem with heart attack. Pain in the jaw may be indicative of a heart attack and it is not uncommon for patients presenting to a dentist and he has to ensure the pain is not dental in origin. If it is not then the patient is referred to a cardiologist. I know of at least one whose life was saved by a quick thinking and astute dentist. There are better analogies than the one chosen. Dentists are more important in the health business than is generally recognised.

  11. JC

    Homes,

    That reminds me. Did you stack the toothpaste shelves overnight, as I may send wifey in to get some.

    Also do you have any Oral-B ultra-floss around? I don’t like the smooth sort, as I prefer the unwaxed fluffy type. Have any of that in the supermarket?

    And what aisle please? Thanks

  12. thefrollickingmole

    I read a bit on the link and the theory behind it (in simple terms) is this. (while I was doing the medic course, we had a no-bullshit instructor, if ypu made an allegation you had to research and prove it)

    Chronic gum/tooth disease causes a lot of inflamation, including vascular.
    I hadnt seen the link made wether it was just the byproducts of the infamation or the infamation itself affecting heart tissue.

    So if I wanted to be mischevous Id say its no less relyable than tree growth rings for proof of AGW. (at this stage).

    Yes there may be a link, it may or may not be direct, more research needed…

  13. Louis Hissink

    MOnty

    You blather “History and economics are soft sciences. Physics and climatology are hard sciences. There is a big difference.”

    Climate is an abstraction arbitrarily defined as weather over a period of 30 years.

    In the hard physical science, of which I am a very experienced professional, we expect to be able to test our hypotheses in the here and now. I usually can by the drilling of holes into geophysical and geochemical targets.

    However in climatology I need to wait at minimum 30 years, and perhaps 60 years, to test any climate hypothesis. My bad luck if I get inspiration just before I die and can’t test my hypothesis.

    It’s why climate science is dismissed as pseudoscience by us hard physical scientists.

    Idiot.

  14. Louis Hissink

    My Optician can determine whether I have cardio-vascular disease by photographing my retinas – the veins in the eyeball are a proxy for general cardio-vascular health.

    And the problem is ?

  15. Cliff Maurer

    If a friend asks me if the advice my dentist gives me on the expected outcome of my dental treatment has been accurate, should I refer my friend to a dentist for an answer?

  16. Winston Smith

    Minty, one of the criteria for successful cardiac transplants is a dental clearance.

  17. cohenite

    It all boils down to this: would you let Trenberth or any of his merry band [including Mann for god's sake!] perform your next heart bypass?

  18. m0nty

    However in climatology I need to wait at minimum 30 years, and perhaps 60 years, to test any climate hypothesis. My bad luck if I get inspiration just before I die and can’t test my hypothesis.

    It’s why climate science is dismissed as pseudoscience by us hard physical scientists.

    Louis, you are a proponent of the crackpot theory of abiotic oil. You have no credibility on lecturing others about testability of hypotheses.

  19. On your Marx

    Samuel has tried to be smart but has made a simple mistake.

    He has not, nor has anyone else, shown why anyone would go to a dentist to inquire about a heart condition.

    I am perfectly happy for him to show why but I won’t hold my breath in anticipation.

    He also hasn’t shown why dental health is an EXCELLENT indicator of one’s heart condition.

    Most people writing on other blogs would indicate such evidence.

    Thus far not two cents worth not even a halfpenny

  20. Entropy

    Monty, I would not call climate science a hard science. It is modeling.

  21. Louis Hissink

    mOnty

    Please point us to experimental evidence that sujecting biomass to pressures and temperatures typically inferred for the bottom of sedimentary basins will spontaenously it to hydrocarbons of high Dalton number, ier CnHm where n > 2 and m > 4.

    And don’t waste my time by using the logical fallacy of arguing the consequent.

  22. Louis Hissink

    omitted “transform” before it and after spontaneously.

  23. Jc

    They don’t go to a dentist for a heart check you moron , homer.
    You’ve missed the point again. Unlike you people should ensure they don’t carry excessive plaque as its a bad marker for future cardiac health.
    Remind me never to be downwind of you anytime .
    kev’s analogy was blind to this association , you nimbus.

    Also homer you need to grow a set.

    You now have four aliases and you posted a nasty comment about the cat at troppo under jb cairns

    They’ll ban you too for trying that stuff over there as they don’t like those sorts of comments.

    You know that, right.

  24. Michael Warren

    mOnty & On your Marx, you don’t go to your dentist for heart surgery for sure. But your dentist certainly knows something about your heart by your teeth and can legitimately ask questions of a heart specialist on your behalf. If the heart specialist can’t answer or replies “what would you know, you’re just a stupid dentist?” I’d still trust my dentist and go looking for another heart specialist.

  25. ar

    He has not, nor has anyone else, shown why anyone would go to a dentist to inquire about a heart condition.

    I did.

    Well, it was always a stupid analogy. But you would be likely to ask your dentist, or indeed any other person, for their opinion if your doctor prescribed anal implants because your deodorant use would lead to heart attacks and climate change in 50 years. I mean, wouldn’t you?

  26. m0nty

    mOnty

    Please point us to experimental evidence that sujecting biomass to pressures and temperatures typically inferred for the bottom of sedimentary basins will spontaenously it to hydrocarbons of high Dalton number, ier CnHm where n > 2 and m > 4.

    Aha! So in your field, you need thousands if not millions of years to test hypotheses on the creation of oil. And you call yourself a hard physical scientist. Hoist with your own petard, Louis. :P

  27. Louis Hissink

    MOnty,

    I never stated that millions of years were necessary, you did as a strawman argument, so please unimpale yourself from your own petard.

    Incidentally, the experimental evidence? We have now 2 experiments, one replicating the earlier, using a diamond anvil in which calcium carbonate, iron oxide and tripe distilled water transformed into high dalton number hydrocarbons by subjecting the sample to pressures and temperatures inferred to exist in the earth’s mantle.

    You fossil fuelers have yet to provide chemical evidence and experiment that its possible except by arguing that it takes millions of years.

    I’m not waiting either since there is no experimental evidence, because no one has been able to demonstrate it except by proposing aeons of time. That makes your assertion unscientific.

  28. Aqualung

    I must say that the dependence of ‘Climatology’ on statistics, inferrence, assumptions standing in need of justification, vague conclusions all compared to a conventional and abstracted ‘normal’ state, reminds me rather more of psychology than physics.

  29. m0nty

    Poor old Louis, he’s fighting the lonely fight against scientific consensus by claiming that it’s unscientific. Him and a couple of crazy Russkies. I see a pattern here.

  30. Annabelle

    Please people, lets not waste time arguing about cardiac and oral health.

    The bulk of Trenberths letter falls in to the “appeal to authority” fallacy. He then contradicts his own thesis by offering an opinion in an area where he has no expertise. End of story.

  31. Cyril of Gladstone

    I have trouble with this idea of “climate science” and that only somebody actively involved with publishing “climate science” can make any comment. At the base level there are only three types of natural science, Physics, chemistry, and biology. So called climate science is only really the application of these natural sciences to the study of the climate system. Any competent Physicist or engineer with highly competent knolwedge of thermodynamics for example, can review the thermodynamic aspects of some part of a climate science paper and decide whether is is BS or not. In actual fact these people are probably much more qualified in this are than the “Climate Scientist” who has written the paper. It is these people who are now entering the fry because they are sick and tired of the climate science scams as presented by the clamate gate crowd of climate scientists.

  32. Winston Smith

    “…calcium carbonate, iron oxide and tripe distilled water transformed into…”

    Uh. Louis?
    How do you filter water through tripe?
    :oops:
    :lol:

  33. ar

    Good response by Judy Curry

    The take home line – “What’s wrong with the statement by Trenberth et al. is this. The big issue is deciding whether or not you need the heart surgery.”

    The big issue is deciding whether everyone else needs wallet surgery.

    Climate Changering is not about making your own decisions. It’s forcing other people to pay more for your leftist environut fantasies.

  34. Pingback: Rebutting the rebutters « bingbing

  35. Bill

    In a “hard science” you test your theory against empirical evidence, if they dont agree you discard the theory. When that happens in climatology, you discard the evidence.

  36. John H.

    The author is ignorant in that there are at least three connections with cardiac disease in realtion to dental health.

    The connection relates to inflammatory mediators il1,6, tnfa, il12,2, and god knows what else. Just about any infection will induce systemic inflammation. The inflammatory mediators not only impact on cardiac function but are strongly implicated in atherosclerosis, dementias, diabetes 2, and cancer.

    It is a logical error however, and by golly this happens so often, to attribute causation to one factor alone. Poor oral health can have implications for cardiovascular health but it is not a given. Rather poor oral health is indicative of generally poor health.

    Again, assertion and appeal to authority. How tiresome.

    So what is wrong with the appeal to authority? Next time you have a health problem, go see a mechanic. Good luck.

    I would put my trust in Harrison Schmidt, the Apollo 17 astronaut and geologist, than Kevin Trenberth and his 37 colleagues.

    So now you’re appealing to their authority. Remarkable.

  37. wreckage

    You wouldn’t want a dentist doing heart surgery, but you do want a committee of climate scientists and tax academics doing mining and agriculture.

  38. wreckage

    So here’s where it falls apart for me: climate policy always degenerates into a command-driven economy.

    It. Doesn’t. Work.

    End of story.

    If we need governments to step in and generate new, more energy efficient and effective marketplaces to save us…. we can’t be saved.

  39. Johnno

    In matters of faith, such as AGW, it is better to consult a professional such as a Priest rather than a climate change scientist.

  40. Rob

    Dentists are more important in the health business than is generally recognised.

    What an amazing coincidence, “climate scientists” are less important in the science business than is generally recognised.

  41. Rob

    So here’s where it falls apart for me: climate policy always degenerates into a command-driven economy.

    It. Doesn’t. Work.

    It works, if you think that you are going to be doing the commanding and you don’t actually give a flying duck about anyone else. Which reminds me, how do you spell IPCC?

  42. oil shrill

    The connection relates to inflammatory mediators

    so there is more common correlation between dental health and heart conditions than between, say, Bristlecone tree rings and temperatures?

    who would have thought…

  43. Louis Hissink

    tripe ??? Damn stupid autospell checker! Triple distilled water.

  44. John H.

    so there is more common correlation between dental health and heart conditions than between, say, Bristlecone tree rings and temperatures?

    How do you know that? Why did you ignore my warning that it may simply indicate that poor oral health is a marker for poor attention to health? Dentists are very expensive so many people avoid dentists. It could even be the case that pre-existing inflammation promotes poor oral health. Whatever correlation exists is very hard to pin down.

    Thus …

    There are not definite data on the effect of periodontal treatment on CVD clinical outcomes (either in primary or secondary prevention) however it should be pointed out that the limited (both in terms of numbers and study design) experimental evidence in humans suggests a possible beneficial effect of periodontal treatment of indices of functional and structural vascular health.

    The relationship between periodontal disease (pd) and cardiovascular disease (cvd).
    Mediterr J Hematol Infect Dis. 2010 Oct 1;2(3):e2010030.


    J Clin Periodontol. 2009 Jul;36 Suppl 10:15-9.
    Periodontitis and risk for atherosclerosis: an update on intervention trials.
    Efforts to test causality in the relationship between periodontitis and CVD are ongoing. Evidence to date is consistent with the notion that severe generalized periodontitis causes systemic inflammation and endothelial dysfunction. Periodontitis has effects that go beyond the oral cavity and its treatment and prevention may contribute to the prevention of atherosclerosis.

    But hey, this is a paper written by authority figures. We can’t trust them but I should trust your assertion about the unequivocal link? So you’re prepared to argue that this linkage is clear and strong in spite of a lack of evidence. You are sounding like an alarmist.

    This is ridiculous, on the one hand we shouldn’t trust authority figures but rather trust some 16 authority figures, that it is clear peridontal inflammation causes CVD when it is has never been proven. Epistemological hypocrisy.

  45. Louis Hissink

    MOnty,

    There is no such things as a scientific consensus – and I actually asked an oil company executive type about the Russian-Ukrainian theory of Abiotic oil, and the reply was that his geologists did not believe it. Mind you Biotic oil is actually a belief, not an established fact, but that’s what it is, a belief, like AGW.

  46. m0nty

    There is infinitely more evidence of biotic oil than there is for abiotic oil, mainly because you get a divide by zero error in comparison. You only have to look at the plant-derived material in oil from places where the sediment would have been from times when plants existed, as opposed to oil from pre-plant times which does not have that material. If abiotic oil held any weight as a theory, it could be used to predict new oil reserves, which it can’t. It’s a failure and has been abandoned by all but a few crackpots, Louis.

  47. Louis Hissink

    mOnty,

    You make the logical fallacy of arguing the consequent.

    If oil is produced in the mantle and then ascends upwards and invades a sedimentary sequence, it will incorporate all the biological debris in that sediment as hydrocarbon is an excellent organic solvent.

    Based on biological content, Abiotic oil is indistinguishable from Biotic oil, so those biomarkers cannot be used to determine whether oil is biotic or abiotic.

    Abiotic oil has been experimentally verified – biotic hasn’t. So far no one has been able to come up with direct experimental evidence supporting the chemical transition of biomass to hydrocarbons of high dalton number by raising the temperature and pressure typical at the base of sedimentary basins.

    You also argue from authority, so you have made a double clanger.

  48. cohenite

    There is infinitely more evidence of biotic oil than there is for abiotic oil,

    Not on Titan.

  49. JC

    Cohenite.

    This is just a hunch of mine and nothing scientific. I reckon we could have both abiotic oil and the crap made from dead trees.

    The old saying “oils ain’t oils Soul” takes on new meaning from that ad because oil really isn’t the same from different wells. There’s sweet crude, heavy they and they have all sorts of impurities in it. Perhaps we have both and some people think it must all come from the same source.

  50. m0nty

    Abiotic oil has not been experimentally verified. Abiotic methane, sure, but we already knew that from other planets. I didn’t hear of any actual oil being produced in those experiments. Trace hydrocarbons do not equate to massive oil deposits – which I remind you that the abiotic oil theory still has not identified, which would surely be the incontrovertible proof that you need to prove just about every working geologist wrong.

    All you’re doing, Louis, is attacking the basis of geology, thus undermining your and other geologists’ criticisms of climatology, since your own science is based on such supposedly shaky footing.

  51. Louis Hissink

    mOnty

    “Experiments have shown that under extreme conditions of heat and pressure it is possible to convert iron oxide, calcium carbonate and water into methane, with hydrocarbons containing up to 10 carbon atoms being produced by Russian scientists last century and confirmed in recent US experiments. The absence of large quantities of free gaseous oxygen in the magma prevents the hydrocarbons from burning and therefore forming the lower energy state molecule carbon dioxide. The conditions present in the Earth’s mantle would easily be sufficient for these small hydrocarbon chains to polymerise into the longer chain molecules found in crude oil.”

    Source

    All I did was Google “Carnegie Abiotic” and the Carnegie experiment was top of the list- reference at the bottom of the web page to the experimental results.

    So your statement “Abiotic oil has not been experimentally verified” has been refuted.

  52. Louis Hissink

    mOnty

    Attacking the basis of my scientific education is science pure and simple – all scientific theories are provisional and always subject change in the light of new data and knowledge. Religious dogma is inviolate, however and hence will never change with new data.

    So you confuse religion with science.

    Incidentally the Donesk Basin in Russia is a massive abiotic oil source.

  53. Simon

    It must be getting pretty embarrassing for climate scientists to back down, they’ve hyped their expertise and careers on it to a point where backtracking is nearly impossible. It’s the cholera debate all over again, only this miasma has a name, CO2. Were just gonna have to wait for this generation of gullible try hards to retire and listen for their deathbed recantations.

  54. Louis Hissink

    JC,

    The variation in oils is due to the local geology that the oil invades.

    And it’s Sol, not Soul :-) Capish ?

  55. Rob

    If abiotic oil held any weight as a theory, it could be used to predict new oil reserves, which it can’t. It’s a failure and has been abandoned by all but a few crackpots,

    By the same reasoning climate models, that can’t even predict current temperatures, should be junked and the tree ring circus masters of climate change recognised as crackpots. But, in the words of another circus promoter ” there’s a sucker born every minute”.

  56. m0nty

    All I did was Google “Carnegie Abiotic” and the Carnegie experiment was top of the list- reference at the bottom of the web page to the experimental results.

    So your statement “Abiotic oil has not been experimentally verified” has been refuted.

    They produced no abiotic oil in the experiment. All they have done is reproduce conditions on somewhere like Titan, and we already know methane exists there. Please point to experimental evidence about abiotic oil that doesn’t rely on handwaving and untested theorising.

    Incidentally the Donesk Basin in Russia is a massive abiotic oil source.

    Oh, you mean the 60 billion barrels of abiotic oil, claimed to exist in 1994 by one of your crackpot mates, but that none of the oil companies have drilled for? It’s a mirage, Louis.

  57. Rafe

    In case anyone is still interested in the climate debate and keeping the IPCC accountable.

    Beware, solutioneers at work at the IPCC.
    http://catallaxyfiles.com/2012/01/15/laframboise-5-solutioneering-at-the-ipcc-and-the-unfccc/

  58. Nick_Brisbane

    We need experts to comment on climate change? Well that counts out Al Gore, Tim Flannery,Ross Garnaut, Rajendra Pachauri for starters

  59. wreckage

    In case anyone is still interested in the climate debate and keeping the IPCC accountable.

    mOnty has proven that to be irrelevant, as a consequence of Louis being wrong about abiotic oil. It’s just logic. AGW is a real and imminent threat unless you can prove the existence of abiotic oil!

    Yeah, I didn’t quite follow it either.

  60. m0nty

    mOnty has proven that to be irrelevant, as a consequence of Louis being wrong about abiotic oil. It’s just logic. AGW is a real and imminent threat unless you can prove the existence of abiotic oil!

    Yeah, I didn’t quite follow it either.

    I am demonstrating a pattern of behaviour. Louis believes in a discredited theory which mainstream science long ago discarded as wrong. Which is what AGW denialists are also doing. What’s more, Louis was attacking climatology as being hard to quantify and experiment against, all the while being a proponent of a crackpot theory that oil appears from the magical wonderland of the “deep biosphere” which has been proven time and time again to produce zero results in the field.

    It calls into question his judgement in scientific matters, as it does for the rest of you because the Cat routinely pushes quack science like abiotic oil, just because it suits your political ideological goals.

  61. The 456 words of this op ed, presumably written by Trenberth and signed by 37 of his friends and colleagues is dwarfed by the 532 words used to list the author and his co-signers and their various credentials. It is typical of the folly of appealing to authority / credentials rather than mounting a sensible argument.

    Monty, you’re playing a variation of that same game.

    You’re claiming that because someone at the Cat espouses theories you don’t agree with, nothing written by any author at the Cat has any authority at all, and is in fact automatically wrong.

    Meanwhile, the fact remains that climate change scientists have to date failed to provide predictions which have proven accurate / testable, and so skeptics are perfectly within their rights to keep questioning the eminently-questionable “science”.

    Simply screeching shut up shut up shut UP! at AGW skeptics – at louder and louder volumes – never was and never will be an effective way to prove to them that the science is settled.

  62. wreckage

    I am demonstrating a pattern of behaviour.

    You are demonstrating a very common and very well known cognitive error, wherein two data-points make a pattern, and then committing another one when you assume that your (erroneous, but that’s not relevant) pattern is predictive.

  63. m0nty

    You’re claiming that because someone at the Cat espouses theories you don’t agree with, nothing written by any author at the Cat has any authority at all, and is in fact automatically wrong.

    The theory in question has been abandoned by the scientific community as useless. It’s not a matter of agreeing or disagreeing, the theory itself is bunkum according to all but a handful of Communist wackos and their sympathisers like Louis.

    The lowly status of libertarianism draws you people towards these lost causes, because you have long since learned how to tune your brain to the psychology of the isolated conspiracy cultist. In your fevered worldview, authority and credentials are tools of the New World Order, and anyone who trusts mainstream thought on anything, even (or especially) science, can be dismissed as a sheep.

    That doesn’t actually give you any moral superiority to lecture others about how your crackpot ideas are superior to the mainstream. You are not a heroic band of brothers, fighting the powers that be on behalf of a sleepwalking populace.

    In reality, scientists practice science to their best ability with the imprecise tools at their disposal, using the scientific method in peer-reviewed systems to provide rigour. AGW skeptics routinely cherrypick and distort data in direct violation of scientific principles with no peer review, and their media cheerleaders at the Cat and elsewhere always swallow their lies in credulous fashion.

    The fact that multiple Cat denizens rushed to the defence of Samuel J’s stupid comment that he would consult his dentist for a heart condition only underscores how this is not about science for you lot, it’s about tribalism.

  64. Tl;dr Monty – ShutUpShutUpShutUpShutUpShutUpShutUp, ShutUpShutUp, ShutUpShutUpShutUpShutUp, ShutUpShutUpShutUpShutUp. ShutUpShutUp, ShutUpShutUp ShutUpShutUp, ShutUpShutUp. Also, ShutUp. Stupidfaces.

    “The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t.”

    ~fingers in ears~ TRA LA LA LA LA I CAN’T HEAR YOU SO SHUT UP!

  65. Evan Thomas

    The aspect of this debate which I find most troubling is that the major media – Fairfax, the ABC even the OZ do not treat this enormous scientific controversy between well informed scientists with the significance it clearly deserves. Some aspects deserve page one exposure (e.g. the letters to the WSJ) others pages 2,3 or 4. Todays Oz (Sat. 4th) relies on letters to the editor. Perhaps the media rely entirely on journos with arts qualifications who feel uncomfortable writing about science controversy, but I think there is more to it than that. Of course overseas we have the BBC and the Guardian and the NYTimes who staunchly defend the ‘official’ climate change line. Perhaps Mrs Reinhardt will influence the Fairfax media to see the error of their ways!

  66. wreckage

    The theory in question has been abandoned by the scientific community as useless. It’s not a matter of agreeing or disagreeing

    Irrelevant to my point.

    The lowly status of libertarianism draws you people towards these lost causes, because you have long since learned how to tune your brain to the psychology of the isolated conspiracy cultist. In your fevered worldview

    Pop-psychology bullshit; and I’m not a Libertarian.

    You are not a heroic band of brothers, fighting the powers that be on behalf of a sleepwalking populace.

    Of course not, because you are. Right? Little hint here: you are not a TV drama psychologist, and TV drama psychology doesn’t work.

    The fact that multiple Cat denizens rushed to the defence of Samuel J’s stupid comment that he would consult his dentist for a heart condition

    Two is multiple and multiple is everyone, same fallacy all over again.

    You haven’t backed away from an endorsement of having agriculture and mining run by a committee of academics and tax policy wonks, either.

  67. m0nty

    You haven’t backed away from an endorsement of having agriculture and mining run by a committee of academics and tax policy wonks, either.

    Isn’t this blog run by academics and tax policy wonks? You just want to call to the authority of your wonks, not the other mob’s wonks.

  68. AndrewL

    Remind me to check back when solar irradiance increases and the next El Niño hits. I would like to see how the WSJ Astronaut and Geologist spin that.

  69. wreckage

    Isn’t this blog run by academics and tax policy wonks? You just want to call to the authority of your wonks, not the other mob’s wonks.

    You’ve misread me rather badly, go back and see if you can tell how. Here’s a little hint: might it be that rather than wanting THESE economists to grab a tractor and a hat, I don’t want ANY too?

  70. Pingback: Kevin Trenberth (2) at Catallaxy Files

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