Climate Stuff

A few things caught my eye this morning.

1) The UK Parliament will have an inquiry into the ClimateGate affair.

The Independent Review will:
1. Examine the hacked e-mail exchanges, other relevant e-mail exchanges and any other information held at CRU to determine whether there is any evidence of the manipulation or suppression of data which is at odds with acceptable scientific practice and may therefore call into question any of the research outcomes.

2. Review CRU’s policies and practices for acquiring, assembling, subjecting to peer review and disseminating data and research findings, and their compliance or otherwise with best scientific practice.

3. Review CRU’s compliance or otherwise with the University’s policies and practices regarding requests under the Freedom of Information Act (‘the FOIA’) and the Environmental Information Regulations (‘the EIR’) for the release of data.

4. Review and make recommendations as to the appropriate management, governance and security structures for CRU and the security, integrity and release of the data it holds .

2) There is an interesting discussion of the climate v weather issue.

The difference is that one day’s temperature has little influence on a yearly mean — it is just one out of 365 other numbers that make up the average. One day’s temperature is thus weak evidence for or against any theory of climate.

But a slew of months with higher- or lower-than-average temperatures will push that yearly mean higher or lower. A season’s mean temperature is stronger evidence for or against any climate theory than is a day’s.

Back in the 1990s, when the yearly mean temperatures were increasing, this was touted as evidence for the man-made global warming — but those years’ temperatures also corroborated the Business-as-Usual theory. Which theory was better?

For the past decade, we have had a string of years with mostly decreasing temperatures. This is strong evidence against the man-made global warming theory, but pretty good testimony for the BUT. So far, the BUT theory is winning on points (there are other climate theories the BUT doesn’t beat). This doesn’t mean that BUT is true and that the man-made global warming theory is false, but it does suggest that this is so.

3) I’m sure we all remember the answer Oliver North gace when asked why he was shredding documents, “This was an office with a shredding machine” or something like that. Well this comment deserves the widest possible publicity (emphasis added).

Professor Hasnain, who was not involved in drafting the IPCC report, said that he noticed some of the mistakes when he first read the relevant section in 2008.

That was also the year he joined The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) in Delhi, which is headed by Dr Pachauri.

He said he realised that the 2035 prediction was based on an interview he gave to the New Scientist magazine in 1999, although he blamed the journalist for assigning the actual date.

He said that he did not tell Dr Pachauri because he was not working for the IPCC and was busy with his own programmes at the time.

“I was keeping quiet as I was working here,” he said. “My job is not to point out mistakes. And you know the might of the IPCC. What about all the other glaciologists around the world who did not speak out?

“My job is not to point out mistakes” – don’t you just love employees like this?

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132 Responses to Climate Stuff

  1. dover_beach

    So, the UK Parliament is going to investigate what John Faine previously thought (I wonder if he still thinks it) was a storm in a tea cup.

    Bishop Hill has a post informing us that Senator Barton is also on the case:

    Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) is pressing Energy Secretary Steven Chu for information about department ties to the U.K. climate institute at the center of the controversy over the infamous hacked climate science emails.

    Barton, the top Republican on the Energy and Commerce Committee, and Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.) wrote to Chu Friday asking about DoE funding for projects connected to the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia.

    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2010/1/22/pincer-attack.html

    Love it.

  2. JM

    Sinclair, Watts is an idiot I don’t know why you pay attention to him. He doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Let me take this part of the quote:

    this was touted as evidence for the man-made global warming — but those years’ temperatures also corroborated the Business-as-Usual theory. Which theory was better?

    Business-as-Usual is not a theory, it’s an estimate from Goddard of what will happen if we do nothing. ie. it is part of global warming “theory”, not something different.

    His comment is gibberish.

  3. Sinclair Davidson

    JM – are you really that dumb?

  4. JM

    No I’m not Sinclair. Briggs (who actually wrote the article) poses the question as a strawman:

    how come all those environmental groups get to use hot weather as evidence of global warming, but we’re not allowed to use cold weather as evidence that catastrophic man-made global warming is false?

    (Watts elides this from the start of his quoting of the article – the full version is available here)

    It’s a strawman because no-one actually says that a single year indicates warming. Or cooling, or anything at all.

    Briggs goes on to say:

    For those too busy, the answer is: we are allowed.

    Well no you’re not. No more than anyone who uses 1 year to confirm warming. You need 30 years. There are mathematical tests to determine this is an appropriate number of observations. I’m surprised Briggs, who claims to be a statistician, doesn’t appear to know them.

    For one, or even 10 years, the error is too wide and just about any trend, up, down or static will fit.

    Briggs actually makes this point himself but is dishonest in his use of it. Rather than accept that 30 years is necessary – at which point warming is the only possible conclusion – he instead says that no conclusion is possible.

    And despite his misuse of the term “business as usual” is James Hansen’s name for scenario B of his presentation to congress in 1988, and is commonly understood to refer to the situation where we do nothing. I don’t think Briggs is using it in the same sense at all.

  5. Entropy

    It’s a strawman because no-one actually says that a single year indicates warming. Or cooling, or anything at all.

    bwahahahahaha!

  6. Entropy

    I’ll allow that BUT is a scenario, not a theory. Just like all the other scenarios.

  7. Sinclair Davidson

    JM – giving you the benefit of the doubt, the argument is subtle and nuanced. There are always many theories that can explain a given set of facts. In this instance, short-term deviations from long term trends are known to occur. Separating the two is difficult (a mistake both sides make) making differentiation between theories harder, but at some point the short run aggregates up to the long run. He then goes on to suggest that the aggregation, at present, doesn’t support the warmenist theory.

  8. Sinclair Davidson

    NASA employees can tell that to the judge.

  9. JC1

    Dover:

    US senators never ask questions first unless they know the answer beforehand.

  10. “My job is not to point out mistakes” – don’t you just love employees like this?
    .
    In my, thankfully, limited experience of large organizations that mantra seems par for the course. 🙂

  11. JM

    Sinclair, if you mean the “aggregation” over 30 years it certainly does support warming. If you mean the aggregation over the last 8-10 years it doesn’t – the error bars are too large.

    But it doesn’t support stasis or cooling either – for the same reason.

    The problem with the view for stasis or cooling is that there is no justification for believing that the underlying physics – the model if you like – has changed.

    Another way of looking at this is that the “aggregation” over the last 8-10 years is consistent with the longer term warming trend. But since there is no longer term cooling trend to be consistent with, Briggs has no justification in postulating one.

  12. Sinclair Davidson

    Well, yes. That is the question. When does the short aggregate into the long run? Right now people are talking about the last decade, but is that too long, too short?

  13. JM

    Too short. You can tell from tests of statistical significance alone.

    A statistician should know that, apparently Briggs doesn’t. And his argument about “a slew of months…” is alarming nonsense – it’s almost as if he has never heard of the seasons.

    There is a very technical article here by a professional time series analyst that takes a more sophisticated look at the GISS series and concludes (my bold):

    Therefore we need at least 14 years of GISS data … to draw a confident conclusion about the most recent trend. In fact, since we have additional unaccounted-for uncertainty … we actually need a bit more.

    That does not mean that there’s been no warming trend in those 15 years — or in the last 10, or 9, or 8, or 7, or 6 years, or three and a half days. It only means that the trend cannot be established with statistical signficance. Of course, it’s another common denialist theme that “there’s been no warming.” This too is a fool’s argument; any such claims are only statements about the noise, not about the trend. It’s the trend that matters, and is cause for great concern, and there’s no evidence at all that the trend has reversed, or even slowed.

    Briggs is making the fools argument.

  14. Sinclair Davidson

    JM – I agree it’s too short but why then are we hearing arguments about decades and not centuries and millenia? Briggs is engaging in the arguments we hear.

  15. JM

    Sinclair, the first graph on that page is also a very nice presentation of the last 35 years of data which clearly shows a steady linear trend – albeit one with a fair bit of noise – including the last few years which are clearly clustering around the long term trend so all you need are your own eyes (although you shouldn’t rely on them alone).

    There is no cooling.

  16. JM

    Briggs is not engaging in an argument about decades. He is flat out saying – as he does in his strawman – that a single year is enough.

    But he’s being very dishonest about his argument, by giving it the gloss of technical merit which it doesn’t have.

  17. dover_beach

    But it doesn’t support stasis or cooling either – for the same reason.

    The problem with the view for stasis or cooling is that there is no justification for believing that the underlying physics – the model if you like – has changed.

    Wrong. If the underlying physics were right we should still be warming. The stasis in temp over the last decade indicates that the effect of GHGs is not as dominant as JM, etc. believe. And if you’re going to say that the stasis is down to natural variability its curious that this can dominate the climate signal over a decade while GHGs are increasing in concentration in the atmosphere. And what of natural variability in the 1980s and 1990s; maybe much of the rise in temps then was due to natural variability. Was that a no being said? You guys seem to want to have your cake and eat it too.

    Briggs is making the fools argument.

    JM, you haven’t landed a glove on Briggs to date. You’ve misrepresented his argument/s and called him names; apart from that, nothing else.

  18. C.L.

    The Times of London on yet another climate scandal:

    NaturalDisasterGate:

    UN wrongly linked global warming to natural disasters.

    THE United Nations climate science panel faces new controversy for wrongly linking global warming to an increase in the number and severity of natural disasters such as hurricanes and floods.

    It based the claims on an unpublished report that had not been subjected to routine scientific scrutiny — and ignored warnings from scientific advisers that the evidence supporting the link too weak. The report’s own authors later withdrew the claim because they felt the evidence was not strong enough…

    The new controversy also goes back to the IPCC’s 2007 report in which a separate section warned that the world had “suffered rapidly rising costs due to extreme weather-related events since the 1970s”.

    It suggested a part of this increase was due to global warming and cited the unpublished report, saying: “One study has found that while the dominant signal remains that of the significant increases in the values of exposure at risk, once losses are normalised for exposure, there still remains an underlying rising trend.”

    The Sunday Times has since found that the scientific paper on which the IPCC based its claim had not been peer reviewed, nor published, at the time the climate body issued its report.

    When the paper was eventually published, in 2008, it had a new caveat. It said: “We find insufficient evidence to claim a statistical relationship between global temperature increase and catastrophe losses.”

    Despite this change the IPCC did not issue a clarification ahead of the Copenhagen climate summit last month. It has also emerged that at least two scientific reviewers who checked drafts of the IPCC report urged greater caution in proposing a link between climate change and disaster impacts — but were ignored.

    These dishonest clowns ought to be prosecuted.

  19. JC

    Another one……?

    As I keep saying the entire senior ranks of this science needs to be cleaned out.

  20. Sinclair Davidson

    JM – as I said before he is making a nuanced argument and as best i can see you’re missing the point.

  21. JM

    DB, from a statistical viewpoint the variation over the last 8 years is within normal bounds. It’s noise, there is no reason to start questioning the physical basis.

  22. JM

    DB: “You’ve misrepresented his argument/s and called him names;”

    I haven’t misrepresented his argument, I’ve criticized it. I haven’t called him names, although I’ve called Watts an idiot – because he is.

  23. JM

    Sinclair, if you think there’s nuance that I’ve missed, could you elucidate it to help me understand it?

    Presumably this purported nuance would invalidate what I’ve said in this thread?

  24. JM,

    How did you conclude that:

    “the variation over the last 8 years is within normal bounds”

    This is more interesting than what is little more than gossip.

  25. Sinclair Davidson

    see here and here. I don’t know how better to explain the issue.

  26. Sinclair Davidson

    CL that is the same issue I detail in the next post.

  27. JM

    Sinclair I’ve already responded to those points. There is no justification for supposing that the CO2-induced warming theory is wrong – particularly as no-one has a credible alternative theory (so the “many theories” argument is moot).

    And you’ve already accepted my point about the length of time required to establish statistical significance.

    SRL, the last 8 years cluster around the long term trend within the normal tests of statistical significance.

    The converse is also true, the error bars on a trend line over the last 8 years are so wide that the long term trend falls within them.

  28. Sinclair Davidson

    JM that’s what Briggs says too. If this then that.

    if “climate” is defined as the yearly mean temperature, then this year’s cold winter will produce a yearly mean temperature that is colder than average

    and again

    If “climate” is defined as the decadal mean temperature, then this year’s cold winter will push the decadal mean lower.

    As best I can see you are not responding to what Briggs has written, or my explanation.

  29. dover_beach

    DB, from a statistical viewpoint the variation over the last 8 years is within normal bounds. It’s noise, there is no reason to start questioning the physical basis.

    From a statistical point of view, this is true of global temps over all time-scales. So far as the physical basis is concerned we have very little idea of the impact of clouds, so the idea that the physical basis is well-known is a nonsense. So far as GHGs being dominant, if natural variability can dominate global temp for a whole decade, the role of GHGs have been grossly overestimated. So far as noise is concerned, this is whatever cannot be explained by AGW theorists or their arm-chair megaphones.

    I haven’t misrepresented his argument, I’ve criticized it. I haven’t called him names, although I’ve called Watts an idiot – because he is.

    Yes, you have repeatedly misrepresented his argument; almost to the point of comedy. Regarding names, you’ve called him ‘dishonest’, and a constructor of ‘strawmen’ whereas the only one here engaging in such construction is yourself.

    There is no justification for supposing that the CO2-induced warming theory is wrong – particularly as no-one has a credible alternative theory (so the “many theories” argument is moot).

    By this stunning ‘logic’, the Ptolemic theory was right until the heliocentric theory appeared, then it was wrong.

  30. Sinclair Davidson

    This gets worse and worse.

    The scientist behind the bogus claim in a Nobel Prize-winning UN report that Himalayan glaciers will have melted by 2035 last night admitted it was included purely to put political pressure on world leaders.
    Dr Murari Lal also said he was well aware the statement, in the 2007 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), did not rest on peer-reviewed scientific research.
    In an interview with The Mail on Sunday, Dr Lal, the co-ordinating lead author of the report’s chapter on Asia, said: ‘It related to several countries in this region and their water sources. We thought that if we can highlight it, it will impact policy-makers and politicians and encourage them to take some concrete action.

  31. “SRL, the last 8 years cluster around the long term trend within the normal tests of statistical significance.”

    Such as?

    “The converse is also true, the error bars on a trend line over the last 8 years are so wide that the long term trend falls within them.”

    What does that prove, exactly?

  32. JM

    Sinclair he’s playing fast and loose with his definitions. Climate is defined as annual temperature over 30 years (WMO definition) not annual or decadal averages.

    All temperature data is quoted as anomalies (ie. differences) from the mean annual temperature over a period of 30 years (1961-90 in the WMO standard and Hadley Center usage, 1951-1980 in GISS).

    Now let’s suppose we have a hypothesis that the climate is changing, that will manifest itself as a trend line departure from the 30 year mean. If we apply that to actual data we get a trend of about 1.7C per century – even when we include the last 8 years.

    Then we test the statistical significance and find that the trend line has pretty good explanatory power (R2 of about .74 last time I looked).

    If we do the same thing for just 8 years, we find a trend showing just over 1C per century increase (yes, warming, not cooling) with an R2 of around 0.25. Not as strong, certainly not enough to invalidate the first hypothesis and not strong enough to establish a new one.

    SRL, I think the last paragraph also answers your questions.

  33. JM

    DB: “the Ptolemic theory was right until the heliocentric theory appeared, then it was wrong.”

    Ahh that pretty much is the philosophical standpoint of science actually. All knowledge is contingent and subject to testing.

    And don’t forget, epicycles were actually pretty good at predicting the movements of the known planets – they just had absolutely no grounding in physical reality and could not make predictions at all about the movement of newly discovered planets – that had to wait until Kepler. They were not a theory, but a bunch of heuristic tricks to synthesize the results of observations into a form usable for sailors etc.

  34. JM

    Dover we don’t need to worry about clouds to know the earth is warming, we just need radiative models – all other climate science is concerned with is where the heat ends up, whether in the seas, the atmosphere or whatever.

    And if you’re talking about Svensmark then please bear in mind that his 1990’s papers have been heavily criticised – the supposed correlation between cosmic rays and cloud cover disappears when several errors in those papers are corrected.

    Even Svensmark has conceded that the purported relationship breaks down after 1986.

  35. Sinclair Davidson

    If decades are unimportant, whats this then?

    I understand there are definitions and anomalies are measured relative to 1961-90 etc. But I’m wondering how those definitions underpin the AGW hypothesis. (The fact that the anomalies are measured relative to 1961-90 is intersting – that is when the temperature station coverage was at its best, it has eclined since then and we are no longer comparing like with like when looking at measured temperature.)

    Imagine we have two time series. The first series is say a million years worth of data and the second series is a subset of that data being the last 150 years or so. Now we wish to test whether or not the average value of the series is increasing. But the problem is that we can only observe the shorter time series. We know that the variable of interest (lets say a long term trend) is observed with variation. Some data values may be high (warm) or low (cool). We then observe some high value (warm) years relative to the average the shorter time series – this is consistent with our hypothesis that the value of interest is increasing over time (or in AGW terms it is getting warmer on average over time). But the problem is that we don’t if those high value (warm) years are unusual relative to the longer time series even if they are unusual relative to the shorter time series. That is the problem we face in the whole climate debate. Everyone is data snooping.

    (As an aside I don’t see how an R2 measure tells us anything about global warming. You want to show that the trend is statistically significant different from zero and have a test value that takes into account the truncated tme series and the power of the test.)

  36. Now JM – where are you getting your alarmist figures from? You said 1.7 deg. per century, (or 2.38 deg over the IPCC study period) was the trend.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trend_estimation#Noisy_time_series.2C_and_an_example

    “If we consider a concrete example, the global surface temperature record of the past 140 years as presented by the IPCC: [1], then the interannual variation is about 0.2°C and the trend about 0.6°C over 140 years, with 95% confidence limits of 0.2°C (by coincidence, about the same value as the interannual variation). Hence the trend is statistically different from 0.”

    Please tell me if wiki is wrong here. Says you’re out by about 400%.

  37. JC1

    Sinclair:
    Don’t we have Satellite data operational since the mid 70’s that tells us we have been warming.

    Can ask why do you say station data has been degraded since the 60’s and can’t adjustments be made within reasonable accuracy when a station is moved?

  38. dover_beach

    Sinclair he’s playing fast and loose with his definitions. Climate is defined as annual temperature over 30 years (WMO definition) not annual or decadal averages.

    So, when Hansen walked into Congress in 1988 with only about a decade of ‘warming’ to speak of was he talking about ‘climate’ or ‘weather’?

    Now let’s suppose we have a hypothesis that the climate is changing, that will manifest itself as a trend line departure from the 30 year mean. If we apply that to actual data we get a trend of about 1.7C per century – even when we include the last 8 years.

    Wrong. If you look at the trend line here, from GISS, you find a trend of 0.6 degrees per century:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Instrumental_Temperature_Record.png

    f we do the same thing for just 8 years, we find a trend showing just over 1C per century increase (yes, warming, not cooling).

    Really now? If you begin in 2001 you find the following using GISS:

    http://rankexploits.com/musings/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/GISSTempDec.jpg

    So far as the R2 values you use are concerned, I’d suggest that the 0.27 indicates that the 0.74 is spurious.

    Ahh that pretty much is the philosophical standpoint of science actually. All knowledge is contingent and subject to testing.

    No, it isn’t JM. Ptolemy was wrong even though his theory had predictive power. The fact that you admit that his theory had no foundation in physical reality suggests he was wrong even before Copernicus.

    Dover we don’t need to worry about clouds to know the earth is warming, we just need radiative models – all other climate science is concerned with is where the heat ends up, whether in the seas, the atmosphere or whatever.

    Don’t be ridiculous. Clouds modulate the transfer of energy to space as well as to the surface; that you think this is unimportant is mind-boggling.

  39. dover_beach

    SRL, you might be interested in the following post:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/23/sanity-check-2008-2009-were-the-coolest-years-since-1998-in-the-usa/

    According to NCDC, 2009 temperatures in the US (53.13F) were the 33rd warmest and very close to the long term mean of 52.86F.

  40. JM

    SRL, you’re not making sense:

    Hence the trend is statistically different from 0.

    Not “is not”.

    Says you’re out by about 400%

    How do you arrive at that figure?

    Sinclair, your example is a little artificial since by having the longer period of interest over 1 million years you’re predating the modern warming era and the modern burning of fossil fuels.

    However, it is a representation of the problem faced by HadCRU and GISS, so here’s what Goddard (Hansen et al) had to say a few days ago:

    The past year, 2009, tied as the second warmest year in the 130 years of global instrumental temperature records, in the surface temperature analysis of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS). The Southern Hemisphere set a record as the warmest year for that half of the world.

  41. JM

    Dover: “his theory had predictive power. ”

    Sorry DB, the theory had no predictive power. It really began to fall apart when Galileo found new bodies – the moons of Jupiter – and it could not make predictions about their motions.

    It had utility for known bodies, but no predictive power at all.

    Secondly, yes the long term trend based on just about any year in the late 1800’s (ie. before the burning of fossil fuels really got going) is 0.6C/century, but the long term trend based on just about any year in the 1970’s comes out to about 1.7C/century.

    I don’t know what Hansen used in the 1988, but if he used 1951 as a baseline he would have got about 0.8C/century.

    All of those are a departure from zero.

    I don’t pay attention to Lucia anymore because she uses an obsolete econometric AR(1) type analysis that no-one else uses and she has never justified its use. She also gets evasive when questioned about it.

    I stand by my remarks re. Svensmark. There is no correlation between cosmic rays and cloud cover (once his earlier errors are accounted for), and even on his own model it hasn’t held up since 1986.

    Lastly, Watts is referring to US temperatures. The US is not the whole globe, covering only about 3% of the surface area I think.

  42. JM,

    Don’t be facetious. The wiki had a typo. Big deal. Another one DB referenced came up with the same result.

    “How do you arrive at that figure?”

    JM: 1.7 per 100 years

    Wiki: .6 per 100 or 140 years

    Well, not quote 400%, but getting there.

  43. JM

    SRL, see my last comment about baseline years. Use the 1880’s and you get 0.6C (but get the benefit of a lengthy period of relatively light fossil fuel burning), use 1970 or so and you get 1.7C (and capture both the modern warming period and the bulk of fossil fuel use).

  44. There are better ways to deal with changes in variables than truncating the sample so severely.

  45. JM

    SRL, so you agree that Briggs is wrong when he supports truncation to 1 year (or 8 or 10)?

  46. Any truncation or “smoothing: is wrong, IMO.

  47. daddy dave

    Sorry DB, the theory had no predictive power. It really began to fall apart when Galileo found new bodies – the moons of Jupiter – and it could not make predictions about their motions
    .
    JM, Galileo’s discovery of moons is irrelevant to whether Ptolemy’s theory had “predictive power,” except in the very loose sense that it didn’t predict those discoveries. It had predictive power in that it was the best theory at the time for predicting the locations of stars and planets at any point in the future.

  48. dover_beach

    JM now:

    Sorry DB, the theory had no predictive power. It really began to fall apart when Galileo found new bodies – the moons of Jupiter – and it could not make predictions about their motions

    JM then:

    And don’t forget, epicycles were actually pretty good at predicting the movements of the known planets – they just had absolutely no grounding in physical reality and could not make predictions at all about the movement of newly discovered planets – that had to wait until Kepler.

    I don’t know why I bother with you.

    Secondly, yes the long term trend based on just about any year in the late 1800’s (ie. before the burning of fossil fuels really got going) is 0.6C/century, but the long term trend based on just about any year in the 1970’s comes out to about 1.7C/century.

    More pee and thimble tricks. The long term trend over the last century is 0.6 C/century. Admit your mistake and we can move on.

    I don’t pay attention to Lucia anymore because she uses an obsolete econometric AR(1) type analysis that no-one else uses and she has never justified its use. She also gets evasive when questioned about it.

    JM, I would pay more attention to Lucia then I would to you in a heartbeat.

    I stand by my remarks re. Svensmark. There is no correlation between cosmic rays and cloud cover (once his earlier errors are accounted for), and even on his own model it hasn’t held up since 1986.

    You can even sit by them if you please, I don’t really care. By the way, he never proposed his ‘model’ in 1986.

    Lastly, Watts is referring to US temperatures. The US is not the whole globe, covering only about 3% of the surface area I think.

    I know that, I was just pointing to this curious fact guessing that SRL or others may have found it of interest.

    SRL, see my last comment about baseline years. Use the 1880’s and you get 0.6C (but get the benefit of a lengthy period of relatively light fossil fuel burning), use 1970 or so and you get 1.7C (and capture both the modern warming period and the bulk of fossil fuel use).

    This makes absolutely no sense; in fact, its nonsense. The trend line I provided above uses the baseline period 1951-80. You ought to be tarred and feathered, JM.

  49. JM

    Dave (and Dover) the point is this – once Jupiter’s moons were discovered epicycles could not predict their motions at all (well they can if you have modern computers capable of carrying out the complex calculations).

    It’s not prediction of their existence that’s important, it’s prediction of their motion in the future.

    But Copernicus could – he said they travelled in circles. That’s a much easier calculation (wrong, but it could be done at the time).

    Derivation of epicycles requires many, many observations:- at least one “orbit” of the earth and probably more. The Copernican model would work with just a few observations enough to establish the period and size of the orbit of the moon around Jupiter. Once Kepler came along with the 3 Laws of Planetary Motion (which are a primitive form of a theory of gravity) it became heaps load easier.

    As Gauss showed when he predicted the position of the lost planetoid Ceres.

    Ptolemy relied on history, Copernicus (and Kepler) relied on science. That’s the difference.

    Your next clanger is mistaking Svensmark for Arheniuss. Svensmark is a relatively young man (51) and still alive, his wiki page is here.

    Re. baselines – I was responding to SRL not either of you.

    As to Dover’s particular trendline from Lucia – I’ve no idea what she’s referring to since her post doesn’t explain it. In the past she has steadfastly refused to take account of the differing baselines of differing data series so I don’t know what to make of her graph.

  50. JM

    Dover: “Admit your mistake and we can move on.”

    There is no mistake dover, you asked me to explain the context and background of my statements. I did, and they hold up.

  51. JM

    SRL: “Any truncation or “smoothing: is wrong, IMO.”

    To what degree? Below a million years? Below 30? Below 10?

    Surely this is a question that hinges on significance and not a binary “completely wrong/right” separation?

  52. daddy dave

    DB, from a statistical viewpoint the variation over the last 8 years is within normal bounds. It’s noise, there is no reason to start questioning the physical basis.
    .
    JM, that’s not what East Anglia scientists said in their private emails. Perhaps they’re just uninformed?

  53. dover_beach

    Dave (and Dover) the point is this – once Jupiter’s moons were discovered epicycles could not predict their motions at all (well they can if you have modern computers capable of carrying out the complex calculations).

    JM, you said later that Ptolemy’s theory had no predictive power even though you said before that it did have predictive power so far as known bodies were concerned. I even had the courtesy of including your statements so the reader could compare. Your diversionary tactic of talking about Jupiter’s moons is more pee and thimble. This is your first strawman.

    Your next clanger is mistaking Svensmark for Arheniuss. Svensmark is a relatively young man (51) and still alive, his wiki page is here.

    Where do I conflate them or assume their contemporaries? I merely pointed out to you that Svensmark did not propose his ‘model’ in 1986 (he popularised it in 1996/7 along with Friis-Christensen and he formally published his theory in 2007) you, as usual, lack the intellectual honesty to admit a trivial error, preferring to pretend that your interlocutor has made an error by concocting another story. This is your second strawman.

    Re. baselines – I was responding to SRL not either of you.

    Actually, your remark to SRL, which is wrong, appears more or less identical to your earlier response to me, which was also wrong.

    As to Dover’s particular trendline from Lucia – I’ve no idea what she’s referring to since her post doesn’t explain it. In the past she has steadfastly refused to take account of the differing baselines of differing data series so I don’t know what to make of her graph.

    Stop babbling, JM. The trendline I referred to for the 20th C is not Lucia’s but GISS (the trendline I include from Lucia’s, which also involves only GISS data, is for only the last decade). It confirms that the trend last century was 0.6 C/ century, not your erroneous claim of 1.7 C/ century.

    There is no mistake dover, you asked me to explain the context and background of my statements. I did, and they hold up.

    If you think pee and thimble tricks hold together an argument you’re mistaken.

  54. dover_beach

    DD, JM’s stock-in-trade is bluff and bluster.

  55. JC

    DB

    See this? The report prepared by the IPCC that was supposedly based on science ..

    Look at how many citations there to the WWF and Greenpeace in the scientific report? This is truly fucked up.

    All told, an extensive list of documents created or co-authored by the WWF is cited by this Nobel-winning IPCC report:

    * Allianz and World Wildlife Fund, 2006: Climate change and the financial sector: an agenda for action, 59 pp. [Accessed 03.05.07: http://www.wwf.org.uk/ filelibrary/pdf/allianz_rep_0605.pdf]
    * Austin, G., A. Williams, G. Morris, R. Spalding-Feche, and R. Worthington, 2003: Employment potential of renewable energy in South Africa. Earthlife Africa, Johannesburg and World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Denmark, November, 104 pp.
    * Baker, T., 2005: Vulnerability Assessment of the North-East Atlantic Shelf Marine Ecoregion to Climate Change, Workshop Project Report, WWF, Godalming, Surrey, 79 pp.
    * Coleman, T., O. Hoegh-Guldberg, D. Karoly, I. Lowe, T. McMichael, C.D. Mitchell, G.I. Pearman, P. Scaife and J. Reynolds, 2004: Climate Change: Solutions for Australia. Australian Climate Group, 35 pp. http://www.wwf.org.au/ publications/acg_solutions.pdf
    * Dlugolecki, A. and S. Lafeld, 2005: Climate change – agenda for action: the financial sector’s perspective. Allianz Group and WWF, Munich [may be the same document as “Allianz” above, except that one is dated 2006 and the other 2005]
    * Fritsche, U.R., K. Hünecke, A. Hermann, F. Schulze, and K. Wiegmann, 2006: Sustainability standards for bioenergy. Öko-Institut e.V., Darmstadt, WWF Germany, Frankfurt am Main, November
    * Giannakopoulos, C., M. Bindi, M. Moriondo, P. LeSager and T. Tin, 2005: Climate Change Impacts in the Mediterranean Resulting from a 2oC Global Temperature Rise. WWF report, Gland Switzerland. Accessed 01.10.2006 at http://assets.panda.org/downloads/medreportfinal8july05.pdf.

    * Hansen, L.J., J.L. Biringer and J.R. Hoffmann, 2003: Buying Time: A User’s Manual for Building Resistance and Resilience to Climate Change in Natural Systems. WWF Climate Change Program, Berlin, 246 pp.
    * http://www.panda.org/about_wwf/what_we_do/climate_change/our_solutions/business_industry/climate_savers/ index.cfm
    * Lechtenbohmer, S., V. Grimm, D. Mitze, S. Thomas, M. Wissner, 2005: Target 2020: Policies and measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the EU. WWF European Policy Office, Wuppertal
    * Malcolm, J.R., C. Liu, L. Miller, T. Allnut and L. Hansen, Eds., 2002a: Habitats at Risk: Global Warming and Species Loss in Globally Significant Terrestrial Ecosystems. WWF World Wide Fund for Nature, Gland, 40 pp.
    * Rowell, A. and P.F. Moore, 2000: Global Review of Forest Fires. WWF/IUCN, Gland, Switzerland, 66 pp. http://www.iucn.org/themes/fcp/publications /files/global_review_forest_fires.pdf

    * WWF, 2004: Deforestation threatens the cradle of reef diversity. World Wide Fund for Nature, 2 December 2004. http://www.wwf.org/
    * WWF, 2004: Living Planet Report 2004. WWF- World Wide Fund for Nature (formerly World Wildlife Fund), Gland, Switzerland, 44 pp.
    * WWF (World Wildlife Fund), 2005: An overview of glaciers, glacier retreat, and subsequent impacts in Nepal, India and China. World Wildlife Fund, Nepal Programme, 79 pp.

    * Zarsky, L. and K. Gallagher, 2003: Searching for the Holy Grail? Making FDI Work for Sustainable Development. Analytical Paper, World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Switzerland

    I’ve only spent a few hours tracking these down, so there may be more.

    I haven’t yet fully explored the Greenpeace citations, but two occur in the first paragraph on this page.

    Finally, there are these authoritative sources cited by the IPCC – publications with names such as Leisure and Event Management:

    * Jones, B. and D. Scott, 2007: Implications of climate change to Ontario’s provincial parks. Leisure, (in press)
    * Jones, B., D. Scott and H. Abi Khaled, 2006: Implications of climate change for outdoor event planning: a case study of three special events in Canada’s National Capital region. Event Management, 10, 63-76

    This, apparently, is how you win a Nobel prize.

    http://nofrakkingconsensus.blogspot.com/2010/01/more-dodgy-citations-in-nobel-winning.html

  56. JC

    lost in the spam bin?

    [yep. that is due to the seven links. sinc]

  57. Sinclair Davidson

    Sinclair, your example is a little artificial since by having the longer period of interest over 1 million years you’re predating the modern warming era and the modern burning of fossil fuels.

    Precisely. The burning of fossil fuels is behind the theory driving AGW. To have a valid process you need to compare temperature with and without the burning. That is what Mann has been trying to do – that is why his research in important. That is why everyone looks to his work. You JM are beging the question.

  58. Sinclair Davidson

    Can ask why do you say station data has been degraded since the 60’s and can’t adjustments be made within reasonable accuracy when a station is moved?

    The number of stations has decreased since that period. The adjustments have been made and there is debate as to the veracity of the adjustments with an agrument being that they have been ad hoc.

  59. dover_beach

    JC, that is how they get dubious claims into the assessment reports, via ‘grey literature’ prepared by the NGOs.

  60. JC

    JC, that is how they get dubious claims into the assessment reports, via ‘grey literature’ prepared by the NGOs.

    WTF? What is Greenpeace and the WWF doing in there?

    The mere fact these trogs get cited means the IPCC management was partial to these goons in the first place. We’re now setting economic policy actions on reports where these fuckers had an influence? This is truly fucked up.

  61. JM

    Dover I was not being as clear as I could have been. Predictive in the scientific sense means being able to explain new, previously unobserved phenomena; or being able to explain previously unexplained phenomena from the theory.

    However, predictive in the colloquial sense – which is how I used it in respect of known bodies is a looser definition.

    Ptolemy could do neither in respect of Jupiter’s moons. And I have represented the historical situation accurately; which you would know if you understood the history.

    Sorry, the Arhennius comment is my mistake – I misread 1986 as 1896, which is when Arhennius proposed the CO2 driven global warming theory.

    As to Svensmark, I know he wrote his original papers during the ’90’s. But he has conceded that his model breaks down after 1986. He has not replied otherwise to any of the severe criticisms made of his ideas over the last 10 years.

    ” your remark to SRL, which is wrong, appears more or less identical to your earlier response to me, which was also wrong.”

    You don’t explain how.

    Lucia’s graph does not show 0.6C/century. It shows 1.2C since 2000 and 0.2C since 2001 – such instability in her model (whatever one of the several she uses applies to this graph) – ought to give her (and you) pause.

  62. JM

    Sorry DB: “Ptolemy could do neither …” The neither refers to the two means of prediction in the first paragraph. It doesn’t include the statement in the second paragraph.

  63. “#

    SRL: “Any truncation or “smoothing: is wrong, IMO.”

    To what degree? Below a million years? Below 30? Below 10?

    Surely this is a question that hinges on significance and not a binary “completely wrong/right” separation?”

    There are a multitude of alternatives and techniques you use before truncation or smoothing.

  64. JM

    SRL: There are a multitude of alternatives and techniques you use before truncation or smoothing.

    Such as?

  65. JM

    Sinclair: “The burning of fossil fuels is behind the theory driving AGW. To have a valid process you need to compare temperature with and without the burning. That is what Mann has been trying to do – that is why his research in important. ”

    Firstly Mann’s paleoclimatology is not what we’re talking about, it’s Brigg’s insistence that a year’s observations are adequate to draw conclusions about climate.

    But leaving that aside, it is a good example.

    What are to we make of Mann’s hockey stick? A sharp increase, both in magnitude and velocity, when the underlying physical structure – ie. burning of fossil fuels – changes?

    Don’t we then have an example of a short term change invalidating conclusions drawn from long term trends (which is I think the point you’re leading to, and also the point of your post and comments in this thread)? Because the underlying model has changed? For well known and identifiable reasons?

    Don’t we then have both cause and correlation?

  66. Sinclair Davidson

    JM – what do we make of the hockey stick? Is this a serious question? Fraud is a word that comes to mind. What was the expression again? oh, yes. ‘mike’s trick to hide the decline’.

    Anyway did you check out the ink I provided earlier? No, didn’t think so. If the Bureau of Metrologycan put out a graph with single years and decadal means showing global warming, then those same periods can be critiqued.

    When I transform this

    Because the underlying model has changed? For well known and identifiable reasons?

    into this
    “Because the underlying model MIGHT have changed? For reasons that MIGHT be associated with AGW.
    we are close to agreement. Even better would be the recognition on your part that we have too few observations to form an opinion if the planet is warming or not. It probably isn’t because if it was the AGW lobby wouldn’t have to fake their research to prove the point.

    Don’t we then have both cause and correlation?

    We are talking about a theory here. You do know what a theory is? You would think that a theory is about causation, that does imply some sort of correltion. Just saying.

  67. JM

    Stop with the word games Sinclair. Cribbing your rhetoric from creationists isn’t a good look.

    Particularly, since they at least have an alternative “theory” – God did it.

    You haven’t got anything, and injecting words like “might” in the face of a ton of evidence all pointing in one direction isn’t very convincing either.

    The theory underlying AGW – and the mechanism where increased CO2 warms the planet – is radiative physics. Which is extremely well proven and embedded in every modern technology.

  68. Sinclair Davidson

    JM – AGW is a theory. It is a theory that can and should be tested. In order to test AGW the scientist has to marshall evidence. All you can tell me is that a theory has some practical applications. Fine.

    But for an empirical test you don’t need an alternative theory you need a alternative hypothesis. So the test goes something like this:
    Null Hypothesis: AGW does not explain recent warming.
    Alternate Hypothesis: AGW does explain recent warming.
    Then the scientists tries to falisify the Null. If they succeed they say ‘we have evidence that supports (or is consistent with) the AGW theory’ if they do not succeed they say, ‘we have failed to reject the null hypothesis’. Nowhere in that series of statements is any reference to a ‘god did it’. If that is the best you can do, you’re wasting our time. But we’re still in ‘give JM the benefit of the doubt mode’.

    One of the factors a scientist would have to control for are the other factors that could be driving a temperature change. But as we know from the CRU emails,

    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.

    Bottom line – they have a theory but can’t yet reconcile empirical observation with the theory. That doesn’t mean that the theory is wrong, but it does mean that we shouldn’t be doing anything rash and irreversible.

  69. JM

    Sinclair, you fail to appreciate two things:-

    1./ By arguing against “CO2 causes warming” you are arguing against all of 20th century physics. All of it.

    2./ If you want to make that argument, you have to find an alternative hypothesis that does two things:-

    a.) explains why CO2 does not cause warming (and also by implication where the error is in 20th C physics, so you now need a substitute for that as well)

    b.) an explanation for what has caused the recent warming

    Simple economy would tell you that (2) is unlikely.

    Lastly you ignore that

    (i) statistical tests do show that CO2 explains recent warming

    (ii) you’ve spent this post and most of this thread supporting Briggs who argues that standard statistical tests don’t apply. Don’t go running for their shelter now.

  70. JM

    As regards Trenberth’s “travesty” statement – he has published that view. His view is not some dark secret.

    But also, many of his collegues disagree with him. His view is not a consensus.

    I’m disappointed to see you keeping company with the loons and conspiracy nuts.

  71. Sinclair Davidson

    KM – By arguing against “CO2 causes warming” you are arguing against all of 20th century physics. All of it.

    Sinc – how so? I’m very surprised by this comment. Having done physics all through high school and regularly speaking with a friend who has a PhD is physics I astonished that the only contribution physics has made in the twntieth century is AGW. Astonished!!

    JM – If you want to make that argument, you have to find an alternative hypothesis that does two things:-

    a.) explains why CO2 does not cause warming (and also by implication where the error is in 20th C physics, so you now need a substitute for that as well)

    Sinc – I don’t have have to do anything. The people making the argument need to prove ther case (of course, without deleting the data or hiding the decline). They have to convince me they are right, not me prove that that are wrong (you can’t prove a negative anyway)

    JM b)an explanation for what has caused the recent warming

    Sinc – and what warming would that be? Perhaps if Jones’ wasn’t so busy deleting the files and hiding the decline you could suggest some warming but I don’t think so.

    JM – (i) statistical tests do show that CO2 explains recent warming
    Sinc – some do some some don’t

    JM – (ii) you’ve spent this post and most of this thread supporting Briggs who argues that standard statistical tests don’t apply. Don’t go running for their shelter now.

    Sinc – I’m not. Briggs and I both suggest that it is difficult to establish what is happening when you have short-term variation that can cloud long term trends. Statisticians are familiar with this problem. Are you?

  72. Sinclair Davidson

    Those loons and conspiracy nuts seem to include the UK Parliament who will be undertaking an investigation.

    I am actually sympathetic to Trenberth’s problem. I understand what he’s on about. His statement is not consistent with ‘the science is settled’.

  73. JM

    Sinclair, you (and certainly your friend) know exactly what I’m talking about, don’t put words in my mouth.

    CO2 absorbs and reemits infra-red. Fact. Get your friend to demonstrate it and measure it in a laboratory – I think he’ll refuse because he knows the result (or should), and will see it as a waste of time.

    The absorption and re-emission effect lies at the base of our understanding of atomic and molecular physics and is the basis of all later developments such as quantum physics.

    Briggs and I both suggest that it is difficult to establish what is happening when you have short-term variation that can cloud long term trends.

    Yes. And there are techniques are available to deal with noisy data. Briggs ignores them (or distorts his description of them).

  74. Sinclair Davidson

    Yes. And there are techniques are available to deal with noisy data. Briggs ignores them (or distorts his description of them).

    This is the nub of the problem. I can’t see how a clear test can be undertaken without long-term data series. This is why Mann’s research is so important.

  75. JM

    And since you and so many other denialists are so fond of the phrase “hiding the decline”, could you point me to any dataset at all – apart from the tree ring proxies they were talking about -showing a decline in temperature since 1970 (or even 1960)?

    There is no decline.

  76. JM

    This is why Mann’s research is so important.

    Sorry, I thought Mann was a fraud in your view (my bold):

    what do we make of the hockey stick? Is this a serious question? Fraud is a word that comes to mind. What was the expression again? oh, yes. ‘mike’s trick to hide the decline’.

    Could you at least be consistent.

  77. Sinclair Davidson

    Mann was a naughty boy, without a doubt. That doesn’t mean that his research project wasn’t important. It does mean we can’t trust what he did or his results.

    You are aware of the Darwin temperature record and hw it has been doctored?

  78. JM

    There was an adjustment to the Darwin record after a site change. Eschenbach declares this adjustment “bogus”, even though it is exactly the sort of siting/re-siting problem that people like Watts scream about on a daily basis.

    The adjustment rationale and procedure is described here

    What do you want? Unadjusted raw data with bogus effects (which Eschenbach uses) or the real deal?

    For the real deal refer to the BOM’s high quality data record for Darwin airport

    No decline.

    Or is the Australian Bureau of Meteorology part of the Global Cllimate Conspiracy as well?

    For a major public intellectual, you’re hanging out with a pretty seedy crowd Sinclair.

  79. Sinclair Davidson

    JM – I’m not a major public intellectual. Secondly, it isn’t me who is seedy. It is not appropriate to falsify research results, it is not appropriate the delete data, it is not appropriate to conspire to sack journal editors who promote debate that you don’t like, it is not appropriate to label people as holocaust deniers when they don’t agree with your theories. I could go on and on, but you get the idea. These people have behaved like crooks, so it is fair enough to consider them to be crooks. If extremist greenies like Mondiot can be shocked and shaken by the behaviour of the AGW lobby, so too can everyone else. There is a stench about them, a stench of falsehood; a stench of corruption. Everytime we look around yet another one of their claims is being falsified.

    There are serious and important research questions that need to be answered. This needs to be done in a serious manner. Our AGW friends have corrupted the scientific process for purposes that may be good or bad. Who cares? If we can’t trust the process we cannot trust the outcomes. That is exactly what we are seeing.

  80. Sinclair Davidson

    Anyway, on that note, I’m going to bed. I’m sure you’ll still be here in the morning.

  81. JM

    It is not appropriate to falsify research results,

    No-one disagrees. But do you have any proof? No.

    it is not appropriate the delete data,

    No-one disagrees. But in the incident you refer to, the data was intermediate data files – not raw data – and it is not clear that they were subject to FOI, which was the issue at hand. The intermediate data could always be recreated. I don’t keep every intermediate result – do you?

    it is not appropriate to conspire to sack journal editors who promote debate that you don’t like,

    I’m not sure what you’re referring to.

    it is not appropriate to label people as holocaust deniers when they don’t agree with your theories.

    Since when have I done that? That said, climate denialists share many behavioral features with holocaust deniers and if someone else wants to do it in private emails I’m not going to let it disturb my morning coffee.

  82. JM

    While we’re on this, let’s touch briefly on Watt’s Surface Stations project where he identified poorly sited weather stations in the US and suggested that those measurements were biased to the warm side.

    Well the results are in, and Watt’s hypothesis is now disproved.

    Firstly, a while back NOAA examined 75 sites that Watt’s said were “good” and compared the warming shown at those sites with the overall result from “good” and “bad” sites.

    Outcome? There is warming.

    Now Menne has compared the “good” against the “bad” sites.

    Outcome? The “bad” sites show cooling, not warming as Watts hypothesized.

    See here

    The results are in. The denialist case is disproved.

    Warming all round.

  83. C.L.

    Now climate-change scientists say ozone hole stops global warming.

    “IT WAS once regarded as one of the biggest environmental threats to the planet.”

    Oops.

  84. JM

    CL, both of these are observed effects.

    First, if rainfall drops a rain forest turns to savannah. This is happening in parts of the Amazon. Shooting the messenger doesn’t invalidate that.

    Second, the ozone effect has been known for quite a few years (and was obvious in retrospect from the absorptive properties of ozone in the ultra violet). What do you want? Produce more air conditioners using fluorocarbons and cook the earth by ultraviolet, or cook the earth from the infra-red retained via the CO2 output by the coal burning that powers them?

    No-one said this was an easy problem to solve.

  85. Sinclair Davidson

    JM – have you followed the climategate debate and the IPCC quality control issues over the last couple of months? If so, you’d know exactly what I’m talking about. These people stand condemned by their own actions as revealed in their own emails, their own correspondence, their own working files, and their corruption of the peer review process and the IPCC process. So whatever Watts and McIntyre and the like have up to is a secondary issue; I don’t know these and don’t have to know these people.

  86. daddy dave

    I’m not sure what you’re referring to.
    .
    JM, have you even heard of “climategate?”
    Or did you simply read a couple of articles at deltoid and realclimate dismissing it as a storm in a teacup, and going no further? Because you’re clearly ignorant of even the most basic facts about climategate.
    And presumably you think the glaciers will melt by the year 2035? (hint: google “glaciergate”)

  87. JM

    Sinclair I’m well aware of “climategate”. I assumed that was what you were referring to, I’m just not sure of which specific aspect.

    Dave, I’ve already posted a comment re. that particular typo. I’m more interested in Sinclair’s construction:-

    it is not appropriate to conspire to sack journal editors who promote debate that you don’t like,

  88. JC

    Watts:

    As many readers know, there have been a number of interesting analysis posts on surface data that have been on various blogs in the past couple of months. But, they’ve been widely scattered. This document was created to pull that collective body of work together.

    Of course there will be those who say “but it is not peer reviewed” as some scientific papers are. But the sections in it have been reviewed by thousands before being combined into this new document. We welcome constructive feedback on this compendium.

    Oh and I should mention, the word “robust” only appears once, on page 89, and it’s use is somewhat in jest.

    The short read: The surface record is a mess.

    If this is true the entire process is now a complete shambles.

    There is a story to tell about AGW however the way these people have been plying their trade is a disgrace.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/26/new-paper-on-surface-temperature-records/#more-15700

  89. Sinclair Davidson

    I’m more interested in Sinclair’s construction:-

    it is not appropriate to conspire to sack journal editors who promote debate that you don’t like,

    from a forthcoming paper on the climategate scandal.
    An email between Tom Wigley and Timothy Carter (copied to Phil Jones and Mike Hulme) contained this extraordinary comment.

    Hans von Storch is partly to blame — he encourages the publication of crap science ‘in order to stimulate debate’. One approach is to go direct to the publishers and point out the fact that their journal is perceived as being a medium for disseminating misinformation under the guise of refereed work.

    Mike’s idea to get editorial board members to resign will probably not work — must get rid of von Storch too, otherwise holes will eventually fill up with people like Legates, Balling, Lindzen, Michaels, Singer, etc.

    Stimulating debate is precisely what academic journals are meant to do. It is simply astonishing that a scientist could imagine that he was publishing to last word in any topic and that any disagreements were ‘crap science’ and that the editor needed to be gotten rid of and the editorial board be stacked with sympathetic voices – as opposed to unsympathetic voices.

    email is here.

  90. JM

    Sinclair I find it difficult to believe that you’re falling for this “conspiracy” crap.

    Let me quote the whole thing – the bolded section is what you have elided.


    Hans von Storch is partly to blame — he encourages the
    publication of crap science ‘in order to stimulate debate’. One approach is to go direct to the publishers and point out the fact that their journal is perceived as being a medium for disseminating misinformation under the guise of refereed work. I use the word ‘perceived’ here, since whether it is true or not is not what the publishers care about — it is
    how the journal is seen by the community that counts.

    I think we could get a large group of highly credentialed scientists to sign such a letter — 50+ people.

    Note that I am copying this view only to Mike Hulme and Phil Jones. Mike’s idea to get editorial board members to resign will probably not work — must get rid of von Storch too, otherwise holes will eventually fill up with people like Legates, Balling, Lindzen, Michaels, Singer, etc.

    Note – “let’s get about 50 signatures”

    I hardly think that discussing how best to go public with your gripes about editorial policy on a given journal is some deep dark conspiracy.

  91. daddy dave

    Sinclair I find it difficult to believe that you’re falling for this “conspiracy” crap.
    .
    JM, when you say stupid things like that it’s really hard to take you seriously.
    but I’ll indulge…
    1. There are tons of emails from climategate that show that East Anglia researchers conspired to thwart FOI requests (see recent post by Sinc on this)
    2. they also conspired to blacklist journals that published skeptic opinion and roll skeptical editors… in their own words!
    (but you knew that already, right? Since you’re so on top of climategate 🙂
    3. they included false claims, such as glaciers melting, simply for political purposes. This is by their own admission.
    so, here’s a question JM. Which of these is crap? 1? 2? 3? all of them? 2 and 3 but not 1?

  92. “#

    SRL: There are a multitude of alternatives and techniques you use before truncation or smoothing.

    Such as?

    JM

    26 Jan 10 at 2:35 am”

    Instead of staying up all night, get a second job and buy a fucking textbook. I noticed that “Tamino” didn’t understand a cointegration question I put to him and rambled on about autocorrelation. Buy him a textbook as well.

  93. JM

    No, not textbooks. Your assertion that there are a multitude of techniques.

    Can you point me to which ones you have in mind, and why you think they’re relevant. (I’m not sure why you bring econometrics into this.)

    Also could you point me to your discussion with Tamino – I’ve just done a quick search and I couldn’t find anything right off. Did you comment under another id?

  94. I’ve got a better idea – why don’t you justify manipulating the data?

  95. JM

    No, why don’t you tell us what you’re talking about? Show us your conclusions and justify them?

  96. JM

    Dave – let me indulge you:-

    1. There are 5 statements in those tons of emails that are questionable. They have been aired widely (and widely misunderstood)

    2. Talking about a public campaign to improve peer review is not a conspiracy

    3. The glaciers melting thing is a result of a.) a typo, b.) probably a misquotation in a new report and c.) poor editorial practice – exactly what was being discussed in 1)

    Unless I’m going to buy into the conspiracy theory I don’t see anything other than the normal cut ‘n thrust, with some normal errors.

    Errors that don’t invalidate the entire conclusion no matter how much the conspiracy nuts wished they did.

  97. http://tamino.wordpress.com/?s=cointegration

    “Welp, we couldn’t find that…try again?”

    Damn right. Not in his lexicon.

    “I’m not sure why you bring econometrics into this.”

    Because it is of a higher standard generally than the amateurish statistics of climatology that feeds into highly complex systems modelling. The methodologically better studies have less alarmist results.

    “Show us your conclusions and justify them?”

    Um no, you truncate, delete, otherwise manipulate data without justifying it, you may as well just not do any data analysis. Torture the data enough and it will confess. If you’re not doing large time series analysis with cointegration techniques, you shouldn’t be put near the peer reviewed stuff. It’s not cutting edge, it’s standard. How do you deal with spurious regressions if you don’t do unit root tests or cointegration techniques?

    Here’s the conclusion: a lot of climatology is not sound because it is methodologically valid. This view stands because it’s correct and peer reviewed research should be to a high standard.

  98. “Talking about a public campaign to improve peer review is not a conspiracy”

    Blacklisting improves public debate? I suppose Mc Carthy improved on “American-ness”.

    You have no idea what you are saying. This kind of attitude could kill any interest in global warming in the US. You are being an apologist to the point that you’d defend something akin to Mc Carthyism. Never mind if there may a serious problem, smaller than estimated by the IPCC, (as the better research still shows) you’ve just turned the public against the whole thing.

    I’m not saying this to score points – just think to yourself – “do I really support blacklisting?”.

  99. JC

    SRL is right. If people find even more lies this area of science is gone. Even if Climate science is heading in the right direction people will be turned off by the lying and we could end up facing a serious problem without the safeguards in place.

    We really don’t know how many scientists are prepared to speak out and offer divergent views because there is a form of McCarthyism taking place where it seems that anyone with differing opinions is shut out.

  100. JC

    1. There are 5 statements in those tons of emails that are questionable. They have been aired widely (and widely misunderstood)

    That actually isn’t true. There seems to be a lot of stuff in those emails that shows things may not be up to scratch.

    3. The glaciers melting thing is a result of a.) a typo, b.) probably a misquotation in a new report and c.) poor editorial practice – exactly what was being discussed in 1)

    Bullshit. The inclusion of the glaciers story was a deliberate attempt at falsifying the picture and present the world with a worse prediction.

    Unless I’m going to buy into the conspiracy theory I don’t see anything other than the normal cut ‘n thrust, with some normal errors.

    You are perfectly in your rights to believe that, however don’t expect other people to be as gullible as you are.

    Errors that don’t invalidate the entire conclusion no matter how much the conspiracy nuts wished they did.

    No but the perception of bullshitting does make it harder to get the truth across to people. Leaving people to feel free without a climate of fear is how science should be done.

  101. JM

    Dave then:

    I noticed that “Tamino” didn’t understand a cointegration question I put to him and rambled on about autocorrelation.

    Dave now:

    http://tamino.wordpress.com/?s=cointegration
    “Welp, we couldn’t find that…try again?”

    ie. you didn’t engage with him at all did you? You didn’t put a question to him. He didn’t ramble on in response.

    Hand in your Intellectual Integrity Badge on you way out.

  102. JM

    JC I agree the kerfuffle over the glaciers means it harder to make the case in the public mind.

    And if you think there is more than the 5 statements that have got wide airing I’m more than willing to listen. Particularly as this is an important issue – if you look at it as a dichotomy we are faced with enormous costs either way.

    If AGW is wrong and we spend money on crap we’ve wasted it. On the other hand if it’s right and we fail to respond we’re stuffed.

    Personally, because I come at this from a physics perspective rather than an economic one, I think AGW is correct. And the downside is huge.

    But perspective is important. In my view the science is settled and we now have to deal with the economics and the politics, which are much harder. We have to change our entire economy.

    I get really alarmed by the recent commentary on this site where there are a lot of people very well versed in both politics and economy who choose to stray out of their area of expertise and instead attack another professional group as crooks and frauds.

    There is a lot that the people on this site can contribute.

    To the response.

    Shooting the messenger is a really unproductive exercise.

  103. C.L.

    The end of the circus looms. In the wake of Britain’s chief scientist John Beddington’s admission that UN warminists have been lying, Canada’s leading “climate change” guru now confirms Beddington’s disturbing confession:

    Climate agency going up in flames.

    A catastrophic heat wave appears to be closing in on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. How hot is it getting in the scientific kitchen where they’ve been cooking the books and spicing up the stew pots? So hot, apparently, that Andrew Weaver, probably Canada’s leading climate scientist, is calling for replacement of IPCC leadership and institutional reform.

    If Andrew Weaver is heading for the exits, it’s a pretty sure sign that the United Nations agency is under monumental stress. Mr. Weaver, after all, has been a major IPCC science insider for years. He is Canada Research Chair in Climate Modelling and Analysis at the University of Victoria, mastermind of one of the most sophisticated climate modelling systems on the planet, and lead author on two recent landmark IPCC reports.

    For him to say, as he told Canwest News yesterday, that there has been some “dangerous crossing” of the line between climate advocacy and science at the IPCC is stunning in itself…

    That Mr. Weaver now thinks it necessary to set himself up as the voice of scientific reason, and as a moderate guardian of appropriate and measured commentary on the state of the world’s climate, is firm evidence that the IPCC is in deep trouble. He’s getting out while the getting’s good, and blaming the IPCC’s upper echelon for the looming crisis.

    The science was never “settled” – that’s now official. Anyone who says otherwise is a denialist. The Prime Minister ought to formally apologise for making the contrary – tendentious – argument, which was a lie.

    In what is rapidly becoming the scientific backblock of Kevin Rudd’s Australia, however, we’re still lumbered with an hysterical exaggerator and partisan hack raving on about the end of the world.

  104. JM sez:

    “i.e. you didn’t engage with him at all did you? You didn’t put a question to him. He didn’t ramble on in response.

    Hand in your Intellectual Integrity Badge on you way out.”

    Bullshit.

    Um yes he did pal and because you can’t find it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exists or happened. You don’t have access to his archives so shut up. I re-searched under my old usernames and it isn’t there either. “Oh no it musn’t have happened and I must be right about the methodology of global warming!” Don’t allow your vanity to fool yourself.

    You are kidding yourself if you use this to convince yourself you are correct. You are scoring points (with yourself) and avoiding reality.

    The Stern report over reported the economic cost of increased hurricane activity to the US by 1000%:

    http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com/2010/01/what-tangled-web-we-weave.html

    So much for “intellectual integrity via google search” JM. I’m just an interested observer. Go with the facts – the statistics behind the modelling is dubious and amateurish and the economic modelling of “climate change mitigation” is riddled with mistakes of doomsday proportions.

    “To the response.

    Shooting the messenger is a really unproductive exercise.”

    How true.

  105. JM –

    Ask yourself this again: *Do I REALLY support blacklisting as a form of scientific advocacy?*

  106. Sinclair Davidson

    I get really alarmed by the recent commentary on this site where there are a lot of people very well versed in both politics and economy who choose to stray out of their area of expertise and instead attack another professional group as crooks and frauds.

    In a previous life I was employed as Dean (Research and Innovation) so my professional function was managing issues that related to how and what people did in their research both within my faculty and across the university in general. Before that I was the Research Director of my school. Furthermore I have a book chapter forthcoming on how the ClimateGate issue is a failure of governance within universities and the scientific community. On that basis I do think I’m qualified to comment on the basis of the criteria you have specified.

  107. daddy dave

    a lot of people very well versed in both politics and economy who choose to stray out of their area of expertise
    .
    JM, statistics and scientific methodology are my area of expertise. On economics and politics I’m merely an enthusiastic amateur.
    So, back to those three points.
    .
    1. There are 5 statements in those tons of emails that are questionable.
    .
    no, there are 5 statements that are stand-alone, devastating soundbites that illuminate the problem. It’s not like they’re islands in a sea of purity and bland scientific enquiry. They haven’t been misconstrued. You remind me of a character in a Seinfeld episode that gets busted saying “Jerry is such a jerk”. Jerry confronts him about it and he says, “It was taken out of context.”
    Jerry says, “Okay then: use it in a sentence.” Of course the guy can’t! He tries though. Thus illustrating the emptiness of the “out of context” defense in many situations, such as this one.
    .
    2. Talking about a public campaign to improve peer review is not a conspiracy
    .
    I agree. But that’s not the charge.
    .
    3. The glaciers melting thing is a result of a.) a typo, b.) probably a misquotation in a new report and c.) poor editorial practice – exactly what was being discussed in 1)
    .
    wrong. The scientist in question has admitted he did it to ramp up the urgency for political purposes. No typo – pure propaganda.
    Plus, I didn’t mention all the times they used WWF publications as scientific references.

  108. dover_beach

    As to Svensmark, I know he wrote his original papers during the ’90’s. But he has conceded that his model breaks down after 1986. He has not replied otherwise to any of the severe criticisms made of his ideas over the last 10 years.

    JM, wrong. Svensmark published his formal paper in 2007. He has informally replied to criticisms made of his theories. He has not conceded that his theory breaks down after 1986. In one of his informal responses to his critics he suggested that his theory only appears to breakdown because they choose to use temp data with running means of approx. 10-years whereas they should be using unsmoothed temp data. Here is their informal Reply to Lockwood and Fröhlich – The persistent role of the Sun in climate forcing:

    http://www.spacecenter.dk/publications/scientific-report-series/Scient_No._3.pdf/view

    Lucia’s graph does not show 0.6C/century. It shows 1.2C since 2000 and 0.2C since 2001 – such instability in her model (whatever one of the several she uses applies to this graph) – ought to give her (and you) pause.

    Can you read? I said that this graph indicated a warming of 0.6 C/century:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Instrumental_Temperature_Record.png

    This is incontrovertible.

  109. dover_beach

    Regarding Lucia’s graph,

    http://rankexploits.com/musings/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/GISSTempDec.jpg

    it does NOT show ‘instability’ in her ‘model’. She does not include ANY model data, the data she employs in her graph is observational data processed by GISS.

    JM, you really are all bluff and bluster.

  110. dover_beach

    Another nail in the AGW coffin:

    http://motls.blogspot.com/2010/01/nature-carbon-cycle-feedback-is-80.html

    Frank et al. explain that the uncertainty about the strength of this “carbon cycle feedback” constitutes approximately 40% of the uncertainty about the whole projected 21st century global warming. Because they have slashed more than 80% of this contribution which used to represent 40% of the total future warming, you may see that one third of the projected 21st century warming has to be deleted, too.

  111. dover_beach

    In other news, remember rog’s comment, to the effect, that nuclear is, like, sooo 20th C? Well…

    http://www.wired.com/magazine/2009/12/ff_new_nukes/

    And we have the largest reserve of Thorium in the world:

    http://www.aph.gov.au/library/Pubs/rp/2007-08/08rp11.htm

    This is something Abbott should be giving very serious attention to given its promise.

  112. C.L.

    More scandal, more fraud:

    Call it the mystery of the missing thermometers.

    Two months after “climategate” cast doubt on some of the science behind global warming, new questions are being raised about the reliability of a key temperature database, used by the United Nations and climate change scientists as proof of recent planetary warming.

    Two American researchers allege that U.S. government scientists have skewed global temperature trends by ignoring readings from thousands of local weather stations around the world, particularly those in colder altitudes and more northerly latitudes, such as Canada.

    In the 1970s, nearly 600 Canadian weather stations fed surface temperature readings into a global database assembled by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Today, NOAA only collects data from 35 stations across Canada.

    Worse, only one station — at Eureka on Ellesmere Island — is now used by NOAA as a temperature gauge for all Canadian territory above the Arctic Circle.

  113. JM

    SRL: Um yes he did pal and because you can’t find it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exists or happened. You don’t have access to his archives so shut up. I re-searched under my old usernames and it isn’t there either.

    You gave me the URL, you put it forward as representing your interaction with Tamino.

    Don’t go claiming “the dog ate my homework” now.

    BTW – You still haven’t explained the relevance or application of cointegration techniques. I did a search and found a few papers, but they pretty much seem to confirm conventional research.

    Climate sensitivity of about 3C per doubling of CO2 (example)

    Hoist. Own. Petard.

  114. JM

    Dover: Svensmark published his formal paper in 2007

    Are you out to lunch? Svensmark has had a project going at CERN since circa 2000 based on papers he wrote in 1991 and 1997. Those are the original papers I was referring to.

    And what pray tell is the difference between peer reviewed papers in 1991 and 1997 and a “formal” paper?

  115. JM

    Dave: “I agree. But that’s not the charge.”

    It is the charge Dave. In fact you make it in yourself in your immediately preceding paragraph:

    there are 5 statements that are stand-alone, devastating soundbites that illuminate the problem.

    The scientist in question has admitted he did it to ramp up the urgency for political purposes.

    Who in particular are you talking about? There were a number of people involved in that little smashed teacup.

  116. JM

    Dover: Can you read? I said that this graph indicated a warming of 0.6 C/century:

    Yes I can. And I can read graphs. Lucia’s graph does not say 0.6C/century. It shows about 1.2C since 2000.

    Further, I never claimed that the 20th Century showed 1.7C, I said the current rate (which I later clarified as being the modern warming era – ie since the 1970’s) to be about 1.7C.

    Which it is.

    Further, if Lucia shows 1.2 since 2000 and 0.2 since 2001 (which she does) then her claim, Sinclairs claim and your claim that 8-10 years is good enough to determine a trend is simply blown out of the water.

    A single year should not make that sort of difference. (As to the ‘model’ I was referring to whether she was using least squares or the Cochrane-Orcutt thing she favors. It isn’t clear from the graph.) The model underlying both is a linear one.

  117. JM

    Lastly Dover, Thorium is still experimental, expensive and relies on an existing Uranium economy to work.

    Not practical within the required timescale.

  118. JM

    Dover, re. Motl.

    You elided his immediately following paragraph:

    (There is some uncertainty about the numerical value of what they consider the “total uncertainty of the projected warming, so take the previous paragraph with a grain of salt.)

    Knowing Lubos, that should be a very large grain of salt.

  119. dover_beach

    Are you out to lunch? Svensmark has had a project going at CERN since circa 2000 based on papers he wrote in 1991 and 1997. Those are the original papers I was referring to.

    And what pray tell is the difference between peer reviewed papers in 1991 and 1997 and a “formal” paper?

    JM, can you reference these papers? I was referring to the following:

    Svensmark, Henrik (2007). “Cosmoclimatology: a new theory emerges”. Astronomy & Geophysics (Blackwell Publishing) 48 (1).

    That would seem to me to be the first presentation of his theory.

    So far as a 1991 paper is concerned, what is it called? And so far as his 1997 paper is concerned, it is the first presentation of a probable link between GCR and global cloud coverage; hardly the presentation of a new theory.

    Yes I can. And I can read graphs. Lucia’s graph does not say 0.6C/century. It shows about 1.2C since 2000.

    More pee and thimble. I never said it did, JM. You seem to want to ignore the actual graph for the 20th C using GISS data, that isn’t Lucia’s graph but GISS’s, that clearly indicates 0.6 C/ century.

    Further, I never claimed that the 20th Century showed 1.7C, I said the current rate (which I later clarified as being the modern warming era – ie since the 1970’s) to be about 1.7C.

    The modern era doesn’t begin in 1970, JM. Your cherry-picking is also painfully obvious.

    Further, if Lucia shows 1.2 since 2000 and 0.2 since 2001 (which she does) then her claim, Sinclairs claim and your claim that 8-10 years is good enough to determine a trend is simply blown out of the water.

    Not at all, JM, because neither of us is pretending that the last 8-10 years determines the trend for the 21st C. What we are suggesting is that the last 8-10 years indicates that AGW has not dominated global average temps over this respective period.

    You elided his immediately following paragraph:

    (There is some uncertainty about the numerical value of what they consider the “total uncertainty of the projected warming, so take the previous paragraph with a grain of salt.)

    Knowing Lubos, that should be a very large grain of salt.

    JM, I didn’t elide anything. If you take the numerical analysis of Frank et al as more or less accurate, then Motl’s calculation stands. I know you find observational estimates of CS painful because the always seem to come in between 0.5-2 C for a doubling of CO2 but you are just going to have to get used to them.

  120. JM

    You are merely fooling yourself.

    You don’t win an argument on a blog, and hence for all time by challenging someone to find an archived comment they made on a third party’s blog. The point still stands that the mitigation lobby don’t understand the methodology too well – you don’t even understand why cointegration is relevant to time series analysis! This level of understanding, to put it nicely, is “less than journeyman” standard.

    The majority of papers that are methodologically correct use cointegration and most of these have less alarmist outcomes.

    If you don’t understand the relevance of cointegration, stop pretending that you’re qualified to comment on statistical matters – i.e buy a fucking textbook. Here’s a hint – google “spurious relationship”.

    You’re just interested in scoring points to impress yourself. Accept the facts – the statistics underpinning the simulations is poor at best. The Stern report etc. made glaringly bad errors (i.e, 1000% error in US economic costs of AGW) to mean that they are basically junk.

    PS – Do you support blacklisting?

    Stop tying to impress yourself, learn about the correct methodologies before pontificating to others about validity of research and accept there is some very poor modelling of climate and economy that underpins policy at the moment.

  121. tal

    Speaking of the Amazon, what ever happened to that Indian with the lip thing that Sting used to drag around?

  122. dover_beach

    More evidence to suggest that CS is on the low-side:

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2010/01/evidence-for-natural-climate-cycles-in-the-ipcc-climate-models-20th-century-temperature-reconstructions/

    What I believe this demonstrates is that after known, natural modes of climate variability are taken into account, the primary period of supposed CO2-induced warming during the 20th Century – that from about 1970 onward – does not need as strong a CO2-warming effect as is programmed into the average IPCC climate model. This is because the natural variability seen BEFORE 1970 suggests that part of the warming AFTER 1970 is natural! Note that I have deduced this from the IPCC’s inherent admission that they can not explain all of the temperature variability seen during the 20th Century.

  123. Sinclair Davidson

    John O’Sullivan at Climategate is suggesting that Phil Jones can still be prosecuted for fraud under the UK Fraud Act (2006). While many of the actions appear to have occurred before 2006, I understand that the legislation simply formalises the common law position.

  124. JM

    SRL: you don’t even understand why cointegration is relevant to time series analysis! This level of understanding, to put it nicely, is “less than journeyman” standard.

    So explain it to me. I followed your prompt and showed you the first of a number of examples that I found and as it happened that example reported a climate sensitivity of 3.4C per doubling of CO2.

    ie. consistent with the accepted consensus value (viz the IPCC) of about 3C

    When you criticize someone (or a consensus) for not using “correct” methods you should take it to the next level and show what the results are if you use the “correct” methods.

    If you don’t take that next step then you aren’t being honest.

    I’ve demonstrated (I believe) to you that the “correct” methods (in your view) yield the same results as conventional research.

    Are you able to show the contrary?

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