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« How to fake a warmer Arctic | Main | London Science Museum backs down on climate change »

Comments

Tez

Perhaps climate scientists will now turn their minds to what causes climate change, instead of attempting to show that mans CO2 output is responsible. But where will the funding for that come from?

CM

Nice shiny collection of misrepresentation there Ian. Blatant lying about what Jones said too.

So nothing unusual then.

"A common skeptic refrain is that "the science isn't settled", meaning there are still uncertainties in climate science and therefore action to cut CO2 emissions is premature. This line of argument betrays a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of science. Firstly, it presumes science exists in a binary state - that science isn't settled until it crosses some imaginary line after which it's finally settled. On the contrary, science by its very nature is never 100% settled. Secondly, it presumes that poor understanding in one area invalidates good understanding in other areas. This is not the case. To properly answer the question, "is the science settled?", an understanding of how science works is first required.

Science is not about absolute proofs. It never reaches 100% certainty. This is the domain of mathematics and logic. Science is about improving our understanding by narrowing uncertainty. Different areas of science are understood with varying degrees of confidence. For example, while some areas of climate science are understood with high confidence, there are some areas understood with lower confidence, such as the effect on climate from atmospheric aerosols (liquid or solid particles suspended in the air). Aerosols cool climate by blocking sunlight. But they also serve as nuclei for condensation which leads to cloud formation. The question of the net effect of aerosols is one of the greater sources of uncertainty in climate science.

What do we know with high confidence? We have a high degree of confidence that humans are raising carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere. The amount of CO2 emissions can be accurately calculated using international energy statistics (CDIAC). This is double checked using measurements of carbon isotopes in the atmosphere (Ghosh 2003). We can also triple check these results using observations of falling oxygen levels due to the burning of fossil fuels (Manning 2006). Multiple lines of empirical evidence increase our confidence that humans are responsible for rising CO2 levels.

We also have a high degree of confidence in the amount of heat trapped by increased carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. This is otherwise known as radiative forcing, a disturbance in the planet's energy balance. We can calculate with relatively high accuracy how much heat is trapped by greenhouse gases using line-by-line models which determine infrared radiation absorption at each wavelength of the infrared spectrum. The model results can then be directly compared to satellite observations which measure the change in infrared radiation escaping to space. What we find in Figure 1 is the observed increased greenhouse effect (black line) is consistent with theoretical expectations (red line) (Chen 2007). These results can also be double checked by surface measurements that observe more infrared radiation returning to Earth at greenhouse gas wavelengths (Evans 2006). Again, independent observations raise our confidence in the increased greenhouse effect.

So we have a lower understanding of aerosol forcing and a higher understanding of greenhouse gas forcing. This contrast is reflected in Figure 2 which displays the probability of the radiative forcing from greenhouse gases (dashed red line) and aerosol forcing (dashed blue line). Greenhouse gas forcing has a much higher probability constrained to a narrow uncertainty range. Conversely, the aerosol forcing has a lower probability and is spread over a broader uncertainty range.

The important point to make here is that a lower understanding of aerosols doesn't invalidate our higher understanding of the warming effect of increased greenhouse gases. Poorly understood aspects of climate change do not change the fact that a great deal of climate science is well understood. To argue that the 5% that is poorly understood disproves the 95% that is well understood betrays an incorrect understanding of the nature of science."

http://www.skepticalscience.com/Is-the-science-settled.html

Ross

CM -- how can they be lies when the article is just commenting on direct quotes from the interview.
The only reason "the science is settled " is ever raised is because this is what the supporters of AGW continually tell the public. The scientists agreeing with AGW DO NOT say anything against these comments or they reinforce them.
Science is not about absolute proof .... etc .I agree with this but tell Gore , Stern , Flannery etc this.

CM

>>>CM -- how can they be lies when the article is just commenting on direct quotes from the interview.<<<

No it is not 'just' doing that at all. And it ignores all the evidence. It's cherrypicking and misrepresenting both Jones and the body of science. it's trying to reduce the entire AGW theory to "0.051C per decade". not to mention misrepresenting the MWP.
It's funny that the author talks about 'finally getting straight answers' and then abruptly twists them.

>>>The only reason "the science is settled " is ever raised is because this is what the supporters of AGW continually tell the public.<<<

For about the nine millionth time, please provide some actual quotes.

>>>The scientists agreeing with AGW DO NOT say anything against these comments or they reinforce them.<<<

Give me some examples of reinforcing (the "do not say anything against" isn't meaningful).

>>>Science is not about absolute proof .... etc .I agree with this but tell Gore , Stern , Flannery etc this.<<<

Why, when did any of them claim that absolute proof has been obtained?

Why oh why do you need to defend such obvious crap, and help prop up straw man arguments?

Charles Higley

The historical temperatures (e.g., the Medieval Warm Period) are always dicussed, but why do so few people refer to the direct CO2 chemical data that is readily available and organized by Ernst Beck (180 years of direct chemical bottle data)?

Just because the IPCC denigrated his work for their own agenda and discounted almost all direct chemical data as too variable, this does not mean that we should ignore this huge body of data. In fact, the knowledge that the IPCC discounted all of these published papers indicates that we definitely need to look at it. And, since when is indirect data better than direct data? It makes no sense.

So, the variability that the IPCC criticizes is not random variation, but the plotted data describes a history of decadal ups and downs over the last two hundred years, two well-defined peaks in the 1800s and one in the 1940s with a peak (440-550 ppm, only 385 ppm today) about 8 years after the 1938 temperature peak of that period. And, quite significantly, temperature dropped rapidly while CO2 was high. This shows that CO2 (at concentrations significantly higher than now) cannot maintain a warm climate, let alone drive one to warm.

To ignore the direct chemical CO2 data is a mistake. To only discuss the recent 50-60 years is also a mistake.

So, the IPCC would like us to believe that indirect CO2 data from ice cores is better than direct chemical data. How stupid do they think we are?

Well, we are generally stupid as we have tacitly accepted their discounting of direct data and allowed them to perpetuate the myth that CO2 has been historically low until relatively recently - a myth created by unethically melding by time-shifting (normally only acceptable in science fiction) ice core data with volcano data from half a world away!

In fact, Jaworowski, the world's authority on ice cores and CO2, estimates that the trauma of extracting ice cores from depth causes the loss of 30-50% of the CO2. Using a 40% back-calculation, ice core CO2 values become the same or significantly higher than today.

And, it should be noted that the direct chemical data CO2 peaks never preceded temperature peaks, they always lag or follow.

Thus, not only are temperatures fluctuations over the decades perfectly natural, but CO2 fluctuations occur historically and are natural (i.e., in the 1800s). These fluctuations are easily equal to or larger than the CO2 changes we see today.

The percentage of CO2 we add each year to the atmosphere is 3-5%. This cannot account for the observed rise in CO2 unless there is a long half-life. The IPCC puts CO2 half-life at 200 years and NOAA has inflated that to 1000 years - thus, they can claim that our emissions are accumulating. Real science, however, has shown that the half-life is closer to 5.4 years, which means that our effect would be necessarily transient.

As CO2 partitions between the oceans and air at 50 to 1, there is an enormous amount of CO2 in a huge watery reservoir. A 2% change in this could double our atmospheric CO2. It is small wonder, then, that changes in global temperatures, which would necessarily warm the oceans, would be followed by outgassing of CO2 into the atmosphere. The IPCC essentially and totally neglects this simple piece of science.

Charles Higley

CM: "Again, independent observations raise our confidence in the increased greenhouse effect."

You really need of find the work of Fernc Miskolczi and his colleague M Zagoni.
(http://www.scribd.com/doc/25071132/The-Saturated-Greenhouse-Effect-Theory-of-Ferenc-Miskolczi)

Miskolczi was the one who pointed out the falsehood of using an infinite layer for the atmosphere in models and substituted a finite layer. He has since refined his work very nicely and supported it with real world confirmation.

The basics of his conclusions are that CO2 and water vapor interact such that they form a relatively constant heat-trapping component in the atmosphere which has a relatively constant effect. In essence, when CO2 rises, absolute humidity goes down. As water vapor is a more powerful heat-trapping gas, this effect could actually serve to cool the planet, not warm.

The bottom line is that CO2 concentrations are effectively irrelevant to the climate. (Just as I have been saying for years.)

Ferenc also points out that the ridiculous abundance of a superior heat-trapping gas, water vapor, begs the question of why an increased "greenhouse effect" would wait million of years for the addition of a tiny bit of a weaker heat-trapping gas, CO2. If there was to have been an effect, it would have happened already. Done!

So, the IPCC forcing factors, about which everybody likes to argue, are effectively worthless and just part of the fabricated construct, now even more wrong than before Miskolczi, that makes up their AGW fantasy.

The IPCC and AGW supporters:
1) Ignore the real world CO2 history from direct chemical data

2) Accept adulterated and poor indirect ice core data

3) Ignore Beer's Law regarding CO2 and heat-trapping

4) Ignore Henry's Law and the huge ocean CO2 reservoir

5) Adulterate a CO2 thermodynamic factor to augment its effect

6) Assume water vapor to be a positive forcing factor - only in a real greenhouse!

7) Ignore the water cycle global convective heat engine = a huge negative forcing factor

8) Fabricate an erroneously huge atmospheric CO2 half-life (actually about 5.4 years)

9) Ignore natural climate cycles, assuming they are all overwhelmed

10) Massage, adjust, and homogenize temperature data to an unrecognizable form, always showing warming

11) Over-represent the accuracy of all of their work

12) Trust computer climate models which are desperately and multiply flawed - they are not science and fail miserably

13) Ignore known solar influences on our climate

14) Ignore natural cyclic temperature (oceanic) influences

15) Argue from ignorance that warming, whether it is happening or not, must be due to man as they cannot think of anything else it could be

16) Now that the disconnect between CO2 rising and global cooling is becoming public, they go on and on about particulates - because particulates, like CO2, could be blamed on us -but they ignore Solar Cycle 24 going quiescent, the solar wind going to a breeze, and key ocean systems flipping to their cooling phase right on time, totally predictable.

What a house of cards, only supported by loads of money, politicians, a long-term one-world government socialized agenda, and public ignorance of the real science.

A real scientist HAS to consider ALL of the science when proposing a hypothesis, including the inconvenient parts that indicate that the hypothesis needs work or is actually wrong.

If one looks at the real data from our current interglacial period, one will see that our last 4 or 5 temperature optima have shown decreasing highs. We are looking in the wrong direction. Long term cooling is bad, stuff does not grow. We can always find crops that grows in warmer, as in the Medieval Warm Period, but below 45 Deg F, most crops fail. (Cool season crops germinate at 40 deg F and cool soil temperatures limit growth.)

Delaying the next cold period would be a fantastically good thing!

CM

Yeah someone else tried to have a go with Miskolczi earlier.

http://briefingroom.typepad.com/the_briefing_room/2010/01/nz-science-media-centre-embarrasses-itself-again.html?cid=6a00d8341c51bc53ef012876d6a9b5970c

The scientific world was clearly less than impressed.

>>>What a house of cards, only supported by loads of money, politicians, a long-term one-world government socialized agenda....<<<

That's all you really needed to say.

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