20 million years of CO2 and ice sheet/sea level correlation

iceageWhen you look at the ice core record, there’s a significant amount of correlation between sea level rise and the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the air at the time. But the ice core record goes back less than a million years. A study published a couple of weeks ago in the journal Science measured proxy data for CO2 concentration in the ocean and compared that data to other data on the stability of ice sheets. The authors discovered that there is strong correlation between the two going back at least 20 million years.

One of the challenges that the authors had was the fact that few available previous studies didn’t show correlation between the amount of CO2 in the air and the global climate prior to the start of ice core data. The authors hypothesized that this was a problem with the other datasets and developed a set of tests to check their hypothesis.

First they found two sites in the Pacific where they concluded – based on prior published studies – that the effects on marine sediments would be relatively unchanged over the last 20 million years due to specific geologic and oceanographic factors (limited upwelling, geologic stability, low biological productivity, et al). And they measured three different proxies from marine fossils that enabled them to estimate pH, sea surface temperature, and the amount of CO2 in the water.

Then they compared their results to the ice core data in order to estimate the accuracy of their measurements. What they found was that their reconstruction of the amount of CO2 in the air independently reproduced the ice core measurements to within the known error in the ice core measurements themselves. The importance of this fact was mentioned specifically in the paper:

[F]ew pCO2 proxies have replicated the ice core data of the past 0.8 Ma. (NOTE: “pCO2” is defined as the partial pressure of CO2 and is thus a measurement of the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere. “Ma” is a shorthand unit for “millions of years ago.”)

icecoresectionAs a result of this new reconstruction, the authors claim that “[r]esults for the Miocene and Late Pliocene support a close coupling between pCO2 and climate.”

In addition, the paper finds that a climatic optimum from 14-16 million years ago have the highest estimated CO2 concentrations in the paper’s data, and that during the optimum is the only period in the entire 20 million year dataset that has higher CO2 concentrations than the present.

The authors don’t claim to have answered everything, and like all good scientists, they point out that they haven’t proven causation, only shown very high correlation. Attribution studies to determine whether CO2 was a cause, an effect, or both will require more research.

Even so, the paper has a number of important conclusions. First, the data supports “the hypothesis that greenhouse gas forcing was an important modulator of climate over [the past 20 million years] via direct and indirect effects.” Second, the new reconstruction has sufficient resolution to define rough thresholds of CO2 concentration in the atmosphere for different degrees of ice sheet size and stability, and thus sea level. Specifically, the last time that there was this much CO2 in the air, there was little to no sea ice in the Arctic, Greenland had little to no ice, there was essentially no ice on West Antarctica, and even East Antarctica was mostly ice-free. And finally, the reconstruction may indicate that the global climate is highly sensitive to the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere.

At the climate optimum described in the study, “global surface temperatures were on average 3 to 6°C warmer than present.” If this study’s results are corroborated, then this paleoclimate reconstruction will be yet another study supporting the widespread understanding that climate is very sensitive to CO2 concentrations. In addition, the study will stand out as another example of “climate disruption is worse than we figured” as it points to the near complete melting of both Greenland and both sides of Antarctica. That would raise sea level by nearly 70 meters (~230 feet).

Other studies have shown that it takes hundreds to thousands of years for that much ice to melt, but if it starts this century, there may not be much humanity can do about it but move inland.

Thanks to lead author Dr. Tripati for a review copy of her paper. For the supplemental online information, click here.

Image Credits:
W Berner/University of Bern, via NewScientist.com

70 replies »

  1. Ah, not again. Cherry picking time periods, just like using the 1977-1998 period to show a seeming correlation. What about those periods when the relationship was inverse?

    In your own words:

    “The authors don’t claim to have answered everything, and like all good scientists, they point out that they haven’t proven causation, only shown very high correlation. Attribution studies to determine whether CO2 was a cause, an effect, or both will require more research.”

    And what they left out was the period when CO2 was 4000ppm during an ice age


    “There has historically been much more CO2 in our atmosphere than exists today. For example, during the Jurassic Period (200 mya), average CO2 concentrations were about 1800 ppm or about 4.7 times higher than today. The highest concentrations of CO2 during all of the Paleozoic Era occurred during the Cambrian Period, nearly 7000 ppm — about 18 times higher than today.

    The Carboniferous Period and the Ordovician Period were the only geological periods during the Paleozoic Era when global temperatures were as low as they are today. To the consternation of global warming proponents, the Late Ordovician Period was also an Ice Age while at the same time CO2 concentrations then were nearly 12 times higher than today– 4400 ppm. According to greenhouse theory, Earth should have been exceedingly hot. Instead, global temperatures were no warmer than today. Clearly, other factors besides atmospheric carbon influence earth temperatures and global warming.”


  2. The study’s authors didn’t “leave it out” – they didn’t have data that goes back that far. The Ordovician period was nearly a half a billion years ago – this study ends at 20 million years because that’s where their oceanic microfossil record ended.

    Something that’s interesting, though, is that the entire Ordovician wasn’t an ice age, only the late part of it. The early Ordovician was warm until, scientists think, the Appalachian Mountains rose due to plate tectonics. The exposed rock would have pulled CO2 out of the atmosphere as the mountains rapidly weathered.

    The problem here is that scientists don’t have high enough resolution data to determine what happened first – the drop in CO2 from ~7000 ppm to 4400 ppm, or the ice age. Remember, we have data on ice age vs. CO2 in ice cores that show a roughly 800 year difference between the two – 800 years out of 800,000 is 0.1%. 800 years out of half a billion years is about 0.0002%. The measurement accuracy would have to be 625x better, and the existing data just isn’t good enough to say what really happened.

    What that really means is that anyone who’s trying to use the late Ordovician ice age as an example of why modern climate isn’t correlated to CO2 is badly misunderstanding or intentionally misrepresenting the available data.

    Finally, just to cut you off before you get started on the “CO2 follows the end of the ice age in the ice core data” thing, remember that it takes between five and six thousand years to end an ice age. It takes CO2 800 years to rise after a deglaciation starts – which means that the CO2 is in the air, heating up the global temperature, for between 4200 and 5200 years. So the time delay in the ice core record actually supports that CO2 has a role in ending ice ages.

    I do find it interesting that you pounced on my original posting of this at Care2 within 10 minutes. It’s nice to know that you’re so worried about my writing that you feel the need to try and destroy it so quickly

  3. Aw, come on. Brian. When there has been no real correlation between CO2 and temperature over the eons, the fact that they found a period when there seems to be one…means nothing.

    Get yourself a copy of:
    August 2009 issue of Geophysical Research Letters, MIT’s Richard Lindzen and Yang-Sang Choi
    or read it at
    New paper from Lindzen demonstrates low climate sensitivity with observational data
    23 07 2009

    “…ERBE data appear to demonstrate a climate sensitivity of about 0.5°C which is easily distinguished from sensitivities given by models.”
    Extracted from the Abstract.
    The observed behavior of radiation fluxes implies negative feedback processes associated with relatively low climate sensitivity. This is the opposite of the behavior of 11 atmospheric models forced by the same SSTs. Therefore, the models display much higher climate sensitivity than is inferred from ERBE, though it is difficult to pin down such high sensitivities with any precision. Results also show, the feedback in ERBE is mostly from shortwave radiation while the feedback in the models is mostly from longwave radiation. Although such a test does not distinguish the mechanisms, this is important since the inconsistency of climate feedbacks constitutes a very fundamental problem in climate prediction.”

    • “When there has been no real correlation between CO2 and temperature over the eons, the fact that they found a period when there seems to be one…means nothing.”
      Let’s see here – the paper you’re taking issue with finds a correlation over 20 million years, an increase of 25x from the most recently known period of correlation. The Ordovician glaciation corresponds roughly to a precipitous drop in CO2 concentrations from a high of 7000 to a final value of 4400 (coupled with a much lower solar output and “greenhouse” conditions on both sides of the glaciation) over the period of a few million years. Oh, and there’s a new paper that I just stumbled across today that says that CO2 WAS likely the cause of the Ordovician ice age: A major drop in seawater 87Sr/86Sr during the Middle Ordovician (Darriwilian): Links to volcanism and climate? So it looks like there’s been some correlation over geologic time after all, Judy.

      I did read the Lindzen paper and there’s a couple of interesting points that the authors make that you apparently are unaware of. First, they point out that their analysis is exclusively based on the tropics, which represent about 1/3rd of the Earth. The paper they refer in support of the rest of the globe has been found be significantly in error (Lindzen would disagree, of course, but there’s a serious takedown of the 2001 paper here that says with a great deal of math that Lindzen’s mathematical definition is the source of the small sensitivity, not the actual data he used). There’s also some question about whether they’re using the corrected ERBE data or if they rejected the correction even though the correction is required to make the ERBE data internally consistent (something the authors themselves point out).

      But perhaps the greatest problem is that Lindzen and Choi target only the models, but ignore the climate sensitivity estimates that are derived from paleoclimate data. Here’s a list of a number of paleoclimate papers and the ranges for CO2 climate sensitivity they derive from the data:

      Climate sensitivity constrained by CO2 concentrations over the past 420 million years: greater than 1.5 C.
      Paleoclimate data constraints on climate sensitivity: The paleocalibration method : between 2 and 5 C.
      Comment on “Aerosol radiative forcing and climate sensitivity
      deduced from the Last Glacial Maximum to Holocene transition”, by P. Chylek and U. Lohmann, Geophys. Res. Lett., 2008
      : 1.7-3.4 C.

      And of course, this paper also supports the idea that sensitivity is high.

      There’s no physical mechanism I know of that would explain why the laws of physics (upon which climate sensitivity ultimately rests, even if Lindzen says it’s lower than nearly everyone else involved in researching climate says) changed from 500 million years ago to the start of the satellite era.

  4. They looked in the tropics because that is where the warming from CO2 is supposed to happen.

    Evans points out that the “greenhouse signature” that would indicate CO2 emissions are driving temperature increases – “a hot spot about 10km up in the atmosphere over the tropics” – which would be evident if climate change was man-made, is simply non-existent.

    “If there is no hot spot then an increased greenhouse effect is not the cause of global warming. So we know for sure that carbon emissions are not a significant cause of the global warming,”

    Comparing Chyleks work with ice core proxies to Lindzen and Choi’s work is apples and oranges. Besides, it is still water vapor that has the has the biggest effect with estimates ranging from 70% up to 95%

    The CO2 hypothesis is dead. Unless you are a zombie master, for heaven sake, bury it.

  5. The alter-ego is back. When Brian can’t find something to spin, Dr. Slammy shows up and calls me names.

    Quite pathetic really!

      • So, which of us is the evil twin?

        “They looked in the tropics because that is where the warming from CO2 is supposed to happen.”

        Lindzen and Choi looked at the tropics because that’s what the ERBE nonscanner data that they used actually measures. It didn’t measure as effectively outside of the tropics. You’d know that it if you actually looked up the ERBE data or read the paper you quoted out of context.

        As for your apple and oranges comment, I’d love to understand your reasoning, since from where I sit, you have none. Climate sensitivity is estimated from multiple different sources, using multiple different methods, to be over 1.5 C, and most likely about 4 C. One single outlier study by Lindzen, especially when there’s a great deal of question about whether Lindzen’s methods are mathematically predetermined to produce an artificially low sensitivity, doesn’t negate all those other studies.

        By the way, nice try to segue from a topic you were about to lose badly on to one you think you can win. Too bad Evans’ arguments are a loser too.

        I’ve debunked Evans already and don’t feel inclined to do it again here, but I have a couple of new points that I came across a while back. While there’s no physical mechanism to boost the sun’s output by 1%, climate models show that the troposphere “hot spot” of a major jump in solar output would be nearly identical to a “hot spot” from greenhouse gases. The difference is what would happen to the stratosphere. From an increase in solar output, the stratosphere would heat up too, whereas the stratosphere cools due to greenhouse gases trapping heat in the troposphere. Note that these simulations are based on one of the simplest physical laws – hot air is less dense, so it rises until it can’t rise any more or it reaches equilibrium with the rest of the air.

        And what’s happening to the stratosphere? It’s cooling at the same time that the troposphere is heating. In many respects, it’s that cooling that is the “tropical fingerprint,” not the heating.

        Furthermore, there are what’s called “attribution studies” that have, based on a number of factors well beyond the troposphere “hot spot,” strongly suggested that CO2 is the bulk of the problem. The IPCC AR4 WG1 paper attributed climate to human factors to a likelihood of 95% using paleoclimate data, satellite data, volcanic eruptions, surface measurements, and more. In fact, the IPCC used 14 different papers that used five different methods. When there’s that much data, and that many different techniques that all agree with each other, the burden of proof is on the people like Lindzen who claim that all that data and every one of those techniques is fatally flawed.

  6. If you are referring to me by the use of “illuminatus”, you have not only my motivation wrong, but also the gender. It would be “illuminata”.

    Be that as it may, the origins of the Club of Rome are amply documented, as is the UN’s Agenda 21.
    One doesn’t have to reach into the origins of the Illuminati in order to see the unfolding of a new feudalism based on international agreements which we never consented to and over which voters have no control.

    Copenhagen may fail, but the oligarchy will just keep trying to get control over energy and usurp sovereignty of nations.

    All based on the fiction that CO2 can change climate.

  7. I love Brian’s dismissal of David Evans..as if he had the credentials to be a credible critic.

    Maybe you should read David Evans article, “No smoking hot spot” from July 08.

    “I DEVOTED six years to carbon accounting, building models for the Australian Greenhouse Office. I am the rocket scientist who wrote the carbon accounting model (FullCAM) that measures Australia’s compliance with the Kyoto Protocol, in the land use change and forestry sector.

    FullCAM models carbon flows in plants, mulch, debris, soils and agricultural products, using inputs such as climate data, plant physiology and satellite data. I’ve been following the global warming debate closely for years.

    When I started that job in 1999 the evidence that carbon emissions caused global warming seemed pretty good: CO2 is a greenhouse gas, the old ice core data, no other suspects.

    The evidence was not conclusive, but why wait until we were certain when it appeared we needed to act quickly? Soon government and the scientific community were working together and lots of science research jobs were created. We scientists had political support, the ear of government, big budgets, and we felt fairly important and useful (well, I did anyway). It was great. We were working to save the planet.

    But since 1999 new evidence has seriously weakened the case that carbon emissions are the main cause of global warming, and by 2007 the evidence was pretty conclusive that carbon played only a minor role and was not the main cause of the recent global warming. As Lord Keynes famously said, “When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?”

    There has not been a public debate about the causes of global warming and most of the public and our decision makers are not aware of the most basic salient facts:

    1. The greenhouse signature is missing. We have been looking and measuring for years, and cannot find it.

    Each possible cause of global warming has a different pattern of where in the planet the warming occurs first and the most. The signature of an increased greenhouse effect is a hot spot about 10km up in the atmosphere over the tropics. We have been measuring the atmosphere for decades using radiosondes: weather balloons with thermometers that radio back the temperature as the balloon ascends through the atmosphere. They show no hot spot. Whatsoever.

    If there is no hot spot then an increased greenhouse effect is not the cause of global warming. So we know for sure that carbon emissions are not a significant cause of the global warming. If we had found the greenhouse signature then I would be an alarmist again.

    It continues

  8. And that editorial is EXACTLY what I debunked, Judy. Check out that link again.

    The nice thing about science is that math and data are what make someone credible. That I can do the math myself, that I can read the papers and understand them, that I understand the physics, chemistry, and atmospheric science – those are what make me credible.

    That I’m willing to ask questions when I don’t understand something, and admit when I’m wrong or when someone else makes a good point, is something else that makes me credible.

    That you do none of those things is why you are almost laughable.

    Ok, that and you’re a crackpot conspiracy theorist who rails against chemtrails, the Club of Rome, the and the H1N1 vaccine. Oh, and that you don’t get the logical inconsistency of believing that the US military can change the weather using ELF radiation but that human civilization is incapable of changing the climate.

    You really should just get it over and admit that it’s your ideology that drives you to ignore well established science and data in favor of an irrational belief that humanity isn’t responsible for disrupting climate on a global scale. And to think, you accuse me of religious zeal….

  9. You are as credible as any other internet entity… and the things you use to try to discredit me are a dead give-away as to your place in the psyop called AGW.

    Why drag in all of those other topics? What do chemtrails have to do with the work done by Lindzen and Choi? What does H1N1 have to do with David Evans expertise?

    You say you have all this background that makes it possible for you to make your pronouncements on the work of people with real experience, and we are supposed to believe it and go away.I don’t pretend to any credentials.

    The very fact you pull that while attacking me on my attitudes toward other topics, makes you far more suspect than I. The use of the “ad hominem” fallacy is a dead giveaway to the poverty of the Warmist stance.

    In the meantime CO2 is still rising and temperatures are down and I’m in good company.

    ” We know of no evidence that any of the “leaders” of the scientific community who signed the letter to you ever asked their memberships for their opinions, before claiming to represent them on this important matter.

    We also note that the American Physical Society (APS, and we are physicists) did not sign the letter, though the scientific issues at stake are fundamentally matters of applied physics. You can do physics without climatology, but you can’t do climatology without physics.

    The APS is at this moment reviewing its stance on so-called global warming, having received a petition from its membership to do so. That petition was signed by 160 distinguished members and fellows of the Society, including one Nobelist and 12 members of the National Academies. Indeed a score of the signers are Members and Fellows of the AAAS, none of whom were consulted before the AAAS letter to you.”


  10. Brian,

    Thanks for the rundown but, you know, this thread actually turned into a different lesson, entirely. I’ve been thinking a lot, lately, about human intelligence and its uses. The thing about Judy is that she’s obviously very bright and writes well. She’s not stupid by any stretch of the imagination. Yet, like so many, she turns intelligence towards adopting a paradigm and then bending all facts to fit. In that sense, she’s the anti-scientist. So many people are.

    Thanks again.

  11. You said a few very interesting things there, Judy. First, you said I’m as credible as any other Internet entity. So, does that mean that I’m as credible as your internet heroes like Anthony Watts, Steve McIntyre, Joe D’Aleo, the Edso brothers, and Marc Morano? Or does it mean that they’re only as barely credible as you think I am?

    The second thing is that you don’t pretend to have any credentials. Actually, you do pretend to have credentials – you pretend to know the science well enough to have an informed opinion, when the truth is that you don’t – know enough, or have an informed opinion. The point of bringing in the fact that you believe in a number of irrational conspiracy theories and that you hold logically self-contradictory positions on things is to illustrate that your judgment is based not on data, science, and evidence, but instead on feeling and ideology.

    As far as your claim that temp is going down, that was wrong last year when I posted this in response to a false claim you made (that the temperature had been dropping since May 08):

    And temperatures have been going up for longer trends as well, as illustrated in the following images (starting at the high point, July 1998, for GISS, Hadley, NCDC, UAH, and RSS datasets – note that these are all three surface station datasets and both major satellite datasets):

    First, the GISS, Hadley, and NCDC surface data:

    Looks like a positive (warming) trend there.

    Now, the satellite data:

    Looks like a smaller, but still positive (warming) trend there too.

    In addition, the Associated Press did a blind test on climate data by handing the annual climate temperature data to four independent statisticians without telling them what the data was. And all four said that there was no statistically valid “cooling” like you’d have us believe:

    The AP sent expert statisticians NOAA’s year-to-year ground temperature changes over 130 years and the 30 years of satellite-measured temperatures preferred by skeptics and gathered by scientists at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.

    Statisticians who analyzed the data found a distinct decades-long upward trend in the numbers, but could not find a significant drop in the past 10 years in either data set. The ups and downs during the last decade repeat random variability in data as far back as 1880.

    Saying there’s a downward trend since 1998 is not scientifically legitimate, said David Peterson, a retired Duke University statistics professor and one of those analyzing the numbers.

    Identifying a downward trend is a case of “people coming at the data with preconceived notions,” said Peterson, author of the book “Why Did They Do That? An Introduction to Forensic Decision Analysis.”

  12. Skeptics are not the ones turning reality on its head or faking data. Luckily, the hypnosis has worn off and people are rejecting the scam. There is no getting them back. The only question now is whether we can prevent laws from being passed that will allow even more to be stolen by governments run by crooks.

    “Politicians More Powerful Than Nature
    Current Global Temperatures Impossible According to IPCC ‘Science’.

    “Temperatures were predicted to increase but are declining (Figure 1). Even their lowest scenario says the world should be at least 0.3¬∞C warmer. Doesn’t sound like much but it equals half the warming they claim occurred in the preceding 130 years.

    Figure 1: Global average temperature 2002 to 2009 and IPCC scenarios.

    As physicist David Douglass said, “If the facts are contrary to any predictions, then the hypothesis is wrong no matter how appealing.”

    This isn’t about the psychological profile of skeptics…it is about reality.

    The science has fallen apart, so now Gore is pushing a “spiritual” approach.

    “Al’s Gore’s much-anticipated sequel to An Inconvenent Truth is published today, with an admission that facts alone will not persuade Americans to act on global warming and that appealing to their spiritual side is the way forward.”

    At least in church one’s donations are voluntary. This new religion will require sacrifices through the tax man and higher energy prices while Gore will become the first carbon billionaire.

    “Al Gore’s Inconvenient Truth sequel program recruits world religions for holy war on changing climate”


    All I can say is, “beware the Devil quoting Scripture”

  13. Just a quick note – the surface station and lower troposphere images are as conservative as I could make them – I chose the highest temperature in 1998 to work from. That’s just over 11 years ago. In statistical terms, that’s still not enough to get a good trend given the noisiness of the data itself. So I’m not claiming that these trends are statistically meaningful, only that they’re positive (warming), contrary to Judy’s cooling (ie a negative trend) claim.

  14. I missed commenting on the difference between you, Morano, D’Aleo, the Idso father and brothers,McIntrye et al. They are real!

    You keep skating around the hole in the CO2 theory.

    “Nature Not Playing By The Rules

    Now they face facts everyone can grasp. The Earth is cooling with record low temperatures everywhere, a contradiction with the IPCC hypothesis anyone can grasp without scientific understanding. Figure 2 shows 1998 was an unusually warm year attributed to El Nino. 1999 was cooler and AGW proponents correctly said the drop from 1998 was not evidence of a trend.

    Figure 2: Global temperatures 1985 to 2009 and atmospheric CO2 levels.

    Temperatures increased slightly again in 2000 (Figure 2) seeming to support the AGW contention. However, since 2002 temperatures declined gradually, making a trend that began in the Southern Hemisphere 10 years earlier global. AGW proponents are now trying to prove the trend doesn’t exist.

    They play statistical games by pre-determining the trend by the starting point chosen. Choosing 2002 as a starting point appears to play the same game, however, there’s a major difference. The decline can’t happen according to the IPCC hypothesis. Their report says, “Most of the observed increase in global average temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic GHG concentrations.”

    “Very likely” is defined as greater than 90 percent likelihood.

    They reinforce the point; “During the past 50 years, the sum of solar and volcanic forcings would likely have produced cooling. Observed patterns of warming and their changes are simulated only by models that include anthropogenic forcings.” But according to their Reports CO2 levels have continued to increase due to human additions. “Global GHG emissions due to human activities have grown since pre-industrial times, with an increase of 70% between 1970 and 2004.”

    The second statement is also false because they don’t include two of the three known mechanisms of solar causes of temperature change in their models. They did acknowledge, “Difficulties remain in simulating and attributing observed temperature changes at smaller than continental scales” They must say this because they report, “It is likely that there has been significant anthropogenic warming over the past 50 years averaged over each continent (except Antarctica).” If CO2 was causing temperature increase it should be global. So what is happening cannot happen. The hypothesis and the models built on it are wrong. Temperature declining while CO2 increased did force one change; they switched focus from global warming to climate change.
    Climate Change: What Happens When Nature Disobeys Government.

    Political leaders say they are going to stop climate change. It is an arrogant, ignorant claim adopted because they accepted IPCC claims and then chose to ignore scientific evidence showing they were wrong. Now they’re ignoring nature, which doesn’t listen as the evidence shows. As Douglass says, “One finds the truth by making a hypothesis and comparing observations with the hypothesis.” The observations don’t support the hypothesis but that doesn’t matter because it fits the political objective. British MP Jeremy Thorpe said “Greater love hath no man than this, that he lay down his friends for his political life.” Our leaders are laying the people down for their political lives. Sadly none of them will ever be held accountable, but the people will pay the price.”

    If you had bothered to read Prof Ball’s article when I first posted excerpts from it, you might not have made the lame statement above.

  15. Uber – The original images, no, although I can give you that if you want. Do you want R squared for the base data or the trend residuals? I’ve got another response to Judy’s second most recent (I think the most recent is just a cut/paste of more from the first Ball article, though) that has a lot of math for an image that you’ll appreciate.

  16. You’re assuming that anything Tim Ball writes is credible, when in fact he has a well documented history of lying. First, before leaving academia, he wrote precisely 4 peer-reviewed papers, none of which had anything to do with climate. He’s written no peer-reviewed papers on climate since. Second, he has alternately claimed to have 28 years and 32 years teaching climatology – he taught for 8. Ball also claimed at one time to be the first Canadian PhD in climatology, when he was actually something like 10th or 20th. Finally, Ball used his contacts at the University of Winnipeg to launder fossil fuel money that he then used to promote climate FUD – fear, uncertainty, and doubt. In other words, Dr. Ball has a history of lying about himself in order to make himself sound more impressive than he actually is and using his political and university connections to hide his fossil fuel backers (source: “Climate Cover-Up”)

    Now, on to this image:

    There are so many problems with this image it’s hard to know where to begin. How about with my prior debunking of a nearly identical image? Here’s what I wrote there:

    Allow me to start with the laughably bad figure from IceCap:

    That’s weather, not climate. Come back to me when you’ve got a 15 year cooling trend. Oh, that’s right, there isn’t one.
    Temperature is expected to rise exponentially, not linearly, and slow points are to be expected. Entire papers have been devoted to explaining this. You should read a few (here’s a good starting point: http://www.scholarsandrogues.com/2009/05/19/the-weekly-carboholic-climate-disruption-lowering-juneau-sea-level/#cool)
    Lest you think 1 and 2 were too dismissive, there’s something called endpoint sensitivity. January 2002 was the third hottest monthly measurement in that period, following January 2007 and March 2002. All of 1999, 2000, and 2001 were colder than that. So the starting point, being the start of an El Nino, was unusually hot while 2008 and up through April 2009 was unusually cold due to La Nina effects. So the careful choice of the endpoints produced a short-term cooling trend in long-term data that shows nothing of the sort. Weather vs. climate again.
    The error of that trend is nearly double the trend itself because there are so many trend outliers and the number of independent samples is so low (again, because this is essentially weather instead of climate).

    In other words, the supposedly massive cooling trend you, Monckton (since one of his presentations is where I first saw this terrible graph), and D’Aleo are trumpeting here is statistical bullshit.

    Add to that list the following:

    There’s no way to verify the data since the graph doesn’t say if it’s surface station data from CRUT, GISS, or NCDC, or if it’s satellite data from RSS, UAH, or UMd (or if it’s the lower troposphere or middle troposphere channels from the satellite data). It looks like the CRUT data, which is convenient since that data shows the greatest drop from January 2002 to the present, but if you look closely at the data in the graph above and the CRUT data in the image below.
    For those of you who care about the math behind the image below, the trends and autocorrelation adjusted standard error are as follows:

    GISS Trend: -0.002 C/decade. Samples (N): 90. AR-1 equivalent samples (Neq): 42.5. Std Error: 0.14 C. AR-1 adjusted 1 sigma error: 0.94 C. Adjusted 2 sigma error (95% confidence interval): 1.87 C. Rsq: 0.001.
    CRUT Trend: -0.15 C/decade. Samples (N): 90. AR-1 equivalent samples (Neq): 24.8. Std Error: 0.08 C. AR-1 adjusted 1 sigma error: 0.42 C. Adjusted 2 sigma error (95% confidence interval): 0.84 C. Rsq: 0.132.
    NCDC Trend: -0.09 C/decade. Samples (N): 90. AR-1 equivalent samples (Neq): 41.5. Std Error: 0.09 C. AR-1 adjusted 1 sigma error: 0.61 C. Adjusted 2 sigma error (95% confidence interval): 1.22 C. Rsq: 0.041.

    In other words, the error is WAY greater than the trend. To a simple first pass, the data is so noisy that the CRUT trend would take 57 years of similar data to reach the 95% confidence level, 129 years for the NCDC data to reach the 95% confidence level, and over 10,000 years for the
    Notice that you can see the endpoint problem from the image above to the data I ran for the image below. The SPPI image that Tim Ball used claims a negative trend of -1.9 C/decade from January 2002 to the end of March, 2009. But now it’s October, the same starting point and an endpoint 6 months later produce a trend of -0.15 C/decade, over 10x smaller. Thus the problem with (and ease of manipulation of) short, noisy datasets.

    And add David Douglass and Tim Ball to the list of people trumpeting statistical bullshit.

  17. I don’t know how you guys have time to write this while at work. Haha. I’ll have to take a closer look later. But based on those R^2 values, I’m not really seeing much of a correlation at all regardless of the model. Basically, it’s flat. I hate this kind of data. I see it in biology all the time. I’m not happy unless I see R2 values above at the very least 0.5…which isn’t really all that common. Call me a conservative. 🙂

  18. As I said before, I don’t pretend to expertise I don’t have. That is why I present…by the dreadful method of cutting and pasting, the writings of real experts.
    Here is an interesting bit of history:
    “In 1988, the Environmental Protection Agency called a meeting of atmospheric scientists and others with environmental interests. I remember well the meeting I attended in the San Francisco Bay Area. The meeting was in a theater-like lecture room with the seating curved to face the center stage and rising rapidly toward the back of the room. Attending were many atmospheric scientists whom I knew from Lawrence Livermore Laboratory, Stanford Research Institute and some local colleges.

    The room became silent when a man walked up to the lectern. He told us that the next big national problem was global warming. He explained how human carbon dioxide emissions were trapping the earth’s radiation like a greenhouse and causing the atmosphere to heat beyond its normal temperature. He said this will lead to environmental disasters. He finished by saying the EPA will now concentrate its research funding toward quantifying the disasters that would be caused by our carbon dioxide.

    The room was silent. I was the first to raise my hand to ask a question, “How can you defend your global warming hypothesis when you have omitted the effects of clouds which affect heat balance far more than carbon dioxide, and when your hypothesis contradicts the paper by Lee in the Journal of Applied Meteorology in 1972 that shows the atmosphere does not behave like a greenhouse?”

    He answered me by saying, “You do not know what you are talking about. I know more about how the atmosphere works than you do.”

    Not being one to drop out of a fight, I responded, “I know many of the atmospheric scientists in this room, and many others who are not present but I do not know you. What is your background and what makes you know so much more than me?”

    He answered, “I know more than you because I am a lawyer and I work for the EPA.”

    After the meeting, many of my atmospheric science friends who worked for public agencies thanked me for what I said, saying they would have liked to say the same thing but they feared for their jobs.

    And that, my dear readers, is my recollection of that great day when a lawyer, acting as a scientist, working for the federal government, announced global warming.

    Fast forward to today. The federal government is spending 1000 times more money to promote the global-warming charade than is available to those scientists who are arguing against it. Never before in history has it taken a massive publicity campaign to convince the public of a scientific truth. The only reason half the public thinks global warming may be true is the massive amount of money put into global-warming propaganda. The green eco-groups have their umbilical cords in the government’s tax funds. Aside from a few honest but duped scientists living on government money, the majority of the alarms about global warming – now called “climate change” because it’s no longer warming – come from those who have no professional training in atmospheric science. They are the environmentalists, the ecologists, the lawyers and the politicians. They are not the reliable atmospheric scientists whom I know.

    Nevertheless, our politicians have passed laws stating that carbon dioxide is bad. See California’s AB32 which is based upon science fiction. (For readers who take issue with me, I will be happy to destroy your arguments in another place. In this paper, we focus on the damage to America that is being caused by those promoting the global-warming fraud.)”

  19. Uber – the R2 values for the 98-09 trends are as follows (they’re essentially flat too):
    GISS: 0.135
    CRUT: 0.015
    NCDC: 0.064
    RSS TLT: 0.005
    UAH T2LT: 0.011

  20. Judy, arguing with you is like playing whack-a-mole – whenever I beat down an argument, you pop up with another. One of these days you’ll realize that it doesn’t work on me.

    You’re trying to cast doubt on CO2 as a greenhouse gas by quoting from Lew’s site that the atmosphere doesn’t work like a greenhouse. The atmosphere doesn’t work like a greenhouse, but CO2 is still a greenhouse gas because of an unfortunate naming convention that’s now 30 years old at least.

    Greenhouses work by reducing or eliminating convection, which is the most efficient way to cool an object. Sunlight shines into the greenhouse and warms it, but because the greenhouse prevents the warm air from rising with plastic, glass, or whatever other solid material the greenhouse is made out of, it stays put and the interior of the greenhouse stays warm. If you look at a greenhouse using an infrared camera, however, you’ll see that it’s warmer than its surroundings. That’s because the greenhouse radiates heat. Radiation is the least efficient method of removing heat, however, so the greenhouse stays hot.

    The Earth is the temperature it is not because it’s enclosed in glass like a greenhouse is, but because our outgoing energy is roughly equal to our incoming energy. Greenhouse gases work by absorbing infrared radiation in various wavelength bands, and in the process the gases prevent radiation of heat from the Earth back out into space. So greenhouse gases work by reducing radiation rather than eliminating convection. A different mechanism, but the same result – warming.

    As far as Berry’s claims about the alarms being sounded by “environmentalists, the ecologists, the lawyers and the politicians,” that’s flat out false. Unless, that is, he ignores all the climatologists listed in the IPCC author list just for starters, and legions of post-docs and young professors like Dr. Tripati.

  21. Come on…the IPCC was mostly clerks, not scientists. It is as phony as the proverbial $3 bill.

    Maurice Strong convinced Ted Turner to put up $1 Billion to finance the UN Foundation, which Turner controls and they got crooked Kofi Annan to go along with it. The the UN Foundation financed the IPCC which only looked at CO2..not water vapor…not the influence of the sun…not cyclic changes in ocean currents.

    You do remember what Maurice Strong said, don’t you?
    “Isn’t the only hope for the planet that the
    industrialized civilizations collapse?
    Isn’t it our responsibility to bring that about?”
    – Maurice Strong,
    founder of the UN Environment Programme

    Maurice Strong: The new guy in your future!

    By Henry Lamb
    January, 1997

    Shortly after his selection as U.N. Secretary General, Kofi Annan told the Lehrer News Hour that Ingvar Carlsson and Shirdath Ramphal, co-chairs of the U.N.-funded Commission on Global Governance, would be among those asked to help him reform the sprawling, world-wide U.N. bureaucracy. His first choice, however, announced in the Washington Post on January 17, 1997, was none other than Maurice Strong, also a member of the Commission on Global Governance.

    Strong’s appointment as Senior Advisor, “to assist planning and executing a far-reaching reform of the world body,” is seen by U.N. watchers to be a masterful strategic maneuver to avoid political opposition while empowering Strong to implement a global agenda he has been developing for years. More than 100 developing nations coordinated a “Draft Strong” movement in 1995 to replace Boutros Boutros-Ghali. But Strong’s name was never presented publicly as a candidate. His appointment avoids the public scrutiny and the possibility of a veto. As a Senior Advisor to Kofi Annan, Strong will have a free hand to do what he wants while Annan takes the heat – or the praise. Strong prefers to operate in the background. He, perhaps more than any other single person, is responsible for the development of a global agenda now being implemented throughout the world. Although various components of the global agenda are associated with an assortment of individuals and institutions, Maurice Strong is, or has been, the driving force behind them. It is essential that Americans come to know this man who has been entrusted with the task of “reforming” the U.N. – this man Maurice F. Strong. ”


    As I’ve said before…it can’t be called a “conspiracy theory” because it is all documented and out in the open.

    • I’m beginning to see a pattern here. First Brian posts data and conducts rigid statistical analysis. Then Judy replies with things that have been debunked a jillion times, launches back-door ad hominem and quotes monkeys.

      Seriously, folks – why does Judy not have her own show on FOX News?

  22. Hardly “debunked”, just denied, or said to be irrelevant or ignored. Given that Al Gore and Maurice Strong are in business trading carbon credits with a company which Obama helped to get off the ground by voting for grants to start up the Chicago Climate Exchange…
    “Obama, Maurice Strong, Al Gore key players cashing in on Chicago Climate Exchange”


    Why would anybody follow you down a scientific rabbit hole given the collusion that is documented.

    “A pure play is Climate Exchange PLC (CXCHF.PK). This is a very volatile stock that has traded between 5.75 and 39.50 during the last twelve months. The company owns the European Climate Exchange and the Chicago Climate Exchange. They claim to be North America’s only voluntary, legally binding greenhouse gas reduction and trading system. The exchange trades carbon sources in North America and Brazil. The exchange was founded in 2003 and trades carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, sulfur hexafluoride, perfluorocarbons and hydrofluorocarbons.

    10% of the company is reportedly owned by the Generation Investment Management, an investment firm founded and chaired by former vice president Al Gore. The CEO is David Blood, former top executive of Goldman Sachs Asset Management. This has generated the nickname for the company, “Blood and Gore.” Climate Exchange PLC has an extremely low volume of trading and trades on the Pink Sheets.

    The Chicago Climate Exchange has hundreds of major corporations as members including Amtrak, the City of Chicago, DuPont (DD), Ford (F), Motorola (MOT), and the City of Oakland. They also have a division called the Chicago Climate Futures Exchange, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Chicago Climate Exchange. The CCFE is a CFTC designated contract market which offers standardized and cleared futures contracts on emission allowances and other environmental products. For the first half of 2009, trading increased by 111% over the first half of 2008 and a 27.5% increase over full year of 2008.”

    Just the idea of Gore, Strong, Obama and Goldman Sachs working on this together should be enough for rational people to question, if not the science,…at least the documented conflicts of interest.

    The science was faked and the principle pushers will profit.

    A rational person doesn’t get entangled in square roots given the facts of fraud.

  23. Let’s see – the coordinating lead authors of Chapter 9 are both PhDs in climatology (here’s a partial CV for each: http://www.geos.ed.ac.uk/homes/ghegerl/vita_hegerl_feb09.pdf and http://www.cccma.bc.ec.gc.ca/people/fzwiers.shtml) with LOTS of climate-relevant papers between them.

    Lead authors for Chapter 9:

    Pascale Braconnot has many climate-related publications.

    Nathan P. Gillett has lots of climate-related publications (at the link).

    Tracking down info on Yong Luo is proving challenging due to the fact I don’t speak any of the Chinese languages. However, a Google Scholar search turns up climate-related papers going back to at least 2003.

    Jose A. Marengo Orsini has a PhD and a significant number of papers on the response of the Amazon to climate (again, Google Scholar is your friend), and so many relevant peer-reviewed papers.

    Neville Nicholls has been cranking out climate-related papers since at least 1990.

    Joyce E. Penner has been researching aerosol effects on climate since 1992 and has dozens of papers.

    Peter A. Stott is the head of climate monitoring and attribution for the UK’s MET and has many papers going back to 1998 that are relevant to climate.

    That’s hardly a list of “clerks,” Judy. So much for THAT claim.

    I’ll give you one thing though – Al Gore isn’t necessarily who I’d choose for one of the defacto leaders of the movement to address climate disruption. He’s made it easy for conspiracy crackpots like you to make him a target. Most of your arguments against Gore are a full of it as your debunked links to Ball and Douglass above (And yes, they’ve been debunked. You just don’t have the scientific knowledge and mathematical skill to realize it.).

    I may be saddled with a rich environmentalist who doesn’t always live the life he preaches, but you’re saddled with documented lairs like Tim Ball, Joe D’Aleo, and Steve Milloy. Given that they’re paid to spread fear, uncertainty, and doubt, I’ll take Gore over them any day.

    Oh, BTW – you’ve previously claimed that the British found that Gore lied. Too bad that’s not what the judge in the case actually wrote:

    I turn to AIT, the film. The following is clear:
    i) It is substantially founded upon scientific research and fact, albeit that the science is used, in the hands of a talented politician and communicator, to make a political statement and to support a political programme.

    ii) As Mr Chamberlain persuasively sets out at paragraph 11 of his skeleton:

    “The Film advances four main scientific hypotheses, each of which is very well supported by research published in respected, peer-reviewed journals and accords with the latest conclusions of the IPCC:

    (1) global average temperatures have been rising significantly over the past half century and are likely to continue to rise (“climate change”);

    (2) climate change is mainly attributable to man-made emissions of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide (“greenhouse gases”);

    (3) climate change will, if unchecked, have significant adverse effects on the world and its populations; and

    (4) there are measures which individuals and governments can take which will help to reduce climate change or mitigate its effects.”

    These propositions, Mr Chamberlain submits (and I accept), are supported by a vast quantity of research published in peer-reviewed journals worldwide and by the great majority of the world’s climate scientists.

    And let’s not forget that the Plaintiff in the lawsuit sought to have The Great Global Warming Swindle played, and the judge found no need for that – just a guidance note explaining when Gore was using rhetoric that wasn’t supported by the IPCC reports that came out after An Inconvenient Truth.

    A rational person admits when he or she is wrong, Judy, especially when shown repeatedly. For that reason alone I never expect you to admit you’re wrong.

  24. It was Gore’s movie that was the subject of the lawsuit…not Swindle. ..and that is not quite what the judge ruled .

    “A spokesman for Al Gore has issued a questionable response to the news that in October 2007 the High Court in London had identified nine “errors” in his movie An Inconvenient Truth. The judge had stated that, if the UK Government had not agreed to send to every secondary school in England a corrected guidance note making clear the mainstream scientific position on these nine “errors”, he would have made a finding that the Government’s distribution of the film and the first draft of the guidance note earlier in 2007 to all English secondary schools had been an unlawful contravention of an Act of Parliament prohibiting the political indoctrination of children.

    Al Gore’s spokesman and “environment advisor,” Ms. Kalee Kreider, begins by saying that the film presented “thousands and thousands of facts.” It did not: just 2,000 “facts” in 93 minutes would have been one fact every three seconds. The film contained only a few dozen points, most of which will be seen to have been substantially inaccurate. The judge concentrated only on nine points which even the UK Government, to which Gore is a climate-change advisor, had to admit did not represent mainstream scientific opinion.

    Ms. Kreider then states, incorrectly, that the judge himself had never used the term “errors.” In fact, the judge used the term “errors,” in inverted commas, throughout his judgment.

    Next, Ms. Kreider makes some unjustifiable ad hominem attacks on Mr. Stewart Dimmock, the lorry driver, school governor and father of two school-age children who was the plaintiff in the case. This memorandum, however, will eschew any ad hominem response, and will concentrate exclusively on the 35 scientific inaccuracies and exaggerations in Gore’s movie.

    Ms. Kreider then says, “The process of creating a 90-minute documentary from the original peer-reviewed science for an audience of moviegoers in the U.S. and around the world is complex.” However, the single web-page entitled “The Science” on the movie’s official website contains only two references to articles in the peer-reviewed scientific journals. There is also a reference to a document of the IPCC, but its documents are not independently peer-reviewed in the usual understanding of the term.

    Ms. Kreider then says, “The judge stated clearly that he was not attempting to perform an analysis of the scientific questions in his ruling.” He did not need to. Each of the nine “errors” which he identified had been admitted by the UK Government to be inconsistent with the mainstream of scientific opinion.”

    Now we will get ad hominem attacks on Monckton.

    May I remind you that Monckton isn’t in the carbon trading business. Since Gore is, the movie can be viewed as an advertising campaign for his business. An advertising campaign he got you to pay to see. Really brilliant! Public relations at its best…makes money and gets a Nobel.

    • What, no acknowledgment that you’re wrong about your “clerks” comment RE the IPCC? I thought not.

      What I quoted is exactly, word for word, what Mr. Justice Burton wrote. It’s paragraph 17 – look it up. Also, Mr. Justice Burton said:

      I have no doubt that Dr Stott, the Defendant’s expert, is right when he says that:

      “Al Gore’s presentation of the causes and likely effects of climate change in the film was broadly accurate.”

      Mr Downes does not agree with this, but to some extent this is because the views of the Claimant’s expert, Professor Carter, do not accord with those of Dr Stott, and indeed are said by Dr Stott in certain respects not to accord with the IPCC report. But Mr Downes sensibly limited his submissions to concentrate on those areas where, as he submitted, even on Dr Stott’s case there are errors or deviations from the mainstream by Mr Gore. Mr Downes produced a long schedule of such alleged errors or exaggerations and waxed lyrical in that regard. It was obviously helpful for me to look at the film with his critique in hand.

      In the event I was persuaded that only some of them were sufficiently persuasive to be relevant for the purposes of his argument, and it was those matters – 9 in all – upon which I invited Mr Chamberlain to concentrate. (judgement paragraphs 22 and 23, emphasis original)

      No ad hominem attacks on Monckton are required. He’s the source of a great deal of disinformation that has been widely and thoroughly debunked, but that’s not ad hominem – it’s flat out fact. Monckton uses the Icecap/SPPI image that Tim Ball referenced in your CFP article above in his presentations, for example, even though I and many others have pointed out its failings (and the attempts by yourself, Ball, Douglass, Singer et al to manipulate public opinion via that graph). And Monckton’s APS opinion (which he claimed, without evidence, had been peer reviewed even though the APS doesn’t review the kind of paper Monckton got published) had over 100 errors and contradictions.

      It’s also not ad hominem to point out that Monckton arguably has fewer credentials than even I do – I have a masters degree in electrical engineering and over 10 years of experience, which means I’ve studied physics and advanced math and worked successfully as an EE for over a decade. Monckton has a classics and journalism degree (note – no math or science) and never worked as either a scientist or an engineer. I’m all for someone learning by teaching themselves, but there’s no evidence that Monckton has done this.

      Oh, and he was the man who paid for the lawsuit against Al Gore and An Inconvenient Truth (source: Climate Cover-Up).

      None of that is ad hominem, Judy. Calling him a crackpot conspiracy theorist like you certainly would be, since there’s no evidence I know of to support that statement. Calling you a crackpot conspiracy theorist, however, isn’t ad hominem either because you’ve repeatedly illustrated that you are one.

  25. I didn’t bother because it was a big so what. The inner sanctum those who ran the show consisted of +- 60 people. And since the whole idea was not to look at anything other than CO2…what difference would it make if those 60 or so people were painted ponies. The whole thing was a sham.

    Brian…I don’t care about your credentials…they are irrelevant in another internet entity. You have no way to prove that you are the Brian with the credentials. People assume other real identities all the time on the net. Dr. Slammy is not a reference.

    Yet another Warmist talking point shot down.

    “Oil Companies Support Global Warming Alarmists, Not Skeptics”

    “The only disagreement between Al Gore and Exxon Mobil is who gets to sink the teeth in first
    “Exxon Mobil and their ilk are not concerned about a carbon tax eating into their profits because they know they won’t have to pay it – the tab will be picked up by the ignorant taxpayer at the fuel pump at an inflated cost which if anything will hand the transnational oil cartels an even bigger cut.

    Ideologically, Al Gore and Exxon Mobil are on exactly the same page – the only difference between the oil companies and global warming alarmists is the squabble over who will get to sink their teeth into the taxpayer and reap the dividends of the climate change scam.

    Whereas parasites like Al Gore and Maurice Strong, the people who own the very carbon trading systems they claim will save the earth from CO2 emissions, want to enrich themselves to the tune of billions under a cap and trade scheme where they take a percentage of each transaction, the oil companies want to bypass this completely by simply imposing a direct CO2 tax. The consequence for the taxpayer under either scenario will be exactly the same, and the profits under both schemes would go towards filling the coffers of the global government that will enforce the whole scam.

    “Emphasizing again that oil companies are firmly behind the idea of man-made climate change and the introduction of a CO2 tax, in 2007 the Trilateral Commission, one of the three pillars of the new world order in alliance with Bilderberg and the CFR, met in near secrecy to formulate policy on how best they could exploit global warming fear mongering to ratchet up taxes and control over how westerners live their lives.”

    Read the rest and do look at the first video below. The first one features the much maligned Prof Ball who studied the log books from the Hudson’s Bay Company at their archives in Winnipeg for years. The HBC factors kept details of weather and ice conditions among other things. He is a climate historian and as he explains knows that climate changes all by itself. Naturally he had to be shot down…..as Brian did above.

    Let’s get back to the scam part

  26. During the question and answer session of last week’s William Schlesinger/John Christy global warming debate, (alarmist) Schlesinger was asked how many members of United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) were actual climate scientists. It is well known that many, if not most, of its members are not scientists at all. Its president, for example, is an economist. This question came after Schlesinger had cited the IPCC as an authority for his position. His answer was quite telling. First he broadened it to include not just climate scientists but also those who have had “some dealing with the climate.” His complete answer was that he thought, “something on the order of 20 percent have had some dealing with climate.” In other words, even IPCC worshiper Schlesinger now acknowledges that 80 percent of the IPCC membership had absolutely no dealing with the climate as part of their academic studies.

    This shatters so much of the alarmists’ claim, as they almost always appeal to the IPCC as their ultimate authority. Slain.


    “This is big. Al Gore is now saying carbon dioxide isn’t actually to blame for most of the warming we saw until 2001:

    Gore explored new studies – published only last week – that show methane and black carbon or soot had a far greater impact on global warming than previously thought. Carbon dioxide – while the focus of the politics of climate change – produces around 40% of the actual warming. Gore acknowledged to Newsweek that the findings could complicate efforts to build a political consensus around the need to limit carbon emissions.

    Which suggests not only that was Gore wrong to claim the science was “settled”, but that the hugely expensive schemes to “stop” warming by slashing carbon dixoide emissions will be less than half as effective as claimed.”
    Also here:

  27. “This shatters so much of the alarmists’ claim, as they almost always appeal to the IPCC as their ultimate authority. Slain.”


    Would you hire a climatologist to program your climate model, or would you hire a programmer? You’d hire a programmer. So a programmer (ie someone who most likely has a mathematics, electrical engineering, computer engineering, or computer science degree) can still be a climate modeling expert even though he’s not a climatologist.

    If you’re researching how the ocean responds to changes in atmospheric chemistry, would you talk to a climatologist (a branch of atmospheric science), or would you talk to an oceanographic chemist? The latter, of course. Again, not a climatologist, but still an expert in how climate affects ocean chemistry.

    If you’re studying how geologic weathering of basaltic rocks pulls CO2 out of the atmosphere via chemical reactions, would you talk to a climatologist or would you talk to a geochemist? Again, the latter, and yet again an expert on the effects of interactions between atmospheric CO2 and geologic features.

    And I could go on listing climate-related fields that aren’t actually climatology for pages, but I think I’ve made my point. So long as their work is in the interactions between climate and their academic field, they’re qualified.

    I have a question for you – do you realize that you’re logically inconsistent? You’re linking to a post on Prison Planet that reports on how climate models have found that soot and methane are more important than previously thought, but you also think that the models suck so bad that they can’t predict anything. After all, you quoted extensively from Tim Ball’s piece that said that the models were completely wrong.

    So which is it – are the models right and CO2 is somewhat less important and methane somewhat more, or are the models wrong and you can’t trust this result any more than you could trust the result that CO2 is a major greenhouse gas? Or are the models right when you agree with them and wrong when you don’t?

    I may have more to say on the paper once I’ve had a chance to read it. Unlike you, I don’t trust sources that I can’t verify, and Prison Planet is hardly an unbiased source of information.

  28. Are you really trying to pretend the the Climate Scam is “logically consistent” when data has been faked? Under that circumstance, what on earth does that phrase mean? Briffa lied, Mann lied, Santer lied and Gore is lying.

    Gore’s Profits Of Doom

    Junk Science: The oracle of climate disaster has a new book out on global warming that should be on the fiction list. He asks us to commit economic suicide while he rakes in millions from his green investments.

    ‘Our Choice: A Plan to Solve the Climate Crisis,” Al Gore’s sequel to his 2006 tome “An Inconvenient Truth,” came out Tuesday. Printed on recycled paper using low-VOC (volatile organic compound) ink, it will undoubtedly be a best-seller and on the desk of every attendee at next month’s climate change conference in Copenhagen.

    In a press release announcing the book, the Oscar- and Nobel Prize-winning former vice president writes: “Now that the need for urgent action is even clearer with the alarming new findings of the last three years, it is time for a comprehensive global plan that actually solves the climate crisis. ‘Our Choice’ will answer that call.”

    The book’s cover depicts one of the hurricanes Gore still claims are increasing in frequency and intensity. What has happened in the past three years is that such claims have been thoroughly debunked as the earth has cooled, possibly for decades hence.

    For example, a recent study by researchers at Florida State University determined that the 2007 and 2008 hurricane seasons had the least tropical activity in the Northern Hemisphere in 30 years.

    Ryan Maue, co-author of the report released in November 2008 on “Global Tropical Cyclone Activity,” used a measurement called accumulated cyclone energy (ACE) that combines a storm’s duration and its wind speed in six-hour intervals. The years 2007 and 2008 had among the lowest ACE measurements since reliable global satellite data were first available three decades ago.

    In a New York Times puff piece the same day Gore’s book was released, “Gore’s Dual Role: Advocate And Investor,” it’s described just how profitable saving the earth can be. Considering the accuracy of Gore’s climate data, his role would be better described as “storyteller and profiteer.”

    In November 2007, Gore joined the investment firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. The following May the firm announced a $500 million investment in maturing green technology firms called the Green Growth Fund.

    The group then announced an additional $700 million to be invested the next three years in green-tech startup firms. But there will be no return on these investments if the green technology business, uh, cools down. The hype and interest must be maintained. Climate change skeptics must be denounced as “deniers.””Financial disclosure documents released before the 2000 election put the Gore family’s net worth at $1 million to $2 million.

    A mere nine years later, estimates put his net worth at about $100 million. Gore’s spokeswoman wouldn’t give a current figure for his net worth, but, according to the Times, “the scale of his wealth is evident in a single investment of $35 million in Capricorn Equity Group,” a Palo Alto, Calif., firm that directs clients to conservation investments, namely environmentally correct products.

    Last year, Gore was the star witness at the hearings on cap-and trade-legislation in front of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., asked how a man dedicated to saving the planet could get so wealthy so quickly.

    Blackburn noted that Kleiner Perkins at last count had “about $1 billion dollars invested in 40 companies that are going to benefit from cap-and-trade legislation that we are discussing here today.”

    Gore replied he was only being a good businessman in a capitalist economy, that he was putting his money where his mouth was.

    Perhaps, but at the same time he is advocating policies based on junk science that, while he enriches himself, will devastate the American economy, causing huge losses in jobs, economic growth and GDP.

    The American consumer and taxpayer are on the wrong end of his green Ponzi scheme. Somewhere, Bernie Madoff is smiling.”

    As some stand-up comic has said…”Beware a prophet seeking profits’.

    • Can you prove that Mann lied? Can you prove that Briffa did? McIntyre can’t and he’s got WAY more mathematical and scientific knowledge than you do. Dozens, perhaps hundreds, of scientists have independently verified that Mann’s work is solid. I’ll indulge in a little argument by authority here and point out that one of the most prestigious scientific organizations in the world, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, also cleared Mann’s work as being scientifically accurate given the state of knowledge at the time. The Santer claim is new to me, but I’ve read much of what Santer has written in the last few years and it’s all pretty solid.

      However, you’ve never offered any proof – not even links to any proof – that the data underlying climate disruption is fake. None. Every time you’ve tried, I’ve shot it down using science, data, research, peer-reviewed papers, and so on. And every time I’ve shot it down, you’ve gone off on some tangent

      Unsurprisingly, though, you didn’t answer my question – are the models bullshit and we can’t trust them, are they correct and you’re admitting it, or are they only correct when they’re convenient to your ideologically predetermined position?

      And don’t bother quoting Milloy – he’s not a scientist or an engineer, he’s a former tobacco PR man who was paid, and still is paid, to cast fear, uncertainty, and doubt on science that’s inconvenient to his employers. He was paid by Phillip Morris to deny the scientific data that second hand smoke was a health hazard. I spent more than a month researching Milloy’s background and put together three pieces back in December, 2007. You won’t bother to read them because anything that opposes your ideology doesn’t even penetrate, but others might.

      Suffice it to say that he’s got even less credibility than even you do, and you’ve admitted that you have none.

  29. The fact the Briffa hid his data for 10 years and Mann et al also played hidden data games is beyond suspicious when others being able to check the work is a basic part of the scientific process is a dead give away.

    The role played by Ben Santer was pivotal is getting the scam off the ground

    “.Letter to Science: Changes in the Climate Change Report
    July 3, 1996

    The controversial text changes (News & Comments, 21 June) made in “Climate Change 1995,” the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) [1], point to a possible distortion of science for political purposes. If the IPCC conclusions are accepted by governments as being based on solid science and lead to global controls on energy use and generation, drastic economic consequences would follow, impacting mainly on the world’s poor.

    Dr. Benjamin Santer, convening lead author of Chapter 8, admits to making the actual changes between the final approval of the report in Madrid (in November 1995} and its printing (in May 1996), because “reviewers requested them” [2]. This statement obviously calls for considerable amplification.

    The legality of the procedure is still in dispute [3]. It is not clear, for example, who else was involved in making the changes, who decided that changes were necessary, and who approved or edited the changes before the book was printed [4].

    Following its own investigation, Nature reports that the responsibility for disputed changes lies with “IPCC officials” [5]. A Richmond Times-Dispatch editorial states on credible authority that the changes “were made at the request of State Department officials, not scientists” [6]. A news story in Nature [7] confirms that a State Department letter of November 15, 1995 “endorsed” changes in the report, but does not explain how the State Department derives such authority.

    Did “scientific cleansing” change the tone of the report? The IPCC says No. Nature [5], while clearly favoring the IPCC and impugning its critics, nevertheless concludes that “there is some evidence that the revision process did result in a subtle shift … [that] tended to favour arguments that aligned with the report’s broad conclusions.” (Critics of the IPCC would have used much stronger words). The Nature article further admits that “phrases that might have been (mis)interpreted as undermining these conclusions have disappeared” [5].

    Why were these changes made? Santer says he “fine-tuned the wording to bring the report into line with the scientific consensus” [2] (emphasis added). IPCC officials quoted by Nature claim the reason for the revisions was “to ensure that it conformed to a `policymakers’ summary’ of the full report…” [5].

    Their claim raises the obvious question: Should not a summary conform to the underlying scientific report rather than vice versa? More important, the policymakers’ summary is a political consensus of government delegations not a scientific one. The several pages of the Summary–drafted by the IPCC leadership–were tortuously discussed, line by line, in three days of plenary sessions in Madrid [8].

    Why were IPCC officials so anxious to make the scientific report conform to the Summary once its wording had been hammered out? In my view, there may have been two reasons:

    1. In the past, the IPCC had been severely criticized in connection with their first climate assessment report of 1990 (and its 1992 addendum), when that earlier Summary clearly departed from the underlying scientific report, thereby portraying the warming issue as much more serious than the data permitted [9].

    2. A more basic reason may be that the Summary contains so little to back the political claim of a global warming threat. Ever economical with the truth, the Summary presents the underlying facts selectively and omits relevant information [10]. For example, the Summary does not even mention the existence of 18 years of weather satellite data that show a slight global cooling trend, contradicting all theoretical models of climate warming [11].

    In its earlier reports [12], the IPCC used the artful phrase that data and climate models were “broadly consistent.” This phrase has now been abandoned. In 1996 [13], it seems to be “balance of evidence for a discernible human influence” on climate. Nothing is new here; we have known for some years that the stratosphere is cooling [14], that the diurnal temperature range has been decreasing [15], etc.–most likely as the result of human influence.

    But even if a “discernible human influence” were to exist [16] in the surface temperature record, this does not mean that greenhouse warming will occur at anywhere near the rapid rate calculated from current climate models–although this is exactly what many will be led to believe when they read the Summary and altered report.

    S. Fred Singer, distinguished research professor of the Institute for Humane Studies at George Mason University, directs the Fairfax, VA based Science & Environmental Policy Project.


    • Singer was wrong about the satellite data showing a cooling trend even back in 1996:

      It’s certainly flat, but the noise is so bad that it can’t be considered to be warming or cooling.

      But Singer doesn’t prove here that Santer fabricated anything. He casts doubt, yes, but in a court of law this is called “hearsay,” and isn’t considered evidence. The same goes for your claims about Mann and Briffa. At this point all you have is accusations, but accusations are not proof. Provide me actual proof, Judy, if you can.

      You’re trying to do FUD, Judy – fear, uncertainty, and doubt. Too bad you don’t do it well.

      And you still haven’t answered my question: are the models bullshit and we can’t trust them, are they correct and you’re admitting it, or are they only correct when they’re convenient to your ideologically predetermined position?

      The fact you refuse to say means that the last option is the correct answer. But I’m just going to keep asking it until you answer.

  30. Nope, and nice try to weasel out by pretending to answer my question with an irrelevant link to yet another bogus image.

    You quoted in comment #37 above a Prison Planet link about how Gore’s having troubles due to methane. You seem to believe that this is a major deal. But as I pointed out in comment #38:

    I have a question for you – do you realize that you’re logically inconsistent? You’re linking to a post on Prison Planet that reports on how climate models have found that soot and methane are more important than previously thought, but you also think that the models suck so bad that they can’t predict anything. After all, you quoted extensively from Tim Ball’s piece that said that the models were completely wrong. (emphasis added)

    That’s what I’m asking. You can’t have it both ways, Judy.

    So again, are the models bullshit and we can’t trust them, are the models correct and you’re admitting you’re wrong, or are the models only correct when they’re convenient to your ideologically predetermined position?

  31. The usual Warmist wriggle…call evidence bogus.

    On what grounds is that graph “bogus”?…That you don’t like it doesn’t make it bogus

    You set up the strawman..obviously all models are not equal. I never said they were.
    The IPCC and CCPS models were obviously wrong.

    Slippery. slippery Brian!

    I like this oldie-but-goodie too!

    Ben Santer: MacArthur “Genius”
    June 2, 1998

    The New York Times reports today that Dr. Benjamin Santer, atmospheric scientist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, California, has been awarded a MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant of $270,000 for research supporting the finding that human activity contributes to global warming.

    We recall that earlier MacArthur “genius” grants have gone to Dr. Paul Ehrlich of Stanford University and Lester Brown of the Worldwatch Institute, both noteworthy for forecasts of famines, cancer epidemics, and other population disasters that were somewhat wide of the mark.

    Dr. Santer breaks new ground by having admitted to altering Chapter 8 of the most recent IPCC report, deleting phrases that suggested scientific doubts about human influences on climate. According to the journal Nature, the changes were made to make the report conform to the IPCC Policymakers Summary, a political document. Nature editors said that the U.S. State Department had urged the head of the UN science advisory group to prevail upon chapter authors to make such changes.

    Santer also edited a crucial graph in Chapter 8 (Fig. 8.10) from his original published version, leading readers to believe that human influence is present and increasing with time, and selected data for Figure 8.7 (discovered by climatologist Prof. Patrick Michaels of the University of Virginia) to suggest that aerosols could account for the discrepancy between calculated and observed temperature trends.

    The Science & Environmental Policy Project congratulates Dr. Ben Santer on his success. We feel certain he has a bright future in his field of research.

    We also express our deep appreciation to the New York Times for not putting this story on page 1. ”


    Kind of reminds one of the various “prizes” Hansen got, like the one from Sen Kerry’s wife.

    It’s a scam, and your tactic of attacking me doesn’t amount to a pinch of soot.

  32. Unlike you, Judy, I can actually back up my statements with science and data when I make them.

    If you’d read my response #24 above, you’d understand why it’s bogus. The image is nearly identical, and as such it’s bogus for the same basic reasons. Linking to the same image over and over and over from different sites and done in different programs doesn’t make the science and statistics underlying the flaws in the image any different.

    And the GISS model used to develop the forcing for methane is one of the models used by the CCSP and IPCC. If you’d read the actual paper instead of relying on the Prison Planet link (and I’ve now read it – at lunch today, actually), you’d know that.

    If the GISS model is wrong for the CCSP and IPCC, then why is it suddenly right now that you like the conclusion? Again I ask you, are the models bullshit and we can’t trust them, are the models correct and you’re admitting you’re wrong, or are the models only correct when they’re convenient to your ideologically predetermined position?

    As to what Santer did or didn’t do in the Second Assessment Report, I don’t know enough about the situation. If he did succumb to political pressure and alter part of Chapter 8, that’s unfortunate and explains why the IPCC process in the Fourth Assessment Report is much more rigorous than it was a decade earlier. Santer at least admitted he did it – D’Aleo, Singer, Monckton, et al never admit that they screwed up – it’s part of the FUD PR tactic.

    Like Milloy, Singer was also paid to deny the health dangers of smoking and has been funded over the years by libertarian think tanks (CEI, Cato, etc) who get large amounts of their money from the Koch oil fortune, ExxonMobil, and similar carbon-intensive energy companies. The SEPP also has received money directly from Exxon. (Sources: my Milloy piece, Climate Cover-Up, and the tobacco documents library)

    Finally, I’m not attacking you, Judy. I’m simply not letting you weasel away from answering a question you don’t want to answer.

  33. Singer did no such thing…jeesh. What junk fills your head? What a stupid ad hominem when the facts are known.

    “The page that Wikipedia devotes to what is ostensibly Fred Singer’s biography is designed to trivialize his long and outstanding scientific career by painting him as a political partisan and someone who “is best known as president and founder (in 1990) of the Science & Environmental Policy Project, which disputes the prevailing scientific views of climate change, ozone depletion, and second-hand smoke and is science advisor to the conservative journal NewsMax.”
    Innocent Wikipedia readers would be surprised to learn that Dr. Singer is no conservative kook but the first director of the U.S. National Weather Satellite Center; the recipient of a White House commendation for his early design of space satellites; the recipient of a commendation from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration for research on particle clouds; and the recipient of a U.S. Department of Commerce Gold Medal Award for the development and management of weather satellites.
    He is, in short, a scientist of the highest calibre, with a long list of major scientific achievements, including the first measurements, with V-2 and Aerobee rockets, of primary cosmic radiation in space, the design of the first instruments for measuring ozone, and the authorship of the first publications predicting the existence of trapped radiation in the earth’s magnetic field to explain the magnetic-storm ring current.
    Honest accounts of Fred Singer and his accomplishments have been available on Wikipedia, and on hundreds of occasions. Those occasions don’t last long, however — often just minutes — before the honest accounts are discovered and reverted by Wikipedians who troll the site. Such trolls continually monitor Wikipedia’s 10 million pages to erase any hint that the science is not settled on climate change. Dissenters by the dozens have been likewise demeaned — to check for yourself, just look up Richard Lindzen, Paul Reiter, or any of the other scientists or organizations that have questioned the orthodoxy on climate change.
    In contrast to the high-handed treatment that greet global warming skeptics, those who support the orthodoxy are puffed up and protected from criticism, their errors erased and their controversies hushed.”

    ” Fact: The first step in a meta analysis is identifying all of the relevant studies. The EPA located 33 studies that compared ETS exposure to lung cancer rates.

    Fact: The EPA selected 31 of the 33 studies. Later they rejected one of their chosen studies, bringing the total to 30.

    Fact: On page 3-46 of the report the EPA estimates, based on nicotine measurements in non-smokers blood, “this would translate to the equivalent of about one-fifth of a cigarette per day.”

    Fact: Studies that measured actual exposure by having non-smokers wear monitors indicate even this low estimate is exaggerated. Actual exposure (for people who live and/or work in smoky environments) is about six cigarettes per year. (See also the study by Oak Ridge National Laboratories.)

    Fact: In 1995 The Congressional Research Service (CRS) released a review of the EPA report.

    The CRS was highly critical of both the EPA’s methods and conclusions.

    Pulling that one just shows the kind of dumb, irrelevant smear Warmists are capable of.

    And pulling that nonsense about Christy’s graph being bogus is really outrageous. The data is available to be checked and the graph is elementary

    .Global Warming Predictions Invalidated
    Submitted by Doug L. Hoffman on Thu, 11/05/2009 – 13:39

    A new study in the journal Science has just shown that all of the climate modeling results of the past are erroneous. The IPCC’s modeling cronies have just been told that the figures used for greenhouse gas forcings are incorrect, meaning none of the model results from prior IPCC reports can be considered valid. What has caused climate scientists’ assumptions to go awry? Short lived aerosol particles in the atmosphere changing how greenhouse gases react in previously unsuspected ways. The result is another devastating blow to the climate catastrophists’ computer generated apocalyptic fantasies.

    In a stunning article entitled “Improved Attribution of Climate Forcing to Emissions,” a group of researchers from NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies and Columbia University in New York, led by Drew T. Shindell, have called into question the values used to calculate the “forcing” due to various greenhouse gases. “We calculated atmospheric composition changes, historical radiative forcing, and forcing per unit of emission due to aerosol and tropospheric ozone precursor emissions in a coupled composition-climate model,” states the paper’s abstract. “We found that gas-aerosol interactions substantially alter the relative importance of the various emissions. In particular, methane emissions have a larger impact than that used in current carbon-trading schemes or in the Kyoto Protocol.”
    more at

    Warmists have nothing left to stand on…there never was any real science, just fakes, fakery and lies.

    • I don’t claim that Singer wasn’t an impressive scientist at one point in his life, Judy. Only that he’s allowed his ideology and/or greed to cloud his scientific judgment.

      And yes, Singer did take money from tobacco companies, albeit indirectly. Here’s a link to the TobaccoDocuments.org, dated March 10, 1994, where members of the Alexis de Tocqueville Institution (ADTI) discuss Singer’s resume for a research paper they want to commission:

      Here is the resume of the man who would handle the EPA/ETS background work for us on the “social costs”. Very impressive resume – I think the project is worth the 20k we discussed.

      That fax was to Bill Orzechowski, Chief Economist for the Tobacco Institute. In response to the letter being written, the following was written in a letter from the ADTI to the Tobacco Institute:

      On behalf of the directors of the Alexis de Tocqueville Institution, I would like to thank the Tobacco Institute for its grant of $20,000 to support our research and education projects. IRS regulations require us to inform you in writing that we received your tax deductible $20,000.00 donation (check # 016214) today.

      Singer also worked with APCO, the PR firm hired by Philip Morris to create Milloy’s TASSC organization that, again, existed to claim that second-hand smoke wasn’t hazardous. Here’s an link to an APCO internal communication that mentions Singer’s writing of opinion articles on “junk science.” And another. And here’s an internal APCO memo that talks about how to create a TASSC-like group in Europe and that mentions Singer by name:

      When considering the formation of a TASSC-like group in Europe, we think it is important to begin where we started in the United States by identifying some key objectives. Specifically, we recommend that a European TASSC be formulated to do the following:
      – preempt unilateral action against industry.
      – associate anti-industry “scientific” studies with broader questions about government research and regulations.
      link the tobacco issue with more “politically correct” products.
      – have non-industry messengers provide reasons for business executives and media to view policies drawn from unreliable scientific studies with extreme caution.

      In discussions with a number of our scientific supporters ans with Dr. Fred Singer (a member of the Board of the International Center for Scientific Ecology), there is belief that this initial support could be organized into a more “formal movement” internationally. (emphasis mine)

      As for TASSC, here’s what I wrote in 2007 in my Milloy series:

      Mr. Milloy also founded the The Advancement of Sound Science Coalition (TASSC), later renamed The Advancement of Sound Science Center. TASSC was created by APCO Associated using money provided by Philip Morris (PM) specifically to work with PM as a “public affairs” group for “Consumers/Special Constituents” (see page 9) on issues such as the safety of second-hand smoke. There are many documents in the Legacy Tobacco Documents Library that tie PM to TASSC via APCO, including this plan for launching TASSC sent from APCO to PM and this discussion of PM’s funding of TASSC’s 1994 budget. In brief, an organization that Mr. Milloy founded (TASSC) was created by Philip Morris via a public relations firm in order to “encourage the public to question the validity of scientific studies” and to “establish an image of a national grassroots coalition” (source, pages 2 & 3).

      TASSC was shut down by Milloy after the tobacco settlement because it had been exposed as a sham by the release of hundreds of thousands of documents into the public domain.

      So we’ve seen that Singer is associated with APCO, Philip Morris, and TASSC. SEPP has recieved funding from the Claude R. Lambe Charitable Foundation (in 2003), part of the Koch family foundations that are funded with oil money, and SEPP has received at least two donations of $10,000 each from ExxonMobil.

      Oh, and look, not a single Wikipedia reference anywhere.

      Again, though, your second point is what I’ve been harping on you for all day, and simply pasting in another link to another example isn’t going to get you off the hook. If the old models were all bullshit, but the new information is based on those same old bullshit models, then the new information is bullshit too (a logically consistent result). Or, if the new information is right, and it’s based on the old models, then the old models couldn’t have been complete bullshit like you claim (another logically consistent result). Or you’re thrilled with the new results because they support your ideologically predetermined opinion. So which is it, Judy?

      Answer the question.

  34. One would have to be as mad as a hatter to attribute greed as a possible motive to Singer for a $20,000 donation and overlook Gore, Strong and Obama and the millions made trading carbon credits in Chicago.

    You’ve lost me . .. the maze that is your mind is impenetrable .What/which models. All models are not the same.The IPCC’s model was wrong because it gave too big a value to CO2.

    Singer has lots of credible company

    The following letter was sent to all 100 U.S. Senator’s on October 29, 2009 by a team of scientists. The letter is reproduced in full below:

    You have recently received a letter from the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), purporting to convey a “consensus” of the scientific community that immediate and drastic action is needed to avert a climatic catastrophe.

    We do not seek to make the scientific arguments here (we did that in an earlier letter, sent a couple of months ago), but simply to note that the claim of consensus is fake, designed to stampede you into actions that will cripple our economy, and which you will regret for many years. There is no consensus, and even if there were, consensus is not the test of scientific validity. Theories that disagree with the facts are wrong, consensus or no.

    We know of no evidence that any of the “leaders” of the scientific community who signed the letter to you ever asked their memberships for their opinions, before claiming to represent them on this important matter. We also note that the American Physical Society (APS, and we are physicists) did not sign the letter, though the scientific issues at stake are fundamentally matters of applied physics. You can do physics without climatology, but you can’t do climatology without physics.

    The APS is at this moment reviewing its stance on so-called global warming, having received a petition from its membership to do so. That petition was signed by 160 distinguished members and fellows of the Society, including one Nobelist and 12 members of the National Academies. Indeed a score of the signers are Members and Fellows of the AAAS, none of whom were consulted before the AAAS letter to you.

    Professor Hal Lewis, University of California, Santa Barbara
    Professor Fred Singer, University of Virginia
    Professor Will Happer, Princeton University
    Professor Larry Gould, University of Hartford
    Dr. Roger Cohen, retired Manager, Strategic Planning, ExxonMobil
    List of 160 signers of the APS petition available here

  35. When was the last time you got paid $20 grand for a research paper, Judy? I never have. Singer got paid $20,000 by the Tobacco Institute to deny that second-hand tobacco smoke is dangerous (something you apparently agree with, given your DaveHitt.com link in comment #47) and he worked with and for people who got paid by Philip Morris to deny that second-hand tobacco smoke is dangerous.

    The APS has 46000 members. Based on the Six Americas survey, there should be 7-18% of APS members (assuming they track the U.S. population at large) who disagree with the APS stance on climate disruption. That’s between 3200 and 8300 physicists. That there are only 160 APS scientists who signed on to the letter suggests that APS physicists actually understand the science and agree that the Earth is warming as a result of human influence in much larger numbers than the general public (as would be expected). 160 is 0.3% of the APS membership.

    As I pointed out in comment #46, the GISS model that was used by Drew Shindell is the same general combined circulation model as is used for the IPCC AR4 results you claim are bullshit. So again I ask you, is the IPCC model that produced Shindell’s results bullshit and thus his new results are bullshit too, are Shindell’s results correct and thus the IPCC model that produced them is also correct, or do you approve of Shindell’s results simply because they match your ideologically predetermined position?

    Answer the question.

  36. The irrelevant won’t help you get people back into the fold. If anything your tactics expose the paucity of your evidence in support of the scam. You wouldn’t be talking about Big Tobacco if there was anything real to support the fraud of man-made global warming aka climate change.

    The Global Warming Scare is All Over but the Shouting

    The great global warming scare is over — it is well past its peak, very much a spent force, sputtering in fits and starts to a whimpering end. You may not know this yet. Or rather, you may know it but don’t want to acknowledge it until every one else does, and that won’t happen until the press, much of which also knows it, formally acknowledges it.

    I know that the global warming scare is over but for the shouting because that’s what the polls show, at least those in the U.S., where unlike Canada the public is polled extensively on global warming. Most Americans don’t blame humans for climate change — they consider global warming to be a natural phenomenon. Even when the polls showed the public believed man was responsible for global warming, the public didn’t take the scare seriously. When asked to rank global warming’s importance compared to numerous other concerns — unemployment, trade, health care, poverty, crime, and education among them — global warming came in dead last. Fewer than 1% chose global warming as scare-worthy.

    The informed members of the media read those polls and know the global warming scare is over, too. Andrew Revkin, The New York Times reporter entrusted with the global warming scare beat, has for months lamented “the public’s waning interest in global warming.” His colleague at The Washington Post, Andrew Freedman, does his best to revive public fear, and to get politicians to act, by urging experts to up their hype so that the press will have scarier material to run with.

    The experts do their best to give us the willies. This week they offered up plagues of locusts in China and a warning that the 2016 Olympics “could be the last for mankind” because “the earth has passed the point of no return.” But the press has also begun to tire of Armageddon All-The-Time, and (I believe) to position itself for its inevitable attack on the doomsters. In an online article in June entitled “Massive Estimates of Death are in Vogue for Copenhagen,” Richard Cable of the BBC, until then the most stalwart of scare-mongers, rattled off the global warnings du jour – they included a comparison of global warming to nuclear war and a report from the former Secretary General of the UN, Kofi Annan, to the effect that “every year climate change leaves over 300,000 people dead, 325-million people seriously affected, and economic losses of US $125-billion.” Cable’s conclusion: “The problem is that once you’ve sat up and paid attention enough to examine them a bit more closely, you find that the means by which the figures were arrived at isn’t very compelling… The report contains so many extrapolations derived from guesswork based on estimates inferred from unsuitable data.”

    The scientist-scare-mongers, seeing the diminishing returns that come of their escalating claims of catastrophe, also know their stock is falling. Until now, they have all toughed it out when the data disagreed with their findings – as it does on every major climate issue, without exception. Some scientists, like Germany’s Mojib Latif, have begun to break ranks. Frustrated by embarrassing questions about why the world hasn’t seen any warming over the last decade, Latif, a tireless veteran of the public speaking circuits, now explains that global warming has paused, to resume in 2020 or perhaps 2030. “People understand what I’m saying but then basically wind up saying, ‘We don’t believe anything,’” he told The New York Times this week.

    And why should they believe anything that comes from the global warming camp? Not only has the globe not warmed over the last decade but the Arctic ice is returning, the Antarctic isn’t shrinking, polar bear populations aren’t diminishing, hurricanes aren’t becoming more extreme. The only thing that’s scary about the science is the frequency with which doomsayer data is hidden from public scrutiny, manipulated to mislead, or simply made up.

    None of this matters anymore, I recently heard at the Global Business Forum in Banff, where a fellow panelist from the Pew Centre on Global Climate Change told the audience that, while she couldn’t dispute the claims I had made about the science being dubious, the rights and wrongs in the global warming debate are no longer relevant. “The train has left the station,” she cheerily told the business audience, meaning that the debate is over, global warming regulations are coming in, and everyone in the room — primarily business movers and shakers from Western Canada — had better learn to adapt.

    Her advice was well accepted, chiefly because most in the room had already adapted — they are busy trying to cash in by obtaining carbon subsidies, building nuclear plants, or providing services to the new carbon economy.

    My assessment for those wondering where we’re at: Yes, the train left the station some time ago. And it is now off the rails. http://www.skepticsglobalwarming.com/?p=19765

    • Judy, what’s happening here is this: you’re throwing every argument you can think of against the wall, hoping one will stick. When you try to use manipulated science that you don’t understand, I demolish it with actual science and data. When you claim that your fellow deniers are credible using an argument to authority, I point out that they have a fiduciary conflict of interest and have been paid in the past to cast doubt on science in order to protect their employer’s profits. When you try to use my own arguments against me, I point out that doing so introduces a logical inconsistency into your own position that makes your position untenable.

      You essentially have four arguments – my scientists are better than your scientists, the models are all bullshit, humanity isn’t powerful enough to manipulate nature, and Al Gore is the devil. The Al Gore argument is the only one I haven’t torn apart multiple times and in multiple ways, and that’s because it has no bearing on the actual science behind climate disruption.

      I’ve disproved the claims of your scientists in some cases and raise serious methodological concerns about them in others. I’ve pointed out repeatedly that the claims of many of your scientists are questionable at best, manipulative or out right lies at worst, and almost always unsupported by the best available science and statistics. In many cases, I’ve pointed out that your scientists are presently in the employ of companies who profit to the tune of tens to hundreds of billions of dollars annually, or who have been in their employ in the past. And in other cases, I’ve pointed out that your scientists aren’t actually scientists, have little to no relevant expertise, and/or have inflated their resumes and been caught doing so.

      I’ve pointed out that your “the IPCC models are bullshit” argument is false at least twice, based on your own logical inconsistencies, with the Shindell paper mentioned above being the most recent example. Again, if all the IPCC models are bullshit, then Shindell’s new IPCC model based results are also bullshit. If Shindell’s new IPCC model based results are correct, then the IPCC models are also largely correct. If the IPCC model Shindell used was wrong before but is right now, then you’re a ideologically-driven partisan picking and choosing your data to match your preconceived notions. You’ve made it abundantly clear, both by refusing to accept the logical conundrum you’re in and by your prior arguments in this and dozens of other comments to my posts at S&R and Care2 that the third option is the correct one.

      Your opinions on humanity not being powerful enough to manipulate climate and weather are not supported by your own stated opinions at Care2. As recently as September 1, 2009, you posted at Care2 about chemtrails causing droughts, “weather modification techniques,” “giant standing ELF waves which are transmitted by the Soviets intentionally to block the flow of normal weather patterns,” and so on. If humanity has the power to manipulate weather and climate on purpose, then logically we have the power to do the same unintentionally with greenhouse gas emissions, land use changes, pollutants, etc. Again, logically inconsistent. This is especially true since your reject science in at least three cases – chemtrails causing drought, ELF radiation modifying weather over the course of years, and human influence on climate.

      And as for your Al Gore argument, you’ve damaged yourself with your conspiracy claims about the Club of Rome wanting to destroy 90%+ of the global population, ELF radiation, chemtrails, and H1N1 being used to depopulate the Earth (probably working for the Club of Rome, they are…) that I don’t need to argue against you. I just give you a place to talk and you destroy your own credibility when you start ranting about Al Gore.

      You have no interest in the truth, Judy. You have no interest in understanding the mathematics, statistics, scientific disciplines, and data that underlie the conclusion that anthropogenic climate disruption is real. You have no interest in debate – all you care about is using as many soapboxes as you can find to spread unsupported fear, uncertainty, and doubt. And at this point you’ve run out of arguments to even do that effectively.

      • At this stage, I’m going to step in and note that S&R has a “no noise” policy for commenters. That is, we welcome debate, we understand that humanity doesn’t know everything that there is to know, and we acknowledge that science is a process whereby we rarely can declare victory on a question. Where climate is concerned, there remains a great deal we don’t yet know. Scientists are conducting ongoing research every day, and these people routinely add to our body of knowledge.

        So there is certainly room for debate on various climate issues. However, “debate” is a word with a meaning, and it relies on good faith participation by those involved. It rather pointedly does NOT include those who would obfuscate, who would inject confusion instead of clarity, those who seek to delude in the name of ignorance or vested profit motive, and those who trade in fear, uncertainty and doubt.

        In a nutshell, S&R is about signal, not noise. And we have gone out of our way to recruit writers who know the difference, who understand the limits of their knowledge and expertise, and who confront those limits in a spirit of honest, open inquiry.

        I use the term “noisers” from time to time to signify those whose mission is to spread noise instead of signal, and Judy, you’re about as bad a case as I have seen. You’ve been allowed to continue here basically because Brian enjoys making a fool out of you, because he values your commitment to bringing him all the current bullshit (that is, he gets to practice on you), and because I personally find a lot of value in letting idiots speak because they do such a wonderful job of discrediting themselves.

        However, in the end, your presence here significantly erodes our collective signal-to-noise ration, and we are now officially over it.

  37. There is one fundamental problem with this sea ice versus CO2 theory. The effect of CO2 on solar energy trapping (greenhouse effect) depends on the actual concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere not the partial pressure. Also other atmospheric constituents such as water vapor, methane, and sulfuric acid aerosols have much stronger greenhouse effects than CO2. The correlation between sea ice and partial pressure of CO2 is meaningless unless the total atmospheric pressure and the mass of these other constituents are known and correctly account for.

    • Actually, we can ignore water vapor because it has such a short residence time in the atmosphere that it’s a feedback, not a forcing. Sulfur aerosols are overwhelmingly cooling factors (they increase albedo) rather than warming ones, so they’d work to decouple CO2 from the temperature records rather than to couple them more tightly. And the partial pressure of CO2 is directly related to the total amount of CO2 in the atmosphere.

      Your comment about methane is a reasonable concern, however, and I don’t immediately see it addressed in the paper or the supplemental online materials. I haven’t checked the references, however.

  38. We need to get to the fundamental issue. Data from ancient ice and ocean sediment samples were used to establish an assumed correlation between lower CO2 partial pressure and the concomitant growth of sea ice sheets. This assumed correlation was then used to validate the higher CO2 partial pressure models that predict warming.

    The fact that sulfur aerosols cause cooling was amply demonstrated by the earth cooling after the eruption of Mt Pinatubo. The point here is that the possible existence of other constituents such as high levels of sulfur aerosols, methane, and ozone must be ruled out before one can make the leap that CO2 was the cause of growth of the sea ice sheets. Also it must be proven that the cooling was not caused by lower solar radiant intensity and/or lower cosmic radiation penetration due to increased ozone. I flatly disagree with the argument that water vapor is not a forcing constituent. The levels of water vapor determine the prevalence, density, and particle size distribution of clouds. All of these factors affect the reflection and transmission of solar radiation and upwelling earth radiation. Both of these have strong effects on the temperature. As any meteorologist will validate, clouds trap heat in the lower atmosphere and in cold climatic zones clear skies result in lower surface temperatures.

    The final error in your argument concerns the partial pressure of CO2. As I said, it is not the partial pressure that counts, its the total CO2 mass. Contrary to what you say, the partial pressure of CO2 is proportional to the total atmosphere mass not the total CO2 mass. Without knowing the total atmosphere mass we have no way of knowing the total CO2 mass. The argument assumes that the atmosphere 20 million years ago was essentially the same as the present atmosphere.

    The bottom line is that basing global warming model validation on CO2 partial pressure and ice sheet concomitant growth is not valid unless all other factors at the time (20 million years ago) are ruled out. It is the responsibility of researchers who propose the theory to prove there can be no other cause of ice sheet growth 20 million years ago. Absence of that proof puts into question the validation of those global warming models.

  39. I am a new observer to this web site and have read the exchanges between Brian and other “Deniers”. I would like to weigh in on comment 14 where Brian sights his credentials. Specifically the following comment:

    “The nice thing about science is that math and data are what make someone credible. That I can do the math myself, that I can read the papers and understand them, that I understand the physics, chemistry, and atmospheric science – those are what make me credible.”

    Having been a key investigator at several national research laboratories I am concerned with this comment. I specifically object to the statement that “The nice thing about science is that math and data are what make someone credible.” This is a totally false preposition. Having data and knowing math do not make one credible. What makes one credible is the correct validation of the data and the proper use of the science and math. In my career I have seen over and over that any person with a touch of knowledge on a subject and a computer with a powerful mathematical program like MathCad can prove almost anything to himself and to some other people. A person using these tools must be objective and any computed results must be carefully checked with standard known physical laws. Otherwise the person is very likely to produce results that are at best incorrect and at worst self delusional but certainly misleading to many uniformed people. This is precisely the problem with much of the climate change research that is being done.

    • Hal,

      Instead of evaluating the credibility a guy who has written more about this subject in recent years than I can readily recall, especially since he’s trying to give a quick answer to someone, how about taking the time to read all those critiques. If you’re as qualified as you indicate, I feel certain you’ll conclude that he’s plenty credible to do the work he’s doing.

    • Hal – If you disagree with any of the authors’ assumptions, you’re certainly welcome to do the research necessary to poke holes in the paper. Email the primary author – her contact information is in the abstract that I link to above – and ask her to explain. The authors pointed out that they made a bunch of assumptions. They also tested the reasonableness of those assumptions and included them in the error bars of their paper. Even with all their assumptions, their simple models showed a high degree of correlation.

      Their paper doesn’t prove causation, Hal, only correlation. I made that very clear in my post above, as did the authors of the paper. I said

      The authors don’t claim to have answered everything, and like all good scientists, they point out that they haven’t proven causation, only shown very high correlation. Attribution studies to determine whether CO2 was a cause, an effect, or both will require more research.

      And the authors said

      The data presented do not preclude alternative mechanisms for driving climate change over the past 20 Ma; however, they do indicate changes in pCO2 were closely tied to the evolution of climate during the Middle and Late Miocene, and Late Pliocene glacial intensification, and therefore it is logical to deduce pCO2 placed an important role in driving these transitions.

      So neither they nor I are claiming that this is the last word, that there are no other possibilities, or anything of the sort.

      (Hal said) Also it must be proven that the cooling was not caused by lower solar radiant intensity and/or lower cosmic radiation penetration due to increased ozone.

      Several of the referenced papers controlled for Milankovic cycles (Ref 2, Ref 3, Ref 8), which are the major drivers of changes in insolation over the course of thousands of years – as the authors point out in their first paragraph.

      As for ozone, its concentration is directly proportional to the amount of UV present (assuming limited removal and sufficient molecular oxygen to absorb all the UV) – if the UV drops, then the amount of ozone drops too. The only real question is whether there is a major ozone disrupting event in that time period (like a long-duration volcanic eruption that pumps LOTS of sulfur aerosols into the stratosphere over the course of hundreds or thousands of years) or if there’s some way that the amount of atmospheric oxygen dropped so much that it couldn’t absorb all the UV photons hitting the atmosphere. I’m not aware of there being any examples of this in the Middle Miocene, however – no thick bands of volcanic rock, for example, dating to the Middle Miocene. If you do know of examples of this, I’d love to read it.

      (Hal said) I flatly disagree with the argument that water vapor is not a forcing constituent. The levels of water vapor determine the prevalence, density, and particle size distribution of clouds. All of these factors affect the reflection and transmission of solar radiation and upwelling earth radiation. Both of these have strong effects on the temperature. As any meteorologist will validate, clouds trap heat in the lower atmosphere and in cold climatic zones clear skies result in lower surface temperatures.

      First, let’s make sure we both understand the terms. A climate forcing element is something that drives a change in the energy balance of the planet and, in an ideal world, is independent of the current state of the Earth’s energy balance. A climate feedback element is something that responds to the current energy balance state and either increases or decreases (positive or negative feedback, respectively) the changes in the energy balance being altered by a forcing element. Most climate forcings have a long duration, measured in at least years. CO2 is an example, with its lifetime in the atmosphere of decades to millennia. Methane is a mix of forcing and feedback because it’s ~25x more powerful a GHG than CO2, but its lifetime in the atmosphere is measured in years.

      Clouds come and go on extremely short time scales compared to that of climate (hours, days, maybe weeks vs. years, decades, and centuries). Similarly, clear water vapor (ie not condensed into clouds) also rises and falls rapidly, over the course of hours to weeks. As a result, climatologists largely consider water vapor to be a feedback. Yes, it drives changes in the Earth’s energy balance, but those changes literally vary with the weather.

      (Hal said) The final error in your argument concerns the partial pressure of CO2. As I said, it is not the partial pressure that counts, its the total CO2 mass. Contrary to what you say, the partial pressure of CO2 is proportional to the total atmosphere mass not the total CO2 mass. Without knowing the total atmosphere mass we have no way of knowing the total CO2 mass. The argument assumes that the atmosphere 20 million years ago was essentially the same as the present atmosphere.

      Not necessarily. This is the definition of partial pressure of CO2 (pCO2) in the atmosphere:

      pCO2 = Ptotal * nCO2/ntotal,

      where Ptotal = the total pressure of the atmosphere, nCO2 = number of moles of CO2, and ntotal = total number of moles of the rest of the gas. Given that the total mass of both CO2 and the atmosphere are directly related to the number of moles of each, pCO2 is proportional to both total CO2 mass and total atmosphere mass. As a result, using partial pressure enables the authors to essentially continually normalize their calculations to the total mass of the atmosphere at each datapoint.

      Furthermore, we can assume that the atmosphere behaves similarly to an ideal gas (a good first assumption, and not too wrong for the purposes of this example), so we can rewrite the pressure Ptotal:

      Ptotal = ntotal * R * T/V,

      where ntotal is defined above, R =ideal gas constant, T = temperature, and V = volume of the atmosphere. Substituting the ideal gas equation, assuming that the volume of the atmosphere is constant (a reasonable assumption, even though it does change somewhat with temperature and composition), we get the following:

      pCO2 = kV * T * nCO2,

      where the total moles of the atmosphere cancels out and kV = R/V. This gives a simple relationship between the partial pressure of CO2 and the total mass of CO2 in the atmosphere at a given temperature. True, it’s predicated on a couple of assumptions, but it wouldn’t be too difficult to get more accurate by using an equation of state to model the atmosphere instead of the ideal gas law, and so a numerical solution out of a simple model shouldn’t be too far different from this equation. And there have been many studies of temperature over the last 20 million years, so T is known (within certain error bands) and thus the number of moles of CO2 (and thus total mass) could be estimated. If the authors wanted to do that math, that is.

      Ultimately, though, the authors don’t have to do that. Their paper shows correlation of the partial pressure of CO2 (measured in parts per million by volume, ppmv) to changes in ice cover, and as I illustrated above, it’s almost trivial to extract total CO2 mass from the partial pressure of CO2. Running to that next step isn’t their purpose, and so they can leave the job of estimating the total mass of CO2 and the total mass of the atmosphere at the time to other scientists. In fact, such an estimate would be an independent check on this paper’s conclusions and is thus a worthy research project for another group of scientists to perform.

      (Hal said)The bottom line is that basing global warming model validation on CO2 partial pressure and ice sheet concomitant growth is not valid unless all other factors at the time (20 million years ago) are ruled out. It is the responsibility of researchers who propose the theory to prove there can be no other cause of ice sheet growth 20 million years ago. Absence of that proof puts into question the validation of those global warming models.

      The authors don’t have to rule out every possibility, Hal, since they’re not trying to prove causation. The authors presented a hypothesis and the data in support of that hypothesis. They carefully explained the limitations of their data and their conclusions based on that data. It’s now the responsibility of other scientists to propose alternative hypotheses and to poke holes in this paper. Experts will weigh the new paper and data and compare it to the old papers and data, determine if there were errors in the old papers that the new paper corrects, whether there are error in the new paper that partially or wholly negate the correlation, and so on.

      Remember, the authors showed correlation, not causation. Solar changes, volcanic eruptions, meteorite impacts, changes in the location of the Sun’s orbit through the Milky Way, and so on could have been the trigger of an increase in pCO2, but then the CO2 functioned as a feedback on the scale of geologic ages (which are significantly longer than climate time scales). They’ve specifically not stated that they know all the answers, or that they’ve controlled for everything, only that they found a high degree of correlation between pCO2 and transitions in glaciation.

      Patience is called for here, Hal. It’s an interesting paper, but it’s not going to be anything like a “last word.” Let’s not forget something critical that I said in the post above:

      If this study’s results are corroborated, then this paleoclimate reconstruction will be yet another study supporting the widespread understanding that climate is very sensitive to CO2 concentrations. (emphasis added)

      We don’t know if the results will be corroborated. Having read the paper, I’d say that there’s a decent chance they will be. But I could be wrong, the authors could be wrong, and the paper could fade away as a dead end. But if further review finds this paper’s conclusions to be substantially correct, then it will be a big deal because it extended CO2 correlation information from the end of the ice core record back millions of years.

      Only time, and lots more careful research, will tell.

      As to your other comment about credibility, if you see places where I’m using the math and data incorrectly, I welcome finding out how and why. Early in my own professional career as an electrical engineer, I made the exact error you described, and I like to think that I’ve learned something from that. I don’t claim to be perfect or to understand everything about the science underlying climatology and climate disruption. I’ve made mistakes in the past and will certainly make them in the future. I like to think that I’m open minded enough to admit my errors and learn from them so I don’t make them in the future, but ultimately that’s for you, and your fellow readers, to decide. Just be aware, though, that if you’re unwilling to back up your claim that I’m wrong about something, I will simply ignore you.

  40. What and how much one writes does not in itself create credibility. I know the news media gives science credibility to prolific science fiction writers but in actual scientific investigation we expect better. What I see in your response is more of the kill the messenger approach many in this important scientific issue are using defensively to cover very biased positions. I’m not concerned with credentials but with valid science, methods, and open minded investigation. Making and running computer models is not good science. Good science is making validated models and validating the results.

    What is needed is validation of theory and conclusions based on known laws of physics and incontrovertible collateral data. How can one use sparse data to make valid conclusions on climate conditions 20 million years ago when, with all of the knowledge we have of the earth and solar system presently, we can’t make irrefutable conclusions? But to turn around and use 20 million year sparse data to validate models of current conditions is too a far of a leap.

  41. Brian:

    I’m not claiming you are wrong. As far as I am concerned, right now, nobody really knows what is right about this climate change issue. But it bothers me when I read or hear people say that climate warming due to CO2 is proven science. I don’t believe that. And anyone claiming it is so causes me to doubt their credibility. Although you appear to have strong feelings about your position, you seem to have a healthy degree of uncertainty. I will spend some time reviewing this and other information and then perhaps I can make some constructive comments. I have done extensive modeling of radiation transport in the atmosphere and aerosols in the atmosphere myself.

    My fundamental position is that other possible causes for the observed warming events have not been adequately researched. I think too much funding and effort has been put on just the theory of anthropomorphic CO2 caused climate change. (This is not proper use of the word anthropomorphic but it is frequently used this way in the literature.) Most important to me is that you and others working the area do not defensively push the conclusion that it is settled science. We all have to keep in mind that the wrong answer can needlessly cause severe political and economic havoc to the entire world. So this is a very serious matter. Castigating those who disagree with the way the science is being conducted as “Deniers” is not proper discourse on the issue. That is the sort of thing that causes people to conclude it is politics or religion rather than science.

  42. Hal, I for one hope you DO respond as long as it’s constructive. I’ve been hoping for that for a while now. Brian occasionally gets a decent debate going, but a lot of time it’s less a debate than a one sided thrashing. 🙂 I also agree with you that the issue is not settled by any stretch of the imagination just because I know how science works in MY field. Unfortunately, the people on the other side of the fence tend to make, shall we say, less than scientific arguments. As I’ve said before, I may not see eye to eye with Brian on some of these issues, but I know for a fact that he does his background research before saying anything here.

  43. Ubertramp:

    As time permits I will make comments and contributions to this venue. It is somewhat fun. I am sure readers are curious about my own qualifications. I wish to remain anonymous for a couple of reasons. First I am the CTO of a company and do not want to expose the company to controversies – especially those so politically charged as climate change. Second, most of my 30+ years of work was done for organizations best described, as the British would say, “hush hush and all that you know”. (Imagine the English Accent.)

    Regarding written works, I have published many papers. I have also written hundreds unpublished presentations, reports and some book sized treatises on such topics: (unpublished because of “hush hush”):

    > radio, microwave, infrared, and light propagation in the atmosphere, in aerosols, in sea water, and even in the ground;
    > Electromagnetic wave interactions with the sea surface and waves.
    > Underwater acoustics;
    > Laser and optical systems;
    > Microwave radiometry, radar, and communication systems;
    > Optical and laser systems

    I have done system engineering on satellite borne meteorological sensors and invented and designed very complex airborne radar technology. So my experience runs the gambit from physical phenomenology to system engineering to design and development.

    I have also been the organizer, chairman and paper reviewer for sessions at professional society conferences. I have contributed to numerous workshops at DARPA, NASA, and other agencies. And for certain agencies I did reviews of Soviet Union scientific and technical literature.

  44. @Judy Cross

    Do you really expect anyone here to accept the information put forward by people employed by the coal industry?

    I am of course speaking of the creators of this site:


    And to the study by Lindzen and Choi, do you really expect anyone to think that that study is good evidence of anything when a climate denier like Roy Spencer discounts the study?

    Lindzen is a corporate shill.

    Professor of Meteorology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
    Member, Annapolis Center Science and Economic Advisory Council. Contributing Expert, Cato Institute. Contributing Expert, George C. Marshall Institute. Member, National Academy of Sciences.

    Dr. Lindzen is one of the highest prolife climate skeptic scientists, arguably because he has been a member of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and contributed to the Second Assessment Report. He regularly takes issue with the general conclusions drawn from the IPCC’s reports and has been at the forefront of the consistent attacks on the IPCC since the early 1990’s. His prolific writings assert that climate change science is inconclusive. His opinions are cited throughout the ExxonMobil funded groups and he regularly appears at events organised by them.

    Ross Gelbspan reported in 1995 that Lindzen “charges oil and coal interests $2,500 a day for his consulting services; his 1991 trip to testify before a Senate committee was paid for by Western Fuels, and a speech he wrote, entitled ‘Global Warming: the Origin and Nature of Alleged Scientific Consensus,’ was underwritten by OPEC.” (“The Heat is On: The warming of the world’s climate sparks a blaze of denial,” Harper’s magazine, December 1995.) Lindzen signed the 1995 Leipzig Declaration.
    Lindzen described Exxon Mobil as “the only principled oil and gas company I know in the US.” “They have a CEO who is not going to be bamboozled by nonsense,” he adds. Professor Lindzen wants the debate on global warming kept alive. He also describes the Royal Society letter as a “disgrace,” adding “they don’t know what they’re talking about.”


  45. Brian:

    In our previous exchanges I raised the issue of water vapor contribution to climate change. You dismissed it by saying that water vapor is a short lifetime “feedback” effect rather than “forcing” (i.e., having a direct effect on temperature). My response was that increased humidity can cause increased cloudiness which in turn can cause heating. Aerosols and hydrometeors work together in this process. My position is supported by these articles:

    1. “Inside of Clouds May Be The Key to Climate Change” Science Daily, Feb. 25, 2007.

    2. “Role of Aerosols in Climate Change examined”. Science Daily, Sep. 8 2008

    3. “Aerosol Research Key to Improving Climate Predictions, Experts Say” Science Daily, Jan. 20, 2008.

    4. “Aerosols May Have High Impact on Rainfall, Climate Change”, Science Daily, Feb. 23, 2009.

    Also of interest are the following:

    5. “Pollution from China And India Affecting World’s Weather”, Science Daily, Mar. 7, 2007

    6. “NASA Study Finds Soot May Be Changing The Arctic Environment.” Science Daily, Apr. 15, 2005.

    Before discussing the references I will provide some background for those readers who are not familiar with aerosols in the atmosphere and their effects on cloud formation and solar radiation. I have done extensive research, modeling, and application of the physics of radiation scattering by aerosols and hydrometeors. (Hydrometeors are water droplets, ice particles, and particles consisting of mix of ice and water). And I have written book sized treatises on the subject.

    Aerosols are defined as microscopic particles dispersed or suspended in the air. They can be solid or liquid particles or mixtures of both. They may consist of dust (e.g., soil and vegetation fragments), carbon (smoke), and chemical compounds (e.g., sulfuric acid droplets) but are usually some mixture of these. Some natural sources include volcanoes, dust storms, and ocean plankton. In addition, some aerosol particles are produced by human activities. A hydrometeor is an individual water or ice (or mixture) particle that can form in humid air when the air pressure and/or temperature are reduced. When the hydrometeor particle size and the density of particles (i.e., number per unit volume of air) become large enough the particles form a fog or cloud. (Fog is a cloud that touches the ground.)

    The presence of an aerosol in humid air or clouds can greatly modify the characteristics of clouds by a process of liquid accretion. The aerosol particles act as condensation nuclei on which water condenses and hydrometeors form. As long as favorable conditions persist the size of hydrometeors tends to grow and when the hydrometeor density and size are sufficient they scatter light and become visible in the form of clouds. As hydrometeors increase in mass they exceed the buoyant forces of the air and drop out in the form of rain, hail, snow, or sleet. But the effects on radiant energy transport are what are important here.

    Radiant energy transfer through a layer of clouds and aerosols depends on the aerosol particle and hydrometeor dielectric properties, size distribution, density, and the geometry of radiant energy incidence. The dielectric properties of hydrometeors are determined by both the aerosol particle material properties and the form of water (i.e., liquid, ice, mixture of both) and hydrometeor shape. But it is a fact that the effects of hydrometeors on radiant energy transfer are much greater than the effects of most aerosols. (Martian dust storms and sulfuric acid aerosol clouds on Venus may be the primary exceptions.)

    Both aerosol particles and hydrometeors scatter and absorb incident infrared, optical, and UV radiation. So, as it transits the aerosol or cloud, the radiant intensity of the incident radiation is reduced by the cumulative scattering and absorption of all particles in the medium. In many clouds the backscattered component can be very strong and the top layer of clouds “reflect” (actually scatters) incident solar radiation back into space. Similarly the lower cloud levels scatter upwelling radiation from the earth surface back toward the ground. So this radiation is trapped in the troposphere just as the greenhouse gas concept. Some of the radiation is absorbed by the hydrometeors and the resulting heat is transferred to the surrounding air. So, by backscattering radiation, the top layers of clouds have a cooling effect on the lower troposphere and earth surface but, by the trapping effect, the lower layers of clouds can have a warming effect.

    For given cloud characteristics the net effect on the troposphere and surface temperatures depends on the cloud type (water vs. ice), altitude, depth, extent of coverage, and persistence. Under conditions where cloud coverage is thick, widespread over a large area and highly persistent, considerable warming of the troposphere is likely. If, eons ago, the earth had extensive long duration coverage of thick clouds the clouds could have either cooling or warming effects depending on the altitude and thickness of the clouds. Specifically cirrus clouds (i.e., stratospheric ice clouds) could cause cooling whereas a thick stratus cloud layer could cause warming.

    My point in our previous exchange was that if this (and some other factors) were not taken into account, then the assumption that the cause of past ice sheet growth or reduction was totally caused by CO2 is doubtful. Did the researchers rule out the possibility that dense highly persistent stratus clouds covered most of the earth?

    The salient points from the references support my position: [Note: in the following, phrases in brackets (such as this one) are added by me for clarification.]

    Ref. 1:
    1. The effects of clouds is [sic] becoming more critical in terms of modeling future changes in climate.
    2. By comparing the observed temperature change record since 1850 with two different climate models, one that has low climate sensitivity and small amounts of aerosols and one that has high climate sensitivity and high amounts of aerosols, the authors showed that both models follow almost identical predictive paths in the past, but diverge significantly when predicting the temperature in the future.
    3. [The study] also looks at the predictive capability of three climate models, a US NCAR-Oslo model, a French model and a Japanese model, and shows that differences are large, especially when the models predict both aerosols and their cloud effects in the assumed level of aerosols at the time, significantly changes the results.

    Ref. 2:
    1. Recent studies suggest that increased aerosol loading may have changed the energy balance in the atmosphere and at the Earth’s surface, and altered the global water cycle in ways that make the climate system more prone to precipitation extremes. [Some scientists are now using observed deviations in precipitation patterns to justify their CO2 based climate change conclusions.]
    2. It appears that aerosol effects on clouds can induce large changes in precipitation patterns, which in turn may change not only regional water resources, but also may change the regional and global circulation systems that constitute the Earth’s climate.
    3. The radiative [sic] effects of aerosols on clouds mostly act to suppress precipitation, because they decrease the amount of solar radiation that reaches the land surface, and therefore cause less heat to be available for evaporating water and energizing convective rain clouds.
    4. Model simulations have shown that greater heating in the troposphere enhances the atmospheric circulation system, shifting weather patterns due to changes [in] convective activity.
    5. The IPCC, in its latest climate change assessment report, declared aerosols to be “the dominant uncertainty in radiative [sic] forcing (a concept used for quantitative comparisons of the strength of different human and natural agents in causing climate change)”. Therefore, aerosols, clouds and their interaction with climate are still the most uncertain areas of climate change [research] and require multidisciplinary coordinated research efforts.

    Ref. 3:
    1. The influence of aerosols on climate is not yet adequately taken into account in our computer predictions of climate.
    2. Improved representation of aerosols in climate models is essential to more accurately predict the climate changes.
    3. Although Earth’s atmosphere consists primarily of gases, aerosols and clouds play significant roles in shaping conditions at the surface and in the lower atmosphere. Aerosols typically range in diameter from a few nanometers to a few tens of micrometers. They exhibit a wide range of compositions and shapes, but aerosols between 0.05 and 10 micrometers in diameter dominate aerosols’ direct interaction with sunlight. Aerosols also can produce changes in cloud properties and precipitation, which, in turn, affect climate.
    4. The role of greenhouse gases in global warming is fairly well established, but the degree to which the cooling effect of human-produced aerosols offsets the warming is still inadequately understood.

    Ref. 4:
    1. Aerosols are fine particles suspended in the atmosphere. Sources of human-generated aerosols include industry, motor vehicles and vegetation burning. Natural sources include volcanoes, dust storms and ocean plankton. Human-generated aerosols have long been known to exert a cooling effect on climate.
    2. Dr Rotstayn said aerosols are much more than a ‘negative greenhouse gas’ because they can actively force changes in winds and ocean currents by altering the distribution of solar heating at the earth’s surface.
    3. New simulations with the CSIRO climate model also show big improvements in the simulation of El Niño and the associated natural rainfall variability over eastern Australia, when natural and human-generated aerosols are included in the model.

    Ref. 5:
    1. During the past few decades, there has been a dramatic increase in atmospheric aerosols — mostly sulfate [aerosols] and soot [carbon particles] from coal burning — especially in China and India.
    2. Because of various climate conditions, the northern Pacific Ocean is more susceptible to the aerosol effect in winter. Aerosols can affect the droplets in clouds and can actually change the dynamics of the clouds themselves.
    3. [This] provides indisputable evidence that man-made pollution [not CO2] is adversely affecting the storm track over the Pacific Ocean, a major weather event in the northern hemisphere during winter.

    Personally, I think reference Ref. 5 points to a more critical problem than hypothesized climate warming due to increased CO2 – especially for the USA. Also the hydrometeors formed from the emitted sulfur aerosol particles are highly acidic. When they fall into the ocean they cause the ocean acidity to increase.

    Reference 6 is very interesting. It states that observed ice melting in the Arctic may be caused by soot from pollution.

    Ref. 6:
    1. This research offers additional evidence black carbon, generated through the process of incomplete combustion, may have a significant warming impact on the Arctic.
    2. There may be immediate consequences for Arctic ecosystems, and potentially long-term implications on climate patterns for much of the globe.
    3. In recent years the Arctic has significantly warmed, and sea-ice cover and glacial snow have diminished. Likely causes for these trends include changing weather patterns and the effects of pollution. Black carbon has been implicated as playing a role in melting ice and snow. When soot falls on ice, it darkens the surface and accelerates melting by increasing absorbed sunlight. Airborne soot also warms the air and affects weather patterns and clouds.
    4. Koch and Hansen’s results suggest a possible mechanism behind the satellite-derived observations of Arctic climate change. They found the timing and location of Arctic warming and sea ice loss in the late 20th century are consistent with a significant contribution from man-made tiny particles of pollution, or aerosols.
    5. The research found in the atmosphere over the Arctic, about one-third of the soot comes from South Asia, one-third from burning biomass or vegetation around the world, and the remainder from Russia, Europe and North America.

    Conclusion: Anyone who is basing climate change prediction solely on modeling the effects of CO2 may be mislead and misleading others. The last reference indicates that anyone (e.g., Al Gore) who insists that CO2 will cause the Arctic ice to melt in 5 years is either insentient or just plain stupid. Before we as a society set out to mitigate any affects of anthropogenic global warming, we must first understand the correct causation.

    There are a number of other factors that depreciate the validity of CO2 as the predominant cause of warming. I will address some of these in future contributions.

    • Hal – quite a response there. Some things I agree with, others I don’t, and a few that are (IMO) irrelevant. And I think there were a couple where there was a misunderstanding. It’ll take me a while to write up a suitable response, but I greatly appreciate your taking the time to delve into serious discussion. I’ll do the same.

  46. Brian:

    I have been reviewing the IPCC AR4 WG1 report and other relevant material and, at this point, I see many holes in the conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 is the dominant forcing in climate change. In fact other documentation from other very respectable sources contradict this conclusion. [I will expand on some of those in the future.] Also, shortly I will provide more information on the effects of aerosols and settled particulates which some researchers are saying are stronger than CO2 forcing.

    What strikes me so far in this review is that most of the people doing computer modeling do not understand the difference between highly correlated data and cause and effect. Most of the literature I am seeing assumes that computer plotted curves showing strong correlation between increased anthropogenic CO2 and the rising trend of temperature anomaly is conclusive proof that climate warming is caused by anthropogenic CO2. In other words they assume that the correlation between CO2 and temperature anomaly data proves cause and effect. But computer plots of data that show high correlation do not prove cause and effect. Before that leap can be made it has to be proven that the observed correlation between data plots is not a parallel association in which some other phenomenon causes (or separate phenomena cause) both results.

    For example a comparison of world population growth correlates very strongly with both CO2 and temperature anomaly. Can’t one conclude that climate change is actually caused by the population growth? Some of the research I have read indicates the anthropogenic aerosols and settled particulates have much stronger effects on regional climates than CO2. Could the cumulative regional climate changes going on in diverse areas of the planet be the cause of global climate change? I think so.

    The IPCC report lightly touches on phenomena other than anthropogenic CO2, but the report indicates that these phenomena have not been explored in detail because they are not well understood and/or there is insufficient data. So the IPCC philosophy appears to be to blame climate change on something they understand and use that assumption to make rapid and extreme political and economic changes rather than wait, do the science, and see how these other phenomena that they don’t now understand influences climate change.