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the.bricoleur
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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #120 on: 2007-08-12 15:56:06 »
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Quote from: Blunderov on 2007-08-11 17:28:07   

[Blunderov] I have been in a quandry for some while regarding the AGW debate. This is in no small part due to the arguments that Iolo has very effectively presented.

Goodness. Coming from yourself this is a huge compliment. Thank you Blunderov.


Quote:
It is true that there are very grave problems with inferential conclusions. It is in the nature of things that data can never be complete (amongst other objections). My mind is now clear on the matter though. The precautionary principle demands that we accept this growing preponderance of evidence as sufficient cause to take action to reduce carbon and other emissions radically. I would go so far as to say that it is now almost as much a moral issue as it is a scientific one in much the same way that it is a moral issue to inform your lover if you have possibly been exposed to HIV. (Don't even get me started on HIV skepticism...)

Or I!! It was my long term partner who came to the conclusion that it was safer to carry a condom in order to offer it to a rapist than to her boyfriend.

We were both born in South Africa.

If only it were as simple as taking a shower and eating some potatoes ...

If I am being as simplemindedly-skeptical as your analogy I prey that I awake from it shortly ... however, the example you give about arctic ice is fascinating ... but linking it to human activity is still an hypothesis.

As for RealClimate and the response to the NASA Y2K bug ...

Firstly, Gavin is incompetent about climatology. He is a modeler.

Secondly, McIntyre had to do a commendable job all by himself. Frankly, it bordered on the insane. And still he was able to find something. That should not be considered a minor achievement, nor dismissed because it was "only" about US data, or "just" a few tenths of a degree of a change.

On the contrary, it clearly indicates there could be lots of mistakes in the published results.

Imagine in fact taking Tiger Woods, blindfolded, with one hand tied behind his back and his shoes tied together - then as he tries to hit the golf ball he almost misses it, moving it by a few inches.

Would that be evidence that Tiger Woods is no good at golf?

Of course not. It would be a loud statement regarding the fact that nobody should be forced to pursue a reasonable and lawful quest with unfair, almost unbearable, restrictions.

And so if McIntyre, or anybody else, wants to check if Hansen's data, algorithms and code, etc. are correct, they should be given full access. Immediately!

And why not? Who would find such a request unreasonable? And we would all gain from that. If the world is indeed warming, it would still show it, and clearly.

-iolo

PS the 'algorithms are in the papers' argument is flawed: even if the algorithms were in the papers, McIntyre's correction still had to be dug out by hand. If things were as simple as A=B+C there would have been no 1934 blog on RealClimate.


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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #121 on: 2007-08-12 17:32:35 »
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Quote from: Iolo Morganwg on 2007-08-12 15:56:06   


If I am being as simplemindedly-skeptical as your analogy I prey that I awake from it shortly ...

[Blunderov] My apologies. I did not intend to imply that your skepticism was simple-minded; only that the potential consequences of error were too serious and, IMV, not to be countenanced. To be an AIDS denialist requires an almost creationist ability to ignore brute fact; the climate is a much more complex problem.

Best Regards.
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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #122 on: 2007-08-16 06:27:56 »
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Thanks for clarifying Blunderov.


Quote from: Blunderov on 2007-08-11 17:28:07   

Global Warming Denialism at Its Best
Category: blogosphere • global warming • media
Posted on: August 11, 2007 1:54 PM, by Nick Anthis

August 9, 2007, will go down in history as a great day for global warming denialism. On Wednesday, the 8th, well-known global warming denialist Steve McIntyre published a post on his blog about NASA finding a flaw in some of its temperature data that led to a minor reordering of the list of the hottest years on record. Not surprisingly, the conservative media and blogs went hog wild the next day. The mainstream media even got a bit carried away... despite the fact that we're talking about changes of hundredths of degrees here and that these numbers are only for North America (and don't affect the worldwide leaderboard).

Several issues here are very consequential. It changes the slope of Jones' curve for temperature increase over the last 130 years. This is a key argument in the AGW hypothesis, although unexplained thanks to Jones intransigence. Even if the slope is changed the error factor remains the same - it is ± 0.2C on an increase of 0.6°C. Even IPCC acknowledge this increase is 50% explained by changes in solar energy. Reduce the number and leave the error factor the same and there is very little left for CO2, human or other. The higher temperature in 1934 was within a very warm period all occurring before human production of CO2 became important. I suspect 1936 was only lower because a  very hot summer was followed by a very cold winter, especially in North America. Lockwood's estimate of solar being the factor up until the last 20 years is based on the previous GISS record. How long before the computer models are adjusted to allow for the new numbers? James Hansen is the Director of GISS and should be held accountable for such an egregious error. There should be a Congressional Hearing, but don't hold your breath.



Quote:
Analysts See ‘Simply Incredible’ Shrinking of Floating Ice in the Arctic 
Source: NY Times

The area of floating ice in the Arctic has shrunk more this summer than in any other summer since satellite tracking began in 1979, and it has reached that record point a month before the annual ice pullback typically peaks, experts said yesterday.

The Big Melt A series describing the effects of warming on the environment and the people of the Arctic.
Postcards From the Arctic Andrew C. Revkin's three Arctic multimedia reports. The cause is probably a mix of natural fluctuations, like unusually sunny conditions in June and July, and long-term warming from heat-trapping greenhouse gases and sooty particles accumulating in the air, according to several scientists.

William L. Chapman, who monitors the region at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and posted a Web report on the ice retreat yesterday, said that only an abrupt change in conditions could prevent far more melting before the 24-hour sun of the boreal summer set in September. “The melting rate during June and July this year was simply incredible,” Mr. Chapman said. “And then you’ve got this exposed black ocean soaking up sunlight and you wonder what, if anything, could cause it to reverse course.”

Mark Serreze, a sea-ice expert at the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colo., said his center’s estimates differed somewhat from those of the Illinois team, and by the ice center’s reckoning the retreat had not surpassed the satellite-era record set in 2005. But it was close even by the center’s calculations, he said, adding that it is almost certain that by September, there will be more open water in the Arctic than has been seen for a long time. Ice experts at NASA and the University of Washington echoed his assessment.


Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/10/science/earth/10arcti...


Interestingly, in the 1970's the comment in a book about the danger of cooling titled "The Weather Conspiracy" was "The ice cover in the Northern Hemisphere increased by 12 percent in 1971 - an increase equal to the combined area of England, Italy and France. This added ice remained. The great ice mass of Antarctic grew by 10 percent in one year, 1966-67. And the average ice and snow cover is high and expanding."

I think this is an excellent satellite ice portrayal site = http://iup.physik.uni-bremen.de:8084/amsr/amsre.html

There was a claim of a 9% decrease in ice cover but it turned out that much of this was due to a change in recording techniques. They switched from a pastiche of sources in a compilation technique to satellite information in 1978, although the accurate measures didn't begin until 1980. There is a natural variability around 10 million km2 between the amount of winter cover (about 16 million km2) to summer cover of about 6 million km2. This is an area approximately equal to the US land surface. In 2005 we heard a great buzz because an area the size of Texas melted more than the previous summer. Of course, this is less than 4% of the total melt, but sounds dramatic, besides, it is within the range of variability of the record since 1980. This last winter there was more ice than the previous winter, but nothing was reported. The mechanism of explanation is the more southerly mean position of the Polar Front and a shift from a meridional Rossby waves to a more zonal flow. This resulted in a reduction in the variability of weather. This pattern reflects what has happened in the southern hemisphere for approximately 2 years now. One way you see the difference this winter was the lack of complaints about the ability to build winter roads in northern Canada. The evidence for cooling grows.

-iolo

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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #123 on: 2007-08-16 13:01:55 »
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Quote from: Iolo Morganwg on 2007-08-16 06:27:56   

Thanks for clarifying Blunderov.
[Blunderov] You are welcome. Another interesting graph is attached for your perusal.
Best regards.





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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #124 on: 2007-08-16 14:15:49 »
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Note that Iola does not attempt to address:
  • Previously provided satellite based gravitational icepack and glacier survey results - which shows massive reductions in Arctic and Greenland ice on an annual basis. This is unarguable physics based absolute data from systems continuously operated since the 1970s. This data  correlates completely to laser altimetry surveys reflecting the same information. Current measurements, published in the peer reviewed journal Science, reflect that Greenland is now losing 20% more mass per year than is delivered via precipitation. [Refer eg http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?articleID=000E4F12-B717-1537-B71783414B7F016F ].
  • Recent studies indicating a massive acceleration in the rate of ice loss [refer e.g. http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn9717 ].
  • The newly discovered breakup mechanism, of warm water tricking through the ice establishing a cleavage zone from which fractures propagate - which is the hair-trigger for rapid pack breakup - something the denialists argued strenuously was impossible - indeed some of them are still attempting to argue that.
  • The issues of tundra defrosting in the USSR, Alaska and Canada reported as continuously worsening with the now inevitable or near inevitable release of Methane and CO2  previously trapped by permafrost.
  • The achievement of the north pole by unarmored ships last year
  • The ability to go swimming at the North Pole this year
  • The threat to polar bears, due to loss of the habitat they are acclimitized to, and have been successfully adapted for, for far longer than mankind and his close ancestors have been walking upright.


I suspect that the denialists will still be attempting to snipe around the edges of the data as the last arctic iceberg is used to cool somebody's martini. Presumably on the grounds that the cycle will eventually change and the ice ages will return. The trouble with this purported argument is that identical logic can be used to support a return to the primordial state of a nitro-methane atmosphere, a logical step finally disposing of the dangerous, poisonous tiny percentage of Oxygen in the atmosphere - and that wouldn't be much good for us either. But it isn't true. We are seeing far too many measurable differences in too many areas to allow us to consider what we are seeing as a cyclic event similar to previous cycles. Which should disincline us to the complacency which the denialists continue to encourage.

If the consensus models - which have been shown to be predictive (and I remind you that good science adjusts its models to match observations so long as there are not better models - and the denialists do not have better models - they don't even have functioning hypothesis) are correct, there are many trapdoor functions involved. Once these traps are triggered reversal is no longer possible. One example is what the release of Tundra sequestered Methane and CO2 means for the atmosphere (more rapid greenhouse heating leading to a runaway positive feedback cycle). Unfortunately, like it or not, denialism will likely soon show us what it looks on the other side of these traps.

Kind Regards

Hermit
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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #125 on: 2007-08-17 23:57:26 »
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And as I was saying:

Arctic sea ice shrinks to record low

Source: Associated Press
Authors: Randolph E. Schmid (AP Science Writer)
Dated: 2007-08-17
Dateline: Washington

There was less sea ice in the Arctic on Friday than ever before on record, and the melting is continuing, the National Snow and Ice Data Center reported.

"Today is a historic day," said Mark Serreze, a senior research scientist at the center. "This is the least sea ice we've ever seen in the satellite record and we have another month left to go in the melt season this year."

Satellite measurements showed 2.02 million square miles of ice in the Arctic, falling below the Sept. 21, 2005, record minimum of 2.05 million square miles, the agency said.

Sea ice is particularly low in the East Siberian side of the Arctic and the Beaufort Sea north of Alaska, the center reported.

Ice in the Canadian Archipelago is also quite low. Along the Atlantic side of the Arctic Ocean, sea ice extent is not as unusually low, but there is still less than normal, according to the center located in Boulder, Colo.

The snow and ice center is part of the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado. It receives support from NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Science Foundation.

Scientists began monitoring the extent of Arctic sea ice in the 1970s when satellite images became available.

The polar regions have long been of concern to climate specialists studying global warming because those regions are expected to feel the impact of climate change sooner and to a greater extent than other areas.

Sea ice in the Arctic helps keep those regions cool by reflecting sunlight that might be absorbed by darker land or ocean surfaces. Exposed to direct sun, for example, instead of reflecting 80 percent of the sunlight, the ocean absorbs 90 percent. That causes the ocean to heat up and raises Arctic temperatures.

Unusually clear sky conditions have prevailed in the Arctic in June and July, promoting more sunshine at the time when the sun is highest in the sky over the region.

The center said this led to an unusually high amount of solar energy being pumped onto the Arctic ice surface, accelerating the melting process. Fairly strong winds also brought in some warm air from the south.

But, Serreze said in a telephone interview, while some natural variability is involved in the melting "we simply can't explain everything through natural processes."

"It is very strong evidence that we are starting to see an effect of greenhouse warming," he said.

The puzzling thing, he said, is that the melting is actually occurring faster than computer climate models have predicted.

Several years ago he would have predicted a complete melt of Arctic sea ice in summer would occur by the year 2070 to 2100, Serreze said. But at the rates now occurring, a complete melt could happen by 2030, he said Friday.
[Hermit: The explanation is simple. The sun melts a little water on the surface of the ice. This then absorbs much more solar heat than the surrounding ice, causing rapid surface melting with accumulations of warmer water. This warm water exposes weaknesses in the ice where the ice has been exposed to tension or shear, and melts its way through it, creating an area able to move and allowing differential strain to express itself through placing the ice, which is weak in shear, under intolerable stress. The ice distributes the stress through an expanding network of fine cracks which then allow more melt-water through. Once the water reaches the ocean below the icepack breaks up and more work - and much more solar energy - then accelerates the process. Models which relied on pure thermal energy to melt ice shelves and glaciers massively underestimated the damage caused by this mechanism, although materials scientists have been aware of it since WW II when some experiments were performed by the British to determine the viability of using icebergs as natural aircraft carriers.]

There will still be ice in winter, he said, but it could be gone in summer.
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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #126 on: 2007-08-23 10:07:55 »
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Antarctic ice thawing faster than predicted

Sources: Reuters
Authors: Alister Doyle (Reuters Environment Correspondent)
Dated: 2007-08-22
Dateline: NY Alesund, Norway

A thaw of Antarctic ice is outpacing predictions by the U.N. climate panel and could in the worst case drive up world sea levels by 2 meters (6 ft) by 2100, a leading expert said on Wednesday.

Millions of people, from Bangladesh to Florida and some Pacific island states, live less than a meter above sea level. Most of the world's major cities, from Shanghai to Buenos Aires, are by the sea.

Chris Rapley, the outgoing head of the British Antarctic Survey, said there were worrying signs of accelerating flows of ice towards the ocean from both Antarctica and Greenland with little sign of more snow falling inland to compensate.

"The ice is moving faster both in Greenland and in the Antarctic than the glaciologists had believed would happen," Rapley told Reuters during a climate seminar in Ny Alesund on a Norwegian Arctic island 1,200 km from the North Pole.

"I think the realistic view is that we will be nearer a meter than the 40 cm" in sea level rise by 2100, Raply said. The U.N. climate panel in February gave a likely range of 18 to 59 cm this century, for an average around 40 cm.


Asked at the seminar what the upper limit for the rise might be at a probability of one percent or less, he said: "At this extremely unlikely level the maximum would be two meters."

Skeptics often dismiss such low probabilities as scaremongering. But many scientists note that people take precautions such as to insure their homes against far lower risks, such as fire.

HIMALAYAS

The U.N. panel said that rising temperatures due to more and more greenhouse gases from human activities led by use of fossil fuels were melting ice.

Antarctica stores enough ice to raise ocean levels by about 57 meters if it ever all melted. Greenland has about 7 meters, according to U.N. data.

All other glaciers on land, from the Norwegian Arctic to the Himalayas, are tiny by comparison and contain only enough ice combined to raise sea levels by about 15-37 cm.

Glaciers around Ny Alesund, which calls itself the world's most northerly settlement, are also retreating fast.

The U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in February hedged its forecasts by saying that "larger values cannot be excluded" but said there was too little understanding of how ice sheets react if water seeps beneath them and lubricates their slide.

Rapley said there were worrying signs of an accelerating thaw both in West Antarctica, where much of the ice sits on rocks that are below sea level, and on the Cook and Totten glaciers on the fringe of the far bigger ice mass to the East.

"The East Antarctic ice sheet is always dismissed as the big bit which sits on rock above sea level and so is much more stable. But the radar altimeters show significant discharge going on," he said.
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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #127 on: 2007-08-26 17:12:24 »
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Flipping Point, Schmipping Point.

Blah, Blah, Blah.

This is the final word on the subject goddamnit!

[Dubya on global warming]
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nxpEqln5EdQ



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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #128 on: 2007-09-06 06:14:06 »
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Well, it is simple to give a point by point rebuttal to each of Hermit’s assertions that are all untrue.  But there would be no purpose to it.  He provides a list of assertions that are all misinformed (e.g. demise of polar bears) or misguided (e.g. citing effects of Arctic warming while ignoring Antarctic cooling).  The list demonstrates that he is sure in his mind, and the list asserts information that supports a view while pretending contrary evidence does not exist.  Such certainty comes under the heading of 'unquestioning faith' and it cannot be assuaged by logic, argument and/or evidence.

Instead of the point by point rebuttal, I will address his repeated use of the word "denialists"?  He clearly thinks that all observed climate changes are anthropogenic and not natural.  Simply, he is denying the possibility that the changes are natural climate changes that have always happened everywhere.  Indeed, the natural changes he denies were pointed out to Pharoah by Joseph (with the Technicolour Dreamcoat) in the Bronze Age, and since then such natural changes have always been observed and adapted to. Furthermore, no unprecedented climate changes have been detected recently.  He is a "denialist" and should be challenged to justify such denial.

Additionally, since he claims concern for polar bears (that are increasing in total number) it may be productive to ask why mammals are not going extinct.  The last known mammal extinction was the mammoth 10,000 years ago.

----

For those not in denial it May be of interest to go to the NSIDC media advisory page and read their comment on how the Northwest passage is open for the first time since satellite observations began.
<http://nsidc.org/news/press/2007_seaiceminimum/20070810_index.html>

I have been able to find 3 instances where the Northwest passage has been crossed by boats. The last time was in 2000 but that was by a ship accompanied by an ice breaker, so the passage was really not open.

The next time back was in the early 1940's
<http://hnsa.org/ships/stroch.htm>

The first crossing was from 1904-1906 by Roald Amundsen.
<http://www.framheim.com/Amundsen/NWP/NWPassage.html>

If arctic sea ice is going to be used as a proxy for global temperatures by denialist i.e. AGW believers, then they will have to acknowledge that the earth was as warm in the early 1900's and 1940's as it is today.

The denialist Hermit points us to some interesting articles ... But my point was - and remains - that warming or cooling trends are generated in the surface temperature series (e.g. HadCRUT3, GISS) by the methods used to create those data sets.  And those generated trends are known to be at least as great as the global warming the data sets purport to indicate.  Hence, those data sets are useless as tools to quantify global warming or global cooling.

Thus, in the context of the above, these events do not quantify global warming or cooling.  But, of course, every locality is warming or cooling.

- iolo
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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #129 on: 2007-09-06 06:24:27 »
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Now, this business of the accuracy of the predictions of consensus models is interesting. If you read RealClimate as I do, then you will know that they claim there is a "sweet spot" for predictions which is 20 or 30 years in the future; when the variations in weather have been averaged out, and the effects of climate become clear. (Yes, I know this is nonsense, but this is what is believed on RealClimate). Obviously we have no idea whether these predictions 20 or 30 years in the future, are correct. So what predictions are being talked about? The only short term prediction I am aware of is that by CRU in Jan 2007 that the average temperature in 2007 has a 60% chance of being higher than 1998 (according to the CRU data). They also gave 95% confidence limits. We now have 7 months of data, and from what I can see there is the proverbial snowball's chance in hell that 2007 will be warmer than 1998. There is a much more significant chance that the final figure will be less than the 95% lower confidence limit.

-------

What global warming, Australian skeptic asks

Lawrence Solomon
Financial Post

<http://www.canada.com/nationalpost/environment/story.html?id=d71dfa89-384c-4ede-a759-55fb7ffdcfc2>
Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Bob Carter, a professor at James Cook University (Queensland) and the University of Adelaide (South Australia), is a paleontologist, a stratigrapher, and a marine geologist.

He has been chair of the National Marine Science and Technologies Committee, director of the Australian Office of the Ocean Drilling Program, and chair of the Earth Sciences Discipline Panel of the Australian Research Council.

He is Cambridge educated. And he is an outspoken global-warming skeptic.

Most global-warming skeptics criticize the United Nation's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change on limited grounds -- they might view the science put forth by the IPCC to be at odds with science in their particular discipline, for example, or they might object to the IPCC's secrecy, or they might object to the IPCC's failure to observe standard peer-review practices. Moreover, when they object they generally do so quietly, often without naming names and only in private.

Prof. Carter objects on multiple grounds and in multiple arenas; he names names and he will set the record straight, even when those he believes to be in the wrong are fellow skeptics.

NASA chief Michael Griffin, for example, is a skeptic because he thinks that global warming may be beneficial, that it is not worth worrying about, and that, in any case, we wouldn't be able to stop it, even if we wanted to. But Dr. Griffin also thinks that a global-warming trend is certainly underway, and to this Prof. Carter takes objection.

Dr. Griffin's "opinion is unsupported by the evidence," Prof. Carter wrote in rebuttal. "The accepted global average temperature statistics used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change show that no ground-based warming has occurred since 1998. Oddly, this eight-year-long temperature stasis has occurred despite an increase over the same period of 15 parts per million (or 4%) in atmospheric carbon dioxide.

"Second, lower-atmosphere satellite-based temperature measurements, if corrected for non-greenhouse influences such as El Nino events and large volcanic eruptions, show little, if any, global warming since 1979, a period over which atmospheric CO2 has increased by 55 ppm (17%)."

Moreover, Prof. Carter adds, credible scientists predict global cooling. How then can Dr. Griffin boldly assert that humans are causing global warming?

One of the most contentious areas of climate-change science involves computer General Circulation Models (GCMs), the predictive tool that generate most of the scary scenarios that arouse public alarm. Prof. Carter has long been a critic of these models, which claim to project for us what the climate will be in the year 2100.

In the past, Prof. Carter has drawn the ire of global-warming proponents with his GCM critiques. Now, to his satisfaction, he has support in his critique from an unlikely source -- Kevin Trenberth, whom he thinks of as "one of the advisory high priests of the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on
Climate Change."

As Dr. Trenberth recently acknowledged to Nature journal's Climate Feedback blog, IPCC models cannot predict future climate because they don't reflect reality: "None of the models used by IPCC are initialized to the observed state and none of the climate states in the models correspond even remotely to the current observed climate," he stated.


"Moreover, the starting climate state in several of the models may depart significantly from the real climate owing to model errors. I postulate that regional climate change is impossible to deal with properly unless the models are initialized."

While these statements warrant Prof. Carter's approval , others do not, such as Dr. Trenberth's claim that people have mistakenly believed that the IPCC makes predictions: "In fact there are no predictions by IPCC at all. And there never have been," claims Dr. Trenberth.

To which Prof. Carter notes an audit at the 27th International Symposium on Forecasting presented earlier this month. It found that "in apparent contradiction to claims by some climate experts that the IPCC provides 'projections' and not 'forecasts', the word 'forecast' and its derivatives occurred 37 times, and 'predict' and its derivatives occur 90 times" in a chapter from the IPCC's latest report.

"There is no predictive value in the current generation of computer GCMs and therefore the alarmist IPCC statements about human-caused global warming are unjustified," he concludes. Until others conclude so too, expect Prof. Carter to continue his critiques without fear or favour.

---
- Lawrence Solomon is executive director of Urban Renaissance Institute
and Consumer Policy Institute, divisions of Energy Probe Research
Foundation.

CV OF A DENIER:

Bob Carter is a Research Professor at University of Adelaide (South Australia) and James Cook University (Queensland), where he headed the School of Earth Sciences between 1981 and 1999. He has published more than 100 papers in international science journals and received numerous awards and prizes from bodies such as the Australian Research Council, the Geological Society of New Zealand, and the Royal Society of New Zealand. He received his PhD in palaeontology in 1968 from the University of Cambridge.

LawrenceSolomon@nextcity.com

------

-iolo
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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #130 on: 2007-09-06 08:25:40 »
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Such an excellent reply that I could only share:


Quote:
"The threat to polar bears, due to loss of the habitat they are acclimatized to, and have been successfully adapted for, for far longer than mankind and his close ancestors have been walking upright."

My friend Dr. Erik S.Nyholm, 77, the dean of Finnish predator research, spent several years on Spitzbergen in the 1960's studying the behavior of icebears. He prepared himself by interviewing old Norwegian icebear trappers who had hunted icebears commercially in their youth. On Spitzbergen Erik achieved the status of alpha male (chief) of one of the icebear packs he was studying, among many other exploits.

Erik told me how extraordinarily adaptive icebears are: They catch seals on small ice floes and dive for seaweed for vegetables. In summer, they eat birds' eggs and young. Erik laughed his head off when learning about the icebears being threatened by warming.

The icebear evolved from the grizzly about 125 000 years ago, during the previous interglacial. By that time man had been walking upright for ages and the common female ancestor of all men living today, "Eve", had been dead for about 75 000 years.

During the 125 000 years of its existence, icebears have lived through one ice age and the following the holocene when it was several degrees warmer than today during thousands of years, about as warm as in any old IPCC horror scenario.

Most icebear populations are strong and increasing because of the growing seal populations. They are legally game animals in the countries where they live, except perhaps in the US where their survival is being threatened in global warming computer models.

Alongside global environmental meltdowns, endangering large land and marine predators with cuddly looking young is an important weapon of the greenies. The former is designed to destroy industrial economies, the second to destroy hunting, fishing, gathering, grazing and children's safety – everything that makes the free life in the countryside and in the outback economically viable, worth living and possible.

You cannot imagine what it feels like to have strictly EU-protected 60 kg wild dogs (wolves) killing your sheep and your dogs and roaming around your house totally unafraid of humans. You know they have a history of catching children from ambush, carrying them away and eating them. Hearing the authorities declare wolves not to be dangerous and 15th - 19th century history to be fairy-tales offers little comfort. You know that they know that - sooner or later – you will move out, sell cheap, and make place for more precious wilderness. This war is about much more than climate.

Magnus Hagelstam

---

-iolo
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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #131 on: 2007-09-07 08:17:26 »
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Too many snipes to respond to all.

Asserting that my data is fallacious is one thing. Responding to it is something else.

In the interests of limiting further strawmen let me reiterate:
  • Anthromorphic change? I don't recall asserting that that is proven. I've previously observed that correlation is not causation. But the correlation is clear.
  • Global climate change is undeniable.
  • Warming is apparent.
  • Ice loss is particularly apparent (and refuting gravimetric and laser measurements is challenging).
  • Greenhouse gas levels are indubitably rising.
  • Solar variation has been shown to be insufficient to account for more than a smallish percentage (15% IIRC) of measured thermal radiation by Earth And Bolton's law shows that implies that our planet is becoming warmer.
  • I didn't say Polar Bears were becoming extinct, I noted that they were threatened. Which is an official status awarded to them by a number of bodies who appear to know some things your distinguished "dean of Finnish predator research" (some kind of trapper?) didn't mention.


I know some other things that maybe should be taken into account.

Modern bears evolved early to be the apex predator in North America; following and paralleling their even nastier but fortunately extinct ancestors (e.g. the cave bear) and our knowledge of their habit of munching seals dates back to the Oligocene (22-23 MyBP) when the seals diverged from their ancestors the bear, and became bear lunch (as shown by fossil evidence). I'll cite Wikipedia on your assertions re the Polar Bear:

The raccoon and bear families are believed to have diverged about 30 million years ago. The spectacled bear split from other bears around 13 million years ago. The six distinct ursine species originated some 4 million years ago. According to both fossil and DNA evidence, the polar bear diverged from the brown bear roughly 200 thousand years ago; fossils show that between 10 and 20 thousand years ago the polar bear's molar teeth changed significantly from those of the brown bear.

Polar bears have, however, bred with brown bears to produce fertile grizzly–polar bear hybrids,[16] [17] suggesting that the two are close relatives. But neither species can survive long in the other's niche, and with distinctly different morphology, metabolism, social and feeding behaviors, and other phenotypic characters, the two bears are generally classified as separate species.

In a widely cited paper published in 1996, a comparison of the DNA of various brown bear populations showed that the brown bears of Alaska's ABC islands shared a more recent common ancestor with polar bears than with any other brown bear population in the world.[18] Also to see how the bear species once split yet are still connected, polar bears still have HIT (hibernation induction trigger) in their blood, but they also utilize this to hibernate as the brown bear does. They may occasionally enter a dormant state referred to as "denning" (pregnant females in particular), though their body temperature does not decrease during this period as it would for a typical mammal in hibernation.[19]

And just to put a final nail in the coffin of your apparently poorly educated expert, just thinking about his ludicrous statement on mammalian extinctions, I was able to think of the Chinese River Dolphin or Baiji, Pyrenean Ibex, the Tasmanian Thylacine, The African Quagga, the giant Lemurs of Madagascar, the Aurochs of Europe and the Sea Cow. This is without recourse to a reference work. I'm sure that research will turn up more.

Try to look up the Holocene extinction event which confirmed my suspicion. It may dent your certainty.

Regards

Hermit
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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #132 on: 2007-09-08 09:23:54 »
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Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
Too many snipes to respond to all.

In which case I’ll keep this reply simple.


Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
Asserting that my data is fallacious is one thing. Responding to it is something else.

Indeed. I notice you failed to respond to my points re your data.

I’ll reiterate and in doing so address your points:


Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
Anthromorphic change? I don't recall asserting that that is proven. I've previously observed that correlation is not causation. But the correlation is clear.

And since we cannot presently distinguish between AGW induced climate change and natural variability, I state that the correlation for natural variability is clear.


Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
Global climate change is undeniable.

?

What an irrelevant point ... or perhaps you think there was a period when global climate was static?



Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
Warming is apparent.

As is cooling.

See: the heat goes down « Reply #114 on: 2007-08-09 09:15:19 »

But let me not stray from the point I made in my previous reply, “that warming or cooling trends are generated in the surface temperature series (e.g. HadCRUT3, GISS) by the methods used to create those data sets.  And those generated trends are known to be at least as great as the global warming the data sets purport to indicate.  Hence, those data sets are useless as tools to quantify global warming or global cooling.

Thus, in the context of the above, these events do not quantify global warming or cooling.  But, of course, every locality is warming or cooling.”



Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
Ice loss is particularly apparent (and refuting gravimetric and laser measurements is challenging).

I have addressed this before and will reiterate and expand.

Re:The Flipping Point « Reply #122 on: 2007-08-16 11:27:56 »

Quote:
Interestingly, in the 1970's the comment in a book about the danger of cooling titled "The Weather Conspiracy" was "The ice cover in the Northern Hemisphere increased by 12 percent in 1971 - an increase equal to the combined area of England, Italy and France. This added ice remained. The great ice mass of Antarctic grew by 10 percent in one year, 1966-67. And the average ice and snow cover is high and expanding."

I think this is an excellent satellite ice portrayal site = http://iup.physik.uni-bremen.de:8084/amsr/amsre.html

There was a claim of a 9% decrease in ice cover but it turned out that much of this was due to a change in recording techniques. They switched from a pastiche of sources in a compilation technique to satellite information in 1978, although the accurate measures didn't begin until 1980. There is a natural variability around 10 million km2 between the amount of winter cover (about 16 million km2) to summer cover of about 6 million km2. This is an area approximately equal to the US land surface. In 2005 we heard a great buzz because an area the size of Texas melted more than the previous summer. Of course, this is less than 4% of the total melt, but sounds dramatic, besides, it is within the range of variability of the record since 1980. This last winter there was more ice than the previous winter, but nothing was reported. The mechanism of explanation is the more southerly mean position of the Polar Front and a shift from a meridional Rossby waves to a more zonal flow. This resulted in a reduction in the variability of weather. This pattern reflects what has happened in the southern hemisphere for approximately 2 years now. One way you see the difference this winter was the lack of complaints about the ability to build winter roads in northern Canada. The evidence for cooling grows.

To expand:

re the Greenland ice cap:

The 1930-1950 retreat of the breakup point of the largest Greenland glacier (at Ilulisat - Jaboshavn) was much faster than in current times. See the NASA's page here: http://www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/lookingatearth/jakobshavn.html and follow the link to the high resolution graph from 1850-2003.

The inland move of the breakup point is as long in the period 1929-1953 (24 years) as in the period 1953-2003 (50 years). Moreover, summer (melt) temperatures around Greenland (only the edges are habited, but temperature trends there are important for summer melt of the ice cap edges) now are not higher than in the 1930-1945 period, when GHGs didn't play an important role.
See: http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/greenland_temp.html

There was thinning of the ice sheet around 1950, comparable to the recent thinning. From http://www.agu.org/meetings/fm05/fm05-sessions/fm05_C41A.html :


Quote:
This record shows two periods of rapid thinning by about 70 meters, in the early 1950s and since 1997. Observed changes in glacier behavior during these two events are markedly different. The recent thinning, which involved several episodes of retreat followed by large thinning, resulted in a rapid retreat of the calving front toward grounding line. Thinning in the 1950s occurred during a period when the calving front was stationary with only minor annual fluctuations. Nevertheless, aerial photographs collected in the 1940s and 50s indicate that thinning extended far inland.


An important factor to mention is that the retreat of the glacier front should accelerate with glacier altitude, as the remaining icebergs in the 30 km long icefjord give less back resistance against the ice front than a longer tongue. Thus the 1930-1950 retreat was in fact faster in many ways than the current one.

In his reply of Re:The Flipping Point « Reply #124 on: 2007-08-16 19:15:49 » Hermit makes the following point:


Quote:
The issues of tundra defrosting in the USSR, Alaska and Canada reported as continuously worsening with the now inevitable or near inevitable release of Methane and CO2  previously trapped by permafrost.

Despite the increased defrosting (if it really happens, compared to the 1930-1945 period), the atmosphere doesn't show any increased levels of methane. The increase of methane in the atmosphere ceased some 5 years ago... See: http://www.niwa.cri.nz/rc/prog/greenhouse/info/4

And:


Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
The ability to go swimming at the North Pole this year

Yes, polinia’s are common in every summer at the North Pole.



Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
Greenhouse gas levels are indubitably rising.

Indeed.

See: the heat goes down « Reply #114 on: 2007-08-09 09:15:19 »



Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
Solar variation has been shown to be insufficient to account for more than a smallish percentage (15% IIRC) of measured thermal radiation by Earth And Bolton's law shows that implies that our planet is becoming warmer.

Are there any extraterrestrial forces, other than solar irradiance, which have a significant effect on the worlds' climate?

I ask because your statement ignores The Great Pacific Climate Shift of 1976/7 – the last shift from The Pacific Decadal Oscillation cool phase to warm phase (reversing the shift to cool phase in the early 1940s).  The 1976/7 Shift was an inertial event of huge magnitude; an up-welling quantity of cold water in the equatorial eastern Pacific reduced from approximately 26 to 18 Sverdrups. These events correlate with reversal in the rate-of-change of length-of-day (LOD). These PDO and LOD reversals correlate with reversals in the sense of the torque the giant planets combine to apply to the Sun – and hence kinks in the radius of the Sun’s orbit around the centre of mass of the solar system.

While the Royal Society/Met Office/IPCC ignore inertial (and resonant) influences, these are not the main difference between the competing hypotheses of a self-contained and anthropogenic driven climate vs an externally-driven climate. 

Hermit and company do allow a minuscule external warming contribution via total solar irradiance (TSI). IPCC AR4 states that since 1750, radiative forcing from CO2 and CH4 have increased by some 1.66 and 0.48 Watts/sq m respectively – compared to only 0.12 W/m2 from TSI. The Sun is almost irrelevant.

It appears likely that the main difference is that most of the variation in the transport of energy in the outer reaches of the Sun and beyond is by convection associated with the bulk turbulent motion of gas – not by radiation. TSI varies only by fractions of a percent; but the eruptive outflow of magnetised plasma can vary by orders of magnitude. At time scales from hours to millennia it seems much more plausible that the solar wind – and not TSI – is the principal vehicle for causing variability in the quantity of solar energy reaching Earth. 

In their study Usoskin, Solanki and Korte 2006, “Solar activity reconstructed over the past 7000 years: The influence of geomagnetic field changes”, (GRL 33, GL025921) ‘”… allows the fraction of time to be estimated that the Sun spends in grand minima of activity.  … about 6% or 430 years after 5000 BC with 320 of these years occurring during the last millennium.”  For grand maxima, “hyper-active episodes (similar to the modern episode) remain very rare … being between about 1% and 3% of all the time during the last 7000 years.”

Another relevant study is from Lockwood, Stamper and Wild 1999, “A doubling of the Sun’s coronal magnetic field during the past 100 years”, Nature 399, pp.437-9.  Their abstract begins:


Quote:
“The solar wind is an extended ionized gas of very high electrical conductivity and therefore drags some magnetic flux out of the Sun to fill the heliosphere with a weak interplanetary magnetic field.  Magnetic reconnection – the merging of oppositely directed magnetic fields – between the interplanetary magnetic field and the Earth’s magnetic field allows energy from the solar wind to enter the near-earth environment.  …  Here we show that measurements of the near-Earth interplanetary magnetic field reveal that the total magnetic flux leaving the Sun has risen by a factor of 1.4 since 1964; surrogate measurements of the interplanetary magnetic field indicate that the increase since 1901 has been a factor of 2.3 …”

Their records end with 1996; and the peak year for solar magnetic flux was 1992.



Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
I didn't say Polar Bears were becoming extinct, I noted that they were threatened.

Good point. Apologies for putting words in your mouth.



Quote from: Hermit on 2007-09-07 08:17:26   
Which is an official status awarded to them by a number of bodies who appear to know some things your distinguished "dean of Finnish predator research" (some kind of trapper?) didn't mention.

Like what?

I find the following:

Polar Bears
Proceedings of the 14th Working  Meeting of the IUCN/SSC Polar Bear Specialist Group, 20ˆ24 June  2005

http://assets.panda.org/downloads/polar_bear.pdf  (2.2MB)


The document lists 19 sub-populations, of which:


Quote:
Data deficient, 7 sub-populations, 59% of total  population
Declining, 5 sub-populations, 5% of total  population
Increasing, 2 sub-populations, 10% of total  population
Stable, 5 sub-populations, 27% of total  population

To me, this does not indicate any danger for the bears. It does indicate, however, that we do not know a lot about them, having inadequate data for about 60% of the total. We do not have data on most of the populations.

Further, According to Dr. Mitch Taylor (one of the authors of the study cited above), head of the governmental Wildlife Research in Nunavut and member of the Polar Bear Specialist Group, (and several others), most polar bear groups are thriving well and are expanding. In fact, Inuit polar bear quota for hunting was increased from 400 per year to 500 per year...

In conclusion:

On 10 August, six authors from the Hadley Centre issued a prediction with a short enough term for its veracity to be tested while many of us are hopefully still alive. Doug M. Smith et al 2007, “Improved surface temperature prediction for the coming decade from a global climate model”, Science 317, pp. 796-9.  Their abstract ends:

“… climate will continue to warm, with at least half of the years after 2009 predicted to exceed the warmest year currently on record.”

Now that that stark and unqualified prediction is out, it seems pointless for me to continue debating the minutiae of the establishment position on anthropogenic driven climate.  I think it better to make sure that all rational people know what has been said. Theodor Landscheidt, Ian Wilson, David Archibald et al envisage the start of cooling during the next decade. Thus, within a decade we will know if people or the Sun is the principal driver of Earth’s climate. 

I’ll get back to this thread closer to the time ...

-iolo
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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #133 on: 2007-09-09 04:58:16 »
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[Blunderov] Whatever the source of the trouble, trouble there is - aplenty.

Black Sun Journal

Greenland Ice Melt Triggers Earthquakes
By BlackSun / September 8th, 2007 / Energy Transition, Science, Newswire / No comments

Greenland Ice Melt Triggers Earthquakes

The Greenland ice cap is melting so quickly that it is triggering earthquakes as pieces of ice several cubic kilometres in size break off. Scientists monitoring events this summer say the acceleration could be catastrophic in terms of sea-level rise and make predictions this February by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change far too low. The glacier at Ilulissat, which supposedly spawned the iceberg that sank the Titantic, is now flowing three times faster into the sea than it was 10 years ago. Robert Correll, chairman of the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment, said in Ilulissat today: “We have seen a massive acceleration of the speed with which these glaciers are moving into the sea. The ice is moving at two metres an hour on a front 5km [3 miles] long and 1,500 metres deep. That means that this one glacier puts enough fresh water into the sea in one year to provide drinking water for a city the size of London for a year.” Prof Correll is visiting Greenland as part of a symposium of religious, scientific, and political leaders to look at the problems of the island, which has an ice cap 3km thick containing enough water to raise worldwide sea levels by seven metres.

The melting of Arctic ice already floating in the ocean has no effect on sea levels due to Archimedes’ law. But we will have no such luck with the collapsing Greenland ice sheet, which has enough fresh water to raise global sea levels by 22 feet! The future is now and it ain’t pretty.




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Re:The Flipping Point
« Reply #134 on: 2007-09-10 15:26:20 »
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De Nile. The river continues to expand, who knows its sources: As opposed to that, the source for this graph reflecting measured changes in the world’s temperature* as presented by NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies is easy to tell, it is http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/



The rapid increase in world temperatures over the last 20 years has paralleled the rapid rise in carbon dioxide concentrations. The slight cooling that took place from 1940 to the 1960’s was caused by increasing sulfates in the atmosphere - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Climate_Change_Attribution.png

*The above graph incorporates the July, 2007 corrections in historical data.
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