TCS Daily


An Army of Climate Davids

By Tim Worstall - May 4, 2006 12:00 AM

Something stunningly sensible has just occurred in the field of climate change research. But what might actually induce gasps of amazement is that that something has been done by the US Government. And it is already causing shock and dismay among tree huggers and Gaia worshippers everywhere, however simple, elegant and even desirable this something is.

By way of background, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is the UN-sponsored organization looking into climate change on our behalves. We had the Third Report from them back a few years ago and it was that report that became the impetus for the great global warming outcry -- bringing the whole subject to fore of our collective consciousness. Now, it's time for the Fourth Report to be compiled; obviously science has not stood still in recent years. In fact, given the money and effort being expended on this subject, we'd rather hope it hadn't. That Fourth Report is due to be published next year.

OK, so, fine, the process goes on apace and what's so remarkable about that? Well, the draft report has historically been kept secret. Sooper-seekkrit. You see, the scientists (and the rather more political creatures who write the summaries) want to be able to work in peace and deliver the report at once in a blaze of publicity. So what has the US Government gone and done? Posted a draft of it on the Internet! (Right here).

Now, admittedly, you do have to apply for a password to get onto the site, but I can assure you that it's set up as an automatic function and if the choice of password that I got is any indication we're all going to be getting exactly the same one.

Not only has the draft been published, how about this from Britain's Independent:

"The US Climate Change Science Programme, which yesterday released its own report saying climate change was being affected by man-made pollution, said it wanted as many experts and stakeholders as possible to comment on the draft IPCC report."

Admittedly, I hesitate to describe myself as an expert on this part of the report (I'm much more interested in the economic models that this part of it does not address), but I think I qualify as a "stakeholder" in the process. That is, someone with an interest in this report being done properly. I also think that you probably qualify as a stakeholder, as well. So why not? Get a password, read what you will of the report and if you've got an apposite comment -- by which I don't mean either "This is all a commie plot" or "Aieee! We're all going to die!" -- why not make it? They do specify that you should be a US citizen or Resident Alien to comment, for you will be contributing, in however small a manner, to the official US Government response.

You may well wonder why this is actually being done. Why on earth is something so scientifically complex being opened up to us, the general public, to comment upon?

One thought is that someone's actually gone and read James Surowiecki's The Wisdom of Crowds and has noted that it is often true that experts, working with other such, can end up moving further away from, not towards, the correct solution. Bias (even unconsciously so) can create a kind of groupthink: remember the way in which the writers of the economic models have consistently refused to take seriously the criticisms of Castles and Henderson (as I described here a month ago)? So why not unleash an Army of (Climate) Davids, as Glenn Reynolds might put it, to help matters in the early stages?

However, I think there's a much greater reason for this request for help. We take it as a truism that on any specific subject there are experts, something which is obviously true. But it isn't similarly obvious that all of the experts on a subject are actually writing a specific report. There are those (vastly more competent to comment than I) on the scientific aspects of climate change who are not actually part of the IPCC process. The US Government is thus asking these people to aid it in preparing a response to the draft report. Unlike last time, of course, when anyone who critiqued the final report was simply told, Uh, this is the considered view of all of the experts -- now shut up.

Which was a rather unfortunate response as there was a lot to criticize. Back in the economic models, for example, were those problems, as above, with market and purchasing power exchange rates. It's also been a particular bugbear that population estimates were exogenous to the scenarios rather than endogenous (that is, that the numbers of people were a given, not something that emerged from the interactions within the models). One of the big things we've found out about demography in recent decades is that as societies become richer, population growth slows, stabilizes, and then goes into reverse. Such hasn't been reflected in the models which portray a future earth vastly richer than today's, and yet with many more people (i.e. one of the ways that they arrive at extreme outcomes).

So my guess is that the request for comments is an attempt to open up the subject to those outside the charmed circle actually employed by the IPCC to write the report. It might be that those on the outside have nothing to contribute; it could be that they will spot some errors of logic, or of science. But at least, by doing it at the draft stage, we can get the final report influenced -- if there are indeed errors -- rather than spend years, after the report is released, arguing about it.

One comment in The Times really rather amused me:

"Roger Pielke Jr, of the University of Colorado, told Nature: "If the report is already out there in circulation, then the 'news' value is likely to be much diminished when the official report is finally released."

Really? We should not have peer review (even if of the most citizen journalist based kind) simply because it will diminish the news value? Is this science or propaganda? The following is even more puzzling:

"Friends of the Earth said that the US Government had repeatedly tried to undermine the IPCC in the past."

Difficult not to snigger at that really: asking people to comment upon and possibly correct a draft is "undermining"?

Anyway, go on. Have a go. See what you can find. Just remember that whatever you do want to say has to be in by May 9th.

Tim Worstall is a TCS contributing writer.

Categories:

270 Comments

Interesting and Very Contentious
Global Warming Data Sets Reconciled
by Ronald Bailey
Reason Online, May 3, 2006

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has just released a report that looks at the various global temperature data sets and finds that THEY ARE NOW ALL "CONSISTENT" WITH MAN-MADE GLOBAL WARMING. The chief cause is the emission of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide released from the burning of fossil fuels.

Global warming skeptics (and I WAS DEFINITELY ONE OF THEM) have cited the findings of John Christy and Roy Spencer at the University of Alabama at Huntsville who have produced a temperature series based on satellite measurements since 1979 ... saw little or no warming ... [but] corrections made to the data sets have boosted average global temperatures in both.

...The question of how high temperatures are likely to go in the future is still open. Christy told the Washington Post that he has "a MINIMALIST INTERPRETATION interpretation" of the report because Earth is not heating up rapidly at this point. And questions about what policies should be adopted, e.g., cutting emissions, fostering a technological revolution, adapting, or some combination, are now clearly on the table. The next couple of decades are going to be interesting and very contentious.

http://www.reason.com/hitandrun/

Ronald Bailey is an Adjunct Scholar of the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), an Adjunct Scholar of the Cato Institute, Science Correspondent for Reason Magazine.

Well, Now Bailey Is Wrong, Too
"Various global temperature data sets . . . are now all 'consistent' with man-made global warming" merely means that you can't rule out man-made global warming on the basis of the data sets. The same data can be consistent with a number of underlying mechanisms for causation. The fact that the earth is warming is consistent with natural cycles as well, since the earth has gone through innumerable warming trends in the past.

In other words, this doesn't really add much new to the debate. Even "climate skeptics" have conceded over the last year or so that the planet is warming up, and that seems to be all that the NOAA report really says.

Climate skeptics continue to say that the case hasn't been made for ANTHROPOGENIC CO2 [as the underlying or primary cause], and I don't understand the NOAA report to be saying any different. I don't think NOAA is claiming that the temperature data settles the question of what is causing the current warming trend. ~ RC Dean

THAT is the rub, Rhampton. That global warming is happening is a foregone conclusion. The usually insightful Bailey seems to be owning up the fact that he was something of an idiot for a while.

The NOAA report is more smoke and mirrors from the High Church of Politics, which in its sadomasochism craves for it to be the truth that mankind is entirely responsible for global warming. I'm not saying that the scientists at NOAA are sloppy, or liars, or tha their new report is wrong. I am saying that they have added nothing of substance whatsoever to the real issue--the issue of WHY.

It seems that they are beginning with the hypothesis that mankind is the creator of global warming--and they are not recognizing it as a mere hypothesis, but as a fact. They are wrong.

The science that I see says it is mostly the Sun's (very, very long) cycle. Mankind might be contributing a little, but not in any significant way; and global warming and its subsequent effects cannot be stopped, only prepared for and dealt with.



When did humans land on Jupiter?


"New Storm on Jupiter Hints at Climate Change "

http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/060504_red_jr.html

Carbon 12, 13, & 14
More Notes on Global Warming
Physics Today, May 4, 2005

...Besides technicalities implying that the global CO2 budget still has SECOND-ORDER UNCERTAINTIES, I'm surprised Weart didn't cite FIRST-ORDER PROOFS demonstrating that the recent CO2 increase cannot be due to ocean warming. Those killing proofs are well-known in the climatology community -- for example, in the IPCC -- but it is crucial to emphasize them again for a wider audience.

The recent CO2 increase -- 280 to 380 parts per million by volume between 1800 and 2005 -- is accompanied by three phenomena that completely rule out ocean warming as the main cause:

* Parallel decline of the 14C/12C ratio of atmospheric CO2. Strictly speaking, this is the "Suess effect," first observed, and correctly interpreted, by Hans Suess of the University of California, San Diego, in the early 1950s. The Suess effect occurs because fossil fuels do not contain 14C precisely because they are fossil -- much older than 10 half-lives of 14C.

* Parallel decline of the 13C/12C ratio of atmospheric CO2. This phenomenon is linked to the fact that fossil fuels, forests, and soil carbon come from photosynthetic carbon, which is strongly depleted in 13C.

* Parallel decline in the oxygen concentration of the atmosphere, which is the inescapable signature of an oxidation of carbon. If ocean warming were responsible for the CO2 increase, we should also observe an increase in atmospheric O2

http://www.physicstoday.org/vol-58/iss-5/p16a.html

How do you get a password?
I clicked on the link, but was asked immediately for a password/login without being given an opportunity to sign up for one. How do we do that?

But you're right? Why should we believe you?
I mean, this:

>The science that I see says it is mostly the Sun's (very, very long) cycle.

The experts, the people who have spent their lives doing ths, see and do the same science, and come to quite different conclusiion. But you say this is sadomasochistic politics.

You're also misrepresenting the situation. The crux is not that "that mankind is entirely responsible for global warming," but that human inputs are a major factor in the warming that we're observing now. Yes, a few scientists dispute this. The vast majority don't.

If you believe the science is wrong, go to the places it's published and publish something refuting it.

because of the evidence

Password info
I hunted around on the website and found the following:

"If you are interested in reviewing the report, send a message -- with your name and affiliation in the subject line -- to ipcc-usgrev@climatescience.gov to obtain the username and password required to access the report."

Bah TCS doesn't do html in comments
that's passage is from this site: http://www.climatescience.gov/Library/ipcc/wg14ar-review.htm

How much
How much heat, being trapped by all the CO2, is contributing to any current global,or local tempeature rises?

shut up, Mark

What difference would any answer make to you?
Your mind has been made up for years. No evidence will change it.

What difference would any answer make to you?
Your mind has been made up for years. No evidence will change it.

on expert dogma...
"The experts, the people who have spent their lives doing ths, see and do the same science, and come to quite different conclusiion."

That's what the Church said to Galileo.

An example almost mathematical in its irrelevance
The church had non-rational reasons to reject observations challenging the earth as the center of the universe, not factual evidence. The case that humans are influencing the earth's climate does not come from wishful thinking or religious believe, but from detailed, meticulous observations over decades all of the world, from sateillites, ice cores, models and much more, all of it critically examined at every stage of the way.

If you really want to compare this body of hard won empirical knowledge with the Inquisition's abstract misunderstandings of Greek astronomy, I really think you'll believe anything at all. But the reason you believe it is because your mind was made up on political grounds, not scientific ones.

Show me some evidence.
It doesn't matter what I believe, it is what can be proven.
And I have not yet been shown proof that CO2 is the sole culprit.

Science

"Anthropogenic forcing, resulting from thermal expansion from ocean warming and glacier and ice sheet melt, is likely the largest contributor to sea level rise during the latter half of the 20th century," the report says.

"Anthropogenic forcing has likely contributed to recent decreases in Arctic sea ice extent. There is evidence of a decreasing trend in global snow cover and widespread retreat of glaciers consistent with warming and evidence that this melting has also contributed to sea-level rise," it adds."

Not that they are hedging their bets by saying likely. Which means they cannot prove it.

http://news.independent.co.uk/environment/article361813.ece

The way science works is that observations are made. Theories are devoped and then the theories are tested.
Copernicus used mathematics to prove the earth orbited the sun.
The mathematics proving CO2 is causing climate change has not been presented.

Another method is develop a theory and make measurements to prove the theory. So far, climate models have not predicted climate change, not even tomorrow's weather.

My mind has not been made up because the evidence is not convincing. Obviously you have decided to beleive the creator of the internet.

Again: why?
>And I have not yet been shown proof that CO2 is the sole culprit

Ah yes, the world has to drop everything to show you.

But: Nobody says it is the "sole culprit:" Other greenhouse gases are also increasing because of human inputs. But the bottom line is that the physics for why an increase in CO2 would produce an increase in temperature are ironclad. We can document the increase. And the evidence is there, and has been for years. That you choose to ignore it doesn't mean it doesn't exist, nor does it turn you into an expert on the subject whose opinions carry weight.

Accurate Science Reporting
"Another method is develop a theory and make measurements to prove the theory. So far, climate models have not predicted climate change, not even tomorrow's weather."

Global warming weakens Pacific winds
Nature, May 3, 2006

Climate change is weakening a vast system of circulating winds that traverses the Pacific Ocean from coast to coast, say climate experts ... The system, known as the Walker circulation, has weakened by more than 3% since the mid-nineteenth century, report climate modellers led by Gabriel Vecchi of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Princeton, New Jersey. The cause, they say, is greenhouse gases. And with emissions still climbing, Pacific winds could potentially decline by more than 10% by the end of the century, they predict.

The observations, reported in Nature, BACK UP CLIMATE MODEL PREDICTIONS that these winds should weaken, says Vecchi. "This is one of the most robust predictions of climate research," he says...

http://www.nature.com/news/2006/060501/full/060501-5.html

--------------------

New observations and climate model data confirm recent warming of the tropical atmosphere
DOE/Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, August 11, 2005

...Three papers published in today's edition of Science Express shed light on this debate. The first two studies revisit temperature data obtained from satellites and weather balloons, and provide compelling evidence that the tropical troposphere has warmed since 1979. The third study, led by scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, finds that these new observational estimates of temperature change are CONSISTENT WITH RESULTS FROM STATE-OF-THE-ART CLIMATE MODELS...

http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2005-08/dlnl-noa081105.php

Again: why should anyone care what you think
If the word "likely" weren't included, you'd complain about dogmatism.

And in many cases where the science is absolutely ironclad, you still use the word likely. A lifelong chain smoker develops lung cancer. The smoking likely caused it, but you can't prove it.

As for predicting weather: it's a different question, but I'm sure you'd ignore a report that warned of a likely hurricane: I mean,what do those dogmatists know?

>Obviously you have decided to beleive the creator of the internet.

I've decided to believe the experts. And I really don't care what you believe.

Prediction: this will be the umpteenth factual Rhampton post ignored by true believers
Because facts and science simply don't enter into their equation. They know the truth before the science is done.

That's the point - the science isn't done, Fortunato
"Because facts and science simply don't enter into their equation. They know the truth before the science is done."

The science isn't done, Fortunato, or are you saying that it is?

Many people have seen this Chicken Little stuff before and, frankly, they aren't willing to buy it. The Earth is, what, 4 billion years old, and you're going to embrace devastating economic policy changes based on, what, 20 years worth of (debatable) climate research? It frankly doesn't stand the "smell test."

In the '70s, the parents of the GW gloom and doomsters were saying that the Earth was COOLING. Ten years earlier, Paul Ehrlich was saying we'd have 30 billion people by the year 2000.

Nope, sorry, I'm not yet willing to buy the story these "experts" are peddling.

...and when did people land on Mars?
Looks like Mars is warming up as well, and corresponding to the temperature rise on Earth.

Anthropogenic CO2 doing this as well?

Concur
Because of the Club of Rome predictions that we should all be dead now, or that we should be in the middle of an ice age, the level of proof needed for many will be pretty high.
There was once a boy who cried wolf....

And from Down Under
"Members of the public, like scientific experts, hold a wide variety of views on global warming and the degree to which it might be caused by human influence. The lack of scientific certainty regarding the causes of climate change is an established condition, not a political contrivance.

For instance, in April this year there was an interchange of letters in the Canadian media by two different groups of expert scientists who expressed polar opposite views on human-caused global warming, in public advice to incoming Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Editorialising on these letters, on May 3 the National Post wrote:

"We have clear evidence of scientific disagreement, and that's just in Canada. Internationally, the debate over climate-change theory intensifies daily. Two major conferences, one in Europe and the other in New Mexico, will explore the growing scientific conflict over climate change as it moves to new levels of understanding."

The editorial went on to add:

"It may be news to many Canadians, but the possible causes of global warming -- to whatever degree it might be happening -- range far beyond human carbon emissions. Changes in the behaviour of the sun, the role of aerosols and other natural factors may be as important, if not more important, than human behaviour."

By all accounts, this will be news to Greenpeace NZ too."

http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/SC0605/S00014.htm

And from MIT, #1 US engineering school
"Global Warming: The Origin and Nature of the
Alleged Scientific Consensus

Richard S. Lindzen
Richard S. Lindzen is the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Most of the literate world today regards "global warming'' as both real and
dangerous. Indeed, the diplomatic activity concerning warming might lead one to
believe that it is the major crisis confronting mankind. The June 1992 Earth
Summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, focused on international agreements to deal
with that threat, and the heads of state from dozens of countries attended. I must
state at the outset, that, as a scientist, I can find no substantive basis for the
warming scenarios being popularly described. Moreover, according to many
studies I have read by economists, agronomists, and hydrologists, there would be
little difficulty adapting to such warming if it were to occur."

http://www.climatescience.org.nz/assets/200605021722530.CSC-Lindzen.pdf

The wisdom of crowds
Get enough of the faithful jumping up and down and you can change the science, eh?

This is the Washington Post's take on the report:

Study Says Warming Data Match

A government study released Tuesday undermines a key argument of climate change skeptics, concluding there is no statistically significant conflict between measures of global warming on the Earth's surface and in the atmosphere.

For years, global warming critics pointed to the fact that satellite measurements recorded very little warming in the lower atmosphere, while surface temperatures said the Earth is heating up. Now the US Climate Change Science Program has concluded the two data sets match.

"The bottom line is there are no significant discrepancies in the rates of warming," said Thomas Karl, director of the National Climatic Data Center at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Rafe Pomerance, chairman of the Climate Policy Center, a group that advocates mandatory curbs on greenhouse gases linked to global warming, said the new report settles the scientific debate over humans' role. "This puts the nail in the coffin of [the skeptics'] argument as much as anything i've seen." Pomerance said.

Twenty-one scientists worked on the federal report and found that more recent satellite data reconcile surface temperature observations with satellite records.

Science Worstall style
"One of the big things we've found out about demography in recent decades is that as societies become richer, population growth slows, stabilizes, and then goes into reverse."

I guess that's why the United States has been adding population, while the old Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc have been losing population. I'm sure you can cite other examples as well.

Rests on speculation
Brant-- You comment that "Various global temperature data sets . . . are now all 'consistent' with man-made global warming" merely means that you can't rule out man-made global warming on the basis of the data sets. The same data can be consistent with a number of underlying mechanisms for causation. The fact that the earth is warming is consistent with natural cycles as well, since the earth has gone through innumerable warming trends in the past."

What it means is that there is a warming trend in effect, and that man-made warming constitutes a part or all of this trend. This means there are only three possible scenarios:

1) There is a natural warming trend in effect, and man-made warming is making it worse;

2) There is currently a natural cooling trend-- but it is not as strong as man-made warming; and

3) There is no natural trend at present. All the warming is man-made.

Can you imagine a fourth alternative?

Also, do you have the slightest amount of hard data illustrating the sun's supposed "very, very long cycle"?

US Stands alone
The US stands alone as the only western Country that disputes AGW. Not your climate scientist mind you, just your Government. Funny that with Bush being a oil man and funny that this site never run positive peiece about AGW. I would hate to say that because the it is sponced by EXXON because surely that wouldn’t be it. There must be some other reason.

Stands Alone?
Yo geek! Last time I looked the Aussies were right there with us.
DISCLOSURE: I am "sponced" by EXXON although I have a producing oil well in my back yard and am independently
wealthy (NOT!).

Demography
Roy: You need to pull out the effect of immigration. And the higher fertility of first generation immigrants. Without these two the fertility rate in the US would be below 2.0....below replacement. As it is in almost all European countries. The E. European and CIS countries have even lower rates for other reasons.
I might be wrong but I’m pretty sure that there’s no EU member with fertility (even including those immigrants) above 2.0.

Crowds
Everyone new the world was flat or that the sun rotated around the earth.
While there were a few throughout history that knew it was not true, Columbus, Magellan and Copernicus, individuals, proved them wrong.
If you ask the crowds today why gas prices are so high, you will get the answer that evil oil companies are gouging.
There is a very good reason the USA is a republic. Our founders understood the dangers of the majority and France proved them correct.
So until the crowds supporting your position can publically produce formulas and theories that can be repeated experimently proving their contention, I will trust in the individual.

Climate scientists
There are numberous climate scientists who support the US government position just as there are scientists in western counties who oppose their governments potion.
Check out the post above Down Under.

Warming planets
Pluto is warming as well-- as is Triton, a moon of Neptune. You should probably check them all out to see what the causes are. Each one is in a different situation.

On Triton, for instance, "The moon is approaching an extreme southern summer, a season that occurs every few hundred years. During this special time, the moon's southern hemisphere receives more direct sunlight. The equivalent on Earth would be having the sun directly overhead at noon north of Lake Superior during a northern summer."

http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/1998/triton.html

The solar system has about thirty bodies of significant size-- planets and major moons. Is it surprising that they should find five that are warming?

I care what they write
Sorry if people are not believing your man-made global warming religon like you do.

The experts were in consensus on global cooling in the 70's. Did you believe them then?

Natural factors
"It may be news to many Canadians, but the possible causes of global warming -- to whatever degree it might be happening -- range far beyond human carbon emissions. Changes in the behaviour of the sun, the role of aerosols and other natural factors may be as important, if not more important, than human behaviour."

I've asked this many times here. Could you please describe those changes in the sun's behavior? The solar irradiance has been measured since the 1950's, when we first put weather balloons into the stratosphere. What have they found about changes?

Everyone in the field acknowledges the significance of aerosols in countering warming. But what has changed? Man-made aerosols, such as sulfates, nitrates and soot, are quite easy to distinguish from those of natural origin. And the ones that have changed are the man-made ones. Passage of the Clean Air Act, in 1972, was a significant marker. After that, particulates of industrial origin decreased markedly. And a temporary cooling trend was reversed.

I'm sure you can describe other natural factors that have recently changed.

That's what you say, but you don't know what you're talking about
It's not what the scientists say. The science isn't finished - it never is -- but we have the picture with high enough confidence to act.

The examples you're giving are either individuals (Paul Erhlich) or small groups. The idea that the earth was cooling never had remotely the confirmation or the consensus behind it of the present day.

>It frankly doesn't stand the "smell test."...Nope, sorry, I'm not yet willing to buy the story these "experts" are peddling.

This isn't something that changes because you don't believe it. It's science. Smell what you want to smell: you're still burying your head in the sand.

Read the Report
Roy, I’d strngly suggest getting your password and reading the report. Solar Variance is discussed in the summary for policymakers. Yes, it does have a (small) effect.

That's what you say, but you don't know what you're talking about
It's not what the scientists say. The science isn't finished - it never is -- but we have the picture with high enough confidence to act.

The examples you're giving are either individuals (Paul Erhlich) or small groups. The idea that the earth was cooling never had remotely the confirmation or the consensus behind it of the present day.

>It frankly doesn't stand the "smell test."...Nope, sorry, I'm not yet willing to buy the story these "experts" are peddling.

This isn't something that changes because you don't believe it. It's science. Smell what you want to smell: you're still burying your head in the sand.

There was no such consensus
You had one or two articles in Newsweek, etc. Why not look up what actually happened?

There was no such consensus
You had one or two articles in Newsweek, etc. Why not look up what actually happened?

Lindzen is one guy
And now almost completely isolated.

Excuse me...
We aren't talking about crowds of ignoramuses. We're talking about a consensus among the people who know the material best. Copernicus has nothing to do with this.

The scientists have published the proofs. You refuse to believe them. That says a lot about you, but nothing about the science.

Columbus
was one guy.
Einstein was one guy.
Pasteur was one guy.
Salk was one guy.
Jesus was one guy.
Isn't it amazing what one guy can do?

Where?
If there is proof that quantifies the direct relationship between CO2 and any global temp increase I would like to see it and I dare say the IPCC would like to see it. For it they did, it would be splashed across the headlines and the internet inventor would be shouting from the rooftops with the proof.
And please explain why the earth's climate has been warmer in the past without any human intervention?
It is easy to topple a shakey theory. Just ask the right question.

Peer review: the value of crowds?
" widespread belief among nonscientists is that journal editors and their reviewers check authors’ research firsthand and even repeat the research. In fact, journal editors do not routinely examine authors’ scientific notebooks. Instead, they rely on peer reviewers’ criticisms, which are based on the information submitted by the authors.

While editors and reviewers may ask authors for more information, journals and their invited experts examine raw data only under the most unusual circumstances.

I think Steve McIntyre could wax eloquent on this one. The IPCC relies on the integrity of the journal’s peer review, and woe betide an IPCC reviewer who asks for raw data.

Journals have rejected calls to make the process scientific by conducting random audits like those used to monitor quality control in medicine. The costs and the potential for creating distrust are the most commonly cited reasons for not auditing.

In defending themselves, journal editors often shift blame to the authors and excuse themselves and their peer reviewers.

Journals seldom investigate frauds that they have published, contending that they are not investigative bodies and that they could not afford the costs. Instead, the journals say that the investigations are up to the accused authors’ employers and agencies that financed the research."

http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=656#more-656

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/05/02/health/02docs.html?_r=2&pagewanted=1&oref=slogin

If these are the crowds being valued, I will stick to the mavericks.

Solar irradiance
Thanks, Tim. That's helpful. Skimming the report I don't see where it's fleshed out anything on solar forcing (I've yet to download and read the thing closely) but they do offer a graph that indicates changes in solar output since 1750 on the order of 0.12 w/m2, with an uncertainty factor of two. I'd love to see the evidence behind that.

I hasten to say I've neither cited nor quoted from the document, so if you think I did, please pluck those neurons from your brain. Thanks in advance. :)

Fingers in your ears and singing 'I can't hear you'
The theory of how this happens has been ironclad for decades.

>And please explain why the earth's climate has been warmer in the past without any human intervention?

The mechanisms for this have been established. But you're ignoring the main point: just because the earth's climate has changed in the past without human intervention does not imply that human activity can't or isn't changing the climate.

But for you, it's not a matter of facts, it's a matter of pre-set belief. No fact anyone could bring would make you change your mind.

Here's the deal, Gulliver
You say the Earth is warming. I concur. You say "It's manmade!" I say, "I'm not convinced." You say (implicitly, given your strident tone), "AGW is true and we're all going to die horrible, miserable deaths." And I say, "BS." You see, you CAN'T prove that this trend won't turn around in 5, 10, 20 years. You simply can't take 20 years worth of data and turn it into a trend line for a 4 billion year old planet. Period.

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