TCS Daily


Book Review: The Deniers

By B.P. Terpstra - January 8, 2009 12:00 AM

There appears to be a great spiritual thirst for predicting great catastrophes. I call it Armageddon chic. In Lawrence Solomon's 2008 book, The Deniers, however, we hear from a good many moderate voices. There are no sensational prophecies, but there are many reasons to take a deep yoga breath.

Here are four:

Notably, the former chairman of the Committee on Applied and Theoretical Sciences, Dr. Edward Wegman, for example, exposed the "hockey stick" rot behind the catastrophic global warming narrative, in spite of attacks from all directions.

The president of the International Commission on Polar Meteorology, Dr. David Bromwich openly believes that "it's hard to see a global warming signal from the mainland of Antarctica right now."

The chief of Insects and Infectious Diseases, Prof. Paul Reiter from the influential Pasteur Institute acknowledges that Al Gore's stated view that "global" warming catastrophes and "mosquito-borne diseases" are partners is not taken seriously in specialist circles.

And, not surprisingly, the director of research, from the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute, Prof. Hendrik Tennekes, maintains that "there exists no sound theoretical framework for climate predictability studies" to justify catastrophic warming forecasts.

The Deniers also calls readers to think outside the so-called consensus box. Is there really a consensus on the consensus? And, if so, how wise is it to present science as a show of hands? In it, Solomon, a Canadian columnist raises the issue of politics in all of this. Page 183: "Headline horrors make great scapegoats. There's no more egregious or vicious example than governments using global warming to cover up their own failures to prevent the resurgence of malaria and other mosquito-borne diseases."

The dynamics of the global warming issue are changing, too. From Jimmy Carter's campaign against "global cooling" and his faith in the National Climate Program Act to Hollywood's An Inconvenient Truth, Solomon's text is also a cautionary tale about embracing extreme theories. But rather than deleting historical records, and simply inserting ourselves in a catastrophic motion picture, The Deniers also attempts to draw our attention to the big-picture arguments.

Page 171: "For millions of years, the geologic record shows, Earth has experienced an ongoing cycle of ice ages, each typically lasting about 100,000 years, and punctured by brief, warmer periods called interglacials, such as we are now in," Solomon argues. "The current period of global warming actually constitutes additional indication of the ice age to come." Thus, there is no reason to blame the "evil" robber barons. Or live like Hobbits.

With so much talk about the role of politics in business (an important argument, no doubt), it's no wonder so many of us forget just how political the "independent" United Nations and other public intuitions are. And, where, pray tell is the infamous hockey stick today? Page 21: "The IPCC has dropped it from the Summary for Policymakers for its 2007 Report," notes Solomon. "But the hockey stick did its main work years ago and is still very widely cited by advocates of the science-is-settled position."

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151 Comments

Not news, but book might be a good read
The so-called "consensus" never existed as it was never more than a 60-40 majority at best. Worse for the "believers", the "deniers" numbers have grown and become more outspoken in recent years.

There never was a consensus, that has little to do with science even if there had been, and the evidence is, quite simply, not strong enough to warrant any conclusion.

But none of this is news. It has been the position of many in the sceintific community since the late 90s, before AGW became the "big ticket scare" of the far-left enviro-loons.

To the credit of the "believers" the answer is not "There is no GW and/or human influence"; the is "There is a warming trend but it is largely natural and normal with little or not human influence."

Thus allt he policies in all the governments of the world can't do much about it. If humans are not the main cause, we cannot fix the problem.

No sun spots
I notice in the news recently that NASA has taken steps to protect astronauts from cosmic radiation as the solar activity has dropped.

"Cosmic rays from deep in space are to some extent prevented from entering the solar system by the solar wind, a gale of atomic particles blasted out from the sun.

The sun produces more solar wind when it is highly active.

Fluctuating levels of rare isotopes such as beryllium-10 in Greenland ice cores provide evidence of the effect of the sun's active and inactive phases, according to Jose Abreu from the Swiss Institute in Duebendorf."

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1108983/Astronauts-threatened-cosmic-rays-sun-active.html

There is also evidence to suggest cosmic radiation influences cloud creation on earth. I notice we have have quite a few more storms this year in the norther hemisphere.

" German scientists have found a significant piece of evidence linking cosmic rays to climate change.

They have detected charged particle clusters in the lower atmosphere that were probably caused by the space radiation.

They say the clusters can lead to the condensed nuclei which form into dense clouds. "

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/2333133.stm

Al Gore and the socialists are wrong, but...
they will, of course, deny it just as they deny they were wrong in the 70's with 'Limits to Growth' and the New Deal.

"Success is the important thing. Propaganda is not a matter for average minds, but rather a matter for practitioners. It is not supposed to be lovely or theoretically correct. I do not care if I give wonderful, aesthetically elegant speeches, or speak so that women cry. The point of a political speech is to persuade people of what we think right. I speak differently in the provinces than I do in Berlin, and when I speak in Bayreuth, I say different things than I say in the Pharus Hall. That is a matter of practice, not of theory. We do not want to be a movement of a few straw brains, but rather a movement that can conquer the broad masses. Propaganda should be popular, not intellectually pleasing. It is not the task of propaganda to discover intellectual truths."

"If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes the truth. // If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. // If you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it. // If you repeat a lie long enough, it becomes truth. // If you repeat a lie many times, people are bound to start believing it. "

http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Joseph_Goebbels

"The Coldest Weather Possible In Nearly 15 Years"
http://www.accuweather.com/news-top-headline.asp?partner=accuweather&traveler=0&date=2009-01-09_21:55

I recall -30F in SD in the 70s. In '89 Fairbanks was ~-70F for a few days.

Where is the 'news' in the above headline?

The alarmist prophets are quiet
I remember when this site was home to vigorous debates over global warming. No longer. Where have all the true believers gone?

The global warming prophets baptized us with fear, not with valid science and facts. Now that most people are no longer afraid of global warming, the prophets' flood of followers has dwindled to a trickle of sycophants who are best suited to live in a world never to come, being so maladjusted to the real world.

What's their next move? A Kool-Aid party à la Jim Jones and the People's Temple? I hope not, but at least they would trouble the rest of us no more.

they'll think of something
Don't worry, the 'reds turned greens' will think of something else soon. There's already a war against western food, and there's always population control. Remember leftists don't really like people so they always recommend population control; but of course only for western countries, the same as they only wanted CO2 control.

Good Book
In addition to Solomon's tome, I'd also recommend Christopher Horner's "Red Hot Lies" which details the real agenda behind so much of the AGW cult.

http://www.amazon.com/Red-Hot-Lies-Alarmists-Misinformed/dp/1596985380/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1231596763&sr=8-1

Food police
NYC is taxing 'fat' foods and other cities are forcing restaurants to post nutrition content and to stop using certain 'bad' oils.

Now we will have to go to Mexico or some back ally kitchen to get tortillas made with pork lard.

The coming ice age
Once in a while you do get something right. And this is one of those magic moments. The link between solar minima and cold weather is getting to look more and more like a... slam dunk.

Check this out:

"...Researcher Dr. Timothy Patterson, director of the Geoscience Center at Carleton University, shares the concern. Patterson is finding "excellent correlations" between solar fluctuations, a relationship that historically, he says doesn't exist between CO2 and past climate changes. According to Patterson, we shouldn't be surprised by a solar link. "The sun [is] the ultimate source of energy on this planet," he says.

"Such research dates back to 1991, when the Danish Meteorological Institute released a study showing that world temperatures over the past several centuries correlated very closely with solar cycles. A 2004 study by the Max Planck Institute found a similar correlation, but concluded the timing was only coincidental, as the solar variance seemed too small to explain temperature changes.

"However, researchers at DMI continued to work, eventually discovering what they believe to be the link. The key factor isn't changes in solar output, but rather changes in the sun's magnetosphere A stronger field shields the earth more from cosmic rays, which act as "seeds" for cloud formation. The result is less cloud cover, and a warming planet. When the field weakens, clouds increase, reflecting more light back to space, and the earth cools off.

"Recently, lead researcher Henrik Svensmark was able to experimentally verify the link between cosmic rays and cloud formation, in a cloud chamber experiment called "SKY" at the Danish National Space Center. CERN plans a similar experiment this year. A few years ago, Stanford University's Hoover Institution also reported finding a correlation between the sun and climate."

http://www.climatescienceinternational.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=31:vanishing-sunspots-prelude-to-global-cooling&catid=1:latest

So we might well be on our way to a new Maunder-like Minimum.. were it not for the beneficial and countering effects of carbon-based GW. :)

This is certainly a good fit with the observed fact.. that this has been the coldest and wettest winter in a number of years.

Fire up your engines, gentlemen.. we have an imminent ice age to fight! Of course if the sunspots decide to return.. then we're back to square one, and getting hotter.

WHAT?
You now admit human generated CO2 will NOT melt the glaciers and flood the planet?

Or, like in the early '70s, will this be your next sky is falling scare, a new ice age?

Here's a big problem though...
Alarming perturbations in the earth's magnetosphere.

"Dec. 16, 2008: NASA's five THEMIS spacecraft have discovered a breach in Earth's magnetic field ten times larger than anything previously thought to exist. Solar wind can flow in through the opening to "load up" the magnetosphere for powerful geomagnetic storms. But the breach itself is not the biggest surprise. Researchers are even more amazed at the strange and unexpected way it forms, overturning long-held ideas of space physics."

http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2008/16dec_giantbreach.htm

The problem, of course, is that if we're going into uncharted territory re earth's response to untempered solar winds, we could be on the brink of a magnetic reversal. And that really WOULD be a problem.

The deal is that the field will first weaken, then disappear. During the gap before it reappears in its reversed mode, we have no sun screen. And THAT can be a very big problem. Unfiltered solar particles and UV radiation will blast all living things until an effective shield can be re-established.

We are already in a "shields down" situation, as reported by NASA. This could be a precursor to a solar particle bath that would leave us all mutated and glittery inside.

http://www.cosmosmagazine.com/news/1967/earths-poles-long-overdue-reversal

As you say, it has happened before.
What government program do you plan to stop the reversal?

I'm not hopeful that you'll understand this any time soon
This is typical of your fuzz brained, one track thinking. You just have no business commenting on science.

It is well established that hiatuses in sunspot activity are linked with increases in incoming solar radiation.. and that these cause greater cloud condensation around nuclei, hence greater reflectivity from cloud cover.

It is also well established that the greater the proportion of GHGs in the atmosphere, the greater the retention of atmospheric heat. Plus, of course, a number of other consequences, like ocean acidification.

The two phenomena are both very well illustrated in the data we have. And they are both antithetical in effect. I.e. one has a net cooling effect, the other a net warming effect.

There are of course other inputs, some tending to heat the earth, others to cool it. The Milankovitch Cycles, for example. The climate we experience derives from the locus of all those effects acting against one another.

Prior to the current cessation of sunspot activity, the cooling effect seen from fluctuations in solar output was calculated as being one-fourth to one-fifth as strong as the warming effect seen from increasing GHGs.

Both kinds of effects are acknowledged by any competent climate scientist. And if by any chance the current minimum in sunspot activity becomes so pronounced as to precipitate a geomagnetic reversal, it could conceivably incur the beginning of a new ice age.

You're stuck in your crap about what "proves" this and what "disproves" that... maybe you should just sit back and read more about the complexity of it all. Good science doesn't pick and choose from among those things it wants, or doesn't want, to believe.

Science is exactly about what you can or cannot PROVE. NOT what you believe.
Since I have been working in a scientific field for over 25 years, I think I am qualified to comment.

Apparently you don't understand much about the scientific process,however, referring to your last paragraph.

Jeckel and Hyde
rb wrote:

"Prior to the current cessation of sunspot activity, the cooling effect seen from fluctuations in solar output was calculated as being one-fourth to one-fifth as strong as the warming effect seen from increasing GHGs."

Both kinds of effects are acknowledged by any competent climate scientist."

I recall that you once pooh-poohed the idea that the sun is the primary driver of the earth's climate, preferring instead the theory that man-made GHGs were the primary cause of climate change. Based on this "theory" and the undebatable science supporting it, you demanded that the state force people to radically alter the way they live, work, and play while depriving them of much of the economic liberty they now enjoy.

Now it seems that you have changed your tune on the basis of that which you once claimed was beyond debate, i.e. science. You are one dangerous critter, rb, and you have no business commenting on science because you readily exploit it to justify your own political ends while perverting the same by stifling debate. Stop beating your doom drums based on the latest state of science, which is ignorance relative to the final state of science. Knowing this, I also know that your commentary on science at any point in time is dangerous pablum of the same character as the shout of "fire" in a crowded cinema.

Now we know why Roy changed his mind: Pravda
"The earth is now on the brink of entering another Ice Age, according to a large and compelling body of evidence from within the field of climate science. Many sources of data which provide our knowledge base of long-term climate change indicate that the warm, twelve thousand year-long Holocene period will rather soon be coming to an end, and then the earth will return to Ice Age conditions for the next 100,000 years."

http://english.pravda.ru/science/earth/106922-earth_ice_age-0

Science is a work in progress.
This area of science is one in which everything is very far from being proven. It's very much a work in progress.. not like basic physics or chemistry. And at this early stage what we have is measurable data that hopefully have some predictive value.

Regarding the ability of greenhouse gases to hold heat, we have the experiment first conducted by Svante Arrhenius a century ago, upheld over time and never disproven. Maybe with your scientific background you have some way of explaining where everyone went wrong on that one.

The links between sunspot variability and cloud cover are much more tenuous than that so far.. although to me they look convincing enough at this early stage.

So let's say that evidence for both effects has been produced.. especially for the greenhouse effect. But we should never accept as dogma that something has been "proven" for all time.

It is commonly thought, for instance, that no matter the weight of an object, gravity will pull it toward the earth at the same rate of speed as any other object. Which, in an atmospheric medium, would be false. Try dropping a rock and a piece of paper from the same height. See which one lands first.

I like to keep up with ALL the science in the field.. not just whatever area you think I should be somehow in favor of. Because I have no vested interest in any outcome but the correct one. And the unfolding story of a stormless sun is currently the hottest story out there. Let's see where it leads.

You're out of your depth here
"I recall that you once pooh-poohed the idea that the sun is the primary driver of the earth's climate, preferring instead the theory that man-made GHGs were the primary cause of climate change."

No on the first count. The sun is the primary driver of earth's climate, as I've said on a number of occasions here.

And man-made GHGs are in fact the primary, though far from the sole, cause of current climate change.

If you can't figure out how these two ideas are not in conflict, I'll be glad to help you. But I think you'll learn it better if you puzzle it out for yourself.

Take a look at the chart labelled Anthropogenic and Natural Forcing on this page:

http://segre.ieec.uab.es/miralda/fsgw/lect7.html

The relative strengths of these various factors changes over time, with the acquisition of new data. But by and large they're still good. You'll see a number of factors promoting cooling, while others promote warming. The climate we get lies in the balance of these forces.

The column marked "solar" refers to the observed variability in solar irradiation.. not to the amount of surface activity on the sun. During recent normal 22 year cycles they've found the longer term trend to be slightly on the warming side. But there's an asterisk by this opinion, owing to the very short baseline of measurable events. We've only been able to measure this since 1978.. a mere two full cycles.

It has only been over the past year that we've experienced an actual absence of sunspot activity. And now that we're looking at it, the Little Ice Age is suddenly coming into sharper focus.

It remains to be seen whether this will turn into a long term condition or will all blow over next year. So we're not anywhere near the point of being able to make climate predictions based on an anomaly in 2008.

I have not changed my tune, as you state. I have pointed to two very different, unrelated phenomena.

Nor am I claiming that anything is "beyond debate". It's premature to say that the debate regarding climate science is closed. And I have ALWAYS said as much.

Nor am I stifling debate but rather promoting sensible debate. Someone makes an ignorant comment and I'll call them out on it. Buy and large the level of debate on this subject here has always been abysmal. And your feel for scientific evidence is an example.. witness your confusion in thinking that solar variability somehow must disprove the measurable effects of atmospheric greenhouse gases. The two are unrelated.

Nor do you appear to have the slightest idea what a scientific theory actually is. This is another thing you should look up, if you think theories are somehow opposed to facts.

Nor, finally, do I have any "political ends" to promote. When the science tells us we're headed toward a cliff, I get worried. And the man-made inputs into climate change tell us we're headed toward a cliff. It may be that at the last moment, the sun's variability saves us.. and it may not. But only a fool banks on chance.

What?
"No on the first count. The sun is the primary driver of earth's climate, as I've said on a number of occasions here.

And man-made GHGs are in fact the primary, though far from the sole, cause of current climate change.
"

1) If the sun is the PRIMARY driver, how can man-made GHGs be the PRIMARY driver of climate change? There can be only ONE 'primary'.

2) The 'proof' for man made GHGs being the 'cause' of current climate change is base upon computer models with significant uncertainty.

What is the most significant 'greenhouse' gas? Water.
As you have parroted Al Gore's nonsense about AGW, you have zero credibility to discuss anything about science.

"It is commonly thought, for instance, that no matter the weight of an object, gravity will pull it toward the earth at the same rate of speed as any other object. Which, in an atmospheric medium, would be false. Try dropping a rock and a piece of paper from the same height. See which one lands first."

Well, science is something is it not? It has been suggested recently that gravity is not invariant.

"Deviations from relativity are tightly constrained by numerous experiments. A class of unmeasured and potentially large violations is presented that can be tested in the laboratory only via weak-gravity couplings. Specialized highly sensitive experiments could achieve measurements of the corresponding effects. A single constraint of 1×10-11 GeV is extracted on one combination of the 12 possible effects in ordinary matter. Estimates are provided for attainable sensitivities in existing and future experiments."
http://scitation.aip.org/getabs/servlet/GetabsServlet?prog=normal&id=PRLTAO000102000001010402000001&idtype=cvips&gifs=yes

Which means gravity may be seasonal depending upon where it is in space-time.

If you believe what you just wrote, then why have you defended Al Gore's 'truth' when it has never been proven?

Now Greenland is NOT melting? Now they are playing CYA.
"The recent acceleration of glacier melt-off in Greenland, which some scientists fear could dramatically raise sea levels, may only be a temporary phenomenon, according to a study published Sunday.

Researchers in Britain and the United States devised computer models to test three scenarios that could account for rapid -- by the standards applied to glaciers -- melting of the Helheim Glacier, one of Greenland's largest.

Two were based on changes caused directly by global warming: an increase in the flow of water that greases the underbelly of the glacier as it slides toward the sea, and a general thinning due to melting.

If confirmed, either of these explanations would point to a sustained increase in runoff over the coming decades, fueling speculation that sea level could rise faster and higher than once thought.

The stakes are enormous: the rate at which the global ocean water mark rises could have a devastating impact on hundreds of millions of people living in low-lying areas around the world.

But a team led by Faezeh Nick of Durham University in Britain found that neither of these scenarios matched the data.

"They simply don't fit what we have observed," said colleague and co-author Andreas Vieli in an interview.

By contrast, the third computer model -- which hypothesised that melt-off was triggered by changing conditions in the confined area where the glacier meets the sea -- fit like a glove, he said.

"Whatever happens at the terminus provokes a strong and rapid reaction in the rest of the glacier. The result has been a significant loss of mass" as huge chunks of ice drop into the ocean, a process known as calving, Vieli explained.

These changes are also set in motion by global warming, but are not likely to last, he said.

"You cannot maintain these very high rates of peak mass loss for very long. The glaciers start to retreat and settle into a new an relatively stable state," he said.

The Helheim Glacier, along with several others in Greenland, started to slow down in 2007.

Vieli also noted that the data alarming the scientific community only covers a span of a few years. It may be ill-advised, he suggested, to project a trend on the basis of what may turn out to be a short-term phenomenon."

http://www.physorg.com/news150906831.html

Questioning Credentials
This is typical of your fuzz brained, one track thinking. You just have no business commenting on science.


You are projecting again.

Sure-the first 90 degree day in July
I've come to believe that in addition to being just another scheme to arrogate power to the learjet libs (isn't there a Kennedy peddling this AGW stuff?)

Its a test. THe left has always known that "the big lie" sells-now they are trying to figure out how big a lie and how fast.

But lets listen to Roy, I'm sure his scientific credential are as impressive, compelling and relevant as his economoic ones.

Fats...And other Bads.
Yeah there's always a contingency peddling some crap or another. There's a small but growing group of physicians urging some restraint on the war on sun exposure-why? Because while baking yourself is bad-sun has positive effects-such as causing the body to make Vitamin D. So while your dermatologish wants you to stay inside and slather on sunscreen-an endocrinologist might have a different take.

We know that multiple sclerosis seems inversely correlated with your residency's position from the equator. The highest rate of the disease is in Alaska.

Fats are also necessary-for mental, reproductive and dermatological health among other things. I'm old enough to remember the lunacy of the all you need is carbs thinking of the 70's. I learned the hard way about inadequate fats the hard way-xerotic (dry)and pruritic (itchy) skin. I'll take an extra 2-4 inches around the middle to avoid the scratching. I was lucky, I had a physician that was cautious enough to want to avoid steroids. Life is much better with some olive oil.

Beware of "expert" myopeia. IN all things, moderation.






Dim bulb, check filament
Your two comments offer excellent evidence that you don't have a scientific mind. If, as you state, you've spent 25 years in some science-realted field, it can only have been at the third rung or below.

1) "If the sun is the PRIMARY driver, how can man-made GHGs be the PRIMARY driver of climate change? There can be only ONE 'primary'."

Sloppy. Solar energy is the primary driver of climate, as probably 99% of our heat comes from this ball of fire. Without the sun our surface temp would probably be an even minus 273 Fahrenheit, modulated by whatever heat percolates upward from our molten core.

Climate CHANGE, on the other hand, is something very different. Of the half dozen or so factors influencing change on the scale of centuries to millenia, the sun had not been seen to be a major player. Our window of observation had simply been too small, with accurate measurements of irradiation only having been made since 1978 and problems with calibration having been found in those. But from what we could tell, long-term change in irradiation (that is, beyond the modulation found in the 11- or 22-year solar cycle) was minimally detectible.

There was, of course, the anomalous period that seemed to precipitate the Maunder Minimum. But there seemed to be no good way to study that, so the question was shelved until this past year, when sunspot activity again ceased.

So as I say, right now it's a "hot" topic.

2) "The 'proof' for man made GHGs being the 'cause' of current climate change is base upon computer models with significant uncertainty."

Once something gets inside your head, it never changes, does it?

I have to have said this directly to you a dozen times. First, there is no such thing as "proof". That's a bad word in this context. Try "evidence". Not as in "models".. as in observable measurements.

Experiments illustrating the effects of GHGs on heat retention in a gas medium have proven the theory of Arrhenius.. and we've come up with nothing yet to qualify that theory in light of some countering experiment. BUT.. no one has proven anything, nor COULD they prove anything beyond the ability of some fresh body of information to attenuate and change our understanding, when it comes to assessing ALL inputs into climate change. We're still very much on the learning curve.

Further, do you recall my ever having told you there is no "the" cause? You should. Time and time again I've tried to pound into your skull the fact that this is a multifactorial problem. There are many inputs that tend to heat the planet, and many others that tend to cool it. Some change over time to a greater degree than others. It is a certainty that there are forces bearing on the problem that have not yet come to light. And, finally, some of these factors are anthropogenic while others are "natural".

You need to widen the opening in your mind. And you need to stop maintaining that I've said there can only be one possible "cause" of global warming, and that cause is man-made GHGs, and that the edifice of proof derives from the manipulation of models.

Wouldn't dream of such a thing
I certainly didn't question your credentials. I have none myself in this area, and assume you don't either.

What I question is your ability to think scientifically.. to employ the Scientific Method in arriving at your conclusions. And in this as in every other issue upon which you've made a pronouncement here, your process has been to begin with the desired conclusion, then artfully arrange what evidence you can conjure up to make it seem to point in that direction.

Rhetoric in the employ of ideology has no place in science. If we find next month that something important in the science of climate change has been flawed, I'll be the very first to find it and point it out here. As I've just done with the news about the current solar minimum.

I'm feeling a little heavy today
Water is indeed the "most significant" greenhouse gas if you want to describe the gas that retains the greatest amount of heat in our lower atmosphere. But we have had no measurable way to evaluate the CHANGE in climate coming from changes in either humidity or cloud cover, because the problem has been too complex to describe.

Let me repeat: there is a distinction to be made between overall degree of heat retention and variability of heat retention over time. You need to master this idea before you're going to be able to move forward.

Current events in the solar outer layers are of great interest, in that they may provide preliminary evidence supporting the as-yet theoretical link between sunspot activity and terrestrial cloud cover. So the science here is moving ahead.

Re my comment on gravity, it was not describing local gravitational anomalies-- although there are such-- but rather the fact of wind resistance. A ping pong ball falls more slowly than a golf ball. The theory of gravitation is going through some changes right now in other areas (theoretical physics) but is in little danger of being overturned, that I can see.

Your new information about possible seasonality is intriguing and worth a close look. Certainly my body feels a lot heavier now than it did twenty years ago. :)

Al Gore's "truth"
I've taken from the science what I've taken. Al Gore seems to have done the same. If you want to criticise him, find some quote of his and show us where it's wrong. But don't try to tear me down because you think I bear a superficial similarity to him. That would be entirely coincidence, as I've never read his book or seen the movie. Ergo I have not defended Al Gore or anything he may have said.

If you use the word "proven" as meaning "beyond a shadow of a doubt, these findings can never be contradicted", then I've never said that about any of the GW issues we've been discussing. I would consider the theories of gravity and of the action of greenhouse gases in heat retention to be proven. But knowledge of the relative strengths of different weather vectors is still very much a work in progress. So far, man-made GHGs are well out in the lead, as we can see right in the data.

But as to the notion that there is one and only one "cause" of global warming, I would consider this theory of yours to be distinctly UNproven. It's bogus science.

Will that be a Slushie or a Slurpie?
If you actually read the article for content you'll find that both teams find the glacier under study to be losing ice mass, and both agree that the mechanisms involved derive from Global Warming. One thinks it's more melting, while the other thinks it's more spalling (calving).

Amazing! Two teams of scientists, who disagree over details. This has never happened before!

"o far, man-made GHGs are well out in the lead, as we can see right in the data."
No, it is not in the data. It is in a highly uncertain computer model.

But ALL scientists agree that man is causing the global warming?
Since the answer is NO, why do you BELIEVE AGW.

Try to keep the posters straight.
"I question is your ability to think scientifically."

First of all you aren't questioning me in this thread, because I haven't made any assertions here (yet). My post was a general dismissal of your faculties.

Then again, one must be qualified to question not only another's result, but method. You also need to think to bbe able to question another's thinking-you'shown no thinking here in any matter-just regurgitation of your most cherished nonsense.



Little to do with science
"Moreover, the coincidence of increasing carbon
dioxide (CO2) and the small warming over the past century hardly
establishes causality."

"The public discourse on global warming has little in common with the standards
of scientific discourse. Rather, it is part of political discourse, where comments
are made to secure the political base and frighten the opposition, not
illuminate issues. In political discourse, information is to be “spun” to reinforce
preexisting beliefs and to discourage opposition. The chief example of the latter
is the claim of universal scientific agreement. This claim was part of the media
treatment of global cooling (in the 1970s) and has been part of the treatment of
global warming since 1988 (well before most climate change institutes were created).
The consensus preceded the research."

"The situation has been recognized since time immemorial.
In Federalist Paper no. 79, Alexander Hamilton brooded about abuses
that might arise from legislative tampering with judges’ salaries. “In the general
course of human nature,” he wrote, “a power over a man’s subsistence amounts
to a power over his will.” An indication of such an attitude occurred when, in
2003, the draft of the U.S. National Climate Plan urged giving high priority to
improving our knowledge of climate sensitivity (that is, in finding the answer). A
National Research Council review panel instead urged giving broader support
for numerous groups to study the impacts of warming. The panel apparently
was more interested in spreading the wealth than in finding an answer.'

http://www-eaps.mit.edu/faculty/lindzen/L_R-Exchange.pdf

There is another danger to this AGW 'debate', amateurs like you think you understand 'science' when what is really happening is politics.
Anyone who understands science and scientists would KNOW they do not 'consense' readily.

Your feeblest defense yet
This is a desperation move on your part. All you're trying to do is to impute to me a statement that (a) is demonstrably wrong and (b) I've never said.

Give up, bro. Hit the books. Get some better material.

There is NO proof that AGW is caused by A GHGs.
Why do you persist is stating there is?

Political consensus is a red herring
Any time a once respected scientist like Lindzen brings in comments about Alex Hamilton, the Federalist Papers, etc, you know he's gone off the deep end. It's true that most scoentists who know and have studied the field believe that anthropogenic sources are responsible for an alarming trend in warming.. and that this trend, if unchecked, could lead to irreversible phase changes in the weather regimen civilization was built on. We should make neither too much nor too little of this scientific agreement.

We should also understand that the dorections of research being funded follow fashions and fads. But this is very far from saying they only fund research that intends to prove one theory and disprove another. That's crap. They fund areas of research that are of broad interest. And the research being funded tends to test every theory out there. And they publish results after peer review. There's no political spin involved, nor is there any de-funding of unpopular positions that can be supported by the evidence.

It is certainly true that crackpot theories get weeded out by the process. It may be that our Mr Lindzen is testy over not being published with such frequency lately, since he jumped on the axe-to-grind bandwagon.

If they were only funding things that "proved" anthropogenic GW, what are they doing funding so much research now into the sunspot anomaly? Doesn't reality counter your theory here? It's a natural force suspected of being greatly significant to the direction of current climate change. Yet it is attracting much interest.. and funding.

How come?

Can't tell the ditto heads apart
Sorry.. if I couldn't tell you from marjon and bennett, it's because you're all singing from the same hymnal.

But you've admitted to just impugning my character, rather than adding any meaning to the discussion. Why not then show me up? Come up with some interpretation that casts the theory (that anthropogenic sources are responsible for an alarming share of current global warming) into question.

If you're able to support your argument with strong evidence, I'll certainly admit it. I'm strongly evidence-based, not ideologically based.

As witness my initial post in this thread.

There's a mountain of evidence...
... that serves to illustrate the link between observed phenomena, such as Arctic warming, deglaciation, sea ice melting, ocean acidification, changes in botanical zones, migration of many, many species, etcetera and the predictive models that explain these phenomena on the basis of atmospheric gases and particulates, changes in albedo and changes in ocean chemistry.

If we want to posit that the earth is a very different place now than it would have been had our species not entered into an industrial age, we can't perform the experiment of measuring it against another parallel earth. But by every means we do have at our disposal, we can infer that there is no other explanation but anthropogenic change that so fits the facts.

Which comes very close to being in the spirit of your word of preference: "proof".

Any theory is greatly strengthened when it's joined by supporting evidence from other fields. The botanical and zoological evidence tells us the same thing is happening as the atmospheric evidence. Ocean chemistry also supports that interpretation. All you've got, pretty much, is the echo chamber attacking a hockey stick.

Like Squashing An Ant
You can't read the posters names?

You don't know much about science today.
It IS very political.

It is interesting that most of the scientists who agree with Lindzen are retired and don't depend upon grants from the government.

There is no proof, or even a valid theory, it is cause by human activity.
It was WARMER over 1000 years ago than today with no SUVs, only Vikings living on Greenland for a few hundred years.

A few hundred years later, it was much colder.

Until a model can explain these observations, it is junk.

Which is why the hockey stick data had to be massaged to fit their desires.

I believe in Climate Change
Because I know there's empirical evidence of it.

About 90 miles North of where I live is a "public facility" that features a field of rocks. They got there when the glaciers retreated millenia ago. A little further North is a geological oddity carved into the ground, also a glacial feature. Jefferson, I believe made references to the depth of Snow in Virginia. I stand over coal fields that were once tropic swamps. The pachyderms of NOrth America were equipped for cold, unlike their African & Indian Cousins and are now gone.

Therefore the climate changes, regularly. It changed an awful lot before human beings ever got here, let alone started using using coal and oil.

But the same crowd that warned us of a new ice age, now warns us of a global hothouse. Meteorologists called for 4-8" of snow this past Friday, for Saturday-we have less than 2.

So how is it we know:

The present climate is changing (drastically)
That it is unusual
That the cause is discernable
That it isn't caused by natural phenomona
That it is caused by human activity
That it can be slowed
That it can be stopped
That it can be reversed
That it can be slowed by human activity
That it can be stopped by human activity
That it can be reversed by human activity
That it should be slowed
That it should be stopped
That it should be reversed

These are just a few of the questions that need to be reasonable answerable before we hit the alarm button. This, Roy is called reasonable skepticism. You don't have reasonable skepticism, if you question nothing about the things that appeal to your gut (AGW) and are unable to be convinced about the things you disagree with.

So stop lecturing people who don't go hook line ans sinker for Lear Jet Gore's carbon blither-and by the way, last I looked, he's a lawyer, not a scientist.
























Lindzen's Iris theory
http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/Iris/iris2.php

This link provides an interesting discussion of Lindzen's iris theory.

Data collected to challenge the theory is from CERES.

http://asd-www.larc.nasa.gov/ceres/brochure/intro.html

Ceres has been around a while.

Now NASA is trying to launch CLARREO to significantly reduce the uncertainty in measurements from CERES and other EOS satellites.

"Accurate decadal-length records are essential for climate change detection, attribution, and for testing climate prediction accuracy. They represent the most critical test of uncertainty in future climate change prediction."

"CLARREO provides an orbiting calibration observatory that can be used to calibrate other solar and infrared space-borne sensors (e.g. VIIRS, CrIS, Landsat, Geostationary, CERES) and thereby improve to climate accuracy a wide range of sensors across the GEO observing system. It also improves the scientific value of all of these instruments.'

http://nasascience.nasa.gov/missions/clarreo

If NASA was so certain, meaning they could prove the claims made by AGW supporters, there would be need for CLARREO.

What is sad is the politics now being inserted. I attended a conference at the Space Dynamics Lab about earth observing satellites. Instead of presenting the technical need for CLARREO, a Harvard professor went off on a political tangent. Very unprofessional.

This was the abstract but his pitch was nothing like the abstract.

"Developments of high accuracy subsystems that establish SI traceable spectrally resolved radiance measurements from Earth orbit are presented in the context of climate forecast testing using an array of mathematical methods that optimize the information content obtained from the CLARREO satellite mission. A strategy is presented for CLARREO that considers the NRC decadal study objectives for climate, the sampling issues and orbit selection, the instrument design, and the integrated spacecraft design."

http://www.sdl.usu.edu/conferences/calcon/abstracts/testing-performance

He even has his own research group: http://www.arp.harvard.edu/

I guess he has an incentive to keep the bucks coming in.

This guy is pretty reasonable though: http://www.arp.harvard.edu/people/johnd/

No need to 'believe'. You have proof.
It can be proven that climate change occurs. Belief is not required, except for AGW.

political consensus
Politics is the arena for consensus, not science.
I like the quote from Einstein, something like; but thousands of scientists are saying your're wrong Mr. Einstein, and he answerd, 'why thousands, it would only take ONE to show i'm wrong?"

The power of one.
Socialists can't tolerate the power that one individual can have to prove them wrong, only the power one can have to force all to their will.

Politics intruding into science
You don't think you're being a little hypersensitive?

The need to verify data from CERES has been apparent for some time. And we missed a critically valuable opportunity, as I recall, when our doofus in charge failed to approve spending that would've allowed CLARREO to overlap data from CERES. Without both of them in orbit, no calibration of data would be possible. Thus we would have no opportunity to lengthen our baseline of observation. Am I recalling this right?

God, I'm glad that man's gone! But I digress.

This Harvard professor who concerns you, who got so political.. although there's nothing either in his abstract or on his website to that effect. Is it just possible that the political point he inserted was an aside? One sentence you bristled at?

I wish I had it as a reference. Yes, there are scientists who feel very strongly about the politicisation of their field. But I'm thinking most of them are against it.. and say as much whenever they're in front of an audience.

In other words, I'm thinking that there is not only a purely scientific need for CLARREO, there is a pressing political need. Because without it, political agents will be able to pursue their agenda in an absence of good data.

Try to sum up for me why you think this group, ostensibly pursuing basic research, is (a) just in it for the bucks, (b) ready to deliver such findings as will give them more bucks, and (c) working in an environment where more bucks come from research that's slanted toward a particular conclusion.

To me, CLARREO can only serve one purpose: the replacement of propaganda with good data. Therefore we need it.. even now that the opportunity for calibration has passed.

You're passing up a great opportunity
I said "But you've admitted to just impugning my character, rather than adding any meaning to the discussion. Why not then show me up? Come up with some interpretation that casts the theory (that anthropogenic sources are responsible for an alarming share of current global warming) into question."

Instead of showing off your own knowledge of the field and dazzling us all with your command of the facts, you choose to instead just continue chipping away at me with personal slurs. This is a dull addition to the discourse.

So let's give it another try. What's your take on the relative values of the various contributors to global warming.. and cooling?

Test question. I'll be waiting with interest.

The smoking gun
I'm sorry, with ideas like this I'm finding it very hard to believe you're employed in any scientific field. This is ridiculous.

All you're saying is that during a pre-industrial period, climate could change. Does that mean you believe there can be one and only one reason for climate change? And that since climate change occurred before our industrial era, that PROVES that we're not the ones responsible?

I would really, REALLY like your open answer to that one.

At last.. a beginning!
The inside of your mind is one scary looking place, Super. But at least you're beginning to address the basic premise of science.

Yes. All the questions you're asking yourself here are ones that need to be asked. It's a good information tree for coming to grips with climate science. But there's apparently no way I can convince you that I've been looking at the data for years, and listening to the theories knowledgable people offer in explanation of the data. And I follow the controversy.

Still, you think I'm just parroting Al Gore, despite my just mentioning in this thread that I've never read Al Gore, only know in general what he stands for and really don't give a crap about discussion on that level.

Here's one thing you could do right now to broaden your understanding. Your questions four and five are these:

"so how is it we know.."
"That it isn't caused by natural phenomona"
"That it is caused by human activity"

I'll have to give you the benefit of the doubt. Even though I must have posted the obvious fact, that the causes of climate change are many and varied, twenty or thirty times over the past several years, you've missed every post. And you know so little about the nature of the actual science that you haven't figured this out for yourself.

So then, I would like you to come up with a list of some of the principal inputs into how climate changes. You don't have to give it to us.. just use it for your own edification.

Don't forget to include the cosmic inputs: solar irradiation, storms in the sun's magnetosphere, the Milankovitch Cycles, the occasional bolide strike.. or the terrestrial inputs: volcanism, changes in atmospheric chemistry and sea chemistry, changes in albedo and land cover.. or the human inputs, smoke from fires, coal burning, clearing of land area, heat sinks from urban centers, the depletion and misplacement of carbon-based resources from all life systems, and the exhalation and pollution that results from an advanced industrial civilization having spread itself around the globe.

All these and many more inputs have their effect on major areas in earth's economy. They change the carbon cycle, the nitrogen cycle, the water cycle and in a variety of ways disrupt the way things used to be. And this has been the case for the past four and one-half billion years. Life itself changed the content of the atmosphere as soon as it grew to cover the shallow seas.. by filling the skies with free oxygen. And so, at that moment, life had to change irredeemably. It had poisoned its own environment.

If you look into the ancient record, you will find that ordinary algae, just by existing and respiring, were able to completely transform the climate and the chemistry of earth. Yet you are unwilling to admit that humans might be capable of doing the same. When just the fact of our moving around billions of tons of earth each year, changing the albedo and replacing one sort of cover with another can be quantified.. and the numbers used to illustrate that we are changing the earth's surface more rapidly than nearly any force in its pre-human history. The only natural forces that can compare are mammoth meteorite strikes and prolonged episodes of vulcanism.

So does everything but climate then change?

If there is a consensus among most scientists that we too have changed some basic things about the way the earth works, it's because they have all been studying the same body data and have mostly come ro similar conclusions as to what it infers.

To the primitive, any such agreement can only mean they are all part of some political plot to deceive regular folks who don't understand such things. But in fact much of the utter agreement is of the sort that makes most mathematicians agree that 2-2=0.

And what of those matters where we haven't yet reached agreement? They are argued endlessly.. but by people who understand the issues. And argued on their merits, not from an agenda.

A good argument to follow, as a study guide, is the extremely reluctant acceptance of Alvarez's theory of a large bolide strike 65 million years ago. At first, everyone thought it was far fetched, Gradually, the evidence pulled them around. That's the way science proceeds.

Come up to speed on the issues. Then maybe you can offer a valid opinion.

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