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Arctic Ice Caps


JohnB
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Some people like to think that we sceptics simply ignore evidence, or perhaps for spurious reasons we discount it.

 

When we've read the same thing over and over again and it never happens then funnily enough we view that a sane person does and should discount the stories.

 

One of those stories is the whole "The ice caps are melting! We could all drown!" Well, yes we "could", we could also freeze in a sudden ice age or be killed off by a meteorite strike. Lots of things "could" happen. To argue against this point it would seem reasonable to point out that scientists in general are a cautious lot and so use the word "could". Followed shortly by an assertion that if they weren't at least reasonably sure of it they wouldn't make the warning public.

 

I'd like to quote in full a newspaer article, unfortunately I don't have a link to the page.

 

Mysterious Warming of Arctic Climate

 

Los Angeles, May 29 (A.A.P.) A mysterious warming of the climate is slowly manifesting itself in the Arctic, and if the Antarctic ice regions and major Greenland icecap should reduce at the same rate as it is at present melting, oceanic surfaces would rise to catastrophic proportions and people living in lowlands, along the shores would be inundated.

 

This was said by Dr Hans Ahlmann,the noted Swedish geophysi-(st at) California's Geophysical Institute. Dr. Ahlmann added the temperatures in the Arctic have increased 10 degrees Fahrenheit since 1900, an "enormous" rise from a scientific standpoint.

 

Waters in the Spitzbergen area in the same period had risen three to five degrees in temperature and one to one and a half millimeters yearly in level.

 

The Arctic change is so serious that I hope an International Agency can speedily be formed to study "the conditions on a global basis".

 

Dr Ahlmann pointed out that in 1916 the navigable season along western Spitzbergen lasted three months. It now lasts eight.

 

It could have been written yesterday. But it wasn't. The article was at the bottom of the front page of the "Brisbane Telegraph" on Friday Evening, May 30th, 1947.

 

Even the phraseology is the same, if things stay "at the same rate as it is at present" then disaster will ensue. I'm reminded of a story anbout a little boy who yelled "Wolf" a lot. To make things funnier of course, all this worry about warming in 1947 was just before the world temps dropped by some .4 degrees C in the following 30 years. A bout of cooling that had some "scientists" publicly spreading comments about the disaster that global cooling "could" bring.

 

The problem is of course that things don't continue at the same rate, or most things don't.

 

However we can notice some things. Last year for example it was reported here that sea level rise was about 1.7 mm per year. The 1947 article quotes a figure of 1 to 1.5 mm per year. To make for a bit more fun let us introduce the graph from CSIRO the Australian government scientific organisation.

 

CSIRO_GMSL_figure.jpg

 

Note that error bars have not been shown for the altimeter data (red curve) for clarity, but are about ±5 mm.

 

So the error bars are + or - 5 mm and the rise in 1947 of 1.5 mm/year compares to the recent period of 1.7 mm/year. Is anybody really going to argue for an "increase" in sea level rise when the difference between the two averages is .2 mm/year or 4% of the error bars?

 

So there is no evidence for an increase or acceleration in sea level rise at all. Just another prediction by GHG theory that fails when compared to actual reality.

 

Oh, and just in case people think I made up the 1947 story, the Telegraph was the afternoon paper and here are some front pages of Saturday mornings papers;

The Melbourne Argus.

The Canberra Times.

Tasmanias The Advocate.

 

You will find versions of the story on the front pages, it was syndicated by A.A.P.

 

And totally off topic;

 

For those who are interested, Trove is part of the National Library of Australia where more and more old documents and newspapers are being digitised. What makes it cool is that you can feed in a date and it will give you all the newspapers and magazines it has released on that date.

 

In what I call a fascinating coincidence there was a train crash in 1947 only a few miles from my home where a number of holiday makers were killed. Any references you see on those pages about a train crash inquiry is actually about that crash.

 

Having a trawl through these old papers can be quite educational. One article mentions that with the introduction of the new "Constellation" aircraft Quantas Empire Airways will be ablr to drop the price of a trip to England from 375 to 250 pounds. When you consider inflation, airfares are a lot cheaper now than they were then.

 

I also note that even though rationing was still on and there were austerity measures, the Federal pollies voted themselves a 50% pay rise. Nice work if you can get it. :P

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  • 4 weeks later...

The North Pole has receded to record levels. There isn't much left. The oceans won't rise much more The antarctic on the other hand still has a dense block of ice on it. And it is on land. Icebergs on the north pole are floating in water and so already displacing it anyways. Greenland's glaciers are melting but not quickly.

Edited by vampares
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However we can notice some things. Last year for example it was reported here that sea level rise was about 1.7 mm per year. The 1947 article quotes a figure of 1 to 1.5 mm per year. To make for a bit more fun let us introduce the graph from CSIRO the Australian government scientific organisation.

 

CSIRO_GMSL_figure.jpg

 

 

 

So the error bars are + or - 5 mm and the rise in 1947 of 1.5 mm/year compares to the recent period of 1.7 mm/year. Is anybody really going to argue for an "increase" in sea level rise when the difference between the two averages is .2 mm/year or 4% of the error bars?

 

So there is no evidence for an increase or acceleration in sea level rise at all. Just another prediction by GHG theory that fails when compared to actual reality.

The "recent period" is, according to the article, the 20th century. Even a cursory inspection of the graph shows that the slope of the last 20 years is greater than the slope of the preceding century.

 

The "deceleration" is a local (i.e. Australia region), not global measurement:

Based on century-long tide gauge records at Fremantle, Western Australia (from 1897 to present), Auckland Harbour in New Zealand (1903 to present), Fort Denison in Sydney Harbour (1914 to present) and Pilot Station at Newcastle (1925 to present), the analysis finds there was a "consistent trend of weak deceleration" from 1940 to 2000.
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  • 2 weeks later...
The "deceleration" is a local (i.e. Australia region), not global measurement:

 

Actually I always found this sort of thing interesting. Does it mean that in 400 years the Australian region will be at the bottom of a well of water? Will my descendents go to the beach to marvel at the water wall some distance offshore and wonder why it doesn't flow downhill any more?

 

The more I've learned the less faith I have in the findings for before the satellite period. There is often so much coastal movement that we are right in "best guess" territory. A simple example is that we all know that sea levels have been rising since the last Ice Age and that trend has not stopped, the speed may vary but the rise continues. If we go to Google Earth and look at Lake Traiano in Italy we find it some metres above sea level. (It's near the mouth of the Tiber and is a perfect hexagon, very cool) Now used as a lake and water storage, some 2,000 years ago it was the harbour for the Roman Navy, so sea level relative to the land (and this is the only meaningful metric to use) has dropped by at least 2 metres in that area.

 

The bottom line is that it's gone up in places, down in others and remained pretty stable in other areas. Average these out if you want, but don't try to convince me that the work is anything more than a rough guess. We have to make far too many assumptions about the rise and fall of the land over too long a period in too many areas to be able to claim accuracy with any confidence.

 

However swansont you perhaps missed the bit further down the article?

 

Mr Watson's analysis of the four longest continuous Australian and New Zealand records is consistent with the findings of US researchers Robert Dean and James Houston, who analysed monthly averaged records for 57 tide gauges, covering periods of 60 to 156 years.

 

The US research concluded there was "no evidence to support positive acceleration over the 20th century as suggested by the IPCC, global climate change models and some researchers".

 

So it's not a regional finding at all, is it? :)

 

And Vamperes, please. I wouldn't call 3.5 million square kilometers "hardly much left". The Antarctic of course set another record for maximum extent of sea ice. Yes, Antarctica has a large block of ice sitting on land, but out of curiousity how much would the temps have to rise above their current minus 40 odd degrees C for it to melt? A point a lot of people miss is that even if the temp at the South Pole increased by 50 degrees C it would still be minus 20 degrees and the ice won't melt.

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Dean and Houston cherry-picked their start date (1930) to show their results. Had they chosen any start date more than a decade later or earlier they would have found an acceleration. The prediction is for a minimum acceleration if you choose a start date around 1930, so the comparison of expected vs found is incorrect.

 

http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2011/07/is-sea-level-rise-accelerating/

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Some people like to think that we sceptics simply ignore evidence, or perhaps for spurious reasons we discount it.

...or don't understand it, or can't fathom the implications....

 

 

So there is no evidence for an increase or acceleration in sea level rise at all. Just another prediction by GHG theory that fails when compared to actual reality.

 

 

 

http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/

 

Poles apart: A record-breaking summer and winter

October 2, 2012

The sun has set over the central Arctic Ocean and sea ice extent is now increasing. While much attention has been paid to the record minimum Arctic ice extent set on September 16, 2012, winter sea ice extent in Antarctica has reached a record high. The Antarctic extent increase is an interesting response to changes in circulation patterns in the Southern Hemisphere.

 

So on average, there is no change, right? [iI Corinthians 11:19 ...suffering fools....]

===

 

If it doesn't match the predictions, then the theory must be "wrong," eh?

...But still perhaps not meaningless or useless, science might consider.

~

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CSIRO_GMSL_figure.jpg

 

 

 

 

So there is no evidence for an increase or acceleration in sea level rise at all. Just another prediction by GHG theory that fails when compared to actual reality.

 

 

 

Ok so have a quick look at the graph.

Left hand half 1880 to 1940 the sea level rises by about 70 mm

Gradient is 70mm/60years.

Right hand side 1940 to 2010 the sea level rises from about 70 to 210. A rise of about 140 mm

Gradient 140mm/70 years

 

So the rise was roughly twice as fast in the second half of that data as it was in the first half.

That's proof of an acceleration.

How can you write "So there is no evidence for an increase or acceleration in sea level rise at all. " immediately after a graph that shows the acceleration?

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I personally find it worrying how people can have this view. "Yes we could all drown, but there could also be a new ice age" as if it being a natural occurrence in Earth's geological cycles means it isn't a problem. Despite all the scientific evidence that humans are causing the ice caps to melt, let us humor the thought that it is an entirely natural phenomena: We must still try and act to stop it, because it will cause widespread death of the millions. If an asteroid was heading toward the Earth which was guaranteed to wipe us all out, would you be saying; "Yes, but according to fossil records, an asteroid this size hit the Earth millions of years ago, but there is still life, so it's nothing to worry about"?

Edited by ElasticCollision
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swansont, I find it interesting if a little disturbing that you find a blog post on an advertising agency website to be equivalent to peer review. Stefan wrote a comment in the literature and it was answered by the original authors. Rather than continue in the literature he then chose to make his claims on a website where he controls all comments and input. Nice. I won't even bother that Stefan claims as backup blog posts from his old co-author Tamino (Grant Foster). I note that in the last paragraph, since there was another paper that Stefan didn't like he now is reduced to casting aspersions on the peer review process. Which is kind of funny since he and the RC crew have previously been staunch supporters. Is it just that all peer review is equal, but some are more equal than others?

 

But to get back to the original point. The 1947 article lists the increase as being 1.5 mm/year and the recent announcement from the CSIRO puts the rate at 1.7 mm/year (note that this is quite below the IPCC AR4 estimate of 3 mm/year, but I digress). The CSIRO also places a value on the error bars of 5 mm/year. The supposed increase is within the measurement error region. Is anybody here really going to argue in favour of a very slight increase in rate, an increase that it can be argued is not even detectable?

 

To use the analogy of a police radar trap for speeders. If the radar is accurate to plus/minus 5 mph can you really argue on a basis of fact that the speed was really 49.4 mph and not 49.5?

 

The great difficulty with sea levels is that we've only had the sats for a few decades. While it is all well and good to use tide guages, they only tell us what the sea is doing relative to that particular piece of land and not what is happening in general. Many areas, especially in the North are still experiencing undulations in recovery from the last great Ice Age. (Isostatic Rebound) If, for example a tide guage tells us that sea levels have risen by 10 cm in the last century, they cannot tell us how much of that is the sea level going up and the land going down. Note that is sea level dropped by 10 cm in real terms but the land where the tide guage sat subsided by 20 cm, then it would show a 10 cm rise.

 

The sea level question is not as cut and dried as many would like to think it is. Now of course we have the sats, but that means a much shorter baseline to compare things to.

 

Essay

...or don't understand it, or can't fathom the implications....

 

Or have BS detectors that work, or don't believe the first climate calamity theory that drops on our desk, or are properly sceptical of overblown and unproven claims....

 

As we were talking sea levels I have no idea at all why you bring the Artic ice into it. It, um, floats you know? On the water? Which means it displaces volume? Which means that if it all melts it will not effect the sea level at all. What's the next diversion? A picture of a Polar Bear?

 

If it doesn't match the predictions, then the theory must be "wrong," eh?

 

I believe that the opposite, the rejection of reality in favour of a mental construct is called "psychosis". In general though, yes. Although I prefer to say that the theory is wrong or incomplete. This is based on the logical view that if a theory is correct and complete then it will agree with reality.

 

John, if you have a problem take it up with the CSIRO. They are the ones claiming the 1.7 mm/year. I simply compared it to the rate given in 1947 of 1.5 mm/year and note that the difference is so far within the level of instrumental error as to make a case for an increase groundless. By ignoring my point while quoting me, you are indulging in a red herring at best. Frankly and using the old Mk1 eyeball I would agree with you, but that is not what the data released says. Perhaps the problem is with the graph?

 

ElasticCollision.

 

I personally find it worrying that people can have views based on nothing more than fear and ignorance. As I said above the northern ice cap floats. Melting it will not change the sea level, although there is a school of thought that says if you melt the ice the sea level will actually go down. So since the complete melt of the northern ice cap will not change sea levels and will not drown anybody, on what basis do you want to do anything about it? It will not cause the widespread deaths of millions at all. To use your asteroid analogy if it was known that it was going to miss us, would you be demanding that something be done about it?

 

So melting the Arctic ice will not cause widespread disaster, but melting the Antarctic would do so. But the sea ice down there has just set a new record maximum and it appears that the whole Antarctic continent is gaining ice mas rahter than losing it, so it's not about to melt anyway. But a simple question "How many degrees C does the temp have to rise over most of Antarctica to melt the ice cap and flood us all?"

 

Bonus questions "How many degrees warmer than today was the Holocene Optimum some 7,000 years ago and why was it named the Holocene Optimum?"

 

The thing is that climate is always going to change, no matter what we do. If you have a way to control the planetary climate there is a Nobel waiting for you. Climate will change and it will do one of two things it will warm or it will cool. Going from historical and archaeological records we can safely say that warming=good and cooling=bad. People live good lives in warm times and they scrounge for food in cool times due to shorter growing seasons and often too much rain. One of the reasons for the Green Revolution that feeds our planet is the nice warm weather.

 

Am I worried about Climate change? My oath I am. I'm worried that a number of Solar scientists are noting that the Sun is behaving in a very similar way to just before the Maunder Minimum. If we plunge back into something like the LIA it will be a disaster of Biblical proportions. All those nice, ecologically sound windmills that European nations use for power will shut down due to ice load just when people will most need power for warmth. We would see crop yeilds in the Northern Hemisphere drop precipitously, losses of 60-80% across Europe would not be out of the question. European economies are already fragile and those stories from the 1800s about 30 feet of snow in a single night aren't stories.

 

And the big thing is that unless you think that we can control the weather, then there is bloody nothing we can do about it. We will have to attempt to survive and adapt, because that is all we can do.

 

Edit to add.

 

Another point that many ignore because it means asking very hard questions that have no easy answer, is the possiblity that land use change is responsible as some climatologists think. We have changed the face of the planet to grow the food for our population. If land use change is the problem then the answer is obvious, turn a lot of that fertile cropland back into forests. Since that will mean a lot less food to go around.....Who are you going to starve? As a matter of intentional policy to "Save the Planet"? Let me guess that it won't be the nations with a predominantly white population, will it?

 

It would be so nice and easy if it was only CO2 involved and people like me were just foolish deniers who ignore evidence. But the climate isn't easy and neither are the questions or the answers that are needed, or the moral choices. I personally would rather we have to deal with the future climate as it comes than to condemn millions, if not tens of millions to disease, poverty and an early death.

Edited by JohnB
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As we were talking sea levels I have no idea at all why you bring the Artic ice into it. It, um, floats you know? On the water? Which means it displaces volume? Which means that if it all melts it will not effect the sea level at all.

seriously?

===

 

You start a thread entitled Arctic Ice Caps... and in your first post you say

One of those stories is the whole "The ice caps are melting! We could all drown!" Well, yes we "could",

... and you ask such a question? Could we all drown, as you say? Your post is the one linking the ice cap with drowning, isn't it?

 

But I assumed you are smart enough to know that basic fact about AGW, so didn't think it was worth trying to "call" you on it as a rookie mistake--especially since it was obvious you were using it as a rhetorical device ...maybe to sow a bit more confusing complexity and thus make doubt easier.

 

But you "call" me out for responding to your thread title, as if I had responded to the flawed notion about drowning (which only you brought up ...several times). Seriously?

 

You seem to be trying to personify what they say, when I assume....

 

~

Edited by Essay
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Essay, in that context I'm sorry. I didn't realise that you were still looking at the OP and I thought we had moved to an "increasing rate of sea level rise", which of course the ice caps have little to do with.

 

I read and responded to your post #6 on the premise it was on one subject, when it was (sort of) on two.

 

From your post we can we conclude that you do not think that we are in danger of disasterous sea level rise in the next decades? IOW there is nothing to little to worry about on that front?

 

And it's not about sowing confusion, it's pointing out the very real fact that scary stories and predictions of ecological and climate disaster have been with us for what 70 years now and so far not one prediction has come true. Not one, nada, zip, zilch. Now there is a track record of prediction worth listening to I don't think.

 

Let's say that there was a bloke who gave you a hot tip for the Saturday horse races. And every week you backed the horse he said and every single week the horse failed to come in. How many years will you continue to follow his advice before you decide his track record is too poor to listen to?

 

And what is it about the human psyche that makes so many people want and need to believe that we are living in the "End of Days" for one reason or another? Seriously, I've lost count of how many times the world was supposed to end since 1970.

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swansont, I find it interesting if a little disturbing that you find a blog post on an advertising agency website to be equivalent to peer review.

 

Seeing as I never claimed that it was, perhaps it's less interesting. Did you claim that the newspaper article you quoted was peer-reviewed? I pointed out some analysis people did with the numbers. The choice of the start date affects the answer you get, which is what is discussed in the link. One thing that is "interesting" is when someone disparages the source but doesn't touch the analysis. You aren't claiming that there was no cherry picking, just that the discussion happened on a blog.

 

 

But to get back to the original point. The 1947 article lists the increase as being 1.5 mm/year and the recent announcement from the CSIRO puts the rate at 1.7 mm/year (note that this is quite below the IPCC AR4 estimate of 3 mm/year, but I digress). The CSIRO also places a value on the error bars of 5 mm/year. The supposed increase is within the measurement error region. Is anybody here really going to argue in favour of a very slight increase in rate, an increase that it can be argued is not even detectable?

The 1947 newspaper article mentions Spitzbergen, and it says 1 - 1.5 mm/year, and the other article is the Australia region. So again I will point out that you are comparing local numbers. The global numbers on the plot — which you provided — shows a clear difference in the global rates. The graph is not linear, it has a concavity to it.

 

And it's not about sowing confusion, it's pointing out the very real fact that scary stories and predictions of ecological and climate disaster have been with us for what 70 years now and so far not one prediction has come true. Not one, nada, zip, zilch. Now there is a track record of prediction worth listening to I don't think.

So it's NOT warmer now than it was decades ago?

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...it's not about sowing confusion, it's pointing out the very real fact that scary stories and predictions of ecological and climate disaster have been with us for what 70 years now and so far not one prediction has come true. Not one, nada, zip, zilch. Now there is a track record of prediction worth listening to I don't think.

 

 

Seriously, I've lost count of how many times the world was supposed to end since 1970.

Seriously, I don't pay much attention to media hype about such stuff, so I don't keep count.

 

 

 

What about the descriptions of how nighttime temperatures would be affected more than daytime temperatures? What about the descriptions of how stratospheric temperatures would be affected? What about the descriptions of how phenologic changes would accelerate? What about the descriptions of how the cryosphere would respond? What about the descriptions of how higher latitudes would be affected more strongly than more equatorial latitudes?

 

Observations of the averages for surface air, sea surface, ice, soil, and upper crust of the planet all show accelerating heat absorption, and all are responding as expected by greenhouse theory--by expanding, melting, or warming--since not all the additional heat goes into raising air temperatures.

 

Greenhouse Theory seems to be increasingly validated as time goes by. But lets look at how one particular IPCC projection has done.

 

post-47272-0-40680000-1349990854_thumb.png

 

Hey! You're right! It doesn't match! Do you think that means the whole theory is invalidated?

 

Do you think the idea is wrong; that adding heat will not warm things up? Or do you think that idea is valid, but that we can't precisely project how that heat will be distributed over time and space?

~

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One thing that is "interesting" is when someone disparages the source but doesn't touch the analysis. You aren't claiming that there was no cherry picking, just that the discussion happened on a blog.

Actually I was pointing out that the peer reviewed literature contradicted what was posted on the blog. But try two more studies for size

 

http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2007/2006GL028492.shtml

 

Extending the sea level record back over the entire century suggests that the high variability in the rates of sea level change observed over the past 20 years were not particularly unusual.

 

http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/1992/92JC01133.shtml

 

Thus there is no evidence for an apparent acceleration in the past 100+ years that is significant either statistically, or in comparison to values associated with global warming.

 

Gee, maybe JGR needs to look at their review system as well, too many papers getting through that Stefan won't like.

 

The graph is not linear, it has a concavity to it.

 

As I said earlier, my Mk1 eyeball would tend to agree. But it isn't my fault that CSIRO put out a graph that doesn't appear to match the literature. Maybe they use "adjusted" sea levels? :P

 

So it's NOT warmer now than it was decades ago?

 

Strawman, or a silly question. At no point in any of these threads have I ever even implied that temps have not risen and to imply that I had or that I refuse to acknowledge such a rise is unbecoming of one of your intelligence. I specifically spoke of "scary stories and predictions of ecological and climate disaster" that have been around for decades.

 

I say that not one has come true and therefore the track record of those who make these predictions is so poor as to be beneath consideration. If you want to argue the point rather than making vague smears then all you have to do is supply some evidence. Islands sunk? Ice Ages started? 50% of animal species disappearing? Come on, the list is extremely long over the last 60 years, surely you can find one that came true? One?

 

What about the descriptions of how nighttime temperatures would be affected more than daytime temperatures? What about the descriptions of how stratospheric temperatures would be affected? What about the descriptions of how phenologic changes would accelerate? What about the descriptions of how the cryosphere would respond? What about the descriptions of how higher latitudes would be affected more strongly than more equatorial latitudes?

 

Unfortunately these are all things that will happen in a warming world and as such are independent of cause. How about the very specific claim that tropical troposphere temps would increase faster than the ground temps? You know? The hot spot predicted in AR4 WG1 9.2.2, Figure 9.1? Pity it's not there, isn't it? But of course if we use Sherwood 2008 and conclude that ground speed is a better indicator of temps at 15,000 ft than the actual thermometer carried by the balloon, then we can make it appear again. All that money and time to develop instrumentation for weather balloons over decades and all they really needed to do was measure the ground speed. Meteorologists should be hanging their heads in shame...

 

Do you think the idea is wrong; that adding heat will not warm things up? Or do you think that idea is valid, but that we can't precisely project how that heat will be distributed over time and space?

 

Fair question. Adding heat will warm things up, I think that this is a given, it's what follows afterwards that is less well known. Does the warmer world have more convection thereby moving more heat from the surface to the higher atmosphere? We don't know. Increased warmth should increase evaporation , thereby increasing the WV content of the atmosphere (the idea behind the acceleration effect of AGW), but this WV will become clouds and as such will shield the Earth from some of the Suns energy. Will this be a nett warming or cooling effect? We don't know. Is there really such a thing as "Climate Sensitivity"? We define it as the increase in temps for a doubling of CO2, but is it real? By definition the climate is a non linear system and yet one of the basic assumptions we are making is that it reacts in a totally linear fashion to forcing.

 

Our lack of precision in predictions could be very well leading us astray. Will we be preparing for one predicted form of trouble and instead get hit with another? We in Oz were bombarded for years that drought was to be "the new normal" according to the models. Well guess what? The drought broke, the dams are full and the extremely expensive desal plants we built are in mothballs. Except for the one in Victoria which they couldn't finish due to too much rain. It might seem parochial to you bu to me it illustrates two points. Firstly that many in the AGW crowd will jump on anything that they think will advance the cause. Down here the drought, the fires which killed amny people and the floods were all "proof" of the extremes to come. (Americas Kevin Trenberth was one of those, we hadn't even found all the bodies before he was trying to make political capital out of it.) But because the "experts" were warning govs about drought we spend billions on desal plants that are now rotting and nothing on flood mitigation dams which we actually needed.

 

If the best advice they can give is to prepare for floods and droughts, then shut the dept down because they are of less use than Ronnie the village idiot, even he knows that and doesn't cost as much.

 

I know, as an unlettered person I really should listen to and follow the instructions of those smarter than me, but which of these highly educated groups of people do I choose?

1/ The people from the Belgian Royal Observatory who say that Global Warming will cause the Earth to spin slower? or

2/ The People from the Max Plank Institute who say that Global Warming will make it spin faster?

 

How about I go with option 3? As the predictions are based wholly on models, neither group have the foggiest idea what is actually happening and are inhabiting a computer generated circle jerk? So I'll ignore them both.

 

But I urge people to peruse the wonderful list at Numberwatch and see for themselves all the things linked to "Global Warming". Note that GW is linked to both an increase and a decrease in fog in San Francisco.

 

And Essay, this is the problem. When the theory can predict absolutely everything and all results are "consistent with" the theory then it becomes non falsifiable. On this, a science forum there will be no shortage of people who know what an unfalsifiable theory is. Pseudoscience. It doesn't matter how pretty your theory is or how complex the models you use, if the theory cannot be falsified it is not science.

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I'm still waiting for an explanation of how someone can cite a graph that shows a clear acceleration in the rise in sea level and then say there's no evidence for an acceleration.

 

If I had access to the data from which the graph is plotted I could do a full statistical analysis on it, but even a cursory glance shows it is steeper on the right.

Edited by John Cuthber
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Re: What about the descriptions of how nighttime temperatures would be affected more than daytime temperatures? What about the descriptions of how stratospheric temperatures would be affected? What about the descriptions of how phenologic changes would accelerate? What about the descriptions of how the cryosphere would respond? What about the descriptions of how higher latitudes would be affected more strongly than more equatorial latitudes?

Unfortunately these are all things that will happen in a warming world and as such are independent of cause.

No John, among the many points you bring up... those "predictions" rule in something that operates 24/7/365, from pole to pole, such as CO2; as well as ruling out something that operates only during the daytime, and that would affect the poles less than the lower latitudes and only seasonally, such as a solar cause.

 

That is the falsifiability part. You can't establish "Pseudoscience" with pseudocritiques that do not invalidate decades of science done across the globe.

===

 

 

"Does the warmer world have more convection... more heat... evaporation... WV content... clouds... shield.... Suns energy.... Will this be a nett warming or cooling effect? We don't know."

Ooooooh, it's all soooo unknowable....

 

But we can see... it won't be the same.

And that is the point... it won't be as stable as during the past few thousand years.

 

...and about the "sensitivity" of the system; whatever its linearity might turn out to be on paper, we can observe how it responded in the past and derive a sensitivity based on those observations. That tactic is limited in many ways, especially as we push conditions beyond historical parameters; but it is a robust, repeatedly observed, result regarding observed climate sensitivity.

 

But beyond that main point... you'll find a way to doubt it, and thus ignore it as not set in stone.

===

 

 

 

"...predictions could be very well leading us astray."

"...the best advice they can give is to prepare for floods and droughts...."

It sounds as if you all are about halfway prepared. I'd safely guess those desalination plants will come in handy, and be seen as valuable, in the not too distant future. Around here I advocate for combining flood mitigation with water storage, but they still tackle these as unrelated problems.

===

 

 

 

"I know, as an unlettered person I really should listen to and follow the instructions of those smarter than me, but which of these highly educated groups of people do I choose?

1/ The people from the Belgian Royal Observatory who say that Global Warming will cause the Earth to spin slower? or

2/ The People from the Max Plank Institute who say that Global Warming will make it spin faster?

 

How about I go with option 3? As the predictions are based wholly on models, neither group have the foggiest idea what is actually happening and are inhabiting a computer generated circle jerk? "So I'll ignore them both."

You'll ignore them both!? That is the easiest response to complexity, I suppose. But where is your curiosity or concern? Don't you wonder if there are different competing mechanisms by which "Global Warming will cause the Earth to spin" either faster or slower? Or wonder if one mechanism might predominate? Or wonder if they need to learn more about such mechanisms?

 

Do you think these folks at Max Planck are deluded, or that they are just hoaxing this spin effect and having a good laugh at our expense? Those would be a good reasons to ignore them.

 

I hope that by ignoring something, you don't also deny its existence; it doesn't disappear just because you ignore it.

 

~

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John, I'm saying that the graph does not appear to match the known data. And FOR THE THIRD FREAKING TIME I agree with you that the graph appears to be steeper on the right.

 

@iDevonian, learn to bloody read. I've said twice that the graph appears steeper on the right, did you miss them both?

 

The question that you are avoiding is this "Why is the graph steeper on the right when the literature says there is no acceleration?" The quote from Douglas again;

Thus there is no evidence for an apparent acceleration in the past 100+ years that is significant either statistically, or in comparison to values associated with global warming.

 

My eyeball says that John is correct in his quickie estimate and the graph shows the rate as roughly double. So, why is that?

 

Swansont, it is informative to look at the abstract the article is based on as it includes a very pertinent point;

Evidence of statistically significant acceleration in sea level rise relative to land is found in a recent analysis of monthly mean sea level (mmsl) at tide stations on the Atlantic coast of North America.

(Emphasis mine.)

 

One of the problems with the Tide Guage record is that it is effected by isostatic changes in the land. The Northern Part of the US and Canada were under some 2 miles of ice 15,000 years ago, this weight depressed the land significantly. I don't know the figures for North America but Scandinavia is estimated at 900 m depression due to ice weight. While the area under the ice was depressed and is therefore still rising now the ice is gone the areas around where the ice was was actually higher in the past, the weight of the ice created a bulge at the ice perimeter. This region is still sinking now the ice weight is removed. So whether sea levels relative to the land are rising or falling is a very localised question. The abstract doesn't actually say whether the sea is rising or the land is sinking, but it may be covered in the actual paper. (paywalled)

 

The upshot is of course that from the human POV sea level relative to the land is the only thing that matters, it is not a very good indicator of what the global sea level is actually doing.

 

Essay,

No John, among the many points you bring up... those "predictions" rule in something that operates 24/7/365, from pole to pole, such as CO2; as well as ruling out something that operates only during the daytime, and that would affect the poles less than the lower latitudes and only seasonally, such as a solar cause.

 

Not quite. The Hadley cells distribute heat around the planet, and have been getting rather bigger for some time. Strangely enough these operate 24/7/365 and are independent of CO2. Or does the distribution of heat only happen during the daytime? My point is that predictions that occur as a result of warming only indicate warming and are not proof of cause. I notice that you avoided the question about the very plain prediction of the "Hot Spot" and its abject failure.

 

I'll say it again. If your theory does not produce falsifiable predictions then it is pseudoscience.

 

Ooooooh, it's all soooo unknowable....

 

But we can see... it won't be the same.

And that is the point... it won't be as stable as during the past few thousand years.

 

...and about the "sensitivity" of the system; whatever its linearity might turn out to be on paper, we can observe how it responded in the past and derive a sensitivity based on those observations. That tactic is limited in many ways, especially as we push conditions beyond historical parameters; but it is a robust, repeatedly observed, result regarding observed climate sensitivity.

 

But beyond that main point... you'll find a way to doubt it, and thus ignore it as not set in stone.

 

Cut the crap. Or can I say that you'll find any way to avoid a question on the science and try to make ad homs instead? And if climate sensitivity is "observed", then what is it's specific value? Either provide the value or admit that it is not "observed" at all, but is inferred or estimated from climate model runs.

 

I also suggest you aquire a dictionary and learn the meaning of the word "stable". the climate has not been stable, ever. The Holocene is "stable" if compared the D-O events during the last Ice Age but that is about it. The 20th Century is no less stable than the last few thousand years. Temps go up and down as this recent rework of the Tornetrask tree ring series shows;

melvin_etal_fig5.jpg

 

In Scandinavia at least, the 20th Century was probably more stable than the last two thousand odd years. Face it, without the now defunct "Hockey Stick" there is nothing at all to indicate that the change in temps in the 20th C were in any way unusual or outside the standard for normal, natural climate variations.

 

But just so that everyone can see how wonderfully stable it has been over he last 10,00 years or so,

Holocene_Temperature_Variations_Rev.png

 

Oh, wait....

 

It sounds as if you all are about halfway prepared. I'd safely guess those desalination plants will come in handy, and be seen as valuable, in the not too distant future. Around here I advocate for combining flood mitigation with water storage, but they still tackle these as unrelated problems.

 

This is more a political rather than a scientific point. We have some 1.5 million people living in a region with a water supply for about 1.2 million. We were going to build more dams, both for supply and mitigation, but these were deemed environmentally unsound and so with a long drought we nearly ran out of water. The answer was of course to build a power guzzling desal plant which was hailed as environmentally sound by the people who protest against dams and want us to cut our CO2 emissions.

 

But we are about 1/3 prepared. The Wivenhoe Dam which caused the flooding in Brisbane last year was supposed to be the first of three dams to be built after the 1974 flood for supply and mitigation. The second and third were never built as we were advised by "experts" that rainfall was decreasing and the chances of another flood was miniscule. In a similar vein the dam was allowed to exceed the maximum levels because expert climate advice was that the drought condition would continue and we would need the water. Unfortunately the drought broke and the dam became so full that it was in danger of collapse and so the gates were opened at the worst possible time for those downstream and raised the flood levels by about 4 feet.

 

You'll ignore them both!? That is the easiest response to complexity, I suppose. But where is your curiosity or concern? Don't you wonder if there are different competing mechanisms by which "Global Warming will cause the Earth to spin" either faster or slower? Or wonder if one mechanism might predominate? Or wonder if they need to learn more about such mechanisms?

 

Nice deflection there. This has nothing to do with complexity at all. It has to do with the logical impossibility of following mutually exclusive advice. To be advised to prepare for more floods is advice that can be acted upon, as is to prepare for less flooding since you can then spend the mitigation money on other things. But to be advised to prepare for both more and less flooding is as useless as tits on a bull. If highly trained experts with millions of dollars in funding can't come up with better advice than Jimmy the Village Idiot, then the problem isn't Jimmy is it? I can pay climate "scientists" a couple of million or Jimmy $50 and get the same advice. Only one is giving value for money though. I'm certain that they need to learn more about the mechanisms, but unlike you I think they should shut up until they do. Advice from "experts" that is mutually exclusive is useless. My complaint here is that there is way too much "Science by Press Release".

 

I would also point out that if there are all these factors that effect the final analysis that are poorly known then high confidence in the accuracy of that analysis must be misplaced. Given that a climate models yearly result is based on the previous years prediction and that these predictions are at best 90% accurate, then the idea that more iterations of the program you do the more accurate it bocomes is "novel" to say the least.

 

Taking hurricanes as an example one could argue that the increased warmth would increase the strength of hurricanes, warmth leading to more evaporation. One can also argue that increased warmth lowers the temperature differential between the Equator and the Poles (Due to polar amplification) and therefore will reduce the severity of hurricanes. What we have now is a bombardment of press releases each time someone makes a finding on either of these concepts. To me the better approach is to say that there are at least two competing mechanisms and we don't currently know which will be dominant under what conditions. It might be one, it might be the other or it might swap depending on other factors and more research is needed. This is, I believe, the honest approach.

 

Do you think these folks at Max Planck are deluded, or that they are just hoaxing this spin effect and having a good laugh at our expense?

 

No. I don't believe the Moon landings were a hoax or that 9/11 was an inside job either. So how about dropping the logical fallacies and arguing the science?

Edited by JohnB
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Essay,

Not quite.

...JB~

~All your reason are belong to us.

 

wink.gif

 

===

The Hadley cells distribute heat around the planet, and have been getting rather bigger for some time. Strangely enough these operate 24/7/365 and are independent of CO2. Or does the distribution of heat only happen during the daytime? My point is that predictions that occur as a result of warming only indicate warming and are not proof of cause.

....

I'll say it again. If your theory does not produce falsifiable predictions then it is pseudoscience.

It's not "my" theory that you are calling pseudoscience.

 

 

John, simply raising a different mechanism for warming doesn't erase all the falsifiable predictions of Greenhouse Theory, which have held up. Besides that, the Hadley cell isn't a mechanism (or forcer); it is a consequence of geothermodynamics, like ocean currents or jet streams. It is a response to established heat flow (insolation, evaporation, convection, etc.), which may be why expansion is being observed (more greenhouse heating); but that wouldn't make the poles warm more than the tropics... would it? Can you suggest a mechanism, whereby that would work, with falsifiable predictions? I think, if you check, you'll find Hadley circulation has already been ruled out (doesn't make sense) as a cause for the greenhouse effect or exceptional polar or night-time warming.

===

 

Cut the crap. Or can I say that you'll find any way to avoid a question on the science and try to make ad homs instead? ....I notice that you avoided the question about the very plain prediction of the "Hot Spot" and its abject failure.

....Avoid what question, what ad homs, what "hot spot;" what are you talking about?

===

 

And if climate sensitivity is "observed", then what is it's specific value? Either provide the value or admit that it is not "observed" at all, but is inferred or estimated from climate model runs.

 

 

You can look this stuff up, but in the same way that we can observe how the planet's surface is about 15C degrees warmer (than it should be due to insolation/albedo alone) because of our atmosphere, we can observe the difference between ice-age conditions (~20 kya and now), to see what changes in conditions led to an observed ~5C degree change in temperature. The difference between the temperature change calculated from solar input variance alone, and the actual temperature change, would (roughly) be the change due to feedbacks.

 

The sensitivity is around 3 (2.7 iirc). This result arises because, as we moved from glacial to interglacial conditions, instead of a one-quarter degree of change per Watt/m-2 (calculated from solar change), almost a three-quarter degree per W/-2 seemed to occur. So the feedbacks lead to about a three times amplification or sensitivity.

===

 

I also suggest you aquire a dictionary and learn the meaning of the word "stable". the climate has not been stable, ever. The Holocene is "stable" if compared the D-O events during the last Ice Age but that is about it. The 20th Century is no less stable than the last few thousand years. Temps go up and down as this recent rework of the Tornetrask tree ring series shows....

 

Ha! To refute "stability," you point to tree-ring variability? You!? Using dendro-data as valid evidence!? Will wonders never cease? I guess there is a first time for everything, eh? :)

 

But the point is that we "know" which transient forcings cause those short variations, and so now that we are injecting a long-term forcer, we should not expect variability to remain bound around the past "level" and normal or known averages.

How do you define "long-term" forcing, or stability?

===

 

...the climate has not been stable, ever. The Holocene is "stable" if compared the D-O events during the last Ice Age but that is about it.

But just so that everyone can see how wonderfully stable it has been over he last 10,00 years or so...

...we can look at reconstructions to see; but....

 

Perhaps you could revise your perception of "stability" to better reflect physical reality and a geological "long-term" perspective, rather than the view from one short lifetime. I specified the relative stability of our climate, when I said "as stable as during the past few thousand years;" and you posted graphs showing some variability during the past few (0.2-12) thousand years. But those same few thousand years, which you pointed to as unstable (mentioning D-O events), are the recent past that I see, which has been relatively "stable" when compared to the past hundreds-of-thousands to millions of years.

 

post-47272-0-51201000-1352144056_thumb.gif

 

 

Despite the increasing resolution that adds increasing "variability" to the graph in more recent millennia (left side), the slope of 10kyr segments is what counts as varibility on a long-term scale; so focus on the slope of 5-10kyr segments.

 

Note the level slope, for the past interglacial; as compared with the slope of climate during any other "recent" period. That "levelness" is the "as stable as," which I was talking about. The MWP & LIA do not even count as blips in climate variation, when you look at what the planet has done throughout history--before the past few (5-12) thousand years ago, or roughly--before agriculture developed.

===

 

The climate variance between the LIA & MWP should be considered minimal, when compared to the climate variation we are currently forcing into the system.

===

 

One can also argue that increased warmth lowers the temperature differential between the Equator and the Poles (Due to polar amplification) and therefore will reduce the severity of hurricanes.

 

So back on topic. Do you really think that is all the Arctic does? From where do you think "polar amplification" arises?

 

Robust and extensive Arctic Ice is what stabilizes our weather patterns; by keeping the ocean currents active, and by keeping the jet stream strong, as well as by providing the minimal amount of albedo keeping the present feedbacks operable... and by preventing those "blocking highs" from forming easily, too far into the northern latitudes.

===

 

Face it, without the now defunct "Hockey Stick" there is nothing at all to indicate that the change in temps in the 20th C were in any way unusual or outside the standard for normal, natural climate variations.

You shouldn't believe (or repeat) denialist hype from the internet, John, imho; or maybe you just didn't get the word in your community....

There is nothing that is overall "now defunct" about the Hockey Stick. It (The Hockey Stick) continues to be recognized by the scientific community as valid and instructive.

 

JohnB: Why do you also seem to never "...even consider all subsequent peer reviewed commentary –commentary that clearly demonstrated that correction of Mann et al's "short-centered" PCA had minimal impact on the overall reconstruction."?

...as is mentioned at:

http://deepclimate.o...tyle/#more-2745

 

...or at: ==>

 

http://www.popsci.co...-climate-change

...my bolding

...propelling the issue of human-caused global warming into the culture wars—and Mann along with it. "Since then, my life has been crazy," he says. "People have stolen my e-mails and bought billboards and newspaper ads to denounce me; they've staged bogus grassroots protests; they've threatened my family. I've been through eight investigations by everyone from the National Science Foundation to the British House of Commons. Every time, they find no evidence of fraud or misuse of information. Every time, they conclude that my methods are sound, my data replicable. And every time I'm exonerated, another investigation pops up." Mann has been called a "compulsive liar, a con man and an extraordinary psychological case." Some critics accuse him of masterminding a cabal of scientists that aims to establish a new world order. Still others compare him to Hitler, Stalin and Satan.

 

At the time of our meeting, Mann was juggling several FOIA requests and two lawsuits—one of which would be resolved the following week, when the Virginia Supreme Court rejected the state attorney general's demand that the University of Virginia (Mann's former employer) turn over the researcher's e-mails and other documents. The university spent nearly $600,000 to argue that releasing personal correspondence would chill academic research. "Yes, there's been a toll on me and my family," Mann says. "But it's bigger than that. Look what it's doing to science, when others see this and see what happens if they speak up about their research. These efforts to discredit science are well-organized. It's not just a bunch of crazy people."

... it is in addition to a bunch of crazy people.

===

 

~All your basis are belong to us!

Edited by Essay
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