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Unforced variations: Feb 2014

Filed under: — group @ 4 February 2014

A little late starting this month’s open thread – must be the weather…


435 Responses to “Unforced variations: Feb 2014”

  1. 351
    Hank Roberts says:

    > 346, 347, 348
    (three new posts by three different people re Wasdell paper).

    Gavin’s inline reply at 346 answers all of them.

    > 349, bio-reactors

    Redoing sewage handling worldwide is a major challenge.
    Our sewage is contaminated with persistent organic chemicals, endocrine disruptors, pha rma ceuticals, and heavy metals. I know people working at university programs are wrestling with those issues.

    By contrast, the fossil fuels coming out of the ground formed from entirely pure, naturally occurring ingredients :-)

  2. 352
    prokaryotes says:

    Re Walter’s comment #201 is very confusing, he added keywords(wrong interpretation) into quotes of the IPCC report from 1990.

    IPCC 1990 “A reduction in mid-latitude synoptic variability might be expected as a result of the reduction in the equator to-pole temperature gradient at low levels (Figure 5 2)”

    Walter’s version: “A reduction in mid-latitude synoptic variability might be expected as a result of the reduction in the equator-to-pole temperature gradient (polar vortex system) at low levels” – See more at: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2014/02/unforced-variations-feb-2014/comment-page-5/

  3. 353
    Hank Roberts says:

    It’s important to check what people claim are quotations.
    It’s surprising how often they aren’t.

    Sometimes they don’t know how to use quotation marks.
    Sometimes they are relying on memory instead of checking sources.
    Sometimes they make stuff up.

    After checking a while you get a feel for someone’s reliability.

    Search indicates that same thing is found at least two places?
    Google the whole string inquotes, or just this:

    “(polar vortex system) at low levels”

  4. 354
    Hank Roberts says:

    > fossil fuels

    PS, prepare for a wave of newbies who’ve just discovered the “abiotic oil” notion, thanks to some far right believers.

    Rachel Maddow described this:

    … when Republican Governor Pat McCrory in North Carolina needed somebody to be in charge of the most scientifically intensive of all state agencies, protecting the natural resources of North Carolina, he found somebody who apparently believes the “World Net Daily” conspiracy theory.

    A conspiracy theory like this obviously has some appeal, right?

    There`s a reason that some people would want to believe this. When John Skvarla first made those comments in that TV interview the day before he took office in North Carolina, the alt weekly, which is called “Indy Week” in the research triangle area in North Carolina, they reacted with some alarm to learning this was the guy who was going to be in charge of environmental issues for the state.

    They listen to his interview and then they took the claims to a retired geology professor from UNC, to ask if this theory about new oil being made every day has any scientific credence whatsoever. The professor told “Indy Week”, no, the theory is, quote, in his words,

    “another idea that conservatives have latched on to as a way to denying that there`s any limitation that the earth places on the way we live.”

    They also noted part of the reason this theory has some appeal is if you think that the earth is not very old.

  5. 355
    Eric Swanson says:

    I’m surprised that there’s not been a post regarding the WSJ commentary by McNider and Christy.
    Why Kerry Is Flat Wrong on Climate Change

    McNider and Christy present a graph showing temperature vs. model results. This graph appears similar to one presented by Roy Spencer in his written testimony before the US Senate Environment and Public Works Committee last July. Here’s the LINK to Spencer’s written comments, showing this graph as Figure 2.

    Spencer claimed the graph shows Middle Troposphere data, probably the UAH TMT averaged with the RSS version of the same, both data sets based on the MSU channel 2 measurements. These data are known to include strong influence from the stratosphere in addition to that from the troposphere and was the main reason given by Spencer and Christy for the introduction of their lower troposphere (now called TLT) product back in 1992. As a result of the stratospheric influence, the MT graph shows much less warming compared to that found in other data sets for the troposphere or surface. Spencer obviously knows this, which indicates that he intended to deceive the US Senate with this presentation, IMHO.

    It’s clear that McNider and Christy have perpetuated this deception by repeating the presentation of this graphical data. McNider and Christy didn’t mention that Spencer’s graph was limited to tropical latitudes between 20S and 20N, so the unaware might assume that the graph represented the entire Earth. Worse, McNider and Christy shifted the so-called “model” curve above the satellite data curve, which results in a visual impression of greater difference between the two. The WSJ op-ed was immediately pointed to by Charles Krauthammer in his latest opinion piece on the Washington Post late Thursday (The myth of ‘settled science’), spreading the disinformation to a much wider audience. The WSJ was clearly complicit in this deception, allowing the McNider and Christy piece to appear without the usual paywall that surrounds most of the WSJ site so that individuals reading Kruathammer’s commentary could link directly to the WSJ post. I suggest that these actions are just another example of the well known saying from pre-World War II Germany: “A lie repeated often enough becomes the truth”. As we are now entering another election cycle, I expect to see more of this sort of disinformation spread far and wide.

    Given the ongoing concerns regarding the Keystone XL pipeline and EPA’s proposals to regulate CO2 emissions, many sectors of the US economy, such as the fossil fuel and electric power industries would likely be impacted and sending the wrong signal to the public would likely result in imprudent investments. Presenting false and deceptive information is considered a fraud in some legal situations, particularly regarding securities. For a group of individuals to do this represents conspiracy to commit fraud, which is also a crime in the US. One can only wish that these denialist be brought before a court of law to face whatever justice is applicable…

  6. 356
    wili says:

    “346, 347, 348
    (three new posts by three different people re Wasdell paper).

    Gavin’s inline reply at 346 answers all of them.”

    It would be more helpful if we were informed exactly how and where Wasdell is wrong so we could go on to explain that to others who post his stuff on other sites. Any pointers would be most appreciated.

  7. 357
    Hank Roberts says:

    > if we were informed exactly …
    > we could go on to explain that to others

    Provide a pointer to the Inline Response

    Then you don’t need to be the intermediary.

  8. 358
    Tony Weddle says:

    Thanks for the reply, Gavin. However, you said that Wasdell’s piece is not “broadly correct”. Can you expand on that? Is his figure for an ESS (PDF) incorrect? Even if it is, the paper I linked to is also scary using Hansen’s estimate of climate sensitivity? Is that incorrect, or is Wasdell’s use of it incorrect?

    If it’s just a matter of timing, it’s hard to justify Patrick Flege’s (and, perhaps, your) dismissal of it. Do future generations not count, provided current generations are long gone by the time the effect of our actions are fully borne out?

    [Response: the issue is that current emission paths are usefully predictive of 2100. They are much less so for 2500 or later. - gavin]

  9. 359
    Richard Simons says:

    Hank @353:

    It’s important to check what people claim are quotations.

    This includes in scientific papers – in the days when I reviewed papers I’d check as many references as I could easily locate and a surprisingly high number were wrong. This ranged from a minor error in the author’s name or the title to claims about topics that were absent from the supposed source. I even had one author who quoted himself as finding the opposite from what his paper actually said. Some authors were spot on with all their citations, but I recall one who got 12 out of 13 references wrong (I rejected the paper – who knows how many errors were made in collecting and collating the data). If any quotation or reference is unexpected, check the original.

  10. 360
    john byatt says:

    I am going into withdrawal here without the Model update, know you are busy but hope that it is soon, we need the ammo

  11. 361
    sidd says:

    Some bedrock maps of Greenland based on the new Bamber data

    http://membrane.com/sidd/greenland-2013/

    sidd

  12. 362
    Tony Weddle says:

    Gavin, that is true (re RCPs being helpful for decadal projections not so much for projections centuries hence). So are you saying that we can’t know much about the ultimate ESS for CO2 concentrations we’re seeing now? Because this is the issue – Wasdell thinks that for Hansen’s sensitivity and ESS, the levels of CO2 (and other GHGs) we have now pretty much preclude any further carbon budget to keep within the arbitrary 2C limit (except Hansen’s sensitivity allows a tiny budget). Given these more likely (?) climate sensitivities, it shouldn’t ultimately matter whether dangerous climate change occurs in 2200, 2300 or 2400 because of our actions now; surely we should care about what we leave for future generations?

  13. 363
    patrick says:

    http://www.reportingclimatescience.com/news-stories/article/carbon-implicated-in-earths-most-severe-extinction-says-research.html

    In this article, study co-author Samuel Bowring talks about the end-Permian timeline study linked at #293 and #320. The article says the next step is to see how the timeline of the extinctions compares to the timeline of the Siberian Traps eruptions. Geochronologist Bowring says, “We are slowly spiraling in on the truth.”

  14. 364
    patrick says:

    Correction: Bowring says, ““You can think of it as slowly spiraling in toward the truth.”

  15. 365
    Patrick Flege says:

    Tony,

    I fear you misunderstand me. I do agree that ESS is larger in the long term. However this is not a new finding, and does in no way negate the possibility to stay below 2°C. My beef with Wasdell is that he consistently claims to be ahead of mainstream science, yet his conclusions are often nothing to be surprised about.

    But I won’t repeat, as a layman, what Gavin has already said. IPCC projections are useful for around 2100. That is correct.

    I do not dismiss the risk and dangers associated with a, possibly high, ESS. However, one does need to take into account the temporal differences. Wasdell simply ignores them in order to proliferate himself.

  16. 366
    Tony Weddle says:

    A climate scientist has commented on Wasdell’s paper.

  17. 367
    wili says:

    @#365 “consistently claims to be ahead of mainstream science” I’ve never heard him make such a claim. Did I miss something?

  18. 368
    Hank Roberts says:

    > A climate scientist has commented

    He’s a fire ecologist; he has been actively publishing (interesting work, too) — look him up on Scholar.

    He gave the prepper bloggers there a decent explanation of the problems with Wasdell, I’d agree.

  19. 369
    DIOGENES says:

    Tony Weddle/Wili #346, #348,

    Wasdell’s Bottom Line is correct, even though his approach can be questioned. We have run out of carbon budget, and are in substantial carbon debt. In the thread “If you see something, say something” (IYSSSS), #291, I use a different approach to identify the temperature target ceilings for avoiding the climate Apocalypse, and come to the above conclusion. In IYSSSS #511, I present the only self-consistent plan on the climate blogs that, if implemented, would provide a reasonable chance of avoiding the climate Apocalypse. It starts with the temperature ceilings from IYSSSS #291, and then outlines a policy/strategy as a basis for action. The actions required are not pleasant, but neither are the prospects for our survival if these harsh actions are not taken.

    If your doctor says that high-dose chemo is the only way to save your life, then ‘take two asspirin and call me in the morning’ won’t do. In our case, the patient, the biosphere, is extremely ill. The plan I have presented in IYSSSS #511 is the high-dose chemo, and we have most of it available today. Like any chemo treatment, there are no guarantees; there is only maximization of chances of survival. All other ‘proposals’ I have seen presented (e.g. IYSSSS #373) are ‘take two asspirin and call me in the morning’. Their contribution to avoiding the climate Apocalypse parallels the contribution of errectile dyssfunction to good sex!

  20. 370
    Hank Roberts says:

    ps, the whole huge thread there is worth reviewing, as Dr. Cochrane writes earlier there:

    “I had the opportunity this week to speak to our local city council about how climate change is impacting us here. It took 8 months to wend through the local politics to get on the docket but we managed….
    … continuing to plug away. I live in a very ‘red’ state but I’ve kept the politics out of the climate change discussions and I’ve been trying to educate people through editorials in the local paper for years. One thing we are doing though is trying to place the conversation here in town in terms of improved resiliency. Hopefully something everyone can agree on.”

    Good sense there.

  21. 371
    prokaryotes says:

    Re patrick, interesting, there is also evidence for volcanism as a precursor for the PETM.

  22. 372
    freemike says:

    In my little corner of the internet the ‘pause’ is still the new talking point and now some people are claiming that “AGW models all overestimate the amount of warming we were supposed to have by now.”

    Can someone please give me a better response than my layperson understanding can come up with. Thanks in advance.

  23. 373
    prokaryotes says:

    Mainstream media waking up?

    In South Florida: Rising Seas Sinking In http://climatestate.com/2014/02/25/in-south-florida-rising-seas-sinking-in/

    CNN: Why Are We Still Debating Climate Change? http://climatestate.com/2014/02/25/cnn-why-are-we-still-debating-climate-change/

  24. 374
    prokaryotes says:

    Sidd, is it ok if i upload that video to yt?

  25. 375

    #363–patrick, thanks. I’ve added a brief note about the paper as an update to my “Five Degrees” summary, here:

    http://doc-snow.hubpages.com/hub/The-Five-Degree-World

  26. 376
    Hal Juul says:

    Eric@355 I didn’t understand the y axis in the plot in Christy’s wsj piece. Could you or anyone else explain it?
    Thanks

  27. 377
    sidd says:

    Mr. prokaryotes asked if he might upload a video I created from the Bamber(2013) data to yt (I presume that means youtube.com)

    I thank him for the offer, but I must decline. I do not want any of my content republished on youtube, or any large content aggregator. The reasons are not germane to this forum.

    As for small content aggregators, or if someone wants to reproduce my pages/images/video/audio/3dholodeck recordings for other than private use, I’d like them to ask permission first, as Mr. prokaryotes was kind enough to do. (Not that my desires will stop the unscruplous from appropriating content.)

    An email address that eventually gets to me is not hard to find if you dig a bit. If anyone is having trouble getting the video, I recommend the coral cache, thus

    http://membrane.com.nyud.net/sidd/greenland-2013/45×50.mp4

    is the coral cache version of

    http://membrane.com/sidd/greenland-2013/45×50.mp4

    stills and other links are at

    http://membrane.com/sidd/greenland-2013/

    sidd

  28. 378
    Hank Roberts says:

    Tony, re not knowing much with confidence about the course of events past 2100 –

    Amateur perspective: do you read GRL? Browsing the abstracts every week turns up new possible events with uncertain outcomes about and for climate.

    You can rule out slow calm beneficial climate changes, it seems.

  29. 379
    flxible says:

    Not sure why folks would be concerned about the climate in 22 or 2300 when the climate today indicates the immediate future, even the lifetimes of the oldtimers here, may be untenable soon. We do know things need to change, but apparently we’re going to await the changes that “natural variations” force upon us. Maybe chisel an apology on a stone [that'd be hard copy] to leave for your great-grandchildren in case digital or paper messages don’t weather the storms. :)

  30. 380
    Thomas says:

    Gavin.
    I can think of two potential objections to Wasdell.

    The first is that he may be leaving out or underestimating the amount of atmospheric CO2 that will be redistribured to other earth CO2 reservoirs -particularly the oceans, and thus he is applying the sensitivity to an injection of CO2, which will significantly decline over time.

    The second is just the difficulty of modeling the systems (including human inputs) over multicentury timescales.

    Care to elicidate further?

    [Response: That is a good point, and is indeed part of the difficulty in assessing any CO2 trajectory or level out a couple of centuries or two. - gavin]

  31. 381
    Tony Weddle says:

    Hank, thanks for the tip of scanning GRL. I will.

    Regarding long term outcomes, I tend to agree with flxible that even short term outcomes don’t look good but it seems to me that Wasdell is at least showing that if the international community wants to avoid 2C (because of some arbitrary idea of where dangerous climate change will kick in, agreed on years ago) then it can’t do it without removing atmospheric greenhouse gases and so any notion that some emissions reduction agreement can do the trick are delusions. If only the next 86 years are important, however, then a different argument ensues.

  32. 382

    @barry, re #140

    Barry, I have saved 78 different articles from many sources that cover the story of Dr. Charles Monnett, see here:

    http://climatechangepsychology.blogspot.com/search/label/Charles%20Monnett

  33. 383
    Steve Fish says:

    Re- Comment by freemike — 25 Feb 2014 @ 1:28 PM

    See here- http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2013/12/the-global-temperature-jigsaw/#more-16547

    Keep in mind that the denial hobby and its enthusiasts find scientific evidence easy to refute based on their simplistic belief system.

    Steve

  34. 384
    Hank Roberts says:

    > If only the next 86 years are important

    Nobody has made any such argument.

    Tony, the climate scientists will be delighted to run multiple scenarios over longer time spans. A model generates a range of possibilities. Each run takes a lot of computer time and money.

    You’ve probably heard the story about planning large computation-intensive projects: you can either

    1) buy today’s hardware, build a computer center, and run for five years, with a large staff, or
    2) take the same amount of money, go to Bermuda for four years to party, then spend what’s left over on a fast computer and do the same project in one year on your desktop.

  35. 385
    Dave Peters says:

    freemike (# 372)– Your query raises two rather distinct topics: a) the “pause,” and b) the “models running cool”. Both have received much attention, if you are not in deep yet, with the development of your interest. I have been a devout warmist for decades, but with long gaps in my attention to the literature. In these past couple years, I am struck by the greatly enhanced attention being devoted to a far more thoroughly instrumented Pacific Ocean. I hope that we may well be nearing the brink of having within humanity’s grasp, not only strong inferences about the recent, relative decadal reduction in the rate of surface warming (compared with the final quarter of Century 20), but also with a more compelling story about the true pause which stretched across the middle of that century. Many keyposts at RC across the past year address a declining proportion of the radiative imbalance which may be flowing to the surface and air, compared with a Pacific which has been more prone to ENSO behavior characterized by fewer and less intense El Ninos, or a protracted quasi-La Nina bias. To which the minimalists respond, “yeah, and the dog ate my homework”. Or, “well, if the Pacific sucks up the excess energy, it is thereby no big problem”. These are subjects of deep technical complexity, at the edges of what an immense expenditure of extraordinary mental talent, has yet to securely win over to the known realm.

    The first of the concerns you raise however, results from an altogether different source. Namely, the “pause” arises from a deliberate and egregious distortion of elementary statistical methods long since known and routinely practiced, for interpreting intrinsically noisy data, such as that exhibited by our thermometer record. This false claim then, is endlessly repeated. And that practice cannot be remedied by esoteric science, but rather by a vigilant citizenship which talks common sense rejoinders to the common man.

    Commenter Swanson above (# 355) mentions a few of the usual suspects: Roy Spencer, Charles Krauthammer, and Paul Gigot at the WSJ editorial page. I have made a practice of frequently challenging their references to the “pause” wherever and whenever I encounter them, and will dig up a recent example, momentarily. I think it might be helpful if we members of the choir could share, critique, encourage and improve upon each others efforts along such lines.

  36. 386
    Dave Peters says:

    freemike (# 372) -– Here is my retort to the “pause claim” made by Fred Singer, which I encountered somewhere on Real Clear Politics within the past few months:

    In the single year beginning September 1, 1997, and ending on August 31, 1998, the Pacific Ocean disgorged a huge amount of stored-up energy. The heat from that unprecedented El Nino, possibly assisted by far smaller variations elsewhere, was sufficient to elevate the temperature of the world’s near surface air by 0.55 Fahrenheit degrees, compared with the preceding twelve months. [from HadCRUT4]

    We are now confident that the world cooled for many centuries, before it assuredly stopped cooling, and began warming, several years into the 20th century. In the 104 years which have elapsed between 2011 (our latest central year of the 5-yr. running average), and 1907 (the year, very broadly averaged, when multi-century cooling bottomed, and Global Warming began), the annual incremental warming has averaged 1.57 hundredths degree F. [from GISS]

    In those twelve months therefore, we added 35 year’s worth of normal heat gain [0.546 / 0.0157 = 34.7]. When Mr. Singer (or similarly, the likes of Charles Krauthammer, Paul Gigot, John Stossel, or Michael Barone) steps upon that needle point, to assert that the Earth’s behavior since 1998 has exhibited no warming, one might fairly respond: why don’t you get back to us on that in August of, say, 2032?

  37. 387
    Hank Roberts says:

    Journal of Climate . Jan2014, Vol. 27 Issue 1, p285-299. 15p.
    Fast and Slow Responses to Global Warming: Sea Surface Temperature and Precipitation Patterns.

    an attempt to post a link to the abstract triggers the spam filter; ‘oogle it.

  38. 388
    Hank Roberts says:

    http://www.yaleclimatemediaforum.org/2014/02/thoughts-on-abrupt-climate-change-as-in-30-years-not-100/

    Thoughts on Abrupt Climate Change, As In 30 Years, not 100
    — February 20, 2014

    University of Colorado Professor Jim White offers examples in the individual and corporate sectors of impacts that could be felt as a result of abrupt climate change. (Video)

    … White explains in a new two-minute Yale Forum video interview that he was approached by a supplier of major air conditioning systems for companies on the scale of Microsoft and Google with the question, “What’s the average high temperatures going to be 40 years from now.”

    He explained that customers want to write-off such capital investments over four decades, but if they build for average high temperatures reached over a shorter period … trouble city.

    “They need to buy oversized for today so they can adapt to tomorrow.”

    Independent videographer Peter Sinclair recorded White, along with a number of other climate scientists during the December meeting of the American Geographical Union in San Francisco, Ca. White was the chair of a recent National Research Council report on abrupt climate change.

    (Actually, they need to build different buildings, not over-buy A/C.

    I recently heard an architect comment (KQED’s radio locally) that how nuts it is to be build thick highly insulated cool-white or green-planted-roofs on buildings in Sacramento — that he could accomplish the same result by having big trees shading ordinary shingled roofs.)

  39. 389
    Peter Brunson says:

    Flxible wrote “Not sure why folks would be concerned about the climate in 22 or 2300 when the climate today indicates the immediate future, even the lifetimes of the oldtimers here, may be untenable soon.”

    What time frame do you associate with soon?

  40. 390
    prokaryotes says:

    @Hank, #387

    Fast and Slow Responses to Global Warming: Sea Surface Temperature and Precipitation Patterns The deep ocean warming retards the surface warming in the fast response but turns into a forcing for the slow response. As a result, the fast and slow responses are nearly opposite to each other in spatial pattern, especially over the subpolar North Atlantic/Southern Ocean regions of the deep-water/bottom-water formation, and in the interhemispheric SST gradient between the southern and northern subtropics. Wind–evaporation–SST feedback is an additional mechanism for the SST pattern formation in the tropics.

    Analyses of phase 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) multimodel ensemble of global warming simulations confirm the validity of the diagnostic method that separates the fast and slow responses. Tropical annual rainfall change follows the SST warming pattern in both the fast and slow responses in CMIP5, increasing where the SST increase exceeds the tropical mean warming. http://tinyurl.com/lczv53z

  41. 391
    flxible says:

    Peter Brunson: “What time frame do you associate with soon?”

    “… the immediate future, even the lifetimes of the oldtimers here …” …. isn’t clear?

    As one of the ‘old timers’, I’m not too concerned with the climate, globally or locally, 80-90 years from now, why would I be interested in it 1-200 years hence? Why would you be interested in it? Concern for a hypothetical ’10th’ generation? What concerns me is the immediate future, which isn’t looking too rosy, particularly for any major change to “BAU”. Speculation about the far future is pointless when we have such an poor understanding of the present, particularly concerning the details of climate, but what we should know is that your immediate children [if you have such, I don't], will not find the planet as comfortable as it has been. OTOH, this is a climate site, so speculation about unknowns isn’t entirely out of place. :)

  42. 392
    David B. Benson says:

    Climate change: No warming hiatus for extreme hot temperatures
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140226165305.htm

  43. 393
    Fred Magyar says:

    Hank Roberts @388,
    Wrote:
    “I recently heard an architect comment (KQED’s radio locally) that how nuts it is to be build thick highly insulated cool-white or green-planted-roofs on buildings in Sacramento — that he could accomplish the same result by having big trees shading ordinary shingled roofs.)”

    No, it’s not nuts… It’s downright STUPID!! Though a bit ironic that it was a statement from an architect >;-)
    Apparently there is a least one smart architect left in the world…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rkfAcWpOYAA
    Distinguished Lecturer Series: Building Science
    Dr. Joseph Lstiburek

    Enjoy!

  44. 394
    Hank Roberts says:

    As one of the ‘old timers’, I’m not too concerned with the climate, globally or locally, 80-90 years from now, why would I be interested in it 1-200 years hence?

    Because that’s how long it takes. Why think 200 years ahead?

    Because I’m not smart enough to work on plans that take _less_ time.

    “Plant just one tree. Love, Ma” — someone used to buy that as a classified ad in the old CoEvolution Quarterly, year after year.

    Good idea.

    Everybody needs a hobby.

  45. 395
    Hank Roberts says:

    Lstiburek is wonderful. Everyone should know about this guy.

    “they’re old books. That involves asking a librarian to get them. That involves a social interaction. That’s why younger engineers don’t get them.”

    He starts into green roofs at 32:30, and the fundamental building science that’s known but that nobody gets taught around 37:00.

  46. 396
    Eric Swanson says:

    #385 – Dave Peters – Yeah, that old “pause” thingy. Funny thing, those folks who rant about the so-called “pause” don’t want to talk about the low solar activity during the last solar cycle, even though a few years ago these same guys probably claimed that the world was heading into another Maunder Minimum cold period. Also, not one of them wants to talk about the massive increase in coal burning in China and India over the past 20 years, the result being a major increase in SO2 emissions. Also, the rapid economic growth has also resulted in large increases in diesel emissions, thus more “black carbon” particulate air pollution from both countries. That Asian Brown Cloud keeps growing larger each year, which one might expect to have an impact on weather, that is, if one were interested in a truthful presentation.

  47. 397
    patrick says:

    “If we cannot distill complex science into plain English, the failure is ours.”–Dr. Ben Santer, about a half hour ago.

    Climate Change: Evidence & Causes, NAS & the Royal Society event & publication:
    http://royalsociety.org/policy/projects/climate-evidence-causes/

    http://nas-sites.org/americasclimatechoices/events/a-discussion-on-climate-change-evidence-and-causes/

  48. 398
    David Miller says:

    As for not building light, well-insulated roofs because they can be shaded by large trees,

    That’s true, but short-sighted. What happens when drought, flood, violent wind, ice storms, salt, or a disease kills the tree large tree? What about new houses that won’t be shaded by just-planted trees for a decade or three? What about using the roof-top for solar panels?

    It doesn’t seem stupid to me to have a light, well-insulated roof at all.

  49. 399

    The Berkeley BEST Land+Ocean temperature series is available to supplement the Land-only previous analysis.
    http://berkeleyearth.lbl.gov/auto/Global/

    Any opinions whether they have made a mistake in the analysis by using the SST data model from Hadley rather than that of NOAA? To me, it looks like HadSST has been overly tampered with by questionable correction algorithms, especially post WWII.

    So, after all that work, all they have done is recreate HadCRUT4. I suspect that they would have recreated GISS GISTEMP loti if they replaced HadSST with NOAA’s ERSST.

    GISS is still the BEST, imo.

  50. 400
    SecularAnimist says:

    Hank Roberts wrote: “I recently heard an architect comment (KQED’s radio locally) that how nuts it is to be build thick highly insulated cool-white or green-planted-roofs on buildings in Sacramento — that he could accomplish the same result by having big trees shading ordinary shingled roofs.”

    What “same result”?

    A recent study found that the results of white roofs and green-planted roofs are quite different:

    Looking strictly at the economic costs and benefits of three different roof types — black, white and “green” (or vegetated) — Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) researchers have found in a new study that white roofs are the most cost-effective over a 50-year time span …

    A green roof, often called vegetated roofs or rooftop gardens, has become an increasingly popular choice for aesthetic and environmental reasons … For example rooftop gardens provide stormwater management, an appreciable benefit in cities with sewage overflow issues, while helping to cool the roof’s surface as well as the air …

    However, unlike white roofs, green roofs do not offset climate change. White roofs are more reflective than green roofs, reflecting roughly three times more sunlight back into the atmosphere and therefore absorbing less sunlight at earth’s surface. By absorbing less sunlight than either green or black roofs, white roofs offset a portion of the warming effect from greenhouse gas emissions …

    Both white and green roofs do a good job at cooling the building and cooling the air in the city, but white roofs are three times more effective at countering climate change than green roofs.

    I would ask that architect on the radio where he would plant those “big trees” that can shade the entire roof of a commercial building, in the middle of a densely built-up urban environment?

    And how long would it take those trees to grow big enough to shade the entire roof of a commercial building? Perhaps it would take as long to grow them as the entire 50-year life span of an inexpensive highly-reflective white roof that could be installed in a matter of days?

    I’m all for planting more trees. LOTS more trees, including in urban areas wherever possible. But it seems there are cheaper and faster ways to address the problem of black roofs (which the Berkeley Lab study found post a significant public health risk — “In Chicago’s July 1995 heat wave a major risk factor in mortality was living on the top floor of a building with a black roof”).


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