RealClimate logo


Unforced Variations: Jan 2017

Filed under: — group @ 2 January 2017

The first open thread of the new year. Your resolution will be to keep the comments focused on science. Try to keep it longer than your resolution to exercise more…

194 Responses to “Unforced Variations: Jan 2017”

  1. 1
    Karsten V. Johansen says:

    A new discussion among climate scientists about climate models seems to be emerging. As fx. described in this article:

    http://science.sciencemag.org/content/354/6311/401 also discussed here – may be a little too journalistic/”bloggish” in the approach:

    https://judithcurry.com/2016/11/05/climate-modelers-open-up-their-black-boxes-to-scrutiny/

    I am no expert on this subject, just a norwegian teacher since 20 years in high school in physical geography with a masters degree in physical geography from the University of Oslo (1994). But the corriculum in my teaching subject among many other things require that the students/pupils are able to understand and discuss the climate models and predictions of the IPCC report – on a very elementary level of course. Thats the reason for my question: I want to be somewhat better informed on climate models and their status today.

  2. 2
    Karsten V. Johansen says:

    I apologize for my not very eloquent english and for the typos in the above: curriculum and that’s it should be of course. And I am well aware that Judith Curry is controversial, as described here:

    http://www.nature.com/news/2010/101101/full/news.2010.577.html

  3. 3
    patrick says:

    The Paris Agreement of the UNFCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) has been ratified now by 118 Parties representing 80% of global emissions.

    http://cait.wri.org/indc/#/ratification

  4. 4
    JCH says:

    Sounds like in 2017 the “rosey” record setting post EL Niño global cooling could be about to butt heads with a very disagreeable ocean.

    Initialized decadal prediction for transition to positive phase of the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation

    … Indeed, the 3- to 7-year predictions for 2015–2019 that were initialized in 2013 indicate such an IPO transition has occurred, with a resumption of accelerated rates of global warming above those in the uninitialized model simulations. …

    Predictability and prediction of persistent cool states of the Tropical Pacific Ocean

    … We then apply this method to make retrospective forecasts of shifts in the decadal mean state and to forecast the mean state of the Tropical Pacific Ocean for the upcoming decade. Our results suggest that the Pacific will undergo a shift to a warmer mean state after the 2015–2016 El Niño. …

  5. 5

    Breitbart factoid provider James Delingpole has just proposed winding down the Climate Wars by imprisoning all climate scientsts.

  6. 6

    I’m working on a book called “On the Temperatures of Terrestrial Planets.” Whether I’ll be able to publish it is another question, of course.

  7. 7
    Phil Hays says:

    An interesting paper.

    http://escholarship.org/uc/item/85c019pr

    Also at (paywall)

    https://doi.org/10.1038/nature17423

    “At 5–7× the pre-industrial value, our reconstructed EECO CO 2 value can provide tighter constraints on models than those that have been previously available. ”

    Burning all the available fossil fuels may take a few hundred years, of course. It keeps looking more and more like our descendants will live in a world grotesquely warmer if we burn most of the fossil fuels.

  8. 8
    Lawrence Coleman says:

    To Excersise more what?…. maybe restraint. Hope you all had a great Xmas and put on a few pounds. Let’s hope this year wont be as scary as we think it will be. Has anyone read Prof. Wadhams new book “A farewell to ice” yet. I for one have always found what he says to be sensible and on point. Above all he ‘gets’ the urgency that many of us here don’t appear to. anyway HAPPY NEW YEAR to all at RC and to our very patient moderators. Cheers!

  9. 9
    Mr. Know It All says:

    Major heat wave in Vostok Wednesday – getting up to 5 degrees F. Of course it is mid summer there.
    https://www.wunderground.com/aq//vostok/zmw:00000.1.89606

    Question: Some say that recent decisions by the current WH administration could result in WW3. If that occurs and we have nuclear winter due to particulates in the atmosphere, will the excess CO2 added by burning fossil fuels help to keep us a little warmer?

  10. 10
    Karsten V. Johansen says:

    Time to remember this with all “ratifications” of the socalled Paris agreement:

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/dec/12/james-hansen-climate-change-paris-talks-fraud

    My modest guess: there will be lots of words, still. But no action except the very usual procedure. The there will be yet another agreement. And so on. That’s what keep the world on course to climate desaster: all the climate bluffers, the lukewarmers’ silent work for the fossil lobby.

  11. 11
    Greg Simpson says:

    Mr. Know It All:

    If that occurs and we have nuclear winter due to particulates in the atmosphere, will the excess CO2 added by burning fossil fuels help to keep us a little warmer?

    Yes, but that is very small compensation for a disaster. Also, the other effects of carbon dioxide, like ocean acidification, would still be with us.

  12. 12
    Ed Davies says:

    GISSTemp northern hemisphere land anomalies for the years 2000 and on are over 1.5 °C above those for the years up to 1900. In my naive understanding it seems that the NH land temperatures are likely where we are headed globally: it’s just a matter of waiting for the mixed layers at the top of the oceans to catch up. Maybe once they do the NH land temperatures will increase a bit more, of course.

    It seems to me, therefore, that even if we could keep CO₂ concentrations at current levels a few ppmv over 400 we’d still already be passed the 1.5 °C target set in Paris. Does this seem right?

  13. 13
    MA Rodger says:

    UAH has posted the December global temperature anomaly for its TLTv6.0(beta5) at +0.24ºC (two significant places), the 66th warmest anomaly on the record. This is the 6th warmest December on record (after 2015, 2003, 1987, 1996, 1997). And despite this being a significant drop on the November anomaly the average 2016 anomaly comes in as the warmest calendar year on record at +0.506ºC, a little ahead of previous record-holder 1998 at +0.484ºC.

    The table here allows comparison with the 1997-99 El Nino years. That 1997-98 El Nino was quickly followed by La Nina conditions. While the 2015-16 El Nino ended pretty-much in sinc with 1997-98 El Nino, the La Nina conditions now appear to be a non-event.
    Back in 1998 as per the table below, the November value showed the beginning of the big drop from the elevated El Nino temperatures with a bit of a rebound in December. The December 2016 may or may not be the start of such a drop or it could just be an outlier.
    ……….1997/99 … 2015/16
    Dec … +0.250ºC … +0.450ºC
    Jan … +0.479ºC … +0.540ºC
    Feb … +0.653ºC … +0.832ºC
    Mar … +0.475ºC … +0.734ºC
    Apr … +0.743ºC … +0.714ºC
    May … +0.643ºC … +0.545ºC
    Jun .… +0.575ºC … +0.338ºC
    Jul … +0.511ºC . … +0.389ºC
    Aug … +0.516ºC …. +0.435ºC
    Sep … +0.441ºC …. +0.440ºC
    Oct … +0.403ºC …. +0.410ºC
    Nov … +0.123ºC …. +0.450ºC
    Dec … +0.246ºC …. +0.240ºC
    Jan … +0.060ºC
    Feb … +0.166ºC
    Mar … -0.081ºC
    Apr … +0.009ºC
    May … -0.037ºC

  14. 14
    Don Neidig says:

    Adding to #12: As I understand it, there is presently an energy imbalance of about 0.8 W m-2, because
    the climate system hasn’t fully responded to the current forcing. That means we are committed to an
    additional rise in global surface temperature of about 0.6 C even if atmospheric composition were to remain
    what it is at present. So, in terms of commitment we may have already busted the 1.5 C target. (Of course it
    might take a hundred years before that imbalance is mostly canceled by temperature rise.)

  15. 15
    Hank says:

    Latest from Dr. Judith C, some will breathe a sigh of relief, I’m sure.

    https://judithcurry.com/2017/01/03/jc-in-transition/#more-22651

  16. 16
    mike says:

    Daily CO2

    January 2, 2017: 407.05 ppm
    January 2, 2016: 401.83 ppm

    Last Week

    December 25 – 31, 2016 404.78 ppm
    December 25 – 31, 2015 402.09 ppm

    I think annual global average temperature has established an unusual milestone with 2016 being the 5th consecutive year with increase in global temp. Usual pattern is a couple years in one direction, then head in the other direction, though of course, the trend is upward sticky, reportedly linked to rising CO2 levels.

    Anyone want to take a look back through the historical record to see if there is another period of 5 consecutive years of increase? We can hope that 2017 will break the string with a cooling-off as EN wanes.

    Hot, hot, hot!

    Warm regards,

    Mike

  17. 17
    Digby Scorgie says:

    Ed Davies @12

    As I understand it, there’s a lot of inertia in the climate system. After atmospheric carbon dioxide reaches a certain concentration it takes a while for the planet to stabilize at the temperature corresponding to that concentration. The last time carbon dioxide was at 400 ppm was a little over three million years ago. At that time, from what I’ve read, temperatures were two to three degrees celsius higher than today’s. Also, the sea level was about 20 to 25 metres higher. I suppose that’s what we can look forward to, but it will take a while . . .

  18. 18
    Thomas says:

    10 Karsten V. Johansen; the most telling part of that dec. 2015 article on Paris/Hansen are the reader “comments” by the mainly denier/conspiratorial type.

    It’s telling that Hansen’s judgment on Obama a year ago was “Hansen feels Obama, who has made climate change a legacy issue in his final year in office, has botched the opportunity to tackle the issue.” Who knew? :-)

    imo nothing significant is ever going to happen via COP or any other similar body. They’re luke-warmers and procrastinators on Steroids. Minor changes around the margins is all that will be done in the coming 2 decades (much like the last 2 decades of AGW action = next to nothing).

    The present reality is the best indicator of the short term future prognosis = more rearranging of the deck chairs on the Titanic as the music plays on … (shrug)

    The last and only hope to avoid significant climate change global impacts imo are legal challenges in the high courts of key nations. A very slim hope imho.

    No one can change an entrenched systemic causation by occasionally poking it with a stick or having a protest march or emailing the President or by commenting on a blog site.

  19. 19
    Thomas says:

    PS

    “They’re luke-warmers and procrastinators on Steroids” informed by overly conservative out of date IPCC Reports, manipulated/untested energy statistics, and mythological political economic beliefs.

    Best not be deluded to a point of denying fundamental reality – “People are stupid!” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_priori_and_a_posteriori

  20. 20
    David B. Benson says:

    Ed Davies @12 — Checking the mid-Pliocene in
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pliocene_climate
    one sees an expected repeat as the ocean circulation was about the same 3.2 million years ago. Therefore expect a global warming of 2–3 °C. Also note the sea stand.

  21. 21
    Omega Centauri says:

    Karsten@10
    I think a strong case can be made that this time is different. The most significant diference is that the so called renewables are now ready for the big time, and in many cases are already cheaper than new fossil fueled generation. Add in local pressures to reduce pollution, and many of these signatory countries have strong local economic and political incentives to begin a serious energy transformation with or without the agreement. So I think we will see substantial compliance because it is the cheapest/best local option.

  22. 22
    Thomas says:

    fwiw future energy trends
    http://corporate.exxonmobil.com.au/en-au/energy/energy-outlook
    news report http://www.smh.com.au/business/energy/five-uncomfortable-forecasts-about-our-energy-future-20170102-gtl1k5.html

    “Coal provides less than 30 percent of world’s electricity in 2040, versus about 40 percent in 2015,” according to energy giant ExxonMobil’s 2017 “The Outlook for Energy.” http://dailycaller.com/2017/01/03/report-coal-is-still-king-in-2040/

    IEA 2016 – The Energy Sector in 2040 ‘IF’ nations abide by the Paris Agreement – but even then CO2 emissions are NOT on track for a 2C scenario.
    “We see clear winners for the next 25 years – natural gas but especially wind and solar – replacing the champion of the previous 25 years, coal,” said Dr Fatih Birol, the IEA’s executive director. “But there is no single story about the future of global energy: in practice, government policies will determine where we go from here.”
    http://www.iea.org/newsroom/news/2016/november/world-energy-outlook-2016.html

    AC/DC says it all – “Don’t need reason, don’t need rhyme, Season ticket on a one way ride”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gEPmA3USJdI :-)

    I’d be interested in seeing an updated scientific analysis of RCPs and defining exactly where the planet is now headed post the AR4 & AR5 assumptions and the current best case “assumptions” for energy use changes out to 2040

    eg compared to “The blue RCP2.6 is such a scenario with strong emissions reduction. With this scenario global warming can be stopped below 2 ° C.” http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2013/09/the-new-ipcc-climate-report/
    https://www.sei-international.org/mediamanager/documents/A-guide-to-RCPs.pdf and RCP8.5 http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10584-011-0149-y etc etc

  23. 23
    Thomas says:

    re 22 (etc), 16 & 13.

    In 2017 I would like to see RC scientist spend more time reporting on AGW/CC ‘Yardsticks’ and leveling out the confusing ‘Contexts’ – the set of circumstances or facts that surround a particular event, situation, etc.

    http://www.thefreedictionary.com/yardstick
    http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/yardstick
    http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/context
    http://www.dictionary.com/browse/context

    imo/ime muddying the contexts is how disinformation persists and instills confusion in the public mind. It exists throughout the whole of climate science and policy for decades now. With COP ghg emission reduction treaties nations use different starting points and fly % flags to ‘promote/advertise’ their great national achievements or goals. Apples and Oranges at work.

    The IPCC used RCPs to provide context and yardsticks, and yet no one uses these to gauge how well we are doing or what the current reality actually is – based upon those ‘yardsticks’. What use is a yardstick if it is left in the draw? Not much.

    Multiple orgs put out reports on energy use … for the past present and future 25 years out. Again this is apples and oranges … whose numbers are correct? I have no idea.

    Every nation has either none or widely different fuel economy standards for motor vehicles. They use different methodologies to report on how well they are doing in cutting emissions. None seem to be based on actual FF consumption, actual emissions, actual / relative MV running costs, or actual fuel price & govt excise differences between nations … just more apples and oranges? But all seem to to ‘advertise/promote’ how great they are each doing to solve the problem of agw/cc and meet their “incomprehensible” Paris Treaty obligations.

    Apparently every nation is a gung ho success in goal achievement at the UNFCCC. Really? Based on what comparative facts can that be so? One Govt after another comes to power only to undo whatever was done or undone by the last Govt. Yet still they are all going gang busters in meeting their UNFCCC treaty obligations. How can this be so?

    I would love to see some hard facts – where all are based upon the very same Yardstick. BY using the same Yardstick and the same time period means figures will be a start to key AGW/CC information being based within the very same Context…. a context that the everyday person can recognise and make sense out of it without a slide rule. This is not the case today and it has not been since Rio.

    For communicating a clear message rule #1 in marketing is Repetition. That message needs to be consistent as well. What’s the reality? Oh the Avg Temp has increased by 0.7C is quite common. So is 0.9C So is 1.0C and 1.1C and now more recently a new one has appeared at 1.2C.

    If you cannot see the critical problem here then I am talking to the wrong people.

    So I would love to see a year where there’s some consistency and regular reporting on the base Yardsticks such as:

    Mean Avg Global Temps
    Define a Base Standard starting point eg above 1750, or 1850 or avg last 10,000 years, or 1900, or the 20th Century Avg or flip a coin but stick to it? Where every ‘science’ report is recalculated back to this #1 Yardstick.
    Mean Avg Regional Temps eg The Arctic, nth africa, Middle east etc
    Global CO2 ppm level and rate of increase
    Global CH4 ppm level and rate of increase
    Global CO2e standardized levels
    Define a base standard for atmospheric ppm eg 280 ppm CO2 avg over the last 10,000 years
    Ocean PH levels
    Regional PH levels eg GBR, Sth Tasmania, Antarctic, Arctic, nth Atlantic?
    Global coral bleaching events
    Arctic Antarctic Sea Ice extent and Piomass
    Antarctic Greenland Ice sheets
    Land based Glaciers – eg in graphs like SIE
    Sea level rise changes and monitoring
    Global Regional Drought and Precip anomalies by year by decade since ?
    Global coal, oil, gas production/use broken down into transport, heating, electricity and industrial scale uses.
    Ongoing Land clearing and major Fires
    Use of Nitrogen Fertilisers
    Use of cement
    Expansion of pastoral farms and livestock

    Placing the above into a standard context such as RCPs – better or worse than expected in AR4/AR5 scenarios.

    A scientific analysis of the notion that the wealthiest ~20% of the population contributes over ~50% of all AGW/emissions on the planet.

    A scientific analysis of the Paris Agreement commitments by each nation – standardizing their goals to one single Yardstick over time, that includes national totals and emissions per million people.

    Then comparing their actual emissions up to 2015 then in 2016 and 2017 ongoing to 2025.

    I already know I am asking for too much, so no need to tell me that. But maybe one of the above ideas could find favor?

  24. 24
    Thomas says:

    PS here’s an example of how the facts, yardsticks and context gets lost in the permanent noise.

    By Buddy – Daily Mean Temperature above 80N – looking at the DMI above 80 degree latitude numbers from various years the other day. Thought I would insert one more that I took a gander at: The 1998 numbers. Remember…..the big El Nino was in 1997 – 1998….so below I’ve put the 2016 vs the 1998 DMI charts. Quite a difference….yes?
    http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1611.msg97865.html#msg97865

    One might imagine that avg regional temperatures being 10C-20C above normal (and above 1998 for that matter – and everywhere else on Earth) for almost half a year would make the evening news more than once yeah?

    But no. Of course the facts are that next to no one knows about this ‘fact’. Certainly not the 6 o’clock news reader. No one told them. If only Trump had tweeted it, then all would be well known. :-)

    Climate Science has a very serious PR, Name recognition, and Marketing problem. It has next to zero Market Penetration and Awareness levels in the minds of the Public. It has next to zero credibility in the Social Media market place as well primarily based on false information and false accusations of fraud being repeated endlessly (even here on RC).

    Here’s a marketing factoid: Rather than turn people on, climate science tends to turn people off. That’s a very serious, in fact critically terminal, public perception problem. It would send any existing ‘business, charity or enterprise’ to the wall overnight.

    As such, Climate Science Inc. should consider firing their current PR Marketing advisors and finding another Advertising Agency. Oh that’s right, they don’t have either to start with. :-)

    And John Cook, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wXA777yUndQ despite his expertise, knowledge and truth telling accuracy, is no replacement for a high end professional Ad Agency or Salesman who knows how to connect with people and get them to pay attention and retain the Message — then act on it.

    Meanwhile I’ve got a good truthful motto – “Climate Science – the world’s best kept secret!”

    Since when would average regional temperatures being 10C to 20C above normal for months on end NOT be global NEWS?

    Since now!

  25. 25
  26. 26
  27. 27

    T: imo nothing significant is ever going to happen via COP or any other similar body. They’re luke-warmers and procrastinators on Steroids. . . . The present reality is . . . rearranging of the deck chairs on the Titanic . . . The last and only hope to avoid significant climate change global impacts imo are legal challenges in the high courts of key nations. A very slim hope imho. . . . No one can change an entrenched systemic causation by occasionally poking it with a stick or having a protest march or emailing the President or by commenting on a blog site.

    BPL: What would you recommend? I’m guessing total proletarian revolution.

  28. 28
    Charles Hughes says:

    90> Mr. K.I.A. – “Question: Some say that recent decisions by the current WH administration could result in WW3. If that occurs and we have nuclear winter due to particulates in the atmosphere, will the excess CO2 added by burning fossil fuels help to keep us a little warmer?”

    The current WH Administration is The Obama Administration. Not much chance of a nuclear war breaking out between now and January 20th. It’s the next administration you need to be worrying about, if in fact you’re worried about anything… which I strongly doubt.

    My guess is you’re here to harass and disrupt the conversation given your inane comments thus far. Use your real name and we’ll see if your comments improve a little.

  29. 29
    Ed Davies says:

    Digby Scorgie @ 17
    David B. Benson @ 20

    Yes, observed northern-hemisphere land temperature increases only indicate a lower bound on the expected longer-term warming. Still, it seems to me that many are ignoring even that. I have a hard time keeping a straight face while pretending to be puzzled why.

  30. 30
    Hank Roberts says:

    MrKIA has failed at Trolling 101.
    Please send us more competent ignoramuses.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/03/meteors-nuclear-tests-and-global-warming/

  31. 31
    Hank Roberts says:

    Last month, at a meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco, California, another pioneer of the technique, plant physiologist Peter Franks of the University of Sydney in Australia, trained it on one of those puzzles: the time shortly after an asteroid impact killed off the dinosaurs 66 million years ago. Tropical forests were growing at temperate latitudes, yet earlier studies suggested CO2 levels of about 350 parts per million (ppm)—less than levels today and seemingly too low to create a global hothouse. Based on a gas exchange analysis of fossil leaves in what was once a tropical forest at Castle Rock, near Denver, Franks and his colleagues now conclude that the atmosphere 1.5 million years after the impact contained CO2 at about 650 ppm—a far more plausible level.

    http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/01/fossil-leaves-suggest-global-warming-will-be-harder-fight-scientists-thought

  32. 32
    Hank Roberts says:

    More from that source:

    http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/01/fossil-leaves-suggest-global-warming-will-be-harder-fight-scientists-thought

    By revealing lower CO2 levels during ancient warmings, he says, the gas exchange technique suggests a climate sensitivity closer to 4°C, not 3°C. It may take several generations for that rise to kick in, but history suggests that it is built into the climate system. “I do find it worrying,” McElwain says. “Within 50–100 years the Earth’s surface temperature could rise much higher than we currently anticipate.”

    Still, the technique is new, and its message is far from definitive. This March, at a workshop at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory in Palisades, New York, the CO2 proxies will square off in a competition of sorts. Paleoclimatologists plan to weigh the different proxy techniques and come up with a consensus record of CO2 over the past 66 million years.

    Franks is confident that the gas exchange technique will fare well. “There’s little argument that the uncertainty you get from this is improved,” he says. “I’m not evangelizing for this model. I think it will take care of itself.”
    Posted in: Climate

    DOI: 10.1126/science.aal0567

  33. 33
    Bill Henderson says:

    Unlike the majority of commentators I get optimistic around the New Year, even on the verge of a Trump presidency. Replying to Thomas 24 esp:

    In an article ‘Leveraging technology to settle the climate change debate’
    https://cleantechnica.com/2016/12/31/leveraging-technology-settle-climate-change-debate/ Kyle Field staes:

    “Obama triaged the struggle to communicate the facts, asking “How do we create a space where truth gets eyeballs?” He closed the segment with the summary problem statement: “Let’s agree on facts then argue about means after that.”

    “Ultimately, this single item — developing and leveraging technology to communicate the facts to the public in a way that is universally accepted — is the largest challenge facing climate change. The day we can communicate truths and facts to the public in a way that’s meaningful and believable is the day the masses will start working in earnest to make the required changes to avert catastrophic climate change.”

    The science and activist community hasn’t adapted to post-truth politics but the tools and ability to do so are there if we get serious.

    I sent this e-mail to Mr. Field:

    Hi Kyle,

    just saw your ‘Leveraging technology….’ op-ed and this climate activist agrees totally. In fact I’ve been trying to push for such an innovation for more than a decade. The social science indicates that science fact or education won’t conquer denial by itself but I think you can use the Net to build a competition that will systematically disprove the denial memes and affirm a much more robust consensus about climate dangers and mitigation options so that even the Trump Admin deniers will find denial untenable.

    I’ve tried to describe such a competition in many op-eds. I found that my idea for innovation was mis-understood as just a wiki or as anti-science or such so I kept on trying to describe more fully. You can get an idea of this innovation by reading the op-eds bundled in iProve: Climate Change and Post-Truth Politics
    http://www.countercurrents.org/henderson031011.htm

    Now I’m a tech midget but I did get a techie opinion from a guy who works on on-line science publication that it would be tech possible but he didn’t seem to think that my vision of competition as denier slayer was important enough to consider more deeply. I’m looking for techies who recognize the climate dangers and urgency to play with the innovations possibilities and maybe, now that post-truth politics is rampant, consider whether developing and leveraging technology to communicate the facts to the public in a way that is universally accepted couldn’t be the most important innovation of 2017.

  34. 34
    Hank Roberts says:

    “Trolls are experts at finding soft targets”
    — one of the Breitbart writers, approvingly

  35. 35
    JCH says:

    Is there an El Niño underway in the publication of new articles at RealClimate? I hope so.

  36. 36
    Pekka Kostamo says:

    A good starting point is to adopt the globally known standard for evaluating global average warming.

    It reads: “Less than 2 degC warming with respect to pre-industrial time”.

    This is written in the major international treaties and all the national strategies to comply with them. The general public hears this phrase over all media channels weekly, if not daily.

    Where do we stand now in this respect? You may find out if you dig diligently and do your homework. The average voter or politician does not do that. He/she just sees and remembers various numbers going from 0.2 to 1,2 degC, all correct and from authoritative sources, who all have their own, better reporting schemes. The reasonable quick conclusion is that the scientists do not know what they are talking about.

    Try reading the NOAA and WMO climate reports, for instance.

  37. 37
    Thomas says:

    Real Scientists don’t guess. But Trolls do it all the time as they try to get a reaction. Makes them feel momentarily powerful and in control. But they aren’t.

  38. 38
    Thomas says:

    Climate news: on average, the world’s reefs will be start suffering annual coral bleaching in 2043 (in ~25 years).
    http://www.smh.com.au/queensland/great-barrier-reef-bleaching-to-be-annual-event-study-20170105-gtmagv
    Interview with Steve Palumbi, professor in Marine Sciences at Stanford University http://www.btlonline.org/2017/seg/170113cf-btl-palumbi.html
    – older reports
    http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/keynotes/keynotes_0415_vanhooidonk.html
    https://coralreefwatch.noaa.gov/climate/projections/downscaled_bleaching_4km/index.php
    http://climate.miami.edu/the-complex-climate/corals-struggle-to-survive/

    Australia 2016 a year of extreme weather events – and see: Quick facts: Major weather events in 2016
    http://media.bom.gov.au/releases/333/2016-a-year-of-extreme-weather-events/

    Detailed BOM Report
    http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/current/annual/aus/2016/

    Sea surface temperatures (SST) in the oceans around Australia were also very warm during 2016, with the annual mean SST the warmest on record at 0.73 °C above average, surpassing the previous record of +0.64 °C in 2010.

    2016 was Australia’s fourth-warmest year on record (the national observational dataset commences in 1910). Australia’s area-averaged mean temperature for 2016 was 0.87 °C above the 1961–1990 average.

    Maximum temperatures were 0.70 °C above average, and minimum temperatures were 1.03 °C above average. Minimum temperatures were the second-warmest on record behind +1.16 °C in 1998. [el nino year]

    News reports
    http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2017/01/05/extreme-weather-events-dominated-2016-bom-annual-report

    A RECORD breaking year of scorching heat and driving rain on Australia’s east coast meant that climate-wise, many of us have “shifted a few hundred kilometres north,” a weather expert has said.
    http://www.news.com.au/technology/environment/climate-change/2016-was-the-hottest-year-ever-on-australias-east-coast-confirms-bureau-of-meteorology/news-story/734e780dac6e3e48a617119e63da6963

    [Q: Is Australia the only nation that does this kind of reporting in the first week of the year, every year? See #23 ref http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2017/01/unforced-variations-jan-2017/#comment-666768 ]

  39. 39
    Mr. Know It All says:

    28 – CH – CH,

    [edit – leave the general political stuff for somewhere else]

    But I have received some good answers to my questions in my quest to figure out how much of the warming may be caused by AGW and how much is merely the result of the warming and cooling that has occurred since the earth was formed.

    FYI, it seems to me that the world temperatures are becoming more uniform (at least those in North America). Fairbanks used to be MUCH colder than any place in the lower 48 on a regular basis – now it is not uncommon for it to have similar temps – ditto for much of the country – the really cold places in the winter seem to my occasional monitoring (not scientific) to be moderating – and sometimes more temperate zones have cooler temps. If the atmosphere is like a big gas bag, I’d think higher temps would produce more mixing due to more energy in the air causing more air movement. But that’s just a gut feel. I still have to figure out how that CO2 molecule causes heating, and I’ve been given good links to check out. :)

  40. 40
    Hank Roberts says:

    http://www.trb.org/Main/Blurbs/The_Potential_Impacts_of_Climate_Change_on_US_Tran_156825.aspx

    Transportation Research Board
    The Potential Impacts of Climate Change on U.S. Transportation

  41. 41
    Charles Hughes says:

    It was a nice evening so I decided to go out for a scroll. I hope everyone here is jotting this critical information down. If you’re not get out your ‘Yardsticks’ and get busy. Those of you in the UK should get out your ‘Metersticks’ STAT! Especially you RC scientists imo/ime. And those apples and oranges better get to work too or I’ll beat you with a ‘Yardstick’.

    Thomas says:
    4 Jan 2017 at 12:56 AM
    re 22 (etc), 16 & 13.

    In 2017 I would like to see RC scientist spend more time reporting on AGW/CC ‘Yardsticks’ and leveling out the confusing ‘Contexts’ – the set of circumstances or facts that surround a particular event, situation, etc.

    http://www.thefreedictionary.com/yardstick
    http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/yardstick
    http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/context
    http://www.dictionary.com/browse/context

    imo/ime muddying the contexts is how disinformation persists and instills confusion in the public mind. It exists throughout the whole of climate science and policy for decades now. With COP ghg emission reduction treaties nations use different starting points and fly % flags to ‘promote/advertise’ their great national achievements or goals. Apples and Oranges at work.

    The IPCC used RCPs to provide context and yardsticks, and yet no one uses these to gauge how well we are doing or what the current reality actually is – based upon those ‘yardsticks’. What use is a yardstick if it is left in the draw? Not much.

    Multiple orgs put out reports on energy use … for the past present and future 25 years out. Again this is apples and oranges … whose numbers are correct? I have no idea.

    Every nation has either none or widely different fuel economy standards for motor vehicles. They use different methodologies to report on how well they are doing in cutting emissions. None seem to be based on actual FF consumption, actual emissions, actual / relative MV running costs, or actual fuel price & govt excise differences between nations … just more apples and oranges? But all seem to to ‘advertise/promote’ how great they are each doing to solve the problem of agw/cc and meet their “incomprehensible” Paris Treaty obligations.

    Apparently every nation is a gung ho success in goal achievement at the UNFCCC. Really? Based on what comparative facts can that be so? One Govt after another comes to power only to undo whatever was done or undone by the last Govt. Yet still they are all going gang busters in meeting their UNFCCC treaty obligations. How can this be so?

    I would love to see some hard facts – where all are based upon the very same Yardstick. BY using the same Yardstick and the same time period means figures will be a start to key AGW/CC information being based within the very same Context…. a context that the everyday person can recognise and make sense out of it without a slide rule. This is not the case today and it has not been since Rio.

    For communicating a clear message rule #1 in marketing is Repetition. That message needs to be consistent as well. What’s the reality? Oh the Avg Temp has increased by 0.7C is quite common. So is 0.9C So is 1.0C and 1.1C and now more recently a new one has appeared at 1.2C.

    If you cannot see the critical problem here then I am talking to the wrong people.

    So I would love to see a year where there’s some consistency and regular reporting on the base Yardsticks such as:

    Mean Avg Global Temps
    Define a Base Standard starting point eg above 1750, or 1850 or avg last 10,000 years, or 1900, or the 20th Century Avg or flip a coin but stick to it? Where every ‘science’ report is recalculated back to this #1 Yardstick.
    Mean Avg Regional Temps eg The Arctic, nth africa, Middle east etc
    Global CO2 ppm level and rate of increase
    Global CH4 ppm level and rate of increase
    Global CO2e standardized levels
    Define a base standard for atmospheric ppm eg 280 ppm CO2 avg over the last 10,000 years
    Ocean PH levels
    Regional PH levels eg GBR, Sth Tasmania, Antarctic, Arctic, nth Atlantic?
    Global coral bleaching events
    Arctic Antarctic Sea Ice extent and Piomass
    Antarctic Greenland Ice sheets
    Land based Glaciers – eg in graphs like SIE
    Sea level rise changes and monitoring
    Global Regional Drought and Precip anomalies by year by decade since ?
    Global coal, oil, gas production/use broken down into transport, heating, electricity and industrial scale uses.
    Ongoing Land clearing and major Fires
    Use of Nitrogen Fertilisers
    Use of cement
    Expansion of pastoral farms and livestock

    Placing the above into a standard context such as RCPs – better or worse than expected in AR4/AR5 scenarios.

    A scientific analysis of the notion that the wealthiest ~20% of the population contributes over ~50% of all AGW/emissions on the planet.

    A scientific analysis of the Paris Agreement commitments by each nation – standardizing their goals to one single Yardstick over time, that includes national totals and emissions per million people.

    Then comparing their actual emissions up to 2015 then in 2016 and 2017 ongoing to 2025.

    I already know I am asking for too much, so no need to tell me that. But maybe one of the above ideas could find favor?

  42. 42
    MA Rodger says:

    Hank @15,
    It must be over a decade since Judith Curry started acting a bit odd and started trying to disprove AGW rather than practise science. Her publications show the transition. I think the dramatic 2005 hurricane season played its part in her journey from hurricane/arctic climatology to denialist blog-mom. The controversy precipitated her 2006 paper Curry et al (2006) Mixing Politics and Science in Testing the Hypothesis that Greenhouse Warming is Causing an Increase in Hurricane Intensity.” and with the dramatic 2005 storm season yet to be repeated in the Atlantic, it must have featured big in her conversion.
    Her search for a role within AGW denial hasn’t gone well for her. For instance, involvement with Muller failed to deliver with BEST showing the GISS/CRU temperatures record were pretty-much spot on. And her more recent support for the Wyatt Unified Wave Theory simply demonstrated her bad judgement. (We still await the melting or perhaps it was the freezing of the Laptev Sea to kick off the next Wyatt Wave.) Still, I suppose she played her part in demonstarting the correctness of AGW by being singularly unable to find any significant fault.

  43. 43
    MA Rodger says:

    The JAXA Arctic SIE record did make it to the end of 2016 with a record low, racking a total of 201 days of record over the year.
    The records continued into 2017 but only to January 3rd. The latest update shows January 4th not a record low, bested by 2016. Still the 76-day run of record lows was unprecidented. A year-on-year graph of the JAXA Arcttic SIE anomalies can be viewed here (usually 2 clicks to ‘download your attachment’).

  44. 44
    roger murphy says:

    MA Rodger @42 how disappointing to read your parting shots at Dr Curry, you imply that she is somehow a failed academic when by any standard hers was a highly successful career with books and many publications to her credit along with taking a tiny department at Georgia Tech and growing it into one of the most recognized in the land. Further you label her an AGW denier, that is a bold faced lie, Dr Curry certainly believes that man has an impact on climate just not to the degree that the models predict…and on that she seems to be right, more so every year. [edit – leave out the ad homs]

  45. 45
    Dan says:

    re: 44. [original comment edited as per comment policy, so response is moot]

  46. 46
  47. 47
    MA Rodger says:

    roger murphy @44.
    Perhaps if I made it part of an on-going critique of Judy and less of a parting shot, you may find my comment less disappointing. And in the process, you may find it more something-else. I should add that your comment comes across as that of a sycophantic apologist for blog-mom Judy. You should try to set out your praise for her in your own terms and not copy her own nomenclature so closely.
    I would suggest that to characterise Curry as anything other than an AGW denier is a bit of an up-hill battle given she manages to kick off her 2015 evidence to the US Senate by asserting there has been “The hiatus in global warming since 1998.” Mind, look properly and air-brained Judy does manage to have her cake and eat it. Note in this E&E News interview about her academic retirement she complains that the scientific certainty of AGW is being exaggerated but also that her advice on mitigation policy is correct. The two positions are incompatible. Curry presents an obviously false argument and that surely makes her a bit of a light-weight.

  48. 48
    Thomas says:

    2016 ‘hottest on record’ – Global surface temperatures in 2016 averaged 14.8 degrees Celsius or 1.3C higher than estimated before the Industrial Revolution

    Earth on the edge: Record breaking 2016 was close to 1.5°C warming

    2016 confirmed as the warmest year on record, warmer than 2015 by close to 0.2°C

    Global temperatures reached a peak in February 2016 around 1.5°C higher than at the start of the Industrial Revolution

    Extreme conditions impacting several regions across the Earth

    European Union’s Copernicus Climate Change Service
    https://climate.copernicus.eu/news-and-media/press-room/press-releases/earth-edge-record-breaking-2016-was-close-15%C2%B0c-warming

  49. 49
    Thomas says:

    33 Bill Henderson, thx a good contribution and idea. skimmed it for now, have things to do, so may reply later.

  50. 50
    MA Rodger says:

    RSS has posted for December and as expected the callendar year 2016 becomes the hottest on the TLT record (as per UAH TLTv6.0beta5) with an average anomaly of +0.572ºC. The previous record had been the El Nino yer 1998 at +0.550ºC. The RSS December anomaly was +0.229ºC, a significant drop on previous months but this is in line with UAH. This is the 10th warmest November on the RSS TLT record and the 143rd warmest monthly anomaly on the full record.
    The drop in anomaly for December may give some encouragement for sceptics who likely still expect global temperatures to drop post-ElNino, not the least those betting on the 2011-20 TLT being colder than the 2001-10 TLT (eg see here). A more colourful and informative (& presently more up-to-date) graph of the standing of this bet (see here – usually 2 clicks to ‘download your attachment’) shows that with the ‘enormous’ drop for December, the dastardly warmists still managed to shave a victory. So sad!!
    A comparison of the 1997/98 El Nino temperatures with 2015/16 here (usually 2 clicks to ‘download your attachment’) shows that the December 2016 anomaly is not different from the pre-ElNino anomalies of 2015. The graph also shows the lack of La Nina beginning to appear in MEI.
    A comparison of recent RSS TLT anomalies with the 1997/98 El Nino years:-
    ……….1997/99 … 2015/16
    Dec … +0.302ºC … +0.568ºC
    Jan … +0.550ºC … +0.680ºC
    Feb … +0.736ºC … +0.993ºC
    Mar … +0.585ºC … +0.870ºC
    Apr … +0.857ºC … +0.784ºC
    May … +0.667ºC … +0.542ºC
    Jun .… +0.567ºC … +0.485ºC
    Jul ….. +0.605ºC … +0.492ºC
    Aug … +0.572ºC… +0.471ºC
    Sep … +0.494ºC… +0.580ºC
    Oct … +0.461ºC… +0.353ºC
    Nov … +0.195ºC… +0.390ºC
    Dec … +0.311ºC… +0.229ºC
    Jan … +0.181ºC
    Feb … +0.317ºC
    Mar … -0.013ºC
    Apr … +0.182ºC
    May … +0.112ºC
    Jun … -0.083ºC


Switch to our mobile site