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Unforced variations: Mar 2018

Filed under: — gavin @ 28 February 2018

This month’s open thread for climate science related items. The open thread for responses to climate change is here.

408 Responses to “Unforced variations: Mar 2018”

  1. 351
    Ray Ladbury says:

    Weaktor@340 demonstrates an utterly astounding ability to fail to comprehend what he is reading. Nowhere does de Smith suggest that eyeballing is in any way superior or even adequate to the task of identifying a trend. He merely says that it might be useful.

    Our eyes lie. Properly performed statistical analyses do not. But then, Weaktor likes lies.

  2. 352
    CCHolley says:

    Arguments put forth by advocates of AGW are based on portions of the evidence carefully selected to support a pre-conceived view…

    Let’s give a simplistic example for Victor on how science actually works.

    Let’s say an early scientist is interested in applying Newton’s Laws of Motion to ballistics. He uses the law to derive a mathematical model of the predicted path of a projectile given a know initial velocity, angle of launch, and the force of gravity. The mathematical model predicts a trajectory of a parabolic arc.

    He then sets up an experiment to confirm the results of his model. Instrumentation is used to measure the initial velocity. The launch angle is set and the projectile is launched. The distance from launch to landing is carefully measured. Unfortunately the landing point is well short of that predicted. Several more launches are made to make sure the initial result was not an anomaly. All the results are similar.

    He then goes through his model and cannot find any mistakes in the derivation. Does the scientist then declare Newton’s Laws falsified? No, that would be foolish because others have confirmed the laws through other experiments. It is already considered scientific truth. Physics is physics.

    So the scientist must ask himself questions. What am I missing? What are the gaps in my knowledge? Could there be other unknown forces acting on the body of which I am unaware? This opens a new line of inquiry and he eventually hypothesizes the influence of air in the form of drag on a body in motion. His evidence of such was NOT simply collected to support a pre-conceived view. It was collected to support known physical laws.

    Likewise for AGW theory. The laws of physics are the laws of physics and the laws of physics allow us to make certain predictions. When evidence surfaces that might conflict with our predictions, we don’t consider the physics falsified, we look for gaps in our knowledge and hypothesize explanations. Those hypothesis must stand on their own merits. This is NOT simply collecting evidence to support a pre-conceived view, it is attempting to explain the world based on known physical laws. We don’t just throw out physical laws because of any little bump in the road, that would be an extraordinary claim that requires extraordinary evidence.

    CO2 is a greenhouse gas that prevents heat from escaping to space. That is a scientific certainty. In a complex world, if observations seemly conflict with that scientific certainty, then looking for explanations is absolutely the right thing to do. Explanations that are supported by evidence and conform to physical laws. Aerosols like drag have an effect and cannot be ignored. We don’t throw out greenhouse gas laws just because the effect of aerosols changes the outcome. Like the Newtonian Laws, we didn’t throw them out simply because we didn’t initially understand drag.

  3. 353
    Victor says:

    I believe I’ve made my cases(es) and see no point in continuing to argue as this could go on endlessly. Just a few brief points:

    1. #351 Ray, you are wrong. De Smith makes it very clear that statistics cannot in itself produce a trend while “eyeballing” is certainly capable of revealing one. Once a trend is identified then statistics can be used to quantify it and assess its significance.

    2. #343 Thanks for the clarification, gavin, but it looks like you are questioning the widely held notion that aerosol cooling did in fact match CO2 induced warming during the post-war years 1945 through the late 70’s. Is that really the case?

    3. 342 CCHolley: “This is what science is all about, using all the evidence rather than assumptive reasoning which can easily fool us.” But what you’ve offered is not evidence, but only a set of very questionable assumptions.

    “Aerosols absolutely cause cooling, that’s not a hypothesis it is scientific truth supported by evidence.” I see no reason to disagree. But if they caused cooling in the post-WW2 era then they would cause cooling in the pre-war era as well.

    “But it is complicated. Victor has problems with complexity.” Pluralitas non est ponenda sine necessitate.

    4. 344 nigelj “Yes, and everyone here except you looks at graphs of temperature and see an increasing trend from 1970 – 2017, and we look at temperature versus CO2 since 1900 and see a rough correlation.”

    We see what we want to see, nigel. I’ll apply that one to myself as well.

  4. 354

    Victor, #340–

    …according to Dr. Smith, who presumably knows what he is talking about, it makes sense to “examine the graph of the time series visually, to see if any trend-line behavior can be observed.” Thus identification of the trend must come first and only if one can be identified does it make sense to proceed to a statistical analysis.

    Er, no. “…it makes sense” does not equal “must.” The former is pretty clearly an informal heuristic to save unnecessary labor; one may eyeball a graph to determine *candidates* for trends. But one can only determined *actual* trends by statistical procedures. (And eyeballing a graph is virtually useless for testing significance.)

    (And while we’re at it, there are also plenty of cases in which statistical analysis has been used absent ‘Mark I eyeball testing’ and, for that matter, plenty of cases where the data are not amenable to a simple eyeball test. Analysis may also uncover a relationship of some sort, for which someone subsequently finds a nifty way to display it graphically. It would be absurd to argue that because this sequence of events is putatitively ‘backward’ that the result is somehow lacking in statistical rigor.)

    And, returning to the source quote, Dr. Smith didn’t originally say “it makes sense”; he originally said “The first step is usually…” That clearly implies that there are ‘unusual’ situations which arise.

    To put it bluntly, statistics per se is NOT sufficient to identify a trend while, according to the good doctor, eyeballing a graph is.

    From conflating cases, Victor proceeds to invert realities. And this fiasco could have been avoided by simply reading for comprehension, instead of reading in order to try and torture the predetermined conclusion out of a given set of words.

  5. 355
    Dan says:

    re: 353.
    It goes beyond “Victor has problems with complexity.” He makes no effort to learn the scientific method and yet he assumes via poor cherry-picking of denier information (never questioning the source or their agenda) propelled by climate science deniers that he somehow knows something that every professional climate science society (yes, every one) in the world does not. Because he does not take the time to learn such things as what peer-review is all about he is the absolutely definition of intellectual laziness. He just lazily regurgitates what he wants to believe. Or makes it up (for example, failure to understand the 1st Law of Themodynamics and thus his absurdities about the stratosphere not having anything to do with AGW violate that law because he can’t comprehend it. And since he can’t comprehend it, everyone else with climate science degrees must be wrong. smh

  6. 356

    Victor, here’s how to find a trend in time series data. I’ll use annual data as an example.

    The variable you want to examine is your Y variable. Temperature, for instance.
    Elapsed time in years is your X variable.
    Perform a linear regression of Y on X.
    Is the slope significantly positive (p < 0.05)? You have a positive trend.
    Is it significantly negative (p < 0.05)? You have a negative trend.
    Is it not significant? You have failed to detect a trend.

    I can't put it more clearly than that. Do you want me to go through how to do a two-variable linear regression? It requires nothing harder than algebra.

  7. 357
    nigelj says:

    I have a perfect eidetic graphical memory (images etc), and this ability seems to also help analyse images. I can visually detect if there’s a trend in a graph, even if its only very slight. Sadly this ability is of no use in remembering general information, sigh.

  8. 358
    nigelj says:

    Victor @353

    “1. #351 Ray, you are wrong. De Smith makes it very clear that statistics cannot in itself produce a trend while “eyeballing” is certainly capable of revealing one. Once a trend is identified then statistics can be used to quantify it and assess its significance.”

    Nonsense. All Dr Smith said was you normally look at a graph to see is theres a rough suggestion of a trend or correlation, and if there is you do a statistical analysis. That is just commonsense because we look for trends and correlations visually all the time. Nowhere did he say there “has to be” a visual trend before you do a statistical analysis, because obviously we differ in our ability to read graphs. This is why a statistical analysis is vital.

    I happen to have a perfect eidetic graphical memory, and this also helps me pick even a slight trend, or correlation, because I have tested this ability (it’s no use in remembering phone numbers sadly.)

    “2. #343 Thanks for the clarification, gavin, but it looks like you are questioning the widely held notion that aerosol cooling did in fact match CO2 induced warming during the post-war years 1945 through the late 70’s. Is that really the case?”

    No he is not. He is simply explaining that aerosols and CO2 have different effects “over time” and this has to be considered. You are basically shamelessly shoving words in his mouth.

    “3. 342 CCHolley: “This is what science is all about, using all the evidence rather than assumptive reasoning which can easily fool us.” But what you’ve offered is not evidence, but only a set of very questionable assumptions.”

    No he offered plenty of evidence.

    ““Aerosols absolutely cause cooling, that’s not a hypothesis it is scientific truth supported by evidence.” I see no reason to disagree. But if they caused cooling in the post-WW2 era then they would cause cooling in the pre-war era as well.”

    More nonsense as has been explained several times to you. Other factors operated before WW2 including higher solar activity and changes in volcanic activity that in turn supress the effects of coal burning aerosols, and you also have to consider what gavin said, and regional effects mentioned by other people.

    “4. 344 nigelj “Yes, and everyone here except you looks at graphs of temperature and see an increasing trend from 1970 – 2017, and we look at temperature versus CO2 since 1900 and see a rough correlation.”We see what we want to see, nigel. I’ll apply that one to myself as well.”

    No. Any average person can detect whether there’s a reasonably strong or obvious trend or correlation or not. Its obvious that there’s an increasing temperature trend overall form 1900 – 2017 for example and also in the last three decades, and if you cant see this you have some sort of deficit.

    Now clearly some trends and correlations are not so clear, and people may be tempted to look for what they want to find. For this reason, you do a statistical analysis!

    You have people going to the trouble of explaining the math’s and you choose to ignore this, so you make yourself look stupid and childish. You have not shown any flaws in the maths, and its old textbook maths tested and used many times over.

  9. 359
    Bob Loblaw says:

    Victor # 353:; “[I} see no point in continuing to argue”

    Oh, I sooo wish that this were true.

  10. 360
    Alf says:

    @ 353 Victor (The Troll) said:

    I believe I’ve made my cases(es) and see no point in continuing to argue as this could go on endlessly.

    Wise decision! Long overdue. Thank you very much. Act consequent!

    Just a few brief points:

    Listen to : ‘UTFO – Split Personality’, on the kindernet. (It´s really funny) :)

    I see what I want to see.

    (condensed)
    Gotcha! No need to care of the scientific method. ;)
    Light on on your path; best wishes, farewell!

    p.s. Thanks, Gavin, for cooling down Thomas. Keep up the good work!

  11. 361
    Victor says:

    359 Bob Loblaw says:

    “Victor # 353:; “[I} see no point in continuing to argue”

    Oh, I sooo wish that this were true.”

    Yes, it’s true. We’ve been going in circles over these issues for too long and everyone including me is repeating himself. If I see something new that bothers me in future I might want to raise my trusty pea shooter again though. So keep your guard up, folks.

  12. 362
    CCHolley says:

    Victor @353

    “Aerosols absolutely cause cooling, that’s not a hypothesis it is scientific truth supported by evidence.” I see no reason to disagree. But if they caused cooling in the post-WW2 era then they would cause cooling in the pre-war era as well.

    No one ever said that aerosols would not have provided a cooing effect prior to 1940. Net cooling, however, no. Although there is not enough historical data to determine accurately exactly what was happening during this earlier period, including the exact spacial coverage of aerosols, we know that CO2 levels were increasing, solar was increasing, and that there was a lull in volcanic activity all resulting in a period of warming. In the post 1940 period, solar had leveled and volcanic activity had resumed. The net result with new sources of aerosols was a period of no warming.

    The whole discussion on aerosols was in response to the following claim made by Victor:

    If a steady increase of CO2 levels causes global temps. to rise, then how do we explain the lowering and/or leveling off of global temps. during the period ca. 1940-ca. 1979? This is roughly 40 years without significant warming, surely not a short-term bit of random “noise.” Yet AGW advocates claim that the doubling of CO2 levels will invariably, due to iron clad physical laws, result in 2 degrees (or more) of global warming. Since this is the period during which the burning of fossil fuels really took off, it’s hard to see any evidence of such a relationship. This in itself strikes me as strong evidence for falsification.

    Victor claimed the the period from 1940 to about 1979 with no warming was evidence to falsify a relationship of CO2 to temperatures. In Victor’s way of thinking, aerosols didn’t matter because aerosols exist in conjunction with CO2 emissions. However, as usual, Victor failed to do his due diligence and make an attempt to understand the science. If he had, he would have understood that the CO2 effect and the aerosol effect do not occur lock step and are not just a matter of how much is emitted. CO2 remains in the atmosphere for centuries with a compounding effect while the aerosol effect is dependent only on the current emissions as they have short life. Not only that, aerosols have a localized effect and the cooling is dependent on spacial coverage. The location of the sources are critical to the response.

    After about 1979, the compounding effect of CO2 made it the dominate forcing overcoming all other drivers including the cooling effect of aerosols.

    From Robert A. Rohde of Berkley Earth:

    This figure shows the level of agreement between a climate model driven by five factors and the historical temperature record. The negative component identified as “sulfate” is associated with the aerosol emissions blamed for global dimming.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_dimming#/media/File:Climate_Change_Attribution.png

    Pluralitas non est ponenda sine necessitate.

    CO2 is a greenhouse gas that slows radiative heat loss to space. Physics tells us that with the water vapor feedback the minimum sensitivity is 2 degrees celsius for every doubling. In order to falsify AGW one would have to show that net feedbacks are significantly negative without creating ad hoc theories like the iris effect along with providing alternative explanations for the warming that is occurring. Explanations that are supported by evidence and conform to the laws of physics and shows why the arctic is warming faster than lower latitudes, nights are warming faster than days, and winters faster than summers.

    Glad Victor made his case. For what exactly, I don’t know.

  13. 363
    Victor says:

    352 CCHolley

    In this post CC actually presents a very intelligent and reasonable response to some of the problems I’ve raised regarding violations of Occam’s Razor and the presentation of questionable “saving hypotheses.” Thanks for that, CC. Since I recently promised to back off on arguing any of these points, I won’t attempt a rebuttal here. Actually what is called for is not so much a rebuttal but a fresh consideration of certain very basic epistemological problems.

  14. 364
    jgnfld says:

    “De Smith makes it very clear that statistics cannot in itself produce a trend while ‘eyeballing’ is certainly capable of revealing one. Once a trend is identified then statistics can be used to quantify it and assess its significance.”

    There is so much wrong here it’s hard to know where to begin. But here is at least a small beginning:

    –One simply does not “identify” trends by eye. One uses math. (Well unless you’re B. F. Skinner however his trends had stable characteristics and were based on thousands upon thousands of replications. So he can be statistically forgiven.)

    –This procedure is highly likely to lead to the sort of “replication crisis” so commonly found in life/behavioral sciences. Essentially it guides the (foolish) investigator to look at noise. The “pause” which has fooled even hard science researchers is another example of the errors inherent in using this approach (in the reverse sense in this case). Noise is just not where essential understanding is to be found.

    –Focusing on “identified” trends can take the focus away from the whole system and may result in focusing on variables with no real effect size even if they are contributing real trends.

    There is much more, but this should be enough to make anyone–even a victor–wary of doing any such thing.

  15. 365
    MA Rodger says:

    Killian @312,
    You ask about Knoblauch et al (2018) and @339 repeat the call.
    In some respects I see a bit of a hole in the science of the carbon cycle in that there is nobody properly setting out the broad possibilities for the size (& timing) of natural carbon feedbacks (which include permafrost, clathrates, and forests. Perhaps the potential for carbon sinks appearing in a warming climate should be added as a counterbalance to that list). That the hole in the science exists can perhaps be seen as reassuring, in that if any of this was considered imminently catastrophic, there would be no hole. And Knoblauch et al (2018) sits at the edge of that hole.

    Knoblauch et al (2018) tell us there is 1,300Gt(C) of carbon frozen in permafrost of which 800Gt(C) is currently permanently frozen. It addresses the question of how fast that carbon would be realeased if permafrost were melted and in what form it would be released, CO2 or CH4.
    As exemplars of understanding to date, Schuur et al (2015) and Schädel et al (2016) are cited.
    Knoblauch et al (2018) say these two papers conclude that most carbon feedbacks from melting permafrost will be due to dry permafrost and thus overwhelmingly CO2 emiting. In more detail, Schuur et al put permafrozen C at 1,300-1,600Gt, and list references that set emissions by 2100 under RCP8.5 as 5%-15% of that permafrozen C. The CH4 component is set low, even when converted to t(CO2e) but that CH4 component is evidently couched with many ???s. Schädel et al put the CH4 Wet:Dry component higher (Dry=3.4xWet) than the Schurr et al (Dry=6xWet).
    Knoblauch et al say they challenge this undestanding. They provide no value for the proportion of melting permafrost that will be wet (which their findings make relevant) but do suggest the emissions from an area of wet melted permafrost will contribute more AGW feedback than an equivalent area of dry melted permafrost. The values given are 113g(C)CO2/kg(C) by 2100/(+/-50%) for dry & 17g(C)CO2 + 22g(C)CH4/kg(C) by 2100(+/-50%) for wet, the latter equivalent to 17g(C)CO2+224g(Ce)Ch4 = 241g(Ce)CO2+CH4. Note that if the overwhelming contribution were dry in an arctic with all permafrost melting (IPCC AR5 Sec 12.4.6.2 put it as 81±12% under RCP8.5 by 2100), that would conform to the central 10% C emissions listed by Schurr et al. But importantly, Knoblauch et al’s numbers reverse the CeqWet:Dry ratio and put the wet well above the dry Dry=0.5xWet. This is significant in that it does not support the previous estimates but it does not of itself overturn those previous estimates.

  16. 366
    mike says:

    Carbon release from damaged sea grass beds. How are those emission reports looking? Are they getting flatish fastish enough?

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41558-018-0096-y

    warm regards

    Mike

  17. 367
    nigelj says:

    Victor @361

    “If I see something new that bothers me in future I might want to raise my trusty pea shooter again though. So keep your guard up, folks.:’\”

    Pea shooter about sums up the strength of his arguments and level of logical thought. Definitely not a rocket launcher thats for sure.

    Take a long luxurious holiday in some tropical paradise away from climate issues Victor. You deserve a good ten years.

  18. 368
    nigelj says:

    I have an interesting book called Enlightenment Now, by Steven Pinker. I haven’t read much of it and the chapter on climate change seems ok. This guy is a heavy weight influential writer apparently.

    However one thing grabbed my attention. He firstly accepts geoengineering using normal particulate solar reflecting technologies is very risky, but he mentions a case for a sort of “moderate and temporary” geoengineering using sulphate aeorosols from a book by physicist David Keith.

    We would still eliminate CO2 emissions at source and by negative emissions technologies, but a moderate and tempoary geoengineering would reduce temperatures until that job is done and then be phased down.This would mean you dont get the geoengineering problem of it having to be permanent and it would give more time to reduce emissions.

    Is this crazy? I’m not terribly convinced because it could become a crutch meaning emissions are never reduced, and it has risks of side effects, but on the other hand its a bit of lateral thinking.

    The book is well worth a read in general respects and is similar to The Moral Arc by M Shermer.

    Serious, sensible non abusive replies only please.

  19. 369
    Killian says:

    #365 MA Rodger said Killian @312,
    You ask about Knoblauch et al (2018) and @339… They provide no value for the proportion of melting permafrost that will be wet (which their findings make relevant) but do suggest the emissions from an area of wet melted permafrost will contribute more AGW feedback than an equivalent area of dry melted permafrost…

    importantly, Knoblauch et al’s numbers reverse the CeqWet:Dry ratio and put the wet well above the dry Dry=0.5xWet. This is significant in that it does not support the previous estimates but it does not of itself overturn those previous estimates.

    Yes, the key issues are 1. for a given area of land assumed to be a. dry and then b. wet, what is the ratio? And, does that ratio change based on temps, carbon content, etc? And 2. given that warming will be continuing, what estimate of shifts from dry to wet, Arctic-wide, might we anticipate?

    All this takes me back to the 2007 findings by Katie… forget her name, and then she got married… from U of Alaska… on thermokarst lakes. Anyway, that was an “Oh, isht!” moment for me and this paper takes us back to that assumed danger level. I have taken all research and analysis since 2007 that minimized or reduced the potential for CH4 with a grain of salt because Chaos applies: There is no way to predict where a chaotic system will go, so best to assume the worst and try to make it not happen. I will likely always remember my debates with Archer and Schmidt on this issue as the most perfect examples of scientific reticence one may find.

    We’re back in the doo, and had better get to doing.

  20. 370
    Killian says:

    #368

    Love Pinker on language, psych. He’s a bit of an idiot on climate. He misrepresents the issues:

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2018/mar/05/stop-blaming-both-sides-for-americas-climate-failures

    He engages in magical thinking/technocopian thinking:

    He argues that progress is not only sustainable, but essential for attaining the knowledge that will enable us to find the cleanest and most efficient use of energy. In other words, scientific progress is what will make economic progress work…

    There’s an issue with the effects on the environment: it really is not good to pollute the environment, particularly when it comes to carbon emissions, but the way to deal with that is not to rail against consumption. There are a lot of aspects of consumption, like being able to travel, see the world, be warm in the winter, cool in the summer, that are human goods. The challenge is: how do we get the most human benefit with the least environmental damage?”

    https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/feb/11/steven-pinker-enlightenment-now-interview-inequality-consumption-environment

    No, that isn’t the question. Getting the premise wrong results in getting everything that follows wrong.

  21. 371
    Mr. Know It All says:

    368 – nigelj

    On Mr. Pinker:
    https://stevenpinker.com/biocv

    “Steven Pinker is a Johnstone Family Professor in the Department of Psychology at Harvard University. He conducts research on language and cognition, writes for publications such as the New York Times, Time and The Atlantic, and is the author of ten books, including The Language Instinct, How the Mind Works, The Blank Slate, The Stuff of Thought, The Better Angels of Our Nature, and most recently, The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Writing in the 21st Century.”

    On psychology and writing he may be a good source. I’ve read similar opinions on geo-engineering and the risk that it could delay reduction of FF burning previously on RC. His opinion on CC is as good as any other non-climate scientist I suppose, but that’s not saying much, although I’ll bet he is a heavyweight influential writer as you suggest. Heavyweight influential writers frequently crank out well-written articles and books filled with falsehoods and absolute crap – but they sound really good.

  22. 372
    nigelj says:

    Mr KIA @371

    “Heavyweight influential writers frequently crank out well-written articles and books filled with falsehoods and absolute crap – but they sound really good.”

    Maybe sometimes, but you would have to show what you think Pinker is wrong about in terms of his data, and claims of fact, and you havent. You would need some decent evidence. You wont find it easy, because the data he uses is from reputable sources and is the best quality you will be able to find. It all comes back to his data.

    And that data does show a lot of trends are improving like less violence, better prosperity etc. However imho its important not to use this as an excuse to downplay problems!

    I have only scanned his book briefly, and I think his general rational humanism and values system is good, but I disagree with some of his more specific views and prescriptions and he understates the problem of inequality a little. But people will seldom agree on everything, especially in such a broad book.

    Pinker is generally good on climate change on all the core issues. He is arguably wrong about nuclear energy and a bit too optimistic about humanities ability to fix problems. But he seems ok on climate science and renewable energy, although I have only scanned through quickly.

    He doesnt fully face the consumption problem Killian describes, but that is not actually “climate science”. Killians comments wrting him off totally are just silly over stated dismissive blather.

  23. 373
    CCHolley says:

    Mr KIA @371

    Heavyweight influential writers frequently crank out well-written articles and books filled with falsehoods and absolute crap – but they sound really good.

    hmmmm, where have I seen this before? Not the heavyweight influential part, but the rest of it.

  24. 374
    CCHolley says:

    Victor @363

    Actually what is called for is not so much a rebuttal but a fresh consideration of certain very basic epistemological problems.

    sigh

  25. 375
    MA Rodger says:

    Victor the Troll.
    I should be now drawing my conclusions and pointing to the absence of any response from you to the demand @325 that you provide some evidence to support the bullshit you have been spouting. But I forget you would be uncapable of understanding that small table of numbers which was provided for you @325. And being an incredibly charitable sort (as you should remember from when you first dumped on a RealClimate comment thread almost 3½ years ago now – sad that you have learned absolutely nothing ove that period); being an incredibly charitable sort I will set this out graphically for you, not the first time I have done this sort of exercise for you.

    Your grand claim is that the impact of CO2 from human sources on the climate and the impact of aerosols from human sources on the climate would mean that any warming pre-1940 should also be accompanied by warming 1940-70. ‘Source’ for the goose must also be ‘source’ for the gander. But if we plot out, say, 10-year rolling averages of HadCRUT4 we see warming pre-1940 but we see no warming but instead a modest cooling 1940-70.
    And it is true HadCRUT shows both pre-1940 warming and cooling 1940-70.
    So let us also plot out the net influence of human CO2 emissions plus human aerosol emissions and see what they show. The graph here (usually two clicks to ‘download your attachment’) provides such plot.
    Victor, this graph is quite convincing. Your ‘source’ for the goose and ‘source’ for the gander test shows no dodgy doings. It never did.
    Of course, CO2 & aerosol forcings are not the only forcings and forcings do not immediately equate to climatic temperature. So we could get more sophisticated with our modelling but that will not repair you silly goosey-gander claims

    Of course, you may have other evidence. So this is now the time for you to provide such evidence or otherwise crawl back under your bridge.

  26. 376
    nigelj says:

    Killian @370

    “Love Pinker on language, psych. He’s a bit of an idiot on climate. He misrepresents the issues:” (quotes a guardian article)

    Its ridiculous to conclude hes an idiot on climate, and such accusations are demeaning and are internet trolling.

    Pinker was critical of the left for opposing nuclear power and being irrational in their criticisms, and there’s an element of truth in this, and even the Guardian partly concede this. Although personally I see nuclear as a rather small part of the mix because its so slow to build.

    Pinker was critical Of Naomi Kleins opposition to a carbon tax. He was wrong here by not acknowledging that she actually had a pretty good reason, in that a carbon tax funded by corporate tax cuts is plainly indefensible because it taxes the corporate’s then gives the same money straight back to them! But Pinker may not have realised this detail.One of the issues is Pinker tries to cover so many issues he is likely to miss the occasional detail. So this hardly makes him an idiot.

    Pinker didn’t realise there was a poll of peoples views on carbon taxes. Big deal, not a grave sin. (And its clear liberals do accept agw science and carbon taxes more so than conservatives).

    None of this “makes him an idiot” on climate change. Pinker gets the science pretty right, and his views on mitigation are mainstream. The real point Pinker is trying to make is sometimes the liberal left get it wrong or are intransigent just as the conservative right get things wrong. I find the Republicans frustrating people but Pinker has a fair point.

    Killian accuses Pinker of engaging in magical thinking. He quotes Pinker as saying (paraphrasing) Pinker says science will solve the problems of economic progress, and that consumption is a good thing for example being warm in winter, doing some travel etc.

    Killian thinks we should deliberately reduce our consumption by 90% within the next 20 years, to avoid “extinction”.

    Killians response seems like a dubious sort of argument, and rather detached from the climate issue Nowhere has Killian proven that such radical changes make sense. Nowhere did Pinker promote excessive consumption or waste.

    Does Pinker get everything right? No there are things I disagree with , but he makes lots of sense overall and calling him an idiot is well over the top.

  27. 377
    spam says:

    [spam removed]

  28. 378
    MA Rodger says:

    Killian @369,
    Your take-aways from Knoblauch et al (2018) seem a little odd. Why would the temperature effect the wet/dry ratios (other than the obvious melting effects)? And from there we are back to 2007 and Katie Somebody (presumably this would be KM Walter) and the talk of the deep do-do.

    The Knoblauch et al result is at odds with other prevous studies. But which ever is correct, such processes would today be at work in the Arctic where permafrost is melting at alarming rates. So is there any sign of this arctic methane skyrocket?
    After 50 years of arctic warming, Schaefer et al (2016) found no sign of it. Or we could compare the three decades of measured atmospheric CH4 levels in that increasingly warm arctic, from say Barrow Alaska & compare them with, say MLO. This shows no increase in the annual cycle at Barrow over the period to December 2017. But then perhaps the methane skyrocket is from some other un-measured part of the arctic.
    Simply, is there any actual evidence that supports arctic methane skyrocketry theories?

  29. 379
    SystemicCausation says:

    Up-to-date weekly average CO2 at Mauna Loa
    Week beginning on March 18, 2018: 409.30 ppm +2.72 ppmv
    Weekly value from 1 year ago: 406.58 ppm
    Weekly value from 10 years ago: 385.92 ppm
    Last updated: March 25, 2018

    Average annual increase since 2008 is +2.34 ppmv

    Data indicates that the CO2 annual increase rate is accelerating.

    Not stabilizing. Not decreasing. Most likely due to systemic causes.

  30. 380
    Al Bundy says:

    JB,
    Decent points. The folks on this site are sub-brilliant for sure, but they are far smarter than the competition.

    But remember the old saw that old age and treachery will defeat youth and skill? Well, stupidity and a lack of concern for evidence beats intelligence and sincerity, especially when backed by bucks. I wander here occasionally and the scene never changes: folks getting off on infuriating and enraging and belittling one another. The reason the trolls are allowed is that the moderators don’t care nearly as much ad the regs about the comment section – (they’re too interested in science) as the regs. Makes for a jolly time for all. The deniertrolls get off on rattling the cages of the regs and the regs get off on insulting the trolls (and each other, which is hilarious to the trolls). Ahh, a complete ecosystem.

  31. 381
    Al Bundy says:

    Kia, as to saturation, we only have to look at Venus. Until Earth’s temperature approaches Venus’, duh, there’s no way saturation has been reached. (In fact there’s NO way to ever reach saturation. More GHG = higher temps until the Earth approaches the temperature of the sun. Oops, did I just find a definition of saturation?)

  32. 382
    Al Bundy says:

    Victor,
    You are correct. WUWT does not suffer from the bile that defines the comments here. Of course, the reason I’d that WUWT is strictly moderated and RealClimate has chosen the preschool model of commenting

  33. 383
    SystemicCausation says:

    Recent Daily Average Mauna Loa CO2
    March 25: 410.16 ppm
    March 24: 409.16 ppm
    March 23: 409.60 ppm
    March 22: 409.57 ppm
    March 21: 410.16 ppm
    Last Updated: March 26, 2018

    March 2017 Average 407.18 ppm

    Record Week 410.36 ppm in May 14-20 2017

  34. 384
    jgnfld says:

    @363

    Re. “Actually what is called for is not so much a rebuttal but a fresh consideration of certain very basic epistemological problems.”

    Good lord! The sheer arrogance exhibited in this statement from a nonprofessional addressing professionals is simply astounding. I bet victor can give pitching tips to Arrieta as well. Unbelievable.

    victor: I might suggest an initial perusal of these articles in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy on “induction”. From there there are any number of professional writings you might read to learn something. But I’d suggest not acting like an expert in any case. You aren’t.

    https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/induction-problem/
    https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/logic-inductive/

  35. 385
    Dan says:

    re:382. “RealClimate has chosen the preschool model of commenting”
    Wow, that is quite insulting of the hosts and moderators (who have advanced climate science degrees) of RealClimate while praising a science denial site which has no scientific legs on which to stand. smh

  36. 386
    Victor says:

    374 CCHolley says:

    –Victor @363

    –Actually what is called for is not so much a rebuttal but a fresh consideration of certain very basic epistemological problems.

    “sigh”

    375
    MA Rodger says:

    Victor the Troll.
    I should be now drawing my conclusions and pointing to the absence of any response from you to the demand @325 that you provide some evidence to support the bullshit you have been spouting. But I forget you would be uncapable of understanding that small table of numbers which was provided for you @325. And being an incredibly charitable sort (as you should remember from when you first dumped on a RealClimate comment thread almost 3½ years ago now – sad that you have learned absolutely nothing ove that period); being an incredibly charitable sort I will set this out graphically for you, not the first time I have done this sort of exercise for you.

    [etc.]

    V: In view of the fact that some posting here persist in challenging me despite my decision to cease and desist from further discussion of these topics in this blog, I’ve decided to move my responses to an old blog of my own, where I can freely express my thoughts without taking up further bandwidth over here and further irritating those of you who object to my participation in this forum. For those of you still interested in the questions I’ve raised and curious as to my take on the “epistemological issues” I’ve mentioned, I invite you to read what I have to say in this new venue and respond, if you wish, with comments. There will be no “bore hole.”

    Here’s the link:

    https://amoleintheground.blogspot.com/2018/03/thoughts-on-climate-change.html

  37. 387
    Killian says:

    #378 MA Rodger said Killian @369,
    Your take-aways from Knoblauch et al (2018) seem a little odd.

    In no way odd, you’re just a bit of a strict constructionist, so to speak, WRT climate science. If it hasn’t been measured, it doesn’t exist in your world. I am overstating it a bit, but not much. On the other hand, I am a systemic analyst. It is not odd that we approach it differently, and my conclusions are not odd.

    Basically, this research says the risk of significant CH4 emissions this century is substantially higher than believed before this paper, assuming it is accurate.

    And, yes, the greater temps would mean greater melt which means more CH4.

    Ergo…

    Sorry… gotta run…

  38. 388
    Killian says:

    #378 MA Rodger said The Knoblauch et al result is at odds with other prevous studies. But which ever is correct, such processes would today be at work in the Arctic where permafrost is melting at alarming rates. So is there any sign of this arctic methane skyrocket?

    That study in no way says there should be a big sign of emissions now, only that future emissions should be higher than other studies have found because they were over too short a time frame.

    No Straw Men, please.

  39. 389
    nigelj says:

    Al Bundy @381

    “Kia, as to saturation, we only have to look at Venus. Until Earth’s temperature approaches Venus’, duh, there’s no way saturation has been reached. (In fact there’s NO way to ever reach saturation. More GHG = higher temps until the Earth approaches the temperature of the sun. Oops, did I just find a definition of saturation?)”

    While the CO2 effect doesn’t saturate, we dont have enough fossil fuels on this planet to burn to approach the temperature of venus, let alone anything else. Estimates put the maximum at 12 degrees celsius above current levels, which is of course quite serious enough to worry about.

    Before you make general statements like “The folks on this site are sub-brilliant for sure”, get your own house in order. You dont like abuse and neither do I, but your statement is a bit abusive frankly.

  40. 390
    SystemicCausation says:

    382 Al Bundy, 385 Dan says:

    re:382. “RealClimate has chosen the preschool model of commenting”
    Wow, that is quite insulting of the hosts and moderators.

    Maybe it was meant to be?

    Besides, such comments are true and are warranted.

  41. 391
    nigelj says:

    Killian @387

    “If it hasn’t been measured, it doesn’t exist in your world.’

    So perhaps in your world ghosts and fairies are real? Come on.

    If we can’t measure something we think might be there, or to eliminate the possibility, and we have taken good measurements, then science concludes its not there. That’s how science works, and anything else is fantasy.

    Of course if we are sure something should be there, we keep on checking and measuring, just in case.

    The known problems of climate change should be more than enough to scare the hell out of anyone possessing a brain. And anyone with a brain knows there could be hidden problems, but we cant jump to conclusions about the nature of possible hidden problems and start assuming they are real.

    I think the trouble is the nature of the climate problem is so insidious and longer term and so multifaceted, its overwhelming people. However imho another big jump in temperatures like last year will wake the world up to the harsh reality.

  42. 392
    Dan says:

    re 390.”Besides, such comments are true and are warranted.”
    In which case, you completely missed the point or purposely ignored the later part. Which is that the moderators are peer-reviewed climate scientists. I am pretty sure you are not even close. Which means you are equally scientifically lazy as the original poster by thinking you somehow know something that literally every professional climate science organization in the world do not. And then feel it appropriate to insult the hosts and moderators as well. That is the height of scientific arrogance and ignorance (regurgitating what you want to believe without any substantial basis). Further evidence of that is that you do not know the fundamental difference between an “opinion” and “truth”. Just because you want something to be true does in absolutely no way make it so. Those who claim “truth” based on simple want or believe are always the same as those who can never admit to being wrong. Try learning the science and the scientific method which you should have learned in grade school.

  43. 393
    MA Rodger says:

    Killian @387/388,
    A message from someone you consider to be “a bit of a strict constructionist” (whatever that is meant to mean) to you, a self-appointed “systemic analyst”: do bear in mind that a systemic analysis does still need to be explained/explainable. Such methods do not in any way include a ‘Get out of explaining your evidence/method’ card.

    You talk of “Straw Men” potentially appearing. I am of the opinion that you mistake such a one appearing for what will prove to be a real living proposition (at most sporting a very natty linen suit, linen being effectively ‘straw’ fibres).
    As I set out @378, as of end-2017 I see no evidence for a recent surge in late-summer CH4 emissions from the arctic, either in the literature or in atmospheric CH4 data. With an absence of such evidence, it is very likley that we can negate the CH4 emissions from a 3 million sq km of Arctic permafrost that has been melted over the last 40 years, such a melt being suggested by IPCC AR5 Fig 12-33. That same graphic suggests the loss of permafrost has already reached full AGW levels and that by 2100 the 3 million sq km will be roughly increased to 7 million sq km under RCP2.6 and 15 million sq km under RPC8.5. The modelling of carbon emissions from melted permafrost by von Deimling et al (2015) puts CH4 emissions (see their Fig S4) by today at 2Mt(CH4)/yr roughly 0.3% of current global emissions, with maximum levels by 2100 (&2300) as 6Mt(CH4)/yr under RCP2.6 and 25Mt(CH4)/yr under RCP8.5. (Note that as CH4 has a decadal persistence in the atmosphere, accumulative emissions are of no concern.)

    So can a “systemic analyst” identify any flaws in such linen-clothed logic? Is there further evidence not yet considered? Is there some lack of exactitude that has any significant bearing on the conclusion?

    Importantly Killian, what I will not accept is the idea that Chaos has any part to play in such analysis, although you may feel Chaos featured within your memorable “debates with Archer and Schmidt on this issue.” Presumably these rose-titned interchanges with our hosts are evident within the RealClimate comment threads of yesteryear. Or should I look elsewhere for evidence of them?

  44. 394
    MA Rodger says:

    And HadCRUT has posted for February with an anomaly of +0.523ºC, a small drop on January’s +0.556ºC (a drop being also seen in NOAA, RSS TLT & UAH TLT while GISS showed no change & BEST shows a rise, from +0.80ºC to +0.84ºC).
    In HadCRUT, Feb 2018 is the lowest monthly anomaly since November 2014.
    2018 had the 12th warmest February on the HadCRUT record (=6th in GISTEMP, 11th in NOAA, 4th in BEST), the top twelve HadCRUT Febs being 2016, 2017, 1998, 2002, 2015, 2004, 1995, 2010, 1999, 2006, 2007, 2018 (pretty-much the same as NOAA, 2006 being the interloper in HadCRUT).
    Feb 2018 sits as =117th highest HadCRUT anomaly (=42nd highest in GISTEMP, =112nd highest in NOAA, 25th highest in BEST).

  45. 395
    mike says:

    March 18 – 24, 2018 409.30 ppm
    March 18 – 24, 2017 406.58 ppm

    2.72 ppm increase in yoy number. That’s a pretty noisy number, but we are about to month on month comparison, that one is less noisy. We have been cranking along with daily numbers in the 410 range which is pretty awful. It’s an upward sticky number with no significant indication that it has gone even leveled off, but appears to be continuing to rise with rate of increase accelerating.

    MAR’s monthly temp numbers show temp anomalies dropping a bit from record numbers, but I think that’s because we are in trough between the EN events that have a significant advantage at setting records. Folks will get excited when next EN event fires up. All the EN events are now likely to push heat wave deaths into the newsworthy columns. But I could be wrong about all that, time will tell.

    Cheers and don’t feed the trolls,

    Mike

  46. 396
    Vendicar Decarian says:

    The Trump administration is poised to abandon America’s pioneering fuel economy targets for cars and SUVs, a move that would undermine one of the world’s most aggressive programs to confront climate change and invite another major confrontation with California.

    The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to announce in the coming days that it will scrap mileage targets the Obama administration drafted in tandem with California that aim to boost average fuel economy for passenger cars and SUVs to 55 miles per gallon by 2025, according to people familiar with the plans.

  47. 397
    MA Rodger says:

    NSIDC reported that this year’s maximum daily Arctic Sea Ice Extent didn’t quite set a new record, iciness having edged beyond the 2017 record.
    And the top of the 2018 freeze wasn’t quite as spectacular as last year in terms of daily records broken. By this time last year (day 88 of the year), the JAXA SIE index had racked-up 57 daily record SIE levels. 2018 has only managed 54 daily records. Of course, most of those 2018 records were breaking the record set in 2017 so in terms of ice levels through the beginning of the year, 2018 was significantly less icy, having on average 100,000 sq km less daily SIE throogh those 88 days.
    The ‘Ave SIE’ tabulated below shows the average anomaly (1979-2009 base) in millions sq km. As an 88-day average, this measure of early-year SIE is a lot less noisy than individual maximum daily ice and is a good ‘predictor’ for the annual daily maximum SIE which itself shows a fair bit more noise. (The table also shows the rankings of this ‘Lowest max SIE’ to demonstrate that noise.)
    Year … … … … ..Ave SIE … … .Annual ranking
    … … … … … …(Day 1-88)… … lowest max SIE
    2018 … … … … -1.47 … … … … … 2nd
    2017 … … … … -1.37 … … … … … 1st
    2016 … … … … -1.23 … … … … … 4th
    2015 … … … … -1.16 … … … … … 3rd
    2006 … … … … -1.16 … … … … … 6th
    2011 … … … … -1.12 … … … … … 5th
    2014 … … … … -1.00 … … … … … 9th
    2005 … … … … -0.98 … … … … … 8th
    2007 … … … … -0.95 … … … … … 7th
    2013 … … … … -0.82 … … … … … 11th
    2012 … … … … -0.77 … … … … … 13th
    2010 … … … … -0.77 … … … … … 14th
    2009 … … … … -0.64 … … … … … 10th
    Overall, the early-year-ave-SIE has been dropping at a rate of 0.055M sq km/yr since 1979, slightly quicker than the more noisy Lowest-max-SIE. Note the table shows that in recent years the early-year-ave-SIE has been dropping by double that full-record trend.

    The graphic here (usually 2 clicks to download your attachment’) shows how SIE anomalies progressed through recent years after the ice-maximum.
    After last year had racked up its early 57 daily records, that was pretty-much it for the year. A handful more were set during a wobble in the records set by 2016 and then that was it until the closing days of December. Although 2017 was still much less icy than almost all previous years, it never came close to the exceptional records set by 2016 both during the early melt and the early freeze or the records set through the annual minimum-ice period during 2012.
    What 2018 will bring is anybody’s guess.

  48. 398

    #397, MAR–

    Thanks for that useful summary.

    What 2018 will bring is anybody’s guess.

    Indeed; the Arctic sea ice is very hard to predict, and frequently makes fools of prognosticators. Still, I have a weird feeling about the forthcoming melt season. Partly, I suppose, it’s because I feel that we dodged a bullet last year; as your discussion suggests, good weather for ice retention during most of the melt season kept 2017 from setting more records than it already had in the early going.

    Partly it’s because we had an extremely warm winter overall for the Arctic basin. Ice thickness is hard to measure on a wide scale, but one must think that it’s down yet again as a result.

    And partly it’s because we are once again in some pretty anomalous territory WRT ice coverage, particularly in the Bering Sea:

    http://neven1.typepad.com/blog/2018/03/bering-goes-extreme.html

    That’s significant–or potentially so–because the Bering Sea is the gateway from the northern Pacific to the central Arctic basin. What will happen when that ‘gateway’ is pretty much open from the very start of the melt season? It depends on the weather, of course–presumably another cloudy summer would limit the consequences. But will we get it? Will it be another year of the ‘new transient normal’, or something really spectacular?

    We’re about to find out.

  49. 399
    nigelj says:

    https://thinkprogress.org/solar-wind-power-prices-are-beating-natural-gas-c9912054400c/

    “Stunning drops in solar, wind costs mean economic case for coal, gas is ‘crumbling’”

    “Since 2010, the prices for lithium-ion batteries — crucial to energy storage — have plummeted a stunning 79 percent (see chart).”

  50. 400
    Killian says:

    #383

    Let me know when you 1. care to address the point I made, which you did not, and 2. when you actually have a question.

    To be clear, you stated there had been no increase measured. I pointed out the paper in no way said there had been. Straw Man.

    Just because you clarify now does not mean you did not Straw Man then. Nest time, rather than get your, as Koreans say, panties in a bunch, post more thoroughly in the first place. And don’t blame others when you fail to do so.

    As for strict constructionist, you know exactly what I mean. Don’t try to be cute; it doesn’t suit you.