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Unforced Variations: Jan 2021

Filed under: — gavin @ 1 January 2021

According to the somewhat* arbitrary customs of our age, the 1st of January marks the beginning of a new year, a new decade and, by analogy, a new start in human affairs. So shall it be at RealClimate too**.

This month’s topics will no doubt include the summaries of the 2020 climate (due Jan 14th or so), ongoing efforts to understand and predict extreme weather in a climate context, and the shift by the weather organizations (WMO, NWS) to a new set of climate normals (i.e. moving from 1981-2010 to 1991-2020).

In the spirit of this new year, please make a renewed effort to stay vaguely on climate science topics, try to stay constructive even when you disagree, refrain from posting abuse, and don’t bother with cut-and-paste climate denial (that stuff was tedious enough when it was originally wrong, and is simply boring now). Thanks!

*completely

**Seriously, we are thinking about how to update/re-position this blog, and would welcome constructive suggestions from readers.

258 Responses to “Unforced Variations: Jan 2021”

  1. 151
    Piotr says:

    Alastair McDonald (138): “I posed the idea that climate is chaotic partly to find out if anyone agreed with me.

    hence your guardedly phrased words:
    AMD(43): “ We KNOW weather is chaotic and so MUST BE climate” ;-)?

    Abrupt changes have occurred at the entry to the Bolling-Allerod inter-glacial, to the Younger Dryas stadial, and to the Holocene. Will the Anthropocene result in yet another?

    1. But weren’t these changes AGAINST the preceding TREND? So in our case it would have been a sudden … cooling that interrupts … the Global Warming and buys us more time ?

    2. The context may be different – if I recall some of your events were associated with massive changes in _continental ice caps_ in North America (say, rapid destabilization of these ice caps or rapid release of melt-water from them – altering AMOC).But we don’t have them anymore. I read somewhere that the ice in Greenland may not melt fast enough to shut AMOC completely down.

    3. The feedbacks that were positive between glacial and interglacial, may no longer be positive, once you are past the upper range of the past. For instance, the feedbacks that increased temp. toward the interglacial max. seem to run out of steam as you approach the interglacial temp. max. – and that’s why the interglacial didn’t CONTINUE toward ever higher temps, but slowly creeped back into a next glacial.

    4. The relative importance of GHG forcing compared to the albedo/circulation/ocean pCO2/temp feedbacks, may be now much bigger than in the past (>400 ppm CO2 vs max 280 in interglacial; methane conc. – several times higher), so the Pleistocene past is a poor analogy to the present and next centuries…

  2. 152
    David B. Benson says:

    John Pollack @150 — way off-topic but having grown up in Los Alamos NM, where my parents were 2 of the world’s first computer programmers, I assure you that Stan Ulam and the other ‘bomb physicists’ had no interest in deterministic chaos. The goal was to simulate random processes.

  3. 153
    John Pollack says:

    David Benson @152 Off topic, yes, but interesting nonetheless. Thanks for sharing. I believe you that deterministic chaos wasn’t their goal, but they were curious, intelligent people. Somebody could have looked into it a bit, if only to get rid of another obstacle to their calculations.

    I am assuming that deterministic chaos would have arisen in the context of trying to calculate the critical mass of uranium enriched to a certain percentage, and tweaking the variables. In addition, the failure rate of computer components in the early days was sufficiently large that they might not have gotten the same result twice from the same input.

  4. 154
    nigelj says:

    Piotr @149 I think you might have me confused with Killian, which is a bit alarming, ha ha.

  5. 155
    Piotr says:

    Have a question. We have discussed that surplus methane does not stay as long in the atmosphere as CO2, primarily because it is lost to oxidation. But what about CH4 in the ice-cores?

    Since the ice-core data show strong cycles of CH4, but no overall decline with age – does it mean that:
    a) CH4 in the ice does not oxidize AT ALL (perhaps like in permafrost? or methane hydrates in the ocean?)
    or
    b) that it oxidizes, even if very slowly (with 100,000s of years it does not have to be very fast…), but this oxidation is somehow corrected for – in the ice core analysis ?

    Version a) seems more likely – does it mean that CH4 in low temps does not spontaneously oxidize AT ALL even in the presence of O2, without either some reactive species that oxidize CH4 in (high?) atmosphere, or presence of chemotrophic methane oxidizing bacteria?

  6. 156
    Piotr says:

    John Pollack(150): It was Lorenz’s empirical discovery that if you rounded off a couple of decimals in the input data, the results would diverge, that introduced the idea of “chaos” into meteorology

    Great, now we have a way to test Alastair’s hypothesis that “ climate must be chaotic “: let’s run a global climate model after “rounding off a couple of decimals in the input data” and see whether the results diverge.
    Surely, somebody must have done it by now. Gavin ? ;-)

  7. 157
    mike says:

    “Using Altmetric data for 2020, Carbon Brief has compiled its annual list of the 25 most talked-about climate change-related papers that were published the previous year. The infographic above shows which ones made it into the Top 10, while the chart at the end of the piece shows which journals feature most frequently in the Top 25”

    https://www.carbonbrief.org/analysis-the-climate-papers-most-featured-in-the-media-in-2020?utm_campaign=Carbon%20Brief%20Weekly%20Briefing&utm_content=20210115&utm_medium=email&utm_source=Revue%20newsletter

    Interesting overview of the public reach of climate change papers of 2020.

    Cheers

    Mike

  8. 158
    Piotr says:

    nigel @154: ” I think you might have me confused with Killian, which is a bit alarming, ha ha.

    I can see how this could be alarming (and to both parties … ;-)) But no – I have referred to Killian (121) – it was succinct, to the point, and had an interesting analogy.
    So people may be reacting to what was written and not automatically to who wrote it, after all ^* ;-)

    ^*(compare: Forced Resp. 206).

  9. 159
    zebra says:

    Alastair M #138 and John P #150,

    Alastair, thank you for clearing it up. I keep trying to get people to have constructive dialogues… even with the Denialists, hopeless as that might be… by “getting on the same page” both with respect to what the question or ‘debate proposition’ is, and by avoiding the ‘definition debate’ situation. We have to start by speaking the same language.

    I think John is mostly correct, but I’m thinking that your use of the term “feedback” might actually be referring to what I have called “coupling”. That actually is consistent with the concept of a chaotic system. I refer people again to

    https://www.myphysicslab.com/pendulum/double-pendulum-en.html.

    It sounds like you are describing the relationship of the two masses, where energy is changing from potential to kinetic in various ways, between the two.

    To further analogize with the climate, it sounds like you are proposing something along the lines of one or both of the connecting rods being stressed/fatigued to the point that it may elongate, or perhaps turn into a spring. Then, it becomes a ‘different system’.

    Is that right? And if it is, would John agree that your use of the term “chaotic” might not be that far off?

    (And I stipulate that I’m not sure whether/which climate phenomena might be characterized as having that simple/direct a level of physical coupling.)

  10. 160
    Al Bundy says:

    nigelj: Piotr @149 I think you might have me confused with Killian, which is a bit alarming, ha ha.

    AB: We are known by the company we keep. And that goes double when you form a couple. Get. A. Room. Cuz your dysfunctional relationship with Killian is shredding your reputation here. You’re Otherizing yourself. I no longer anticipate your posts and I often scroll right through, generating ill feelings all the way down.

  11. 161
    Al Bundy says:

    Alastair McDonald (138): “I posed the idea that climate is chaotic partly to find out if anyone agreed with me.”

    Piotr: hence your guardedly phrased words:
    AMD(43): “ We KNOW weather is chaotic and so MUST BE climate” ;-)?

    AB: I’d say “poetically phrased”. The capital letters in a queryesquely-worded declarative provide controversy, turning an emphatic into a welcoming question that deliberately smudges the speaker’s viewpoint, encouraging honest responses. I didn’t go back and look at the surrounding syntax, but regardless, this sub-thread was there.

  12. 162
    David B. Benson says:

    John Pollack @153 — By the time Los Alamos had substantial computers the stated goal was both larger and physically smaller so-called hydrogen bombs, triggered by a plutonium implosion.
    The computers were perfectly capable of performing 48 hour Monte Carlo simulations.

  13. 163

    #156, piotr–

    Wait, isn’t that just a slightly cruder implementation of what is done all the time to generate model run ensembles? (I.e., aren’t all those different climate trajectories initiated by small variations in initial conditions? Or maybe boundary conditions post spin-up?)

  14. 164
    Al Bundy says:

    Piotr,

    For humans “the climate” is a static background just like the stars in the sky. That’s why it’s “the” climate.

    Now we’ve found that our human experience, a static set of stars, does not apply on geologic timescales, so our inner visualization of, say, “the North Star” fails when the phrase is analyzed over way long periods.

    Used to be the same with climate. But now “the climate” no longer applies over centuries. That’s a change in definitions that hasn’t filtered down, resulting in “shifting baselines”. I’d say “the climate” no longer apply over decades. This decade’s climate is different than last decade’s climate.

    We can quibble about “years”. “Days” is an extrapolation to the absurd, which is still an order of magnitude larger than the other discussion…

    “Climate change” is an oxymoron. Doesn’t mean climate doesn’t change. Just speaks to how we interact. One could do a paper reflecting on how the tension between the words has affected our civilization’s response to the current crisis.

    And yes, English sucks at defining “you”. I used “ya” instead of “you” to try to indicate the switch from personal to general.

  15. 165
    Chuck Hughes says:

    I agree with others that this site needs a moderator who can get rid of a couple of regular trolls (KIA et al). I’m sick of them hijacking the threads and posting bullshit without consequences. These are bad actors who should not be given a platform to spew their lies. America got rid of Donald Trump; surly we can dump a couple of trolls.

  16. 166
    Piotr says:

    Kevin McKinney (163): “ Wait, isn’t that just a slightly cruder implementation of what is done all the time to generate model run ensembles ?”

    Yes, this kind of things must have been done “all the time” with ANY global climate model, not explicitly to explore “chaos”, but just as a part of routing evaluating of one’s model.

    That’s why I wrote: : “ Surely, somebody must have done it
    (and winked at Gavin … ;-))

  17. 167
    Piotr says:

    Al Bundy (160): We are known by the company we keep. And that goes double when you form a couple. Get. A. Room. Cuz your dysfunctional relationship with Killian is shredding your reputation here. You’re Otherizing yourself. I no longer anticipate your posts and I often scroll right through, generating ill feelings all the way down

    Could it also apply … to you, Al? I ask because, that’s …quite a lot of vitriol
    in response to a … light-hearted line from Nigel (154): “Piotr @149 I think you might have me confused with Killian, which is a bit alarming, ha ha.

    To give it a context – in my (149) I said that Killian and I shot zebra’s argument dead. Nigel in this thread did challenge the zebra’s arguments in this thread TOO, AND he may have MISSED Killian’s (121) post (the post was short, on topic, and not personal at all …).

    So when _I_ read Nigel’s line, I understood it as part checking my attribution (people do misattribute comments on RC), part self-deprecating irony:

    Nigel: “ I think you might have me confused with Killian, which is a bit alarming, ha ha.

    How did _you_ understand it ??? I mean, to justify your response to Nigel:
    AB: “ Get. A. Room. Cuz your dysfunctional relationship with Killian is shredding your reputation here.

  18. 168
    Western Hiker says:

    Does weather/climate behave chaotically?

    I don’t think a simple yes or no answer is appropriate. For example, I couldn’t tell you what the exact wind speed or direction will be 5 minutes from now in my current location. Neither could a computer model. So, in that respect, you could argue that wind behaves chaotically.

    OTOH, I could tell you with absolute certainty that the wind speed will be less than 50 mph. I know for sure it won’t start snowing 5 minutes from now, nor will there be a lightning strike or tornado.

    A degree of chaos and a degree of predictability.

  19. 169
    Killian says:

    160 Al Bundy:
    15 Jan 2021 at 1:06 PM

    nigelj: Piotr @149 I think you might have me confused with Killian, which is a bit alarming, ha ha.

    AB: We are known by the company we keep. And that goes double when you form a couple. Get. A. Room. Cuz your dysfunctional relationship with Killian is shredding your reputation here. You’re Otherizing yourself. I no longer anticipate your posts and I often scroll right through, generating ill feelings all the way down.

    I a moving past all this as my recent responses to nigel should demonstrate, but it is key that others do hold him accountable as they have so enthusiastically done with me. I have asked people to do this for a long time. Never calling him out has led to him holding the *belief* he holds no responsibility the conflicts here.

    I am not cheering this post nor gloating, just glad to see some small balancing occurring. I think it is not just more fair, but is necessary.

  20. 170
    Killian says:

    The typos, dear gods, the typos…

  21. 171
    John Pollack says:

    zebra@159 I am not sure how completely your usage of “coupling” would correspond to mine of “feedback” because I’m not thinking in terms of rods, springs, and pendulums. An example of positive climate feedback is ice albedo feedback. As temperatures warm above freezing, surface snow and ice melt. This reveals the underlying surface, which is darker (lower albedo) and more subject to solar warming, raising the temperature further. In addition, snow and ice are excellent radiators at IR wavelengths, so an icy surface generates more cold air by radiation away from the ground.

    Chaos is manifested in general, and in climate, by a sensitive dependence on initial conditions, such that a small perturbation is magnified over time, the so-called “butterfly effect.”

  22. 172
    John Pollack says:

    David Benson @162 Thanks for correcting my speculation. Even if a relationship between several variables exhibited chaotic dynamics, it would not show up in a Monte Carlo simulation.

  23. 173
    Mr. Know It All says:

    141 – BPL
    “JDS has taken to emailing me vitriolic letters. Not sure how he got hold of my email address, though it is publicly available in some places.”

    BPL, a click on your name takes you to your website. Your email address is under your contact information.

    Some folks have the green screen names, some don’t. The green ones take you to your web page.

    Not cool writing crap to people’s personal email address! If there is a threat then it is a crime of course. I must remain anonymous since some have threatened deniers. That’s even less cool! But that’s where we are today. People get fired for their beliefs or the hat they wear; some are attacked, or even killed! Most of the retaliation has been from the “tolerant” side of the aisle. Ironic!

  24. 174
    zebra says:

    John Pollack #171,

    John, that question was for Alastair. You said you interpreted his use of “feedback” as “amplification”, but I think he is talking about “coupling”. I hope we don’t have to wait too long for him to clarify, but meanwhile I will address your example.

    Usually, people use the Arctic ocean specifically to talk about “feedback”. The argument is that diminished surface ice reduces albedo, which allows for further energy transfer to the water, which further reduces the surface ice (positive feedback). Then we also have the negative feedback, because eliminating the ice allows for greater radiation from the water, which counteracts the energy gain to some degree.

    Case A: This is correct if we consider the ocean in isolation… e.g we create a sci-fi force-field to prevent any energy transfer other than radiation. The ocean is “de-coupled” from the rest of the climate system, and we only look at the surface-ice metric and the operating energy transfer.

    Case B: But in reality, the ocean also gives and takes energy through advection. So then we have the proposals that have been made that reduction in Arctic temperature perturbs the patterns of atmospheric and oceanic flows. The Arctic is coupled to the rest of the climate system.

    The significant difference is that those patterns fit the model of a complex non-linear dynamic system, unlike the much simpler albedo relationship.

    So Case B is capable of being a chaotic system, where Case A is not. Some small change could result, for example, in a wild-and-crazy pattern that results in incursion of so much warmer air or water that the ice melts in the winter.

    I suspect that’s what Alastair is talking about, but we shall see.

  25. 175

    #173, KIA–

    Most of the retaliation has been from the “tolerant” side of the aisle. Ironic!

    It would be, if it were true. Which it isn’t.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/av/science-environment-54165868

  26. 176

    piotr, #163–

    I hate it when I miss a joke! Didn’t really register the wink typography, I’m afraid.

    Ah, well.

  27. 177
    zebra says:

    Correction to my #174

    Case B should be:

    “…proposal that reduction in Arctic temperature contrast

    (due to increase in Arctic temperature)

  28. 178
    Mal Adapted says:

    Mr. Ironically Anosognosic Typist:

    Not cool writing crap to people’s personal email address! If there is a threat then it is a crime of course.

    On this much we agree.

    IAT:

    I must remain anonymous since some have threatened deniers.

    Well, a stable pseudonym isn’t anonymous, but never mind. I too prefer pseudonymity online, having had occasional threatening responses to my defense of science in public fora; though none in the last few years and never to my private email, I’m glad to report. Now I mostly use my nom du clavier of twelve years to avoid confusing my audience about who’s commenting (“oh yeah, that a**hole”). Honestly? While you might feel threatened by some science defenders, I’m, er, skeptical anyone in this virtual arena takes you seriously enough to seek you out IRL. You’re free to remain pseudonymous in any case.

    IAT:

    People get fired for their beliefs or the hat they wear; some are attacked, or even killed! Most of the retaliation has been from the “tolerant” side of the aisle. Ironic!

    The first sentence is well-supported by history; the second is plainly ridiculous WRT science denial. Claims supported only by insinuation can be dismissed without counter-argument. That one isn’t ‘ironic’ unless you know it’s not intersubjectively verifiable. Which may well be the case: I still haven’t figured out why you post so much pernicious nonsense here, but I’m leaning toward sheer joy at provoking your audience and subsequently complaining of persecution. Admittedly I don’t know why I still reward you, either!

  29. 179
    nigelj says:

    Chuck Hughes @165

    ” I agree with others that this site needs a moderator who can get rid of a couple of regular trolls (KIA et al). I’m sick of them hijacking the threads and posting bullshit without consequences. ”

    I’m sick of them as well. Scepticalscience.com (not a denialist website!) has a good policy. They publish material by both warmists and denialists, but only if its reasonably polite, free of empty assertions and only if assertions of facts are backed up with references to peer reviewed science or some credible website like NASA. All posts with just empty assertions, irrelevant crap, trolling, name calling, accusations of lying, social bullshit (eg KIA) get crossed out or completely deleted and the website is pretty merciless.

    I like this approach because it maintains a level of freedom of speech but filters out the sort of material that is just clutter. Its a balancing act because nobody wants over moderation but I think the sensible middle ground is kinda really obvious. Right now RC doesn’t really have much moderation and I don’t see much good that has come form it. The lack of moderation could even cause general public start to have doubts about the quality of the science. I hope not but who knows. It would be a shame because RC is a great resource overall.

  30. 180
    Piotr says:

    Al Bundy (164): “ For humans “the climate” is a static background just like the stars in the sky. That’s why it’s “the” climate.”

    Let’s eat shit, billion flies can’t be wrong“? (as the entomologists say)
    “For humans” the Earth is flat. Does not mean that we have treat it as such on RC.

    AB(164): “ But now “the climate” no longer applies over centuries. That’s a change in definitions that hasn’t filtered down, resulting in “shifting baselines”. I’d say “the climate” no longer apply over decades. This decade’s climate is different than last decade’s climate.

    You went much further down than “decades”: “ it is essentially a given that 1/14/21’s climate is different than 1/13/21’s climate was”; Al Bundy (144).

    And for “decades” and “years” we have moving average/smoothing over climatic time window. See the graph and the justification for the time-window for smoothing in my previous post. For the reference, I repost it at the bottom.

    AB:” “Climate change” is an oxymoron. Doesn’t mean climate doesn’t change. Just speaks to how we interact.

    as is calling the Earth “a globe” instead of “a flat plate” ? Because of … “ how we interact“?

    AB: “And yes, English sucks at defining “you”. I used “ya” instead of “you” to try to indicate the switch from personal to general.

    I don’t think _this_ was the problem with yar argument.

    Piotr

    ===== Piotr(148): ===============
    “calculate moving average/local regression over period window corresponding to the climatic time-scale, see for instance the black line in
    https://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/2015/08/07/warm-2015-and-model-data-comparisons/ with the justification for the time scale of smoothing, I quote:

    “The black line in the graph is a so-called smooth function (Loess) over 30 years. 30 years is not an arbitrary choice, it is the number of years on which the climatic definition is based. Natural variability, e.g. caused by El Niño’s and La Niña’s or temporary dips by volcanic eruptions are averaged out on this time scale. This climatically relevant perspective of 30 years shows that there has been a steady increase in the surface temperature on Earth since the 1970s, as expected given the steady rise in greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere.”
    ===============

  31. 181
    Piotr says:

    KIA(173): “ I must remain anonymous since some have threatened deniers.

    :-))) Good one, KIA!

    Threats are the last resort of those who can’t disprove opponent’s arguments.
    So I don’t think you have anything to worry …

  32. 182
    Killian says:

    If you’ve been feeding the climate trolls for years, people, realize the cause of them posting so much is… you. Regardless what the site owners/moderators do, the single simplest thing is to stop feeding them.

  33. 183
    nigelj says:

    Piotr @158, yes youre right, I didnt remember Killians sand pile analogy post. But you didnt refer specifically to that particular comment number, so hence the confusion. But not a big issue! His sand pile is a good analogy relating to the chaos issue.

    —————————————–

    Al Bundy @160

    I accept the first part of your comments like “We are known by the company we keep”. I needed that cold water thrown in my face. And remember all the nasty comments are basically a moderation issue, its not my frigging fault. I dont know why you cant get that. However various peoples disdain for bad tone have essentially done that moderation job.

    But this? “I no longer anticipate your posts and I often scroll right through, generating ill feelings all the way down.”What does that even mean? Reading between the lines you ignore me because…. you dont like that I respond to Killian? Hes just a guy on the internet. Hes not the godfather of the mafia. And its like you are blaming your own incompetence…on me? Just bizarre.

  34. 184

    KIA 173: Most of the retaliation has been from the “tolerant” side of the aisle.

    BPL: Look again:

    https://bartonlevenson.com/ClimateScientistsIntimidation.html

  35. 185
    Alastair McDonald says:

    Apologies for not responding earlier but I am being distracted from useful work by this type of social media. I will try to resist the urge to respond in the future.

    I would just like to say that I was wrong to say weather and climate are chaotic. It is the outputs of weather and climate which are chaotic, e.g., temperature, humidity, etc. . That seems to fit. Both local and global temperatures appear random within certain limits (a strange attractor?).

    On second thoughts, if a system produces a chaotic output then perhaps you could call it chaotic.

    However I don’t see how this helps with predicting abrupt climate change, so I am not sure whether it is useful. So for now, I will leave it to others to pursue that further.

    Cheers, Alastair.

  36. 186
    Piotr says:

    Alastair(185): “ I would just like to say that I was wrong to say weather and climate are chaotic. It is the outputs of weather and climate which are chaotic, e.g., temperature, humidity, etc.,/i>”

    that’s what I assumed wanted to say (since I don’t know how zebra would have liked to prove the chaos of a “system”, if NOT through the analysis of its outputs),
    and already proposed a way to test you assertion on the climating “
    outputs“.

    Piotr(156): “a way to test Alastair’s hypothesis : let’s run a global climate model after “rounding off a couple of decimals in the input data” and see whether the results diverge.” [And I indicted that this must have been already done on a routine basis when testing ANY climate model].

    Certainly beats your current argument that climate output “must be chaotic” because … there is a some random variability around the mean. By _this_ standard – pretty much everything would have to be chaotic. (Random noise is not the sufficient condition for declaring something “chaotic”).

    AMD(185): “However I don’t see how this helps with predicting abrupt climate change, so I am not sure whether it is useful.”

    Huh? Weren’t your whole argument in this thread that it was the chaos that led to abrupt climate change in the past, and therefore may lead it again in the future?
    See your opening post:
    AMD (43) We know weather is chaotic and so must be climate. In fact we have seen abrupt events at 8ka, 12ka, 13ka and 16ka ago. Could similar events happen in the future. Warming from a melting arctic sea ice could lead to accelerating melt of the Greenland ice sheet.

    And you reiterated it with different examples from the past in your post (138).
    To which I, in addition to my questioning whether the current climate is indeed chaotic, posted 4 differences between now/future and the past abrupt events that make your extrapolations problematic – see my (151).

  37. 187
    Piotr says:

    Killian: I am not cheering [Al Bundy’s 160] post nor gloating, just glad to see some small balancing occurring. I think it is not just more fair, but is necessary.

    Everybody gets the balancing they deserve? ;-) Al’s (160) was vitriolic attack on the light-hearted line from Nigel. It was completely unjustified, as I demonstrated in my (167):

    ======== Piotr(167) ===========
    “[in my 149] I said that Killian and I shot zebra’s argument dead [without giving numbers of posts]. Nigel in the same thread did challenge the zebra’s arguments TOO, AND he may have MISSED Killian’s (121) post (the post was short, on topic, and not personal at all …). So to me Nigel’s line is a part checking the attribution (people do misattribute comments on RC), and part self-deprecating irony:”
    Nigel: “I think you might have me confused with Killian, which is a bit alarming, ha ha.

    How did _you_ understand it, Al??? I mean, to justify your response to Nigel:
    AB: “ Get. A. Room. Cuz your dysfunctional relationship with Killian is shredding your reputation here.
    ======

    Al … never answered my question, so how about you – since you portrayed Al’s words as a part of the much-needed “balancing” – do you, Killian, consider Al’s response to this post of nigel – “ fair“?

  38. 188
    mike says:

    Nearing the Climate Cliff: Study Warns Plants Are Decades Away From Absorbing Less Carbon

    The study identifies a temperature tipping point in the coming decades at which plants’ ability to absorb carbon would begin to significantly decrease, which in turn would trigger a rapid increase in global warming.

    “The main thing that comes out of this study is that the speed with which we will reach dangerous levels of climate change is most likely an underestimate,” said study co-author Christopher Schwalm, a senior scientist at Woodwell Climate Research Center…

    “So [imagine] you have 10 units of emissions. Five stay in the atmosphere, 2.5 are absorbed by forests, 2.5 are absorbed by oceans. … This notion of by 2040 the land sink strength being halved means that … 6.25 units of carbon will stay in the atmosphere,” he said.

    https://www.capeandislands.org/post/nearing-climate-cliff-study-warns-plants-are-decades-away-absorbing-less-carbon#stream/0

  39. 189
    Piotr says:

    Mike(188), quoting: “So [imagine] you have 10 units of emissions. Five stay in the atmosphere, 2.5 are absorbed by forests, 2.5 are absorbed by oceans. … This notion of by 2040 the land sink strength being halved means that … 6.25 units of carbon will stay in the atmosphere

    Actually probably more, since the warmer, the more acidic ocean takes LESS CO2 (higher Revelle factor). Maybe partly offset by the reduced calcification/increased dissolution existing CaCO3 in coral reefs and other aragonite-forming organisms, but at best only “partly”. The CO2 uptake by deep water formation could increase, BUT only if AMOC does not weaken. So “6.25” may be underestimation.

  40. 190
    Al Bundy says:

    Piotr: 30 years is not an arbitrary choice, it is the number of years on which the climatic definition is based. Natural variability, e.g. caused by El Niño’s and La Niña’s or temporary dips by volcanic eruptions are averaged out on this time scale.

    AB: So one needs a stable climate background for 30 years. Name a recent 30 year period where the background climate (ignoring cycles and other “weather” stuff) has been stable.

    On the Killian and nigelj show:

    I hold those I respect and those I feel closer to to far far far higher standards, which appears to be the opposite of what some folks do, which could cause confusion and misinterpretation. Perhaps you should re-read for comprehension, given this new clue.

  41. 191
    mike says:

    PNAS reports that insects are struggling a bit: https://www.pnas.org/cc/the-global-decline-of-insects-in-the-anthropocene-special-feature

    bugs probably do not think too much about economics and how their global situation has become less accommodating.

    why should we care about insect populations?
    https://sustainabilitymath.org/2019/02/14/why-should-we-care-about-insects/

    Cheers

    Mike

  42. 192
    Piotr says:

    Piotr (148) [my quoting on reasons for using LOESS smoothing window of 30 years for the temp. anomaly graph in question]: “ 30 years is not an arbitrary choice, it is the number of years on which the climatic definition is based. Natural variability, e.g. caused by El Niño’s and La Niña’s or temporary dips by volcanic eruptions are averaged out on this time scale.

    Al Bundy (190): So one needs a stable climate background for 30 years.

    No, one DOESN’T: smoothing data over 30-years window does NOT require the data
    to be FLAT over 30 years. That’s why in the discussed graph: https://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/2015/08/07/warm-2015-and-model-data-comparisons/
    you see a CONTINUOSLY CHANGING line, INSTEAD of a series of 30-yr-long FLAT segments, with discontinuities between them. The word “increase” in the post you quote might have been a give-away…

    If you want to learn more see why smoothing over certain smoothing window does not have to produce a horizontally flat line, see:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Local_regression
    or https://rafalab.github.io/dsbook/smoothing.html#bin-smoothing

    In the latter, our “30 years” would be termed “ window size, bandwidth or span” of our smoothing.

    AB: Name a recent 30 year period where the background climate (ignoring cycles and other “weather” stuff) has been stable.

    See above – since moving average/smoothing does NOT require the temperature anomaly to be flat (= “stable”) over the averaging/smoothing window (here =30 years) – I DON’T have to.

    As for other outstanding issues, have we agreed that:
    – “climate-change relevant time scale” is NOT 2 days, as in: Al Bundy (144): “it is essentially a given that 1/14/21’s climate is different than 1/13/21’s climate was

    – using 30 years smoothing window is appropriately to the climatic time scale, because: “Natural variability, e.g. caused by El Niño’s and La Niña’s or temporary dips by volcanic eruptions, are averaged out on this time scale.” [as quoted in Piotr 148] and as it can be seen in:
    https://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/2015/08/07/warm-2015-and-model-data-comparisons/

  43. 193
    Oscar Anton Wehmanen says:

    On the matter of Chaos:
    Mr. Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle guarantees that any measurement at atomic levels is chaotic. You cannot measure position and velocity of a particle simultaniously. If you know where it is you cannot know its velocity. However, statistics, when n= 100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 can relate velocity and position of aggregates very precisely. In the case of weather, one measurement of temperature, location, humidity, wind has rather limited value in describing the conditions conditions a mile distant. But taking 100,000 similar measurements we can make useful statements about about distant locations. As n increases, and the analytic techniques improve It becomes possible to make statements that have validity for larger regions.

    Chaos theory only says that some physical systems are so sensitive to initial conditions that for those sensitive systems useful statements about the system cannot be made beyond limits, even with better measurements of initial conditions.

    Statistical theory is designed to manage unstable inputs and produce useful statements – or point out that this is impossible. (If you love chaos – look up the Cauchy distribution. The distribution of one observation is identical to the distribution of the average of n observations!)

  44. 194
    Killian says:

    187 piotr:

    Al … never answered my question, so how about you – since you portrayed Al’s words as a part of the much-needed “balancing” – do you, Killian, consider Al’s response to this post of nigel – “ fair“?

    I have already clearly stated these are issues for others. I am no longer interested. I have said what I had to say. I think the view of things has finally reached some degree of balance. I think most here sincerely wish to discuss climate.

    Moving along.

  45. 195
    Piotr says:

    AL Bundy (190): “ On the Killian and nigelj show: I hold those I respect and those I feel closer to to far far far higher standards

    and this is supposed to …explain your going ballistic after a … light-hearted auto-ironic sentence from nigel???

    Nigel: “ Piotr @149 I think you might have me confused with Killian, which is a bit alarming, ha ha.

    Al Bundy: “ Get. A. Room. Cuz your dysfunctional relationship with Killian is shredding your reputation here. You’re Otherizing yourself. I no longer anticipate your posts and I often scroll right through, generating ill feelings all the way down.

    So …. this is how you show “ respect” to others? And you udnerstood
    nigel’s … auto-irony about his relationship with Killian, as a sign of his …
    obsession with him? And after this example of your comprehension, you lecture others:
    Perhaps you should re-read for comprehension ” ?

  46. 196
    Piotr says:

    Killian(194): “I have already clearly stated these are issues for others. I am no longer interested. I have said what I had to say.

    Since you did respond to the undeserved and absurd attack of Al Bundy on nigel’s by your praising as, I quote: “ just glad to see some small balancing occurring. I think it is not just more fair, but is necessary“,
    then refusing to comment on its fairness, because you “have already clearly stated these are issues for others” is a cop-out. And means that as long as they attack your opponent, you are not interested, if they hit dirty.

    And since you are “moving on”, here is your “ not just fair, but necessary” Al Bundy, for the road:

    Nigel: “ Piotr @149 I think you might have me confused with Killian, which is a bit alarming, ha ha.

    Al Bundy: “ Get. A. Room. Cuz your dysfunctional relationship with Killian is shredding your reputation here. You’re Otherizing yourself. I no longer anticipate your posts and I often scroll right through, generating ill feelings all the way down.

    “I am not cheering [Al Bundy’s] post nor gloating, just glad to see some small balancing occurring. I think it is not just more fair, but is necessary.
    Killian

  47. 197
    zebra says:

    Oscar Anton Wehmanene #193,

    In the case of weather, one measurement of temperature, location, humidity, wind has rather limited value in describing the conditions conditions a mile distant. But taking 100,000 similar measurements we can make useful statements about about distant locations.

    As recent comments here illustrate, discussions of chaos often produce chaotic language; your statement is not at all clear. Could you just explain what you mean by “taking 100,000 ‘similar’ measurements”?

    If I measure the temperature at point A, without any other information, then of course I don’t know the temperature at point B, a mile away. But what are these 100,000 measurements measurements of ??

    If we can take 100,000 measurements, why would we not just measure the temperature at point B ??

    Perhaps you could try again with more specificity and a concrete example?

  48. 198

    Gavin et al.,

    I have completed a manuscript “On the Temperatures of Terrestrial Planets,” which combines my old self-published book about the greenhouse effect with a primer on writing radiative-convective models. Ramses Ramirez (U of Tokyo) expressed interest in the book and even suggested he might use it for a class on writing RCMs. But I can’t find a publisher. I was writing to Cambridge U. Press for a while, then they simply stopped responding to me–I can’t figure out why; I was polite and professional all the way.

    Do you have any suggestions for how I could get this thing into print?

  49. 199
    Piotr says:

    zebra (197)
    As recent comments here illustrate, discussions of chaos often produce chaotic language; your statement is not at all clear.

    And they said self-deprecating humour is dead… Ha! ;-)

    If we can take 100,000 measurements, why would we not just measure the temperature at point B ??

    I was wondering the same. Maybe Oscar can’t go there? So from 100,000 measurements he calculates climatologic average temp. and assumes that climatological avg. temp at B will be the same, with B being only 1 mile away? Not terribly riveting or useful (you can’t the global temp. average this way), but whatever floats your boat?

  50. 200
    Killian says:

    196
    Piotr:
    20 Jan 2021 at 1:04 PM

    Killian(194): “I have already clearly stated these are issues for others. I am no longer interested. I have said what I had to say.”

    Since you did respond to the undeserved and absurd attack of Al Bundy on nigel’s by your praising as, I quote: “ just glad to see some small balancing occurring. I think it is not just more fair, but is necessary“,
    then refusing to comment on its fairness, because you “have already clearly stated these are issues for others” is a cop-out.

    No, it’s a topic that is not useful to continue to discuss. IDGAF if you all discuss it for the next ten years, but I have no responsibility to please you because you have an opinion that is… in no way important to me, and has zero usefulness to this forum generally.

    Taking care of myself and choosing which conversations to continue with is my business and none of yours.