This is a belated open thread for this month, for anything non-COP21 and non-AGU related.
Archives for 2015
So this week it’s the biggest Earth Science meeting on the planet…
There is a lot of great science that will be freely streamed via AGU On-Demand (registration required), and there’ll be a lot of commentary using the hashtag #AGU15. Many posters will be available online too. A few highlights have already been discussed by Victor Venema related to the surface temperature station datasets, but there’ll be much more on offer if you dig deeper.
As the week goes on, we’ll link to anything good we see, and we’ll be happy to host any commentaries that anyone has on specific climate sessions or talks.
Apparently there is a climate conference of some sort going on. Happy to answer any science questions as they arise…
Guest commentary by Stephan Lewandowsky, James Risbey and Naomi Oreskes
The idea that global warming has “stopped” has long been a contrarian talking point. This framing has found entry into the scientific literature and there are now numerous articles that address a presumed recent “pause” or “hiatus” in global warming. Moreover, the “hiatus” also featured as an accepted fact in the latest IPCC report (AR5). Notwithstanding its widespread use in public and apparent acceptance in the scientific community, there are reasons to be skeptical of the existence of a “hiatus” or “pause” in global warming [Ed: see also this previous post]. We have examined this issue in a series of three recent papers, which have converged on the conclusion that there is not now, and there never has been, a hiatus or pause in global warming.
… have of course been greatly exaggerated. But we are having some issues with our domain name. The back story is perhaps interesting to others, so here is quick summary of the situation.
Update: The account details have been restored and the domains renewed. We should be back to normal in a couple of days.
Remember the forecast of a temporary global cooling which made headlines around the world in 2008? We didn’t think it was reliable and offered a bet. The forecast period is now over: we were right, the forecast was not skillful.
Back around 2007/8, two high-profile papers claimed to produce, for the first time, skilful predictions of decadal climate change, based on new techniques of ocean state initialization in climate models. Both papers made forecasts of the future evolution of global mean and regional temperatures. The first paper, Smith et al. (2007), predicted “that internal variability will partially offset the anthropogenic global warming signal for the next few years. However, climate will continue to warm, with at least half of the years after 2009 predicted to exceed the warmest year currently on record.” The second, Keenlyside et al., (2008), forecast in contrast that “global surface temperature may not increase over the next decade, as natural climate variations in the North Atlantic and tropical Pacific temporarily offset the projected anthropogenic warming.”
This month marks the end of the forecast period for Keenlyside et al and so their forecasts can now be cleanly compared to what actually happened. This is particularly interesting to RealClimate, since we offered a bet to the authors on whether the results would be accurate based on our assessment of their methodology. They ignored our offer but now the time period of the bet has passed, it’s worth checking how it would have gone.
- D.M. Smith, S. Cusack, A.W. Colman, C.K. Folland, G.R. Harris, and J.M. Murphy, "Improved Surface Temperature Prediction for the Coming Decade from a Global Climate Model", Science, vol. 317, pp. 796-799, 2007. http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1139540
- N.S. Keenlyside, M. Latif, J. Jungclaus, L. Kornblueh, and E. Roeckner, "Advancing decadal-scale climate prediction in the North Atlantic sector", Nature, vol. 453, pp. 84-88, 2008. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature06921
The recent paper by Zwally et al. in the Journal of Glaciology has been widely reported as evidence that Antarctic is gaining mass, and hence lowering sea level. Is it? Expert Jonathan Bamber weighs in.
Guest post by Jonathan Bamber, University of Bristol
There have been quite few big media stories related to Antarctica recently, including a paper on the irreversible collapse of the marine portion of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and a NASA-funded study that finds, contrary to numerous previous results, that the Antarctic ice sheet as a whole has been gaining mass between 1992 and 2008. This most recent study received a lot of media attention because it runs counter to what was said in the last IPCC Report. Certain parts of the media hailed this as another sign that the impacts of climate change had somehow been exaggerated a risk that the lead author Jay Zwally was concerned about before the research was published.
So what did Zwally and his colleagues do, what did they find, and why does it contradict a plethora of previous studies that suggest Antarctica has been losing mass over the same time period?
[Read more…] about So what is really happening in Antarctica?
This month’s open thread.
What are the local consequences of a continued global warming? And what kind of future climate can you expect for you children? Do we expect more extreme events, and will a global warming affect the statistics of storms? Another question is how the local changes matters for local communities and the ecosystem.
It may be contrary to most people’s impression. We have a clearer picture of future climate changes on a global scale than of the local consequences associated with a global warming. And we know why.