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John F. Clauser: the latest climate science-denying physicist

Posted on 4 September 2023 by dana1981

It’s a familiar story – the physicist who draws attention for declaring that climate scientists have got climate science all wrong. He (it’s always a ‘he’) was born before color television was invented, usually retired, perhaps having won a Nobel Prize, but with zero climate science research or expertise. William Happer. Ivar Giaever. Roger Cohen. Freeman DysonSteven Koonin. Robert Laughlin. The latest example from this mould is John F. Clauser.

Although Clauser has never published any peer-reviewed climate science research, he has made several climate-related claims whose veracity we will examine below.

Yes, humans are responsible for the increase in CO2

In a July 2023 interview with the Epoch Times, Clauser claimed that the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) “may or may not be made by human beings. It doesn't really matter where it comes from.

That's a bit like saying, "I don't know what atoms are made of, but it doesn't really matter. Let me tell you why particle physics is all wrong."

In reality, several lines of evidence have proven the incontrovertible fact that the human combustion of fossil fuels – which today releases nearly 40 billion tons of CO2 per year – is entirely responsible for the 50% increase in Earth’s atmospheric CO2 concentrations since the Industrial Revolution. For example, there’s basic accounting: those 40 billion tons of CO2 have to go somewhere, and Earth’s natural sinks like the oceans and biosphere only absorb about half of those emissions. The other half ends up in the atmosphere, as explained in the Denial101x video below. And atmospheric carbon isotope ratio measurements also demonstrate that the CO2 increase is coming from ancient plant matter, a.k.a. fossil fuels.

Anyone who understands even the most basic aspects of climate science should not question such a simple and thoroughly-established fact.

No, clouds won’t save us

The Epoch Times also wrote of Clauser:

He argues that climate is primarily set by what he refers to as the "cloud cover thermostat," a self-regulating process whereby more clouds start to enshroud the Earth when the temperature is too high and vice-versa.

Clouds play a complicated role in Earth’s climate because they both reflect sunlight, causing a cooling effect, and trap heat, causing a warming effect. Higher clouds tend to have a net warming effect while lower clouds tend to have a net cooling effect. How each type of cloud cover will change as the planet warms will determine whether they dampen or amplify global warming on the whole.

So far, both observational evidence and climate modeling suggest that if anything, changes in cloud cover will act to slightly amplify global warming. Moreover, if cloud cover acted as Earth’s thermostat, then we wouldn’t have seen the large historical swings between ice ages and warm periods, as explained in the Denial101x video below. So, the available evidence strongly contradicts Clauser’s hypothesis.

Climate change worsens extreme weather events

In July 2023, Clauser gave a talk at the event Quantum Korea 2023 in which he claimed, “climate change does not cause extreme weather events.

In fact, climate change increases the intensity and/or frequency of many types of extreme weather. This is basic physics. An increased greenhouse effect traps more heat energy within Earth’s climate system. That increased heat raises temperatures, directly causing more extreme heat waves. It also increases evapotranspiration, amplifying droughts in drought-prone regions, and also wildfires. A warmer atmosphere holds more water vapor (Clauser should read up on the Clausius–Clapeyron relation), which can amplify extreme precipitation and flooding in flood-prone regions. And warmer ocean waters fuel stronger hurricanes.

The World Weather Attribution group has quantified the climate contribution to a number of extreme weather events, and these general relationships have been established by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

The IPCC is a great scientific body

In his Quantum Korea talk, Clauser also described the IPCC as “one of the worst sources of dangerous misinformation.

In reality, the IPCC is one of the world’s greatest scientific bodies. It is composed of the world’s foremost climate scientists, who every 5 to 8 years devote tremendous amounts of time and effort to author reports summarizing the latest climate science research, without any remuneration whatsoever. The IPCC reports are in fact the world’s best source of accurate and valuable climate science information.

Energy can come from clean sources

In May of 2023, Clauser joined the board of directors of the climate-denying CO2 Coalition, at which time he stated:

In my opinion, there is no real climate crisis. There is, however, a very real problem with providing a decent standard of living to the world’s large population and an associated energy crisis.

Developing nations do need cost-effective energy sources to reduce the number of people living in poverty. But that energy needn’t come from fossil fuels. Africa, for example, has the largest solar power potential in the world, and also vast wind energy potential. As Andrea Willige has argued, the continent could leapfrog fossil fuel infrastructure in favor of decentralized power generation using renewable energy, just as it leapfrogged fixed-line telecommunication infrastructure to move straight to mass mobile phone use. In the process, it would avoid the detrimental health effects associated with fossil fuel air and water pollution, as well as the resulting climate pollution. Moreover, according to Lazard, the costs of clean technologies have fallen so far that solar energy plus storage is often cheaper today than building new fossil fuel power plants.

Old climate denial

Like so many of his old physicist colleagues before him, Clauser has repeated a number of long-debunked climate myths without providing any supporting evidence whatsoever. Until that changes, there is no reason to lend any credence to this brand of stale, reheated climate denial.  Remember: whenever John F. Clauser and his statements related to climate change get bandied about, it is a prime example of using a fake expert on climate change.

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Comments 1 to 50 out of 66:

  1. Scientists are human beings like everyone else, and while that explains much of the disagreement one can find among scientists on all sorts of topics, when people like Clauser come along and speak outside of their area of expertise, flatly contradicting the work of the majority of those directly involved specifically in that field, as in this case climate science, it really makes you wonder what motivated them to do that. 

    Honesty is important for everyone involved on the subject of climate science and global warming, of course, including those in the mainstream. The characerization of the IPCC here, for example, is so glowing, one might think it was written by the IPCC itself "one of the world’s greatest scientific bodies. It is composed of the world’s foremost climate scientists, who every 5 to 8 years devote tremendous amounts of time and effort to author reports summarizing the latest climate science research, without any remuneration whatsoever. The IPCC reports are in fact the world’s best source of accurate and valuable climate science information." 

    In fact, the IPCC is arguably not a scientific body: the "Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change" is, as the name implies, a governmental body, where scientists volunteer their work but must in a way "compete" with political appointees from 195 UN nations to haggle over messages delivered to policymakers. It is well known that those political agents have rejected and softened language in statements proposed by scientists numerous times, when that language was deemed problematic for their individual nations. 

    But it goes further than that. The IPCC in fact has been criticized, not only by cranks like Clauser, but by its own contributors as well as other, reputable scientists in the climate science field, for being far too cautious, particularly in their characterization of the speed and severity of the effects of climate change from global warming. Being on the "right" side of this debate between the mainstream climate science "community" and people who are clearly climate deniers, should not mean that those defending what scientists have discovered need be deniers themselves of the many errors and misinformation that has been produced by organizations like the IPCC. 

    Papers such as "What Lies Beneath; The Understatement of Existential Climate Risk" by David Spratt and Ian Dunlop, and "Faster Than Expected; The IPCC's Role In Exacerbating Climate Change" by Kyle Kimball, are a good start for those interested in examining clearly documented errors and pattern-forming cases of inaccuracy on the part of the public messages delivered by the IPCC.   

    It is one thing to be an outright climate denier. It is another to be one who so stridently opposes the outright frauds and fakes that one refuses to admit, and even attempts to hide or gloss over the real problems that do exist within what people call the climate science "community" and those various organizations responsible for gaining insight and finding solutions for humanity to fight what may someday soon be legally recognized as the ecocide perpetrated by numerous energy companies when they were warned numerous times by scientists of the need to swiftly switch to alternate fuels, and chose to bury, manipulate and deny that science in order to focus on business as usual and the maximization of shareholder value.

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    • " of the world’s greatest scientific bodies."

    Name a functional equivalent that produces a more competently comprehensive synopsis of how Earth's climate functions and how we affect its functioning.

    • "It is composed of the world’s foremost climate scientists, who every 5 to 8 years devote tremendous amounts of time and effort to author reports summarizing the latest climate science research, without any remuneration whatsoever."

    This is objectively correct. 

    • "The IPCC reports are in fact the world’s best source of accurate and valuable climate science information."

    Name reports on climate (or anything else) that are more comprehensive and also accurately reflect "here's the best we know at this point."

    The IPCC exists, the first and most important virtue. It's a concrete feature, as opposed to wishful desire for a system for dealing with human nature that is divorced from human factors.

    Meanwhile, haggling over the messaging, the messaging ending up acceptable to multiple countries with multiple often conflicting self-interests? Is this a defect? If one bothers to read its self-stated mission and purpose, one will learn that the IPCC specifically exists for the purpose of colliding geopolitics with science. To expect the IPCC to remain aloof from geopolitics is to doom it to have no connection with or influence over geopolitics and the behavior of individual states.

    The IPCC has since its first report steadily produced warnings over our influence on climate that have over the course of the years increased in stridency and urgency, a surfeit of actionable advice. The parsimonious methods of the IPCC have yielded all the information we've needed to act on and attempt to check our climate disaster. But the IPCC does not operate governments, it informs them.  There's plenty of information emerging from this sausage factory, only consumed very slowly because it's emerging into a world full of interactive, reverberating other problems of human nature.

    There's a lot of inchoate frustration over human nature and Earth's climate floating about these days, looking for its proper home. Keep looking. 

    Meanwhile Skeptical Science will try to stay in the tank of reality, where feet wade through clay as best as they actually may.

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  2. I'll admit that the IPCC is the largest organization producing climate analysis, and as such provides the overall best information we have. However, much of that information is deeply flawed, according to scientists both inside and outside the organization. Is it wrong to want that corrected? Because that's all anyone is saying.

    Your logic would also have us stop trying to change flaws in our law courts and legal system, flaws in our election system, ad infinitum, because "what we have works and they are doing their best."

    Have you read either of the papers I've provided links to? If you haven't, it's unlikely you know anything about the problems you are trying to close everyone's eyes to.

    Once again, you do not do yourself favors by refusing to be realistic about the good efforts that have been made to fight climate change, and to pretend there is nothing wrong, or to hold that to say so is some kind of blasphemy, or is unfair or unkind, and to suggest that rather than try to shed light on things that need improving if we are to have a fighting chance here, that we should just keep our mouths shut, close our eyes and offer thanks and praise.

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  3. Markp,

    Certainly there are scientists who are doomers like the ones you have linked.  The IPCC reports give the low end of scientific thought on warming problems.  This was a political compromise.  You are correct that the majority of scientists think it will be worse than the IPCC says.

    Everyone agrees that 3C warming will be much worse than 2C and 4C will be much worse again.  We have to do everything we can to reduce CO2 pollution as much as possible.  While we have missed the 1.5C target, we still benefit from the reductions that have taken place.

    There are already many people who have given up on trying to solve the warming problem.  They think it is too hard.  If all scientists take your attitude then it is likely that most countries will give up and the problem will be worse.  Scientists like Michael Mann and Gavin Schmidt know that the situation is very bad.  They act to get as much response as possible from governments.

    I saw this quote today in CNN:

    "Samantha Burgess, deputy director of Copernicus,  “The scientific evidence is overwhelming – we will continue to see more climate records and more intense and frequent extreme weather events impacting society and ecosystems, until we stop emitting greenhouse gases,”

    How can she say anything stronger?

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  4. Markp @ 3:

    Oh, my. The IPCC does not provide analysis in the sense of crunching data, etc: it collects information from the published scientific literature, and provides a broad overview of the status of the science. It does not do any new research of its own. All the material it presents is based on other publications and research. The authors of the IPCC reports are a subset of the authors that work in climatology, but ultimately the science itself comes from the literature. If you don't like what the IPCC says, you can always go into the literature and see what it says for yourself.

    The "Summary for Policymakers" documents are more subject to political pressures. That is where things will get watered down, spin applied, etc. If you disagree with them, look in the full reports for details. If you don't like the full reports, read the literature.

    When you say things like "However, much of that information is deeply flawed, according to scientists both inside and outside the organization", expect to get challenged. Such a vague accusation is pretty much worthless in a serious discussion. What information? What flaws? What scientists? What positions do they hold? Most of the IPCC participants are not "members of the organization" - they do this work as part of their normal employment elsewhere. I have worked with people that were involved in the IPCC process. They did not get paychecks from the IPCC. They did not have IPCC membership cards.

    "Some people say..." is such a weak, weak, weak argument. Some people say all of science is corrupt. Some people say evolution is wrong. Some people say the world is flat. Some people say the Easter Bunny is real.

    To make this vaguely on-topic, John F Clauser says things that are simply way off. Just because he says it does not make it remotely true.

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  5. Michael Sweet

    "Doomers" is a word with little value or meaning and has become similar to "conspiracy theorist" where people apply it to those whose views they do not like.

    I'll bet you haven't read, for example, What Lies Beneath, one of the papers I linked to. The foreward was written by Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, professor of theoretical physics specialising in complex systems and nonlinearity, founding director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, and former chair of the German Advisory Council on Global Change. He is not a doomer. People who want the IPCC to be improved are not necessarily "doomers" or cranks. It's really too bad you and others here seem unable to accept that this government organization is not perfect and could be made better. 

    You say "if all scientists take your attitude..." well guess what? My attitude is to do what I can to stop the warming, which is why I work for a climate science nonprofit to do just that, and not by handing out leaflets asking people to turn off the lights, but by helping an organization that is currently helping the poor in the Global South live more comfortably by converting their roofs into cool roofs, for free. And it's not just white paint. And that's not all. So please. 

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  6. Bob "Oh my" Loblaw

    I don't need a lecture on how the IPCC works. Thanks. I did not say the IPCC provides analysis "in the sense of crunching data, etc," now did I? Read what I wrote, please. 

    As for "what information? What flaws?" maybe if you'd READ the papers I linked to, you would find out. I'm not inveting this. And please don't put words in my mouth, either: "some people say"?? Please see if you can find that in my text. Talk about "weak"!!! 

    I'm happy to check on this site for the new items it brings but I think I'm finished discussing the reality of how much we have not managed to do to stop climate change with people who have their heads in the sand.

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  7. "Your logic would also have us stop trying to change flaws in our law courts and legal system, flaws in our election system, ad infinitum, because "what we have works and they are doing their best."

    Mark, as you're upset about the direction this discussion has taken let's just note that you've invented a situation wherein we claim the IPCC is perfect and not subject to improvement. 

    I'm familiar with Spratt & Dunlop's brief. It's critiquing the IPCC process, methods and results against an imaginary purpose for the organization.

    Spratt & Dunlop's conclusory remarks are notably lacking in any concrete prescription of actionable, practical advice for remedy. They are unhappy with what exists but apparently are not able to conjure a better substitute. 

    With critics failing to deliver a plan for how progress might appear, the reader is left with a false impression; no additional communications vehicle is suggested by the authors, so surely the solution lies in altering the subject of the critique so as to address the authors' untethered objections to the IPCC. If so, what happens?

    As Schellnhuber points out, what's missing from the IPCC is reports is imagination divorced from a continuum of evidence (possibility vs. probability). There's a role for unsupported extrapolation, but that's an additional communications task that if commingled with strict evidentiary requirements will quite arguably leave the entire process of dealing with climate change even more amenable to misinformation and disinformation than it is today. Notably and despite such critiques as the one we're discussing here, the IPCC is the subject of concentrated, prolonged polemical attacks on its credibility from the side of the fossil fuel industry and other enthusiasts of unaccounted external costs. Arming such rhetoricians with valid grounds for their own purposes of critique wouldn't be a smart move. 

    It would be nonsensical to claim that no improvement is possible in the IPCC process and methods. Fortunately nobody here is making that claim. But improvement doesn't include introducing science fiction into the foundations of IPCC reports, and it's hard to see how bringing possibility divorced from probability into the IPCC's work would be other than exactly that. We're blessed with imagination and can and should exploit it, but here our imagination needs a solid tether— as a separate feature— because imagination comes with degrees of credibility and here credibility is mandatory. 

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  8. Markp @1+,
    I think it is wrong to say that the IPCC is not a scientific body. Certainly the SPMs are edited for the political purpose of obtaining unanimity, but the assessment reports do reflect the whole of the science and thus are scientific. If that science is not being done (and in the case of WG2 & WG3 I fear it probably isn't), it is a problem not of the IPCC's making.

    The two examples you provide are worthy of discussion.
    Spatt & Dunlop (2018) 'What Lies Beneath; The Understatement of Existential Climate Risk' is a bit of a gallop through the subject and today a little dated. It is the product of a think-tank and, apparently, "is not intended as a 'scientific paper'." Perhaps study of missing threats should become a subject set up as a science; the studying of the cracks within AGW science.
    Today the science (and thus the IPCC) is addressing tipping points and if the evidence suggests either of them are still underplaying them, then that should be put on record.
    And the 'fat tail', our inability at nailing down ECS and partcularly the top end of possible ECSs; if that does continue to remain elusive, isn't that because the 'fat tail' acts so slowly? And if it is slow and also temperature induced, presumably we should be able to dodge it before it arrives.

    ☻ The second example you cite is a downloadable undergrad thesis and the climatology bit of it is about the rather dated 'Arctic melt-out' warnings of two-decades back. At the time the basis for these warnings was the period of increased melt 2000-07 which saw previous trends in annual Arctic minimum SIE rise from -0.06M sq km/y to -0.24M sq km/y. The idea that the thinning ice would disappear with a rush was at the time** not unfounded but it hasn't been borne out with 2007-on only showing a slow downward trend in the Arctic SIE  minimums.
    (** I remember at the time the widespread incredulity given to 'official' projections which were suggesting ice-free Arctic summers would arrive more slowly, sometime 2027-50. We are now not far off from the start of that period and no ice-free event yet.)

    The other bit of criticism of in the undergrad thesis looks at economic forecasting. This is perhaps off-topic (the numpty Clauser is the topic here & he is a science guy) so I'll try not to wax too lyrically.

    I don't think the thesis really scratches the surface in its descriptions of what I consider ligitmate criticism of the pretty awful work in this field. The idea that timely AGW mitigation would (according to denialists) crash the global economy and pauperise the less-developed world but AGW itself would do no more than slow economic growth marginally (global growth reduced by just a third under +4ºC AGW in the doomiest projection here) I find utterly unbelievable. (My usual example is to imagine Madagascar melted into the sea. The loss to global economy would be 0.014% but would the 30M souls who live there just go down with the ship?)
    But with the numpty Clauser as the topic here & he a science guy, economic forecasting is not on-topic here.

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  9. An enlightening 10-minute read from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists:

    "Betting against worst-case climate scenarios is risky business"

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  10. Markp @10 ,

    Thank you for the link to the David Spratt article of 4 September 2023.

    His article is very reasonable as far as it goes in discussing Risk Assessment of climate tipping points in a general way.   And, as he mentions, the economists' projections are nigh-on useless for the long term.   (Though I do take exception to Spratt's undiscriminating interchangings of the phrases "human extinction" and "civilizational collapse". )

    But then Spratt comes to a halt, before making any practical suggestions.  ( A point noted by physics professor Daniel Marlow, whose replying comment is the only one listed, so far, beneath that article.)

    In comparison, Simon Michaux [referred to briefly in a different SkS  thread, recently]  does know what path we should be taking towards a wind-turbine & solar-panel powered economy . . . but says we cannot reach that goal, owing to inevitability of materials supply shortfalls.  (We can't get there from here.)


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  11. Eclectic

    "In comparison, Simon Michaux [referred to briefly in a different SkS thread, recently] does know what path we should be taking towards a wind-turbine & solar-panel powered economy . . . but says we cannot reach that goal, owing to inevitability of materials supply shortfalls. (We can't get there from here.)"

    IMO Michaux is taking a very doomy, pessimistic approach to the materials issue. The crowd who wrote the limits to growth in around the 1970s were the same and  proclaimed the world would run out of key metals like lead, zinc etc,etc,  by the 1990s and of course that never happened.  Lets explore why.

    Now firstly obviously materials are a finite resource. Some of the elements are quite rare and so scattered in the crust they cant be extraced economically. Even the concentrated mineral despots of those elements are not common in the earths crust. So we have a problem and are at risk of running out of some things longer term.

    But Michaux takes a particularly doomy view of the situation. He  looks at known current high grade / medium grade reserves and says red alert we are running out. But he is basing his warnings on known reserves of good grade ore depoits. He makes insufficient allowance for our ingenuity in extracting low grade deposits, making new discoveries, mining the sea bed,  extracting minerals from sea water (there are trillions of tons), high levels of recycling. And its highly likely we will get better at doing these things and in energy efficient ways.

    Im not talking techno hype where anything is possible and we will conquer all problems. Im just taking the view that its very likely we will find ways of  finding more materials.

    If we do run into severe shortages of materials we will have to reduce our energy use. Michaux concerns do not seem a good enough reason to give up on renewables completely, and he doesnt provide an alternative if we did do that.

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  12. The IPCC reports are clearly conservative leaning. However the latest IPCC report does project warming at around 4 - 5 degrees by end of this century at BAU (Business as usual emissions) and SLR (sea level rise) worst case up around 1 - 2M end of this century. And it will go on rising after that  if we do nothing.

    There are lower SLR projections out there and a small number of higher projections by people like Hansen at around 4M end of century, but his is very speculative. So Im not sure that the IPCC are being excessively conservative on the key numbers.

    For me SLR projections of 1 - 2M end of this century look very worrying with the potential to cause massive problems. Even although 2M is worst case and low probbaility the impact is potentially huge so such a scenario should be guiding or mitigation response. If people cant see all this and feel motivated to take serious action, then I'm not sure they would change their attitude if the number was 4M anyway.

    So obviously the IPCC should robustly communicate the climate problem, but  I think we are at risk of scapegoating the IPCC for the lack of strong mitigation response, when the culprit is really peoples complacency, due presumably to numerous factors from vested interests, resistance to change, psychological barriers, ideological views, the denialist campaign etc,etc.

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  13. Nigelj @12 ,

    Agreed.  Michaux seems determined to assert that "renewables" are an impossibility, or at least a cul-de-sac, on the path to electricity generation of the non-fossil-fuel type.  But the adage is :- half a loaf is better than none . . . it would be foolish not to go the path of wind/solar, while we are gradually developing newer technologies.

    @13 : Clauser appears to be a climate neophyte, suffering from the Happer-Giaever  syndrome.   One wonders at his choice of ignoring the rich lode of information available per the IPCC.

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  14. Eclectic @14 some of these physicists come across as very arrogant and over confident, and seem to think that because physics is the most fundamental of the science it makes them experts at everything, without having to study the detals of other issues, like the climate issue. And with the climate issue the details are particularly important. I assume thats sort of what you mean by Happer-Giaever syndrome. 

    Yes the IPCC reports are a rich lode of information. I can see a great deal of work has gone into these and I get a bit defensive when they get criticised, and especially when the motives of the authors get criticised.

    The IPCC scientists are volunteering their time, and yet  they get slammed by paid professional deniers with their junk science, and also slammed by a few people at the extreme edges of the warmist group, who think the IPCC should immediately and uncritically embrace the latest and most doomy study. Makes me furious. And I say this as someone who has a doomy disposition or bias, but at least Im aware of the potential for that to sometimes get out of control.

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  15. Per the IPCC reports, dare I mention that review articles are often exceptional examples of research. Organizing, theming, and critiquing the body of current understanding does itself create new understanding and further direction... aka: research.

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  16. Good thoughts on the IPCC, but back on topic, Clauser:

    The recent article in Epoch Times is at

    It is depressing to me to see the spread of such blatant crap. To get really upset, see the comments there for a view into the minds of deniers.

    I hope that readers of skeptical science can add comment and replies to that article to help balance the propaganda and even get some deniers thinking of the real science.

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  17. sailingfree @17, blatant crap is pretty much all Epoch Times has to offer. I somehow got identified as a potential subscriber, so I keep getting free copies in the mail. On Adfontes Media's Media Bias chart, ET shows up far to the right on "Political Bias," and well down the vertical axis on "News Value and Reliability". One wonders just how much overlap there is among readers of ET and SkS.

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  18. Sorry, should have included a link to the Media Bias chart. The publisher is selling some versions of it, but the interactive one at the link is free. I have no financial interest in the company.

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  19. Are there thoughts about this July 19, 2023 letter from William Happer
    Professor of Physics, Emeritus Princeton University and Richard Lindzen
    Professor of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Emeritus
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology?

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  20. Wbru49  @20 :

    What were the points you wish to make about the Happer/Lindzen letter addressed to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)  ~ were there any important legal or scientific aspects which are worth noting?

    Based on my quick scan of it : the letter seems to be a general outpouring of all sorts of old "denialist" talking points.  Not sure whether it's best described as a rant or as a "Drumpfized" Gish Gallop of nonsenses & half-truths.

    Either way, it is sad to see two elderly scientists showing that peculiar degeneration of intellect which too-often accompanies "Emeritus" status.  Or would be sad ~ if it weren't already Old News.

    Or perhaps I have misunderstood what these two guys are up to.  Are they laying the ground for an actual legal challenge to the EPA . . . or are they just venting?

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  21. Speaking of talking points: that's quite a rehash of the ole "let's insult these guys and their cognitive functioning, cuz they're only old guys now and we can rub it in". I've seen it happen in all kinds of fields. Thomas Nagle with a lifetime of philosophical materialist belief, writes a book a couple of years before retiring from NYU, the book indicating second thoughts on that ironclad materialistic hegemony in academia. He got roasted over the coals for that and of course the standard "he's an old guy in decline" BS. the exact thing happened to Anthony Flew, retired Brit philosopher with a lifetime of comitted atheism, changed his mind late in life in favor of deism. Same exact tactic, "his mind has declined, and he got someone to ghost write his book." they said.

    You guys should be ashamed for hiding behind this argument. You know that working academics are in jeopardy like never before in the West from being cancelled for wrongthink, and you are part of that problem. You can even watch Lintzen's videos and see for yourself his use of precise vernacular and reasoning to explain exactly where he is coming from on this mass delusion gripping the world's intelligentsia.

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  22. groovimus... Did you have some reason why we should entertain Clauser's position on climate change in spite of the fact he's never in his career done research in the field?

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  23. groovimus - Mass-delusion, you say? You need to get out more - and with your eyes open.

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  24. Speaking of delusions ~ about 17-ish years ago, there was video interview with Prof. Lindzen (Emeritus) , where Lindzen asserted that the world could not / would not get warmer, because Divine action protects this planet from such an excursion.   

    Has Lindzen changed views since then?  Or his "reasoning" ?

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  25. I seem to recall that Bill Gates and Steve Jobs did not have any peer reviewed papers on computer science when as teenagers they charted the future of computing and communications and folks invested millions into their unproved, non peer reviewed theories.

    I think it is healthy to get outside observation and critique from folks with good minds that may not be "set". One does not have to be a specialist or have studied the field all his life to ask why if none of the current models can accurately reproduce what has happened over the last century why should we have faith in their predictions for the next?

    And "faith" is what it is all about, because nobody can "prove" the future while in the present, but we can hopefully understand the present with results from the past... if we choose to pay attention to them, and that applies to far more than climate science.

    When folks accuse others of being "deniers" it means they themselves must be "believers", neither can prove their case with facts, neither can prove something will or will not happen in the future until the future arrives, meaning until then we are talking about religion and not science. "Show me a video of God and I will believe" vs "How could all of this come to be without Him?" If 99% of alleged scientists agree on something either it is no longer science or they are not scientists, it is either religion or they are evangelists.

    As a non-peer reviewed entrepreneur, renaissance man and pilot flying ABOVE clouds I have always marveled at the weather, the incredible energy conversion and transmission capacity of phase change and latent heat, for decades before Clauser came along I have been screaming about cloud reflectivity because I have seen it first hand... all that light beneath me is going back to space. 70% of the Earth's surface is water, from which clouds will form, temperature goes up, more clouds form, more reflection, less insolation.

    It's not rocket science, or even computer science, put a pot of water on the stove, no matter how high the heat the water temperature never gets above boiling. If what Al Gore said at Davos this year were true, that the oceans are boiling, presumably not just where magma is erupting, it would have defied the laws of physics and thermodynamics, it would be impossible to capture and retain such heat with the 100% cloud cover we certainly would have.

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  26. TWFA... Can you explain the scientific advancements made by Jobs and Gates that went contrary to the previous century of scientific research?

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  27. I suppose you are referring to advancements in "pure" science as opposed to "applied" science, or perhaps even need to explain to me just what your concept of "science" is. Gates and Jobs made advances in applied science, their accomplishments and the consequences obvious and without which all the prior advances in computer science would have remained in the lab the same way communications advances were locked up in Bell Laboratories until TPC (The Phone Company in "The President's Analyst) was broken up.

    Inconveniently for the masterminds, people actually have to live in a world with a combination of nature and applied science, unlike lab rats they have the ability to resist those who wish to experiment with their lives and livelihoods.

    So when you take theories in pure climate science and then try to apply it to, or at great expense or sacrifice impose it upon folks accustomed to individual liberty there are consequences, one of them being that, like a good doctor, you need to do a better job of explaining your diagnosis, prognosis and recommended treatment to your patients than simply proclaiming that all of you doctors know more about this than anybody else and you are all in agreement that the rest of us need psychotherapy or brain surgery.

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  28. TWFA... Okay, so... What were the advancements in "applied sciences" made by Jobs and Gates?

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  29. In the case of Gates, perceiving that a standard operating system as a hardware interface platform for multiple applications was one of the two keys to widespread adoption and utility of the technology, and with Jobs the GUI interface being the other, and he was just beginning. Prior to those two it was just "Big IT" with a monopoly market in main frame computers and application development, industrial process control and arcade games.

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  30. TWFA... Just so you know, those do not fit the definition of "applied sciences." As well, neither of the advances in computer applications are attributable to Gates or Jobs.

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  31. TWFA... Your previous post have been long and winding passages, so I'm trying to focus on your first claims. I would suggest here that your examples are both wrong and not applicable to the discussion of Clauser's claims.

    Neither Gates nor Jobs invented what you're attributing to them. Neither of these advancements in computer applications were counter to any previous foundational sciences from which they were assembled. 

    This is wholly different from Clauser, who is essentially dismissing well established science without the benefit of having done any research in the field. 

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  32. How is it not?

    Applied science is the use of the scientific method and knowledge obtained via conclusions from the method to attain practical goals.

    Let's not get into the weeds over definitions, let's try to convey meaning, and to head off the next point of argument, they didn't invent them, Gates had a contract with IBM for the PC, Jobs saw a GUI at 3M, but they certainly formed conclusions and they applied them.

    Now we have Al Gore and others who want to apply your conclusions upon the rest of us, like Gates and Jobs he has and others have profited immensly and have a vested interest in their experiment in climate control, but unlike Gates and Jobs if these folks have their way I will have no choice but participation in their experiment, just as if I had my way, wait for more data, they would be participating in mine.

    But there is no profit motive in mine, only preservation of my standard of living and those of my descedents until such time as the real world data and not just the modeled projections show it is clearly being being affected by our behavior and beyond the control of nature or chance... at which point you would need to do something about China, currently participating in both experiments at once via dirty manufacturing of green products at a profit.

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  33. TWFA, you are skirting around the issue ~ of whether John Clauser is "yer average emeritus fruitcake"  or whether he has achieved a brilliant Galileo-like stroke of genius . . . showing that all the prior scientific experts have been grossly wrong.   While I do enjoy reading your discursive philosophical/lawyerly rhetoric, nevertheless you are failing to discuss the matter logically.

    Please concentrate on whether Clauser is right or wrong about climate matters.  (And note that the planetary history indicates that he is essentially wrong in his suppositions about clouds.)   Do not dwell on whether Gore and/or Gates and/or China are offending your political identity issues or your personal economic-theory sensibiities.

    Waffling discursions are quite easy ~ for instance , you will be aware of Kuebler-Ross's famous Five Stages of Grief.   TWFA, you seem, climatically, to be showing the first two grief stages : Denial and Anger.

    Have you reached the Bargaining stage (in hoping that that Clauser is right, despite a mountain of evidence that he is wrong) . . . or even the Depression stage?   (Depression can indeed co-exist with the other stages of Anger etcetera.)

    Are you fearful that the Acceptance stage threatens to change your inner character of personal identity?   Personal change can be difficult for the ego to face up to ~ in the shorter run it's easier to keep in Denial.

    See ~ rhetorical waffle is easy-peasy.  And entertaining when it has an admixture of truth !

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  34. TWFA... When you say, "But there is no profit motive in mine, only preservation of my standard of living..." you're clearly not understanding that is inherently an economic motivation. Preservation of "your" way of life is a financial motive.

    Al Gore, on the other hand, has primarily made his money being a long serving boardmember for Apple, being a major partner in a large VC firm, and through the sale of a major media company he started. As far as I'm aware, Gore's motivations on climate change are merely to prevent extensive damage to the global environmental systems that support life on this planet.

    But, any discussion of motivations and/or Al Gore have absolutely nothing to do with the veracity of any of Clauser's statements on climate science.

    Please, let us know when you would like to actually discuss Clauser's statements.

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  35. TWFA... "they certainly formed conclusions and they applied them."

    Not to belabor an irrelevant point, but both took concepts and work from others (both paid for the rights) and leveraged them for their respective companies. I believe that would be business management, not applied science. The engineers they hired to further develop the software were doing a form of applied science.

    Oh, and it was Xerox Parc who developed the first GUI, not 3M (Minnesota, Mining and Manufacturing).

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  36. Without a time machine the answer as to whether Clauser or "everybody else" is right or wrong is not and cannot as yet be known, theory is not an outcome, consensus is not data, only measurement is, as Spock would say, "Insufficient data, captain".

    No, I am not claiming to be as intelligent or logical as Spock and you are not going to be able to insult or castigate me into agreement or silence. I and doubtless others do not find such an approach the least bit persuasive, and the biggest problem the experts have is being persuasive instead of dismissive.

    Whether you like it or not there will be other old geezers like me and Clauser who have only earned their advanced degress in ignorance through a lifetime of experience and observations of nature, people, their predictions and outcomes, most recently all the peer reviewed scientists and experts claiming that a vaccine, a mask and two weeks to flatten the curve was all that was necessary to bring things to a halt, but in my case a serial entrepreneur and inventor investing in my own ideas and predictions as well as those of others.

    We have learned that it is not the answers that make the case, it is the questions that precede them, and we know how to ask them. Do not dismiss the value of lay participation in an esoteric field, especially when it affects them directly, you never know where wisdom and breakthrough may come from.

    I mean, who would ever expect that a dumb playwright without an advanced degree in probability theory like Bernard Shaw could ever be able to explain it to the masses in a public debate of his day not unlike the one we are engaged in right here.

    However I am pleased to learn from you that we have some kind of recorded data of planetary cloud cover history, presumably from cave drawings forward, or perhaps Martian observations contained in journals carelessly left behind after landing and departing Nazca International Spaceport, instead of inferred or imputed data through a chain of supporting inferred or imputed data, and because the effects of cloud cover and weather is my primary area of interest I would appreciate links to that data.

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  37. TWFA... May I ask, do you even know what Clauser's claims are?

    I ask merely because you seem to be studiously avoiding addressing the merits any of them.

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  38. TWFA... "...because the effects of cloud cover and weather is my primary area of interest I would appreciate links to that data."

    Aside from your childish passage prior to this ask, there is a full body of research on cloud effects on climate. Perhaps you should endeavor to read the research instead of just assuming a preferred position.

    One key clue that cloud effects aren't going to save us is merely the fact that, over the past million years we can see (through all kinds of paleo records) that the earth has gone through numerous glacial-interglacial cycles. We know the pacing and forcings that drive those cycles. 

    So, think about it. If cloud/weather effects were capable of offsetting changes in modern climate forcings, why would it not have done so over the past million years?

    If what you're assuming were true, then we'd see no climate cycles because clouds/weather would always keep global temperature in equilibrium.

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  39. TWFA:

    There are mountains of evidence that climate science has predicted in the past that can be currently reviewed.  For example, climate scientists predicted that hurricanes would increase in force in the future.  Just yesterday the city of Acapulco was destroyed by a hurricane of greater force than any previously occuring in the East Pacific Ocean.  That was predicted in advance.  Hansen predicted the future increase in temperature in his testimony to congress in 1989.  His predictions have proven to be accurate.

    You are asserting that people who have correctly predicted climate change for the past 100 years cannot be believed in their predictions for the next 20 years.  Why do you think that scientists who have correctly predicted changes in the past will suddenly become unable to make correct predictions now?  For the most part the predictions of scientists have been correct.  A few things, like the increasing force of hurricanes, and sea level rise, have been underestimated by scientsts.

    The time when

    "until such time as the real world data and not just the modeled projections show it is clearly being being affected by our behavior"

    was reached decades ago.  The predictions made during the 60's and 70's have been validated by data.  You are claiming that we can never predict anything because we do not remember what was predicted correctly in the past.  The people at SkS remember the past projections and know that they validate the current projections.

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  40. Yes, Michael, and I can confidently predict that an even more powerful hurricane will someday top that one even if we are carbon neutral or dead, on the other hand I can state with equal confidence that at some time in the past a more powerful one hit Acapulco as well, there is no way one can prove that the one yesterday was "of greater force than any previously occuring in the East Pacific Ocean".

    Do you even realize how rediculous such a claim appears to be? Chance and time alone disqualify such a statement just as vastness and time assure there is life elsewhere in the universe, but neither can be proved without evidence. A CQ or TV signal of Hitler opening the '36 Olympics coming from Vega would be evidence, but proving something never happened, or something that but for reality would have otherwise happened, is extremely difficult, sort of like proving Schrödinger's cat to be alive or dead without opening the box. Until such time as we can open that box a larger hurricane in Acapulco in either the past or future will both exist and not exist.

    But moving on, one of the problems I have with all the models I have seen is that they appear to have been adjusted or tweaked to global surface temperature observations, which is not necessarily a flaw in their creation but possibly a failure in their useful application, and it seems to me that there must be some other data set those models could be run against, with and without the anthroprogenic forcing, basically turning it on and off and looking for the same results on a different sample set, which would clearly show the model works elsewhere, and possibly everywhere.

    Is it the lamp or the light bulb? Screw in another bulb from another lamp and see what happens, if it comes on it was the bulb, if still off it might be the lamp or both bulbs... unless the one you screwed in was hot, in which case it is the lamp. Pretty simple truth table, if the atmosphere and planet is heating up, so should the temperatures at 20,000' or 40,000', or even deep ocean temperatures, there should be plenty of data available at least for the former, weather balloons and PIREPs, it should track the models just as well and if not we would need to know why.

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  41. TWFA @41 :

    you are still skirting the issue (on-topic for this thread) of whether John Clauser's ideas fall into the common fruitcake category or into the solitary genius category.

    Overall evidence strongly favors the former  ~ but I am sure that your readers here would be interested to see if you have some actual support for the latter  category.

    Are you holding back, because you fear to expose the good Dr Clauser to ridicule?   Or even worse - expose him to redicule  [which I gather may be some form of red-shifted ridicule] ??

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  42. TWFA:  " of the problems I have with all the models I have seen is that they appear to have been adjusted or tweaked to global surface temperature observations..."

    This is a nice demonstration showing that you haven't spent any time at all seriously looking at climate models. You've merely made an assumption and make statements that support what you prefer to believe without ever taking a serious look at the data or reading the underlying science.

    Do you understand that Syukuro Manabe recently won a Nobel Prize precisely because his models from the late 1960's have been so accurate.

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  43. TWFA: "... if the atmosphere and planet is heating up, so should the temperatures at 20,000' or 40,000', or even deep ocean temperatures, there should be plenty of data available at least for the former, weather balloons and PIREPs, it should track the models just as well and if not we would need to know why."

    Each of these comments from you is a fascinating demonstration of how little you've actually looked at the science of climate change. There is published research on all these topics and there is a very broad, deep agreement across research fields that human emissions of CO2 are the primary cause of warming of the past 50 years.

    And the PIREP bit is espectially bizarre. Being a pilot myself I know what you're talking about, but you should also know that PIREP's tend to be few and far between. They're helpful but not reliable. In addition, those PROG charts you pull in to ForeFlight or download via ADS-B in, those are produced through the same models used for climate models. They're merely initial conditions modeling (weather) as opposed to boundary conditions modeling (climate).

    All this and still you have yet to say one word about Clauser's claims.

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  44. TWFA #41:

    "Yes, Michael, and I can confidently predict that an even more powerful hurricane will someday top that one even if we are carbon neutral or dead, on the other hand I can state with equal confidence that at some time in the past a more powerful one hit Acapulco as well, there is no way one can prove that the one yesterday was "of greater force than any previously occuring in the East Pacific Ocean"."

    One of the last dinosaurs standing: "I'm sure there have been worse asteroid strikes in the past".

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  45. Rob, with the PIREPs it was not bizarre at all, I was meaning for historical oceanic data that predates the modern technology, in my day position reports on HF always included wind and temperature. Attack, attack, attack... it's amazing.

    Anyway, you keep repeating the same thing, "You obviously are a numb-nuts who hasn't read anything, there are tons of studies and everybody is in agreement, get lost".

    I know how to read, have been reading clinical and technical papers all my life, I don't want to screen abstracts or read tons of studies, I am just looking for a few that have run the models against some mid tropospheric level data set, or deep ocean temperatures, or anything other than surface temperatures. You claim to be the expert, presumably you have read all the studies so you should be able to know right where to look, perhaps cite from memory. I am not the expert, but that does not make me a potted plant.

    I am not here to argue, nor am I here to cheer or circle-jerk, I came here hoping to learn, there are plenty of advocacy sites on both sides, lots of noise, I was hoping this was not one of them.

    There are two areas where I need more information, one is the whole cloud reflectivity and convective energy transfer process, and the other is whether the models we are relying upon work with data sets other than surface temperature, you can't have surface temperatures going up but everything else remaining the same and claim "the planet" is getting warmer.

    I have children and grandchildren who look to me for advice because they know I am an independent thinker who has done pretty damn well so far thinking independently, I am looking for information, not confirmation, if this site is just another cheering section I will be happy to move on, nothing new to learn here.

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  46. TWFA... What I'm trying to convey to you is, climate science is a complex topic and you need to spend far more time than you currently have to get a good grasp of what is happening. Instead, you're starting from assumptions and are merely grasping for arguments to support that position, without endeavoring to skeptically research the topics.

    "I am looking for information, not confirmation..."

    This is clearly not the case, though, being that everything you've stated or "asked" has been fundamentally based in rejection of the established science.

    Look, TWFA, there is a lot to understand about this topic. I am not an expert. But what I have done is taken the time to read a large body of the available research. There are many here on this site who are willing and capable of offering answers, but you're going to have to approach the subject with a little bit more humility and awareness of your current state of understanding.

    If you have real questions, ask them. But don't be offended if people here give you answers you don't want to hear. 

    For instance, when you say, "I am just looking for a few that have run the models against some mid tropospheric level data set, or deep ocean temperatures, or anything other than surface temperatures." This is exactly what I'm talking about. 

    Why would you dismiss surface temperature? What about mid-troposphere temps do you think is more interesting? There are plenty of articles on this site discussing those topics already. All of those articles reference the available peer reviewed science. 

    Every time I hear someone call themselves an "independent thinker" it raises a huge red flag for me. Why would you believe every climate scientist out there is not an independent thinker? Why would you assume the broad consensus on climate change isn't a product of independent thinking across a broad spectrum of experts in their relative fields? 

    In order to truly be an independent thinker you first need to inform yourself about the subject you're thinking about. Without doing that, you're merely a rejectionist. If you're offended at being told this, perhaps you're just looking for an easy exit.

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  47. On the PIREP's topic, the PIREP's themselves would be a terrible data source, just because they're sparse and inconsistent. But, I've always thought it would be a worthy research project to work with Garmin in order to pull ongoing data from airborne aircraft using their avionics. That might provide somewhat better coverage and consistency. Maybe.

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  48. It's not that I don't care about surface temperature, I care about whether the models for surface temperature have been applied to predicting temperatures above and below, a perfectly logical query.

    If we have a model that can replicate historical data there is a good chance it can predict as well, but if the models have only been devloped using surface data, adjusted to match history, then you should be able to take the exact same model and run it to replicate historical and predicted data for temperatures aloft or level of thermocline below.

    Sure the values and rate of response will be different, but the trends should not, and that is what I am looking to see. As you know, any temperature observtions at flight levels would be at pressure altitude and need to be corrected to true altitude. There are decades of oceanic route position reports, I seem to recall it was typically four or five on the North Atlantic tracks, probably there are double that on the Pacific, don't know if that data is in a silo somewhere or integrated into other, but it is historical and of interest to me.

    At one site on "the other side" they showed data that indicated temperatures aloft at 200 hPA have NOT been increasing above 1.7 per century but the models predicted 4-4.5, so of course ALL the models are crap.

    When I explained to them I would not expect them to if the readings were at pressure altitudes because I know from experience that unless there is a significant diversion from the standard lapse rate, weather, they will not... even if all the forests on earth were afire, at a 200 hPA pressure altitude of about 40,000' I would expect virtually no variation, and at 5,000' without including the world inferno lots of noise in the signal and would want to look deeper at such a data set to make sure it was as closer to standard atmosphere conditions as possible and corrected to AGL.

    As you can imagine, I got the same kind of crap there, what does it matter, I don't have a clue, all the studies studying all the models of the other studies show them all to be wrong, etc., etc. Nobody is right all the time, but nobody is wrong all the time either, even if they turn out to be right for the wrong reasons.

    So, my search will go on, if there is anybody else here who understands what I am looking for and has something to offer other than, "Get a PhD in climate studies, otherwise believe what we say" I would love to hear from you.

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  49. TWFA... "It's not that I don't care about surface temperature, I care about whether the models for surface temperature have been applied to predicting temperatures above and below, a perfectly logical query."

    Yes, this is a perfectly reasonable and logical query. So, pause right there before you move forward with any assumptions.

    The answer to the best of my understanding: 

    Yes, climate models are applied to the surface and up through the various layers of the atmosphere. Once you get above the surface you run into challenges with measuring those various layers. The surface has the advantage of extensive direct data, above that you have to rely on either balloon data (which is sparse) or satellite data (which is an indirect measure of temperature and actually poorly measures some layers, like the mid-troposphere). 

    For deep ocean models, I'm unsure. But I would imagine those would have little affect on shorter time scales and is more important measure as a longer term reservoir for accumulating heat energy.

    For sea surface or near surface modeling, there is a lot of coupling between the ocean and atmosphere, thus those are going to be inherent to climate models.

    The other important point to understand about climate modeling is that they are, as mentioned earlier, "boundary conditions" modeling.

    You can think of "initial conditions" modeling like the hurricane storm tracks you see on the news. We know where the model is and the models project the likelihood of where it will track over the following days.

    Climate models are different. What they're doing is running model ensembles. Essentially, they're doing longer term weather/climate runs, over and over, in order to see what the mean state is. As they say, "All models are wrong, but they are skillful." We're not asking models to tell us whether this year will be warmer or cooler than the last. We know that's inherently noisy. We're asking climate models to tell us, over time, how much warming we can expect to see. 

    Understand that? They're wrong because one model run will say next year is warmer and another will say it's cooler. But they are "skillful" because they can tell us, with a high degree of confidence, the longer term trend for the climate system.

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