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Climate Hustle

IPCC Draft Report Leaked, Shows Global Warming is NOT Due to the Sun

Posted on 14 December 2012 by dana1981

This post has been re-published by The Guardian

Alec Rawls, an occasional guest poster on the climate contrarian blog WattsUpWithThat who signed up to review the upcoming Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Report (as anyone can), has "leaked" a draft version of the report and declared that it "contains game-changing admission of enhanced solar forcing."  This assertion was then repeated by James Delingpole at The Telegraph (with some added colorful language), and probably on many other climate contrarian blogs.

If the IPCC was to report that the sun is a significant player in the current rapid global warming, that would indeed be major news, because the body of peer-reviewed scientific literature and data clearly show that the sun has made little if any contribution to the observed global warming over the past 50+ years (Figure 1).

contributors 50

Figure 1: Percent contributions of greenhouse gases (GHGs), sulfur dioxide (SO2), the sun, volcanoes, and El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) to the observed global surface warming over the past 50-65 years according to Tett et al. 2000 (T00, dark blue), Meehl et al. 2004 (M04, red), Stone et al. 2007 (S07, green), Lean and Rind 2008 (LR08, purple), Huber and Knutti 2011 (HK11, light blue), Gillett et al. 2012 (G12, orange), and Wigley and Santer 2012 (WS12, dark green).

So why would the latest IPCC report contradict these studies when its purpose is to summarize the latest and greatest scientific research?  The answer is simple — it doesn't.  Rawls has completely misrepresented the IPCC report.

Cosmic Source of Confusion

The supposedly "game-changing admission" from the IPCC report is this:

"Many empirical relationships have been reported between GCR [galactic cosmic rays] or cosmogenic isotope archives and some aspects of the climate system...The forcing from changes in total solar irradiance alone does not seem to account for these observations, implying the existence of an amplifying mechanism such as the hypothesized GCR-cloud link."

This statement refers to a hypothesis of Henrik Svensmark from the Danish National Space Institute, who has proposed that galactic cosmic rays (GCRs) could exert significant influence over global temperatures.  The GCR hypothesis suggests that when they reach Earth, GCRs (high-energy charged particles originating from somewhere in our galaxy) are capable of "seeding" clouds; thus at times when a lot of GCRs are reaching the Earth's surface, more clouds will form.  Clouds generally have a cooling effect on the Earth's temperature, because they reflect sunlight. 

So the hypothesis goes like this: high solar activity means a strong solar magnetic field, which deflects more GCRs away from Earth, which means less cloud formation, which means less sunlight is reflected away from Earth, which means more warming.  This GCR-caused warming would amplify the warming already being caused by increased solar activity.  Conversely, cooling from decreased solar activity would hypothetically be amplified by more GCRs on Earth, more clouds, more reflected sunlight, and thus more cooling.

It's important to note that so far virtually all scientific research on GCRs has shown that they are not effective at seeding clouds and thus have very little influence over the Earth's temperature.  In fact, as Zeke Hausfather has noted, the leaked IPCC report specifically states this:

"...there is medium evidence and high agreement that the cosmic ray-ionization mechanism is too weak to influence global concentrations of [cloud condensation nuclei] or their change over the last century or during a solar cycle in any climatically significant way."

But more importantly in this context, even if GCRs did influence global temperature, they would currently be having a cooling effect.

Solar Activity is Down, Greenhouse Gases are Up

Rawls also provides the following quote from the IPCC report (emphasis added):

"There is very high confidence that natural forcing is a small fraction of the anthropogenic forcing. In particular, over the past three decades (since 1980), robust evidence from satellite observations of the TSI [total solar irradiance] and volcanic aerosols demonstrate a near-zero (–0.04 W m–2) change in the natural forcing compared to the anthropogenic AF increase of ~1.0 ± 0.3 W m–2."

The term "radiative forcing" refers to a global energy imbalance on Earth, which may be caused by various effects like changes in the greenhouse effect or solar activity.  A positive forcing will result in warming temperatures, while a negative forcing will result in cooling.

Here the IPCC is saying that since 1980, the sun and volcanoes have combined to cause a slightly negative global energy imbalance, which means they have had a slight cooling influence on global temperatures over the past three decades.  Indeed, solar activity has decreased a bit over that timeframe (Figure 2).

Figure 2: Global temperature (red, NASA GISS) and Total solar irradiance (blue, 1880 to 1978 from Solanki, 1979 to 2009 from PMOD), with 11-year running averages.

As we would expect, lower solar activity including a weaker solar magnetic field has translated into a slight increase in GCR flux on Earth (Figure 3).  Note that on the left-hand axis of Figure 3, GCR counts decrease going up the axis in order to show the relationship with temperature, since fewer GCRs hypothetically means fewer clouds, less reflected sunlight, and higher temperatures.

cosmic rays vs temps

Figure 3: Global average surface temperature (red, NASA GISS) vs. GCR flux on Earth (blue, Krivova & Solanki 2003), with 11-year running averages.

So, if GCRs really do amplify the solar influence on global temperatures, since 1980 they are amplifying a cooling effect.  In fact, GCRs reaching Earth recently hit record high levels (Figure 4), yet temperatures are still way up.

Figure 4: Record cosmic ray flux observed in 2009 by the Advanced Composition Explorer (NASA)

Physical Reality Intrudes on Rawls

Rawls has argued to the contrary by claiming that the climate is still responding to the increase in solar activity from the early 20th century, and that GCRs are amplifying that solar warming from over 60 years ago.  This argument is simply physically wrong.  As Figure 2 illustrates, when solar activity rises, temperatures follow suit very soon thereafter.  In fact, during the mid-20th century, solar activity and global surface temperatures both flattened out.  Are we to believe that the planet suddenly began responding to the pre-1950 solar activity increase in 1975—2012, after not warming 1940—1975?  The argument makes no physical sense.

On top of that, the hypothetical GCR process is a relatively rapid one.  Cloud formation from GCR seeding should occur within days, and clouds have very short lifetimes.  For GCRs to have a warming effect, solar activity must be increasing right now.  It is not, in fact solar activity has been essentially flat and slightly declining in recent decades.  Changes in solar activity from 60+ years ago have no bearing whatsoever on GCRs today.

IPCC Shows Global Warming is NOT Solar

To sum up,

  • The leaked IPCC report states that there may be some connection between GCRs and some aspects of the climate system.
  • However, the report is also consistent with the body of scientific literature in stating that research indicates GCRs are not effective at seeding clouds and have very little influence on global temperatures.
  • Solar activity has been nearly flat and slightly decreasing in recent decades, meaning that if GCRs do amplify solar influences on climate, they are amplifying a cooling effect.

The body of peer-reviewed scientific literature is very clear: human greenhouse gas emissions, not solar activity or galactic cosmic rays, are causing global warming.  The leaked IPCC report is entirely consistent with this conclusion.  In fact, in attempting to argue to the contrary, Rawls has scored an own goal by showing that if anything, GCRs are currently amplifying a solar cooling effect.

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Comments 1 to 50 out of 115:

  1. Why do the arguments being put forth on Watt's site remind me of articles in "The Onion" now?
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  2. In a way, this is precisely the "climategate" model: gain access to information that is not yet publicly available; sift through looking for useful bits; trumpet those bits out of context, relying on the target audience to buy it hook, line, and sinker without ever reading the original context. By the time AR4 WG1 is out, the meme will be so entrenched in the (alas, not so critical) minds of the target audience, it will take them years to self-correct. Indeed, when AR6 comes out and dismisses GCRs, they'll probably claim it's a fraud because AR5 said (according to their opinion-making intermediaries) it was, in fact, GCRs.
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  3. DSL @2 - true about the same Climategate model, but remember that Climategate 2.0 failed to make any impact because climate realists got out ahead of it and put the information in the correct context. That's what we're trying to do with this post, and would appreciate it if readers would spread the word. Let's get the correct information out there and debunk the myth before it gains any traction.
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  4. One thing to note is that Rawls signed a confidentiality agreement in order to become an IPCC reviewer. In doing so, he falsely declared that he had relevant expertise in climate science. Now, however, he finds it convenient to release the draft, thereby being in breach of his contract with the IPCC. He gives two reasons why he was morally compelled to do so:

    1) The IPCC has indulged in massive "omitted variable fraud" by not discussing the effect of the Sun, and particularly of the strength of the Sun's magnetic field on the Earth's climate by modulating the cosmic ray flux; and

    2) Because the IPCC discussed the effect of the cosmic ray flux on the Earth's climate.

    That's right! Rawl's reason for being in breach of promise is that the IPCC both did, and did not discuss cosmic rays.
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  5. I'm expecting this will kick up a pretty good frenzy among those who will take absolutely any claim they can get the AGW is false without evidence or critical though. Those of us actively engaging in debates on the subject will likely have our hands full dealing with this nonsense

    (Sigh) Once more unto the breach, dear friends
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  6. Tom: [Rawls] gives two reasons why he was morally compelled...

    That's nice; endorsement from skeptics that "moral compulsion" is a rationale for lying. It's absolutely true there's a formal case to be made for lying in certain circumstances, even though it does not exculpate perpetrators of wrong-doing.

    Of course this means skeptics should retract their hysterical, self-righteous screeching over Peter Gleick, if they're to be consistent. Which begs the question, in what way is consistency really the hobgoblin of a small mind?
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  7. The leaked text does not contain anything remotely new, yet those in denial somehow distort and exaggerate the facts in their minds into something it is not.

    Those who deny the theory of anthropogenic global warming (AGW) are incredibly desperate, and this latest fiasco by yet another radical and morally bankrupt fake skeptic just reeks of desperation. "Anything but greenhouse gases" is their mantra, and it matters not one iota to them that the other factors they trumpet as being the supposed "last nail in the AGW coffin" are oftentimes not even physically based, run contradictory to each other, are implausible, of little consequence or even simply fabricated.

    Those in denial are so incredibly scared of the facts and truth and the IPCC's upcoming fifth assessment report, that this is apparently the only way they can deal with their cognitive dissonance and ideology.

    On another note, so now what does the IPCC do with the conspiracy theorist Mr. Rawls? They likely have more pressing and important matters to deal with than giving the likes of Mr. Rawls the time of day.

    Those in the denialosphere trumpeting this should be ashamed, but I realize that they know no shame and have no scruples.
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  8. Andrew Revkin from the NYT dotEarth blog has linked back to this article with the comment "The Web site Skeptical Science has deconstructed, and largely de-fanged, the idea there's something big here."

    So thanks Dana. Your comment @3 is on the money.
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  9. I think it's important to make the point very clear to those in denial that, "this leaked draft is not yet AR5".
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  10. Well done for the rapid response, Dana.

    The similarity between this incident and the selective quotation of the "Darwin's Eye" passage by evolution deniers is striking.
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  11. Steve Sherwood and John Cook interviewed on ABC Radio

    But Professor Sherwood is scornful of the idea that the chapter he helped write confirms a greater role for solar and other cosmic rays in global warming.

    STEVE SHERWOOD: Oh that's completely ridiculous. I'm sure you could go and read those paragraphs yourself and the summary of it and see that we conclude exactly the opposite, that this cosmic ray effect that the paragraph is discussing appears to be negligible.

    OppositeGate? ReverseGate? CluelessGate?
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  12. Excellent summary.

    Question 1:
    What was Svensmarks 2009 prediction for global temperature?
    Question 2:
    Now, three years later, what is the current global temperature in the deniers favorite dataset, the "skeptic" run satellite based UAH AMSU (Channel 5)?

    Svensmark has been remarkably quiet for the last few years. For good reason.
    The desperation of the deniers is getting pathetic. Problem is that they are getting lots of traction over here in Europe, as we are entering the 4th winter in a row with major Arctic blasts and very cold temps. (Nobody made note of near record warm November temps).
    Also funny how the deniers no longer quote their "own" UAH dataset, but instead quote CRU, a dataset "they" proved "fraudulent" in the "climategate" nonstory. Could it be because CRU does not include most of the Arctic, thus neglecting the absolutely mindblowing warming up there.
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  13. Went to WUWT to look at the article under the headline:

    "IPCC AR5 draft leaked, contains game-changing admission of enhanced solar forcing"

    Then downloaded and read section 7 and read 7.4.5.

    Given what the IPCC authors have written in the report there is just no justification for that headline unless, somehow, "many empirical relationships have been reported" actually means, "many empirical relationships have been shown and proven".

    Which from the last paragraph it pretty obvious that the authors didn't mean that.

    My take on it would be that its an article on a popular skeptic site designed mainly for their target audience of already committed denialists to keep up the outrage quotient.
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  14. I could be mistaken but these deniers can trawl a vast document and then misinterpret or just lie about one tiny bit and with a great flourish claim they have proven another 'fact' that brings down a self consistent edifice based on scientific principles. I would not poo on them as it may give them some relevance. Unfortunately the MSM eats their poo and then regurgitates it without a nasty taste in their collective mouths! Bert
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  15. The Human Factor- the trend, if there is one, tends towards publicity. A few months ago I did a little online research about bottom feeding denialists including Omnologos - who joined the big boys with his 28gate BBC research and had 1000 hits on his profile []. Rawls is a failed rightwing economist desperate for attention so it would surprise me if he set out to do the leak from the start. Setting up a denial website is easy and requires little actual work or writing skills so I think some have seen the success and kudos of WUWT and try and duplicate it.

    This attention seeking and desire to pick up any kind of loyal following is illustrated by James Delingpole: despite recycling the same stories [agw conpiracy-green fascist conspiracy- and wind turbines are evil- UN conspiracy] each and every week he sells his blog, books and gets fairly regular t.v. appearances and even bookings. For a struggling writer or economist [for instance] such a lifestyle is attractive.
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  16. I take it that WUWT-ers, Delingpole and other fake skeptics are now touting IPCC reports as reliable sources (even though they don't understand them)?
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  17. bjchip # 1: That's a nice take. WUWT becomes a parody of itself? From Bob Loblaw over at Tamino's site: Fa[c]t free physics? Is that like diet physics? Zero calorie physics? [Cold fusion fits there, I think.] Physics Lite? Looks and tastes like physics, with none of the facts! Ahh, that pesky physics...
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  18. sout, *if* and as *long* as it serves their purpose of disinformation: on this, they've, as we scientists say, really screwed the pooch.

    Once it is shown to them how *badly* and utterly *incorrectly* they've misinterpreted AR5, you can stake your fortune on the fact that they will go right back to excoriating the IPCC as the evil genius behind us "warmists."

    Cue Daniel Bailey with a graphic of Mike Myers, pinkie to lips....
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    Moderator Response: [DB] Fixed text.
  19. @18 vroomie,
    Still, it should be fun in the meantime to point out to any UN conspiracy theorists that they are now taking the IPCC at their word. May result in a few good head-exploding moments
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  20. The plot of the 11-year rolling average Solar Activity in Figure 2 shows a lot more decline when more recent years are added. The Frohlich and J. Lean data to Jan 2012 gives a latest 11-year average of 1365.65 (which would be on a level with the loop of 'p' in "temperature" in fig 2), a value not seen since the 1930s.
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  21. @Dana1981 #3
    I'm afraid you're a bit late on this one. It's going to be almost impossible to un-spin this story into obscurity because there is just too much uncertainty and hedging in this draft report, never mind the Solar angle =\
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  22. Hank... Uncertainties and hedging is what science is all about. That is what happens at the cutting edge of knowledge.

    What is NOT uncertain is whether solar accounts for the warming of the past 50 years. It doesn't. No ifs ands or buts. Rawls just flatly misinterpreted what he read. ...Or more accurately, he selectively interpreted what he read, dismissing large passages and conclusions, in order to craft a conclusion he preferred. Confirmation bias at its finest.
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  23. It’s important that every time anyone in denial refers to this as ‘the leaked IPCC report’, or, ‘the leaked AR5’, they’re told very firmly that these are just drafts and that the real AR5 will not be available until September 2013. I completely agree that it’s best not to be cajoled into discussing the supposed content.

    Second: look out next September for those in denial looking for differences between these drafts and the published AR5, and trying to use them to show… well, anything really that diverts attention away from the fact that there’s even more evidence to indicate that the world is warming and it’s caused by humans.
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  24. John Russell,

    Yes. Now, if they correct the wording on the quoted section to make Rawl's confusion less likely, they'll scream that it's a conspiracy to hide the truth that was plainly stated in the draft.

    You can't "win" with them. No matter what is said, how or where, they will twist it. It's a bit maddening. It's like wrestling snakes, covered in butter, in a jello pit.
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  25. I think Hank is referring more to semantics than the specific case at hand; IPCC expresses itself w/what a lot of folks will see as diffident and inconclusive language.

    For the IPCC it's an asymmetry problem; the right way to say these things in science-speak inherently sounds a bit mushy to the lay public. In the hands of people w/bad faith the scientifically "right" way to describe research is potentially disastrous. IPCC absolutely must adopt the scientifically valid way to speak and so has an inherent weakness when it comes to idiotic "debates."
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  26. "You can't "win" with them. It's a bit maddening. It's like wrestling snakes, covered in butter, in a jello pit."

    I like that one, Sphaerica: unlike the one about a wildcat and a hot stick of butter, I *can* use yours in polite company...;)
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  27. Further to doug_bostom's points, @25, the IPCc reports, by *design*, have to be carefully constructed such that OPEC countries, like Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Iran, Iraq, and Kuwait, will sign off on the various ARXs. Not only is science inherently conservative, you toss that fact on top of that, and it's AMAZING the IPCC gets these things out as *often* as they do, and as conclusive of the main points.
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  28. Funded Denialists know that their unpaid Denialist believers will not look at the actual report: and they know that will be the case. The object is to delay mitigation efforts, and for the USA the tactic is working.

    Lying Denialists: is anyone surprised?
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  29. Again I must thank the denialists for pointing me to such valuable documents..I had not seen the draft reports.

    I quickly debunked cosmic ray-ism with glance at a chart on page 80 of:

    (it seems like many, many years ago that I learned of desmogblog, Oreskes, and Hansen - all by the loud croaking of denialists... backhanded thanks)
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  30. Is the cite (Link) for figure 3 of "Krivova & Solanki 2003" correct, following the link to came to a paper on solar irradiance but no mention of cosmic rays.
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  31. panzerboy @30 - the link and reference is correct, see their Figure 8.
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  32. Dana1981 @31, Thanks, that's what happens when I search for text (Cosmic Ray) in a scanned pdf. Doh!
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  33. Rob @22
    Whilst it's NOT uncertain whether solar caused the last 50 years of warming, it's also NOT certain that humans caused the last 50 years of warming.

    Say what you will about graphs such as that in figure 1 of this article, those studies don't quantify ALL natural and anthropogenic sources, only subsets. One may have ENSO but miss AMO. Another may have the AMO but miss the PDO.

    I think we will find the reality is most definitely somewhere between 100% natural or 100% human. Fingering humans for all the recent warming is as ludicrous as fingering solar. Both sides fall for THAT trap.
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  34. Professor Sherwood again. This time interviewed by New Scientist and making the obvious point.

    The most interesting aspect of this little event is it reveals how deeply in denial the climate deniers are," says Steven Sherwood of the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia – one of the lead authors of the chapter in question. "If they can look at a short section of a report and walk away believing it says the opposite of what it actually says, and if this spin can be uncritically echoed by very influential blogs, imagine how wildly they are misinterpreting the scientific evidence.
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  35. Indeed, well said by Sherwood.

    brr @33 - you're missing the distinct possibility that more than 100% of the recent warming is anthropogenic (i.e. that natural influences are in the net cooling direction). But I'd put my money on something close to 100% anthropogenic warming over the past ~50 years.
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  36. Can you advise why the graphs in figures 1 and 2 don't include years later than 2000?
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  37. Apologies I should have written Figures 2 and 3
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  38. Ray, look closely. Look at the increments. The answer for the blue line in fig. 3 is in the caption.
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  39. brr, you sound like a merchant of doubt. Somewhere between 100% natural and 100% anthro? That would require the falsification of the greenhouse gas effect. Solar de-coupled from surface temp fifty years ago. It had been tracking surface temp fairly well prior. See Pasini et al. (2012) and other attribution studies. Solar has been flat or falling for fifty years, and we just went through the deepest 11-year cycle trough in the instrumental period, yet global ice mass loss actually accelerated during that time. ENSO and AMO are not sources of energy. At best, you could argue that El Nino is moving energy stored long ago, but you're going to have to provide a mechanism that works. Unless you like long odds and hanging out at the far ends of error bars, AMO lags surface temp.

    What other mechanisms are you proposing for the source of the trends in surface temp, OHC, and global ice mass loss?
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  40. dana @35
    Possible, but not exactly likely. You'd have to argue that natural forcings are highly negative then, including certain feedbacks that AGW requires to be positive. Like I said, reality says it'll be somewhere in between.
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  41. I was just reading through the draft of the upcoming AR5 linked to earlier. Here’s a quote from the draft that tells us the latest scientific consensus thinking on causes of warming.

    Quantification of the contributions of anthropogenic and natural forcing using multi-signal detection and attribution analyses show it is extremely likely that human activities (with very high confidence) have caused most (at least 50%) of the observed increase in global average temperatures since 1951. Detection and attribution analyses show that the greenhouse gas warming contribution of 0.6°C–1.4°C was very likely greater than the observed warming of 0.6°C over the period 1951–2010.

    Taken together with other evidence this indicates that it is extremely unlikely that the contribution from solar forcing to the warming since 1950 was larger than that from greenhouse gases. Better understanding of pre-instrumental data shows that observed warming over this period is far outside the range of internal climate variability estimated from such records, and it is also far outside the range of variability simulated in climate models. Based on the surface temperature record, we therefore assess that it is virtually certain that warming since 1950 cannot be explained by internal variability alone.

    Note the use of the words “very high confidence”, “very likely”, “extremely unlikely” and “virtually certain”.
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  42. Ray @36 - Figures 2 and 3 do extend beyond 2000. They don't extend further because they're 11-year running averages. Cosmic ray data in Figure 3 also comes from a 2003 paper.

    brr @40 - no, anthro accounting for >100% warming would only require a slightly negative net natural forcing, which is quite plausible over the past half century.

    SoundOff @41 - good to see the IPCC getting attribution right, i.e. noting that the net anthro contribution is >50% of warming, and the GHG contribution is >100% since 1950.
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  43. Thanks DSL and dana1981 it'll teach me to pay much greater attention to the captions in figures
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  44. Great visuals from the SkS team once more. Nothing makes the case like a good clean visual representation of data.
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  45. "You'd have to argue that natural forcings are highly negative then"

    Sorry, why do you think that? See the IPCC report for breakdown of all the forcing, anthropogenic and natural. Anthropogenic are both postitive (GHG) and negative (aerosol, land use change) but not a lot change in any natural forcing (eg slight increase in solar, very very slight decrease in milankovich forcing).

    Evidence for the manmade cause comes from multiple sources (models validation from forcing, direct measurement of the increased radiation on surface and attribution of that, lack of any other explanation).
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  46. In regards to those climate change proponents, I'd say are fairly pathetic in that they don’t let everyday humans decide for themselves if it’s true. Those proponents refuse to understand the concept of attaching themselves to bureaucracy which will tax or make people bend to their will, is appalling.

    There will always be arguments as to who is wrong and who is right in the climate change debate. The real truth will ferret out the public’s course of action, not from edicts or laws passed by politicians. When one side attaches themselves to that they are already going down the wrong side of the rabbit hole.

    How many times have people been lied to by politicians, that they hold the whole grail in the solution of things? It’s December 2012 in America and why aren’t we seeing the benefits of Nafta, and Gatt, passed in 1994, since they were supposed to be the next best thing since sliced bread? The road to hell is paved by the path of good intentions.

    It’s this distrust that should drive the proponents away from this resolve. Look at Einstein’s special theory of relativity, he published it and let it be. He didn’t get politicians involved in making people like or accept it. If the scientist really cared about people, then care about people and leave politics out of the equation.
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  47. ajason, while I appreciate some of your sentiments re politicians, your analysis is flawed in several ways.

    1. You assume that everyday humans are going to be immune to the rhetorical force of opinion-makers and their employers. These opinion-makers are highly effective in situations where everyday humans do not have the time, energy, means, and/or training to read the science and come to their own conclusions. Surely you know people whose political expressions could be mistaken for plagiarism of a popular pundit's talk show transcript.

    2. The real truth? The real truth for an everyday human occurs when that human's empirical context is significantly changed over a period of time long enough to convince the human that the change isn't temporary. All other evidence arrives mediated in some way by other humans. If science is correct, then the real truth will arrive when we're already committed to the worst outcomes, because the real truth has to fight against the guiding hands of the opinion-makers (the infinitive "to convince" then becomes the key element in the above formulation).

    3. I'm certain the Koch brothers have the best intentions, according to their own ideology. I'm certain that they think their corruption of the democratic process is a necessary evil to further human progress. I'm certain that Al Gore and James Inhofe have the best of intentions according to their own ideologies. Not sure about Morano. You want to do something about politicians? Teach the public how to think critically, create conditions where they are motivated to do so, and encourage open, non-hostile dialogue. That may require some fundamental changes, because, again, most people don't have the time, energy, training, and/or means to engage the science of just climate (among all of the other pressing issues).

    4. Relativity isn't rapidly stressing the biosphere. This is a pressing issue. Though if I recall correctly, Einstein didn't leave alone relativity in one respect: the bomb. I recall he was quite vocal in his disgust that his fellow humans would use his scientific contribution to kill each other and generally make each other miserable.
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  48. ajason @46 - try listening to scientists instead of politicians. They're the ones who are really alarmed about climate change. I'm not sure why you're talking about politicians at all, since this post is about a scientific report.
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  49. Even as a skeptic unqualified in science the solar paragraph looked wrong to me so not really surprised. But what was a surprise was the summary of the rest of AR5 by Roger Pielke here. Not wanting to put the cart before the horse they seem to have made pretty much a total U turn, with most expectations of extreme weather etc pretty much quashed. The full report can be downloaded for those with the time and disk space, but no reason these quotes wouldn't be genuine.
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  50. Dana, could you redo those graphs with a temperature dataset other than NASA GISS? The reason I ask is because I suspect you may see a much better correlation if you do. That NASA GISS dataset is a bit extreme for the temperature. Most temperature graphs I see show a peak in about 1998, with a gentle decline since then. This NASA GISS shows nothing like that.

    I don't think you have faithfully conveyed the message in Rawls' submission. There was great import to what he had to say about the chapter 7 admissions, but you reported none of this. It was as though your intent was to obfuscate his message.

    Here are his bombshells, for the benefit of your readers:

    "The Chapter 7 authors are admitting strong evidence (“many empirical relationships”) for enhanced solar forcing (forcing beyond total solar irradiance, or TSI), even if they don’t know what the mechanism is."


    "This analysis, where post-1980 warming gets attributed to the human release of CO2 on the grounds that it cannot be attributed to solar irradiance, cannot stand in the face of the Chapter 7 admission of substantial evidence for solar forcing beyond solar irradiance. Once the evidence for enhanced solar forcing is taken into account we can have no confidence that natural forcing is small compared to anthropogenic forcing."


    "The report still barely hints at the mountain of evidence for enhanced solar forcing, or the magnitude of the evidenced effect. Dozens of studies (section two here) have found between a .4 and .7 degree of correlation between solar activity and various climate indices, suggesting that solar activity “explains” in the statistical sense something like half of all past temperature change, very little of which could be explained by the very slight variation in TSI. At least the Chapter 7 team is now being explicit about what this evidence means: that some mechanism of enhanced solar forcing must be at work."

    And finally:

    "The admission of strong evidence for enhanced solar forcing changes everything. The climate alarmists can’t continue to claim that warming was almost entirely due to human activity over a period when solar warming effects, now acknowledged to be important, were at a maximum."
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