Climate Science Glossary

Term Lookup

Enter a term in the search box to find its definition.

Settings

Use the controls in the far right panel to increase or decrease the number of terms automatically displayed (or to completely turn that feature off).

Term Lookup

Settings


All IPCC definitions taken from Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Working Group I Contribution to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Annex I, Glossary, pp. 941-954. Cambridge University Press.

Home Arguments Software Resources Comments The Consensus Project Translations About Donate

Twitter Facebook YouTube Pinterest MeWe

RSS Posts RSS Comments Email Subscribe


Climate's changed before
It's the sun
It's not bad
There is no consensus
It's cooling
Models are unreliable
Temp record is unreliable
Animals and plants can adapt
It hasn't warmed since 1998
Antarctica is gaining ice
View All Arguments...



Username
Password
New? Register here
Forgot your password?

Latest Posts

Archives

Climate Change and the Integrity of Science: a letter to Science

Posted on 8 May 2010 by John Cook

A letter Climate Change and the Integrity of Science has been published in the journal Science. It's written by 255 members of the US National Academy of Sciences, including 11 Nobel laureates (here's the complete list plus their university affiliations). I recommend reading the entire letter but here is an excerpt:

There is always some uncertainty associated with scientific conclusions; science never absolutely proves anything. When someone says that society should wait until scientists are absolutely certain before taking any action, it is the same as saying society should never take action. For a problem as potentially catastrophic as climate change, taking no action poses a dangerous risk for our planet...

... The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and other scientific assessments of climate change, which involve thousands of scientists producing massive and comprehensive reports, have, quite expectedly and normally, made some mistakes. When errors are pointed out, they are corrected. But there is nothing remotely identified in the recent events that changes the fundamental conclusions about climate change:
  1. The planet is warming due to increased concentrations of heat-trapping gases in our atmosphere. A snowy winter in Washington does not alter this fact.
  2. Most of the increase in the concentration of these gases over the last century is due to human activities, especially the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation.
  3. Natural causes always play a role in changing Earth's climate, but are now being overwhelmed by human-induced changes.
  4. Warming the planet will cause many other climatic patterns to change at speeds unprecedented in modern times, including increasing rates of sea-level rise and alterations in the hydrologic cycle. Rising concentrations of carbon dioxide are making the oceans more acidic.
  5. The combination of these complex climate changes threatens coastal communities and cities, our food and water supplies, marine and freshwater ecosystems, forests, high mountain environments, and far more.
Much more can be, and has been, said by the world's scientific societies, national academies, and individuals, but these conclusions should be enough to indicate why scientists are concerned about what future generations will face from business-as-usual practices. We urge our policy-makers and the public to move forward immediately to address the causes of climate change, including the un restrained burning of fossil fuels.

The scientists are the members of the NAS most familiar with climate science, as explained by lead signer Peter Gleick:

It is hard to get 255 members of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences to agree on pretty much anything, making the import of this letter even more substantial. Moreover, only a small fraction of National Academy members were asked to sign (the signatories are all members of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences but were not speaking on its behalf). Because of a desire to produce a statement quickly, the coordinators of the letter focused on those sections of the NAS most familiar with climate science and the ongoing debate. But the NAS (and Academies of Sciences and other professional scientific societies from dozens of other nations) has previously published a long set of assessments and reviews of the science of climate change, which support the conclusions laid out in the Science essay.

Lastly, here is a link to the National Academy of Science's Policy advice, based on science, to guide the nation's response to climate change.

0 0

Printable Version  |  Link to this page

Comments

Prev  1  2  3  4  Next

Comments 101 to 150 out of 157:

  1. tobyjoyce@97, Just a personal pet peeve of mine. The word "data" refers to a collection of multiple measurements, while "datum" is a single measure. So proper English expression should be: The first question a statistician asks is "How were these data gathered?" It is increasingly common usage I know...it just bugs the heck out of me to see it used on science blogs...you will seldom see this in scientific literature. Other than that I appreciate your comment.
    0 0
  2. I would like to add my support to those NAS scientists who have spoken out on the repeated attacks on science, and climate scientists in particular. They should also be commended for drawing attention to AGW and explaining the dangers and underlying principles to the general public. NAS, as a whole, supports the reduction of GHGs to minimize the impacts of AGW (including ocean acidification) See also for another statement on AGW which was released by NAS in 2007
    0 0
  3. Dikran Marsupial at 04:35 AM, despite your detailed analysis concluding "it is arguably the mainstream that is concentrating on the basics there" it seems that the mainstream have hitched their horse to the wagon that is based on a foundation of a high climate sensitivity. Not only is this most important pivotal question unresolved, not that you would think so given the strength of the assertions all dependant on a high climate sensitivity scenario, but it is increasingly appearing to be wrong with gathering evidence that low climate sensitivity may instead be the case, some such evidence soon to be published.
    0 0
  4. johnd, perhaps you'd like to provide a source for your contention that there is "gathering evidence that low climate sensitivity may instead be the case." The appropriate thread would be Climate sensitivity is low.
    0 0
  5. #100 johnd, I don't understand your point about land use effects multiplying forever. Plants take up CO2 as the grow, then release it again as they die (except for the small fraction of organics that get buried and geologically sequestered). You can't keep counting the loss of takeup unless you also keep counting the loss of release. Suppose you have a piece of land with forest, having a lot of woody mass. You burn the forest and pave over the land with concrete; no plants grow. You have released the C in the trees into the atmosphere, and the land is out of the carbon cycle. No plants there take up CO2 as they grow, but none release any as they die, either. After you account for the forest, the land has no further effect on the carbon cycle at all. If you burn down the forest and replace it with crops, the crops take up CO2 as the grow and release it every year. You count the woody carbon of the trees as a contribution to atmospheric CO2 and the yearly cycle is about a wash. On the other hand, if you plant a forest where there used to be cropland, you start to sequester carbon in the woody mass as the trees grow -- a net reduction in atmospheric CO2. In the very long term, of course, all the trees die and decompose, so its really net change in carbon mass of trees and other plant matter that counts. But of course we are changing things on a timescale that is short compared to the complete turnover of a forest. But however you count it, you only get a trend in CO2 from land use changes if there is a trend in land use changes. Or were you getting at something else?
    0 0
  6. Like Tom I too would like to see this ""gathering evidence that low climate sensitivity may instead be the case". Especially when the latest study concludes that climate sensitivity to CO2 has been understated by 30-50%.
    0 0
  7. Does anybody know how many were asked to sign?
    0 0
  8. regarding 51 Marcus and 74 Mal First of all like I said yesterday, I am fairly new here.I thought part of the fun of discussion was if you don't agree with what the other side says go research what they are saying and perhaps gleen insite into something new. My fingers have been flying looking up information as offered by the other side. Hmm well I promised Mr. Cook that I would keep my responses brief so I shall endeavor to do so. I would challenge Marcus on comments to plants needing a perfect environment to grow as nature and plants have been growing for eons without the help of mankind. Secondly I would challenge you to let your fingers do the walking of several collegiate Agriculture web sites and see what they have to say about pumping the equivalent of several thousand ppm of CO2 into their greenhouses because it helps the plants grow faster and heartier for sale. Even if man is the predominate cause of CO2 trees are growing back in exponential numbers in the rain forests where man has farmed and over harvested for years. Because the trees were cut down and there was an abundance of co2 locally the tree growth is growing explosively, I'll leave it to you to research that one. to save space in my comments
    0 0
  9. 74 Mal I'm assuming you are refering to the fact that the more one believes their story with gusto the more they are to have a stronger faith in their belief which continues in a looping effect? I'm assuming that you are trying to share the psychology of Cognitive adaptation and critical thinking skills rather than saying I'm totally bereft of emotional intelligence or critical thinking skills because young man if the latter were true that would be an Ad Hominem attack against me and well we know those are against the rules here. That wouldn't apply because I've put in countless hours of research and I'm not a skeptic because of any lunacy or hocus pocus belief system. So..... moving on
    0 0
  10. I was going to follow up to Mal Adapted's comment on Phil Jones but I think enough has been said about that email. I not only have lived in the Pacific Northwest for 30 years and in Alaska but I have followed temperatures throughout the United States, Canada, and the rest of the world. I've always been fascinated by Meteorology. In fact one of my best friends of many years is a retired scientist who worked for the US Weather bureau for over 30 years as a senior meterologist. Also one would assume from the second half of my name I am a student, not just from the school of hard knocks but of the collegiate level. Also if you're saying that all the contributors have been working on ACGW since it's inception of study in the late 50's I would like to see the background on every contributor here. I don't think that's neccessary as it's not very probable. I don't think one needs to have studied ACGW since the 50's in order to make a statement. If that were the case you would have to destroy this thread as it is focused on a scientific paper co authored by the senior author who happens to be a rock star. I'm sure he's very intelligent in his career (I for instance can't read a lick of music or play a guitar so I bow to his musical intelligence).
    0 0
  11. SkepticStudent@109: Heh, heh, that was quite a riff! We can see you're smart, now if you get humble, too, you'll be capable of learning something. I've got high hopes for you 8^)!
    0 0
  12. @ Mark R. The story I refer to is the Global Climate Coalition-an organization disbanded in 2002. An internal document from 1995-obtained via a court action-claimed, & I quote: "The contrarian theories raise interesting questions about our total understanding of climate processes, but they do not offer convincing arguments against the conventional model of greenhouse gas emission-induced climate change. Jastrow's hypothesis about the role of solar variability and Michaels' questions about the temperature record are not convincing arguments against any conclusion that we are currently experiencing warming as the result of greenhouse gas emissions. However, neither solar variability nor anomalies in the temperature record offer a mechanism for off-setting the much larger rise in temperature which might occur if the atmospheric concentration of greenhouse gases were to double or quadruple." For the source, go here: http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Climate_change_skeptics & read the section on "Skeptics Group Discounts Skeptics Arguments". Indeed, the entire article is great reading.
    0 0
  13. skepticstudent, I've answered your challenge about CO2's effect on plant growth in the comments on this thread: CO2 is not a pollutant. If you want to further discuss that topic, please do so on that thread.
    0 0
  14. Actually SS, as someone who *works* in the field of agricultural science, I've read a number of peer-reviewed papers which show the negative impacts of both increased CO2 & increased warming on the metabolism of many common crop plants (wheat, barley, sorghum, corn especially). The most common problem is that warming temperatures increase senescence-which leads to a decline in biomass. Problem # 2 is that increased CO2 concentrations lead to an increase in vegetative biomass-but a decline in seed biomass. Increased CO2 concentrations have also been shown to decrease the uptake of nitrogen & zinc-as well as other trace nutrients-by crop plants, thus making the plants less nutritious for humans or animals. Other studies have highlighted how many of the plants most suited to warmer, high-CO2 environments are classified as weeds, which will make agriculture more energy intensive. So you can see that there are many good reasons why humans shouldn't be pumping out so much CO2 & warming up our atmosphere.
    0 0
  15. Another point, SS, is that I suggest you read Guns, Germs & Steel. It points out very clearly how-& why-agriculture independently arose in only a very narrow band around the equator (around the Mediterranean & in Central America especially). Though agriculture is robust enough to survive somewhat outside of these *ideal* conditions, it does strongly suggest that the agriculture's tolerance for above average temperatures is limited-especially when coupled with low rainfall. If you don't believe me, then might I suggest you spend some time out here in Australia, & see first hand what years of global warming have done to hundreds of farming families. Sure, some have managed to hang on & eke out a living from the land, but it gets harder with every year. This fate will almost certainly be shared by farmers in many other parts of the world, but still the contrarians bury their heads in the sand.
    0 0
  16. I am not sure where to post this next question. If anyone has any ideas I'll repost it and it can be deleted from here. I am positing it here because this letter which is the focal point of this thread discusses several things including the need to do something now in order to avoid the crisis. I have been doing some serious thinking as to whether or not I could be wrong. This ability is the pinnacle of Critical Thinking and ipso facto proof positive in the lack of a Dunning Krueger issue. I have a question as to the reality and effectiveness of the global warming scare. I continuously use ACGW rather than AGW as Mal Adapted and others use because the seat of the entire global warming issue is the supposed direness of it, so I always use Anthropogenic Catastrophic Global Warming. Let us assume that the IPCC and other scientists are correct on the side of the warmists, and that 30 billion tonnes (European spelling) of CO2 which equates to roughly 2ppm per year in to the atmosphere. (As proposed by the IPCC not me.) So that puts us roughly give or take plus or minus at 15btn’s per ppm. (30 divided by 2 is 15 on either side of the issue) It is proposed that by 2101, (the beginning of the next century) the total CO2 output (by man or otherwise) will be roughly 468ppm and at 7trillion tonnes, and will cause a 7degree F increase in temperature by that time. Now if you take away the forcings and feedbacks that the warmists (not intending to be ad-hominem in nature I am just trying to avoid the use of the term alarmists as that seems ad hominem in nature) The beginning range that the warmist agrees on is 1 degree C increase by 2024, if you start adding the forcings and feedback by some warmist theory it should be as high as 20 degrees not 1 but let’s just go with the base 1 degree. So in the very nature of mathematics if you are talking a 7 degree F increase for 7 ttns it would be logical I believe to say that for 1 degree there would be 1ttns. If you were to divide 1ttn by 30btn’s it would take roughly 33 years without any CO2 for a 1 F degree drop in temperature. (I’m strictly going off accepted numbers from both the skeptic side and the warmist side.) Now would that really be possible without destroying virtually every nation on the planet and forcing mankind to live in deep underground tunnels and caves? Forcing a strict law forbidding trucks from delivery of goods to consumers (such as food staples etc…), forcing a strict law against airplanes from flying. All for 1 degree decrease in temperature? (or even 7 degrees F if you strictly follow the IPCC) Does this even seem reasonable given the IPCC’s own numbers. We would have to remove every human being from the planet for 33 years, stop all driving or flying. No hospitals, no factories in America or third world nations. Well that would go without saying as without humans who would drive or fly, who would need hospitals, who would be able to work in factories? Oddly enough I never see a discussion of this nature on this or any other warmist blog or website. I would have to ask why? Those numbers are pretty common knowledge, the math is not that difficult. I figured it out and I’m not the best or brightest of Mathematicians (I will gladly confess that I am no Steven B. Hawking or Albert Einstein). John I'm sorry this is so long but I didn't know where to break it up without losing the flow.
    0 0
  17. Marcus, your response would be an excellent addition to the thread CO2 is not a pollutant. Will you please post it there? Perhaps then your comment here will be deleted, thereby helping bring this now-chaotic thread back somewhat on track.
    0 0
  18. "trees are growing back in exponential numbers in the rain forests where man has farmed and over harvested for years." Again, SS, cite your source for this claim or stop making this claim in a repetitive fashion. I've done extensive reading on Rainforest ecology, & have read *nothing* about this miraculous regrowth. Indeed, the amount of CO2 contributed by deforestation is continuing to rise unabated, something which wouldn't be occurring if this miraculous regrowth of forest were truly occurring.
    0 0
  19. Tom re 133, Sorry sir, I was simply responding to I believe it was Marcus's comments on CO2 and plants. I get so excited some times that I forget to go looking for other blogs, as do many here apparently by the plethora of challenges to my comments. :-)
    0 0
  20. Tom, I don't have the specific articles here at my fingertips, but will be glad to seek them out at work and post them here.
    0 0
  21. Sorry, SS, but where has anyone mentioned dropping the temperature? As I recall, all people are talking about is reducing the amount by which temperatures are set to rise. Last I checked, the IPCC only gives figures on what kind of cuts to CO2 would be required-globally-to keep temperatures from rising by 2 degrees C by the end of the century. I believe the hope is that we can get to a point where we're annually only putting out as much CO2 as we were 20 years ago, & hope that nature can take care of it (remembering that the oceans are able to absorb 40% of human emissions above & beyond the natural emissions they already soak up).
    0 0
  22. Also, I'd like to put a 20% cut in CO2 emissions into some kind of perspective. Assuming that we continue to source the majority of our electricity from fossil fuels until the run out (& they will, sooner than we realise), then simply by increasing energy efficiency, in our homes & workplaces, we can achieve a roughly 20% reduction in the CO2 emitted from the electricity generation sector. In transportation, if we all chose to use public transport, car-pooling & tele-commuting for work-instead of driving 1-person-per-car every-day, then we could see somewhere in the order of a 20%-40% reduction in the CO2 emissions from the transport sector. My point is simply that the job of reducing CO2 emissions-even in the absence of a switch to renewable energy-is not as big a task as some people make out!
    0 0
  23. skepticstudent, RealClimate has a post with details along the lines of Marcus's response to you.
    0 0
  24. 62. monckhausen at 18:03 PM on 8 May, 2010 I must take you to task as to your ad hominem attack on skeptics... I daresay I have proven quite often in my comments here that I don't have me knickers in a twist.I have proven o'r and o'r that I have a very good sense of humor. In such a great amount that I have been taken to task by Mr. Cook himself and had several of my posts removed for frivolous comments. Such as the time that I made mention that I would buy a round of drinks for all the warmers here when Tiger Woods is able to play the Master's in short pants at the Anchorage Golf club in February. No sense of humor in deed. See Mr. Cook this is the very type of ad hominem account in such large amounts here that it shows a bias. Granted it is your blog but we should remove all examples of ad hominems if you are to remove mine.
    0 0
  25. 118 MARCUS, IN HONOR OF YOUR TENACITY DEAR SIR... For the other side: www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/mar/11/amazon-global-warming-trees In question of the otherside: http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/12/copenhagen-summit-seeks-climate-action/?hp http://www.eci.oc.ac.uk/news/press-relaeases/090210amazonia-dieback.pdf http://www.treehugger.com/files/2009/02/some-rainforests-are-regrowing-should-we-care-about-deforestation-anymore.php which is a discovery channel (well known for warmist sympathetic tv shows.) There are links to several other stories. http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE50B5CY20090112 (reuters is far more political neutral than most newswires globally)This is mostly about a story from two scientists, one of which is from the Smithsonian a typically pro warmist organization http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/30/science/earth/30forest.html I’ve seen about a hundred similar stories. Even though most third world rain forest dwelling tribes men and women don’t ever right pier reviewed journals, I think since they live in the forrest, they can speak to its returning. (not saying they’re stupid it’s just that a good majority of them have no written language still, no offense or ad hominem intended) However there are numerous respected scientists (the one from the Smithsonian included) that can and often do write peer reviewed papers In an effort to keep my responses as short as possible, while I could go further into bringing up my sources, I will stop at 5. While I got my information from other sources, I found these 6 articles via google search in roughly 30 seconds. If you wish further information on the subject I can bring out a large amount of it but I will leave it at this for now.
    0 0
  26. Marcus I'm getting tired and my eyes are growing weary, did I correctly read your question as to who cares about temperatures? Wouldn't that be the crux of the entire nature of the IPCC report that CO2 levels are causing temperatures to rise? Disagreements whether co2 follows temp levels aside, disagreements over the actual amount of temp increase aside, what is this all about if not about temperature levels. The point of my question was missed entirely apparently.
    0 0
  27. J Bowers @ 78: I'll take the bet. I'm sure John C will be the first to publicise the result. Stephen Baines @ 89: Kudos for standing up for the signatories. I don't agree with all you have to say but you're a gentleman. Your point about the involvement of social scientists such as economists is valid. However, I still find it hard to get my mind around the involvement of medicos and neuroscientists(though epidemiologists might get a look in).
    0 0
  28. Marcus – no one would want to see harm to Australian farmers or anyone else in Australia. The major fire which occurred in Australia and the drought there occurred almost 100 years to the day of a similar major drought and fire in Australia. Can that be laid at the feet of man expelled CO2? In honor of Australia and to prove my sense of humor I thought I would refer to the news of the odd bobkin… An Australian scientist says that global warming is to be blamed for a transsexual lizard. Tuatara ABC Catalyst 25 March 2004, http://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/stories/s1073835.htm Also Cold spell’s weird cause Sydney Morning Herald, 4 July 2006, http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/cold-spells-weird-cause/2006/07/03/1151779973599.html So which is it Marcus since 2009 had a nationwide cold snap in 2009 and the second coldest winter since 1950 is it global warming or regional cooling? Windmills to change local and global climates Live science 9, November, 2004 http://www.livescience.com/environment/041109_win_mills.html
    0 0
  29. re 84. 84.e at 02:57 AM on 9 May, 2010 I never said I was an expert. I don't know half of what you peple in here know. I have bowed to the wisdom of the people in here on numerous occasions. However in my line of work, I have had to work hard to devolop what you could call a BS sensor (Bad Science) I see things that I don't necessarily agree with on the sides of the warmists. I don't necessarily believe they have proven beyond a shadow of a doubt, which I believe they should do if I'm going to be taxed back to stonehenge by cap and trade. Many make the assumption based on my name that I am a young cub who hasn't learned much of anything in life. In reality I'm 50 years old. I just happen to be going to college currently. My education and science in general mean a lot to me. I have enjoyed studying science for many years. I believe that in some instances not all, that some are using science and education to further their political and monetary agendas. ( It could be said of scientists on both sides I'm sure, and if I find any I will speak out against them most harshly I assure you) One thing that really annoys me is when their science can't be debunked many on the side of warmists continuously bring up that some scientists have taken money from exxon and thusly should be disbarred from future discussion in the ACGW arena. Dare we ask how much money the major players on the side of ACGW are receiving from the US Government and from the IPCC? I recall reading one of the hacked emails which haven't been denied by the authors of said emails, only decried that the person should not have hacked their computers and published them... and in a later email Mann said himself that there is no use denying the emails, McIntyre and McKitrick are going to do what they are going to do whether we deny them or not! I've also read other emails where the scientists were bragging about their new offices and plush leather chairs received from grant money. In the last 10 years the US government has dropped nearly 2 trillion dollars to scientists studying ACGW. Should we really point fingers over 53 million spent by Exxon when we have a huge log sticking out of our own eye?
    0 0
  30. 93.Dikran Marsupial at 04:35 AM on 9 May, 2010 It's neither here nor there of course but after reading the papers of M&M from Canada I would not consider statisticians to be mere anything. There science is just as valid as climatologists. In fact statisticians should be better able than anyone else to tell if climatologists are staying true to the scientific method. And whilst we're laying fingers at one level of science over another, let's remember that Mann for instance is neither a climatolologist, meterologist, or paleo-ecologist. Yet his paper even still today gets high acclaim despite the wide ranging criticism it has received.
    0 0
  31. excuse me in regards to... 111.Mal Adapted at 13:06 PM on 9 May, 2010 I appreciate your sentiments. However if you took the time to get to know me you would realize that I am the humblest of people. I have overgrown some very major learning obstacles to arrive at a fairly high IQ. I am not trying to come off as an expert, merely someone who wants to get to the heart of the matter. Read my comments earlier as to why I feel so strongly about this.
    0 0
  32. Marcus at 13:56 PM, whilst your post remains on this thread I need to respond here also. I think you may be confusing the effects of years of global warming on farmers with the effects of regular but cyclic droughts. Although the droughts of the 1800's are not documented as well as those since the advent of TV, critical study will show the 1800's to be particularly drought prone, eased somewhat in the first half of the 1900's and followed in the next half century by perhaps the most favourable farming conditions ever since the arrival of the first fleet, with the mid 1970's being considered the wettest period ever since that arrival. In terms of fires, the worst ever in Victoria since settlement began, in terms of area burnt, occurred in 1851. It is well documented but often overlooked as are most that also occurred before the advent of TV in Australia.
    0 0
  33. SS @ 125. I followed those links - at least the 4 I could. There is nothing about CO2 effects on plant growth. Two stories actually reference another where two scientists are talking about how fast regrowth of tropical forests occurs secondary succession. So those three are really the same story. The other actually references a blog report on a discussion of the potential for sections of the Amazon to flip into a savanna state with further drying. That hardly helps your case, and it makes me grumpy. Look...the CO2 fertilization effect is well known among plant physiologists. It's incorporated in global C cycle models. But it long term effects on plants and the communities they belong to are complex and depend heavily on other limiting factors. It won't help species that are limited due to temperature requirements to mountain tops or the poleward limits of continents as climate warms. It won't offset the effects of severe dought stress or fire. You should really talk about this in the appropriate threads, and bring real references with you.
    0 0
  34. Poptech (from other thread), "The [Oregon]petition has never been debunked, ever." Not true, and you know it. Many legitimate and very serious concerns have been raised regarding the petition, you choose it seems to ignore them. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oregon_Petition http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05 http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2004/05/oregonpetition.php Also, a recent survey has found that over 97% of scientists who are actively involved in research climate research agree that AGW is a real and legitimate concern. http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/01 (see January 19) You also fail to recognize that all signatories of petitions are not, or should not be weighted equally. One Manabe or Santer or Hansen, for example, carry a heck of a lot more weight than someone with a BSc in say computing science when it comes to actually understanding the scope and depth of science involved in climate science, or the potential impacts on the biosphere. At the end of the day though, the radiative forcing of GHGs and climate sensitivity to doubling of CO2 (not to mention increasing other, more powerful, GHGs) do not care about petitions. You can, of course, continue to seek out those opinions and data which fit your belief system on this, but that does not change the integrated scientific understanding amassed in the last century, nor does it change the reality that the planet is accumulating energy because of a radiative imbalance caused by increasing GHGs. And that the effects of that energy imbalance (warming of atmosphere and oceans, Arctic ice loss, loss of ice from glaciers and ice sheets, longer growing seasons etc. etc.) are now clearly becoming apparent for all to see, if they wish to see. The concerns and statements made in the NAS open letter are accurate and supported by the observations and legitimate/credible science. What is also incredibly important about the letter is that they are calling those who choose to make cowardly attacks on science and scientists, and who are inciting people to take violent action against scientists (e.g., words of Beck, Limbaugh and Morano), to stop doing so. Many lay people have no idea how bad the situation is right now, so I for one, am glad that they have highlighted that very unfortunate fact.
    0 0
  35. #131 skepticstudent, "I appreciate your sentiments. However if you took the time to get to know me you would realize that I am the humblest of people." If that's the case, then I suggest you help us get to know your humble side. You could start by wondering, in all honesty, how likely it is that your arguments have not already been considered, with great care, by people who study this subject for a living. In addition to the normal peer review process, which is very rigorous, AGW has been subjected for decades to a huge amount of skeptical inquiry from people in a wide variety of fields, because of its political and economic implications. You may be the smartest person who has ever posted here, but even so, the chance that you're going to come up with a serious critique of the theory that hasn't already been counted, weighed, and found wanting by a significant number of scientists is vanishingly small. Your chance of making a really strong argument will improve if you take the time to learn the basics, and to understand not just the skeptics' arguments, but also the experts' rebuttals of the skeptics' arguments. A truly humble person should be able to understand that this is necessary not just to avoid making elementary mistakes, but also to avoid casting frivolous aspersions on the competence and honesty of scientists you've never met. I could consider myself the humblest person on the face of the earth, but if I suggested to a biologist that evolution never happened, despite having no serious expertise in the field, she would think that I was being very arrogant indeed. And rightly so.
    0 0
  36. Stephen Baines the articles that I cited had not much to do with co2 in general but as more of a hint. I mean after all so much of science and so much of the ACGW warmist point of view is theoretical and hypothetical and has not been proven, it is merely a point of view. There are other cases and studies on the point but as I was attempting to point out, there was not much effort put into being able to go find 5 stories about a faster than normal or faster than expected regrowth of jungle forrestation in the South American Rain forrest region. What is the one key factor in tree growth, aside from water, aside from sun? I will leave it to the august body of scientist in this blog to come to their own conclusions. As has been stated and I would daresay not argued by AGW warmists is that trees absorb and hold co2 if they absorb and hold co2 it would go to reason that if there is a tremendous amount of co2 in south america because there hasn't been any trees soaking it up over the last 20 years or so, that if new tree growth is growing in large numbers that it would be to the CO2 principle of plant growth. You may have missed the intitial cause for my posting those links. It wasn't to prove anything about CO2 at all, other than the obvious that I didn't even need to mention that co2 makes trees grow... It was in response to Marcus asking me on 2 different occasions to give evidence of my statement that trees are growing back quicker than normal and in vast quantities. I would daresay that I proved my case quickly and efficiently by bringing up 5 evidenciary postings in less than 60 seconds. I don't really feel that it is fair to attack me from two fronts when I was merely answering to one question from one person, I never said that those links were anything to do with CO2, merely that Marcus asked me for proof of major growback in the rainforrests of South America.Once again I would say this post is quite the undelicate ad hominem attack. For a place that doesn't like Ad hominem attacks there sure are quite a few of them being thrown my way over the last couple of days, um no actually since yesterday when I posted the first 6 posts in this thread.
    0 0
  37. Philla, No offense but as I mentioned yesterday, I don't believe that the warmist side has satisfactorily debunked the skeptic side in all areas. Also as I said if a man comes up to me stark naked I'm not going to tell him, wonderful new suit joe, no I’m going to tell him he's bloody naked. I believe the points of the letter that started this thread have been disproved. Many of them three ways to Sunday. I have been called on the carpet for an Ad Hominem attack on the Mann paper. I don't care what anyone here thinks I believe that it was truly shot full of holes by the M&M paper and even some of the senior warmist scientists have made comments of a similar nature, yet it still continues to be a focal point of the IPCC. I have not only read the Mann paper, I have read the IPCC 1, 2, and 4th assessment as posted by the IPCC. I'm not just idly making comments without reading the enemies point of view (I use that term loosely not that I consider you bright minds as the enemy per se). Many of the comments in this blog bring up the same comments over and over, doesn't make them correct, just oft repeated. 23% of the world polled in the last 2 years still say they believe that the earth is flat. There have been people saying the earth is flat for a couple millennia, does that mean I close my eyes to their nonsense and let it slide? In Galileo’s day there were many older more experience scientists that thought Galileo was wrong, He was in the minority. Bernstein and Woodward were inexperienced journalists and they took on Watergate. Am I comparing myself to Galileo or Woodward and Bernstein? No. I have read numerous “peer reviewed” papers in journals. I have also stepped behind the scenes to see who the reviewers were in some instances. They were people that had either written previous papers with the author(s) or were in current process of writing a paper with an author(s). I believe there is something to be said for conflict of interest. In fact to prove myself right I read a paper by a renowned author and reviewer from Dartmouth who said that it should not be that that ever occurs. Now have all warmist papers been reviewed and approved by their fellow authors and friends? No but far too many of them have been. As to authors from the other side far too many of them have been denied journalistic publishing after publishing on numerous occasions. The only reason for denial was the editor said the reviewers didn’t believe it was to be published and never gave further evidence or opportunity to read what was wrong with their paper or make corrections, If you chose I can bring up evidence of at least one case of the latter. So am I going to believe everything I read blindly at face value simply because it was “peer” reviewed and published in Nature, Science, or New Scientist? No I have to confess I am not. Doesn’t mean I’m going to stop reading them however. If for no other reason I find a lot of what is published in Nature or Science to be fascinating. So don’t assume I haven’t read the “other” side. I firmly believe that one should not speak out for either side unless one has read extensively from both sides. The very reason I’ve seen Al Gore’s movie and read Mr. Hoggan’s book and numerous other articles from the side of the Warmists.
    0 0
  38. Phila @135, well stated! I think the following sentence may succinctly describe the problem at hand here (from #136): "so much of the ACGW warmist point of view is theoretical and hypothetical and has not been proven, it is merely a point of view." Nothing could be further form the truth as evidenced by the volumes of scientific literature on the underlying theory of AGW going back over 100 years, not to mention both surface-based and space based observations and other overwhelming empirical evidence all pointing to AGW. What is also telling is that one, of course, can not "prove" unequivocally that enhanced GHGs cause warming, anymore than one can prove unequivocally that smoking causes cancer. IMO, the author of #136 needs to seriously contemplate the implications of the quoted statement before harshly judging and cavalierly dismissing the science and empirical evidence in support for AGW. Even, Lindzen and Spencer agree that AGW is real. They believe that climate sensitivity is very low. They have, however, been unsuccessful in demonstrating that CS is as low as they believe. Lindzen has tried, but his work has not held up to close scrutiny/critique by his peers (e.g., Lindzen and Choi 2009). IMHO, the NAS statements stand.
    0 0
  39. re marcus 114 I think we should worry about new regulations coming from the codex alementarius which will require radiation of all foods and allows for numerous chemicals that have been shown harmful to man by farmers and ranchers than CO2 which has been at much higher levels in the past and the same plants that were around then are here now and they didn't mutate or become endangered.
    0 0
  40. 139 if you'll read post 137 you will see the reason for my comments in 136 and they were very well thought out, laid out and dispensed with. If one can't believe for a minute that one's side could possibly be wrong. Especially when 3/4 of the "peer reviewed" Emperical evidence has been reviewed by the chums of the author rather than pure peer review of un biased reviewers and editors (while that is getting harder and harder to do in the polarization of 2 sides on this subject) then I don't think one is truly thinking scientifically to the detriment of future science. If the academia laid down to the feelings of Einstein simply because he was a good scientist (of course at the time they thought him a basket case) then we would have never learned the thousands of things we have learned about space exploration or any number of things since then. Far too much of the "peer reviewed" work which is being lauded as empirical study far too many time falls short. If all the people on this post want to do is hear from each other and only from those that never question their points of view then how are they to be challenged and have the rough edges removed from their diamonds of science?
    0 0
  41. skepticstudent at 16:25 PM, an examination of any coal seam will confirm the connection between CO2 and prolific tree growth. For trees made up of about 50% carbon to be transformed into coal, sufficient moisture must be available to create a wet environment where fallen trees are unable to decay due to low levels of oxygen. This lack of decay then also limits the amount of nutrients including carbon available for recycling by new growth unless they were leached from the submerged trees, which obviously the carbon was not. CO2, high levels of moisture and warmth would indeed seem to be the major drivers of tree growth.
    0 0
  42. I would also humbly disagree that there is over 100 years of empirical acgw study. perhaps 30 at the most and I would stand on my soap box and say that most of that is not empirical.
    0 0
  43. Persistent unsubstantiated claims don't add value to any thread. "2008 had the 3rd coldest winter since thermometers were created in 1775." Winter 2007-2008 (la Nina peak): 0.27 C above the 1951-1980 average Winter 2007-2008 Map: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/do_nmap.py?year_last=2010&month_last=3&sat=4&sst=1&type=anoms&mean_gen=1203&year1=2008&year2=2008&base1=1951&base2=1980&radius=1200&pol=reg Winter 2008-2009: 0.49 C above the 1951-1980 average Winter 2009-2010: 0.66 C above the 1951-1980 average and the 2nd warmest on record (behind 2006-2007 winter) http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata/GLB.Ts+dSST.txt "Temperatures have been continuously declining since 1999." ??? http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/wti/from:1999
    0 0
  44. I am at a total loss how anyone could even remotely construe anything Glenn Beck has ever said as "go out and beat up them there bad guy scientists!" I have watched Glenn Beck since before Obama's camp started a boycot parade against him. I have never seen him say go beat up a global warming scientist. Hmmm wouldn't that be construed as not only an ad hominem but a vile case of libel?
    0 0
  45. Albatross at 16:57 PM, Spencer has a paper about to be published, it is currently being printed, that analyses 9 years of satellite data and concludes that indeed the climate sensitivity is low. Should make interesting reading, it apparently did get a good going over by the peer review process in order to be accepted for publication.
    0 0
  46. SS you said in #108 above. "Even if man is the predominate cause of CO2 trees are growing back in exponential numbers in the rain forests where man has farmed and over harvested for years. Because the trees were cut down and there was an abundance of co2 locally the tree growth is growing explosively" The idea being the increasing CO2 offsets negative effects of climate change. To which Marcus and Tom Dayton responded regarding effects of CO2 on plants, the latter pointing you to a very good set of posts on the subject with refs from the scientific. You then, in response to their comments, posted the links I looked at. I think I was being fair expecting a link between CO2 and plant growth in them.
    0 0
  47. @skepticstudent at 17:16 PM on 9 May, 2010 The good Glenn said "There are not enough knives for "dishonoured" scientists to kill themselves". Rush Lumbaugh told Andrew Revkin (a NYT columnist and blogger) to "just go kill yourself". Given the obvious popularity of Beck and Lumbaugh, do you think this type of violent rhetoric creates the best atmosphere for a rational discussion? Perhaps you might enlighten us as to reason for this form of hate-speech directed at scientists, and whether you think it good for science in general? This is one of the reasons why 255 scientists felt obliged to write the letter under discussion. Glenn Beck Hatespeech
    0 0
  48. #137 skepticstudent "I don't care what anyone here thinks I believe...." Well, if that's your approach, and you intend to stick to it at all costs, regardless of any facts that are brought to your attention, then there's really not much more to say. To me, the statement "I don't care what anyone here thinks" is totally incompatible with humility and skepticism, and thus with science itself.
    0 0
  49. @scepticalstudent #137 Well, if you have read all the papers and still think global warming "has been disproved 3 ways to Sunday", there is not much we can do for you here. Personally, I though the M&M paper had long since been debunked, but you are entitled to your opinion. I think you idea of what science is all about is not very realistic. Galileo is not a good example, because in his day what we now call "science" did not really exist. Scientific disputes are not for the faint-hearted, but are usually confined to journals and conferences. It is unusual for scientists to come under such media assault as has happened recently. Evolution and AIDS denialism are the only precedents. If I can point out (as John recently quoted Naomi Oreskes), there are "multiple lines of converging evidence supporing the scientific theory of AGW". While denialists have cherry-picked at issues within each line of eveidence (the hockey stick, Arctic ice etc.), there is no rival theory or body of scientists to explain the evidence for Global Warming simultaneously (temperature, ice, CO2 level, sea level, ozone hole, and others). If science is "inference to the best explanation", there is no other "better explanation" out there.
    0 0
  50. johnd, offtopic here but let me throw my two cents on what Spencer wrote in his blog (we really need to read the paper though). Spencer still keeps using monthly variation. While this is not wrong in principle, it only accounts for the fast response part of the climate system. This will obviously underestimate the overall sensitivity.
    0 0

Prev  1  2  3  4  Next

You need to be logged in to post a comment. Login via the left margin or if you're new, register here.



The Consensus Project Website

THE ESCALATOR

(free to republish)


© Copyright 2020 John Cook
Home | Links | Translations | About Us | Privacy | Contact Us