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    More than 100 comments found. Only the most recent 100 have been displayed.

  • Models are unreliable

    Eclectic at 20:06 PM on 20 March, 2022

    Bob Loblaw @1302  -  thank you.  It is a while since I looked at the background info on Dr Roy Spencer.  The SkS  info on him is from 2012, and the Desmog info goes up to 2017.   ( I do see Spencer's UAH  monthly chart always gets featured on the WUWT  blogsite, and draws many comments of a vacuous sort.  Other global temperature charts get little mention there . . . and oceanic warming is almost tabu. )

    Spencer has to keep backstepping from his original position of total AGW denial (including the "minimal warming" assertion).   And he has stepped even further back since 2017, and is now admitting (quietly) that it is possible the majority of modern warming comes from manmade GH gasses.

    No such admission from that other celebrated contrarian climatologist Dr Judith Curry.   On her blog [ClimateEtc] her latest article, posted 17 March, titled:  "A 'Plan B' for addressing climate change"  . . . is classic Curry vagueness.  The reader risks almost drowning in discursive verbiage ~ which in essence kind of boils down to:  We should be doing nothing to counteract Global Warming because it is all too difficult (and too mild) and should probably be given a priority way, way below all the other problems that we face in this world.      (And of course we cannot tackle more than one problem at a time.)

  • 2022 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #7

    Eclectic at 11:47 AM on 27 February, 2022

    Santalives @19 ,  it is always a fine day for me when I come across two good jokes in a day.    (A) The first is that you say you've read "nearly every one of the [over 200]  Climate Myth and many of the comments."   And how you felt that the comments were not arranged by date.   Thank you for your personal revelations in these matters.   Difficult to top.

    (B) The second joke: was the David Coe et al., paper which you linked to @ WattsUpWithThat  blogsite.   Hilarious.   Even your paper by the good professor Koutsoyiannis looks half-way sane in comparison.

    Santalives, sit down and put your thinking cap on.   As Philippe Chantreau [above]  says, the Coe paper is wildly . . . wildly . . . inconsistent with everything that's within arm-reach of conventional climate science.   IIRC, only the good Lord Monckton has ever come out with a similar figure to Coe's ultra-low 0.5K figure for total climate sensitivity to CO2.   And Monckton seems to produce  new & wildly high/low ECS figures annually (but with a strong bias toward Zero).

    Now, I've looked through the WUWT  assessment of the Coe paper.   Not encouraging, at all.   As usual, a number of commenters there deny that CO2 absorbs radiation and/or deny that there is any GreenHouse Effect whatsoever.   At my own time of writing [>80 comments]  no expert scientist has appeared to make comment at WUWT .   Especially no climate scientist.   Yes, that is the usual lofty standard of scientific analysis at WUWT .

    #  However, Santalives, if you scroll down to a couple of comments by Rud Istvan [an intelligent & well-informed guy, if you make allowance for his bad case of motivated reasoning on climate] . . . you will find he shows that some semi-respectable "contrarian" scientists such as Judith Curry and Richard Lindzen give a climate sensitivity of 1.1 - 1.2 for CO2 alone [without the large additional feedback from H2O ].

    'Nuff said.   The Coe paper you mentioned is simply garbage.    Santalives, please remember the acronym GIGO  ~ where sometimes you see the Garbage going In . . . and sometimes (e.g. with Coe et al., ) you see the Garbage coming Out.

    #  Oh, Santalives, I did come across a joke yesterday :

    "My math teacher really hated negative numbers.  Hated them.  He would stop at nothing to avoid them."

  • The New Climate War by Michael E. Mann - our reviews

    Philippe Chantreau at 04:17 AM on 10 June, 2021


    You just reiterated the points you made earlier.

    Uncertainties have not been represented inadequately in the IPCC reports. Cloud feedbacks have always been at the top of the uncertainty ladder.

    You are sliding toward the very behavior you condemn by saying the CMIP5 models run "too hot." In reality they run slightly warmer than observations, and slightly is even generous. There is plenty of good posts on that RealClimate and even here showing how well within models' expectations the observations have been. The cloud feedback underestimation has not prevented actual temps of increasing beyond .15 degC/decade. Everything considered, the models have performed remarkably well, even the old ones. Describing it as "too hot" does exactly the same as what all the sides you accuse of taking liberties with the facts do.

    I'll add that over-emphasizing uncertainty is Judith Curry's preferred method of manipulation and it is every bit as bad than anything done by so-called alarmists. It is a free pass for do nothing or slowly do a little, neither of which are adequate.

    I can understand the pressures and imperatives that a business like Exxon has to reconcile. The state of their knowledge, and the remarkably reasonable tone in most of the old documents (see the wayback machine link) are so far removed from the propaganda they pushed that your excuse falls short. Why such an immense disconnect? Sure there was significant uncertainty in 1979. Less so in 1989. Much less in 1999. All the uncertainty that could justify not seriously starting a transition was gone in 2009. Exxon kept on pushing the same narrative, and still does, through the same actors. 

    I do not disagree that, if one wants to understand the science, the message coming from activist organizations is often not helpful. I do not disagree that some have a wholefully unrealistic perception of the difficulty of a full energy transition. The energy transition we are faced with is a major undertaking. Both the magnitude and urgency of it have been made far worse by the decades of inaction caused by the fossil fuel backed opinion campaigns.

    As for myself, I strive to be reality-based and firmly believe that no option should be off the table, except those whose range of consequences can not be well assessed )atmsopheric geo-engineering comes to mind). I am not opposed, in principle, to nuclear. I believe that existing dams that can produce electricity and allow to store water should be kept. I think that enhanced geothermal deserves more attention. I also know for sure that a world in which the pursuit of more profit at any cost all the time is the main driver is a world doomed to fail.

  • Dr. Ben Santer: Climate Denialism Has No Place at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

    Jim Hunt at 21:04 PM on 27 May, 2021

    Eclectic @17:

    I selected a different quotation from Mark Boslough as my favourite in a recent review article:

    Most of the technical mistakes and misrepresentations in “Unsettled” may simply be attributable to Koonin’s trust of those advisors and lack of rigorous independent verification.

    "Those advisors" being John Christy, Judith Curry, and Richard Lindzen.
    Plus an informative infographic from his suggested source:


  • 2021 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #19

    MA Rodger at 01:43 AM on 12 May, 2021

    Jim Hunt @12,

    I think you missed a trick in your interchange with Judy @ClimateEtc on the subject of Koonin & Arctic Sea Ice. Judy chips in "If you think that the consensus is that this decline is 100% caused by AGW, then you disagree with the IPCC SROCC report (which estimates ~50%). Very weak base for criticizing Koonin."

    But come on,  Judy is just flying arround on Occam's broom.

    So I think the reply should be "Judy, have you read IPCC SROCC and the references it bases that "est ~50%" on?  I ask because if you had, I think you would be less quick with your "very weak base" comment."

    IPCC SROCC says "Approximately half of the observed Arctic summer sea ice loss is driven by increased concentrations of atmospheric greenhouse gases, with the remainder attributed to internal climate variability (Kay et al., 2011; Notz and Marotzke, 2012) (medium confidence).  ...   A lack of complete process understanding limits a more definitive differentiation between anthropogenic versus internal drivers of summer Arctic sea ice loss (Serreze et al., 2016; Ding et al., 2017; Meehl et al., 2018)."

    So at first cut, the ~50% value appears to be based on some rather old references. Of these references, Kay et al (2011) which provides a 40%-50% value says "The conclusions we draw are only as reliable as the underlying climate model processes," which isn't the sort of finding you would lay great store by. Their conclusion is "Thus, consistent with early studies, this [study] should be seen as another reminder of the need to account for internal variability in the assessment of recent sea ice loss and the fidelity of global climate model simulations."  It is thus not a reliable quantification of the contribution of internal variability.

    And Notz and Marotzke (2012) basically says that internal variability is not the cause of the post-1979 trend in SIE decline. "1. Internal variability as estimated from pre-satellite observations cannot explain the recent retreat of Arctic sea ice. 2. The observational record shows no signs of self-acceleration and hence no signs of a possible ‘tipping’. 3. The satellite record is well described by a linear trend onto which internal variability is superimposed. The magnitude of this superimposed internal variability is very similar to that of the pre-satellite record. 4. The most likely explanation for the linear trend during the satellite era from 1979 onwards is the almost linear increase in CO2 concentration during that period."

    Of the later references, Serreze et al (2015) says nothing on the subject,
    Ding et al (2017) is saying the internal variability is being driven by sea ice loss in a two-way street [so this is AGW creating internal variability] and comes up wiht a 30%-50% value, while Meehl et al (2018) suggest the extra oomph in Arctic SIE decline 2000 is due to forced tropical SST.

    So I see nowhere any reason to dismiss half the 1079-2020 SIE loss as being due to one of Judy's wobbly trends.

  • 2021 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #19

    Eclectic at 00:34 AM on 12 May, 2021

    Jim Hunt @12  :-

    Well congratulations and bravo, Jim, for your multiple comments in the Judith Curry blog (Post titled:  Climate book shelf , on 10 May 2021).

    Your droll ironies were entertaining/enjoyable.  Such as: "It seems safe to assume that Dr. Koonin has heard of NASA ... [which is mentioned] once in the body of the book."

    Meanwhile the "opposition" [the usual suspects] were parading themselves in typical form.  Such as Turbulent Eddie's face-palming fatuosity about arctic maxima/minima.  Others were in good form too ~ one stating the certainty of massive cooling due in the coming century or two.  While another stated that the present arctic warming was, yes, caused by humans . . . but even in the absence of humans, the same amount of warming would have occurred in a few decades' time anyway!   Others were deeply into "cycles" explaining all climate variation . . . yet they never seem to understand that there must be an underlying physical cause of every variation (cyclic or otherwise).

    In some ways, Curry's blog "ClimateEtc"  is more fun than the proverbial barrel of monkeys.   But it is partly rescued by sane contributions from JH, Willard, and the very deft Joshua, plus some (erratic) others.

    Curry herself (and likewise Koonin, who uses a partly similar style) is like a magician making a stage presentation.  Rhetorical vagueness and obfuscation, like smoke and mirrors.  All designed to keep the audience's attention away from the physical realities.

    Yet overall so far, the deniosphere's response to the Koonin book is somewhat more muted than I expected.

  • 2021 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #19

    Jim Hunt at 20:01 PM on 11 May, 2021

    Eclectic @10 - "[Koonin] took a rather aggressive/persistent attack on the mainstream position."

    Allegedly that has now changed. I'm endeavouring to point this out to the thick skulled denizens at Judith Curry's blog, but they seem incapable of taking this message on board:

    It seems that I need to repeat myself very slowly.

    1) On page 21 (of the Kindle edition) of Prof. Koonin’s magnum opus it states:

    "Along with its comprehensive AR series of assessments, the IPCC also publishes more focused special reports, such as those on Extreme Events, the Ocean and Cyrosphere (sic), or Climate Change and Land."

    followed on page 22 by:

    "The assessment reports literally define The Science for non-experts. Given the intensive authoring and review processes, any reader would naturally expect that their assessments and summaries of the research literature are complete, objective, and transparent—the “gold standard.” In my experience, the reports largely do meet that expectation, and so much of the detail in the first part of this book, the science story, is drawn from them."

    The final clause should of course read:

    Much of the detail in the first part of this book, the science story, is cherry picked from them."

  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #35

    KR at 23:10 PM on 14 September, 2020

    Re: Eclectic and the reference to bad arguments at Judith Curry's blog:

    I'm greatly amused in that article on the Ethical Skeptic and the attempt to claim global warming is due to geothermal effects to see Willis Eschenbach (long time contributor to WUWT, primarily with ad hoc and unsupportable math) as a major dissenter, pointing out that the blog post is simply unsupportable. 

    When other climate denialists weigh in loudly noting your argument is bad, it's really bad. 

  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #35

    Eclectic at 01:30 AM on 13 September, 2020

    Gseattle ,  it seems you are failing to think sufficiently rationally about planetary ecosystem degradation.   Yes, your "gofundme campaign"  suggestion to rescue a few species . . . is flippantly amusing.  But you seem to mistake an accountant's numerical approach as being adequate for an overall assessment.

    You are right that the IUCN has looked at only 120,000 species for extinction risk assessment ~ with 30,000 marked as "threatened".   Yet the IUCN has still to assess a million species.  Perhaps several million.  If it ever gets around to completing such a large project.

    The whole situation has a fuzzy uncertainty of numbers, but it would be moronic to take a complacent view of extinctions and worldwide ecological balance.

    In this and other matters, I recommend you visit Dr Judith Curry's "ClimateEtc"  blogsite []  for both good & bad examples of rational/irrational thinking.   ( I advise you avoid Curry's recent "Open Day" comments column devoted to political commentary ~ where The Usual Suspects really opened up in mouth-frothing form, almost reaching the depths of a typical average WattsUpWithThat  commentary.)

    And possibly you may wish to avoid a new article of Curry's , where she praises "The Ethical Skeptic"  blog and its proposition that our modern global warming has been caused by an increase in geothermal heat.   I hope this is a giant leg-pull by Curry . . . for if it is not, then she is veering even further from the path of scientific sanity.

    But the main value in Curry's blogsite, is the appearances of Nic Lewis.    Gseattle, you can learn a lot from observing how Nic Lewis confuses statistics versus realities.

  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #35

    Eclectic at 19:16 PM on 11 September, 2020

    Gseattle @35 ,

    it is important to think logically & scientifically about the problems being examined ~  without having the numbers distract you away from critical thinking.

    Go to the IUCN website, and you will read that the IUCN does not  state the total & absolute numbers of species extinctions as being 869 (or similar number).   The IUCN gives various caveats about why  the true number of extinctions must be far larger than the number you have mentioned.   Which should have been obvious to you !

    To examine the "distractions" further, I strongly suggest the examples to be found on Dr Judith Curry's blogsite ClimateEtc.   Go to ClimateEtc  and look up Nic Lewis as a salient example.   Lewis is a good statistician but a poor scientist.  

    A contrast (found elsewhere) is "Tamino", who is good at statistics and  good at scientific thinking.

    The proper purpose of statistics is to illuminate  the science of the underlying realities of this universe ~  not to obfuscate the scientific approach to understanding nature.

  • Models are unreliable

    Deplore_This at 07:47 AM on 5 July, 2020

    @Tom Dayton 1230

    Alright, I’ll simplify this. How to I evaluate the following claim without relying on someone else’s opinion? (I’ve already read the IPCC reports).

    “There is growing evidence that climate models are running too hot and that climate sensitivity to carbon dioxide is at the lower end of the range provided by the IPCC. Nevertheless, these lower values of climate sensitivity are not accounted for in IPCC climate model projections of temperature at the end of the 21st century or in estimates of the impact on temperatures of reducing carbon dioxide emissions.”
    -— Judith Curry, the former Chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at my alma mater

  • Models are unreliable

    Deplore_This at 15:00 PM on 4 July, 2020

    @ Eclectic, @Bob Lowlaw, @Philippe Chantreau, The moderator

    Your sophomoric comments memorialize your lack of credibility and reflect poorly on all of the proponents of this website and to some extent to the entire climate science profession. Your adolescent giddiness that you can slander me and the moderator will strike my response that challenges your opinion demonstrates that in your little sandbox here you are not practicing science. If Judith Curry was your Professor I’m sure she’d be embarrassed at your unprofessional and juvenile behavior.

    From my perspective your behavior here demonstrates that she is right “We've lost a generation of climate dynamicists. These are the people who develop theories and dig into data on the system and really try to find out how the system works. We've ceded all that to climate models, and the climate models are nowhere near good enough. The climate models were designed to test sensitivity to CO2. They don't even do a very good job at that…we've lost a generation of climate dynamists, and that's what worries me greatly.”

    And in the end, you’ve all failed to answer my question so what is your reason for being here.

    Good day.

  • Models are unreliable

    Eclectic at 06:36 AM on 4 July, 2020

    Deplore_This , yes everyone with reasonable climate knowledge has heard of Dr Judith Curry ( and I myself visit her blog several times a month . . . it's a sort of upmarket version of WUWT  blog ).   Dr Curry's commentary is an excellent object lesson for those who wish to exercise their critical thinking!    She is one of the very very  few climate-contrarian scientists (a dying breed, it appears).

    Now, I notice your rapid-fire uploading of long posts at 1:23 AM and 1:24 AM and 1:25 AM.    Clearly these were pre-selected & prepared to go, and were not really a response to Scaddenp.

    And as you say: "... I've read criticism of the validity of ..."    And there is the nub of your problem, Deplore_This.

    The internal evidence of your many posts, is that you have not bothered to learn the fundamental science of climate yet.  Once you have done so, then you will be able to (A) make an informed decision whether or not to attempt the various complexities of climate modeling (with or without access to a supercomputer)

    . . . and (B) see right through the ludicrous nonsense of "the 500" scientists you mentioned

    . . . and (C) see right through Dr Curry's vague obfuscatory sophistry.

    It is a red-flag sign, that you have allowed yourself to be taken in by the simply unscientific propaganda exhibited by "the 500".    But Dr Curry's propaganda is a different matter ~ she uses a more subtle approach (analogous to what the hypnotherapists call "the Indirect method" ).   If you yourself are strongly motivated to believe her - which indeed you are - then she seems to make sense.   That is, she seems to make sense until you educate yourself past the "veneer" level of climate science.  And then, using skepticism and critical thinking, you will see the fatal flaws in her presentations.

    #  My apologies for sounding patronizing ~ but you really do need to learn the climate science first.   Don't be an Ivar Giaever, who succumbed to Motivated Reasoning, and reckoned that half a day or so on the internet sufficed for him to lecture the climate experts on their multitude of errors.   ( Yes, there are many humorous events to be found in the sphere of climate science ! )

  • Models are unreliable

    Deplore_This at 04:15 AM on 4 July, 2020

    @Bob Lowlaw 1199

    Quit with your sanctimonious crap. It certainly doesn’t reflect well on your scientific reputation. I came here stating that I’m a skeptic and wanted a recommendation for university course on GCM, not to believe one person over another.

    Judith Curry was the Chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at a well-respected technical university and was obviously imminently qualified to get the job. I’m not going to post people’s names on the Internet to satisfy your curiosity.

    I looked at the Spencer Weart link and I’m already beyond that level. I have read the IPCC reports.

    If you were going to scientifically challenge Judith Curry’s opinions that I referenced you would point to published scientific scrutiny and not just make juvenile comments. The more emotional you become the more you add to her credibility in my eyes.


  • Models are unreliable

    Deplore_This at 02:44 AM on 4 July, 2020

    @Bob Lowlaw 1197

    As I stated Judith Curry was the Chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at my alma mater. I don’t know her personally but I know people who do and they tell me she is credible. As a courtesy I reviewed your links and I don’t see anything that refutes that opinion. It appears to me that Judith Curry is a scientist who disputes some of the “group think” and is shunned and unfunded. If the climate science community can not engage in open debate then it is not practicing science. As a climate skeptic I am accused of not believing science but without open debate it is not science.

    Bob, I believe Judith Curry before I believe you. So my dilemma remains and I’m not sure what to do next. Thank you for your response.

  • Models are unreliable

    Bob Loblaw at 02:16 AM on 4 July, 2020


    Judith Curry is not, I repeat, not, a reliable source of information. She peddles "uncertainty", and much of what she says is simply wrong. Start here:

    and continue here:

    In addition, pretty much anything published by the GPWF is full of crap:

    Same for the Climate Intelligence Foundation:

    You need to find better sources of information. You're paying attention to people that are selling shite to you.

  • Models are unreliable

    Deplore_This at 01:23 AM on 4 July, 2020

    @scaddenp 1187

    Thank you for your response. To answer your question here this is an example of scientists who disagree with the IPCC’s conclusion on GCMs:

    “GCMs are important tools for understanding the climate system. However, there are broad concerns about their reliability:

    • GCM predictions of the impact of increasing carbon dioxide on climate cannot be rigorously evaluated on timescales of the order of a century.

    • There has been insufficient exploration of GCM uncertainties.

    • There are an extremely large number of unconstrained choices in terms of selecting model parameters and parameterisations.

    • There has been a lack of formal model verification and validation, which is the norm for engineering and regulatory science.

    • GCMs are evaluated against the same observations used for model tuning.

    • There are concerns about a fundamental lack of predictability in a complex nonlinear system.

    There is growing evidence that climate models are running too hot and that climate sensitivity to carbon dioxide is at the lower end of the range provided by the IPCC. Nevertheless, these lower values of climate sensitivity are not accounted for in IPCC climate model projections of temperature at the end of the 21st century or in estimates of the impact on temperatures of reducing carbon dioxide emissions. The IPCC climate model projections focus on the response of the climate to different scenarios
    of emissions. The 21st century climate model projections do not include:

    • a range of scenarios for volcanic eruptions (the models assume that the volcanic activity will be comparable to the 20th century, which had much lower volcanic activity than the 19th century

    • a possible scenario of solar cooling, analogous to the solar minimum being predicted by Russian scientists

    • the possibility that climate sensitivity is a factor of two lower than that simulated by most climate models

    • realistic simulations of the phasing and amplitude of decadal- to century-scale natural internal variability

    The climate modelling community has been focused on the response of the climate to increased human caused emissions, and the policy community accepts (either explicitly or implicitly) the results of the 21st century GCM simulations as actual predictions. Hence we don’t have a good understanding of the relative climate impacts of the above or their potential impacts on the evolution of the 21st century climate.”
    -— Judith Curry, the former Chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at my alma mater

  • IPCC human-caused global warming attribution confidence is unfounded

    MA Rodger at 09:12 AM on 10 May, 2020

    Deplore This @3,

    As set out by Philippe Chantreau @5, in the time of Galileo there wasn't much of a process which could be today called a "scientific community's acceptance" to allow us to understand how far Galileo's contemparies accepted his work. All we hear is that the Pope famously got very 'trumpy' with his work. But if you roll the clock on 50 years and you find the likes of 'Entretiens sur la pluralité des mondes' or 'Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica' so in 50 years there was established complete acceptance.

    And so for comprison, 50 years on from, say, the likes of John Sawyer setting out the scientific case for saying:-

    "The increase of 25% CO2 expected by the end of the century therefore corresponds to an increase of 0.6 °C in the world temperature – an amount somewhat greater than the climatic variation of recent centuries."

    50 years on we see there is a very strong consensus that such a finding is correct. And spelling-wise, "Judith Curry" is correct although so much of what she writes about climate change is unsubstatiated nonsense.

  • IPCC human-caused global warming attribution confidence is unfounded

    Deplore This at 02:48 AM on 10 May, 2020

    Judith Curry is correct. Science is not group think. The percentage of practitioners who agree with a theory is not the confidence interval that it is correct. Consider the so called scientific communities acceptance of Copernicus and Galileo.

  • YouTube's Climate Denial Problem

    Eclectic at 12:32 PM on 10 April, 2020

    Since the SkS  scene is a bit quiet at the moment (a covid-19 effect?) , I take the liberty of doing some more waffling about the notorious WUWT  website.   So my apologies for this long post.

    WUWT  claims to be the world's "most viewed site" for global warming and climate change ~ and I have seen no evidence disproving WUWT 's possession of the crown for most popular Climate Denial echo-chamber website status.

    As mentioned above, WUWT  has a rapid churn of headlines to keep its fans interested & clicking-on frequently.   Proprietor Anthony Watts claims WUWT  receives no subsidy from the fossil fuel industries ~ I don't know if this was so in its early days, but it could well be so nowadays.   (There are of course many ways in which secret sponsors can covertly channel funds indirectly to WUWT  or associated entities . . . but that's not immediately relevant to the site's anti-science activities.)   Judging by the large range of of on-line advertising at the WUWT  site, it seems there is no shortage of dollar income ~ and it also suggests that the on-line advertising agencies have examined  & confirmed a high rate of traffic going to the website.

    Nigelj and OPOF ~ my earlier wording that many of the regular WUWT  commenters "are thick as two short planks" . . . was a colloquialism, and was not meaning that Denialists are of lower IQ than the general population.   AFAIK, there is no evidence that Denialists have an average IQ lower than logical thinkers have.   Yes, most of the WUWT  commenters are "pretty average" [another colloquialism!].   But as always ~ it is not whether you are intelligent but whether you actually use the intelligence you have.

    And there are indeed [a few] highly intelligent commenters at WUWT.   My favorite is Willis Eschenbach.  Very intelligent, and he has a sense of humor I like . . . but despite his analytical skills, he nevertheless has a "Dark Side" twist in his psyche ~ such that he always fails in the end to reach the destination of logical synthesis of the full context of the climate issue.   I reckon he has a combination of Motivated Reasoning and Doublethink.   Like so many (all?) Denialists, he somehow manages ultimately to suppress seeing the Bleeding Obvious.

    # There are certain neurological conditions [often, from stroke] where the brain fails to identify the human face, or other objects.   Climate Denialists achieve that status, sometimes wilfully perhaps . . . but eventually it becomes an automatic mental habit to "not see" what their emotions don't want to see.

    Nigelj , as I mentioned earlier, it surely must be that the WUWT  Moderators allow Nick Stokes as a token example of their "non-discrimination" policy.   But there is yet another example ~ Steven Mosher.   Mosher does not come from the strong scientific background of Stokes . . . but over the years he has gained his stripes as a scientist (in a de-facto manner).   IIRC, Mosher was at first rather climate-skeptical, and joined the original BEST project in a sort of literary capacity.   And when the BEST project eventually confirmed the mainstream climate science data, he accordingly "converted" to become a mainstreamer.

    As a convert from "skepticism" , Mosher is loathed and hated by the bulk of WUWT  commenters.   Mosher's style is usually not to go into details on how the OP or fellow commenters have messed up or been stupid . . . but he more often issues a one-liner to point out an error, or he merely says [in effect] : "Sigh. You've gotten it wrong again."   Unsurprisingly, this enrages many of the Denialists.

    Stokes is hated too, and is hated also because he is unfailingly correct , and the Denialists can find no chinks in his scientific armor ~ not that the Denialists at WUWT  would ever change their viewpoint merely because someone publicly proves them wrong !

    In the past, WUWT  had a system where registered commenters could vote a Like  or a Dislike  to any post in the Comments column.   Run-of-the -mill Deniaist comments sometimes garnered one or two or a handful of Likes.   But I always found it amusing to see how every comment by Stokes or Mosher was immediately garnering 20 - 50 Dislikes !   (In a way, it's pity this Like/Dislike barometer got scrubbed.)

    # Over my years of observation, there have not really been any other "anti-Denialists" to stay the course in the hostile environment at the WUWT  comments columns.   Some appear for a little while, then disappear ~ mostly by being censored I think (but doubtless, a few have become tired & disgusted).   Yet I also detect a few who (after banning) resurrect themselves under a new pseudonym.   However, in recent months WUWT  has introduced a new stricter regime of registration to make resurrection far more difficult.   ( It also raises your risk of being doxxed.)

    And no, I myself don't post at WUWT.   The denizens there are largely  rabid political ultra-extremists, quite uncharitable to humanity as a whole.   There are also some (apolitical or non-partisan) scientific crackpots.   But all are hard-core deniers of climate science, and they show zero inclination to become sane.

    #  If you examine the bulk of WUWT  posted articles, you see a strong undercurrent of petulant and childish propaganda slant.   Clearly WUWT  is essentially aiming at the Lowest Common Denominator of everyday Denialists.   (Some Denialist websites exist, which are slightly more high-brow  e.g. Judith Curry's and Roy Spencer's .)   But for rampant psychopathology, my "vote" goes to WUWT.

    My apologies once again for the long post.   I hope readers have found elements informative and/or entertaining.

  • On climate misinformation and accountability

    dana1981 at 05:05 AM on 12 February, 2020

    sailrick @ 8: while one would hope that would be a typo, it's not.  It's a quote from Judith Curry using a double-negative to suggest global warming had stopped.

  • On climate misinformation and accountability

    Rob Honeycutt at 01:14 AM on 12 February, 2020

    ajki... There is a very long list of tasks that those with coding skills have to do to keep up this site. I believe this one has been on the list for a long time but it's been a lower priority. Being that we were previously hacked there's a lot of effort that goes into ensuring that can't happen again.

    Roger is an interesting case on a lot of levels. He definitely agrees with all the existing science. He believes we need to be cutting emissions much faster than we currently are. But, he seems to continually present materials that minimizes climate impacts. 

    An example was a piece he did in a short stint he had work with the political website 538, where he claimed there was no correlation between climate and severe storm damage, kind of implying "so, what are we worried about?" 

    Lots of people hit the roof over that and eventually 538 asked leading expert Kerry Emanual to write up a piece explaining how Roger got it wrong.

    My point here is, he hasn't changed since 2013. If anything he's only become more angry. Similar with Judith Curry.

  • On climate misinformation and accountability

    NoctambulantJoycean at 19:06 PM on 11 February, 2020

    Thanks for the compliment, Eclectic. I forgot to mention something else.

    Roger Pielke Jr. and Judith Curry also used another tactic: saying that SkepticalScience's writers have worse academic qualifications/credentials that the people they were criticizing. To that end, Curry wrote the following to Pielke Jr. about one of the misinformers SkepticalScience criticized:

    "It gets better . . . Kary Mullis is a Nobel Laureate "
    [ ]

    For those of you who don't know: before he passed away, Kary Mullis was one of the best-known AIDS denialists, in addition to his spreading misinformation on climate science. Feel free to look up his views other topics as well.

    Curry mentioned Mullis in order to criticize SkepticalScience, but she inadvertently illustrated my point from my previous post: SkepticalScience justifiably debunks the views of misinformers, even misinformers who may have some credentials. In that respect, it's like other science communication groups that debunk AIDS denialists, young Earth creationists, anti-vaxxers / vaccine denialists, etc. I suspect David Gorski, Paul Offit, and Peter Hadfield would be proud.

  • On climate misinformation and accountability

    NoctambulantJoycean at 16:38 PM on 11 February, 2020

    FYI, Roger Pielke Jr. misrepresents your post below:

    This reminds me of the debates on "free speech" vs. "freeze peach", where various conservatives would act as if free speech / academic freedom entailed:

    - freedom from criticism (including harsh criticism),
    - no consequences for what one says,
    - the ability to say whatever nonsense they wanted in any forum and under the employment of any institution,

    Of course, freedom of speech entails none of that.

    And by the flawed logic Judith Curry and Roger Pielke Jr. have been recently using, it's bullying when:

    - virologists make websites correcting Peter Duesberg's distortions,
    - doctors make websites correcting Andrew Wakefield's distortions,
    - biologists + astronomers make websites correcting Duane Gish's distortions

    These aren't just hypotheticals; they actually happened, and I've pointed them out to Pielke Jr. He, unsurprisingly, has no cogent response. For instance, the great website TalkOrigins has a list of creationists, and numerous pages debunking creationists' claims, including creationists with science degrees:

    By Pielke Jr.'s implausible logic, that makes TalkOrigins a malicious attempt to blacklist scientists, make them unhirable, chill academic freedom, and make TalkOrigins "arbiters of all science". That makes no sense; that's not the point of TalkOrigins. TalkOrigins is meant to correct creationist distortions for the purpose of educating the public.

    It might turn out that a young Earth creationist is unable to get hired to teach biology or astronomy, because prospective employers see the creationist's publicly-stated position being debunked on TalkOrigins. But that's fine, since one should be held accountable for what one says, when what one says is relevant to the position one is applying for. That's compatible with freedom of speech. Parallel point for people being unhirable based on their position being debunked on SkepticalScience, and their being listed on SkepticalScience misinformer's pages.

    And in case folks want another example: AIDSTruth + others have lists of AIDS denialists, and numerous pages debunking AIDS denialists' claims, including AIDS denialists with science/medical degrees. Is Pielke Jr. going to object to that to? Does he really not understand the important role websites like AIDSTruth, TalkOrigins, and SkepticalScience play in correcting denialist misinformation/disinformation?:

  • There is no consensus

    TVC15 at 13:46 PM on 7 January, 2020

    To add to KR @ 870

    PatrickSS kept propping Judith Curry up as some sort of climate expert who is being hushed from publsihing papers.  I also suggest PatrickSS that you look up her credentials.

    It always cracks me up as Judith is always the wild card deniers pull out of their back pockets and try to prop her us as some sort of credible climate science researcher such as Katharine Hayhoe.

    Here are a few links about who Judith is as well as her agenda.

    Judith Curry Was For Me Before She Was Against Me


    Climate Misinformation by Source: Judith Curry

    IPCC attribution statements redux: A response to Judith Curry

    Judith Curry - SourceWatch

  • There is no consensus

    PatrickSS at 05:58 AM on 18 December, 2019

    Thx so much for your replies.

    It’s incredibly unfortunate that climate science has become political – on both sides IMO.

    Actually I don’t feel that any of you have really engaged with my main argument: does this page give a fair summary of scientists’ views? E.g. does sticking up the percentage “91%” give a fair summary of Vergehhen’s data?  (Obviously not.)

    Science is IMO very subject to fashions. When authors, reviewers and the people who award grants all have the same point of view it can all go wrong. E.g. a few years ago almost everyone believed that fat in the diet was a kind of poison – which we now know is nonsense.

    What I notice is that most scientists who are contrarians are either old and retired, or else somehow supporting themselves on private means or as consultants. That doesn’t seem like a good situation. It could mean that only crazy old men and women believe this nonsense, or it could mean that young climate scientists would damage their careers if they expressed contrarian views. MA Roger @857, I've listened to Freeman Dyson, Richard Lindzen and William Happer on youtube and none of them seem crazy, they seem to be good scientists. Judith Curry said that she couldn’t get her work published. I’ve just checked what she said – in fact she did publish one reviewer’s comment:

    “Overall, there is the danger that the paper is used by unscrupulous people to create confusion or to discredit climate or sea-level science. Hence, I suggest that the author reconsiders the essence of its contribution to the scientific debate on climate and sea-level science.”

    Hmm.  That’s definitely a very dangerous argument.  In fact it's very worrying indeed.

    Scaddemp, most lukewarmers that I've listened to (including Judith C and Matt Ridley) definitely want to protect the environment, and they propose the expansion of research into new energy systems, but they worry about taking it to an extreme.

    But . . . .  although the process looks bad, there could be a real problem here.  I find it incredibly hard to know.  Unfoortunately we all have this thing called confirmation bias, and that makes everything tricky. 

  • There is no consensus

    PatrickSS at 02:20 AM on 16 December, 2019

    Hi All. I think it's essential that we all think for ourselves on this topic. I wanted to do that, and I started recently by looking at the scientific consensus.

    I now have lots of problems with the information on this page, which I think is misleading in several different ways. From what I can see, this is an argument between the people who think that doubling CO2 will raise the world temp by about 1C (which they think will not be a major problem) and those who think that doubling CO2 will raise the world temp by about 3C (which, they think, would be a major problem). So it is very misleading to say, above, that "97% of climate experts agree humans are causing global warming", because both sides agree on that.

    Secondly I have a lot of problems with the way that the consensus is reported both here and in eg Wikipedia. I decided to look at the data. I looked at what seemed to be the most recent paper on this, by Bart Verheggen and colleagues, called Scientists’ view about attribution of global warming.

    In the light of my first point above, the only question that you really want to hear about is their Q12, "How concerned are you about climate change as a long-term global problem?". What is quite extraordinary is that Bart and colleagues don't mention this question, or the responses to it, in the whole of their article. How could that happen?

    Fortunately they have published a summary of the responses:

    Now we discover that only 33% of climate scientists are more than "somewhat concerned", and 8.5% are "not very concerned" or "not concerned at all".

    That doesn't really look like a consensus.

    The main argument in the abstract of Bart's paper is that the authors who publish a lot on climate science are more likely to agree that anthropogenic gasses are the dominant driver of recent climate change. John Cook's graph, above, makes a similar point. Given that scientists, such as Judith Curry, who take a "contrarian" view of climate change complain that they can't get their work published, this doesn't see like a very good argument.

    With the best will in the world, none of this looks good for the consensus.

    Would it be possible to change the information on this page to encourage people to look at the original data in Bart's report? And also to highlight areas of agreement - such as that most contrarians are "lukewarmers" who agree that human activities cause some warming? That way lay-people such as myself would be in a much better position to think about this for ourselves.

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    nigelj at 05:59 AM on 29 November, 2019

    nyood @10

    "However, as an every man lay when you come in contact with these leaked emails for the first time, it makes you really wonder why there is such a severe hostility towards skeptics"

    The reasons for the hostility towards sceptics include the following:

    1) the sceptics relentlessly mislead and cherry pick. Dont ask me for examples - read this website regularly.

    2) the sceptics tie up working scientists with endless pointless information requests.

    3) the sceptics verbally abuse scientists and have made death threats, particularly with M Mann, and naturally this in turn makes all climate scientists hostile towards sceptics. Why wouldn't it?

    4) the sceptics relentless junk science.

    This is more than enough to explain the scientists hostility towards sceptics, and if anything scientists have been very restrained and patient. As far as I'm concerned some of the sceptics should be in jail.

    "The language used in these emails is concerning, they are very political and extremely polarized to a point where it makes one wonder if it is still possible for the authors to keep a scientific neutrality. As I am not sure if quoting emails is allowed here..."

    Oh I'm happy to post a few from an article in Forbes, and that will be enough. We don't need too many silly lists distracting us all. I don't know if they are genuine. They are indicative of normal people dealing appropriately with difficult issues as anyone does. If they are political, its no more than any other organisation on this fine planet. There is nothing criminal, unethical or sinister, and numerous official investigations found no corruption of science.

    You denialists make me laugh. You are the people with obvious political motives, mostly right wing, and with lashings of paranoia. But people with nasty suspicious minds and bad motives assume everyone is the same. News flash - we aren't all the same.

    The emails:

    “The trick may be to decide on the main message and use that to guid[e] what’s included and what is left out” of IPCC reports, writes Jonathan Overpeck, coordinating lead author for the IPCC’s most recent climate assessment."

    This is meaningless without background context. Its a selective quote. And professional people decide content all the time, theres no indication of wrong doing.

    “I gave up on [Georgia Institute of Technology climate professor] Judith Curry a while ago. I don’t know what she thinks she’s doing, but its not helping the cause,” wrote Mann in another newly released email."

    It helps to actually know something about Judith Curry then you would understand and commiserate with the scientists in question.

    “I have been talking w/ folks in the states about finding an investigative journalist to investigate and expose” skeptical scientist Steve McIntyre, Mann writes in another newly released email."

    Oh dear oh dear. Given M Mann has received death threats and packets of white powder in the mail, and endless abusive emails. I'm going to "cut him some slack".

  • Millions of times later, 97 percent climate consensus still faces denial

    MA Rodger at 00:40 AM on 20 August, 2019

    Doug_C @19,

    I rather disagree with your comment or at least feel it sould be better explained.

    There are certainly differing qualities of work that comprise denialism. There is a large protion of that denialist work that is incompatable with very basic science. (I'm not sure that your mention of Quantum Mechanics is entirely correct or helpful to your assessment.) There is also a large protion of that denialist work that is incompatable with scientific data and thus contrdicts the resulting inferences that can be established by that data. None of this is a great distance from your comment.

    What I don't see is any remaining denialist work that is properly supported by evidence. The entirety of the 3% sitting beyond the 'consensus' is surely incompatable with the scientific data and it is actually not a proper constituent part of the science.

    What I particularly feel is a step too far is suggesting that:-

    "The few percents of research that show doubt are simply there as part of the uncertainty that is inherent in science, it may as well be stated in terms of a 100% consensus when it comes to evidence driving policy on global warming."

    This statement is saying that there exists "uncertainty ... inherent in (the) science" which is exactly the denialist message. The likes of, say, Richard Lindzen or Judith Curry who constitute the 3% outside the 'consensus' will argue that there is enough uncertainty to infer that Climate Sensitivity is low and thus AGW will not be a problem.

    Now, we can see that Lindzen with his cloud iris theorising or Curry with her large natural climate wobbles are part of the scientific process. But the doubt they may have sown scientifically is long dispelled. What we are left with is the likes of Lindzen & Curry continuing to spread their now-unscientific message to policymakers as though it was legitimate science. It is unscientific to represent these messages as scientific and their messages ar become part of the "finely tuned stream of disinformation" (although the "tuning" may not be a conscious process on their part).

    And masquerading as legitimate science, their message can then be presented as though it had the same scientific standing as the IPCC Assessment Reports rather than a loony fringe opinion, indeed one balanced by those who grossly exaggerate AGW.

    I note you use the word "existential" without making plain to what it applies - ie what it is that has its existence threatened by AGW. I would suggest that it is but that loony fringe (that is balanced by the denialist looney fringe) that describes AGW as an existential threat to the human race when AGW is surely only an existential threat to the world economy whose collapse would not be a pretty sight and likely reduce human populations to a fraction of today's total.

  • Arctic icemelt is a natural cycle

    MA Rodger at 18:59 PM on 20 June, 2019

    With the absence of any further comment from commenter bruce, it might be worthwhile joining a few dots to make sense of his intervention @70.

    The insistence that Arcric SIE annual minimums have "not decreased since 2007" follows from denialist insistence that there has been an Arctic version of the 'hiatus' - Arctic Sea Ice has not been diminishing as it did in previous AGW years and the trend is now flat. Swart et ak (2015) 'Influence of internal variability on Arctic sea-ice trends' has been cited as showing evidence of this 'hiatus' operating over the 6-year period 2007-13 and which is now assertedly extended for significantly more years. Thus the "not decreased since 2007" is not interested in the 2012 minimum as the denialist assertion concerns the multi-year trend not the individual years.

    The data used for IPCC FAR Fig20 is described thus:-

    "Sea-ice conditions are now reported regularly in marine synoptic observations, as well as by special reconnaissance flights, and coastal radar. Especially importantly, satellite observations have been used to map sea-ice extent routinelysince the early 1970s.The American Navy Joint Ice Center has produced weekly charts which have been digitised by NOAA. These data are summarized in Figure 7.20 which is based on analyses carried out on a 1°latitude x 2.5° longitude grid."

    It is obviously not the best of data given it shows such a small drop in SIE 1979-1990. It may be possible to find this data within literature of the time (the likes of say Mysak & Manak (1998) also use some JIC data) but it doesn't in anyway resemble modern satellite SIE data.

    The AMO's "close correlation with Arctic ice" is probably simple nonsense. Even denialists like Connolly et al (2017) found it difficult to fabricate an Arctic SIE racord based on Arctic temperature that was much different to more respectable records using similar methods. The graphic below is from Cea-Pirón & Cano-Pasalodos presented within a Judith Curry blog-comment-thread. SIE records such as HadISST & Marsh et al (2016) developed from historical ice records show significantly higher SIE over the earlier pre-1950 years, perhaps 2M sq km higher. None of these show any AMO-like wobbles.

    Arctic SIE based on temperature

    But what Connolly et al did manage to achieve was to present a graphic to the world (below) from Alekseev et al (2016) [paywalled] (but without the actual post-1979 SIE data plotted as in Alekseev et al (2015) Fig3b) and without mentioning the finding predicting of an ice-free Arctic summers by 2030.
    Alekseev et al Fig

    If you are happy with the most basic of similarities being considered as being a "close correlation", the likes of this Alekseev et al (2016) graph may be assumed as an upside-down AMO graph but the assertion doesn't actually pass muster. Firstly the Alekseev et al graph is simply an upside-down version of a rather crude Arctic summer temperature record which are then no more than assumed as a proxy for Arctic summer SIE minimums. And even then, the upside-down AMO does have a very different shape. The 1950 AMO(us-d) was the same value as recent values with a peak inbetween in the 1970s (rather than 1960s) and a 'hiatus' since 1999. So AMO(us-d) is a long way off from being a proxy for Arctic SIE values.

  • The temperature evolution after 2016 suggests hotter future

    ThinkingMan at 22:50 PM on 21 March, 2019

    Scaddenp:  Will reply at another time.

    All:  Parts of this article are relevant to the concept.

    Yes, I know Judith Curry's name will cause some followers of this blog to recoil.  Pls read the paper, nevertheless.

    The 2nd & 4th graphs are pointed out because a picture is worth1000 words.  The 4th graph shows that since 1950, rising atmospheric CO2 levels explain well a long term temperature trend.  The 2nd graph shows the difference between recorded temperatures and temperatures consistent with contemporaneous CO2 levels.  The difference is attributed to "natural variability".  Pls note the downward trend in natural variability from 2000-2012.  Whether the downward trend is caused by a cycle or natural events with unpredictable timing is a side issue.  The important outcome is:  Rising CO2 levels apparently (and may have indeed) offset natural cooling forces since 1998-2000.  This possible outcome supports the AGW case.

  • The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change

    One Planet Only Forever at 01:35 AM on 24 November, 2018

    There appears to be confusion due to incorrect conflating of:

    • Scientific consensus of understanding (development of an emergent truth that is open to correction if substantive new evidence is contrary to the developing understanding).
    • An individual's helpfulness in efforts to improve awareness and understanding: in the field of understanding, among leaders in society, among the general population.

    Individuals are not 'part of the 97% or 3%'. The consensus measure is regarding how much of the 'literature that is a legitimate part of the effort to improve the understanding of an area/field of understanding' is aligned with a developing understanding. As the degree of alignment increases it can be understood that an emergent truth is being established (an understanding that is unlikely to be significantly altered by new investigation in that field of learning).

    An evaluation of all of an individual's actions is the basis for determining how helpful they are to the improvement of the understanding and to the increased 'correct' awareness and understanding among leaders and the general population.

    While the likes of Judith Curry, Roy Spencer and Richard Lindzen may have their names on a specific piece of literature that is included in the 97% side of the climate science consensus evaluation regarding the understanding that human activity is significantly impacting the global climate, that does not make them 'a part of the 97% side'.

    Individual merit would be determined by their collective actions regarding the understanding. That evaluation would undeniably indicate that the likes of Judith Curry, Roy Spencer and Richard Lindzen are very unhelpful (harmful) to the improvement of awareness and understanding the understanding that human activity is significantly (and negatively) impacting the global climate that future generations will suffer the consequences of and the challenge of trying to maintain perceptions of prosperity that are the result of a portion of humanity getting away with benefiting from the damaging unsustainable burning of fossil fuels (benefiting in ways that do not develop sustainable improvements for the future of humanity - like perceptions of reduction of poverty that cannot be sustained if the damaging impact creation of fossil fuels is significantly and rapidly curtailed like it has to be in order to minimize the damage done to the future generations of humanity).

  • The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change

    One Planet Only Forever at 01:59 AM on 23 November, 2018

    Art Vandelay@8,

    A more important measure than 'grudging acceptance of climate science to a limited degree' is how helpful a person is to improving the more correct awareness and understanding of climate science in the general population and among leadership.

    By that measure Judith Curry, Roy Spencer, Richard Lindzen are dismal damaging failures.

    As a case in point, I frequently visit Roy Spencer's site (just for the amusement, but in case he actually presents a meaningfully insightful point).

    Roy Spencer spends almost all of his time making up stories to refute the need for the burning of fossil fuels to be curtailed. The lack of validity of his story-telling is consistent. He also spends a significant amount of time creating creative ways to intrerpret satellite data in an attempt to refute that unacceptable warming and climate change is happening (he has been forced to partially correct his misinterpretations of the satellite data many times).

  • The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change

    Art Vandelay at 17:27 PM on 22 November, 2018

    It should be noted too that Judith Curry, Roy Spencer, Richard Lindzen et al, are all painted as skeptics or "deniers", but are in fact members of the 97% consensus.  

    Perhaps a more valuable statistic would be one that indicated a percentage of (climate) scientists who hold the view that it's a serious threat requiring urgent, universal remedial action.  

  • 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #44

    Eclectic at 09:20 AM on 15 November, 2018

    LaymanSC @3 , the matter of the oceanic warming paper (by Resplandy et al) which you mention, has turned out to be a storm in a teacup.

    And the paper's criticism by Nic Lewis is also a storm in a teacup.

    You are wrong to imply that Lewis sometime had a Damascene Conversion to "turn skeptic" ~ he is no such animal, no such converter.  He was always a science "denialist",  AFAICT from reading his various posts & articles on the Judith Curry blog.  A denialist is someone who fails to follow the scientific process of objective assessment, but who allows his bias/emotions [by means of motivated reasoning] to impel him in the direction he wishes to go.  Lewis in an intelligent and educated fellow ~ yet he bends over backwards to minimize the size of that important matter, Climate Sensitivity to CO2.  But please note that he is not one of the usual denialist crazies who deny the actual basic science involved in AGW ~ yet it seems clear that he has a similar psychological motivation as some of the crazies (but he does not overtly express conspiracy theories & Socialist World Government fears).

    The end result : is that the Resplandy paper presented a clever novel way of assessing global warming . . . clever and novel enough to impress the paper's initial reviewers.  The Resplandy paper indicated the global warming rate to be worryingly worse than the mainstream scientific opinion.

    However, it seems now (provisionally) that the "fuzziness" of the Resplandy assessment is large enough [as discovered and pointed out by Lewis] to render the paper to be of little utility in quantifying climate sensitivity.  So we go  back to the status quo.  And the views held by Lewis and Curry are still wrong ~ still outliers, unsupported by the generality of scientific evidence.

  • 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #44

    LaymanSC at 01:43 AM on 15 November, 2018

    Regarding the media releases on this study and disregarding the fact that ocean temperature rise and atmospheric rise are in fact linked (are they not?) I came across this : 

    In that paper, a mathematician/physicist/financier turned climate "skeptic" posted a mathematical analysis in which just some basic division was in error on the first page of a peer reviewed and approved Nature article that subsequently made huge headlines. However, not so much on the correction of the paper. I found that surprising. I was, perhaps incorrectly, under the assumption that part of the peer review process would include a double check on the maths involved - especially for a paper that may potentially revise multiple studies done before it, to the point where the previous papers would have been an epic miscalculations and the results imperiling the drive towards action on the issue of carbon pollution. 

    I believe the evidence (that I am capable of understanding) that climate change is happening. Personal experience within my lifetime, some basic chemistry and physics knowledge, and a strong interest in the subject (I am human and have a child that I would like to have live in a climate-stable world).

    However, the fact that a very simple division calculation was skipped over in the peer review process troubles me. So my question is, since I am ignorant of the total body of the researchers involved, are there also teams of mathematicians whose job it is to help interpret calculable risks, projections, and also some basic maths checking of the results of climate scientists (in whatever specialized fields that umbrella covers)?

    If so, is there a (set of) resource(s) for their interpretations?

    If not - why not? 

    I also note that it was stated above that "Three scientists analyzed the article and estimate its overall scientific credibility to be 'high'".

    When can the public expect to start seeing "scientists AND mathematicians analyzed" these issues and calculations - hopefully BEFORE being released to the major news media so that the waters don't get even more muddied than they already are? With all due respect to these scientists and their areas of expertise, their maths seem to be a little less developed.

  • It hasn't warmed since 1998

    MA Rodger at 22:38 PM on 1 June, 2018

    guym @400,

    I have long  pondered the "hiatus" nonsense from contrarians. My take on it is perhaps more clinical than Eclectic @401, and a smidgen shorter.

    One of the difficulties we face addessing the "hiatus" is that contrarians define the "hiatus" to mean vastly different things, from silly nonsense from Rose of the Daily Rail (Temp(Jan1996)=Temp(Aug2012) => global warming stopped 16 years ago) to more allegedly-grown-up versions comparing modeled & measured temperatures. Which ever version is used, their take-away is "Global Warming has stopped" or "Models are badly wrong". And any attempt to sensibly address the issue like in the AR5 Box 9.2 or for instance Hansen et al discussing the 'Global Warming Standstill' in 2012 results in a contrarian 'we told you so!!' response which is then grafted onto nonsense by even the more respected of contrarians to beat the "Global Warming Has Stopped!!!" drum (eg ex-clomatologist Judith Curry).

    So you really do have to be careful when addressing the issue of the "hiatus" and that means more than using a title that calls it the "Hiatus in Global Mean Surface Warming of the Past 15 Years" as per AR5 Box9.2.

    I think the AR5 Box9.2 use of OLS analysis over the period 1998-2012 was poorly contrived. (For the record, the resulting SAT trend roughly doubles if you use 1999-2012, to +0.09ºC/decade, instead of  1975-1996.) What was poor was firstly comparison of 1998-2012 with 1951-2012. The start period should have been roughly 1975, the start of the recent strong AGW. Contrarians who exaggerate the significance of the "hiatus" would be surprised to hear that if you compare 1975-1996 with 1975-2012 you get almost identical trends. The reason for 1998-2012 being so different from the longer-term SAT trend is because the 1998-2012 SAT trend relies on one of those reality-busting steps as in the SKS Escalator. So a second criticism of AR5 Box9.2 is giving credance to the 1998-2012 reality-busting OLS analysis.

    SKS Escalator

    Simply-put, anybody who (a) supports a "hiatus" 16-years long or (b) uses the "flatness" in surface temperature record to create a 16-year long "hiatus" by for instance saying "I predict we will see continuation of the ‘standstill’ in global average temperature for the next decade" (and good old Judy Curry manages both a & b) show they have departed from truthful analysis of AGW.

    I myself feel the way to take command of the "hiatus" is by setting its true length. This analysis of HadCRUT data (usually 2 clicks to 'download your attachment') finds it was just 32 months long. And a message that must always be included in "hiatus" talk - thoroughout these years, AGW did not show any signs of faltering as the Ocean Heat Content data surely demonstrates.

  • There is no consensus

    Eclectic at 15:00 PM on 26 April, 2018

    Windrunner @770 , welcome (back) to SkepticalScience !

    If you have come to defend Dr Judith Curry's reputation as a scientist, then alas you come too late.  That ship has sailed.

    If you have come to argue that the climate scientist consensus on AGW is anything less than 99%, then alas you come 30 years too late.  The consensus has been steadily rising for many years now, and has reached 100% (or more precisely:  100% minus a few crackpots, who are entirely unable to provide any valid contrarian scientific reasoning or supportive facts).

    In addition, your "Churchillian" quote is wrongly ascribed.  There have been many versions of it -— the Twenty-First Century version is:  "If you are not a liberal in your twenties you have no heart, and if you are not a conservative in your forties you have no brain, and if you are not an environmentalist by your sixties then you have no conscience."

  • There is no consensus

    windrunner at 13:42 PM on 26 April, 2018

    As this is your first post, Skeptical Science respectfully reminds you to please follow our comments policy. Thank You!

    Found this forum on a link posted on a POW(Protect our Winters) EM article I recieved. I consider myself an open minded person and willing to listen to many points of view and draw my own conclusions from the facts presented, regardless of my personal opinions.  My views have changed on several things over the years.  Winston Churchhill, hardly a scientist but certianly one of the biggest influencers on the course of 20th century history, once said that "if you are not a liberal in your twenties you have no heart, and if you are not a conservetive in your forties you have no brain."

    The heart creates passion, and passion emotionalizes arguements, obscuring the validity of points of contention.  One of the obscured points is the method that one of the cited studies was conducted, the Doran study, conducted by Margeret R.K. Zimmerman, as a grad student under Doran's direction.  Points that make you go huh?... 10,257 surveys were sent out. 3,146 bothered to respond.  Does that mean 7,111 questionaires were not delivered? Or that the intended recipients had no opinions, yea or nay? Only 30%, give or take, bothered to respond. Only 79 respondents answers were eventually used to come up with the 97%- the other responses supposedly did not come from "climate scientists" so they were not used.  Why were they even sent?  There are other questions that arise from the conclusions that were drawn from this study but I think the point is made.  When any survey requires closed answers the results must be considered with a skeptical eye.

    Facts are not arrived at by consensus.  If this were true, the earth would still be flat, and Giordano Bruno's burning by the Vatican Inquisition in defense of geocentrism would be justifiable. Aristotle's expansion on spontaneous generation were accepted as fact for over 2,000 years! Neaderthals are not ancestral to modern man! Micheal Bradley's assertation of Neanderthalic genitics in "The Iceman Inheritance" was laughed at and later decried as racist. Indeed, the scientific community's persecution of any one who questions the dogma of the alarmists who have made substantial financial gains espousing the global warming/end of the world would be entirely defensible.  One of Micheal E. Manns (the hockey stick guy) claims in the defamation lawsuit against Mark Styen,et al., was that it is (or should be) a crime to defame a Nobel Prize winner.  Of course he is not, and it is not.  This claim was dismissed from the suit. The financial gains to be garnered by silencing any thought contrary to the prevailing AGW theocratic dogma is too great to be allowed a voice.  This site has poo-poo'ed Judith Curry and some of her claims, but I have found more open minded and even handed writings on her site, on both sides of the issue. Humankind thinks that they are of gret consequence but the truth is we are like all other afflictions this globe has suffered, and when she tires of us she will shake us off like raindrops and without a second thought.

  • Climate Science Denial Explained

    DPiepgrass at 16:24 PM on 16 April, 2018

    Unfortunately greenhouses (or hot cars) aren't ideal examples of the greenhouse effect, because a greenhouse works in part by trapping air so that it can't rise (and be replaced by cooler air that used to be higher in the atmosphere). The glass of a greenhouses also, incidentally, traps infrared radiation the same way greenhouse gases do, but it's easy for a pseudo-skeptic to point to the lack of convection and say "that's how a greenhouse really works - so the planetary greenhouse effect is a hoax."

    If I catch someone denying the greenhouse effect, I just point out that most contrarian climate scientists (e.g. Roy Spencer, John Christy, Judith Curry) agree that the greenhouse effect exists. More learned pseudo-skeptics have all kinds of other arguments.

  • American conservatives are still clueless about the 97% expert climate consensus

    Eclectic at 23:16 PM on 12 April, 2018

    Scaddenp @17 , thank you for the link to RealClimate with the 27Aug2014 take-down of Judith Curry's "attribution" of modern sea level rise.   Gavin Schmidt (the article's author) was distinctly more scathing than I have been, about Curry's lack of logical thinking.

    I also read the near-200 comments following the article.  Some amusing stuff there — and with honorable mention of MA Rodger and his [posts #163 and onwards] "analysis" of Curry's golden panacea, the "BNO" [Big Natural Oscillation] which she waves about in all directions.   Actually, it didn't take long to read through the comments — my speed being helped by entirely skipping all posts by "Rob Ellison" (who has a track record of bloviating prolixity & crankdom & ne'er a useful point to make).

    But I regret my curiosity letting me follow the [final] post's link to WUWT  — and an article by [engineer] Matt Skaggs who promised to deliver a rigorous "Root Cause  Analysis of Modern Warming" sort of engineer's approach to things.   Alas, it turned out to be a complete waste of time . . . huge holes in his arguments.   Yes, I should have known better than to think that any WUWT article could deliver enlightenment (rather than just amusement).

    If I may quote from Gavin Schmidt : "In general, the shorter the time period, the greater potential for internal variability, or (equivalently) the larger the forced signal needs to be in order to be detected . . . ~ . . . Thus cutting down the period to ever-shorter periods of years increases the challenges and one can end up simply cherry-picking the noise instead of seeing the signal".      Very fitting — because that is Judith Curry's modus operandi : she cherry-picks a sufficiently-short time period of Mean Sea Level rise . . . where it is just conceivably possible that a fortuitous combination of "BNO" [Big Natural Oscillation, excuse the sarcasm] might explain a substantial minority of recent MSL rise.   But when you stand back and look at the bigger picture, you see that Curry's arguments are twaddle.

  • American conservatives are still clueless about the 97% expert climate consensus

    scaddenp at 07:04 AM on 12 April, 2018

    Well NorrisM, you could just look up the Ar5 and find it. (ch 10). The attribution statement and pseudo-skeptic responses are discussed here with numerous useful references.

  • 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #11

    Bob Loblaw at 00:51 AM on 25 March, 2018


    In deference to other parts of my life, I try to restrict my blog time to reading blogs that help me learn things. Judith Curry's blog does not fall into that category, for reasons that include what Eclectic stated in his response.

    When you post (on the selected/appropriate thread), instead of feeling that you have to present or defend a particular position, focus on outlining what you do understand, describe what you don't, and ask questions to help understand.

    You're not a lawyer trying to argue a case against an opponent. The idea here is to be a participant in a discussion where ideas are shared and a common understanding is the desired outcome. It is the ideas that will be put in the line of fire, not you.

  • 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #11

    Eclectic at 21:55 PM on 24 March, 2018

    NorrisM @19 , with your permission, I will jump into the fray also — with an overview.

    Judith Curry's recent articles on sea level rise exhibit typical Curryism.  She provides, at first glance, an impressively erudite summation of the field of (modern) sea level rise.  It is a complex area.  She quotes from the IPCC and and other sources, and in effect she states that somewhere in the region of 40 - 60% of recent MSL rise is clearly anthropogenic (from AGW).

    But there are three facets of Curryism here : 

    1.  Although the mainstream scientists know that around 100% of modern rapid global warming is caused by human activity (including more than simply CO2 effects) . . . this fact does not suit public acknowledgement by Dr Curry and her agenda.  Her clientele wish to hear that only a very minor part ( or none !! ) of global warming is caused by CO2 emissions — and to hear that AGW itself is a very small and temporary effect and will never amount to more than a limited inconvenience.  (And preferably hear that today's slight/insignificant warming is merely the result of "natural variability" . . . such as a 1000-year or 2400-year cycle, or the AMO and/or a Stadium Wave and/or due to ABC [Anything But Carbon] ).

    Dr Curry therefore presents her case in a way that implies that the very reasonable conclusion of 40 - 60% human attribution for sea level rise, must (by implication) point to AGW being far less than 100% human . . . and that therefore the mainstream scientists have gotten it wrong about warming.   Curry is happy to strongly hint, but never state that explicitly.

    2.  Another typical Curryism, is her careful avoidance of the bigger picture.   Readers who read her without making any effort to notice what she has avoided saying, will feel that she is giving a fair, balanced and dispassionate presentation.   But taking a longer historical view of sea level, one sees that Curry is restricting her comments to the narrow case of the recent century or so (and she prefers to draw the focus toward 1950 and later).  In that narrow window it is indeed possible to make a defensible case that cycles [however dubious] plus contributions from solar variability, the AMO, volcano eruptions, or other natural variability . . . can explain around half of [recent] sea level rise.

    But on the multi-century / multi-millennial scale, her explanations are twaddle.

    3.  NorrisM, you may also notice how very carefully Dr Curry delineates the various time-segments through the 20th Century up to 2017.  And she wishes to suggest validity of the post-1998 "Pause" in surface temperatures (and to minimize or not even mention the continuing oceanic heating).  And she places the last few years of high spike in surface temperature, in a separate post-Pause category . . . caused by the "super-Nino" (without acknowledging that it's an ongoing warming problem, not just an El Nino fluctuation).

    All very selective, all very denfensible in a court of law . . . yet at the same time rather obviously intended to mislead the unwary reader.


    NorrisM, if you have time, take a further read through the comments columns at the foot of Dr Curry's articles.  I confess to finding them quite entertaining — I usually skim through the repetitive nonsense coming from most posters there.  But yes you are right, JCH is usually fairly well on the ball, if rather short-tempered.  Nick Stokes is always worth reading, and provides genuine science.   And there is the admirable calmness of JimD as he continually puntures the nonsense of posters like "ABC" Ellison and the slightly less crackpot-ish Javier.  All good fun, but sadly illustrating the insanity of some of the tolerably intelligent sections of the human population.

    Also entertaining, NorrisM, is the way that on Curry's Climate Etc, the denialists who are scientifically/mathematically literate "medium crazies" have to keep turning around and putting down the "ultra-crazies" who come out repeatedly with way-off-planet ideas (ideas which are nevertheless still extremely common in the common ruck of denialists).  You hardly ever see that with the posters at WhatsUpWithThat . . . where craziness & anger run rampant continuously.

  • 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #11

    NorrisM at 17:08 PM on 24 March, 2018

    Bob Loblaw @ 18

    I have to admit this is pretty daunting.  I somewhat have a feeling of someone in the trenches being asked to "go over the top" into the machine gun fire!  I really should keep out of this because it is so technical.  But by the end of the weekend, I will take a shot at it (excuse the pun).

    I would be interested in your thoughts on the Judith Curry most recent posts IV and V on sea level rise.  I think JCH has done a pretty good job of responding, especially his summary of sea level rises 1900 to 1990, then the various shorter periods of the last 20 years, last 10 years and last 5 years.

    I have now read your last reference at RealClimate.

  • Stop blaming ‘both sides’ for America’s climate failures

    NorrisM at 11:21 AM on 14 March, 2018

    michael sweet and Bob Loblaw,

    I did not want to get back into a discussion of sea level rise until I had further information in front of me.  Obviously, a lawyer even trying to discuss "sea level" rise is problematic and I appreciate this (but it seems there is a judge in San Francisco who has just asked each side to present a brief on climate change as part of one of these actions against oil companies).  But I only replied to michael sweet accusing me of avoiding the issue and moving onto Pinker notwithstanding that I specifically said in one comment that I would reply to michael sweet when I had further information.  michael sweet in fairness may have missed this.

    So again, I will defer any further comments on sea level rise. 

    But I think I should address this desire of michael sweet to bar me from any participation on this website unless my comments are backed up by "peer reviewed" papers.  Does this mean that there can be no criticism of the Nerem 2018 paper unless it is backed up by a peer reviewed paper that criticizes the results or methodology of the Nerem 2018 paper?

    And, if the answer to that is "no", then what is the standard?

    PS  There is a JimD on the Curry website who is light years ahead of me in technical expertise who regularly posts questions and comments which drive Robert Ellison and other regulars on that site crazy. There are constant requests for Judith Curry to prohibit his comments.  Judith Curry does not even respond to any such requests.  Not that I compare myself to JimD in any way but I respect this website for also not responding to michael sweet's entreaties.

  • Stop blaming ‘both sides’ for America’s climate failures

    NorrisM at 15:08 PM on 13 March, 2018

    michael sweet @ 34

    I have not ignored our discussion regarding sea levels. 

    I have made it clear that I have been waiting for the last instalment on sea level rise on another website before I respond to you because I would like to have as much technical information as I can before I explain where I am on sea level rise.  I have my doubts about the Nerem 2018 paper and how much it will be followed by the IPCC in its next assessment for reasons that I have not fully discussed only because my understanding is that the last instalment of the Judith Curry essays on sea level rise is expected to address the Nerem 2018 paper.  Some of the blogs on the earlier instalments on her website have effectively said that if you eliminated the reliance by Nerem on the adjustments to the first 6 years of the TOPEX satellite measurements and removed the assumptions about what sea level rise would have occurred without Mt Pitabo (sp) eruption it would eliminate all of the acceleration.  Fuerthermore another blogger has said that Nerem's method of removing ENSO is patently wrong.  I want to hear what Judity Curry has to say about Nerem in the body of one of her instalments rather than rely on a couple of the bloggers who do sound like they know something about climate science.   I will get back to you on this as soon as this last instalment appears.

    So right now for 2100 we are at a projected linear increase of about 11" if the present rate holds, with Nerem's adjustments, we are at around 26" and the IPCC at 1-3 feet and the US Climate Report at 1-4 feet with what can only be described as an outlier suggestion that we cannot rule out 8 feet but refusing to risk this outlier.  Having said this their risk analysis of sea levels increasing beyond 4.9 feet lies around 1.3%  so why they would even mention 8 feet in the Executive Summary makes me pause to wonder why (See Charts 12.1 and 12.4).  According to their own classifications, such a chance is either "Extremely Unlikely" of "Exceptionally Unlikely".  Take your pick.  

    So I would appreciate it if we could stick to the best estimates for now.  But I would really ask that we just put this on hold until I have read the last instalment of Curry.  It may or may not help but I would like to see what she has to say about Nerem before I make any futher comments on projections about sea level rise.

  • The Key To Slowing Global Warming

    nigelj at 06:12 AM on 17 January, 2018

    NorrisM @50

    Thank's for the reference to the Hartley article and the attached nuclear discussion. I gather this is the article? For anyone interested...

    I assume the extensive and possibly frustrating regulation of the nuclear industry is to do with safety. This is not something that I would want to see compromised, or short cuts taken.

    I would not place absolute reliance on Hartleys views. They are the views of just one person, and the climate issue has become politicised and people have agendas. People need to read a range of views.

  • The Key To Slowing Global Warming

    NorrisM at 04:44 AM on 15 January, 2018

    michael sweet @ 27 and 28

    Thanks for clarifying some things.  I should have tried to link the Hartley paper (I have been unsuccessful in the past in doing so).  If someone can again direct me to where on this website I can figure it out I will again try next time. 

    Interesting comments about the Hartley paper.  To answer where I found it, I do not go searching for these things.  It was referenced by Judith Curry on her website.  I will go back and see what comments were made on that site.  I did not read all of the posts.  The reason I did not just "post" the paper is that I agree that his reference to nuclear power made me ask what his responses were to the Abbott papers.  I was more using it to analyze costs.  He did use the EIA 2016 estimates of nuclear cost in his paper and the ERCOT 2016 Wind Integration Report so I am not sure what you mean by data 20 years out of date unless this only references his inclusion of nuclear power in the equation.  I do not want to get into a discussion of perhaps why the Georgia and South Carolina projects might not be illustrative of what could be done with a knowledgeable operator because I simply do not have any information and Abbott was pretty compelling on both the availability of uranium and the number of plants required.

    But to correct one misconception in your blogs, ERCOT statistics do not just relate to a "small part of Texas", it is most of Texas covering 24 MM households in Texas.  On its website here is what ERCOT says as to its coverage:

    "The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) manages scheduling on an electric grid carrying 90 percent of Texas' load. This section contains data about the grid and key measurements of its operation."

    Thanks for your clarification as to where the technology is as to bulk battery storage.  I thought that the Tesla information was "too good to be true".  It is used as a voltage regulator and not as bulk storage of RE.  That makes more sense.

    My underlying sense is that we need natural gas to provide the "backup" for RE and I realize that you have agreed with this in other exchanges.  To the extent that there are other natural gas plants in an area (rather than coal plants) I completely agree that there is no need to quote RE plus storage.  But the Xcel quote was to replace existing coal fired electrical generation.  It may be that there also were available natural gas plants.

    I have attempted to read the articles you previously provided.  The first one was so theoretical that I gave up.  Perhaps you can point to one that discusses these issues more generally than providing a massive number of formulas. 

    But if mass battery storage is not currently economic and if pumped storage is too expensive and not practical in many flat areas (even run-of- river hydro) then why can Jacobson make statements that it is presently possible to completely replace fossil fuels now?  Unless he is like my famous economist who makes assumptions about can openers when it comes to opening cans of beans?  Seems to me that Clack et al are more reasonable with their suggestion of an 80-20 mix of RE and natural gas for the US economy (and probably the world) until there is some breakthrough in bulk battery storage technology.   

    Could you help me with a conversion of $/kW-mo to $/MWh so I could compare all of the Xcel Energy bids?  I assume that "Combustion Turbine/EC Engines" references a traditional gas plant supplying electricity with gas-fired combined cycles being the kind of natural gas plant technology assumed in the Hartley paper.  

    I am assuming that in the summary of Xcel bids the "blacked out" bids were not considered to be representative because of the small number of them.

  • Polar bear numbers are increasing

    Eclectic at 19:21 PM on 20 December, 2017

    Bruce @72 ..... with all due respect, Dr Crockford's expertise in evolution/speciation & hybridization of polar bears has near zero relevance to the modern situation where there is an extinction threat to the species.

    Polar bears are evolved for a specialized diet, and they do not have the fall-back position of an omnivorous diet (such as possessed by their ursine relatives).   The polar bears' hunting habitat is heading rapidly toward 100% loss over the next one-to-two centuries, thanks to Arctic warming (per AGW).

    Polar bear numbers (and importantly their condition) can be very difficult to determine accurately.  It is a bold, very bold, scientist who undertakes to publicly express a complacent attitude about the survival of a specialized mega-fauna carnivore which is undergoing almost complete loss of habitat.  Especially bold, for a scientist who is not a specialist "at the coal face".

    It appears Dr Crockford holds an outlier opinion, and is also making a mountain out of a molehill when it comes to relevant expertise.

    As to whether she is receiving financial benefits (from propaganda organizations such as Heartland, GWPF or other slush funds) in the form of a retainer or fee-for-service or stipend [see for instance the case of Emeritus Professor Lindzen or maybe Dr Judith Curry] or receiving non-cash benefits for speaking engagements etcetera ..... a cynic like you Bruce would of course wish see an absolutely categorical denial from her, that "none of the above" benefits apply to the present financial year nor any years of the past decade.   Alas, it is all too easy for propaganda organizations to arrange for covert benefits of various types.

    All too often in this world, Bruce, situations are more "gray" than you would wish.

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #49

    michael sweet at 09:25 AM on 14 December, 2017

    Acording to E&E news,  Pruitt is having trouble getting scientists to sign up for the Red team. Real scientists like Judith Curry and John Christy do not want to serve with a bunch of crackpots and the crackpots do not want to be left out.  Curry specifically said she did not want to work with a bunch of Heartland funded cranks (Heartland sent Pruitt a list of possible members of the Red team.  Curry and Spencer were on the list but said they have not been asked if they want to participate).  Even some conservative politicians say they want  a serious debate which excludes many "skeptics".

    In addition, since the skeptics do not agree with each other they cannot agree on what positions they want to support.  While it will give them a national stage they do not deserve, if scientist A says CO2 is increasing but no warming and scienitst B says it is warming but that is good and scientist 3 says CO2 is not increasing they will not come across as convincing.  Those whose views are not expounded on will be angered.

    I think that Pruitt may not be able to organize a red team.  He has made a lot of noise and has little to show for it.  Many of the members of the Heartland list can only be called cranks, certainly not scientists.

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #49

    NorrisM at 15:24 PM on 12 December, 2017

    nigel @ 1

    I have hesitated to even comment on this thread because I have made my views known on this topic in respect to other topics when this the issue of the red team blue team has come up.  Things became rather heated when I suggested a certain physicist as a possible chairman.

    But nigelj, have you read the transcript from the 2014 APS panel review which has been referenced many times?  These were not "monkeys" yelling at each other.  They were rational climate scientists on both sides commenting on the questions posed from the Framework document.  Why could we not have the same thing but this time allow for a long lead time for each side to prepare their responses to specific questions posed.  I think this could be incredibly educational.  This would be miles better than trying this issue in courtrooms as suggested by others.   You never get the "give and take" between experts in a courtroom.  One side says one thing and the other says something else and the two experts cannot go head to head.   The only job of the lawyer in cross-examination is just to make his points and sit down.  A courtroom does not offer the interchange that I would hope you would see with a red team blue team approach.  

    Depending on who participates in this panel (and who chairs it), it could be very valuable to highlight in the public's mind what real scientists are saying about this.  Of course, such a panel discussion would raise a number of issues but do you think the public would come away thinking climate change is all a "hoax"?  It would clearly bring the debate front and centre in the United States.  What would Trump have to say after both sides acknowledged that there is real AGW and it is only a question of how serious it will be? 

    And it is not right to say that there should be a 9.7 to 1 ratio on the panel.  The facts and science should stand on its own.   Facts are facts.   We have massively injected CO2 into our atmosphere way beyond anything in the last X,000 years.  Let the facts speak for themselves.  The oceans are rising, the temperature is going up and the glaciers are melting, more droughts are happening and there is more precipitation.  I personally  think you should not get into California forest fires or more intense hurricanes but that is just my opinion. 

    If you have to say climate science is too complicated, you just have to "trust us" then you will never get the public truly behind this. 

    I appreciate that the climate models will meet with criticisms but I have over the last while seen enough graphs to see that they have been generally tracking the temperature rise with maybe a 10% difference but not significantly off.    I understand there are recent studies that have suggested the models are too conservative.  Legitimately, answers will have to be given as to why temperature rates are anticipated to accelerate (if that is the case).

    But this kind of debate would get it totally out in the open.   

    I think the "consensus side" scientists and others are far too concerned about the fact that there are scientific uncertainties as to what will happen and are afraid that admitting these things will "weaken their case" when in fact admitting these uncertainties will give confidence to the public that true science is working, not political agendas.  If the science is not compelling given these uncertainties then that would be a problem.  But everything that I have learned so far tells me that there is no real alternative explanation and so therefore the only questions remaining are how serious is it (ie how much time do we have) and what are the best solutions going forward?  It is not a question of moving off of fossil fuels but only how fast.  I have also gained a lot of respect for what the IPCC has done (and their openness to a lot of uncertainties) but you cannot expect "Joe Public" to start reading the Fifth Assessment.  Watching a TV "debate" is the best you can expect of him.

    If it is some kind of kangaroo court then I agree it would not be advisable.  That is why I would like to reserve my decision until I see who the proposed chair or co-chairs are and who are the participants.  On this point, I might note that Judith Curry has been quoted somewhere that she does not think that the Heartland Institute should be involved.  I obviously agree.  I just hope the "consensus" side does not just "thumb its nose" at this but rather agrees to participate CONDITIONAL on being satisfied as to the constitution of the red team blue team and the rules of the game.  I would hope that this would be broken into a serious of debates on various issues spaced perhaps one month between them.  I personally  would like to have this extended to solutions but perhaps that would be for another year.

    Again, I have made this point before, but given the political reality today in the United States, here is a chance to deliver a body blow to the Trump administration.  Other than taking to the courts, what other choice is available to try and convince the middle of the road Republicans and Democrats of your case? 

    I just worry that Trump will not let it be sufficiently independent to encourage real climate scientists on the consensus side to participate.  I think that is the real tug of war that is going on behind the scenes right now.  If we see the Heartland Institute up there front and centre then we know the answer.

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #48

    NorrisM at 03:41 AM on 6 December, 2017


    I understand this is where I should be posting something which is not specifically "on topic" elsewhere.

    From another website, I have learned that there is a climate change case moving through the US court system which could have significant ramifications on US climate change action well beyond the Scott Pruitt proposal for a "red team blue team" analysis.

    The name of the case is Juliana v. United States which was filed in 2015 by 21 young plaintiffs who have claimed that their constitutional rights had been violated by government inaction on climate change. 

    Obviously a decision by the courts could have more legal ramifications on the Trump administration than a "red team blue team" analysis because the decision would  in some ways be binding on the government.  Obviously, the difficulty with a case like this is what could the court say that could really be binding on the government other than make some declarations as to their conclusions on the climate science based upon the evidence adduced? 

    Supposedly the government is having a difficult time responding to this challenge because even "luke warmers" like Judith Curry are not ready to participate unless they can be assured of no political interference with their views on where we are with climate change.  I suspect that this very same reluctance on the part of "lukewarmers" may be styming Scott Pruitt's efforts re a red team blue team approach.

  • There once was a polar bear – science vs the blogosphere

    Matthew L at 02:18 AM on 2 December, 2017

    She has done meta-analysis on research data on polar bear numbers which is compelling, if not peer reviewed. As a medic I am well aware of the problems with peer review and the lack of replicated results, so I do not dismiss any paper just because it is not peer reviewed.

    There is nothing to suggest that global numbers of polar bears have  declined in the last 40 years and plenty to suggest that they have grown. It may be difficult to disentangle growth due to a reduction in hunting with decline due to a reduction in habitat.  However, to date, the former effect has evidently been stronger than the latter, despite a steady decline in Arctic sea ice. You are disingenous in your statement that polar bears are listed as endangered. This was done to protect them from dangerous men with dangerous guns, not gradual sea ice decline.

    From what I can gather, most of the time when an unbiased assesment is done on Arctic fauna the results tend to be less alarming than the initial press would suggest. For instance the recent Fish and Wildlife Service assesment of walrus populations as not endangered following "analysis of the best available scientific information".

    I do not know of Crockford's attitude on climate change, but as she is a highly qualified and published scientist who has worked extensively in the Arctic I very much doubt it is "anti-science" - any more than Judith Curry, Pielke Junior and Roy Spencer are "anti-science" or "deniers" (absolutely hate the use of that word).  They are all highly qualified scientists in relevant fields of study who understand global warming and greenhouse gases but have come to a different view of the scientific evidence than taken on this blog - largely through empircal study and analysis rather than reliance on the wildly variable reuslts from General Circulation Models.

    I am broadly on your side, fascinated by the science, but absolutely  despair of the politics on both sides.  The rampant and totally ludicrous millenial cult level alarmism (Manhatten under water by  2010, no Arctic ice by 2012, 5 million climate refugees by 2015 etc) in the press followed by ridiculous self justification and cognitive dissonance when the world does not end ("its worse than we thought!") just demolishes credibility .  As for the "sky dragon slayers", I absolutely despair...

    Blogs really are not the problem.  The problem is that the uncertainties in the science are so huge (ECS between 1.5C and 4C per CO2 doubling according to IPCC) that it is quite possible to take a reasonable view at both ends of the spectrum. It would be better for sites such as this to climb down from the moral high ground and start looking at the effect that crying "wolf!" so often has on scientific credibility when the wolf does not appear. 

  • Sea level rise is exaggerated

    MA Rodger at 03:23 AM on 6 November, 2017

    This Koonin blather raised by NorrisM includes a WSJ opinion piece by Koonin (paywalled) entitled "A Deceptive New Report on Climate", this concerning the draft of a Climate Science Special Report (CSSR). Blog Mom Judy Curry has a post suppling some excerpts from the WSJ item and from the Koonin memo to the authors of the CSSR,  the memo itself being also posted at Judy's site (where NorrisM linked to it @221).

    The Koonin criticism sets out to fudge the inevitability of serious SLR by branding SLR rates since 1993 as "not statistically different from those during the first half of the 20th Century," this description being required so as to "not misleadingly alarm the non‐expert reader into believing that recent rates of rise are unprecedented." And he also wants mention of 2m SLR by 2100 setting out that this would require a rate of 24mm/yr so as to "help illustrate for the non‐expert reader just how dramatic the projected changes are." Or should that be 'how unbelievable'?

    So here we have somebody in denial over AGW-induced SLR.

    And he is not the only one. In the same post, Judy links to a slide show of her own titled "Sea Level Rise: Past, Present & Future"  which also shows signs of denial. And Judy's prediction of global SLR 2017-50 is presented on Slide 35 as 3" to 8" which works out as an average SLR over the period of 4.2mm/yr(+/-2mm).

  • Sea level rise is exaggerated

    John Hartz at 04:37 AM on 5 November, 2017

    NorrisM @221

    As evidenced in the new research summarized in the following article, sea level rise is a very complex subject matter. You would do well to focus your time and energy on peer-reviewed papers published in reputable scientific journals rather than on the pseudo-science poppycock posted on Judith Curry's website.

    New science suggests the ocean could rise more — and faster — than we thought by Chris Mooney, Energy & Envronment, Oct 26, 2017 

  • Sea level rise is exaggerated

    Bob Loblaw at 03:28 AM on 5 November, 2017


    I have no interest in what Steve Koonin has asked - he has no credibility as a scientific source on climate change, due to reasons already explained. Judith Curry is also of no interest to me. Most of what gets posted on her site is a waste of time.

    In comment 219, I posted a link to RealClimate. It includes the following graph:

    Sea Level rise


    I assume that you have followed the links given to you, or have a reason not to. What is it about this figure that you question? What about it fails to answer the question you are posing about cause of changes in sea level rise in the past century?

  • Climate and energy are becoming focal points in state political races

    NorrisM at 10:30 AM on 23 October, 2017

    Bob Loblaw and MA Rodger

    First rule of statutory interpretation is "turn the page".  The modern one is "scroll down".  I just spent 5 minutes trying to find both books which I guess I have left at my office.    I then scrolled down and find that MA Rodger had the two books pictured.   In my first reference to these books, when I found that Mark Steyn was one of the authors of the second book, I just about did not open it up.  But as it turned out I found all of the others interesting.  The other "starter" book was Michael Mann's book entitled "Climate Wars". 

    When I first started studying the early origins of Christianity and the arguments for and against the Christian god, I read books on both sides because I found that was the only way to "test ideas".

    Unfortunately in the area of climate science the area is too complex for the average layman.  Furthermore, the climate scientists themselves cannot even agree on the facts let alone what those facts tell us about the future.

    I definitely plan to look at the book recommended.

    Not to get back into the issue of freedom of speech but I just opened my email to find that Judith Curry's website today has a discussion of the very topic we were addressing.  First time I saw this was about 15 minutes ago.  From the blog, it would seem "both sides" seem to agree with her take on what is happening on university campuses.

  • Climate and energy are becoming focal points in state political races

    NorrisM at 03:08 AM on 23 October, 2017

    MA Rodger @ 154

    I am very impressed with your summary of that portion of the Harris podcast with Cass Sunstein.  I should have qualified my comment to Eclectic that not the whole podcast is on freedom of speech.  But it is very interesting on the other things discussed so it would not have been a waste of time. 

    We all agree that freedom of speech is very important in our society.  Sunstein's point is that we have to tolerate wackos like Jones denying the Sandy Hook massacre to protect our freedoms because to do otherwise puts us on the slippery slope of quelling any dissent with the "popular view" which would be very dangerous.   I think his summary of where the US Supreme Court has drawn the line is a good one and one with which I generally agree. 

    As to Miersch, I have since noted that at the time of my post I did not realize that he had strong views on climate change.  Of course I am familiar with GWPF because it and Judith Curry's blog are the other two that I look at only occasionally.  I have now searched on Wikipedia for the German Wildlife Foundation and it is not listed as a conservation society in Germany.  I am somewhat disappointed in GWPF for not making it clear who Miersch is and is not.  If the German Wildlife Society was in fact a true conservation society, leaving Miersch in the position as Director of Communications would say something as to their views but that does not seem to be the case. 

  • Ivar Giaever - Nobel Winning Physicist and Climate Pseudoscientist

    Eclectic at 12:59 PM on 2 October, 2017

    Magellan @90 , it is a strawman argument to say that: "Ivar Giaever is not fit to address the issue because its [sic] not his field of expertise".   And I'd love to know who are the "very smart people on both sides of the isle [sic] here".   And which island are you referring to?

    Magellan, you entirely miss the point about criticism of Giaever.  It is irrelevant which "field of expertise" he previously came from.

    Giaever's incompetent assessment of climate science is being criticized because

    (A) He got it wrong.  And got it wrong bigly !

    (B) He had the hubris to think that a few hours of googling  the topic of climate science would gain him enough knowledge to make a worthwhile contribution to the public discussion.

    (C) He had the arrogance to think that a few hours' reading on non-specialist websites would qualify him to declare that all the experts were wrong.

    (D) At the age of 83 , he had the chutzpah to lecture a formal gathering of Nobel Laureates (and also of many bright young scientists) about how science is done properly — while at the same time demonstrating his own failure to think logically about science!   What an embarrassing performance in front of the young scientists (not to mention in front of the Laureates).   Truly cringeworthy stuff !

    (E) And he had the lack of insight to recognize the above.

    ~ Magellan, possibly you do not recognize/comprehend Scaddenp's euphemism of "Gone Emeritus" about Giaever.   "Gone Emeritus" is a term used about some retired professors or retired eminent scientists — it represents a pathological fusion of hubris & mild senile dementia.   It shows itself as wacky beliefs and/or a maverick's disregard of the evidence base of mainstream science.

    If Giaever were 50 or 60 years younger, then scientists would simply call him a silly young fool.  Yet still have some hope that he would come to his senses as he got a bit older.

    Magellan, possibly you are not aware of the insidiously corrupting effects of small amounts of money or other inducement.   Money etc that Giaever receives from propaganda organizations (e.g. his payments from the Heartland Institute in his role as an apologist for Big Tobacco) might not appear to you as very much or very likely to influence a famous/wealthy person to any great degree.   But psychologists' experiments show that a small amount (such as $25,000*) can be more effective than a large amount (say $500,000) in maintaining & entrenching a person's adherence to a particular line of thinking.   So for rather small amounts, the propaganda paymasters get very good value for money!!


    [ * I mention this figure because it is an example: of a sum paid to the science-denier Richard Lindzen by Peabody Energy.   I have not seen the size of the payments / stipends / gratuities / subsidies received by Judith Curry or her like, from paymasters such as Heartland, the GWPF, or under-the-counter industry slush funds. ]

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #39

    NorrisM at 01:28 AM on 2 October, 2017


    The writer of the article.  By the way, lawyers in the same position are called "ambulance chasers" (When I practiced law I was a business lawyer)

    I think a couple of months from now would have been more appropriate to engage in this discussion.

    On another somewhat related point, I have been reading the comments on Judith Curry.  Is this all because of some interview I understand she had with Fox News?  I am a little disappointed with her even appearing on that "news" source.

    But I can tell you at one point when I was watching CNN and CBS etc covering Hurricane Irma when it was in the Caribbean, all of the predictions for the path of Irma at that time were up the east coast of Florida.  I just happened to go on the Curry blog for other reasons (although I sometimes look at GWPF, I only regularly follow two blogs, one on each side).

    At that time, when all the other predictions had the storm heading to Miami, Judith Curry's prediction that day showed the hurricane heading for the west coast of Florida. 

    It took another day before CNN was modifying its predictions.  Perhaps there were others and this was just an example of news sources looking for the dramatic but it was both CNN and CBS.

    So if one oil and gas company retains Judith Curry to predict hurricane paths I have no problem with that.  People do have a right to earn a living while promoting their causes.  I think her oil and gas interests are immaterial to the issues and have been fully disclosed.  You cannot bar every person from this debate if they have had some present or past relationship with the fossil fuel industry.  On that basis, everyone should disclose any advice (and compensation they receive) to any organization promoting the dangers of climate change.

    PS  One time I took a look at a YouTube video of the President of the Heartland Institute.  That was all I needed to stay clear of that site.

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    NorrisM at 16:14 PM on 1 October, 2017

    nigelj @ 46

    I see that the thrust of the one question you asked that I did not answer relates to how much certainty do we need before we make significant decisions.  You state:

    " We certainly have a good idea of global temperatures plus or minus a small discrepency (sic)"

    After me commenting on the Millar et al paper that has recently been published, one of the other participants suggested that I read the blog following the McKitrick article on the Judith Curry website.  In fact, I found the discussion very interesting and civil between McKitrick and Hausfather but it was too technical for me to come to any conclusions on where they ended up.

    But reading further, I came to an answer to your question regarding how much "certainty" I need or, more to the point, how much uncertainty there is there with the models? 

    First, Benjamin Webster came up with what I thought was a reasonable explanation for the differences in what the observations show and what the models have predicted and how they have been "adjusted" to correspond with actual observations so that they are very close:

    "With regard to forcing, this is apples-to-apples.
    For the past, we generally know the real-world forcings that went into the hindcasts.
    For the present simulations, they can get off if we don’t use the real-world forcings.
    That’s part of the cause of the 1998-2014 temperature “slowdown”. Solar and volcanic forcings were a little cooler than expected. But running a hindcast with the real-world forcings still gives pretty good estimate of the resulting surface temperatures."

    Just at a point when I thought, "gee" is that all there is in differences, David Springer highlighted exactly what Steve Koonin said in the APS panel that I have reference before:

    "Sorry Benjamin but estimated ECS is still 1.5C – 4.5C @ 95% confidence. By definition that’s a constant forcing. That range hasn’t been improved in 60 years of climate “science”. The low end of that range is yawn-worthy and the high side is alarming. Observed ECS is near or below the low number."

    I will not add the balance of his remark. 

    If we are still at this range, we are not talking 100% certainty, are we?  We are no where near the certainty we require before we undertake massive changes in our society. 

    This is not the place to discuss the massive changes required. 

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    Eclectic at 15:46 PM on 1 October, 2017

    NorrisM @45 , (A) you do not need to await a moderation opinion, before choosing to discuss things on a fitter thread.

    (B) You are making the Denialist error of looking at various models and  failing to look at the physical reality.    Ice is melting, sea levels are rising ever faster, etcetera . . . the global warming is occurring very obviously — so it doesn't need to be "falsified" !

    MA Rodger @40 , @38 , @36 : thank you for that further background on Judith Curry.  It is in complete accordance with what I have seen in studying her blog.  ( I haven't bothered with any detailed study of Lindzen Christy & Spencer — since a large slice of their illogical thinking derives from their fundamentalist religious fixed ideas.  But Curry is interesting because she is something stranger & more peculiar ! )

    Currie makes a nauseating display of persistent intellectual dishonesty — because she flies in the face of clear logical thinking & well-proven scientific fact.   Made doubly nauseating by her attempts at a tone of self-righteous martyrdom.

    Her blog's support for Salby's nonsense is far from the only denialist craziness that she chooses to espouse slightly indirectly.   She has a tendency to put other denialists' scientifically-wacky stuff in her blog (in effect, they are "guest authors") and she keeps a few inches back from 100% endorsing this stuff, in that she delicately says she is including it for the readers' "interest" ).   ~ Again, an example of her intellectual dishonesty.

    She is indulging in plain denialism of the most unscientific sort — and the extremist politicians (senatorial and congressional) & the extremist press enjoy lapping it up. 

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    MA Rodger at 04:58 AM on 30 September, 2017

    NigelJ @37,
    Judith Curry's objections are indeed quite petty, numerous and overtly used in feeding the denial machine. Their petty nature generally means she gets away without too much detailed criticisms. Mind, she makes out she doesn't like being called a denier. In her Dec 2015 Senate testimony (PDFp104) she describes this badge-of-courage and counters it by describing three things the IPCC assessments allegedly cannot explain, the least petty of which was the early 20th century warming.

    "Are you aware that temperatures have been warming for more than 200 years and that in the 20th century, 40 percent of the warming occurred before 1950, when carbon dioxide was not a factor in the warming. OK. And I could go on and on. Many of these issues are raised in my written testimony. " (My bold)

    This, of course, is intemperate nonsense from Judy-the-BlogMom and not the words that any serious climatologist would ever utter. To be fair we should examine her written testimony to check she didn't mis-speak. He written testimony tells us:-

    "If the warming since 1950 was caused by humans, what caused the warming during the period 1910—1945? The period 1910–1945 comprises over 40 percent of the warming since 1900, but is associated with only 10 percent of the carbon dioxide increase since 1900. Clearly, human emissions of greenhouse gases played little role in causing this early warming."

    Here we meet a cherry-picked period 1910-1940 which is then associated with "warming since 1900" so I would be inclined to take 1900 as the start-point of any analysis.
    Checking Curry's bold assertions - Using 10-year averages to prevent annual fluctuations causing problems (as per the data in the graph presented in Curry's testimony, although here I use GISS, not HadCRUT) and CO2 forcing from IPCC AR5 AII, the warming 1900-40 is 37% of the 1900-2000 rise and the "associated carbon dioxide increase", ΔF(CO2) 21%. It appears Curry's testimony is seriously flawed.

    Mind, this method of comparison that Curry attempts is overly simplistic and needs checking. We could instead compare the 40-year period 1900-1940 with the period 1970-2010 and note that the global increase in temperature 1900-40 was 42% the 1970-2010 increase. And the anthropogenic climate forcings increase (for both periods a pretty-linear increase) with the 1900-40 increase 26% that of the later period. (We should also perhaps note in passing that in comparison to 1970-2010, 1900-40 was preceded by decades of relatively high ΔF(anthro) that would have still been in action thro' the respective periods and also relatively high negative natural forcings, Both these would have boosted temperatures 1900-40 relative to the later period.) These percentages 42% & 26% would compare to Curry's unfounded asssertion of 40:60=67% & 10:90=11%.

    Thus it can be seen that Curry identifies an allegedly unexplained discrepancy to refute the accusation made against her - "I was basically called a denier." But she then unable to grasp the problem in more-than-trebling the size of this discrepancy within her testimony to a Senate Hearing. So it basically sounds like her accusers called it right.

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    MA Rodger at 01:17 AM on 29 September, 2017

    Eclectic @34,
    You say you have examined the history of Judy's little asteroid Climateetc but that was not the start of her journey to the dark side. A lot of stuff preceded the creation of Climateetc in Sept 2010 but, as with much else, Judy has her own take on the journey she took. Her version of it is set out at the start of her 2015 Senate testimony:- (PDFp39)

    "Prior to 2009, I felt that supporting the IPCC consensus on climate change was a responsible thing to do. I bought into the argument don’t trust what one scientist says, trust what an international team of 1,000 scientists have said after years of careful deliberation.
    "That all changed for me in November 2009, following the leaked ‘‘Climategate’’ e-mails that illustrated the sausage-making and even bullying that went into building the consensus. I started speaking out, saying that scientists needed to do better at making the data and supporting information publicly available, being more transparent about how they reach conclusions, doing a better job of assessing uncertainties, and actively engaging with scientists having minority perspectives.
    "The response of my colleagues to this is summed up by the title of a 2010 article in the Scientific American, ‘Climate Heretic: Judith Curry Turns on Her Colleagues.' I came to the growing realization that I had fallen into the trap of group think. I had accepted the consensus based on second-order evidence, the assertion that a consensus existed."

    This seems to suggest that in the two days following Climategate, Judy went from happy-bunny climatologist to happily posting on denialist websites like Wattsupia (a re-post from ThinkProgress but Wattsupia is the version she links to here) and denialist Climate Audit, the place she tells us "became my blog of choice, because I found the discussions very interesting and I thought, ‘Well, these are the people I want to reach rather than preaching to the converted over at [the mainstream climate science blog] RealClimate.’” That's a big big shift in just two days, Judy! Almost as abrupt as the next leap to full denialist in the following year, assuming you go along with Judy's timeline.

    The story actually begins in 2005 with Webster et al (2005) 'Changes in Tropical Cyclone Number, Duration, and Intensity in a Warming Environment'  which was published just as the 2005 hurricane season was making hurricane studies highly political. So the paper drew a lot of denialist flack from contrarians to which Judy found herself responding (being a co-author) and was still providing expert hurricane testimony in July 2006.  She was also the lead-author on a paper addressing the scientific argumentation of hurricane studies (although note that while the article is described here as "unapologetic in advancing their particular point of view", the article is actually setting out its scientific position as being no more than "the central hypothesis."
    But there are then the first signs in 2006 of Judy falling out with her scientific colleagues but over the narrow issue of how to treat with denialists. We find Judy commenting at what would become her "blog of choise" ( eg. about halfway down this 2006 thread where she would soon earn her posting rights). Also in 2006, she was talking on the need for engaging with denialism which heavily hints at her future path. This 2006 talk was tellingly titled "Falling Out of the Ivory Tower" and bullet points included ♠ inadequate assessment and communication of uncertainty ♠ turf battles and appeal to authority ♠muddy relationship between climate research and policy. It can thus be seen that Judy was already engaging with her "group think" monster by 2006, years before 'climategate'.
    Her immediate response to 'climategate' (in web-pages linked above) was to advocate openness so denialists can spot any errors allowing (apparently) corrections to be made with minimum fuss. "Doing this would keep molehills from growing into mountains that involve congressional hearings, lawyers, etc." while she says she isn't implying "climate researchers need to keep defending against the same arguments over and over again." (I would agree with this last point as they would instead have to 'keep defending against the same arguments over and over & over & over & over & over again, ad nauseam.')
    And by mid-2010 our Judy had become one of her own "scientists having minority perspectives" becoming an uncritical conduit for denialst argument and thus unable to connect with her peers (as her input into this July 2010 RealClimate comment-thread well demonstrates).
    Two months afterwards she had her little un-worldly asteroid Climateetc to retreat to, where she could cultivate her persona as The Daily Mail climate scientist of choice.


    Tapping this out, I was surprised to read in that article critical of Judy which she cited in her testimony that:-

    "Curry asserts that scientists haven’t adequately dealt with the uncertainty in their calculations and don’t even know with precision what’s arguably the most basic number in the field: the climate forcing from CO2 —that is, the amount of warming a doubling of CO2 alone would cause without any amplifying or mitigating effects from melting ice, increased water vapor or any of a dozen other factors."

    Question- Is that right? Has she fallen that far into the denialistic pit to consider this a substantive issue. Answer - She certainly had back in Dec 2010.

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #38

    NorrisM at 16:08 PM on 28 September, 2017

    Here is Ross McKitrick's analysis of the Millar et al paper that seems to have caused such a kerfuffle:

    "Millar et al. attracted controversy for stating that climate models have shown too much warming in recent decades, even though others (including the IPCC) have said the same thing. Zeke Hausfather disputed this using an adjustment to model outputs developed by Cowtan et al. The combination of the adjustment and the recent El Nino creates a visual impression of coherence. But other measures not affected by the issues raised in Cowtan et al. support the existence of a warm bias in models. Gridcell extreme frequencies in CMIP5 models do not overlap with observations. And satellite-measured temperature trends in the lower troposphere run below the CMIP5 rates in the same way that the HadCRUT4 surface data do, including in the tropics. The model-observational discrepancy is real, and needs to be taken into account especially when using models for policy guidance."

    This article, which can be referenced on the ClimateEtc Judith Curry website seems to be reasonably balanced.  I first read it and thought that maybe the "overstatement of the models" was an overstatement.  But .3C is a fair bit when we are talking about 1C since pre-industrial times.

    I see that in fact the IPCC did acknowledge in 2013 that the models were predicting warming beyond observations.  I took a look at their chart which is actually updated by McKitrick to reflect the 2016 El Nino.  So this is why Ben Santer, in the APS 2014 panel review acknowledged that Christy's claim of a significant variance was "old news".  At least it has now been acknowledged.  Does not change the question as to what we should do about it.

    On that point, I am still waiting for someone to respond to my question (on another stream) regarding the Jacobson 2015 study on wind and solar costs of replacing fossil fuels in the US by 2050.  I have seen no criticism whatever by this website of the June 2017 paper of Clack (NOAA) et al published  by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences which has  roundly criticized the Jacobson cost study to the point of questioning its validity.  

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    nigelj at 06:54 AM on 28 September, 2017

    Just reading the above discussion various things come through. Judith Curry is clearly promoting sceptical arguments sometimes over even basic accepted physics, and encouraging doubt about climate change. She is clearly irrational in her thinking. Tom says she has said other things less sceptical, but its the doubt that comes through strongly.

    The interesting thing is she is not specific on her reasoning. Theres a lack of clarity and detail about why she thinks what she thinks, which is frustrating everyone, and just plays into the hands of the denialists.

    Perhaps she is filled with doubts, but unwilling to be open in specific ways, or perhaps she enjoys the attention. Or perhaps she is just a schill for commercial interests and this looks very likely.

    I wish she would be specific, or shut up. I think as a scientist payed out of public funds to some extent (as well as fossil fuel money) she owes us all a duty to be precise and stop in effect spreading nonsense, doubt, climate rumours and vague suspicions.

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    nigelj at 06:05 AM on 28 September, 2017

    Tom13 @28

    "There is a huge body of scientific research showing CO2 has been a trailing indicator of climate change over the last 1.5m years, not the leading indicator.

    This trailing indicator phrasing of yours is unclear. The ice core samples show a strong correlation of CO2 and temperature and remember we have good causation as well given CO2 is a greenhouse gas. The samples show CO2 peaks lag temperature peaks, but the published research demonstrates with good certainty that while solar changes  caused the initial temperature peaks, CO2 was the dominant factor in the warming and amplified the warming as below:

    And more recent published evidence shows CO2 may well not have lagged temperature as below. So you are wrong on both counts. Just as Judith Curry is wrong to claim CO2 is not the main control knob.

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    MA Rodger at 02:07 AM on 28 September, 2017

    Tom13 @25.

    The 8th December 2015 Senate Committee hearing quote (B) "And that's not human" is probably taken from DeSmogBlog and (having hit upon the segment in the hearing video) it isn't a word-perfect quote from the hearing. The actual quote is:-

    "Yes, I do believe that we have overall been warming, but we have been warming for 200, maybe even 400 years, OK? And that is not caused by humans. OK. There is natural variability involved. And this is exactly what has not been sorted out. "

    But the hearing (nicely described as four denialists & one admiral by one of the senators) is more a deniers' revialist meet than enquiry. The hand-wringing from ex-climatologist-now-BlogMom Judy does require wider viewing/listening to fully appreciate the context of the quote which appears @2:26. A transcript is available here (with quote @pdf page 109).

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    Eclectic at 20:59 PM on 27 September, 2017

    Randman @22 , about your quote: "she was" (unquote)

    She was . . . what?  What are you talking about?  Please be precise!  Readers here don't wish to bother second-guessing what you intend to mean.

    Regarding Judith Curry :- the sources are her own comments :

    (A) in April 2015 : "Recent data and research supports the importance of natural climate variability and calls into question the conclusion that humans are the dominant cause of recent climate change" (unquote)

    (B) also in 2015 at a Congressional hearing, she stated about the global warming [of the past 200 years] : "And that's not human" (unquote)

    (C) in 2014 speaking at the National Press Club : "We just don't know [what's going to happen].  I think we are fooling ourselves to think that CO2 control knob really influences climate on these decadal or even century time scales." (unquote)

    (D) in November 2015 [please specially note this very recent date, Randman] she supported the existence of the so-called hiatus or pause : "global average surface temperature ... has shown little or no warming during the 21st century" (unquote)

    (E) in 2011, she supported Murry Salby's crazy/nonsensical "hypothesis" that oceanic-origin CO2 is the real cause of our modern rapid Global Warming.

    Now, Randman, consider each of the above 5 statements.  If you yourself had issued them, then it would be evidence that you were grossly ignorant about climate science.  If they had been made by a scientist (a scientist not specializing in climate related matters), then that would count as intellectual dishonesty.  Issued by a climatologist, that would rise to the level of gross intellectual dishonesty. 

    Individually, each of the above statements cannot be justified, for they are individually & severally false and/or misleading.   Randman, I could add others to the list . . . but (to paraphrase an Einstein quote) :- "It only takes one" !



    Randman, I do not in any way suggest that Curry receives money illegally from the Oil industry & other anti-science propagandists.   Arguably, what money or other benefits she receives from such groups is immoral but not illegal.

    ~ In 2006, Judith Curry [climatologist] and Peter Webster [meteorologist] set up a private company "Climate Forecast Applications Network".  Judith Curry is President (not an unpaid job, I gather!).  Curry herself said (in an interview with Scientific American) : "I do receive some funding from the fossil fuel industry ... [per my company] since 2007." (unquote).   Please note, Randman, that that sort of thing is not illegal — it is simply one of the many ways that the Oil industry slush funds operate.

    Perhaps you are innocently unaware, Randman, that the fossil fuel industry slush fund money percolates all around the place.  [Though I had to laugh when I saw that Peabody Energy's filing for bankruptcy in 2016 had "stiffed" the prominent science-denier Richard Lindzen, for a USD$25,000 "consultancy fee" that they owed him — though I don't know whether that $25,000 was a one-off or an annual stipend.]    Stipends, expenses, etc are paid in various ways — sometimes by "sinecure" payments, sometimes by propaganda "fronts" like Heartland or GWPF, sometimes by other under-the-counter indirect methods e.g. payments to a company (not to the individual).

    As to other benefits [in non-monetary form, not in cash] there are the examples of Curry appearing at least three times in front of Congressional-level hearings.   I am sure that even you, Randman, are not so naive as to believe that Curry paid for travel accommodation & incidental expenses, out of her own purse — if you act as a prominent stooge for Big Corporations, then they look after you in the premium style.   That's just the way the business world is, Randman.  (But it's not in any way illegal for her to be on the Big Oil teat.)   And then there's the purely psychological benefits she receives — definitely an ego boost for a mediocre climate scientist, to appear (and often) in the national Congressional limelight (etc).

    Then there are other benefits in cash e.g. in January and February this year [her academic retirement onto a teacher's pension, being at the end of December 2016] Judith Curry authored two reports, one for Koch Brothers and one for the British propaganda machine GWPF.  I don't know whether she was paid directly into her personal account or indirectly via her CFAN company, or by other means — but it would have been a generous*-sized benefit.  Again, not illegal — but of doubtful morality.   ( *Randman, it is extremely difficult for denialism-pushing Big Corporations to find any scientist with more than a shred of repectability/reputation who can be relied on as a stooge who will play the "Doubt & Uncertainty" game, in the face of all the overwhelming evidence that proves "D&U" is unjustified/dishonest.)


    In Summary :

    So, all in all, Randman, your own phrasing: "her scientific reasoning is dishonest, biased and she is funded by the oil companies" . . . is a fairly good summation of the situation.

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    nigelj at 14:30 PM on 27 September, 2017

    Randman @22

    "Eclectic, she was. Please cite your source for your defamation of her character in claiming her scientific reasoning is dishonest, biased and she is funded by the oil companies."

    I'm sure Eclectic can answer for himself, but I just cannot see where he claimed or implied Curry was dishonest or biased as such. I just wonder where you get off thinking you can really blatantly shove words in peoples mouths like that? 

    Judith Currie has actually recieved funding from fossil fuel companies according to these sources, including scientific american:

    Currie claims it hasn't influenced her. Yeah well ha ha I draw my own conclusions.

    Curry is more climate sceptic than anything these days, constantly expressing somewhat vague doubts about the IPCC and whether we can be sure of anything. Its all utterly confusing, not really backed up with anything specific,  and thus unhelpful. Refer her wikipedia entry. People can join the dots and reach their own conclusions.

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    Eclectic at 10:06 AM on 27 September, 2017

    Randman @16 , you are very wrong if you think that Judith Curry is a proponent* of AGW.

    Judith Curry receives considerable benefits from slush funds (from Oil corporations) as a separate matter from her regular retirement income.  She is, in effect, a paid opponent of mainstream science.   Please read her blog more carefully (as well as her other public comments) and you will see that she bends over backwards to give people the impression that AGW does not exist or only exists to a negligible degree.

    She was a climate scientist in the 1990's , but in more recent years she has slid into an anti-science role.  So, it's more accurate to consider her an "ex-scientist".


    [ * here you convey your meaning adequately, but your actual use of the word "proponent" is incorrect IMO.  There have been no proponents of AGW for about 20 years now (since AGW became a well-accepted & well-proven part of mainstream physical science).

    ~ An analogous case is the Round Earth situation : for several centuries now, there have been no "proponents" of the Round Earth, because the Round Earth is accepted & proven mainstream physical science.  Yes, there are "opponents" (called Flat-Earthers) but there are no "proponents", since the Round Earth is well past the stage of being a "proposed" matter.

    Randman : sloppy use of words tends to produce sloppy thinking.  Please aim for precision! 

    The concept AGW is distinct from the concept of "proposing" action to tackle the AGW problem. ]

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    nigelj at 06:27 AM on 27 September, 2017

    Randman @16

    "knaugle, if the NYTs and Washington Post get high marks on their facts, something is wrong with the rating group, at least if that concerns politics. '

    Can you please provide something specific to back up your vague rhetorical allegations. Nothing is wrong. Several reviews by various groups find these publications more accurate than others. This should be telling you something, namely they just are more accurate and so get their basic facts right better.

    "On global warming, I think they generally just report what the various agencies put out. So maybe they are better on that."

    Thats their job, to report on what the agencies say.

    "But there should be more reporting on skeptic's arguments, some of whom like Judith Curry were proponents of AGW and maybe still are for AGW-lite or somehing."

    Why? I dont think more reporting is required. The mainstream media already report sceptics arguments and in my view give them too much and disproportionate attention sometimes in a fake 50 / 50 balance. Numerous polls like the Cook study show over 90% of climate scientists think we are warming the climate, so the media should devote most attention to the 90% not the few dissenting voices many of which are funded by vested interests. And some of their claims are just nonsensical in the realms of flat earthers, so why report on that? Just having a view is not a reason for media being obliged to report it.

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    randman at 05:04 AM on 27 September, 2017

    knaugle, if the NYTs and Washington Post get high marks on their facts, something is wrong with the rating group, at least if that concerns politics. On global warming, I think they generally just report what the various agencies put out. So maybe they are better on that.

    But there should be more reporting on skeptic's arguments, some of whom like Judith Curry were proponents of AGW and maybe still are for AGW-lite or somehing.

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    Tom13 at 23:06 PM on 26 September, 2017

    Here is John Bates original statement which he posted at Judith curry's website.

    His post is a 3,100 word statement.  Bates is later quoted with the following statement "I knew people would misuse this. But you can’t control other people."

    With the quote cited above, some are arguing that Bates essentially repudiated his prior 3100 statement.  I find it doubltful that Bates actually repudiated his carefully crafted statement.

  • Temp record is unreliable

    Eclectic at 17:17 PM on 25 September, 2017

    Tom Dayton @493 , ~ Quite so.    Even the most intellectually-handicapped member of junior high school classes is capable of understanding the temperatures / anomalies / averages etc which Randman pretends to be confused by.

    But there is a certain entertainment value in seeing the crazy gyrations of the Denialist mind which enjoys displaying itself in public.  A subpontine dweller whose motivation must be at least 50% masochism.


    Randman @whatever ,

    it's been a while since I last checked the NOAA website, and I thought you might be  pleased to read this extract from their latest :-

    "The global land and ocean surface temperature for the first eight months of the year ranked as the second highest in the 138-year record at 0.88 C (1.58 F) above the 20th century average of 14.0 C (57.3 F) — falling behind 2016 by 0.13 C (0.23 F), but ahead of 2015 by 0.03 C (0.05 F).  Based on three simple scenarios, 2017 will likely end up as the third warmest year on record." (unquote)

    Isn't that a beautiful wording, Randman.  

    The same 14.0 degrees that Hansen clairvoyantly predicted in his 1981 and/or 1988 speech, in order (in his kindly way) to show that he was intending to lower the world temperature (from 15.0) so that you would have some "grist for your mill".   [ Literary note : though it is said that "the mills of God grind slowly" ~ yet the Divine mills grind never so slowly as the Randman mills. ]

    But it seems, Randman, that you have a little problem — despite criticizing the world average temperature, you have not specified how you would like the average to be determined e.g. would you like regional temperatures to be summed up over  all the 300 x 300 nautical mile squares constituting the Earth's surface.  Or possibly 300 x 200 n.m. squares as you move away from the equator? Or the 300 x 100 n.m. squares as you get closer to the poles?  Or something more Geodesic? Or less?

    Or would you prefer, Randman, to use the 150 x 150 nautical mile squares ~ as used by NOAA or maybe NASA (or vice versa) ?   I have a vague idea, Randman, that the (Japanese) JMO uses a somewhat different area measurement basis.  Not to mention the Chinese system.

    So which of these measuring systems is the one that you would choose, Randman? They all give a different result for World Absolute Temperature average.  Randman, you are the One — you must choose for us (the red pill, or the blue pill, or some other color . . . in your case, perhaps the rainbow pill? . . . not that there's anything wrong with that! ) .  Which method of averaging, Randman?

    Oh if only the world were simpler, and we had a consensus of scientists to guide us in these matters!


    Oh, er, yes . . . there is one more little problem with your way of "thinking", Randman.   Since you have it somewhere in your head that all of the millions of scientists worldwide are (for decades now) in a Giant Conspiracy to lie to you and deceive your innocence . . . and that you know the Earth is cooling not warming . . . but then how is it that the ice is melting and the sea level has risen several inches since Hansen's pronunciamento in 1981 ?   Just doesn't fit, does it? . . . unless WhatsUpWithThat and Judith Curry are wrong!

    Puzzling, eh!

  • Temp record is unreliable

    randman at 08:42 AM on 25 September, 2017

    Tom, this is the paper by Hansen with 288 Kelvin as the mean. I think you've already seen the press comments by Hansen and Jones in 1988 of 59 degrees F and "roughly 59 degrees" respectively, right? 


    Obviously regardless of looking at anomalies, there is a reason they believed the mean was 59 degrees. The fact climatologists like to look at anomalies does not change that, does it? Not seeing your point.

    On a wider note, this appears to be a pattern. 15 degrees was later adjusted down to 14 degrees, which had the effect of making the then present temps appear warmer, whether correctly so or not. 

    More recently, we've seen satellite data that showed no sea level rise to speak of "adjusted", perhaps correctly so or not, to now show sea level rise.

    Prior to that we saw the posited warming hiatus changed by some, which changes including lowering the past means among other things. One climatologists somewhat famously has complained about this, Judith Curry. Some of her comments here:

    ""This short paper in Science is not adequate to explain and explore the very large changes that have been made to the NOAA data set," she wrote. "The global surface temperature data sets are clearly a moving target. So while I'm sure this latest analysis from NOAA will be regarded as politically useful for the Obama Administration, I don't regard it as a particularly useful contribution to our scientific understanding of what is going on.""

    As I understand it, Curry was a proponent of AGW and perhaps still is in some respect, but has had problems with the way the data has been adjusted and the accuracy of the models among other things.

    She's not the only scientist raises these questions. So it's not just laymen like myself who wonder why there appears to be a pattern of data that does not line up with predictions simply being "adjusted." These adjustments are not just one-off things either but a fairly consistent feature here.

  • The Trump administration wants to bail out failed contrarian climate scientists

    nigelj at 08:15 AM on 6 September, 2017

    NorrisM @53

    "Bob Loblaw, I understand your criticism of Steve Koonin reaching past his expertise but I have seen nothing to impact his integrity."

    No, with respect you miss the point. Its not a question of integrity alone. S Koonin has a lack of grasp of the science, and an obvious sceptical bias which makes him totally unsuitable. Would you be happy with Al gore leading / organising the debate?

    "Why not, with the support of the Democrats, make sure this Red Team Blue Team is independent?"

    Its going to be very hard to do this, especially given your very own suggestions so far.

    "There is clearly something that is driving conservatives and others "in the middle" when you look at the Pew Research results (I do not believe anyone is questioning the integrity of Pew Research). "

    Yes on the science. But do you seriously believe conservatives would accept a red blue team result that found climate change was even more serious and proven than the IPCC claims? Really?

    "I think you find a reluctance in much of the American public to accept the "scientific consensus" of major global warming and its effects because the costs are so drastic."

    Maybe, maybe not. The pew research you yourself are fond of quoting shows the majority are uncertain on the science, but the majority actually want more done about the climate problem, and favour renewable energy. I think the scepticism about the science might be largely politically and ideologicall driven, so a sort of dislike of liberal elites who are generally support the science. Theres certainly some evidence of ideological factors behind it is you read for example The Economist which is pretty reliable.

    Of course commonsense suggests cost of renewable energy are at least some degree of concern, but your red blue team is not actually debating that aspect, so your point is irrelevant.

    "When or where else has the American public (or any democracy for that matter) been asked to make massive and costly changes to their lifestyle based upon predictions of the future?

    How is that relevant really? Theres a first time for everything. And plenty of environmental law has been passed that has had significant costs at least short to medium term. There's some precedent there even if the scale is different.

    "There is an expression used with religious claims that applies to other areas of human endeavour. "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence".

    This is yet another meme copied and pasted from denier websites. I'm wondering how a busy lawyer like yourself has the time for all your commentary.

    Anyway we do have good evidence for climate science and perhaps you also need to take into account the "extraordinary scale and implications" of climate change.

    "So this Red Team Blue Team approach, if the Trump administration goes along with it, is that opportunity to get that confidence level up so that it at least includes those in the middle."

    By rehashing over studies of climate sensitivity, the mwp, sea level rise projections etc? I cant see it. They will probably conclude much the same as the IPCC . The red blue process is too tainted with bias to have much appeal to moderates in the middle.

    "Because both the IPCC and the National Academy of Sciences are populated with climate scientists who have taken a clear position on the issue, this investigation has to be conducted by some other body."

    So on that basis you would have to have a red blue team debate for every scientific issue in history. Just so absurd.

    And the people you have on the teams also have a "clear view" on the issue negating your argument.

    "I think there is an underlying distrust that climate scientists are consciously or subconciously misrepresenting the existing state of knowledge in their zeal to get people onside. "

    There will be considerably more distrust of a red blue team collection of scientists picked by a climate denying organiser.

    "Climategate reinforced that view or perhaps caused it. "

    Well it left a bad impression, but given the red blue team doesn't really address the climategate thing, I can't see how it changes the perception. Basically people need to read up on climategate carefully, and they will realise the scientists did nothing wrong or deceptive. Unfortunatly people are clutching at any reason possible, no matter how silly, or scurrilous or lying, to deny fossil fuels are a problem.

    "Judith Curry suggests another US body which I think deals with national security which, as she says, does not have a "dog in the fight".

    Actually they do, or at least the military do, because they have produced reports greatly concerned about climate change.

    Pleas also note the IPCC teams do include some sceptics. The IPCC makeup reflects weight of climate opinion but does make sure it always includes several sceptics, this is deliberate.

    "The constitution of the body has to be equal otherwise you are deciding the issue before the contest. "

    No it doesn't. Its not even supposed to be a contest of people like some silly school debate. Science is a contest of ideas and if most scientists support one idea, you can't force them otherwise.

    Public debates have their place, but are mere entertainment, and should not be used as alternatives for IPCC process on serious issues.

    "What I come back to is, what are your choices?"

    One of the real problems is money in politics. Your quoted pew reseaarch shows one important thing that people do generally want more done about climate change, even if they are sceptical of causation, but they are ignored by Trump and Congress, and I suggest this is money in politics and influence of lobby groups, and this is what needs to change.

  • The Trump administration wants to bail out failed contrarian climate scientists

    NorrisM at 01:53 AM on 6 September, 2017

    Bob Loblaw @ 47 and Nigelj at 51

    Bob Loblaw, I understand your criticism of Steve Koonin reaching past his expertise but I have seen nothing to impact his integrity so your scenario of an effective kangaroo court I do not think is apposite. 

    But to the two of you, my question still remains, what do you do given the reality of a Republican White House for at least the next 3 years?  Why not, with the support of the Democrats, make sure this Red Team Blue Team is independent?

    There is clearly something that is driving conservatives and others "in the middle" when you look at the Pew Research results (I do not believe anyone is questioning the integrity of Pew Research).  I think you find a reluctance in much of the American public to accept the "scientific consensus" of major global warming and its effects because the costs are so drastic.

    When or where  else has the American public (or any democracy for that matter) been asked to make massive and costly changes to their lifestyle based upon predictions of the future?  Look how long it took the US to engage in both WWI and WWII when the danger was very obvious to Western liberal democratic order.  

    There is an expression used with religious claims that applies to other areas of human endeavour.  "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence".

    The facts remain that even with an Obama administration the "scientific consensus" was not able to convince the American public.  So this Red Team Blue Team approach, if the Trump administration goes along with it, is that opportunity to get that confidence level up so that it at least includes those in the middle.

    Because both the IPCC and the National Academy of Sciences are populated with climate scientists who have taken a clear position on the issue, this investigation has to be conducted by some other body.  I think there is an underlying distrust that climate scientists are consciously or subconciously misrepresenting the existing state of knowledge in their zeal to get people onside.  Climategate reinforced that view or perhaps caused it.   But leaving out "qualifying statements" in Summaries for Policy Makers etc that clearly has happened does not help.   Judith Curry suggests another US body which I think deals with national security which, as she says, does not have a "dog in the fight".  Perhaps this body would be better than the EPA.  I do not think this matters as much as the constitution of the body.

    The constitution of the body has to be equal otherwise you are deciding the issue before the contest.  I think you should again, recognizing the reality that the Republicans are in power,  "play the hand your are dealt".

     What I come back to is, what are your choices?

  • The Trump administration wants to bail out failed contrarian climate scientists

    Bob Loblaw at 23:39 PM on 4 September, 2017

    NorrisM @ 38:

    Did you read the post I linked to at #34? It outlines many of the items that Koonin just simply gets wrong about well-known climate issues, and how his rhetoric just does not follow logic. It is also worth following the link on that page to Eli Rabbett's blog post:

    And yes, Judith Curry exhibits symptoms of crankhood in many of her blog posts, congresisonal testimony, etc. Although she has a successful scientific career in some subjects, she has supported crank-level ideas from others as if they had scientific merit.

    My statement in #34 is not a definition of crankhood - it is one element that leads in that direction. I repeat (and rephrase): success in one subject area is not  a legitimate claim to authority or ability in another. I have spent 40 years studying and working in climatology and related atmospheric sciences, but there is a limit to my knowledge. If I were to try to start to tell particle physicists that everything they know is wrong, I would be descending into crankhood.

    What makes Konnin et al cranks in the climate rhealm is not that they disagree with me, but that they disagree with huge amounts of well-founded, widely-accepted basic physics and reason. And yes - if they want to overthrow physics they are going to have to provide evidence and a better explanation. It is not good enough to just throw stones.

    And if you are going to try the "they laughed at Einstein" ploy, remember that they also laughed at Bozo the Clown. And read the following "Crackpot Index" web page:

    Koonin is already hugely invested in the denial side of the climate "debate". Having someone like him lead a Red Team/Blue Team exercise would be like having Stalin lead a debate of communism vs. captailism in 1950. Koonin is not a disinterested, independent party.

  • The Trump administration wants to bail out failed contrarian climate scientists

    NorrisM at 08:49 AM on 4 September, 2017

    Bob Loblaw @34 

    I worry that your definition of "crank" is anyone who does not agree with you.  I am sure Judith Curry is also a crank based upon your definition.

    nigelj @ 35

    Perhaps I have not fully researched John Cook's "97% of climate scientists" as to what they do agree on  but do you think there is a consensus on what future impact the AGW will have on temperatures and the consequences in terms of melting ice?  This is the issue.  Even the IPCC provide a range of 1.5C to 4C without offering even a best guess.

    Jeff B @ 36

    Very interesting and thoughtful comments.  I would agree that the MWP probably is not as relevant but varying temperatures over the 20th Century and the 17 year pause are relevant because they at least address the issue of the predictability of the models. 

    But it does raise questions.  If it is accepted that there was a MWP and a Little Ice Age, then unless these are explained using natural causes there is a natural inference that the existing warming may consist of more than just CO2 concentrations.  I have earlier mentioned what I hope a Red Team Blue Team could address.  But for sure, this is a way of bringing this front and centre before the American public.

    The Pew Reserch study was conducted in June 2016 during the Obama administration.  If there was so much skeptcism even during the Obama years then surely there is a need to address this skepticism.

    I fully agree that Citizens United decision of the US SC is one more example of why it is hard to argue that the US has a true democracy.  Add that together with gerrymandering and you do have to ask if there is a Deep State in the US.  On the other hand, were it not for a few of the rust belt states, Clinton would have won. 

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #35

    BilB at 08:06 AM on 4 September, 2017

    Good John Hartz article, and good to see terms such as "energy in the atmosphere" entering the conversation. 

    What is missing in this article is the reason why, or how, the "energy in the atmosphere" makes a difference. 

    It is all about density.

    The 60's high school science that I grew up with, and take note here that this includes the bulk of the baby boomers who are commanding the bulk of the world's wealth and political power, was that storms are caused by the sun's energy warming air which rose carrying moisture with it to form rain. I now believe that this is demonstably a false understanding of how rain making works (I hasten to add that I am not a scientist and this is entirely guesswork on my part). The percep[tion that hot air causes storms has been utilised by the denialists to obfuscate the real atmospheric processes, as they concentrate on the notion that Global Warming will result in ever higher daytime air temperatures, which we know full well is not the case and Gabriel Bowen points to what really happens.

    The one piece of knowledge that is missing from general public knowledge is that humid air is lighter than dry air, it is all about relative density. It turns out that high humidity air, although only a little bit lighter than dry air has a very large uplift capacity relative to warm air. In fact by my back of the envelope calculations it takes a 20 degree C difference in dry air to equal that humid air uplift capacity. 

    So what we see in the environment is thermal energy creating uplift and this level of uplift gives us the spotted fluffy clouds of a standard summers day where the uplift rises to a level where there is a temperature and density barrier which causes the moisture in that air mass to begin to condence into larger droplets and the air energy is expended in turbulent air movement and infra red radiation, but no rain formation. It only dawned on me recently what mists and clouds are about when I drove through a morning mist near my business premisis. A mist is where the moisture forms droplets large enough for the uplift effect of the density difference to balance out and the moisture cannot rise until more energy is delivered with the morning sun, else bigger droplets form causing dew (we often sense a warmth from such air as the latent heat of condensation warms the carrying air). 

    My conclusion is that rain clouds are formed not by thermal up lift but by humidity uplift. It was not until I realised this that I understood why there can by storms in sub arctic environments. 

    So the full story is that Global Warming delivers heat to the oceans (and the land) thereby increasing the average air moisture content. This moisture content moderates the average air temperature and the increase in average air temperature is predominately visible in the average night time temperature, ie as the average night time temperature increases it is seen as the time of the early morning at which the temperature begins to fall (later and later as Global Warming intensifies and invisible to most people who are generally asleep and do not experience the time of change). 

    Climate Change is predominately the impact of the increase in atmospheric energy in the form of atmospheric moisture, and the primary driver of how that makes a difference is the relative density of moist air over dry air. The density difference creates the atmospheric overturning effect and volume of the moisture both increases that effect and causes the increase in rain volume that we are seeing around the globe.

    The simple message is that CO2 increase is the primary driver of Global Warming and moist air increase density difference is the primary driver of Climate Change.

    It would be interesting to know if Judith Curry and her cohorts understood this important point.

  • The Trump administration wants to bail out failed contrarian climate scientists

    NorrisM at 07:19 AM on 1 September, 2017

    Following up on my thoughts on another blog on this site (re Trump country to be hit hard by climate change), I truly think that the scientific community should not lose this opportunity to have an effect on Trump's policies going forward.

    The reality is that the Trump administration (or at least a Republican administration) will be in power both in the White House and in Congress for at least the next 3+ years.

    Although Trump has called "climate change" a hoax perpetrated on us by China we have come to learn to live with his hyperbole. He is a salesman, that is what salesmen do.  Please understand I am not an apologist for Donald Trump (I just hope we can make it through the next 3 years without any major disaster).

    But he will be moved by the public mood. From what I can understand, the American public are very ambivalent about Climate Change and how much trust can be put into climate scientists (notwithstanding the IPCC, Neil DeGrassie Tyson and Stephen Hawking).  In many, but not all, respects these differences do seem to be drawn on political lines.   I went to the Pew Research website to get my information.

    Here is the url for the Pew October 4, 2016 "The Politics of Climate" article on Americans' view on Climate Change:

    Given this diversity, it would seem to me that this "red team blue team" approach proposed by Scott Priutt could, depending on the results of the information exchange (the "debate"), move many moderate Republicans and conservative Democrats (see Pew Research) into the camp of the majority scientific view which would clearly turn the political heat up on Trump.  I personally would like to see a follow up examination on how best to deal with the impacts of climate change.

    I do not think anyone seriously argues as to whether the climate is changing (when has it not?) or whether man has had a signficant hand in it.  What this first debate should be focussed on is: (1) how much of a temperature rise should we expect until 2100 (and after)  taking into account existing model predictions of future temperature increases and whether this temperature rise will exacerbate extreme weather events; and (2) what would those specific impacts be (ie estimated sea level rise by 2100, etc) on the world assuming no action were taken to limit carbon emissions to mitigate the changing climate.  The second debate would have to focus on the best ways to deal with those impacts (ie mitigation and adaptation).   It would be too confusing to put this all in one debate.

    Given the political reality in the US today, I would hope that the scientific community would jump at this opportunity.  I think failure to do so would cause serious harm to its cause.  I can just hear Trump if that were to happen!

    As I have said in other venues, anyone asking how this could work should search "Climate Change Policy Statement" on the website, the official website of the American Physical Society, the second largest association of physicists in the world.  This panel discussion chaired  by Steve Koonin, an eminent physicist (and former Energy undersecretary in the Obama administration), along with other APS physicists, had some of the best climatologists on "both sides" giving their views on certain questions posed in something called the  Workshop Framing Document.   This Framing Document largely keyed on the IPCC 2013 Group 1 Assessment.  The three climatologists for the "majority opinion side" were all important contributors to the IPCC assessment.  On the other side were "lukewarmers" like Judith Curry,  John Christy and Richard Lindzen. 

    Based upon the final policy statement ultimately issued by the APS, the "majority side" won, so why should there be any reluctance to engage in this kind of exchange? 

    If someone like Steve Koonin were to be appointed as the chair of this red team blue team investigation I think you would have a reasonably independent person at its head.  I fully understand that after this APS panel hearing Koonin  made public statements even calling for such a red team blue team approach.  But I do not think anyone could question his integrity.

    As I have noted elsewhere, I just wonder whether Trump really has the intestinal fortitude to take a chance on this.  My guess is that he will not.

    JWRebel @ 2. Actually, my understanding is that in a red team blue team exchange there is no final "decision".  I actually find this to be a weakness of the red team blue team approach but I fully understand why.  But I would prefer to have a "majority opinion" and "minority opinion" published giving their reasons for their decision in words that are understandable to the public.  But this would then become political because who gets to appoint the full hearing panel?  I trust Steve Koonin to be a moderator but after that it would be like appointing justices to the US Supreme Court!

  • James Powell is wrong about the 99.99% AGW consensus

    DPiepgrass at 09:34 AM on 13 July, 2017

    I am curious who the four authors of 69,406 are that rejected AGW in peer-reviewed literature. Anyone know? I only know of 4 prominent contrarian climatologists – John Christy, Roy Spencer, Judith Curry, and Willie Soon – but only the first two are still publishing in the scientific literature AFAIK, and most likely Roy Spencer and John Christy would not attempt to publish something that explicitly rejects AGW.

  • Why the Republican Party's climate policy obstruction is indefensible

    NorrisM at 05:24 AM on 12 July, 2017

    Eclectic @ 53 and MA Rodger at 54

    My reply to MA Rodger is that I started that process of reading the thread starting in 2008 and was prepared to slog through it all, knowing after a very short while that I would hardly understand most of the technical information.

    That was until I heard that Perry may very well undertake a Red Team Blue Team investigation which, for a lawyer, is the way to go because it forces both sides to mount their evidence and bring their experts. 

    In fact, Eclectic, although I fully agree with your comments on the APS Panel regarding preparation ahead of time, we should have what is the equivalent of a Supreme Court hearing on this.   It still troubles me that Santer and Held did not speak up more strongly on the discrepancies (and I note no one has yet commented on that).   But the problem I had with both the APS enquiry and the Berkeley Red Team Blue Team project is that they did not follow through with what we have come to expect in a common law justice system.  An independent judge (or judges) listening to both sides of the argument and their experts, that panel of judges coming to a decision, and then providing their reasons.   Any dissenting judges would also provide their reasons.

    In the case of the APS Panel, the Board of Directors one year later came out with a revised statement that basically was the same as the previous one (after backing off of the word "incontrovertible") but without providing any reasons. 

    In the case of the Berkeley project, Mueller (sp) really acted like a judge in the European system where the judges get actively involved in searching out for evidence on their own.  This system may or may not be better than our adversarial system but I like our adversarial system because it is open.  Basically, Mueller hired his own guy and came up with his own reasons and ignored the evidence of both sides or certainly did not use it. 

    What we will be relying on as Trump takes a run at our institutions, is an independent judiciary with no axe to grind.  That I am sure is why Judith Curry does not want the NAS to conduct the review.  I fully understand that some scientific bodies felt that they had to make a stand on the question of climate change but it does then hit their independence when later asked to preside over any adversarial process to consider the very issue upon which they have come out with a policy.  

    When the APS came out with their statement after the Koonin chaired APS Panel, I am sure that one of the discussions amongst the Board was how much they could  "modify" their statement now that they had taken a stand without causing a major issue not just in the press but in the world. 

    So if there is to be a Red Team Blue Team organized by the Department of Energy, it would probably be better to place the responsibility in some agency that has not come out one way or the other on this issue.  I still have some misgivings with this rather than the NAS but it might be that the NAS itself would pass on it.

    For those that say this is a "waste of time" I can only repeat myself. It is called RealPolitik.  As lawyers, we used to refer to the "Golden Rule".  He who has the gold makes the rules.   I hate to say it but you know who makes the rules in the US at this time and for the foreseeable future.  That is why I think the climate science community should sign on to this process and be a part of it. 

    Perhaps this website should set up a separate section to consider the issues that should be considered by such a Red Team Blue Team. 

    Who knows, perhaps Trump will only sign on to this process if he has some assurances that 'he will win".   If the panel is "weighted' one way or the other it would destroy its credibility.  From what I have seen of Koonin, I do think that he would ensure that the panel had representation from both sides but that the majority of the panel were truly independent. 

    I truly think that the Red Team Blue Team structure should be modified to require the panel to provide its recommendation and reasons for its decisions.  As with judgments of any appellate body, there could be dissenting opinions.

  • Bad news for climate contrarians – 'the best data we have' just got hotter

    nigelj at 07:14 AM on 10 July, 2017

    I just don't understand Judith Curry at all. She is certainly very vague.

    She says climate gate raised genuine doubts with her. I find this incomprehensible, because I have looked at the actual evidence and there's just nothing there, nothing wrong and various investigations have found the same. So what is she on about? She is certainly unable to specifically say when asked. She  is a scientist for goodness sake!

    Yes, climate scientists do sometimes make mistakes like anyone, but there was nothing remotely significant in the climategate thing! In fact when you look at the desperate attempts to get dirt on climate scientists, and the many documents found (or hacked illegally) theres just remarkably little dirt there.

    I think Curry is an attention seeker, and this is her way of creating a following of people on her blog.

    Of course climategate showed some grumpy scientists complaining about somebody trying to publish a sceptical paper, and hoping it might not get published. This is people in a frustrated mood, as we all get, it is not evidence of a global conspiracy!

    Jo Nova and Judith Curry are of course entitled to their websites. Free speech and all that is very important to me. It doesn't change the fact the content is largely nonsense.

    People like Joe Nova claim to be intelligent, discerning sceptics, but they do not apply this equally to everything, they ignore patent nonsense, so they are intellectually shallow.

    They are not genuine sceptics. I think they simply have some deep seated distrust or dislike of climate science, that is probably a mish mash of different motivations, some genuine scepticism, but I think much of it more about gut reactions, politics and protecting their general world view. You will learn precious little reading their websites.

  • Bad news for climate contrarians – 'the best data we have' just got hotter

    Eclectic at 23:25 PM on 9 July, 2017

    Haze @33 , it is not altogether true that SkS comments columns are more strictly moderated than WUWT's & JoNova's.

    Yes, WUWT & JoNova comments columns are [and please forgive the "Irishism" ..... ] not just "full of hyperbole and emotion" but also full of vitriol, conspiracy theorism, and mindless repetition of long-disproven ideas.  And particularly telling counterpoints (against denialism) are deleted — according to hearsay from scientists who have attempted such posts.

    OTOH, the past policy of SkS moderators seems to have been to only delete posts which were egregious rubbish and/or flagrantly in breach of Comments Guidelines.  More recently (as you will have seen) the moderators have taken a softened approach to many "low-quality" posts, by striking them through yet leaving them visible.  But not sparing them where spam or outrageous trolling is involved.

    Judith Curry's blog is a different kettle of fish.  Yes, the comments column has a goodly share of poor thinking and unscientific nonsense posts, but there are also many posts which at least make some attempt to grapple with the issues raised by her.  Almost invariably ineffectually, though!!!  Taken altogether, the Curry blog provides a space where genteel denialists can express themselves without the unpleasantness of associating themselves with the vitriolic hoi polloi.

    The problem of Curry's blog is mostly with her own efforts.  She revels in vague (and unjustifiable) "uncertainties".  Always her underlying message is: We must wait and do nothing; we must carry on with Business-As-Usual ; we must carry on with more studies over many decades.  Unsurprisingly, she is seen as (and doubtless is) an apologist for Fossil Fuel Industry.  For which reason she is a darling of right-wing anti-science extremists, especially those in high places!  And like other FF Industry apologists, she entirely fails to make a case against the mainstream consensus science position.

    Vague uncertainties and woolly sophistries are the stock-in-trade of Curry.  On top of that, she sometimes features guest authors who spout rubbish & crazy theories — crazy stuff, which she does not trouble to deny or critique, but she says they were included in her blog "because they are interesting".  A tasty bone for the crazier end of the spectrum of her blog's followers ;-)

    For an example of Curry sophistry & confusionism & absurdity :- try this gem ...

    "The Brumbergs are correct to conclude: In our view, the fact that so many scientists agree so closely about the [causes of the] earth's warming is, in itself, evidence of a lack of evidence for [human caused] global warming."

    Quelle superbe post-modernist claptrap, eh!!!

  • Bad news for climate contrarians – 'the best data we have' just got hotter

    Haze at 19:53 PM on 9 July, 2017

    @31  Yes I do visit sites that have different view points.  I look at WUWT, JoNova and Climate etc and  Skeptical Science, Real Climate and Open Mind.   I also subscribe to The Guardian and The Australian as I like to get views from both sides of politics  too

    @31 and 32.  WUWT, JoNova but not really Judith Curry do tend to over simplify the topic and exaggerate minutiae and the readers are less likely to be scientifically inclined as those visiting this and other similar sites.  This leads to comments that are full of hyperbole and emotion but often not well thought through.  I think the real difference though is that the climate science sites are far more strictly moderated and emotive incorrectness is not tolerated.  Thus comments to, say, SkS need more thought than those to, say, WUWT

  • Why the Republican Party's climate policy obstruction is indefensible

    nigelj at 18:44 PM on 6 July, 2017

    Norris M @6

    Interesting comments, but I largely disagree.

    "Rightly or wrongly, I think that ClimateGate had a very damaging effect on the climate change views of conservatives everywhere. "

    Well it probably didn't help their views. I  can appreciate that much. 

    People do get tainted by one so called mistake (alleged in the cause of climategate), but that is very shallow to dismiss people on that basis.

    It's also very much "wrongly" that climate gate tainted anyones views. I'm a political moderate, with a reasonably  decent arts, technical and some science education. It only took me five minutes reading the actual evidence of climate gate and both sides of debate and commentary, to see there was literally nothing there, nothing wrong. Numerous investigations have also concluded the same.

    People concluding otherwise, must want to conclude otherwise, and are being irrational. I do however agree it was an unfortuante thing and rather bad luck, but to claim it means the damage is irreversible is absurd, innacurate and lazy thinking.

    "Judith Curry has herself admitted that this made her seriously question her position which was until then "mainstream"

    Her views are in a small minority of climate scientists, and she does not have a spectacular research record or any great clarity on anything, in fact she is rather vague about things. So please explain why you give her views prominence.

    "The hiatus"

    So much rubbish is talked about this. Firstly the latest information shows the pause was more of a short blip, and entirely within expectations. Last years temperatures changed everything.

    It's at least partly  inaccurate to claim models didn't predict the pause. All models without exception expect flat periods, but its impossible to predict them exacly because short term natural variation is slightly random. Models have been reasonably reliable predicting temperatures, as evidenced by articles on this website.

    Things are still slightly under predictions, but only slightly and this is not enough to be concerned about. Republicans dont appear to want to hear that, instead they seem to hear, things are not 100% as predicted to within millimetres, so everything must be wrong. With respect this is childish, self interested, and intellectually empty thinking, and they are smarter than that.

    "For now let us not get into arguments about this because you will NOT convince the Republicans by one "new study" that shows that the IPCC was mistaken. "

    So you are saying don't even try because people are so stubborn with minds closed? Humanity might as well give up. Just imagine your outrage if Hilary Clinton said something like that. Nobody needs to be that closed minded.

    Remember the only evidence that really counts is the science, and weight of scientific evidence, and it all points one way. Not politics, or character of climate scientists, or scandals, or occasional mistakes, or the like. One mistake on a minor point does not make an entire theory wrong, or key conclusions wrong. Climate change theory is built on wide evidence, not one piece of evidence.

    "So "97% of climate scientists" does not cut it with Republicans. They simply do not trust the climate scientists believing, rightly or wrongly, that their bread and butter is really based upon making sure that climate change is primarily man-made."

    Well that is just foolish thinking. Scientists are not exaggerating to manufacture work. Scientists get work in all sorts of fields because its needed, without glamourising everything.  

    We could turn around and say we dont trust politicians because their bread and butter depends on xyz, or business people or anyone. The world cannot and doesn't work like that or it would come to a complete stop . You have to have fundamental trust in professionals, unless they personally start to consistently act otherwise. Now look at the many, many false claims by Donald Trump, and there you have someone of dubious integrity.

    Basically people just do their jobs, and scientists are no different. They very critical of each other if they can find fault, because its in their interests. 

    "Can anyone really be a scientist and say that 100% of climate change is man-made? "

    Obviously yes, if thats what the science finds, and it does or very close to it. It's like certain diseases have very precise causes.

    "Climate change has been on-going for the life of the planet and the man-made CO2 emissions simply cannot be 100% unless you have strong evidence that we are in a natural "cooling period". "

    There is overwhelming evidence that we are in a natural cooling period. The solar energy output of the sun has been in a decades long cooling phase. Review "Is it the sun" on this website. This is a key reason for scientists beings concerned, quite apart from the evidence and calculations that point at CO2.

    "It is not possible that the climate naturally is not going either up or down. "

    No because the science doesn't find this. There are over 12,000 research papers on climate change, and many look at this aspect. How many would be enough for you?

    "When you say "100%" you sound like an extremist. Most people, and especially conservatives, do not like extremists. Not a smart thing to say."

    Maybe so, but when they said 90% that was too extreme as well. Seriously do we have science here, or "pc" correctness on an acceptable level? What is an "acceptable level" and why? 

    "But back to the Republican position. When they see there are real-life climate scientists like Judith Curry (who I have to admit sounds much more balanced than Michael Mann in testimony before the various Congress committees and who is not subject to any "ad hominem" attacks that seem to be levelled at Christy and Lindzen),"

    With respect, you are being one eyed. There's fault on both sides. Michael Mann gets abuse each week for example. Forget the short tempers, and look at the scientific research.

    "then the "red team blue team" approach with other scientists (primarily physicists I hope) may be the best answer to the Republicans"

    It's a staged, dubious sort of enquiry that can achieve nothing new. It's too small. The IPCC is much, larger and they include sceptics as well as so called warmists, and rotate new scientists on each review panel. You have a very good process, but most people haven't read what really happens overall, only biased little snippets of information taken out of context.

    The rest of the world has moved on while the Republicans alone seem stuck. You are just engaging in delaying tactics yet again, and we are sick of it for over a decade now. The rest of the world has seen through the ruse, and moved on to accept the obvious reality of human caused warming.

    "Once we get past what Dessler calls "positive statements" (in his very good book on climate change)"

    It's a very dubious book, and it's not about books and opinions, it's about the weight of published evidence in proper journals.

    "I just think the climate science community has to do a reality check. Trump won and he in all likelihood is here for at least for the remainder of his first term and possibly 8 years (would Pence be any better?). "Anyone who does not accept this is really like the ostrich in the sand pictured on the home page of this website."

    That's a real laugh given Trumps approval ratings are so low. I doubt he will even survive this term, and chances of re-election look slim. I'm sorry he is probably a good family man, but imho he is a confidence trickster, and does not have solidly founded policies and beliefs.

    "I personally am very unhappy with this situation but the American people have spoken!'

    Yeah sure. All your previous comments suggest otherwise. 

    "Churchill has noted, democracy is close to unworkable but compared to the alternatives, it is the best. "

    Well I would agree on that, but not with much else.

  • Why the Republican Party's climate policy obstruction is indefensible

    NorrisM at 16:31 PM on 6 July, 2017

    Rightly or wrongly, I think that ClimateGate had a very damaging effect on the climate change views of conservatives everywhere.  It is very similar to evidence given by a witness testifying in some legal case who is  completely honest in his testimony until the last question, where, in his desire to "win the case" for whatever side, he  "fudges" his last answer.  The cross-examining lawyer then leads another witness who proves on that very point that the witness was not telling the truth.  For any jury, ALL of the evidence of that witness is tainted.  I truly think this happened with this issue.  Judith Curry has herself admitted that this made her seriously question her position which was until then "mainstream".   It is just about irrelevant now as to what was or was not the intention of those emails.  The damage has been done.  End of story.

    When you add this to the issue of the "hiatus" of X number of years whether or not it was really there (the IPCC at least in 2013 coined that term) has added to the legitimate questions of conservatives that are we being led down a garden path.  The models did not predict this and therefore are unreliable.    That is not an unreasonable position to take IF the hiatus really occurred.  For now let us not get into arguments about this because you will NOT convince the Republicans by one "new study" that shows that the IPCC was mistaken. 

    Then you add on John Christy's famous graph which so impressed Steve Koonin between the predictions of the models and the actual observations (see APS panel hearing below).  Do you not think that those pressing the Republicans not to do anything on the climate change file have not read the transcript of the APS panel hearing where three (3) of the top IPCC contributing climate scientists, Collins, Hand and Santer, admitted that the model predictions do not track the observations?  Their answer was that they do not trust the observations.  Can you not see how this would make conservatives suspicious?

    So "97% of climate scientists" does not cut it with Republicans.  They simply do not trust the climate scientists believing, rightly or wrongly, that their bread and butter is really based upon making sure that climate change is primarily man-made.  Can anyone really be a scientist and say that 100% of climate change is man-made?  On  that point I fully agree with Perry.  Climate change has been on-going for the life of the planet and the man-made CO2 emissions simply cannot be 100% unless you have strong evidence that we are in a natural "cooling period".  It is not possible that the climate naturally is not going either up or down.  When you say "100%" you sound like an extremist.  Most people, and especially conservatives, do not like extremists.  Not a smart thing to say.

    But back to the Republican position.  When they see there are real-life climate scientists like Judith Curry (who I have to admit sounds much more balanced than Michael Mann in testimony before the various Congress committees and who is not subject to any "ad hominem" attacks that seem to be levelled at Christy and Lindzen), then the "red team blue team" approach with other scientists (primarily physicists I hope) may be the best answer to the Republicans.  Give it a go and see what happens.  If the Koch Bros result happens again, then you will have a very legitimate and strong position to force the Republicans to act.  If their own "red team blue team" comes to the conclusion that CO2 emissions are really the cause then we are at least then only into the question of how much warming and decisions as to how best to approach this.  So I say, fully support the "red team blue team" even if it has been done before. 

    Once we get past what Dessler calls "positive statements" (in his very good book on climate change) which are the facts, then we can get into "normative statements" on what we think the results are in economic terms and what we should do about it, both as to mitigation and adaptation.

    I do suspect that such a "red team blue team" debate will get bogged down on the facts and largely because we do not have the proper instruments to measure what is happening year to year.  If the result is that the Republicans do at least decide to dedicate much more money to funding both weather/climate satellites and water buoys and on-land temperature measurements then it will be a "win" for the majority of climate scientists who believe that we are the cause.

    What I found most unsatisfying about the APS panel struck in 2014 to re-evaluate their statement on Climate Change is that after having somewhat of an "appellate hearing" there were no "reasons for judgment", just a decision by the Board of Directors of the APS one year later to effectively stick with their previous statement.  I have no problem with them sticking with their same statement but by providing their reasons they could have provided massive "independent evidence" outside the climate science community that man made warming is a major threat to our world.  On another post, I have made reference to the APS panel.  You can read the APS Workshop Framework Questions and transcript of the proceeding with 6 of the top climatologists on both sides of this debate on the website just searching "Climate Change Policy Review".

    I just think the climate science community has to do a reality check.  Trump won and he in all likelihood is here for at least for the remainder of his first term and possibly 8 years (would Pence be any better?).  Anyone who does not accept this is really like the ostrich in the sand pictured on the home page of this website. 

    I personally am very unhappy with this situation but the American people have spoken!  Get used to it!  As Winston Churchill has noted, democracy is close to unworkable but compared to the alternatives, it is the best.  Comey must stay awake at nights realizing how he might have turned the course of history.  


  • Models are unreliable

    Tom Dayton at 11:40 AM on 27 June, 2017

    NorrisM, initially I'm going to assume you are who you claim to be, though the content of your post makes me suspicious--very suspicious--that you are one of SkepticalScience's fake-skeptic, trolling, chronic sock-puppeteers, and one in particular.

    Your statement

    The APS panel consisted of six (6) arm’s length physicists (with no axe to grind) chaired by Steve Koonin who were asking hard questions of both sides. What actually struck me as very astounding was how honest Koonin was about his previous lack of understanding as to how uncertain climate science is owing to the uncertainties underlying the climate models.

    is incorrect. Steve Koonin is a notorious fake skeptic, who has both the background and the subsequent, repeatedly delivered, information to know that most of what he says and writes is factually and drastically incorrect. Christy has and continues to make claims that are factually incorrect, and is motivated primarily by political and religious beliefs. Christy's partner in crime is Roy Spencer, who is a member of the Cornwall Alliance that claims human-caused global warming is impossible because God promised Noah there would not be any more floods. Really. LIndzen's pet theory about the "iris" mechanism that self-regulates the Earth's temperature conclusively and repeatedly has been proven wrong (obviously, since Earth's temperature has varied drastically--Snowball Earth, ice ages,...) but that has had no effect on his opinion, and he very much resents and takes personally the criticisms. Curry once was an adequately productive climate scientist, but for reasons I won't speculate on here, has become quite the opposite.

  • Models are unreliable

    NorrisM at 08:59 AM on 27 June, 2017

    I would first like to state that I have finally found a website that is balanced on this very emotional issue. I also want to thank SemiChemE and Tom Curtis (along with a few others) who have engaged in a very fascinating discussion on climate models.

    My intention is to pose a question on climate models in keeping with this blog, however because this is my first post, I would like to explain my background. I am a lawyer by training and have a very limited base in physics (took Latin in Grade 12 rather than physics) although I always did well in science. I will also disclose that I do have an involvement in the Canadian oil and gas industry notwithstanding that I live in Vancouver, BC.

    Ever since the issue of global warming came to the fore in the late 1990’s and since, I have to admit that I have tended to accept the “scientific consensus” if only because I had no reason to question it. Climategate shook my confidence in 2009 but if Neil DeGrasse Tyson still believes that the principal causes are anthropogenic then far be it for me to question it. However, it always seemed logical to me that a first step in reducing the effects of CO2 should be to move from oil and coal to natural gas (especially for electrical generation) which puts about one half of the pollutants into the air compared to coal and oil. After spending enough holidays in France, I have also thought that a switch to nuclear energy made more sense than disfiguring our planet with massive wind turbines and great areas of solar panels. Driving from LA to Palm Springs is not a pretty sight. But I do appreciate that there are real concerns relating to disposing of nuclear waste and issues of terrorists getting their hands on nuclear fuel. However, someone as significant as James Hansen believes that we will not achieve our goals without a turn to nuclear energy.

    In any event, my recent interest in the causes of global warming really came about because I have two sisters who are just about no longer on speaking terms owing to their disagreements on global warming. When one sister called me asking where I stood on climate change and if I truly believed that this was all a “global conspiracy of the left” to increase taxes and government control over our lives, I promised her that I would buy some books on both sides of the argument and get back to her. Needless to say, I do not believe in conspiracy theories of any sort.

    So the two books I located were The Science & Politics of Global Climate Change by Dessler and Parson and Climate Change the Facts edited by Alan Moran.

    By the time I was finished with Dessler’s book I was convinced of the science. Then I read the essays in the Moran book and found myself at least questioning some things.

    I actually then went back and re-read Dessler’s book to see where the gaps were. I have to say that when I found that Mark Steyn had an essay in the Moran book I almost did not read the book because of his extreme views. Just to make my political views clear, I think Donald Trump poses a major threat to liberal democracy in the US and to the world in many ways. But it does look like the US institutions may be able to withstand him and his cohorts. I also follow Sam Harris’s podcasts “religiously”.

    Since reading these two books I have largely pursued my research on the web even reading the submissions of the four climatologists on March 25, 2017 to the House Committee on Science Space and Technology.

    Based upon Judith Curry’s reference in her submission, this led me to the most fascinating discussion of the topic of climate models by a panel of physicists formed by the American Physical Society (APS) which posed questions to six (6) well-known climatologists having “different perspectives”. Three (3) of them (Collins, Santer and Held) are IPCC climatologists and the other three (3), Curry, Christy and Lindzen are on the other side of the debate. This was the 2014 Workshop sponsored by the APS as part of its 5 year review of its Climate Change Policy Statement.

    As a lawyer, I have to admit that if I treated (i) the IPCC 2013 Assessment as an appellate lawyer’s factum, (ii) the Workshop Framework posed as questions from the bench, and (iii) the 600 page transcript of the panel hearing as the “give and take” between the judges and lawyers during the oral argument of the appeal, I would have predicted a “win” for Curry, Lindzen and Christy and a “loss” for Collins, Santer and Held. Both the Workshop Framework questions and the transcript are on the website. Just search “Climate Change Statement Review”. If anyone has read any legal transcript of a hearing you know it is a simple read so don’t be put off by the “600 pages”.

    The APS panel consisted of six (6) arm’s length physicists (with no axe to grind) chaired by Steve Koonin who were asking hard questions of both sides. What actually struck me as very astounding was how honest Koonin was about his previous lack of understanding as to how uncertain climate science is owing to the uncertainties underlying the climate models.

    This panel hearing took place in February 2014. By November 2015, the judgment of the Board of Directors of the APS was in. The connection between increases in CO2 and global warming was “compelling”. However, the APS did acknowledge that there were significant uncertainties in the science and urged sustained research in climate science.

    Where my comparison with an appellate hearing breaks down is that no appellate court would render a significant judgment without providing its reasons. We do not get any reasons from the panel as to why it recommended to the Board of Directors (as I assume it did) that the APS “stay the course” with its policy statement notwithstanding the serious reservations you could see in Koonin’s and other panel members questions to Collins, Santer and Held and the weak answers provided by them. The IPCC climatologists in effect admitted that Christy’s now famous chart showing how far apart the average predictions of the climate models were from actual observations was “old information” and did in fact represent the existing state of models predictions versus observations. See Santer page 504. The IPCC climatologists effectively said that they could not trust the observations! Koonin’s rhetorical question to Held to this "observational" response earlier was: “So the ability then to reproduce historical data is neither necessary or sufficient to predict the future. Is that what I understand?” See page 453 of the transcript. Held effectively avoids answering the question. See page 454. Read it yourself and see if you disagree with my view of his response.

    So here is my question.

    From everything that I have read so far, other things being equal, a doubling of CO2 in the atmosphere from pre-industrial levels of CO2 of around 280 ppm to 560 ppm will increase the global surface temperature by about 1 to 1.2C and the balance of the predicted range of 1.5C to 4.5C of the IPCC 2013 Assessment is based upon “positive feedbacks” resulting from increased water vapour that is assumed will form arising out of the 1C increase by CO2. I accept (or understand) that the 1C increase is “solid physics” or “hard science”.

    Is it “solid physics” that:

    1. Water vapour will in fact increase as modelled?
    2. Water vapour will cause the predicted additional increase in temperature by a factor of 2 to 3 times?

    Although this next observation is not specifically focused on the climate models, what also troubles me in everything that I have read so far on climate change is the following:

    1. The Mediaeval Warming Period had temperatures for at least 200 years in at least Greenland and Northern Europe close to or equal to our present temperature.

    2. During the 1600's and 1700's there was a "Mini-Ice Age" when they were skating on the Thames.  We were just coming out of this cold period at the beginning of the American Revolution (good timing).

    3. From 1990 to 1940 we experienced about .3C warming; then from 1940 to 1975 there was a levelling off or cooling period; then from 1975 to 1998 we experienced .5C warming; and then there was a levelling off (termed the “hiatus” by the IPCC) of now about 17 plus years that may or may not have ended in 2015 (El Nino event 2015-2016). I appreciate that 1998 was an El Nino year but the IPCC 2013 Assessment recognized the “hiatus” up to that time.

    If climatologists cannot explain why these other warming and cooling periods occurred which, other than the 1975-1998 period, were primarily or completely caused by natural climate change, then why can they so confidently claim that this one warming period was primarily caused by the CO2 rise?  Just because there was a concomitant rise in CO2?  What about the rise of CO2 from 1950 to 1975?

    The models predicted that our temperature would increase on a linear basis. There were no “waves” in the models. I guess based upon Michael Mann’s most recent testimony the most recent peer reviewed papers are now suggesting that we will be going up in steps or waves. Can we now expect that the new models with show the steps or waves?

    So where did the “warming” go during this “hiatus”? If the answer is into the oceans, then why did the “warming” not come from the oceans during the period 1975-1998? Could we have had a cooling period during the “hiatus” that offset the warming from CO2 during this period? What are the impacts of a decrease or increase in low clouds caused by natural factors which impacts the amount of sunlight hitting the earth? Because of computer capacity issues, we can only make “parameterizations” of clouds in the models.  These are the kinds of questions that make me question the validity of the models.

    When we talk of the difference between weather and climate we say we cannot predict weather but we can predict climate because we know that next July it will be warm. But why do we know that? Not from models, from observation. If observations and models do not correspond, when do we admit that the models do not have sufficient predictive value to be relied upon? It is OK for science to say “we just do not presently understand the science sufficiently to make reasonably accurate predictions”.

    On the other hand, here are the major science societies of the world like the APS, the US National Academy of Sciences and the UK Royal Society coming out strongly in support of the proposition that man-made global warming is a serious problem and is going to get worse. My worry is that they got on a band wagon in the early 2000’s before the “hiatus” was apparent and they now find it very difficult to get off even when they see that these models are not predictive.

    I apologize for such a long-winded initial blog. If you think I have to reduce it, please advise.

  • Study: to beat science denial, inoculate against misinformers' tricks

    citizenschallenge at 13:02 PM on 14 May, 2017

    KR 17 - why do folks always leave out the part about Curry's dependence on personal attacks? - Her articles consistently insinuate that scientists are dishonest, she often suggests motives that show serious respected scientists in the worst possible light.

    Judith Curry does her "science communication" by malicious one-sided rhetoric. Tippy toeing around that doesn't help anyone. Why not confront it, case in point:

    "¶1 A look behind the curtain of John Bates’ facade - The John Bates Affair" - A citizen's examination of the article at the heart of this season’s faux climate scandal. "Climate scientists versus climate data" - John Bates, posted on February 4, 2017 at Curry's ClimateEtc

  • Study: to beat science denial, inoculate against misinformers' tricks

    Haze at 12:02 PM on 11 May, 2017

    I just watched the video clip featuring Bill Nye the science guy.  No doubt amusing to some but giving entirely the  wrong message.  Look for yourselves.  The"denier" is asked why he denies climate change and gives a concise, clear, straightforward and readily understandable answer "the science isn't in yet".  John Oliver then turns to the "climate scientists" who produce  a babble of sound in which nothing can be  distiguished.  How does this help their cause?  Humorus? Debatable.  Informative?  Definitely not

    A significant sentence in the piece  under discussion is " I asked lead author John Cook how these findings can be implemented in the real world where misinformation about subjects like climate science and vaccines is pervasive."

    The primary interest of the MSM is earning money by selling advertising everything else is secondary.  A piece headlined "Climate Change is a Scam"  attracts heaps of interest.  All the WUWT and JoNova readers say "Yeah bro, right on!"  while the readers of Real Climate and Skeptical Science  "No way bro, the evidence shows that that ain't so".  This sells papers and/or attracts viewers but above all gets publicity which attracts advertisers.

     And on a slightly different tack, I agree that JoNova and WUWT are attractive to the wider community  as their content makes little demand on the intellect.  That however is not the case  with  Judith Curry's "Climate etc" so why does it garner so many comments?

  • New publication: Does it matter if the consensus on anthropogenic global warming is 97% or 99.99%?

    knaugle at 00:38 AM on 5 May, 2017

    Most of the time when I look into this, at a purely amateur level, I find that there are maybe 80 really active, publishing climate scientists.  From this list, I can count less than a handfull of scientists whom I know are critical of AGW.  Roy Spencer, John Christy, and Judith Curry come to mind.  Interestingly Curry has retired and so is no longer on my list.  As is the case with Richard Lindzen and William Gray, and for that matter Christopher Moncton and Fred Singer (who aren't really climate scientists) it seems the most ardent "deniers" are getting really old and I'm not seeing their replacements.  The eternal problem of being a contrarian is always that while you might be right, it is really hard to convince anyone.

  • No climate conspiracy: NOAA temperature adjustments bring data closer to pristine

    Tom Curtis at 11:07 AM on 27 April, 2017

    Spassapparat @34, Tony Heller (aka Steven Goddard) shows the following graph of USHCN adjustments:

    You will notice that there is not a lot of scatter in the individual points from year to year, a necessary feature for the high correlation with CO2 given the very limited scatter found in the CO2 record (at least from Mauna Loa).  That being said, the graph comes as a surprise to me, for I have typically seen a much larger year to year scatter in the graphs, such as shown here:

    The author of this second graph is in obvious, and fundamental disagreement with Tony Heller about the size and nature of the adjustments in the USHCN temperature record.  Importantly, if Heller is correct, there is a significant correlation between CO2 concentrations and temperature adjustments, but if the author of the second graph is correct, there is not.  That is odd, because the author of the second graph is Tony Heller.  

    It turns out that when Heller is not trying to argue that there is a high correlation between CO2 concentration and temperature adjustments, he thinks the adjustments are very different from what he takes them to be when he trying to make that argument.  It might make one think that Heller has adjusted his calculation of the adjustments to fit is CO2 correlation argument.

    In any event, the basis of the adjustments is in fact well known.  NOAA publishes the algorithms used to make the adjustments.  The publish the raw and final data as well.  Consequently anybody with the appropriate skills and determination can calculate the adjustments independently of NOAA.  Several people have, and they have come up with the same result.  Needless to say, none of NOAA's algorithms make any reference to CO2 concentration, as can be seen for the step wise adjustments as calculated by Judith Curry:

    Heller knows this, so he knows that any correlation between the adjustments and CO2 concentration (whether assisted by adjusting the adjustments or not) is coincidental.  His failure to discuss the known basis of the adjustments in his post must therefore be considered a calculated deceit.

  • Inconceivable! The latest theatrical House 'Science' committee hearing

    Dennis Horne at 14:15 PM on 7 April, 2017

    Michael Mann was ambushed. He walked straight into the Clay Higgin's trap (Association of Concerned Scientists, Climate Accountability Institute). A minute on Wikipedia and youtube  ("Don't Be Throwing Rocks - Congressmen Clay Higgins") and he might have known not to answer. (Copy Judith Curry: "We don't know".)

    Elizabeth Esty knew what was going on and how to deal with it. You can't argue with Lamar Smith, you go around him.

    The fundamental problem is the person speaking for science has to know everything in the book and a denier needs know only one question, which may not have a simple answer. So a scientist is going to come off second best against a lawyer or politican.

    It is a game and maybe there is something to be said for not playing.

  • Inconceivable! The latest theatrical House 'Science' committee hearing

    Tom Curtis at 14:51 PM on 6 April, 2017

    Jeff T @7, I have not watched the testimony, and so cannot comment on the relative merits of each performance.  I agree with you that Michael Mann should not have been the witness chosen by the Democrats (if he was in fact chosen by them).  It is very clear that the chair wanted to stack the deck.  Essentially the 97% of climate scientists who agree with the consensus got represented by Michael Mann.  The 1% who are uncertain got represented by Roger Pielkie Jr and Judith Curry, and the 2% who are definite "skeptics" were represented by John Christy.  Whilst the chair insists on an effective gag on the vast majority of climate scientists, the Democrats should invite a different climate scientist to each such hearing.  Over time, this will highlight that the Republicans always invite the same people because they really do not have that many to choose from.

  • Inconceivable! The latest theatrical House 'Science' committee hearing

    Jeff T at 13:55 PM on 6 April, 2017

    The hearing was (or should have been) an embarrassment to most participants.  Michael Mann was a poor choice for the Democrats' invitee.  He's much too combative to sway any fence-sitter in his direction. Yes, he was the object of a political witch hunt and has received a great deal of vitriol, but those facts aren't effective arguments for his scientific positions.   Judith Curry was her usual we-don't-know-enough-to-say-anything-about-anything self. 

    An especially telling exchange occurred at 1:08 in the recording.  Rep. Brooks said that sea level ought to fall in response to global warming.  John Christy avoided the awkward moment by deferring to Curry, who hemmed and hawed about East and West Antarctica.  Isn't she a big fan of satellite data?  Not wanting to cross her sponsors, she missed an opportunity to educate them and gave Mann the chance to mention that we have good data showing that Greenland and Antarctica (as a whole) are both losing ice mass.  That was Mann's best moment.

    I'm not a fan of his, but I thought Roger Pielke, Jr came out best.  He kept quoting IPCC, mostly stayed out of the "you attacked me before I attacked you" conversation, and managed to contradict his sponsors.

  • Inconceivable! The latest theatrical House 'Science' committee hearing

    Jim Hunt at 22:51 PM on 5 April, 2017

    My own thoughts on last Wednesday's events:

    The House Science Climate Model Show Trial

    Some highlights from my Transatlantic perspective:

    The denialosphere is of course now spinning like crazy attempting to pin something, anything, on Michael Mann.

    not to mention:

    Why on Earth Judith chose to repeat the “CAI” allegation is beyond me.


    Given our long running campaign against the climate science misinformation frequently printed in the Mail on Sunday it gives us great pleasure to reprint in full the following extract from [Mann’s] written testimony:

    I'm currently doing battle with Steve McIntyre and other "skeptics" on Twitter over his assertion that "the CV contradicts his lie" regarding Mann's alleged CAI "affiliation/association".

    I can only assume that Mr. McIntyre has neglected to watch the above video of the proceedings. I even managed to persuade one of Judith Curry's "denizens" to take on board my point of view about that contentious issue!

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