Reprint: Climate science and policy: the tension between ‘argument’ and ‘debate’

Today The Conversation published a piece by Barry Naughton from the Australian National University (see title above). Taking advantage of the common creative license offered by The Conversation I’m republishing it in full.

I believe it offers some insightful analysis on the need for clear thinking and countering the most common semantic tricks and logical fallacies the riddles the work of the denial movement.

Enjoy, it is a great article – Mike @Watchthedeniers

Robert Manne’s important essay in The Monthly (August 2012) laments that in the climate change debate “the denialist campaign has won”, a sharp turn for the worse since 2009. Clearly, Manne’s primary purpose is not to haul up the white flag, but to inform and to shock. If “denialism” and its cousins (climate “scepticism” and “contrarianism”) are to be countered, we need to face some unpleasant political and psychological realities.

Faced with the onslaught of the few powerful ideologues and corporate vested interests identified by Manne, Naomi Oreskes and others, a significant section of the public is unpersuaded by the “science” alone. This is despite accumulating evidence including extreme weather events, many impacting on food security.

Much of the public also fails to understand the political economy of mitigating climate change at the national and international levels.

These failures of understanding and of explanation cannot be solved over-night. It is time to take a step back from the detail and focus on the fundamentals of knowledge and communication.

The first is about clear thinking and about recognising common forms of deception and dishonesty in debate. The second is about resolving a tension between scientific argument (about truth-seeking) and the practice of debate (essentially about persuasion or conversion).

“Clear thinking” and debating tricks

In the chapter on climate change in his Quarterly Essay on the Murdoch empire, Manne seized on an apparent decline of “clear thinking” as an educational goal (indeed, a “whole of life” educational objective).

A decline in education for clear thinking makes dealing with issues like climate change harder. hira3/Flickr.

It was not always thus. In the 1950s (at least in Victoria) the compulsory year 12 (matriculation) English Expression curriculum included a prescribed text by Robert H Thouless, Straight and Crooked Thinking. In the book, the author identified an a long list of dishonest debating tricks.

Drawing on an interview with the late and eminent climate scientist Stephen Schneider, Manne’s essay identifies one such dirty trick.

[Schneider] had spoken about the tension between his obligation as a scientist towards nuanced truthfulness and his responsibility as a human being to fight for the future well-being of the Earth. One passage of the interview read, “Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest. I hope that means being both”. A journalist published the first sentence and omitted the second. For 20 years, on this basis, Schneider was defamed on denialist websites as a self-confessed liar.

The necessary response, taught by Thouless, is to give a label to such dirty tricks: here, selective quotation out of context, where context is vital to meaning.

Of course, not all faulty claims and inferences are intentionally deceptive. Equally important is to address and expose fallacies and faults in our own reasoning and persuasive practices.

“Argument” versus “debate”: the discordant goals of truth-seeking versus persuasion

Part of the problem in the climate change debate (indeed in debates about the findings and impact of science generally), arises from this tension so well identified by Schneider.

Pioneering mathematical game theorist and academic psychologist Anatole Rapoport set out a first step in dealing with this tension in his classic text Fights, Games and Debates. Rapoport distinguished two distinct “ideal-types”: he called them “argument” and “debate”. He identified the objective of the former as truth-seeking; the objective of the latter as conversion (or persuasion).

Rapoport says rigorous “argument” is the province of science and scientists. This should be expanded to include serious scholars generally. By contrast, in his schema there are the experts in the arts of persuasive “debate”: politicians, barristers, evangelists (of all stripes), and PR people. Clearly, the rules and norms of these two broad types of activity are significantly different.

The (public) debate – with its objectives of persuasion, conversion and commitment – is too important to exclude either the scientists and scholars, or conscientious citizens. Both will face difficulties and challenges, notably because the practices of unfair debate are not consonant with the norms of science ─ or of ordinary conversation.

This was the first part of Schneider’s argument. The second part concerned an obligation for those scientists able to participate effectively in the open debate to do so, recognising that “debate” was a different kind of activity from scientific “argument”.

The tension between the two sorts of activities, both legitimate, will and should remain but also needs to be transcended. This means the public debate about climate change cannot take as its objective simply conversion and persuasion. It must also take aboard and strongly propagate the goal of truth-seeking.

This indeed is precisely the ethic of “clear thinking” and responsible citizenship that is implicit in the educational project defined by Thouless and others. The special role of scientists and scholars like Schneider is not only to provide expertise. It is also to expound, in the public domain, the scientific ethic of truth-seeking, and of honest and clear reporting.

On the other hand, access to the scientific argument poses particular difficulties for the conscientious citizen, because of the technical difficulties and complexities. Manne points out that many denialists with a non-scientific background seek to grapple with the science ─ and commendably so. However, not so commendably, they often do so as credulous hangers-on of a small cabal of scientific “merchants of doubt” identified in the important work of Naomi Oreskes and her colleagues.

This cabal uses the well-recognised uncertainties about the extent, timing and nature of future climate change, and its human-related causes, to discredit the many well-established findings in climate science. We need to understand both the latter and the (for now) irreducible uncertainties in climate science.

The findings of science are typically provisional at the margins even if the core is “settled”. The “complex systems” involved in the climate science can preclude accurate prediction, especially in those many cases where “tight linkages” and “tipping points” could cause catastrophe for human civilisation.

Against this potentially enormous cost and risk, the “premium” for this global and epochal “insurance policy” is the cost of mitigation, and the pricing of greenhouse emissions. The leads and lags are such that it is prudent to begin paying the premium now, where this ‘premium’ is the cost of sufficiently slowing emissions growth.

Contrary to the “denialists”, it is fitting that as an affluent OECD economy, minimally impacted by the GFC, with the highest per capita emissions, profiting immensely from the export of steaming coal, and especially vulnerable to climate change, Australia should be among those at forefront in the mitigation effort.

74 thoughts on “Reprint: Climate science and policy: the tension between ‘argument’ and ‘debate’

  1. uknowispeaksense says:

    Hi Mike, I reckon Stephen Schneider summed it up beautifully in a talk he gave not long before his passing. A condensed version is here. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IDBh7cyXPJ8

  2. James says:

    The writer is so lacking in analytical skills he writes “Faced with the onslaught of the few powerful ideologues and corporate vested interests identified by Manne, Naomi Oreskes and others,” knowing full well that Manne, Oreskes ‘and others’ are never specific in actually pointing to any particular ideologue or corporate vested interest. Manne simply mentions ‘vested interests’ without being more specific. Oreskes occasionally refers to the fossil fuel lobby or general expressions like that, but many ‘fossil fuel’ companies are also leaders in renewable energy technology so she can’t be right there. How about one of these great commentators actually naming the members of this ‘cabal’.

    Mike you have the hide to criticise David Evans and Lord Monkton for allegedly suggesting conspiracy theories, then quite happily do the same and reprint material here doing the same. Do you not see the hypocrisy?

    • uknowispeaksense says:

      With all due respect James but did you even read the Manne piece? I’m pretty sure there were plenty of names mentioned in there, all who receive funding from rightwing, fossil fuel funded thinktanks like the George C Marshall Institute. Patrick Michaels gets a mention and of course the Cato Institute who he receives funding from is clean and green isn’t it? Surely I don’t need to define “vested interest” do I?

      and then there’s “Western Fuels Association, the Intermountain Rural Electric Association or the Global Climate Coalition, an alliance of 50 or so corporations and trade associations. In the late 1990s, this alliance fell apart, beginning with the defection of BP. The largest source of funds for the denial campaign was now probably ExxonMobil.” Did you skip over that bit or did the wilful ignorance typical of so many deniers prevent you from reading it?

      Finally, would you care to provide your reference for all this fossil fuel money that is going in to renewables? I have some figures right in front of me but I’m keen to see if you actually know. Here’s some food for thought just to let you know what Exxon is doing.

      “NEW YORK — Exxon said Thursday that it will spend about $150 billion over the next five years to find more oil and natural gas to satisfy the world’s growing energy appetite.

      Exxon, the world’s largest publicly traded energy company, expects global energy demand to increase 30 percent by 2040, compared with 2010 levels. As demand grows, CEO Rex Tillerson said Exxon will plow more money into a global search for new resources. Including investments in its refining and chemicals business, Exxon’s capital budget for 2012 through 2016 will total $185 billion, up 29 percent from the prior five-year period.”
      http://online.wsj.com/article/AP698226701140440a9bacb32b14c48966.html

      • James says:

        The problem is, Manne, Oreskes and others imply that those who do not accept the theory of dangerous anthropogenic climate change are part of a ‘vested’ interest or fossil fuel conspiracy of deniers. They do not attempt, nor does this blog site, to address the actual science. They simply refuse to believe that their left wing buddies couldn’t possibly be wrong. I did read Manne’s article and yes, he mentioned a few names in a fairly obscure way. Of course a business which relies on fossil fuel and sees no problems with it’s use will support it’s use. Having a vested interest doesn’t make you a ‘denialist’ it makes you an interested party! But suggesting a right wing think tank is every thing about evil, is as silly as suggesting that all left wing think tanks are all evil. The difference between the two does tend to be, in Australia at least, that many of the Left Wing think tanks, and they are numerous, are significantly funded directly or indirectly by Government funds, whereas you rarely see Government funds going to a right wing think tank.

        As a subscriber to the Monthly I posted a comment in response to Manne’s essay which was not shown on their website. Remarkably, there wasn’t a single challenging comment published. So credit to you Mike at least you are publishing non supportive arguments even if it is just so you and your friends can leave a cheap shot comment. That is more than The Monthly is game to do, You’d think if they were so confident of their intellectual superiority and science accuracy they’d be happy to publish my foolish comments. Anyway, I decided to write to Manne directly and to date he has not responded. Perhaps he will in the future but I doubt it.

        This is an edited version of some of my content, which may interest your readers and help them challenge the flustered tenured professor.

        One of the heroes Manne named “James Hansen of the Goddard Institute of Space Studies (Manne actually said he was of NASA because that sounds better. GISS does come under NASA but real NASA scientists (that is the type who are smart enough to get Rovers to land safely on Mars, have been trying to stop Hansen from calling himself a NASA scientist for years. See: http://notrickszone.com/2012/04/10/50-top-astronauts-scientists-engineers-sign-letter-claiming-giss-is-turning-nasa-into-a-laughing-stock/ But anyway, the totally enamoured, and poorly research Manne described Hansen as being from NASA, and “perhaps the pre-eminent climate scientist in the world”.

        Hansen is actually an Astronomer but he does control the GISS temperature records and how they have been ‘adjusted and homogenised’ to increase the warming trend over the last century, but that’s another story.

        Back in 1971 James Hansen was a member of a team who had an article published at the journal Science which was authored by Rasool and S. H. Schneider. Here is part of the abstract of an article in the Washington Post entitled “Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and Aerosols: Effects of Large Increases on Global Climate,” and indicated the authors were from “Institute for Space Studies, Goddard Space Flight Center, National Aeronautics and Space Administration” This is the organisation Manne would have us treat with God like status and which Hansen has been with since and risen up the ranks to head the Climate division.

        “Effects on the global temperature of large increases in carbon dioxide and aerosol densities in the atmosphere of Earth have been computed. It is found that, although the addition of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere does increase the surface temperature, the rate of temperature increase diminishes with increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. For aerosols, however, the net effect of increase in density is to reduce the surface temperature of Earth. Because of the exponential dependence of the backscattering, the rate of temperature decrease is augmented with increasing aerosol content. An increase by only a factor of 4 in global aerosol background concentration may be sufficient to reduce the surface temperature by as much as 3.5 ° K. If sustained over a period of several years, such a temperature decrease over the whole globe is believed to be sufficient to trigger an ice age.”

        When quizzed on this in later years Hansen claims he had little to do with the paper and that all he did was write the computer code. But at the time he was clearly part of a team which believed humans were potentially causing an ice age due to increased aerosols in the atmosphere.

        One of the most interesting points in the paper, which is still a true scientific fact today, but do you ever hear Hansen or any other ‘warmist’ mention it is:

        “….although the addition of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere does increase the surface temperature, the rate of temperature increase diminishes with increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.”

        I asked Manne if he was aware of this? CO2 has a diminishing warming effect not an increasing one. Yet how many times have you heard your warmist mates mention that?

        I wrote: “I was just wondering if you could ask Hansen if he’s absolutely sure this time is it an ice age we are heading for, or is it fire and brim stone? I guess he doesn’t mind either way as long as the funding keeps rolling in by the wheel barrow load!”

        It is all very well for scientists to agree that green house gases can contribute to the earth average global temperature, and thank goodness it does. Otherwise the planet would be frozen and humans would not have evolved. There is no doubt that human emissions of greenhouse gases can increase overall global average temperatures. I have no disagreement with that fact and I have never heard any serious knowledgeable ‘sceptic’ disagree. The mistake Robert Manne and many eco activists and anti humanists make is in claiming there is any scientific consensus explaining the following:

        1. The many other known natural climate variability factors which are likely to be more significant than human greenhouse gas emissions and which correlate more closely than human green house gas emissions to global temperature.

        2. Natural negative feedback mechanisms to increasing atmospheric greenhouse gases which may counter any positive feedback mechanisms.

        3. How much warming would actually be beneficial for the world’s population, plants and animals increasing crop growing seasons, crop yields, reducing fuels needed to keep warm, reducing deaths from extreme cold, extending the cropping area of land in the world.

        4. Why if the theory of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming is correct, is it that while human greenhouse gas emissions have increased exponentially since industrialisation, there have been 2-3 consecutive decades of just cooling or warming, even though greenhouse gas emissions grew apace? And since 1998 a period of global temperature stabilisation in direct contradiction of the IPCC Climate Models? These examples contradict the ‘scientific consensus’ Robert Manne assumes exists where our climate is most sensitive to green house gasses.

        5. Why, if the science is so solid and the scientific consensus so certain on dangerous anthropogenic global warming (AGW), have leading climate scientists actively avoided what is common practice within the peer review science process of making their data and coding available for scrutiny by others? Why has the BOM refused to disclose their temperature station adjustment and homogenisation process as requested and have declined a request of an independent Audit. Why did New Zealand’s NIWA do the same thing then under court mediation agree to have a third party audit their adjustment and homogenisation procedures. But NIWA will not release the results of that peer review to the courts? Meanwhile HADCRUT raw data and notes pre the ‘adjusted’, which artificially increased the warming trend, have been lost or deleted and must be reconstructed by the UK Met in a 3 year project. Hardly the actions of scientists solidly confident of their data!

        6. Why, again have climate scientists conspired to corrupt the peer review process by pressuring journal editors to not accept research papers for review if those papers disagreed with their (AGW) views.

        Now readers who blindly believe in catastrophic anthropogenic global warming may read the above, dismiss it because they ‘know’ the science is settled and move on. But any who are curious can get on the net and verify everything I have written. If you are having trouble drop a comment and I’ll provide a link.

        What has increased over the years is the amount of government funding spent to support the popular left wing position which is anti industry, anti mining, anti coal anti oil so it is no surprise that there is research paper after research paper ‘finding’ evidence of warming, or starting with the premise of warming, making dire predictions regarding the potential disaster of an over heating world.

        Sailrick may be looking at funding which is being spent on finding and developing fossil fuels. Well I am hardly going to defend that because I don’t need to. It is almost exclusively private capital that is being risked, not tax payers money, and I don’t have a problem with efficiently burning fossil fuels to provide a cheap source of energy while providing time for technology to develop efficient, renewable energy sources – rather than trying to artificially force the pace. Any steps which make energy and the cost of production more expensive will not disadvantage the rich, but they will definitely disadvantage the poor – the same people most left wing organisations claim to care for. However that claim evaporates when socialist left wing meets eco fascist, who would welcome the de-population of the world. The eco fascists do not care that mandated ethanol content in vehicle fuel has forced the cast of corn so high which combined with a North American drought will no doubt lead to tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of deaths from hunger of poor people in some other part of the world and the eco fascists will be cheering.

        There are all sorts of estimates about how much tax payers money has already been spent on the unproven theory of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming which doesn’t exist outside of climate models and which has already been falsified by actual empirical evidence not matching those models. I read recently that the US had spent $79 Billion, The EU $100 Billion, but I think these estimates only scratch the surface. They only include ‘official’ expenditure and funding. Not all the $billions spent by Government departments, corporations and individuals complying with new ‘climate change’ regulations, or in an attempt to anticipate a new environment based on what they have been told was the ‘scientific consensus’. This isn’t private money which is willingly risked by individuals and corporations, so it is quite different from what Exxonmobil or others may choose to spend on finding fossil fuels.

        Anyway, back to Robert Manne et al:

        What we haven’t seen from any of the billions of dollars spent by these scientists and pseudo scientist Manne so admires in the nouveau Climate Science area is any empirical evidence linking human greenhouse gas emissions with anything more than a moderate level of warming. Warming which would quite arguably be beneficial to the world.

        Predictions of catastrophic climate change have been made up in the minds of computer programmers and scientists making untested and unproven assumptions regarding how water vapour, and clouds would work and assuming no negative feedback mechanisms would come into play. This is pure speculation and there are plenty of world renown Climate Scientists and Astrophysicists and Meteorologists and related specialists who do not believe it is worth crippling the economy of the first world, but worst still, depriving the poor of the third world, and the struggling of the developing world, with access to cheap, reliable fuel and energy sources, without appropriate evidence that any climate change variations we are experiencing are likely to be outside the boundaries of natural variability as experienced in the Earth’s human past.

        Robert Manne should stop trying to use science to thinly veil his real left wing socialist agenda.

        • uknowispeaksense says:

          Wow. I’m impressed. Nothing like a good old fashioned Gish Gallop. I shall wait with baited breath for you to publish. You might want to consider that when you do though, you should probably consider using real references because blogs don’t really cut it.

          This is the point where you reply that I’m taking a cheap shot but until I saw that steaming pile of crap, I was prepared to give you a fair go, but all you have managed to do is demonstrate just how much you don’t know. You sit there behind your keyboard bashing science you don’t even come close to understanding, and believe me. it is patently obvious to those of us who do have scientific qualifications that you have no idea, not just about any particular discipline, but about scientific convention.

          But here’s the kicker sunshine, when you start using words like “eco facists” and “left wing socialist agenda” you reveal your true colours and do very little to engender reasonable discussion.

          By the way, if I received ““I was just wondering if you could ask Hansen if he’s absolutely sure this time is it an ice age we are heading for, or is it fire and brim stone? I guess he doesn’t mind either way as long as the funding keeps rolling in by the wheel barrow load!” in a letter, I would have one of two choices to make. The first would be to write you off as an idiot and bin the letter. The second would be to respond and inform you of just what you are, and that is an idiot. Manne clearly has done the first. I am doing the second. Stop pretending you know what you are talking about.

        • James says:

          Perhaps instead you would ask Hansen to respond to the accusations here : http://hotair.com/greenroom/archives/2011/11/19/climate-clown-james-hansen-on-the-government-dole-while-accepting-1-6-million-in-additional-income-and-counting/ But since you are so hot on scientific references unknowispeaksense how about giving me one which provides proof based on empirical real world data that human greenhouse gas emissions will cause dangerous climate change. We know Co2 has a warming effect, we know the warming effect is diminishing, eg IPCC say 0 ppm CO2 = approx -15C, 280ppm CO2 = +15C, 380ppm CO2 = +15.5C, 760ppm CO2 = approx +16.2C based on the greenhouse effect. That is the consensus of the science. (The temperature I am using is the global average temperature, just in case you hadn’t guessed). Now sure there are some scientists who have theories about the possibility that there could be positive feedback mechanisms, or other aerosol effects which will cause temperatures to rise at a greater rate and these theories are built into some of the climate models. The trouble is if the climate models were accurate, firstly they would come out with the same predictions given the same rise in CO2 and they don’t, secondly, they would actually have some predictive ability over the last three decades or so and they haven’t. So clearly they have been falsified. The IPCC reports, including the latest update all clearly state that there are many climate variables which are poorly understood and which are not included in the models, or are not adequately accounted for in the models. But it seems you know different. If you understand how science works, you will know it is not up to me to prove the theory of catastrophic anthropogenic climate change, you are its supporter, so just come up with one peer reviewed research paper which provides empirical evidence which directly links human GHG emissions with catastrophic climate change. Just one.

        • uknowispeaksense says:

          ahhh, the icing on the cake in the denial repetoire, the demand for the seminal paper. Thankyou for proving my point about your illiteracy. Go and do at least a university level science course so that you can come to understand how science works.

    • sailrick says:

      That’s a false equivalency.
      One is a bat sh>t crazy conspiracy theory cult of deniers, and other is a well documented attempt to confuse the public on the science, and not honestly.

      For starters:

      Here is how the deceivers spread their misinformation about climate change and “wipe the oil” off the money, by funneling it through groups like these and others.

      These 32 conservative ‘think tanks’ (really industry front groups) have all been involved in the tobacco industry’s campaign to deny the science showing the dangers of tobacco.

      They are all now involved in the campaign to deny the science of climate change.

      1. Acton Institute
      2. American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)
      3. Alexis de Tocquerville Institute
      4. American Enterprise Institute (AEI)
      5. Americans for Prosperity
      6. Atlas Economic Research Foundation
      7. Burson-Marsteller (PR firm)
      8. Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW)
      9. Cato Institute
      10. Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI)
      11. Consumer Alert
      12. DCI Group (PR firm)
      13. European Science and Environment Forum
      14. Fraser Institute
      15. Frontiers of Freedom
      16. George C. Marshall Institute
      17. Harvard Center for Risk Analysis
      18. Heartland Institute
      19. Heritage Foundation
      20. Independent Institute
      21. International Center for a Scientific Ecology
      22. International Policy Network
      23. John Locke Foundation
      24. Junk Science
      25. National Center for Public Policy Research
      26. National Journalism Center
      27. National Legal Center for the Public Interest (NLCPI)
      28. Pacific Research Institute
      29. Reason Foundation
      30. Small Business Survival Committee
      31. The Advancement of Sound Science Coalition (TASSC)
      32. Washington Legal Foundation

      #5 and #9 were created by the billionaire oil and lumber tycoon Koch brothers, who fund all kinds of anti-enviromental PR. They also fund denial of the science saying formaldahyde causes cancer. This is no surprise, since they are major owners of Georgia Pacific lumber company.

      #24 Junk Science, which is aptly named, is run by Steve Milloy, who Fox News like to feature as an “expert” on climate change. Milloy is NOT a scientist. He’s a paid lobbyist for fossil fuel interests and a professional PR man. Fox ever divulge that to you? I doubt it. And Milloy gets funding from, guess who? – the Koch brothers.

      “Forty public policy groups have this in common: They seek to undermine the scientific consensus that humans are causing the earth to overheat. And they all get money from ExxonMobil.”
      Chris Mooney at Mother Jones
      “The global warming denial PR machine and the GOP”

      • James says:

        See my comment above Sailrick. I can’t comment that those 32 organisations you mentioned were involved in the tobacco industry’s campaign, I couldn’t even confirm that they are all ‘right wing think tanks’. If that were true, it really has no relevance to my argument or to Manne’s. But if you do want to list them as all campaigning for the tobacco industry you should probably provide some supporting evidence if you think it is important.

        There was a time of course when just about everyone though smoking was OK including all the heroes of the left wing. You only have to see the archival footage of the first environmentalists smoking cigarettes and weed and whatever they could get their hands on. Of course some of the great Hollywood supporters of the climate change movement can be seen regularly toting a stogie with the best of them including of course Ex Californian Governor Arnie. So if you want to list people who are on the side of smoking as proof they are evil, it will be a long list!

  3. James says:

    What is it that I am denying exactly unknowispeaksense? Or what do you think I am denying? Well I will make it easy for you. I am denying that there is no evidence that human greenhouse gas emissions are causing dangerous climate change. I have read a few hundred peer reviewed papers on climate science and related subjects, and a couple of dozen books on the subject. I have attended a number of conferences and seminars and read thousands or newspaper, magazine and blog articles. I have read every IPCC report and until AR4 I found no reason to question the science. Like other well educated people completely familiar with the scientific method and the peer review process assumed that Climate Science would have undergone the same rigour as other branches of science. It was two events which really started moving me from believer to unconvinced (denier is a silly term and skeptic is what all scientists should be), Those two events were:

    a) The marked difference between the actual content of the body of the AR4 including the stated uncertainties versus the ‘Summary for Policy Makers’ which read like a politically driven statement, not something put together by scientists. and

    b) The unanimous endorsement which Al Gore’s ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ received by ‘Climate Science’ without any of the so-called eminent climate scientists of the world bothering to correct some of the most obvious errors in the film, and encouraging the confusion between weather events and climate. It took a few concerned parents in the UK to force their courts to acknowledge the factual errors in Gore’s film. You’d think if Climate Scientists were about the truth, they would have spoken up earlier!

    You start to dig you realise that somehow the nouveau Climate science area (because there really isn’t such a discipline), as demonstrated by Manne referring to Astronomer James Hansen as “the world’s pre-eminent climate scientist” (I still laugh when I type that!) – somehow managed to bypass the usual rigours of the scientific process and it can only be because so many people were desperate to find a reason to support their environmental cause. It is a good cause, but it shouldn’t need lies to support it!

    But blaming CO2 for potentially catastrophic climate change became convenient, and I believe, strongly believed by many, but certainly not proven to cause dangerous climate change. But the situation became ridiculous when Michael Mann and his other band of merry proxy temperature converters were able to convert tree ring data to show recent temperatures were ‘unprecedented’. It was unfortunate that they also made the MWP disappear. Remarkable that Mann still stands by it as a credible piece of science.

    Then of course the most recent decades of tree ring data didn’t match the actual temperature data so one of the other eminent Climate scientists Phil Jones used “Mikes” trick to “hide the decline” (in the tree ring proxy data), by substituting actual temperature data in a tree ring proxy data temperature series. Something a real scientist would never do. But hey it was mentioned in the footnotes somewhere. Trouble is the peer reviewers didn’t pick it up because they were seeing what they wanted to see.

    A real scientist would have gone to the peer reviewed science which had already been gathered from decades of ice core data in The Arctic and Antarctic which covers hundreds of thousands of years of temperature proxies and would have known straight away that current temperatures are not unprecedented.

    I will leave you with Greenland ice core data graphed for the last 10,000 years here : http://mclean.ch/climate/Ice_cores.htm The temperature changes are probably very indicative of temperatures changes across all of the Northern Hemisphere.

    They show clearly:

    About 1,000 years ago average temperatures were about 1 degree higher than today (which makes our concern about a 0.4 degree rise since 1980 rather minor).

    About 2,100 years ago average temperatures were about 2 degrees higher than today.

    About 3,300 years ago average temperatures were about 3 degrees higher than today. (The data from Greenland ice-cores goes back far beyond this time so, despite what some people say, it looks like it takes a lot more than 3 degrees to melt the ice cap!)

    The remains of woolly mammoths have been found on the northern edge of Siberia and dated at around 7,000 and 8,000 years ago (along with others from around 30,000 years ago). Mammoths are not likely to have hibernated nor migrated vast distances. They are also unlikely to have eaten frozen grass or tundra and so we can surmise that temperatures at that time were warm enough to produce adequate food all year round. That part of the world currently averages just above zero in one or two months of the year and in the other months as much as 40 degrees below zero.

    Look at the increase in temperature about 3200 years ago. It is about 1 degree in less than 50 years. In the twentieth century temperatures have risen and fallen, the most recent change being an increase since 1980 of about 0.4 degrees. The maximum was reached in 1998 and while temperatures have fluctuated since then they have not exceeded that point. An increase of 1 degree in 50 years is looking very unlikely.

    For almost all of the last 8,000 years temperatures were higher than today. More precisely, apart from a brief period 1200 years ago, it is only the last 750 years that have been at or below current temperatures.

    Remember the IPCC, our Government, Robert Manne would are trying to sell us on their ‘theory’ of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming, by first convincing us that since industrialisation we have been pumping CO2 into the atmosphere and it is this massive increase in CO2 which has seen temperatures rise to ‘unprecedented’ levels. Yet we find all of that part of the story is not true, and no one has provided any proof of a link between human GHG emissions and dangerous climate change. In fact when you look at global temperatures over a reasonable period of time, it is clear the world normally operates at much higher temperatures and there is nothing we humans can do about it!

    • uknowispeaksense says:

      *sigh* appeal to self authority, climategate, Siberian mammoths, historical temperatures, CO2 is plant food, no warming since 1998, homogenisation, witholding data, cooling in the 70’s, AR4 summary and no seminal paper. You left out a few of the other denier canards. Feel free to mention them now.

      • James says:

        You like to claim the science high ground, but haven’t addressed any of the specific climate science issues I have raised, nor have you offered the evidence which gives the the confidence of knowing you are right about dangerous anthropogenic climate change. You’d think such an easily defensible position would be – well, easily defensible! You wouldn’t need to pretend it’s all too complicated for me and the other readers to understand, or that your so tired of addressing the same old arguments. I really did only ask for one bit of proof. But I did show a number of examples where the denizens of climate science are easily caught out. Never mind. I’ll leave you guys to your preferred ignorance is bliss position. Clearly you lack the capacity and the facts to debate the subject matter.

        • uknowispeaksense says:

          That’s the thing James. You want a debate and I’m up for an argument. There is a big, big difference and you have only shown the capacity and understanding to debate. I take your perception that I lack the capacity to debate as a compliment beause debating isn’t about facts, its about convincing and converting people to your way of thinking no matter how wrong it is. As I said, go and do a science course so that you can at least understand some of the basic conventions and maybe then you will be fit to argue.

        • Watching the Deniers says:

          There’s lots of claims from James but no supporting evidence. Make one claim – rather than make a Gish Gallop – with supporting evidence. Play by the rules of reasoned debate and use of evidence please James.

        • James says:

          What a cop out! Pathetic. I suppose you agreed with the IPCC’s Chairman when India’a Himalayan Experts and many other scientists told the IPCC that the prediction that the Himalayan glaciers would melt by 2035 was “voodoo science”? That is how rigorous your brand of science and peer review has been. How about you give me some science to argue. All you have offered is teenage sneering remarks.

        • Watching the Deniers says:

          Sorry James, please provide the sources for your claims. It was a respectful request. I don’t ban people here, in fact at one point one of the world’s foremost holocaust deniers was a poster (whose position I utterly reject). I’m supportive of freedom of speech. However, with that freedom comes a responsibility: if you are making evidence based claims back it up with evidence.

        • uknowispeaksense says:

          Thankyou for rubbishing peer review. That puts you in the same league as young Earth creationists and the anti-vaccination crowd. It’s a convenient position for deniers to take because it means you can just use the “pal review” defence. Perhaps you think the Anthony Watts approach of blog review is the way of the future where non-scientists such as yourself can muck around in Excel and pretend you are doing “science”? Personally I think the graph eyeball approach is a great one. Come on, you know you’ve tried it.

          But seriously, since you want to pretend to understand science,and you did mention the CO2 is plant food canard, I’m curious to know your thoughts on the acidification of cropland soils under climate change. You see it is well established that under higher CO2 and temperature and changed water balance, soil nitrogen becomes a limiting factor to plant growth due to changes in nitrification, effectively cancelling out any benefits to plant growth from the increase in CO2. The way to combat this is of course is to add more nitrogen based fertiliser and adjust watering regimes as well. The problem of course though is the change to cation exchange capacity in the soil. Urea, (NH2)2CO, is the major nitrogen based fertiliser. In the presence of water it releases ammonia (NH3). These emissions to the atmosphere come mostly from fertilised soil and livestock waste, but also from industry and cars. These NH3 emissions are then deposited as NH+4. Oxidation of NH+4 in the soils and surface waters generates acidity during nitrification. Now, in agricultural systems, some of the nitrogenous fertiliser not used by plants remains in the soil. This has the same effect as nitrogen delivered by acidic atmospheric deposition. That is, the depletion of base cations through leaching. It has been reported, for example by Guo et al. (2010) that Chinese croplands on a national scale have declined in pH by 0.13-0.80 units over 20 years. Even basic soils, those with a high calcium carbonate (CaCO3) content have had significant declines in pH. They also report that acidification of soils by natural atmospheric processes come nowhere near that of agricultural activities which are up to 100 times greater. So, assuming those Chinese scientists probably aren’t in on the USA led conspiracy to implement a tax, how do you propose we deal with the emerging positive acidification feedback loop in the nitrogen cycle so that we can continue to feed our growing population from an ever decreasing availability of farmland?

          Guo, J.H., Liu, X.J., Zhang, Y., Shen, J.L., Han, W.X., Zhang, W.F., Christie, P., Goulding,
          K.W.T., Vitousek, P.M., Zhang, F.S., 2010. Significant acidification in major Chinese croplands. Science 327, 1008–1010.

  4. uknowispeaksense says:

    and James, go and look up the Dunning Kruger effect. You are out of your depth and you don’t even know it.

    • James says:

      and to ‘watchingthedeniers’

      Firstly I have two undergraduate degrees and two postgraduate degrees. Not science, bit one is a Masters in Economics specialising in econometrics which makes me uniquely and better qualified than the likes of Michael Mann of Hockey Stick fame, Phil Jones of CRU fame, and James Hansen of GISS fame to interpret data and model data. It also enables me to easily spot fudged data.

      I don’t and haven’t disputed the basic science of greenhouse gas effect. I also note that increasing atmospheric CO2 has a diminishing warming impact and I did reference a paper to which Robert Manne’s acclaimed ‘world’s most pre-eminent climate scientist’ contributed, for this most basic, widely accepted scientific fact.

      Most of the other statements I have made are widely accepted and not disputed. I expected people of your alleged knowledge to be across the literature, however, if there is a statement I have made which you beg to differ, then please point it out and I will happily respond. I am not going to go through everything I have written to reference everything I have said just in case you don’t know or accept that particular point. For instance, I didn’t reference above who Phil Jones is or what the CRU is, but I’d expect anyone mildly knowledgeable on climate matters to know what I am talking about.

      unknowispeaksense – if you want to understand the Dunning Kruger effect, perhaps you need to look into a mirror?

      With regards to ‘earth is a plant food’: that is clearly a favourite topic of yours, it wasn’t raised by me so nice work on acidification of cropland soils. However that study simply shows basic science which I don’t disagree with. I have only skim read the paper because I haven’t come across it before and I’ll make a brief comment about it’s conclusions in a second because it really isn’t directly relevant. But nor is your dig at “US led conspiracy to implement a tax” – nothing I have said – as you would know. You are the ones who want argument not debate, but you are the ones who continuously use immature debating techniques such as putting words in my mouth.

      With regards to China, and soil fertility, as you may be aware they have a great deal of problems regarding soil fertility. I was visiting China earlier this year on a research trip and inspected a significant length of the Yangtze River along which about one third of China’s population resides and along which about 65% of it’s produce is grown. The river would regularly flood with disastrous human and property consequences. Wiping out a whole seasons crop, wrecking housing and infrastructure and killing thousands of people. But the people continued living close to the river because they needed the water and they needed the fertile soils.

      Over the years China has resolved a lot of the flooding problems by building massive infrastructure including the world famous Three Gorges Dam project which when commenced was designed to deliver up to 10% of China’s electricity needs through hydro. However such has China’s economic growth been that it now only delivers some 3% of China’s overall power requirements, But that is still servicing a population greater than the whole of Australia with Industry which dwarf’s that of Australia.

      One of a number of negative side effects of the flood control is that the rich topsoil which used to be washed down the river and spread throughout the floodlands is no longer reaching the flood lands. It is either washing straight out to sea or piling up at the dam walls where sifts and conveyor belts work 24 hours a day taking the top soil away and delivering it to maintains by the side of the river to later be trucked all over the country. Anyway, that is indeed a man-made factor which is affecting soil quality in agricultural land in China, and something they need to address.

      But you are making the assumption from the paper you referred to which the study cannot; that there is an incontrovertible link between human GHG emissions and rising global average temperatures and even rainfall. The long term temperature record, CO2 record and rainfall records do not support that and the IPCC climate models which are based on that assumption and fail the predictive test.

      With regards to the IPCC models, apart from a vocal few, even the IPCC insiders have little faith in any scientific value claimed by the climate models. In December 2010 an important collection of documents entered the public domain. These were the answers 232 interested individuals provided to a series of questions concerning the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The individuals had to have played a part in the IPCC process. The committee was established by the InterAcademy Council (an international organization of science bodies) and was charged with investigating the IPCC’s procedures and processes. It invited comments via a questionnaire earlier in 2010 and took these comments into account before writing its report. Released in August, 2010 where it recommended a significant overhaul of the IPCC process. (I note that the IPCC has pretty much disregarded the recommendations and instead recently passed a regulation allowing the inclusion of grey material in the report – which now ‘legitimises’ what they were already doing – even though they had claimed the IPCC reports were ‘peer reviewed’ and represented the ‘gold standard’ in climate science. (Do you want references for this because you’d have to have been living under a rock to dispute it?!

      The IAC report was described as ‘damning‘ by journalists.

      The public comments, with most names and identifying details removed, took a long time after the report was published to materialise – probably because they were more damning than the IAC’s softened report. You can read all the public comments which add up to 678 pages here:
      http://reviewipcc.interacademycouncil.net/Comments.pdf

      The following are some extracts:

      Freeman Dyson – one of the world’s most eminent physicists:

      “I have studied the climate models and I know what they can do. The models solve the equations of fluid dynamics, and they do a very good job of describing the fluid motions of the atmosphere and the oceans. They do a very poor job of describing the clouds, the dust, the chemistry and the biology of fields and farms and forests. They do not begin to describe the real world that we live in.

      The real world is muddy and messy and full of things that we do not yet understand. It is much easier for a scientist to sit in an air-conditioned building and run computer models, than to put on winter clothes and measure what is really happening outside in the swamps and the clouds. That is why the climate model experts end up believing their own models.”

      Here is what some IPCC insiders spontaneously say about climate models? The first significant discussion appears on page 97 of a 678-page PDF (names were removed before these questionnaire answers were made public). There’s some technical jargon here, but the gist of this IPCC contributing author’s concern shines through nevertheless:

      “With regards to climate models, their deficiencies are airbrushed. We never see the actual temperatures simulated by the models, only their deviations, hiding fundamental problems of the model temperature simulations. There are no agreed upon metrics for evaluating climate models.” (p. 97)

      A few pages later, this person adds:

      “All climate models used in the IPCC assessment reports should undergo a formal validation and verification process, accompanied by clear documentation. Not just scientific publications, but actual manuals and documentation which are publicly accessible. The strengths, weaknesses and limitations of climate models and codes need to be stated explicitly and unequivocally. People are left with the impression that the 21st century simulations are actual climate predictions, and they are not.” (p. 99)

      That last theme is picked up nearly 100 pages later, when a coordinating lead author observes:

      “At the current time, [IPCC reports too often produce] flattened views of the world, where unreasonably high precision and confidence is accorded outcomes from numerical models which have known limitations, while use of information from other sources is not accorded equivalent status (where merited), and questions related to structural uncertainties in models are almost entirely ignored.” (p. 183)

      In other words, even though the models have shortcomings, the IPCC appears to favour model results over information that comes from alternative sources.

      Now for some further spontaneously-volunteered observations:

      “The current process of the IPCC has elevated global climate model outputs to a level of authority that the modellers themselves cannot be comfortable with.” (p. 332)

      “The modellers have a particular feeling that their models are the TRUTH, and they do not properly recognize that the models are very limited in scope and in terms of processes included. The resolution is yet far too coarse, and the parameterizations used make the model results very uncertain, and the modellers and the IPCC report do not recognize this properly.” (p. 374)

      “Many results described in [Working Group 2] are based on very limited studies, simulations with just one model, etc, that do not faithfully represent the range of uncertainty. This also makes the whole IPCC Report inconsistent: whereas the Report by [Working Group 1] includes results achieved with climate simulations performed by a whole suite of climate models, [Working Group 2] is much more limited and includes conclusions that are not valid when the full suite of IPCC climate models is considered” (p. 383)

      Governments around the world are now convinced CO2 emissions are dangerous and that drastic steps must be taken to curtail these emissions. And where did they get this idea? From computer models that even IPCC insiders say are uncertain, unreliable, and invalidated!

      One way or another you may try to explain away all the people who point out the low level of quality and certainty of the climate models and the lack of scientific credibility as discussed above. But eventually the climate models have to be held to account for their predictive ability. After all, James Hansen has been using the predictions of climate models in the US Congress ans Senate to warn the ‘end is neigh’ for decades. There have been lots of articles and papers comparing his predictions in 1988 to what has happened since then. Actual CO2 emissions have exceeded any of his model projections, yet actual global average temperatures are below his lowest predictions which assumed immediate cuts in CO2 emissions.

      Since Hansen’s predictions got it so wrong, there have been many ‘warmists’ who have tried to explain, or make excuses why it was so wrong – other climate variables such as La Nina, volcanoes cooling, etc etc. But all they do is prove the point that Hansen’s models, and the current IPCC’s models poorly accommodate all climate variables. It is wrong to choose your favourite climate sensitivity variable, CO2, and include that, but exclude or not properly account for a whole lot of others. You only have to be a fraction out at the start of the modelling period to be a long way out over the long term.

      Anyway, I you can look up Hansen’s 1988 paper yourself, but I found a most recent graph comparing Hansen’s 1988 temperature predictions given scenarios A, B and C and what the actual global average temperature is here: http://meteorologicalmusings.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/science-by-press-release-story-about.html

      “Climate models not only fail to do better than random numbers, in some cases they are actually worse.

      In 2008 and 2010, a team of hydrologists at the National Technical University of Athens published a pair of studies comparing long-term (100-year) temperature and precipitation trends in a total of 55 locations around the world to model projections. The models performed quite poorly at the annual level, which was not surprising. What was more surprising was that they also did poorly even when averaged up to the 30-year scale, which is typically assumed to be the level they work best at. They also did no better over larger and larger regional scales. The authors concluded that there is no basis for the claim that climate models are well-suited for long-term predictions over large regions.

      A 2011 study in the Journal of Forecasting took the same data set and compared model predictions against a “random walk” alternative, consisting simply of using the last period’s value in each location as the forecast for the next period’s value in that location. The test measures the sum of errors relative to the random walk. A perfect model gets a score of zero, meaning it made no errors. A model that does no better than a random walk gets a score of 1. A model receiving a score above 1 did worse than uninformed guesses. Simple statistical forecast models that have no climatology or physics in them typically got scores between 0.8 and 1, indicating slight improvements on the random walk, though in some cases their scores went as high as 1.8.

      The climate models, by contrast, got scores ranging from 2.4 to 3.7, indicating a total failure to provide valid forecast information at the regional level, even on long time scales. The authors commented: “This implies that the current [climate] models are ill-suited to localized decadal predictions, even though they are used as inputs for policymaking.”

      One of the biggest issues I have with the nouveau science of ‘climate science’ is that it seems to be focussed on the short term, but wants to make predictions about the long term. For instance, such a big deal is being made about what is essentially a statistically interesting but poor correlation between atmospheric CO2 and Global average temperature over the last century or so. Interesting if you exclude the periods of direct non-correlation, exclude the natural warming variability since the end of the little ice age (surely you don’t need a reference for these?), and the fact there are many other climate variables which correlate better to global average temperature than CO2, such as solar activity. See: http://diehardempiricist.blogspot.com.au/2012/04/global-warming-is-bunk-part-6-its-sun.html I like this paper because I consider myself an empiricist, and it is very well referenced. The graph at Fig 12 is pretty straight forward, and comes from Robinson, Robinson, Soon 79. But you may like this paper better: http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/thermo/solact.html But since this was written, the ambiguity between solar activity and global average temperatures have straightened out with reduced solar activity coinciding with a lack of any increase in global average temperatures since 1998.

      As I may have already stated, most climate scientists focus far too much on a small period of time in the recent past rather than look at what has been happening with our planet over a very long period of time. Most geologists and astrophysicists find it difficult to understand what all the fuss is about over such a small amount of CO2 in our atmosphere given the past experience of our planet.

      The climate panic merchants would have us think that an increase of 100 parts per million of CO2 in the atmosphere to 390 ppm or 0.039% of our atmosphere signs the death knell of civilisation, the environment and bio-diversity unless we ‘decarbonise’ dramatically. But when you look at the history of the world this position seems quite hysterical.

      I have read quite a lot of the work done by Christopher R. Scotese, Professor, Ph.D., from the University of Chicago, now a Professor at the University of Texas, Arlington. Research interests include plate tectonics, paleogeography, and palaeoclimatology. Wikipedia tells me: He is creator of the Paleomap Project, which aims to map Earth over the last billion years, and is credited with predicting Pangaea Ultima, a possible future supercontinent configuration. So he looks at things on a really long time scale. He has a really interesting web site here and provides a lot of resources on paleogeography and palaeoclimatology here: http://www.scotese.com/Default.htm

      So here are a few statements of facts for your readers taken from the work of Scotese and others which you don’t hear from the climate alarmists. I will show a reference at the end of these statements which readers can check out and see a wonderful graph comparing reconstructed temperatures, and CO2 over the last 600 million years to present day.

      Earth has low CO2 today compared to most of our last 600 million years, planet never burned up contrary to today’s ‘pay billions now or burn up’ crowd

      Our planet has mostly been much hotter and more humid than we know it to be today, and with far more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than exists today. The notable exception is 300,000,000 years ago during the late Carboniferous Period, which resembles our own climate an atmosphere like no other.

      With this in mind the road to understanding global warming and our present climate begins with an historical journey through a chapter in Earth’s history, some 30 million years before dinosaurs appeared, known as the Carboniferous Period– a time when terrestrial Earth was ruled by giant plants and insects, and glaciers waxed and waned over a huge southern continent….

      Similarities with our present world.

      Average global temperatures in the Early Carboniferous Period were hot- approximately 20° C . However, cooling during the Middle Carboniferous reduced average global temperatures to about 12° C ). As shown on the graph in the reference below, this is comparable to the average global temperature on Earth today!

      Similarly, atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the Early Carboniferous Period were approximately 1500 ppm (parts per million), but by the Middle Carboniferous had declined to about 350 ppm — comparable to average CO2 concentrations today!

      Late Carboniferous to Early Permian time (315 mya — 270 mya) is the only time period in the last 600 million years when both atmospheric CO2 and temperatures were as low as they are today (Quaternary Period ).

      During the last 2 billion years the Earth’s climate has alternated between a frigid “Ice House”, like today’s world, and a steaming “Hot House”, like the world of the dinosaurs. http://www.scotese.com/climate.htm

      Earth’s atmosphere today contains about 380 ppm CO2 (0.038%). Compared to former geologic times, our present atmosphere, like the Late Carboniferous atmosphere, is CO2- impoverished! In the last 600 million years of Earth’s history only the Carboniferous Period and our present age, the Quaternary Period have witnessed CO2 levels less than 400 ppm. There has historically been much more CO2 in our atmosphere than exists today. For example, during the Jurassic Period (200 mya), average CO2 concentrations were about 1800 ppm or about 4.7 times higher than today. The highest concentrations of CO2 during all of the Paleozoic Era occurred during the Cambrian Period, nearly 7000 ppm — about 18 times higher than today.

      The Carboniferous Period and the Ordovician Period were the only geological periods during the Paleozoic Era when global temperatures were as low as they are today. To the consternation of global warming proponents, the Late Ordovician Period was also an Ice Age while at the same time CO2 concentrations then were nearly 12 times higher than today– 4400 ppm. According to greenhouse theory, Earth should have been exceedingly hot. Instead, global temperatures were no warmer than today. Clearly, other factors besides atmospheric carbon influence earth temperatures and global warming.

      We are actually in an ice age climate today. However for the last 10,000 years or so we have enjoyed a warm but temporary interglacial vacation. We know from geological records like ocean sediments and ice cores from permanent glaciers that for at least the last 750,000 years interglacial periods happen at 100,000 year intervals, lasting about 15,000 to 20,000 years before returning to an icehouse climate. We are currently about 18,000 years into Earth’s present interglacial cycle. These cycles have been occurring for at least the last 2-4 million years, although the Earth has been cooling gradually for the last 30 million years.

      So here is that nice graph I referred to: http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/Carboniferous_climate.html

      But I hear you say, what about all those ice core samples which show that current day levels of atmospheric CO2 are unprecedented? Well scientists have known those measurements (guesstimates) of CO2 have been very dodgy for years, yet the IPCC have deliberately excluded any reference to peer reviewed questions over the validity.

      Accumulating ice layers can take a century or more to become buried deep enough to be isolated from the atmosphere, which at the South Pole occurs at a depth of approximately 120 m. The resulting heat and pressure causes gas exchange between ice layers, which modifies the chemistry of ice air bubbles. At burial depths of between 900 and 1200 meters the pressure is so great that air bubbles in ice disappear and the gases recombine with liquids and ice crystals. Such processes tend to smooth away variability in the ice record and may also make CO2 levels appear lower than they really were, obscuring much of the resolution pertaining to CO2 variability. Liquid water is common in polar snow and ice, even at temperatures as low as -72C, (and) in cold water, CO2 is 70 times more soluble than nitrogen and 30 times more soluble than oxygen– guaranteeing that the proportions of the various gases that remain in the trapped, ancient air will change. Moreover, under the extreme pressure that deep ice is subjected to — 320 bars, or more than 300 times normal atmospheric pressure — high levels of CO2 get squeezed out of ancient air.

      So Ice core data may be a reliable guide to past temperatures, it is a very poor guide to past CO2 levels, that is why geologists rather than glaciologists are best relied upon for this very long term data. Although the ice core record represents a very nice overall view of temperature and CO2 trends over many thousands of years, their reliability for resolving details over timescales of decades– or in some cases several centuries– is limited. Nonethess, these data are used by the IPCC as the principle evidence to show that CO2 levels in excess of 300 parts per million are unprecedented in all of human history and a cause for concern. http://www.warwickhughes.com/icecore/

      As no doubt you are aware, atmospheric CO2 has only been systematically measured since 1957(records from 1958), at a lovely place I was also privileged to visit earlier this year, Mt Mauna Loa on the ‘Big Island’ Hawaii. I just checked the site and today the reading is 393 ppm CO2. But back in 1958 they had no idea what the atmospheric CO2 level was at the start of industrialisation. In fact that figure has been the subject of dispute for some time. G.S. Calendar (1898-1964)– the grandfather of the theory of man-made global warming, put the pre-industrial CO2 concentration level at 280ppm and that has been adopted by the IPCC despite numerous 19th century air measurements showing +300 ppm CO2 levels, and despite the fact that many of the youngest ice cores showed higher than expected CO2 values and so were shifted forward 90-100 years from previously-established dates so that they would match the more elevated CO2 levels of 20th century air samples.

      The truth is many researchers in the 1800’s took direct air CO2 measurements and the CO2 levels reported by them were mostly in excess of 300 ppm. For reasons that are unclear, only a few of these tests were considered valid by G.S. Calendar. Callendar has been accused of cherry-picking data from a sampling of 19th century averages, using 26 that supported his ideas, but rejecting 16 that were higher than his assumed low global average, and 2 that were lower. When you look at the data he excluded, and knowing the data in some instances was collected by Nobel Laureates, it is hard to come to any other conclusion than Calendar was suiting his own hypothesis, and the IPCC has done the same. See here: http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/stomata.html

      unknowispeaksense – you also mocked the Anthony Watts et al approach to publishing his research papers on temperature station accuracy in the US (I can’t be bothered looking for the correct name as it is clear you know the one I am talking about – and I have read it). I whole heartedly agree with you. I would much prefer to see papers go through an effective peer review process. Though that process hasn’t been so effective in the climate science area – you may disagree but here are some scientists views on that:

      I have disdained the IPCC/Climate Science peer review process and have been criticised for bringing out that old ‘denialist’ ‘pal review’ claim. Pal review is a pretty good term for it. There were certainly Climategate emails between prominent climate scientists suggesting who a journal editor should get as a ‘friendly’ reviewer for a submitted paper which agreed with the ‘warmist’ CAGW theory. There were also emails making sure certain papers were reviewed and not passed no matter what, by ‘pals’, or arranging to put journal editors under pressure to not even accept papers for submission from a ‘non warmist’ researcher. Now if you don’t like the term ‘pal review’ to cover that type of behaviour, then that is too bad, but it certainly isn’t peer review as science intends it to be!

      There are lots of places on the net where you can pour over the terrible examples of scientists behaving badly for instance via here ;
      http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/11/22/climategate-2-0/

      But you and your readers (all three or whatever) can look at a few emails I have selected from the leaked Climategate fodder and decide for yourself whether this isn’t a corruption of the peer review process. Whether this isn’t a form of ‘pal review’? Check out:

      Attempt to discredit an editor and a paper:
      http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/2683.txt
      The paper Climate Research published which they were furious about: http://coast.gkss.de/staff/storch/pdf/soon+baliunas.cr.2003.pdf
      Attempt to Discredit an entire journal and a paper which refutes Mann’s hockey stick – now globally refuted!
      http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/2272.txt
      Shutting out a non conforming scientist
      http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/3039.txt
      Suggestions on boycotting journals, discrediting authors, labelling rogue editors
      http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/0332.txt
      An attempt to get a non conforming scientist sacked
      http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/0332.txt
      Complaints that non conformist may be abusing the peer review process (ha ha)
      http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/0332.txt
      Proposal for ‘warmists’ to resign from Climate Research Journal to force the sacking of one non conformist editor
      http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/4808.txt

      Note that Pachauri, the head of the IPCC is copied in on many of the emails, from some of his ‘leading scientists’, where it is 100% apparent that they are out of control. He does nothing to protect the integrity of the peer review process!

      At least in skipping the peer review process, Watts did say in his preamble that his intention of publishing widely on the net was so that the research could be quickly disseminated and critiqued to allow him to receive feedback which he can take into account BEFORE submitting for peer review and publication in an appropriate journal. It is a completely open and transparent approach.

      So perhaps, this is a new – even better way forward – in the peer review process. No doubt you were equally vocal and critical of Richard Muller et al’s BEST study which was published WITHOUT peer review. It’s funny that there was little (in fact no noise) from the pro man made climate change lobby though. In fact the BEST study was picked up by CAGW supporters and main stream media (MSM) around the world as if there was some new, convincing data which had convinced a so-called climate skeptic scientist that global warming was real and that is was caused by humans.

      What received no news at all, and no attention by Muller was the fact that the BEST paper had actually been REJECTED by the peer review process for publication, so he released it anyway. No doubt you covered that story here though hey watchingthedeniers?

      Ross McKitrick the economist who helped blow the gaping holes in the Hockey Stick and other dodgy climate data, had been asked by the Journal of Geophysical Research (JGR) to be one of the expert reviewers of the Berkley Earth Study (BEST). He reviewed the study and did not recommend it for publication. I assume other reviewers agreed because JGR knocked it back for publication even though the project had received millions of dollars in funding and a blaze of publicity. Muller (the alleged sceptic), his daughter and other members of the team, not only didn’t fix the problems with the first part of the study but ploughed on with the second part and released their report recently in a blaze of publicity which far out-shadowed that achieved by Watts et al for their paper. And with Muller, no one seemed to mind, or ask why he hadn’t had his reports peer reviewed.

      Here is an extract from what McKitrick who by Muller’s actions is now released from confidentiality, has to say. I have referenced his entire comments on the subject below.

      “In October 2011, despite the papers not being accepted, Richard Muller launched a major international publicity blitz announcing the results of the “BEST” project. I wrote to him and his coauthor Judy Curry objecting to the promotional initiative since the critical comments of people like me were locked up under confidentiality rules, and the papers had not been accepted for publication. Richard stated that he felt there was no alternative since the studies would be picked up by the press anyway. Later, when the journal turned the paper down and asked for major revisions, I sought permission from Richard to release my review. He requested that I post it without indicating I was a reviewer for JGR. Since that was not feasible I simply kept it confidential.
      On July 29 2012 Richard Muller launched another publicity blitz (e.g. here and here) claiming, among other things, that “In our papers we demonstrate that none of these potentially troublesome effects [including those related to urbanization and land surface changes] unduly biased our conclusions.” Their failure to provide a proper demonstration of this point had led me to recommend against publishing their paper. This places me in an awkward position since I made an undertaking to JGR to respect the confidentiality of the peer review process, but I have reason to believe Muller et al.’s analysis does not support the conclusions he is now asserting in the press.”

      http://www.rossmckitrick.com/ ‘BERKELEY EARTH STUDY REFEREE REPORTS:’

      This is ridiculously long but you gave me no indication of what if anything I had said you disagreed with, and you did ask for references.

      Perhaps if I receive a sensible response on the above I will consider continuing a dialogue.

      • Watching the Deniers says:

        Climategate, WUWT links etc. I’m familiar with and read most of these materials, so there is nothing new here for me. Sorry😦

        Well, I’m out – I mean guys if you *really* want to debate James please do.

      • uknowispeaksense says:

        Let me know when you publish on the some of the science content…oh wait….

  5. john byatt says:

    Put some of James GG through mr google, word for word from jonova and john daley site.

  6. James says:

    Mike you really are pathetic. I can’t imagine this site has more than a hand full of rusted on readers. You offer them nothing. Yes of course I used some links as resources – just as you have done. I have a quick check on this site and there is plenty I have raised in my material which you have never discussed – but you say ho hum – nothing new here.

    Really. You claim you want to discuss/argue the science, but you are too scared to touch it. Just as ‘The Team’ were too scared to be exposed to scrutiny of the ‘Hockey Stick’, and The IPCC tried to shout down exposure of the Glacier melting and all the other misguided claims.

    Until you address the issues I have raised you have no right to claim any high ground on the science and you certainly have no right to call anyone else a denier.

    Perhaps you should consider a name change to: Watching – The Deniers!

    • Watching the Deniers says:

      James, putting aside your ad hominem attacks, all I’ve asked you to do is show evidence to support your claims. A very reasonable request. I’ve stated I don’t debate the science. Why? I’m not a scientist. I refer people to the vast amount of peer reviewed science and IPCC reports.

      As to my readership, I’m not at all phased by numbers. It’s the least of my concern. When I started I set the goal of reaching one – yes *one* – person everyday. I’m doing more than that. Given that sites such as Forbes, The Guardian and others have linked to this blog I assume WtD is doing ok. No really, it’s doing just fine.

      In saying that I will continue to allow you to post, however consider this your first warning. Further insults will result in a ban.

      Just saying.

      Carry on, that is all.

      • James says:

        Mike, I call you pathetic and state why I think you are. You call that ad hominem attacks and threaten to ban me from this site. Meanwhile you and the other correspondent have happily used terms such as “denier(with it’s obvious holocaust reference)”, called my content a “steaming pile of crap”, and “gish gallop, ( half-truths, lies, and straw-man arguments)”(without actually pointing out what you consider is wrong with any of it) and suggested I “go and look up the Dunning Kruger effect” as if I am totally deluded – and without providing any of this acclaimed ‘evidence’. I was also told: “That puts you in the same league as young Earth creationists and the anti-vaccination crowd.” When I actually provided common knowledge examples of where the IPCC peer review system failed miserably.

        If anyone is dishing out the ad hominem attacks it is you and your buddy.

        Words have been put into my mouth about plant food and a US based tax conspiracy.

        But that was A-OK as far as you were concerned. Non of that was anywhere near as bad as being called pathetic. Oh dear. That was stepping over the dotted, squiggly, moving and to me invisible line!

        You asked for ‘evidence’ of what I was writing. I wrote: ” I expected people of your alleged knowledge to be across the literature, however, if there is a statement I have made which you beg to differ, then please point it out and I will happily respond.” I received no requests. But from then on I did make an effort to provide references for the less obvious points I was making as requested.

        OK you say you do not debate the science. It is funny that you choose not to, but you criticise those who do if they do not happen to agree with the claim that human GHG emissions are causing dangerous climate change. You call them ‘deniers’ but wont look at their arguments. Instead you strongly maintain your position of belief. ‘Dunning Kruger’ anyone?

        The evidence I provided which you and your buddy ignored, was not all about science yet still no response.

        I have asked you to say exactly what it is you think I deny. Just to be clear. It’s handy when you are silent on that because then I can be silently grouped with all sorts of nut jobs. You know, those people who think CO2 can’t possibly have any warming effect when it is a scientific fact.

        You keep claiming that you ask for evidence and you and one or two reader per day claim I don’t provide any when asked. So I will list all the points I have provided evidence for in this conversation to which you and your cohort are apparently blind. If anyone on this page is a ‘denier’ if there is such a word, then surely it must be you, if after seeing this list you still insist I have provided no evidence to support my claims:

        1. “the world’s pre-eminent climate scientist” James Hansen has previously thought we were heading for global cooling.(quote from Robert Manne)

        2. Hansen is an astronomer, not a climate scientist and heads up the Goddard Institute of Space Science which comes under NASA’a jurisdiction.

        3. Real NASA scientists who work on the space program wrote to the head of NASA as follows: “We, the undersigned, respectfully request that NASA and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) refrain from including unproven remarks in public releases and websites. We believe the claims by NASA and GISS, that man-made carbon dioxide is having a catastrophic impact on global climate change are not substantiated, especially when considering thousands of years of empirical data. With hundreds of well-known climate scientists and tens of thousands of other scientists publicly declaring their disbelief in the catastrophic forecasts, coming particularly from the GISS leadership, it is clear that the science is NOT settled.”

        4. While CO2 in the atmosphere has a warming effect, the effect diminishes with the addition of more CO2.

        5. As a public servant James Hansen is not supposed to enrich himself for doing his job. He is also expected to report any gifts he receives as part of carrying out his public service role. He has failed to report at least $1.6m in income and hundreds of thousands of dollars in gifts, prizes, accommodation, flights and conference attendance for himself and family members in direct violation of criminal code, 18 U.S.C. 209.

        6. The IPCC show that the most warming they expect from the greenhouse gas effect from increasing CO2 emissions is 1.2C from pre-industrial levels. Any additional temperature increase is due to assumptions made about positive feedback and knock on effects included in climate models. Not from any empirically supported data.

        7. I provided a sample list of smokers who support the theory of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming.

        8. The Greenland Ice Core data which correlates well with northern hemisphere temperatures shows that recent temperature rises are minor and that for most of the last 8,000 years temperatures were warmer than they are now!

        9. When challenged by Indian Himalayan Glacier Science specialists that the IPCC’s AR4 prediction that the Himalayan glaciers could all melt by 2035 IPCC Chairman Rajendra K. Pachauri dismissed the questions saying those people were practising “voo doo science”. It was later discovered the quote the IPCC used was from a World Wild Life Fund brochure and had no scientific basis whatsoever.

        10. I provided the InterAcademy Council report on the IPCC process which proved that IPCC ‘insider’ that is scientists and authors involved in preparing the scientific content of the IPCC reports, know the ‘peer review’ system claim as a ‘gold standard’ by the IPCC is corrupt.

        11. Further on the InterAcademy Council report, evidence shows there is a stark difference between what the ‘insider’ scientists thing of the climate models, and what the IPCC imply to the public about those models. “the climate models do not begin to describe the real world we live in” The IPCC reports do not reflect the significant weaknesses and uncertainties of the climate models.

        12. I provided a graph showing James Hansen’s climate models predicting global temperature under three scenarios from 1988. A, B and C. A was ‘Business as usual’ with increasing CO2 emissions at current rates, B was atmospheric CO2 emissions remaining as is, and C was a gradual reduction in CO2 emissions. Against these modelled predictions is plotted the actual temperature to 2012 from 1988 under a scenario which Hansen didn’t envisage, CO2 emissions climbing far more rapidly than he had anticipated because of the rapid economic growth in China, India, SE Asia and South America. Yet the actual temperature is below the projection for his scenario ‘C’, whereas, if his climate models had any credibility, the actual temperature should be plotted well above his predictions for scenario ‘A’. This means the predictions of “the world’s pre-eminent Climate Scientist”, on which the IPCC and Governments are basing massive economic decisions, have been totally falsified.

        13. Climate models fail to do better than random numbers in some cases they actually do worse.

        14. Solar activity correlates better with global temperature than CO2 does.

        15. Compared to most of the last 600 million years the earth’s current level of atmospheric CO2 is quite low.

        16. Our planet has been mostly much hotter than current times.

        17. CO2 was 4.7 and 18 times higher than what it is today, in the Jurassic and Paleozoic periods. Compared to then we are currently CO2 impoverished.

        18. In the late Ordovicion Period , an Ice-Age, CO2 was 4,400ppm 02 12 times higher than today! But based on CAGW theory it should have been very hot indeed!

        19. Ice core samples are unreliable for CO2 and other gas measures because of the extreme pressures they experience.

        20. Actual CO2 observations taken in the 1800’s and deliberately excluded by Calendar without explanation would have meant a pre-industrialisation starting point of CO2 well above 300ppm instead of the 280ppm which has been accepted. We have only actually been measuring atmospheric CO2 since 1957/58.

        21. Muller et al’s Berkeley Earth Station (BEST) paper was rejected for peer review journal publication so Muller published on-line without addressing the flaws in the paper which had been outlined to him. The suspicion is so that he could beat the deadline for inclusion for reference in the IPCC AR5.

        22. Many of the world’s best known climate scientists associated with the IPCC and with leading roles with the IPCC reports and the world temperature data conspired, and took action to corrupt the peer review system. The IPCC Chairman was in the loop.

        So please don’t keep saying I provide no evidence!

        • uknowispeaksense says:

          1. “the world’s pre-eminent climate scientist” James Hansen has previously thought we were heading for global cooling.(quote from Robert Manne)

          Bullshit. This is a common denier (get used to it) canard that Hansen was a co-author of a 1971 paper by Rasoon and Schneider. The only input he had was the supply of a model that the authors used. He had no responsibility for how the authors used his model or what data they put into it. If I lend my pen to someone, am I responsible for what they write? As for that paper, in the many papers you claim to have read, I am assuming that isn’t in the list. It is a purely hypothetical paper with more caveats than you can poke a stick at. Here’s a good one. “In seeking to determine the present optical thickness of the aerosols, it is important to note that the value needed here is a global average of the equilibrium dust content of the atmosphere. Although several measurements of the atmospheric opacity in the visible have been made at various locations, particularly over the cities (20), only very few studies of the global background turbidity due to aerosols are available (21, 22).” and “Even if we assume that the rate of scavenging and of other removal processes for atmospheric dust particles remains constant, it is still difficult to predict the rate at which global background opacity of the atmosphere will increase with increasing particulate injection by human activities.”

          2. Hansen is an astronomer, not a climate scientist and heads up the Goddard Institute of Space Science which comes under NASA’s jurisdiction.

          Bullshit. Hansen has a MS in Astronomy and a PhD in Physics and mathematics which he applied to atmospheric physics of Venus initially. Simply referring to him as an astronomer is a cheap shot only loosely based on his actual expertise. While my qualifications make me an Ecologist, I also worked for quite a number of years in the field of tropical plant pathology. Am I a plant pathologist? No. Do I know more than most people about tropical plant pathology? Yes. Am I recognised by other plant pathologists as an expert in the field of tropical plant pathology? Yes. You yourself claim that although you don’t have a degree in a scientific discipline you believe you are qualified to assess climate models. James Hansen’s degree is much closer to his field of expertise than yours.

          3. Real NASA scientists who work on the space program wrote to the head of NASA as follows: “We, the undersigned, respectfully request that NASA and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) refrain from including unproven remarks in public releases and websites. We believe the claims by NASA and GISS, that man-made carbon dioxide is having a catastrophic impact on global climate change are not substantiated, especially when considering thousands of years of empirical data. With hundreds of well-known climate scientists and tens of thousands of other scientists publicly declaring their disbelief in the catastrophic forecasts, coming particularly from the GISS leadership, it is clear that the science is NOT settled.”

          Bullshit. Your “real NASA scientists” comprised a bunch of retired and former astronauts, engineers, administration staff and technicians, none of whom worked in the field of climate science. Interesting that you feel Hansen isn’t qualified but you put forward a list of people with NO experience at all? Your mate Anthony Watts has the full list of signatories and their qualifications. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/04/10/hansen-and-schmidt-of-nasa-giss-under-fire-engineers-scientists-astronauts-ask-nasa-administration-to-look-at-emprical-evidence-rather-than-climate-models/

          4. While CO2 in the atmosphere has a warming effect, the effect diminishes with the addition of more CO2.

          Bullshit. This argument is based on a paper from 1901 by Angstrom and was still appearing in papers in the 1970’s. We’ve come a long way since then and it just isn’t true.
          doi:10.1038/35066553
          http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/summary?doi=10.1.1.131.3867
          https://ams.confex.com/ams/Annual2006/techprogram/paper_100737.htm

          5. As a public servant James Hansen is not supposed to enrich himself for doing his job. He is also expected to report any gifts he receives as part of carrying out his public service role. He has failed to report at least $1.6m in income and hundreds of thousands of dollars in gifts, prizes, accommodation, flights and conference attendance for himself and family members in direct violation of criminal code, 18 U.S.C. 209.

          I don’t know enough about that but I have to wonder about relevance? Even if it’s true, does it somehow make the science incorrect when it has been independently verified time and time and time again? If you want to talk about money, let’s talk about the millions a upon millions of dollars poured into the thinktanks with the sole purpose of creating doubt in the public sphere with dodgy unpublished unreviewed “science” just so some already megarich individuals can continue to become even richer at the expense of everyone else.

          6. The IPCC show that the most warming they expect from the greenhouse gas effect from increasing CO2 emissions is 1.2C from pre-industrial levels. Any additional temperature increase is due to assumptions made about positive feedback and knock on effects included in climate models. Not from any empirically supported data.

          Bullshit. http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2011AGUFM.A31D0113D

          7. I provided a sample list of smokers who support the theory of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming.

          Great! I’ve got a list of prostitutes and pimps who don’t.

          8. The Greenland Ice Core data which correlates well with northern hemisphere temperatures shows that recent temperature rises are minor and that for most of the last 8,000 years temperatures were warmer than they are now!

          Yep. But how are natural variations from the past relevant to the very unnatural rise today? Just because it might have been warmer then doesn’t mean we have to go hell for leather to revisit it and since we are warming the world at a time when the natural cycles would have us cooler, what happens when the natural warm cycle comes around again? How much amplification do you want to see? Oh, that’s right, it won’t matter…future generations’ problem (not putting words in your mouth, in case you want to have a cry about that again).

          9. When challenged by Indian Himalayan Glacier Science specialists that the IPCC’s AR4 prediction that the Himalayan glaciers could all melt by 2035 IPCC Chairman Rajendra K. Pachauri dismissed the questions saying those people were practising “voo doo science”. It was later discovered the quote the IPCC used was from a World Wild Life Fund brochure and had no scientific basis whatsoever.

          A 100 word paragraph in a 1000 page document.

          10. I provided the InterAcademy Council report on the IPCC process which proved that IPCC ‘insider’ that is scientists and authors involved in preparing the scientific content of the IPCC reports, know the ‘peer review’ system claim as a ‘gold standard’ by the IPCC is corrupt.

          Bullshit. You provided a list of public comments about the report. Here is the section of the ACTUAL report. I’m not going to read the entire thing but feel free to and point out to me where they say the peer review system is corrupt.
          http://reviewipcc.interacademycouncil.net/report/Chapter%203%20-%20IPCC’s%20Evaluation%20of%20Evidence%20and%20Treatment%20of%20Uncertainty.pdf

          11. Further on the InterAcademy Council report, evidence shows there is a stark difference between what the ‘insider’ scientists thing of the climate models, and what the IPCC imply to the public about those models. “the climate models do not begin to describe the real world we live in” The IPCC reports do not reflect the significant weaknesses and uncertainties of the climate models.

          See above.

          12. I provided a graph showing James Hansen’s climate models predicting global temperature under three scenarios from 1988. A, B and C. A was ‘Business as usual’ with increasing CO2 emissions at current rates, B was atmospheric CO2 emissions remaining as is, and C was a gradual reduction in CO2 emissions. Against these modelled predictions is plotted the actual temperature to 2012 from 1988 under a scenario which Hansen didn’t envisage, CO2 emissions climbing far more rapidly than he had anticipated because of the rapid economic growth in China, India, SE Asia and South America. Yet the actual temperature is below the projection for his scenario ‘C’, whereas, if his climate models had any credibility, the actual temperature should be plotted well above his predictions for scenario ‘A’. This means the predictions of “the world’s pre-eminent Climate Scientist”, on which the IPCC and Governments are basing massive economic decisions, have been totally falsified.

          Hansen slightly overestimated sensitivity but it is tracking with Scenario C. Even so, that does not mean we are not undergoing AGW and the overwhelming evidence is that we are. Whether you like it or not, those decisions will either be made now or in 10 years. Oh and the IPCC do not rely soley on 1 graph from 1988 and to suggest they do as you have here is dishonest.

          13. Climate models fail to do better than random numbers in some cases they actually do worse.

          Bullshit. Oh no,hang on, you might have a point. The models certainly grossly underestimated the ice loss in the Arctic. However, you don’t need a model to see what is actually occurring now. Personally, I’d like to have even a rough idea of what we can expect. You might like to live in the moment and ride the wave until you crash on the rocks. Not me, I love my children.

          14. Solar activity correlates better with global temperature than CO2 does.

          Yep, up until about 50 years ago. Given the decrease in average solar activity of 0.5wm^2 over that time, the temperature has gone up….I wonder why? This is getting tiresome…just a few to go.

          15. Compared to most of the last 600 million years the earth’s current level of atmospheric CO2 is quite low.

          Yep, and my human ancestors 600 million years ago……oh hang on………..

          16. Our planet has been mostly much hotter than current times.

          And the dinosaurs loved it, they also loved it when Australia was 4 separate islands separated by a shallow sea.

          17. CO2 was 4.7 and 18 times higher than what it is today, in the Jurassic and Paleozoic periods. Compared to then we are currently CO2 impoverished.

          Yes and the Earth was once a molten ball of lava, constantly bombarded by asteroids and comets.

          18. In the late Ordovicion Period , an Ice-Age, CO2 was 4,400ppm 02 12 times higher than today! But based on CAGW theory it should have been very hot indeed!

          Given that the Ordovician ice age only lasted ~1 million years and the CO2 levels wereworked out over ~10 million year intervals,y ou have to wonderabou thte accuracy. It’s a very long bow to draw. Here, perhaps this will help.DOI: 10.1130/G30152A.1 That said, you really love the past don’t you? I guess it prevents you from facing up to what’s happening now.

          19. Ice core samples are unreliable for CO2 and other gas measures because of the extreme pressures they experience.

          Hang on….if that’s the case , how confident are you that your statement from number 18 is accurate?

          20. Actual CO2 observations taken in the 1800’s and deliberately excluded by Calendar without explanation would have meant a pre-industrialisation starting point of CO2 well above 300ppm instead of the 280ppm which has been accepted. We have only actually been measuring atmospheric CO2 since 1957/58.

          Bullshit.

          21. Muller et al’s Berkeley Earth Station (BEST) paper was rejected for peer review journal publication so Muller published on-line without addressing the flaws in the paper which had been outlined to him. The suspicion is so that he could beat the deadline for inclusion for reference in the IPCC AR5.

          A bit like your mate Mr Watts. It is unlikely either will be included, and nor do they need to be given the thousands of other evidential papers available.

          22. Many of the world’s best known climate scientists associated with the IPCC and with leading roles with the IPCC reports and the world temperature data conspired, and took action to corrupt the peer review system. The IPCC Chairman was in the loop. So please don’t keep saying I provide no evidence!

          Are you seriously still beating the Climategate drum?

          Ok, well, I’m done here. I have wasted far too much time on you. I am more than happy to address one thing at a time from you but any more Gish Gallops and I won’t bother. I’ll just take it as your desire to not engage. If you consider any of my answers to be a bit rude or suggestive that you don’t love your children, too bad. Suck it up Princess. I’m tired of dealing with idiots.

        • Watching the Deniers says:

          You have more patience than me mate.

        • James says:

          Your favourite term is Gish-gallops and you have just served up a dish full. Much of it lacking the much beloved citations I’m so often told are demanded on this site. But that’s OK , I’m not a pedant.

          I have briefly scanned your responses, which usually start with ‘bullshit’ followed by other favourite terms such as canard and denier for emphasis, and finishing with a quick bunch of dismissive comments which fail to address serious points before a final couple of insults.

          What was that ‘Watchingthedenier said? “The interesting thing about denial – as a psychological defense mechanism – is the increased levels of hostility individuals feel when their cognitive dissonance on an issue starts to unravel. In general this leads increased levels of anger, anxiety and feelings of panic. Often this results in rage.”

          uknowispeaksense I know you will be disappointed if I don’t respond, so I promise to do so, But I have to do something else for a few hours and may not be able to until tomorrow. Hope you can hang on till then.

        • uknowispeaksense says:

          The reason you gallop James is because you don’t expect anyone to answer all your points. I had a spare 15 minutes or so.

          As for your weak assertion that perhaps my…what was it? cognitive dissonance was unravelling and I was expressing rage, you couldn’t be further from the truth. It was fun.

          Okay the constant facepalming wasn’t fun….but the rest was. I’m glad you numbered it like that though, it made it much easier to follow and with every line it became ever clearer that your denial isn’t actually based on anything you have come up with yourself. It was canard after canard after canard almost word for word.

          As for using the term “bullshit” James, I think its a great word to use in this case. It’s easily recognisable, mildly offensive, descriptive and accurate.

          Finally, I couldn’t care less if you reply or not. I’d rather you made the decision to either crawl back under whatever rock you came from or go and educate yourself on scientific convention so that you can discuss things from a position of knowledge, rather than ignorance. My forehead can’t take much more.

      • Sammy Jankis says:

        pa·tience [pey-shuhns]
        noun

        1. the quality of being patient, as the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, without complaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like.

        2. an ability or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay: to have patience with a slow learner.

        3. uknowispeaksense

  7. Sammy Jankis says:

    …and I’m forced to ask again, James, how do the lizard people fit into all of this. Stop avoiding the question and give us an honest answer.

    • Watching the Deniers says:

      James, somewhere outside the sun is shining. Back away slowly from the computer and take a nice, deep breath.

      That is all, caryy on.

    • James says:

      Sammy, I guess that is your idea of a really clever and witty response which will get a back slapping laugh from your agreeable buddies while avoiding any need by yourself to understand, let alone address anything I have written.

      But if you want me to take your comment seriously Sammy, you point out where I have made any reference at all to ‘the lizard people’, and I will correct it if I have. Because I am not aware of anything to do with lizard people for which you seem to hold a fascination.

      If you really do have a serious question about anything I have written, and not a smart arse comment (which is clearly fine by the moderators rules), then I will be happy to address it.

  8. Watching the Deniers says:

    I also note that your references carry no citations. This is what I am asking for, otherwise they are simply declarative statements.

    The interesting thing about denial – as a psychological defense mechanism – is the increased levels of hostility individuals feel when their cognitive dissonance on an issue starts to unravel.

    In general this leads increased levels of anger, anxiety and feelings of panic. Often this results in rage.

    Or in an online environment, repeated usage of exclamation marks to finish outraged howls of protests masked as sentences.

    • Sammy Jankis says:

      Also note the similarity between climate change denialism and creationism. For example, both frequently use the Gish-gallop (a favourite of James). Rather than highlight a specific point and offer a detailed discussion they prefer to flood comment threads with as many talking points as possible, perhaps misinterpreting a lack of reaction by others as a sign of being stumped and intimidated, when the reality is that people just can’t be bothered typing out all of the corrections.

      Another similarity is the faulty appeal to authority. Creationists often claim that there is a scientific controversy over evolution, and provide a list of their creationist heroes and their scientific qualifications. Of course, being an expert in chemistry, physics or engineering doesn’t make one an expert in biology, but creationists will make a big deal out of anyone with some letters after their name if they’re prepared to say evolution is a lie.

      Argument by petition is another favourite. Creationists have their ‘Dissent from Darwin’ petition, denialists have their ‘Oregon’ petition and ‘Handful of retired NASA employees’ petition.

      Creationists accuse ‘evilutionists’ of accepting evolution because of some ideological reason, usually being that ‘they don’t want to believe in God’ or ‘a pre-commitment to philosophical naturalism’. Denialists believe ‘warmists’ all over the world are, at heart, socialists and green totalitarians who are inventing a problem as an excuse for greater government control over industry.

      Both take the same view of the peer-review process. Creationists sulk about ‘biased’ journals that won’t publish their papers, and turn to books and blogs to get their message out, or they just create their own journal and hold their own conferences. Just like denialists.

      In both cases, it is a clear case of scientific reality clashing with ideology. Reality challenges their world view, so it’s easier to deny the facts than to change their ideas.

      • James says:

        Oh this is really good Sammy you type a whole page setting up a straw man argument. Well sorry to disappoint you. I am not a creationist. I do not believe in God. So there goes your whole analogy.

        As for your claim of Gish-gallop, you are accusing me of swamping you with half truths and lies, which is a personal insult indeed – or as others would like to say – an ad hominem. So it should be easy for you to pick out a hand full of lies or half truths, since Gish-gallop is a favourite of mine. So let me know what they are.

        If that is too challenging then maybe just a couple to start with. I’m sure you will enjoy destroying me in front of all the readers on this site since I am so obvious.

        And while you are at it Sammy, can you please tell me what you are accusing me of denying? Please be specific because whatever it is I am denying, you must believe and must have proof of, so I’ll be asking for it.

        Looking forward to your response.

      • James says:

        Sammy, it occurred to me how funny it is that you are comparing me to a creationist when it really is the other way round. The creationist believes in God and presents some pretty dodgy ‘evidence’ for Gods existence. For years they were able to get away with it because anyone who questioned the belief was a blasphemer (a denier). Who could be punished by death. The religious believers didn’t like their subjects questioning their authority, but eventually the printing press and better education meant that religion lost the authority it once had and can no longer keep people in the dark like they once used to.

        But now, if you are not a ‘believer’ (in CAGW), you are ridiculed for questioning what we are being told, for finding fault in the science, and for trying to expose it.

        Sammy, it is you are on the side of the creationists filling the IPCC reports with favourable but misguided references.

        Are you aware that recently the IPCC voted that rather than accept the IAC’s recommendation to ban grey material from the IPCC report altogether they voted to accept grey material? You may remember that the IPCC used to claim all their material was peer reviewed. That was until it was proven that about 30% of the references were actually grey literature, many turning out to be from brochures and reports by the WWF an Green Peace and other vested interests.

        Actually I am not being quite accurate. The IPCC did have a rule which allowed the use of Grey Literature in special circumstances but that had to be especially identified and listed. There were only 6 items identified in this way in the IPCC AR4 of nearly 6,000 grey literature references used!

        The audit of all references in the IPCC AR4 provided these figures: The final score for 18,531 references in the 2007 report was 5,587 (one third) not peer reviewed. In 21 of the 44 chapters the score for peer reviewed references did not reach 60%. This would not be so bad if it was admitted up front and in public, also if there were clearly defined and properly policed rules for vetting the grey matter (not peer-reviewed) for use by the inner circle of authors.

        Among the sources used to support IPCC recommendations were newspapers and magazine articles, unpublished theses, Greenpeace and World Wildlife Fund documents, and yes, press releases.

        http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn21940-climate-panel-adopts-controversial-grey-evidence.html
        http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/ar5/statement/newscientist.pdf
        http://reviewipcc.interacademycouncil.net/

      • Sammy Jankis says:

        Oh this is really good Sammy you type a whole page setting up a straw man argument. Well sorry to disappoint you. I am not a creationist. I do not believe in God. So there goes your whole analogy.

        You’ve crashed and burned at the first hurdle – I never said you were a creationist. I merely highlighted the similarities in the way creationists and climate change denialists “debate”.

        As for your claim of Gish-gallop, you are accusing me of swamping you with half truths and lies, which is a personal insult indeed…

        I really don’t care if that hurts your feelings. I also don’t care if your upset when called a denialist. You’ve given me no reason to believe you’re a holocaust denier, and I don’t believe anyone has suggested you are. You are most certainly, however, a climate change denialist, and I’ll continue to use the term. (Shoe.Fits.Wear.)

        If that is too challenging then maybe just a couple to start with. I’m sure you will enjoy destroying me in front of all the readers on this site since I am so obvious.

        uknowispeaksense has already taken care of that. I enjoyed it too. I wish I had that level of patience.

  9. James says:

    Now you are just being pedantic. I am not submitting this for assessment or publication, and you guys are hardly qualified to assess my knowledge on the subject anyway. The references I have provided are URL’s. If you go to the URL’s the facts being referenced are sourced (whether it be the climategate email number, the source of a particular graph, the InterAcademy Council Report or even citations to papers which are being referenced), it is all there and accessible. Stop trying to pretend there is anything I have written which does no have substantiation.

    Or better still, as I must have written at least three times now, if there is a part of what I have written which you are questioning, which you have questions about, or which you think is complete and utter rubbish, then just let me know what it is and I’ll address it.

    Did you want me to put nice little foot notes in with the relevant citations? Maybe you had better add that to the list of site rules so everyone does it. Then maybe I would understand what Sammy is on about with the lizard people.

    As you know the worst name you can call someone who is not convinced that humans are causing dangerous climate change is not skeptic (after all, all scientists should be skeptics), it is ‘denier’. ‘Denier’ was used consistently to describe those who argued that the Holocaust never happened. So it has deliberate evil, anti Semitic, pro-Nazi overtones.

    Despite the world having pointed this distasteful fact out, you still relish the use of the term in full knowledge of its derogatory purpose. It would be like deliberately calling a French waiter ‘garcon’ when you know it will irritate him, or worse, calling a black man ‘boy’. Yet you do this while pretending to cling to some pretence of scientific enquiry and protocol – demanding citations from me, and complaining about ad hominem attacks. Clinging to the use of out of date Latin – which I actually studied, is perhaps is a demonstration that you are trying to bathe in some intellectual glory to which you are not really worthy. You run away from addressing any questions, and from posing any ideas or information of your own which may be pulled apart.

    Talk about cognitive dissonance!

    PS: One of the things which most irks me about Christopher Monckton is his overuse of Latin. So what if he studied Classics. We are supposed to be communicating in english. If you want to say personal insults, then say that – not ad hominem (to the man).

  10. James says:

    Sammy:

    I didn’t say you said I was a creationist, but what is the point of using the analogy if I am not one? It is just a silly straw man.

    You said: “You’ve given me no reason to believe you’re a holocaust denier, and I don’t believe anyone has suggested you are. ” –

    The point is the term denier is deliberately and knowingly used to link it with holocaust denier. Knowing that and still using the term understanding that it has those offensive links is what is wrong with using the term. I am sure you wouldn’t call a black man boy, or nigger (even though a black person happily uses the term in their own vernacular), you know it would be offensive.

    You said: “You are most certainly, however, a climate change denialist, and I’ll continue to use the term. (Shoe.Fits.Wear.)”

    Please define what you mean by climate change denier since you are so certain I am one. That way I can understand what you think it is I don’t believe or understand what it is you do believe that you think I don’t. If you can’t define what I am denying, then you certainly shouldn’t be calling me a climate change denier.

    • john byatt says:

      James you are a dud, Mike addressed everyone of your points and you came back with rhetoric but no substance to back your original comments, now address each of mike’s points one at a time if you can.

      This crap you have been putting up was done and dusted effin years ago.

      • James says:

        John, did you even read what I wrote and what Mike wrote? I wouldn’t say every one of the points was addressed.

        But if you believe the “crap” I’ve been putting up was done and dusted years ago, then why don’t you be the one to take up the challenge and provide me with the one peer reviewed paper which shows a clear connection between human GHG emissions and dangerous climate change.

        • uknowispeaksense says:

          John means me. I’m Mike as well.

          As for your constant demand for that one paper, I will only say this one last time. Go and do a science course so that you can gain a better understanding of the way science works and not argue from a position of ignorance, which is what you are doing and is clearly on display when you ask for that single paper. Science is a process. The conclusions drawn from this process are decided on the weight of probabilities. You don’t get it because you are ignorant, and this conversation will just go round and round and never be resolved until you cure yourself of your ignorance. You seem like an intelligent person, James, but the fact that you fail to recognise your own weaknesses speaks volumes.
          The other option of course is that you know full well that we cannot produce that one paper and you understand why, in which case you are a troll. Either way, this has become tiresome and my forehead is starting to get a permanent handprint. Good luck doing that science course James. Don’t forget, the lecturers know more than you.

        • James says:

          So none of you are prepared to address each or any of the point and are using excuses to make me go away. You thought it was great when Mike had addressed everyone of my points even though it was done in such an immature manner, you cheered him on. I was challenged to come back and respond to Mike and address each point one at a time.

          I did that. John Byatt charges me with the favourite accusation of Gish-galloping, (which on this site seems to mean presenting more than one though at a time which confuses the hell out of you.

          John says if I don’t want to learn, then I should go elsewhere, but it seems you guys are the ones who are unprepared to open your minds and do a bit of reading.

          Uknowispeaksense/Mike avoids addressing the points I made in my responses which show the gaping flaws in his thinking by still suggesting that I go and get a science degree – because he has one – so that mus make him a lot smarter? Really?

          It seems you all want to be left in your comfortable little corner without your faith in CAGW being questioned. You have your high priests who you don’t question. I guess you didn’t wonder why those high priests had told you the drought was a permanent feature of the Australian Landscape and it was not so. So you will rationalise things when other predictions don’t turn out too.

      • john byatt says:

        “with the one peer reviewed paper which shows a clear connection between human GHG emissions and dangerous climate change.”

        So where would you like to start James?
        what you are saying is that you do not accept that CO2 is a greenhouse gas
        that humans are not increasing the atmospheric level of CO2
        that greenhouse gases can be increased in the atmosphere without effect.

        not even jonova, Lindzen Spencer watts nor Monckton would support those positions,
        paleoclimate studies reveal that we are already at dangerous levels of CO2
        are you incapable of doing your own homework?

        it is only a week or so since Hansen’s paper came out connecting the current CO2 levels to the increase in heatwaves. Are heatwaves dangerous? they are if you are very young or old James and will get a lot worse without action.

        which scientific theory stands on one paper alone James,? you do not even realise how stupid your request is.

        No reply to uknowispeaksense’s take down of your gish gallop?

  11. I didn’t say you said I was a creationist, but what is the point of using the analogy if I am not one? It is just a silly straw man.

    You’re just not getting this are you? Ok, one more try and then you’re on your own. I explained how creationists and climate change denialists have the same modus operandi. Presumably, you don’t like the way creationists “debate”, but you’re more than happy to adopt their tactics when it comes to climate change.

    • James says:

      Sammy you may as well say that about anyone you disagree with. I know it is a favourite line I’ve seen it used by Clive Hamilton and Stephan Lewandowsky who are also logic deprived. So it’s not an original analogy. Of course Stephan Lewandowsky was the Psychologist who was writing papers about how wonderful it was to be skeptical of the Government when John Howard and George Bush were in Power and the Western Allies were invading Iraq. But now he’s writing papers on why climate skeptics have cognitive dysfunctions and an automatic suspicion of government. Basically people who are ideologically driven allow their ideology to cloud their logic, even university professors, no matter how well meaning.

      If you actually want to put a reasonable argument to me about why you perhaps are persuaded that human CO2 emissions are causing dangerous climate change, or if you want to try to define what it is you claim I am denying when you call me a ‘climate change denier’, then please feel free.

      But don’t wast our time suggesting I argue in the same way people who believe in a diety who created all things, is omnipotent, but refuses to communicate clearly with its creations.

      • john byatt says:

        James, just to pre-empt your next myth

        A 2012 study by Shakun et al. looked at temperature changes 20,000 years ago (the last glacial-interglacial transition) from around the world and added more detail to our understanding of the CO2-temperature change relationship. They found that:

        The Earth’s orbital cycles trigger the initial warming (starting approximately 19,000 years ago), which is first reflected in the the Arctic.
        This Arctic warming caused large amounts of ice to melt, causing large amounts of fresh water to flood into the oceans.
        This influx of fresh water then disrupted the Atlantic Ocean circulation, in turn causing a seesawing of heat between the hemispheres. The Southern Hemisphere and its oceans warmed first, starting about 18,000 years ago.
        The warming Southern Ocean then released CO2 into the atmosphere starting around 17,500 years ago, which in turn caused the entire planet to warm via the increased greenhouse effect.
        Overall, about 90% of the global warming occurred after the CO2 increase

    • john byatt says:

      This may help James understand,

      http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Gish_Gallop

      • James says:

        “what you are saying is that you do not accept that CO2 is a greenhouse gas
        that humans are not increasing the atmospheric level of CO2
        that greenhouse gases can be increased in the atmosphere without effect.”

        Where did you get that from John? I don’t deny any of those things!

        “paleoclimate studies reveal that we are already at dangerous levels of CO2
        are you incapable of doing your own homework?”

        You need to provide a reference for that. I’ve done mu homework and provided references which show current levels of CO2 are actually quite low based on palaeoclimatology studies. So maybe you need to read the material I provided.

        “it is only a week or so since Hansen’s paper came out connecting the current CO2 levels to the increase in heatwaves. Are heatwaves dangerous? they are if you are very young or old James and will get a lot worse without action.”

        I’m sure that will be another quality piece of work and have the accuracy of his temperature projections which I have shown to be wildly off track from reality. But I’ll be happy to look at it if you give me the citation and it turns it it is anything more than another thought bubble press release.

        However, ‘dangerous’ does have to mean ;overall to humankind. If there are some negative effects, but they are outweighed by positive effects such as less people dying from freezing winters or lack of food due to longer crop cycles and more arable crop lands, then some instances of small negative impacts wouldn’t fit the bill.

        “No reply to uknowispeaksense’s take down of your gish gallop?”

        Yes, I provided a detailed response to his tirade of ‘Bullshit”.

        The 2012 Shakun et al paper you refer to which is here if you want to avoid the pay wall: http://sciences.blogs.liberation.fr/files/shakun-et-al.pdf has more holes in it than a Swiss cheese.

        The Shakun showed a pretty good agreement between CO2 and temperature proxies, see here: http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2012/04/nature_shakun_proxies_plus_co2.jpg. The problem is, they were a bit naughty in selecting there temperature proxy’s and including them in the graph. If you do you get a much less convincing graph shown here: http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2012/04/nature_shakun_proxies_plus_daa.jpg which is far less convincing. By far less, I mean not at all!

        To make matters worse, if you show the entire plot of the Shakun temperature and CO2 record you get this graph. http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2012/04/nature_shakun_proxies_plus_co2_all.jpg. What this clearly shows, and what Shakun et al failed to mention or show in their paper, is that there is a clear disconnect between temperature and CO2 between -5000 and 0 years, when CO2 climbs steadily, but temperature has stabilised and remains steady for that 5000 years. No wonder Shakun chopped that off their graphs!

        Dr Don J. Easterbrook provided some further damaging critique of the Shakun et al paper http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/04/08/did-shakun-et-al-really-prove-that-co2-precede-late-glacial-warming-part-1/ which I will summarize:
        a) “One special feature of glaciological models is a large model error due to unresolved physics and errors on the forcing fields, clearly affecting the quality of the inferred dating scenarios.” What this means of course is that the age determinations of the Antarctic cores are, at best, educated guesses with large uncertainties. Because chronology is so critical to the Shakun et al. contention, the ages of the Antarctic cores shown in their Figure 2 cannot be considered accurate.
        b) “It’s clear that there is warming since the last ice age.” “But if you want to make the claim that CO2 precedes the warming? I fear that this set of proxies is perfectly useless for that. How on earth could you claim anything about the timing of the warming from this group of proxies? It’s all over the map.”
        c) In other material I have previously discussed the problems with accurately measuring CO2 levels in ice cores. They are unreliable.

        Dr Eastbrook looks at further flaws in the Shakun paper here: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/04/18/more-fatal-flaws-in-the-shakun-et-al-nature-paper-claiming-that-co2-preceded-late-glacial-warming-part-2/ and concludes: The age of the (Younger Dryas) YD shown on their Antarctic curve is from 13,000 to 14,700, nowhere near the age of the YD in New Zealand and the rest of the world. Considering the lack of adequate dating of the Antarctic ice cores and lack of correlation with New Zealand and global YD chronology, what this means is that their entire Antarctic curve is incorrect and needs to be shifted by nearly 2,000 years, taking with it the CO2 curve. This means that their entire argument for CO2 preceding warming during the last glaciation falls completely apart.

        Prof. Fritz Vahrenholt and geologist Dr. Sebastian Lüning comment on Shakun’s recent paper here: http://notrickszone.com/2012/04/14/vahrenholt-luning-on-shakun-desperate-attempt-to-salvage-beloved-co2-catastrophe-model/. Basically he says that if you get a big enough scatter of data – which Shakun certainly did, you can hid the 800 year time lag between temperature and CO2.

        Shakun is very shaky and was likely rushed to get a paper in IPCC AR% which covered the Temperature/CO2 lag problem.

        • Watching the Deniers says:

          Interesting James… you criticize the IPCC report for containing grey literature, and yet everything you cite as supporting materials constitutes for your argument constitutes the definition of grey literature.

  12. James says:
    I apologise for the delay in my response, but some unexpected work came up. Before I start my response to I would point out that no one has taken me up on the suggestion of providing just one peer reviewed paper which proves the link between human green house gas emissions and catastrophic climate change. You would think it such an easy job given the high level of confidence displayed at this site and elsewhere. I also note that no-one has yet defined what it is that I am accused of denying. It would be nice to know, if someone could be specific about telling me. Dr Kevin Trenberth describes himself in his bio as a Distinguished Senior Scientist; he is employed in the Climate Analysis Section at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, and is famous for his part in the many hacked/leaked Climategate emails. He also wastes no time telling everyone on his personal bio site that he shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize which went to the IPCC. Being a scientist I would expect he to be technically correct on such matters but the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to be shared jointly between Al Gore and The InterGovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). I did a little bit of research and Dr Trenberth was not a member of the Panel in 2007. Sure he was a member of a working group. But hey there are four working groups. There were thousands of lead authors, contributing authors, reviewers and their secretaries. Above the working groups sit the IPCC Executive Committee, The IPCC Bureau, and the IPCC Plenary and above that the IPCC Panel and alongside that the IPCC Secretariat). Then of course there are the authors of the nearly 18,000 pieces of literature cited including nearly 6,000 pieces of grey material from the likes of the WWF, Green Peace and various other activist organisations. So if you donated to one of those organisations in 2007 maybe you should claim a share of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize, but in fact, it was awarded to a body and that body was the IPCC. The reason I mention this is because Dr Trenberth does have a funny view of the world and it does seem to be a view shared by some people at this site. If you read his emails leaked through Climategate, or have a wonder through his many publications, presentations and blog posts at his website here http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/trenbert.html you will sense his continuing frustration at the need to prove that humans are causing dangerous global warming. He finds it tiresome and trivial. I have been told on three occasions here that I need to go away I learn some basic science. Well forgive me, if Dr Trenberth and you guys find it inconvenient, but the null hypothesis with regards climate change is that it is natural – not human caused. His job, (and I guess your job if you choose to take it), is to prove that climate change is human caused. To do this he also needs to show how much is human caused. It is not my job to prove that climate change isn’t human caused. Given the world got on quite happily for millions of years without humans around and underwent numerous, significant and regular changes in climate, it is fair and reasonable, and therefore the null hypothesis to believe that any climate change is natural. Until it is proven otherwise those who believe otherwise might be determined the ‘deniers’. Of course in the past whenever significant unexplained climate change happened, primitive people assumed that we had angered the gods, and sacrifices needed to be made to appease them. Do you see any similarities? But the gods are now Gaia – or ‘mother earth. Our climate commissioner Tim Flannery is a big fan of James Lovelocks ‘Gaia theory’ as one big unified living organism. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaia_hypothesis. It seems to hit a nerve in this post religious society we live in. James Lovelock has not exactly recanted is manmade global warming beliefs, but he has backed away from his radical predictions. “Five years ago, he had claimed: ‘Before this century is over billions of us will die and the few breeding pairs of people that survive will be in the Arctic where the climate remains tolerable.’ But in an interview with msnbc.com, he admitted: ‘I made a mistake.’ He said: ‘The problem is we don’t know what the climate is doing,’ he told ‘We thought we knew 20 years ago. That led to some alarmist books – mine included – because it looked clear cut, but it hasn’t happened. ‘[The temperature] has stayed almost constant, whereas it should have been rising – carbon dioxide is rising, no question about that.’ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2134092/Gaia-scientist-James-Lovelock-I-alarmist-climate-change.html#ixzz23cxErxPe Of course Lovelock doesn’t have to recant he just has to push out his predictions a little longer. After all he’s 92, like all the prophets of doom before him, he won’t have to live to see he is wrong (well any more than he has already). But sorry that was a little digression. The point I was making was it is up to scientists to prove the theory of catastrophic global warming, because natural climate change is the null hypothesis. But in an incredible piece of work coming from a scientist (and here is the long awaited connection), Dr Trenberth suggested in his presentation to the American Meteorological Society on 26 January 2011 (you can get the presentation off his website link given above), that human caused climate change should be made the official null hypothesis. That way, it would be up to sceptics to prove that it is something else which is causing climate change and not humans. WOW! When I read that more than 12 months ago I though the person who alerted me to it was pulling my leg. One of the supposed world’s leading scientists suggested turning science upside down essentially just to make his job easier, presumably because he’s certain he’s right, so the burden of proof shouldn’t be on him. On the face of it his suggestion may seem reasonable to some of you ‘burnt on believers’, but remember, if the null hypothesis is that climate change is caused by humans, what about all that climate change which happened before humans came along a blink of an eye ago in the few billion year history of the world or even just the few hundred million years? Are we supposed to pretend all those other factors which we know causes climate change do not exist? It is madness! That is why my friends, in real, properly done science, it is your side which needs to prove humans are causing dangerous climate change. It is not up to me to prove a negative (prove that humans aren’t causing dangerous climate change), just as I can’t prove God doesn’t exist! OK – over to ‘uknowispeaksense’ addressing my points. I have responded to each individual point as requested. You will see I have repeated the point I made, his comment and then shown my ‘RESPONSE’. It should be simple enough to follow. 1. “the world’s pre-eminent climate scientist” James Hansen has previously thought we were heading for global cooling.(quote from Robert Manne) Bullshit. This is a common denier (get used to it) canard that Hansen was a co-author of a 1971 paper by Rasoon and Schneider. The only input he had was the supply of a model that the authors used. He had no responsibility for how the authors used his model or what data they put into it. If I lend my pen to someone, am I responsible for what they write? As for that paper, in the many papers you claim to have read, I am assuming that isn’t in the list. It is a purely hypothetical paper with more caveats than you can poke a stick at. Here’s a good one. “In seeking to determine the present optical thickness of the aerosols, it is important to note that the value needed here is a global average of the equilibrium dust content of the atmosphere. Although several measurements of the atmospheric opacity in the visible have been made at various locations, particularly over the cities (20), only very few studies of the global background turbidity due to aerosols are available (21, 22).” and “Even if we assume that the rate of scavenging and of other removal processes for atmospheric dust particles remains constant, it is still difficult to predict the rate at which global background opacity of the atmosphere will increase with increasing particulate injection by human activities.” RESPONSE: Firstly I want to address the use of the word ‘canard’. I assume you are using it to mean an unfounded, false or misleading story. I would note it is a common practice to label anything you don’t like a ‘canard’ without seriously addressing the content. Your ‘pen’ explanation is word for word how Hansen has explained away his involvement in the project. But the fact is, like all such project, but especially back in those days, (as coding was particularly time consuming and difficult). He may have still been using punch cards which I can tell you is not fun! To be a member of the team you have to be on board with the team. I don’t know why Hansen is trying to pretend he simply did a coding job and had no thoughts on the matter one way or the other. He worked with those guys at a later date and if you follow their publications, by about 1975 they were starting to consider global warming. Hansen would have remained junior to Rasool and Schneider at GISS for some years and they continued to publish in the areas of particulate and aerosols and climate change. It was clear Schneider in particular had an environmental bent back in those days which no doubt rubbed off on Hansen. In a 1975 paper ‘The Population Explosion’ Schneider was predicting a doubling of the population by 2015 and a massive shortage of food. He essentially predicted the formation of the IPCC when he wrote, “international authorities must eventually be established to deal with potential world conflicts arising from future problems of food production and climate change-whether purposeful or inadvertent.” http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/4312070?uid=3737536&uid=2&uid=4&sid=21100984174053 There is little doubt in my that Hansen and others believed the world was heading for global cooling and a possible ice age at one stage and at some point change their mind. I think it is the right of good scientists to change their mind. What I don’t like is when he lies about the past, or the present (that is why the story about his undeclared income is relevant), because his credibility is in question. Hansen is a powerful man and controls a lot of temperature records which have been systematically been adjusted and homogenised. We are assured by him that those adjustments, which have increased the warming effect over the last century by almost uniformly lowering earlier recorded station temperatures, dropping out stations and other adjustments, are to improve the quality of the temperature measurements. Now that is easy to believe if you think Hansen is the world’s most pre-eminent climate scientist, but if you think he’s a shady character with a particular bias prepared to do and say what’s needed for his cause, then it is easy to get suspicious. If the average person was asked to describe the runaway greenhouse effect, and given a bit of prep time, how would they do it? Most people would type it into their favorite search engine which would lead them to the Wikipedia article on the subject. They would read through it, try to memorize the basics, understand the fundamentals and then prepare a summary for their audience. But how would a climate scientist do it? Specifically, how would the head of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies describe it? I expect he would rely on his past work, his models of Venus’ atmosphere, which he jerry-rigged to apply to Earth (yes, I learned about that from Wikipedia). Most assuredly he would cite the latest peer-reviewed work on the subject. Here is a youtube video of James Hansen titled “The Runaway Greenhouse Effect – James Hansen” http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=1uxfiuKB_R8#t=115s watch from 1.50min. James Hansen says this: “…it gets warmer and warmer then the oceans begin to evaporate and water vapor is a very strong green house gas, even more powerful than carbon dioxide. So you can get to a situation where, it just, the oceans will begin to boil and the planet becomes, uhh, so hot that the ocean ends up in the atmosphere, and that happened to Venus…” Essentially he implies that because that happened on Venus it could happen on Earth! Now compare James Hansen’s words in that YouTube video with this passage: “increasing the temperature and consequently increasing the evaporation of the ocean, leading eventually to the situation in which the oceans boiled, and all of the water vapor entered the atmosphere” That certainly looks rather similar now doesn’t it? That second passage is from Wikipedia’s article on the runaway greenhouse effect – in the Venus section. Of course, if Mr. Hansen had read down to the section about the Earth, then he would’ve noticed this: “Potential runaway greenhouse effects on Earth may involve the carbon cycle, but unlike Venus will not involve boiling of the oceans.” The above ‘story’ was extracted from the following. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/03/14/boiling-oceans-and-burning-reputations-with-james-hansen/ Since it was written in March this year, because of the embarrassment to Hansen, and because of his power and Wikipedia’s compliance on matters to do with climate change, they have allowed the Earth reference to be amended without any reasonable reference other than “James Hansen disagrees”. My point is, James Hansen has a history of changing the story after the event and making the facts fit his purpose. That is not a very scientific approach. 2. Hansen is an astronomer, not a climate scientist and heads up the Goddard Institute of Space Science which comes under NASA’s jurisdiction. Bullshit. Hansen has a MS in Astronomy and a PhD in Physics and mathematics which he applied to atmospheric physics of Venus initially. Simply referring to him as an astronomer is a cheap shot only loosely based on his actual expertise. While my qualifications make me an Ecologist, I also worked for quite a number of years in the field of tropical plant pathology. Am I a plant pathologist? No. Do I know more than most people about tropical plant pathology? Yes. Am I recognised by other plant pathologists as an expert in the field of tropical plant pathology? Yes. You yourself claim that although you don’t have a degree in a scientific discipline you believe you are qualified to assess climate models. James Hansen’s degree is much closer to his field of expertise than yours. RESPONSE: I think that given how loosely the term ‘Climate Scientist’ is used, commonly, and that there is not a single scientific discipline of climate science, I will have to agree with you that I should accept that Hansen is a Climate Scientist. But while GISS comes under NASA’s jurisdiction, I think it is misleading to call him a NASA scientist. 3. Real NASA scientists who work on the space program wrote to the head of NASA as follows: “We, the undersigned, respectfully request that NASA and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) refrain from including unproven remarks in public releases and websites. We believe the claims by NASA and GISS, that man-made carbon dioxide is having a catastrophic impact on global climate change are not substantiated, especially when considering thousands of years of empirical data. With hundreds of well-known climate scientists and tens of thousands of other scientists publicly declaring their disbelief in the catastrophic forecasts, coming particularly from the GISS leadership, it is clear that the science is NOT settled.” Bullshit. Your “real NASA scientists” comprised a bunch of retired and former astronauts, engineers, administration staff and technicians, none of whom worked in the field of climate science. Interesting that you feel Hansen isn’t qualified but you put forward a list of people with NO experience at all? Your mate Anthony Watts has the full list of signatories and their qualifications.http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/04/10/hansen-and-schmidt-of-nasa-giss-under-fire-engineers-scientists-astronauts-ask-nasa-administration-to-look-at-emprical-evidence-rather-than-climate-models/ RESPONSE: Nothing you have written addresses anything I wrote. I didn’t claim they were ‘climate scientists’ I said they were real ‘NASA Scientists’. Yes they were retired – who in their right mind, who valued their job would write such a letter to their employer in a state with an unemployment rate of around 15%? All those astronauts, engineers and technicians are science qualified; I’ve had a look at the list. They are the people who were responsible for making the shuttle and rover programmes work. No one at NASA was calling them a bunch on nobody’s. And from what they wrote, it is also clear that the claim the science is settled si just another climate alarmist ‘canard’ – you see I can use that word too! 4. While CO2 in the atmosphere has a warming effect, the effect diminishes with the addition of more CO2. Bullshit. This argument is based on a paper from 1901 by Angstrom and was still appearing in papers in the 1970’s. We’ve come a long way since then and it just isn’t true. doi:10.1038/35066553 http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/summary?doi=10.1.1.131.3867 https://ams.confex.com/ams/Annual2006/techprogram/paper_100737.htm RESPONSE: Boy, you need to update you reading! The logarithmic warming effect from increasing CO2 concentration is discussed in the 3rd assessment report (TAR) and the 4th assessment report (AR4). The only way the IPCC get warming of greater than 1.1C – 1.2C from a doubling of CO2 is by making unproven and frankly unrealistic assumptions about positive feedbacks without properly accounting for negative feedbacks and carbon sinks and other climate variability factors. There is a very easy to read post here by Dr David Archibald who uses the same model Dr Trenberth uses on CO2 sensitivity if you just want a basic overview.http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/03/08/the-logarithmic-effect-of-carbon-dioxide/ or this detailed peer reviewed technical paper here: Heat capacity, time constant, and sensitivity of Earth’s climate system; Stephen E. Schwartz 2007. Atmospheric Science Division, Brookhaven National Laboratory http://www.ecd.bnl.gov/steve/pubs/HeatCapacity.pdf 5. As a public servant James Hansen is not supposed to enrich himself for doing his job. He is also expected to report any gifts he receives as part of carrying out his public service role. He has failed to report at least $1.6m in income and hundreds of thousands of dollars in gifts, prizes, accommodation, flights and conference attendance for himself and family members in direct violation of criminal code, 18 U.S.C. 209. I don’t know enough about that but I have to wonder about relevance? Even if it’s true, does it somehow make the science incorrect when it has been independently verified time and time and time again? If you want to talk about money, let’s talk about the millions a upon millions of dollars poured into the thinktanks with the sole purpose of creating doubt in the public sphere with dodgy unpublished unreviewed “science” just so some already megarich individuals can continue to become even richer at the expense of everyone else. RESPONSE: I have addressed the issue of Hansen’s credibility above. It is important. He controls a lot of information, how it is adjusted, presented and used. Now you mention the old ‘canard’ (see I can keep using it) about right wing think tanks. But the money which goes into funding right wing think tanks pales when compared to tax payer money spent funding left wing think tanks, Universities which churn out the likes of Robert Manne, Clive Hamilton, Stephan Lewan Dowsky, Richard Denniss etc. At least private money funding right wing think tanks is simply our free market at work. Tax payer money funding left wing think tanks is about government control. In a manner we did not vote for! 6. The IPCC show that the most warming they expect from the greenhouse gas effect from increasing CO2 emissions is 1.2C from pre-industrial levels. Any additional temperature increase is due to assumptions made about positive feedback and knock on effects included in climate models. Not from any empirically supported data. Bullshit. http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2011AGUFM.A31D0113D RESPONSE: a) I refer you to my response to 4. above. b) Did you read the paper you have referenced here? It has nothing to do with the climate modelling used in the IPCC AR4. You need to look at http://www.ipcc-data.org/ddc_climscen.html 7. I provided a sample list of smokers who support the theory of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming. Great! I’ve got a list of prostitutes and pimps who don’t. RESPONSE: My list of smokers who supported CAGW was in response to a correspondents list of think tanks which allegedly supported the tobacco industry. The point was that there are plenty of people like me who don’t support the tobacco industry who don’t support CAGW and vice versa. I don’t have a list of prostitutes and pimps! 8. The Greenland Ice Core data which correlates well with northern hemisphere temperatures shows that recent temperature rises are minor and that for most of the last 8,000 years temperatures were warmer than they are now! Yep. But how are natural variations from the past relevant to the very unnatural rise today? Just because it might have been warmer then doesn’t mean we have to go hell for leather to revisit it and since we are warming the world at a time when the natural cycles would have us cooler, what happens when the natural warm cycle comes around again? How much amplification do you want to see? Oh, that’s right, it won’t matter…future generations’ problem (not putting words in your mouth, in case you want to have a cry about that again). RESPONSE: Have another look at the graph and what I wrote. http://mclean.ch/climate/Ice_cores.htm About a thousand years ago the temperature fell by over 1.4C over a century, the century preceding that the temperature had risen by about 1.8C. About 1,900 years ago the temperature cooled around 1.6C over a century. Around 3150 years ago the temperature started a decline of 2.0C over just 150 years. Or you can skip back 8,000 years to a 3.0C rise in temperature over just 100 years. The ‘hell for leather’, ‘unnatural’ warming you are referring to today is going to be less than 1.0C well within natural variations. 9. When challenged by Indian Himalayan Glacier Science specialists that the IPCC’s AR4 prediction that the Himalayan glaciers could all melt by 2035 IPCC Chairman Rajendra K. Pachauri dismissed the questions saying those people were practising “voo doo science”. It was later discovered the quote the IPCC used was from a World Wild Life Fund brochure and had no scientific basis whatsoever. A 100 word paragraph in a 1000 page document. RESPONSE: Actually the AR4 report was 2,800 pages long – I’ve read them! But you (deliberately), totally miss the point. Here we have the chairman of the IPCC being told of a fault in the report by the leading Indian scientist on Himalayan glaciers. The Chairman dismisses the Indian scientists as “schoolboy scientists” practicing “voo doo” science. I can imagine how that would have gone down if a white fella had made that remark! He was wrong of course and it turned out that the 2035 claim which had gotten past the peer review of who knows how many climate scientists who now claim they shared in the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize was a load of crap made up by the WWF! But sure, if that was the only error in 2,800 pages it wouldn’t be a big deal, but there have been a torrent of errors and half truths and attempts to twist the facts to paint a story which suites the clearly political agenda of those running the IPCC rather than just letting the science settle where it lands. One classic example is here: ‘Another IPCC Error: Antarctic Sea Ice Increase Underestimated by 50%’: http://www.worldclimatereport.com/index.php/2010/02/16/another-ipcc-error-antarctic-sea-ice-increase-underestimated-by-50/ Another is the claims about increasing tropical storm activity: ‘GROSS ERRORS IN THE IPCC-AR4 REPORT REGARDING PAST & FUTURE CHANGES IN GLOBAL TROPICAL CYCLONE ACTIVITY: http://tropical.atmos.colostate.edu/Includes/Documents/Publications/gray2011.pdf I’m sure you have heard about all the other more famous errors. The one where the IPCC wrongly reported that more than half of the Netherlands was below sea level because it had failed to check information supplied by a Dutch government agency. When errors first started to surface the IPCC attempted to counter growing criticism by releasing a statement insisting that authors who contribute to its 3,000-page report are required to “critically assess and review the quality and validity of each source” when they use material from unpublished or non-peer-reviewed sources. Drafts of the reports are checked by scientific reviewers before they are subjected to line-by-line approval by the 130 member countries of the IPCC. (A bit like saying “A 100 word paragraph in a 1000 page document.” – except they at least got the document size a bit more accurate). Despite these checks, a diagram used to demonstrate the potential for generating electricity from wave power was also found to contain numerous errors. The source of information for the diagram was cited as the website of UK-based wave-energy company Wavegen. Yet the diagram on Wavegen’s website contained dramatically different figures for energy potential off Britain and Alaska and in the Bering Sea. When contacted by The Sunday Telegraph, Wavegen insisted that the diagram on its website had not been changed. It added that it was not the original source of the data and had simply reproduced it on its website. The diagram is widely cited in other literature as having come from a paper on wave energy produced by the Institute of Mechanical Engineering in 1991 along with data from the European Directory of Renewable Energy. Experts claim that, had the IPCC checked the citation properly, it would have spotted the discrepancies. It can also be revealed that claims made by the IPCC about the effects of global warming, and suggestions about ways it could be avoided, were partly based on information from ten dissertations by Masters students. One unpublished dissertation was used to support the claim that sea-level rise could impact on people living in the Nile delta and other African coastal areas, although the main focus of the thesis, by a student at the Al-Azhar University in Cairo, appears to have been the impact of computer software on environmental development. The IPCC also made use of a report by US conservation group Defenders of Wildlife to state that salmon in US streams have been affected by rising temperatures. The panel has already come under fire for using information in reports by conservation charity the WWF. Estimates of carbon-dioxide emissions from nuclear power stations and claims that suggested they were cheaper than coal or gas power stations were also taken from the website of the World Nuclear Association, rather than using independent scientific calculations. Another contributing author, Professor Roger Pielke Jnr, from Colorado University’s Centre for Science and Technology Policy Research, claimed The IPCC deliberately ignored a paper he wrote that contradicted the panel’s claims about the cost of climate-related natural disasters. An IPCC document included a statement from an anonymous IPCC author saying that they believed Dr Pielke had changed his mind on the matter, when he had not. There have been countless other matters relating to errors, omissions and faults within the IPCC reports. For instance others dubbed Africagate, Amazongate, the wild claims about melting snow on Kilimanjaro, the spread of malaria, more severe weather patterns, and a whole swathe of other claims where papers which didn’t support the group think view were excluded, and data was twisted to enhance what would sell the global warming hysteria. And all these got through the peer review and checking processes at the IPCC. Well actually that’s not quite true because there were plenty of scientists who complained that they pointed out errors, but they were ignored by the lead authors. Your readers can google those topics but a very detailed study has been done on the quality of the IPCC AR4 report and has been published after peer review and is available here: ‘Improving conveyance of uncertainties in the findings of the IPCC’ Rachael Jonassen and Roger Pielke CLIMATIC CHANGE Volume 108, Number 4 (2011), 745-753, DOI: 10.1007/s10584-011-0185-7 In talking about his peer reviewed paper Dr Roger Pielke wrote the following which may be of interest to readers: In a paper just out in Climatic Change today Rachael Jonassen and I perform a quantitative analysis of all 2,744 findings found in the three 2007 assessment reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Here is the abstract of our paper: Jonassen, R. and R. Pielke, Jr., 2011. Improving conveyance of uncertainties in the findings of the IPCC, Climatic Change, 9 August, 0165-0009:1-9,http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10584-011-0185-7. Abstract Authors of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) received guidance on reporting understanding, certainty and/or confidence in findings using a common language, to better communicate with decision makers. However, a review of the IPCC conducted by the InterAcademy Council (2010) found that “the guidance was not consistently followed in AR4, leading to unnecessary errors . . . the guidance was often applied to statements that are so vague they cannot be falsified. In these cases the impression was often left, quite incorrectly, that a substantive finding was being presented.” Our comprehensive and quantitative analysis of findings and associated uncertainty in the AR4 supports the IAC findings and suggests opportunities for improvement in future assessments. The paper characterizes the various findings of the report in terms of the uncertainty guidance used by the IPCC. The paper includes various summary statistics and discussion. The answer to the provocative title of this post is found in the following part of the paper: If we confine our attention to those findings that refer to the future, one can ask how many IPCC findings can be expected to become verified ultimately as being accurate. For example, if we consider findings that refer to future events with likelihood in the ‘likely’ class (i.e., >66% likelihood) then if these judgments are well calibrated then it would be appropriate to conclude that as many as a third can be expected to not occur. More generally, of the 360 findings reported in the full text of WG1 across all likelihood categories and presented with associated measures of likelihood (i.e., those summarized in Table 2 below), then based on the judgments of likelihood associated with each statement we should logically expect that about 100 of these findings (~28%) will at some point be overturned. So, it’s not one error in 2,800 pages. The 2,800 pages are riddled with errors! Using the IPCC’s own standards the error rate is calculated at around 28%. The quality of the paper was so lacking in some areas, and so poorly checked, that simple arithmetic errors went unnoticed. Usually because they advantaged/exaggerated the story of CAGW. Here are instances documented by your favourite person no doubt, Christopher Monckton, who also shows that the IPCC made corrections to the report after publication covertly rather than through the normal method of issuing an erratum. http://ff.org/centers/csspp/pdf/20070226_monckton.pdf It really is hard to know where to stop when pointing out the errors in the IPCC AR4, but your readers should get the idea that your response of “A 100 word paragraph in a 1000 page document” was a climate alarmist ‘canard’ which you didn’t even manage to state correctly. 10. I provided the InterAcademy Council report on the IPCC process which proved that IPCC ‘insider’ that is scientists and authors involved in preparing the scientific content of the IPCC reports, know the ‘peer review’ system claim as a ‘gold standard’ by the IPCC is corrupt. Bullshit. You provided a list of public comments about the report. Here is the section of the ACTUAL report. I’m not going to read the entire thing but feel free to and point out to me where they say the peer review system is corrupt. http://reviewipcc.interacademycouncil.net/report/Chapter%203%20-%20IPCC’s%20Evaluation%20of%20Evidence%20and%20Treatment%20of%20Uncertainty.pdf RESPONSE: Well I think my response at 10. well and truly shows that the IPCC peer review system failed miserably given the almost 6000 references to grey material which were not identified as was required by procedure; given the many instances of proven errors in the report, and given the many instances where the reviewers chose to ignore any papers or advice which was contrary to the CAGW theme. The facts speak for themselves, as did the comments of the IPCC participants who reported to the IAC review – unless you are suggesting that they were making it all up? I pretty much think that is ‘insiders’ are saying the peer review system is corrupt, and there is no defence given against those allegation, then my statement at 10. Is very much supported. What you have provided above is a link to ‘3. IPCC’s evaluation of evidence and treatment of uncertainty’ which is the way things should have been managed in the IPCC report, but they weren’t. The 113 page IAC IPCC Review report is here: http://reviewipcc.interacademycouncil.net/. You can read an online version which is what I use at: http://reviewipcc.interacademycouncil.net/report.html. The following are relevant comments in relation to that report regarding the IPCC’s trashing of what were supposed to be its own standards regarding peer review. I guess you didn’t look too hard; the paragraphs are clearly labelled in the IAC report. It seems you probably haven’t read the report. I have extracted some relevant parts below in inverted commas, adding commentary if necessary. Page 15: Chapter 2: Evaluation of IPCC’s Assessment Processes “This chapter identifies and recommends remedies for the most significant shortcomings in each major step of IPCC’s assessment process, based on the Committee’s analysis of current IPCC practices, of the literature on assessments, and community input.” 1. Scoping Respondents complained of being excluded from the IPCC process simply because they didn’t share the IPCC CAGW view. The IAC report covered these issues: “The preliminary scope and outline of IPCC assessment reports is developed by an invited group of scientists, other subject-matter experts, and government representatives. …… respondents raised two concerns about the scoping process. First, the scoping process itself and the selection of participants for the scoping meeting(s) remain somewhat opaque……. the scoping process has a major influence on the mandate and goals for the assessment, it is essential that the process be as transparent as possible.” “Recommendation: The IPCC should make the process and criteria for selecting participants for scoping meetings more transparent.” 2. Author Selection Trying to overcome the ‘pal review system’ “The selection of authors is one of the most important decisions in the assessment process because credibility of the assessment depends largely on the participation of respected scientists (e.g., NRC, 2007). ………..Yet in interviews and responses to the Committee’s questionnaire, some scientists expressed frustration that they have not been nominated, despite their clear scientific qualifications and demonstrated willingness to participate. The absence of a transparent author selection process or well-defined criteria for author selection can raise questions of bias and undermine the confidence of scientists and others in the credibility of the assessment (e.g., Pielke, 2010a). The IPCC has no formal process or criteria for selecting authors, although some Working Group Co-chairs established their own for the fourth assessment, considering factors such as scientific expertise and excellence, geography, gender, age, viewpoint, and the ability to work in teams.9 Establishing such criteria and applying them in a transparent manner to all Working Groups would alleviate some of the frustrations voiced by the community. Recommendation: The IPCC should establish a formal set of criteria and processes for selecting Coordinating Lead Authors and Lead Authors. 3. Sources of Data and Literature: IAC make it clear the expectation was that the IPCC report was to use only peer reviewed papers for reference or in the isolated incidences where this was not practical, it should have been made clear the reference used was grey material not peer reviewed. “IPCC assessments are intended to rely mainly on peer-reviewed literature. Although the peer review process is not perfect, it ensures that the study being considered has had the benefit of independent scrutiny and quality control before it is used in the assessment. An analysis of the 14,000 references cited in the Third Assessment Report found that peer-reviewed journal articles comprised 84 percent of references in Working Group I, but only 59 percent of references in Working Group II and 36 percent of references in Working Group III (Bjurström and Polk, 2010).” The Working Group 1 is the original IPCC brief assessing the physical aspects of the climate system and climate change. The Working Groups 2 and 3 deal with the vulnerability to climate change and policy options for mitigation, respectively. The IAC Report concludes that clearer guidelines and stronger mechanisms for enforcing them are needed in terms of including non-peer-reviewed literature. “Some of the errors discovered in the Fourth Assessment Report had been attributed to poor handling of unpublished or non-peer-reviewed sources (Ravindranath, 2010). Moreover, a search through the Working Group reports of the fourth assessment found few instances of information flagged as unpublished or non-peer reviewed.” “Recommendation: The IPCC should strengthen and enforce its procedure for the use of unpublished and non-peer-reviewed literature, including providing more specific guidance on how to evaluate such information, adding guidelines on what types of literature are unacceptable, and ensuring that unpublished and non-peer-reviewed literature is appropriately flagged in the report.” 4. Handling the Full Range of Views IAC addressing the tendency for the IPCC Report to ignore any views which disagree with CAGW. “Equally important is combating confirmation bias—the tendency of authors to place too much weight on their own views relative to other views (Jonas et al., 2001). As pointed out to the Committee by a presenter10 and some questionnaire respondents, alternative views are not always cited in a chapter if the Lead Authors do not agree with them. Getting the balance right is an ongoing struggle. However, concrete steps could also be taken. For example, chapters could include references to all papers that were considered by the authoring team and describe the authors’ rationale for arriving at their conclusions.” “Recommendation: Lead Authors should explicitly document that a range of scientific viewpoints has been considered, and Coordinating Lead Authors and Review Editors should satisfy themselves that due consideration was given to properly documented alternative views.” 5. Report Review The IAC reflects on the end quality of the IPCC quiven the number of review comments provided to lead authors which were simply ignored. In the report criticism was made of the early release of report before final drafts had been completed. “In the case of the incorrect projection of the disappearance of the Himalayan glaciers, for example, some of the review comments were not adequately considered and the justifications were not completely explained (see Box 2.1). Although a few such errors are likely to be missed in any review process, stronger enforcement of existing IPCC procedures by the Review Editors could minimize their numbers. This includes paying special attention to review comments that point out contradictions, unreferenced literature, or potential errors; and ensuring that alternate or dissenting views receive proper consideration. “ “Recommendation: The IPCC should adopt a more targeted and effective process for responding to reviewer comments. In such a process, Review Editors would prepare a written summary of the most significant issues raised by reviewers shortly after review comments have been received. Authors would be required to provide detailed written responses to the most significant review issues identified by the Review Editors, abbreviated responses to all non-editorial comments, and no written responses to editorial comments.” Further IAC Commentary to try to address the ‘Pal Review System’ “Although implementing these recommendations would greatly strengthen the review process, it would not make the review process truly independent because the Working Group Co-chairs, who have overall responsibility for the preparation of the reports, are also responsible for selecting Review Editors. To be independent, the selection of Review Editors would have to be made by an individual or group that is not engaged in writing the report, and Review Editors would report directly to that individual or group (NRC, 1998, 2002).” The IAC makes a couple of suggestions: “One option for the IPCC would be to appoint a small group of experts who would report directly to a new Executive Committee (see “IPCC Management Structure” in Chapter 4) to serve a similar function for the IPCC. Another option would be to engage an international scientific body to provide such services for the IPCC.” 6. Summary for Policy Makers The IAC addresses the key issues of the Summary for policy makers being able to be altered by the Working Group Co-Chairs and Lead Authors which may conflict with revisions, and they may also be influenced by their government employers or funders at the plenary session where the Summary is finalised line by line. The IAC also state the concern that the Summary can have a difference in content and weight compared to the underlying IPCC report. “Although most respondents agreed that government buy-in is important, many were concerned that reinterpretations of the assessment’s findings, suggested in the final Plenary, might be politically motivated. Moreover, the Working Group Co-chairs and Lead Authors exercise the authority to reject proposed revisions that they believe are not consistent with their underlying Working Group report. Thus, the continued involvement of scientists in the drafting and approval process of the Summary for Policy Makers is critical to the scientific credibility of the report. A complication could arise when Lead Authors are sitting side-by-side with their government representative, which might put the Lead Authors in the difficult position of either supporting a government position at odds with the Working Group report or opposing their government’s position. This may be most awkward when authors are also government employees.” “Another concern of respondents to the Committee’s questionnaire was the difference in content between the Summary for Policy Makers and the underlying report. The distillation of the many findings of a massive report into the relatively brief, high-level messages that characterize the Summary for Policy Makers necessarily results in the loss of important nuances and caveats that appear in the Working Group report. Moreover, the choice of messages and description of topics may be influenced in subtle ways by political considerations. Some respondents thought that the Summary for Policy Makers places more emphasis on what is known, sensational, or popular among Lead Authors than one would find in the body of the report.” The IAC makes one of its most useless recommendations: “Recommendation: The IPCC should revise its process for the approval of the Summary for Policy Makers so that governments provide written comments prior to the Plenary.” Only the most obliviously naive could read the above IAC review of the IPCC report as a sound endorsement of the IPCC process and while the IAC couch their wording very gently at times, it is clear the allegations of poor and lacking peer review, and pal review problems were rampant in the IPCC report. Hardly a couple of errors in 3,000 pages. 11. Further on the InterAcademy Council report, evidence shows there is a stark difference between what the ‘insider’ scientists think of the climate models, and what the IPCC imply to the public about those models. “the climate models do not begin to describe the real world we live in” The IPCC reports do not reflect the significant weaknesses and uncertainties of the climate models. See above. RESPONSE: Indeed – see above. 12. I provided a graph showing James Hansen’s climate models predicting global temperature under three scenarios from 1988. A, B and C. A was ‘Business as usual’ with increasing CO2 emissions at current rates, B was atmospheric CO2 emissions remaining as is, and C was a gradual reduction in CO2 emissions. Against these modelled predictions is plotted the actual temperature to 2012 from 1988 under a scenario which Hansen didn’t envisage, CO2 emissions climbing far more rapidly than he had anticipated because of the rapid economic growth in China, India, SE Asia and South America. Yet the actual temperature is below the projection for his scenario ‘C’, whereas, if his climate models had any credibility, the actual temperature should be plotted well above his predictions for scenario ‘A’. This means the predictions of “the world’s pre-eminent Climate Scientist”, on which the IPCC and Governments are basing massive economic decisions, have been totally falsified. Hansen slightly overestimated sensitivity but it is tracking with Scenario C. Even so, that does not mean we are not undergoing AGW and the overwhelming evidence is that we are. Whether you like it or not, those decisions will either be made now or in 10 years. Oh and the IPCC do not rely solely on 1 graph from 1988 and to suggest they do as you have here is dishonest. RESPONSE: Hansen didn’t slightly overestimate CO2 sensitivity, he plugged in sensitivity which isn’t there and got warming roughly equal to the natural variability we have averaged over since the Little Ice Age. There is a 0.7C difference between where global average temperature is now and where Hansen projected it would be in 1988, even though Hansen didn’t envisage CO2 rising as quickly as what his ‘worst case’ scenario was in 1988. Why is this only a ‘slight’ miscalculation in sensitivity now? The world is supposed to get alarmed about a 0.7C warming over half a century according to the IPCC! Either 0.7C is a big number or it isn’t? You also say current temperatures are tracking Hansen’s scenario ‘C’. Then we should be congratulated. Because that was the outcome he wanted when he went to congress in 1988 and said if we ceased CO2 emission growth in 1990 and started gradually reducing them, then scenario ‘C’ is what we can expect. Hey, we’ve achieved that without any of the economic pain that Hansen was advocating way back then. Just shows how useless his advice was then and there is no reason to think it has improved. Finally, here is a graph showing current global temperatures versus IPCC model predictions and as you can see we are tracking below the lowest IPCC scenario to 2009 and as temperatures have been stable since then I guess the picture for the IPCC models wouldn’t be looking any better. And of course that low scenario model wasn’t assuming the high levels of CO2 emissions we have had since those predictions were made in fact those projections anticipated emission reductions. So yes, the IPCC models are as big a failure as Hansens. 13. Climate models fail to do better than random numbers in some cases they actually do worse. Bullshit. Oh no,hang on, you might have a point. The models certainly grossly underestimated the ice loss in the Arctic. However, you don’t need a model to see what is actually occurring now. Personally, I’d like to have even a rough idea of what we can expect. You might like to live in the moment and ride the wave until you crash on the rocks. Not me, I love my children. RESPONSE: Ah, the old ‘I love my children’ line – assuming of course that anyone who disagrees with your CAGW theory must not love their children, or must not care about the future of the human race. A good emotional appeal when you don’t have any facts to support your position. Clearly you can’t support the unsupportable in the random walk climate models, so just switch the topic to Arctic Sea Ice instead. Well that’s not really what we are supposed to be talking about but I will make a brief comment just so I can’t be accused of avoiding the topic. I am a climate realist, I’m not one of those people that feel the need to convince you that Arctic Sea Ice isn’t declining, or melting faster in the northern hemisphere summer. In fact that’s exactly what I would expect to be happening as our world warms coming out of the Little Ice Age and I hope it continues to do so for a while longer yet – for the sake of the billions of people on the planet who still live from hand to mouth – cold is their enemy. Nevertheless I can point you back to the 10,000 Greenland ice core records to times in the past where the Arctic has clearly been much warmer than it is now. I am sure there was much less sea ice then than there is now. What makes that a bad thing? It is a natural thing. We have only accurately been tracking Arctic Sea Ice efficiently since 1979 so we don’t really have a long record to compare against and in fact we only have a warming record to compare against. So statistically I would expect every year to represent less ice in a naturally warming world than the base line being used. Meanwhile here is what the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre has to say about what is going on in Antarctica: “During the satellite era (1979-present), no significant net reduction in Antarctic sea ice extent has been measured, although there are significant reductions around the Antarctic Peninsula with compensating increases elsewhere”.http://www.acecrc.org.au/Research/Antarctic%20Sea%20Ice The fact that the Arctic and Antarctic are acting differently lends itself far better to a combination of climate variability factors global and regional, than the single all sensitive CO2 which CAGWers prefer to rely on. 14. Solar activity correlates better with global temperature than CO2 does. Yep, up until about 50 years ago. Given the decrease in average solar activity of 0.5wm^2 over that time, the temperature has gone up….I wonder why? This is getting tiresome…just a few to go. RESPONSE: You can’t have even looked at the evidence. You guys go on all the time about doing the science and citations, but all through addressing my points it is clear that you didn’t even read most of the material I provided – probably because you thought you knew the answer. Then when you make wild claims, like the one above, you never hold yourself to the standards you insist on holding me to. Well I am still waiting to see a plotted graph showing well correlated atmospheric CO2 with global average temperature. Meanwhile, maybe readers would like to check this CO2 vs Temperature graph: http://flowingdata.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/The_global_temperature_chart-545×409.jpg With regards my comment I admit lacking some clarity. You see unlike yourself who seems wedded to the notion that CO2 is the primary climate driver, I believe CO2 is a very minor player and there are many variable which impact on our climate, some we understand to a certain extent, others, such as galactic cosmic rays influencing cloud formation we are only just starting to learn about through the new experiments at the multibillion dollar CERN centre in Geneva – another place I have had the pleasure of visiting. http://public.web.cern.ch/public/en/research/CLOUD-en.html. Cosmic rays, sun irradiance, sunspot activity, magnetic influences, orbital forcing and more locally, PDO’s and so on all have an influence on our climate. I haven’t and wouldn’t be silly enough to say that solar activity was the only influence, all I said was that it is ‘better correlated than CO2’ and the reference I gave below shows that is the case: http://diehardempiricist.blogspot.com.au/2012/04/global-warming-is-bunk-part-6-its-sun.html 15. Compared to most of the last 600 million years the earth’s current level of atmospheric CO2 is quite low. Yep, and my human ancestors 600 million years ago……oh hang on……….. RESPONSE: An attempt to ridicule the statement and respond in a proper manner is an attempt to avoid it. In fact 600 million years is an extremely relevant time period to use. As you probably know, the earth has been around for about 4.5 Billion years but for most of that time, the planet was not in a condition for life as we know it to survive. Then about 3.4 billion years ago we had the development of our oldest life forms which still exist today, stromatolites, which, used photosynthesis, The next couple of billion years or so saw the development of a range of multicellular, complex organisms. But about 600 million years ago was the start of the hard bodied organisms, reptiles about 300 mya, lots of different insects, many of all these creatures (sharks, crocodiles), or their evolved cousins still exist today. About 200 million years ago the first mammals came along and about 50 million years ago the first primates. Of course even today, humans carry vestiges of our sea living fish and our reptilian DNA. But the point is, the conditions on the earth was good enough 3.4 billion years ago to support the most basic of life. But it didn’t really improve dramatically for a long time but 600 million years ago seems to have been conditions on earth to trigger a bloom of new life which saw the development of the creatures leading to mammals 200 million years ago. And during all but a short period of this time, atmospheric CO2 levels have been much higher than they are today. In fact even since mammals started populating the world CO2 levels have been as much as 6.6 times higher than current levels. In fact at the point when mammals burst on to the scene some 200 mya CO2 levels were about 3 times higher than they are today and global average temperatures was a very much warmer 25C. That is well beyond the disaster temperature predictions of the most fervent CAGW promoter. So maybe it is worth having another look at that graph: http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/Carboniferous_climate.html 16. Our planet has been mostly much hotter than current times. And the dinosaurs loved it, they also loved it when Australia was 4 separate islands separated by a shallow sea. RESPONSE: Another silly response from you. See my response above. The CO2 and temperature in the past is very relevant since the climate alarmists are trying to scare the Government and the public into taking damaging policy action on the basis of moderate temperature increases well within natural climate variability levels. 17. CO2 was 4.7 and 18 times higher than what it is today, in the Jurassic and Paleozoic periods. Compared to then we are currently CO2 impoverished. Yes and the Earth was once a molten ball of lava, constantly bombarded by asteroids and comets. RESPONSE: See above, you obviously had nothing worthwhile to say. The Jurassic and Paleozoic periods were when life on our planet bloomed. So it is an extremely relevant point to make that CO2 levels were much higher then, than it is now. Obviously the point went straight over your head. 18. In the late Ordovicion Period , an Ice-Age, CO2 was 4,400ppm 02 12 times higher than today! But based on CAGW theory it should have been very hot indeed! Given that the Ordovician ice age only lasted ~1 million years and the CO2 levels wereworked out over ~10 million year intervals,y ou have to wonderabou thte accuracy. It’s a very long bow to draw. Here, perhaps this will help.DOI: 10.1130/G30152A.1 That said, you really love the past don’t you? I guess it prevents you from facing up to what’s happening now. RESPONSE: Certainly in early studies CO2 levels were calculated over 10 million year intervals, but that certainly isn’t the case for the last couple of decades or so, and certainly not the case with regards the paper the CAGW believers rely on to ‘disprove’ CO2 levels were high in the late Ordovician period. ‘Did changes in atmospheric CO2 coincide with latest Ordovician glacial–interglacial cycles?’ Seth A. Young Matthew R. Saltzmanb, William I. Ausichb, André Desrochersc, Dimitri Kaljod Department of Geological Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405, USA. Their improbable theory is: “The dip, [in CO2] he says, was triggered by a burst of volcanic activity that deposited new silicate rocks. These draw CO2 out of the air as they erode. As the ice spread, however, it gradually covered the silicate rocks, slowing the erosion and so allowing CO2 to build up in the atmosphere once more. This eventually would have warmed the atmosphere enough to end the ice age, says Kump.” However critics of his paper point out quite validly that: a) Even their proposed dip in CO2 would only get CO2 down to around 3000ppm, even with the argument that solar output was lower at that time (and given CAGW followers reject the solar output climate change nexus usually), that is till nearly 8 times higher than CO2 levels today. b) The improbable theory doesn’t properly account for all the greenhouse gasses including sulphates which would have been emitted by the massive volcanic activity they proposed took place to lay sufficient silicate to soak up say 1500ppm CO2 from the atmosphere (that’s almost 4 times as much as the total amount which is in our atmosphere currently). Since silicates make up 90% of the earth’s crust then perhaps we should be mining it so we can use it as a CO2 sink and solve the CAGW problem. Well actually Lithium Silicate is used for CO2 absorption and I am pretty sure silicates are used in various commercial scrubbers. But the point it, it would have to be a heck of a volume of silicate exposed to cause such a drop in atmospheric CO2 and the authors have made no calculations regarding such volumes needed. c) If the theory were correct, then one the ice had covered the CO2 absorbing silicate to allow CO2 in the atmosphere to build up again (from?) and then re-warm to melt the ice, then: i) Why didn’t the CO2 get absorbed by the exposed silicates? or ii) If by then all the exposed silicates had absorbed as much CO2 through weathering as they were going to, why didn’t CO2 levels bounce back to pre-ice-age-levels? The CO2 levels continued to fall dramatically over the next 100 million years, while temperatures remained relatively high over the same period showing no link between the two. Again refer: http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/Carboniferous_climate.html 19. Ice core samples are unreliable for CO2 and other gas measures because of the extreme pressures they experience. Hang on….if that’s the case , how confident are you that your statement from number 18 is accurate? RESPONSE: Because my statement at number 18 is based on geological work and has nothing to do with ice core samples! However, if you are referring to my use of the Greenland Ice Core graph for the last 10,000 years, I have only relied on that for temperature records, not CO2 as you will see if you go back and have a look. 20. Actual CO2 observations taken in the 1800′s and deliberately excluded by Calendar without explanation would have meant a pre-industrialisation starting point of CO2 well above 300ppm instead of the 280ppm which has been accepted. We have only actually been measuring atmospheric CO2 since 1957/58. Bullshit. RESPONSE: Well you really addressed the issue there. What are you saying ‘bullshit’ to? The evidence for the first line at point 20.is here: http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/stomata.html (You need to curser down to the article titled ‘Basis for the Estimate of Pre-Industrial CO2’. You can Wiki the evidence for the last part that the world’s first official continuous CO2 measurements only commenced in 1957/8. 21. Muller et al’s Berkeley Earth Station (BEST) paper was rejected for peer review journal publication so Muller published on-line without addressing the flaws in the paper which had been outlined to him. The suspicion is so that he could beat the deadline for inclusion for reference in the IPCC AR5. A bit like your mate Mr Watts. It is unlikely either will be included, and nor do they need to be given the thousands of other evidential papers available. RESPONSE: I am glad we can agree on something – that neither should appear in the IPCC AR5 report. It remains to be seen if one of them does. 22. Many of the world’s best known climate scientists associated with the IPCC and with leading roles with the IPCC reports and the world temperature data conspired, and took action to corrupt the peer review system. The IPCC Chairman was in the loop. So please don’t keep saying I provide no evidence! Are you seriously still beating the Climategate drum? RESPONSE: Whether you want to acknowledge it or not, I have provided evidence of this, not only in showing that even the Inter Academy Council made recommendations to enforce the peer review process in compiling the IPCC reports but by also showing the damning emails (below) of leading scientists behaving badly, Jjust because you don’t want to admit your hero scientists are not prepared to let the science speak for itself and feel the need to rig the peer review system, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen! Attempt to discredit an editor and a paper: http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/2683.txt The paper Climate Research published which they were furious about:http://coast.gkss.de/staff/storch/pdf/soon+baliunas.cr.2003.pdf Attempt to Discredit an entire journal and a paper which refutes Mann’s hockey stick – now globally refuted! http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/2272.txt Shutting out a non conforming scientist http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/3039.txt Suggestions on boycotting journals, discrediting authors, labelling rogue editors http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/0332.txt An attempt to get a non conforming scientist sacked http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/0332.txt Complaints that non conformist may be abusing the peer review process (ha ha) http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/0332.txt Proposal for ‘warmists’ to resign from Climate Research Journal to force the sacking of one non conformist editor http://di2.nu/foia/foia2011/mail/4808.txt Ok, well, I’m done here. I have wasted far too much time on you. I am more than happy to address one thing at a time from you but any more Gish Gallops and I won’t bother. I’ll just take it as your desire to not engage. If you consider any of my answers to be a bit rude or suggestive that you don’t love your children, too bad. Suck it up Princess. I’m tired of dealing with idiots. http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/Trenberth/trenberth_presentations.html Because you said you love your children so much I thought I’d leave you with this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JfnddMpzPsM RESPONSE: So I have responded to each of the points above, one point at a time as requested!
    • Sammy Jankis says:

      …no one has taken me up on the suggestion of providing just one peer reviewed paper which proves the link between human green house gas emissions and catastrophic climate change.

      Too funny! In one post you complain about your methods being compared to those of creationists, and in the next you open with the “Show me just one peer reviewed paper…” gambit. This is a ploy I encountered frequently back in the days when I’d try to talk sense into creationists of both the young-earth and intelligent design variety. And why do you want to see a “peer-reviewed” paper? I though to you denialists peer-review is a scam. Oh, that’s right, it depends entirely on the context. If you’re talking up the credentials of your denialist heroes the number of peer-reviewed publications they have is a cause for great celebration. Then, when the discussion shifts to the body of peer-reviewed research which supports the AGW hypothesis, suddenly peer-review is a communist idea to shut out the freedom loving ‘skeptics’.

  13. john byatt says:

    And guess what James, this is exactly what you did.

    In responding to the Gish Gallop, where possible it is best to
    …narrow the debate down to a single topic–the age of the earth, or the fossil record–and then debate it through to its logical conclusion. This defeats the Gish Gallop, and also prevents the common creationist tactic of suddenly changing the subject whenever he or she gets uncomfortable.[

      • john byatt says:

        Classic, you go from posting Gish Gallop to changing the subject and now back to gish gallop WTF indeed James,

        You pretty much have proved sammy’s point and you have not addressed mikes reply at all , your contortion about Hansen’s pen is pathetic logic.

        If you do not want to learn then spit the dummy and take your ball elsewhere, that is your right, if you want to learn, hang around and ask pertinent questions,

  14. James says:

    So have I been blocked now!

    • uknowispeaksense says:

      Obviously not. As I said, your poor understanding of scientific convention is apparent and you just don’t get that and likely never will. By the way,i don’t for aminute believe that my science qualification makes me smarter than you at all but it does make me more qualified to discuss scientific convention than you. I am ignorant of many things but the scientific method and scientific convention isn’t one of them. I don’t know how to tune my car.I don’t know how to perform surgery and I don’t really know how a computer works. As a result, I am not going to tell my mechanic he is wrong, perform any surgery or try and increase my RAM. You wouldn’t either…or maybe you would. I am finished.

      • john byatt says:

        I am not a gynacologist but i will have a look at it for you ? , as they say,

      • James says:

        Well I tried to post a comment a number of times and it was rejected – I’ll have another go:

        So none of you are prepared to address each or any of the point and are using excuses to make me go away. You thought it was great when Mike had addressed everyone of my points even though it was done in such an immature manner, you cheered him on. I was challenged to come back and respond to Mike and address each point one at a time.

        I did that. John Byatt charges me with the favourite accusation of Gish-galloping, (which on this site seems to mean presenting more than one though at a time which confuses the hell out of you.

        John says if I don’t want to learn, then I should go elsewhere, but it seems you guys are the ones who are unprepared to open your minds and do a bit of reading.

        Uknowispeaksense/Mike avoids addressing the points I made in my responses which show the gaping flaws in his thinking by still suggesting that I go and get a science degree – because he has one – so that mus make him a lot smarter? Really?

        It seems you all want to be left in your comfortable little corner without your faith in CAGW being questioned. You have your high priests who you don’t question. I guess you didn’t wonder why those high priests had told you the drought was a permanent feature of the Australian Landscape and it was not so. So you will rationalise things when other predictions don’t turn out too.

      • john byatt says:

        James , you asked the question regarding high levels of CO2 and ice age when I answered that, your reply was that you knew the answer all along, now you go off on a tangent ,

        The point is that regardless of geocraft’s opinion high levels of CO2 and ice ages are not mutually exclusive and do not falsify the theory.

        That was your concern and now you inform us that you knew that..

    • Watching the Deniers says:

      Not at all.

  15. john byatt says:

    This is one of the big misunderstandings of the deniers

    18. In the late Ordovicion Period , an Ice-Age, CO2 was 4,400ppm 02 12 times higher than today! But based on CAGW theory it should have been very hot indeed!

    James, why should it have been very hot, on it’s own CO2 cannot heat the atmosphere , do you not understand albedo? hint, ice age, ice, albedo, infrared, lack thereof

    see james you are only looking at half the story, not your fault, you are just a bit gullible and do not subject what you read to scepticism,

    • James says:

      Oh so this is “the one of the big misunderstandings of deniers” now. Well I assure you I am fully conversant with the albedo effect, though you write about it as if you have just discovered it.

      Albedo does not address:

      ” If the theory were correct, then once the ice had covered the CO2 absorbing silicate to allow CO2 in the atmosphere to build up again (from?) and then re-warm to melt the ice, then: i) Why didn’t the CO2 get absorbed by the exposed silicates? or ii) If by then all the exposed silicates had absorbed as much CO2 through weathering as they were going to, why didn’t CO2 levels bounce back to pre-ice-age-levels? The CO2 levels continued to fall dramatically over the next 100 million years, while temperatures remained relatively high over the same period showing no link between the two. Again refer: http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/Carboniferous_climate.html

      And if you want to tackle the Ordovicion Period ice age, don’t forget my points a) and b) in my response above!

      • john byatt says:

        now I will ask you for your paper as you have asked me for.

        here is one of the papers that you sought

        tripati 2009

        ABSTRACT

        The carbon dioxide (CO2) content of the atmosphere has varied cyclically between ~180 and ~280 parts per million by volume over the past 800,000 years, closely coupled with temperature and sea level. For earlier periods in Earth’s history, the partial pressure of CO2 (pCO2) is much less certain, and the relation between pCO2 and climate remains poorly constrained. We use boron/calcium ratios in foraminifera to estimate pCO2 during major climate transitions of the past 20 million years. During the Middle Miocene, when temperatures were ~3° to 6°C warmer and sea level was 25 to 40 meters higher than at present, pCO2 appears to have been similar to modern levels. Decreases in pCO2 were apparently synchronous with major episodes of glacial expansion during the Middle Miocene (~14 to 10 million years ago) and Late Pliocene (~3.3 to 2.4 million years ago).

      • john byatt says:

        reposted

        john byatt says:
        August 17, 2012 at 3:03 am
        James , you asked the question regarding high levels of CO2 and ice age when I answered that, your reply was that you knew the answer all along, now you go off on a tangent ,

        The point is that regardless of geocraft’s opinion high levels of CO2 and ice ages are not mutually exclusive and do not falsify the theory.

        That was your concern and now you inform us that you knew that..

  16. john byatt says:

    James ” The CO2 levels continued to fall dramatically over the next 100 million years, while temperatures remained relatively high over the same period ”

    Today CO2 levels have risen dramatically over just 130 years and you call over 100 million years as a dramatic fall ?

    ,

  17. sailrick says:

    Sorry if someone already posted this …….

    James @ 10:23 am August 13

    4.
    “Why if the theory of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming is correct, is it that while human greenhouse gas emissions have increased exponentially since industrialisation, there have been 2-3 consecutive decades of just cooling or warming, even though greenhouse gas emissions grew apace?”

    Because of the time lag of the oceans’ thermal inertia mostly.
    In fact, 2-3 decades is just about right.

    “And since 1998…..”

    The largest El Nino in about a century, in 1998, might have something to do with it.
    The last decade dominated more by the La Nina side of ENSO.
    A 100 year solar minimum toward the end of the last decade might also have something to do with it.

    And you are forgetting the excess heat being absorbed by the oceans. 90% of it in fact.
    In fact, while La Nina tends to cool the atmosphere, it tends to warm the ocean.

    La Nina and El Nino

    “Note what happens during La Nina – a lot of heat gets buried below the surface in the western Tropical Pacific (tilting of the thermocline) and cool water wells up from the deep along the coast of North & South America. These processes cause cooling of global surface temperatures through the ocean-atmosphere heat exchange.

    With El Nino heats wells up to the surface in the central and eastern tropical Pacific, and the upwelling of cold water along the Americas shuts off. The end result is that a lot of heat from the ocean is given up to the atmosphere, which warms up abruptly and raises global surface temperatures. But much of this atmospheric heat is radiated out to space.

    So, although it seems counter-intuitive, La Nina is when the Earth gains a lot of energy, and El Nino is when the oceans loses heat to the atmosphere – and the Earth loses energy.”

    {Rob Painting at Skeptical science}

  18. sailrick says:

    James
    August 13 10:23 3:14 pm

    “Climate scientists Phil Jones used “Mikes” trick to “hide the decline” (in the tree ring proxy data), by substituting actual temperature data in a tree ring proxy data temperature series. Something a real scientist would never do.”

    Explain how using the Actual Temperature, for the thirty years starting in 1960, is hiding the decline. Oh right. Use the tree ring data that you know is wrong for those 30 years. How do you know the tree ring data is wrong? Because you have the Actual Measured Temperature!

    August 13 10:33 am
    “There was a time of course when just about everyone though smoking was OK including all the heroes of the left wing. You only have to see the archival footage of the first environmentalists smoking cigarettes and weed and whatever they could get their hands on.”

    People smoke because they have become addicted,not because they don’t believe it’s bad for them.

    What does smoking weed have to do with it?

  19. john byatt says:

    “I guess you didn’t wonder why those high priests had told you the drought was a permanent feature of the Australian Landscape and it was not so. So you will rationalise things when other predictions don’t turn out too.”

    which high priest stated that james?

    link directly to the quote to prove your point,

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