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1 freetoken  Sun, Oct 30, 2011 6:37:38pm

Yeah, HotWingnuts ran this story today with saliva drooling.

Look, 200 years after geologists gave good evidence of a very old Earth we still have a substantial number of people who believe the universe was created ex nihilo 6000 years ago. If someone wants to hold onto their beliefs, no matter how ignorant, there is little that can be done to dissuade them.

2 freetoken  Sun, Oct 30, 2011 6:40:24pm

Oh, and obviously the title needs editing.

And, Curry has a very long history of sowing confusion about climate.

3 RanchTooth  Sun, Oct 30, 2011 6:52:51pm

re: #2 freetoken

Thanks for catching that silly error... =P

I don't think Curry is inciting confusion about climate change, not in this case. She readily admits, as does Muller, that there's something going on in the temperature data within the past 10-13 years. This doesn't indicate that atmospheric conditions can't change in other ways as a result of increased CO2 emission.

There's the other obvious argument that, well, it's only a 10-year period, how can you possibly draw any conclusions from it? The y-scale is so horrid on that bottom graph, that you can't say for sure what the trend is. At the first point, the y-value (change from 1950-1980 avg temp) is about +0.75. Looking at the continuation of points after that, I would say that a majority of them are above the value of +0.75, with the last data point falling at about +1.125 (I assumed it was halfway between 1.5 and 0.75). That would be an increase, it may be too small of a sample to see the "hockey stick effect" that we are all accustomed to seeing in AGW graphs (i.e. the one above it), but I think drawing any sort of conclusions from that graph is faulty. You could probably do this same analysis with any 10-year period and get the same result. It is too small of a sample to draw anything meaningful from.

4 freetoken  Sun, Oct 30, 2011 7:01:51pm
You see an anomaly and you try to explain it. It does NOT discredit the theory of AGW (as global temperature averages have certainly increased), but the causation may have changed over time after a threshold amount of CO2. The article, which I have yet to read, cites possible additional causes such as solar radiation, cloud formation, and natural temperature cycles, something that their work has included.

Um, no.

But, I suppose more than a two word answer is needed here.

First, the problem in this latest news cycle with the BEST work is that the talking point has become Global Warming = the surface temperature record. That's way too narrow of a view of what is really happening on the Earth's surface, and as I've mentioned before simply taking the surface temperature record isn't even the best way to understand what is really going on (for which one really needs to delve into the energy flow from the surface into space, and realize that changes are taking place from the mid ocean depths up through the stratosphere.)

Even then, taking a surface temperature record including the polar regions (which the UK MET office does not!) does show surface temperature rising over the past 10 years.

As for "causes" - they are the same as stated before, and have been known (generally, and in many cases specifically) for many years and continue to be re-examined in more detail. The least well understood appears to be cloud formation. One of the best understood is the "greenhouse" effect of gases in the atmosphere. Ocean heat transport is something that is also understood in general but has many details in the specifics that are being investigated. The affects of the biosphere also comes into play. In this latter case human transformation of the landscape is of particular importance. And, as for incoming solar radiation - it too has been well studied.

Overturning of the ocean (via currents), biosphere changes, aerosols, and the solar (psuedo-)cycle are more than enough to account for the year to year variations. Indeed, it was only about two years ago scientific papers showed up warning about a few years of North Atlantic ocean heat absorption (thus leading to less surface temp warming) around the early 2010's (I think Susan Solomon was involved in some of this - you can Google her name for more details.)

Variations from year to year in the surface temp record, and even within a whole decade, are to be expected from a system as large and complex as the Earth's surface.

Judith Curry doesn't want to give up the spotlight, and Muller seems content with the idea that he's made his splash (see his books). That's what is going on here.

5 RanchTooth  Sun, Oct 30, 2011 7:23:05pm

re: #4 freetoken

My poorly worded phrase came back to bite me. What I meant to say is essentially what you've just said. Not causation, but the effects. I simply wanted to analyze the fallacies in the arguments of DM, etc.

6 Amory Blaine  Sun, Oct 30, 2011 7:41:15pm

Climate change will now only happen during certain administrations.

That is all.

7 Interesting Times  Sun, Oct 30, 2011 8:04:14pm
Prof Ross McKittrick, a climate statistics expert from Guelph University in Ontario

Two things:

1) It's "University of Guelph", not "Guelph University".

2) McKittrick isn't a "climate statistics expert" by any stretch of the imagination. He's a Koch-worshipping Fraser Institute AGW denier whose field is economics, not climate science.

No wonder they call it the Daily Fail 9_9

8 RogueOne  Mon, Oct 31, 2011 3:29:33am

re: #3 RanchTooth

.......
There's the other obvious argument that, well, it's only a 10-year period, how can you possibly draw any conclusions from it?........

Related:

Provoked scientists try to explain lag in global warming
[Link: www.eenews.net...]

"If you look at the last decade of global temperature, it's not increasing," Barnes said. "There's a lot of scatter to it. But the [climate] models go up. And that has to be explained. Why didn't we warm up?"

The question itself, while simple sounding, is loaded. By any measure, the decade from 2000 to 2010 was the warmest in modern history. However, 1998 remains the single warmest year on record, though by some accounts last year tied its heat. Temperatures following 1998 stayed relatively flat for 10 years, with the heat in 2008 about equaling temperatures at the decade's start. The warming, as scientists say, went on "hiatus."

The hiatus was not unexpected. Variability in the climate can suppress rising temperatures temporarily, though before this decade scientists were uncertain how long such pauses could last. In any case, one decade is not long enough to say anything about human effects on climate; as one forthcoming paper lays out, 17 years is required.

For some scientists, chalking the hiatus up to the planet's natural variability was enough. Temperatures would soon rise again, driven up inexorably by the ever-thickening blanket thrown on the atmosphere by greenhouse gases. People would forget about it.

But for others, this simple answer was a failure. If scientists were going to attribute the stall to natural variability, they faced a burden to explain, in a precise way, how this variation worked. Without evidence, their statements were no better than the unsubstantiated theories circulated by climate skeptics on the Internet.


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