The colors are glorious in the land of iron oxide.
Though I pitied any poor shipwrecked soul staggering ashore here at the wrong time of year. How forbidding, dry and vast that landscape.
The colors are glorious in the land of iron oxide.
Though I pitied any poor shipwrecked soul staggering ashore here at the wrong time of year. How forbidding, dry and vast that landscape.
” Labor vacated the arena of argument. The sceptics and deniers have turned the 70 per cent-plus belief in climate change into a minority because no one has engaged them.“
— Graham Richardson, Friday May 22nd, 2015
No one has engaged them?
That’s right Graham, we unfunded bloggers and the few surviving skeptical scientists not evicted and blackballed from our universities (yet) have tricked 20% of the population because no one has put forward the climate change arguments except for: The Climate Commission, CSIRO, Deutsche Bank, Citigroup, Royal Dutch Shell, GE, Panasonic, The ABC, The BBC, The Guardian, Fairfax, The Australian government, most universities, The EU, The UN, The World Bank, and the IMF.
With a budget of nothing we’re winning. Why? We have nature on our side.* The world isn’t warming, the models can’t predict the real climate, and half the population have wised up to the propaganda. The main arguments of those who would control CO2 are not scientific, but insults and bluster, shutting up and disqualifying critics rather than answering politely, and producing the evidence. The University of Queensland offers a whole course in namecalling to train people to “engage” deniers. But the public know that the endless drought ended, the dams filled, the predictions were wrong and that “denier” is not science. Namecalling isn’t working anymore (so keep it coming Graham, it helps the skeptics ).
No one will debate skeptics
Obviously it’s a David versus Goliath battle. If Richardson means that no one will debate the skeptical arguments, he’s right.
Dear Graham, why don’t you invite one of Prof Sherwood, Prof Pitman or Will Steffen to debate Dr David Evans on your Skyshow? That’s when you’ll find out how they run scared of real debate. You are welcome to argue your case here too.
Others have tried to arrange these debates. On behalf of the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Western Australia, Bill Crabtree invited Prof Pitman and anyone he cared to nominate to debate David Evans and Bill Kinnimonth a couple of years ago. Pitman refused, saying he wouldn’t debate “someone who denies gravity”. David Evans: PhD, M.S. (E.E.), M.S. (Stats) [Stanford Uni], B.Eng, M.A., B.Sc. [Syd Uni]. Bill Kininmonth: Headed the National Climate Centre at the Bureau of Meteorology from 1986 to 1998. Andy Pitmans: BSc (Hons) PhD (1988) Liverpool Uni. UK Postgraduate Certificate in Educational Leadership (2000) Macquarie Uni.
Andy Pitman isn’t stupid; he knows what would happen if he debated Dr David Evans. He knows that their 95% certainty rests on broken models, and iteratively homogenized, reanalyzed, and readjusted data.
Andy Pitman and I debated each other in emails back in 2008 before I even published the Skeptics Handbook. I wanted to make all those emails public. Andy Pitman refused.
I debated Prof Glikson in 2010, through five rounds of to and fro, but he clearly had no idea the models depend on assumptions about water vapor that we know are wrong. The offer remains open for him to send in his reply, which he asked to be published on my site. I welcomed it (like all the other replies), but he didn’t send anything.
Graham Richardson, The Australian “Silence of the political lambs”
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Here I go, harping on about the missing hot spot again.
Roy Spencer has been hunting for the famous missing hot spot (like half the climate world) but he’s been looking in the UAH satellite temperature data. Last week Sherwood et al claimed they finally found it (again!) in an iteratively reiterated homogenized and adjusted version of radiosondes. Spencer was not impressed with the black box statistics approach. As I pointed out here, the Sherwood results was adjusted so much it did not look like the original data, and they somehow found the hotspot by adding in data from years when a hot spot shouldn’t occur. They mushed the data to fit one part of their model, but it broke in other parts.
Roy Spencer has used new methods to improve the satellite signal of the hot spot, and is “increasingly convinced” the all important mysterious hot spot is really not there, which fits with 28 million weather balloons and humidity data too. Satellites are not particularly good at finding the hot spot because it is a very thin layer over the tropics and satellites peering down from on high find it difficult to measure signals from 10km up and separate them from signals, say 8km up. Radiosondes are much better at resolving the different layers, which is really what matters — only the uppermost layer of water vapor counts, not the total column. Having said that, satellites are pretty handy over the oceans where not many weather balloons get released, and it would be good if we could use them.
See my last post on the missing hot spot if you can’t figure out why I go on and on about this mythical zone. It’s the key flaw in the models that amplifies the effects of CO2, but which study after study, and millions of measurements, show is probably just a bad guess that ought to have died properly long ago.
What Roy Spencer found was confirmation for the twentieth time that the models are wrong about this their major, most important feedback.
“…what is really striking in the above plot is how strong the climate models’ average warming trend over the tropical oceans is in the upper troposphere (+0.35 C/decade, dark red), which I calculate to be about 1.89 times the models’ average surface trend (+0.19 C/decade, dark green). This ratio of 1.89 is based upon the UT weighting function applied to the model average temperature trend profile from the surface to 100 mb (16 km) altitude.
So, what we see is that the models are off by about a factor of 2 on surface warming, but maybe by a factor of 5 (!) for upper tropospheric warming.
This is “preliminary” so needs confirmation, but the results are pretty stark.
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Of seventy four million deaths (that is quite some study) 7.7% of all deaths could be blamed on “non-optimal” temperatures according to Gasparrini et al in the Lancet. But look closely, and 7.3% of deaths were due to the cold and only 0.4% were due to the heat.
This may be part of the reason people retire to Florida, and not so much to Barrow, Alaska.
The biggest killers were not the heat waves that score the headlines, but the the moderate cold. Winter kills. (Time to ban winter?)
Cold weather kills far more people than hot weather
Cold weather kills 20 times as many people as hot weather, according to an international study analyzing over 74 million deaths in 384 locations across 13 countries. The findings, published in The Lancet, also reveal that deaths due to moderately hot or cold weather substantially exceed those resulting from extreme heat waves or cold spells.
“It’s often assumed that extreme weather causes the majority of deaths, with most previous research focusing on the effects of extreme heat waves,” says lead author Dr Antonio Gasparrini from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine in the UK. “Our findings, from an analysis of the largest dataset of temperature-related deaths ever collected, show that the majority of these deaths actually happen on moderately hot and cold days, with most deaths caused by moderately cold temperatures.”
The study analysed over 74 million (74,225,200) deaths between 1985 and 2012 in 13 countries with a wide range of climates, from cold to subtropical. Data on daily average temperature, death rates, and confounding variables (eg, humidity and air pollution) were used to calculate the temperature of minimum mortality (the optimal temperature), and to quantify total deaths due to non-optimal ambient temperature in each location. The researchers then estimated the relative contributions of heat and cold, from moderate to extreme temperatures.
What I found really curious was that the death rates due to cold were so low in Sweden, but so high in Italy and Japan?
Around 7.71% of all deaths were caused by non-optimal temperatures, with substantial differences between countries, ranging from around 3% in Thailand, Brazil, and Sweden to about 11% in China, Italy, and Japan. Cold was responsible for the majority of these deaths (7.29% of all deaths), while just 0.42% of all deaths were attributable to heat.
The study also found that extreme temperatures were responsible for less than 1% of all deaths, while mildly sub-optimal temperatures accounted for around 7% of all deaths — with most (6.66% of all deaths) related to moderate cold.
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The UWA debacle has been the best thing to happen to skeptics for years. People who have never mentioned the climate debate to me are now approaching me to talk about it — aghast that something so tame was treated like an outbreak of Ebola. The over-reaction to Lomborg’s Consensus Centre is priceless — it has exposed just how much the pro-climate-crisis team are scared of even the tiniest deviation from their religious doctrine. They depend so entirely on their unchallenged “university” authority that the threat of any official dissent could cause the collapse of the whole facade. (What a disaster.)
Figure just how innocuous and banal their target was: The Consensus Centre at UWA wasn’t even going to discuss the climate. Lomborg wasn’t going to work there, he wasn’t going to be paid a salary, and he completely accepts the IPCC scientific position, wild exaggerations and all. He’s not a climate scientist and doesn’t pretend to be one. He is a political scientist who discusses economics. On other campuses and in other contexts, Lomborg tries to find ways to help the environment with smarter spending. Oh the crime, twice removed, to seed an errant thought that doubts the power of windmills and solar panels to stop floods and storms?!
UWA is sending a message to skeptical scientists everywhere that they dare not speak their mind. But this message is too clumsy and public, the world can read between the lines, and the message they see is that this is not a science debate. They might have thought a 97% consensus mattered, now they know that the skeptics at universities can’t speak up.
UWA — reap what ye sow
Years of propaganda have gone into creating the idea that academic pronouncements are the Word of God, that climate change is “settled”, and that people who question it are sub-human leeches paid by big-oil. All that poison just came back to sting the Big-Scare-Campaign. UWA had not trained its own staff or students in the scientific method, or free speech, or to be skeptical — and they paid for it. The intellectual vacuum at UWA was put on show for all to see (and how it sucks). The students and staff did exactly what their UWA training had taught them: protest with passion, but without rational reason. There was no argument given, other than the emotional reaction. Hence the new logo ;- ). Passionis non causa — everything the post-modern uni aims to be.
Global Worriers have overplayed their hand again, and it’s woken up a new layer of people. If the Centre had gone ahead, it would have been crippled in the climate debate anyhow (they weren’t planning to discuss the topic anyhow), yet it would have been cited as proof “deniers” got millions in funding. The illusion that our universities were esteemed places of reason, could have been maintained.
On the night the banishment was announced, the ABC News told Australia that Lomborg was a “controversial academic” (which is code for not respected, not popular, and not eminent). Most curiously he was also described incorrectly as a “scientist” and “dubbed a climate contrarian”. Getting his career wrong is embarrassing for national prime time news. Was it sloppy research, blinded by their devotion to the faith, or was the intention to hide that even climate economics is a sacred taboo? Was the ABC trying to cloak the fact that even climate believers get evicted if they don’t believe enough?
Bjorn Lomborg needs to stay out of the science debate
Meanwhile, Lomborg himself has reminded us how little he knows about science (which makes him qualified for UWA ). “We should listen to scientists” Lomborg says in the National Post, not meaning “scientists” as people who follow the scientific method, but “scientists” who are government-approved and hold mainstream views on any complex, unproven topic that happens to be politically correct. Bizarrely, his life’s work is to point out that economists and policy-makers ought be questioned, but here he is saying that consensus-scientists are gods who are always right. Are scientists not human too?
It’s hard to say if he is just saying this to appease the global-bullies, or if this is his genuine belief. So much of what the rational economist says is rational, so it makes no sense that he holds such a simplistic and contradictory notion that most professions need auditing but one profession is “perfect”.
Since he knows so little about science, and the attack dogs hate him no matter what he says, he would be wise to say nothing on the science debate. It’s a realistic thing for him to say he believes the IPCC, he’s not a scientist — and leave it at that.
Skeptical scientists have been his strongest supporters, so his pandering and illogical argument for authority achieves nothing but to burn off the people who are listening to him. As I said, the Consensus Centre was already crippled — it wasn’t going to publish on climate-economics anyway. Instead, it’s gone down in a flaming heap, leaving a blazing message across the sky. We need to be relentless in keeping this case study of the fall of academia in the public conversation. Shame about the reputation of my old alma mater, but then Lewandowsky had already trashed it and the Lomborg assault-team could hardly outdo that.
h/t to an emailer — thank you — that I can’t find. I wish I could…
Having said it was a brilliant PR coup that it was axed, it would be another brilliant PR coup if it could be reinstated or set up somewhere else. To that end, a lot of good people are working to fix this ridiculous situation.
Nick Cater wrote a column in The Australian last week: ” It must have been something of a shock for Johnson to discover that despite what it says on his business card, he doesn’t actually run the university.”
The Menzies Research Centre is planning to host a symposium on academic freedom on the UWA campus in August. They’re seeking funds to fly in national and international speakers for this important event. Find out how to make a tax deductible donation to the Menzies Research Centre’s Public Fund by clicking here.
From the Australian Taxpayers Alliance wants to run full page adverts supporting academic freedom:
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The ambit claims know no bounds. Who else would ask for $89,000,000,000,000? If the evil “more developed” nations pay for their carbon sins, the bill for those 1.3 billion people works out at $70,000 per person by 2030 (babies included).* When the target is 89,000 billion dollars, anything the Global Saviours get, can be painted as “not enough”. (It’s never enough). A trillion in funds is a “tiny”, “insufficient” amount that is “barely adequate”. Compliant journalists will print those headlines. The crowd will pay the money and feel guilty they are not paying more.
Speaking of the loot, the world’s GDP is currently $70 trillion, so asking for $89 trillion is a claim on 8% of all the money turned over in the world economy for a decade and a half. Handsome!
There is a grand array of climate junkets for Global Worriers this year. A gala of red-carpet events culminating in Paris, from November 30 to December 11. The wheeling and dealing is on right now, months ahead — and though they talk about the importance of Paris, I expect that Paris is mostly the cabaret show (like UNFCCC event in Bali that I went to), and it’s the deals being hammered out right now that matter (so write to your Austrlian M.P. today. And can we get links to lists for the politicians of the US, UK, EU, NZ…) h/t Rereke
This is a gambit by the highest orders of bureaucratic power in the West for more power, more money, and virtually no accountability — they’re trying to change the global weather fergoodnesssake. There will always be storms, floods and droughts somewhere in the world. This is not so much about renewable energy as about a renewable cash cow. For people who don’t want to compete in the world of hard business but quite like to be treated as if they were a glorious CEO, this is not bad in the global gravy stakes. There are ego-massaging press conferences, tax deductible trips to Rio, five star hotels, and a “hero” status among the passionate flock of useful idiots.
Part of the trick for such a grand grab is the invisibility of the bill. The bureaucrats sneak silently into bank accounts around the world, a dollar here and a dollar there. Funds come from taxpayers and then through higher electricity, fuel and grocery bills, the money flows from seniors, retired folk, children and the unemployed. Through loans issued by governments and central banks, the payments come through silent inflation, as the value of purchasing power and currencies fall. The payments are almost never labeled. No product is ever produced that needs to be delivered. No one gets a bill in the mail to change the weather.
If they did, there would be riots in the streets.
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In the latest news about wind-generators, The Australian reports that a new Australian study estimates we wasted $70m on RET* certificates last year because of losses the wind turbines put on the rest of the grid. About a fifth of the CO2 supposedly cut by wind-farms was emitted by the rest of the grid as it ramped up and down trying to cope with the erratic supply from the on-and-off whirly-gigs.
If we double our wind-farms the losses are proportionally even greater (every extra wind farm is even more useless than the one before). With twice as many, all of the wind towers would only be 70% effective. But this is all a wild fantasy overestimate, since the point of wind towers is not to reduce CO2, but to reduce global temperatures, stop storms, and hold back the tides. The 3.5% reduction in total Australian electricity emissions changed global temperatures by 0.00C, hence RET on wind is 100.00% useless, accurate to two decimal places. The Clean Energy Council said they had no answer at all, and wouldn’t talk about it, except to say that Australians like “renewables”.
In other news in from the UK, the new majority conservative government says local residents will soon be able to block new wind farms (which they should have been able to do all along). That will mean no new wind-farms on land in the UK. Hallelujah. Praise be to UKIP for shifting the political landscape there back to something more sane.
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Who’s desperate to find the missing hot-spot? Sherwood’s new paper claims to have found it, but after years of multi-layered adjustments, and now kriging the gaps, and iteratively homogenizing, the results of the new data partly “solve” one problem while creating others. There’s no documented, physical reason for the homogenizing and there’s no new insight gained. The raw data was used by airlines, the military, and meteorologists for years, yet the suggested new results are quite different to the raw data. It’s as if we can’t even measure air temperature properly. Somehow we’ve made multivariate complex models work but not simple temperature sensors? The main problem with the old results was that they didn’t fit the models. Now, after torturing the data, they still don’t.
Twenty-eight million weather balloons had shown by 1999 that the key assumption in the climate models was wrong. Without feedbacks, the models only produce 1.2°C of warming with a doubling of CO2. With feedbacks the simulations ramp that up to a dangerous 3 – 4 degrees C, and water vapor was the most important feedback. It’s just no fun for the Global Worriers without it.
No hotspot = no water vapor feedback like in the models = no danger from CO2
The fingerprint test of the water-vapor feedback is the “hot-spot”, a warming of a band of the upper troposphere 10 km over the tropics. (See the reasons below at the end). The weather balloons were designed and calibrated to measure temperature and humidity as they rise through the sky and right through the hot-spot. Their results are unequivocal: red was not yellow; the spot was not hotter. Supporting this, the specific humidity was also supposed to rise, but fell instead. If the computer models worked on everything else, we might wonder if the millions of observations were biased, but the models didn’t predict the pause, were wrong about humidity, rainfall, drought, and clouds too. They didn’t work on regional, local, or continental scales and can’t explain long term historic climate either. At this point, a scientist would throw out the theory. The weather balloons independently agreed with each other, the humidity results fitted the temperature results, the whole lot was loosely supported by satellites. The data doesn’t need homogenising or kriging or obscure numerical witchcraft.
Instead Steven Sherwood and Nidhi Nishant of UNSW revisited their 2008 technique of homogenizing temperature data by using wind data as well. They homogenised it again. They have iterated the iteration? They’ve also extended it from 2005 to 2013 and changed the “wind shear” component to “vector wind”. Their new homogenized-temp-wind data is below (left). The model predictions of 2005 are centre, and the radiosonde temperature results (before homogenisation etc) are on the right.
Sherwood was a co-author of the model projection in the centre from the US 2005 CCSP report (a kind of mini IPCC, known as “Karl et al”). Chapter 5 of the CCSP report used the term “fingerprint” seventy four (74) times. It was that important. Note that color and time scales are different in these graphs. Sherwood could have made these directly and easily comparable, and put them side by side. He is paid to do this.
They’ve iteratively homogenised, but their findings are paradoxical
The fingerprint was strengthened by adding years of irrelevent data
The new study added data from 2005 – 2013, though we have to wonder why — there hasn’t been any global warming of the surface since the late 1990′s, so we wouldn’t expect to find a hot spot in the last 18 years. The hot spot is supposed to warm faster than the surface, but two times zero is still zero. Yet this strange point is the first finding mentioned in the abstract: “First, tropical warming is equally strong over both the 1959–2012 and 1979–2012 periods”. It shouldn’t be. The hot spot should exist from about 1976 to 1999, but not during the non-warming times before and after. In the climate models a hot spot only happens when the surface warms. This result still doesn’t fit the theory. Sherwood et al acknowledge that the rate should have slowed after 1998 but didn’t. They admit that adding in the extra data during the last flat decade is “the main reason why the trends are now slightly stronger than those shown in [Sherwood 2008].” They added data that shouldn’t generate a hotspot, and this helped find one? Sherwood calls this “interesting”, and says it “deserves further scrutiny”. Rather?
The models still have the altitudes wrong, by 1 – 2 km
Their second finding is also more bad news for models: “tropospheric warming does not reach quite as high in the tropics and subtropics as predicted in typical models”. The height is crucial. Higher means cooler, and cooler layers emit less than warmer ones. “…our data indicate that the upper tropospheric warming since 1979 began transitioning to stratospheric cooling at a lower altitude (by about 1–2 km) in nature than in a typical climate model.” If the models have this height wrong, they’re still a long way from understanding our climate. If the top of the water vapor (to one optical depth, looking from space) does not rise, then the water vapor does not amplify the effect of extra CO2 and there is no crisis.
The stratosphere was supposed to cool more but cools less?
Their third finding was that “cooling has slackened in the stratosphere such that linear trends since 1979 are about half as strong as reported earlier for shorter periods.” But wait? Wasn’t stratospheric cooling part of the fingerprint? So all that extra CO2 since 1979 has had less effect than expected?
Independent scientists are setting the science agenda
The press release was quite different from the abstract (perhaps because the central findings raise more questions than they answer). The press release is primarily designed to respond to skeptics, and it openly says so. Forgive me for feeling pleased. We’ve been talking about the hot-spot here for nearly seven years. This site put the missing hotspot on the search-engine map in 2008. Dr David Evans got the first headline about the “hot spot” into the media. The hot spot was the first point in the Skeptics Handbook and the key point in the evidence. For all the posts here see the tag: missing hot spot.The hunt for the hot spot has been so passionate, that in the 2008 paper this new study was following, Sherwood and co. even used deceptive color scale tricks to “find it” where the color of zero was a hot orange-red.
Independent scientists and blogs are setting the agenda in the science debate, supported only by citizens donations (and we do need your help). Sherwood collects a UNSW professorial salary and gets full resources, PhD students, support, and superannuation to produce papers telling us essentially that we can’t even measure the temperature of the upper atmosphere without adjusting the data so much that the homogenized results look nothing like the raw measurements. If the models are that good that we are “correcting” data to fit, why bother taking the measurements? We could just figure out the temperature over Sudan from a computer in Pennsylvania, right?
This is modern bureaucratized science — it’s what 95% certainty means — yellow is red, don’t ask questions — we have to stop the storms.
Compare wind-temperature to modeled simulations
Sherwood has never published a paper admitting the hot spot is missing, except implicitly when he issues another paper that “finds” it. If this paper really shows something new, why was his attitude to the missing hot-spot the same last week, last year, and every year before this discovery?
Credit to the independent scientists fighting for the basic truth in the peer review medium: Fred Singer, David Douglass, Roy Spencer, John Christy, Garth Paltridge, Ross McKitrick, Steve McIntyre, Chad Herman, Benjamin Pearson, and others named in citations below. I’m pretty sure credit for the “hotspot” phrase itself goes to Christopher Monckton.
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Forecast the Facts wants newspapers to label anyone who disagrees with them as mentally deficient deniers. Climate change is settled, beyond debate, and the evidence is overwhelming, but the the team with all that certainty seems awfullly scared that the public might listen to their critics.
Look at the first line of their defining statement Who We Are: “Forecast the Facts is dedicated to ensuring that Americans hear the truth about climate change”. In this case the truth is not about the planetary atmosphere so much as “facts” about newspaper word use, opinions of science pin-up personality, and a club with a long nerdy sounding name. The research they want to share is not about the troposphere, but about their “success” in silencing alternate views: can we cancel an ad campaign, or harrass an executive who is not toeing the line?
Forecast the Facts is a grassroots human rights organization dedicated to ensuring that Americans hear the truth about climate change: that temperatures are increasing, human activity is largely responsible, and that our world is already experiencing the effects. We do this by empowering everyday people to speak out in the face of misinformation and hold accountable those who mislead the public.
Their human rights concern is as deep as their science. They empower everyday people who agree with them, and want to shut the damn rest of the voices up. Lately their campaigns are titled “Condemn Climate Censorship”. Indeed.
Skeptics just want newspapers to use accurate English (please write to the editors to tell them). A “denier” must deny something, and in a science debate, it implies someone denies evidence. So what is it? I’ve been asking for specific climate evidence for five years. You’d think if the planet was at stake, perhaps someone could find it? Others say deniers deny the consensus, but a consensus is a vote, a poll an opinion, not science. We don’t vote for the Laws of Motion.
Using standard English definitions, those who believe in phenomenon without evidence are gullible. Those who want evidence are rational. If skeptics deny the need to obey opinion polls, it’s because they are scientists. This is not the battle of denier versus scientist, it’s the battle of rational versus the gullible.
Skeptics want a scientific debate. Believers want editors to start namecalling instead.
“Deniers Are Not Skeptics”: New Research on Leading Papers Shows the Need for Greater Scrutiny in Reporting on Climate Denial
According to new research conducted by Media Matters in coordination with Forecast the Facts, the country’s leading newspapers have repeatedly used the inaccurate term “skeptic” to describe those who deny the basic scientific facts of climate change.
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