JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Almost everything the media tells you about skeptics is wrong: they’re engineers and hard scientists. They like physics too.

In the mainstream media, skeptics are called Flat-Earthers, Deniers, and ideologues who deny basic physics. So it’s no surprise that they are exactly the opposite. A recent survey of 5,286 readers of leading skeptical blogs (eg here, WattsUp) shows that the people driving the skeptical debate are predominantly engineers and hard scientists with backgrounds like maths, physics and chemistry. Which group in the population are least likely to deny basic physics?  Skeptics.

I asked Mike Haseler for more details:

  • around half of respondents had worked in engineering and a quarter in science
  • around 80% had degrees of which about 40% were “post graduate” qualified.
  • Respondents were asked which areas they had formal “post-school qualification”. A third said “physics/chemistry. One third said maths. Just under 40% said engineering. 40% said they had post school training in computer programming.

Furthermore, the media “debate” is nothing like the real debate. Four out of five skeptics agree our emissions cause CO2 levels to rise, that Co2 causes warming, and that global temperatures have increased. In other words, the mainstream media journalists have somehow entirely missed both the nature of the skeptics and the nature of the debate.

The so called “experts” (say like Stephan Lewandowsky, and John Cook) either don’t understand what drives skeptics, or they know but do their best “not to accidentally discover it” with irrelevant surveys, loaded questions, poor sampling and bad methodology. (I’m going with incompetence). Lewandowsky, after all, tried to figure out the motivation of skeptics by asking people who hate them if they believe Diana was murdered. Not surprisingly he didn’t find out that about half of skeptics are Engineers, but he did find 10 anonymous people on the Internet who said the moon landing was faked. This is the kind of result only government funded science could achieve.

The big question this survey doesn’t answer is why no government funded groups seem to have done this obvious research long ago. The climate is supposedly a high priority, so understanding skeptics would seem “sort of” useful. Then again, it’s only useful if you wanted to figure out whether there was a consensus, or if you wanted to reach one. I guess that’s not the aim…

Mike Haseler has done a great job here on a much needed task. I’m looking forward to seeing more of the results in future.

Full credit to all the other skeptics who didn’t need the hard science training to see the flaws. They sagely picked the correct side of the scientific debate. Congrats to those lawyers, farmers, doctors, taxi-drivers, and pool shop owners (I spoke to one yesterday) plus kids, and countless other sane brains who are not easily fooled.

Science, of course, is a philosophy, not a certificate.

Jo

PS: And the evidence that this survey is legitimate is in the comments of posts like this one where 200 readers gave their names and qualifications, and there are others who must stay anonymous. I’m continually impressed at the depth of the talent. I posted an anatomy curiosity recently, within hours my interpretation of a point was being criticized by email by a friendly Professor of Anatomy.

 ————————————————————

A sceptical consensus: the science is right but catastrophic global warming is not going to happen

The Scottish Climate & Energy Forum has been conducting a survey on the background and attitudes of participants to online climate discussions. Thanks to the generosity of all who participated, the survey has had a massive response which will take time and resource to process. However initial analysis already shows that the actual views and backgrounds of participants are in sharp contrast with some high-profile statements being made about the participants. Therefore I felt we should make these initial results known as soon as practical to avoid further damage, both to the reputation of those involved in the online debate, as well as those making the unfounded and presumably mistaken accusations of “denial”.

As such, I am releasing the following statement regarding the survey.

A sceptical consensus: the science is right but catastrophic global warming is not going to happen

A recent survey of those participating in on-line forums showed that most of the 5,000 respondents were experienced engineers, scientists and IT professionals most degree qualified and around a third with post graduate qualifications. The survey, carried out by the Scottish Climate and Energy Forum, asked respondents for their views on CO2 and the effect it might have on global temperatures. The results were surprising. 96% of respondents said that atmospheric CO2 levels are increasing with 79% attributing the increase to man-made sources. 81% agreed that global temperatures had increased over the 20th century and 81% also agreed that CO2 is a warming gas. But only 2% believed that increases in CO2 would cause catastrophic global warming.

So what’s going on?

Above all, these highly qualified people – experts in their own spheres – look at the published data and trust their own analysis, so their views match the available data. They agree that the climate warmed over the 20th century (this has been measured), that CO2 levels are increasing (this too has been measured) and that CO2 is a warming gas (it helps trap heat in the atmosphere and the effects can be measured). Beyond this, the survey found that 98% of respondents believe that the climate varies naturally and that increasing CO2 levels won’t cause catastrophic warming.

What next?

Overwhelmingly participants in this large scale survey support the science, however this is not how they have been portrayed in the media and this has led to deep and bitter divides between those who hold different viewpoints. This debate should be based on the evidence and that not only includes the scientific evidence on the climate, but also the evidence of the real participants involved in the debate. Given the huge number of responses and detail of questions a full assessment will take up to one year to complete. This is a huge commitment from an organisation that has no outside funding and is reliant on one full-time volunteer (Mike Haseler). We will therefore be approaching The Scottish Climate & Energy Forum has been conducting a survey on the background and attitudes of participants to online climate discussions. The survey has had a massive response which will take time and resource to process. However initial analysis already shows that the actual views and backgrounds of participants are in sharp contrast with some high-profile statements being made about the participants. Therefore I felt we should make these initial results known as soon as practical to avoid further damage, both to the reputation of those involved in the online debate, as well as those making the unfounded and presumably mistaken accusations of “denial”.

Mike Haseler BSc. MBA

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225 comments to Almost everything the media tells you about skeptics is wrong: they’re engineers and hard scientists. They like physics too.

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    Scott

    Hi Jo,

    Just a reminder you have your own data on the quals of the people that visit your blog


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    • #

      Good point Scott. PS Added to post.
      PS: And the evidence that this survey is legitimate is in the comments of posts like this one where 200 readers gave their names and qualifications, and there are others who must stay anonymous. I’m continually impressed at the depth of the talent. I posted an anatomy curiosity recently, within hours my interpretation of a point was being criticised by email by a friendly Professor of Anatomy.


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      • #
        turnedoutnice

        The Science is right?

        No professional scientist or engineer, defined as competent in statistical thermodynamics, radiation physics down to Maxwell’s Equations and with practical experience of measuring and predicting coupled convection and radiation, agrees with any part of the ‘enhanced greenhouse effect’ physics.

        It is an abomination against science!


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        • #

          Agree turnedoutnice, I think I filled out the Scottish survey. I am an engineer who has experience with heat transfer and have post graduate qualifications. so I am one of the 40% post graduates and one of the 40% engineers.


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        • #
          Robert JM

          How many wrong computer models runs does it make a right one…..


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          • #
            turnedoutnice

            None because the programme was wrong to start with.

            This is why I refer to this abomination as Climate Alchemy.


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            • #
              GH05T

              Alchemy utilized empirical observation and documentation of controlled experiments to test hypotheses. Despite the flaw in the underlying assumptions (which was dropped when sufficient evidence against it was discovered), alchemists were responsible for much of our current knowledge, and they invented many alloys still in use today. It’s easy to think turning lead into gold is a ridiculous concept with today’s knowledge, but given the knowledge and technology available to them, alchemists were far more scientific in their practice than most professionals who use to term derisively today.

              In short, you’re insulting alchemists by comparing climate modelers to them. A better comparison would be to the ancient “natural philosophers” like Pliny the Elder whose wildly inaccurate suppositions based on casual observation and hearsay are still repeated today.


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          • #
            Ted O'Brien.

            Robert JM.

            Looks like a typo there, but may I use that line?

            How many wrong computer models does it take to make a right one?

            Marvellous!

            And, unfortunately, in the matter of AGW, Bernd has the answer!


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    • #
      Steve

      Heres the thing , as one who did respond to the questionairre, I did do Engineering.

      The thing that irks me about the climate change nonsense is that when one is trained in logic and observation of empirical evidence, the climate change nonsense is like a red rag to a bull and its quite franly an insult to anyone who has a brain and uses it.

      To be labelled a half wit and a flat earther while ignoring logical labels the perpetrators as :

      (a) liars.

      (b) Political operatives

      (c) Highly versed in propaganda techniques

      (d) Devoid of trust

      (e ) probably mroe at home in a dungeon during the Spanish Inquisition, than in the public sphere in 2014 Australia.

      I have no time nor sympathy for those how knowingly abdicate logic and common sense.

      Clealry the main prize is by bamboozling people ( ie the majority of the population who dont have science backgrounds ) and in the process, wresting power from the people by deviously devolving Australian govt authority to an UN body ( the IPCC ) .

      As such they must be stopped, by peaceful reasoning and application of logic and solid science.

      Alea iacta est


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      • #
        John Brookes

        So what is the reason you don’t believe in AGW?


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          James Bradley

          Hi John, maybe belief fails the fact test.


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          Steve

          Because the CAGW theory fails the science test.

          The models fail when comapred against observations.

          Then we are told the science is settled – that is a lie – science is never settled, its on a constant revision.

          Then, we have the theory rammed down our throats agressively – if it was self evident and correct there would be no need to do that.

          Then we have the Left shreiking loudly and harassing anyone who dares to “not believe” – the fact its a belief system means its a pseudo religion, and not science.

          Then we have the “Inconvenient Truth” labelled by a court in the UK as “Political Propaganda” due to the large scientific errors in the movie.

          We have it taught in schools as “fact” – thats messing with our kids.

          Then we have clear “trough feeding” by people to make money quickly.

          Any way you cut it, it reeks of scam, BS, and bottom feeding – not science

          QED.


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        • #
          LevelGaze

          Brookes is now reduced to a Bot.


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        • #
          PhilJourdan

          Straw man. Most believe in global warming. Most believe in global cooling. All believe in climate change. The red herring is Anthropogenic! And the false flag is “Catastrophic”.

          Neither of which have been proven or even come close to being scientific. Just hysteria.


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      • #
        George Daddis

        Steve, how can anyone believe you when you are massively funded by fossil fuel interests. /sarc
        You missed that one in your litany. :)


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        George Daddis

        In defense of engineers, since I are one:

        When I studied engineering (50 years ago, so take this with a grain of salt) I was told that engineering was a discipline.
        My subsequent experience in industry has further taught me that one of the disciplines within engineering is to UNDERSTAND what scientists have discovered, and then to put that knowledge into practical use. Thus the ability to UNDERSTAND scientific knowledge is critical for an engineer.

        That ability also allows us to understand what “science” is crap. (Part of my career, in a corporation you would all recognize, was to evaluate which capital requests from our “development labs” were worth funding.)


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  • #
    Truthseeker

    Science is not consensus. Even saying that “A sceptical consensus: the science is right …” is meaningless. You are playing the alarmists game and they have more funding and propaganda tools to play it.

    The science of CAGW is wrong. It has been proven to be wrong in a number of different ways, in a number of different disciplines by many people working independently from each other.

    Computer models are not science. Science is about discovering what you do not know. Computer models can only show what you think you already do know. Computer models are confirmation bias powered by teraflops of CPU cycles, by definition.

    Even the physics of CAGW is wrong. Trace gases do not affect the ambient temperature of a free-flowing planetary atmosphere. Here is yet another piece of work using observational data to show the lack of any “greenhouse effect”.

    Personally, I like the engineer’s attitude to science … if you cannot use it to make something that works in the real world, it is speculation.


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      Manfred

      It has been proven to be wrong in a number of different ways, in a number of different disciplines by many people working independently from each other.

      Truthseeker, if I may. Let’s just use a well hackneyed cliché peddled by the Ministers of Climate Change, the IPCC, MSM et al. After all, they do understand its marketing impact.

      …there are multiple lines of evidence…


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    • #
      jon

      The political activists and People with an agenda only want their own policy based science on the field?


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  • #

    I keep saying it, and it’s probably got to the stage where readers here are probably heartily sick of my repeating it, but (for me) the biggest indicator is the fact that if these CO2 emissions are indeed a problem, then they would be doing everything in their power to stop those emissions.

    If a doctor tells you that you have a Cancer, the very first thing he says is that it needs to be cut out, and post haste.

    Electrical power generation makes up more than 40% of all CO2 emissions. That being the case, then the first step to rid the World of this Cancer which will kill us all (so they never cease telling us) is to cut it out, stop those emissions, close down those power plants. Hang the consequences, as we’ll deal with them after stopping those emissions first.

    Are they doing that?

    Well no! In fact, they are allowing the opposite, the ever increasing proliferation of more and more of those CO2 emitting power plants, and not the odd one here and there in the already Developed World, as in Germany, but the many thousands more of large scale plants opening up in China, India and other parts of the still Developing World.

    The only place closures have traction is in that already Developed World, and any closures are small, old technology, virtually ancient plants, replaced, not in their totality, but by more than that, with Natural Gas fired plants, still emitters of large amounts of CO2.

    They’re not closing them down. They only thing that they are doing is finding ways to make money out of those emissions. That doesn’t stop the emissions.

    THAT is what convinces me that there is no problem, the fact that nobody is seeking to close those plants, and the utter panic that they are supposedly killing us all is not there.

    IF it was a problem, they would be doing something concrete about it.

    Oddly, now, whenever I mention this, it’s somehow a strawman argument.

    Tony.


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    • #
      Neville

      Tony you left out that our clueless Labor party STRONGLY supports INCREASING exports of coal , gas and iron ore.

      In fact they couldn’t care less about increasing co2 emissions as long as it helps India, China etc to build more industry and create more jobs. But they hate Aussies having the same results and advantages.
      They are barking mad bi-polar hypocrites and I can’t understand why people don’t understand these simple facts.


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        Jon

        I agree. From the Climategate it’s obvious that the Agenda is more to spread UNFCCC based fears and less scientific truth on this subject.

        The object is an UN(EP) based global government to rule the whole world. The UNFCCC is basically a tool and means to scare the public into something stupid as “jumping from cliffs in total darkness not knowing how far it’s down”(giving away national democracy and sovereignty). Remember we are a threat to Gaia so some self appointed, that think they are wiser, will have to rule us?


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    • #

      Tony,

      I disagree with the cancer analogy for two reasons.
      First is that cancer, untreated, is life-threatening. Only a few total eco-loonies see global warming as apocalyptic.
      Second, as most cancers are, unfortunately, very common there is a huge body of expertise in diagnosis and treatment. Treatments depend on type and stage of development. CAGW, if true, has never happened before. The treatment is totally untried. Neither are their standards for dosage.

      There is something that you allude to that is comparable. Medical professionals have a strong ethical duty of care towards their patients – something I have found in practice and when talking with doctors about their work. They take into account the risks, harm and pain of treatment along with the risks, harm and pain of the condition. There is no such duty of care shown by mitigation policy-lovers. In Australia you have the Labor Party. In the UK, we have the Labour Party, the current leader of which is blaming the rise of in electricity and gas prices on profiteering by the energy companies. I looked at the figures. The rise is due to the Climate Change Act 2008, passed when Labour were in power, and when Labour leader Ed Miliband was Secretary of State for Environment & Climate Change. It is not just hypocritical to blame others. It shows a complete lack of moral responsibility in acknowledging that policy can create harm, and making sure that harm is minimized.


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    • #

      Absolutely spot on! The solution to a catastrophe on the scale of nuclear holocaust is CFLs and a tax on carbon emissions! Like mandating duct tape on your windows for asteroid impact.


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    • #
      Charles Higley

      The real reason their claim that CO2 causes global warming is that they say that CO2 in the upper tropical troposphere absorbs outgoing IR radiation which it sends back down to Earths surface, warming the surface and by conduction the air.

      Now, we have to recognize that their model has sunlight 24/7, as it is based on a flat-sun model that was cooled to make a flat-planet model. Being flat, there is no night.

      So, the surface is 17 deg C and the upper troposphere is -15 deg C. Any IR sent upward by the surface and returned to the surface by CO2 would find the corresponding energy levels full and be reflected (rejected) back upward. As the upper troposphere is much colder than the surface, it simply cannot warm the surface, per the well-established laws of thermodynamics. The war mists suspend the basic laws of physics in their assumptions.

      The warmists claim that the troposphere has to warm faster than any place, but this “hop spot” in the upper troposphere has never been found, despite many efforts, and indeed this region has been shown to be slightly cooling.

      Warmists also claim that the Arctic region has to warm faster than all other regions, but that is not happening either. Temperature monitoring sites around the Arctic Rim show no warming in the last 50–60 years.

      Now, CO2 has two very narrow IR absorptions band, most of which overlap those of water vapor. It beggars reality to think that such narrow absorption ability could have any detectable effect on the climate.

      Indeed, CO2 has a small ability to convert IR energy to heat energy, but it is small. And, this ability is NOT the ability claimed by the warmists. They claim an absorption/re-emission scenario that warms the surface. Any heat energy released by CO2 to other air molecules could just as easily return to CO2 and be re-emitted as IR. On a sunny day, this ability is saturated and limited; basically a wash.

      It is at night, however, that CO2 and water vapor can absorb heat from neighboring air molecules, in the absence of IR input, and release it as IR radiation, most of which is lost to space or reflected by the surface and then lost to space. That is why the day cools so rapidly when the Sun sets. Furthermore, we experience the coldest nights when the skies are clear and the atmosphere (and the surface) can radiate IR energy out to space.

      Space is not 2.7 K but actually has no temperature. On a cloudy night, however, the -15 deg. C temperature, say, of the clouds is 258 K warmer than space and sending IR toward the surface, thus, slowing down, not heating, the cooling of the surface and the lower atmosphere.

      A warm object radiates at a cool object and also the cool radiates at the warm. But, the radiation of the cool object finds the equivalent energy levels already full or simply exchanges with those levels just emptied, but the cool object has empty energy levels that can absorb the energy from the warm object and is thus warmed.


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  • #
    Grant Burfield

    What’s going on here? Something’s wrong. It’s a well known fact in academia, if not a rule, that only social scientists and cognitive psychologists can undertake cutting edge research in the science of climate denialism.


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  • #
    Manfred

    ….however this is not how they have been portrayed in the media

    The MSM are helplessly incarcerated by their own progressive leftist Green propaganda perspective. They appear doomed to endlessly demonstrate their unintelligent servitude, trapped by a reflexive socio-political echo of the meme.

    One almost (but not quite) begins to feel compassion for them.


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    • #
      Peter C

      Don’t go soft on the MSM and progressive leftist Green Propagandists now Manfred.

      I haven’t fought the good fight with words and money all this time to give up and make friends with them before the end. This is nothing less that a battle between rationalism and Green marxist socialism. Rationalism must win if our society is to progress


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        Keith L

        This is a very important point which gets missed too often.
        Many of my friends are green believers and I remain friends with them of course but when all this is over I will never let them forget which side they were on and I will never let them quietly walk away from their stand. They have to take responsibility for the results.
        I remember back in 1989 when the Berlin Wall came down and then later the USSR collapsed I felt “magnanimous in victory”. Not my own of course, but a victory for Western ideals, capitalism, freedom, free markets, free press, private enterprise, individual rights etc.
        It was so obvious to everyone that communism was an utter failure and there was nothing more to say.
        In our magnanimity we took our eye off the ball and look what sprung up a decade later!
        This time, once we finally kill the idea with a wooden stake and garlic let’s pour concrete over its grave and erect a warning sign.


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        • #
          Steve

          I agree, however I often wonder what happens inside th emind of a greenie who believes this nonsense – are they brainwashed, or all sociology students without a proper cause to rally around?

          Wtritten above the loo paper dispenser at uni, in the Engineering building :

          “Arts degree – please take one”.


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          • #
            Keith L

            HAHA. I think from my experience that that is written above the loo paper dispenser in EVERY engineering faculty in the world!


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            I have a number of friends living in the U.S. One lives in Florida and another in Missouri, and both are graduates of Universities in their respective States, and while they are good friends, there is always banter between them about their respective Universities, and I’ve never come across people so fiercely loyal of the Uni they graduated from than Americans.

            One of the common banter points between them is when one asks what is the phrase most uttered by Graduates from the other guy’s University.

            “Would you like fries with that?”

            Cue Curly – Nyuk nyuk nyuk!

            Tony.


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              D. J. Hawkins

              Texas University joke about Texas A&M (Agriculture & Military):

              “How do you define gross ignorance?
              144 Aggies in the same room.”


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              • #
                David Kleppinger

                That’s Texas Agricultural and Mechanical.

                My boss is an Aggie and he claims they’re the most brilliant idiots around so he’d probably agree with your quote.


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              George Daddis

              There is an old Boston story about a youngster who arrived at a “10 items or less” supermarket checkout lane with a cart full of groceries. The friendly cashier said “You must be either from Harvard or MIT.” The surprised kid asked “How did you know?”
              The cashier replied “If you are from Harvard you can’t count, and if you are from MIT you can’t read!”


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            The Griss

            I hear that they are adding a barista course into many arts degrees.

            At last some career training !!


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            Peter C

            An Arts Degree may have its shortcomings. I do not have one. However I do not recall the Engineering Students being held in high regard at Melbourne University in the 1970′s except for Acts of Gross Indecency. Also I was told they had a poor grasp of Mathematics (by one of their lecturers!)


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              Keith L

              That seems to be the case in most unis.
              Engineers have just enough maths to get them through the course and the rest of the time is devoted to beer and rugby. Sounds reasonable to me.


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              • #
                AndyG55

                Keith, this is true for a significant number of engineering students.

                But like most other courses the spread of abilities exists. We get some with very good maths skills, and others….ummm.. without !

                Up here, we now adopt a “pre-entry maths test” for engineering.

                If they fail that test, which isn’t particularly onerous, they have to go and do a “pre-maths” course.

                There is a Engineering Frat, but it doesn’t really get that many takers.

                I was talking to a 4th year student the other day, and he said that all they do at frat gatherings is let the beer keg get warm.

                ie.. by the time they reach 3rd/4th year, they grow up and start to take engineering seriously.

                They have to if they want a decent job.


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              • #

                One of the longest of the many subjects (phases) in my Electrical Trade Training in the Air Force was Electrical Technology 2, (ET2) and that was virtually wholly Maths based.

                During my training in the late 60′s early 70′s we did our training in two parts, after the initial trade course of 12 weeks to see which of the 6 Technical Trades we were most suited to. The first part in Trade (in my case Electrical) was for 7 Months, then a year at a Squadron, and then back for the second part, another 7 Months.

                Each of the separate subjects was intense, some only 10 days and some as much as three and a half weeks long (the 6 Electronics subjects) and it was 8 hours a day five days a week, 2 hours less on Fridays.

                When I went back to teach the Trade, it was whittled down to the one 10 Month Course, and quite a lot of those subjects I learned had disappeared completely. Now it’s even shorter again, as most of the real electrical in depth knowledge is not taught any more.

                Still the longest Phase was ET2, at almost 4 weeks, and that ended up being one of the four subjects I had the Phase responsibility for.

                Being Maths based, and dealing with AC, it was resolution of formulae, application of formulae, and then on to series and parallel circuitry resolution for Capacitance, Inductance, Resistance, the two Reactances, Impedance, and then resolution of Voltage, Current, Apparent Power and True Power in both series and parallel circuits. All of that was vector diagrams and resolution of them, Trigonometry based. So resolution of just one circuit might entail anything up to 10 separate formulae, drawing the vector diagram and then resolving it. That’s why they had a standard plastic brain calculator, the Casio fx-100C, and I still have mine, used a number of times each day, even now.

                That one subject sorted out the ones who had aptitude, and ET2 had the highest fail rate for any subject.

                Oddly, when I was learning the subject first time round as a trainee, it was incredibly difficult, but when I went back and started teaching the subject, it seemed to be so much easier, and I could see the logical progression.

                When I see media reports about Wind and Solar Power, it’s patently obvious that those reporting on them have little comprehension of the Maths involved in working out why exactly they are such a failure at what they claim, the ability to deliver power, and all of that is Maths based.

                The hardest task I have is then trying to explain why they are such flops, and luckily, having that Maths background makes it ….. again, a logical progression.

                Tony.


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                Heywood

                “That one subject sorted out the ones who had aptitude, and ET2 had the highest fail rate for any subject.”

                Not much had changed in the early 90s when I went through Tony, although it was known as BET (Basic Electrical Theory) consisting of nine modules, all using the latest and greatest ‘self paced learning’ philosophy where we had ‘facilitators’ in lieu of true instructors.

                It certainly sorted out the men from the boys electrical wise. Subjects sound the same though, with a spattering of digital at the end ;)


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            Manfred

            It ‘feels’ right on a number of levels to engage in a crusade to ‘save the planet’. It’s a visceral thing. The intellectual corroboration is supplied by the party political loudspeaker of the MSM. Then couple it with a few latte mornings, and you’ve got a confirmed celery waving, tofudebeest eating, Greenie. (nod to Larsen).


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            Len

            In the Law Faculty at the UWA, the hand paper dispenser had on it the same – Arts Degrees please take one. Underneath was written “For Law Degree just wipe arse on it”.


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        Manfred

        Peter C. #5.1

        Thank you for your concern.

        The ‘but not quite’ was intended as the equivalent of ‘faint praise’. Be sure that in astronomical terms it does not equate to a ‘near miss’ but rather, let’s say the distance to Andromeda, about 2.5 million light-years.


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      Geoff Sherrington

      Manfred,
      That would be feeling compassion in the way that a hostage can begin to feel compassion for the kidnappers, a psychological condition that even has a name. ‘Stockholm Syndrome’.

      You can be treated.


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        Manfred

        I fnd occupational therapy best, don’t you Geoff?

        Let’s see. We could start with a little fissile material and gradually build ourselves towards the Hiroshima point, fanatically made on The Conversation, although I honestly doubt with the best will in the World I could assemble four a second to illuminate their lower GI tract.


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      Kevin Lohse

      “The MSM are helplessly incarcerated by their own kneejerkprogressive leftist Green propaganda perspective.

      Fixed it for you. :)


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        Manfred

        Thanks KL. The kneejerk is a deep tendon reflex, hence my use of ‘reflexive socio-political echo of the meme’. In this instance, I wanted a little play on ‘relfex’ and ‘echo.’


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      tony thomas

      I have been in mainstream journalism for 40+ years. Here’s my take on why journalists parrot the alarmist case:
      Journos for the most part are not independent thinkers. Their day job is to interview experts and accurately report what they say. They have available 95 warmest experts for every five sceptics, and the sceptics do not have titles, positions, and other hallmarks of authority. So they are not viewed as ‘authorities’ to interview.
      To have any sympathy with the sceptic case, journos would need to spend many weeks looking into the arguments, but since they are told the skeptic case is flat-earth, they see no reason to embark on this quest for independent knowledge. Their days are full of busy/busy work and fossicking about climate data is going to lower their short-term output and maybe get them fired.
      “News” is all about bad news, things going wrong and scary stuff. The skeptic case that everything is probably fine, no worries, is lousy “news”, compared with reporting that “we’re all going to die unless we do this or that; the Barrier Reef will be doomed; cute possums will become extinct from climate change etc”.
      Journos also operate in herds, like wildebeests. There is safety in staying with the herd (warmish) and great danger in writing non-conformist stuff. As when, on another subject, two journos began writing about Julia Gillard and Bruce Wilson and slush funds, and got sacked. Eventually, the herd realised that the slush fund stuff was serious and gradually began reportage, but the pioneers got the arrows in their back.
      Another factor is that almost no journalists have any training in the ‘hard’ disciplines, they are arty graduates and basically innumerate. They are in awe of ‘official’ scientists because they have no clue that ‘official’ science work is capable of being criticised validly by lay observers. For example, they note that various inquiries have ‘cleared’ Mike Mann et al and they do not probe further into this, from ignorance, laziness, time pressure etc.
      Graeme Lloyd on The Australian is about the only mainstream journo willing to give the skeptic case a run.
      The rest are largely ‘Environment Writers’ and their sources are greenies like ACF, Climate Change Commissions etc. Retaining these sources for tips and scoops is important to them.
      I could continue but dinner is being served…


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        Yonniestone

        Thanks for the insight Tony, this is very interesting from someone on the inside as it’s said, I’m assuming you are or have done some form of journalism over those 40+ years and this information only cements concerns the general public has increasingly held of any journalistic integrity (oxymoron?) over recent years.
        As stated here before the MSM is held in low regard in their pro AGW stance and surely must realize the general populous get more of their real news from the internet in many forms, if not then the attitude and approach to their work will end up making many unreadable and obsolete.


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        Steve

        Although it does play to the moronic groupthink
        Approach of the Left one what-aka the blind leading the
        Already ignorant (public).

        No wonder the cage nonsense has had so much
        Traction for so long.


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        MJFagan

        A significant factor is that skeptics are almost always individuals. Warmists are organizations.

        No organizations are skeptics, even if all the members are skeptics, as happened with the American Physics Society with control of the committee by warmists. People at the top recognize the enormous potential for warmism to generate fortune and fame so no matter what goes on with individual scientists in NASA, the IPCC or Physicists, the official opinions change at the very top. Suddenly nothing people are world famous, people like Flannery and Hansen and Manne. It is a gravy train which will not be derailed by the facts. All individuals can do is sign petitions and they are ignored in bulk, like the 32,000 who signed the Oregon petition.

        Of course scientists have children, mortages and careers too. Most just shut up. They have little choice, especially if they work for the University of East Anglia. See what happened to Dr. Murry Selby when he disagreed with Tim Flannery and denounced the scam!

        Plus the communist controlled Greens world wide have the political support of the caring, the scared and the wishful and the ignorant, the bulk of Green supporters, a political force in a time of hung governments, so their views are disproportionately significant. Consider that the Greens in Australia have one person in the House of Representatives but control of the Senate. So we have a carbon tax that neither side wanted and both sides promised we would not have. It never seems to end.

        So Tony, what you say fits with the larger picture, that it is all about going with the flow, the money, the easy options, the manipulation. After all, what proportion of society are scientists anyway to disagree. 1%? Then 97% of those are not allowed to speak and others do not dare or could not be bothered.


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    Mark D.

    Science, of course, is a philosophy, not a certificate.

    Excellent point. It’s also not a license or permit to bilk people out of their hard earned money.


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      PeterS

      That is true. In fact those who do so are termed scam artists and should be charged accordingly with fraud. AGW scientists have done more damage to the reputation of science than anything else in recent history. I now wonder if it will ever recover. Some of the leading scam artists including the scientists should really belong behind bars.


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        john robertson

        I have confidence the scientific method will be just fine.
        Institutional government funded science? Well it was always pretty dodgy, a fake world of credentialed slackers.
        The true irony of delving into CAGW has been the blatant institutional attempts to shut down the right to dissent.
        Science cannot exist without sceptical self honesty, defined terms and duplication.
        And the right of all citizens to say I doubt.

        Yet the opening gambit of the cause, was to name call, slander and demean.
        While rabidly insisting;”We have the SCIENCE”.

        I find it difficult to think of a behaviour, more certain to force practical users of science to take a critical look at the actors.
        I realized early on, this UN orchestrated ugliness, was an attack on my religion.
        The belief that the scientific method is currently the best tool we have to avoid falling into mass delusion.
        No guarantees, but better that arguing from any authority.


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    • #
      Joe

      If, you as a climate “scientist”, have the ear of gov’t nothin else matters.


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  • #
    PeterS

    A true scientist is always a skeptic. That’s a fact. Anyone who has a dogmatic view on anything and refuses to accept the possibility or even the probability it could be wrong is not a true scientist but nothing but an ignoramus.


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    Cynic

    I have a Science Degree and post grad Computing.
    I do not believe for the following reasons.
    1. I am old enough to remember the same people telling us we were going to cause an Ice Age.
    2. I am an avid reader and I was aware of the higher temperatures and farming of Greenland in the past. I was not aware of the Roman period.
    3. My degree contained Geology so I was aware of massive changes in temperature in the past (without human help).
    4. Their hypotheses were not falsifyable. That is Global Warming causes more rain, droughts, you name it.
    5. When their predictions did not come true they always had an excuse or changed the goal posts.
    6. They make statements that if researched are not true (such as the hottest day ever).
    7. They falsify records and change data in the past to conform to thei models.
    The longer this goes on the more it conforms to a religion (belief system) not Science.


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    • #
      King Geo

      Cynic, I am very glad you were exposed to Geology – as I keep saying, anyone who has studied Geology, will not believe any of the “Warmist” crap that has overwhelmed the MSM for the past decade. The “AGW Con” has already sucked US$ trillions out of many Global Economies, including Oz (thanks to 6 years of ALP rule) and there is more pain to be borne by the Oz Economy this year until the Abbott Govt gets the numbers in the Upper House to rid us of the CT/ETS scourge, a scourge that has contributed to many manufacturing industries closing down and a huge burden (energy bill shock) on many low to middle income Aussie citizens.


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    • #
      John Brookes

      7. They falsify records and change data in the past to conform to thei models.

      So you aren’t one of the people who do acknowledge warming? Or is some of the warming real, and some of it made up?


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      • #
        Spetzer86

        I’d say it’s now so difficult to distinguish real temperature values from those that have been adjusted that no one really knows. All that can be said is that clear evidence exists that temperature values have been, for unknown or not clearly identified reasons, modified and that those alterations have a demonstrated tendency to result in decreasing past values. The end result is an increase in the apparent temperature slope.


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        Shane

        There has been warming. This is not in dispute.

        The predictions of the models are in dispute though, and as the global warming theory is dependent on the predictions of models, the theory at this time can only be considered as unproven.

        Until a computer model can correctly show known past climate and temperature fluctuations (such as the Maunder Minimum) I see no reason to accept future predictions from those same models.


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        • #
          Chuck Nolan

          The models can’t produce the cold periods(like the Maunder Minimum)because the scientists don’t know what caused them so they don’t know how to enter or exit cold periods…only warm ones caused by CO2.
          cn


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      • #

        That does not follow. Tampering or falsification of data can be used to make the difference between the anthropogenic warming being a curiosity for academics and a prospective global problem that starts to justify policy. One reason that engineers are put off climatology is that to them magnitudes are crucial. Another is that engineers spend their lives providing workable solutions, whilst climatologists think (like socialists of yore) that any solution someone thinks up, like mitigation policy, must work.


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        • #
          The Griss

          “policy, must work.’

          It is patently obvious that on a global basis, these mitigation policies do not work.

          Trillions of dollar spent on mitigating CO2, but because western countries and developing countries still need “stuff”, all that these policies will ever accomplish is to move manufacturing to places without silly policies.

          Then add in the additional transportation, lack of care in developing countries etc, and it seem highly probable that the final effect of these policies is exactly the opposite of what they sought to accomplish.


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      • #
        The Griss

        Raw data indicates that around 1940 was about the same as the ElNino peak of 1998.

        Raw data indicates that there was a slight cooling from 1940 to about 1970, then a slight warming until 1998. Now maybe a slight decline since the 1998 ElNino settled.

        Australian raw data shows that early 1900′s, especially in the outback SE of the country, was almost certainly warmer than the current. There was a nasty spike around 1906-1910 that shows up in many raw data sets, as well as in historic records.

        So, has there been warming.. yes, probably a very small amount of NATURAL cyclic warming since the 1970′s. It is this period of natural warming combined with the massive downward adjustments of past peaks on which the whole scam is based.


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  • #
    Philip Shehan

    I have visted the Scottish Climate & Energy Forum wbsite and can find no information on this survey.

    Are the respondents to the survey a self selecting group?

    How representative are they of climate “skeptics”?


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    • #
      Heywood

      Been and gone Brian.

      Was conducted just before Christmas.


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    • #
      Heywood

      Apologies. It was more recent than that. Was linked by Jo on 24th Jan here.


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      Heywood

      “I have visted the Scottish Climate & Energy Forum wbsite and can find no information on this survey.”

      Perhaps you looked at the wrong website. I had a quick look at the Scottish Climate & Energy Forum site home page at http://scef.org.uk/ and lo and behold, it is the first thing mentioned:

      “Thank you everyone that has so far completed the survey.
      For those that haven’t done so please visit: http://scef.org.uk/survey/index.php/524582/lang/en
      Due to the huge interest, we would like to start processing the results as soon as practical, whilst still allowing others a chance to participate.
      Therefore we have decided to start processing the results as of Midnight Monday 27th January.
      However, the survey will remain open to further participants until Friday 21st February.
      This will allow us to produce an initial report on the survey at or soon after the 21st February followed several months later by a more detailed assessment”


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    • #
      Philip Shehan

      Thanks Heywood. I was aware that entries had closed so to speak. I was interested in the methodology and the questions.

      Your last link gave the information.


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  • #
    Brad R

    A few years back Jeff Id did a survey of his readers, and found similar results: http://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2010/04/21/reader-background/


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    • #

      Brad R had forgotten about that. My comment was at 76. There used to be good discussion on that blog. I think that was where I saw Dr Gavin Schmidt of RC admit he did not know about the Schmidt number which is a pointer to his incompetence in climate assessment. If one of the supposed Gurus of so-called “climate science” lacks understanding what does that say for the fellow travelers.


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  • #
    pat

    as u know, i’m scientifically illiterate, but not to worry. all i had to do was actually read the Climategate emails – not have the MSM & The Team interpret them for me – to realise i’d been scammed.

    anyway, Big taxpayer Money for Big Oil for unproven technology, all in the name of CAGW…& the Greens & Labor think this will save the planet!

    24 Feb: Reuters: Update 1: Shell secures funding for Scottish carbon capture project
    *Government is giving a total 100 mln stg for two CCS projects
    Ed Davey, Britain’s Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change…”If built, the project could save one million tonnes of CO2 each year”…
    The British government wants to develop CCS to help it meet both national and international targets to reduce environmentally-damaging greenhouse gas emissions.
    By 2050, CCS could save more than 30 billion pounds ($50 billion) a year in fighting climate change, it said…
    http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/02/24/shell-ccs-idUKL6N0LT1K520140224


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  • #

    All readers of this blog and Watts Up, Judith Curry, Bishop Hill, and others were invited to participate. There is an element of self selection, but it’s also true that unskeptical readers might have tried to influence the survey in the opposite direction. In any case the truth of climate does not rest in the qualifications of readers being 80% or 70% or 90%. The general validity of the test is confirmed with names and details in comments (eg here). The point is the story being fed out in the media is obviously a myth.


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    • #
      John Brookes

      I did the survey. And was honest – that is I did not try and influence the survey, just answered truthfully. But it does explain why there was a physicist there…


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      • #
        Jaymez

        One assumes you indicated a belief in CAGW and would therefore NOT be included as a skeptic Brooksy.


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        The Griss

        “But it does explain why there was a physicist there…’

        WFT are you talking about ?

        As usual, your comment makes no sense.

        There were lots of physicists. All skeptics……. (except you, who is a brain-washed, non-thinking sycophant.)


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  • #
    pat

    MSM aren’t carrying this as yet – they don’t like to expose the “fixing” of markets, especially for carbon dioxide emissions:

    EU ministers adopt fast-track CO2 backloading: official
    LONDON, Feb 24 (Reuters) – EU ministers on Monday adopted a fast-track plan to prop up European Union carbon prices, an EU official said, in time to allow the withdrawal of a maximum of 400 million permits from auction schedules this year…
    https://www.pointcarbon.com/news/reutersnews/1.4264702

    24 Feb: London South-East: EU member states give green light to CO2 emissions-trading deal
    At present, the cost of permits allowing companies in the EU to produce a set volume of carbon dioxide is considered too low, reducing the incentive for them to invest in modern filter technologies or similar means of reducing their emissions…
    Industry representatives had opposed the initiative, fearing it would drive up their costs…
    http://www.lse.co.uk/AllNews.asp?code=unuyveo8&headline=EU_member_states_give_green_light_to_CO2_emissionstrading_deal


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  • #
    wayne, s. Job

    I fall into the old engineer catagory. The article is saying most believe the science, if the science was right the models would work. They took a few assumptions and embellished them with more assumptions of positive feed back.

    Then they closed shop, and told all the science was settled, and all those disagreeing were heretics. That they are wrong no longer bothers them, for the battle is political and a propaganda war full of hatred for the disbelievers is in full swing.

    This is now open warfare against our freedoms and way of life, using the incremental propaganda the original eco-nazis of Hitler used to convince an entire population of the correctness of the cause.

    Vigilence is needed, they are trying every avenue to shut down debate, especially the internet.
    Obama tried again last week. It is time for scientists to be not timid, put your hands up and speak out against this atrocity that is facing us. This anti science, anti human,anti freedom mob that are actively calling for the incarceration, persecution or death of disbelievers.

    Dr Roy Spencer, the mild mannered gentle has had enough, he is now just calling them nazis.
    If enough real scientists stand up for truth the MSM will be overwhelmed and have to tell the real story.

    These evil mongrels think they are on the end game, but Gaia is not co-operating, time to throw their crap back in their faces.


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    • #
      Steve

      Yes and my time reading the nonsense they throw into regional newspapers shows how broad brush they are ( the news paper in question is owned by one large family owned media company ) – last time we had a heatwave they must have trotted out every AGW believer they could find, once I started throwing solid science into the ring.

      It was predictable – demeaning, sarcastic, know-it-all, appeal to consensus, “97%” , it was all there. I just hunkered down, and dug in for the long haul. I still monitor the newspaper in question to make sure the voice of science and reason is heard.


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    • #
      John Brookes

      Then they closed shop, and told all the science was settled, and all those disagreeing were heretics. That they are wrong no longer bothers them, for the battle is political and a propaganda war full of hatred for the disbelievers is in full swing.

      No. Then they got sick of people concocting ridiculous arguments to avoid having to act on climate change.

      And they weren’t wrong. But if you’d rather think that the warming is finished, feel free.


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      • #

        No. Then they got sick of people concocting ridiculous arguments to avoid having to act on climate change.

        You lack a sense of proportion.


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      • #
        The Griss

        “rather think that the warming is finished”

        Certainly been that way this century.

        And with the satellite record, its pretty hard for Giss and Hadcrut to make large warming adjustments any more.

        —————-
        “Then they got sick of people concocting ridiculous arguments ”

        You mean like “the warm” hiding in the deep oceans.


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      • #
        Steve

        No – they studied the science, relaised CAGW was a crosk and turfed it.

        Common sense ( not a belief system ) at work.

        Are you here just to wind people up?


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  • #
    Gos

    You don’t need a science or math degree to be able to understand how weather/climate comes about.To say that x-number has an education shows an elitist mentality.And from what I have seen scientists etc are just as corrupt dishonest ignorant and stupid as those who aren’t educated,common sense is just as rare in educated people as it is in the great unwashed.


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    • #
      Geoff Sherrington

      Gos,
      We real scientists put climate ‘scientists’ into a different category. The standards of their ‘science’ are so low and so unregulated that they do not qualify as proper scientists.
      Please don’t colour your picture of scientists by the abnormal actions of a few on the fringe.


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      • #
        blackadderthe4th

        ‘We real scientists put climate ‘scientists’ into a different category’ quite right too!

        trust me I’m a scientist!

        ‘As a scientist I know GW doesn’t exist at all in any sense of significance. [well thanks for the reassurance John, only one problem, HELLO, you’re not a scientist, you’ve got a degree in media studies and became a TV weather man…and the American Meteorology Society disagrees, you are not on the list of certified meteorologist, in other words TV weather personalities with a degree in meteorology. And the biggest irony of the lot]…there are 10000s signing a petition, 19000… [Coleman keeps promoting a petition of scientists against anthropogenic climate change, but his lack of a science degree means he isn’t even qualified to sign it…Christopher Monckton former science advisor [has a degree in journalism]…he didn’t. so if we are going to look at the consensus on climate change… since Coleman and Monckton think they are scientists they think that is the citron…after all scientist are supposed to know every field of science] well Brains your mind… [in Thunderbirds Brains was able to turn his hands from the dubious aerodynamics of Thunderbird 2 to the hydrology of New York City,…Brains may have been an expert in every aspect of science but his arse was made out of plastic. Real life scientist aren’t experts on everything, they have to specialise and the more they specialise the greater their expertise, a wood engineer knows a lot about wood engineering, but that doesn’t mean he understands a lot about atmospheric physics. As when Stephen C Zylkowski, who is a wood engineer, signs his name to a petition that there is no evidence that co2 cause catastrophic heating of the Earth, he is simply stating his belief , based on whatever he has read. We have no idea what that is, but it’s not these papers]. Potholer54.

        Now watch for yourself:-

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GqCkZaKMW_w
        [SNIP REPEAT]

        [Geoff did not say, "trust me I’m a scientist!", so you are misrepresenting him. Then you include a quotation from someone else entirely, and then repeat it, either for emphasis, or to grab eye-ball space. I don't know why you bother. You only end up corresponding with the moderators. And, I have already explained why video clips are not a suitable medium for honest debate, and yet you continue to insist on using them. Why? -Fly]


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        • #
          blackadderthe4th

          ‘Why? -Fly]’ because they have the power of logic behind them! I notice you counter them with nothing thing other than putting them in moderation, (why what are running from?) but then on occasion posting when the thread has ran it’s course and the viewers/posters have moved on!

          [Jo has explained this to you several times and still you persist! It is rude to make someone go to an unknown video that could contain any number of falsehoods. YOU DON'T GET TO USE JO'S SITE TO PROMOTE YOUR VIDEOS! This is a blog not NETFLIX.] ED


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    • #
      John Brookes

      Postmodernist are we? All opinions are equal. Facts are in the eye of the beholder…


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      Rereke Whakaaro

      from what I have seen scientists etc are just as corrupt dishonest ignorant and stupid as those who aren’t educated

      That is probably true. The proportion of scientists that are dishonest, is probably very similar to the proportion of dishonest people in any other area of society.

      The real problem is that people who do not understand science, tend to give more credence to what “scientists” say, than they do to other areas of society. Dishonest scientists can therefore do more damage to society. Combine dishonest scientists, with dishonest (or misguided) politicians, and you have a real recipe for social disaster.


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    NikFromNYC

    The finer points of opinion and background are fine to survey and present, but there is no excuse any more for any skeptic to not loudly declare that straight up scientific fraud lies at the very core of climate “science” now that the hockey stick team supported the most ridiculous example of pure deception of all time, the data-redating artifact hockey stick blade of Marcott 2013 still unretracted in the leading journal Science. A simple plot of the bladeless input proxies shows anybody, absolutely anybody, the full depth of deception involved, not requiring any technical background whatsoever to fully comprehend: the blade does not exist in the actual data. The team finally showed their cheating hand outside of the world of arcane statistics that has required calls to authority that skeptics have so little of. The data plot by Willis from WUWT and a screenshot of mathematician Mann’s promotion of it as vindication of his own work is the singularly most powerful exposé skeptics could ever hope for, seen here:
    http://s6.postimg.org/jb6qe15rl/Marcott_2013_Eye_Candy.jpg

    Yet Bill Nye the engineer turned Science Guy is still successfully using Mann’s original hockey stick plot on national television here in the US. It’s bewildering but that’s possible since skeptics have *failed* to actively leverage this utter nuclear level weapon in their debate arsenal. Instead they barely let on that they might, oh so politely, suspect some bias exists, blah blah blah. In any serious field like genetics such fraud would be a scandal but that’s because people in those fields use the a actual word fraud and fabrication in everyday language when exposing it.


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  • #
    James Bradley

    The concept of a thriving economy for a Socialist is an inverted pyramid-scam.


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    John F. Hultquist

    The media and so called experts really don’t need no stinking data. They just make stuff up. Everything is simpler that way. Bless their little hearts.


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  • #

    I am one of those who responded to the survey. I do not have a degree as I saw the writing on the wall for tertiary education some time ago. However, I do know how to use my brain and I possess an ability to sniff out bullshit at a thousand yards.

    I appreciate that many of the sceptics have science degrees and that is a good thing, although when we find ourselves in the ridiculous position of having to defend critical analysis with how many pieces of paper our side holds then I weep for humanity.


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    scaper...

    I don’t have any the qualifications stated whatsoever. I build stuff that will endure for a century after I’m gone. However, without an understanding of certain sciences, engineering, lateral thinking and problem solving my craft would not endure for a decade!

    Was a believer until early 2008 but decided to do my own research and hence, I’ve not only become a sceptic but in the trenches fighting this rubbish.

    Also, having pretty high aspirations for this nation’s future leaves me no choice as this evil pagan cult’s aim is to shut down the advance of mankind!

    I see the warmists’ demise like that light at the end of the tunnel. When it eventuates, will fade away but have to say, “Never thought I would meet so many great people and in itself, is the reward for the effort.”


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    warcroft

    “A recent survey of 5,286 readers of leading skeptical blogs (eg here, WattsUp) shows that the people driving the skeptical debate are predominantly engineers and hard scientists with backgrounds like maths, physics and chemistry.”

    Is this why its so frustrating arguing with warmists. Are they the uneducated types glued to reality TV and the MSM? Parroting the latest warmist catch phrase?
    “Global warming is real because TV told me so!”


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    pat

    btw i didn’t take part in the survey.

    anyway, imagine how much it must have irked Hannam to have to write the following, no matter how much he spins it with lots of Butler & the inevitable appearance of Milne:

    25 Feb: SMH: Peter Hannam: Labor backs Coalition plan to scrap carbon auctions
    Labor will not oppose the Abbott government’s plan to cancel carbon auctions but denies the move signals a weakening of its support for retaining a price on pollution.
    The federal opposition on Tuesday voted in caucus to side with the government in the Senate on plans to cancel the voluntary auctions, allowing the Coalition to overcome a potential block had Labor sided with the Greens.
    Labor said the decision was consistent with plans announced during the second Rudd government to accelerate the end of a fixed price on carbon by one year to replace it with a floating price set by an emissions trading scheme (ETS) from this July.
    “The voluntary auction would have no impact on the introduction of Labor’s ETS,” the opposition’s Climate Change spokesman Mark Butler said in a statement…
    Greens leader Christine Milne said it was “a shame” Labor had fallen for “a stunt by Tony Abbott” but the auction cancellation would not spell the end of a price on carbon.
    “The Clean Energy Package and the price stands,” Senator Milne said. “It is arrogance in the extreme in the face of a new [Senate] election in WA to assume that the Clean Energy Package will be repealed.”
    “The Australian Greens will oppose every move by Tony Abbott to undermine action on global warming and we call on Labor to do the same,” she said…
    Environment Minister Greg Hunt said Labor’s decision marked “a very significant moment…when the ALP has started to crumble in their support for the carbon tax”.
    The ALP was starting to “crabwalk away from the carbon tax” and now it was time to take “the big step” and repeal the carbon price entirely…
    Chloe Munro, the chief executive of the Clean Energy Regulator, told the Senate Environment and Communications Legislation Committee on Monday that the government’s move to end auctions of carbon credits would not affect the carbon price.
    “We don’t have any evidence there is a market” for these carbon units, Ms Munro said.
    The auctions were to sell a small proportion of the credits that will be sold or handed out for companies to cover emissions in 2015 and 2016…
    The current carbon price is $24.15 a tonne of emissions up from $23 in the first year of operations.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/labor-backs-coalition-plan-to-scrap-carbon-auctions-20140225-33eq1.html


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    pat

    25 Feb: The Conversation: Anna Skarbek: Three more ways to cut carbon emissions and save money, whatever the policy
    The federal government has begun the process of unwinding the carbon price, moving to cancel further auctions of carbon permits, ahead of its hoped-for repeal of all carbon-pricing legislation after the new Senate takes its seat in July.
    But arguments about whether the Federal Government’s proposed Emissions Reduction Fund or the existing carbon pricing mechanism is better — or cheaper — misses an important point. We’ll have to do more to meet our current 5% target at the lowest cost and to achieve a 25% target — the minimum recommended by scientists for developed countries.
    While many are debating which policy will prevail, we should get on with the job…
    Meanwhile …
    The award-winning Low Carbon Growth Plan for Australia from ClimateWorks at Monash University showed that Australia can cost-effectively meet emissions reduction targets without changes to lifestyle or industry mix…
    Emissions reduction in three easy steps…
    http://theconversation.com/three-more-ways-to-cut-carbon-emissions-and-save-money-whatever-the-policy-23612
    ***Disclosure Statement
    Anna Skarbek does not work for, consult to, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has no relevant affiliations.

    LOL. LOL. LOL.

    The Conversation: Profile: Anna Skarbek
    Executive Director at ClimateWorks Australia at Monash University.
    Anna Skarbek is Executive Director of ClimateWorks Australia, a new non-profit collaboration hosted by Monash Sustainability Institute in partnership with The Myer Foundation.
    Anna led the first project for ClimateWorks, the award-winning Low Carbon Growth Plan for Australia, working with McKinsey & Co and the Australian and Victorian Governments to identify the least cost opportunities for emissions reduction across the major sectors of the Australian economy, with a roadmap for implementation. She is also is a member of the Australian Government’s NGO Roundtable on Climate Change and a director of the Carbon Market Institute, Sustainable Melbourne Fund, Thermometer Foundation for Social Research on Climate Change and Linking Melbourne Authority.
    From 2007-2009, Anna worked in London’s carbon markets, as Vice President at Climate Change Capital, a specialist investment manager and advisor dedicated to raising and deploying capital for low carbon activities. Previously in Australia, Anna’s career included senior policy adviser for the Victorian Deputy Premier, investment banker in Macquarie Bank’s energy and utilities team, and solicitor with the national corporate law firm Mallesons Stephen Jaques. Anna was also a director of The Big Issue Australia for three years and served on the board of Amnesty International Australia from 2000–2006 in roles including National Treasurer and Victorian President.
    http://theconversation.com/profiles/anna-skarbek-971/profile_bio


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    Leo Morgan

    There is a significant typographical error in the final paragraph.
    Presumably it was caused by a cut-and-paste error.
    We will therefore be approaching The Scottish Climate & Energy Forum has been conducting [and all following text]

    Personally I’m a University drop-out. But I recognise sophistry when I see it.
    Al Gore claimed the Arctic would be melted by 2010. UNEP forecast 50 to 200 million Climate Refugees by 2010. All the models forecast a greater temperature than we actually measure. How did they get it so wrong?
    They got it wrong because the politicised science of the IPCC was never able to look in politically incorrect directions.
    Now as reality fails to accord with their predictions they are finally backtracking to accept what sceptics have been claiming from the beginning.
    We claimed the IPCC’s claimed climate sensitivity was suspiciously high, and the range they selected was not satisfactorily justified . They have now reduced the range. We claimed they had not established that they had included all plausible relevant factors, particularly solar influences. (Dismissed as a ‘myth’ in one Royal Society publication.) They now acknowledge several such effects, from the differing effects of differing UV wavelengths, solar maxima and minima effects and they accept the plausibility of the Svensmark hypothesis. How did they come to dismiss the arguments that correctly described reality? Most commonly, by the use of sophistry.
    There are several other claims made from the beginning that they dismissed without investigation that they now have to consider to account for the discrepancy between reality and their forecasts. The inappropriateness of bristle-cone pine as proxy for temperature. The inaccuracy of the land-based thermometer record and urban heat island effects, and many more.
    But it was obvious, even to a university dropout, that they were never justified in dismissing the arguments.


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    pat

    more LOL. Bloomberg/SMH spin: instead of taxpayers giving greenbacks to Shell, we have:

    25 Feb: SMH: Bloomberg: Shell gives green light to UK carbon capture project
    Royal Dutch Shell Plc will proceed with a project to capture carbon dioxide from a U.K. gas-fired power plant after signing an agreement with the government…

    Britain is seeking to get a carbon capture and storage, or CCS, industry off the ground by the end of the decade to clean up fossil-fuel power stations and factories…
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/carbon-economy/shell-gives-green-light-to-uk-carbon-capture-project-20140225-33dp1.html

    the money does get a mention in para 5.


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    pat

    can’t stop laughing:

    24 Feb: The Conversation: University of Utah: Human well-being leaves large carbon footprint
    Improving life conditions for humans has been linked to increased carbon emissions.
    Professor Andrew Jorgenson’s research measured the carbon intensity of human well-being (CIWB) by using the ratio between per capita carbon dioxide emissions and average life expectancy at birth — for 106 countries over the period 1970–2009.
    The largest CIWB was found to be in North America, Europe and Oceania, but generally increased across the board.
    Jorgenson says that as long as societies rely on fossil fuels, achieving better life conditions will drive up carbon emissions worldwide.
    Read more at the University of Utah…
    2 COMMENTS ONLY:
    Gerard Dean:
    Amazing! Who would have thought that raising human living standards through the use of fossil fuels to create electricity, gasoline, diesel and gas would increase our carbon footprint.
    Our ancestors learnt how to light a fire for warmth, then to cook and to light their nights. Noticing a funny rock that melted lead to smelting of metals and it took off from there.Then we found coal, then oil and finally uranium.
    It is blindingly obvious that humans improve their living conditions by burning more stuff dragged out of old mother earth.
    Can I have my PhD now?
    Professor Andrew Jorgenson
    Dear Gerald Dean,
    Perhaps before making such flippant remarks you should first read the research article as well as the supplemental materials. I’d be happy to send you both.
    Regards,
    Andrew Jorgenson
    http://theconversation.com/human-well-being-leaves-large-carbon-footprint-23620


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    Richard111

    (it helps trap heat in the atmosphere and the effects can be measured).

    Please. I really, really would like to know how this happens. All I can find so far is current air temperature keeps CO2 molecular temperature ABOVE its peak radiation band at 15 microns which covers temperature range -50C to -102C (13 to 17 micron band). Thus CO2 will be continuously radiating and cooling the surrounding air until air temperature drops below -102C. The CO2 CANNOT absorb and radiation from the surface over that band because it is TOO HOT. Please look up black body radiation science.

    When the sun is shining CO2 CAN AND DOES absorb energy in 2.7 and 4.3 micron bands and warm air which simply rises and cools. The main effect is to SHEILD THE SURFACE from those bands. This is a cooling effect.

    Please, I ask again, how does CO2 trap heat and warm the surface of the earth?
    It certainly does NOT slow down escaping surface radiation.


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      Don’t waste your breath Richard. Those of us who accept that CO2s net effect is to cool the atmosphere are treated like lepers, even by the ‘mainstream’ sceptics.

      But time will out the truth. Too bad I’ll be dead by then and so won’t be able to gloat lol


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        Richard111

        Same here B H. But what I think I will see is the coming food riots. The Northern Hemisphere’s food growing period is getting narrower. They don’t want people to notice. More and food is being grown in tunnels — with extra CO2 pumped in!


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          Rereke Whakaaro

          … with extra CO2 pumped in!

          Which is then released into the atmosphere when the crops are harvested … But we are not supposed to know that, are we?


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      cohenite

      You may be interested in this Richard.

      The emissivity of H2O and CO2 in respect of backradiation is shown here.


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      The Griss

      “how does CO2 trap heat”

      Hey, at least he didn’t say it was a blanket ;-)


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      Robert JM

      Black body radiation below the peak still increases with temp, its just that the proportion of energy radiated in the longer wavelengths is lower.
      Think of it like a babushka!
      At -60 deg C there would say be 5 w/m2 of absorption represent 20% of all emissions where as at 14degC there would be 6 w/m2 representing only 5% of emissions. (made up numbers for example)

      I’m ok with the notion that CO2 may act as both as a warming and cooling agent depending on location/conditions.


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        Sweet Old Bob

        “Traps”heat? Like a mouse in a trap? More like a mouse in a maze.
        Right?


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        Richard111

        Black body radiation below the peak still increases with temp

        Yes! The hotter body will indeed be emitting more photons in the range below the peak! But the cooler body is already emitting all it can at its own temperature. The cooler body can only absorb and store photons with energy levels ABOVE its own peak radiation temperature. It can absorb photons below peak but the energy WILL NOT add to the temperature as those below peak photons are immediately emitted. Not the same photon of course, another one at the same energy level. The result at this point is energy in equals energy out means no change in temperature. The best result is a DELAY IN COOLING which is NOT WARMING.


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    Leo Morgan

    I just recognised the ambiguity in my last comment. The sophistry to which I allude is that displayed by Warmists. I had completely changed the subject, and was not suggesting that Mike’s contribution was sophistry.
    Sorry!


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    [...] har The Scottish Climate & Energy Forum nettopp gjennomført en spørreundersøkelse blant over 5000 deltakere i den internasjonale klimadebatten, de fleste formodentlig skeptikere, og [...]


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    [...] Nova has more here. Rate this:Share this:TwitterFacebookMorePrintEmailGoogleLike this:Like Loading…‹ Climate [...]


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    Stephen Richards

    I do remember one of the big blogs doing a survey but I thought it was WUWT. It seems it might have been you Jo.


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    Turtle of WA

    This survey confirms what skeptics know from experience: nearly all the people you know who believe in Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming have next to no knowledge of science, and those who question it do have scientific knowledge. Those who really believe in CAWG often have arts degrees, and did little physics or chemistry at high school. (I know because I have an arts degree and actually did the hard sciences in high school.)


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      Robert JM

      Most people who believe in climate change probably haven’t heard of Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming, let alone water vapour positive feedback.
      Unfortunately excessive education seems to lead to delusions of intellectual superiority, not to mention weak milky coffee consumption!


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        Robert JM

        The vast majority of climate researchers are climate modellers who come from an applied maths background, ie meteorology. They have never been trained in the scientific method, let alone use it in their research. Just look at the von storch survey from a few years ago.
        80% of researchers are aware there are factors in the climate that have not yet been understood and could mean CAGW won’t happen, yet 70% were confident that the computer models were correct. All I can say about that is WTF!


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        Jantar

        Now that is a well considered and very concise reply. It explains your position with complete clarity.


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      Joe V.

      Having knowledge, or access to it and understanding it are quite different things.
      No one knows more than a teenager, but it can take a lifetime to make sense of it.
      Continued government funding is one kind of sense. Scientists & engineers free of such constraints and not trying to sell you something are less partial in their appraisals.


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    John DeFayette

    It’s no surprise at all. CAGW skeptics are generally people who have to do real things–make stuff work in the real world. Make pieces of widgets and ship them to people who want them. Turn the wheels that make industry happen.

    James Hansen has always been the poster child of the alarmist crowd: worked out of an air conditioned office in Upper Manhatten of all places. Not much reality to be seen from his window. His crowd spends far too much time behind computer screens and too little time getting their hands even hypothetically dirty.


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    Andrew McRae

    Before we go much further in back slapping and high-fiving it would be remiss of me if I didn’t point out that the operators of the SCEF web site believe that the majority of climate skeptics are deniers.
    That may seem a shock, but it can be inferred from their own web site here:

    Although there is no single sceptic view, most** sceptics broadly agree with the following:

    • Man-made sources have increased global levels of CO2, however scientific analysis shows part of the increase is natural and no one is certain how much or little of this rise is man-made.

    Scientific analysis of the only reliable measurements in this area show that none of the rise in CO2 over the last 40 years was from natural sources. It is absolutely certain that 100% of the rise over that time is from man-made sources, in spite of natural inter-annual influences on the accumulation rate. For those scientists and engineers who have spent their careers applying arithmetic to the real world with continual success, this should be no surprise.

    As there are negligible nuclear reactions in the carbon cycle, carbon atoms are conserved via conservation of mass. So in any time period all net changes of carbon quantity in the different reservoirs must sum to zero. To solve the problem of the origin of the rise, partition the world into the two reservoirs we can measure (Fossil carbon and the Atmosphere) plus an extra reservoir containing everything we can’t measure (call it “Nature”). Since all net changes must sum to zero, we can subtract the annual change in the reservoirs we can measure away from zero, and the remainder will be the annual change in the third unmeasurable Nature reservoir.
    Logically, if the sign of the annual change in the Nature reservoir is calculated as positive, then Nature is a net sink of carbon and so is contributing nothing to the increase of CO2 in the Atmosphere.
    When you locate the annual anthropogenic CO2 emissions figures and convert to Gt of carbon, and convert annual ppm CO2 increase to gigatonnes of carbon, and then apply the arithmetic, the result must be the truth.

    Of course when you run the numbers, you find Nature is indeed a net sink of carbon. The same facts also disprove the allegation that increasing ocean temperature is the main driver of the CO2 increase. Any argument (eg Salby, or Humlum et al) which relies on analysing time derivatives without regard for mass conservation will be wrong for the same reason. The CO2 rise is coming from human activity. Anyone who applies arithmetic to the relevant measurements will arrive at that same conclusion. So for SCEF to say the majority of us climate skeptics disbelieve that conclusion is a tacit allegation that we are deniers of either facts, or the law of conservation of mass, or arithmetic.

    I would not dare to go as far as saying that the scientists and engineers surveyed by SCEF have some sort of exceptional blindspot when it comes to applying their considerable mathematical problem-solving skills even-handedly to the issue of CO2 origins. So I can only assume that the SCEF’s so-called “consensus” on the origin of the CO2 rise was derived from a small sample of people that were unrepresentative of the majority of climate skeptics.


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      Robert JM

      You obviously need to learn about henry’s law and partial pressure equilibrium. To double CO2 in the atmosphere you must double CO2 in the system. The oceans temp controls the ratio between atmosphere and ocean. Based on 750GT in the atmosphere there is 36000+ GT dissolved in the oceans. At the present rate of human production it will take thousand of years for humans to double CO2 in the system.
      Of course in your world you can just ignore physical laws and half of equation evaporating into the ether.


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        Andrew McRae

        Robert, if you actually understood Henry’s law you would recognise it works both ways: increase the partial pressure of the gas above the liquid and the amount of gas that can dissolve in the liquid increases. That is basically a restatement of Henry’s Law. It is just one consequence of the more general Le Chatelier’s Principle, that the system will counteract any change imposed on it. The magnitude of the imposed change is important, not just its sign. So if the liquid warms by a miniscule amount (factor of 1.0035) at the same time as the partial pressure above the liquid is forced to increase (by factor of 1.39), then the gas can dissolve into the liquid even though the liquid warmed. You should try understanding these laws instead of simplistically reciting hollow talking points.

        The requirement to double the total CO2 in a system to double the pCO2 is valid but is manifest only at equilibrium, whereas the atmosphere/ocean composition now is not yet at equilibrium. The very fact that the CO2 level naturally goes up and down by 5 ppm over the course of the year due to NH plant growth and decay proves that the ocean cannot absorb 10Gt+ carbon in 6 months (or it wouldn’t be available for plants to use in the next growing season) and can’t reach equilibrium that quickly, so it is plausible it can’t absorb our extra 8Gt in a year either. The air’s concentration would follow an inverse exponential decay curve and the ocean will take more time to absorb the extra CO2 and reach equilibrium, which is not going to happen for as long as we keep topping it up at 8Gt+ per year.
        This is not an argument about how soon CO2 reaches equilibrium and whether the doubling is permanent (it’s transient), it is only an argument about what has happened already and where the CO2 came from.

        There is also the awkward (for you) fact that in measurements of CO2 at depth over the last 30 years, “The pCO2(20) values show a consistent increase in deep water over the time period.” Exactly the opposite of what one would expect if CO2 was leaving the ocean.

        Your hand-waving semi-theoretical response fails to confront the central argument and ignores the real world measurements and the law of conservation of mass. You have defined your world so that you can count the majority of CO2 increase as coming from oceans. In your world carbon atoms disappear as soon as they are emitted by human activity, but don’t disappear if they are emitted by the ocean. That’s not the world the rest of us live in.

        The bottom line: If CO2 was coming out of the oceans then the air’s atmospheric CO2 increase trend line would be far more than the rate we have been outputting it, but the measurements have been done and in fact the rate is not more, it’s less by half. Your hypothesis is incompatible with measurement. That is the time to give up on the hypothesis.


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          Mark D.

          Andrew, aside from arguing against the biased assumption that the paper makes about the deep ocean co2 increase being anthropogenic, you must realize that there is no such thing as “equilibrium” between sea and atmosphere? The cold waters north and south will always absorb co2 more easily and the warm waters of the equatorial will always be inclined to give it up (in fact there should be a measurable gradient but I’ve never seen that anyone has looked for it). Then, it isn’t just partial pressure working here there is also variable atmospheric pressure and even variability due to sea surface wave action.

          Back to the awkward paper, how did they eliminate undersea vulcanism or variables in ocean biota as a source for the increase they claim to be anthropogenic?

          Lastly, how is the annual anthropogenic contribution of co2 measured?


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            Andrew McRae

            As the paper is paywalled I’ve not read the whole paper. Whether they have a good reason for thinking it is anthropogenic (ie they use the mass balance argument) or whether they simply made that assumption is not possible to say without reading the whole paper. I referenced the paper only to establish that oceanic CO2 was increasing not decreasing, so theory is not inconsistent with measurement.

            Just like Robert, you are failing to confront the central argument, which is that mass is conserved in the system. A straightforward application of the chemistry mass balance principle can resolve the question, which is why we do not need to track down, control for, nor “eliminate” every last carbon-bearing process occurring in nature. (No need to figure out how many angelic underwater volcanoes dance on the head of a pin.) That is why the mass balance argument provides the truth, the logic of it is so simple that there is nowhere for a mistake to hide. You are however perfectly right to question the figures that are input into that logic.

            As to how the annual anthropogenic contribution is measured is a good question. In principle it should be easy enough to add up all the world’s fossil fuel and cement sales and figure out the carbon content of those sales. If anything it would be an underestimate of what’s being emitted. I am only part way through trying to produce my own estimate of world emissions for the last decade using only the BP Annual Statistical review, so I can’t give any personal verification of it yet.
            As to how CDIAC do actually produce those emissions figures, I don’t know, I just assume if they were exaggerating it to any great degree then Big Oil and Big Coal would have called them out on it by now. As it happens the World Coal Association’s document “Coal Facts 2012″ was happy to repeat BP’s stats on coal, so presumably the rest of BP’s stats are authentic.
            Please note the anthropogenic emissions figures would have to be smaller by 57% on average to change the end conclusion and I hope you would agree the figures could not be wrong by that much.

            The CDIAC also add in Land-Use Change as a source of CO2 (cutting down trees etc) which is probably the most rubbery of the figures. But if you don’t include Land-use change as an “anthropogenic” emission there is still only 1 year in the past 50 years where nature may have acted as a net source of CO2, and that was 1987 due to the warm El Nino ending that year. The average yearly error in anthropogenic emissions needed to falsify the conclusion drops to 45% in that case, which is still too high to be credible.


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              Mark D.

              Andrew, thanks for the reasonable reply. I’m not arguing that mass isn’t conserved. I’m arguing that these numbers are so big and so variable, that we can only guess at best.

              To my thinking the ocean temperature relationship can’t be assumed because there must be huge lead-lag issues as equilibrium is never achieved. If the ocean is warming because of other than co2 in the atmosphere (a situation that is quite plausible), then the result would be an increase in atmospheric co2. The only reason one can claim it is human caused is the correlation to fossil fuel use and calculated assumptions of resulting co2.

              Carbon dioxide is converted to other compounds at staggering rates. Biota in the ocean are impossible to accurately quantify. As an example we assume it is fossil fuels causing the rise but it could also be an unknown decline in ocean algae, or other biota. I don’t quite buy the notion that the numbers aren’t “wrong by that much” I’m bothered by the seeming arbitrary dismissal of the possibility by the “science”. There is just too many unknown quantities and effects throughout climate science.

              I’m not in argument with your approach mind you, and I don’t deny that humans have had some effect on these numbers. I’m just not so quick to affix blame and guilt.

              I’m seriously interested in how the number of human co2 is calculated though, and again the very great possibility that it is incorrect by a large number looms in my mind. Several examples: the flared natural gas at well heads can’t be measured (granted it is still human caused), The fact that burning fossil fuels is never 100% efficient so someone had to make assumptions as to how much co2 versus other carbon compounds are the result. I have my doubts or I should say I believe the error bars are wide on this assumption. I’m not confident that Big Oil would call them out either as they’d be beat up on it and the PR damage could be enough of a deterrent.

              Then there is the world wide biota sources (opposite of sinks mentioned above) of co2. What if the rise of co2 is partly to do with the possibility that they’re thriving and we can’t measure it? We have been bombarded with the “humans are bad” for so long that we unconsciously think that the insect and animal world must be in decline overall. It may not be the case and the insect world is a big producer of co2.

              Global wildfires, again a huge number with assumptions on the contributions of co2 that could be wildly different from reality. (pardon the pun)

              All this would be simply academic IF the Green side weren’t pushing for a political solution.


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                Andrew McRae

                The reason you aren’t in argument with this approach is because you still haven’t understood the approach. When you understand what conservation of mass implies about the real direction of carbon flow in the world, you will realise how all of these biota and lag uncertainties are irrelevant to the task at hand. The biota are part of the repository whose content is unmeasurable, yes, but whose rate of change per year is definitely calculable by mass balance. The equilibration lag doesn’t matter because the calculation shows what net flow of carbon actually occurred in each year. It seems you’re rejecting the certainty offered to you by simple chemistry, as though you would rather not know what’s happening, or that intuition is somehow superior to measurement for knowing what’s happening.

                The belief that the error bars are wide on emissions is just your belief.
                My belief they are smaller than 20% is also just my belief, but at least I am part way through the process of checking it against BP’s published stats. I don’t know what the outcome of that check will be, but I’d guess the emissions figure will be smaller than CDIAC’s, the only issue is by how much.

                I think if you are keen on knowing the truth you will try to quantify human emissions of fossil carbon (as CO2 or methane) by yourself from public sources. Going through that process might help you guess what the error bars are likely to be.


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                Mark D.

                I say to you that you don’t have real numbers to perform a mass balance calculation, provide you examples and you say I don’t understand?

                Good day.


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                Marc D.,

                I fully agree with Andrew here…

                The emissions mass inventory is based on fossil fuels sales x burning efficiency. These figures are quite hard, thanks to taxes imposed on fossil fuel sales, but probably underestimated, due to losses like flares, leaks and under-the-counter sales and stealing to avoid taxes. Add to that any extra emissions from forest clearing and other land use changes. Thus the figures you see from human emissions are the minimum amounts.

                That means that at least in the past 50+ years of accurate measurements human emissions were always larger than the increase in the atmosphere and that nature was always a net sink for CO2. No matter the distribution of the net sinks over oceans, vegetation, rock weathering etc. No matter the variability of the natural sources and sinks:
                http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/dco2_em2.jpg
                Only 1998 was borderline.

                That humans are (near) fully responsible for the total increase of CO2 is additionally supported by every line of evidence in the real world: the process characteristics, the 13C/12C ratio, the (pre-bomb tests) 14C/12C ratio, the oxygen balance, the increase of CO2 (and the decrease in pH and the decrease of 13C/12C ratio) in the ocean surface layer… See:
                http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/co2_measurements.html#The_mass_balance

                All the alternative explanations I have heard of all fail one or more observations. Ocean releases e.g. due to warming can’t be the cause: DIC (total dissolved inorganic carbon) in the surface layer should decrease, but it increases. pH should go up, but it goes down. Last but not least the 13C/12C ratio of the oceans is way higher than of the atmosphere (even including the fractionation at the surface), thus should INcrease the ratio in the atmosphere, but we see a firm DEcrease both in atmosphere and ocean surface layer…

                See further my reactions at 48.2 and following…


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                Mark D.

                Ferdinand, always good to hear from you. I am perplexed by what you have said here:

                Ocean releases e.g. due to warming can’t be the cause: DIC (total dissolved inorganic carbon) in the surface layer should decrease, but it increases.

                Now if the DIC were constantly being regenerated by some unknown process in the ocean, why would anyone one expect the surface layer DIC to decrease? You are assuming the ocean has a finite amount not a continually replenished source (as might be possible). Furthermore, if the ocean were a source of some of the rising atmospheric co2, wouldn’t DIC HAVE to be increasing in order to satisfy equilibrium?

                In anticipation of a suggestion that no one knows of any such process in the ocean I give you this to ponder: http://www.sciencewa.net.au/topics/fisheries-a-water/item/2700-ninety-five-per-cent-of-world-s-fish-hide-in-mesopelagic-zone

                AN INTERNATIONAL team of marine biologists has found mesopelagic fish in the earth’s oceans constitute 10 to 30 times more biomass than previously thought.

                …..

                “This very large stock of fish that we have just discovered, that holds 95 per cent of all the fish biomass in the world, is untouched by fishers,” he says.

                How much co2 do fish produce?

                This is what I attempted to suggest to Andrew, mass balance calculations may work wonderfully in a closed industrial process where all the necessary factors are known but I don’t assume that we know enough about all the sources of co2 on earth.

                And Ferdinand, this whole subject (Atmospheric Anthropogenic co2) is the thing that I am perhaps least skeptical about. I just have not committed it to “undeniable” status as yet.


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                Marc,

                The exchange rate between the ocean surface layer and the deeper oceans is rather limited. Diffusion of heat and CO2/bi/carbonates, salts, nutritients is minimal and exchanges mainly happen at the upwelling and downwelling places. The exchanges between surface layer and the atmosphere meanwhile is very fast as can be seen in the seasonal swings of ocean surface water observations at Bermuda and Hawaii.

                Thus if there is an increase in the atmosphere, that will be followed by an increase in the ocean surface and reverse. The direction follows from the pH: if the direction is from atmosphere to oceans, then the pH drops (a little) if it is the opposite, the pH would increase by a loss of CO2. Opposite, a lowering of ocean pH would release more CO2, but with a drop of DIC, while we see an increase in DIC…
                Feely e.a. have a lot of information about CO2 exchanges:
                http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/pubs/outstand/feel2331/exchange.shtml

                Fish mass is not of much interest, as fish mass only can grow if more CO2 was taken away first by ocean plant life. Seeding the oceans with iron didn’t give the expected results: the fish mass indeed increased but very little extra CO2 dropped out of the ocean surface.

                The only way that the oceans may have a huge influence on atmospheric CO2 levels is from the deep ocean exchanges, but these are very limited. That makes that such exchanges are quite slow: while taking away a lot of the extra CO2 out of the atmosphere directly in the deep via the polar waters (THC), that is too slow to remove all human emissions of each year…

                But the main objection against the oceans as extra source of CO2 is the isotopic composition. Any release of the (deep) oceans will increase the 13C/12C ratio of the atmosphere while we see a firm decrease completely in ratio with human use of fossil fuels…


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          Andrew:

          There is also the awkward (for you) fact that in measurements of CO2 at depth over the last 30 years, “The pCO2(20) values show a consistent increase in deep water over the time period.” Exactly the opposite of what one would expect if CO2 was leaving the ocean.

          The ocean surface layer is even more clear: the upper few hundred meters is thoroughly mixed with the atmosphere with an e-fold exchange speed of less than one year, getting an equilibrium in 2-3 years. But as the levels in the atmosphere continu to increase, the carbon content (DIC: CO2 + bicarbonate + carbonate) continues to increase too. If the oceans were the source, DIC should decrease, pH would increase and the 13C/12C ratio shouldn’t change in the water but increase in the atmosphere. The exact opposite happens for all the observations. There are two longer term series (apart from many ship’s surveys) at Bermuda and Hawaii:
          http://www.biogeosciences.net/9/2509/2012/bg-9-2509-2012.pdf Fig. 5
          and
          http://www.pnas.org/content/106/30/12235.full.pdf Fig.1 (indirectly: plotted as pCO2, calculated from DIC and TA)


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            The Griss

            The oceans will never become acid.

            The terminology is flawed (as a propaganda mechanism) from the very start.


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              The Griss

              ps. Its like having a million dollars in the bank, withdrawing $100 and saying you’re going broke.


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              I fully agree that the terminology is bad, although technically correct: the ocean pH is shifting to the acidic side, but is far from acidic and will never reach a pH below 7. Thus “acidification” is technically right, but highly misleading as most lay people would think of real acidic levels like from lemons and vinegar, killing all fish in the oceans…

              But skeptics who maintain the opinion that the oceans are the source of the increase of CO2 in the atmosphere are completely wrong, as the observations show the opposite changes in the oceans as should be observed if the oceans were a net source of CO2…


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                The Griss

                Frankly, I don’t think where the CO2 is coming from matters in the least.

                More Co2, within any range of possible future atmospheric values, is definitely beneficial for the biosphere.

                Life on this planet started when CO2 levels were far, far higher than they will ever be again.

                And probably in water that really was slight acidic (mild acids act as catalysts in many organic reactions)

                CO2 levels are currently still quite dangerously low. They have been barely above plant subsistence level for hundreds of thousands of years, and if we really are the cause of the increasing CO2 levels, then yippee to us humans.. we have saved the world, brought it back to life.

                Even if an enhanced CO2 atmosphere does cause a tiny amount of warming (which I doubt, given that the pressure gradient and solar inputs control things), ..

                …then that warming is probably a good think in most parts of the world.

                We are only just above the dangerously low temperatures of the LIA, and nowhere near those of the MWP or RWP.

                I really hope that the likes of Easterbrook, and the Russian guys are wrong, and we are not heading into a cooling period, that would be disastrous for world food supplies.

                Sorry for getting narky, but the “scare” words like “extreme”, “acidification”, etc etc, really are starting to annoy me, because the are so obviously just a propaganda tactic to push the alarmist meme, and absolutely nothing to do with real science.


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                Heywood

                “although technically correct”

                Maybe, but I don’t think it is the most appropriate term. Yes, the ocean’s pH is heading towards an acidic state, but it is hardly acidification.

                A solution can only be in one of two states – Acidic or Basic (or Alkaline)

                An acidic solution can be made more or less acidic but cannot be more or less basic.

                A basic solution can be made more or less basic, but cannot be more or less acidic.

                The more correct term to use when describing ocean ‘acidification’ is to say the ocean is becoming less basic, and only very slightly so.

                As ‘The Griss’ stated above, the term “ocean acidification” is merely a propaganda mechanism, because it sounds scarier than “less basic”.


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                The Griss

                I prefer the term, less alkaline.

                or maybe even less caustic :-)


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                The Griss

                ie, making the mental link to caustic soda,


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                I prefer the term, less alkaline.

                Agreed, that is the most correct term without any negative undertone…


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            The Griss

            Seriously Englebert, if you can’t link to people who know the difference between an acid and a base, why bother, !!


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    ImranCan

    I must admit to feeling a sense of vindication at the result that 98% do not think there is anything catastrophic happening. With the incessant drumbeat of the ridiculous “denier” theme coming from the media fuelled ideology, even I was beginning to doubt myself. Now I know the truth ….. And is is somewhat liberating.


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    Speedy

    Jo

    You have certainly collected an eclectic band of minds on this site – some truly brilliant mental horsepower (degree qualified or not) is on display.

    Thank you, one and all.

    Cheers,

    Speedy


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    TdeF

    Catastrophic Global Warming will die. Simply because even non scientists can tell the world is no warmer in nearly 20 years. The warmists will resort to ‘Climate Change’ and ‘extreme events’. This position is defensible because it is meaningless. With the hundreds of billions spent, we have a measure of ‘Global Temperature’ which after all is very hard to define across latitudes, seasons, night and day and countries and oceans. It is a triumph to even have a Global Temperature and now we know it is not changing.

    Climate is very different. The climate varies even across a city. It is dependent on concrete, vegetation, vegetation type and colour and water use, lakes, streams, obstacles and what happens nearby. Australia does not have a climate, or at least it has hundreds of them, from Darwin to Hobart, Albany to Cooktown. Do they change? All the time, so you have to average over decades as some years are hot and wet and others dry and cold, some windy and others with bushfires. Now we now that every storm, every hurricane, every bushfire and every seasonal variation in sea ice is proof of climate change. How can it be denied.

    We need to keep these profiteers of doom to their original thesis, that man made CO2 was producing catastrophic Global warming.

    Or you could ask a single question about Climate Change.

    “How does CO2 concentration produce Climate Change if it cannot even change the temperature?”

    Really does anyone expect an increase of 0.005% in total CO2 concentration over 100 years to make any difference to climate? How? The only change I can see, as agreed by the CSIRO, is that we will green the planet and so slightly increase rainfall in Australia. The deserts will bloom again. Sounds great.


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    I think this is mega ..please pick it up .
    TIP : checkout 26min 30s of last Friday’s ABC prog : Naked Scientists Q&A at the AAAS (Science Conference)
    Seems to me the ABC’s Robyn Williams & Joel Werner have crossed a line & seriously damaged the ABC’s reputation
    http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/nakedscientists/new-document/5274394 (strangely no podcast)
    The podcast is here http://www.thenakedscientists.com/HTML/podcasts/naked-scientists/show/20140214-1/
    26min 30s There is this question from “Science Journalist” Joel Werner
    …Hang on that’s Joel Werner is not just a regular audience member nor scientist,
    he flippin works for the ABC making Climate Alarmist programs, including bits for the science show alongside Robyn Williams who is sitting up on the stage as part of the panel. So I assumed then that both he and Robyn were working together gathering material at AAAS. So how come they don’t have the courtesy to mention that they are connected.
    To me it seemed like an outrageous PLANTED question.
    2. It was orageous propaganda
    3. It drew in the British Minister forScience David Willets as he was a panel member. And got him to use the word denier

    “Climate deniers often use the tools of propaganda to further their campaigns, should science be embracing these similar tools ?”

    Jesus do you see what they have done ? to smear skeptics as “devious & manipulative” Joel et al seem to have been “devious & manipulative”
    - The question gave Robyn the excuse to do what otherwise been impossible do a big rant & smear against skeptics and plug Naomi Oreskes book
    seriously I had to lie down.

    Clarifications : Is Joel still working for the ABC ? “Joel is an Australian who has just moved to NYC as a freelance”
    Well it seems he is still on the books as an ABC (Oz) journalist & his progs are still going out there
    Joels ABC profile page http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/joel-werner/2915416
    (perhaps on 1 year leave of absence)
    (I also wonder : did “freelancer” Joel pay for the AAAS trip himself or did ABC chip in in some way ?)
    NS forum has warmists already discussing that show http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/index.php?topic=50453

    - how strangley fortuitous that as they collected the questions from the audience and stacked them randomly that a question written by Joel came to the right position. I respect Naked Scientists so much, but this damages their credibility. And the public would have had a different impression if they had had the courtesy to mention that Robyn and Joel know each other (I presume quite well since they share the same religiousity for climate alarmisn)
    I’m sure they would deny anything was wrong, but to me “it is consistant with” a scenario where the question was planted.

    Cos if that scenario were true that would be an attempt to smear your opposition as being “devious & manilpulative” by being devious & manipulative themselves.
    ..And that really does seem consistant with the normal PROJECTION which is the fingerprint of alarmist activists.


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    I see Commenter Pat also picked up the story on Saturday
    I also complained
    Naked Scientists might say they think it was a perfectly reasonable question that inspired an interesting discussion I disagree
    - 1. They should have screened the word “denier” as it is a loaded UNSCIENTIFIC word
    - 2. It was a smear rather than a valid question, because it failed to give any evidence of the heavy assumptions
    - Those were strong assumptions it made
    1 that skeptics use propaganda
    2 and the other side have not even started to
    … we know well from Climategate emails and 28Gate and the Futerra PR agency that came up with the “rules of the game” report telling the UK gov to push the “science is settled meme”.
    that what I would call the beyond-sci-activists seem to use propaganda techniques much more than skeptics


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      John Brookes

      “Denier” is a perfectly good word to describe people who, in the face of lots of evidence, continue to deny.


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        Evidence of WHAT?

        Where is the evidence that global climate is being changed by anthroprogenic CO2 emissions?

        Evidence. Not computer model runs.


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        James Bradley

        Pull up John, warmists present beliefs, AGW evidence is tainted – scepticism is a very healthy human trait to prevent being fooled by confidence tricksters.


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        The Griss

        Then you won’t mind us calling YOU a denier.

        John Brookes: DENIER extraordinaire.


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        Heywood

        ““Denier” is a perfectly good word”

        No John, it is used by lazy activist tossers (like yourself) to make vague comparisons between those skeptical of your claims with holocaust denial and you know it. You can try and justify it as much as you like, but there are much more accurate descriptors to use than ‘deny’. Try ‘disagree’ on for size.

        Don’t you have university toilets to mop?


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        James Bradley

        John, the word ‘denier’ seems to be used predominantly by those who want to force their beliefs onto others this type of behaviour could be described by words such as persecution, bullying and harassment.


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    TIP : checkout 26min 30s of last Friday’s ABC prog : Naked Scientists Q&A at the AAAS (Science Conference)
    Seems to me the ABC’s Robyn Williams & Joel Werner have crossed a line & seriously damaged the ABC’s reputation
    The podcast is here http://www.thenakedscientists.com/HTML/podcasts/naked-scientists/show/20140214-1/
    (link to ABC show broadcast http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/nakedscientists/new-document/5274394 ..strangely no podcast)

    26min 30s There is this question from “Science Journalist” Joel Werner
    …Hang on that’s Joel Werner is not just a regular audience member nor scientist,
    he flippin works for the ABC making Climate Alarmist programs, including bits for the science show alongside Robyn Williams who is sitting up on the stage as part of the panel. So I assumed then that both he and Robyn were working together gathering material at AAAS. So how come they don’t have the courtesy to mention that they are connected.
    To me it seemed like an outrageous PLANTED question.

    “Climate deniers often use the tools of propaganda to further their campaigns, should science be embracing these similar tools ?”

    2. It was outrageous propaganda
    3. It drew in the British Minister for Science David Willets as he was a panel member. And got him to use the word denier.

    Jesus do you see what they have done ? to smear skeptics as “devious & manipulative” Joel et al seem to have been “devious & manipulative”
    - The question gave Robyn the excuse to do what otherwise been impossible do a big rant & smear against skeptics and plug Naomi Oreskes book
    seriously I had to lie down.

    Clarifications : Is Joel still working for the ABC ? “Joel is an Australian who has just moved to NYC as a freelance”
    Well it seems he is still on the books as an ABC (Oz) journalist & his progs are still going out there
    Joels ABC profile page http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/joel-werner/2915416
    (perhaps on 1 year leave of absence)
    (I also wonder : did “freelancer” Joel pay for the AAAS trip himself or did ABC chip in in some way ?)
    NS forum has warmists already discussing that show http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/index.php?topic=50453

    - how strangley fortuitous that as they collected the questions from the audience and stacked them randomly that a question written by Joel came to the right position. I respect Naked Scientists so much, but this damages their credibility. And the public would have had a different impression if they had had the courtesy to mention that Robyn and Joel know each other (I presume quite well since they share the same religiousity for climate alarmisn)
    I’m sure they would deny anything was wrong, but to me “it is consistant with” a scenario where the question was planted.

    Cos if that scenario were true that would be an attempt to smear your opposition as being “devious & manilpulative” by being devious & manipulative themselves.
    ..And that really does seem consistant with the normal PROJECTION which is the fingerprint of alarmist activists.

    - I also complained
    Naked Scientists might say they think it was a perfectly reasonable question that inspired an interesting discussion I disagree
    - 1. They should have screened the word “denier” as it is a loaded UNSCIENTIFIC word
    - 2. It was a smear rather than a valid question, because it failed to give any evidence of the heavy assumptions
    - Those were strong assumptions it made
    1 that skeptics use propaganda
    2 and the other side have not even started to
    … we know well from Climategate emails and 28Gate and the Futerra PR agency that came up with the “rules of the game” report telling the UK gov to push the “science is settled meme”.
    that what I would call the beyond-sci-activists seem to use propaganda techniques much more than skeptics

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    darn sorry for the double post..you can delete #37


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    Mike S

    Quick note – seems to be a copy-and-paste error in the last paragraph (“Whats next?”). About halfway down a sentence starts “We will therefore be approaching” but after that repeats the beginning of Mike’s announcement almost verbatim.


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    D J C

    The Global Precipitation Mission will no doubt be helpful in making short-term weather predictions in that any significant increase in rainfall above a particular region signals cooler temperatures a day or two later, because the supporting temperature will be lowered.

    It may also help some to decide which side of the fence is the correct one. That fence divides the isothermalists and the isentropists – new words for your spell check it seems.

    (a) The isothermalists (like Roy Spencer) believe the troposphere would have been isothermal in the absence of those “pollutants” like water vapour and carbon dioxide. The fact that the Uranus troposphere doesn’t have them, or a surface, or any direct solar radiation doesn’t perturb them as they bury their heads in the carbon dioxide hoax.

    (b) The isentropists understand why there is in fact a thermal gradient in the troposphere of Uranus because they understand the implications of the isentropic state which the Second Law of Thermodynamics says will evolve spontaneously.


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    Stephen Richards

    TdeF

    February 25, 2014 at 10:02 pm · Reply

    Catastrophic Global Warming will die. Simply because even non scientists can tell the world is no warmer in nearly 20 years.

    TdeF, Do not become complancent. The Nazis used the same techniques as these greens and succeeded in controling a very large nation and destroying 6 million people without so much as a wimper of protest. Yes, I know today is different but the sheople are not and the greens know it.


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      TdeF

      Thanks. My point was that they will abandon a losing argument and retreat to the comfort of the undefinable ‘climate change’ to regroup.
      Along the way, no one will bother to explain how the CO2 which did not produce Catastrophic Global Warming actually produces ‘climate change’


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    David

    Haven’t seen any survey to fill in – but as a dyed-in-the-wool sceptic I confirm that I am also a degree-qualified retired mechanical engineer – so add me to your list..


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    Mark D.

    What is very telling is that there appears to be two camps:

    One camp uses science, funded principally by government, to save the world and wants to foist various political solutions to bring about that salvation.

    The other camp wishes to save the world from the effects of permitting and even sanctioning oppressive political power by using flawed science as the justification.

    Ask yourself; in terms of saving the world, what camp has history firmly on it’s side?

    This is why I’m a skeptic. There is scientific evidence that governments can and will put their people in harms way. There is very little scientific evidence that humans are in harms way because of changes to climate.


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    “Four out of five skeptics agree our emissions cause CO2 levels to rise, that Co2 causes warming, and that global temperatures have increased. In other words, the mainstream media journalists have somehow entirely missed both the nature of the skeptics and the nature of the debate.”

    So four out of five have bought in to the simplistic warmist arguments. The first point is likely although there isn’t any good direct evidence(no Ferdinand the isotope ratio doesn’t count for the reasons E M Smith laid out. See WUWT today where Willis finds a simple well documented natural experiment to demolish the “cause of the pause is volcanos” paper. Then connect the dots to the alleged CO2 caused warming. Which warming , BTW is less than 1 degree C which is probably inside the error band, if indeed what we are told is correct and hasn’t been tampered with with dubious adjustments. There has likely been some temperature variation as shown by length of growing seasons but it is very difficult to measure with any accuracy.

    Basing huge political decisions on this dubious evidence is a good way to end technical civilisation. That is, of course, the goal of many.


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      Peter C

      I agree Mike,

      What is Going On?

      96% of respondents said that atmospheric CO2 levels are increasing with 79% attributing the increase to man-made sources. 81% agreed that global temperatures had increased over the 20th century and 81% also agreed that CO2 is a warming gas. But only 2% believed that increases in CO2 would cause catastrophic global warming.

      So what’s going on?

      Above all, these highly qualified people – experts in their own spheres – look at the published data and trust their own analysis, so their views match the available data. They agree that the climate warmed over the 20th century (this has been measured), that CO2 levels are increasing (this too has been measured) and that CO2 is a warming gas (it helps trap heat in the atmosphere and the effects can be measured). Beyond this, the survey found that 98% of respondents believe that the climate varies naturally and that increasing CO2 levels won’t cause catastrophic warming.

      1 CO2 levels are increasing. Correct. The CSIRO measurement staion at Cape Grim, Tasmania produces good data and confirms the measurements from Moana Loa, Hawai. 96% apparently got that right.

      2. The increase is due to made made sources. Debateable. There are lots of sources of CO2. The amount of increase due man made sources is complete conjecture. However 79% apparently agree.

      3. Global temperatures have increased over the 20th century. Debateable. There are big problems creating a global temperature reconstruction from individual, widely scattered thermometers. Only 1/3 of the planet surface is sampled. Add Urban Heat Island effect, measurement errors and tampering with the records by Meterology Authorities. Satellite measurements since 1968 show little or no warming. None the less 81% agree,

      4. CO2 is a warming gas. No direct evidence for that. Yet 81% agree

      5. Climate varies naturally and that increasing CO2 levels won’t cause catastrophic warming. 98% agree, despite the fact that it is a contradiction to points 1, 2, 3 and 4.

      Therefore it seems to me unlikely that all these highly qualified people have looked at the published evidence and formed their own opinions on the basis of the evidence.


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        The Griss

        Its #3 and #4 which I find most debatable.

        3. The records are so seriously stuffed up, nobody has a clue any more. Raw data would seem to indicate a peak at 1940, about the same as 1998
        ….In central NSW, Vic the raw data shows a nasty peak around 1906-1910, higher than either now or 1940
        ….Ocean temps from NOAA also show the 1940 peak being higher than now.
        …. yes there was maybe a slight warming from 1970-2000, but that followed a cooling from 1940-1970. Nothing unusual happening here.

        4. See the numerous posts by thermal engineers, who just laugh at this proposition.
        Its the pressure gradient that controls the temperature, with respect to the incoming energy, and CO2 does not affect the pressure gradient.


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        Vic G Gallus

        I think that 2) refers to people agreeing that some of the increase could be due to fossil fuel use. I think most would appreciate that a warmer ocean would mean more CO2 from the oceans goes into the atmosphere as well as other sources.

        3) There is reason to be suspicious of the a plot of mean global surface temperatures. That’s not what it is but it is evidence that the world has warmed, and most of it likely to be natural.(apologies to the who ever posted this, I forgot your name)

        4)Most people agree that CO2 does absorb IR radiation and that it must have some sort of trapping effect. Opinions of how large that effect is on world temperatures might vary a lot but that it is well short of how large natural changes are is a common opinion.

        There is no contradiction but a lot of different views that only have one thing in common. the IPCC have sold us a pup.


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        Jantar

        The question about CO2 did not ask if man had caused the increase. If it had I would have disagreed, but instead it asked us how much we agreed with the staement “Man-made sources have increased global levels of CO2″. I believe man made sources have increased the global levels of CO2, but so have many natural sources. Therefore, the staement about cause is out of line with the question asked.


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        About:

        4. CO2 is a warming gas. No direct evidence for that. Yet 81% agree

        That was proven over a century ago (Tyndall?). And satellites show an increase in absorbance at the CO2 spectrum of outgoing IR radiation. That amount of energy must get somewhere, thus warms something somewhere. If that has much effect, that is the main question…

        5. Climate varies naturally and that increasing CO2 levels won’t cause catastrophic warming. 98% agree, despite the fact that it is a contradiction to points 1, 2, 3 and 4.

        No contradiction at all: if there is little effect from points 1-4, then the effect is undetectable within natural variability, like we see now with the “pauze”…


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      Come on boys (where are the girls?),

      Near the full increase of CO2 in the atmosphere is man-made. Temperature has some effect, but that is very moderate: 5 ppmv/°C over the seasons, 4-5 ppmv/°C interannual (opposite to the seasons!) and 8 ppmv/K from decades to multi-millennia.
      The MWP-LIA drop of ~0.8 K in temperature was good for a drop of 6 ppmv CO2, with a lag of ~50 years after the temperature drop:
      http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/law_dome_1000yr.jpg
      The resolution of the Law Dome DSS ice core is an average over ~20 years and the repeatability of the measurements is at 1.2 ppmv (1 sigma). That means that if there was a sustained increase of 2.5 ppmv during 20 years or a one-year peak of 25 ppmv, it would have been detected in the core.
      Thus some 6 ppmv extra since the LIA is from natural causes, except if you prefer Mann’s hockeystick as real, then the current temperature is higher than during the MWP…

      The 13C/12C ratio changed with a few tenths of a per mil during huge CO2 changes over glacial-interglacial transitions and back. The variability in ice cores (atm) and corraline sponges (ocean surface) over the past Holocene also is within +/- 0.2 per mil:
      http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/sponges.gif
      Since about 1850, the drop in ratio is 1.6 per mil. The equivalent of burning down halve of all land vegetation. But the latter is growing: the earth is greening. There are only few sources of low 13C into the atmosphere: fresh vegetation and fossil vegetation and methane made by bacteria. The latter is hardly increased in the past decade, fresh vegetation is currently a growing sink and all other sources are higher in 13C/12C ratio than in the atmosphere. That includes oceanic releases, volcanoes, rock weathering,…

      What me as (retired) engineer convinced was the process response of nature to the disturbance by human emissions: remarkably linear for a bunch of linear and non-linear natural processes:
      http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/temp_co2_acc_1900_2011.jpg
      and
      http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/acc_co2_1900_cur.jpg

      If anyone can point me to a natural process that gives a similar increase in CO2 without much natural variability, I am very interested…


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    It should be no surprise that engineers stand out as a group amongst global warming/climate change skeptics.

    As a group engineers deal with proven formulas, reliable data, and reality, not anecdotes, computer projections, consensus, and hockey stick FrankenGraphs.

    One look at the ice core temperature graph for the last 10,500 years (Alley, R.B. 2000, The Younger Dryas cold interval as viewed from central Greenland, Quaternary Science Reviews, 19:213-226.) speaks volumes on the insignificance of the warmup of the last 50 years.


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    Renato Alessio

    Some year and a half or two ago ago, the then Association of Professional Engineers, Scientists and Managers Australia, now Professionals Australia (i.e. the professionals’ trade union) surveyed its members and found them evenly split at 50% each on the question of human caused global warming. Thus I suspect that there is some validity to the notion that many engineers and scientists are likely to be skeptical.

    However, the problem with the Scottish survey, and those of all other on-line forums is that the sample is self-selecting, rather than being a random sample. Therefore, the results are statistically meaningless. One sees crazy survey results all over the place that arise from responding to on-line surveys or ringing in for TV and radio stations’ so called “polls”. The real pollsters always select the sample population to question, rather than the other way round.

    If one really wanted to know what engineers and scientists thought about the issue, one would be better off locating 31 or 100 engineers and scientists at random from university records, and then finding them, ringing them up and asking them.

    If one tried using the correct random sampling technique, but using say memebership of Engineers Australia or Professionals Australia to draw the sample, the result could well still be incorrect for the population as a whole (though correct for the membership of those organisations), as the former group may be made up with a greater percentage of acadameics, while the latter group probably has more government engineers within its membership.
    Regards.


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    Roy Hogue

    The so called “experts” (say like Stephan Lewandowsky, and John Cook) either don’t understand what drives skeptics, or they know but do their best “not to accidentally discover it” with irrelevant surveys, loaded questions, poor sampling and bad methodology.

    They certainly do know what drives skeptics and it scares them nearly to death. It doesn’t take much research to find the credentials and even more important, the accomplishments of any noteworthy skeptic. Google will do it for you. And if there’s anything these people know to do it’s: know thine enemy.


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    cat

    My sister is a Green Despot. She lowers her voice and says “Are you a DENIER?” It was at that moment I realized it’s not science it’s religion. If my sister had the power she would like to use, she would burn me at the stake for offences against God. It’s a supreme narcissism. I create the world! And since she doesn’t have any religion, family values or sense of purpose in her life the Green Outrage and Anger satisfies her. As she said, which really demonstrates how feelings are trumping common sense, “Don’t you care about the planet?”


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      When assaulted with the “denier” term, an appropriate response may be to admit that one is an “infidel”.

      That is, after all, the correct terminology for one who does not share a particular (religious) belief.


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        Roy Hogue

        It’s a tough bind to be in, Bernd. Sometimes family can be more judgmental than anyone and when that happens you have to decide how much harm you’re going to accept to the relationship. And since the split is already there it’s not easily solved with choice of the “right term”. I have seen brother and sister become almost mortal enemies over less than climate change (not my sister fortunately).

        From the description of the problem I wouldn’t give advice. :-)


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    Grant (NZ)

    I know some very smart people who believe in CAGW. They hold similar qualifications to me – the same undergraduate degree in fact. And they are very sharp when it comes to business – they know how to make money, protect a revenue stream and reduce costs. But they blindly believe anything they are told by ‘experts’ about the climate.

    What they seem to lack is that “incredulity” factor – the ability to think things through from a scientific perspective. They don’t realise that the “proof” of CAGW is all provided by computer models and not by empirical observation.


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    Orson Presence

    On Lewandowsky, the man has mush for brains. You can see it most clearly here.

    Here’s a lengthy quote, my comments in square brackets:

    ““Truth is so precious that she should be attended by a bodyguard of lies.”

    Winston Churchill’s famous words were uttered during the war against the Nazis and referred to Operation Bodyguard, a deception that was intended to mislead the German high command about the date and location of the invasion of Normandy. Given the context, few would criticise Churchill’s statement.

    Now imagine Bernie Madoff uttering the same words in defense of his acrobatic Ponzi schemes. Few would accept such glaring sophistry. [Maybe, but if Madoff had stolen his billions to fund global warming research, that would be fine in Stephan's book, and it's not sophistry, it's not even sophisticated.]

    Where does Dr Peter Gleick’s revelation that he lied to a conservative think tank to access climate change documents fit on this spectrum?

    This question gets us right to the heart of a central issue in moral cognition and philosophy: Are there immutable moral rules — such as “thou shall not lie” — or does morality legitimately involve a trade-off between competing ethical imperatives that includes consideration of the ultimate outcomes of one’s actions?” {There’s too many ways to pull this down, it’s classical Machiavelli end justifies the means stuff, Millsean utilitarianism with its associated infinite regression problems, and we all know how that worked out in the French Revolution, Russia, China etc etc. More interesting to my mind is the basic logical problem with the statement. If “morality legitimately involve[s] a trade-off between competing ethical imperatives”, then that must be an “immutable moral rule”. So Lewandowsky is claiming an “immutable moral rule” does and doesn’t exist simultaneously. That’s a reductio ad absurdem.

    Like I said, the man has mush for brains.


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    A brief on the latest from Dr. Dennis Jensen (MP).

    Some may not be aware that Australia has a scientist (with expertise in the physical sciences) sitting as a Member of Parliament. But even though he’s with the parliamentary majority party, he is in a minority of one as a physical scientist in the chamber. …

    Please follow the link to read more.


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    C Muir

    “Four out of five skeptics agree our emissions cause CO2 levels to rise, that Co2 causes warming, and that global temperatures have increased”.?????? Excuse me, As a skeptic, I believe only the first.

    It has been shown that C02 levels in the past have nothing to do with whether it is an ice age or a tropical age.

    As for global temperatures, have they increased? Apart from the fact that we are coming out of a small ice age, which no one knows why, or how, I doubt that there is any extra warming on top of that as well, when we are talking about a miniscule part of a degree, when thermometers can have errors up to 2 degrees c.

    As for the whole quantifying how many skeptics have degrees in whatever, this is an attempt to argue from a position of authority.
    Any person of reasonable intelligence without a degree can discuss this. It is not rocket science, although attempts have been made to make it appear to be so, in order to exclude the masses from saying anything.


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    Rereke Whakaaro

    That quote is about the results of the survey. Admittedly, it is probably very badly worded, because it conflates all three ideas, but it is a quotation. So it is, what it is.

    To understand the question about qualifications, you need to know that Jo ran an informal and voluntary survey on this site where she asked people what qualifications they had. A significant number said that they had no tertiary qualifications but had taken the trouble to read up on the subject, and conduct their own research. And that is fine – this site is not elitist, and I can’t remember who has what degree in what field. It is not an issue. Several guest contributors have been experts in their specialised fields, but have not had any tertiary qualifications above a trade certificate. But boy, do they know their stuff!

    A significant number of those with tertiary qualifications are engineers and applied scientists, and so have a more pragmatic view of the world. I guess that would tend to make them more skeptical as well. We also have a few academic scientists, who visit here, but they tend to be in positions where they are not reliant on getting grant funding. In its own way, that also says a lot about the underlying drivers, and motivations, wouldn’t you say?


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    Mark Luxton

    The word skeptic is being misused by the mainstream media, deliberately I would say. Now the masses are also misunderstanding and misusing the word skeptic.

    Belief, also greatly misused and misunderstood, is actually a retarded and lazy form of thinking; or nonthinking. It is foolish. ALL belief is foolish.

    The other side of the coin, and equally retarding of thinking, another type of nonthinking, is disbelief.

    The mainstream media paints skeptics as disbelievers, and gives airtime to disbelievers(deniers) calling them skeptics.

    A true skeptic is neither a believer nor a disbeliever, but one who withholds judgment or conclusion till there is certainty/proof.

    A good scientist or a good thinker is also neither a believer nor a disbeliever.

    Skeptic does not mean disbeliever nor denier.


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    [...] JoNova reports on Mike Haseler’s recent survey of skeptics; some interesting results [...]


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    Peter Lang

    Jo, Excellent post. Thank you.


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    [...] har frågat 5,286 personer som regelbundet läser på skeptiska bloggar om vad de är för några. JoNova bad Mike Haseler, som leder det hela, att berätta lite om vad han fått reda på [...]


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    Fatso

    Sorry, but I can’t parse this sentence:

    We will therefore be approaching The Scottish Climate & Energy Forum has been conducting a survey on the background and attitudes of participants to online climate discussions

    Is there a word missing or maybe an entire phrase?


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