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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Another climate model paper in Nature misses a whole class of feedbacks

It’s always the same.  A new paper adds one more magical fine-tuning-cog to the models and promises “more accurate predictions”. There are a million small cogs we can add and it takes years to show they don’t deliver. These wheels can spin forever. The real climate machine has a whole extra exhaust pipe to which the models are blind.

 Why some climate processes are more effective at warming Earth

Conventional models assume increasing atmospheric CO2 warms the surface, then apply the feedbacks to the surface warming. But if feedbacks start up in the atmosphere instead, everything changes.

The assumption (bolded below) is the problem –

There are many processes which affect the surface climate: changes to the sun’s activity, to the cloud cover, precipitation patterns, or soil water content to name just a few. Currently climate scientists relate these processes by looking at how much they change the energy budget, described by perturbations in the radiative forcing. The existing assumption is that if a given process introduces a certain radiative forcing, then there will always be the same response in the surface air temperature. However, this assumption doesn’t hold for the temperature response on [...]

New Science 13: The Start of a New Architecture for Climate Models

In most ways, David Evans’ alternative model is exactly the same as the conventional model. But a reconnection of one forcing, and an additional factor, can make all the difference. Finally, climate model architecture is getting analyzed and discussed — the conventional structure has been in place for over 40 years.

In the conventional basic model the radiation imbalance caused by CO2 is treated like extra sunlight, amplified by the same feedback processes that amplify warming caused by the sun. But as we explained, the effects of CO2 are not just confined to the surface of Earth, but spread through the atmosphere. In the alternative model the warming caused by CO2 is allowed to have its own unique response. Only after the separate “warmings” of the Sun and CO2 are calculated can they be added together. The conventional model adds them too soon, while they are still radiation imbalances, and assumes the Earth’s climate responds to both in the same way — it’s too simplistic.

David’s model also allows for other factors to change cloud cover, with the addition of an input for externally driven albedo (EDA). In conventional models, clouds are just a feedback to surface warming, [...]

New Science 9: Error 3: All Radiation Imbalances Treated the Same — The Ground is not the sky!

The ground is not the sky

Here’s a big big flaw that is easy for anyone to understand, yet has lain at the core of the climate models since at least 1984. Indeed, you’ll wonder why we all haven’t been chuckling at this simplistic caricature of our atmosphere for 31 years.

The theory underlying the alarm about CO2 is built around a bizarre idea that blocking outgoing energy in the CO2 pipe is equivalent to getting an increase in sunlight. The very architecture of all the mainstream climate models assumes that the Earth’s climate responds to all radiation imbalances or “forcings” as if they were all like extra sunlight. (We call that extra absorbed solar radiation (ASR) to be more precise. It’s all about the sunlight that makes it through to the surface.)

Extra sunlight adds heat directly to the Earth’s surface, and maybe the climate models have correctly estimated the feedbacks from clouds and evaporation and what-not to surface warming. But it is obvious, in a way even a child could comprehend, that this is not the same as blocking outgoing radiation in the upper atmosphere, which is the effect of increasing CO2. [...]

Climate Models: 100% right except for rain, drought, storms, humidity and everything else

Yet more observations from the planet show that modelers misunderstand the water based part of the climate – on our water based planet.

Modelers thought that dry ground would decrease afternoon storms and rainfall over those frazzled parched lands (though I don’t remember many headlines predicting “More Drought means Fewer Storms” ). But observations show that storms are more likely to rain over dry soil. Why? Probably the dry soil heats up faster than moist areas thanks to the cooling effect of evaporation, and that in turn creates stronger thermals over dry land. Modelers assumed that wetter soils means more evaporation and thus more rain, but the moisture laden air is evidently coming from further away.

It’s another example of a point where climate modelers assume a positive feedback, yet the evidence suggests the feedback is negative. Once again water appears to be the dominant force with feedbacks (it does cover 70% of the surface). In a natural stable system the net feedbacks are likely to be negative. Positive feedbacks make the system less stable (and more scary and harder to predict.)

Climate change models misjudge drought: “A four-nation team led by Chris Taylor from Britain’s Centre for Ecology and [...]

Last 30 years shows climate feedbacks are zero (at best)

Let’s be as generous as we can. The IPCC say feedbacks amplify CO2′s warming by a factor of about three.

Without the amplification from positive feedback there is no crisis

So being nice people, let’s assume it’s warmed since 1979 and assume that it was all due to carbon dioxide. If so, that means feedbacks are …. zero. There goes that prediction of 3.3ºC. Feedbacks are the name of the game. If carbon dioxide doesn’t trigger off powerful positive feedbacks, there was and is no crisis. Even James Hansen would agree — inasmuch as he himself said that CO2 would directly cause about 1.2ºC of warming if it doubled, without any feedbacks (Hansen 1984).

Consider the warming from1979 to 2007, when we measured temperatures using satellites and not corrupted and adjusted land thermometers. Douglass and Christy (2008) point out that, given how much CO2 levels increased in that time, the warming only amounts to what the IPCC scientists predict we should get from CO2 alone, from the direct effect of CO2, and not from the effect of CO2 plus positive feedbacks.

The warming trend expected from CO2 without any feedbacks at all is 0.07 ºC/decade. The trends [...]

Dr David Evans: The Skeptic’s Case

A new brief summary of the reasoning and evidence behind the skeptics case. –Jo

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The Skeptic’s Case Who Are You Going To Believe – The Government Climate Scientists Or The Data? Guest Post Dr David M.W. Evans

We check the main predictions of the climate models against the best and latest data. Fortunately the climate models got all their major predictions wrong. Why? Every serious skeptical scientist has been consistently saying essentially the same thing for over 20 years, yet most people have never heard the message — here it is, put simply enough for any lay reader willing to pay attention.

What the Government Climate Scientists Say

 

Figure 1: The climate models. If the CO2 level doubles (as it is on course to do by about 2070 to 2100), the climate models estimate the temperature increase due to that extra CO2 will be about 1.1°C × 3 = 3.3°C. [1]

The direct effect of CO2 is well-established physics, based on laboratory results, and known for over a century.[2]

Feedbacks are due to the ways the Earth reacts to the direct warming effect of the CO2. The threefold amplification by feedbacks is based on the [...]

When top scientists take 2 years to publish, it’s time to give up on old “Peer” review

Ladies and Gentlemen this is the front line trench of modern science. If climate science is so important, and there is no time to waste, why does the system try so hard to discourage dissent (because they don’t want to find the truth, only the “correct” answer)?

This paper by Lindzen and Choi was submitted and rejected by GRL in 2009, then rejected twice more by PNAS. (And in part because it needed to meet impossible standards. In the end, it was supposed to include “the kitchen sink” but fit into a sandwich bag — see below). The paper could have been out for discussion in 2009, and while it has improved upon revision, was it worth the two year wait? Those gains could have been made in two months (or two weeks) online.

Even the reviewers understand how significant these results would be if they are right. One admits the new paper shows the models don’t match the observations.

Science needs free and open criticism, and competing theories. If Lindzen’s analysis is revolutionary, but potential wrong, is it so bad to publish those results? He is one of the most eminent researchers in the [...]

The oceans, clouds and cosmic rays drive the climate, not CO2

Dr Noor van Andel

Dr Noor van Andel spoke at the Dutch Meteorological Institute (KNMI), provocatively concluding there is no observational evidence for the influence of CO2 on past or present climate. He has released a high caliber slide set. He is the former head of research at Akzo Nobel.

In the very long run, we need not mind about CO2 or global warming, but instead about higher [galactic cosmic ray] activity and global cooling. There is no way we can influence [galactic cosmic ray] activity, originating in active black holes and imploding supernovae.

Essentially he uses empirical evidence to draw the conclusion that most recent climate variability is due to Pacific Decadal Oscillation, and to Cosmic Ray effect as described by Svensmark. This fits with what William Kinninmonth explained and I described as essentially a massive pool of “stored cold”  in the abyssal depths of the oceans, which erratically reaches up and pulls in heat from the insubstantial atmosphere above. Air temperatures are at the beck and call of the releases of this “cold” (yes I know cold is just an absence of heat). In El Nino years when the cold pool lies deep and unstirred, the incoming [...]

Clouds dominate everything

Al Gore describes how carbon dioxide beats up Mr Sunbeam and stops him leaving the atmosphere. But he “forgot” to mention that clouds reflect around a quarter of all the sunlight that hits the earth. Those beams of light travel all the way from the sun to get bounced off into space when they are just a few kilometers from the ground.

Any change in cloud cover makes a major difference. The IPCC assumes clouds respond to warming, but clouds could easily drive the warming.

[...]

The one flaw that wipes out the crisis

Carbon dioxide only causes 1.1°C of warming if it doubles. That’s according to the IPCC. Did you know?

The real game is water.

Researchers made guesses about humidity and clouds in the early 1980s and they built these guesses into their models. We now know they were wrong, not about carbon, but about water in the form of humidity and clouds. Here’s how the models can be right about carbon and wrong about the climate.

[...]