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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Climate change increases chance of dragons

Be warned. Don’t write this off as the usual exaggerated hype from Nature.

Zoology: Here be dragons Andrew J. Hamilton, Robert M. May & Edward K. Waters Nature 520, 42–43   doi:10.1038/520042a  Published online 01 April 2015

Emerging evidence indicates that dragons can no longer be dismissed as creatures of legend and fantasy, and that anthropogenic effects on the world’s climate may inadvertently be paving the way for the resurgence of these beasts.

Figure 2: The rise and fall and rise again of dragons. The relative frequency of ‘dragons’ in fictional literature (thick red line), as determined as a unigram probability4, with two historical reconstructions of Northern Hemisphere temperature (decadal smoothing) shown in blue5 and purple6. Global temperatures have been measured since 1855 (thick black line5). Temperature anomalies represent deviations from the 1961–90 reference period. The rising incidence of dragons in the literature correlates with rising temperatures, and suggests that these fire-breathing lizards are being sighted more frequently. As a result, the large-scale ‘Third Stir’ is deemed to be imminent.

Ominous signs are there:

Further work has revealed that the early medieval period was a veritable paradise for dragons. This can be attributed to the [...]

UK Met Office uses graphical tricks to hide the pause

The UK Met Office went to some effort to graph the last 160 years, from hottest calendar year to coldest.

Name the scientific reason:

1. Because the order of the calendar years is important.

The graph reveals mysterious patterns  — Years ending in 3, 4, or 5 are more likely to be hotter. Years containing a six are statistically more likely to be green.

OR

2. Because climate models show a linear rise in temperatures, and no “pause”, and this graph does too. Glance at it sideways and be afraid!

 The Met Office used to say one year doesn’t mean anything, only long term trends matter.

Now they graph the noise.

Thanks to Barry Woods for pointing me at this, and carefully putting the years back in their chronological order in the graph below.

See the pause? See the noise?

IPCC competition? Dr Xargles Book of Earth Weather

Reader William York points out that Dr Xargle’s Book of Earth Weather (published 1992) is a similar vintage to the IPCC  FAR report. Xargle’s job was to explain Earth’s climate to the Planet of Queeqians. Like the FAR report, Dr Xargle was turned into a fictional TV series.

Perfect fodder really for a Holiday Unthreaded.  – Jo

 ——————————————————————————————–

From William York,

The following work, first published in 1992 is arguably one of the best interpretations of the 1990 IPCC First Assessment Report.

The book appears to be based on the earlier work of Mark Twain who wisely said “climate is what you want and weather is what you get”.

Dr Xargle from another planet should be well aligned with our climate modelers.

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Study namecalling at Queensland University

Would you too like to learn how to misinform people, mangle English, and toss cherry-picked factoids that avoid the real point? How about studying to be an apologist for scientists who take your taxes, but hide their data? Or perhaps you’ve always dreamed of being an obedient useful fool for the State, to help promote propaganda that governments can change the weather if the people just pay enough money?

Are you looking for a cause to pick up that you can brag about at parties to prove your social superiority, impress teenage girls, or hide your low self-esteem? Do you crave an outlet where you get the thrill of being a namecalling bully, but with the excuse that you are “saving the planet” and “being scientific”?

Good news, Queensland University is dumping any pretense that its science faculty uses logic or reason or has an interest in observable evidence. The university is advertising that abusing English definitions and words meets its standards of higher education. After all, no one denies we have climate, and “climate deniers” don’t exist, but it’s a useful propaganda term to fog, veil and clog up the public debate about climate science. John Cook who [...]

Global Placebo Effect: Windmills, taxes, solar panels — slowed global warming before they were built.

New Global Placebo Effect (GPE) announced by Baroness Verma in the UK.

It’s a scientific breakthrough. Global warming may be stopped by the mere thought of trying to reduce CO2, even if that thought fails to bring down actual CO2 levels.

The central dilemma: CO2 levels have been rising “faster than expected” for the last twenty years, yet global warming has been rising “slower than expected” for almost as long.

Matt Ridley was questioning Baroness Sandip Verma at the House of Lords this week. He pointed out to the peers that even the IPCC admits there is “hiatus” that modelers can’t explain. Verma responded: “‘It [global warming] may have slowed down, but that is a good thing. It could well be that some of the measures we are taking today is helping that to occur.’” [Source -- Dailymail]

Verma raises the intriguing possibility that windmills and solar panels that were built after 2005 have managed to keep global temperatures constant starting from ten years before they were constructed.

What’s even more remarkable is that none of these projects or activities have reduced global CO2 levels. It follows then, that the mere thought of building windmills is enough to change the [...]

Australia becomes a climate pariah and yet tourists flock to visit the Axis of Carbon!

According to the Guardian, Australia is almost a Climate Pariah TM, and owes the world an apology for voting to repeal the Carbon Tax.

What chilling effect, I wondered, did being a pariah have on international tourists?

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, in July 2014 as the Carbon Tax was finally removed, tourists voted with their feet … and flocked to come. A record 573,100 visitors arrived in Australia from all over the world. Year on year tourism from May 2013 – May 2014 grew by 8%.

Pariah status it appears, may count for Guardian and NY Times columnists, but not so much for the rest of the world.

Josh Bornstein of The Guardian says Australia is seen as a dirty polluter. The Axis of Carbon!

“This is how the New York Times responded to the scrapping of the carbon price scheme:

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Kill the Climate Deniers — taxes fund new “living satire” where writer plays paranoid believer admiring terrorists

I’ve come back from a few days R&R at a marvellous farm, to hear that the ACT government is tossing $19,000 to an Aspen Island Theatre Company to  do the “creative development” of a fun play called Kill The Deniers.

David Finnigan

Don Aitkin wonders if it is a comedy, so I went with an open mind to investigate. After reading his other works, I conclude the writer, David Finnigan, seems to be doing a brave new kind of living satire — one where he lives the genre full time as he prepares, never breaking out of character in tweets, blogs, or plays. Sheer brilliance! He is self-satirizing the paranoid useful idiot who swallows improbable scientific visions about controlling the weather, and uses hyperbolic crass motherf…… language in a form of scientific self-mockery. Taking things to absurd extremes, he calls himself peaceful while he admires terrorists, invents conspiracy theories, and dreams of bloody revolution.

Truly, this could be a remarkable production that we will laugh at for years to come. In a stroke of innovation, the production is not the play that is in draft — instead it’s the media, the blogs, and his own parody responses. The [...]

Gullible activists bury their heads in the sand

I guess scientific debate is too hard for some people. While skeptics want to talk about the evidence, some people just want to put their heads in the sand.

This story tritely reminds us that a picture is worth a thousands words. Indeed! The original caption read “Townsville Salutes the Australian government for their achievements in combating climate change”.  But the scientific evidence is clear that there are more accurate captions, so I thought I’d help them — strictly in the spirit of satire of course.

Fully 99% of climate models didn’t predict global warming would slow. Even in hindsight, they still don’t know why it happened.

The organizers want the idea to spread:

 Mr Hirst said he hoped that the concept would take off and that others would set up their own shots.

“People seem to like the idea … I would love to see people do it on Bondi Beach.”

 Go for it, I say. Tweet this!

 

Click here for the story of the 28 million weather balloons, and how tricky the IPCC can be at ignoring them. There’s more on the missing Hot Spot here.

Perhaps we [...]

Climate Disruption fodder for Stand Up

This is a good sign. And oh boy, there is so much more material to extend this theme. I predict we’ll see a lot more of this new form of public debate…

Michael Loftus does do a good Al Gore.

Some very funny comments about this on The Blaze.

Ridicule and mockery rather takes the fun out of things for the bully-boys of climate fear. It will dent recruitment.

So how long before DeSmog find a link to The Kochs?

 

H/t Sam.

Egypt went from wetter to drier three times in Predynastic times with perfect CO2 levels

Back when CO2 levels were ideal, and there were 1 billion less cars than today, monsoons always happened in the same place, the rain was the same year after year, and there were no local extinctions of animals.

If we could only return to renewable slave power:

[ScienceDaily] The researchers identified five episodes over the past 6,000 years when dramatic changes occurred in Egypt’s mammalian community, three of which coincided with extreme environmental changes as the climate shifted to more arid conditions. These drying periods also coincided with upheaval in human societies, such as the collapse of the Old Kingdom around 4,000 years ago and the fall of the New Kingdom about 3,000 years ago.

“There were three large pulses of aridification as Egypt went from a wetter to a drier climate, starting with the end of the African Humid Period 5,500 years ago when the monsoons shifted to the south,” Yeakel said. “At the same time, human population densities were increasing, and competition for space along the Nile Valley would have had a large impact on animal populations.”

No climate models were harmed in the production of this paper.

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