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Last Build Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2017 10:18:48 +0000


Comment on The climate has always changed. What do you conclude? by Barton Paul Levenson

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 10:18:48 +0000

V 137: I find Wolfe’s scattergram more convincing than BPL’s simply because it is consistent with the raw data, which in itself reveals no clear long term trend (despite the many efforts to explain the problem away by invoking various “forcings”). BPL: In statistics, "trend" has a specific meaning. Your saying there is no long-term trend is simply incorrect. If you want to know how to do it properly, the trend is the slope of the line when you plot a linear regression against time. If it's significantly above zero, you have a positive trend. If it's significantly below zero, you have a negative trend. V: I find it difficult to understand how BPL can translate a graph filled with suchups and downs into a smoothly rising trend leading to a correlation other than by the use of statistical legerdemain. BPL: Your inability to figure it out doesn't make it meaningless. I suggest you take a course in introductory statistics. I'm using no "legerdemain" whatsoever; I am applying some fairly simple, basic analyses. V: As for the technical issues raised in the critique of Wolfe’s work, I’m not qualified to comment. But unlike BPL’s result, “scientific” as it might be, Wolfe’s does seem to reflect the ups and downs of the actual data, so I’m sorry but I find his results more convincing. BPL: You find his results more congenial to your position, you mean.

Comment on The climate has always changed. What do you conclude? by MA Rodger

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 08:25:02 +0000

Victor the Troll @78 insisted that we are unable to develop any scientific understanding because all a skeptic has to do is insist the phenomenon we investigate is the result of leprechauns and, game over, all scientific theories are thus broken. Victor the Troll @137 adds statistics to the list of useless learning. This is because people use statistics to mislead others, to spread lies. I suppose if you are a stupid as Victor the Troll, it would be difficult or even impossible to determine when something is a correct representation of the evidence and when something is a lie. In such circumstance a world full of facts and fictions is a mighty difficult place. It seems to me we are faced with two alternatives. We could put aside statistics and science so stupid morons like Victor the Troll can sign off on what we do. Or such folk as stupid as Victor could stick to activities where lies and complex analysis aren't a problem, like music perhaps. I am inclined to the second alternative. Dire idiots like Victor the Troll have no place here making bold statements about something they can have little or no understanding of, no place outside the borehole.

Comment on Unforced variations: July 2017 by Andrew

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 08:16:59 +0000

Exposing your personal life details in a magazine article, misrepresenting the Paris Agreement and how low can you go? You certainly wouldn’t find such information in a climate science paper, but DWW does not hesitate to share an abundance of private details about his parents’ personal life in his New York Magazine piece. We learn for example that his father died of lung cancer: “My father’s, for instance: born in 1938, among his first memories the news of Pearl Harbor and the mythic Air Force of the propaganda films that followed, films that doubled as advertisements for imperial-American industrial might; and among his last memories the coverage of the desperate signing of the Paris climate accords on cable news, ten weeks before he died of lung cancer last July.” And that his 72 year old mother is still alive and kicking despite being a heavy smoker: “Or my mother’s: born in 1945, to German Jews fleeing the smokestacks through which their relatives were incinerated, now enjoying her 72nd year in an American commodity paradise, a paradise supported by the supply chains of an industrialized developing world. She has been smoking for 57 of those years, unfiltered.” Now, I couldn’t really fathom how these personal details fit into DWW’s narrative of certain death-by-climate-change, initially. Then I noticed the en passant jab at the Paris Agreement (nobody calls them “the Paris accords”, btw) in the details of DWW’s father death. And if you really look into it, the dates don’t quite match: the Paris Agreement was adopted on December, 12 2015, after a slightly drama-filled marathon of last-minute negotiations, but the “Paris Agreement was open for signature by States and regional economic integration organizations that are Parties to the UNFCCC (the Convention) from 22 April 2016 to 21 April 2017.” (from the Paris Agreement Wikipedia page) I don’t see anything “desperate” about that. DWW doesn’t stop there in his numerous attempts to misrepresent the Paris Agreement and misinform his readers. He insists repeatedly that 2C warming is the “goal” of the Paris Agreement: - “Now two degrees is our goal, per the Paris climate accords...” - “Even if we meet the Paris goals of two degrees warming...” What does the Paris Agreement really say (in article 2.1.a)? - “Holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels, recognizing that this would significantly reduce the risks and impacts of climate change;” No, the “goal” of the Paris Agreement is not 2C, it’s “well below 2C”, and if possible, under 1.5C. Btw, a special IPCC report is due in 2018 about the 1.5C global warming threshold. Which brings us back to the climate science related factual errors that Dr. Michael Mann found in DWW’s article. Here is Dr. Mann’s take on these factual errors: “DIMITRI LASCARIS: However, you've written a somewhat critical response to this article. Your critique of the Wallis-Wells piece in the New York Magazine can I think be broken down into two themes. The first broadly speaking is about factual errors that you've identified within the article, and the second relates to the rather pessimistic tone of his article. I'd like to start with the factual errors. What do you consider to be the most important factual errors in this New York Magazine piece? MICHAEL MANN: Yeah, and I don't see those two things as necessarily being independent, because my assessment is that those factual errors all sort of were in the same direction of implying a narrative of a future climate that is worse than what the science objectively supports. As I've said, the truth is bad enough. We don't have to exaggerate it to make the case that there is a great urgency in acting on climate change.” Could it be that DWW made those errors on purpose? It seems so. And if you [...]

Comment on The climate has always changed. What do you conclude? by MA Rodger

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 08:12:59 +0000

Victor the Troll @143. You ask the specific question "How is this [the graphic posted @127] a rebuttal of Wolfe’s result?" "Wolfe's result" is that global mean surface temperature relative to atmospheric CO2 levels 1958-to-date shows a fixed temperature followed by a linear rise followed by a fixed temperature. There is however no underlying basis for this "result". It is not a "result" obtained by anything other than Wolfe drawing some lines on a graph. His result is thus entirely bogus, a lie. And you bring it here, to a science-based forum because you believe it. Well done you. Of course, it is easy to see where you are coming from on this. You are in denial about there being warming since 1998, and you know there was a period in the 1950s and 1960s with a 'similar' absence of warming. So with CO2 rising year-on-year over this period, such denial would lead to an expectation of a plot like Wolfe's. Add to this a firm belief (based on denial of oh-so-many facts) that there is no impact from CO2 on global temperatures, and "Wolfe's result" must provide complete vindication for your dellusions. Such a shame it's just a bogus lie.

Comment on The climate has always changed. What do you conclude? by nigelj

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 04:19:21 +0000

Victor @141, correlations exist in shades of grey from perfect, to good, to fair to less than great to zero etc. If you plot CO2 against temperature for about 1850 - 2016 the correlation is reasonably good. Its not perfect but its a fair correlation. You can see this in one glance visually. Bartons maths proves you have a significant correlation over the long term since 1850. This maths is the same maths used in any field of science and engineering. Climate science does not require perfect correlation, just statistical significance. Barton has proven that as have hundreds of others. More importantly we know what causes the bumps in the nasa graph you lined to, el nino events, etc. The flat period mid last century was due to high levels of particulates fighting against the greenhouse gas trend. I think deep down you know this. Most of the people critical of climate science have absolutely no relevant qualifications. They don't have the first clue how the climate operates or what the equations mean. Back to correlation briefly. Its like tobacco smoking, not all lung cancer or emphysema is from this but an awful lot is. Its not a perfect correlation, but its a good or fair correlation. This is more than enough to deeply implicate tobacco in disease, plus we have a causative mechanism from laboratory studies. Its a fair analogy for climate science.

Comment on Unforced variations: July 2017 by nigelj

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 03:51:49 +0000

Zebra @350, phew, we really are on the same page. That's a relief. Couldn't agree more. No doubt we will find something to disagree on at some point. I think a lot of white collar clercial and some professional jobs are going to be replaced by intelligent computing, and it could happen fast, as computer chips cost nothing once the breakthroughs are made. I think full robotics will be much slower. Replacing plumbers and hairdressers with robots wont be cheap or easy. But regardless, people will be looking for work. They will drift into other remaining services industries, and maybe the result will be mass unemployment, or more likely lots of part time work and lower wages. I think it may lead to a UBI, a universal basic income. Im very uncomfortable with the idea of decent people being thrown on the scrap heap or dire poverty, so it will need something. The owners of capital may also feel little incentive to create enough jobs. It's uncharted territory, but you can't stop the march of technology.

Comment on The climate has always changed. What do you conclude? by Victor

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 03:38:28 +0000

#144 Astringent: ". . . and while you didn’t use the phrase ‘mysterious natural forcings’ you would have to acknowledge that your argument is based on a natural forcing that scientists have missed . . ." No, not at all. The skeptical argument is based, very simply, on the failure of certain climate scientists to offer convincing evidence supporting their theories. There are many possible reasons other than the failure to identify all natural forcings. The problem could lie, for example, in their over-reliance on dubious statistical methods, or their failure to take certain complexities in the physics into account, confirmation bias in their selection of data (for example, identifying the steep temperature rise from 1910 to 1940 as due to the lack of volcanic activity -- that one is pretty obvious -- as is the claim that the cooling from 1940 to 1979 was due to industrially produced aerosols), etc. Or even more simply, biases inherent in methods of data collection. As far as those "forcings" are concerned, the fact that the climate has changed many times in the past for reasons either unknown or not well understood, should be enough. If climate changed in the past for reasons unknown, then it might well be changing now for reasons unknown. Just as temperatures went down in the 40's for reasons unknown, leading to speculation about a coming ice age.

Comment on Unforced variations: July 2017 by nigelj

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 03:31:44 +0000

Al Bundy 339, yeah agreed. I did say capitalism is good in "essence" not that it is perfect, or should never evolve.

Comment on Unforced variations: July 2017 by nigelj

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 03:22:39 +0000

Obstreporous applesauce @351, I think we should target the message on the climate problem at very single person on the planet, but politicians will be a big priority to try to convince for obvious reasons. I agree the general public need something, a story they can hang their hat on, something real and clear and human sounding, as opposed to a string of data and equations. The current messages do lack urgency. I'm just not 100% sure doomsday scenarios of earth becoming like venus or a Steven King horror story is the right way to go. This is actually my natural inclination, but I have had second thoughts. It is too like trying to scare small children into doing something. Adults respond better to controlled scariness. They know worst case scenarios are always possible, but very unlikely. And yes climate change should be bumped right up the agenda. The real problem is money in politics and, I'm not sure scary doomsday stories will resolve that. Like I said, it probably needs a more scary narrative than its currently getting, but based on measured scariness, and real world examples of antarctic ice etc, rather than earth ending up like venus with 200 degrees celsius and sulphuric acid raining form the sky.Such things are incredibly unlikely given the science. 3-6 degrees is quite serious enough and I think most people do partly grasp this. We also need to paint a plan or picture of a viable world with renewable energy. Give something people can believe in. I gave up smoking over then years ago by visualising my life without tobacco and thinking it all through, and what I would do.

Comment on Unforced variations: July 2017 by Killian

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 02:13:05 +0000

Killian/ccpo for the win! So, as I have said for so very long, risk is the proper framing.