The accusation of a lack of peer review (PR) by those who mount arguments against anthropogenic global warming (AGW) is at the heart of the elitism, consensus and ad hominem approach used by many supporters of AGW.
It is a red herring. Science should be like the Law; transparent and universally accessible.
It should not be used by specialists to dominate the general populace, or to promulgate ideological based alterations to the social and economic structure. Nor should it be used to stifle debate because, apart from anything else, the importance of science is diminished by such oppression. Because the AGW advocates have used such tactics, and been supported by a sizeable proportion of the mainstream media, the importance of blogs has grown. Their importance has also been highlighted by the degree of vitriol leveled at anti-AGW sites.
Most of all the PR argument is simply wrong.
As a layman my AGW education curve has been steep. But it has been informed by a number of peer reviewed papers which have provided substantial critiques of AGW. In the interest of providing a rebuttal to the insidious PR stigma I present my ‘top 10’ papers which mount arguments against AGW, nine of them peer-reviewed.
I have had to exclude a number of valuable articles; the McLean and Quirk paper on the Great Pacific Climate Change was my first exposure to the misrepresentation of temperature base periods; the first Beck paper is a notable exclusion; the castigation against Beck was particularly condescending and elitist, no doubt because he does not have a PhD; likewise none of the valuable contributions made by Monckton, Watts, Castles, Hughes, Lucia, Bob Tisdale or Steve Short are eligible.
But I am going to list 10 papers, and start with a non peer-reviewed paper as an exception because of his sustained and exemplary efforts, any one of which is worthy of a Doctorate.
1. Steve McIntyre’s Ohio State University Address;
How do we “know” that 1998 was the warmest year of the millennium? (May 16, 2008)
This is a seminal paper which synthesizes all the errors and obfuscations to do with the Hockey Stick. It also demonstrates McIntyre’s methodical, scientific and unadorned approach to the issue.
2. Craig Loehle’s paper;
A 2000-year global temperature reconstruction based on non-tree ring proxies, Energy & Environment 18(7-8): 1049-1058. 2007
This paper was important because it was a counterpoise to Mann’s tree-ring data and provided good support for the Medieval Warming Period, a major obstacle to AGW.
3.Douglass, Christy et al; this is the first of the GCM critiques;
A comparison of tropical temperature trends with model predictions. International Journal of Climatology, 2007
This paper really touched a nerve and the level of hostility leveled at it was astounding; it mostly boiled down to nit-picking about Raobcore data and whether a falsification was distinct from a bias. The second link is to an addendum to the paper; comments 69-74 are entertaining.
4.Koutsoyiannis et al;
Assessment of the reliability of climate predictions based on comparisons with historical time series. Geophysical Research Abstracts, 2008
This link is to the first presentation. This was a crucial paper; it covered the 18 year predictive history of the GCM’s on a regional basis; regionalism is the Achilles Heel of AGW.
Tests of Regional Climate Model Validity in the Drought Exceptional Circumstances Report. 2008
This paper did the job on CSIRO and demonstrated the political imput into the AGW science.
Greenhouse effect in semi-transparent planetary Atmospheres. Quarterly Journal of the Hungarian Meteorological Service, Vol. 111, No. 1, January–March 2007, pp. 1–40.
This is my favourite. It has everything; the dead hand of AGW censorship, and the demolition of the AGW’s semi-infinite opaque layered atmosphere. People have quibbled about the Kirchhoff equations but Miskolczian –ve feedbacks have been established.
7. Essex, McKitrick, Andresen;
Does a Global Temperature Exist? Journal of Non-EquilibriumThermodynamics, 32 (1) 1-27. 2007
The fallacy of a global average temperature was taken to task in this paper, and, again, the reaction was hostile. This paper wittily compared averaging temperature to averaging the phone book; an important addition to the regionalism lexicon.
8. Spencer and Braswell;
Potential Biases in Feedback Diagnosis from Observational Data: A simple Model Demonstration, Journal of Climate.
No list would be complete without Mr Cloud and –ve feedback. As well, Spencer has been a bastion of reliable temperature data. This was still a close call. Minschwaner and Dessler’s paper on RH decline as a response to increasing CO2 is a crucial paper, conforming to Miskolczi’s feedbacks.
Cooling of Atmosphere Due to CO2 Emission, Energy Sources, Part A: Recovery, Utilization, and Environmental Effects. Volume 30, Issue 1, January 2008 , pages 1 – 9
An important paper about convective heat transfer which relegates CO2 radiative heating to its proper subordinate position; and incorporates atmospheric pressure as a heating factor. Thanks to Louis for alerting me to the paper. An honourable mention to the Gerlich and Tscheuschner paper on the fallacy of the greenhouse concept and a host of other errors AGW science makes.
10. Pielke Sr et al;
Unresolved issues with the assessment of multidecadal global land surface temperature trends. Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol 112. 2007.
An elegant paper which uses Stefan-Boltzman to support regionalism and show that the notion of a radiative imbalance is defeated by regional temperature based energy differentials. Somewhat superfluous since AR4, FIG 1 shows no global radiative imbalance.
Given the above, what 10 papers can AGW supporters produce to vindicate AGW?