Redefining the Limits of Global Warming

YESTERDAY, at the second International Conference on Climate Change in New York, Australian climatologist William Kininmonth explained that: The computer models on which the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change bases its projections significantly underestimate the rate of increase of evaporation with increasing temperature.  As a consequence, Mr Kininmonth explained they grossly exaggerate the surface temperature increase from carbon dioxide.  It follows that the suggestion that global temperature might pass a ‘tipping point’ and even go into a phase of ‘runaway global warming’ are not realistic because the oceans and the hydrological cycle are a natural constraint on anthropogenic global warming.  

A Natural Limit to Anthropogenic Global Warming
By William Kininmonth

THE burning of fossil fuels and other activities of modern industrial economies emit carbon dioxide (CO2) and other so-called greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. CO2 in particular is claimed to be enhancing the greenhouse effect and causing dangerous global warming.  Further, it is claimed that the consequence will have catastrophic impact for life on Earth, including inundation of low lying coastal margins from rising sea levels, more frequent heatwaves and droughts reducing food and water availability, and the spread of disease to higher latitudes.

The concept of dangerous climate change, although central to the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change and its Kyoto Protocol to restrict CO2 emissions, has never been formally defined. A general understanding has evolved within scientific and political discussions on the issue that global warming exceeding 2oC would indeed be dangerous. Some scientists go so far as to suggest that 2oC represents a ‘tipping point’ beyond which ‘runaway global warming’ is likely. The evidence, however, is speculative and linked to the projections of computer models.

The scientific bases for the claims that human emissions of CO2 will cause dangerous climate change largely have their foundation on three premises:

1. Prior to industrialisation the Earth was in radiation balance, emitting to space as infrared radiation as much energy as is intercepted as solar radiation. As a consequence, the Earth’s climate was then stable.

2. The apparent stability is now being disrupted as accumulation of human-caused CO2 emissions in the atmosphere is reducing infrared radiation to space in wavelengths characteristic of CO2.

3. There is a direct and linear relationship between the reduction of infrared radiation to space  (the so-called radiation forcing) and the increase in surface temperature.
 
There is little disagreement that additional CO2 in the atmosphere will enhance the greenhouse effect. However, these seemingly plausible statements are either demonstrably false or not verified by rigorous theory or observation. The relationship between radiative forcing and surface temperature response does not have theoretical underpinning and the sensitivity factor can only be estimated from computer models. The sensitivity factor value as given by different computer models varies over a relatively broad range; there is no way of assessing whether it should have a low value or a high value. The IPCC, without rigorous scientific analysis, suggests that the average of all models is the most realistic estimate that should be used.

Faced with such uncertainty it is reasonable to re-examine the scientific premises. It comes as little surprise that our understanding of the climate system has advanced since the premises were first formulated more than two decades ago. It is surprising that the IPCC has not incorporated new knowledge into its description of the climate system and its evaluation of computer model performance outlined in the most recent 2007 assessment report.

CARBON DIOXIDE AND RADIATION TO SPACE

CO2 absorbs and emits radiation within selected bands of the infrared spectrum. That is, within these bands the CO2 molecules absorb radiation that has been emitted from the earth’s surface with intensity characteristic of the local surface temperature. Also, within these bands the CO2 molecules emit radiation in all directions but with intensity that is dependent on the prevailing gas temperature.

Treating the atmosphere as a layer we find the emission to space is of much less intensity than the radiation emitted from the surface. This is because the earth’s surface is much warmer than the cold high layer of the atmosphere from whence the radiation to space originates. However, the lowest warm layer of the atmosphere is also emitting radiation back to earth. What is of importance in this discussion is the change in radiation intensity as the concentration of CO2 varies.
 
Figure 1: Changes in upward infrared emission to space, downward emission at the surface (both LH scale), and net radiation loss from the atmosphere (RH scale) for changing concentrations of CO2. (Computed from MODTRANS for the US Standard Atmosphere and clear sky) [Double click on the image for a larger version.]

Figure 1 illustrates how the changing concentration of CO2 affects the radiation intensity, both the emission from the atmosphere to space and the downward emission from the atmosphere to earth. These calculations have been performed using the MODTRANS  radiation transfer model based on the US Standard Atmosphere under clear sky conditions. As the CO2 concentration of the atmosphere increases the infrared radiation in the CO2 wavelengths emanates from a higher, colder altitude and the intensity decreases. At the surface, the downward infrared radiation emanates from a lower, warmer altitude as the CO2 concentration increases.

Two points of Figure 1 are of interest:
1. As the concentration of CO2 increases the reduction in intensity of the emission to space is similar in magnitude to the corresponding increase in intensity of downward radiation at the surface. As a consequence, as CO2 concentration increases there is only a small increase in net radiation loss from the atmospheric layer.
2. Figure 1 does not give support to the notion that, as the atmospheric CO2 concentration increases, there is more absorption of infrared radiation by the atmospheric layer, leading to warming of the atmosphere. There is an equal or greater loss of energy to the surface as downward emission increases with increasing CO2 concentration.

The notion of radiation forcing is further weakened when the variation with latitude of net radiation at the top of the atmosphere (solar absorption less infrared emission) is considered. Figure 2 clearly shows a surplus of solar radiation over tropical latitudes and excess emission to space over polar latitudes. Nowhere are surface temperatures determined by local radiation balance. In order to achieve overall global radiation balance large quantities of energy are transported from the tropics to polar regions by the ocean and (principally) the atmospheric circulations.

As a consequence of the poleward transport of energy the polar temperatures are warmer than they would be under local radiation equilibrium. Moreover, the polar temperatures (and ice mass magnitude) will vary as the poleward temperature transport varies. The ocean and atmospheric circulations are two interacting fluids and there is no reason to believe that the partitioning of the poleward energy transport will not vary over a range of timescales. Indeed, there is every reason to believe that the partitioning will fluctuate with time such that polar temperatures fluctuate on similar timescales.

The message of Figure 2 is that the ocean and atmospheric circulations are continually acting to bring about overall global radiation balance at the top of the atmosphere. At times the climate system is accumulating energy and at other times there is a net loss of radiant energy, depending on the changing energy storage of the respective fluids and the thermodynamics of the fluid flows. This is evident because the earth’s annual climate cycle is not exactly repeated. In addition, known oceanic-atmosphere phenomena such as El Niño cause major variations to the climate cycle.
 
Figure 2: Average variation with latitude of net radiation (solar absorption minus infrared emission to space) at the top of the atmosphere (TOA). (Trenberth and Caron) [Double click on the image to see more detail.]

An assumption of the anthropogenic global warming hypothesis is that a reduction of infrared radiation to space in the CO2 wavelength bands will cause the earth to warm and increase the intensity of emissions across the radiation spectrum.  This assumption does not take cognisance of the fact that, at least for tropical and subtropical latitudes, the main variation in infrared radiation emission to space is brought about through variations in cloud and water vapour distribution.

The dominant control of cloud and water vapour distribution can be readily seen in Figure 3. In regions of recurring deep convective clouds with tops in the high cold troposphere, such as over the Congo and Amazon Basins and the warm equatorial oceans extending from the Indian Ocean to the western Pacific Ocean, the radiation to space is reduced. In contrast, over much of the subtropics and other regions of dry subsiding air the radiation to space emanates from much lower in the atmosphere where temperatures are warmer.

Variations in infrared radiation emission to space can be more than 80 Wm-2 from cloud to cloud-free regions. In addition, these spatial patterns are not fixed in time. Not only do they vary according to the annual cycle but they also vary from year to year. There are major disruptions to the cloud and outgoing infrared radiation patterns during El Niño events when the deep convective clouds form over the central and eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean. The changing cloud and moisture patterns during El Niño events significantly change the magnitude and pattern of infrared radiation emission to space.
 
Figure 3: Spatial variations of climatological infrared radiation to space (OLR) for January.  Radiation to space is reduced in the regions of deep tropical convection because the emission largely emanates from the high cold cloud tops. Radiation is much higher in the regions of dry descending air where the emission emanates from warm layers near the surface. Radiation is also reduced over the cold polar regions of the winter hemisphere. [Double click on the image to see more detail.]

It is clear that interactions between the ocean and atmosphere fluids regulate internal variability of the climate system, especially the changing poleward transport of energy and the changing cloud and moisture patterns. It is these latter that are the dominant control over the magnitudes and pattern of infrared radiation to space. It is not plausible that the only response from a change to CO2 concentration, and its small reduction of infrared radiation to space, will be an increase of surface temperature.  The small decrease in infrared radiation to space resulting from CO2 increase will be overwhelmed by the magnitude of the ever-changing patterns resulting from the atmospheric circulation and associated cloud and moisture distribution. There is no sound theoretical basis to expect a reduction in infrared radiation to space in the relatively narrow CO2 wavelength bands to cause an increase in surface temperature.

CARBON DIOXIDE AND SURFACE ENERGY EXCHANGE

In contrast to the upper atmosphere and the ever-changing infrared radiation to space, any change in CO2 concentration and downward infrared radiation will directly affect the surface energy balance and surface temperature. An increase in the concentration of atmospheric CO2 will increase the downward infrared radiation and tend to warm the surface. The magnitude of the actual surface temperature rise will be regulated by the response of other surface energy exchange processes to the CO2 radiation forcing.

At the surface, the energy inputs are solar radiation and the emission of infrared radiation from the greenhouse gases (principally water vapour and CO2) and clouds of the atmosphere back to the surface (often called back radiation). The surface energy losses are primarily by way of direct heat exchange between the surface and the atmosphere, Latent energy exchange between the surface and the atmosphere due to evaporation of water, and the emission of infrared radiation from the surface. There is also a loss or gain of energy to surface storage (in the land surface or ocean surface layer) if the surface temperature is warming or cooling.

The increase in downward radiation, ΔFCO2 due to increased CO2 concentration will cause an increase in surface temperature, ΔTs given by:

ΔFCO2 = [dFu/dT + dLH/dT + dH/dT – dSo/dT – dFd/dT] * ΔTs    (1)

Here:
dSo/dT is the rate of change of solar radiation absorbed at the surface with temperature;
dFd/dT is the rate of change of downward radiation from water vapour emissions with temperature;
dFu/dT is the rate of change of surface emission with temperature;
dH/dT is the rate of change of direct surface heat exchange with temperature; and
dLH/dT is the rate of change of latent energy exchange with temperature.

Absorption of solar radiation will vary with cloudiness changes but not directly with variation of CO2 concentration. Cloudiness may change with surface temperature of the earth but a priori we do not know the direction or magnitude of any potential change. In the first instance solar radiation is treated as a constant that does not change with temperature.

The downward infrared radiation at the surface varies directly with greenhouse gas concentration and temperature of the air near the ground. The main greenhouse gases are water vapour and CO2; water vapour concentration varies with temperature and CO2 concentration varies with fossil fuel usage. In the context of anthropogenic global warming, CO2 is the forcing process; atmospheric temperature and water vapour concentration are response processes. Increasing the concentrations of CO2 and water vapour, each act to increase the downward radiation at the surface.

The direct exchange of heat between the surface and atmosphere varies with the vertical gradient of air temperature at the surface. The temperature of the air near the ground increases as the surface temperature increases. Consequently the rate of heat transfer does not vary appreciably as the surface temperature changes and is ignored in this discussion.

The infrared emission from the surface varies with temperature according to the Stefan Boltzman Law. The emissivity also has a small variation depending on the nature of the surface (land, vegetation or ocean) but this a second order effect and can be ignored.

The evaporation of water that exchanges latent energy between the surface and the atmosphere varies with the vapour pressure gradient near the surface. Empirical evidence suggests that the relative humidity near the surface does not vary with temperature. As a consequence the rate of evaporation and latent energy exchange vary according to the Clausius Clapeyron relationship, the same rate as the saturation vapour pressure varies with temperature.

Recognising that solar absorption and direct heat exchange vary little with temperature then equation 1 can be reduced to:
ΔFCO2 = [dFu/dT + dLH/dT – dFd/dT] *ΔTs    (2)
and rearranged to:
ΔTs = ΔTCO2 / (1 – r)       (3)
where
ΔTCO2 =  ΔFCO2 / [dFu/dT + dLH/dT]     (4)
and
r = dFd/dT / [dFu/dT + dLH/dT]      (5)

Here ΔTCO2 is the direct surface temperature response resulting from CO2 forcing and 1 /(1 – r) is the feedback amplification due to atmospheric temperature and water vapour increase.

It is important to note that the rate of change of surface energy loss with temperature, given by [dFu/dT + dLH/dT] constrains both the direct surface temperature response to radiation forcing and the magnitude of the feedback amplification.
 
Figure 4: Changing magnitudes of the major surface energy exchange processes over the range of typical temperatures of the Earth’s surface. (The Back Radiation is computed for the US Standard Atmosphere under clear sky conditions using the MODTRANS model) [Double click on the image for more detail.]

At Figure 4 are plotted the magnitudes of the major surface energy exchange processes across the range of temperatures typical of the Earth’s surface. The surface emission is according to the Stefan Boltzman Law (emissivity = 1) while the back radiation is computed using the MODTRANS model for the US Standard Atmosphere (approximately average global temperature and moisture) under clear sky conditions and constant relative humidity. Latent energy exchange is according to the Clausius Clapeyron relationship (7 percent change with each degree Celsius variation – 7% C-1) scaled to the global average exchange of 78 Wm-2 at 15oC.

What is clear from Figure 4 is that the magnitudes of surface emission and the back radiation increase in near parallel, as is to be expected because the temperatures of the surface and near surface atmosphere also increase in near parallel. As a consequence, there is little change in the magnitude of net infrared radiation loss from the surface across the temperature range. It is the latent energy exchange, approximately doubling in magnitude with every 10oC temperature rise, which dominates the changing surface energy loss with temperature. The importance of evaporation for limiting surface temperature has previously been discussed by Priestley (1966) .

 Figure 5: The magnitude of the net surface energy loss with the solar absorption and other unvarying processes scaled to be in steady state at the Earth’s mean temperature of 15oC. As CO2 concentration increases the back radiation also increases, thus reducing the net surface energy loss. The surface temperature rises to a new steady state for energy balance with the near constant energy input processes. [Double click on the image for more detail.]

When the magnitude of the net surface energy loss (net infrared radiation plus latent energy) is plotted against temperature and scaled for steady state at the average temperature of the Earth, as in Figure 5, it is found that the surface temperature is relatively stable. A small change in surface temperature, either to a lower or a higher value, causes the surface energy loss to be out of balance with the steady energy input and there is a strong tendency to return to the steady state temperature.

We can also readily ascertain the impact on the surface temperature from an increase in CO2 concentration. For example, a doubling of the CO2 concentration from prevailing values will increase the back radiation by about 4 Wm-2. As a consequence, the net surface loss will be reduced by an equal magnitude and the surface energy processes are out of balance. A new steady state is achieved by an increase in surface temperature of about 0.6oC.

It should be noted that this adjustment to surface temperature is independent of changes that might be wrought by changing atmospheric circulation and distributions of cloud and moisture patterns. The changing CO2 concentration will directly affect the surface temperature because of the impact that CO2 concentration has on back radiation and the ensuing surface energy balance. Unlike the CO2 forced change to the infrared radiation to space that has only a tenuous connection to surface temperature the change in back radiation has a direct impact and the effect is mathematically tractable.  Moreover, because of the rapid increase of latent energy exchange with temperature, the surface temperature rise is constrained to a relatively small response.

THE EXAGGERATED RESPONSE OF COMPUTER MODELS

There is nearly an order of magnitude difference between the relatively small surface temperature response of 0.6oC to a doubling of CO2 concentration calculated above and the projected responses quoted by the IPCC.  The latter are based on computer models and range from about 2oC to about 6oC. The key to the difference is in the formulation of the changing rate of latent energy exchange with temperature used in the computer models.

As explained above, here the rate of increase in evaporation (and latent energy exchange) with temperature is equated to the Clausius Clapeyron relationship of 7% per degree C. As noted by Held and Soden (2006) , the rate of increase of evaporation with temperature rise for the computer models used in the fourth assessment of the IPCC was, on average, only about one-third this value.  This low value in computer models was confirmed by Wentz et al (2007) , who also identified a range of 1-3% K-1 for the global average evaporation increase across the models.

A reduction in the rate of evaporation increase with temperature has significant consequences for temperature projections under CO2 forcing. The reduced rate of change of latent energy exchange with surface temperature means that the rate of increase of surface energy loss with temperature is also reduced and the slope of the curve of Figure 5 is flattened. As a consequence, the surface temperature can vary over a wider range for the same imbalances between the fixed energy input and the surface energy loss variation. That is, the tendency to return to the steady state temperature is weakened.

Of more importance, if the rate of increase of latent energy exchange with temperature is significantly less than the Clausius Clapeyron relationship then the radiation forcing from a doubling of CO2 concentration produces a larger increase in surface temperature to a new steady state.

The changing sensitivity of surface temperature to radiative forcing can be readily assessed by way of equation 3 above. At the average temperature of the Earth (15oC) the rate of increase of surface infrared emission with temperature change is given by the Stefan Boltzman Law as 5.4 Wm-2C-1. The equivalent rate of increase with temperature of downward infrared radiation at the surface can be assessed, for example using the MODTRANS radiation transfer model. With the assumptions that the US Standard Atmosphere approximates the mean profile of the atmosphere, that relative humidity is constant (that is, the atmospheric water vapour increases with temperature in accordance with the Clausius Clapeyron relationship) and ignoring clouds, it is found that the increase in downward infrared radiation at the surface is 4.8 Wm-2C-1.

Table 1 sets out indicative values for the sensitivity of surface temperature to radiative forcing for a range of rates of latent energy exchange with temperature. The value of 6% C-1 is the global average estimate by Wentz et al (2007) based on satellite estimates of changing precipitation during global warming of recent decades. It is less than the Clausius Clapeyron relationship but this is not unexpected given the magnitude of arid and semi-arid land areas. The other values are typical for computer models (GCM) used in the IPCC fourth assessment of 2007. 

Table 1: Indicative values of surface temperature response to radiative forcing and of surface temperature increase from a doubling of CO2 concentration. The rates of surface latent energy exchange, dLH/dT  correspond to global values assessed from satellite analysis, and values corresponding to computer models (GCM) used in the 2007 IPCC fourth assessment . [Double click on the image to read the table.]

It is very clear from Table 1 that any assessment of the surface temperature response to CO2 forcing is very sensitive to the specification of the rate of increase of evaporation, and hence latent energy exchange, with temperature increase. The analysis at Table 1 clearly points to a high likelihood that the computer models used as the basis for the IPCC estimates of anthropogenic global warming are significantly exaggerating the projected global temperature response. A doubling of CO2 concentration even from current level to near 800 ppm by the end of the 21st century is not likely to cause global temperature rise exceeding 1oC. Such a rise is well within the range of natural variability and should not be construed as dangerous.

CONCLUSION

Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas and interacts with the Earth’s infrared radiation, both the emission to space and the downward radiation at the surface. Contrary to popular explanations, it is not the reduction in radiation to space across the CO2 bands that are important for enhancing the greenhouse effect; it is the increase in downward radiation at the surface that is important. An increase to the concentration of CO2 will enhance the greenhouse effect but only cause a modest increase in global surface temperatures.

Water vapour is important in regulating the magnitude of the enhanced greenhouse effect in two ways: increased water vapour in the atmosphere has an amplifying effect on the CO2 forcing; and, more importantly, increased evaporation constrains the surface temperature rise. It is the evaporation that is dominant because the Earth’s surface is more than 70 percent ocean and much of the remainder is covered by transpiring vegetation.  A doubling of CO2 concentration by the end of the century from current levels will cause a modest global temperature rise not exceeding 1oC.

The computer models on which the IPCC based its fourth assessment projections have been shown to significantly underestimate the rate of increase of evaporation with temperature. As a consequence, surface temperature rise from CO2 forcing is grossly exaggerated. Suggestions that global temperature might pass a ‘tipping point’ and even go into a phase of ‘runaway global warming’ are an outcome of the flawed computer models and are not a realistic future scenario. The extensive oceans and the hydrological cycle are a natural constraint on global temperature and dangerous anthropogenic global warming is not a feasible outcome.

*****************

William Kininmonth is a former head of Australia’s National Climate Centre. He was actively engaged in work of the World Meteorological Organization’s Commission for Climatology for more than two decades and is author of Climate Change: A Natural Hazard (2004, Multi-Science Publishing Co., UK).

To facilitate posting on the internet this article has been edited with some of the mathematical formulas removed.

NOTES

The intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) refers to the ‘radiation forcing’ as the reduction in upward directed infrared at the tropopause due to the increase in CO2 concentration.

MODTRANS is a medium resolution radiation transfer model and is accessible through the University of Chicago at http://geosci.uchicago.edu/~archer/cgimodels/radiation.html 

Trenberth, K.E. and J.M. Caron, 2001. Estimates of meridional ocean and atmospheric heat transports. J of Clim. 14:3433-3443

Priestley, C.H.B., 1966. The limitation of temperature by evaporation in hot climates. Agr. Meteorol., 3: 241-246

Held, I.M. and B.J. Soden, 2006. Robust responses of the hydrological cycle to global warming. J of Clim 19: 5686-5699

Wentz, F.J., L. Riccaiardulli, K. Hilburn and C. Mears, 2007. How much more rain will global warming bring. ScienceExpress, 31 May 2007.

89 Responses to Redefining the Limits of Global Warming

  1. Geoff Brown March 10, 2009 at 1:45 pm #

    Hi Jen

    Those of us who were unfortunately unable to attend Heartland, will vicariously attend by such detailed posts as this.

    Well done. Safe travels on your return.

  2. jennifer March 10, 2009 at 2:53 pm #

    Hey Geoff, My budget didn’t stretch to NY this year. But Bill Kininmonth and some others have kindly sent me their presentations for sharing.

  3. Lorenzo March 10, 2009 at 5:23 pm #

    I attempt to bring out the fundamental limitations of computer models by using the example of the failure of Wall St financial models and pointing out the same issues apply to climate models here:
    http://lorenzo-thinkingoutaloud.blogspot.com/2009/03/computer-models-and-cognitive-failure.html

  4. Mary Jenkins March 10, 2009 at 5:56 pm #

    Whatever you believe or the ‘experts’ believe we have a problem. The world is not prepared for all these disasters all over the world. Concerned citizens feel they have to do something at least try to solve the problem.
    What is at the foundation of these problems? Dramatic change in weather patterns. One major cause is waste and more waste . Today we live in a world that consumers greedily without a thought for anyone or the planet.

    We can no longer continue on this path the waste has to stop. Who will stop it? Not the corporations they want us to stop waste so they can waste and pollute more. Where is the sense in that? A carbon trading scheme will not fix the problem.

    We all have to become truly wise in how we tread on this earth and live simply so all may simply live.

  5. Phillip Bratby March 10, 2009 at 6:01 pm #

    Mary Jenkins:

    What? Dramatic change in weather patterns is caused by waste and more waste? Evidence please. The relevance of your comment to the above excellent article is zero.

  6. cohenite March 10, 2009 at 6:44 pm #

    Well, I was going to present a comparison between this article, Michael Hammer’s recent excellent post and Miskolczi, but what’s the point? This is the level of neurotic alarmism that has been fostered by an egregious media and political connivance.

    Dear Mary, the waste you are referring to would be the billions that rudd and his ideological cronies are going to spend on fighting the chimera of AGW, right? Go and curl up with a copy of Lomborg’s “Cool It”; look at Fig 11 on p41 and the relative costs of ‘fighting’ AGW; notice a business as usual scenario where, assuming AGW is real, the costs are 1 trillion and the benefits [yes Mary, there are benefits to warming] 2 trillion; then look at the costs of keeping temperatures to a 1.5C increase [based on IPCC doomsday predictions]; the costs, 84 trillion and the benefits, 10 trillion. Now that’s waste. Sickening.

  7. Luke March 10, 2009 at 7:01 pm #

    Has Bill published his thesis? If not – why not?

  8. Lazlo March 10, 2009 at 9:18 pm #

    Luke: ‘Has Bill published his thesis? If not – why not?’

    As in: if it’s “peer reviewed” I’ll believe it, otherwise I’ll ignore it. Ah it must be comfortable and blissful for the intellectual Betas to be told what to believe. Keep taking the IPCC endorsed soma…

  9. Luke March 10, 2009 at 9:34 pm #

    Well surely you’re not going to take an activist’s word for it on such a contentious issue?

  10. Gordon Robertson March 10, 2009 at 9:42 pm #

    Weather advisory from the Great White North…it’s currently -3.5 C in Vancouver, Canada with a wind chill of -20 C. This is the banana belt of Canada, with the warmest temperatures next to Victoria on Vancouver Island. The normal low at this time of year as +3 C.

    Up near the Arctic Circle, where the Tar Sands are located, in Fort McMurray, Alberta, it’s nearly – 40 C. They are thankful there’s no wind. Yellowknife, in the Arctic, is -39 C with a normal of -24 C.

    They call our current phenomenon ‘Arctic Air’. That’s the term used to describe conditions when weather patterns move masses of air from the Arctic down onto us on the west coast of Canada.

    Anyone talking about global warming right now has to get it in his/her head that the Arctic is frozen solid. The Arctic ice cap is frozen and it is cooler than normal right now. Any warming has to be taken as more of a joke than anything. A warming from -40 C to -35 C in mid-winter is not what we cheerfully call warming, and that’s where you’ll find most so-called global warming, at night, in the Arctic, in winter. How much warming does it need to get before that ice cap starts melting significantly, and how many months of the year will it be melting?

  11. cohenite March 10, 2009 at 9:53 pm #

    The “banana belt”; very good Gordon; now, the graphs are still fractionally down but all are improving and I really like the pictures; wave at the camera Gordon; we’ll send luke up in his swimmers;

    http://igloo.atmos.uiuc.edu/cgi-bin/test/print.sh

  12. Ann Novek March 10, 2009 at 9:58 pm #

    Talking about REAL HIGH LATITUDES here: It’s only -4 C in Svalbard today. And it’s only a few hundred km away from the North Pole.

  13. Lazlo March 10, 2009 at 10:04 pm #

    Luke: ‘Well surely you’re not going to take an activist’s word for it on such a contentious issue?’ I don’t take anyone’s word for it. I read and think. And you do… what?

  14. SJT March 10, 2009 at 10:37 pm #

    “I attempt to bring out the fundamental limitations of computer models by using the example of the failure of Wall St financial models and pointing out the same issues apply to climate models here:”

    Climate models and financial models are vastly different. Climate models work with the laws of physics. These are invariant. Financial models try to model the behaviour of sentient beings, who can change in a second from acting rationally to being completely irrational.

  15. Richard111 March 10, 2009 at 11:42 pm #

    Gordon Robertson March 10th, 2009 at 9:42 pm

    Arctic ice has been melting for at least the last four days.

    http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm

    Or the satellite is on the blink again.

  16. Jabba the Cat March 11, 2009 at 12:29 am #

    @ Richard111 11:42 pm

    “Arctic ice has been melting for at least the last four days.”

    Gosh, a full four days. Well I never…

  17. barry moore March 11, 2009 at 2:50 am #

    Richard lll. Take a look at friendsofscience sea ice last 365 days, about a week ago there was an apparent reduction but for the past week it has been increasing I think it may be that flaky satellite again You may want to look at the global sea ice which is right on the 20 year average so there has been no decrease in global sea ice in the last 30 years.
    Come on over to Calgary Gordon we had –27 last night I am sure glad spring is just around the corner and I have a meter of snow in the back yard which is unheard of here.
    To more serious discussion, I note that even discounting the energy loss by CO2 due to collision which accounts for most of it and ignoring Beer’s law which rules out back radiation from anything but a very thin layer of atmosphere at the earth’s surface the AGW hypothesis still has no plausible scientific support. But the AGW faithful are still bowing down to the mantra “ don’t confuse me with the facts my mind is made up”.
    Mary you do sound a little confused, what problem are you talking about. There is no dramatic weather pattern change, we happen to be in a very stable climate condition compared to even the past 15 000 years there have been some massive rapid changes during that time. If you want to talk about waste, which has nothing to do with climate, I suggest you start with your government when I fill my car up 3% goes to the oil company profit and 35% goes to the government for doing nothing. For some reason it is the perception that the sceptics are not environmentalists and do not believe in maximizing our efficiency nothing could be further from the truth. CO2 is not pollution it is a mandatory ingredient of our atmosphere and feeds our plants so more is better less means less growth so the attitude that less CO2 is “green” is the opposite of the truth and is pure hypocrisy.

  18. barry moore March 11, 2009 at 2:58 am #

    Another thought after considering the massive rake off the governments get from the oil industry. Governments want to kill the cash cow and substitute it with a subsidized industry of alternative energy which is about three times as expensive as fossil fuel, now that is waste. In addition how are the governments going to replace the tax revenue they currently get from the oil industry, not by increasing the efficiency of government that’s for sure.

  19. Malcolm Hil March 11, 2009 at 7:24 am #

    Not going to take an activists word for it heh Luke.

    What a load of nonsense that is.

    Firstly it assumes that Bill K is an activist just by expressing a view with some substance and credibility behind it, and,

    Secondly, it infers that all those who have published in so called peer reviewed journals are not activists, you know people like Hansen and Mann for starters.

    But then there are other media darlings like Flannery who havnt published anything in climate science either, but whose dire warnings and unsubstantiated utterances are fawned upon by the Leftist Greeny groupies as though they were holy writ.

    Your mate in the BOM put you up to it did he, thats his usual response to anything with a difference, and not in conformity with the IPCC group think.

  20. James Mayeau March 11, 2009 at 11:06 am #

    Here’s a hypothetical question for you.

    How hard would it be for the media to manufacture a drought? I’m talking purely fictitous.
    If the Sydney Morning Herald wanted to bolster the case for global warming how hard would it be for them to do it? Do they report rainfall totals?
    If they were to substantially augment or detract from the raingauge, who would know about it? Call them on it?

  21. spangled drongo March 11, 2009 at 12:12 pm #

    “The Arctic ice cap is frozen and it is cooler than normal right now. Any warming has to be taken as more of a joke than anything. ”

    Gordon,
    As Lubos has just said, “The overhyped 0.6c of global warming for the last 100 years could be explained by 4 months of accumulated error.”

    And there have been endless amounts of those!

  22. Max March 11, 2009 at 12:57 pm #

    Mary you are right when you say that we all need to be better stewards of our Planet’s resources.

    However, I question whether the disasters that you refer to are happening with any greater frequency or are we just better informed by the media and the problems are accentuated because many people live in such vulnerable areas such as along coastlines and within delta systems or simply where there is a lack of sustainable water.

    The paper under review, once again, highlights the dangers of relying on models that do not reflect the reality of what is occurring but the policy makers are using these same models to determine future actions – very dangerous.

    No doubt Luke’s question can be answered by Jennifer if the paper will be peer reviewed and published although we have had previous posts about the corruption of that system within the climate science community.

  23. jae March 11, 2009 at 1:13 pm #

    “Luke: ‘Has Bill published his thesis? If not – why not?’

    Luke:

    Luke, if you accept only “peer-reviewed” articles as “truth,” you have a great problem in life. You cannot even believe a newspaper article, or maybe even your own eyes, because it is not peer-reviewed???!!!! You have adopted a really strange indefensible and laughable position. An alternative is to think for yourself, which is foreign to most AGW extremists, maybe even you! Do you think Einstein would have worried about “peer-review?”

  24. Luke March 11, 2009 at 1:55 pm #

    Jae – an unpublished “paper” from an activist has little status compared to a published paper. Not saying peer review is perfect. But unpublished in a serious journal (not E&E) is unlikely to have had critical review.

    Yes Einstein would have been concerned

    Max’s complaint about the publication system being corrupt is really very rampant opinion – sour grapes when your favourite paper doesn’t make it?.

    Bill’s ground busting unpublished paper deserves to be published if it is to have any effect or status.

  25. janama March 11, 2009 at 2:01 pm #

    So a difference in the greenhouse effect between Venus and Earth is that the earth has water vapour and venus doesn’t?

  26. Concerned March 11, 2009 at 2:21 pm #

    A few years ago, some pretty well known economists (a previous head of the australian bureau of statistics was one) pointed out the models and data used by the IPCC to estimate world output and therefore greenhouse gas emissions were fundamentally flawed and suggested that the climate scientists might look for help from the economics profession for economic modelling. The IPCC responded that the economic models had been peer reviewed, so therefore they must be right. The peer review was of course by other climate scientists.

  27. Louis Hissink March 11, 2009 at 4:08 pm #

    An easy way of testing the CO2 greenhouse theory is to get a glass cylinder, fill it with CO2 and let it lie in the sun and monitor its temperature. According to the theory, its internal temperature should reach that of Venus’ temperature. If the theory were true this would be a wonderful cheap source of energy as well.

  28. SJT March 11, 2009 at 4:10 pm #

    “An easy way of testing the CO2 greenhouse theory is to get a glass cylinder, fill it with CO2 and let it lie in the sun and monitor its temperature. According to the theory, its internal temperature should reach that of Venus’ temperature. If the theory were true this would be a wonderful cheap source of energy as well.”

    At least you could find out what the theory predicts before saying what the theory predicts.

  29. cohenite March 11, 2009 at 6:44 pm #

    little will; very left field; what would be the point of making a prediction if what you were predicting had already occurred?

  30. Geoffrey Kelley March 11, 2009 at 7:28 pm #

    Jae, we live in wonderful society where even a f**kwit like you has an opinion! And morons like you get to vote! Science is peer-reviewed for a reason which eludes you but that is what makes it science. Your bullshit ideas are not science. Call them what you like, vote for them and believe in them with the fervour you display but do not call it science. Don’t call your beliefs fact. Like Onan spilling his seed on the ground, you are no more than an opinionated wanker. But, I respect your opinion, no matter how wrong it is.
    Geoffrey Kelley

  31. Louis Hissink March 11, 2009 at 9:09 pm #

    Cohenite,

    Who rattled the Turing Machine’s cage?

  32. cohenite March 11, 2009 at 10:20 pm #

    I don’t know Louis but I think I’m going to demote him from Turing to PARRY, given his recent dialogueand non sequiturs; still, he is a beacon of rationality compared with Professor Will Steffan who I heard being interviewed on our ABC tonight; this will has been to Copenhagan at taxpayer expense and guess what, everythting is worse; the seas are rising quicker, the temperatures are rising [?!] and there is inertia in the system so that even if emissions cease tomorrow temps will continue to rise; this is, of course a lie and a damned lie at that; there is no ‘energy’ stored in situ in the ocean or anywhere else;

    http://climatesci.org/2009/03/05/is-there-climate-heating-in-the-pipeline/

    Even Trenberth recognised this with his lag estimate of 3 months; I really feel ill when I see the fawning adulation by the reptiles of the press towards these ‘science’ charlatans; it is a criminal betrayal of the public interest.

  33. SJT March 11, 2009 at 10:29 pm #

    The warming is only just starting, the feedback effects are only just starting. Pielke doesn’t seem to know what they are talking about, and does the usual trick of beating up a strawman.

  34. jae March 12, 2009 at 2:19 am #

    From the Conclusion:

    “Water vapour is important in regulating the magnitude of the enhanced greenhouse effect in two ways: increased water vapour in the atmosphere has an amplifying effect on the CO2 forcing; and, more importantly, increased evaporation constrains the surface temperature rise. It is the evaporation that is dominant because the Earth’s surface is more than 70 percent ocean and much of the remainder is covered by transpiring vegetation. A doubling of CO2 concentration by the end of the century from current levels will cause a modest global temperature rise not exceeding 1oC.”

    I don’t believe much in ANY increase caused by CO2 (down-radiation can’t help retain heat, because it’s coming from a colder region), but the regulation by water vapor is very clear empirically. If it were not true, it would be much hotter in humid areas in the summertime than in deserts at the same elevation and latitude. But the reverse is actually true.

  35. jae March 12, 2009 at 2:22 am #

    Oh, and by the way, if the “down-radiation” was important to surface temperature, it would get much hotter in a desert on a humid day (more GHG/water vapor) than on a dry day. It doesn’t.

  36. James Mayeau March 12, 2009 at 3:40 am #

    Downward radiation?
    That’s the reason why you should always hold a lit candle from the top, so you don’t burn your fingers.
    Come on. Get real.

    Serious question – If the SMH wanted to manufacture a drought to boster the theme of their enviromental reporting, by say adding an inch or two of rainfall to the expected annual rainfall average, thus making it appear that the city of Sydney is perpetually short of rain, how hard would that be for them to get away with?

  37. gavin March 12, 2009 at 5:45 am #

    “Oh, and by the way, if the “down-radiation” was important to surface temperature, it would get much hotter in a desert on a humid day (more GHG/water vapor) than on a dry day. It doesn’t”

    Oh Jae!

  38. gavin March 12, 2009 at 6:06 am #

    A quick question for anyone residing west of the Great Divide say, Canberra to Warwrick:

    Ignoring gales and hail storms, is it warmer in winter on a wet night than a on clear night?

  39. janama March 12, 2009 at 6:35 am #

    I’m just south of Warwick and it’s been overcast for the past few days and nights – the nights are warm. When there’s a clear sky, it’s cooler.

  40. janama March 12, 2009 at 6:38 am #

    Cohenite – the Australian has all that disinformation in an article this morning.

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,25170507-11949,00.html

  41. jae March 12, 2009 at 7:28 am #

    “I’m just south of Warwick and it’s been overcast for the past few days and nights – the nights are warm. When there’s a clear sky, it’s cooler.”

    Yes, and that is often explained in terms of “backradiation” from the greenhouse gas, water vapor. However, it can also be explained by two other phenomenon, which are inter-related:

    1. Water vapor has a heat capacity 4 times as high as other molecules of air. So it stores more heat for the night-time.

    2. Partly because of 1 (and also due to latent heat of condensation), the lapse rate is much lower for moist air than for dry air. That slows convection and the transfer of heat higher into the atmosphere.

  42. cohenite March 12, 2009 at 7:34 am #

    janama; I note they go back 3my to base their scaremongering about sea-levels; within the last 1my the highest sea level has been is 3 meters above current levels 120 thousand years ago during an interglacial;

    http://sahultime.monash.edu.au/explore.htmlr

  43. cohenite March 12, 2009 at 7:37 am #

    jae; you are correct and in regard to gavin’s disingenuous comparison of desert nights and tropical/overcast nights, the issue should be desert days and overcast tropical days; atmospheric vapor moderates temperature BOTH ways.

  44. Toby March 12, 2009 at 8:08 am #

    Any one want to sell me their beach house cheap? I cant believe they can make statements so clearly lacking in reality. Precisely where is the sea level currently rising faster than the models predict!!!!!!?

  45. Luke March 12, 2009 at 8:28 am #

    Water vapour “stores more heat”. A retreat into drongo-ism. It’s a wonder it cools down at night at all. Actually let’s start a denialist movement that disputes that daytime is warmer.

    HASHAHAHAHAHAHA !!

  46. Marcus March 12, 2009 at 9:05 am #

    Max
    “However, I question whether the disasters that you refer to are happening with any greater frequency or are we just better informed”

    Spot on Max.
    Droughts, floods, earthquakes happened regularly on this planet, but by the time it became known to the rest of the world, it was history for those affected.

  47. gavin March 12, 2009 at 11:59 am #

    I see cohenite failed my warmer nights question.

    With cyclone oil oozing up the Brisbane River, M & M fail too.

    For Toby; there is this place near a popular beach on the tourist route
    far side of Bass Strait

    http://www.realestateview.com.au/1240517

  48. jae March 12, 2009 at 12:06 pm #

    The only reason that the AGW hypothesis is even considered by society is that we have so many people, like luke, gavin, and SJT that don’t have a frigging CLUE of what they are talking about. No references, no substantive points, no rationale, only hahahaha type statements. Idiots!

  49. gavin March 12, 2009 at 1:20 pm #

    Trying to get beach pics via google is fun, (trying to see frontages along Boat Harbour Beach below Port Road, say no 272). Haven’t been there for a while but while staying as children at a similar place nearer the shop we could take only one step from shack door to wet sand. My guess is the high water must be up the door on occasions now.

    http://maps.google.com.au/maps

    Lets invite others to do their own childhood beach hey

  50. toby March 12, 2009 at 1:33 pm #

    Thx for the link Gavin, but as beautiful as tassie is, its too cold……..now anybody want to sell a place on the south coast? Gavin ask a local if sea levels are rising and they will laugh in your face. But given the impending depression brought on by the credit crunch, all govt’s complete lack of ability to solve it ( except spend more borrowed/ printed money that got us in the mess in the first place) coupled with an ETS I reckon i should be abl eto buy a 400k place for 250k early to mid next year……and if the doomsayers keep pushing their rubbish ( as per the link to the australian above) maybe even cheaper still!!!….bring it on

  51. toby March 12, 2009 at 1:37 pm #

    “My guess is the high water must be up the door on occasions now.” Come on Gavin you dont really believe that comment do you? where are all these beach front properties that are underwater….other than where people built too close to the beach or cliff and erosion has taken over?

  52. Gordon Robertson March 12, 2009 at 1:40 pm #

    SJT “The warming is only just starting…”

    Yeah…it’s been ‘just starting’ for 20 years now, It was 1988 when Hansen laid his lame theory on us and 10 years ago he admitted ‘his computer’ had erred. Ten years after (hey, that would be a good name for a rock group) he’s still on about a tipping point, as the temperature heads the other way.

    An alternate way of looking at that, as Akasofu so correctly points out, is that it has been warming since the LIA. The IPCC forgot to subtract that initial warming from it’s 0.72 C it guessed for last century’s warming.

  53. cohenite March 12, 2009 at 1:41 pm #

    gavin; what are you talking about?! Failed what “warmer nights” question? What is this , Boogie Nights! A dry desert has less water period; during the day it will be hotter than an equivalent tropical location which has more water in the atmosphere; this is despite the fact that the tropical location which has a lower sensible heat has a higher latent heat and Enthalpy; at night the desert will be colder for the reverse reason; look at at a psychrometic chart and get off the moonshine.

  54. Neville March 12, 2009 at 2:54 pm #

    Cohenite, I don’t know where Monash uni got their flash software from but it just isn’t accurate.
    4,000 years ago sea level around Aust was 1.5 to 2 metres higher than today and started to fall thereafter, this is well documented and the sea shore ( from that period ) can be found quite easily by research teams.
    As you probably know the sea shore line of Roman Britain is found at much higher levels than the shore line of today. Just proves that sea levels can move up and down naturally without that dreaded anthropogenic input.

  55. Gordon Robertson March 12, 2009 at 3:24 pm #

    Geoffrey Kelley “Science is peer-reviewed for a reason which eludes you but that is what makes it science”.

    You wouldn’t be refering to the peer-review by the 4000 IPCC scientists who OK’d Michael Mann’s hockey stick, which had lost the Little Ice Age and the Medieval Warm Period, would you? That gaffe would not have been so remarkable had the IPCC not published a graph circa 1990 that clealry showed the LIA and the MWP.

    Then there’s the Journal of Climate, that tome of fair, peer-review. Sitting on the editorial board are none other than Gavin Schmidt, a mathematician who runs the site realclimate, which is thoroughly biased toward computer model theory. An honorary editor is none other than Michael Mann himself, a geologist, and another contributor to RC. When Roy Spencer commented on a recent rejection of a paper he had submitted to the journal, he claimed the reviewer did not seem to understand what he was trying to say. No kidding. When you have a geologist and a mathematician doing peer review, who also happen to contribute to a controversial, model-oriented site, is it any wonder? Schmidt needed an engineer to explain feedback to him.

  56. cohenite March 12, 2009 at 4:29 pm #

    Neville; this is one of the few references I have for Australian sea-levels;

    http://www.coastalconference.com/2007/papers2007/Peter%20Helman.doc

    I would appreciate any others you have; as for Roman Britain, there is this;

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=61

    Not quite England but nearby; what references do you have?

  57. Minister for Truth and Sanity March 12, 2009 at 4:34 pm #

    Gordon Robertson -no wonder anything contrary to the mantra doesnt get a hearing when the foxes are in charge of the chook house.

    Here is another criticism.

    http://www.heartland.org/full/24853

    It would be interesting to hear more from Willie Soon on the subject.

    No wonder Bill Kininmonth doesnt bother with the PR process.

    Silly bloody yanks. Bugger up the word economies by lending money to people who knowlingly couldnt pay, have no assets, and no jobs, and then palm that toxic debt off around the world.

    Go to war on false pretences.

    Elect an illiterate and gauche President Bush by the wiff of hanging chad off a card punch hole. ( how primitive is that for gods sake).

    Accumulate one of the largest deficits ever known, and now try to dominate the science processes of peer review using people who are demonstrably biased and near incompetent.

    Time for a complete change with the system of Peer Review, to something that is less biased, more open, transparent, and more universal. After all, most of the money in science is public money no matter what country it is.

  58. Neville March 12, 2009 at 5:30 pm #

    Cohenite aust sea levels 4,000 years ago is easy to find online e.g see uni New England’s work at port hacking Cronulla found sea level 3,800 years ago to be 1.7 m higher than today.
    Also abc’s catalyst program found the same on a program about one year ago.
    The beach of the Roman invasion of Britain has been found recently 2.5 miles inland from the Kent coast. The roman fort of Richborough was built near the site.

  59. janama March 12, 2009 at 6:05 pm #

    I assume that when Lake Eyre was an inland sea, sea levels must have been higher. It got cut off via the north, i.e the gulf closing, rather than via the south as sea levels dropped.
    But at one stage the east coast went out to the edge of the continental shelf so levels must have been considerably lower.

  60. Louis Hissink March 12, 2009 at 6:15 pm #

    Cohenite,

    “I don’t know Louis but I think I’m going to demote him from Turing to PARRY, given his recent dialogueand non sequiturs; still, he is a beacon of rationality compared with Professor Will Steffan who I heard being interviewed on our ABC tonight; this will has been to Copenhagan at taxpayer expense and guess what, everythting is worse; the seas are rising quicker, the temperatures are rising [?!] and there is inertia in the system so that even if emissions cease tomorrow temps will continue to rise; this is, of course a lie and a damned lie at that; there is no ‘energy’ stored in situ in the ocean or anywhere else;”

    Of course Prof Will forgot to mention that it’s getting only worse in the computer simulations of climate that couldn’t predict the last 10 years of thermal stasis.

    In any case the global warming models bandied about here are basically incomplete since all lack the solar electromagnetic input into the system. The initial error is the assumption that all the downwelling IR measured is from CO2.

    In any case thrust and parry, and we will deal with these Termite Socialists as they should be.

  61. cohenite March 12, 2009 at 7:30 pm #

    You might be right Neville;

    http://hol.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/17/7/999

    I think I’ll send it to our Will Steffan; what a fraud!

  62. cohenite March 12, 2009 at 7:35 pm #

    Then there is this;

    http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/inqu/finalprogram/session_3419.htm

  63. Luke March 12, 2009 at 7:41 pm #

    “When Roy Spencer commented on a recent rejection of a paper he had submitted to the journal, he claimed the reviewer did not seem to understand what he was trying to say.”

    whingey whingey whinge – alternative explanation is that it was crap.

    Looks like the Heartland Conference is the same old extremists recycling the some old stuff in ever decreasing circles. What else is new.

    Yawn.

  64. Lazlo March 12, 2009 at 7:56 pm #

    Luke: ‘Looks like the Heartland Conference is the same old extremists recycling the some old stuff in ever decreasing circles. What else is new.’

    Surely you mean the Copenhagen Conference?

  65. Luke March 12, 2009 at 8:36 pm #

    No I meant the Dad’s Army climate convention in New York.

  66. cohenite March 12, 2009 at 9:00 pm #

    Dad’s army was one of the most popular British programs;

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dad's_Army

  67. cohenite March 12, 2009 at 9:05 pm #

    luke, “you stupid boy”! You made me mistake the link; if this doesn’t work google Dad’s Army at Wiki;

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dad's_Army

  68. spangled drongo March 12, 2009 at 9:25 pm #

    With all the alarmism on SLRs by the AGWers, when it is checked out there does not seem to be anything happening.

    Gavin, did you look at the mid-tide mark at the Isle of the Dead at Port Arthur?
    It was cut around 170 years ago and it is still a mid-tide mark.

    The Roman landing at the mouth of the River Stour, 2000 years ago is now 2 miles upstream.

    The dykes in Holland are not in trouble. [Neither are the sea walls. {groan}]

    Etc, etc.

  69. spangled drongo March 12, 2009 at 9:31 pm #

    cohenite, I never pictured you as a Captain Mainwearing. More of a “those fuzziwuzzies dont like that cold steel up’em”.

  70. spangled drongo March 12, 2009 at 9:43 pm #

    Gavin, I’m sure you’ve been here.

    http://www.john-daly.com/

  71. SJT March 12, 2009 at 9:58 pm #

    Gavin, did you look at the mid-tide mark at the Isle of the Dead at Port Arthur?
    It was cut around 170 years ago and it is still a mid-tide mark.

    Pull the other one, it’s got bells on it.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/467007.stm

    “John Daly has taken the mark, which is a nice clear bench mark, and said ‘that is the mean level of the sea at that time’, and it wasn’t,” says Dr Pugh.

    “From all the evidence we know it was the high water level at that time – it’s like the difference between mid-tide and high-tide. He’s wrong.”

  72. gavin March 12, 2009 at 10:10 pm #

    SD: sea level studies at UTas

    http://eprints.utas.edu.au/8366/

    These days, it’s quite easy to see S/L max from the air at high tides, i. e. no beaches in the reaches

    next

    BTW; we looked at the withered pines on Mt Read as highlighted on J Daly some way back

    What happens every time I go practical? A few blighters wilt in the heat hey

  73. gavin March 12, 2009 at 10:20 pm #

    real S/L science for bloggers begins with web pages like these

    http://www.dpiw.tas.gov.au/inter.nsf/WebPages/PBAS-7P65GL?open#HeightDatums

  74. spangled drongo March 12, 2009 at 10:52 pm #

    SJT, Why would anyone cut a high tide mark? There’s no such thing, and those old admiralty types understood tides. From what I read Ross did that in many parts of the world.
    And it sure looks about half a metre above water still.
    But I’m sure the land’s rebounded a couple of feet since all the trees were cut down.
    And why is the Roman landing 2 miles inland?
    I’ve been involved with the same seafrontage for the last 50 years and no sea level rise has occurred in that time and I’ve got marks on wall, jetty etc to check.
    I’m happy to see any evidence.
    The surfies at Kirra want the Govt to raise the sealevel there to give them back their point break. [They’re too dumb to realise that’s how it was 50 years ago but it makes for interesting politics.]

  75. SJT March 12, 2009 at 11:21 pm #

    “SJT, Why would anyone cut a high tide mark? There’s no such thing, and those old admiralty types understood tides. From what I read Ross did that in many parts of the world.”

    Because it’s easy to do? How do you know when it’s at the middle level, unless you mark the high and low tide?

    I have seen Roman ports in other places too, that are inland. It’s called silting.

  76. spangled drongo March 13, 2009 at 7:55 am #

    SJT, you obviously don’t know much about tides.
    When you look at a stone cliff face against which the tide has been rising and falling for ever, there are the two bands, high water from neaps to springs and low water from springs to neaps.
    They are vague areas but the mid-tide line is very evident to the naked eye.
    This is mean sea level [MSL] which has been a standard benchmark for centuries, on which building plans and data in coastal communities is based.

    “I have seen Roman ports in other places too, that are inland. It’s called silting.”
    You can only have places move inland from silting if you also have no SLR or a fall in SL.

  77. cohenite March 13, 2009 at 8:12 am #

    gavin; you obviously don’t read your links; the Hunter, Coleman and Pugh paper gives an annual SL rise from 1841-2002 of 1mm +- 0.3mm; this accords with this;

    http://soer.justice.tas.gov.au/2003/casestudy/4/index.php

    The Topex and Jason satellite data show declines over the last 5 years and a 30 year pattern consistent with ENSO; there is no AGW sea-rise.

  78. jae March 13, 2009 at 1:12 pm #

    It has now become very clear that comments from gavin and SJT are not even worth reading, since they are completely thoughtless, hollow, unsubstantiated, nonsense. No more from me to those kids.

  79. Gordon Robertson March 13, 2009 at 1:56 pm #

    Minister for the Trurh…”Elect an illiterate and gauche President Bush by the wiff of hanging chad off a card punch hole….”

    At the time, I was annoyed with the entire presidential election process, and the decisions of the Supreme Court, which seemed biased. However, think of the alternative. Gore might have won.

    I can’t imagine how that would have affected us here in Canada. George W. wasn’t as scary as I expected. After his record as governor in Texas, where people were executed in record numbers, including women, and no one every got clemency, I thought he’d be a lot worse. As it turned out, Grinning Gore would have made life intolerable.

  80. Minister for Truth March 13, 2009 at 2:43 pm #

    Gordon

    I share your concerns.Gore has to be one the most odious VPs’ever. The way he is allowed to make enormous personal gains off the back of the alarmism he has been projecting, just beggars belief.

    As for the current economic woes, it is being reported in “The Australian”, Geithner and Bernanke are berating the Europeans for not doing enough, and claiming that the USA on its own cant do much because of how the global economies are so tied together.Gleithner has the gall to say “Our fortunes are linked to the rest of the world”.

    Well whoopee do, wouldnt it would have been nicer if they had thought of this before creating the subprime mortgage mess. Its not as though the principles are that difficult. You dont lend money to people who you know cant pay.Full stop.

    If the dopes can’t get that right why should anyone trust their oversight of the Peer Review mechanisms, when there are so many glaring conflicts of interest involved.

  81. Minister for Truth March 13, 2009 at 3:05 pm #

    Gordon,

    I share your concerns. Gore has to be one the most odious VPs’ever. The way he is allowed to make enormous personal gains off the back of the alarmism and lies he has been projecting,and allowed to project, just beggars belief. It is a sad reflection upon the USA as well.

    As for the current economic woes, it is being reported in “The Australian”, Gleithner and Bernanke are berating the Europeans for not doing enough, and claiming that the USA on its own cant do much because of how the global economies are so tied together.

    Gleithner has the gall to say “Our fortunes are linked to the rest of the world”.

    Well whoopee do, it would have been far better if they had thought of that before creating the subprime mortgage mess. Its not as though the principles are that difficult, namely you dont lend money to people who you know before hand, that they cant pay.Full stop.

    If the dopes can’t get that right, why should anyone trust their oversight of the Peer Review mechanisms, covering one the most important decisions governments have to make, when there are so many glaring conflicts of interest involved, and not just the ones you highlighted.

    It seems to me that their systems of Government are so flawed, that the people are not being made better by them, but are being disadvantaged by the vested interests and collusions.

    As for whether Bush is better or worse than Obama, just how tasteless can you get when Obama gives the UK PM Gordon Brown a $100 box of DVD’s as a gift, when he Brown went to great trouble to get something of historical significance and value. How appallingly clumsy and incompetent is that. Again if they cant get the simple things right what hope is there.

  82. SJT March 14, 2009 at 11:47 am #

    “If the dopes can’t get that right, why should anyone trust their oversight of the Peer Review mechanisms, covering one the most important decisions governments have to make, when there are so many glaring conflicts of interest involved, and not just the ones you highlighted.”

    The government doesn’t oversee the Peer Review mechanisms.

  83. Sid Reynolds March 14, 2009 at 11:52 am #

    The Mean Tide Level, on the Isle of the Dead, is undoubtably the biggest impediment to the “man made rising sea level” case. As is the MWP to the case for “unprecented temp. rises” at end of 20C, caused by AGW.
    In the latter case, to overcome the problem, the IPCC decided to ‘get rid’ of the MWP, and commissioned their lackey, Mann, to knock it for six with his ‘Hockey Stick’, and then ‘Peer Review’ his own work.
    In the former case, what to do with the troublesome MTL mark?
    Simple; turn it into a high tide mark. Then we can show how sea levels have risen. Oh and this rise has only taken place in the last few years and is caused by AGW.
    Evidence? No worries we will ‘discover’ (and of course not manufacture) evidence that the MTL was in fact a HTL. No worries.

    Of course the boys from the ‘Office for the Propagation of AGW’ within the CSIRO have been up to their eyeballs in this, led by that old climate leftie, John Church, for whom the MTL mark on the Isle of the Dead, has become a life long obsession.

    Church is in the news again, from Copenhagen, trying to out Gore Gore with dire warnings of drastic sea level rises.
    Maybe he should look at the problems people along the waterfront of Lake Huron, at Saginaw Bay, Michigan are having. Not with rising sea levels, but rising ice levels!
    http://www.wnem.com/news/18885556/detail.html

  84. Minister for Truth March 14, 2009 at 2:55 pm #

    SJT “The government doesn’t oversee the Peer Review mechanisms”

    That is just the point that is being made.

    Most of the Research funding on climate science is pubic money for which there is usually an assessment made as to whether there was/is value for money obtained. Most western style governments have Audit Generals and/or Parliamentary Public Accounts Committees.

    One of the performance measures would surely be how many papers were published. But this would be a completely unreliable and unfair measure given that it is a biased and stacked deck even before a dollar is spent- and there is abundant evidence of this.

    When an elitist few control what is to be published and that is independant of the value of the material that is seeking to be published, you have to wonder about it all.

    Like I said when the dopes cant even get this right and in the public interest then what hope is there.When the Auditor Generals and Public Accounts bodies dont out a glove on these cretins then what hope is there

    BTW spare me the idiot retort that science has made a top contribution to human kind so whats the beef, that may be so.

    I am only talking about climate science here and nothing else. Most other areas of science dont have the equivalents of the IPCC and Gore/Hansen, and the various leftist greeny groups distorting things.

  85. WJP March 15, 2009 at 2:45 pm #

    Wait, Minister For Truth, there’s more. Re your “the dopes can’t even get this right” insight Obama appoints Geithner on his track record….hmmm.

    “There’s a growing realisation that Obama’s Treasury Secretary, Tim Geithner, is a dud. He is the boy genius who has grown into a boy. the surprising thing is that it’s a surprise”

    and

    “Let me put two things together that both polititians and the media in the US have been incapable of doing.
    Geithner was the CEO from 2003 to early 2009 of the regulator that sat at ” the heart of the nation’s financial industry”.
    Might he have some responsibility for the mess? Instead he’s tapped to fix it. Not so much setting a thief , but an utterly incomprtant failed cop to catch a thief.”

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/business/story/0,28124,25183284-14743,00.html

    And former PM Paul Keating’s blast the week before

    http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/obamas-economic-saviour-savaged-as-keating-lets-rip-20090306-8rk7.html?page=-1

    Heaven help us!

  86. Malcolm Hill March 15, 2009 at 3:48 pm #

    WJP –and yet there is still more

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29697096/

    What sort of crack pot system is it, that insists the employees and Executives still get paid bonuses for being abject failures.

    Its no wonder the Chinese PM Wen is expressing great concern as to the security of their investments in America.

  87. spangled drongo March 15, 2009 at 5:59 pm #

    Sid Reynolds,
    thanks for that. I wasn’t aware of John Church’s campaign. I just googled this about Daly and Church and according to Daly then [2001], the mid tide mark was 30 cms above current MSL, indicating that SLR over that 160 year period was negative [or the land had risen 1 foot which is hard to believe].

    http://www.john-daly.com/press/press-01b.htm#isledead

  88. Ender March 17, 2009 at 5:24 pm #

    Just throwing in a comment for something to do:

    Assumptions:

    “Empirical evidence suggests that the relative humidity near the surface does not vary with temperature.”

    What evidence?

    http://www.bom.gov.au/lam/humiditycalc.shtml
    “The amount of water vapour the air can hold increases with temperature. Relative humidity therefore decreases with increasing temperature if the actual amount of water vapour stays the same.”

    This is a key assumption as Bill’s whole thesis is related to climate sensitivity and this is what he uses try to say that climate sensitivity is much less.

    “Figure 4: Changing magnitudes of the major surface energy exchange processes over the range of typical temperatures of the Earth’s surface.”

    However he has neglected to put in what altitude the calculations stop and start at. He talks about layers however does not present different calculations for different layers. The stratosphere is very dry and has quite different radiation characteristics. This is explained in Spencer’s work very well however Bill seems to have completely neglected the stratosphere where latent heat of evaporation will not be an effect.

    This does go to peer review. How do you know that the assumptions Bill makes are correct? Are they correct because they say what you want to hear?

    If this paper was checked and published other scientists would question more than the couple of points a layperson like myself could pick up.

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