IS it ever a good idea to base legislation on a scientific theory?
The Australian Parliament’s upper-house Senate has begun debating the Rudd Labor government’s proposed Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme Bill 2009, also known as the emissions trading scheme. The legislation is based on the theory of anthropogenic global warming.
The vote of Family First Senator, Steve Fielding, is considered crucial. The Senator claims Australia’s Minister for Climate Change, Penny Wong, has not answered key questions from him concerning the science in particular: Is it the case that carbon dioxide increased by 5 percent since 1998 whilst global temperature cooled over the same period?
The Minister’s advisors have apparently argued with Senator Fielding about how to measure global temperatures, insisting that ocean as opposed to surface temperature, is a better measure.
Indeed heat is not the same as temperature. Two litres of boiling water contain twice as much heat as one litre of boiling water even though the water in both vessels is the same temperature. A larger container has more thermal mass which means it takes longer to heat and cool. So yes, measuring ocean temperature is a more accurate measure of heat accumulation.
NASA started deploying free floating Argo buoys in the world’s oceans in 2000 with the full complement of 3,000 in place by 2003, and data from these buoys indicate that even the oceans have started to cool.
This is very significant. While surface temperatures may vary from year to year, as long as atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide increase there will be a gradual accumulation of heat in the climate system eventually resulting in a climate crisis.
But so much for the legislation if the oceans are cooling; then the very hypothesis is falsified. Indeed given the nature of science, the fact that today’s theories are often disproven tomorrow, it is perhaps never a good idea to develop legislation on a scientific theory, however, popular.
Notes and Links
The above graph is republished from ‘Have Changes In Ocean Heat Falsified The Global Warming Hypothesis?’ by William DiPuccio http://climatesci.org/2009/05/05/have-changes-in-ocean-heat-falsified-the-global-warming-hypothesis-a-guest-weblog-by-william-dipuccio/
Related blog posts:
Of course it makes sense to apply science to public policy.
That would mean that the social movement that is AGW would have to be excluded.
“it is perhaps never a good idea to develop legislation on a scientific theory”
It is difficult to extract any meaning from this statement, though it does indicate your anti-science outlook. Should we take from this that you oppose any drugs laws, for example? The notion that cocaine is highly addictive is a ‘scientific theory’. What about legislation that prevents tetra-ethyl lead being used in petrol? The toxicity of lead is a ‘scientific theory’. What about gun laws? The notion that a bullet entering a human body would cause massive damage, well, that’s a ‘scientific theory’.
jennifer, how often will you bring up that same wrong graph again?
Argo is reporting another serious error, btw:
according to the “Anthony Watts” method, this completely destroys the purpose of their data.
but Argo (and E&E, and Loehle, and 5 year trends and trends starting in 1998) are all things that the sceptics are not sceptic about….
Argo is aggressively documenting, reporting and seeking to fix the problem. They are not waiting on, and complaining about, outside groups to point out the presence of a problem.
That is exactly the opposite of what AGW promoters do.
NOAA has lost a lot of credibility here. Any reason it should not?
AGW is a theory? Who upgraded it from conjecture?
Solid well established science is indeed a good basis for legislation. AGW ain’t it.
As for RW ‘s blather on the other things – drug laws- well that turned out well didn’t it?
Lead in petrol enabled use of higher compression more economical engines hence less CO2 if you care about that sort of thing. Was there any real evidence that it was problem?
As for gun laws designed to disarm the citizenry, ask the Iranian protestors right now who are facing armed thugs who are the minions of a criminal gang (the government, they are all that to some extent) with nothing but rocks and their bodies.
here’s the source of the Chart Sod
exactly why is the chart wrong?
I have read a number of times that when you consider oceans there is a very large time delay. I think it was Wunch who claimed it was hundreds of years. If this is true it would seem measurement trying to relate it to current events is irrelevant. So if the oceans are cooling as measured and the atmosphere is also the atmosphere reasons it may well be unrelated. Even so the future is starting to look bleak since already crop yields are decreasing. This is in the Americas and Europe because of cold.
Malcolm Hill says
After all the shenanigans ove the Utegate affiir one cannot have any respect for the political establishment, and coming on top of, and combined with, the stupidity and culpibility of the scientific fraternity involved in the AGW scare, one cannot have any confidence about the future.
Of course the stupidity of the Americans in precipitating GFC by lending buckets of money to borrowers who had no hope of paying, ( and that fact was known when the money was lent), doesnt help. But then they were relying upon upon a mix of pure greed- and financial modelling.
Previously the climate mafia involving Whetton, Jones, Pearman,Pittock et al all came out backing Gore and his AIT, and made no attempt at modifying that position when after all the evidence was showing what an exaggerated crock of rubbish it was. Gore has been shown time and again to be looking after his own interests more than anything, and is a total hypocrite/crook.
His own wealth as increased near 100 fold since he produced and began marketing his Prospectus called the AIT.
But non of that stopped a bunch of leftist Swedish Parliamentarians voting to give him, and the equally suspect IPCC, a Nobel Peace prize.
Whilst in Australia a bunch of dead heads voted to make Flannery an Australian of the Year,i n a blatant piece of political manipulation if ever there was one. Doesnt say much about the selection criteria, or the nouse of those doing the selection, that across the whole of this country there wasnt someone better than another Gore like opportunist and self promoting gad fly than Flannery.
And now we have going through the Parliament an absurd piece of legislation that will be a barnacle on the backside of this economy for the next 100 years or more, as well as put thousands out of work in order to achieve an outcome that could not even be measured.
Does it get any dumber.
What the chattering classes dont realise is that even if one accepts all that the nit wit academics,spivs and frauds say about GW is true, we cannot make a tot of difference to any temperature reduction on our own.
But no where have I been able to find a substantive piece of work from these same academic nit wits that would constitute any sort of clarification/advice about that.
These same clowns cant even defend our country against the charge that we have the highest pe capita output of Co2 gases of any other nation states, by pointing out that we have a land and sea area which means that if you divided this per capita by that area we occupy, then our impact on the globe is—- the smallest.
Guess which bunch of countries come out the worst, the very ones who proposed that per capita measure in the first place the IPCC and Europeans- and our numbskull pollies and their toady advsiers let them get away with it.
“Does it get any dumber.”
No matter, since it appears that the skeptics are winning.
No matter what the “global average temperature” does now, it appears that the skeptics have WON the fight for public opinion on the global warming gig. I think a great part of this is due to the fact that the environmental-extremists and con-artists (and they definitely know who they are) have over-hyped the AGW story to such a ridiculous extreme that they have made laughing-stock-asses of themselves. NOBODY is stupid enough to believe that we “only have a few years left…”
Perhaps this very clear expose’ of junk science, plus current economic hardships, will force the “environmental movement” to return to real concerns. And it appears that the ObamaSocialists are facing a similar comeuppance.
They can fool all the people some of the time….
Hopefully, we are not entering another ice age.
Willem de Lange says
The graph you linked contains a significant discontinuity from 2002-2003 reflecting the difference between ARGO and non-ARGO measurements. There was no corresponding jump in temperature measurements, so it is unlikely that the increase in ocean heat evident in the graph at that time actually occurred.
The graph also indicates that since 2003 there has not been any significant increase in the heat content of the upper part of the ocean, which is contrary to the “official” view conveyed to Senator Fielding. The problems identified with ARGO are not likely to change this, but we will see.
sod; janama has linked to the excellent Dipuccio article but your use of the Levitus graph continues luke’s determined use of this graph which is even negated by Fig S9 from the Levitus paper! This is troll-like behaviour, continuing to regurgitatae a highly dubious bit of ‘information’. It is beyond doubt that OH is declining; the question that the AGW acolytes have to ask themselves [and this is conjecture; whether such people are capable of querying anything about their ‘faith’; at least luke makes a token effort] is if OH is decling, or at the very least the rate of increase is declining, which is certainly what the NOAA/Levitus graph does show, then how can AGW not be falsified?
RW; guns don’t kill people, people do; I guess that is why many AGW supporters want to get rid of many people; is that scientific?
Sen. Wong was interviewed on ABC RN this morning. When asked, she said Sen. Fielding has been given the current scientific consensus and if RN wanted to find out whether this satisfied him they should ask him. She apparently considers this to be finished.
Malcolm Hill says
That doesnt surprise me one bit.
More evidence of the appalling decline in standards and the rise of political opportunism at every level including the public sector.
Can blame them really –must look after number one
It is odd that OHC was not getting much attention until the numbers came out against AGW.
Then a report is tossed out that actually does not help the AGW case, but we are told shut our denialist wicked mouthes and move on- topic closed. But the folks pushing the new OHC are the same folks who just published a much less than honest review of climate risks in the US.
The AGW credibility is suffering greatly, and by the actions of its own promoters.
Patrick B says
“As for gun laws designed to disarm the citizenry”
Good see gun nuts joining in the anti-AGW debate. The idea that a well armed citizenry contribiutes to lower crime and smaller numbers of casualties due to firearms injuries is of course well borne out by US statistics. LOL …
Patrick B says
“No matter, since it appears that the skeptics are winning.”
Are yes, little old blogs like this one with contribuions from right wing ideolouges and gun nuts are winning the AGW debate. General inertia and timidity on the issue couldn’t have anything to do with the powerful vested interests could it? I mean the influence of those large capitalist enterprises that contribute so much to global pollution pales into insignificance compared to the weight given to the likes of Jen, Louie, Mottie, Coey and co. And now we have the colossal figure of Sen Fielding striding the globe determined to find the answer to global warming. Ah yes, there is no delusion here only straight out practical solutions and self-effacing disregard for the service performed in the name of the preserving the Universe. Well done denialists! For those who need one extra large dongs are available at the exit (don’t worry you won’t miss out).
Does anyone have comment about ocean temperature being a product of the past? Is this doubtfull or not? If it isn’t then surely ocean temperature has little to do with AGW.
steve from brisbane says
I see that Jennifer’s favourite graph comes from an article written by “a weather forecaster for the U.S. Navy, and a Meteorological/Radiosonde Technician for the National Weather Service. More recently, he served as head of the science department for St. Nicholas Orthodox School in Akron, Ohio (closed in 2006).”
Oh, I wonder why I should be skeptical of this graph…
LOL. “The idea that a well armed citizenry contribiutes to lower crime and smaller numbers of casualties due to firearms injuries is of course well borne out by US statistics. LOL …”
If you had looked up the statistics you will find that the above is true – we have more guns now but gun crime is down. http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/guns.htm
And the crime rate in the UK soared after handguns were banned. I don’t think they are necessarily related – i.e. the rise had more to do with immigration and deterioration of the family unit in urban areas. But the UK gun crime stats now match the US and in many areas exceed the US.
It is very hard to sort out the influence of laws and culture in all of this – I found a pro gun site which had thoughtful statistical knowledge which you might find interesting. http://www.campaignforliberty.com/blog.php?view=8897
Yes, there are gun nuts. But there seem to be be even more anti-gun nuts.
spangled drongo says
The winter solstice has just occurred and with it [ in Australia and possibly world wide] some of the highest tides of the year. I always use these periods to try and see for myself some evidence of real sea level rise against infrastructure I have been familliar with for the last 46 years.
Once again I see no measurable evidence and yesterday I was talking to an engineer in the Gold Coast City Council [a Venice – like city of extensive canals and waterways as well as huge Pacific Ocean frontage and one of the most potentially vulnerable places in Australia to current AGW prophesies of doom] who has been overseeing this potential problem following the ’74 floods.
He says he is also not noticing any change in the sea levels and their MSL [mean sea level] data point has not changed.
It seems that AGW is still only a doubtful hypothesis.
The idea that a well armed citizenry contribiutes to lower crime and smaller numbers of casualties due to firearms injuries is of course well borne out by US statistics. LOL …
Well Patrick, the statistics here say that even though in the US there are a greater number of guns, gun crime is down. http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/guns.htm
The gun crime in the UK soared after handguns were banned. I do not believe that was the reason/cause – I think it had much more to do with immigration and the deterioration of the family unit in urban areas. However, you will find that UK crime stats match and in the case of London far exceed those of the US.
It is exceedingly difficult to separate the impact of law and culture on gun stats. I found some thoughtful use of stats on this pro-gun site which you may find interesting. http://www.campaignforliberty.com/blog.php?view=8897
Yes, there are gun nuts. But there also seem to be a great number of anti-gun nuts. Sarcastic ones, too.
Tried to post earlier and got an error so apologies in advance if this is a double post.
Steve from Brisbane said – Oh, I wonder why I should be skeptical of this graph…
well – if you can point out where the science is wrong then you have every right to be skeptical, otherwise….
steve from brisbane says
This recent discussion of the article in question convinced me there’s no reason to overthrow AGW:
Does Jennifer ever read the Skeptical Science site? It’s calm, rational style is very refreshing and informative, I’m sure she would find!
steve from brisbane
A site dedicated to “examining the science of global warming skepticism” instead of “examining climate science ” or some such is giving away its bias in the headline.
For your information some of the AGW crowd have long argued that when we can’t find the heat increase allegedly caused by extra CO2 it is because the heat is “hidden in the oceans”. If true there’s no reason for it to suddenly pop out in future of course. What they likely mean is that the thermal capacity of the oceans is so large that they act as a low pass filter(with a time constant of hundreds of years allegedly) and any temperature rise will be slow but inexorable. Of course it then follows that what we’re doing now shouldn’t be showing up yet at all which kind of conflicts with the “rapidly increasing and accelerating effects of climate change” claimed to be seen now by other branches of the AGW cult.
It is really difficult to keep your story straight when you tell lies.
Check out the excellent article by Peter Schwerdtfeger on the opinion page of The Australian today.
I’ll take Peter Schwerdtfeger’s opinion on CO2 over that of Neville Nicholls any day.
Louis Hissink says
“For your information some of the AGW crowd have long argued that when we can’t find the heat increase allegedly caused by extra CO2 it is because the heat is “hidden in the oceans”. ”
This happens in pseudoscience – hypothesis===>observations ===> testing. If the test fails, then it’s because the evidence is hidden, here in the oceans, previously in the geological lacunae for the necessary intermediate species to support evolution.
Perhaps we should call it “faux-science”.
Maybe the OHC is hiding out with the missing tropo heat, sharing some nice adult beverages?
I would invite anyone to explain how large amounts of heat stay hidden?
Louis Hissink says
Eyrie “Check out the excellent article by Peter Schwerdtfeger on the opinion page of The Australian today.”
The Russians have been making it rain in Mexico using electro-dynamics/
steve from brisbane says
Oh yes, Eyrie, and the fact that Jennifer runs with virtually every single theory that disputes AGW is true (or even possible) means that this site is non-biased with regard to science? Give me a break…
Louis Hissink says
Steve from Brisbane
“….Eyrie, and the fact that Jennifer runs with virtually every single theory that disputes AGW is true (or even possible) means that this site is non-biased with regard to science? Give me a break…”
Which other theories dispute AGW? Please list them. There is only the theory of AGW which is in contention, and what other theories are we suggesting should replace it with.
Heres a thought,
Lets face it , any rational thinker who has had a fair dinkum look at the AGW evidence or lack there of, can see that at best it is an expensive hoax.
What if PM Krudd and Minister Wrong know that the actual evidence is not supporting the AGW theory and they have bundled the ETS and RET so that they can then play popular politics with the oppposition ie get them to delay their own policies while appearing to be true believers. Cheers !
steve from brisbane:
“This recent discussion of the article in question convinced me there’s no reason to overthrow AGW:
Dear god, its the Levitus paper again!!!
Rule #1 of splicing data sets: if the point at which you change datasets (beginning of Argo data) has a step change that exceeds the entire historical record, then your splice is garbage!!! Clear?
steve from brisbane says
Louis, I don’t really have time for this, and Luke seems MIA, but there’s this for a start:
…according to a new theory dubbed the ‘Saturated Greenhouse Effect’ developed by a Hungarian physicist (Ferenc Miskolczi) adding carbon dioxide to the atmosphere will not impact global temperatures because the atmosphere will compensate by reducing specific humidity at critical altitudes.
My wording was perhaps careless: I should have said that Jennifer will post about nearly any alleged analysis, idea or theory as long as it disputes AGW. She does not indicate (at least not here) any interest in the careful, reasoned counter-arguments that the climate scientists publish elsewhere.
steve from brisbane says
Hmm, perhaps I should qualify that last comment. I had forgotten that specifically on the ocean heating issue, Jennifer has run a long article on the reasons for the adjustment. But she wasn’t convinced. (Why I am still not sure.)
Louis, that is an interesting link about the russians making it rain. I wonder if taking that moistuire out of the air will reduce rainfall elsewhere?
Ian Mott says
Just once more for the bimboscenti.
“In brief, we know of no mechanism by which vast amounts of “missing” heat can be hidden, transferred, or absorbed within the earth’s system. The only reasonable conclusion-call it a null hypothesis-is that heat is no longer accumulating in the climate system and there is no longer a radiative imbalance caused by anthropogenic forcing. This not only demonstrates that the IPCC models are failing to accurately predict global warming, but also presents a serious challenge to the integrity of the AGW hypothesis.”
That is the challenge for the climate cretins. If warming is continuing while it remains undetected in the atmospheric temp data, where is it hiding? Clearly not in the oceans because it is undetected there too.
And if only 2.6 metres of ocean is equal mass to all of the atmosphere above it then the 4000m average depth of ocean holds 1,538 times the mass of the atmosphere above 70.5% of the planetary surface. And given that oceanic albedo, and therefore oceanic heat absorption, can vary between 4% and 30% (ie absorption of 70% to 96%) depending on cloud cover, why on earth would anyone even bother to piss about with a theory based on atmospheric CO2 forcing? AGW is based on one twelth of two fifths of sweet FA.
steve; The Skeptical science site is ok; but I got disenchanted with it when it tried to justify the enhanced greenhouse AGW add-on concept based on the +ve feedback of water; this is simply not true, but at least that post admitted that CO2 follows temperature increases; the OHC issue now seems to be the focus of the debate since even the most steadfast AGW acolyte must be tiring of justifying the down trend since 1998; 2 things about the Levitus/NOAA graph which you and every other AGW spruiker is using; firstly OHC increased during the +ve PDO from 1976 [as the Levitus/NOAA graph shows]; OHC has been declining since ~2003 when arguably the +ve PDO packed its bags and threw the keys at the distaff; secondly, that Levitus/NOAA graph is deeply flawed as this notes;
So increased salinity causes heated surface water to sink into the depths of the AGW trenches where those warmer cold waters become desalinated and carry their heat back to the surface. Such is the balance of nature.
Don’t we call that ENSO?
Well said Joel.
steve of brisbane: instead of making meaningless noises here why don’t you look up how far the long wave radiation from CO2 can penetrate sea water and compare with how far solar short wave penetrates? Then come up with some believeable mechanism for the hiding of the extra heat in the deep oceans.
Louis Hissink says
That I don’t know but the idea that there is a static volume of water in the atmosphere, on which your interpretation assumes, needs to be shown as well. We don’t understand what is going on, but the Russians do, and the limited contact I have with some of their scientists on geoelectrical matters prompts me to suggest that it’s not only weather that we know little about. Geology is another area of contention and I had not realized how much damage Lyell did to the science with his deliberations of the subject.
Louis Hissink says
Tom Segaldstat also explained how the missing CO2 sink was produced – I think the missing oceanic heat sink will have a similar origin.
Louis Hissink says
I don’t know of any previous government legislation that was based on a scientific theory, and AGW is certainly not one either. As political theory yes, and legislation would be in order.
the Willis result is NOT a straight line down, btw.
check figure 1.
“steve; The Skeptical science site is ok; but I got disenchanted with it when it tried to justify the enhanced greenhouse AGW add-on concept based on the +ve feedback of water; this is simply not true,”
I thought Water was the most potent GHG. Increase the water content, increase the greenhouse effect.
Dave in CA says
“Argo is reporting another serious error, btw:
I know you’re trying to discount Argo completely by mentioning this but, Argo’s problem is “an increase in the occurrence rate of floats exhibiting negative surface pressures from floats deployed in 2007 and late”….It doesn’t appear to be a temperature problem.
Argo’s been deployed since, what, 2000.
So what’s the temperature showing? Observed vs model? Pretty interesting for a world that’s supposed to be on the “tipping point” if we don’t do something now, isn’t it?
BTW, Argo’s still better than relying on ship’s to gather information http://www.argo.ucsd.edu/Novel_argo.html
SJT says, “increase the water content, increase the greenhouse effect”.
Doesnt this mean more cloud which reflects sunlight and reduces warming ( simply consider what happens when a cloud comes over the sun).
At night however the cloud prevents heat leaving and so it does produce warmer nights.
Both of these seem pretty positive to me! ( yes some losers, but probably more winners)
S. A. Surma says
never mind: it is the CO2 is responsible for Global Cooling in a next year modeling…