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INTERVIEWS
9 November 2016 14:31

US election: Climate scientists react to Donald Trump’s victory

Carbon Brief Staff

Carbon Brief Staff

09.11.2016 | 2:31pm
InterviewsUS election: Climate scientists react to Donald Trump’s victory

In what’s widely being described as the most shocking upset in US election history, Donald J Trump has beaten Hillary Clinton to become the 45th president of the United States.

As one of the world’s largest greenhouse gas emitters, any change at the top of US politics warrants a consideration of what it might mean for the country’s climate and energy priorities.

But given Trump’s comments on the campaign trail, the US’s recent reputation under Barack Obama as a nation serious about tackling climate change now looks to be in peril.

For example, Trump said he thought climate change was a “hoax” perpetrated by the Chinese. In addition, he pledged to end federal spending on low-carbon energy and to pull the US out of the UN’s Paris Agreement on climate change. Carbon Brief has been asking climate scientists for their reactions.

Dr Philip B Duffy, executive director of the Woods Hole Research Center and former senior policy analyst in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy:

Dr Malte Meinhausen, senior researcher in climate impacts at the University of Melbourne and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research:

“Trump said a lot of things. It looks like the Trump administration could do anything. From playing a destructive role in international climate protection to just letting others get on with the job…However, despite the momentum for climate protection having, in part, an autonomous motor due to the economics of lower cost renewable energies, a hostile Trump administration towards the Paris Agreement could do a lot of damage.
“Trump won’t be able to withdraw from the Paris Agreement for three years (Article 28) now that it just entered into force – one of the world’s major success stories. A hostile Trump administration could, however, withdraw from the UNFCCC Convention and thereby also from the Paris Agreement indirectly. In theory, that could happen quicker. It’s unlikely that the administration would do so much self-harm, so. But Trump seems to defy conventional wisdom, so we don’t know.
“The Paris Agreement without the US would live on, but the spirit and the international focus on one of the defining challenges of our time could get lost. And the economic opportunities for the US will get lost too…Not a good outcome for the US in that respect. Not a good outcome for the climate. Too early to tell how bad it will be, though. One can hear the world gasping for air”

Prof Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research:

“President-elect Donald Trump’s stance on global warming is well known. Ironically, he contributed to the popularity of our recent ‘Turn down the heat’ report series for the World Bank by attacking it on Twitter.
“Yet apart from this, science cannot expect any positive climate action from him. The world has now to move forward without the US on the road towards climate-risk mitigation and clean-technology innovation.”
“The US de-elected expertise and will likely show a blockade mentality now, so Europe and Asia have to pioneer and save the world. Formally leaving the Paris Agreement would take longer than one Presidential term, yet of course the US could simply refuse reducing national emissions which would mean a de facto exit out of international climate policy. Now the US are one of the world’s biggest economies, and even just four years of unbridled emission staying in the atmosphere for many hundreds years would make a substantial difference. The climate system doesn’t forget, and it doesn’t forgive. The US is prone to potentially devastating climate change impacts. Hurricanes hit US coastal cities, the California drought affected farmers, and a state like Florida is particularly exposed to sea-level rise. Sadly, in the long run nature itself might show the US citizens that climate change as a matter of fact is not a hoax. But it might be too late.”

Dr Rachel James, research fellow in climate modelling at the Environmental Change Institute at the University of Oxford:

Dr Twila Moon, lecturer in cryospheric sciences at the University of Bristol:

“Having a person in the position of US President who does not acknowledge scientific facts establishing the clear reality of human-caused climate change is a disgrace. This is a sad and scary outcome for science and for action on halting harmful climate change.
“But I am hopeful that the American people – from all parties – are realising that climate change is happening in our own backyards, and the will of the people will push the political needle. I think our response must be to work harder, together to move forward on climate action locally, regionally, and, as best as possible, nationally. As a human being, I think it is our moral obligation.”

Prof Andrew Dessler, professor of atmospheric sciences at Texas A&M University:

“I don’t think anyone knows what this means for US policy on climate science or emissions reductions. I think we all expected that the Clean Power Plan would end eventually up in front of the Supreme Court, and its fate there is more doubtful now that Trump gets to appoint the next Justice. On the other hand, renewable power is getting cheap fast, and my optimistic hope is that renewable energy gets so cheap that we switch to it without any national government policy. I guess we’ll see!”

Prof Shaun Marcott, professor in palaeoclimate at the University of Wisconsin-Madison:

“This election in terms of future global climate change was critical as the new president will be making decisions that will have long lasting consequences, both in the policy being set in the homeland and policies that they will help set with their international counterparts.
“Much like Britain and the Brexit vote, the U.S. now finds itself at a crossroad and heading in a direction that, in my opinion, does not appear to be sustainable. This is obvious, I think, to most people. I think the best way I’ve heard it described is that decisions made by this incoming president will set in policies that could have lasting climate change effects extending 10,000 years into the future. The stakes were high and unfortunately both of our leading candidates didn’t even discuss, or did so very rarely, climate change at large in any of the debates.”

Prof Charles F Kennel, distinguished professor emeritus at the Scripps Institute of Oceanography:

Dr Emily Shuckburgh, head of open oceans at the British Antarctic Survey:

“A significant theme of recent political discourse has been the use and misuse of evidence. In moving forward, rather than bemoan a “post-truth world”, those of us who have roles in gathering, curating and disseminating evidence must strive to understand the process of human decision-making better.
“We absolutely need to make policy on climate and other matters that is consistent with the evidence base. But within a democracy, this has to be achieved through the will of the people. That requires broad and deep engagement by us with all sections of the wider society to understand the contextual circumstances and to proactively place the evidence in frames that are relevant to people.
“If we are to meet the objectives of the Paris Agreement, it is abundantly clear that a major transformation of society will be required. This is a significant technological challenge, but the political events in the US and UK that have surprised the establishment also serve to remind us the importance of recognising the implications of change for all sectors of society. If we can learn from this, there is hope that we may be able to successfully navigate the perilous journey ahead of us in responding to the climate challenge.”

Prof Jean-Pierre Gattuso, professor of biological oceanography at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Sorbonne University and the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI).

“The result of the US presidential election is very worrisome on many counts, including of course for climate negotiations. The Paris Agreement is a construct that was many years in the making and is, therefore, extremely fragile. Even though the US cannot formally leave the agreement in the next 4 years, not having the US on board and pushing for the full implementation of the Paris Agreement may well affect billions of people for hundreds of years. The outcome of this election is clearly not the end of the world but the consequences for humanity are potentially dreadful.”

Prof Jason Box, professor in glaciology at the Geologic Survey of Denmark and Greenland:

“Those of us in the sciences are all about the rational and we surround ourselves by rational media. The US election outcome reflects the irrational and how those voters were influenced by irrational media.”

Prof Jean-Pascal van Ypersele, professor of climatology and environmental sciences at the Université Catholique de Louvain:

Dr Michael. E. Mann, distinguished professor of atmospheric science at Penn State University

“To quote James Hansen, I fear this may be game over for the climate.”

Prof Eric Steig, professor of earth and space science at the University of Washington:

“It’s impossible to know just how far Trump and the Republican controlled House and Senate will want to push an anti-intellectual, anti-science agenda. I suspect there will be more immediate political concerns. In the medium term, I don’t expect there will be major cuts to science funding; I think Trump will likely govern less as an ideologue and more as an opportunist in this respect. It now is exceedingly unlikely, of course, that any international climate change mitigation agreements will proceed; or if they do, it will not be with the U.S on board.”

Dr Niklas Höhne, professor for mitigation of greenhouse gases at Wageningen University and founding partner of the NewClimate Institute:

“This election result seriously threaten the US’s federal climate action. In the worst case, Trump will work towards reversal of the Clean Power Plan. If the Clean Power Plan was to be permanently stopped, emissions projections would be significantly higher than in its absence and we would be seeing an increasing emissions trend over the next decade – at around 6% below 2005 levels in 2025. All eyes are now on the federal states to pursue further climate policies, but the impact on the USA’s overall contribution may be limited. This means that the climate target that the USA communicated as part of the Paris Agreement process, the “nationally determined contribution”, will probably not be met, and US emissions will remain stable at current levels until 2030.
“In spite of this grave eventuality of no climate action from the new US federal government on the horizon, there is still hope that global greenhouse gas emissions can be reduced. Technological developments can be triggered by transformative coalitions, smaller groups of countries that actively support a technology, to eventually achieve global scale. We have seen this model work for renewable energy. The renewable energy agenda was initially supported by a few pro-active countries such as Germany, which brought the costs down to the extent that renewable technologies are now the ‘new normal’ for new power plants in many places in the world. Similar developments can be seen with electric mobility where Norway, California and, in particular, China are aggressively supporting electric cars. It is fair to believe that these would also become the ‘new normal’ in a few years time.”

Prof Jim Skea, professor of sustainable energy at Imperial College London and co-chair of IPCC Working Group 3:

“IPCC is a scientific body with 195 countries making up its membership so I don’t expect it to make any pronouncement on political developments. But as a scientist involved in IPCC, I can say that US scientists have made a huge contribution to climate science in general and IPCC in particular across all the assessment reports. This is something that the US can be very proud of. It’s far too early to tell how the next administration will approach these issues. In my experience there has been a remarkable consistency in the US approach to IPCC across different administrations. And, again, with much practical climate action in the US taking place at the city and state level, it’s too early to say how things will pan out in the policy domain.”

Prof Katherine Hayhoe, atmospheric scientist and associate professor of political science at Texas Tech University:

“The bright light of hope the Paris Agreement shone on the bleak and discouraging landscape of climate change has been dimmed but not extinguished.”

Zeke Hausfather, energy systems analyst and environmental economist at Berkeley Earth:

“It’s certainly a major setback for progress on combating climate change. While the U.S. has a lot of institutional checks and balances that can hopefully moderate the impact of a Trump presidency, it means the end of the Clean Power Plan and a big roadblock to achieving the aggressive reductions needed for a 2 C warming world. The only silver lining is that structural factors in the energy sector will likely favor the continued decline of coal (and rise of gas/renewables) for electricity generation in the U.S., though it will happen more slowly. I certainly expect to be talking a lot more about geoengineering and overshoot scenarios now than I did a few days ago.”

Dr Bill Hare, founder and CEO of Climate Analytics:

“That President-Elect Trump has appointed a leading climate denier into the driving seat of his US EPA transition team sends a powerful signal about his attitude to climate science when in government. But it will not be so easy to unwind the building momentum on climate action globally, and even within his own country.
“This action is driven by four main forces, none of which President-Elect Trump can control. First, there is a revolution underway in the energy sector with massive drops in the cost of renewable energy, and battery storage and the accelerating take-up of electric vehicles has undercut the economic basis of the fossil fuel interests that have been supporting climate denialism in the United States for years.”
“Secondly, the world is not ruled by one country, and major geopolitical actors including China, India and the European Union are pressing ahead with climate action, and they are starting to change the game, in the face of public pressure. Thirdly the science of climate change is clear and incontrovertible, and its impacts are stampeding into the lives of people all over the planet, from Miami to Mumbai to Manila as sea levels rise, tropical storms escalate in power and heat extremes take hold, and these will not be stopped by government-led denialism. Lastly, people everywhere are increasingly concerned about climate action and about the inadequate action taken by politicians to deal with the problem.”

Prof Piers Forster, professor of physical climate change and director of the Priestley International Centre for Climate at the University of Leeds:

“I would offer a word of caution. What he said to get elected may not be what he does. I think we need to redouble our efforts to show that climate change is science fact not a belief and proactively addressing it needs international collaboration. It also makes sound economic and business sense. My American colleagues I spoke to are typically optimistic and tell me we have to get on and make the best of it.”

Prof Ken Calderia, atmospheric scientist at the Carnegie Institution for Science:

“Today is a day of mourning for good governance and our democratic institutions. Worrying about climate change is a luxury for those who don’t have more immediate problems. We will be fortunate indeed if Trump is not so much of a disaster that climate change can still be a primary concern.
“Trump has advanced a divisive racist, sexist, and xenophobic agenda. He has proposed debt-spending and protectionist policies that could seriously damage our economy. He has advocated the use of torture and the killing of families of suspected terrorists. He has said that he does not want the US to abide by its treaty obligations. If, after his efforts to act on his words, we are in a good enough shape that climate change still seems like one of our most pressing issues, Trump will have damaged our country and the world far less than I anticipate.”

Dr Glen Peters, senior researcher at the Centre for International for Climate and Environmental Research Oslo (CICERO):

“The US has just given the rest of the world a brilliant opportunity to shine. I am not convinced that any country need the US to lead them, nor that they drive the global economy anymore. The US “loss” could be the rest of the worlds gain.
“In terms of climate, the US is responsible for 15% of global emissions. The Paris Agreement will cover 100%. In any given year, there will be administrations in some countries that drag their feet on climate. If the US drags its feet on climate in the next four years, then there is nothing stopping the rest of the world doing an awful lot.
“Domestically, US emissions are going down, primarily because solar, wind, and gas are out competing coal on the market. I am not sure how Trump will revive the dying coal industry, and it is quite possible that US emissions will trend down in the coming years without any help from policy. Many Republican states are quite keen on the jobs and growth offered by solar and wind, and I doubt this will change. It is easy to be negative, but things are moving in some states and that may restrict Trumps ability to do too much damage.”
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  • US election: Climate scientists react to Donald Trump's victory
  • Birgit Sharp

    In light of the recent apathy toward Climate issues, as seen throughout the campaign and in the election results, scientists must do a better job of making the issues clear and understandable to the public. People must understand the real threat, and the real policies that can help.

    • monckton

      The notion that anthropogenic “global warming” constitutes a “real threat” originates in frank mathematical and physical errors in the official methodology for diagnosing climate sensitivity in the climate-model ensembles. The effect of those errors is to exaggerate by a substantial and scientifically unjustifiable margin the magnitude of climate sensitivity.

      The notion that “real policies” to mitigate imagined (and largely imaginary) global warming “can help” arises from a prejudiced and inept economic analysis depending upon an unholy combination of exaggerated estimates of the magnitude and cost of global warming and an unrealistically low intertemporal discount rate.

      On the evidence, the correct policy to tackle global warming is to have the courage to do nothing. There are plenty of real problems in the world – not the least of which is the 6 million premature deaths every year among the 1.2 billion to whom the international community murderously denies the benefits of electrical power.

      The moral imperative is to give everyone affordable electricity as soon as possible: and that means coal-fired power.

      • Lionel Smith

        The moral imperative is to give everyone affordable electricity as soon as possible: and that means coal-fired power.

        Do you know somebody who owns a load of coal to shift? If you are ‘he who must not be named’, then of course you do, one of your GWPF buddies.

        Time and again your false claims about errors in climate models are debunked as are your claims about a lack of warming.

        If the Earth is not increasing its heat energy imbalance then why is the cryosphere in general losing mass balance. You are aware of the huge amounts of heat energy required to melt ice in comparison to raising its temperature by 1°K (or 1°C if you prefer), that is once the temperature of the ice has been raised to the triple point.

        For years you have used arguments about a lack of warming by cherry picking RSS data to use as a basis for a chart using cherry picked start and end points to confuse those who know no better. Repeatedly your arguments have been shown as false.

        The cryosphere aside, using temperature rise based upon atmospheric measurements alone is to ignore the terrific build up of heat in the oceans, where the heat energy build up is analogous to that in a mechanical systems flywheel — in other words it will come back to bite us. A very small rise in average oceanic temperature is indicative of a much larger increase in energy than provided by the same rise of temperature in the atmosphere. The mass of oceanic water far outweighs that of the atmosphere as does the heat capacity of water to that of atmospheric gases, and by a large margin.

        Although the sun is now at its dimmest for half a century the Earth has record temperatures year on year: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php?p=19702

        If you are ‘The Monckton’ then by now you should know better than to repeat these sorry fabrications for you have been repeatedly debunked (remember John Abraham). If you are another using The Name then you now have enough information to begin the task of putting your errant thoughts to rights.

        • monckton

          Mr Smith is wrong about everything. Coal-fired electricity is the cheapest on the planet, and very thermally efficient, and these days very clean. There are indeed numerous errors in the climate models, which is why the warming rate has been half of what the IPCC had predicted in 1990 on the basis of “substantial confidence” that its models had captured all essential climate features.

          At no time have I suggested that the Earth is not warming. Of course it is – but at half the predicted rate. And why? Because of the errors in the predictions, which arise from the errors in the models.

          As for the RSS data (or one could use UAH just as well), I showed that for almost 19 years there had been no gklobal warming of the lower troposphere. That was a fact. Now we have had a substantial el Nino and the warming has resumed, but overall the rate of warming continues to be very substantially below what was predicted. Repeatedly my arguments have been shown to be true. Remember John Abraham, who fatuously produced a video claiming that I had made various errors when in every instance it was he who had made the errors. His “university”, a bible college in an obscure corner of Minnesota (wherever that may be), made him redo the video to take out the numerous gratuitous libels in it.

          Then he tried to criticize a paper I had co-authored in the Bulletin of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. His criticism failed, and our rebuttal paper stands unchallenged and unchallengeable. He is a scientific disgrace, for, like so many totalitarians before him, he knows only the Party Line and what passes for his “mind” is closed to all else.

          As to the “terrific buildup of heat in the oceans”, that is deduced from the ocean temperature measurements by the 3500 ARGO bathythermographs. And those measurements, during the first 11 full years of the network, showed the upper mile and a quarter of the ocean warming at – wait for it – a rate equivalent to one Celsius degree every 430 years. Not exactly terrifying. The characteristic of a heat-sink is that it absorbs heat in such a way as to moderate what would otherwise be the change in ambient temperature in response to that heat. It is precisely because the models take insufficient account of the heat-sink effect of the oceans that they have over-predicted global warming.

          The truth is that global warming has been exaggerated, that most people now know that, and that whining to the opposite effect no longer convinces anyone.

          • BBD

            and these days very clean.

            Why bother reading further? Nonsense at the very first claim. Glance down and the usual rubbish about teh modulz, demonstrating – redundantly – that Monckton doesn’t understand the topic. Models aren’t designed to capture decadal variability, only the long-term forced trend. So using a decade of data to argue that the models are wrong is daft.

            As for the RSS data (or one could use UAH just as well), I showed that
            for almost 19 years there had been no gklobal warming of the lower
            troposphere.

            Cherry-picking from the most problematic data sets on the table (both flatly contradicted by the surface temperature data) demonstrates only that Monckton doesn’t care about accurate presentation. This rather undermines his sciency-sounding rhetoric.

            Why bother going on? All Monckton’s spiel has been debunked time and time again. The man’s a figure of fun, not a serious voice.

          • monckton

            What is fascinating about the ideologues who infest these threads is that their pseudo-moralizing certainty is inversely proportional to their scientific and economic knowledge.

            Yes, these days coal-fired generation is very clean. When I was at Cambridge a colleague was developing first-generation fluidized-bed combustion, which has in turn been followed by pelletized fuel and very-high-temperature combustion, to say nothing of flue-gas scrubbing and fly-ash trapping. The only significant by-product of coal combustion these days is CO2, which is not a pollutant – instead, it is plant food and a trace gas necessary to all forms of life on Earth.

            As for the models, they made medium-term predictions in 1990, to the effect that there would be 1 Celsius degree of warming from then to 2025. However, to reach that value, the warming rate from now to 2025 would have to rise at once to five times the rate observed since 1990 and stay there throughout the next decade. If you do not think the models should have made those medium-term predictions, take the matter up with the modelers and with the IPCC: don’t try to blame me.

            My own study of the models, leading to the creation of my own simple model (see Science Bulletin, Chinese Academy of Sciences, vol. 60 no. 1, 2015), suggests that the general-circulation models embody various scientific errors of mathematics and physics that have led to a substantial overstatement of climate sensitivity, particularly at the upper bound.

            With my distinguished colleagues, I have now prepared a further paper saying what the largest of these physical error is. It is now out for review. Watch this space.

            Childish phrases such as “cherry-picking” and “Monckton’s been debunked” do not advance the discussion, nor do they represent the truth, which is a) that global warming is occurring and will continue to occur at a rate substantially below that which had originally been predicted; and b) that the cost of mitigating global warming today is 100-1000 times the cost of adapting to its consequences the day after tomorrow; and c) that while the “international community” squanders trillions on trying to play King Canute six million people a year – a Holocaust – are dying because the “international community” is denying them the cheap, reliable, base-load electricity they could and would otherwise get from coal-fired power.

            This, in the end, is the moral imperative, and those who have denied the world’s poorest the electric power they urgently need will in due course be held to account for their frauds and their crimes against humanity.

          • BBD

            What is fascinating about the ideologues who infest these threads is
            that their pseudo-moralizing certainty is inversely proportional to
            their scientific and economic knowledge.

            A perfect self-description. Too bad you aren’t able to appreciate the irony.

            Meanwhile, you still don’t understand what the models do and do not do and you are still cherry-picking from the most unreliable data available. If you are going to criticise scientists then you need to hold yourself to the highest possible standards and you have failed comically in your posts above.

            Finally, if the climate system were as insensitive as you seem to think, then palaeoclimate behaviour becomes extremely difficult if not impossible to explain. This is how we know that very low estimates of sensitivity are wrong. It’s surprising that this rather obvious fact has escaped a towering intellect such as your own.

          • monckton

            I am not sure whether “BBD” has ever had anything published in a peer-reviewed journal about the climate models, but I beg leave to doubt it. He is out of his league here, and has been unable to state any particular aspect of what the models do or don’t do that he considers I do not understand.

            As to the insensitivity of the climate and the palaeoclimate evidence, global mean surface temperature has varied by little more than 3 K either side of the period mean throughout the past 810,000 years, suggesting a formidable thermostasis which any true scientist would not be surprised to find: for the atmosphere is bounded by two very large heat-sinks.

            In order to reinterpret the palaeoclimate evidence to suggest high sensitivity, it is necessary to posit very small forcings and very large feedbacks. However, in practice the Milankovich forcings on their own, over the period, will have exerted considerable forcings first in one direction and then in another; and, as a forthcoming paper by me will demonstrate, the influence of net-positive temperature feedbacks in response to any forcing is currently very much exaggerated in the models owing to an elementary error of physics.

            In truth, the palaeoclimate evidence suggests quite large forcings and very small feedbacks.

            Questions are also now being raised by eminent optical physicists about the magnitude of the CO2 forcing, which is overstated by some 40% owing to a misunderstanding by modellers of the properties of the Lorentzian and Voigt lineshape equations. Those equations, simplicitatis causa, assume instantaneity in the excitation-deexcitation collisions, when in fact there is a delay of a few picoseconds. Though in most optical-physics applications the simplification in the L and V equations is harmless, it makes a large difference in the climate models, which the modellers do not take sufficiently into account.

            Taking these two errors together – one in the CO2 forcing and one in the feedback amplification – climate sensitivity can be proven to be of order 1.6 [1.3, 1.9] K, where the mid-range estimate is in line with the detailed analysis of models’ outputs by Lewis and Crok (2015).

            And that is before taking any account of the thermostatic properties of the coupled ocean-atmosphere system, and before taking any account of the fact that both the water-vapor (Harde, 2016, in press) and cloud (Spencer & Braswell, 2011) feedbacks have been shown to have been exaggerated. Taking those adjustments into account, climate sensitivity falls to 0.7 [0.65, 0.75] K per CO2 doubling, as determined from the ERBE measurements by Lindzen & Choi (2011).

            And that is how we know that low estimates of climate sensitivity are correct. But this is perhaps a bit too sciencey for BBD.

          • BBD

            More rubbish. LGM / Holocene GAT difference is about 4 – 5C. This *massive* climate shift was triggered by a mere seasonal and spatial reorganisation of insolation by orbital dynamic. Since TSI barely changes, the glacial / interglacial shift can only result from strong positive feedbacks. These, of course, produce a climate system relatively sensitive to radiative perturbation, including that from CO2 forcing.

            Watching you try to deny this self-evident fact is amusing to say the least.

            Questions are also now being raised by eminent optical physicists about
            the magnitude of the CO2 forcing, which is overstated by some 40% owing
            to a misunderstanding by modellers of the properties of the Lorentzian
            and Voigt lineshape equations.

            Don’t waste my time with this garbage.

          • monckton

            BBD, who does not seem to understand either any climate science or how to conduct an argument, He assumes – incorrectly – that total solar irradiance “barely changes”: so farewell to the early-faint-sun paradox, then. And he also falsely assumes that, supposing that total solar irradiance changes little, “the glacial/interglacial shift can only result from strong positive feedbacks”.

            If he were aware of how to conduct a logical and rational argument, rather than merely trotting out half-understood elements of the Party Line, he would understand that to argue for a particular cause from the premise that we do not actually know the cause is to perpetrate the logical fallacy that is the argument from ignorance, from which no valid conclusion can be drawn except that the perpetrator is ignorant.

            If he were to spend a little time looking at the globe, he might notice that there is more land in the northern than in the southern hemisphere. For this reason, even where total solar irradiance changes little, alterations in the Milankovich cycles are capable of exerting considerable forcings.

            And, as will befome apparent from a forthcoming paper, the influence of feedbacks is greatly exaggerated in the models owing to a fundamental error of physics therein. Watch this space.

            And it appears that BBD has no knowledge of or interest in optical physics, and no understanding of its relevance to the climate debate, or he would not dismiss what he does not understand as “garbage”. The CO2 forcing has been overestimated by 40%, as will shortly be demonstrated in a forthcoming peer-reviewed paper, and that is that. Get over it.

          • BBD

            He assumes – incorrectly – that total solar irradiance “barely changes”: so farewell to the early-faint-sun paradox, then.

            We were discussing Pleistocene glacial cycles. What I said is correct: TSI barely changes during glacial / interglacial transitions. And you call me disingenuous.

            For this reason, even where total solar irradiance changes little, alterations in the Milankovich cycles are capable of exerting considerable forcings.

            Which require even more considerable amplification by positive feedbacks to shift the climate state from glacial to interglacial and keep it there for ~10ka or so. Everything I have said so far is correct and you are simply blustering and we both know it.

          • monckton

            BBD continues to bluster and to parrot the Party Line. The truth is that one could until recently either posit large paleoclimate forcings and small feedbacks or small forcings and large feedbacks; the skeptics generally favor the former, the true-believers the latter.

            However, now that an error in the methodology for determining the warming effect of temperature feedbacks has been found, it is no longer plausible to posit a major influence from feedbacks. Those days are over.

          • BBD

            The truth is that one could until recently either posit large paleoclimate forcings and small feedbacks or small forcings and large feedbacks

            Since global total surface irradiance is barely changed by peak Milankovitch forcing, it is difficult to see how we get from a glacial to an interglacial unless strong positive feedbacks are engaged by regional forcing change.

            Why is this wrong?

          • monckton

            BBD is wrong because he is wedded to the Party Linje rather than to thinking. There are numerous papers on the surface-temperature effect of redistributed solar energy arising from the Milankovich cycles. That effect is far from negligible.

            The truth is that one cannot use the palaeoclimate to prove that climate sensitivity is high – particularly as the models used contain several errors of physics each of which has the effect – intentional or otherwise – of exaggerating climate sensitivity.

          • BBD

            BBD is wrong because he is wedded to the Party Linje rather than to thinking.

            Stop projecting and answer the actual question.

            There are numerous papers on the surface-temperature effect of redistributed solar energy arising from the Milankovich cycles. That effect is far from negligible.

            This doesn’t address the question I asked you. Answer it, please:

            How do you get from a regional forcing change (eg obliquity modulating insolation at high N latitude) to a global climate shift without amplifying positive feedbacks? Remember that global surface irradiance is virtually unchanged during peak orbital forcing. The total amount of solar energy reaching the Earth doesn’t change. It is simply reorganised spatially and seasonally. How can this trigger a massive climate shift without amplifying positive feedbacks?

            Anyone arguing for an insensitive climate system – by definition where net feedbacks are neutral to negative – has a real problem here. The regional forcing change would be suppressed by negative feedbacks making subsequent global climate impacts physically impossible. Glacials can only terminate under a regional orbital forcing change if it entrains strong, positive, globalising feedbacks.

            You need to address this directly.

            The truth is that one cannot use the palaeoclimate to prove that climate sensitivity is high

            I’ve just demonstrated that the converse is true. You have dodged the key questions (twice) and resorted to empty rhetoric (again). You need to do much better than this. Try again.

          • Lionel Smith

            BBD continues to bluster and to parrot the Party Line.

            Guffaw! As some used to write. You are beginning to remind me of the dead parrot sketch, as well as others from the Monty Python line.

          • monckton

            No scientific point to make, then. Just yah-boo. Meanwhile, six million people a year are condemned to death by the mad global-warming mitigation policies Mr Smith advocates.

          • Lionel Smith

            No scientific point to make, then. Just yah-boo.

            I have made many throughout this exchange which compares very favourably with the levels of non-science bluster, bombast and wild assertions that you have drowned this thread in.

            …six million people a year are condemned to death by the mad global-warming mitigation policies

            And how many millions suffer and die from the increasing levels of pollution from the use of fossil fuels. Indeed last evening I was pushed for time from having those near and dear ill from the effects of this. The smog levels, although not quite so visible, yet, as in early 1950s is nonetheless dangerous, in fact more so. The UK is flouting legally set pollution levels, this being one of the factors that has exacerbated the NHS crisis. It is externalities such as this which cost ordinary people dear whilst fossil fuel companies wriggle out of proper tax payments with one of the conduits being the dark money streams that prop up organisations such as those exposed by John Mashey, Robert Brulle, Jane Mayer and others.

            That you should continue in promoting propaganda pushing against
            measures which could ameliorate the situation demonstrates a faulty
            moral compass.

            That you should persist in calling those of us who argue against you ‘socialist’ etc is an indication that your cognitive framework is twisted out of shape. Cannot have ‘plebs’ coming it high now can we.

          • Lionel Smith

            He assumes – incorrectly – that total solar irradiance “barely changes”: so farewell to the early-faint-sun paradox, then.

            Oh look, a squirrel. The current discussion has nothing to do with the ‘early-faint-sun’ paradox. The solar system was a different country it did things differently then as was and did the Earth, boundary conditions and all that.

            …rather than merely trotting out half-understood elements of the Party Line…

            Now you are becoming tedious, even more so.

          • monckton

            So Mr Smith now conc3des that total solar irradiance is not constant. Just as well, because the record over all timescales shows considerable variability, and it is simple to demonstrate that a time-integral of solar activity over a sufficiently long period is sufficient to explain nearly all of the recent variability of global mean surface temperature. That is not to say that solar variability is wholly or even chiefly to blame: but it is not to be cavalierly dismissed.

            The consensus in the peer-reviewed journals to the effect that the global warming of recent decades was chiefly anthropogenic is 0.3%, for most climate scientists and researchers, such as me, do not proclaim that they know that recent warming was mostly manmade – or, for that matter, mostly solar – because the information to make any such claim, in either direction, is not yet available.

          • Lionel Smith

            So Mr Smith now conc3des that total solar irradiance is not constant

            I never made out that it was, in fact I linked to an article at Real Climate right up there, maybe you don’t have the good manners to follow links others place. You tried shifting the goal posts by bringing in the faint sun paradox, but there is no paradox when other conditions are factored in. Besides you were on about temps over the last couple of millennium bringing in the LIA and that is where the discussion is.

            Go look up Ruddiman if you wish to understand GHG effects WRT human activity.

            And as for that Ted Cruz farrago, Admiral David Titley put that in perspective at the time, as have others since, it was your old favourite data set to manipulate so as to hoodwink the gullible, yes RSS . Curry, for a scientist was a disgrace at that with her, ‘you gotta look at the satellite data, its the best data we have’. And the one who could have put her straight was right there alongside her, yes Dr John Christy who I mentioned earlier.

          • Ian Forrester

            for most climate scientists and researchers, such as me

            You are not a climate scientist nor a researcher, you are a dishonest fool.

          • BBD

            He is out of his league here, and has been unable to state any
            particular aspect of what the models do or don’t do that he considers I
            do not understand.

            Clearly you didn’t even understand my explanation of your misconception. They are designed to investigated the long term forced behaviour of the climate system. The models are not designed to reproduce the exact pattern of natural variability exhibited by the actual climate system. How could they, unless they were capable of *predicting* volcanism, the predominant ENSO state, solar variability etc. So when the actual climate system diverges slightly from the multi-model mean for a decade (or even two) this cannot be used as ‘evidence’ that the models are fundamentally flawed.

          • monckton

            BBD is, as usual, disingenuous. The models were specifically cited by the IPCC as the justification for its medium-term predictions of global warming. In its view, they captured all the relevant features of the climate, and were, therefore, suitable for medium-term as well as long-term prediction. If BBD disagrees with the IPCC on this – as he well may, for it predicted twice as much warming as has actually occurred – then he should raise his objection not with me but with the IPCC.

            And it may be that BBD, who appears entirely unqualified and inexperienced, and appears to know nothing except the long-discredited Party Line, has never written a climate model or studied the manuals for one. If he had done these things, he would know that the models do indeed use the published volcanic-activity index as the basis for predicting a baseline volcanic activity over the term of the model; likewise, since ENSO patterns are repeating and their quasi-periodicity is known, models can also allow for them; and it is also possible to predict solar activity on the basis of the length of previous solar cycles, a method used by the better models.

            The “actual climate system” has not diverged “slightly” from the multi-model mean over the past two and a half decades (not just “a decade”): it has warmed at little more than half of the central rate so confidently over-predicted by the IPCC on the basis of the models’ output in 1990.

            As for evidence that the models are fundamentally flawed, there is plenty of it about. Watch this space for further peer-reviewed papers in the pipeline, at least four of which will describe distinct mathematical and physical errors that have led the models greatly to overstate the magnitude of climate sensitivity and greatly to underestimate the cost of mitigation.

          • BBD

            The models were specifically cited by the IPCC as the justification for
            its medium-term predictions of global warming. In its view, they
            captured all the relevant features of the climate, and were, therefore,
            suitable for medium-term as well as long-term prediction.

            Medium- and long-term = multi-decadal and centennial. Both unaffected by short-term (decadal) natural variability. The models average for this stuff, they do not (cannot) *predict* real-Earth short-term natural variability. But this is why the multi-model mean diverges occasionally from the single instance of real world climate behaviour. Your argument fails exactly as I said it did, nor am I being disingenuous. Just correct.

          • monckton

            If BBD thinks the models are not capable of making medium-term predictions (i.e., 1990-2025), then he should write to the IPCC secretariat and explain how they got it wrong.

          • monckton

            The models, as far as the IPCC is concerned, are capable of providing the basis for medium-term predictions. However, the models’ medium-term predictions have proven exaggerated time and again – and flagrantly so. Indeed the models are not capable of making accurate medium-term predictions: the record shows that all too clearly. But if they are not capable of making medium-term predictions, the rational scientific approach is to suspect that a fortiori they may not be capable of making accurate long-term predictions either, particularly since their climate-sensitivity estimates are based on several substantial errors of physics.

          • BBD

            As ever, Monckton’s sources are as unreliable as his claims are emphatic:

            And that is before taking any account of the thermostatic properties of the coupled ocean-atmosphere system, and before taking any account of the fact that both the water-vapor (Harde, 2016, in press) and cloud (Spencer & Braswell, 2011) feedbacks have been shown to have been exaggerated. Taking those adjustments into account, climate sensitivity falls to 0.7 [0.65, 0.75] K per CO2 doubling, as determined from the ERBE measurements by Lindzen & Choi (2011).

            No comment on Harde (2016, in press), obviously, but the rest of this is horrible. There are replies to Lindzen & Choi (2011) and Spencer & Braswell (2011) which demonstrate fundamental flaws in both studies that invalidate their conclusions. See Dessler (2011) and Trenberth, Fasullo & Abraham (2011).

            Another Monckton claim into the junk bin.

          • monckton

            BBD is out of his league. Like so many totalitarian socialists, he parrots the Party Line and recites papers he thinks support the Party Line without having any interest in or understanding of either their arguments or their merits.

            The objective truth is that peer-reviewed estimates of climate sensitivity are generally tumbling, and the few exceptions, which predict monstrously rapid warming of 7 or 9 or 11 or 13 K, are about to be proven wrong, since they are based on a substantial error in the models that has gone unnoticed for 30 years.

          • BBD

            BBD is out of his league.

            You have yet to demonstrate this.

            Like so many totalitarian socialists

            Or this.

            [BBD] recites papers he thinks support the Party Line without having any interest in or understanding of either their arguments or their merits.

            Or this.

            The objective truth is that peer-reviewed estimates of climate sensitivity are generally tumblingand the few exceptions, which predict monstrously rapid warming of 7 or 9 or 11 or 13 K, are about to be proven wrong, since they are based on a substantial error in the models that has gone unnoticed for 30 years.

            There are studies with methodological issues that produce outliers at both ends of the scale but the evidence pointing to ~3C as a most likely value for ECS continues to build. Actual experts can attest to this, so it is not an assertion on my part. Anyone interested should read the link.

            Since both palaeoclimate behaviour and modelling converge on the ~3C value, it is unlikely that the models are as flawed as you assert (without demonstration).

            You are indulging in empty rhetoric.

          • Lachlan

            (I was going to point out the aptness of your first paragraph, but BBD beat me to it.)

            If burning coal is clean, then there can be no objection to taxing its pollution. Sure CO2 is plant food; it is great for the weeds that compete with our food crops. Water is also necessary for life on earth, but I don’t want my home to be flooded. When things get out of proportion, it causes problems. The amount of CO2 currently in the atmosphere is enough to endanger the complex systems that people rely on for life. For example, the geographic range of tropical diseases is already increasing.

            The cost of mitigating global warming today is far less than the cost of mitigating it, if the sums are done right. In particular:
            a) renewable energy is more labour-intensive than fossil-fuel energy, which means more jobs.
            b) the cost of bringing the Great Barrier Reef back from its current nearly-dead state is enormous — it just won’t be done and so isn’t in your sums. (It has been estimated that it will recover if we don’t have another year like 2014-2016 for the next couple of decades, but your “slow” increase in global temperatures makes that implausible.)
            c) the cost of relocating Florida is not low.
            d) the cost of containing anthrax (currently in reindeer in the permafrost) is not low.

            I advise you to stop using that “6 million deaths due to no electricity” theme as justification for using a type of electricity generation that is unsuited to providing electricity to those who lack it. I believe that you are smart enough to know which people are really committing crimes against humanity, though you will be long dead before any charges are laid.

          • monckton

            Far too much blubbing and spouting the Party Line, and far too little science. Burning coal is indeed clean and cheap, and CO2 is not, repeat not, pollution, nor is it “enough to endanger the complex systems that people rely on for life”. On the contrary: it reduces plants’ need for water, and increases crop yields by 20-40% per doubling.

            Clearly Lachlan has no knowledge of elementary economics, or he would not suggest that replacing a less labour-intensive form of power generation with a more labour-intensive one represents a reduction in cost.

            And no, the Great Barrier Reef is not “near-dead”: it is generally thriving, though there has been some incursion from the crown-of-thorns in some areas. The calcite and aragonite corals of which it is chiefly composed first achieved algal symbiosis 750 million and 175 million years ago, respectively. Accordingly, sharp changes in ocean temperature are something they are well used to, and to which they have several defenses, including transient bleaching.

            Besides, the Great Barrier Reef Authority, albeit that it is a bed-wetting cheerleader for More Taxpayers’ Money to pay its salaries, perks and pensions, shows that the sea temperature in the region of the reef has scarcely changed over the past three or four decades.

            Six million deaths a year from no electricity is something of an underestimate. But even the UN admits that 2 million a year are dying from particulates in smoke from fires burned in huts without chimneys, because there is no electricity. If the world community were to get together and spend one-tenth of what they have agreed to spend (but will not actually spend) on making largely non-existent global warming go away, this annual Holocaust caused directly by mad and anti-scientific global-warming policies would cease.

            It will shortly become apparent that the very high climate sensitivities that form the basis of the notion that CO2 is bad for you are based on substantial scientific errors.

          • Lionel Smith

            Coal-fired electricity is the cheapest on the planet, and very thermally efficient, and these days very clean.

            This of course avoids the problems with coal.

            Cheapest – not true if externalities are taken into consideration. Besides coal use will not improve the lot of those in developing countries as is stated clearly here:

            “Coal’s environmental and climate impacts present a clear threat to people living in poverty. Air pollution from coal causes some 670,000 premature deaths a year in China and 100,000 in India. A one gigawatt plant in Indonesia could cause 26,000 premature deaths over its lifespan. Building just a third of the planned coal-fired power plants, mostly in developing Asia, would take the world past 2°C of warming, pushing hundreds of millions into extreme poverty before the middle of the century.”

            source

            That document was linked via this article nearby at Carbon Brief

            Thermal efficiency alone is meaningless, what needs to be considered is the whole process of sourcing, transporting and processing of the fuel. On this basis nuclear power wins hands down. The environmental impacts of coal mining transport and combustion are huge as are the costs in lives blighted and ended. You must have forgotten completely about the smogs of early 1950s Britain.

            See the table on page 35 of this report if you are not convinced

            The remainder of your reply is of course founded on nothing more than hot air. Shame you didn’t talk to David J C MacKay before he passed away. You have been debunked so many times all people need to do is run a search on “John Abraham” AND “Monckton” to discover that you are one naked emperor.

          • john

            Perhaps to emphasize what has happened in China this video series will bring tears to anyone who watches some of them.
            It covers not only China but the USA in some aspects toward the later ones.
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PjHyAl0h4t8&feature=player_embedded&list=PLxU79dQZwwJPkEaR1jM8iJQS0L9iMopog

          • monckton

            I was born in early-1950s Britain and lived through the great fog of November 1952, which killed 4000 and led to the Conservative-sponsored Clean Air Act of 1956, perhaps the first of its kind in the world. The technology for coal combustion in power stations has greatly advanced since those days: and, in any event, the great fog was caused not so much by coal-fired power as by coal-burning in fireplaces throughout London, which was in due course banned.

            Of course coal-burning is still a major pollution problem in India and China, because they are not using modern methods of combustion. We cannot order them to clean up their act, but we can show them how, and we can make sure that all new coal-fired plants throughout the world are as clean as ours now are.

            And of course one should take account of upstream and downstream environmental costs. But one should also take account of the environmental and societal benefits of coal-fired generation. The problem with the environmentalist totalitarians is that they relentlessly look at only one side of the ledger – and even then they are using an out-of-date ledger that takes no account of modern advances in everything from mining techniques and health and safety control to clean-burn or stoichiometric combustion.

            As for the hapless and very silly John Abraham, who was compelled by his own bible college to tone down his anti-Monckton rhetoric, he has been entirely refuted. He is a pathetic little ideologue who has no concern for the truth and very little knowledge of the relevant physics, mathematics or economcs. He is also a serial liar, having deliberately misrepresented me to various fellow-ideologues among the scientific community in order to get anti-Monckton quotes from them – quotes that, one by one, they are retracting.

            Best not to quote him as an authority. He is unaware of the distinction between truth and falsehoodl.

          • Lionel Smith

            Those atmospheric events of early 1950s Britain were known as smogs and not fogs for a very good reason, they were based upon the particulates in the smoke from the burning of coal, in homes, power stations, town gas plants (coke fired mostly) and railway locomotives. Although London was indeed badly affected other urban areas were too. Giles cartoons of the period are very descriptive.

            Now do you really wish to carry on in this vein:

            As for the hapless and very silly John Abraham, who was compelled by his
            own bible college to tone down his anti-Monckton rhetoric, he has been
            entirely refuted. He is a pathetic little ideologue who has no concern
            for the truth and very little knowledge of the relevant physics,
            mathematics or economcs. He is also a serial liar, having deliberately
            misrepresented me to various fellow-ideologues among the scientific
            community in order to get anti-Monckton quotes from them – quotes that,
            one by one, they are retracting.

            for seriously it is clear that scientifically you are out of his league and the too and fro did not go as you make out for you were very much put in your place, shame you didn’t stick.

            Now, that final throw away of yours is a clear case of projection.

          • monckton

            Mr Abraham lost the scientific argument against me; he then tried to renew it, this time in the peer-reviewed journals, and lost again, badly. He now writes for The Guardian – and one need say no more than that.

          • john

            Your original stance not that long ago was there is No Global Warming.
            You went to several countries and made sure your message was given.
            Now suddenly there is but it is all good and ok evidently.
            The amount of energy required to raise the huge volume of ocean even by a minute percentage of a degree is huge.
            While the source of this energy is the sun and it is not showing the increase in output of energy required you have a problem.
            Until very recently the cherry pick was to use the last El Nino event to say that we were headed for cooling.
            You just repeated that cherry pick above.
            As you know as everyone knows it is the trend that is the important aspect.
            The trend has been consistent and it is up.
            As to coal being clean yes it is cleaner than in the 1880 but i am afraid not ever going to be clean in your meaning of the word as in just clean air going up the smoke stack.
            As to the cost of new coal against the alternatives sorry old mate it can not compete.
            Bringing electricity to the millions who have none when they could not possibly afford the price of centrally made and distributed power is not rational.
            Distributed energy is affordable and is and will be adopted rather like they are doing with communications they are just bypassing the landline idea and when straight to mobiles/cell phones.

          • monckton

            My “original stance”, recorded in writing and read by millions on the front page of the Weekend section of the London Sunday Telegraph in November 2006, was that some warming was to be expected, but, on balance, not very much. I see no reason to modify that opinion.

            From approximately 2009 onwards, I pointed out that, contrary to prediction, the global temperature trend since the beginning of 2001 had been either negative or flat. For a time, that was the case on all datasets. Then, in 2014, several datasets were altered so as to show warming where there had previously been none. In the past couple of years there has been an el Nino, so all datasets now show some warming – but at only half the rate that IPCC had originally predicted in 1990.

            The warming of the ocean in the first 11 full years of the ARGO bathythermograph record was at a rate equivalent to 1 Celsius degree every 430 years. That is not a significant warming rate: but it is probably close to the genuine warming rate to be expected in response to anthropogenic increases in greenhouse-gas emissions.

            Of course even this small warming represents a substantial quantum of thermal energy: but so what? If a 40-gallon drum has three or four drops of water in it, a microscopic life-form in one of the drops of water will say that that is a lot of water: but, compared with the capacity of the drum, it is of course negligble – a point that the climate models incorrectly represent.

            The levelized cost of electricity from coal is of order $30 per MWh, which is considerably below the cost of any other form of electricity generation. From the point of view of third-world countries, where some six million people a year die before their time because they have no electric power, the availability of affordable, reliable, base-load, non-polluting coal is of infinitely more value than the availability of very costly, environment-destroying, temperamental, intermittent, high-maintenance “renewables”.

            The cost of providing electric power to all who do not have it is a very small fraction of the vast sums now being squandered on making largely non-existent global warming go away. The rational economic choice, as well as the emotional moral choice, is to stop wasting trillions on global-warming mitigation and to redirect billions towards giving the world electrical power, and preferably coal-fired electrical power.

        • Pat Frank

          Lionel Smith, “Time and again your false claims about errors in climate models are debunked …”

          You obviously did not watch my DDP talk, URL given above. Let’s see you or anyone else refute the analysis.

          Climate models are predictively useless. They have no ability to resolve the effect, if any, of CO2 on climate. Even the relatively small CMIP5 thermal cloud forcing error is two orders of magnitude larger than the annual increase in CO2 forcing.

          LS, “… as are your claims about a lack of warming.” A warming climate does not prove human causality.

          The warming indicated in climate model simulations is merely the expression of an assumption. It is not a unique solution derived from a valid physical theory of climate.

          The extent of warming, in any case, is not knowable. Another indication of the incompetence of the consensus climatologists is the studied neglect of systematic measurement error in the air temperature record. I have published two papers on this, which have been dismissed and ignored, but not refuted. Both are freely available. Have at them.

          Paper 1: http://meteo.lcd.lu/globalwarming/Frank/uncertainty_in%20global_average_temperature_2010.pdf (869.8 KB)

          Paper 2: http://multi-science.metapress.com/content/t8x847248t411126/fulltext.pdf (1 MB)

          A third is in the offing.

          Systematic error imposes at least (+/-)0.5 C uncertainty on the
          global air temperature record since 1860. That means the entire warming
          trend is indistinguishable from zero C at the 95% confidence level.

          I have also published a paper showing how the entire consensus position depends exclusively on negligence and even on pseudo-science. The abstract is here: http://eae.sagepub.com/content/26/3/391.abstract

          Anyone who would like a reprint can email me. Contact information is below the title.

          Climate scientists don’t even recognize the instrumental resolution of air temperature sensors. The extent of negligence among them would be incredible had it not been demonstrated.

          • Lachlan

            Pat Frank, your claim that climate models are predictively useless is patently false. They have predicted the global climate trend for the past thirty years.

            They predict:
            – Rising global mean surface temperatures
            – cooling of the upper atmosphere
            – higher rates of warming at the poles
            – higher rates of warming at night

            We have observed:

            – Rising global mean surface temperatures
            – cooling of the upper atmosphere
            – higher rates of warming at the poles
            – higher rates of warming at night

            What has your alternative model predicted correctly?

            (There is a proverb “He who says it cannot be done should not get in the way of him who is doing it”.)

          • Pat Frank

            Lachlan, expectation values from tuned models are not predictions. That fatal objection negates every single claim of prediction in your list. I make that point explicitly here: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2015/05/20/do-climate-projections-have-any-physical-meaning/

            Not one of your supposed predictions represents a unique solution to the climate energy-state. Or even a tightly bounded set of solutions.

            Climate models are unable to predict anything about the impact, if any, of GHG emissions. The standard presentations of climate model outputs (future global air temperature trends, etc.), are made with no valid physical error analysis at all.

            It’s been my direct experience that climate modelers, apparently as a class, have no understanding whatever of error analysis. And, indeed, have no understanding of physical error itself. See here: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2015/02/24/are-climate-modelers-scientists/

            My model is an emulator of climate models, period. It has nothing to do with climate, or with making predictions.

            It demonstrates that climate model air temperature projections are no more than linear extrapolations of forcing. As such, climate models are subject to linear propagation of error. Huge uncertainty limits follow directly. That uncertainty shows beyond any doubt that climate models have no predictive value. None.

          • BBD

            Pat Frank

            Even if I agreed with you, which I don’t, it makes no difference. You might be surprised to discover that James Hansen himself is sceptical about the models:

            TH: A lot of these metrics that we develop come from computer models. How should people treat the kind of info that comes from computer climate models?

            Hansen: I think you would have to treat it with a great deal of skepticism. Because if computer models were in fact the principal basis for our concern, then you have to admit that there are still substantial uncertainties as to whether we have all the physics in there, and how accurate we have it. But, in fact, that’s not the principal basis for our concern. It’s the Earth’s history-how the Earth responded in the past to changes in boundary conditions, such as atmospheric composition. Climate models are helpful in interpreting that data, but they’re not the primary source of our understanding.

            TH: Do you think that gets misinterpreted in the media?

            Hansen: Oh, yeah, that’s intentional. The contrarians, the deniers who prefer to continue business as usual, easily recognize that the computer models are our weak point. So they jump all over them and they try to make the people, the public, believe that that’s the source of our knowledge. But, in fact, it’s supplementary. It’s not the basic source of knowledge. We know, for example, from looking at the Earth’s history, that the last time the planet was two degrees Celsius warmer, sea level was 25 meters higher.

            And we have a lot of different examples in the Earth’s history of how climate has changed as the atmospheric composition has changed. So it’s misleading to claim that the climate models are the primary basis of understanding.

          • Pat Frank

            BBD, in science, the meaning of factual evidence is strictly assigned by a falsifiable physical theory. No other way. That point is central to all meaning within science, but apparently Jim Hansen doesn’t understand it.

            Climate models provide the only reason we have to think that CO2 emissions will affect the climate.

            Hansen’s claim that terrestrial history provides that meaning apart from climate models is plain wrong. Absent a falsifiable physical theory, any given bit of factual evidence is consistent with any number of causal meanings.

            And Hansen’s claim is wrong on its face about climate history. We know from the Vostok (Antarctica) and GRIP (Greenland) ice cores that atmospheric CO2 changes always lag temperature changes. This, in and of itself, disproves Hansen’s claim that terrestrial history validates the AGW assertion.

            AGW websites try to pass off this ice-core disconfirmation by claiming that, in the past, the lagging CO2 amplified the warming and spread it globally.

            But to suppose that effect requires that climate models are able to predict the effects of CO2, and are accurate. However, they cannot and are not.

            All of AGW comes back to climate models. And climate models have no predictive value. Climate models cannot provide unique solutions to the climate energy state, or even tightly bounded solution sets. See here.

          • BBD

            Pat Frank

            BBD, in science, the meaning of factual evidence is strictly assigned by a falsifiable physical theory. No other way. That point is central to all meaning within science, but apparently Jim Hansen doesn’t understand it.

            Climate models provide the only reason we have to think that CO2 emissions will affect the climate.

            No, they don’t. Palaeoclimate behaviour is strong evidence that CO2 is an effective forcing. Take the PETM, for example. A massive negative CIE excursion and a towering hyperthermal. Pretty unequivocal evidence of a CO2-forced abrupt warming.

            Big picture is the ~50Ma cooling trend from the high C02 Eocence hothouse to the low CO2 Pleistocene icehouse. What forcing change could provide a plausible physical mechanism for this?

            Hansen & Sato (2012) summarises:

            Solar luminosity is increasing on long time scales, as our sun is at an early stage of solar evolution, “burning” hydrogen, forming helium by nuclear fusion, slowly getting brighter. The sun’s brightness increased steadily through the Cenozoic, by about 0.4 percent according to solar physics models (Sackmann et al., 1993). Because Earth absorbs about 240 W/m2 of solar energy, the 0.4 percent increase is a forcing of about 1 W/m2. This small linear increase of forcing, by itself, would have caused a modest global warming through the Cenozoic Era.

            Continent locations affect Earth’s energy balance, as ocean and continent albedos differ. However, most continents were near their present latitudes by the early Cenozoic (Blakey, 2008; Fig. S9 of Hansen et al., 2008). Cloud and atmosphere shielding limit the effect of surface albedo change (Hansen et al., 2005), so this surface climate forcing did not exceed about 1 W/m2.

            In contrast, atmospheric CO2 during the Cenozoic changed from about 1000 ppm in the early Cenozoic (Beerling and Royer, 2011) to as small as 170 ppm during recent ice ages (Luthi et al., 2008). The resulting climate forcing, which can be computed accurately for this CO2 range using formulae in Table 1 of Hansen et al. (2000), exceeds 10 W/m2. CO2 was clearly the dominant climate forcing in the Cenozoic.

          • Pat Frank

            BBD, the resolution of PETM data does not permit establishing whether the CO2 increase came before or after the temperature excursion.

            Neither case, in any event, would establish anything about a connection between CO2 and climate because there is no falsifiable and explanatory theory of climate available to establish a causal connection.

            It is also impossible to know whether or not the PETM temperature increase and the CO2 increase were both driven by a third process. The reason it is impossible to know this, is that there is no adequate physical theory of climate to establish causality.

            Your “unequivocal evidence” is merely a tendentious judgment; a statement your favored explanation.

            Climate models are the only means to establish the validity of your position, or any position on climate and GHGs, but they cannot do so because they do not deploy a valid theory of climate. They have zero predictive power, and zero explanatory power.

            Hansen has no valid theory of climate and therefore no idea how climate responds to the atmospheric energy injected by CO2. He assumes uniform warming is the only response. But this is not a deduction from a valid theory, but a manifestation of his prejudice.

            AGW is a crock built upon an ignorance exploited by prejudice.

          • BBD

            Pat

            BBD, the resolution of PETM data does not permit establishing whether the CO2 increase came before or after the temperature excursion.

            If you dispute that the PETM was CO2-forced, then you need to provide an alternative physical mechanism. I am interested to hear it. If you dispute that CO2 is an effective climate forcing (and you seem to) then that’s where I have to stop because I can’t envisage a productive discussion about this.

            Climate models are the only means to establish the validity of your position, or any position on climate and GHGs, but they cannot do so because they do not deploy a valid theory of climate.

            ‘Theory of climate’ is a strawman. An anthropogenically-enhanced GHE isn’t a theory it is an observed validation of the theory of the GHE. Events like the overarching cooling trend of the Cenozoic, the PETM and other hyperthermals and modern warming all support GHE theory.

            But this is not a deduction from a valid theory, but a manifestation of [Hansen’s] prejudice.

            Palaeoclimate behaviour, observational records and modelling all confirm the GHE theory.

            AGW is a crock built upon an ignorance exploited by prejudice.

            You are entitled to your opinion, but your arguments so far have been invalid.

          • Pat Frank

            BBD, you wrote, “If you dispute that the PETM was CO2-forced, then you need to provide an alternative physical mechanism.

            So many errors… For brevity I’ll address only the minimal set. Where in my post did I dispute that the PETM was CO2-forced? Nowhere, that’s where. I addressed the poor time-resolution and that your CO2 assertion was thereby unsupported.

            I need not provide any mechanism for climate warming. I need merely to show that your mechanism is unfounded, which I have done: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THg6vGGRpvA

            ‘We don’t know’ is a completely valid scientific stance. That exact stance applies to the cause of the PETM, and to the cause of the current warm period (and all prior warm periods). It’s the only stance consistent with scientific integrity.

            I don’t dispute the radiation physics of CO2. I dispute that climate physics can resolve the climatological response to CO2 forcing. If you don’t understand that distinction, then we’d have to stop because [there’s no envisaging] a productive discussion about this.

            Summarizing your point, “Events like the overarching cooling trend of the Cenozoic, the PETM and other hyperthermals and modern warming all support GHE theory.

            The GHE as you portray it is not a theory because it is not falsifiable. The reason is that the events in question, first, could have alternative causal sources. In the absence of a theory of climate and sufficiently resolved data, we cannot exhaust all possible physical causes.

            Second, the climate models that elaborate the GHE are so error-ridden that their GHE-driven expectation values have no physical meaning. The uncertainties are so large their projections cannot be tested against observations and cannot be falsified. My presentation demonstrates that case beyond any doubt.

            In the absence of valid theory and in the face of enormous uncertainty, you nevertheless feel free to just go ahead and assign causality to CO2 and the GHE. Doing so is mere tendentiousness.

            The GHE has no climatological meaning absent a more complete physical theory that can describe all of the climatological response channels to the atmospheric kinetic energy produced by CO2 radiation physics; specifically from the collisional relaxation of IR radiogenic CO2*.

            Climate models inhere the assumption that the terrestrial response to the CO2* kinetic energy input is limited to atmospheric warming. This assumption is unwarranted. This assumption powers your entire argument. Your entire argument is unwarranted.

            A theory of climate is not at all a straw man. It is the central issue. If you really think that you can assign physical meaning in the absence of a falsifiable physical theory, then you know nothing of science no matter your technical training.

          • BBD

            The GHE as you portray it is not a theory because it is not falsifiable.
            The reason is that the events in question, first, could have
            alternative causal sources.

            What are they? Agnosia is not an argument, it is a rhetoric of avoidance. And I’m getting a bit bored, really.

          • Pat Frank

            Right, so you claim to know what you manifestly do not; notum terram for climate science.

            I’m not surprised you’re getting bored. You’ve lost the debate.

          • BBD

            You’ve lost the debate.

            Only when you provide plausible physical mechanisms both for the inefficacy of CO2 as a climate
            forcing and for alternative forcings that explain palaeoclimate
            behaviour.

          • Pat Frank

            Not correct, BBD. Refutations do not require positive alternatives.

          • BBD

            Arguments against an established scientific position do.

            Riding hobby horses in tight circles is not sufficient.

          • Pat Frank

            CO2-induced warming is not an established scientific position, BBD. It’s not supported by a falsifiable theory of climate. It is causality by assignment; physics by fiat.

            In that sense, your supposedly established position is no more than a closed philosophy; rather like the critical theory of liberal arts departments, where they assume what should be proved and all studies are confirmatory.

            That’s your claimed “established scientific position” – no more than a tendentious narrative.

          • BBD

            Pat Frank

            And Hansen’s claim is wrong on its face about climate history. We know from the Vostok (Antarctica) and GRIP (Greenland) ice cores that atmospheric CO2 changes always lag temperature changes. This, in and of itself, disproves Hansen’s claim that terrestrial history validates the AGW assertion.

            No, this is incorrect. See eg. Shakun et al. (2012) Global warming preceded by increasing carbon dioxide concentrations during the last deglaciation.

            A rough summary of S12:

            – NH summer insolation increases from ~21.5ka especially at high latitudes

            – By ~19ka, mid/high latitude NH temperature increase causes sufficient melt from NH ice sheets for freshwater flux to inhibit NADW formation and halt AMOC
            [THC fact sheet: http://www.pik-potsdam.de/~stefan/thc_fact_sheet.html see fig. 2]

            – NH now *cools* as equatorial >>> poleward heat transport stops

            – With the NH ‘heat sink’ turned off, the SH *warms*, as it must

            – Deep water warming in SH ocean causes release of carbon to atmosphere. This positive feedback globalises and amplifies the warming

            – NH melt resumes, fully engaging strongly positive ice albedo feedback

            – Deglaciation accelerates until largely complete by ~11.5ka. Holocene interglacial begins

            At present, NH summer insolation is near its cyclic minimum. Earth’s climate should be drifting slowly down into another glacial, *not* warming at an apparently unprecedented rate. But that is exactly what is happening.

          • Pat Frank

            BBD, the Vostok ice core shows four glaciations over the last half-million years, in all of which CO2 laged temperature, and you’re refuting the entire data set by invoking one study, Shakun, et al., of only the most recent glaciation.

            Apart from that, the Shakun, et al., study has been so thoroughly disproved, see here and here, for example, that I’m surprised that you or anyone else would cite it in debate.

            Finally, Holocene temperatures have been steadily declining since their optimum 10,000 years ago, see here, but with repeated warming excursions. The 20th century excursion is well within the natural variations observed earlier. It is far from “unprecedented” — a word that has been so thoroughly abused among AGW climateers as to have become bereft of meaning.

            And I repeat: the recent global air temperature record is so riddled with systematic measurement error (869.8 kb pdf) as to be useless to establish the rate or magnitude of 20th century warming. Your entire thesis of unprecedented warming is empirically baseless.

          • BBD

            Pat

            BBD, the Vostok ice core shows four glaciations over the last half-million years, in all of which CO2 laged temperature and you’re refuting the entire data set by invoking one study, Shakun, et al., of only the most recent glaciation.

            And orbitally-triggered deglaciation happens differently every time? Why? Obliquity is obliquity, after all.

            Which brings us back to the claim that CO2 lags temperature in Antarctic cores during deglaciation. Recent studies have tightened the chronology sufficiently to render this moot, at best. See Pedro et al. (2012). Tightened constraints on the time-lag between Antarctic temperature and CO2 during the last deglaciation and Parrenin et al. (2013) Synchronous Change of Atmospheric CO2 and Antarctic Temperature During the Last Deglacial Warming

            Apart from that, the Shakun, et al., study has been so thoroughly disproved

            No, it hasn’t. Nothing posted on contrarian blogs demonstrated some fundamental flaw in Shakun12. And there’s not one single reply in the literature to date.

          • Pat Frank

            BBD, we can agree to disagree on Shakun. It’s irrelevant to the center of our discussion, in any case.

            The fact that you dismiss the work of Steve McIntyre and Anthony Watts as “contrarian blogs” merely demonstrates a partisan prejudice. They are every bit as critically valid as an honest journal review.

            Which leads me to your point that, “there’s not one single reply in the literature to date.” My own experience trying to publish critical work, and the testimony of others, is more than sufficient to conclude that “the literature” is actively censored to blockade such work.

            Non-appearance of criticism in a censored literature is meaningless, except to partisan supporters of the protected position. For them it’s something to exploit.

          • BBD

            Which leads me to your point that, “there’s not one single reply in the literature to date.” My own experience trying to publish critical work, and the testimony of others, is more than sufficient to conclude that “the literature” is actively censored to blockade such work.

            Or you might be incorrect.

          • Pat Frank

            View my presentation. Let’s see you or anyone else refute it.

            I’ve debated more than a dozen climate modelers in the course of my several journal submissions. They have been uniformly incompetent; the editors rejecting despite the object demonstration.

            No one has refuted my paper on the systematic measurement error in the temperature record, either. You’re welcome to have at that, too.

          • BBD

            View my presentation. Let’s see you or anyone else refute it.

            You need physical mechanisms both for the inefficacy of CO2 as a climate forcing and for alternative forcings that explain palaeoclimate behaviour.

            Until you provide them, then the consensus will stand, I’m afraid.

          • Pat Frank

            As I’ve pointed out already, I need only show that your proposed mechanism is insupportable. That, I’ve done.

            The fact that you can’t think of any other mechanism is of no causal consequence.

            Your consensus is one of opinion, not one of science; subjectivism decorated with mathematics.

          • BBD

            As I’ve pointed out already, I need only show that your proposed mechanism is insupportable. That, I’ve done.

            No, you haven’t.

          • Pat Frank

            It’s right there in my DDP presentation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THg6vGGRpvA

            Either refute it or concede.

            I’ll make it easy for you, BBD. The average annual increase in CO2 forcing since 1979 is about 0.035 W/m^2.

            In comparison, the average annual CMIP5 error in long wave tropospheric cloud forcing is (+/-)4 W/m^2.

            That (+/-)4 W/m^2 is a lower limit of resolution of climate models, for the simulated tropospheric thermal energy flux. That lower limit is 114 times larger than the GHE perturbation.

            Explain how it’s possible to assign an effect to a perturbation that’s 114 times smaller than the directly relevant lower limit of resolution.

          • BBD

            Either refute it or concede..

            When you can show that annual variability in real-world cloud forcing has driven multidecadal modern warming, you’ve got an argument.

          • Pat Frank

            BBD running away from a direct refutation. You’ve posted an implicit concession.

          • BBD

            It’s right there in my DDP presentation:

            No, it isn’t. I’ve already explained to you that models are just models and that there is a confluence of evidence ranging from the radiative properties of CO2 through the linear transfer equations to palaeoclimate behaviour that supports greenhouse theory. Even if you were correct – and I doubt it – it would make no difference. The PETM still happened and was still a CO2-forced hyperthermal. Physics works whether models do or not.

            You’ve posted an implicit concession.

            I concede nothing. It is extremely unlikely that random interannual noise in cloud forcing is capable of driving a multidecadal warming trend. It is extremely likely that increasing RF from CO2 is causing energy to accumulate in the climate system per observations. The more so as no other sufficient forcing change has ever been detected that can explain the observed warming.

            No one has refuted

            You mean that you refuse to accept explanations as to why your assertions lack merit. Pretty much standard for contrarians, in my experience. This is why nobody serious will take you seriously. You are your own worst enemies, really.

          • Pat Frank

            BBD, climate models deploy current climate physical theory. They are what give meaning to climate observables. Or, climate models would do if they were falsifiable, which they are not.

            Really, BBD, to say as you do that models are just models and the meaning of climate observables comes from somewhere else — mere assignment in your case — leads me to think that you are entirely unfamiliar with the origin and basis of scientific knowledge.

            Second point: if you’d watched my presentation, you’d know that model cloud error is systematic, not random.

            Third, climate modes are coupled oscillators. One mode or another (e.g., an ocean basin, or the atmosphere) can accumulate energy without any change in over all energy flux.

            Fourth, no, I mean that no one has refuted the analysis. I’ve dealt with over a dozen reviews written by climate modelers. They’re uniformly incompetent.

            No one has refuted the earlier analysis in my thoroughly peer-reviewed Skeptic article, either.

            Your comments do not come close to criticism. Your “contrarian” dismissal is mere prejudice serving to disguise ignorance, and climate scientists’ studied neglect of obvious refutations does not recommend their professional integrity, no matter your argument from authority.

          • BBD

            Pat

            BBD, climate models deploy current climate physical theory. They are what give meaning to climate observables.

            No, climate models do not ‘give meaning’ to climate observations. The totality of pre-existent knowledge of physical climatology does that. There is a fundamental flaw in your logic here that I have now pointed out several times. Per previous form, you seem blind to your own errors. Hansen was exactly correct in what he said about this.

            Really, BBD, to say as you do that models are just models and the meaning of climate observables comes from somewhere else

            Of course the meaning comes from somewhere else. It comes from the pre-existing understanding of radiative physics embodied in the algorithms comprising the models. I repeat (yet again) that your reasoning is back-to-front and your argument therefore fails.

            Second point: if you’d watched my presentation, you’d know that model cloud error is systematic, not random.

            Then the models should be incapable of reproducing Earth climate behaviour but they *do*. This is strong evidence (arguably conclusive) that your claim that aspects of model physics are fatally flawed is wrong. IIRC this has been drawn to your attention elsewhere on a number of occasions.

            Fourth, no, I mean that no one has refuted the analysis. I’ve dealt with over a dozen reviews written by climate modelers. They’re uniformly incompetent.

            No one has refuted the earlier analysis in my thoroughly peer-reviewed Skeptic article, either.

            You fall foul of the logical fallacy of appeal to (your own) authority with incessant references to blog posts on WUWT, a magazine article, a Youtube clip and a paper in the junk journal E&E. Not only are you not a climate modeller you are unable to get your aggressively critical claims of a field not your own published in a relevant high-impact journal. Appeal to inappropriate authority is a logical fallacy and you are guilty of it in spades. When I point to the relevant scientific literature (as I have done repeatedly, in marked contrast to yourself) that is appeal to relevant authority and entirely legitimate in the context of this discussion.

            Your comments do not come close to criticism.

            I showed that you to be incorrect over and over again on this thread. With references. Every single one of which you ignored.

            Your “contrarian” dismissal is mere prejudice serving to disguise ignorance, and climate scientists’ studied neglect of obvious refutations does not recommend their professional int egrity, no matter your argument from authority.

            What ignorance? I showed you to be incorrect over and over again on this thread. With references. Every one of which you ignored.

            no matter your argument from authority.

            You don’t understand what constitutes the logical fallacy of argument from inappropriate authority. See above.

            The fact that you dismiss the work of Steve McIntyre and Anthony Watts as “contrarian blogs” merely demonstrates a partisan prejudice. They are every bit as critically valid as an honest journal review.

            That’s credibility-corrosive, partisan, demonstrably false and embarrassing bullshit. Did I mention that you were your own worst enemy? Why yes, I did.

          • Pat Frank

            BBD, so let’s see: your “totality of pre-existent knowledge of physical climatology” are the elements of physical theory that go into climate models.

            Further, each bit of your pre-existent knowledge amounts to a piece of physical theory. Any physical theory is a model of observables. Quantum mechanics, Relativistic mechanics, Thermodynamics, all are physical models that give meaning to observables.

            None of your pre-existent knowledge elements predict the behavior of the climate. None of them predict how climate observables, such as regional precipitation, will behave within the context of a local energy flux driven by the larger climate. Attempts at embedding regional climate models and downscaling demonstrate this point. E.g., the physical meaning of local precipitation requires a global context. And global context requires a global climate model.

            Pre-existing piece-meal knowledge amounts to partial explanations. But we’re talking about climate, aren’t we, which involves the entire planet. Therefore, your pre-existing but subordinate elements of physical climatology cannot provide the meaning of a climate-driven observable, because none of those elements model the climate.

            Climate models combine the relevant physical climatology expressions into a physical theory of coupled systems that is meant to simulate the planetary climate. The meaning of climate observables can only derive from climate models. That’s QED.

            You wrote, “Of course the meaning comes from somewhere else. It comes from the pre-existing understanding of radiative physics embodied in the algorithms comprising the models.

            If you really suppose that radiation physics in and of itself provides meaning for the influence, if any, of CO2 on *climate* — as opposed to just energy-transfer — then you are claiming that radiation physics in and of itself is a valid theory of climate.

            If you demur from that claim — and you should do because it’s obviously wrong — then you must agree that radiation physics provides no meaning concerning a putative impact of CO2 on the climate.

            You wrote, in denying the impact of model systematic cloud error, that “Then the models should be incapable of reproducing Earth climate behaviour but they *do*.

            Non-sequitur, BBD. But in any case, they don’t. Models tuned to simulate precipitation cannot simulate air temperature, and vice versa. Further, tuning models does not eliminate the underlying uncertainty. Even a model that is tuned to reproduce some observed behavior, such as the 20th century air temperature, is not known to reproduce the underlying climate physics. Such models therefore cannot be assumed to simulate the behavior of the climate outside the bounds of their tuning.

            This is obvious stuff, but apparently news to you.

            You wrote, “You fall foul of the logical fallacy of appeal to (your own) authority with incessant references to blog posts on WUWT, a magazine article, a Youtube clip and a paper in the junk journal E&E.

            Brave words, BBD. But empty. Let’s note that you have not refuted iota one of any of them. Let’s see you try. So far, you’ve exhibited no more than a substance-free rejectionism.

            You also wrote that I am “not a climate modeler” But my work is all about physical error analysis. Not about modeling the climate. That distinction has also escaped you.

            I’ve posted direct quotes from my modeler reviewers, demonstrating their incompetence regarding physical error and accuracy. So, by your lights, I’m more of a “relevant authority” than they are.

            Those quotes are open for your inspection. Pick any one of them, and show my mistake. I claim you can’t do it.

            That “magazine article,” by the way, survived review by two independent groups of scientists, and a multiple debates on the web. It will survive your attentions, too, should you venture them.

            You wrote, “I showed that you to be incorrect over and over again on this thread. With references. Every single one of which you ignored.

            I’ve reviewed all your posts to me. You’ve referenced only the Shakun, et al., paper and a couple of papers on the PETM, all of which are irrelevant to the central issue of climate model inaccuracy. So I’ve ignored nothing, and you’ve disproved nothing.

            Regarding the PETM, you ignored the point that the resolution of the data is unable to sustain the temperature/CO2 ordering necessary (but not sufficient) to your spurious claim that the PETM represents a confirmation of the GHE. Your insupportable claim just represents confirmation bias.

            You have not shown me incorrect one single time.

            You dismiss a reference to McIntyre and Watts as “credibility-corrosive, partisan, demonstrably false and embarrassing bullshit” without evidence, and without ever refuting anything they’ve ever done. “Demonstrably false”? Where’s your demonstration? Another empty and pejorative dismissal courtesy of you, BBD. Embarrassment, yes, but not mine.

          • BBD

            None of your pre-existent knowledge elements predict the behavior of the climate. None of them predict how climate observables, such as regional precipitation, will behave within the context of a local energy flux driven by the larger climate.

            You have jumped from the topic (global warming trend) to a non-topic (regional climate effects) invalidating your (but not my) argument. I never made any claims about the regional predictive skill of the models as that was not the focus of discussion. Don’t play crude rhetorical games, please.

            If you really suppose that radiation physics in and of itself provides meaning for the influence, if any, of CO2 on *climate* — as opposed to just energy-transfer — then you are claiming that radiation physics in and of itself is a valid theory of climate.

            As I keep telling you, this is about greenhouse effect theory not some ‘theory of climate’. Is this simple distinction between topic and strawman going over your head or what? How many times to I have to repeat myself? I am stating that radiation physics is a valid theory of the GHE as I have said before repeatedly and will not be saying again. Once again, your argument fails. This is simply rubbish:

            If you demur from that claim — and you should do because it’s obviously wrong — then you must agree that radiation physics provides no meaning concerning a putative impact of CO2 on the climate.

            Cobblers from start to finish.

            * * *

            Even a model that is tuned to reproduce some observed behavior, such as the 20th century air temperature, is not known to reproduce the underlying climate physics.

            I think you just made this up. Since sensitivity is an emergent property of model physics and not parameterised, and since sensitivity determines GAT over multidecadal scales, it’s very hard to see how your claim can be correct.

            Brave words, BBD. But empty.

            True words, Pat. You are a way outside your field of expertise and you can’t get your (very strong) claims published. Your entire argument collapses on the logical fallacy of appeal to your own (non-existent) authority and that is where it stops. The denial business is full of fake experts and on present evidence, you are just another.

            That “magazine article,” by the way, survived review by two independent groups of scientists

            This claim is meaningless as I have no evidence that the magazine actually saw or would have understood the reviewers’ comments. I also noticed that they weren’t even for the version of the article actually published. There’s no evidence that there was anything even approximating to a formal review process. Are you prepared to post all reviewers’ comments here? All emails between you and the magazine so that we can see what actually happened? What they saw and understood? What the changes in the two versions of the article were? How much of it was *not* ‘reviewed’? I think your claim is meaningless. Publish in a relevant high-impact journal if you want to reference your own work or stop pretending that it has any weight whatsoever. It doesn’t and you should know that. The fact that you are pretending otherwise really does set alarm bells ringing.

            I’ve reviewed all your posts to me. You’ve referenced only the Shakun, et al., paper and a couple of papers on the PETM, all of which are irrelevant to the central issue of climate model inaccuracy. So I’ve ignored nothing, and you’ve disproved nothing.

            Your (false) claim was that models alone were the source of our knowledge of the effects of CO2 forcing on climate. To be specific (because you have since tried to obfuscate the point) this meant the effect of CO2 on GAT on centennial timescales. I pointed out that this was evident from palaeoclimate behaviour and that you were wrong. You still are and now you are lying about it.

            This has gone on long enough. When people resort to lying about what is written in black and white, there’s nothing left to be said.

            “Demonstrably false”? Where’s your demonstration?

            You can’t tell that WUWT is bullshit and most of CA is wrong? You are beyond help then.

          • Ian Forrester

            Pat Frank is waving his arms:

            Apart from that, the Shakun, et al., study has been so thoroughly disproved, see here and here,

            Do you seriously wish to say that a peer reviewed science paper has been scientifically disproved by linking to two of the least scientific and most dishonest of AGW denying sites? You are a joke, do you wear the same clown suit as Monckton or do you have your own?

          • Pat Frank

            Thank-you for the worthless evidence-free ad hominems, Ian Forrester, and for providing clear evidence that you can be safely ignored.

          • Ian Forrester

            Put away your clown suit before you trip over your shoes and hurt yourself. You are a fool to be spreading the nonsense you are spreading, it is all either the result of an ignorant mind or you are as dishonest as Monckton and his AGW denying cronies.

            By the way my comment was not worthless since I am sure that honest people will read it and realize the rubbish you are posting here and elsewhere.

          • Pat Frank

            All insult, no substance, Ian. Worthless.

          • Ian Forrester

            Wrong again. My comment is not worthless if it lets others know the truth about you and your dishonest comments.

            Plenty of substance, an honest description of your behaviour. As for insults, well you and your buddy Monckton have no qualms about insulting honest scientists with your drivel. Get lost.

          • Pat Frank

            You can’t show a single dishonest statement, nor a single insult, Ian. Your contribution to the debate: bad grace.

          • Ian Forrester

            You are right, I can’t show a single dishonest statement but that is because there is more than “a single dishonest statement” in all the rubbish you post here and elsewhere. Good grief, for someone who claims to have a PhD you have no clue about science or how it is conducted. It is not conducted by spewing verbal diarrhea and loads of meaningless equations which the average reader cannot determine if they are real or not. you are a hopeless case. I hope that you don’t do any science work in your real life that may endanger yourself or those working with you. You do not seem to be a real scientist to me, That does not mean that I am saying that you don’t have the degrees that you profess to have, only that you do not act like one.

          • Pat Frank

            More evidence-free vulgar accusations, Ian. If there re so many dishonest statements, why are you unable to provide even one of them?

            You claim I “have no clue about science or how it is conducted.

            Here’s my most recent paper, “Solvation structure of the halides from x-ray absorption spectroscopy.”

            Show me its cluelessness or ill-conductedness.

            All my coauthors apparently disagree with you. I have no doubt that so will the co-authors of my other 70 or so peer-reviewed published multi-authored papers, too.

            My DDP presentation is linked right up there for your acute critical perusal, Ian. Let’s see you point out one single non-scientific iotum in the analysis.

          • Lionel Smith

            You obviously did not watch my DDP talk, URL given above. Let’s see you or anyone else refute the analysis.

            No, shame! I prefer spending my time studying Bradley, Cronin, Archer, Ruddiman and others.

            Climate models are predictively useless.

            Stuff and nonsense, that is to miss-characterise climate models in such a way that it would take pages of explanation to refute. But then that is your intent.

            Anybody who has studied e.g. Cronin, Hansen will appreciate that there are many forms of climate model each with their own strengths and weaknesses depending upon the purpose for which they are used.

            It so happens that a useful FAQ on Climate Models is found starting here.

            It so happens that the UK Met’ Office included useful explanations in sets of documents produced in the wake of UK storms in countering the nonsense pushed out concerning a warming pause, a pause which wasn’t. What it was is a slow down in the rate of acceleration of warming, this because of external factors which no climate model should be expected to cover one example being a slow down in economic activity as the result of financial market disruptions.

            Another indication of the incompetence of the consensus climatologists is the studied neglect of systematic measurement error in the air temperature record.

            Maybe you would like to explain the errors behind the UAH data sets over decades, errors which a certain Dr was coy about acknowledging until pushed.

            The way in which you use pejorative descriptions such as ‘ incompetence of the consensus climatologists’ is not helpful to the discussion. Maybe this is from jealousy on your part because their papers are published in highly ranked journals whereas you have to resort to E&E the status of which we are only to well aware.

            But at least you didn’t have to resort to the scientific equivalent of ‘vanity publishing’ and go to some obscure Chinese ‘Journal’.

          • Pat Frank

            Lionel Smith, your mind is made up so don’t bother you with refutations, is it? Great approach to science; one both fit for, and common to, AGW-believers.

            As you decline to watch my presentation, and probably won’t read Do climate projections have any physical meaning?, then your “stuff and nonsense” can be set aside as a fact-free dismissal.

            Thank-you for posting the link to RealClimate. It gives me the opportunity to show how scientifically fatuous is their thinking. Under the heading, “What is robust in a climate projection and how can I tell?” they write this: “They do this by seeing whether the same result is seen in other simulations, with other models, whether it makes physical sense and whether there is some evidence of similar things in the observational or paleo record.

            They claim physical accuracy lays in whether models agree with one another. Wrong.

            Or whether it makes “physical sense.” Naive. Physical sense requires knowing the correct physics. E.g., the photoelectric effect made no physical sense within Maxwell’s very successful electromagnetic theory.

            “Similar things” Non-unique correspondence is not validation. Note the admission of model-tuning under “What is tuning? Nowhere is there any awareness that tuning parameters does not remove uncertainty. Nor any awareness that tuning does not allow a model to produce a unique solution.

            Your evidentiary FAQ just shows these people do not know how to think about science, and have no evident concept of how to derive physical meaning.

            Your reference to the UAH data is just a diversion; apparently to avoid dealing with the failures of the surface data. To repeat: the surface temperature data is so ridden with systematic error as to be unable to quantify the rate or magnitude of climate warming since 1860. Systematic error studiously avoided by the compilers of the record.

            Regarding journals, in science, an analysis stands or falls on its content, not on where it is published. Your dismissals merely demonstrate ignorance of this critically central point. I’ve published in E&E because it is the only journal I’ve found with the editorial courage and integrity to publish AGW-critical papers.

            I provide direct evidence of the stark incompetence of climate modelers here: Are climate modelers scientists?

            But don’t read that, either, as it’s clear you will have no truck with disconfirmations.

          • Lionel Smith

            As a matter of fact I did visit WUWT, against my better judgement, and something odd happened on my computer with something not working as it should. So I quit, re-booted checking for ickies.

            However I have found a copy of one of your efforts from vaguely recalling an article on Open Mind where it is described as ‘this travesty in E&E’. This was enough to turn me to more important things happening around here ATM such as some plumbing and decorating works in progress. Besides, as I have said I prefer to get my science from accredited scientists with a track record of respected research. There is so much material out there that one does have to be selective with ones time thus I follow up references in such texts books as those by Raymond Bradley and Thomas Cronin on Palaeoclimatology. I have had sufficient education in the sciences to be able to make sense of these and judge accordingly.

            The latest edition of Bradley’s on this topic is encyclopaedic, on the Quaternary (with Cronin’s magisterial volume spanning the whole of geological time) and anybody studying the material within will appreciate that anybody who is trying to muddy the waters by attacking climate models is not looking at the big picture which includes all factors which interactively affect climate.

            Sure there are uncertainties, and conundrums still – that is the way of science. But enough is now known, and actual experiences globally reinforces, that climates are now changing, and fast. Palaeoclimatology provides the rationale as to why this is so with the physics described in ‘The Warming Papers’, ‘Global Warming: Understanding the Forecast’ and ‘Principles of Planetary Climate’ underpinning the current understanding.

            The real moral imperative is to allow all nations to develop sufficiency (rather than some with excess) in power to enhance life experience and promote survival without poisoning the planet and causing widespread extinctions from the result of rapid temperature rise and ocean acidification. That is the real moral imperative – not that pushed by those with agendas and biases about left – right politics, those who stir up hostility against anybody arguing for a more egalitarian world.

            Recognition needs to be made that climate change is already playing a part in destabilising areas of the Middle East, where of course it did in times past if you bother to study anthropology and ancient civilisations.

          • Pat Frank

            Lionel Smith, if you’d actually read into the replies at Tamino’s post, you’d have seen that he began to censor my replies after he started losing the debate. Of course, by now he may have edited everything to suit his self-image better.

            No matter. The fact that you turned away after Tamino’s pejorative non-appraisal merely shows that you are satisfied with arguments from authority (something you apparently have in common with BBD). Relying on arguments from authority makes your scientific views worthless.

            You say that you, “prefer to get [your] science from accredited scientists with a track record of respected research.

            I have about 80 peer-reviewed papers, my PhD in Chemistry is from Stanford University, and I work at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. By your own standard, you agree to get your science from me.

            You tout Bradley and his paleotemperature reconstructions. So, inform us all: what physical theory does Bradley use to convert a tree ring metric into a temperature? Does your education in the sciences reveal that detail to you?

            How’s that? He doesn’t use any physical theory at all? Just statistical re-scaling?

            No wonder you admire him — what with that amazing talent to magic physical meaning out of thin air. Such a superior approach to science!

            if you bother to study anthropology and ancient civilisations” I’ve read quite a bit of that, thanks.

            The climate of the middle east is well within known variability.

            There is zero evidence that human-produced CO2 has done anything at all to the climate of the middle east. If anything is destabilizing that area, it’s Islam.

          • Lionel Smith

            Lionel Smith, if you’d actually read into the replies at Tamino’s post,

            I actually did and noted the “Response: Enough already “ which given the exchange with a number of respected commentators there and the length and self contradiction of your responses was not before time.

            Now I wonder how you will defend your comments found here What the IPCC models really say starting with this one 264. Others may like to go from the beginning there where they may pick up on other examples of Frank’s work.

            I have about 80 peer-reviewed papers, my PhD in Chemistry is from Stanford University, and I work at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. By your own standard, you agree to get your science from me.

            Sorry, it matters not how many papers one has to ones name if one sticks their neck out in defending those mentioned already. It is a great shame that somebody of your undoubted ability should chose to try to muddy the waters of climate change research by fiddling with techniques which fit the data to your hypothesis rather than the other way about. You are not alone here, indeed it has been seen that you associate with at least one other that has done this.

            Yes I tout Bradley, who uses a number of techniques to investigate that for which he is well known and who explains them in his excellent book Paleoclimatology: Reconstructing Climates of the Quaternary. Perhaps you should study it, by doing so you will realise that there is more than dendrochronology that produces evidence for rapid warming from the late twentieth century on. Indeed boots on the ground find evidence aplenty.

            Maybe you have not noticed how the cryosphere is melting rapidly, many have including James Balog of ‘Extreme Ice Survey’ on Iceland, Greenland, Alaska and now Antarctica. Lonnie Thompson Thompson has practically made it his life’s work and his findings from high elevation low latitude glaciers such as Qualcaya being a case in point. It just so happens that Lonnie Thompson wrote a very succinct Forward to Bradley’s book.

            Other readers could of course also acquaint themselves with Paleoclimates
            Understanding Climate Change Past and Present
            by Thomas M. Cronin . The chapters (11 & 12) are very explanatory on the Anthropocene. Figure 11.1 and 11.2 on page 297 are particularly revealing.

            Of course reading does not stop with this volumes, neither did it so begin, but continues by looking up the papers cited with the texts. These volumes, and the IPCC AR 5, are good for delving into where we are at now, or rather at publication date.

            As for Middle East drought, linking to a page full of diverse topics is not convincing, neither did it support your premise that the problem was Islam. Such a remark demonstrates your bias and I can well under stand now why some of your responses have gone down the memory hole. Islam isn’t any more a problem than fundamentalist Christianity, but then you were not around at the time of the inquisition.

            Sorry but I find your arguments unconvincing — to say the least.

          • BBD

            PF’s endless appeals to his own authority are a fundamental part of the problem here:

            I have about 80 peer-reviewed papers, my PhD in Chemistry is from
            Stanford University, and I work at the SLAC National Accelerator
            Laboratory. By your own standard, you agree to get your science from me.

            PF is not a climate scientist, so he is opinionating loudly well outside his own sphere of expertise yet appealing directly to his own authority. That’s a whopping logical fallacy.

            I had to point this out to him in a recent comment. PF is altogether too fond of telling others that they don’t understand how science works etc. while providing an extended demonstration of exactly how not to go about things.

          • Pat Frank

            Lionel, I went back to Tamino, and looked for an accusation of self-contradiction. You probably have in mind PJKar’s post, in which he supposes a contradiction between the (+/-)0.5 C systematic error I report in the surface air temperature record, and the use of surface air temperatures for numerical fits.

            But PJKar completely ignored my discussion of this very point at the outset of the analysis he criticized. There’s no self-contradiction at all See for yourself.

            Regarding the debate at RealClimate with Gavin Schmidt, read down to the end. I carried that debate. See post 461 and Gavin’s response. Gavin was reduced to making a false claim that I made a log(0) mistake. He apparently had never seen a log asymptote before. I.e., it terminates at log(1).

            You previously wrote that you, “prefer to get [your] science from accredited scientists with a track record of respected research.” After I demonstrated those credentials, you shifted your ground to “It matters not …” So, in reality you apparently prefer to get your science from scientists who agree with you.

            Who are “those mentioned already, by the way? Can you mean Anthony Watts and Steve McIntyre? Surely not another insubstantial dismissal?

            You wrote that I’ve been “fiddling with techniques which fit the data to your hypothesis rather than the other way about.” Actually, I began an exploration, and ended up discovering that climate model air temperature projections are just linear extrapolations of forcing.

            Note that: I discovered that case by exploration, made further tests and analysis, verified it all the way through CMIP5 models, and ended up writing a manuscript. All standard science, Lionel.

            You wrote, regarding Bradley’s work, that “there is more than dendrochronology that produces evidence for rapid warming from the late twentieth century on.” But that’s not the point, is it.

            I asked for the physical theory Bradley uses to get temperature — degrees C — from a tree ring metric. Where is it?

            Recent warming is well within the limits of past variability. It indicates nothing about CO2 and climate.

            The site I linked gave a run-down of the last 12k years of Middle Eastern climate. It directly refuted your inference that CO2 emissions are destabilizing the Middle East.

            About Islam, try Ibn Warraq’s “Why I Am Not a Muslim” for a start. The point of Islam is that it is obviously and aggressively bringing Inquisitional thinking right down into the 21st century. That thinking previously convulsed Europe. It continues to convulse the middle east.

          • Lionel Smith

            0

      • Lachlan

        As one of those helping the Indonesian government electrify their nation, I can assure you that they are looking at much cheaper alternatives to running wires all through the jungles. Distributed generation is much cheaper for many of the 6 million you mention.

        Coal fired generation is no longer the cheapest new-build source of electricity anyway (although of course getting electricity from existing plants is cheap, if you ignore the deaths due to particulate pollution, mining accidents etc., not to mention climate change).

        The moral imperative is for people to stop muddying the debate, and get on with 21st century engineering.

        • monckton

          It is not 6 million that need electricity: it is 1.2 billion. And coal-fired generation is indeed the cheapest source of electricity, taking account the levelized-cost analysis, which takes into account both the build-and-maintain cost and also the cost of fuel.

  • john

    The people who changed the direction are not going to listen to any information that is outside their simple knowledge. There is no point writing another article that will not be read.
    Perhaps the best outcome one can hope for is that the ever reducing cost of Renewable Energy displaces the 1880 technology and the cost effectiveness of BEV for transportation displaces the ICE vehicles.

    • monckton

      The problem with so-called “renewables” is one of energy density, intermittency and cost. They should not be regarded as a panacea, and they should certainly not be subsidized. Carbon dioxide is net-beneficial, even on IPCC’s analysis, until the world is at least 1 K warmer than it is today: and even then the imagined disbenefit is imaginary.

      The world will continue to warm, but far more slowly than had been predicted. Everyone and everything will have plenty of time to adapt, and there will in any event be far more winners than losers. The climate scare is over. Move along.

      • Lachlan

        Intermittency is indeed the big problem with renewables. Cost is a much bigger problem with fossil fuels (once externalities are considered). Energy density is only really an issue if the energy needs to be transported; electricity from coal needs batteries that are just as big as electricity from renewables, and biodiesel is as energy-dense as regular diesel.

        I also dispute the claim of CO2 being “net beneficial”. To date it has increased the amount of vegetation, but I believe it has also reduced the proportion of protein in grains. It is also killing coral reefs, which host an amazing range of biodiversity from which new medicines would be able to come (as they have so far come from the Amazon rainforest).

        I’m glad the climate scare is over; I thought he hadn’t even been sworn in yet.

        • monckton

          It is ludicrous to assert that CO2 is killing coral reefs. Corals first achieved algal symbiosis when there was an order of magnitude more CO2 in the air than today. They are therefore well adapted even to quite sudden changes in its concentration or partial pressure.

          • BBD

            More rubbish.

            See eg. Veron (2008) Mass extinctions and ocean acidification: biological constraints on geological dilemmas:

            The five mass extinctionevents that the earth has so far experienced have impacted coral reefs as much or more than any other major ecosystem. Each has left the Earth without living reefs for at least four million years, intervals so great that they are commonly referred to as ‘reef gaps’ (geological intervals where there are no remnants of what might have been living reefs). The causes attributed to each mass extinction are reviewed and summarised. When these causes and the reef gaps that follow them are examined in the light of the biology of extant corals and their Pleistocene history, most can be discarded. Causes are divided into (1) those which are independent of the carbon cycle: direct physical destruction from bolides, ‘nuclear winters’ induced by dust clouds, sea-level changes, loss of area during sea-level regressions, loss of biodiversity, low and high temperatures, salinity, diseases and toxins and extraterrestrial events and (2) those linked to the carbon cycle: acid rain, hydrogen sulphide, oxygen and anoxia, methane, carbon dioxide, changes in ocean chemistry and pH. By process of elimination, primary causes of mass extinctions are linked in various ways to the carbon cycle in general and ocean chemistry in particular with clear association with atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. The prospect of ocean acidification is potentially the most serious of all predicted outcomes of anthropogenic carbon dioxide increase. This study concludes that acidification has the potential to trigger a sixth mass extinction event and to do so independently of anthropogenic extinctions that are currently taking place.

          • monckton

            BBD is unable to produce any global dataset of supposed “acidification”. It is another scare that has been much amplified.

          • BBD

            BBD is unable to produce any global dataset of supposed “acidification”. It is another scare that has been much amplified.

            Only because such a global data set doesn’t exist, not because the ongoing pH shift isn’t real. And it’s happened before, demonstrating that yes, chemistry works exactly as advertised. As for your weightless and unsupported opinion about the threat to marine ecosystems, you are wrong about *everything*, so why should anyone listen to your empty assertions about this? Especially in the light of the marine extinctions associated with acidification events in the past?

            Hönisch et al. (2012) The geological record of ocean acidification (emphasis added):

            Ocean acidification may have severe consequences for marine ecosystems; however, assessing its future impact is difficult because laboratory experiments and field observations are limited by their reduced ecologic complexity and sample period, respectively. In contrast, the geological record contains long-term evidence for a variety of global environmental perturbations, including ocean acidification plus their associated biotic responses. We review events exhibiting evidence for elevated atmospheric CO2, global warming, and ocean acidification over the past ~300 million years of Earth’s history, some with contemporaneous extinction or evolutionary turnover among marine calcifiers. Although similarities exist, no past event perfectly parallels future projections in terms of disrupting the balance of ocean carbonate chemistry—a consequence of the unprecedented rapidity of CO2 release currently taking place.

            Let’s have a look at a pretty picture while we’re at it. See panel (c). That’s ocean acidification caused by increased atmospheric CO2 during the PETM hyperthermal (itself forced by CO2):

            http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v451/n7176/images/nature06588-f3.2.jpg

            Source: Zachos et al. (2008) An early Cenozoic perspective on greenhouse warming and carbon cycle dynamics fig. 3.

            See also: Zachos et al. (2005) Rapid acidification of the ocean during the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum.

      • Lionel Smith

        The world will continue to warm, but far more slowly than had been predicted.

        So you keep saying but this is patently untrue and here is evidence. Did you visit the link I provided to ‘Record heat despite a cold sun’, which brings things up to date?

        This is where Pat Frank is so far off with his claims about, ‘A warming climate does not prove human causality.’ is to miss the point. That the climate is warming faster now than at any time since the PETM. For human causality we look to other studies such as those found in the publications seen in this bookmark.

        Everyone and everything will have plenty of time to adapt, and there will in any event be far more winners than losers.

        This is not the message that has been coming in from ecosystem studies over the past several decades, here is one from 2006:

        Abstract
        Global climate change impacts can already be tracked in many physical and biological systems; in particular, terrestrial ecosystems provide a consistent picture of observed changes. One of the preferred indicators is phenology, the science of natural recurring events, as their recorded dates provide a high-temporal resolution of ongoing changes.

        There are many more such studies.

        For the general reader titles in this bookmark are of interest, specifically those by E. O. Wilson and Richard Pearson.

        • monckton

          Mr Smith appears to believe – for he is of that cohort that believes in the Party Line as it is handed down unto him – that “the climate is warming faster now than at any time since the Palaeocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum. That is not true. The Central England Temperature Record, which statistical tests show is a respectable proxy for global mean surface temperature anomalies, shows that from 1694-1733 – long before any appreciable anthropogenic influence – warming was twice as fast as it has been in any 40-year period since.

          As for the adaptability of species, the evidence is entirely clear: species that have survived the evolutionary process until today are not going to be adversely affected by a few tenths of a degree of warmer worldwide weather. It is cold that is the big killer, which is why less than 1% of life-forms subsist at the Poles and more than 90% in the Tropics. Warmer weather is likely to increase speciation in net terms, not reduce it.

          And yes, there are plenty of me-too “studies” claiming various daft supposed net-adverse effects of the negligible global warming that has occurred to date, which brings the temperature to somewhere below where it was for 4000 years during the Holocene Climate Optimum (hint: it is called “Optimum” because warmer is better than colder, for just about all life on Earth). How is it that those species that are said to be suffering from a few tenths of a degree of warming compared with the Little Ice Age did not curl up and die during the far longer period of somewhat warmer worldwide weather that obtained from 6000-10,000 years ago?

          There are many more such illogicalities in the current literature put out by the profiteers of doom and environmentalist totalitarians. But few now give them any serious credence.

          • BBD

            The Central England Temperature Record, which statistical tests show is a respectable proxy for global mean surface temperature anomalies, shows that from 1694-1733 – long before any appreciable anthropogenic influence – warming was twice as fast as it has been in any 40-year period since.

            Another adamant claim based on an unreliable data set. Bit of a pattern there.

            Here’s why you cannot do what you just did: CET data before 1772 are not considered reliable. See Parker et al. (1992) here. Please note: it’s a 10.8Mb pdf of a scan of the original. I’ve retyped this from the introduction:

            Manley (1953) published a time series of monthly mean temperatures representative of central England for 1698-1952, followed (Manley 1974) by an extended and revised series for 1659-1973. Up to 1814 his data are based mainly on overlapping sequences of observations from a variety of carefully chosen and documented locations. Up to 1722, available instrumental records fail to overlap and Manley needs to use non-instrumental series for Utrecht compiled by Labrijn (1945), in order to make the monthly central England temperature (CET) series complete. Between 1723 and the 1760s there are no gaps in the composite instrumental record, but the observations generally were taken in unheated rooms rather than with a truly outdoor exposure. Manley (1952) used a few outdoor temperatures, observations of snow or sleet, and likely temperatures given the wind direction, to establish relationships between the unheated room and outdoor temperatures: these relationships were used to adjust the monthly unheated room data. Daily temperatures in unheated rooms are, however, not not reliably convertible to daily outdoor values, because of the slow thermal response of the rooms. For this reason, no daily series truly representative of CET can begin before about 1770. In this paper we present a daily CET series from 1772 to the present.

            So another Monckton false claim into the junk bin.

          • monckton

            Except that the adjustments have been made and the dataset very clearly shows warming from 1694-1733 at approximately twice any rate seen over any 40-year period since.

          • BBD

            The *unreliable* dataset. I thought you were supposed to be clever. Please read the reference and switch on brain.

          • monckton

            The dataset is not unreliable. Numerous studies have compared it with the historical and archaeological evidence from a variety of locales around the world, establishing that the Little Ice Age was certainly widespread in the Northern Hemisphere and may well have also affected the Southern Hemisphere, where, however, data are sparse owing to the shortage of land masses.

            The fact is that the Central England record shows warming from 1694-1733 at twice any 40-year rate seen since, and that is too large a discrepancy to be arbitrarily dismissed. There is nothing particularly special about the rate of global warming – except that it is less than half the rate originally predicted by the IPCC in 1990 – and there is nothing special about the absolute value of global temperature, which is below the temperature that obtained in the mediaeval, Roman, Minoan, Old Kingdom, and Holocene warm periods, to say nothing of all four of the previous interglacial warm periods.

          • BBD

            The dataset is not unreliable.

            Parker et al. shows that CET data prior to ~1770CE are unreliable. These are the data you have used to make a strong claim. No competent researcher would ever do such a thing. Pointing this out is far from an ‘arbitrary dismissal’. If you are going to play at being a scientist, there are rules and you keep flouting them, which is why you can hear sniggering in the background.

            There is nothing particularly special about the rate of global warming

            Rubbish. The literature of millennial climate reconstruction shows that modern warming is exceptional in the last 2ka.

            there is nothing special about the absolute value of global temperature, which is below the temperature that obtained in the mediaeval, Roman, Minoan, Old Kingdom, and Holocene warm periods, to say nothing of all four of the previous interglacial warm periods.

            There was no global, synchronous ‘MWP’ as warm as or warmer than the present. The entire literature of millennial climate reconstruction supports this, so your first claim is simply false. The supposed Roman, Minoan and Old Kingdom ‘warm periods’ were – at most – regional not global events and there is no evidence whatsoever that they were globally as warm as or warmer than the present. The Holocene Climatic Optimum was orbitally forced (precession) and irrelevant to modern warming except as a demonstration that the climate system is rather sensitive to radiative perturbation. The peak warmth of previous Pleistocene interglacials was determined by the specific orbital dynamics and again irrelevant to modern CO2-forced warming except as a demonstration that the climate system is sensitive to radiative pertubation.

            The LIA is another good example of just how sensitive the climate system is to only slight forcing change.

            I’m still very curious as to how you get from a regional forcing change (eg obliquity modulating insolation at high N latitude) to a global climate shift without amplifying positive feedbacks. Anyone arguing for an insensitive climate system – by definition where net feedbacks are neutral to negative – has a real problem here. The regional forcing change would be suppressed by negative feedbacks making subsequent global climate impacts physically impossible. Glacials can only terminate under a regional orbital forcing change if it entrains strong, positive, globalising feedbacks.

            You need to address this point by point.

          • monckton

            It is interesting how far the climate establishment will go to rewrite every dataset to suit its storyline. The mediaeval warm period was real, was near-global (no records exist for Australia, which had not been discovered) and was warmer than the present, in some places by up to 4 K. The Roman, Minoan, Old Kingdom and Holocene climate optima were also warmer than the present, and were not purely local events. BBD should consult Craig Idso, whose collection of papers on these earlier warm periods shows just how much agreement there is that these periods were – contrary to the Party Line – warmer than today.

            As for feedbacks, a forthcoming paper will demonstrate that their supposed net-positivity has been much exaggerated. There are of course plenty of current papers that establish this – after all, the atmosphere is bounded by two substantial heat-sinks, so that small perturbations are unlikely a priori to cause long-term, significant warming.

            In any event, it is orders of magnitude cheaper to adapt the day after tomorrow than to attempt – futilely – to mitigate today. The rational economic choice is to do nothing, and most serios observers now recognize this, as do the overwhelming majority of papers on mitigation economics.

            This is a tired scare that has had its day – a dead horse that continues to be flogged, vainly, only by anti-capitalists who had hoped to use it to destroy the Western way of life by enforced impoverishment of wealthy nations, as climate Communists such as Edenhofer and Figueres have explicitly stated.

          • BBD

            It is interesting how far the climate establishment will go to rewrite every dataset to suit its storyline. The mediaeval warm period was real, was near-global (no records exist for Australia, which had not been discovered) and was warmer than the present, in some places by up to 4 K. The Roman, Minoan, Old Kingdom and Holocene climate optima were also warmer than the present, and were not purely local events. BBD should consult Craig Idso, whose collection of papers on these earlier warm periods shows just how much agreement there is that these periods were – contrary to the Party Line – warmer than today.

            All wrong, which is why you haven’t produced any references to published studies in mainstream journals to back it up. They do not exist. The best you could manage was to recommend an energy industry shill who spends his time obfuscating the meaning of global and synchronous *and* warmer than the present – although not well enough to fool the informed observer. You continue to indulge in empty (and dishonest) rhetoric.

            As for feedbacks, a forthcoming paper will demonstrate that their supposed net-positivity has been much exaggerated. There are of course plenty of current papers that establish this

            No there aren’t, and the handful that try are junk. Now, answer the question you were asked, please:

            How do you get from a regional forcing change (eg obliquity modulating insolation at high N latitude) to a global climate shift without amplifying positive feedbacks. Anyone arguing for an insensitive climate system – by definition where net feedbacks are neutral to negative – has a real problem here. The regional forcing change would be suppressed by negative feedbacks making subsequent global climate impacts physically impossible. Glacials can only terminate under a regional orbital forcing change if it entrains strong, positive, globalising feedbacks.

            You need to address this point by point and you haven’t even begun.

          • Ian Forrester

            Monckton, the “G” in AGW is “global” CET is a small place in the middle of a small country. Please take off your clown suit and behave as a rational human being.

          • Lionel Smith

            More bombast and bluster. We expect nothing less, by now.

            And yes, there are plenty of me-too “studies” claiming various daft
            supposed net-adverse effects of the negligible global warming that has
            occurred to date

            Define negligible in magnitude and scope.

            How is it that those species that are said to be suffering from a few
            tenths of a degree of warming compared with the Little Ice Age…

            Perhaps you can provide examples with underpinning scientific studies.

            Your reference to, ‘a few tenths of a degree of warming’ betrays your attempt at obfuscation as does your reference to the Little Ice Age which was not a temporally or spatially coherent phenomenon as we find here

            the notion of the Little Ice Age as a globally synchronous
            cold period has all but been dismissed (Bradley and Jones,
            1993; Mann et al., 1999). If defined as a large-scale event,
            the Little Ice Age must instead be considered a time of modest
            cooling of the Northern Hemisphere, with temperatures
            dropping by about 0.6 °C during the 15th–19th centuries
            (Bradley and Jones, 1993; Jones et al., 1998; Mann et al.,
            1998, 1999).

            further

            A severe winter preceded the hot summer that
            precipitated the Great Fire of London in 1666. A harsh
            winter followed by a warm summer may have added to the
            discontent of peasants who stormed the Bastille in Paris
            during the summer of 1789.

            Anybody who has studied that event of 1666 will understand that it was indeed a scorcher. Later that century there were other very hot dry periods with the navy suffering much unfortunate deterioration in the fabric of even the newly built ‘Thirty Ships’ programme e.g. HMS Lenox in the Medway through timbers drying out.

            In the IPCC AR5 WG1 on Page 1457 we find:

            Little Ice Age (LIA) An interval during the last millennium characterized
            by a number of extensive expansions of mountain glaciers and
            moderate retreats in between them, both in the Northern and Southern
            Hemispheres. The timing of glacial advances differs between regions and
            the LIA is, therefore, not clearly defined in time.

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  • Kevin Schmidt

    The Democrats claim to believe in global warming, yet they too are in bed with the fossil fuel monopoly.
    Obama continues to wage multi-trillion dollar wars OF terror in the Middle East, and the Democrats support it. Obama is against the Water Protectors in North Dakota. He is pro fracking, pro off shore oil drilling, pro oil pipelines, and pro corporate welfare for the fossil fuel monopoly, and so are the Democrats in Congress.
    The Republicans may be scientifically illiterate when it comes to global warming, but the Democrats are hypocrites, which makes their behavior worse.
    No wonder Hillary lost. You can’t beat Republicans by being Republican Light.

    • Lachlan

      I agree that the Democrats are flawed, but we live in a flawed world. Diplomacy is the art of the possible. It is not possible to transition off fossil fuels overnight. If the US shut down the oil companies immediately, the economic turmoil would be such a distraction that nobody would consider climate change. (See Ken Calderia’s comment.)

      • monckton

        Fortunately, there is no need to “transition off fossil fuels”. The chief reason why the “Democrats” (a misnomer, that) want to destroy the coal industry is because its captains used to be their Republican opponents’ largest donors. There is no legitimate scientific case against fossil fuels, purely a totalitarian-Left political case.

      • Kevin Schmidt

        Who said anything about shutting down oil companies immediately? Oh, that’s right, fear mongering fossil fuel propagandists.
        What is it about the word, ‘transition,’ don’t you understand?

  • bobro

    They are against Trump for simple, understandable pocketbook reasons; the gusher of funding for nonsensical studies of a non-existent threat will be shut off. Ridiculous subsidies for non-justifiably economic bird killing windmills and enormous sums to support off-shore production of solar panels and government loans to support their swindling corporations that sell and install them, all will suddenly stop. Time to weep and wail you frauds!

  • Pat Frank

    Here’s my recent talk on the reliability of climate model air temperature projections:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THg6vGGRpvA

    Please feel free to include it among your youtube series.

    To forestall the usual, ‘he’s not a climate scientist^ᴛᴍ’ dismissals, do notice the talk concerns error analysis, not climate.

    And those who escape to, ‘if it’s so good, why isn’t it in the peer-reviewed literature?‘ are encouraged to watch through to the question period, where the peer-review experience with climate modelers was addressed.

    • monckton

      Dr Frank gave an excellent talk to the World Federation of Scientists last year about the models’ failure to represent uncertainty correctly. This is just one of many fundamental errors in the models, which render them useless as predicters of global temperature change.

      • Pat Frank

        Thank-you for drawing attention to that talk, Christopher. I’ve been trying to publish that work for three years. It’s gone through several prominent journals. In every single case, the reviews by climate modelers have been thoroughly incompetent. They don’t acknowledge the difference between accuracy and precision — it seems they don’t understand the difference.

        They also uniformly do not understand the difference between an error metric and an energetic perturbation, nor between an uncertainty bar and a model expectation value. Never, in all my life in science, have I ever before encountered incompetence in an entire class of workers. Climate modelers plain are not scientists: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2015/02/24/are-climate-modelers-scientists.

      • Lachlan

        If the models are no good, then how did they predict thirty years ago the climate change that we have experienced? Some contrarians say “the climate always changes, but we’re not causing it”. The fact that the change matches the predictions is pretty good evidence that the models are right. Or can you propose an alternative falsifiable hypothesis (as per the scientific method)?

        • monckton

          In reply to the hapless Lachlan, the models did not “predict 30 years ago the climate change that we have experienced”. They predicted that by 2025 the world would have warmed by 1 K compared with 1990. Outturn so far is so well below the straight-line trend towards 1 K over the 35 years that, in the remaining near-decade, the rate of global warming would have to be at least five times the rate actually observed since 1990. And that is unlikely, because – contrary to all the models’ predictions – though CO2 emissions have continued to increase at above the IPCC’s 1990 “business-as-usual” or high-end prediction, the rate of global warming has appreciably slowed since the late 1990s, when the models had predicted it would increase.

          These are serious discrepancies. If Lachlan is not willing to face them, then he is – as so many in these threads (some of them paid) tend to – simply parroting a half-understood and long-outdated and discredited Party Line.

  • monckton

    The ideological monoculture of totalitarian pseudoscience lacks the self-critical faculty owing to social convenience, political expediency and, above all financial gain.

    These canting profiteers of doom lack the capacity even to contemplate, still less to concede, the facts that the world has not warmed at even half the predicted rate; that sea level is barely rising; that the area of the globe under drought has declined; that changes in precipitation, in patterns of flooding and in storminess are within natural bounds, that south-polar temperature has not risen during the satellite era, that the current processes for determining climate sensitivity contain serious mathematical and physical errors that account for the wild official exaggeration of climate sensitivity, and that the cost of climate mitigation today exceeds by several orders of magnitude the later and far lesser cost of adaptation the day after tomorrow.

    Scientifically and economically speaking, Mr Trump would be right to resile forthwith from the UN Framework Convention and thus automatically from the Paris agreement, and he would be right to cease to subsidize “renewable” energies, not least on the environmental ground of the damage they do.

    Mr Trump would do the academic world a service if he simply ordered Federal agencies to cease all subsidies to climate change “research” (or, more accurately, propaganda) and mitigation (for there is precious little to mitigate).

    His rejection of the Party Line on climate was no small part of the reason why he was elected. As in Britain, so in the United States, democracy and the freedom it brings have triumphed over the totalitarian intolerance displayed by zombie-like creatures such as those whose incurious and robotically uniformitarian comments have been reproduced in the head posting.

    The two chilling words “Brexit” and “Trump” spell democratically-driven doom for the mongers of doom. The climate scare is over. Will someone tell the universities?

    • Christopher O’Brien

      What a very tiresome fellow this Monckton is. A monger of contrarianism.

      • monckton

        No scientific or economic arguments to make, then: just a head-banging conformity with the Party Line. Six million people a year are dying because they do not have electricity. The international community could give them that by building coal-fired stations and grid interconnects, but instead they squander trillions on making barely-existent global warming go away, and allow a Holocaust a year to die. And Mr O’Brien doesn’t care.

    • Bill Spiers

      OK, the two big ones:

      “not warmed at even half the predicted rate”

      So it has raised then, glad you guys agree and you do know from school about water heat capacity and the oceans are kind of big right?

      “sea level is barely rising”

      say again please?https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sea_level_rise#/media/File:Trends_in_global_average_absolute_sea_level,_1880-2013.png

      As for the rest of your claims that are well within climate noise if you have even a vague understanding of statistical maths, like Trump’s campaign they mean nothing because like him you give no facts to back them up. But that is the world we today live in and if you can I would be happy to discuss this further. Till then it is now up to the scientists and good people of the world to change this by continuing to call statements out when they are made by people who simply do not know, or have obviously not done their research.

      • monckton

        Mr Spiers implicitly concedes that the world has not warmed at even half the predicted rate. He sneers about whether I understand the heat capacity of the oceans. But it was not I who had to understand this: it was the modelers, and they appear to have failed to take it sufficiently into account. That is perhaps one reason why their original predictions of global warming over the medium term were such wild exaggerations.

        And sea level, according to Professor Nils-Axel Moerner, who has written some 500 papers on the subject in his 50-year career studying sea level, is likely to rise over the present century at 2 {-2, +6] inches, much in line with the sea-level rise over the previous century. More alarming estimates based on satellite-based laser-altimetry are questionable because they show a step-change in the rate of sea-level rise at the moment when the laser-altimetry measurements began in 1993, and because the intercalibration errors between the three generations of laser-altimetry satellites exceed the sea-level rise they purport to measure. The satellite sea-level budget has not been closed, therefore, and for the time being it is probably best to rely on the tide-gauges, with appropriate adjustments where necessary for isostatic change so as to determine the eustatic component, jto which anthropogenic warming may have contributed somewhat.

        Perhaps it would be better if Mr Spiers actually did some research, rather than merely trotting out a long-outdated and discredited Party Line. I know what the Party Line says: the BBC broadcasts aspects of it daily. But it is wrong, and very nearly always on the side of prodigious and scientifically unjustifiable exaggeration.

        • Lionel Smith

          I know what the Party Line says: the BBC broadcasts aspects of it daily

          Well yes, they did do that once upon a time when they wheeled out Benny Peiser or Andrew Montford for comment on the topic.

          Oh and BTW this is what your ‘no warming for nn years’ looks like.

          • monckton

            Senator Cruz showed in the U.S. Senate in the winter of 2015 what 18 years 9 months without any global warming looked like. Thanks to the el Nino, there has been some warming since, but the overall warming since 1990 is about half of what the IPCC had then predicted on the basis of “substantial” (but misplaced) confidence that the models on which it relied had captured all essential features of the climate.

            As will become apparent in due course, the models contain several serious errors which combine greatly to exaggerate climate sensitivity. Remove the errors and climate sensitivity, though not negligible, can no longer be described as serious or requiring any action on our part to try to prevent it.

          • Lionel Smith

            As for that Ted Cruz farrago, Admiral David Titley put that in
            perspective at the time, as have others since (see below), it was your old favourite data set to manipulate so as to hoodwink the gullible, yes RSS .
            Curry, for a scientist was a disgrace at that with her, ‘you gotta look
            at the satellite data, its the best data we have’. And the one who
            could have put her straight was right there alongside her, yes Dr John
            Christy who I mentioned earlier.

            Sensible deconstructions of the Cruz, Curry, Happer and Stein (who is renowned for his climate science qualifications) performance at that congressional hearing abound here is one Dogma? which contains links to others. Do visit the one behind the ‘Medium article’ link.

            On the Curry trail this section is noteworthy:

            “Satellite data is the best evidence we have.”

            Well, this is a bizarre thing to say, as it almost certainly is not. Eli has a post on why we shouldn’t trust some of the satellite datasets. Even Carl Mears at RSS says

            A similar, but stronger case can be made using surface temperature
            datasets, which I consider to be more reliable than satellite datasets
            (they certainly agree with each other better than the various satellite
            datasets do!).

          • monckton

            Satellite data is indeed the best evidence we have, though, like all forms of measurement, it is subject to uncertainties, as Pat Frank mentions upthread – uncertainties that are incorrectly represented in models at present.

            On all datasets, the rate of warming is less than half what the IPCC predicted in 1990 on the basis of what it called “substantial confidence” that the models on which it relied had captured all essential features of the climate.

            If the rate of global warming continues to be below half the original central estimates, then there is no climate problem – as most people are by now aware.

          • Lionel Smith

            Satellite data is indeed the best evidence we have…

            So you didn’t bother reading about the satellite data issues e.g. via the link above

            By repeated tossing out of tired mantra you are beginning to look more foolish with every post. Also this ‘party line’, ‘communist’, ‘socialist ideology’ and similar language makes you look really silly. Why? Because the real world climate systems are not paying attention to any political ideology – they just do what they do according to the laws of physics, sometime via chemistry and biology. This is what proves the poverty of your line of argument. Take the cryosphere for example, which I have already mentioned, maybe that word was not in your vocabulary and you failed to grasp the importance of such as this.

            As for this verbal diarrhoea:

            The ideological monoculture of totalitarian pseudoscience lacks the self-critical faculty owing to social convenience, political expediency and, above all financial gain.

            These canting profiteers of doom lack the capacity even to contemplate, still less to concede, the facts that the world has not warmed at even half the predicted rate…

            What cant (which I let go the first time around but enough is enough), followed by vague utterances where “the world has not warmed at even half the predicted rate…” has not been defined by you.

            What is the predicted rate?

            The evidence for that is to be found where?

            Maybe you are taking a leaf out of Pat Michaels’ book, and by extension, that of Michael Crichton where one scenario has been isolated from a range in order to make some kind of fatuous point?

            Who knows?

    • Ian Forrester

      The two chilling words “Brexit” and “Trump” spell democratically-driven doom for the mongers of doom

      No, they show that the ill informed and gullible masses believe any and all lies they are told. There is much discussion the past few weeks on “false news” as if it is something new.. Wattsup has been spreading that for 10 years now.

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