The tale of the hockey stick

Or as an alternate title: “Why we find it difficult to trust certain climate scientists.”

This posting by Bishop Hill, telling the tale of the nefarious temperature reconstruction known as the Michael Mann hockey stick, from start to present, is an excellent summation for the layman reader struggling to understand the entire affair and why it is such an amazing pox on the conduct of science and practice of peer review. This sums it up quite well:

That the statistical foundations on which they had built this paleoclimate castle were a swamp of misrepresentation, deceit and malfeasance was, to Wahl and Amman, an irrelevance.  

I highly recommend reading it, and Bishop Hill deserves thanks for condensing this affair into a readable story.

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158 thoughts on “The tale of the hockey stick

  1. There was a great commentary with a link on Climate Audit yesterday and it is a great read. It plainly gives a blow by blow of the corruption present today in the climate science world today. This is particularly true at the IPCC with regards to the political agenda they support. The involvement of the peer review process is equally co opted in the process. It seems that Wegman hit the proverbial nail on the head.

    Great thanks is due to those that are willing to put their time and wealth into the process of saving science. People like Steve McIntyre, Anthony Watts, Spencer, Ball. and all the skeptics that are willing to stand up and say lets look at this again your method is flawed. I am a skeptic but what I like is the way the good sites question the methods and the data collection before they fault the findings. This is science at its best.

    Thank you Bishop Hill for bringing this to light in a manner that I can understand.

    Bill Derryberry

  2. EXCELLENT!! I’ve been looking for something like this for ages!!!

    How about something similar about James Hansen and his GISS???

  3. We need to go back further in time. The question that always stood out in my mind was, what prompted Mann to manufacture the Hockey Stick in the first place? Someone came up with the idea to create a temperature reconstruction that eliminated the MWP and LIA. Someone at the IPCC would be a reasonable assumption. It appears that Mann was just the tool who agreed to implement it. Who wanted it? Houghton maybe?

  4. How about something similar about James Hansen and his GISS???

    Why do we automatically assume that Hansen has engaged in dishonest or unethical practices? I agree that this unfortunate saga illustrates potentially significant ethical breaches and extremely shoddy science, but why must we automatically cross everything with other arguments? Steve McIntyre has been commenting double-time on his own posts over at CA strongly discouraging anyone from making over-arching generalizations about this episode; namely, it does nothing to “refute” AGW – it only applies to a single argument, which is the statistical significance of the “Hockey Stick” paleo-climate reconstruction. You can argue that the “Hockey Stick” is an extremely important part of the public’s perception of AGW, and at one point it definitely was one of the most important selling point’s of the theory. But things have progressed very much since those days, and even if in the coming months the “Hockey Stick” is shown to be definitively incorrect, there are many, many other convincing lines of evidence which strongly support modern AGW.

    That’s all there is. That’s the sum of this entire debacle. It’s unfortunate that it took so much obfuscation and dishonesty by big name players to reach this point, but one can’t possibly claim anything more from it. This doesn’t debunk Al Gore; this doesn’t prove that there is a conspiracy to prop up AGW. All this shows is that there could be serious issues with the “Hockey Stick,” and those issues should most definitely be re-investigated to settle the matter once and for all.

    It’s bad enough that some people (as evidenced by some comments at CA) are trying to turn this into another death-blow to AGW, but to use this to suggest in some way that Hansen is also dishonest is completely ridiculous. I get it; some skeptics don’t like Hansen because he uses extremely strong and harsh rhetoric in some speeches. I’m one your all’s antagonizing “alarmists/eco-nazi/climate-conspiratorist”, and even i’m embarrassed by the tone of Hansen on many occasions. But disagreeing with his political stances is a far cry from alleging that he conducts fraud in his scientific work.

    It’s important to be clear and concise and not over-reach what your evidence implies. The “Hockey Stick” paleo-climate reconstruction may not have any statistical significance, and certain researchers may be going to absurd lengths to defend it and absolve it from error. That’s all that comes out of this episode.

  5. #2 Bill Need to check out the new post on Climate Audit about the temperature record splices. Of course, Anthony may crosslink here.

  6. “In an age of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”
    – George Orwell

  7. I hope some major publications, like the WSJ write up about this one. This should be used as a case study for all those majoring in statistics and what happens when politics manipulate scientists.

  8. An excellent article. This needs to be spread far and wide. Perhaps one of the professional bloggers/journalists at the Telegraph will help out? They seem to me to err on the side of the sceptics.

  9. Bravo! When I first met up with the Mann Hockey stick I had my doubts because it was pieced together with dendrochronology, directly observed temperatures, and the most extreme of the modeled predictions. Good science doesn’t mix and match so selectively like that. Why could he not have used dendrochronology all the way through the 19th and early 20th centuries? I recall they still had trees then. I have always liked the sea level data because there are good insights that go well back in time and all the way up to the present. But Mann, et al, chose to completely disregard the sea level data that said the Medieval Climate Optimum was warmer than present and the worst case scenario from him and the IPCC would get the world only to the average condition for the period of human civilization (roughly the past 6500 years).

    There are lots of nails for the Mann Hockeystick coffin.

  10. Usually innocent corruption spreads like cancer through the entire group of “we-thinkers”, which is another term for the herd mentality, and then spreads as it picks up new converts wanting the ride on the bandwagon. Going to war in Iraq is a classic example of better-knowing people being swept up into the “we-think” camp instead of thinking for themselves. Innocent people even spread lies under “we-think” agendas. Logic becomes twisted. New statistical inventions to verify data becomes acceptable. Backdoor agreements that justify the end become common place. And the public is swept into the bin without knowledge of this downward turn of a once pristine scientific endeavor to hypothesize, test, and then explain an observation.

    Been there. Seen it happen.

  11. But of course, Pamela, climate-change skeptics are immune from that “we-thinker” mentality.

    Anyways, I want to clarify my point from my above comment: this episode merely demonstrates that very specifically, the Mann “Hockey Stick” should be re-evaluated and analyzed. This says nothing on other temperature reconstructions (bear in mind that the Mann one is what, a decade old now, and more modern ones have been constructed since its publication). Finding some evidence of some vast political conspiracy in this story is nothing more than confirmation bias by those who have already determined that such is the nature of AGW – a hoax perpetrated upon them by politicians for some reason or another.

  12. Counters writes: “There are many, many other convincing lines of evidence which strongly support modern AGW.”

    Presumably, these do not include the fact that polar bears have lived through episodes of warming far more intense than that of the past century, or that the Northwest Passage has been traversed repeatedly throughout history during cyclical melt-offs, or that Greenland was colonized in the tenth century by the Vikings, or that Alpine passes that were frozen until recently have melted and refrozen cyclically since before Roman times, or that C02 has spiked after every past significant warming (not before), or that C02 has spiked in the past with no evident effect on temperature (once the 800-year lapse was accounted for), or that commentators in the 1930s were talking about the end of Arctic ice and the catastrophic effects thereof, or that since 1998 there has been no warming, or that quite a lot of warming evidence is contaminated by the urban heat island effect, or that Antarctic sea ice grew to historic maximum in the past 12 months, or that the Southern Hemisphere winter was the most intense in decades last year, or that it has been more intense than that in the past two months, or that it snowed in Baghdad last winter, or that snow and cold in China last winter were both dangerously extreme, or that it was colder and snowier in the American mountain West last winter than in some time, or that Alaska has seen record cold and historic minimums of warm days this summer.

    Al Gore almost certainly had learned that the Mann hockey stick was fallacious prior to making “An Inconvenient Truth.” So far as I know, he hasn’t stopped alluding to its central deceit: that our current warming is without precedent and “caused” by humanity. The planet has warmed many times more than this episode, and not one of the instances from the past was caused by man-made carbon dioxide.

    We are headed into at least three decades of possibly dangerous global cooling. The IPCC is a fully politicized, at least manipulative, and most likely out-and-out deceitful entity, whose ranks were determined by Gore and other warmists. They are playing dangerous games with human history, and they will eventually be held responsible for their folly.

  13. Counters,

    What is at stake is the credibility of the scientists in the alarmist community. Obfuscation, manipulation, dishonesty and silencing of dissent are not elements of legitimate science.

    I posted this at the CA post regarding the GISS estimations:

    “The key point in this is the quality of the science.

    The estimations done by GISS are sloppy. The peer review process is incredibly sloppy. The failure of anyone in the alarmist community to check the quality of the surface temp station siting is really sloppy. The adoption of the hockey stick without anyone making an effort to check Mann’s work was beyond sloppy. The wild guess assumptions uncovered in the sea surface temp records was sloppy. The failure to archive samples and data sets is sloppy. The unwillingness of IPCC scientists to comply with its record requirements is sloppy. [The calls to stifle dissent is way beyond sloppy.]

    There seems to be a pattern developing here regarding the quality of the science.”

    And I added this “The refusal to employ the services of the best experts in statistics, forecasting and computer modelling is sloppy.”

    For this post, let me add — if the climate science community accepts the behavior as described by Bishop Hill in his post, the science is worse than sloppy.

  14. With the exception of the “once pristine scientific endeavor” myth, I agree with Pamela. Science has always been subject to the shortcomings of all-too-human researchers, but in the last few decades I think the scale (and the potential for harm) of pseudo-science has increased substantially.

  15. Why do we automatically assume that Hansen has engaged in dishonest or unethical practices?

    Uh, gee, I don’t know — maybe because he’s been caught making adjustments that make no sense; because he’s refused to divulge methods and algorithms used for making adjustments; because, IMHO, first and foremost he’s almost singlehandedly done more to politicize the debate than any other individual.

    Counters, why do you assume that the duplicity and outright fraud highlighted in Bishop Hill’s piece is an isolated incidence related only to the hockey stick temperature reconstruction? How is it even remotely possible or plausible that fraud and dishonesty have been implicated in just that one single aspect of the AGW issue?

    You are, without a doubt, the most articulate and civil spokesperson for the “alrmists/eco-nazi/climate-conspiratorist” (great description, BTW) side that I’ve run across in a while. You say: “even if in the coming months the “Hockey Stick” is shown to be definitively incorrect, there are many, many other convincing lines of evidence which strongly support modern AGW. One by one those “many other convincing lines of evidence” are being debunked, but it leaves me curious as to what it would take for you to join the ranks of the skeptics. Will you hang on until there is NO credible evidence left of AGW, or will you, at some point, decide that it really was all just one of the worst hoaxes every perpetrated on mankind.

  16. counters, you’re making some pretty odd suggestions. From your comments, it seems you would suggest that the Hockey Stick was a single, isolated incident and not representative of the rest of the AGW science.

    There’s several problems with that. While the Hockey Stick Incident (HSI) is a single “thing”, it’s a really big thing that includes a lot of different actors, motivations, and power plays.

    You make it sound like a single bad paper got slipped through. Hardly. This was a years-long process that involved dozens of people all working to a common goal to pass off a horrible piece of mistakes and lies as “science”. It involved multiple papers. Many, many people used the Hockey Stick (and still do) as support for AGW. There was obviously a great deal of behind-the-scenes chicanery and power-pressure by various political and pseudo-scientific groups to get those papers made “official” and “true”.

    You can’t possibly say that all that influence, falsification, and really horrible ‘science’ is contained just within the couple of papers involved in the HSI, but don’t affect the rest of the science going on about AGW. If they were pushing that hard to get the Hockey Stick papers passed of as good science, you can be guaranteed that there are dozens or hundreds of other situations where the same sort of influence has been wielded to push an AGW POV into a position of respectability when it doesn’t in fact deserve to be based on scientific credentials.

    Hansen has made more than enough statements to show that he is in complete agreement with the style of influence and manipulation that was exercised in the HSI. That makes him very suspect and worthy of great suspicion when it comes to his promotion of his scientific claims about AGW.

    If the HSI parties behaved in such a way to promote the pro-AGW Hockey Stick and silence any dissent, it is highly probable that Hansen (who sounds like he would fit right in with the HSI crowd) would, and perhaps has already, behave in a similar horribly un-scientific way. That’s why Hansen is a prime suspect, at least to me.

    The evidence is circumstantial so far, but he sounds just like the groups who were behind the HSI debacle. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and swims like a duck, I don’t need to do a full dissection to be pretty sure that it is indeed a duck. If Hansen is indeed like the HSI crowd, then I will put very little trust into his statements about AGW.

    Others (Anthony among them) are doing some of the dissection of Hansen based on the very reasonable suspicion that he has engendered about his science. The dissection is ongoing, but so far it looks like, Yup – Hansen is a Duck.

  17. This doesn’t debunk Al Gore; this doesn’t prove that there is a conspiracy to prop up AGW. All this shows is that there could be serious issues with the “Hockey Stick,” and those issues should most definitely be re-investigated to settle the matter once and for all.
    Al Gore has been debunked, thoroughly, and the hockey stock is just one aspect of the debunking. Funny, how you AGW alarmists like that word, “conspiracy”. Just another in your huge arsenal of straw men arguments, since you don’t actually have any science.
    For [snip], the ends justify the means, and the hockey stick is proof positive of that.

    Reply: I know this is another outrage thread, but where I have time and notice, I will continue to enforce the prohibition on name-calling~charles the moderator

  18. Counters-

    “…even i’m embarrassed by the tone of Hansen on many occasions. But disagreeing with his political stances is a far cry from alleging that he conducts fraud in his scientific work.”

    It should, if you’re interested in the science, make you extremely skeptical of his science and his ability to keep his obvious bias from affecting his results.

  19. Counters,
    The question is this:
    How come it is always “outsiders” that perform the due diligence? How come it was left to a retired mining engineer and an economist to uncover these obvious statistical flaws?

    And Hansen has already crossed the Rubicon by signing up to be ALGORE’s climate guru. He has taken sides, and it is normal to now question the motives if his almost daily adjustments.

  20. Re: Counters

    I agree with you that this clearly underhanded and deceitful act shouldn’t necessarily be related to GISS. (Though IMO their work is contaminated by bias.)

    About your comment that the hockey stick is just one piece of the AGW puzzle though – are you sure? You probably have a better history than me, but wasn’t the hockey stick created in large part from Briffa’s studies of dendrochronology, strip bark trees etc? Aren’t all the IPCC supported paleo reconstructions intertwined with the hockey stick and Briffa? Was that historical data not used to create the models??

    To put it another way, what historical records or studies did the IPCC reference in AR4 that aren’t based, or can’t be traced back to, Mann’s work or Briffa’s? I get the impression that it’s a chain of paper after paper, that eventually lead back to these two (only with regards to historical temp data).

  21. Counters:
    Re Hansen:
    If somebody comes with a claim, but are not willing to back it up. You’d think they got something to hide, wouldn’t you??

    On a more personal note: If AGW was falsified (which is difficult because nothing disprove AGW, even cooling) would you think that was a good thing or a bad thing?

  22. counters (07:26:47) :
    How about something similar about James Hansen and his GISS???

    Why do we automatically assume that Hansen has engaged in dishonest or unethical practices?

    Counters, that unfortunate conclusion was not assumed but reluctantly adopted despite Hansen’s apparent expertise. Understand first, this isn’t about Hansen the person. This is Hansen the scientist and mostly his assertions. At every turn the usual process of scientific discovery has been thwarted. It is this last that forces reluctant consideration of other explanations.

  23. The larger issue is not the hockey stick or any other particular chart. It is that the scientific method was sidestepped in favor of political motives. This is especially troublesome when trillions of dollars are on the line.

  24. counters,

    I have considerable sympathy for the case you’ve put here. Whilst I don’t agree with everything you’ve said, I support the view that the demonising of individuals, on the basis of highly questionable assumptions, does nothing to serve what, surely, should be a common interest, and that is the pursuit of scientific understanding.

    As regards the HS issue, the statistical limitations of MBH98/99 have been thoroughly examined by bodies independent of the ‘team’. My summary view of all that is that there were valid criticisms of its methods and that levels of uncertainty were not properly expressed, but not that it has been ‘debunked’ in the way that others here think. Some may be as outraged as they like, but that’s my judgment. But I do not ‘support’ the HS. I don’t have any ‘commitment’ to relatively early scientific studies in particular fields. What I support is any advancement of our scientific knowledge. So, if there is a robust study to come which demonstrates that the MWP was global and equivalent to or in excess of current temperatures, then bring it on (I don’t think that Loehle meets the ‘robust’ criterion). We need to understand as much as we can, but that is, frankly, not advanced by constantly attacking totems. So, if Steve McIntyre now has ‘proof’ that W&A’s work is shown to be faulty, then let him publish. I will look forward to his academic paper. But until I see it presented in that context, I shall reserve my judgment.

    I’ve been reading here, and doing a little posting, to get a better understanding of what the ‘sceptics’ case currently is. I find myself reading a lot of vitriolic, ad hominem attacks, straightforward defamations based upon nothing but speculation. There is absolutely no proof whatsoever that I am aware of that Hansen has applied human bias to the GISS records. I am not impressed by defamation. If the ‘sceptic’ case has science to present, then let that be presented. Personally, I look forward to, for example, Spencer’s next paper. I hope it might be significant, that it might lead us to reassess our perception of risk. I wouldn’t bet much on that at all, but it is my hope. In the meantime, I’d suggest that people stick to discussing the science we have rather than whipping up a witch-hunt. As someone whose current view is that the risk of AGW is high, I have to say that the general impression I am gaining here, of the ‘sceptical’ case being fueled by personalised spleen rather than scientific objectivity, is doing nothing to encourage me to reassess my judgments.

  25. The HoCkey was create dto kill the MWP and LIA.

    If the MWP exists (and it does) then the “unprecedented warming” becomes “just another warming cycle”. There were no SUV’s in the MWP.

    It wasn’t man who caused the MWP.

    It was Mann who tried to hide it.

  26. Stan and Old Man Winter have pretty much covered the arguments about why Hansen should be at least suspected.

    My real problem is that AGW theorists and modelers do not allow a debate that would set up testable hypotheses. Surely, if something can not be tested, then it can’t be debunked. This puts in the same category as many religions.

  27. I sent the link to this story to John Stossel at ABC news but I doubt he will follow up on it considering the volume of mail he receives. I told him this account on Bishop Hill would make a great story on a show such as 20/20. If there is any big media that would cover this story, it would open the eyes of many people of the unprofessional behavior of these so-call scientists. Hiding your data just to influence public opinion is an ethical failure with far reaching consequences. It’s a story that needs repeating to a larger audience.

  28. The IPCC and the “science involved with the Mann/Wahl-Ammam “Hockey Stick” ARE JUST AS BAD AS ANY OF EXCUTIVE AT ERON. They should be investigated by the Senate and band from any further grant money.
    Here’s the sad news
    The same group is now involved with the PR Challenge Paleoclimate Reconstruction Challenge.
    This is the letter I sent to my Senator.
    Dear Sir;
    You may be aware of the PR Challenge or Paleoclimate Reconstruction Challenge. http://www.pages.unibe.ch/science/prchallenge/index.html Many scientists of this group are the same “scientists” which give us the famous “Hockey Stick” reconstruction of our past climate. I should not have to remind you of the boondoggle surrounding the hockey stick starting with “We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period to any input number resulted in the same graph being reconstructed.

    Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

    I demand as a tax payer and citizen that:
    A) An independent audit done to validate and verify all works from Paleoclimate Reconstruction Challenge before any government body and/or government employee can refer to and/or use in full and/or in part for any government function including the IPCC.
    B) If any government funding is used in all and/or part of this reconstruction, the reconstruction shall be subjected to the principle of forecasting as described in Principles of Forecasting handbook.
    C) If any government funding is used in all or part of this reconstruction, the reconstruction shall be subjected to the Data Quality Act.
    D) If scientist and/or institution that does not comply with independent audit and/or principle of forecasting and/or Data Quality Act shall have his and/or hers and/or institution government funding suspended immediately.

    Sincerely,

  29. “We-think” mentality can be researched and even experimentally demonstrated. And it can be done on people who have perfectly good reasoning capacity and who are basically educated, honest, community-minded, contributing citizens. I don’t think there is a vast conspiracy and I have never said so. I don’t think the “we-think” based decisions and beliefs that lead to the invasion of Iraq amounts to a vast conspiracy either.

    I do think that political views guide what the “we-think” group will pay attention to and give credence for. Contrary evidence is brushed aside because the group is now thinking beyond scientific endeavor and are attempting to continue to prove their belief, even when evidence says otherwise.

    There are well-respected scientists and even medical doctors who still believe in the resurrection of the body of Jesus. That belief is neither wrong nor right but it can and does lead honest people to try to convince others of that belief, even though scientific evidence is absent or contrived, or not yet fully developed.

    AGW is at that stage. The full understanding of climate change is not within our grasp yet. The theory has not been fully developed. Yet the proponents act as if it was. It would be like developing a new pill that may have benefit based on some but not all lab experiments, but before trials are made on real humans using gold-standard double blind study designs with controls, the company decides to go ahead and market the product, hoping and even believing they are right.

    Do you really want to take the chance that people could be seriously harmed by a rush to cap and trade?

  30. You’ve got a funny standard if you think the skeptics are full of ad hominem stuff but the believers aren’t. Have you never been to the main believers sites?!?! This blog is downright somnolent compared to RealClimate when it comes to personal attacks.

    This blog (and others) certainly do roundly decry Hansen and Mann and several others. Why? Bad science. You’re blinding yourself if you don’t see several really obvious biases toward recent warming in the Hansen-led “adjustments” to the GISS data. It’s not an ad hominem attack if it’s true.

    Not all of the skeptics avoid ad hominem attacks, but this is the Internet – what do you expect?!?

  31. There is a wise old adage which I paraphrase here :- “Hansen is as Hansen does” – perhaps that will settle the argument.

  32. Steven T

    Your approach seems eminently reasonable. Rely on the science based on peer reviewed published papers. But this is not how the debate about climate change has actually proceeded.

    The ‘hockey stick’ was iconic in the debate between 1998 & 2005, it has been reproduced ad nauseam in numerous books and other forums, especially the media. It was the centrepiece of the TAR and used to promote the agenda of the IPCC, particularly their summary for policy makers.

    So when considerable doubt is brought to bear on the veracity of the ‘hockey stick’ the response of the climate community (not unique in that respect) is to close ranks, deny that there was problem and, after various attemts at rehabilitation (some of which continue to this day), eventually argue that the ‘science has moved on’. The problem with this is that in the wider world the iconic impression continues and the damage done is not refuted. This, of course, suits various political agendas.

    Lastly, I’m sorry to have to say that if you think ‘climate change’ is solely about science you are very politically naive

  33. I’m a CPA. If I do sloppy work, clients pay penalties. If I do really sloppy work, I’m considered negligent. If I knowingly disregard laws with the intent to decieve, that constitutes fraud. Negligence and fraud can result in fines, loss of license, or even jail time. So, I take my work seriously, set up procedures to avoid mistakes or catch and correct them. (and one would think that someone whose work is the basis for national/global energy policy decisions would be held to an even higher standard)

    Now, some here are….ahem…”highly” critical of Hansen/Mann. Some forgive his errors because “he’s human.” Or “it’s complicated.” Or “it’s inaccurate, but that doesn’t mean intentional.” Whatever.

    My only point here is that at some level Hansen/Mann have been made aware of the significant problems with their data. At some point their response becomes either negligent or fraudulent.

    What is that point? Are we there? Then what?

  34. @Steven Talbot
    Despite (currently) disbelieving in AGW, I do find a lot of the angry posts against AGW to be an embarrassment – especially since quite a few even seem to stoop to the level that us Skeptics complain about the Pro AGW camp. Still, this is probably unavoidable (but still undesirable), given how Skeptics feel they are treated (ridiculed) by the other side.

    IMHO, the best approach is to simply look at all the evidence from both sides, weigh it up yourself, and do your best to ignore all the name-calling & faulty logic coming from either side…

  35. I hate to see the value of science damaged in the eyes of the public which is exactly whats is going to happen when this comes to light. Mistakes are expected (thats what peer review is in place to catch) but to manipulate the system and peer process to that extent should end their professional career.

  36. THE LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS……. AUDREY II = GISS

    Me really scares, are these numbers.

    T= 0,001ºC , p = 10-millibar , CO2 = 0,1 ppm, age 300000 =years ago, nano carbons aerosois???

    Beijing urgent; Medal of gold – James E. Hansen – category sodoku.

  37. Yes, this serves as a good example of “bad science” and an embarrasing failure of the peer-review process.

    BUT, for the sake of discussion, realize that it’s entirely possible that “The Hockey Stick” could reflect reality, and at the same time be a statistically insignificant model. These are not necessarily exclusive conditions!

    Consider, one can measure 2 people out of a population of a thousand and come up with an average height that is actually the near exact average (by sheer luck, or a-priori observation and sampling bias), but there is no statistical significance in the measurement whatsoever because it was a poor sample design (poor science). In this example, the predictive power of the resulting model is very weak, although the predictive model hits the actual average square on the head. An accurate average but obviously, not good science.

    Alternatively, one can obtain results from a good scientific experiment or sampling effort that show clear, statistically-significant differences or correlations that are in reality, completely insignificant in terms of reflecting real, functional differences/relationships.

    Hopefully, this “Hockey-Stick Caper” will help in tightening the screws and result in better science that furthers understanding of these exceedingly complex phenomena.

    By the way, on following this and other Blogg discussions, I can only admire those who are so certain on both “sides” of the AGW debate; it must be nice!

    One can be certain in church. People tend towards certainty at the bar on Friday and Saturday nights. Politicians and bussinessmen have to appear certain out of sheer necessity. But with AGW at this stage, neither “side” can base certainty in science; no way, no how. The book remains to be written.

    Cautiously agnostic,
    Jd

  38. Its just priceless to hear the AGW crowd complain that someone is being to harsh with them. Skeptics have had to endure being called just about everything in the book daily. I won’t get into that, I don’t have time nor the energy to list the insults. But when Jim H. called for skeptics to be jailed to avoid debating them was the last straw as far many people are concerned.

    “I find myself reading a lot of vitriolic, ad hominem attacks, straightforward defamations based upon nothing but speculation.”

    Priceless, just priceless and kind of sad.

  39. Counters said:

    Why do we automatically assume that Hansen has engaged in dishonest or unethical practices?

    As Steve Mc noted on his blog, if you are auditing the books of a company, you would likely pick some things at random and check them. If everything stacks up, you likely won’t go any further. However, if they appear to be a bit on the dodgy side, you’ll dig deeper.

    Applying this to climate science would seem to indicate that further investigation is warranted – even more so, given that this sorry tale is not the only example ever to be exposed in the blogosphere of failure to fully expose data and methods.

    Perhaps there is nothing more that is questionable in the whole field, but given the reluctance of many practitioners in the field to supply their data and methods to a qualified statistician, when the conclusions of the paper are reliant on statistics, is disturbingly suspicious – even more so to me, given that most research scientists I have dealt with tend to be, err, somewhat obsessive/compulsive about their research and will talk about and explain it in detail at the drop of a hat.

    Yes, I am on the sceptic side of of this debate, but, believe it or not, what concerns me the most is that the alarmists are right, but will ultimately end up being ignored because they turned into activists instead of honest brokers of knowledge. The boy who cried wolf really did see a wolf in the end…

    John D said:

    But with AGW at this stage, neither “side” can base certainty in science; no way, no how.

    Indeed.

  40. But things have progressed very much since those days, and even if in the coming months the “Hockey Stick” is shown to be definitively incorrect, there are many, many other convincing lines of evidence which strongly support modern AGW.

    Hmmm, Let’s see.

    Hockey stick.- Even though Mr. Talbot says it isn’t, it’s debunked.

    Ice Core CO2.-in question by Jaworoske, Beck, and others. Will the ice core data withstand the scrutiny that the Hockey stick has? I seriously doubt it.

    Warming Troposphere.-Whoops, satelites find no warming troposphere.

    Warming Oceans.- Whoops, that isn’t there either.

    Melting polar ice caps?–Not so much.

    GISS?–under serious scrutiny and serious questions.

    “We understand the physics.”-Well, O.K., but the thread below this one is about how we don’t understand the physics.

    Climate models.–Show me one that has actually predicted something, for the right reasons.

    I mean, really folks, how many legs does the AGW thing got?

  41. My reaction is the same every time I see that graph. If you take it at face value, we were falling into an ice age before the blade started and thanks God that it did.

  42. The hockey stick has been debunked. It was done by reproducing the results through application of its algorithms to red noise, and still producing the same hockey stick.

    Of course Mann says that, I paraphrase, “of course the method is not robust to red noise, but random variations in tree ring growth have been shown to be ‘white’ noise”, that is that the variations do not carry from year to year. This is patently absurd.

    Saying that the stick has not be “debunked” is like saying that OJ is innocent based on the finding of a court of law. It is an insult to anybody with a working brain.

  43. John D said: ….luck

    Lucky … a Nobel prize ….. good luck

    Beijing urgent; James E. Hansen -disqualified (eliminated and banned)- doping mathematical.

    good luck…..

  44. Most of the replies to my comment have been courteous and, as this is really an endeavor of the opinion rather than the fact, more than reasonable and appropriate. However, several times now have my “lines of evidence” been contested; this is simply not the case. Let’s look at Pofarmer’s nice list:

    Hockey Stick – It still hasn’t been shown to be “debunked.” Debunked implies it is incorrect; if it’s incorrect, than we wouldn’t expect any other records to match it in any way. There are many independent paleo-climate reconstructions used to corroborate the “big picture” of the past. RealClimate is still the definitive source rebutting this claim. Shoot the messenger if you will, but once again, no one has debunked the Stick. The only thing that has been shown is that there is a great deal more uncertainty in that particular reconstruction than in others.

    Warming Troposphere – Just because a dude writes an op-ed claiming it’s not there doesn’t mean that’s the case. The expected warming pattern is indeed present.

    Warming Oceans – This entire allegation stems from a single paper published by Lyman et al. two or so years ago. But guess what? The paper had huge sources of bias, and the authors retracted and subsequently submitted a revised paper which has seriously less of a cooling signal. Furthermore, the actual observation is that of a warming ocean, not a cooling one, so the point is moot.

    Melting Polar Ice Caps – It’s true that the Antarctic Ice Cap has a slight positive trend; believe it or not, this is what has been predicted in the IPCC 4AR. Furthermore, the Arctic Ice Cap has a very definite multi-decadal negative trend. The northern ice cap is most definitely melting.

    GISS – It’s not under “serious scrutiny.” I’m sorry, but a couple of blogs haranguing Hansen does not equate with legitimate investigation. There is no credible evidence that the GISS data set is either fabricated or systematically biased in such a way to overstate global warming.

    “We understand the physics” – The thread underneath this is about solar cycles. No skeptic on the blogosphere has been able to demonstrate where the physics behind AGW is incorrect. Period. Nearly every single time someone tries to rebut the physical basis of AGW, they end up disproving greenhouse theory in its entirety. The bottom line is that the physics is more than sound.

    Climate Models – Model’s don’t “predict.” Models are used to establish a statistical measure of where we expect the climate to trend. Experiments involving models don’t predict what the weather or climate will be 100 years from now; the develop trends. There is a great deal of misinformation about what climate models are, what they do, how they work, and what they’re used for. I’d recommend starting here before continuing this allegation.

    There. I’ve rebutted each of your points. Now, the onus is on your shoulders to rebut or provide sources which corroborate your original assertions.

  45. counters says:
    “Hockey Stick – It still hasn’t been shown to be “debunked.” Debunked implies it is incorrect; if it’s incorrect, than we wouldn’t expect any other records to match it in any way”

    There are two groups of proxy studies: those that are variations of the hockey methodology that use the same set of tree ring proxies and those that don’t. All of studies that use non-tree proxies show a strong MWP and LIA. There is no rational reason to believe that the stick has any connection to reality at this time. That means it has been debunked.

  46. Ray Reynolds (14:32:19) :

    I hate to see the value of science damaged in the eyes of the public which is exactly whats is going to happen when this comes to light. Mistakes are expected (thats what peer review is in place to catch) but to manipulate the system and peer process to that extent should end their professional career.

    I think when cooling become incontrovertible and the house of cards comes fluttering down, then the eyes of the public will behold all science and scientists with disdain. I fear that will be the real legacy of Hansen and Mann. How much this will impact adapting to the cooler regime is unclear, but a couple well-placed cold snaps could be disastrous. At least the high price of energy is encouraging conservation and weatherproofing, so that will be a help.

  47. Thanks for posting this. I read Bishop Hill’s excellent summary of the whole affair and my reaction was, “You’ve got to be kidding me!” {Actually, I didn’t say kidding, but we want clean language here.}

    In a similar vein, I found this interesting article at Climate Skeptic. It covers an interesting technique of backcasting with an interesting illustration:

    This one looks like the type of model that may have been shown to one of our local TV weathermen to convince him that we are warming and it’s mankind’s fault. Unstated in the illustration {used in the draft CCSP Climate Change report} is any explanation as to why, in mid-century, the warming would suddenly reverse naturally. This appears to be just another variant of the hockey stick approach.

    Now, should the climate cool over the next several decades, will climatologists then state that the cooling would be worse, were it not for the offsetting warming that the cooling is masking? What they should be prepared to do is to go back to their fundamental assumptions and admit that they may be wrong and that there’s more at play than they first thought. Of course, if anyone thinks that will happen, perhaps I can interest you in some prime real estate a hundred miles east of Miami that I can let you have for a pittance.

  48. iceFree (16:05:56) :

    Not to be picky, but Jimmy H. actually called for trials for ‘Crimes Against Humanity.’ That charge carries the death penalty.

    I guess if one is going to emulate Lysenko one may as well go all the way.

  49. Re: counters’ “warming troposphere” point. The linked page says that the predicted signature of AGW is a troposphere “hot spot” plus cooling stratosphere, whereas the signature of GW due to a 2% increase in solar output is a hot spot with no stratosphere cooling. If so, then neither is happening, since the troposphere hot spot hasn’t been found. Right?

    BTW, hasn’t “solar output” supposedly varied by less than 1% over the centuries, or am I remembering wrong?

  50. counters
    ‘Climate Models – Model’s don’t “predict.” Models are used to establish a statistical measure of where we expect the climate to trend.’
    In other words, models are used to forecast climate trend.
    NCPA Study No. 308 February 2008 concluded
    “The Forecasting Models Are Unreliable.”The Forecasters Themselves Are Unreliable.”
    http://www.ncpa.org/pub/st/st308/#a
    Warming Troposphere. We arte still looking for the CO2 induced hot spot that the climate model say should be there.
    Oceans warming from 1961 to 2003. Wow. No mention of oceans not warming since then.
    “It’s true that the Antarctic Ice Cap has a slight positive trend;”
    What do expect during a natural warming trend. The only problem is we may be headed for a natural cooling trend.

  51. Ric Werme

    “I think when cooling become incontrovertible and the house of cards comes fluttering down, then the eyes of the public will behold all science and scientists with disdain. I fear that will be the real legacy of Hansen and Mann. How much this will impact adapting to the cooler regime is unclear, but a couple well-placed cold snaps could be disastrous. At least the high price of energy is encouraging conservation and weatherproofing, so that will be a help.”

    I have until recently held science in the highest esteem, Science by damn governed by strict rules. These three (to ripoff anothers term) guttersnipe scientist abuse what I hold dear….and pure. Beyond that, GW has been a great incentive for long needed research, its unfortunate political pressure caused these guys to sully and impede knowledge.

    um, i do intend to learn to iceskate this winter under a cool sun.

  52. Hasse@Norway

    it is on the 12th date on the home page of climate audit. Sorry to take so long to get bact to you been a long day.

    Bill Derryberry

  53. O.K. I found the argo bouy article finally. It’s from NPR, and is dated March 2008.

    http://climatesci.org/2008/08/11/guest-weblog-a-comment-on-the-report-unified-synthesis-product-global-climate-change-in-the-united-states-by-joseph-d-aleo/

    n fact, 80 percent to 90 percent of global warming involves heating up ocean waters. They hold much more heat than the atmosphere can. So Willis has been studying the ocean with a fleet of robotic instruments called the Argo system. The buoys can dive 3,000 feet down and measure ocean temperature. Since the system was fully deployed in 2003, it has recorded no warming of the global oceans.

    “There has been a very slight cooling, but not anything really significant,” Willis says. So the buildup of heat on Earth may be on a brief hiatus. “Global warming doesn’t mean every year will be warmer than the last. And it may be that we are in a period of less rapid warming.”

  54. counters:

    Hockey Stick – It still hasn’t been shown to be “debunked.” Debunked implies it is incorrect; if it’s incorrect, than [sic] we wouldn’t expect any other records to match it in any way… once again, no one has debunked the Stick… GISS – It’s not under “serious scrutiny.” I’m sorry, but a couple of blogs haranguing Hansen does not equate with legitimate investigation. There is no credible evidence that the GISS data set is either fabricated or systematically biased in such a way to overstate global warming… There. I’ve rebutted each of your points.

    But arguing that the Hockey Stick is credible begs the question: why has the UN/IPCC been forced to drop Mann’s “Hockey Stick” chart from AR4, if it hasn’t been debunked?

  55. Actually, that paper at realClimate on the models kind of makes my point. No mention of actually checking the models against, ya know, the climate.

    Models say this, models say that. So?

  56. Mr counters (10:08:24) said :
    “this episode merely demonstrates that very specifically, the Mann “Hockey Stick” should be re-evaluated and analyzed. This says nothing on other temperature reconstructions (bear in mind that the Mann one is what, a decade old now, and more modern ones have been constructed since its publication). Finding some evidence of some vast political conspiracy in this story is nothing more than confirmation bias by those who have already determined that such is the nature of AGW – a hoax perpetrated upon them by politicians for some reason or another.”

    I agree with every word of that, Mr Counters, but would qualify your statement with four observations:
    (a) the hockey stick graph was presented to the world as part of the argument that “the science is settled” and “the debate is over”, it was presented as a diagrammatic representation of indisputable fact;
    (b) the hockey stick was the result of two things: (i) a set of temperature measurements (including extrapolations from ice core samples and the rest) and (ii) an analysis of those measurements;
    (c) serious questions have been raised about the accuracy of the temperature measurements used to form the hockey stick;
    (d) serious questions have been raised about the analysis used to create the hockey stick graph.

    Once something has been set up as indisputable, as a definitive conclusion of a scientific exercise, it is a hostage to fortune. Once it has been said that THE conclusion has been reached, anything that undermines that conclusion cannot be dismissed by saying “OK, so maybe we were wrong in that little part of the analysis, but our overall conclusion is still correct.” Something that is declared to be indisputably and finally correct becomes disputed and not finally correct by even such a small concession.

    I look forward to the terms “the science is settled” and “the debate is over” being expressly repudiated by you, Mr Counters, and other reasonable people who accept the AGW hypothesis. Once that has been acknowledged we might be able to get things back in perspective and relegate suggestions of conspiracy to the newspaper opinion columns where they belong.

  57. @counters, and just in general:

    Its good to have company of those like counters in a forum like this. Otherwise these things can tend towards a dittohead type atmosphere, IMO–the groupthink that Pamela speaks of.

    But to chime in: I didn’t become a skeptic because of any of the stuff offered up by the anti-AGW blogosphere, although reading Anthony’s page has made me wonder more about the science of the modern climate models. Nope, my skepticism about climate models came from what we don’t know about the factors affecting Quaternary and Holocene climate. If we don’t have a good idea of everything that affected the climate in the past, how can we pretend to be able to derive trends for the future? (Ha! Reword this for a grant application…)

    The biggest thing that struck me in studying Quaternary geology in a class last spring was that no one has a really good idea on what is behind the fluctuations in climate called Dansgaard-Oeschger cycles (in the Quaternary) and Bond cycles (in the Holocene). Certainly there are ideas, including changes in ocean circulation and perhaps solar cycles forcing Bond cycles. Are these taken into account in the physical computer models we read about–what I mean is can we accurately simulate Quaternary climate including these short-term wiggles? If not, are we missing something? (Though these are still long term wiggles w.r.t. the 2000-2050 trends from GCMs.)

    Re: GISS. I missed the point where Hansen was under legitimate investigation by what counters’ post would seem to construe as “official” investigation by some sort of authority. What I’ve seen is the efforts of Anthony et al on trying to understand and question exactly how GISS comes up with its numbers since they don’t seem to be upfront in their methods. There should be absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to see bits of paper with the code used for data processing and specific methods related to GISS’s publicly funded climate research.

    Re: The secular trend of decreasing NH ice. See Old Man Winter’s comments plus the discussion that some NOAA (?) scientists have had about it being partly due to changes in wind patterns and not increased temperatures. But this to me is rumors of rumors, as I’ve never actually seen that citation, but someone here has to have it…

    Aside:
    If you’re in for a long read from a skeptic scientist and some hard-line activist sentiment, I recommend:
    <a href=”http://activistteacher.blogspot.com/2007/02/global-warming-truth-or-dare.html”

  58. Shucks. I wrote a response to some of Counters stuff, but I waited too long and now I feel tacky for piling on. Oh well, anyone who has seen the contents of my closet knows I am not above being tacky. So, even though it should be a 15-yard penalty for a personal foul, here goes:

    counters (17:27:07)

    ===
    Hockey Stick — “RealClimate is still the definitive source rebutting this claim.”

    I guess that clears up why one of my legs feels longer than the other today. Please don’t elaborate further; I am going to have to see a chiropractor as it is.
    =====

    GISS – It’s not under “serious scrutiny.”

    I will agree with that, but it is a damn shame. In http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=1880 we learn that 1934 was the hottest in the U.S. record. A few months later 1934 wasn’t so hot anymore. Use your Google Fu and you can probably find a couple dozen more Wattsup and Climateaudit links about it.

    Ok, so I will acknowledge that CO2 released in the last few years may have some significant effects. But there is no way today’s CO2 can change the temperature of the past. I know. I know. Anomaly. Anomaly. Yeah right. B.S. Adjustments might be needed to keep score over time, but only on a limited, one-time basis where each adjustment matches an identifiable change in equipment, methodology, etc. There is no valid reason why temperature records for past years need to keep changing on a perpetual basis except to match the AGW script.
    ====

    “No skeptic on the blogosphere has been able to demonstrate where the physics behind AGW is incorrect.”

    Nor has anyone ever demonstrated that it is correct. Steve McIntyre has been asking for “an engineering-quality exposition of how 2.5 deg C is derived from doubled CO2” for a long time. He even asked the IPCC for it in writing as one of their reviewers and was denied. No exposition is forthcoming, and all the people who say it is baby food physics never deliver when pressed. If such an exposition exists, it sure is a carefully guarded secret.

    Just one link about it is: http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2528 Once again, use your Google Fu and you can probably find a couple dozen more links.

    BTW, nice job of moving goalposts. The skeptics did not advance this theory, so the burden of proof does not lie with them. Yes, you are certainly justified in prodding Wattsup patrons who over-reach with ‘debunked’ claims. I just hope you are intellectually honest with yourself while you are needling them a little.

    BTW#2, McIntyre’s reference to engineering is 100% appropriate for a number of reasons. The most obvious one is that once a science (such as parts of physics) becomes so airtight that it can no longer be seriously debated — it becomes a branch of engineering. There a host of other reasons, too, but I won’t belabor the point here.
    ====

    Climate Models – Model’s don’t “predict”

    And, hog nipples don’t produce milk. Fortunately, nobody has called for ‘Crimes Against Humanity’ trials for those who dare to contest the value of hog nipples.
    =====

    Sorry about the 15 yards, team. Sometimes a late hit is just worth it. I’ll try to make it up to you on the next play.

  59. Referring to counters (17:27:07) :

    “Hockey Stick – . . . no one has debunked the Stick. The only thing that has been shown is that there is a great deal more uncertainty in that particular reconstruction than in others.”

    “A great deal of uncertainty” is quite the understatement. If a central component of the Stick is debunked would the entire Stick then be also debunked? If a major component was based entirely on untested theoretical climatology and never attained a high degree of certainty or acceptance through rigorous peer review, would the combined Stick have enough “bunk” in the first place to ever be debunked? Frankly, I think the stick is all bunk as in “noun: unacceptable behavior (especially ludicrously false statements).”

    Sometime ago an article appeared in Nature that concluded dendrochronology was good for dating, but a lousy proxy for temperature. If dendrochronology is such a good temperature proxy (according to some), why was it not used instead of the direct instrument data in the Stick for consistency? There are other temperature proxies of the past 1000 years. Why were they not referenced in addition to or rather than the very flattened dendrochronology used in the Stick?

    Anthony Watt has quite the reputation for questioning the accuracy of the direct observation/instrument temperature data of the past century plus due to the urban heat effect. Indeed, there appeared in this week’s Nature an article that shows city temperatures are higher during the week when automobile traffic is up than on the relatively quieter weekends (study from Spain). Would it not follow then that city temperature measurements are artificially high compared with country measuring stations and revert to the “real ambient temps” when the autos are removed? If the direct instrument data is questionable, then would the Stick also come into question on that basis?

    Venerate statisticians have hammered the Stick, so much so that the IPCC quit including it in the most recent report. Is that not the equivalent of debunking?

    The problems with the Stick are not trivial. Reasonable criticism of the Stick puts a nasty stone in the hoof of the draft horse pulling the AWG band wagon.

  60. Too much emphasis is being placed on the Hockey Stick. Please realize, there are many other paleo-climate reconstructions out there. At one point, yes, the HS was the “icon” of AGW. But that was a decade ago. Since then, issues with uncertainty have cropped up; this often happens in science and technology. One person asked why the HS was dropped from AR4 – it wasn’t. And even if it was, better reconstructions would’ve taken its place.

    My tropospheric hot spot still stands; it’s there. Read the link and look at the data for yourself.

    As for the models, perhaps I wasn’t clear. Models aren’t used for predicting; they’re used for attribution and detection. Attribution experiments demonstrate that increased |CO2| is necessary to see the past century’s warming; detection experiments demonstrate that there is a warming trend. Once these two things are corroborated (which they are), then one can observe the trends that evolve when the models are tuned to faithfully reproduce the observed climate. These trends are your so-called “predictions,” but that’s just not quite the right word for it, seeing as a climate model deducing a 2.5 degC/century trend doesn’t necessarily predict that a century from now it will be 2.5 degC warmer. It’s extremely statistical in nature and subject to chaos.

    REPLY: “Too much emphasis is being placed on the Hockey Stick.” I agree, it shows up in thousands of web articles, newspaper, TV, and magazine stories, in journal papers, government reports, and calls to action like AIT. But is it based on flawed science. I agree, too much emphasis has been placed on it, and it should be discarded as a reference due to that flawed science behind it. – Anthony

  61. @ counters.

    Models have been used for prediction. Hansen had predictions in his report 20 years ago, the A, B, C cases. His predictions were wrong. Even taking into account uncertainty (which can be bounded mathematically) his predictions were wrong. So either 1) we had a very rare occurrence outside the uncertainty bounds or 2) his models were wrong. After seeing what went into their methodology, I would bet his model was wrong.

    The thing that worries me most, is the CO2 goes up but the warming has leveled or decreased. How is that explained rationally?

  62. well ist still 9 C colder dan 3 million years ago

    R. Bintanja (KNMI, Universiteit Utrecht) en R.S.W. van de Wal (Universiteit Utrecht). The Onset of the 100,000-year glacial cycles and to the North American ice sheet dynamics, Nature 14 augustus 2008

    did anybody read this..
    it says the last milion years are the codest ever :)

    http://www.knmi.nl/VinkCMS/news_detail.jsp?id=42976

    …the atmosphere on earth slowly cooled 10 degrees (celsius) over the last 3 million years, and gave rise to iceages, a milliion years ago the ice ages got longer (100kyears vs 40k years) and colder. (because the smaller icecaps merged to big continental ice caps)

    ..other research show that 14 million years ago ANtarctica was 20 C warmer than is its today.

    http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2008/08/01/0802501105

    so after 10 to 20 C cooling we are worried about 1 degree warming and calling it unnattural.

    i think its a matter of perspective..

  63. Reading Steve McIntyre’s latest post, I’m beginning to think he’s losing his mathematical mind. He wrote:
    “I said very clearly that if I had been a manager or principal of the next IPCC report I would have wanted to understand very clearly what, if anything, was wrong with it, and how we could avoid such mistakes in the future.”

    “mistakes”?

    While his entire case shows a profound pattern of behaviour by scientists and the IPCC to deceive, he implies human innocence here. Huh?
    Imagine if a taxpayer or accountant behaved like Ammann, Mann, etc.
    In any other political, corporate or civic area, there’d a full-fledged investigation for fraud!

    Of course maybe Steve is just trying not to add oil to the fire he himself has lit. But I wonder how far he thinks he’ll get appeasing the likes of Mann, Hansen, Schmidt, Amann, etc.
    Attack their work like a pit bull, but pat them as if they are little warm kitty cats.
    I don’t get it.

  64. From the Bishop Report:

    “That the statistical foundations on which they had built this paleoclimate castle were a swamp of misrepresentation, deceit and malfeasance was, to Wahl and Amman, an irrelevance. ”

    What more can I say?
    You are not going to get anywhere appeasing these characters. Basta!

  65. I think some missed the point of my previous post (way up the thread now). I personally could not care less if people here want to witch-hunt Hansen or any of the ‘team’. That’s up to you. My point is that it gives the impression that you’re obsessed with attacking these scientists as a substitute for having any science to talk about that can actually offer a significant and robust challenge to the prevailing view.

    So, reading this site, I get the impression that the really big challenges you have to make to AGW theory is 1) Hansen is cooking the figures and 2)the HS is debunked & the scientists behind it are corrupt.

    Ok, so then I look at the first charge. I’m well aware that all temperature records allow for error, both methodological and observational (and by the way, if you want to talk about the biggest error in the history of all this then that would be UAH’s hash of their satellite data, which wasn’t revealed until other scientists showed it to them in 2005). So, what I need to look for is evidence of human bias, right? If the records are being fiddled upwards, then GISS will be showing a greater increase over time than HadCRUT, yes? So, what is the truth of the matter?

    Look at page 242 of the 4thAR, which shows GISS& HadCRUT, 1850 – 2005, based to the same mean. Do you see what I see? The GISS upward trend is less than HadCRUT!!! The idea that GISS has been fiddled upwards fails the first most basic test for evidence.

    To illustrate this another way, here’s a graph borrowed from Climate Audit (with thanks to the poster Basil) –

    You can see that sometimes GISS is ‘ahead’ and sometimes it’s HadCRUT, but any differences have not been cumulative. Recently GISS has been pulling ahead again, but so what? This is no more ‘evidence’ of GISS being fiddled than it would have been ‘evidence’ of HadCRUT being fiddled in 2000, when that was ‘ahead’. It doesn’t take much thinking to realise that since the two have differing methodologies they’re likely to show short-term divergences (for examples, different approaches to estimating polar regions where there is no observational data, or the fact that GISS uses satellite measurements for SSTs whilst HadCRUT uses ship-based).

    So, where’s the evidence of the supposed human bias? That, surely, is the first question that any genuine sceptic would ask…..

    (As for the second charge, just for now, for those who’ve picked up the idea that the IPCC has ‘dropped the hockey stick’, look at pages 466-7 of the 4thAR WG1, Chapter 6 on Palaeoclimate . It’s the first page of the section dealing with the last 2,000 years).

  66. Counters: You should go back and read the realclimate reference on the troposheric heating. Here’s the link:
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/12/tropical-troposphere-trends/

    First, the color zonal troposheric temperature illustrations on your deltoid link are generated by GCMs for what-if secnarios. They don’t illustrate the actual temperatures.

    Second, in the realclimate webpage discussion, Gavin Schmidt states, “The basis of the issue is that models produce an enhanced warming in the tropical troposphere when there is warming at the surface. This is true enough. Whether the warming is from greenhouse gases, El Nino’s, or solar forcing, trends aloft are enhanced. For instance, the GISS model equilibrium runs with 2xCO2 or a 2% increase in solar forcing both show a maximum around 20N to 20S around 300mb (10 km).”

    Did TSI increase 2%? No.
    Has CO2 doubled? No.

    If the the upper troposphere has warmed in the tropics, as you insist, it didn’t result from CO2; it was caused by El Ninos.

    Wanna try again.

    Regards.

  67. I love all the squirming by the AGW crowd.

    Look, as a layman, the ‘Hockey Stick’ diagram superimposed on the rise of human induced ‘greenhouse’ gases was sold as cast-iron proof of the validity of the AGW hypothesis, not withstanding the flawed logic:

    Without the ‘Hockey Stick’, the AGW hypothesis is just that, an interesting hypothesis which under no circumstances, should be considered a basis of public policy.

  68. Err Steven Talbot. Just a lay observer, but I notice that neither Hadley CRU or GISS is exactly forthcoming with detailed information about the make up of their GMT series, the stations they use or don’t use, the adjustments that they make etc. Au contraire: They hide, obfuscate, confuse, obstruct, waffle.

    They say UHI is not a big issue. They say that closure of many temperature stations in Siberia is not an issue. They say that there is a need to continually adjust past temperature records. However, how can you blame us amateurs when all the adjustments (barely explained if at all) are all in the direction that best exaggerates the GMT warming. Just have a look at how much of the claimed warming last century would disappear if the adjustments were reversed. As one of my science teachers said in 1962: “It is in its nature so to do”. Or more accurately in this context, “it is in its nature NOT to so do”.

    Seems to me that CRU is just as bad as GISS, and comparing one with the other doesn’t get us there.

    You can waffle on. I can waffle on. What we need is facts, honestly presented. I have to say that the ‘real climate scientist’ have dramatically lost cred in the eyes of all but the most committed AGW proponents.

  69. Steven,

    All those other topics have been discussed on this site. Extensively.
    This topic is about Hansen and the misuse of data.

    Why should we drag in every subject under the sun, in every thread, regardless of topic, just to keep you happy?

  70. “Warming Oceans – This entire allegation stems from a single paper published by Lyman et al. two or so years ago. But guess what? The paper had huge sources of bias, and the authors retracted and subsequently submitted a revised paper which has seriously less of a cooling signal. Furthermore, the actual observation is that of a warming ocean, not a cooling one, so the point is moot.”

    Counters,
    The JPL and Layman issued a new paper this year using the improved Argo network. From 2003-2007, again they found no warming in global SSTs; as a matter of fact, the detected a slight cooling.

  71. “Climate Models – Model’s don’t “predict.” Models are used to establish a statistical measure of where we expect the climate to trend. Experiments involving models don’t predict what the weather or climate will be 100 years from now; the develop trends”

    They why do researchers like Gavin Schmidt consistently use model representations instead of raw data? Why can’t the models detect with any precision changes in things like the Walker Cell and ENO? How can models predict what the climate will be in 50 years if they cannot model basic atmospheric circulations with any accuracy? Both Hadley and Hansen predicted a Super El Nino to occur in 2007 -the exact opposite occured.

  72. So, where’s the evidence of the supposed human bias? That, surely, is the first question that any genuine sceptic would ask…..

    Part of it may be the fact that they use different reference periods for their anomolies.

  73. Something is missing in the debate.

    We know that the hockey stick graph is erroneous and not a good representative of the global climate. MWP and LIA are both missing and the 20 th century temperature increase is not diverging significant from that of any previous centuries.

    But the question is seldom asked here if temperature reconstruction from tree rings and corals give good representations of temperature variations.

    Well, it might. That would be the case if temperature were the only parameter that changed during the investigated period,
    But, that is not the case.

    In the case of Mann’s hockey stick, things get worse because of its heavy reliance on bristlecone pine tress which grows in dry regions in California and Utah.

    So in my view if you collect data if things that grow which are sensitive to changes of the CO2 level, those results are not representative of temperature variations.
    In the case if the pine trees, the growth have increased during the last century because of the fertilization effect from elevated levels of CO2 and because of better drought resistance cased by reduced water vapor loss This is because changes in the “stomata”, this is the openings in plants that are used for photosynthesis. They become more closed with higher CO2 levels and the plants don’t need to use so much water to absorb CO2.

    Both these effects are well documented and have now led to more greening of the planet, especially in drier regions.

    So if you normalize the tree ring growth relation to the temperature, by using temperature changes from the last century, but the tree ring growth have more to do with changes in CO2 levels than with temperatures, you are bound to get wrong relations for tree ring growth and temperature.
    Add to that, that the temperature values used for this normalization to some extend are contaminated from the Urban Heat Island Effect.
    This is what they have done. What they get is a hockey stick graph, with a high temperature increase at the end of the graph and an almost flat graph for the time before 1900.
    You don’t need statistical mismanagement to create a faulty “hockey stick graph”. Just use CO2 sensitive biological proxy data and match it up with the temperature from the last 100 years and you are bound to get a hockey stick graph.

    Am I missing something here?
    Have Mann or any of the other AGW people tried to compensate for the fertilization effect and from the improved drought resistance from elevated CO2 levels?
    I’ve never see that!

    In my view it is more constructive to criticize the questionable biological proxy than to look at the questionable statistical data handling of the data to debunk the hockey stick graph.

  74. Bob Tisdale – You should finish reading to the conclusion of the link, where you’ll be referenced to this paper.

    SpecialEd – Well, I’d bet his models were wrong too. They’re two freaking decades old! Do you have any idea of the leaps and bounds made in modeling techniques and what we actual couple in the models nowadays? Hell, just considering the computational power available at the time is enough to laugh at this insinuation. For giggles, though, Wikipedia has the ETA10 as the fastest supercomputer of the late 1980’s; it had a top throughput of 10 giga-flops. By comparison, the IBM Roadrunner of today has a top throughput of… 1 peta-flop. Modeling of two decades ago far lagged in computational power (obviously), as well as sophistication of the techniques being used to build the model. Today’s models can incorporate far more than the surface of teh ocean and the atmosphere; they have many vertical levels to resolve, and they couple many geological, photo-chemical, and bio-chemical reactions to further resolve the system.

    I’d respond to more but I simply don’t have the time this morning. I’ll try to get back on a bit later.

  75. Have Mann or any of the other AGW people tried to compensate for the fertilization effect and from the improved drought resistance from elevated CO2 levels?

    Obviously you missed the memo. CO2 is a pollutant, not a fertilizer.

    For giggles, though, Wikipedia has the ETA10 as the fastest supercomputer of the late 1980’s; it had a top throughput of 10 giga-flops. By comparison, the IBM Roadrunner of today has a top throughput of… 1 peta-flop. Modeling of two decades ago far lagged in computational power

    Well, if the assumptions are wrong, your just gonna get wrong results faster.

  76. counters (17:27:07) :Climate Models – Model’s don’t “predict.” Models are used to establish a statistical measure of where we expect the climate to trend

    ummm… “establishing a statistical measure” to get a trend IS a prediction. IOW: expected trend = prediction.

    Hockey Stick – It still hasn’t been shown to be “debunked.” Debunked implies it is incorrect; …There are many independent paleo-climate reconstructions used to corroborate the “big picture” of the past.

    and later: Too much emphasis is being placed on the Hockey Stick. Please realize, there are many other paleo-climate reconstructions out there

    The Hockey Stick was shown to be a mathematically flawed to the point it was worthless. I call that incorrect. Are you trying to say: “got the right answer but for the wrong reasons?”

    I hope you aren’t including Thompson’s ice core chart that appears (a tad doctored) in AIT. Mann’s Hockey Stick is shown on the same page in Thompson’s paper right along side Thompson’s graph to show the similarity. Never mind that O18 measurements are better precipitation analogs instead of temperature. (BTW: precipitation may be the very thing that drives the bristle-cone data Mann so heavily weighted). What other paleoclimate reconstructions did you have in mind?

    The problem the AGW folk are having is that there is no definitive proof of AGW. The Hockey Stick was the closest thing to proof. If it was not then why was it trumpeted so far and wide without proper vetting? If the HS has been vindicated by subsequent research why is that research not being trumpeted as the HS was? Maybe, just maybe, because it isn’t all it’s been made to be?

    All of the rest is obfuscation of the central issue: Anthropomorphic Global Warming. That is being accomplished through the deliberate confusion of GW, which is undoubtedly occurring (or at least did from the 70’s-90’s), and AGW , of which there is no compelling proof.

    Even if we were to accept without question all of your points, they do nothing to address the issue of AGW.

  77. Well, Counters (and Steve Talbort), one can get the impression that a multitude of emotionally-charged individuals are ganging up on you. Therefore, I hesitate to post my thoughts, but there are a couple of issues which I have not seen yet. I tend to be overly generous in assuming sincerity of others, and I do not call Hansen dishonest. However, I would say this – he acts like I would expect a dishonest person to act. Nevertheless, perhaps a more likely explanation is that he liked the results that his procedures produced and did not scrutinize the details for biases or mistakes. Moreover, he has acted in ways inconsistent with my perceptions of academic and scientific integrity. Only in climatology would it be acceptable for a forecaster be allowed to validate his model results with his own estimate of observed values – especially when his estimates of observed values are not reproducible nor verifiable. (Yes, Steve Talbort, in one sense, his estimates of observed values are verified by similarity to HadCrut estimate values, but HadCrut also has issues with UHI which apparently have been examined even less than in GISS. And we can get into comparison with satellite data which would make this post excessively long.) It appears that Hansen gets pretty much a free pass in the main stream media (MSM) because the MSM is dominated by people whose ideology line up with Hansen’s. Otherwise, it is not conceivable that he could get away with what he gets away with.
    The other issue which I have not seen well addressed is the number of studies (there are several dozens) which show the hockey stick to be a flawed representation of temperatures experienced over the past several hundred years. For starters, look at http://www.co2science.org/data/mwp/mwpp.php.

  78. Pieter Folkens (09:11:37) :

    When I first met up with the Mann Hockey stick I was made skeptical by the error bars presented with the trend. I knew I could not sustain that level of precision over a ten year period using the thermometers installed to measure steam temperatures in my turbines (*). I was amazed by their claims for 600/1000 years.

    I assumed they had used some statistical methodolgy unknown to me so I read the paper in hopes of learning something. The paper was less than illuminating. I recall expressing these doubts to John Daly. He agreed.

    I am just and engineer, so what do I know. I thought all those serious scientists would examine the MBH claims and correct any misconceptions. Not one climate scientist publicly challenged the MBH conclusions.

    This at the very least is a sin of omission. At the very worst it is a criminal conspiracy. Somewhere in between lies the truth. This makes the entire climate science community suspect. Steve McIntyre’s experiences only reinforces this perception and makes them appear to be at the very least foolish.

    (*) calibration drift, no reference temperature, broken thermometers, new thermometers, thermocouples, fouled thermowells, etc.

  79. Have Mann or any of the other AGW people tried to compensate for the fertilization effect…

    As I understand that issue, the AGW people are in denial that the effect is other than minimal.

  80. Counters,

    Hockey Stick – It still hasn’t been shown to be “debunked.”

    From the Wegman committee report:

    “Overall, our committee believes that the MBH99
    assessment that the decade of the 1990s was the likely the hottest
    decade of the millennium and that 1998 was likely the hottest year of
    the millennium cannot be supported by their analysis.”

    http://energycommerce.house.gov/reparchives/108/Hearings/07192006hearing1987/Wegman.pdf

    “There are many independent paleo-climate reconstructions used to corroborate the “big picture” of the past.”

    Such as?

    “Warming Troposphere – Just because a dude writes an op-ed claiming it’s not there doesn’t mean that’s the case.”

    I don’t know what op-ed you’re referring to, but I can’t help but notice you countered with an mere article of your own. There have been actual published studies on this, such as:

    “A comparison of tropical temperature trends with model
    predictions”

    ABSTRACT: We examine tropospheric temperature trends of 67 runs from 22 ‘Climate of the 20th Century’ model
    simulations and try to reconcile them with the best available updated observations (in the tropics during the satellite era).
    Model results and observed temperature trends are in disagreement in most of the tropical troposphere, being separated by
    more than twice the uncertainty of the model mean. In layers near 5 km, the modelled trend is 100 to 300% higher than
    observed, and, above 8 km, modelled and observed trends have opposite signs. These conclusions contrast strongly with
    those of recent publications based on essentially the same data.

    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/DOUGLASPAPER.pdf

    “Warming Oceans – This entire allegation stems from a single paper published by Lyman et al. two or so years ago…. Furthermore, the actual observation is that of a warming ocean, not a cooling one, so the point is moot.”

    Can you point me to the “actual observation” that says the oceans are warming? According to the Argo floats network, that simply isn’t true.

    “GISS – It’s not under “serious scrutiny.” I’m sorry, but a couple of blogs haranguing Hansen does not equate with legitimate investigation.”

    That’s how the debunking of the hockey got started too. It is unfortunate that it takes an independent third party to point out serious errors that make it past “peer review”. With the blatant lack of oversight, it’s got to start somewhere.

    We understand the physics” – The thread underneath this is about solar cycles. No skeptic on the blogosphere has been able to demonstrate where the physics behind AGW is incorrect. Period.

    Well the complete lack of the key signal as shown above, as necessary for a ghg forcing scenario, sure tells us something is off. Of course, nobody has been able to show it is correct either, so you’re point is rather moot.

    Climate Models – “there is a great deal of misinformation about what climate models are, what they do, how they work, and what they’re used for.”

    No kidding.

  81. Here’s a nice little data point from an urban setting, that is perilessly close to the tipping point, and should be baking under UHI and increased GHG’s, yet has somehow managed to keep it’s cool. I will vouch for the varacity of this source. I have not had my AC on all summer, and I was only tempted a few times due to the humidity.

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/chi-tom-skilling-explainer-13aug13,0,918946.story

    Those responsible for this “hockey stick” abomination should know better. They have had plenty of warning that this was junkscience of the worst kind.
    It passed the threshold for “mistake” long ago. This sordid example says more about human nature, than it does about the future climate.

  82. (As for the second charge, just for now, for those who’ve picked up the idea that the IPCC has ‘dropped the hockey stick’, look at pages 466-7 of the 4thAR WG1, Chapter 6 on Palaeoclimate . It’s the first page of the section dealing with the last 2,000 years).
    Steven Talbot

    No, apparently the ipcc did not completely drop the Mann HS Figure, as I had incorrectly implied. Still, the ipcc’s Fourth Assessment Report [4AR] Physical Science Basis, Summary for Policy Makers [SPM4] did not include the Mann Hockey Stick Figure in this very important presentation to the “Policy Makers” of the World, whereas the previous Summary For Policy Makers in the ipcc’s Third Assessment Report [TAR] “Scientific Basis” section did.

    And I think many are beginning to see just why this Figure has not been carried forward from Summary to Summary by the ipcc, and why and how it was still retained at all by the ipcc, while in fact being known to be at least scientifically moribund.

    Regardless, mea culpa: the Mann HS apparently is “carried forward” from the TAR to the remaining main body of the 4AR, contrary to what I implied in my comment to the NCDC. So I apologize to all for this mistaken blanket claim, which I made on the NCDC thread.

    Which still brings us back to the critically important question of whether the Mann Hockey Stick Figure and the rather devious, misguided attempts thus far to continue to present it as credible should be carried forward only as classical examples of perversions of Science.

  83. About those climate models.

    This outta leave a mark.

    http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/archives/003327.html

    It is clear from the above formulation of the surface temperature rise and the associated amplification gain that each is sensitive to the specification of evaporation increase with temperature. Substitution of the average evaporation specification of computer models into the formulation will boost the projected temperature rise from the above expected value of 0.5oC to 1.5oC, the lower end of IPCC projections. When the specification of evaporation increase with temperature is very low, as in the more extreme models, then the feedback amplification gain increases to a value of about ten; the temperature sensitivity of the computer model becomes highly exaggerated and model would likely simulate the behaviour of runaway global warming. The behaviour, of course, is false and arises only because of the significant under-specification of evaporation.

    And the guy would seem to have the chops to back it up.

    William Kininmonth is a former head of Australia’s National Climate Centre; a consultant to the World Meteorological Organization; and author of Climate Change: A Natural Hazard (2004, Multi-Science Publishing)

  84. Ken G,

    You quote Wegman, well I’ll quote the NAS report:

    The basic conclusion of Mann et al. (1998, 1999) was that the late 20th century warmth in the Northern Hemisphere was unprecedented during at least the last 1,000 years. This conclusion has subsequently been supported by an array of evidence that includes the additional large-scale surface temperature reconstructions and documentation of the spatial coherence of recent warming described above (Cook et al. 2004, Moberg et al. 2005b, Rutherford et al. 2005, D’Arrigo et al. 2006, Osborn and Briffa 2006, Wahl and Ammann in press)

    http://books.nap.edu/openbook.php?isbn=0309102251&page=115

    So where does that get us? It certainly doesn’t look to me like agreement that a hockey-stick-style pattern to palaeo reconstructions has been debunked, but it does to you, I guess? (Oh, and you asked for some other examples of confirmatory studies – there’s a start).

    There have been actual published studies on this, such as:

    “A comparison of tropical temperature trends with model
    predictions”

    Are you seriously not aware of the limitations of this paper? How is that posters here can take such relish in attacking perceived limitations in a ‘team’ paper but be, apparently, entirely unaware of far more obvious limitations in a paper which just happens to support the ‘sceptical’ argument? Is that what you call scepticism? How is it that you attack MBH 98/99 but not Loelhe 2007? Well, guess what, Loehle shows a strong MWP, so then it’s ok to gloss over the comical limitations of the methodology there, eh? How is it that so many here attack the GISS methodology but never say a word about Spencer & Christy’s huge mess-up of the UAH data record, up until 2005, when other scientists had to sort out their mess for them? (They got their plus and minus muddled up, in case anyone doesn’t know).

    ‘Scepticism’? It looks like double standards to me.

  85. counters:
    “I’d respond to more but I simply don’t have the time this morning.”

    Why? Is your supercomputer too slow?

    Sorry, couldn’t resist….
    :-)

  86. Talbot.

    You probably already know the contentious nature of Briffa, Wahl, and Ammman??? yes? There was just a big write up on it at Climate Audit.

    How is it that so many here attack the GISS methodology but never say a word about Spencer & Christy’s huge mess-up of the UAH data record, up until 2005, when other scientists had to sort out their mess for them?

    Because it WAS sorted out? Because the raw data was published? Because there weren’t hoardes of scientists backing up the faulty numbers? Because the data was subject to review?

  87. Profarmer,

    Oh, for sure, I know what is being said on Climate Audit. I look forward to Steve McIntyre publishing his paper on the matter, presuming that he has something to say beyond insinuations on a blog. If he has proof, then let him publish.

    “How is it that so many here attack the GISS methodology but never say a word about Spencer & Christy’s huge mess-up of the UAH data record, up until 2005, when other scientists had to sort out their mess for them?”

    Because it WAS sorted out?

    Only when others got onto the case, and not by S&C themselves (they applied the adjustments but had to be shown the error). Before that a great deal of hay was made out of the UAH trend being lower (including by Spencer & Christy themselves – funnily enough, I can’t find any contrite statements from them regretting what they’d said on the back of their bogus record!).

    Because the raw data was published?

    Nope.

    Because there weren’t hoardes of scientists backing up the faulty numbers?

    Nope – just Spencer & Christy “doing their own thing” which, apparently, is something folks here like to criticise Hansen for!

    Because the data was subject to review?

    Nope, it wasn’t. I hope that answers all your questions.

    I don’t have anything against Spencer & Christy on this matter. Anyone can make a mistake, and they’re all dealing with imperfect observations and methodologies that are still being evolved. I’m just pointing out that the obvious ‘bias’ here is in people choosing to attack Hansen!

  88. Counters: I had read the realclimate link to the end. The last paragraph, which includes your referenced Thorne et al paper, reinforces Gavin Schmidt’s opening thoughts (the normal intent of any concluding paragraph) and confirms what I said in the earlier comment. But let me quote Gavin again from that realclimate thread, “If the pictures are very similar despite the different forcings that implies that the pattern really has nothing to do with greenhouse gas changes, but is a more fundamental response to warming (however caused).”

    Again, if you’re seeing a warming in the upper tropical troposphere, it’s a result of El Ninos, not a substantial increase in CO2 or TSI.

    Regards.

  89. “No skeptic on the blogosphere has been able to demonstrate where the physics behind AGW is incorrect. Period.”

    No warmist has been able to demonstrate that the physics are correct either.

    On the other hand, the models all assume that relative humidity will stay constant as temperatures rise.

    No study has ever confirmed this assumption. Most refute it strongly.

  90. Steven Talbot (11:58:12) links to ‘Surface Temperature Reconstructions for the Last 2,000 Years’ (Committee on Surface Temperature Reconstructions for the Last 2,000 Years, National Research Council) and lifts part of one paragraph in support of the Mann HS.

    They conclude that the Mann assertion that the N.H. was warmer than in 1000 years “plausible” (may appear to be convincing or believable on the surface, but may not be so upon closer examination) but “….even less confidence can be placed in the original conclusions by Mann et al. (1999) that ‘the 1990s are likely the warmest decade, and 1998 the warmest year, in at least a millennium’ because the uncertainties inherent in temperature reconstructions…”etc.

  91. Christopher Hanley,

    Yes, of course – we can all select quotations. That was rather my point! (And you probably know I could select further quotations from the NAS report, and then you could select some more, and so on)…..

    …..which tends to show that nothing is so clear-cut as some would like it to be…

    …and so it goes on and on, with the ‘sceptic community’ obsessing about disputed limitations in a ten-year-old scientific paper. Get over it, and consider the whole body of the scientific case today, I would say.

  92. Pielke, McIntyre, Lindzen, Gray, Spence, D’leo, Hackbart…. etc., etc. . Hasse, Bill and Pierre Gosselin…. recommend:
    Movie of the week “I’ll Always Know What You Did Last Summer”

    Ptolemy’s model was debunked ?

  93. “We can all select quotations” Steven Talbot (14:17:38).
    Who’s “we”.

    Huh? You can select quotations, I can select quotations. What’s your point?

    Probably in another ten years time other new people will be able to select quotations……

    I think science will move on regardless. And, of course, the climate will do whatever it’s going to do, irrespective of how steamed up posters on a blog get in this year of 2008.

  94. I think science will move on regardless. And, of course, the climate will do whatever it’s going to do,

    My point exactly.

    You’re starting to sound like skeptic-good job!!!!!

    If it wasn’t for the injection of politics into this(by some of the scientists btw) then none of this would really matter all that much.

  95. Steve,

    “(Cook et al. 2004, Moberg et al. 2005b, Rutherford et al. 2005, D’Arrigo et al. 2006, Osborn and Briffa 2006, Wahl and Ammann in press)”

    Doesn’t that just bring us full circle?

    “Are you seriously not aware of the limitations of this paper?”

    No, and apparently you’re not interested in discussing them either as you seem to have gone off on some irrelevent tangent about Loehle and Spencer/Christy. Perhaps you could just point me to the published research that will lay it out for me so that I can look into that myself?

  96. You’re starting to sound like skeptic-good job!!!!!

    But I am already a sceptic (I’m British, hence the ‘c’)! It’s a matter of how well evidence and arguments, on either side, stand up to sceptical doubt. Scientists of all colours are trained to be sceptical. Perhaps some lose that objectivity – but it would surely be foolish for any sceptic to presume that, according to one’s position of judgment, the ‘opponents’ have lost it whilst the ‘proponents’ have not. I think that’s the main theme of my posts on this thread: be as sceptical of what seems to confirm your inclinations as you like to declare yourself being sceptical of what seems in opposition to them. Apply the same standards ‘on both sides’. Be ready to be doubtful of Steve McIntyre, or Anthony Watts, just as you are ready to be doubtful of Hansen or Mann. Everybody makes mistakes, even those with whom you have tended to agree.

    But we are agreed, Profarmer – the climate will not be subject to our arguments. At one extreme we will waste money unnecessarily on mitigating a problem that doesn’t exist, at the other we will allow the generation of doubt to delay our best actions. We’ll probably be around long enough to realise which was the worst choice, though perhaps not long enough to experience the full consequences of either.

  97. Well, I’d bet his models were wrong too. They’re two freaking decades old! Do you have any idea of the leaps and bounds made in modeling techniques and what we actual couple in the models nowadays?

    And yet, despite a 1000 fold or more increase in computer power, and despite “more realistic” modelling, and despite billions of dollars being thrown at it, what do we have to show for it?

    Have these advanced models “pinned down” climate response to 2 x CO2 any better? Err, no actually. In 1988, the models suggested 1.5-4.5C. In 2008, the models suggest 1.5-4.5C.

    Then perhaps we have “finer” resolution – perhaps, instead of being stuck with just a global average, we have some realistic, verifiable projections on regional scales? Err, no again. “Down sampling” is still required for regional projections/predictions. “Down sampling” in this specific case means adjusting, BTW.

    Then perhaps we have better weather simulation – perhaps, instead of a smooth line, we have a wiggly line that matches real world temperatures? Errr, no, again. Oh sure, we have the nice wiggly lines, but they don’t match real world weather, and they are averaged over multiple runs to get the nice smooth trend line that makes the “climate” prediction. And that smooth line is the same shape and slope as the old models.

    Then perhaps these wiggly lines (weather simulations) can give us some idea of innate variability? Err, no, alas. Lucia’s blog shows that the weather in these models is very different in statistical terms than real world weather is. In point of fact, their variability seems to be in the exact opposite direction from that required by Gavin and the “Team” when they explain that the recent real world events (the last 10 years of data) is simply weather and is encompassed by the models.

    Then perhaps we have shortened the time frame required to verify model projections? Err, no yet again. Gavin et al still insist that 30 years is the required time frame for establishing climate trends.

    What did we gain? Why then, do we need these overly complex models when they tell us nothing more than the simpler models of 20 years ago? Hey, I’m sure they’re nice toys for the climate guys to play with, but they told us they needed more money and better computers to give better projections/predictions. They got all that, so where are the better projections/predictions?

    Oh yeah – Gavin still insists that the old models (which you bet were wrong) were actually pretty good. Of course he would – they were his predictions, after all. Lucia doesn’t agree. Let’s see, we have two people who both think AGW is real. One made a set of projections 20 years ago, and thinks they stand up well. The other thinks they are likely wrong. Gee, who should I believe – the one that says “I was right all along, see?”, or the one who says “I don’t think you were right, and here’s the math to back it up”? The one with the vested interest in showing he was right, or the one trying to show it was right, but actually showing it was wrong? No really much of a contest there, I would think.

  98. Ken G,

    “Are you seriously not aware of the limitations of this paper?”

    No, and apparently you’re not interested in discussing them either as you seem to have gone off on some irrelevent tangent about Loehle and Spencer/Christy. Perhaps you could just point me to the published research that will lay it out for me so that I can look into that myself?

    No, I can’t point you to published papers. Nobody’s bothered to write about it, which will tend to be the case with inconsequential papers. I can give you this link, which you may not like, to a Real Climate review:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/12/tropical-troposphere-trends/

    It’s perfectly reasonable for you to think that Real Climate has its own agenda, but I’d suggest you see how well you think the paper stands up to the criticisms, if you’re interested. For example, it seems indisputable that they chose to use radiosonde data that was not the most recent update (and the data they chose showed the least warming trend). I could link to other blog analyses which are considerably less polite, but that’s not what you’re asking from me.

    I could give you my own observations, but you have no reason to think they’re worth much ( for example, I could note that the introductory remarks depend upon quotations taken from before the UAH records were corrected!).

    What I think I’ll do is to leave it to history. If the paper’s of any consequence, then it will be referenced in the literature, and vice versa. I’d put money on the latter, but that’s just my opinion.

    It would be amusing, really, to see what Climate Audit made of this paper’s
    approach to calculating uncertainties. If people here are outraged by MBH98/99 methodologies, well, there’s plenty more out there to get your teeth into!

  99. Steven Talbot

    Do you believe the UAH process and data have been sorted out?

    Are the temperatures being reported correct?

    How large were the adjustments made to the UAH data?

    I certainly do agree with your statement:

    Anyone can make a mistake, and they’re all dealing with imperfect observations and methodologies that are still being evolved.

    Which is why I don’t want to see any draconian measures imposed on our economies until all of these observations and systems are sorted out.

    Thanks in advance.

  100. Ken G (again),

    I want to correct something I said in my previous post, viz. “it seems indisputable that they chose to use radiosonde data that was not the most recent update”. I have been doing some more research, since I was interested in your questioning me. It appears that, whilst it’s true they didn’t use the most recent update, it is disputed that they ‘chose’ this. My apologies for my assertion.

    For reference, here’s a rather good spat between Gavin Schmidt (of Real Climate) and Dr Douglass (scroll down a long way to get to it) –

    http://wmbriggs.com/blog/2008/04/08/why-multiple-climate-model-agreement-is-not-that-exciting/

    I happen to think Douglass comes out of that with more dignity than Schmidt, but remain of the view that the Douglass paper is questionable. As I’ve suggested, I tend to rely on the scientific process of review to bed down what is worthwhile or not, and that’s a process which takes some time.

  101. Steven,

    “No, I can’t point you to published papers. Nobody’s bothered to write about it, which will tend to be the case with inconsequential papers. I can give you this link, which you may not like, to a Real Climate review:”

    That’s right, you can’t.

    “I could give you my own observations”

    Honestly, I don’t think you could. I think you can parrot Realclimate opinions well enough, but that’s about it.

    “Be ready to be doubtful of Steve McIntyre, or Anthony Watts, just as you are ready to be doubtful of Hansen or Mann. Everybody makes mistakes, even those with whom you have tended to agree.”

    But not Gavin. Apparently, if he opines that a paper is “inconsequential” that’s more than enough for you to come here and state your case confidently, despite the lack of any published support what-so-ever.

    “Oh, for sure, I know what is being said on Climate Audit. I look forward to Steve McIntyre publishing his paper on the matter, presuming that he has something to say beyond insinuations on a blog.”

    Does the word “hypocrite” mean anything to you? Apparently Gavin’s opinion is good enough for you to bash other scientists (mostly through insinuation ironically enough), but Steve’s blog is mere insinuation unless published. And you have the audacity to lecture people here about bias?

  102. Steven,

    “For reference, here’s a rather good spat between Gavin Schmidt (of Real Climate) and Dr Douglass (scroll down a long way to get to it) -”

    Thank you. I’ve already seen it however.

    “As I’ve suggested, I tend to rely on the scientific process of review to bed down what is worthwhile or not, and that’s a process which takes some time.”

    That’s certainly not the impression you’ve left here, in my humble opinion.

  103. Jack Simmons,

    My current view is that, for both UAH and RSS, it’s still rather early days in firming up the methodology. I’m always puzzled by the seemingly popular notion that the satellite record is somehow ‘gold standard’ in terms of telling us what’s really going on. It seems to me that the process of generating temperature anomalies from satellite data is hugely more inventive and potentially questionable than the surface-based records (which are obviously subject to error themselves, as is recognised). The divergences between UAH and RSS (although they’re reducing recently) should be enough to tell us that methodological matters are an issue.

    I think the smart thing is to look at all the records, and consider the extent to which they provide confirmation. Also, to recognise that they each have systemic biases. GISS extrapolates polar regions from nearest data points, Hadley averages such regions, satellite data is a ‘fudge’ for lower troposphere temperatures (which will respond more to ENSO oscillation anyway) and doesn’t cover most of Antarctica, the N pole extreme or the Himalayas and part of the Andes, for example, and so on.

    The UAH 2005 adjustment resulted in (from memory) a c.40% increase in the positive trend.

    My own view is that we’re fussing around with questions of accuracy, but that the record of trend is clear. I don’t want to see draconian economic measures either, but then I don’t want to see draconian punishment for neglect of what we should be able to figure out. There’s been a prevailing scientific view that we’re facing anthropogenic warning since the 1970s at least (Jason project, Charney Review). Frankly, what are we doing here now, arguing about the accuracy of possibly unsatisfactory observations? We should already, at least, have been getting that sorted out! It would have been relatively cheap!

    But whatever the fractional uncertainties may be in our temperature records, there is copious observational evidence of the world warming. Every farmer in temperate regions knows that the growing season has extended. Every resident of tundra regions knows what is happening to the permafrost. The fixation with global averages masks the reality of the step-changes in northern latitude temperatures. So, I’m worried.

  104. Ken G,

    That’s certainly not the impression you’ve left here, in my humble opinion.

    Well, I’m sorry you think that. Posting on bulletin boards can be a rather intemperate process, I think. I hope you’ll note, though, that I took the trouble to correct my over-assertive statement before. I would say that you posted the link to the Douglass paper without any qualification, as if that were enough in itself, so there is a way in which one attitude provokes another. Nevertheless, I hope we can both agree that the process of scientific debate should be what counts, rather than our own comments.

  105. Every farmer in temperate regions knows that the growing season has extended.

    Yeah, well, not so much lately. 10 years ago we were growing 110-112 day corn. Today? Yep, still the same. It’s been a very cold, wet growing season here this year.

    The trend may or may not be certain. There’s a saying in grain trading “the trend is your friend.” The danger is when the trends change.

    I heard an epidemiologist today on the radio. He was talking about cancer and DDT and all sorts of things. His statement was that there are all sorts of things that correlate, but that doesn’t prove causation. Very apt to the discussion of CO2 and GW here, I do beleive. How does a gas at .00035% of the atmosphere overcome watervapor that comprises 1-4% of the atmosphere and can swing whole percentage points in the course of a day?

  106. Ken G,

    I’ve just seen your previous post, which I missed before my last post.

    Excuse me, but don’t lecture me on ‘published support’, not on this blog, nor in reference to Climate Audit! You ask me if the word ‘hypocrite’ has meaning? Pah!

    I actually already gave you part of my own observations of the paper. You may note that my comment was not parroted from Real Climate, so frankly what cause do you have to be insulting? I have already said that I thought Gavin Schmidt showed less dignity than Dr Douglass in their exchange, so frankly how do you suggest that I am simply supporting ‘Gavin’?

    I see that your approach is to attempt denigration of those with whom you disagree. Given that, I have absolutely no interest in discussing with you further my reservations concerning the Douglass paper.

  107. Steven Talbot, Ken G, please take it down a notch and be civil please~charles the moderator.

    No…I don’t care who started it.

  108. Steven Talbot:
    ” Every farmer in temperate regions knows that the growing season has extended. Every resident of tundra regions knows what is happening to the permafrost. The fixation with global averages masks the reality of the step-changes in northern latitude temperatures. So, I’m worried.”

    Worry all you want Steve won’t change the weather, Glad to hear you have talked to every farmer and resident of tundra regions. We call them eskimos
    Here in Cananda. Funny some of the farmers that have been posting here
    say this season is showing a tread to being shorter. Heard lot’s of talk like that lately. Sure they’re just a bunch of raving lunaitics. What would American farmers know about weather.

  109. Steven Talbot:
    I am sure Steve you have details of your chat with all these farmers and residents of the tundra. I’d like to see the computer model of that please,
    peer reviewed of course.

  110. “Excuse me, but don’t lecture me on ‘published support’, not on this blog, nor in reference to Climate Audit! You ask me if the word ‘hypocrite’ has meaning? Pah!”

    You obviously missed something.

    Anyway, my apologies to everyone else for the derailing, but it just irks me to no end to watch someone come here and lecture people about bias and standards for both sides while he also bashes other people’s work with inisinuation and double standards.

  111. Steven Talbot:

    It seems to me that the process of generating temperature anomalies from satellite data is hugely more inventive and potentially questionable than the surface-based records… there is copious observational evidence of the world warming… we’re fussing around with questions of accuracy, but that the record of trend is clear.

    So we have a previously resolved argument over the accuracy of satellite measurements — which are acknowledged to be the most accurate temp measurements of the entire planet. Why??

    Answer: to obfuscate the situation. Because by admitting that satellite measurements are accurate, the entire AGW/planetary disaster hypothesis crashes in flames.

    So the endless argument continues, as the neo-Luddites fan the flames of the AGW/CO2/climate disaster hypothesis in the only way they can: by changing the subject. When AGW purveyors are cornered, they always attempt a red-herring or similar argument, in order to take the spotlight off the central fact: the planet is cooling, not warming.

  112. This has been like watching the badminton competition on the Olympic Games channel!

    If you are a skeptic: Trust bats. They know that food will be in short supply due to cold temperatures. And they have no funding! Trust your fanny. If its freezing, its getting colder. And I don’t believe anyone has given you a grant for fanny modeling. You could also trust the fact that warm weather crops are freezing out around the globe, from grapes in Oregon to Aussie lettuce.

    If you are a AGW fan, you have no course but to trust the models.

    Yes, the cold snap could be just noise. But then the models don’t deal in noise.

  113. Anthony, you are gonna luv this:

    Right off of NOAA National Weather Service Heat Warning for the Willamette Valley:

    IN ADDITION TO THE HOT AFTERNOONS…LITTLE RELIEF IS EXPECTED
    TONIGHT AND FRIDAY NIGHT. THIS WILL ESPECIALLY BE THE CASE IN DOWNTOWN
    URBAN AREAS…WHERE TEMPERATURES WILL NOT LIKELY FALL MUCH BELOW
    70 DEGREES OVERNIGHT. OUTLYING RURAL AREAS WILL BE A BIT COOLER
    OVERNIGHT…BUT MOST LOCATIONS ARE FORECAST TO HAVE LOW
    TEMPERATURES IN THE 60S TONIGHT.

    Very interesting. The urban bias is beginning to be part of the official record. Urban areas bias temperature readings.

    REPLY: Yes, that’s fairly common in NWS narrative these days. NWS accepts UHI as a fact of forecasting temperatures. They see the data daily, they know the drill.

    Yet we have people like Parker and Peterson that write papers trying to convince us that UHI doesn’t exist. Parker’s 2004 paper on UHI, which claims a lack of prescence, it taken hook line and sinker without question by Realclimate. In my opinion it is one of the worst perversions of science I’ve ever seen and an insult to the intelligence and common sense of most people. – Anthony

  114. Pamela Gray: Look I hope we are wrong in a way, a cooling world will do no good for any of us. But the input that this site generates is all great. I like the
    feel of the tread on Maine real peoples input. You want data you got it! real data not garbage computer sims. Thanks to Anthony for hosting this site!

    Average people can have a say and we can swing the tide.

  115. Well, there is no lack of passion on this subject. Talbot, you often demonstrate self-control and valid research in your statements. However, I will challenge you on your characterization of the UAH evolution. I was in the “pro-AGW camp” back in those days, and I remember Christy being quite gentle in his comments and his emphasis on the slightness of any trend that he is seeing. It was because of UAH’s openess of its methodology and the availability of raw data that enabled RSS to develop the correction for orbital decay. Christy graciously accepted the insight and incorporated corrections into his model. Subsequently, (years later) UAH noted that RSS was understating temperatures and helped them figure out what was wrong with their algorithm.
    Although I have greater faith in satellite temperatures as opposed to surface temperatures, I am aware of potential problems and issues in the former, and I hesitate to quible about .1 degree centigrade with all those issues. Nevertheless, it is mind-boggling to consider the precisenss that the space program has achieved on many fronts.

  116. Claims here by some of the posters that the Stick has *not* been debunked are astounding. The stick removes the MWP and the LIA to form the handle. The blade is meaningless without the handle. The entire graph rests on the premise that all has been in a steady state until man started driving SUV’s. This is how the entire AGW argument was sold — it’s what put the A in it!!

    All it takes to debunk that silly stick is one paper showing that the LIA or MWP existed. These exist. The handle is not straight, hence the Stick is debunked.

    Is there like some sort of special school of English usage for alarmists where they take classes in mendaciousness and obfuscation? Is it possible to assert that the Stick is uncontested given that the entire graphic import and meaning is based on the straight handle? Ye flipping gods.

  117. randomengineer (00:15:33)
    All it takes to debunk that silly stick is one paper showing that the LIA or MWP existed. These exist. The handle is not straight, hence the Stick is debunked.
    But, could it get “published”?
    You know that old saying. It’s not what you know, it’s who you…….
    Mann, Amman , and Wahl are just puppets, someone or some group wanted that paper published so it could be used in the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report.
    It just goes to show that “peer” review, IPCC management and others involved with the AGW movement are just as corrupted as ERON or any dictatorship.

  118. Steven Talbot (18:43:25) :

    Agree on using all the data sets available, which appear to be matching very closely in general trends.

    Also agree there was a definite warming from 1970 to 1998.

    Now I believe we have seen a definite plateau since 1998. Furthermore, we have seen a slight cooling since 2002.

    There has been a big drop since 2007. However, one year a trend does not make.

    So my advice, not that anyone cares, is to wait another five years before doing anything other than those projects that make economic or health sense on their own merits.

    You want to build a windmill? Do it, but pay for it yourself.

    Dittoes for ethanol alcohol; solar cars, electric cars, and all other alternatives to fossil fuels.

    Also, let the market decide. You’ll get a lot more done if you have people make their own decisions rather than imposing rules from above.

    If something makes sense economically for people, they’ll do it.

    And I would like everyone to tone down the hysteria. No one really knows the truth about any of things going on in the world.

    Regards

  119. Sigh. My statement about the extension of the growing season in temperate regions was concerning long-term trend rather than comparing this year with the last. Evidently, saying “every farmer knows” was a sloppy way of expressing myself (I guess I was tired). I apologise to any farmers who have not been benefiting from an extended season over recent decades, and I recognise that the weather this year has been poor in many areas. Ok?

    Ken G,

    I think you have misunderstood me. I don’t have any problem at all with people criticising a scientific paper. For example, I think M&M’s criticisms of MBH98/99 were valuable and have helped to move the science on.

    Smokey,

    So we have a previously resolved argument over the accuracy of satellite measurements — which are acknowledged to be the most accurate temp measurements of the entire planet. Why??

    Answer: to obfuscate the situation. Because by admitting that satellite measurements are accurate, the entire AGW/planetary disaster hypothesis crashes in flames.

    The measurements (which are not direct measurements of temperature) may indeed be accurate, but it seems self-evident to me that the translation of these observations into indicative temperature anomalies is subject to systemic bias or error, since RSS and UAH produce differing figures. This is something that both RSS and UAH recognise themselves.

    I think you also misunderstand me: I am not rejecting satellite measurements (and GISS uses satellite measurements for its SSTs anyway). I am simply saying that all temperature records are interpretations of data, and we should be aware of the qualities of each.

    An Inquirer,

    For sure, I don’t have anything against Spencer & Christy’s work at UAH. I was really wishing to point out that it’s well to remember mistakes (or systemic error, for that matter) can happen on both ‘sides’, and I don’t personally think it’s reasonable to leap to the conclusion that human bias is involved. I’ve probably over-stressed the point about the UAH error, but that’s the outcome of an occasionally confrontational debate, I think! I also have faith in the satellite measurements, though they’re not quite measuring the same thing, of course.

    randomengineer & old construction worker,

    I think the MBH99 graph does show an MWP and a LIA, though less emphatically than in some other reconstructions. I think there was an MWP and a LIA (and the IPCC thinks so too). Personally, I don’t think palaeo reconstructions are certain enough to give us confidence in discussing comparisons to fractions of a degree.

    Loehle 2007 presents a reconstruction which shows an emphatic MWP & LIA, so such a paper has already been published –

    http://www.ncasi.org/publications/Detail.aspx?id=3025

  120. Can’t increased growing seasons be due to increased CO2 alone even if temperatures are not up?

    This seems to coincide with reports of a 6% increase of CO2 and a 6% increase of plant biomass (esp. in the tropics where temperature increases have been the smallest).

  121. Pamela,

    Yes it is a bit like watching the Olympics, with China assuring us the age of the competitors is at least 16, and that their judging is fair.

  122. Sigh. My statement about the extension of the growing season in temperate regions was concerning long-term trend rather than comparing this year with the last. Evidently, saying “every farmer knows” was a sloppy way of expressing myself (I guess I was tired). I apologise to any farmers who have not been benefiting from an extended season over recent decades, and I recognise that the weather this year has been poor in many areas. Ok?

    Steve, my family has been at this a looonnngggg time(like 4 generations now). O.K. There is a very long oral history. What is going on now is neither extreme or unprecedented. Things change. You adapt. The growers in the Canadian prairies would love to be able to count on a few extra days of growing season. The growers in the south might be able to double crop in some places where they can’t quite do it now. In the North, temperature is very important. In the south, Moisture tends to be the most important factor. We can pretty easily manage around a small temperature increase by altering planting dates, varities, crops etc. We can’t easily manage around freezing, or a growing season too short to be productive. Go to the USDA website and look up average corn, soybean, and wheat yeilds for the U.S. You can do the same for Canada. It pretty much looks like the CO2 curve.

    Loehle 2007 presents a reconstruction which shows an emphatic MWP & LIA, so such a paper has already been published –

    Once again, Loehle shows that what is going on climatically is neither extreme or unprecedented.

    I don’t think palaeo reconstructions are certain enough to give us confidence in discussing comparisons to fractions of a degree.

    I would tend to agree.

    Tell us again why you believe in AGW?

  123. Steve Talbot: I don’t agree that we can in any way rely on adjusted surface measurement.

    We all know how severely the surface stations have been affected over the last 30, 50, 100 years. We all know how “urbanized” (including sub-, ex-) the stations have become.

    Yet the NOAA USHCN1 adjustment for Station History (SHAP) is POSITIVE. And apparently USHCN2 adjustment is 40% MORE positive than USHCN1–but they don’t publish the same damning graph for v.2 that they do for v.1.

    FILNET, which is supposed to be a neutral adjustment “average” also seems to wind up quite positive.

    So why would we pay even the slightest attention to the adjusted surface data? (Other than to point out that no reasonable person would pay it the slightest attention?)

    I’ll go with the satellite data (for whatever it’s worth), thanks, all the same.

  124. Can’t increased growing seasons be due to increased CO2 alone even if temperatures are not up?

    This seems to coincide with reports of a 6% increase of CO2 and a 6% increase of plant biomass (esp. in the tropics where temperature increases have been the smallest).

    I think instead of increased growing season you mean increased yield?

  125. Steven Talbot, I’m surprised that you dont seem to understand why people prefer the satellite data. Here are two obvious reasons to start with:
    1. There is no question of UHI, UHI adjustments, station move adjustments, TOBS adjustments, stations surrounded by air conditioning units, etc.
    2. The method by which the results are obtained is constant in time. By contrast, GISS station numbers are dropping like a stone, so the method used is constantly changing (This is a favorite trick of the global warming exaggerators). Worse still, the stations Hansen keeps tend to be cities and/or airports (often misleadingly referred to by Hansen as ‘rural area’). And as for HADCRU, Jones won’t even give the details of his stations.

  126. Pofarmer,

    I respect your direct knowledge of the climate’s effects upon agriculture and, obviously, such knowledge is crucial to adapting to whatever the climate brings us. Perhaps I should clarify my view: it seems that on average projected further warming would be beneficial to agriculture in North America in terms of crop yields, up to mid-century, say. So I am not in dispute with what you have said on that. However, the opposite is projected for some other parts of the world. In general, poorer areas are likely to experience negative effects soonest and most severely (although the projections for Australia, for example, are rather worrying).

    As for Loehle’s paper, I really don’t think it’s very useful. Now it seems that Ken G thinks I’m being a hypocrite in saying something like that, but I’m not sure why, since I don’t think MBH98/99 is very useful either. Ah well.

    Tell us again why you believe in AGW?

    Lol! Well, ‘believe’ is not a word I’d use, but never mind. I’ll try to be brief ;-)

    1)I’m convinced that GHGs are positive forcings (the matter of climate sensitivity remains for discussion);

    2)I’m convinced that CO2 (and others) has been increasing

    3) and I’ve yet to see a convincing explanation of 20th century climate change that excludes anthropogenic influences.

    That’ll do for now, and will probably attract enough flack already ;-). I’ll change my mind if the evidence for any of those three changes.

    Evan Jones,

    If we could only have one type of record, I would also keep satellite data. However, I think we can benefit from developing increasingly accurate records of all kinds, particularly with a view to being able to predict regional climate variation in the future (regardless of which way the global temperature goes).

  127. PaulM,

    Given that you think so little of the surface-based records, and seem to suggest that they are exaggerated, can you show me the extent of this exaggeration by comparison to both RSS and UAH? It seems to me that the different types of records correlate very well, although the lower troposphere satellite record show greater response (both high and low) to ENSO variations and volcanic activity, as would be expected.

  128. Steven,

    I never even mentioned Loehle, you did on your quest for strawmen to burn.

    Why I felt you were being hypocritical was clearly laid out, so let’s not make more of it than it was, since as you can see I clearly don’t have the patience for moral relativism.

  129. Ken G,

    No, you didn’t mention Loehle, but I criticised another paper and you said that was hypocritical, even though I have made clear (and had before that) that I think the criticisms of MBH98/99 are valid and useful. Therefore, I do not understand your charge, however much you say it has been “clearly laid out”.

    You are, of course, entitled to whatever opinion you wish to hold. It’s of little consequence to me if you wish to continue with a personalised attack on this board, beyond the fact that I think it interferes with useful discussion.

  130. If we could only have one type of record, I would also keep satellite data. However, I think we can benefit from developing increasingly accurate records of all kinds, particularly with a view to being able to predict regional climate variation in the future (regardless of which way the global temperature goes).

    Yes.

    Look for the new NOAA/CRN network for the US. They are made up of well sited stations (No SHAP). They are continual (no Max/Min) and automated (no FILNET). They will, in fact, need no adjustments whatever. The only poorly sited one I’ve seen shots of is on concrete-like terrain, so that may be a wash.

    Once that is up and running we will have a US system that actually is trustworthy (depending on the gridding methodology).

    But.

    But until then, and as for the historical record, it is not adjusted in the correct manner and the raw data seems to have been “disposed of”. Recent proxies are regional and have a bigger margin of error than the differences they are trying to show (on a short timescale).

    So.

    Therefore I do not trust the historical record as measured by the NOAA. I therefore discount GISS and HadCRUT, which are based on NOAA/GHCN.

    Fortunately we have satellite records, and these will prove a valuable check sum for the surface record going forward.

  131. However, the opposite is projected for some other parts of the world. In general, poorer areas are likely to experience negative effects soonest and most severely (although the projections for Australia, for example, are rather worrying).

    Weren’t you just lecturing us upthread, or in another thread, on how it wasn’t proper to use the climate models in this way?

  132. 1)I’m convinced that GHGs are positive forcings (the matter of climate sensitivity remains for discussion);

    2)I’m convinced that CO2 (and others) has been increasing

    3) and I’ve yet to see a convincing explanation of 20th century climate change that excludes anthropogenic influences.

    1.) I agree. But I think the amount of forcing ( without positive feedback loops) is very, very small.

    2.) Agreed.

    3.)

    a. Reversion to norm after the LIA.

    b. Fluctuations since 1977 due to the “big 6” atmospheric/ocean cycles going warm one by one. (Now they are starting to go cool.)

  133. 3) and I’ve yet to see a convincing explanation of 20th century climate change that excludes anthropogenic influences.

    I wonder if you are really looking.

  134. 3) and I’ve yet to see a convincing explanation of 20th century climate change that excludes anthropogenic influences.

    I wonder if you are really looking.

    It’s really amazing that some folks think the best explanation is that a trace gas has risen from .030% to .038% of the atmosphere.

  135. Pofarmer,

    The percentage of the atmosphere is irrelevant. Some 99% of the atmosphere is not GHGs (including water vapour, although that varies)!

    Jeff B,

    Yes, I’m looking. For example, I look forward to reading Roy Spencer’s next paper.

    Evan Jones,

    a. Reversion to norm after the LIA.

    Which is (mostly at least) well explained by natural variation. If we presume a strong MWP & LIA, then we are assuming high climate sensitivity. I’m fine with the MWP & LIA hypothesis, but the implications of high sensitivity going forward are obvious.

    b. Fluctuations since 1977 due to the “big 6″ atmospheric/ocean cycles going warm one by one. (Now they are starting to go cool.)

    I think that’s the most tenable notion at the moment. But, at the moment, a notion is all it is. If I see some convincing science on it, then I might change my mind.

    Pofarmer again –

    Weren’t you just lecturing us upthread, or in another thread, on how it wasn’t proper to use the climate models in this way?

    Er, no, I don’t think that was me!

    :-)

  136. Er, no, I don’t think that was me!

    My apologies, that was counters.

    The models don’t predict stuff like that, sorry.

  137. Steven, “can you show me the extent of this exaggeration”. Yes I can!
    Have you looked at GISS, HADCRU, UAH and RSS recently?
    I guess not from your question.
    Here are the latest data. Now, guess which two columns are Hansen and Jones
    and which two are the satellites.
    2008 2 0.25 0.192 0.020 -0.002
    2008 3 0.58 0.445 0.089 0.079
    2008 4 0.41 0.267 0.015 0.080
    2008 5 0.36 0.278 -0.183 -0.083
    2008 6 0.26 0.312 -0.114 0.035
    2008 7 0.51 0.403 0.048 0.147

  138. “If we drink good water, we can remove all of diseases over %80 (WHO)”. Alkaline water can sucsess this. Alkaline water flushes acidic metabolites and toxins from cellular level. Supplies health sustaining minerals such as Ca, K, Mg, Na to the body. Contains smaller water clusters (51KHz) that hydrates the body up to 3 times more effective than normal water. Facilitate nutrients and mineral absorptions efficiently. Promotes general well-bing by restoring the body.

  139. PaulM,

    I would expect the satellite records to continue to show greater short-term response, both negative and positive, than the surface-based records. The lower troposhere will react faster, and to a greater degree, to internal variation. This is true both ways – please see the response to the Pinatubo eruption and then to the 1998 El Nino: in the first case the troposphere reaction is more negative than surface, in the second case it is more positive. Exactly the same has been the case in response to the recent La Nina phase, which your figures above illustrate. What is relevant is whether there is divergence over the longer-term, once these predictable variations in response have evened out. Over the longer-term, the greatest divergence is between UAH and all the others, including RSS. GISS does not have the highest trend, as some here seem to suggest – both HadCRUT and RSS (for its shorter period) are higher.

    (Sorry if this response is delayed, but I haven’t figured out how to keep in touch with topics that have slipped off the front page!).

  140. One way is to search for your username, plus a relevant keyword.

    You could even refine your search to this domain if necessary, but the above worked very well.

  141. Pingback: Les trucs du Lab : Les photos de groupe ·

  142. Counters wrote:

    “Hockey Stick – It still hasn’t been shown to be “debunked.” Debunked implies it is incorrect; if it’s incorrect, than we wouldn’t expect any other records to match it in any way. There are many independent paleo-climate reconstructions used to corroborate the “big picture” of the past. RealClimate is still the definitive source rebutting this claim. Shoot the messenger if you will, but once again, no one has debunked the Stick. The only thing that has been shown is that there is a great deal more uncertainty in that particular reconstruction than in others.”

    I can well understand why RealClimate would defend Mann’s “hockey stick”, but I certainly would not agree that “RealClimate is still the definitive source rebutting this claim” (i.e. that it has been “debunked”). Believe we all know that RC has “a horse in the race” on this one, so is not an objective source.

    An objective source and renowned expert on statistical analyses is Edward Wegman, professor at George Mason University, who was asked to testify concerning the Mann “hockey stick” before the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce. Wegman’s panel included two other experts, David Scott (Rice) and Yasmin Said (Johns Hopkins).

    Wegman and his panel found that Mann made basic errors that “may be easily overlooked by someone not trained in statistical methodology.”

    The panel concluded:

    ”Our committee believes that the assessments that the decade of the 1990s was the hottest decade in a millennium and that 1998 was the hottest year in a millennium cannot be supported by the MBH98/99 analysis”

    “The paucity of data in the more remote past makes the hottest-in-a-millennium claims essentially unverifiable.”

    Supporter of the “hockey stick” have used the argument that, while there may have been errors in the methodology used by Mann et al., the conclusions reached were still correct.

    As Wegman summed it up to the energy and commerce committee in later testimony: “I am baffled by the claim that the incorrect method doesn’t matter because the answer is correct anyway. Method Wrong + Answer Correct = Bad Science.”

    Forget this piece of “Bad Science”. It has been buried. Let it “Rest in Peace”.

    Max

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