“Hottest Year” Misdirection

Once again Joe Public comes out smarter than politically correct opinion surveyors, fact checkers and journalists.  The latest evidence of elite blindness comes from a smart-alecky reporter writing at GlobalNews Survey says Canadians think Earth beat its heat record in only 10 of the last 18 years. They’re wrong Excerpts in italics with my bolds.

Ipsos polling agency released “Perils of Perception” on Wednesday.

It’s an annual international survey conducted in 37 countries that looks at whether respondents have accurate, or inaccurate ideas about major issues.

This one ranked Canada 11th out of 37 countries when it came to accurate understandings of major issues.

One area of misunderstanding — climate change.

The survey found that Canadians are underestimating the number of years that the planet Earth has set heat records over the last two decades.  Canadians estimated that Earth set heat records in 10 out of the last 18 years.

It also found that Canadians are overestimating the share of energy that they consume from renewable resources.

I’ll save the renewables issue for another day. (See Exaggerating  Green Energy Supply) This post will show the reporter’s dog ate his homework, because there are large holes in his information.  He didn’t do professional due diligence so I will investigate to put the record straight for him and anyone else misled by the press.

What Ipsos Asked and Thought Was the Right Answer

Q. The World Meteorological Organization collects annual global temperatures, to see whether they are rising or falling across the world. How many of the last 18 years have been the hottest for the world as a whole since they began collecting data in 1961?

A.  17 of the past 18 years have been the hottest since records began. However, every country in the study underestimates the global temperature rise over the past 18 years. The average estimate across the study was 9 years.

Misdirection #1  Framing the Question to Exclude Undesired Data

Note the question context:  The World Meteorological Organization collects annual global temperatures (. . . began collecting data in 1961), to see whether they are rising or falling across the world. When you go looking for the data, WMO directs you to three datasets produced by others:  Hadcrut (UK Met Office), NOAA (US agency) and Gistemp (NASA, US agency).  So the frame serves to exclude satellite-based datasets, and limit the expected answer to three land+ocean products.  And as many will know, those records go back to late 1800s, far earlier than 1961.  Apparently, the surveyors wanted to put anyone off from thinking temperatures were warmer in the 1930s or 40s.

Misdirection #2  Failing to Do the Math

Getting data right now out of US federal agencies is problematic since websites are shut down.  It seems many federal employees are taking leave in order to help reduce the government deficit.  Fortunately, the Met Office has a site ( here) providing the relevant annual global temperature anomalies from the three sources. I compiled a table which makes the asked for comparisons.

The table shows 1998 was the hottest of all preceding years in the record, with slightly different values in the three datasets.  Years in blue were cooler than 1998, while years in red were reported hotter than 1998.  The math says in the last two decades, compared to the previous record year 1998, there were 6 hotter years in Hadcrut4, 8 hotter years in NOAA (NCEI), and 9 hotter years in GISS. Considering “hottest” to mean hotter than all previous years, the table shows exactly 5 hottest years in the last 18 years, with 2016 setting the record.

Ipsos says 17 of the last 18 were the hottest. Really?  Epic Fail: That so-called “correct” answer is three times too high!  Around the world people said 9, and that’s much closer to the truth. Canadians said 10, perhaps biased higher by all the fake news around.

Misdirection #3  Failing to Do the Statistics

Now it may have occurred to you that some of the hotter years were not much warmer.  When you consider the 95% confidence intervals, some years fall out of the list.  For example, Hadcrut also provides each year a calculation of the upper and lower bounds on the error range, combining bias, measurement uncertainty and coverage uncertainty.

As the table shows, they estimate about +/- 0.09 for a typical year.  So for  1998, they say with 95% confidence the true anomaly lies between 0.45C and 0.63C.  Graphically the error range looks like this:

The chart shows that after considering the estimated uncertainty, it is actually the last three years that were hotter than 1998 in Hadcrut4.  The other land+ocean datasets have similar uncertainties and results (five hotter years in NOAA and GISS).

When it comes to UAH satellite dataset, we have this analysis:
University of Alabama Huntsville  Summary:
Globally, 2016 edged out 1998 by +0.02 C to become the warmest year in the 38-year satellite temperature record, according to scientists. Because the margin of error is about 0.10 C, this would technically be a statistical tie, with a higher probability that 2016 was warmer than 1998. The main difference was the extra warmth in the Northern Hemisphere in 2016 compared to 1998. Source: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/01/170104130257.htm

No wonder they wanted UAH excluded.  And others say the confidence ranges are much larger than these estimates, which consider processing uncertainties not including errors of the instruments themselves.

Such characterizations are absurd, according to Richard Lindzen, a meteorology professor at MIT and one of the world’s foremost skeptics that global warming represents an existential threat.

“It’s typical misleading nonsense,” Lindzen said in an e-mail. “We’re talking about less than a tenth of degree with an uncertainty of about a quarter of a degree. Moreover, such small fluctuations – even if real – don’t change the fact that the trend for the past 20 years has been much less than models have predicted.”




Bering Ice is Back!

Remarkable growth of ice in Bering Sea has been observed over the last three weeks as shown above.  The extent went from 57k km2 to 424k km2 during that period, and is presently 94% of the maximum Bering ice extent in March 2018.  To put this event in context, note that Bering 2018 maximum was low and pulled down the overall Arctic extent in March.  For example, 2017 Bering maximum was 725k km2 compared to 2018 max of 451k km2, or a difference of 48%.  We will be watching to see how much will be added in the coming 3 months.

Note also that Chukchi north of Bering completed freezing over on day 352,  December 18, 2018.  We can also see that Okhotsk on the left was freezing at the same rate as Bering, but added no new ice in the last week.

The Bering ice recovery coincides with the demise of the North Pacific “Warm Blob” as reported by Cliff Mass on Dec. 24 Sad News: No More BLOB Excerpts in italics with my bolds.

Starting the autumn, the BLOB was relatively weak.  To illustrate, here is the sea surface temperature anomaly (difference from normal) for the end of October–as much as 2-3C warmer than normal!  This was associated with an area of persistent high pressure over the northeast Pacific.

But compare that situation to two days ago.  The BLOB is essentially gone, with an area of cooler than normal water developing.  Only immediately along the coast is the water temperature slightly above normal.

What killed the BLOB?   Persistent storminess over the northeast Pacific, something that is no surprise to the storm-battered residents of the Pacific Northwest. 

Outlook from Dr. Judah Cohen Dec. 24, 2018 at Arctic Oscillation and Polar Vortex Analysis and Forecasts

In conclusion there is still much uncertainty with the predicted PV disruption and the longer it takes for the PV disruption to unfold the longer it will take for any impacts to reach the surface. And I would argue it makes very important differences on the sensible weather whether the PV splits, and if it splits the duration and the location of the sister vortices. But a robust PV split increases the likelihood of severe winter weather in the near term and more so long term for both the Eastern US and Europe. Also expect ongoing model forecast volatility until the circulation anomalies associated with the PV disruption reaches the tropopause as we argue in my most recent paper Cohen et al. 2018.

One last thing that I feel may play an important role on the NH circulation are sea ice anomalies. For months I have been anticipating that the greatest sea ice anomalies this winter will be in the Barents-Kara Seas. That is quite apparent in today’s Figure 15. Typically blocking is focused across Greenland following a PV disruption. But abundant sea ice near Greenland and the lack of sea ice in the Barents-Kara Seas may help focus future high latitude blocking closer to Europe this winter. Strong Scandinavian/Barents-Kara Seas blocking may favor an eastward shift of the cold air across Europe. Cold air may drain into Eastern Europe but be blocked from Western Europe.

Finally, today from nullschool we can see the North Pacific twin gyres at work:



Several Alaskan kids are in the group suing the US government over fears of Arctic warming.  It’s looking like they may get relief from nature before it can come from the courts.



Going Where No Man-made Object Has Gone Before

This artist’s illustration obtained from NASA on December 21, 2018 shows the New Horizons spacecraft encountering 2014 MU69 nicknamed Ultima Thule a Kuiper Belt object that orbits over a billion kilometres beyond Pluto. (HO / AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

A potential New Year’s gift for all of us is in the works, and a Quebecer will be the key player.

The story comes from the Star Quebec’s Pelletier leads ‘farthest exploration of any planetary body in history’ Excerpts from article in italics with my bolds.

MONTREAL—Frederic Pelletier is boldly predicting he and his team will get the New Horizons spacecraft exactly where it should be on New Year’s Day — 1.6 billion kilometres beyond Pluto to rendezvous with a space rock known as Ultima Thule.

The goal of the NASA mission is to pass by the region known as the “Kuiper Belt” and send data back to Earth that can help explain the origins of the solar system. The flyby of Ultima Thule is being described by the space agency as the “farthest exploration of any planetary body in history.”

NASA says by exploring the region beyond Pluto, scientists can learn more about comets, small planets and other material dating back to the era when planets were formed — 4.5 billion years in the past.

By the time the New Horizons spacecraft makes its closest approach to Ultima Thule — scheduled for 12:33 a.m. eastern standard time on Jan. 1, 2019 — the vehicle will be 6.6 billion kilometres from Earth.

“It’s very difficult, we don’t have much information about (Ultima Thule),” Pelletier said in a recent interview with The Canadian Press. “I’m a bit nervous, but I feel confident … all the stars are aligned.”

NASA contracted Pelletier to be the chief navigator of the spacecraft for the New Horizons mission, whose original plan was to fly past Pluto. The team reached its goal when the vehicle successfully flew by the dwarf planet on July 14, 2015, and sent back data “that resulted in profound new insights about Pluto and its moons,” according to the space agency’s website.

The voyage beyond Pluto to the Kuiper Belt is part of the extended mission.

Pelletier and his eight-member team are responsible for delivering the spacecraft, which is the size of a baby grand piano, to the target.

It will fly by Ultima Thule at a distance of about 3,500 kilometres, going 14 kilometres a second — or 50,000 kilometres an hour. Pelletier compared it to a motorist inside a car who is trying to look at a lamppost.

“It’s going by real fast,” he said.

Pelletier said scientists estimate Ultima Thule to be about the same size as Washington D.C.

“It’s estimated to have a diameter of 30 kilometres right now,” Pelletier said. “We suspect that it’s not going to be spherical, that it’s going to have some weird shape to it. There’s also the possibility that it will be a binary asteroid — two objects touching each other or in close formation.”

What has made the task even more challenging for the Quebec City native is the fact that it takes six hours for the signal from Earth to reach the spacecraft and another six hours to return.

“So when we plan manoeuvres to do uplinks and updates, we need to take that into account,” Pelletier noted.

The New Horizons spacecraft blasted off Jan. 19, 2006, for its trip to Pluto, and since 2015, has been moving deeper into space. The mission is being hosted by Johns Hopkins University’s Applied Physical Laboratory in Laurel, Md., where Pelletier and his team are working.

Ultima Thule was first detected in 2014 using the Hubble Space Telescope, meaning the rock was only discovered after the New Horizons launch.

NASA says scientists estimate there are several hundred objects with a diameter longer than 30 kilometres waiting to be discovered in what’s known as “the third zone” of our solar system.

“I’m an explorer,” Pelletier said. “I love going to places (that are) unexplored — we’re on the edge of the solar system. The Kuiper Belt was only discovered in the 1990s.”

Until the Jan. 1 flyby, Pelletier will keep busy monitoring Ultima Thule, barely giving him time to celebrate his 44th birthday on Friday, Dec. 28.

But his wife and two boys, aged 9 and 12, will be flying up to Maryland to join him in the coming days.

Pelletier has worked on a number of other space missions, including the voyage the Cassini spacecraft took to Saturn, and he also participated in the Mars Curiosity landing.


I really like this story.  My only disappointment is the name of the rock could have been so much better.
uma world

Happy New Year Everyone,  May your 2019 Exceed Expectations!.



Clashing Climate Paradigms

Global Warming/Climate Change is not formally debated any more since early on such proceedings made audiences more skeptical of alarmist claims. Instead, mostly it is on comment threads that True Believers (TB) of AGW can be found jousting with Climate Realists (CR). I recently came upon one from earlier in 2018 that illuminated how these two worldviews compare and contrast regarding the planetary climate functioning. There were numerous participants on both sides (unusually rich interchange), so I will organize my synopsis as a dialogue between Believer and Realist comprised of text from various comments in italics with my bolds. This is a shortened extract of a very long thread focusing on those comments generating more light than heat.

Structuring this argument along the lines of a Platonic dialogue seems right, but also ironic because Plato invented idealism, the basic stance of True Believers. That is, Plato invested eternal verity into objects of the mind, like Good and Evil, Beauty and Justice. Whereas, Climate Sceptics subscribe to objective realism, thus see the natural world as operating by its own devices, independent of what we think or know about it. This interplay of theoretical versus empirical orientations manifests throughout the commentary. And like Plato’s dialogues, the discussion sometimes returns to previous topics and repeats information in another context, which can also be instructive.

The comments were triggered by a post at Discover Magazine Here’s what real science says about the role of CO2 as Earth’s preeminent climatic thermostat. The article by Tom Yulsman concluded:

Earth’s climate is clearly an incredibly complex system. And climate scientists have never contended that they’ve understood all the details, or that their current understanding isn’t subject to revision when new evidence comes along. This is why they continue to do their research – to improve our understanding of how one of Earth’s key life support systems works.

They’ve also never contended that CO2 is the sole factor driving climate changes over geologic history. As we’ve seen, however, it plays a key role: Without the CO2 thermostat, Earth would likely be a proverbial snowball.

And now, we humans have turned the thermostat up, with predictable results that we’re already observing — such as changes to permafrost in the Arctic that got me going on this post to begin with.

The article prompted responses such as these.

Realist: Yulsman correctly states that “scientists actually have long known that something other than CO2 sets thing in motion when Earth enters and emerges from ice ages: shifts in solar radiation …” and “The bottom line is that a change in amount of solar energy reaching Earth may get things going”.

But he is just speculating when he goes on to say “but it’s CO2 that plays the dominant role”, because there is no empirical evidence that is true. It’s just the assumption of the CO2 hypothesis. The real world data shows is not true, as the 1940-1970 global cooling essentially reversed the 1910-1940 warming even though CO2 steadily increased from 1940-1970, and as there has been no CO2-induced warming over the last ~2 decades, even though human CO2 increase has been even higher during the most recent two decades.

There is much more evidence that H2O is the “thermostat”, as the Ramanathan 1981 paper cited below finds, ie., high SST during El Ninos causes more high cirrus clouds which regulate the max SST by blocking solar radiation.

Clouds, made of H2O, are the thermostat. When warming occurs this causes more clouds which reduces solar radiation reaching the surface to prevent ‘runaway’ warming. A negative feedback keeping the temperature within a limited range. When cooling occurs this causes fewer clouds which increases solar radiation reaching the surface to prevent ‘runaway’ cooling. Again, a negative feedback keeping he temperature within a limited range.

There is no physical reason that this cloud/water vapor negative feedback would stop working if there was no CO2 in the atmosphere. So Yulsman’s claim “if water vapor would rain out the result would be a very dramatic cooling” is wrong. If water vapor were to rain out, there would be fewer clouds and more solar radiation would reach the earth’s surface causing warming. It would never drive to an icehouse climate.

Believer: So you’re basically accusing the author of this article of fraud, if he’s perpetuating a “hoax,” as you call the well-established scientific principle that human greenhouse gas emissions are contributing to rising average global temperatures. Exactly what evidence would you use to support such a radical assertion?

Realist:  “well-established scientific principle that human greenhouse gas emissions are contributing to rising average global temperatures.”
What a mouthful. However, it isn’t ‘well established” (although it is widely believed that it is…)
…There is no observational evidence linking Mannkind’s burning of fossil fuels, and planetary warming. None. There are lots of big computer models that generate the appearance of “evidence” … but this is imaginary, existing only in the output of the models. Look a little deeper, and you’ll find large flaws in those models.

Believer: Wrong, as the article above, and over a century of scientific knowledge of carbon dioxide’s properties has shown. Please discuss the “flaws” in this science, if you’re so certain otherwise.

Realist: Trenberth, Fasullo, & Balmaseda 2014: ”All estimates (OHC and TOA) show that over the past decade, the energy imbalance ranges between about 0.5 and 1 W/㎡.

The concept of “Global Warming” is the supposed imbalance of Earth heat gain, and heat loss, measured in Watts per square metre of the Earth surface. In no particular order:

L’Ecuyer 2015 0.45 W/㎡, Trenberth and pals, 2009: 0.9 W/㎡; Stephens 2012: 0.6W/㎡; Lyman 2010: 0.64 ± 0.11 W/㎡; Hansen 2011: 0.8 ± 0.2 W/㎡; Loeb 2012: 0.5 ± 0.43 W/㎡; Allan 2014: 0.34 ± 0.67 W/㎡ from 1985 to 1999 and 0.62 ± 0.43 W/㎡ from 2000 to 2012; Dieng: 0.75 ± 0.52 W/㎡; Levitus 2009: 0.57 W/㎡; Llovel 2014: 0.67 ± 0.43 W/㎡; Wild 2017: 0.60 W/㎡; Johnson 2012 0.48 W/㎡; Church 2011 ~0.4 W/㎡ …von Schuckmann and Le Traon, 2011: 0.55 ± 0.1 W/㎡, so, about ½ Watt per square metre.

Schwartz 2008: ”Comparison with the natural greenhouse effect of about 300 W/m^2 … shows that this enhancement [greenhouse gas forcing] is well less than 1%.”

Wielicki 2013: ”Climate change, however, consists of very small changes in distributions of geophysical variables … Typical decadal changes are much less than 1% and clearly are small perturbations.”

Ollila 2014: “The changes are so small that they can be analyzed only by computational methods.”

Wick, Gary 2016: ”These climate change signals … are far below any expected observational accuracy globally or in polar regions. … .”

All these high-level climate scientists are telling you that these ‘Climate Change’ signals are really small… far below observational accuracy, can only be analyzed by computational methods, consisting of very small changes, much less than 1% … These folks are telling you that, in the twenty-first century. What “century of scientific knowledge” do you have, that these above-mentioned, high-level climate scientists have missed?

Believer: Very close to 1C surface warming in 137 years is substantial and very fast warming. There is no denying that.

Oceans heat content steadily increasing, with temps increasing as deep as 2,000 meters.
Season changing, shorter winters
Arctic rapidly losing sea ice and land ice on Greenland
Agricultural growing zones shifting north in northern hemisphere
Sea level rising

Realist: “Slight warming?”
Yes, slight warming over the last half of the 20th century, which is the only warming the IPCC claims is primarily human-caused. The satellite data shows that there has only been ~0.5C and most of that has been natural, due to El Nino and more solar radiation reaching the earth’s surface.
“is VERY fast warming”
There have been many previous natural warmings with greater rates of warming and greater absolute warming than recent warming of less than 1C/century, such as the following:
– 250 yrs BP 106yr natural warming of >1.5C/century
– 400 yrs BP 103yr natural warming of >1.5C/century
– 1600 yrs BP 119yr natural warming of >1.25C/century
– 2585 yrs BP 84yr natural warming of 2.0C/century
– 2760 yrs BP 90yr natural warming of 2.2C/century
– 2980 yrs BP 133yr natural warming of 1.5C/century
– 3511 yrs BP 89yr natural warming of 1.3C/century
– 4880 yrs BP 94yr natural warming of 1.5C/century
– 6385 yrs BP 98yr natural warming of 1.9C/century
– 8226 yrs BP 91yr natural warming of 3.2C/century
– 10.3K yrs BP 97yr natural warming of 1.9C/century
– 74.7K yrs BP 167yr natural warming of 1.3C/century
– 78.4K yrs BP 160yr natural warming of 1.9C/century
– 80.2K yrs BP 153yr natural warming of 1.8C/century
– 82.4K yrs BP 139yr natural warming of 1.7C/century
– 90.1K yrs BP 155yr natural warming of 1.3C/century
– 102K yrs BP 65yr natural warming of 1.4C/century
– 127K yrs BP 102yr natural warming of 1.3C/century
– 129K yrs BP 162yr natural warming was 1.9C/century
Sources: Mulvaney(2012) and this report

Believer: And you are saying the Earth’s energy balance change is not enough?
Offsetting some of the increased greenhouse effect from our emissions is human emissions of aerosols, having a cooling effect.

Then there is the fact that the net effect of all natural factors would have cooled the planet over the last 50 plus years, if not for our emissions.
Foster & Rahmstorf 2011
Lean and Rind 2008
and other attribution studies

Realist: All of the above, fast warming, OHC, shorter winters, ice loss, agricultural zones moving poleward, rising sea level … These are all just different manifestations of one single fact … It’s a bit warmer. These are not independent, separate facts … they are just one.
Trenberth, Fasullo, & Balmaseda 2014: ”Rising surface temperatures are just one manifestation. Melting Arctic sea ice is another.”
Shepherd, T, 2014: ”…surface temperature, upper-ocean heat content, sea level, Arctic sea-ice extent, glaciers, Northern Hemisphere snow cover, large-scale precipitation patterns (especially as reflected in ocean salinity), and temperature extremes (Figure 1a,b). All these global indicators are physically linked in a direct way to the first on the list, surface temperature, …”
von Schuckmann 2016: ”…global temperature rise, increased [ocean heat content], sea level rise, and the acceleration of the hydrological cycle (Fig. 2b). These are all symptoms of [Earth’s energy imbalance].”
this, theorized, energy imbalance has been quantified as about ½W/㎡. Beyond small, that is tiny. Relative to the average sunshine striking Earth … (½÷340)=0.001471 ≈0.15%
No, what I’m saying is that the imbalance is tiny. Too small for any direct measurement.

Believer: Every year since 2001 was warmer than any year in the 20th century, with the sole exception of 1998. – Globally 15 of the warmest years on record were in the last 16 years.

Realist: CO2’s “properties” are a “push” in the warming direction. Ramanathan 1981: ”Increasing CO2, while fixing all the other climatic parameters and variables, will cause a radiative heating of the surface-troposphere system.”

the trouble is, however, “fixing” all the other variables and parameters in place. Things change.

Plass 1956: ”The most recent calculations of the infra-red flux in the region of the 15 micron CO2 band show that the average surface temperature of the earth increases 3.6° C if the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is doubled, and decreases 3.8°C if the CO2 amount is halved, provided that no other factors change which influence the radiation balance.”

Plass 1956 didn’t warn us, just once. He told us, three different ways, three different phrases … Did you listen? “It is assumed that nothing else changes that affects the radiation balance when the CO2 amount varies.”

” It is also assumed here that no other factors change at the same time which can influence the radiation balance.”

Believer: There are about a half dozen peer reviewed attribution studies showing that the net effect of ALL natural climate forcings and feedbacks, as well as effects of solar and ENSO cycles, since 1960, would have Cooled the Planet, if not for human emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases.

Foster and Rahmstorf (2011) is one such study.

Lean and Rind (2008)
“None of the natural processes can account for the overall warming trend in global surface temperatures. In the 100 years from 1905 to 2005, the temperature trends produce by all three natural influences are at least an order of magnitude smaller than the observed surface temperature trend reported by IPCC [2007].”

According to this analysis, solar forcing contributed negligible long-term warming in the past 25 years and 10% of the warming in the past 100 years”

{Skeptical Science}

Realist: Believer, I want you to think for yourself. Please stop typing what SkS has written. Read the real science papers, take notes, quote the paper (not SkS) and provide citations. I won’t send you to What’s Up, please stop prattling on with SkS text.

Feel free to read the papers I quote. SkS is all backed up by selective choice of papers. You’ll not see many of the papers that I quote from, on SkS. That means, when real science has a disagreement, or a correction, SkS just lets that slide. Then again, I wouldn’t expect you to find and read those papers … so, read the references you find at SkS, and quote the reference paper … not the SkS text, please. Assemble your own thoughts, and support them with quotations from the papers.

Lean & Rind 2008, and the “none of the natural processes…” has several monstrously large flaws. The biggest, is that it is discussing the flawed computer models …these are known knowns, thorny problems that continue into CMIP6. But the second, is that not all the natural processes have been considered. These are known unknowns. Oh, and then, there are the unknown, unknowns.

As I was perusing the paper, Lean & Rind 2008: Influences on Surface Temperatures, I noticed the authors started off with a grand summary. In it, they mentioned, ”An exhaustive model- based study concludes that increasing anthropogenic gas concentrations (GHGs and tropospheric aerosols) produced 0.3–0.5 K per century warming over the 1906–1996 period, and are the dominant cause of global surface warming after 1976 [Allen et al., 2006].”

If some empirical, observational evidence, of this anthropogenic warming, existed prior to their publication in 2008, don’t you think that this review, would have mentioned it? …but, all they mentioned in this review, was this exhaustive model-based study by Allen 2006.
Lean, Judith L., and David H. Rind 2008. “How natural and anthropogenic influences alter global and regional surface temperatures: 1889 to 2006.” Geophysical Research Letters

Believer: Lean and Rind is one of several studies with the same conclusions. Of course, you believe climate models are not valid tools, which is nonsense.

Knutti and Huber is another such study

“Our results show that it is extremely likely that at least 74% of the observed warming since 1950 was caused by radiative forcings, and less than 26% by unforced internal variability.

Of the forced signal during that particular period, 102% (90–116%) is due to anthropogenic and 1% (−10 to 13%) due to natural forcing…. The combination of those results with attribution studies based on optimal fingerprinting, with independent constraints on the magnitude of climate feedbacks, with process understanding, as well as paleoclimate evidence leads to an even higher confidence about human influence dominating the observed temperature increase since pre-industrial times.”
To test whether recent warming might just be down to a random swing in Earth’s unstable climate — another theory favoured by sceptics — Knutti and Huber conducted a series of control runs of different climate models without including the effects of the energy-budget parameters. But even if climate variability were three times greater than that estimated by state-of-the-art models, it is extremely unlikely to have produced a warming trend as pronounced as that observed in the real world, they found.

Realist: “you believe that climate models are not valid tools, which is nonsense.”

Climate models are not empirical data. They merely output what is programmed into them, and we know that what is programmed into them is wrong because 95% of them predict too much warming, and because they can’t project global temperature at even the 2% confidence level, “we find that the continued warming stagnation of fifteen years, 1998-2012, is no longer consistent with model projections even at the 2% confidence level” – vonStorch(2013).

Knutti and Hueber is climate model based:

“based on a massive ensemble of simulations with a medium-complexity climate model we demonstrate…” – Huber & Knutti(2011) ‘Anthropogenic and natural warming inferred from changes in Earth’s energy balance’   And the only solar they use is at ToA, and do not include the amount of solar radiation reaching the surface, which invalidates that study as attempting to attribute warming to CO2 versus solar radiation.

There are no peer reviewed papers that empirically show that anthropogenic CO2 was the primary cause of the late 20th century warming like climate alarmists claim.

Believer: “Climate models are not empirical data. They merely output what is programmed into them, and we know that what is programmed into them is wrong because 95% of them predict too much warming”

Patently FALSE
The models do NOT show too much warming, except when deniers cherry pick their projection for worst case emissions scenarios and ignore the other one or two scenarios used in the models. In fact the projections are spot on when looked at honestly

Realist: “The models do NOT show too much warming . . .”
Patently FALSE. A scientist who is not a denier, but a believer in your CAGW-by-CO2 climate alarmism wrote a paper which confirmed that 98% of the latest CMIP5 climate models predict too much warming.

“we find that the continued warming stagnation of fifteen years, 1998-2012, is no longer consistent with model projections even at the 2% confidence level … for the 15-year trend interval corresponding to the latest observation period 1998-2012, only 2% of the 62 CMIP5 and less than 1% of the 189 CMIP3 trend computations are as low as or lower than the observed trend.” – vonStorch(2013) ‘Can climate models explain the recent stagnation in global warming?’
“In fact the projections are spot on when looked at honestly”

Patently FALSE. That warmist scientist confirmed that 61 of the 62 CMIP climate models predicted too much warming.

And that warmist scientist’s paper confirmed that Dr. Roy Spencer’s graph was correct. And there was no cherry-picking by Roy Spencer, because he evaluated 90 CMIP5 models, ~50% more than vonStorch did!

You are just denying reality, evidently because of your ideological blindness and/or your inflexible belief in your climate alarmism belief system/religion.

Believer: “Later in the documentary he meets with climate scientist Hans von Storch, astrophysicist Piers Corbyn and physicist Freeman Dyson. Those in the loop will immediately recognize that this is not at all a fair representation of the scientific debate, but rather provides a very skewed vision thereof by emphasizing outlier views that are demonstrably false.”

Realist: “outlier views that are demonstrably false”
That’s exactly what your CO2-causes-global-warming view is: demonstrably false.

From 1940 to the 1970s, humans added 350 billion tons of CO2 to the atmosphere, twice as much as had been added prior to 1940, the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere increased, yet global temperatures decreased by as much as they had increased since 1900. This is according to data from the U.S. National Center of Atmospheric Research:

When you add twice as much human CO2 to the atmosphere in 3 decades than had been added in the entirety of human history before that and the global temperature goes down by as much as it had increased over the previous 4 decades, that is irrefutable real world empirical data showing that CO2 does NOT cause global warming.

Why do you believe in a falsified CatastrophicAGW-by-CO2 hypothesis when there isn’t a single peer reviewed paper in existence which empirically shows that anthropogenic CO2 was the primary cause of the late 20th century warming like your climate alarmism religion says?

It’s just not rational.

Believer: That is because industrialization, before and after WWII, also greatly increased emissions of sulfur aerosols that cool the planet. When we put pollution controls on everything, those emissions were greatly reduced. This made the greenhouse gas warming stand out, which is why the warming increased after about 1975.

Those aerosols have a short resident time in the atmosphere of a few years. So it didn’t take long for their cooling effect to be greatly reduced.
The CO2 from back then is still in the atmosphere and will be for hundreds of years.

In fact, daily minimum temperatures rose during mid century cooling, even while daily maximum temps decreased.
“Solar activity increased during that period, and of course greenhouse gases were also already on the rise – in fact already in the 1930s Callendar attributed warming to rising CO2 in the air. The “hump” during WW2 (which includes the subsequent cooling) is only in the SST data and not the land temperatures, so for that I suspect there is still some uncorrected issues in the SST data sets. It is well-known that methods of SST data collection changed during this time.” – stefan at Real Climate

Realist: Sorry, but that BS failed excuse doesn’t fly. Even the IPCC admits that aersols from humans in the lower troposphere are washed out in a few days with rain, and don’t impact global climate:

“Aerosols undergo physical and chemical transformations in the atmosphere, especially within clouds, and are removed largely by precipitation. Consequently aerosols in the lower troposphere typically have residence times of a few days.”- IPCC, SAR, WG1, p.20
In the 1940s-1970s they were too insignificant to have global impact. The only aerosols that can cause a global impact are volcanic aerosols that reach the stratosphere and are there for a year or two, and they only cause a small cooling, not the several tenths of a degree C that happened in the 1940-1970s, while the amount of human CO2 added to he atmosphere TRIPLED. Clear refutation of your CO2 causes global warming hypothesis.
Your argument totally fails.

“The CO2 in the atmosphere from back then is still in the atmosphere and will be for hundreds of years.”
No, you are just repeating the false propaganda of your climate cult religion that was made up out of whole cloth by the IPCC as they denied the peer reviewed science and made up their 100-200 year claim. Here is the peer reviewed science that they ignored:
“in fact already in the 1930s Callendar attributed warming to rising CO2 in the air.”
Callendar was also making an evidence-free claim, confirmed by his own 1938 paper. In that paper he admitted that few scientists at that time held that human CO2 could have “any influence” on our climate and weather.

“Few of those familiar with the natural heat exchanges of the atmosphere, which go into makings of our climate and weather, would be prepared to admit that activities of man could have any influence on phenomena of so vast a scale. … It is well known that the gas carbon dioxide has certain strong absorption bands in the infra-red region of the spectrum, and when this fact was discovered some 70 years ago it soon led to speculation on the effect which changes in the amount of the gas in the air could have on the temperature of the earth’s surface. In view of the much larger quantities and absorbing power of atmospheric water vapour it was concluded that the effect of carbon dioxide was probably negligible.” – Callendar(1938) ‘The Artificial Production of Carbon Dioxide and its Influence on Temperature’

Since rates of human carbon dioxide release in the atmosphere were constantly increasing, Callendar expected that global temperature would increase during the next 20 years and would show that the CO2 hypothesis to be correct:

“The course of world temperatures during the next twenty years should afford valuable evidence as to the accuracy of the calculated effect of atmospheric carbon dioxide.” – ibid
In the next 30 years after Callendar’s paper, humans added more CO2 to the atmosphere than ever before. But the empirical data of temperatures over the next 30 years after Callendar’s 1938 paper showed that global temperature decreased by ~0.7C over the next 30 years:

So we see that the Arrhenius/Chamberlain /Callendar CO2 hypothesis failed the real world test, because global temperatures decreased over the next 30 years after Calander’s prediction, even though humans added over 2 times the total amount of human CO2 between 1938-1968 than had been added before 1938.

During that period of global cooling we come to 1951, where the world’s leading climatologists and meteorologists documented the then-current state-of-the-art climate science in the American Meteorological Society’s 1951 Compendium on Meteorology.

“The purpose of the Compendium of Meteorology is to take stock of the present position of meteorology, to summarize an appraise the knowledge which untiring research has been able to wrest from nature during past years, and to indicate the avenues of further studies and research which need to be explored in order to extend the frontiers of our knowledge.” – American Meteorology Society’s 1951 Compendium on Meteorology, Preface, p.v
It was in this state of climate science report that the world’s leading climate scientists and meteorologists stated that the CO2 hypothesis was never widely held and had been abandoned:

“Arrhenius and Chamberlain saw in this [variations in carbon dioxide] a cause of climate changes, but the theory was never widely accepted and was abandoned when it was found that all the long-wave radiation absorbed by CO2 is also absorbed by water vapor. In the past hundred years burning coal has increased the amount of CO2 by a measurable amount (from 0.28 to 0,30 percent), and Callendar [7] sees in this an explanation of the recent rise in global temperature. But during the last 7000 years there have been greater fluctuations in temperature without the intervention of man, and there seems to be no reason to regard the recent rise as more than a coincidence. This theory is not considered further. – American Meteorology Society’s 1951 Compendium on Meteorology, p.1016
You have swallowed the fake revisionist history that he peddlers of your CAGW-by-CO2 climate alarmism religion have fed you.

Believer: “The current warming trend is of particular significance because most of it is extremely likely (greater than 95 percent probability) to be the result of human activity since the mid-20th century and proceeding at a rate that is unprecedented over decades to millennia.

Earth-orbiting satellites and other technological advances have enabled scientists to see the big picture, collecting many different types of information about our planet and its climate on a global scale. This body of data, collected over many years, reveals the signals of a changing climate.

The heat-trapping nature of carbon dioxide and other gases was demonstrated in the mid-19th century. Their ability to affect the transfer of infrared energy through the atmosphere is the scientific basis of many instruments flown by NASA. There is no question that increased levels of greenhouse gases must cause the Earth to warm in response.

Ice cores drawn from Greenland, Antarctica, and tropical mountain glaciers show that the Earth’s climate responds to changes in greenhouse gas levels. Ancient evidence can also be found in tree rings, ocean sediments, coral reefs, and layers of sedimentary rocks. This ancient, or paleoclimate, evidence reveals that current warming is occurring roughly ten times faster than the average rate of ice-age-recovery warming.”

“Overall, Foster and Rahmstorf (2011) find that ENSO has the largest impact on short-term temperature variations, followed by volcanic activity, with solar irradiance a distant third. However, the contributions of each factor to the 32-year temperature trends were very similar (Table 2, Figure 2). …..These factors contributed to very slight cooling of global temperatures over the past 32 years”

Realist: “and solar irradiance a distant third”
That’s only considering the change in TSI at ToA before it enters the earth’s climate atmosphere/ocean/land system. What is important to global temperature is how much of that solar radiation reaches the earth’s surface. This has been known in peer reviewed science for decades:

“It follows from the analysis of observation data that the secular variation in the mean temperature of the Earth can be explained by the variation of shortwave radiation arriving at the surface of the Earth.” – Budyko(1969) ‘The effect of solar radiation variations on the climate of the Earth’
And the amount of solar radiation reaching the earth’s surface increased by 2.7W/m² to 6.8W/m² during the late 20th century warming. This is documented in the following peer reviewed science:

“Significant increasing trends in DSR [DownwardSurface Radiation] and net DSR fluxes were found, equal to 4.1 and 3.7 Wm⁻², respectively, over the 1984-2000 period (equivalent to 2.4 and 2.2Wm⁻² per decade), indicating an increasing surface solar radiative heating. This surface SW radiative heating is primarily attributed to clouds” –
Title: ‘Global distribution of Earth’s surface shortwave budget’
Author: N. Hatzianastassiou, et.al.
Journal: Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics
DoP: 01 Nov 2005
SRef-ID: 1680-7324/acp/2005-5-2847

“The decrease in the Earth’s reflectance from 1984 to 2000 suggested by Fig. 4, translates into a Bond albedo decrease of 0.02 (out of a nominal value of about 0.30) or an additional global shortwave forcing of 6.8W/m².”
Title: ‘Shortwave forcing of the Earth’s climate: Modern and historical variations in the Sun’s irradiance and Earth’s reflectance’
Author, P.R. Goode, E. Pallé
DoP: Sept 2007
DOI: 10.1016/j.jastp.2007.06.011

“Long term variations in solar radiation at the Earth’s surface (S) can affect our climate … We observed an overall increase in S from 1983 to 2001 at a rate of 0.16 W per square meter (0.10%) per year … the observed changes in radiation budget are caused by changes in mean tropical cloudiness, which is detected in the satellite observations but fails to be predicted by several current climate models.” –
Title: ‘Do Satellites Detect Trends in Surface Solar Radiation?’
Author: R.T. Pinker, et al.
Journal: Science
DoP: 6 May 2005
DOI: 10.1126/science.1103159
(0.16W/m²/yr x 18 years=2.88W/m² for 1983-2001)

“Applying a 3.6% cloud reflectivity perturbation to the shortwave energy balance partitioning given by Trenberth et al. (2009) corresponds to an increase of 2.7 Wm⁻² of solar energy reaching the Earth’s surface and an increase of 2.4 Wm⁻² absorbed by the surface.” –
Title: ‘A net decrease in the Earth’s cloud, aerosol, and surface 340 nm reflectivity during the past 33 yr (1979-2011)’
Author: J. Herman, et al.,
Journal: Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics
DoP: 27 Aug 2013
DOI: 10.5194/acp-13-8505-2013

“The temperature pattern for the period 1988-1997 appears to be generally consistent with the 7% reduction in total cloud cover that occurred across the period 1987-1999. Applying that reduction to the influence of clouds in the energy budget described by Trenberth et al. [34] results in an increased average solar forcing at the Earth’s surface of about 5 Wm⁻². This increase is more than double the IPCC’s estimated radiative forcing from all anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases. … Conclusions Since 1950, global average temperature anomalies have been driven firstly, from 1950 to 1987, by a sustained shift in ENSO conditions, by reductions in total cloud cover (1987 to late 1990s) and then a shift from low cloud to mid and high-level cloud, with both changes in cloud cover being very widespread. According to the energy balance described by Trenberth et al. (2009) [34], the reduction in total cloud cover accounts for the increase in temperature since 1987, leaving little, if any, of the temperature change to be attributed to other forcings.” –
Title: ‘Late Twentieth-Century Warming and Variations in Cloud Cover’
Author: John McLean
Journal: Atmospheric and Climate Sciences
DoP: October 24, 2014
DOI: 10.4236/acs.2014.44066
The alleged increase in CO2 forcing during that time period was only ~0.5W/m². Clear empirical evidence that the late 20th century was overwhelmingly natural, not caused by human CO2.

Believer: I went to Skeptical Science and asked for clarification on the issues you brought up about CO2 increase mostly being natural, and clouds changes increasing solar energy.

Here are the responses

comment by Eclectic:

“The natural organic Carbon Cycle at the surface has been in mildly-fluctuating equilibrium for millions of years. Fossil CO2 (as represented by the approximately “4%” ) is a cumulative addition to the surface Carbon Cycle. Hence the AGW.

The friend appears to be suggesting that the solar radiation incidence increased significantly and/or the Earth’s cloud layer has become significantly less reflective, during the 20th Century.
Both such suggestions are unsupported by the evidence.”

Comment by MA Rodger

” the egregious CO2 cycle nonsense in Harde (2017) has been rebutted at RealClimate and in the literature by Köhler et al (2017). The paper itself still sits for unsuspecting fools to feed from courtesy of the heatland of fiction-creation the Heartland Institute which pretty-much says it all.

Realist: “I went to Skeptical Science…”
There’s your problem. You will never get honest science from a dishonest propaganda website for climate alarmism. The “About Skeptical Science” webpage admitted: “I’m not a climatatologist or a scientist but a self-employed cartoonist and web programmer by trade.” –

Now on to expose the false claims that you got from SkS commenters.
1st false statement by Eclectic: “The natural organic Carbon Cycle at the surface has been in mildly fluctuating equilibrium for millions of years”. Totally false, as over millions of years the natural level of CO2 has varied from a few hundred ppm to 7,000ppm.

2nd false statement by Eclectic: “Fossil CO2 (as represented by the approximately “4%”) is a cumulative addition to the surface Carbon Cycle.” Totally false, because the natural CO2 sinks can not discriminate between natural and human FF CO2 and only sequester the natural CO2, leaving the excess consisting only of human FF CO2. There is no physical process by which that can happen. What really happens is that there is 96% natural and 4% human CO2 in the well mixed atmosphere. 98% of that mixture is sequestered each year, leaving a residual made up of 96% natural and 4% human CO2, to which the next year’s 96% natural and 4% human CO2 is added, which still makes the mixture 96% natural and 4% human, then 98% of that is sequestered away leaving a residual that is still 96% natural and 4% human, and on and on and on, and as far as you go, the atmosphere is made up of 96% natural and 4% human CO2.

MA Rodger’s 1st false claim is that Kohler(2017) refuted Harde(2017). It did not because it was fatally flawed with its assumption that atmospheric CO2 would be constant without a human pertubation. Harde(2017) has not been retracted. It stands unrefuted inspite of flawded attack pieces like Kohler(2017). Rodger is counting on scientifically illiterate people swallowing his whopper false claims.

MA Rodger next writes a lot of words, NONE of which refute the empirical data which shows that there was 2.7W/m to 6.8W/m more “energy in” to the climate system during the late 20th century.

MA Rodger’s 2nd false claim is that “but the actual values for global warming are measured at the top of the atmosphere”. That is patently false, as what matters is how much solar radiation enters the atmosphere and is transferred to the surface. THAT is the only thing that transfers heat/thermal energy to surface & into the oceans.

The absurdity of Rodger’s claim is seen by a simple example. Assume the TSI at ToA is constant for two decades. During the first decade assume that the earth’s albedo is 37%. Then during the second decade assume the albedo changes to 0%. According to Rodgers it wouldn’t impact the global mean temperature because the TSI at ToA was unchanged. That’s ludicrous. The ludicrousness is also seen if the albedo would have changed to 100% so that no net solar radiation would have reached the surface. Again, according to Rodger, the global temperature wouldn’t have changed because the TSI at ToA didn’t change.

Then Rodger goes on to make an OWN GOAL when he brings up Ocean Heat Content. He claims that OHC is a more reliable measure and says that the increases in OHC “are those to be expected by AGW”. That is totally false because the only physical mechanism which can transfer heat/thermal energy into the oceans is solar radiation. And since the climate alarmist admit that 93% of global warming is observed in the increase in OHC, they are admitting that global warming is natural, not human-caused, because there is no physical mechanism by which CO2 in the cold atmosphere can transfer heat/thermal energy into the warmer surface of the ocean.

Believer: Realist, I feel you go beyond the bounds of respectability, even here deep in a Disqus thread. For an unreconstructed AGW denialist, you throw your words around as liberally as your citations. Yet your account is not in any way representative of what you describe. That makes you an untrustworthy source of anything.

You insist CO2 has not been in rough natural equilibrium for millions of years. Yet the last time atmopheric CO2 topped 400ppm (as it has done within just the last three years) was probably 14 million years ago (with an outside chance of it recurring briefly 3 million years ago). And within 40 years that could be 500ppm and a 25million year record falling. You however talk of ” the natural level of CO2 has varied from a few hundred ppm to 7,000ppm” with no time-scale. Of course, such a variation can be seen to have happened in a matter of seconds, having occurred once over millions of billions of second. Your response to the world is saying “High CO2? That’s alright. CO2 has been much-much-much higher, right here on Earth (before animals existed).”

You defend the egregious nonsense of Harde (2017) by saying it has not been “retracted”. That is true. Harde has not admitted that the nonsense-first-class he presented was an abomination. The actual state of play is that Wilde’s attempt to respond to Köhler et al (2017) was refused as it was as nonsensical as his original offerings. And the journal has now reviewed its procedures to prevent such an abomination happening again.

You then accuse me of a “false claim” (a second one apparently) and back this up by ignoring all Top-of-the-Atmosphere measurement bar incoming solar radiation. Are you crazy suggesting this is my meaining? Think of the implications of what you set out. How could anyone accept AGW if the only factor in play was TOA TSI? You are crazy!!

And why would the reliability of OHC measurement have any connection with the drivers of OHC? Oh, I forget. I read the words of a total moron. “…there is no physical mechanism by which CO2 in the cold atmosphere can transfer heat/thermal energy into the warmer surface of the ocean.there is no physical mechanism by which CO2 in the cold atmosphere can transfer heat/thermal energy into the warmer surface of the ocean.” You’re a complete muppet. You’re a SkyDragonSlayer!!!

Yet you insist you are a mere messenger who sets out peer-reviewed literature, like Wilde (2017) perhaps, or even Budyko (1969), who by-the-way was talking ice ages and not AGW. Mind, if you believe “What is important to global temperature is how much of that solar radiation reaches the earth’s surface.” and if you insist “This has been known in peer reviewed science for decades.”, do you have something more recent that a 1969 reference? (Interestingly Budyko is usually mentioned as modelling a climate with an excessively high climate sensitivity, something which denialists argue as being tiny-tiny-tiny. That’s probably why they tend not to be so stupid as to cite Budyko. But for you, Budyko is a bit of a favourite.)

Realist: “I feel that you go beyond the bounds of respectability, even here in a Disqus thread”
I’m sorry you feel that posting cites and quotes from peer reviewed empirical science and explaining people’s fallacious arguments is beyond the bounds of respectability. I suspect the real issue is that the science that I have presented is contrary to your deeply held climate beliefs and it disturbs you that deep down you know that your beliefs are not supportable by empirical science.

Your baseless name calling weakens your case before you even begin. I haven’t denied anything that is supported by empirical science. But you are obviously denying the peer reviewed science which I have presented which shows that the late 20th century warming was caused primarily by natural climate forcing, because the only “energy in” to the climate system increased by 2.7W/m² to 6.8W/m², which was ~10 times greater than the increase in CO2 forcing during that same time frame. Why do you deny that when the only “energy in” to the climate system increases significantly, it is clear evidence for the cause of warming? That’s not rational. It’s a denial of reality. So it appears that you were projecting on your “denialist” accusation.

“Yet the last time atmospheric CO2 topped 400ppm … was probably 14 million years ago”
Peer reviewed science reveals that is a false claim. Beck(2007), http://disq.us/url?url=http… , documents hundreds of direct atmospheric CO2 measurements greater than 400ppm, taken from 180 published technical papers written between 1812 and 1961. And he documents the cherry picking of Callendar which rejected any high CO2 measurements which didn’t fit their CO2 narrative. This cherry-picking is documented in Fig.1 from Fonselius(1956):

Fig 1. Average atmospheric CO2 concentrations measured in the 19th and 20th centuries. Encircled are the values used by Callendar. Redrawn after Fonselius et al. 1956

Your RealClimate article on Harde(2017) was just snipe and gripe and refuted no science from Harde’s paper. About what you would expect from a PR website created to promote your climate alarmism.

“but the important thing is that they are losing the PR battle. That’s what the site is about. By the way, did Gavin come up with the name? … Mike”[Mann] … “Got the email about realclimate from Gavin… Phil Jones” – climategate email #1485

And your histrionics doesn’t change the fact that you made a ridiculous claim: “The changes in these energy fluxes are large but the actual values for global warming are measured at the top of atmosphere and such large levels of warming are not present”. Your clear intention was to dismiss the increase in solar radiation at the surface by claiming that the TSI at TOA was not large. No amount of handwaving on your part can change that.

I made a scientifically correct statement that solar radiation is the only physical mechanism that transfers heat into the ocean. That is supported by Columbia University:

“Sea-air heat exchange … On average the ocean is about 1 or 2 degrees warmer than the atmosphere so on average ocean heat is transferred from ocean to atmosphere by conduction. …
Solar heating of the ocean on a global average is 168 watts per square meter. …
Net back radiation cools the ocean, on a global average by 66 watts per square meter. …
On global average the oceanic heat loss by conduction is only 24 watts per square meter. …
On global average the heat loss by evaporation is 78 watts per square meter. …” – Columbia Univ. Earth & Environ. Science Lecture, ‘Ocean-Atmosphere Coupling’, http://eesc.columbia.edu/co…
Get that? The only ocean-atmosphere heat exchange process that adds heat to the ocean is solar radiation. Why deny reality. It only destroys your credibility, which is already in shambles.

“Budyko (1969) who by-the-way was talking ice ages and not AGW.”
Strawman. I never said it was talking about AGW. Budyko(1969) was not limited to glaciations, as it stated: “Thus it seems probable that present changes of the Earth’s temperature are determined mainly the atmospheric transparency variations“. Your attempt to dismiss Budyko fail.

“Do you have something more recent that[sic] a 1969 reference?”

Really? You need a cite to confirm the fact that the amount of SW solar radiation entering the climate system, most of which arrives at the surface, is the most important factor in determining global temperature? Al, solar radiation is the only “energy-in” to the climate system, just as the previously cited Ozawa(2003) paper showed in its Fig.5(a). That’s the only reference you need, even though there are countless others.

Believer: When you tell me ”the only physical mechanism which can transfer heat/thermal energy into the oceans is solar radiation” this can be considered in one of two ways. (1) The only thing of consequence that is warming the oceans is “the sun’s radiation” but this is rather sweeping and I assume it is not your intended meaning. (2) The energy entering the oceans comes from the sun directly in the form of solar radiation being absorbed by the water. That is untrue but appears to be your meaning. What a shambles you appear to create? By listing heat fluxes from a CU webpage you seem to be continuing with (2). Is this (2) what you intend to mean?

Realist: Al just handwaved to deny the scientific fact that solar radiation is the only physical mechanism that transfers heat into the ocean. Notice that he failed to offer any other physical mechanism that transferred heat into the oceans. Notice that he ignored the Columbia Univ. Lecture that I quoted from which confirmed my statement on ocean warming was true. In his handwaving he stated and dismissed two things that are in fact true:
(1) “The only thing of consequence that is warming the oceans is “the sun’s radiation”.” He dismissed that by saying it is rather sweeping, which it is, but it’s true.
(2) “The energy entering the oceans comes from the sun directly in the form of solar radiation being absorbed by the water. That is also true and exactly what I meant. NOAA confirms that sun is what transfers heat into the oceans in a webpage on “Layers of the ocean”:

“This surface layer is called the sunlight zone and extends from the surface to 200 meters (660 feet). … With the light comes heating from the sun.” – https://web.archive.org/web…

Note that this NOAA reference says nothing about ‘backradiation from the cold atmosphere transferring any heat into the ocean, which is the claim of climate alarmists. Science tells us that backradiation can’t transfer heat into the ocean because first, the atmosphere is colder than the ocean, and heat/thermal energy is only transferred from higher temperature objects to lower temperature objects. Second, energy absorption into water is governed by wavelength. The 15μm wavelength of CO2 ‘backradiation’ essentially can’t penetrate the surface of the ocean. This graph from peer reviewed science shows that that wavelength is only absorbed in the top ~3 millionths of a meter, which is ~1/10th the thickness of a human hair:

Idealized temperature profiles of the near surface layer (~10 m depth) of the ocean during (a) nighttime and daytime during strong wind conditions and (b) daytime low wind speed conditions and high insolation resulting thermal stratification of the surface layers.

Solar radiation from the 5500C sun penetrates up to 200m as NOAA stated. Then you must consider that that uppermost few microns of the ocean skin is always colder than the water just below it, so heat can’t conduct downward. That is shown in this graphic from Donlon(2001) ‘The character of skin and subsurface sea surface temperature’:

So if you want to continue this discussion, please stop playing games, talking in circles, and misrepresenting what has happened and address the original subject of this discussion; the peer reviewed science in my original comment. So you don’t have to go back, I’ll repeat it here:

“It follows from the analysis of observation data that the secular variation in the mean temperature of the Earth can be explained by the variation of shortwave radiation arriving at the surface of the Earth.” – Budyko(1969) ‘The effect of solar radiation variations on the climate of the Earth’
And the amount of solar radiation reaching the earth’s surface increased by 2.7W/m² to 6.8W/m² during the late 20th century warming. This is documented in the following peer reviewed science referenced earlier.

Believer: “When greenhouse gases absorb infrared radiation, the energy heats the atmosphere which in turn re-radiates infrared radiation in all directions. Some makes its way back to the earth’s surface. Hence we expect to find more infrared radiation heading downwards. Surface measurements from 1973 to 2008 find an increasing trend of infrared radiation returning to earth (Wang 2009). A regional study over the central Alps found that downward infrared radiation is increasing due to the enhanced greenhouse effect (Philipona 2004). Taking this a step further, an analysis of high resolution spectral data allowed scientists to quantitatively attribute the increase in downward radiation to each of several greenhouse gases (Evans 2006).”

“From 1970 to 2003, the planet has been accumulating heat at a rate of 190,260 gigawatts with the vast majority of the energy going into the oceans. Considering a typical nuclear power plant has an output of 1 gigawatt, imagine 190,000 nuclear power plants pouring their energy output directly into our oceans. What about after 2003? A map of of ocean heat from 2003 to 2008 was constructed from ocean heat measurements down to 2000 metres deep (von Schuckmann 2009). Globally, the oceans have continued to accumulate heat to the end of 2008 at a rate of 0.77 ± 0.11 Wm?2, consistent with other determinations of the planet’s energy imbalance (Hansen 2005, Trenberth 2009). The planet continues to accumulate heat”

The enhanced greenhouse effect is confirmed by satellite and surface measurements. The planet’s energy imbalance is confirmed by summations of the planet’s total heat content and ocean heat measurements.”

Realist: Reinhart 2013: ” After an absorption event, the CO2 molecule is in an excited state with an estimated lifetime, τrad = (uj / ∆uj)2 / ν ≈ 6 µs for the 15 ㎛ lines. This corresponds to the spontaneous radiative decay rate, Rrad = 1.7×105 s-1. Collisions with the dominant gases of the atmosphere lead to a non-radiative decay. At sea level and T = 288 K, the collision rate of all gas molecules is approximately the inverse of the mean free time between collision. Its value is 7 x 10^9/s. The present CO2 concentration amounts to cco2 = 400 ppm. This leads to a non-radiative collision rate with the CO2 Rnon = 28 x 10^5/s. The chances of radiative emission in this situation is given by Rrad / (Rrad + Rnon ) ≈ 0.06. In the troposphere, where most of the absorption takes place, most of the absorbed energy, by the CO2, heats the dominant atmospheric gases. This is, however, no longer the case in the stratosphere and even higher levels, where the collision rate is dramatically decreased.”

NASA: ”Evaporation and convection processes in the atmosphere transport heat from the surface to the upper troposphere, where it can be much more efficiently radiated into space since it is above most of the greenhouse-trapping water vapor.”

“So in short, it is this convective overturning of the atmosphere – poorly represented in computer models of global warming – that primarily determines the temperature distribution of the surface and upper troposphere, not radiation balance.”

Realist: “Surface measurements from 1973 to 2008 find an increasing trend of infrared radiation returning to earth”
Infrared radiation returning to earth, DLR, varies directly with atmospheric temperature. Temperature went up.

Cho 2008: ”It has been shown that the downward longwave irradiance (DLR) is significantly correlated with three variables: air temperature, specific humidity, and cloudiness.

Dong 2006: ”Cloud fraction is the dominant modulator for determining insolation on the surface, nevertheless cloud-base height (temperature) is more important for downwelling LW flux.” 

Feldman 2015: ”Over the length of the observation period (2000–2010), the modelled spectra at both [Southern Great Plains] and [North Slope of Alaska] are dominated by trends associated with the temperature and humidity structure of the atmosphere rather than the smaller signal from CO2.” Temperature and humidity.

Philipona 2004: ”Longwave downward radiation is expected to increase with increasing greenhouse gas concentrations, but also with the increase in temperature and cloud amount.” Temperature and cloud amount.

Dong 2006 found a decrease…

Cho 2008 found a decrease in DLR, in Antarctica, were there is supposed to be “polar amplification” of this DLR.

Believer: CO2 from fossil fuels has a different Carbon isotope than CO2 from other sources

sources of carbon:
land 120 Gt
ocean 90 Gt
human 7 Gt

sinks for carbon:
land 122 Gt
ocean 92 Gt
human 0 Gt
net change: 3 Gt source – And it’s all human!

Realist: “CO2 from fossil fuels has a different Carbon isotope than CO2 from other sources.”
False. Figure 1 in this ‘Plant Physiology’ journal article, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.go… , shows that the δ¹³ C isotope ratio is exactly the same for coal, marine petroleum and land plants.

“And it’s all human!”
Peer reviewed science says that only 15% of the increased CO2 since the Industrial era is human, and 85% is natural:

“The anthropogenic contribution to the actual CO2 concentration is found to be 4.3%, its fraction to the CO2 increase over the Industrial Era is 15%” – Harde(2017) ‘Scrutinizing the carbon cycle and CO2 residence time in the atmosphere’

Believer: So by natural factors, CO2 stayed between 170ppm – 300ppm for at least the previous 800,000 years, but somehow nature magically increases CO2 since the start of the industrial revolution, to what is now 33% higher than in any of that previous time, at over 400ppm.

Here’s someone who thinks like me.

Tom Curtis at 12:40 PM on 5 April, 2012
tompinlb @1:

“1) CO2 concentrations over the holocene show little variation prior to the industrial era showing that the net natural CO2 flux is close to zero. Even the small 0.003 ppmv flux over the 7000 years prior to the industrial revolution is probably due to land use changes, partly from the desertification of the Sahara, but primarily due to human agriculture, particularly the cultivation of rice. The supposition that natural fluxes should increase 150 fold (conservatively estimated) by strange coincidence at exactly the time when humans started burning fossil fuels at a rate approximately double that which is required to explain the increase in CO2 in the atmosphere strains credulity, both in requiring human emissions to magically not effect atmospheric concentrations, and by requiring the vastly larger natural emissions from an undiscoverable source to magically coincide with the curiously ineffective human emissions.”

Realist: Repeating your false claim and finding someone else that believes it doesn’t refute Harde(2017).

“but somehow nature magically increases CO2 since the start of the industrial revolution … both in requiring human emissions to magically not effect[sic] atmospheric concentrations, and by requiring the vastly larger natural emissions from an undiscoverable source to magically coincide with the curiously ineffective human emissions.”

You and Curtis reveal your lack of science knowledge here. First, no one saying that human emissions don’t affect atmospheric CO2, as Harde(2017) shows. It’s just that all of the increase in CO2 is not due to humans, because nature can’t magically discriminate and only sequester natural CO2. There’s nothing magical about this, nor is there any “undiscoverable source” involved. Peer reviewed science shows it is natural laws such as Henry’s law that causes oceans to net outgas CO2 into the atmosphere when the oceans have warmed since the end of the Little Ice Age, which is coincident with the Industrial era.

“As the rate of net CO2 outgassing from the ocean is then affected by reduced solubility, this offers a simple physical explanation of the observed time lag” – Humlum(2011)  Peer reviewed science acknowledges that over 90% of global warming is observed in the increase in ocean heat content (OHC).

“The World Ocean accounts for approximately 93% of the warming of the earth system that has occurred since 1955.” – Levitus(2012) ‘World ocean heat content and thermosteric sea level change (0-2000m), 1955-2010’  The only physical mechanism that can transfer any significant amount of heat into the oceans on a global average basis is solar radiation. So again, nothing magical at all, just natural physical processes at work.

And the Humlum paper shows that this natural physical process of ocean outgassing happens because the increase in CO2 lags temperature increase. This shows that the temperature change is the cause and the CO2 increase/decrease is the effect because a cause must happen before the effect.

“Using data series on atmospheric carbon dioxide and global temperatures we investigate the phase relation (leads/lags) between these for the period January 1980 to December 2011. Ice cores show atmospheric CO2 variations to lag behind atmospheric temperature changes on a century to millenium scale, but modern temperature is expected to lag changes in atmospheric CO2, as the atmospheric temperature increase since about 1975 generally is assumed to be caused by the modern increase in CO2. In our analysis we use eight well-known datasets: 1) globally averaged well-mixed marine boundary layer CO2 data, 2) HadCRUT3 surface air temperature data, 3) GISS surface air temperature data, 4) NCDC surface air temperature data, 5) HadSST2 sea surface temperature data, 6) UAH lower troposphere temperature data series, 7) CDIAC data on release of anthropogene CO2, and 8) GWP data on volcanic eruptions. Annual cycles are present in all datasets except 7) and 8), and to remove the influence of these we analyze 12-month averaged data. We find a high degree of co-variation between all data series except 7) and 8), but with changes in CO2 always lagging changes in temperature.

A main control on atmospheric CO2 appears to be the ocean surface temperature, and remains a possibility that a significant part of the overall increase of atmospheric CO2 since at least 1958 (start of Mauna Loa observations) simply relflects the gradual warming of the oceans as a result of the prolonged period of high solar activity since 1920 (Solanki et al., 2004). Based on the GISP2 ice core proxy record from Greenland it has previously been pointed out that the present period of warming since 1850 to a high degree may be explained by a natural c. 1100 yr periodic temperature variation (Humlum et al., 2011). …

Believer: There you go again “Where is this empirical, observational evidence?” We realize by now that YOU haven’t seen any, but that does not mean it doesn’t exist.

Obviously you have considerable difficult adding two and two, or even one and one. Otherwise you would look at the many experiments which show that increasing CO2 in a body of air (like in a greenhouse) raises the temperature. Then you would look at the measurements (usually considered empirical evidence) of CO2 in the atmosphere (around 280 in pre-industrial days and over 400 now) and you would say to your self “Could this possibly be the reason that temperatures are rising?”

Of course,you would have to accept the fact – shown by yet more empirical evidence – that temperatures are rising. If you were in any way connected to the climate sciences (which you clearly are not), you would do what scientists do and you would test this hypothesis in whatever way you could. And you would come to the conclusion that all the empirical evidence available pointed in one direction: the earth is warming because of humans’ love affair with fossil fuels.

You would, but you don’t because you are a stubborn old fool who thinks he knows better than nearly every climate-related scientist on the planet.

Realist: Even you (tacitly) admit, there is no observational evidence!

“many experiments … CO2 … temperature”
Consider Ramanathan & Collins 1991, where they observed, not only an increase in the greenhouse effect, but, as they termed it, a supergreenhouse effect. However, Earth reacted to it, and formed (a slight excess of) clouds, which cut off the incident sunlight, and stopped the warming.
Ramanathan & Collins 1991: ”Observations made … in the upper range of sea surface temperatures, … In response to this ‘super greenhouse effect’, highly reflective cirrus clouds are produced which act like a thermostat shielding the ocean from solar radiation. The regulatory effect of these cirrus clouds may limit sea surface temperatures to less than 305 K.” Yes, there are excellent measurements of atmospheric CO₂. There are bastardized measurements of global surface-air Tamperature. The correlation between the two isn’t so hot (pun intended) ‘cept for the last few years (when, the correlation is mediocre). In his awesome 1982 tome, called “Causation”, Barnard wrote: “That correlation, is not causation, is perhaps the first thing that must be said.”
Barnard, G. A. 1982 “Causation. Encyclopedia of Statistical Sciences” John Wiley, New York …
“Correlation is a necessary, but not sufficient condition, for a causal relationship” J Munshi
This is sage advice from learned, esteemed professors. 

CO₂ is easily demonstrated as opaque to certain wavenumbers, in a brass tube, as was done by John Tyndall, when he experimentally verified infrared opacity in various gases. However, the gases in Tyndall’s tube did not convect, advect, evaporate, condense, or freeze, as things do in a real atmosphere. It is this atmospheric motion …

Ramanathan & Collins 1991: “The required moisture for sustaining cirrus is not necessarily provided by the local evaporation, but instead, by large-scale transport within the lower troposphere, into the region of convection. These large circulation systems are the ‘Hadly’ and ‘Walker’ circulations. The sources [of energy] for these large-scale motions are the latent heat released by convection, the cirrus long-wave cloud forcing, and the spatial gradients in SST. Therefore, this convective large-scale system is self-sustaining. The large-scale convergence of moisture, into the warm oceanic regions, amplifies the warming, though the enhanced greenhouse effect, further driving the circulation. This continues, until the cirrus clouds, which accumulate during this process, reflect enough sunlight to arrest further warming. Thus, the [cirrus-cloud] anvils act like a thermostat.”

Believer: Face palm. I admitted nothing of the sort, tacitly or otherwise. There is a wealth of observational evidence. You are just too stupid to accept that.

And yes, I called you stupid. It takes a lot to make me say that, but, boy, have you earned the epithet.

Realist: Sure, there’s a wealth of observational evidence, of all kinds of things … but, none that show Mannkind’s CO₂ emissions cause planarity warming. We realize by now that YOU haven’t seen any, either, but that doesn’t stop you from believing it, simply because you are told it is so. Faith.

Lean 2018: ”IPCC’s finding that the globe would warm in the range 2–4 °C by the end of the 21st century unless greenhouse gas emissions were reduced significantly was based on simulations made by physical climate models, …”

Lean 2018: ”The Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) of the IPCC (2007), charged with the detection and attribution of climate change for its Government stakeholders, stated that ❝Most of the observed increase in global average temperature since the mid‐20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gases❞. The basis for asserting a discernible human influence on climate is statistical comparisons of observed temperature with physical model simulations of the changes expected from anthropogenic and natural influences (Hegerl & Zwiers, 2011; Stott et al., 2010).”

Lean, Judith L. 2018 “Observation‐based detection and attribution of 21st century climate change.” Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change

Believer: What evidence? The massive body of evidence going back to 1859. The huge number of peer reviewed research papers,

In the one year+ from November 12, 2012 through December 31, 2013, –
there were 2,225 peer reviewed papers published by 9,136 contributing scientists.
Only ONE of those 9,136 rejects AGW – [That’s just over 1/100 of 1%]

Between 1991 -2012 there were 13,950 papers published.
24 of them reject AGW.
Of the 33,690 scientists who contributed to the 13,950 papers, only 34 reject AGW – [That’s 1/10 of 1%]

Cook et al looked at 12,280 papers published, of which 4,011 papers addressed the cause.

* 3,933 papers endorsed AGW.
* 78 rejected AGW – 1.9%

98% of the authors of those 4,011 papers said they and their papers agree with AGW

Realist: 150 years of incorrect conclusions brought to the forefront as if they were uncontested. Recognize the errors of your worshipped gods, Tyndall and Arrhenius. Svante did not know about the water vapour’s far infrared radiation … neither did John Tyndall. See, John used rock salt to cap his brass tubes, when he observed that CO2 was opaque to some bands of infrared radiation. He knew not to use glass, because Silicon dioxide glass is widely opaque to infrared. At least, rock salt has some penetration into the IR (but not enough). Arrhenius used data from Langley’s prism, which was made from rock salt. Rock salt is opaque from 20㎛ past 100㎛. Neither Tyndall nor Langley nor Arrhenius could “see” or “measure” wavelengths longer than 20㎛. However, the cooling of the middle and upper troposphere is primarily from the water vapour rotational band (15㎛-100㎛ far-infrared). [Liou 1981 An Introduction to Atmospheric Radiation, 4.8, pg 109] … This is important, flighty, … about half of the infrared radiation that successfully escapes into space from water vapour, is in this long wavelength band. That means Arrhenius blundered, in his attempts to “subtract” water vapour’s effects from the combined atmosphere “greenhouse effect” … which means, he got a grossly wrong answer for the effects of CO2. Around 46% of water vapour’s radiation is in this band of longer wavelengths … Those scientists missed that. Even Plass, in 1956, laments the missing, far-infrared data:

Plass 1956: ”An accurate analysis of the effect of H,O on atmospheric radiation has not been made as yet because of the complexity of this spectrum and the difficulty of making experimental measurements beyond 20 microns. Considerable further work needs to be done on the effect of H2O. ”

Without detailed knowledge of the measure of water vapour in the far infrared, nobody could determine any balance or imbalance of the planet energy budget.

Believer: You don’t “get it”, do you?

Of course scientists document facts – all of them. Then other scientists look at the documentation. Some look at a small number of studies. Others do meta studies, looking at huge numbers of other studies. And pretty close to all of them have come to the same conclusion – when you look at all the data, the only possible explanation for rising temperatures is human activity.

Realist: Well, re-reading a paper that I had cited for other reasons, this paper by Judith Lean, I found a real nugget. She answered my question. I’ve been looking for observational evidence; her paragraph, rather succinctly, says that the only evidence is that from the computer models. There is no physical, observational evidence.

Lean 2018: ”The Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) of the IPCC (2007), charged with the detection and attribution of climate change for its Government stakeholders, stated that ❝Most of the observed increase in global average temperature since the mid‐20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gases❞. The basis for asserting a discernible human influence on climate is statistical comparisons of observed temperature with physical model simulations of the changes expected from anthropogenic and natural influences (Hegerl & Zwiers, 2011; Stott et al., 2010).”

That’s it … quest, over. There is no observational evidence.

Believer: Some of these statements are true in a very limited way; others are just plain wrong.

For example, the climate has changed before. Of course. But never before at the rate of change we have seen in the past 50 years.

It’s the sun. Yes. Everything is the sun. But again, variations in solar activity take place on a different time scale. If we look only at incoming radiation from the sun, the earth should be cooling, but it is not.

It is bad – very bad, but I suspect you will choose not to accept that.

There is very definitely consensus in the scientific sense -all studies, all data, regardless of the source point to the same conclusion – human activity has caused the earth to warm.

Yes, it should be cooling, but it’s not.

The information derived from models changes with the input. That does not mean that they are unreliable. They are not expected to be perfect predictors of future climate conditions, but they give a reasonably accurate idea of what will happen if we continue with business as usual.

Temperature measurements become more and more accurate every day using a vast network of thermometers and satellites. It is possible that we are off on estimates of temperatures thousands and millions of years ago. However, it is clear that the current trend is inexorably upward. In my 34 years in the US, I have seen our temperature zone shift from Zone 5 to Zone 5B. This may not sound like much, but it translates to a difference in the frost free season of nearly two months. That is huge. Good for me trying to grow tomatoes in upstate New York, disaster areas that previously relied on a severe winter to control bugs.

Humans can probably adapt, but plants and most animals are having a hard time.

It has most definitely warmed since 1998. The RATE of increase stayed relatively stable, but the actual temperature continued to rise.

The Antarctic is gaining SEA ICE as are and more ice slips off the continental shelf. Overall there is a loss.

I challenge you to prove otherwise

Realist: You failed to mention what parameter you’re speaking of. Usually, alarmists speak of temperature rise rate, or the atmospheric CO2 rise rate.
Both are flawed concepts, as the modern instrumentation period cannot be compared to the non-instrumentation period, because … well, there were no instruments, then. You have to switch to proxy representations of temperature. Even if the proxy item could be considered as absolutely flawless in its ability to record temperature, the ability we have of determining the temporal resolution … what year it was, for example … is really poor. The temporal resolution of the instrumentation period is measured in minutes, perhaps a few hours. The ice core records have a temporal error amounting to dozens and dozens of years, even plus or minus a hundred years. The imprecise dating of the sample, introduces a skew of the (time, temperature) data point. Subsequent averaging of (time, temperature) data points (with dating errors) causes the obliteration of short-term temperature excursions, even though the peaks of the excursions might have been accurately recorded with individual proxies. This causes a low-frequency-pass (high-frequency-attenuation) “smearing” of the temperature reconstruction.

Believer: I get it now. You want someone to attach micro-thermometers to molecules of carbon dioxide so that you can actually OBSERVE a change in temperature. Great idea!

Realist: Well, we can do that, but in bulk. It is called “brightness temperature” and is observed with a microwave sensor. That’s how the satellites measure atmospheric temperature. What is reported, though is Oxygen brightness temperature, not CO2.

Believer: Why? You’ll have to explain to me why the satellites measure oxygen brightness and not CO2, if we can do that.

Realist: Just because CO2 is a GHG does nor mean that more CO2, causes planetary warming. Ramanathan & Collins 1991 showed, with real observations — no modelling — that (1) sunshine warms Earf, (2) Greenhouse gases intensify this warming, (3) the intensified warming causes more clouds (4) the clouds stop the sunshine that started the warming in the first place. End of points, reinforcement info follows.
Ramanathan & Collins 1991: ”… the greenhouse effect increases with surface temperature … In response to this ‘super greenhouse effect’, highly reflective cirrus clouds are produced which act like a thermostat shielding the ocean from solar radiation.”
The warmer ocean, thus, produces clouds, at higher altitudes. These clouds … have a larger greenhouse effect. … The sources [of energy] for these large-scale motions are the latent heat released by convection, the cirrus long-wave cloud forcing, and the spatial gradients in SST. …This continues, until the cirrus clouds, which accumulate during this process, reflect enough sunlight to arrest further warming. Thus, the [cirrus-cloud] anvils act like a thermostat.”
Ramanathan, Vi, and Wu Collins 1991. “Thermodynamic regulation of ocean warming by cirrus clouds deduced from observations of the 1987 El Nino.” Nature
MORE observational work by Lebsock 2010, Lloyd 2012 has supported this hypothesis.


Important skeptical understandings embedded in this dialogue:

There is no observational evidence showing human CO2 causes rising temperatures.  All studies claiming so are based upon computer models incorporating that supposition. See Also: Temperatures According to Climate Models.

The fraction of atmospheric CO2 is 4% human and 96% from natural sources, such as microbes, insects, and principally ocean outgassing.  The human share of the rise in CO2 is about 15%.  See Also Who to Blame for Rising CO2?

The hypothetical GHG effect is too small to be detected, let alone quantified.  The claim depends on both a tiny CO2 signal and also on the supposition that nothing else changes in response to the minuscule perturbation.  See Also:  No GHG Warming Fingerprints in the Sky

The Arrhenius/Chamberlain /Callendar CO2 hypothesis failed the real world test in the decades following Callendar in the 1930s predicting future global warming .  In 1951 the world’s leading climate scientists and meteorologists stated that the CO2 hypothesis was never widely held and had been abandoned.

The evidence is much stronger for H20, not CO2, acting as climate thermostat.  Evaporation and clouds provide negative feedback to solar rays warming the surface.  See Also Nature’s Sunscreen

There is nothing unusual in the temperatures and weather patterns of the Modern Warming Period since the Little Ice Age.  Ice cores show dozens of previous periods with warming rates much faster and temperatures higher than we have seen.  See Also Does the Current Global Warming Signal Reflect a Recurrent Natural Cycle? by W. Jackson Davis and Peter Taylor

Thank you to RealOldOne2 and Damn Nitpicker for their strong contributions to the discussion and for providing many references to original sources supporting their assertions.


There is an old trial lawyers’ saying “When the facts are on your side, pound the facts. When the law is on your side, pound the law. When neither is on your side, pound the table.”

Postscript:  Believing in a climate forcing too small to be discerned by our best observation instruments reminds of Bertrand Russell’s Cosmic Teapot:

To enlarge, open image in new tab.


GHGs Endangerment? Evidence?



Stanford sock4

Once again Stanford University (my alma mater) fills its stocking with coal instead of scientific gifts. It is often said, “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” As we will see, a recent Stanford climate change publication makes over-the-top claims based upon suppositions rather than evidence. The paper published in Science is Strengthened scientific support for the Endangerment Finding for atmospheric greenhouse gases, by Philip B. Duffy et al. Two of the leading (out of 15) authors are Christopher B. Field and Noah S. Diffenbaugh of Stanford’s Woods Institute for the Environment. Excerpts in italics with my bolds.

The abstract makes extraordinary claims:

We assess scientific evidence that has emerged since the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 2009 Endangerment Finding for six well-mixed greenhouse gases, and find that this new evidence lends increased support to the conclusion that these gases pose a danger to public health and welfare. Newly available evidence about a wide range of observed and projected impacts strengthens the association between risk of some of these impacts and anthropogenic climate change; indicates that some impacts or combinations of impacts have the potential to be more severe than previously understood; and identifies substantial risk of additional impacts through processes and pathways not considered in the endangerment finding.

The core of their argument is:

The EF was structured around knowledge related to public health and public welfare, with a primary focus on impacts in the U.S. The information on public welfare was grouped in sections on (1) air quality, (2) food production and agriculture, (3) forestry, (4) water resources, (5) sea level rise and coastal areas, (6) energy, infrastructure, and settlements, and (7) ecosystems and wildlife. We follow that organization here. In addition, some of the most important advances in understanding the risks of climate change involve sectors or impact types not highlighted in the EF. We summarize the evidence for four of these that are broadly important: ocean acidification, violence and social instability, national security, and economic wellbeing. We characterize changes since the EF in terms of (1) strength of evidence for a link with anthropogenic climate change, (2) potential severity of observed and projected impacts, and (3) risks of additional kinds of impacts, beyond those considered in the EF (Fig. 1).

Fig. 1
Summary of changes in the amount and implications of new evidence since the EF, on each of the impact areas discussed in the EF, and four additional impact areas where evidence of climate sensitivity has matured since the EF.
An upward pointing arrow indicates increasing evidence of endangerment. A downward pointing arrow indicates decreasing evidence of endangerment. A solid arrow indicates that the new evidence is abundant and robust. An outlined arrow indicates that the new evidence, in addition, comes from multiple approaches, is based on independent lines of information, or builds on a new level of mechanistic understanding. The left column refers to confidence in the impacts discussed in the EF. The middle column refers to impact areas that are discussed in the EF but where new evidence points to specific impacts that are fundamentally more severe or pervasive than those discussed in the EF. The right column refers to types of impacts not discussed in the EF.

What about the Warming?

Let’s start with their first theme: We characterize changes since the EF in terms of (1) strength of evidence for a link with anthropogenic climate change. Looking in the text we find the single point of evidence to be a projection from CMIP5 climate models, represented in this diagram:

Fig. 2 The frequency of years in 2080 to 2099 of the RCP8.5 scenario where the June-July-August (JJA) seasonal temperature equals or exceeds the warmest JJA value in the period from 1986 to 2005.

Now showing the globe in bright red colors is certainly in the Christmas spirit and would make a fine ornament for the tree. But there are several problems. We are supposed to believe they can predict summer temperatures 60 to 80 years from now, when trustworthy weather models become unreliable more than 10 days in the future. Next, on average CMIP5 models are configured to forecast future warming at a rate 5 times the past warming (historically observed). Then, the CO2 concentrations fed into the models come from the notorious RCP8.5 scenario.

People like Dr. Judith Curry who have looked into the suppositions comprising RCP8.5 have concluded that it is not only extreme, it is so unlikely as to be nearly impossible. Thus it serves as a scare tactic, but not for reasonable future projections. See: Is RCP8.5 an impossible scenario?

The burning world figure comes from this paper by one of the Stanford lead authors Climate change hotspots in the CMIP5 global climate model ensemble. Out of an array of various projection images, obviously the global warming ornament was chosen specifically for its cherry red color.

To see how they mislead with this model output, let’s consider comparable observations. For the same season (NH Summer), Berkeley Earth provides this global summary of recent warming:

So in the last century of observed temperatures, we get yellows and greens, warming of 0.0 to 1.0 degrees celsius. But the models say the next century we will be on fire. And there is another deception. Notice that the BEST globe shows only continents since that dataset is built on records from land stations. Figure 2 above smears warming also over the oceans (71% of earth’s surface), when we know that land temps are much more volatile than is the ocean. For example, here is a comparable representation of sea surface temperatures (SSTs):

This map displays seasonal standardized sea surface temperature anomalies for the season indicated.

The climatological base period used to calculate the sea surface temperature anomalies is 1971-2000, and the base period used for the standardization is November 1981 to present. Yellow to orange colors on the map indicate areas where sea surface temperature for the season shown is above the climatological value for that season of the year, and blue shades indicate where sea surface temperature is below normal. Shading and contours start at +/- 1.0 s.d., and the shading and contour interval is 0.5 s.d. Source: Columbia IRI climate monitoring (here)

Again, observations do not portend what the unvalidated climate models predict. There are some warm spots, cool spots, and a lot of neutral.


What about the Impacts?

Turning to the main theme of this report: We characterize changes since the EF in terms of (2) potential severity of observed and projected impacts, and (3) risks of additional kinds of impacts, beyond those considered in the EF. The bulk of the text and all of the 281 references pertain to impacts expected from models’ supposed warming. The same research process is repeated ad infinitum: Plug the extreme scenario assumptions into models super-sensitive to GHGs, and then project the horrific impacts from such unlikely levels and supposed results. And the usual litany of disasters is covered (from Duffy et al.2018):

The information on public welfare was grouped in sections on (1) air quality, (2) food production and agriculture, (3) forestry, (4) water resources, (5) sea level rise and coastal areas, (6) energy, infrastructure, and settlements, and (7) ecosystems and wildlife.

Billions of dollars have been spent researching any and all negative effects from a warming world: Everything from Acne to Zika virus.  But these are not what we have experienced and observed, rather they are the models’ imagined future.

Litany of Changes

Seven of the ten hottest years on record have occurred within the last decade; wildfires are at an all-time high, while Arctic Sea ice is rapidly diminishing.

We are seeing one-in-a-thousand-year floods with astonishing frequency.

When it rains really hard, it’s harder than ever.

We’re seeing glaciers melting, sea level rising.

The length and the intensity of heatwaves has gone up dramatically.

Plants and trees are flowering earlier in the year. Birds are moving polewards.

We’re seeing more intense storms.

But: Weather is not more extreme.
And Wildfires were worse in the past.
But: Sea Level Rise is not accelerating.

But: Arctic Ice has not declined since 2007.

But: All of these are within the range of past variability.

In fact our climate is remarkably stable.

And many aspects follow quasi-60 year cycles.

But: Actual climate zones are local and regional in scope, and they show little boundary change.


But: Ice cores show that it was warmer in the past, not due to humans.

But: The planet is greener because of rising CO2.

In conclusion:

Duffy et al. Omitted Recent Scientific Findings that Contradict their Alarms

You may have noticed that no downward arrows appeared in Duffy et al. summary of new science regarding GHG endangerment.  Let’s correct that now.  In addition to exhibits above, there are several findings refuting the link between CO2 emissions and global temperatures.

Why is there no mention of the CERES satellite data showing no effect of rising GHGs upon the radiative behavior of the atmosphere?

We once again observe a rather close match overall. At the very least, we can safely say that there is no evidence whatsoever of any gradual, systematic rise in DWLWIR over the TLT, going from 2000 to 2018. If we plot the difference between the two curves in Fig.9 to obtain the “DWLWIR residual”, this fact becomes all the more evident:

Why do they ignore the radiosonde data showing the temperature profile of the atmosphere has not shifted as GHG theory predicts?

Why do they not report that the optical density at the top of the atmosphere has not changed in 60 years despite rising CO2?

And why do they fail to point out that CMIP5 models only match temperature observations in the tropical troposphere when the CO2 sensitivity is turned off?

In addition, there is no mention that GCMs projections are running about twice as hot as observations. Omitted is the fact GCMs correctly replicate tropospheric temperature observations only when CO2 warming is turned off.

Figure 5. Simplification of IPCC AR5 shown above in Fig. 4. The colored lines represent the range of results for the models and observations. The trends here represent trends at different levels of the tropical atmosphere from the surface up to 50,000 ft. The gray lines are the bounds for the range of observations, the blue for the range of IPCC model results without extra GHGs and the red for IPCC model results with extra GHGs.The key point displayed is the lack of overlap between the GHG model results (red) and the observations (gray). The nonGHG model runs (blue) overlap the observations almost completely.


This paper does not prove GHGs endanger the climate.  It repeats old suppositions and disregards contrary observational evidence, both new and long-established.

See also:  No GHG Warming Fingerprints in the Sky

Climate alarms are balanced on an array of suppositions.



Courts Still Shielding Mann from Climate Exposure

An editorial from National Review summarizing how the courts function as Michael Mann’s protective shield  NR Won’t Be Cowed by a Litigious Michael Mann  December 21, 2018.  Excerpts below with my bolds.

At this rate, Jarndyce v. Jarndyce will be replaced in the Western canon as the go-to example of the court case that never ends by National Review, Inc. v. Michael E. Mann, which is now well into its seventh year as a live proposition and, alas, showing no end in sight.

For those who have forgotten, this is the 2012 case in which Mann sued National Review for libel over a 270-word blog post that criticized his infamous “hockey stick” graph portraying global warming, in response to which National Review refused to acquiesce to what was, and remains, nothing less than an attempt to use the law to bully the press into submission. That this case is both frivolous in nature and clear-cut in National Review’s favor seems to be obvious to everyone except for Michael Mann and the D.C. Court of Appeals. Indeed, in the years since Mann made his play, National Review has been joined by a veritable Who’s Who of American media organizations — including, but not limited to, the ACLU, the National Press Club, Comcast, the Cato Institute, the Washington Post, Time Inc., Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, all of which have filed amicus briefs on NR’s side. Tellingly, National Review has also been supported by the City of Washington, D.C., in which jurisdiction the case was brought. And yet, inexplicably, the D.C. Court of Appeals continues to drag its feet.

This is extraordinary, especially given that at stake here is the integrity of the First Amendment. It is extraordinary foremost because National Review’s case is both straightforward and strong: that it is not, and it has never been, the role of the courts to settle literary or scientific disputes. But it is also extraordinary because National Review’s case is being heard under rules laid out by Washington, D.C.’s robust “anti-SLAPP” law, the explicit purpose of which is to make it more difficult to harass people and organizations with frivolous libel threats and thereby to protect a sturdy culture of free speech. How, we ask, can this be reconciled with a case such as ours, in which, among other inexplicable delays, the court has taken two years to add a single footnote to the records (and modify another)? That a slam-dunk case that is being examined under an expedited process should have yielded so many years of expensive radio static is a genuine national disgrace, and should be widely regarded as such.

National Review neither encourages nor enjoys protracted, expensive, tedious litigation. Indeed, it is our resolute view that questions such as these must be resolved outside of the courtroom. But we will be cowed neither by pressure nor by the passage of time, and we are proud of our role as a champion of the First Amendment. To those who would abridge, undermine, or attempt to circumvent that bulwark of free expression, our response is, as it ever was: Get Lost.

See also:  Rise and Fall of the Modern Warming Spike

School Reality vs. Identity Ideology

Heather MacDonald writes as update on the struggle in schools to create an educational environment in the face of student misbehavior sanctioned by minority racial privileges. Her article at City Journal is Back to Discipline. Excerpts in italics with my bolds.

Disparate impact reflects disparate reality.

A federal commission on school safety has repudiated the use of disparate-impact analysis in evaluating whether school discipline is racially biased. The Trump administration should go further, and extirpate such analysis from the entirety of the federal code of regulations, as well as from informal government practice.

Disparate-impact analysis holds that if a facially-neutral policy negatively affects blacks and Hispanics at a higher rate than whites and Asians, it is discriminatory. Noticing the behavioral differences that lead to those disparate effects is forbidden. In the area of school discipline, disparate-impact analysis results in the conclusion that racially neutral rules must nevertheless contain bias, since black students nationally are suspended at nearly three times the rate of white students. In 2014, the Obama administration relied on this methodology to announce that schools that suspended or expelled black students at higher rates than white students were violating anti-discrimination laws.

To understand how counterfactual such an analysis is, consider Duval County, Florida, which has Florida’s highest juvenile homicide rate. Seventy-three children, some as young as 11, have been arrested for murder and manslaughter over the last decade, according to the Florida Times-Union. Black juveniles made up 87.6 percent of those arrests and whites 8 percent. The black population in Duval County—which includes Jacksonville—was 28.9 percent in 2010 and the white population 56.6 percent, making black youngsters 21.6 times more likely to be arrested for homicide than white youngsters. Nationally, black males between the ages of 14 and 17 commit homicide at ten times the rate of white and Hispanic male teens combined; if Hispanics were removed from the equation, the black-white disparity would be much greater.

Beneath those homicide numbers is a larger juvenile crime wave. “The reason so many kids commit murder in Jacksonville is not because they are murderers, but because they are everything else: drug dealers, robbers, thieves, rapists and a bunch of other types of criminals whose crimes of choice has a great likelihood of leading to a murder,” a teen murder convict, Aaron Wright, told the Florida Times-Union. Fifty-nine percent of juvenile murder convicts from Duval County who responded to the paper’s inmate survey reported that they were committing another crime such as robbery or burglary when they or their co-defendant killed their victim. Wright himself was robbing a woman when his fellow robber shot and killed her, making Wright guilty of felony murder.

The same family dysfunction and lack of socialization that create this juvenile crime wave inevitably affects classroom behavior. Duval County Public Schools also have the highest number of violent campus incidents of any Florida school district. Nationwide, schools with the highest minority populations report the highest number of disciplinary infractions. Schools that are 50 percent minority or more experience weekly gang activity at nearly ten times the rate of schools where minorities constituted 5 percent to 20 percent of the population, according to the 2018 “Indicators of School Crime and Safety” report produced by the U.S. Justice and Education Departments. Gang violence in schools with less than 5 percent minority populations was too low to be usable statistically. Widespread weekly disorder in classrooms was reported in schools with at least 50 percent minority populations at more than five times the rate as in schools with 5 percent to 20 percent minorities. More than four times as many high-minority schools reported weekly verbal abuse of teachers compared with schools with a minority student body less than 20 percent. Widespread disorder and teacher abuse at schools with less than 5 percent minority populations was again too low to be statistically reliable.

The “School Crime and Safety” reports produced during the Obama years contained identical disparities. And yet the Obama administration held that the only possible reason why blacks are disciplined in school more than whites is teacher and administrator bias. Never mind that teaching is the most “woke” profession in the country after social work, with education schools frantically indoctrinating their students in white privilege and critical race theory.

And so school districts, threatened with a loss of federal funding if they didn’t reduce racial disparities in discipline, left disruptive students in the classroom rather than removing them. The results were predictable: chaos and less learning than ever. In Des Moines, for example, students hit teachers and other students with little consequence, according to the Des Moines Register, leading to a teacher exodus. A nine-year-old boy was repeatedly struck by a fellow student, but the teacher felt powerless to do anything lest she be accused of discriminating against a minority student.

In 2018, a cell-phone video captured a classroom assault emblematic of the post-disciplinary era. A physics teacher in Texas had confiscated a student’s smart phone. “Give me my fucking phone. This is the last time asking your stupid ass,” the teen yelled, towering over the teacher sitting frozen behind his desk, grinning nervously, the very image of submission. The student aggressively swept the papers on the teacher’s desk to the floor, then violently shoved him in the face. Still impassive, the teacher pushed the phone across the desk back to the student, who grabbed it with a self-righteous shrug and strode away. The school principal explained that it “was just a bad day the student was having,” and commended the teacher’s response. The other students who observed this adult capitulation to thuggery learned a terrible lesson about their apparent immunity from any consequences for atrocious behavior.

A substitute teacher who worked in Los Angeles’s inner-city schools documents similar insubordination in his recent book, Sit Down and Shut Up: How Discipline Can Set Students Free. One student, recounts author Cinque Henderson, shoved a pregnant teacher in order to grab her laptop and watch a video. The dean then interrogated the teacher about why the student was not “jibing with her.” An instructor from Miami-Dade County told Henderson: “It is virtually impossible to discipline a student. I know we are losing a generation of kids of color as a result of allowing them to run wild.”

The Times-Union analysis identifies the biggest factor in juvenile violence: absent fathers. Eighty-four percent of the juvenile murderers who responded to the paper’s survey had what the paper discreetly calls “divorced or separated parents”—the reality more likely being that their parents never married in the first place. “I believe that my life may have took a different turn . . . had my father been a man and raised me,” a 61-year-old teen murderer and career criminal told the paper.

Excusing insubordination and aggression in the name of racial equity is not a civil rights accomplishment. The third-party victims of such behavior are themselves disproportionately minority—whether fellow classmates who cannot learn, or law-abiding residents of high-crime neighborhoods who have to worry about taking their children safely to school without being carjacked or caught in a drive-by shooting.

But the alleged beneficiary of a racial double standard in conduct is also a victim. Schools are usually the last chance to civilize children if their family has failed to do so. They accomplish that civilizing mission through the application of a color-blind behavioral code, neutrally enforced, that communicates to students that their behavioral choices have consequences. A student who perceives that his race is an excuse for bad conduct will be handicapped for life. Pace the race advocates, it is this disparate-impact-induced state of affairs—not the supposed implicit racism of teachers and principals—that constitutes an actual school-to-prison pipeline.

Not all of the administration’s social policies are as farsighted as the rescission of disparate-impact analysis in student discipline. This week, Trump signed an executive order creating “opportunity zones,” a concept trotted out by every administration over the last 40 years to revive low-income communities. But tax rates are not the main impediment to investment in poor communities; crime is. If the Trump administration wanted to continue breaking the mold of stale poverty initiatives, it would focus on family breakdown as the cause of urban crime and disorder. While policy is severely limited in its capacity to restore marriage norms, the administration should use every rhetorical outlet available to revalorize fathers and men.

Meantime, expect a battle over the future of disparate-impact analysis. The New York Times has accused the Trump administration of attacking “protections for minority students,” and the advocates are predictably outraged. Incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has promised to defend “vital student anti-discrimination protections.” The incoming head of the House Education Committee, Bobby Scott, will likely seek to enshrine disparate-impact methodology further in statutory law. Doing so would not only distort policymaking; it would also continue poisoning civil discourse and society with unjustified claims of racism. The only antidote to such a counterattack is a willingness to tell the truth about the behavioral disparities that create disparate impact in the first place.

Heather Mac Donald is the Thomas W. Smith Fellow at the Manhattan Institute, a contributing editor of City Journal, and the author of The Diversity Delusion: How Race and Gender Pandering Corrupt the University and Undermine Our Culture.

Energy Conundrums

world energy by sources

Anyone paying attention to global warming/climate change knows that activists intend to disrupt (legally or otherwise) the energy platform supporting modern industrial society. It is a radical movement since the developed world (think G20) depends upon fossil fuels for nearly 90% of its energy. Gail Tverberg has again insightfully probed into the ways our energy supply is impacted by these alarmist concerns. Whether or not you believe global warming is now or could become catastrophic (I don’t), policymakers around the world are tinkering with energy supplies under pressure from greens convinced oil, coal and gas should be left in the ground.

At her blog Our Finite World, Tverberg describes the implications and dangers in a recent post  Electricity won’t save us from our oil problems The title is a link to her presentation, and I encourage you to go and read the whole thing. Here are some excerpts in italics with my bolds, selected and somewhat reordered according to my sense of her findings, along with some added images.

Electrical Supply Threatened by Prices Too Low for Producers

Almost everyone seems to believe that our energy problems are primarily oil-related. Electricity will save us.

It wasn’t until I sat down and looked at the electricity situation that I realized how worrying it really is. Intermittent wind and solar cannot stand on their own. They also cannot scale up to the necessary level in the required time period. Instead, the way they are added to the grid artificially depresses wholesale electricity prices, driving other forms of generation out of business. While intermittent wind and solar may sound sustainable, the way that they are added to the electric grid tends to push the overall electrical system toward collapse. They act like parasites on the system.

We end up with an electricity situation parallel to the chronic low-price problem we have for oil. Prices for producers, all along the electricity supply chain, fall too low. Of course, consumers don’t complain about this problem. The electricity system also becomes more fragile, as we depend to an ever greater extent on electricity supplies that may or may not be available at a reasonable price at a given point in time. The full extent of the problem doesn’t become apparent immediately, either. We end up with both the electrical and oil systems speeding in the direction of collapse, while most observers are saying, “But prices aren’t high. How can there possibly be a problem?”

Perverse Direct and Indirect Subsidies

Simply removing the subsidies that come from Production Tax Credits doesn’t fix the situation either. In one sense, the problem reflects a combination of many types of direct and indirect subsidies, including state mandates and the requirement that intermittent renewables be allowed to go first. In another sense, the problem is that, in a self-organizing economy, energy prices (including electricity prices) can only rise temporarily. The increase in energy prices is made possible by a growing debt bubble. At some point, this debt bubble collapses. Raising interest rates, as the US is doing now, is a good way of collapsing the debt bubble.

Slide 18 shows that in the US, the only types of renewable generation growing to any significant extent are intermittent wind and solar. Very high subsidies have helped push these types of generation along.

Parts of these subsidies are being phased out, but other, less visible subsidies remain. The fact that intermittent wind and solar are given priority on the grid, when they happen to be available, is a huge subsidy. Also, renewable mandates mean that generation is being added that is not really needed, lowering prices that that the self-organizing competitive pricing system creates for backup electricity providers. This is part of the reason for the unprofitability of many natural gas, coal, and nuclear companies.

There is also a problem with wholesale rates being too low for nuclear, when electricity rates are competitively set. To work around this problem, some areas use capacity auctions, which are intended to offset the inadequate funding for electricity providers providing backup electricity capacity. One catch is that a capacity auction is, in some sense, needed for every member of the supply chain. Just asking electricity generating companies to bid on providing capacity doesn’t guarantee that the full supply chain will be available.

Furthermore, the subsidies for intermittent wind and solar discourage other innovation because they lead to terribly low wholesale prices for innovators to compete against, particularly in areas where hour by hour competitive rating is done. The ultimate problem is that if one type of electricity production is subsidized (even if in subtle ways), all electricity producers must be subsidized. Governments cannot possibly afford such widespread subsidies.

Falsely Hoping Future Prices Will Save the Industry

By way of background, the US Energy Information Administration publishes “levelized cost of electricity” estimates that companies producing electricity are expected to use for planning purposes. When new generating capacity is added, planning needs to be started several years in advance. This is why what is being published now is the EIA’s calculation of expected wholesale costs (at a 2017 price level) for 2022.

Current wholesale prices for “dispatchable” electricity (the opposite of intermittent electricity) seem to be in the 3 to 4 cents per kWh range in the continental US, so all of the amounts shown assume that electricity prices will be much higher in the future. This thinking is in parallel with the “high oil prices will save the oil industry in the future” view that is prevalent in the oil industry. This thinking has helped keep the prices of shares of energy stocks up: “Even if there are problems now,” the thinking goes, “certainly higher prices in the future will fix the situation.”

With respect to wind, there are two reasons why variable wind can be sold in Power Purchasing Agreements (PPAs) for 2 to 3 cents per kWh. The first is the substantial subsidies that have been available, making this pricing arrangement profitable to wind producers. The second is the low value that intermittent electricity provides to the grid. In fact, prices locked into these PPAs are slightly below the bottom of the range of expected future natural gas prices (Figure 1, below). This suggests that the primary value of wind generation is to replace natural gas as a future fuel.

There is one reason why it might make sense to somewhat believe the first item, “Rising cost of electricity production will be no problem.” This has to do with the cost-plus type of electricity pricing (“regulated pricing”) that is used in some states of the United States. When cost-plus pricing is used, higher costs can, in theory, be passed on to consumers. The catch is that higher electricity prices tend to raise the price of finished goods and services. If wages are not rising rapidly enough, this can lead to an affordability problem. Industrial users of electricity are especially likely to cut back their electricity demand because higher prices make their products less competitive in the world economy.

After the talk, I decided to look at this situation a bit more closely. This analysis strongly suggests that since 2000, increased globalization has been playing a major role in holding down US demand for electricity. If there is an opportunity, industrial production will move to jurisdictions where the total cost of production (including wages, benefits, electricity costs, and other costs) is lower, even if there has not been a big increase in industrial electricity prices.

Industries get very unhappy when their electricity rates rise, making them uncompetitive with producers in other countries. The rates we are discussing are UK industrial electricity rates, so are a little higher (perhaps 1.5 times higher) than the wholesale prices discussed on Slides 5 and 6. If the price of 8.3 cents per kWh for industrial electricity is a big problem today, how can countries possibly withstand much higher rates, based on higher carbon prices or based on required technology that is much more expensive?

Suppose a worker gathers reeds and uses them to make baskets. If his production per hour falls, he will have fewer baskets to sell in the marketplace. He cannot expect the price of each basket to rise to make up for his lower production.

For some reason, economists seem to have overlooked this obvious problem. There is no reason to expect that the buyer will be penalized for the higher costs of the energy industry. These higher costs look much like growing inefficiency. In the real world, the seller is generally penalized for falling efficiency. Why do we have so much confidence that the price per barrel of oil can rise, or the price per kWh of electricity can rise, if the price of baskets that a less-efficient worker makes doesn’t rise?

Coal (and nuclear) are the products that have historically kept US electricity prices low. Replacing coal with fuels that are much higher in cost and more variable in availability seems likely to be problematic. Industrial users are likely to be especially distressed.

The United States has been fortunate enough to have very low natural gas prices recently. A major problem is that these prices are not really high enough for companies extracting natural gas as their primary business. If we really need to depend on natural gas, we will likely need much higher prices. In particular, natural gas prices will need to be high enough for natural gas companies to have bond ratings that are above junk ratings.

Low Prices Also Threaten Oil Production

I have been following oil since 2005, so I have had a chance to hear the discussion evolve. Oil prices were clearly too high for some consumers back in July 2008, when the sub-prime housing debt bubble popped in the United States. By early 2014, I started hearing that oil companies were very unhappy about the low price level available in 2013. In fact, some companies were sufficiently unhappy that they began cutting back on investment in new fields. It was not much later that oil prices dropped further, making the low-price problem even worse for producers.

It is difficult for any new technology to get a foothold in a situation where energy prices of all kinds tend to be low. In addition, the pressure seems to be in the direction of reducing energy prices further, even if this means less energy production of all kinds.

One common inaccurate assumption is that oil prices rise primarily in response to the rising cost of oil production. If a person looks at the data, it becomes clear that interest rates have a huge impact on prices. This seems to happen because the purchase of high-value goods with debt (such as factories, homes, cars, and buildings of all kinds) seems to have a very significant impact on total Demand. Lower interest rates make these high-value goods more affordable. (Quantitative Easing (QE) is a way of reducing long-term interest rates; it also seems to affect oil prices.)

Economies Collapse When Goods are Unaffordable

One way of understanding the situation is by understanding that energy consumption is required for jobs that pay well. If insufficient energy supplies are available at a low price, the vast majority of jobs available will be low-paid service jobs. There will, of course, be a few managers and business owners. But these few managers and owners cannot, by themselves, generate enough Demand for goods and services made with energy products to keep commodity prices up. This is why the system tends to fail.

This is probably the most important reason that economies tend to collapse. Most people miss the affordability connection because they interpret “Demand” to be something that anyone can do, without thinking about the affordability aspect. Without sufficient income, a person cannot demand a new home or new car, or gasoline from a fuel station.

See also:  Killing the Energy Goose

Climateers Tilting at Windmills

US CBO Skeptical of Carbon Tax

Introduction:  HuffPost Gets Huffy over CBO Analysis

In a baffling repudiation of the federal government’s own scientists, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) last week said that climate change poses little economic risk to the United States in the next decade.

The statement, which went so far as to highlight dubiously positive effects of rising global temperatures, poses a potential hurdle for future legislation to curb surging greenhouse gas emissions, experts said, and amounts to textbook climate change denial.

What CBO Actually Said

The US Congressional Budget Office released the document Options for Reducing the Deficit: 2019 to 2028 (Title is link to pdf)  It consists of 35 policy options of which #35 is Impose a Tax on Emissions of Greenhouse Gases. The discussion is as follows (text in italics with my bolds).


The accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere— particularly carbon dioxide (CO2), which is released when fossil fuels (such as coal, oil, and natural gas) are burned and as a result of deforestation—contributes to climate change, which imposes costs on countries around the globe, including the United States.

Many estimates suggest that the effect of climate change on the nation’s economic output, and hence on federal tax revenues, will probably be small over the next 30 years and larger, but still modest, in the following few decades. Among the more certain effects of climate change on humans over the next several decades, some would be positive, such as reductions in deaths from cold weather and improvements in agricultural productivity in certain areas. However, others would be negative, such as declines in the availability of fresh water in areas dependent on snowmelt and the loss of property from high-tide flooding and from storm surges as sea levels rise. Uncertainty about the effects of climate change— and the potential for unlimited emissions to cause significant damage—grow substantially in the more distant future.

Scientists generally agree that reducing global emissions of greenhouse gases would decrease the magnitude of climate change and the expected costs and risks associated with it. The federal government regulates some emissions in an effort to reduce them; however, emissions are not directly taxed. A well-designed tax that covered most energy-related emissions would be expected to reduce emissions.

Greenhouse gas emissions are typically measured in CO2 equivalents (CO2e), which reflect the amount of carbon dioxide estimated to cause an equivalent amount of warming. Under current law, emissions are projected to decline from 5.4 billion metric tons of CO2e in 2019 to 5.2 billion metric tons of CO2e in 2028.


This option would impose a tax of $25 per metric ton on most emissions of greenhouse gases in the United States—specifically, on most energy-related emissions of CO2 (for example, from electricity generation, manufacturing, and transportation) and some other greenhouse gas emissions from large manufacturing facilities. To simplify implementation, as well as to provide incentives to deploy technologies that capture emissions generated in the production of electricity, the tax could be levied on oil producers, natural gas refiners (for sales outside the electricity sector), and electricity generators. The tax would increase at an annual inflation-adjusted rate of 2 percent.

Revenues—Option 35 Impose a Tax on Emissions of Greenhouse Gases (Billions of Dollars)

2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 2027 2028 2019– 2023 2019– 2028
66.0 103.4 105.9 108.2 111.2 115.1 118.9 119.5 123.2 127.1 494.7 1,099.0

Effects on the Budget

According to estimates made by the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation and the Congressional Budget Office, implementing this option would increase federal revenues by $1,099 billion from 2019 through 2028. On average, about 5 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions would be taxed each year over that period. Taxed emissions would be roughly 4 percent lower than projected under current law in 2019 and 11 percent lower in 2028. Despite the projected decline in emissions over the 10-year period, tax revenues would rise over time because the additional revenues caused by increases in the tax rate would more than offset the decrease in revenues caused by the decline in taxable emissions. A tax that was somewhat higher or somewhat lower than the $25 dollar per ton tax considered in this option would generate a roughly proportionally larger or smaller amount of revenues.

A tax on greenhouse gas emissions would reduce taxable business and individual income. The resulting reduction in income and payroll tax receipts would partially offset the increase in excise taxes. The estimate for the option reflects that income and payroll tax offset.

The estimate for this option is uncertain for two key reasons. First, the projected amount of emissions released in the absence of the tax depends on estimates of future economic activity and future changes in the relative prices of various fuels and energy technologies, both of which are uncertain. Second, even if projections of future emissions under current law are accurate, estimated reductions in emissions stemming from the tax are uncertain, in part because they depend on the development of new technologies and on individuals’ and firms’ reactions to the changes in prices that the tax would induce. CBO’s estimates of reductions in emissions rely on past responses to such changes, as reported in the published literature.

Other Effects

An argument in favor of this option is that it would reduce U.S. emission of greenhouse gases and would do so in a cost-effective way. In particular, the tax would reduce emissions in a more cost-effective manner than regulations because such a tax would create uniform incentives for businesses and households throughout the economy to reduce their emissions. The tax would increase the cost of producing carbon-intensive goods and services in proportion to the amount of greenhouse gases emitted as a result of their production and consumption. Moreover, those cost increases would trigger corresponding increases in the prices of consumer goods. As a result, the tax would provide incentives for businesses to produce goods in ways that yield fewer emissions (for example, by generating electricity from wind rather than from coal) and for individuals to consume goods in ways that yield fewer emissions (for example, by driving less). Specifically, this tax would motivate emission reductions that cost less than $25 per ton to achieve, but not those that would cost more than $25 per ton.

Although the effects of climate change on the U.S. economy and on the federal budget are expected to be small in the next few decades, the effects are much more uncertain—and potentially far larger—in the more distant future. Many scientists think there is at least some risk that large changes in global temperatures will trigger catastrophic damage, causing substantial harm to human health and well-being as well as the economy. Moreover, greenhouse gases are long-lived, affecting the climate for many decades after they are emitted. As a result, delaying actions to limit emissions reduces the possibility of avoiding potentially harmful future effects. Because this option would take effect in January 2019, it would help avoid the compounded problems that might be caused by such delays.

An argument against a tax on greenhouse gas emissions is that curtailing U.S. emissions would burden the economy by raising the cost of producing emission-intensive goods and services while yielding uncertain benefits for U.S. residents. For example, most of the direct benefits of lessened emissions and associated reductions in climate change might occur outside of the United States over the next several decades, particularly in developing countries that are at greater risk from changes in weather patterns and an increase in sea levels.

Another argument against this option is that reductions in domestic emissions could be partially offset by increases in emissions overseas if carbon-intensive industries relocated to countries without restrictions on emissions or if reductions in energy consumption in the United States led to decreases in foreign fuel prices. More generally, averting the risk of future damage caused by emissions would depend on collective global efforts to cut emissions. Most analysts agree that reducing emissions in this country would have small effects on climate change if other countries with high levels of emissions did not also cut them substantially (although such reductions in the United States would still diminish the probability of catastrophic damage and could spur other countries to cut their emissions).

An alternative approach for reducing emissions of greenhouse gases in a cost-effective manner would be to establish a cap-and-trade program that set caps on such emissions in the United States. Under such a program, allowances that conveyed the right to emit one metric ton of CO2e apiece would be sold at open auction. The overall number of allowances in a given year would be capped, and the cap would probably be lowered over time. If the caps were set to achieve the same cut in emissions that is anticipated from the tax, then the program would be expected to raise roughly the same amount of revenues between 2019 and 2028. In contrast with a tax, a cap-and-trade program would provide certainty about the quantity of emissions from sources that are subject to the cap (because it would directly limit those emissions), but it would not provide certainty about the costs that firms and households would face for the greenhouse gases that they continued to emit.

Footnote: Additional CBO Response to HuffPost

In a lengthy statement to HuffPost, the CBO referred to three of its own past reports, including one that said, “Even under scenarios in which significant climate change is assumed, the projected long-term effects on GDP would tend to be modest relative to underlying economic growth.”

“Although CBO has not undertaken a full analysis of the budgetary costs stemming from climate change, it has recently analyzed the potential costs of future hurricane damage caused by climate change and coastal development,” read an excerpt from one report highlighted in the statement. “All told, CBO projects that the increase in the amount of hurricane damage attributable to coastal development and climate change will probably be less than 0.05 percent of GDP in the 2040s.”

The agency’s report attributed differing climate predictions to “the imperfect understanding of physical processes and of many aspects of the interacting components (land, air, water, ice, and all forms of life) that make up the Earth’s climate system.”

My Comment

The US Congressional Budget Office is required to examine any reasonable and feasible policies to reduce the government’s operating deficit. In that context, it looked at pricing carbon emissions and projected revenues and economic effects. Arguments for and against the policy option were summarized accordingly. Alarmists are intolerant of arguments against their preferred objective to keep fossil fuels in the ground. On the other hand, CBO weighs likely negative economic effects against the unlikely prospect of concerted international cooperation to reduce emissions.

Blame Everything on Climate Change

A recent editorial from Investor’s Business Daily Is There Anything Environmentalists Won’t Blame On Climate Change?  As you will see, experience shows the question is rhetorical.  Excerpts below with my bolds.

Climate Change: CNN published a huge story saying the source of the migrant caravan wasn’t so much corrupt Central American governments, violence or lousy economic policies. It was climate change. This is just the latest attempt by environmentalists to blame any and all bad news — even acne and animal bites — on climate change.

The CNN story, complete with pictures, videos and charts, claims that climate change is responsible for the drought in parts of Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua that forced thousands to flee for the U.S.

Well, not “responsible,” exactly. The author admits part way through that “Studies have not definitively tied this particular drought to climate change.”

Story Is Bunk
In other words, the entire premise of story is pretty much bunk. The best the CNN reporter could come up with is that “computer models show droughts like the one happening now are becoming more common as the world warms.”

Why would you need computer models to tell you what is supposedly happening right now? Probably because in the U.S., at least, there’s been no increase in droughts since the 1890s.

Unfortunately, playing fast and loose with the facts and jumping to wild conclusions is now the standard operating procedure when it comes to global warming.

This week also saw a bold headline declaring that “climate change was behind 15 weather disasters in 2017.” Again, not exactly. These events were “influenced” by it, the story said.

That’s a bit hard to swallow, too. Every adverse weather event is now somehow attributable to climate change. Whether it’s a big snowstorm, heavy rains, a dry spell, unusually cold weather, unusually hot weather, or anything that can be labeled as “unusual.”

At least those have something to do with the weather. These days, virtually anything bad that happens gets blamed on climate change.

Blaming Climate
Pick a topic and add “climate change” to it in a Google search and you’re likely to find some article or study suggesting a connection between the two.

This week, CNN ran another blame-climate-change-first story. This one claimed that the rate of animal bites “has increased over the past 10 years, according to Dr. Joseph Forrester, one of the authors of the study published Tuesday in the BMJ. He anticipates that it will continue to rise, partially because of climate change.”

Time magazine blamed mental health problems on climate change. “Trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder and depression all rank among the ailments linked to climate change,” the story said

Another story argued that global warming was connected to sexual violence.

EcoWatch warned pet owners that climate change was probably the reason their dogs have fleas because “climate change is creating an ideal habitat for pests.”

The Denver Post claimed that climate change was partly responsible for the decline in fertility rates.

Another article claimed a few years ago that “various skin disorders such as acne scars are the result of global warming and climate change.”

One website had collected examples of just about everything that’s been connected to global warming. There were hundreds of examples.

Why The Avalanche?
A beer shortage, a building collapse in England, the creation of ISIS, rising insurance premiums, kidney stones, prostitution, teenage drinking and homelessness are but a few.

Why the avalanche of such claims? One obvious reason: If you want to get attention to your story or cause, the best way to do so is to claim there’s some climate change connection.

Yet despite these endless tales of woe, the public remains indifferent. France had to back down on a modest increase in fuel taxes it had imposed specifically to fight global warming, after protests consumed the nation. Liberal Washington state overwhelmingly rejected a carbon tax. Countries that made solemn pledges to cut CO2 emissions three years ago as part of the Paris climate change agreement aren’t close to living up to them. Fighting climate change continues to rank at the bottom of the public’s list of priorities.

Common Sense
Most likely that’s because the public has far more common sense than environmentalists or the mainstream media. They know that bad things have always happened. There were devastating hurricanes, floods, droughts, starvation, deprivation, wars and other terrible tragedies — including acne — long before mankind started burning fossil fuel.

They also know that the climate is always changing. (Take a trip to the Grand Canyon if you don’t believe it.)

And the public knows that not everything bad that is happening today can possibly be the result of a less-than-1-degree Celsius increase in average global temperatures over the past 100 years.

Trying to convince people otherwise just exposes what a hoax the whole climate change mania has become.