Patterico's Pontifications

1/17/2017

Is Climate Change a Hoax?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:00 am



As part of my Liberty Classroom contest over Black Friday weekend, I told people that they could commission or write a post if they bought a membership. So far one reader wrote a post. This is the first commissioned post, from reader Gil G., and here is the topic:

I would like you to write a blog post on your thoughts about global warming. Is it a “hoax” as president elect Trump has said? Should we accept that it is real?

Within the scope of that, please discuss the parallels between climate skeptic science and the type of science we saw come from gas companies when they fought to stop lead from being banned (Robert Kehoe), and similarly the way tobacco companies fought the conclusion and link from cigarettes to cancer and other diseases.

I have long described my views on climate change in this manner: I am a climate change skeptic skeptic. That’s not a typo. I am saying that I am skeptical of the climate change skeptics. It doesn’t mean I’m a climate change hysteric. But it also doesn’t mean that I reject the notion that the planet is warming, or that humans may be contributing to that.

I think a little humility is in order. Let me tell an analogous story. I think you’ll get the point.

Not that long ago, Emily Bazelon wrote a hit piece on the late Justice Scalia, portraying him as a “skeptic about science” (as the deck headline declared). Bazelon said: “He relished argument and debate, but when he had to grapple with scientific evidence, he was often wary.” In response, Ed Whelan wrote an excellent pair of posts titled Smearing Justice Scalia on Science—Part 1 and Part 2. Ian Samuel wrote a post of his own which was devastating to Bazelon’s thesis. A summary of his points can be found in this Tweetstorm of his, and the capper to that Tweetstorm was this killer tweet:

Ouch! Bazelon, who is a lawyer, mocked Scalia for not uncritically accepting the “obvious” science . . . except it was wrong, and she didn’t realize it.

What lesson does that have for debates about climate change? For me, the lesson is: I’m not a scientist, and getting into the finer points of the debate is not really something I’m suited for.

I get irritated by some of the phony statistics the hysterics toss around. There is a fellow named James Powell (who my reader Gil. G. seems to have some regard for) who throws around an oft-cited statistic which was stated by an L.A. Times writer in this way: “Out of 10,855 peer-reviewed articles in scientific journals last year that dealt with some aspect of global warming, all but two accepted human behavior as the primary cause.” Wrong! I spent some time debunking this statistic as wholly bogus in this post. The short answer is that the statistic is based on a study that conflated “not rejecting” AGW with “accepting” it — and the study relies on many articles, such as studies of the life cycle of lead acid batteries, that had almost nothing to do with whether global warming is primarily caused by humans.

I also know that, by the global warming alarmists’ own studies, if the U.S. reduced emissions to zero by 2050 (i.e., if everyone in the U.S. died), “the average global temperature in the year 2100 would be 0.1°C — that’s one‐tenth of a degree -— lower than would otherwise be the case.” Quite apparently, the U.S. is not the big problem here . . . China and India are.

That said, it’s my belief that the planet is warming, and my best guess is that man contributes to that. I don’t know to what extent man’s contribution affects the rate of warming.

I think the idea that climate scientists are engaged in some kind of active “hoax” or “conspiracy” seems, um, conspiratorial. It does not strike me as likely. But, just as folks in Big Media tend to lean mostly one way politically, I can believe that climate scientists, by and large, have a herd-like mindset.

It doesn’t strike me like a hard science the way physics is. The models never seem to predict anything accurately. Predictions are commonly and provably exaggerated.

But, in the end, I am a lawyer by trade and a writer (and musician, and other things) by hobby. What I am not, is a scientist. And I recognize my limitations.

That’s about as much as I can say about that. I hope Gil G. does not consider it a cop-out.

And I hope he is enjoying Liberty Classroom at least half as much as I do.

108 Responses to “Is Climate Change a Hoax?”

  1. I think I’m of the same persuasion as you, Patterico. I realize the climate changes and now, perhaps it’s warming. I also figure that man has something to do with climate just by our sheer numbers and emissions. How much effect I really can’t say.

    My problem is I too am not a scientist let alone a climate scientist and not one single person I know who constantly calls me a “denier” is either. It seems if one buys into the cult of man made climate change then anyone who is not 100% devoted to the belief is a denier. No room for doubters, or skeptics or even those of us who have noticed over the years the predictions are never right. Not right 50% or 20% of the time but down right never correct. If you’d like I have an extensive list by “prominent experts in the field of climate” listing their incorrect predictions. So they are not expert scientists and those are not predictions. They are charlatans and those are guesses.

    Rev. Hoagie® (785e38)

  2. As a lapsed farmboy, I am fine with longer growing seasons and milder winters, and if Leonardo DiCaprio worries about a quarter-inch rise in sea levels (seen only in “models” and not in the real world) encroaching on his private beach, he should shrink his house down to a four-room bungalow, fly commercial instead of private plane, and trade in his motor yacht for a sailing ship.

    nk (dbc370)

  3. there’s a theory that carbon dioxide is the most important determinant of global mean temperature

    but nobody’s proved this

    nobody *can* prove this

    the science has been strangled in its crib

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  4. but if you want you some big government, you gotta slurp up some climate change

    it’s so good it gets that government so big for you

    it is so good

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  5. P.S. And as a habitual Chicagoan, I’m thnakful that yesterday we had eighteen hours of rain and not snow and that the temperature today will be 40 and not 20, and I don’t care why that is.

    nk (dbc370)

  6. I’m not a scientist either, but I do know something about the scientific method. And when a so-called “scientist” asks, “Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it?”… well, I know that he isn’t a scientist either. At that point, he has turned himself into a politician who is lying about being a scientist.

    And what I’ve seen of the global warming debate is that the people like Antony Watts are open about their data, their sources, and their methods — while the people like Phil Jones want to hide their data and protect it from peer review. I’m not qualified to understand the data myself, but I understand that kind of behavior perfectly well. And it’s Phil Jones’s famous “Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it?” line that turned me into an AGW* skeptic.

    * AGW = Anthropogenic Global Warming; the position that the warming trend of the 20th century was mostly man-made. (The opposite position is that the warming trend was/is mostly natural, and that man’s contribution was quite small on the grand scale of things).

    Robin Munn (35f4c7)

  7. When the elites have lifestyles that reflect their professed principles on this issue, that’s when I take it to heart. Personally, living a conservative lifestyle extends to use of natural resources and lessening the impact on the environment. It’s living “intelligently”.

    Colonel Haiku (6dd99d)

  8. While I know there are wacky “The Climate is not Changing” climate skeptics out there, I’d say a good portion are in the, “without killing off all humans, what can we do?” camp. Like Bjorn Lomborg and his line of thought that we’d be better off spending money now to adjust to future climate change instead of trying to stop it.

    Then you have the line of skeptics that attack the computer models and temperature data being released by various government agencies. Those are the ones that like to point out that, in recent history, it’s been warmer that it is now. That Mann’s hockey stick seems to be out of synch with written historical accounts. That temperature station locations around the US have had civilization pop up around them and that may a strong cause of the uptick in temperature readings.

    I’m in the first camp, personally. I believe the best thing we could do to prevent Global Warming tragedy in the US would be to end subsidized flood insurance. There is no reason to have a government program which encourages scientifically-proven, dangerous behavior. Get the people off the coasts, get the people out of flood plains.

    Xmas (3a75bb)

  9. “I think the idea that climate scientists are engaged in some kind of active “hoax” or “conspiracy” seems, um, conspiratorial. It does not strike me as likely.”

    Another mish mash. I have been following this for many years. The evidence, yes evidence, to support a conspiracy is not hard to find. You are a lawyer. Use your lawyer skills and do a little more research.

    Davod (f3a711)

  10. P.S. Mind you. This topic is a good way to boost your numbers and take peoples minds off your antagonist attitude towards Trump.

    Davod (f3a711)

  11. The celebs (Al Gore, Barack, Jane Fonda, John F. Kerry, Leo DiCaprio, et al) who do the most talking about the “dangers” of having a big carbon footprint have some of the biggest carbon footprints in the world.

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  12. Human beings have lived, and adapted, to every dry-land environment on earth. We live in barren Arctic wastes, we live in the bone-dry deserts, we live in grasslands and steaming tropical jungles, and people have been living in those areas since long before modern technology. If the climate changes, we will adapt to it, because that is what human beings do.

    The human Dana (1b79fa)

  13. A small quibble, human Dana. We do not adapt to our environment, we adapt our environment to ourselves. I will grant you that we adapt our behaviors. And we do not pass those adaptations of our behavior down to future generations through our genes like animals do, but through words, pictures and training.

    nk (dbc370)

  14. Climate change is real. The closer you get to the equator the warmer it gets.

    ropelight (19a16e)

  15. Our Windy City barrister wrote:

    A small quibble, human Dana. We do not adapt to our environment, we adapt our environment to ourselves. I will grant you that we adapt our behaviors. And we do not pass those adaptations of our behavior down to future generations through our genes like animals do, but through words, pictures and training.

    Why, then, are Eskimos short and fat? Why are Amazon tribesmen skinny? Those are biological adaptations to the climates in which they live, as surface-area-to-body-mass ratios matter as to how efficiently the body retains or expels heat.

    Some animals certainly do train their young; I’m sure you’ve seen the countless shows concerning mother cheetah and lions and the like teaching their cubs how to hunt.

    And much of our behavior is genetic, something the left do not understand. Men and women mate because it is natural for us to do so, it is a compulsion that is very much biological. Women have a nurturing impulse toward their children, because it is a natural thing; we see it across every human society of which we have any knowledge at all.

    The biologist Dana (1b79fa)

  16. Only 3 more shopping days left until the big party.
    Of course, that means Barack still has 3 more days in which to inflict damage upon America.
    A slew of controversial pardons and commutations is likely forthcoming.
    Should we place bets on who gets a ‘get out of jail card’?

    Snowden?
    Bergdahl?
    Leonard Peltier?
    The Unabomber?
    Omar Abdel-Rahman?

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  17. I am not a “climate scientist”, but I am somewhere between a “common sense scientist”* and a professional one, as I did original research in a lab with chemistry grad students and post docs in a highly regarded institution,
    and much of my medical career has been in university settings where “quoting the literature” was expected.

    In my looking into the issue a number if years ago, I was struck by a few things:
    1) Much of the data is questionable and not standardized, readings from a geographical site that once was farmland and now is near paved areas and buildings are not controlled/standardized. data that is not collected under controlled conditions with only one variable cannot be accepted at face value.
    2) The amount of data that conclusions are based on are ridiculously skimpy. In the 70’s the rage was to talk about global cooling because of what trends showed since the beginning of the century, in a scant additional 10-15 years of data, less than a blink of the eye in the geological history of the earth, the opposite conclusions were being drawn.
    In addition, the data on which Mann’s “hockey stick” was based on was from a very small sample set of something that was used as a proxy for temperature (tree rings of a particular specie of tree), when others said that it was not clear that to use that as a proxy of temperature alone (did you know that rain fall also affects the growth of trees??)
    3) The theory ignored established understanding of climate like the Middle Warm period and little ice age, and that Greenland is called Greenland.
    4) The models do not accurately portray past observation, and they haven’t accurately portrayed the last 15+ years of observation (a large percentage of the time period available for study). If the expected findings of a scientific theory are not found, but something else is, that means there is something wrong with the theory. Perhaps minor and not taking other things into account, or major.
    5) All manner of local phenomenon around the world are attributed to global warming, when there is absolutely no way of knowing that “everything else has remained constant”
    6) and that includes asserted claims that just aren’t true, such as a “decline” in polar bears and “haul outs” of walruses (is it walruses, or some type of seal)
    7) Wild predictions of things like Europe never seeing snow again and the arctic ice melting are given great fanfare, but not so much the failures of such things
    8) Things appealed to such as pictures of retreating glaciers in Alaska are presented fraudulently, without including evidence that was is shown started occurring long before the rise in CO2 due to human activity
    9) Proponents of AGW refuse to engage in direct debate with critics
    10) The impact of addressing AGW is not all “up side”, too many people think, “Oh, if it might be true, let’s do something about it”, without realizing that “doing something” is inadequate and causes harm, such as raising corn prices worldwide when US corn production goes into ethanol, not tortillas.

    Now, all of those things do not require a PhD in anything to understand, just a second of vaccination against Murray Gell-Mann amnesia.

    Steyn has a book that is nothing but quotes by the experts on what is wrong with the “hockey stick”, accompanied by a description of the credentials of who it is making the statements. One can say, “Well, the hockey stick is just one part of the whole issue”. That is true, but the dire prediction of the hockey stick and its visible impact, that we were on the edge of an exponential rise in temperature, was what turned the topic from one of reasonable investigation into one of panic that “we needed to do something yesterday!!!”.

    There is much more to be said that is negative about the issue that I am not well versed enough to continue on, but those are the points I make that ought to be understandable to anyone.

    Yes, it ignores all kinds of things. My point is I don’t care what various isolated things can be shown in the forest, if one doesn’t realize that one is in the wrong forest.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  18. Yes, I realize that my points are primarily whether or not man-made global climate change is supported by fundamental data, not whether or not it is a hoax.
    For many it is not a hoax, just falling in line. I imagine there are some true believers, I imagine there are many so invested in it wanting to be true that their thinking is clouded.
    how many people think it is false but perpetuate the idea? I am sure some, not sure who.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  19. There is zero scientific proof for Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming. That is the only thing that would be relevant. These fanatics all claim end of the world scenarios for why we must impoverish ourselves by taking extreme actions now.

    Locke (06e569)

  20. Man plans. God laughs

    Like Patterico, I am not a trained scientist either. But silly phrases like “the science is settled” prattled from the mouths of other people who are also not scientists trouble me as someone who has admittedly taken just a few hard science courses but has a lot of history (both in the classroom and in life) under my belt.
    Climate science is a very new area of study. Very new. “Hoax” may be too strong a word. But I suspiciously suspect that many of the models have been created and paid for (and have very likely been manipulated) for furthering the economic and political agendas of various people and entities whose prime interest is not saving the earth for the world’s great-great-great great-great-great grandchildren. I think I view it this way partly because I do, by graduate level training, understand how “scientific polls and studies” are all too frequently crafted, manipulated, cherry picked and misrepresented to fool or disguise which then taint the results and recommendations coming from them.

    My skepticism on this is furthered by the risible and highly visible current record of academia marching in lockstep on other issues while slamming the door on, firing, and essentially muting any dissent from other highly respected academics. I know some of these people. This is not the way to “settle” science or anything else.

    I also know that every snowstorm and every hurricane and volcanic eruption is not caused by climate change. I know that where I live now (on the shores of one of the glacial fresh water Great Lakes) and that where I earlier grew up (among the acres of fertile farmlands of Illinois) were both once buried under acres of ice. These farmlands now help to feed the world. I know that in the bronze age “Oetsi” the Alpine iceman freely roamed, ate, and fought his enemies in the high Alps before they were covered in ice and snow. Only the melting of that ice many ages later revealed Oetsi’s body and his accouterments and started the fascinating new study of his life and times.

    Man plans. God laughs.

    This is a wonderful post to discuss and interact with. Thank you Patterico and others who have chimed in with such interesting thoughts. I will check in later to read more.

    elissa (377b6d)

  21. Quite apparently, the U.S. is not the big problem here . . . China and India are.

    No, they’re not a problem, either. *

    The sum total of everything that all human beings have done in the way of adding greenhouse gases to the atmosphere since around 1860 is.

    ————
    * If there even is a problem. I mean, it hasn’t been established that global warming is a problem. It could be a net benefit. Otherwise we’re reduced to arguing that the best of all possible cimates was in the year 19xx.

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  22. As the late columnist Dennis Byrne (Chicago ST, later Tribune) once opined, Global Warming might be true, but who wouldnt want to see oranges growing in Michigan. Im of the strain that grudgingly acknowledges it but shouldnt deprive ourselves (as a society) of the conveniences that come about due to the release of certain agents into the atmosphere.

    #15 Biological Dana – if the Eskimos are an race that has adapted to its conditions, I would argue that Afrikaaner white South Africans, white Australians, and white long-time (not recent NYNEX migrants) Floridians exhibit similar proclivities with regard to tanning, heat tolerance and genetic traits (what I call the Greg Norman look).

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  23. but if you want you some big government, you gotta slurp up some climate change

    it’s so good it gets that government so big for you

    it is so good

    happyfeet (28a91b) — 1/17/2017 @ 6:10 am

    OH GOD I agree with happyfeet. The world is ending.

    I have no doubt the climate is changing. I have no doubt humans affect the climate. I have lots of doubt the climate changing is bad. I have lots of doubt humans affect the climate significantly.

    The Earth has not warmed substantially since the 90’s. It was warmer 1500 years ago. The Earth being warmer is actually a good thing.

    The biggest problem I have with climate change science is its based on models that never come close to being accurate, and its used by people to further a big government agenda. Who insist “the science is settled” and the “consensus is its happening” when neither of those statements are what science is about. The science is never settled, and science is not based on consensus.

    In fact, its based on reproducibly and verification. The supported results cannot be reproduced, and cannot be verified. In fact, the models consistently get it wrong with actual data once the predicted time passes.

    So the proper position if you are scientific is to be highly skeptical of man made climate change
    hypotheses.

    Patrick Henry, the 2nd (e04f50)

  24. What could be a hoax is the notion that cutting back on greenhouse gas emissions would change very much. It doesn’t, even according to their own models. So they speculate about tipping points, as if they had never heard of chaos theory, or talk about climate agreements as being a first steps, when we know there isn’t going to be another one. We’ll see a Palestinian state before any of that happens.

    And another thing that’s ignored is other ways of affecting the climate beyond the simplisic notion of just not doing what people are doing, as if because you can say it in a few words, you can easily do it, and without massive costs and disruption.

    If some kind of geo-engineering is worth doing, it’s better to spew sulfer dioxide over the Arctic, or fertilize the Pacific Ocean with iron. Of course the climate alarmists and their allies have been quietly taking these choices off the table by international agreements. They need to be put back on the table.

    The advantage measures like these have over attempts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is that 1) they are reversible and temporary 2) they are much cheaper and 3) it might actually work.

    In the hoax department, there was also the “hockey stick” – which was an attempt to claim that the only possible source of variation in temperature was civilization. For their theory, they had to make the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age….go away.

    Another thing that goes on is to raise the alleged cost of global warming climate change. There’s about 5% more water vapor added to the atmosphere since about 1900 I think, and dihydrogen monoxide is a much more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. (The people who want to reduce CO2 and CH4 attribute all the extra H2O to the presence of other things – althouugh burning all fuels except coal adds water to the atmosphere too.)

    More water vapor means more rainfall, which could mean more and bigger storms – although it also means more droughts, you see, because the rain is falling in the wrong place. There isn’t any kind of study, I think, to support the claim that we can affect where the rain falls by affecting the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere, but never mind. Not even real good statistics to show theer are more hurricanes or droughts.

    And there’s another thing – there is actually a way to prevent hurricanes. You put a covering pver parts of the ocean to limit evaporation, and it can be done cheaply. This is all wroitten aboutin the book “SuperFreakeconomics”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SuperFreakonomics

    Further, the authors posit an alternative way of solving global warming by adding sulfur dioxide to the atmosphere.

    The chapter has been criticized by economists and climate science experts who say it contains numerous misleading statements and discredited arguments, including this presentation of geoengineering as a replacement for CO2 emissions reduction.

    CO2 emission reduxction s AlSO a form of geo-engineering, except that it’s geoengineering that’s guaranteed not to work!!

    In their own models. But I guess, it’s a moral issue.

    By the way, global warming climate models have not yet once correctly predicted the future, ands need to be constantly tweaked to account for the past.

    And another thing. They’ve gotten the Pentagon and the CIA to say that “climate change” causes ers.

    And also, refugees. Governments don’t like refugees maybe. Donald Trump doesn’t like refugees.

    Well, don’t you know, refugees are caused by an increase of carbon dioxide in the atmospher.

    That’s what Senator Kamala Harris (D-Cal.) was trying to get Mike Pompeo, the nominee for Director of the CIA, to agree not to disagree with.

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  25. Barack hosted the World Series champion Chicago Cubs on Monday.
    During his speech honoring the team, he referred to himself 40 times.
    Based on that stat, you’d almost think he delivered the game winning hit in one of those World Series games.

    But we all remember Barack throwing out that laughable first pitch many years ago when he was wearing his Mom jeans.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EJBlwUfIoDk

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  26. I didn’t proofread that sufficiently. It should have been:

    … talk about climate agreements as being a first step, when we know there isn’t going to be another one.

    …– although burning all fuels except coal adds water to the atmosphere too.

    …Not even real good statistics to show there are more hurricanes or droughts.

    …You put a covering over parts of the ocean to limit evaporation, and it can be done cheaply. This is all written about in the book “SuperFreakeconomics”

    (I didn’t give a link for the hurricanes. Here is one:

    http://freakonomics.com/2012/11/06/another-look-at-an-unorthodox-hurricane-prevention-idea/ )

    …By the way, global warming climate models have not yet once correctly predicted the future, and need to be constantly tweaked to account for the past.

    … They’ve gotten the Pentagon and the CIA to say that “climate change” causes wars.

    (My most serious typo. You’d never guess the last word was ‘wars’)

    …Well, don’t you know, refugees are caused by an increase of carbon dioxide in the
    atmosphere.

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  27. Considering he was a faux White Sox fan (as is wont with Hyde Parkers, being seen oftentimes as not truly Southsiders, so they must compensate in other ways), he acquitted himself well in mentioning the ins and outs of the 7th game and the season’s accomplishments. He did flub when describing the final out, saying “Bryant tossed the grounder(?) to Rizzo”.

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  28. “This is a wonderful post to discuss and interact with. Thank you Patterico and others who have chimed in with such interesting thoughts. I will check in later to read more.”

    – elissa

    What jumps out at me is that the post explicitly poses a complex question without an easy answer. With this community, that might be the best way to rechannel the momentum away from acrimony and back toward debate.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  29. urbanleftbehind, have you ever listened to that disastrous interview he did after throwing out the aforementioned first pitch?
    The broadcasters asked him to name some of his favorite White Sox players from the past, and he couldn’t name any. He then claimed he had actually grown up as an Oakland A’s fan.

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  30. Im aware of the mom jeans interview and of the jaded calculated pick of the then-swing state Tigers over the Giants in ’12 Series. One likely scripted speech doesnt outshine that but, but the Cubs greet could have been a lot worse.

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  31. Greetings:

    In these days of 24/7/365.25 marketeering, when an industry has to re-brand itself from “global warning” to “climate change”, it indicates to me that the initial business plan suffered from a lack of, how shall I say it, intellectual rigor.

    And after all these years of low-level on-going hysteria, there seems to a a significant lack of significant consequences except in the area of those two progressive favorites, more government and more wealth re-distribution.

    Lastly, as often as President Eisenhower’s farewell address warning about the “military-industrial complex” (as opposed to the “anti-military-industrial complex”) is trotted out to garner some political benefit or other, my understanding is that that address also contains a warning about a “scientific-governmental complex” that apparently has so little benefit to the usual political trotters-out that it rarely bubbles up to the media surface.

    11B40 (6abb5c)

  32. The system is chaotic. Climate change is real. So is local and regional warming and cooling.

    Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming and its successor Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Change, unless referring to social justice adventurism, extrajudicial trials, international belligerence, immigration “reform”, progressive corruption, [class] diversity, selective exclusion, selective-child, etc., are prophecies sold by Profits, spun by JournoLists, and backed by scientific mystics.

    nn (e79db6)

  33. “Hoax” and “conspiracy” suggest a tiny group of people deliberately perpetuating a falsehood that has tremendous influence on events. Real life rarely works this way. However, it’s not necessary to assume either of these to plausibly explain politically corrupted science. All you need is to postulate several self-reinforcing trends born of fairly universal human flaws:

    – The willingness of people genuinely frightened by an apparent danger to take shortcuts in building the case against that danger;

    – The reluctance of any committed advocate to publicly acknowledge those shortcuts, admit mistakes or modify one’s stance, in the (in itself) reasonable recognition that admitting to being wrong in part will lead a lot of people to conclude you’re wrong in full;

    – The natural tendency of any small “Inner Ring” to divide into tribal camps of allies and enemies, and to polarize the debate in terms of winning a conflict between tribes rather than a testing process aimed at finding truth;

    – The willingness of any given politician or advocate to exploit any conflict as a means for implementing one’s own preferred policy goals, and the temptation to discredit those who merely disagree over solutions as people who don’t really believe in the problem;

    – The basic inertia involved in any large opinion-propelled flow of money, where grant-dispensers can easily succumb to the “sunk cost” fallacy rather than admit they may have been throwing millions of good dollars after bad.

    All climate-disruption policy relies on three key assumptions: 1) we have enough good data about the climate; 2) we understand how it all relates; and 3) we can afford to do something that will actually do something. I think an honest appraisal of the actual state of the science puts all three of these in serious question. But most of all, I have to admit, I am more a skeptic than not because of the classic words of Glenn Reynolds of InstaPundit, among others: “I’ll believe it’s a crisis when the people who say it’s a crisis start acting like it’s a crisis.”

    Stephen J. (f77922)

  34. I think we should refine to anthropogenic global warming, Hansen in the rolling tumbleweed, compared today’s tempers to that 100,000 years ago, assuming that were yrue, there was no man-made element back then.

    narciso (d1f714)

  35. Now Mark Steyn has a rejoinder to the general concept as describing Michael mann

    narciso (d1f714)

  36. My real objection to the quasi religious doctrine of climate change is the economics.

    The cost numbers simply do not justify massive taxes and regulations proposed. For the money these high priests propose to tithe from us we could buy every inhabitant of every low area flooded over the next 300 years a nice condo in the mountains and a Benz to drive there. This includes the impoverished people of Asian and African river deltas, like many of those poor folk in Bangladesh. It also includes unpleasant American bi-coastal lefties, but I suppose we must help them too.

    Plus the economics do not take into account, so far as I know, several hundred million newly arable acres in Canada, Alaska, Siberia and Northern China.

    Besides, I’m in Canada, it’s been -22 degrees F over night for the last few weeks.

    Fred Z (b0a041)

  37. Well the economics are premised on faulty models, which are tilted by heat islandcselection and other biases

    narciso (d1f714)

  38. Another way to look at it is to compare two scenarios and contemplate which seems more plausible:

    Scenario #1: Due to changes in the proportional atmospheric concentrations of a few key gases, changes caused predominantly by human industry, agriculture and energy generation over the 20th century, a fatal positive-feedback vulnerability in the atmospheric heat-transfer cycle of the planet is about to be (or has already been) triggered, and we are about to experience (or are already experiencing the beginning of) a disastrous “runaway” rise in sea level and global temperature that will, possibly within the lifetimes of most people currently alive but certainly within our grandchildren’s lives, turn the planet into a superstorm-flooded tropical swamp and devastate most of the coastal cities of civilization. The only practical way to prevent this disruption is to wind the entirety of human civilization back to about the 1920s, in terms of technological infrastructure and energy use, then freeze it there—regardless of how many lives that costs, and how much global political control that will require to enact and maintain. Moreover, the scientific arguments justifying this necessity are so obvious, ironclad and irrefutable that the only possible reason to disagree with them is either ignorance or malice—thus establishing a priori that any so-called “skeptical” argument must be incompetent or in bad faith, and thus justifiably dismissable as “not science” without having to waste time engaging it. Simultaneously, however, the statistical evidence proving these scientific arguments is so arcane, complex and incomprehensible to non-experts that it can only be convincingly demonstrated if simplified to the point of distortion, removing all data that might appear to indicate contradictions, ambiguities and uncertainties and skipping over all the calculation processes that led to those conclusions. Furthermore, confirming this science and devising solutions to this threat are processes so time- and resource-intensive that simply pausing to provide code and raw data to anyone who asks, or inquiring as to why it has not occurred so far in recorded history despite similar, naturally-caused atmospheric changes in those past centuries, constitutes an insurmountable obstacle to their success and cannot be indulged.

    Scenario #2: An extremely small group of researchers, information-managers and data-collectors (no more than a few hundred people, when you get right down to it) prematurely committed themselves in public to some preliminary conclusions from observed temperature trends, and thus became (most likely inadvertently at first) key figureheads in a major political movement that wanted to capitalize on fear of those conclusions to enact their preferred policies. This movement was aided at every step by a media establishment which has always found fearmongering more profitable and entertaining than reassurance, and whose practitioners’ politics overwhelmingly favour the top-down legal compulsion of social virtue, and it eventually became tremendously widespread in influencing public belief—as well as tremendously invested in the financial structures of the scientific establishment. Then—when contradictory data began to emerge, the models failed to perform as expected, some of the observed trends went flat or reversed, flaws or weaknesses in the data and its collection procedures were discovered, and some of the more outrageous predictions (made mostly by advocates rather than the researchers) failed to come true—those researchers did everything they could to avoid any perception or acknowledgement of error in their initial conclusions, for reasons including hubris (refusal to believe their error), fear (of being held responsible for that error), greed (for the funding, prestige and other benefits of their position), tribalism (refusing to contradict colleagues, or support opponents, no matter what they thought the truth might actually be) and desperation (conviction that the agenda is so important no individual error matters significantly).

    Now which scenario is more plausible does not in itself equal to which one is correct . . . but it does influence the way one bets, I think.

    Stephen J. (f77922)

  39. CAGW is a hoax.

    It’s being perpetuated by leftist governments and their agents in a desire to shape the populace to their will. Any dissenting beliefs are punished and we see agents on the left express their desire to criminalize disagreement.

    Hockey Stick.

    Hide the decline.

    NYC underwater by 2015

    On and on.

    NJRob (43d957)

  40. Considering the fact that scientists only just recently discovered a correlation between the Sun’s solar wind, it’s reach beyond the solar system, and its effects on cosmic radiation, I think it’s best to stop pointing fingers about who “might” be causing observable warming since we know so very little about how the big giant gas ball in the sky operates. This warming could be an effect of the earth’s magnetic field, increased or decreased sun spot activity, variances in solar wind patterns, etc. The fact that so many experts arrogantly believe they can accurately model such a complex system is laughable, and it’s even more absurd that they want to force their “conclusions” upon everyone without ever really proving their theories.

    I think most scientists are afraid, they observe something as happening and believe—again arrogantly—that they can find a solution. What I’m failing to see from the science community is an effort to eliminate known causes of warming, instead they want to focus on hypothetical causes that have never been proven. The fact that many bilk taxpayers for thousands in grants to study the unknown before eliminating the known is just fuel to the skeptics’ fire.

    Sean (41ed1e)

  41. Fred Z,

    This piece on Davos provides the economic rationale for imposing a heavily regressive tax on air. You and I may not be able to discern any economic benefit from the imposition of air taxes but the oligarchs adoption of “Let a billion Solyndras bloom.” as their rallying cry for the future indicates a different perception of the situation.

    WRT to the subject of climate – I agree with the general tenor of observations made by Lomberg, Curry and Lindzen with particular emphasis on Lindzen’s observations regarding the relative importance of H20 rather than CO2 as the driver in change.

    Rick Ballard (1c290b)

  42. Dennis Prager has a three-point summary that I think is a useful one.
    Global Warming / Climate Change / Weather Modification / Whatever is a concern only if the following three premises are true:
    1) The planet is getting warmer.
    2) Human activity is a major cause of this warming.
    3) Said warming is going to result in disaster.

    Point #1 is true. Over the long term, we’ve been seeing warming, and I recall seeing articles in the 1980s examining warming recorded in the Arctic permafrost.

    Point #2 is debatable. Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, because it acts as a barrier to some of the energy that would otherwise escape into space. Increasing CO2 in the atmosphere is equivalent to throwing another blanket on a bed.
    However, CO2 can only block energy in certain bands, so it’s equivalent to throwing a blanket over part of the bed. Furthermore, additional layers of blankets are less effective because there’s less heat making it to each subsequent layer of blanketing.

    So the effect of human activity is greater than zero, but less than infinity. It may be a tiny fraction of the total influence on the planet’s temperature.
    (N.B., I prefer a more generalized statement here: “Point #2: Humans have the ability to alter the climate going into the future.” In other words, given that the planet is warming, and given what we can do to the system, how much could we actually affect the climate if we put our minds and resources to it? If it turns out the answer is “sod all”, this point becomes irrelevant.)

    Point #3 is even more debatable. If the studies of possible effects of warming wind up cherry-picking only bad effects, we’ll get a skewed picture of the effects of climate change.

    So bottom line: if you fail to accept any one of the three points listed above, you, too, are a “denier”.

    Karl Lembke (e37f42)

  43. But, just as folks in Big Media tend to lean mostly one way politically, I can believe that climate scientists, by and large, have a herd-like mindset.

    Not exactly. Most science these days relies on grants and other outside funding. No bucks, no research, no papers, no tenure, no job. And in the climate science field, there are NO grants for “deniers.” You don’t want to be one of those “deniers”, do you?

    There is a bias, but it starts at the political level at places like the NSF, and flows downhill from there.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  44. Is Climate Change A Hoax?

    Life is short.

    No.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  45. I don’t know the extent that human production of greenhouse gasses drives the warming trend. But…

    * The CO2 levels are higher now than at any time humans have been on-planet. It doesn’t seem a wise thing to do.

    * Solar activity clearly plays a role. From 1950-2000 the sun was extremely active and this probably exacerbated the warming trend. Since 2000, solar activity has died down, and now seems to be in a particularly cool period. And the overall warming trend has stalled.

    * Solar cooling does not mean that we can willy-nilly ramp up atmospheric greenhouse gasses, since some day the solar activity will rise and we could be in deep sh1t all of a sudden.

    * But there is time for a calm and long-term plan to transition to less reliance on fossil fuels. Changing any major component (electricity production, winter heating or mobile fuels) away from fossil fuels would seem to be an adequate middle-term response, and of those only winter heating seems difficult.

    * Nuclear power needs to be reconsidered. Not everything needs to be 60-year-old plants operated past their sell-by date and run by accountants and PR flacks like Fukashima.

    This isn’t an emergency and we don’t need to change our system to solve the problem, which is a lot smaller than it is made out to be by the alarmists.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  46. Trees love CO2. If you reduce CO2, you make it harder for trees to “breathe.” If you believe in reducing CO2, you must hate trees……

    Loren (66de82)

  47. I’d say Dilbert has the right take on the subject.

    WarrenPeese (d5b1bb)

  48. We’re made of carbon, we exhale Co 2, what accounted for the previous gas spike between 100,000 and 80,000 years ago,

    narciso (d1f714)

  49. There are a lot of very good comments above justifying the “skeptic” side of the argument. I note that none of the skeptics have called for the arrest of those who disagree with them, and most provide some kinds of evidence supporting their position. Those who support the notion of ACC due to CO2 emitted by modern industry are not of this quality. The most ardent make fantastic claims for future damage, and yet when that “future” arrives, their predictions have no bearing on what is observed. If they were scientists, this would be a time for reflection. But instead they become even more militant. The more subdued are simply pleasing their master while pursuing activities that can be packaged in a climate change research wrapper.

    I think the simplest evidence, based on observation, that refutes the fantastic claims of the ACC crowd are the written histories and painted landscapes of the Medieval Warm Period coupled with recent archaeological and environmental discoveries. The written histories are well known, but the ACC crowd says that was just a local phenomena, applicable only to Europe. But we know Greenland was green, the Vikings probably colonized a portion of North America, and wells and other structures have been found in the remains of these northern settlements as the current ice sheet melts, that prove conditions were warmer in those places a thousand years ago than they are even today. And in western North America, as the Mendenhall Glacier retreats in Alaska, they have discovered the remains of a forest that existed there a thousand years ago. Forests take a long time to mature, so the warmth that embraced the world a thousand years ago was neither short-lived nor local. We also know that the Maunder Minimum in the early 18th Century was time of great cooling around the world. So this thing called “climate” can change dramatically in a few hundred years, and it hasn’t needed modern industrial practices to induce that change. We have proof it has gone from warm to cold in the past, and since the early 19th Century this thing we call climate has been warming. The fact that “climate” has changed, and changed dramatically, over the last thousand years puts a high bar on the nature of the evidence that would be required to demonstrate that our carbon emissions are a significant contributor to what we are seeing.

    You are free to be skeptical of all this, and of us, as you apparently are. But allow us to judge you accordingly. You can’t hide behind the claim of scientific ignorance. The facts are there. The ACC argument isn’t proven simply because “climate” changes. Nor is it proven by computer models that have no demonstrable skill at predicting anything. You need to ask the ACC crowd “where’s the beef”, and a little skepticism would be appropriate until they provide something more convincing than computer output.

    BobStewartatHome (c24491)

  50. If you give them an inch, they’ll take a mile. We will learn that it is racist and sexist to read “inch” as anything other than “mile.”

    Human activity inevitably affects environment. Does this affect justify skimming billions of dollars away from people and to the government?

    -Science has become increasingly politicized by government funding.
    -Politicized science creates outcomes consistent with government goals.
    -Politicized science is untrustworthy science.

    AMartel (a99e2c)

  51. i love carbon dioxide

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  52. Seeding the atmosphere with SO2? No thanks. It’s defined as a major pollutant for good reason. Run rain through it, and it dissolves (yes,gasses do dissolves in liquids, see: soda water) into it, creating sulfuric acid.

    But back to the point. I spent years doing computer simulations, designing ICs. I know how easy it is to go completely off the rails with the wrong initial conditions, or a mistaken constant.

    The computer models they used originally had NO inputs for clouds. None, and yet even back then, doomsday predictions were shouted. Later models have started to include clouds, but they cant even make up their mind as to whether they cool (a cloud goes overhead and blocks the sun) or warms (cloudy nights are warmer). Models are only of use if they can predict, and NONE of them have been able to.

    You don’t need a conspiracy. There doesn’t need to be a smoke-filled room, or today’s equivalent, an encrypted private chat room. The invisible hand works. Politicians want power, “scientists” want grants. Today’s Climate Change Industry is the result.

    bud (2c19b3)

  53. Problems I have with Dilbert’s view include the following:

    First, the amount of warming produced by CO2, even according to the biggest alarmists, is not much. For the nightmare scenarios to occur they have to assume that the effect of the CO2 will also multiple other effects, and the aggregate is what really causes the problems. The amount of heat retained by CO2 in a lab is very different than what happens in the real world of the earth’s climate system.
    As said before by others, H2O is a much bigger factor than CO2, but they don’t understand much at all about when clouds form and why and when they don’t. What happens to the earth’s temperature over 24 hours is impacted yugely depending on whether that water is in the air as a cloud reflecting heat or as vapor trapping heat.
    And, CO2 is a very minor component in the atmosphere. Maybe it is a minor component because plants are always scarfing it up to grow, maybe the net effect of increased CO2 input into the atmosphere will be increased plant growth and crop yields. Like Loren said above.
    People are such animalists, they don’t give plants a second thought.
    All we have to do is start building things like windows and siding out of wood instead of aluminum that takes enormous energy to extract from ore and we’re set. (that is just a throw-away comment).

    Second, “the experts say”. The experts don’t all say. Like P said above about how the “97% of scientists say” is a lie, but that doesn’t prevent people like Harris to keep invoking it.
    It is like saying women only make 77% of what men make. A false number based on improper evaluation of data leading to false conclusions and assumptions for the need to act.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  54. I work here is done.

    The temperature average (TA) as presented by surface stations (SS) is very shaky. Shonky. Gerrymandered. Plenty of gaps in the record which are ever changing because climate “scientists” (CS) infill the gaps with averages of surrounding SS. Those are usually repurposed airport weather stations and/or suburban weather stations which once were rural but have been overtaken by population growth.
    Always adjusted higher until they are out of wack with the reality that can be perceived by us normal humans. That’s where the fraud comes in.
    Our government sponsored CS, recognizing the dilemma, go back into the climate history and rejigger the past making it cooler in order to maintain some semblance of temperature growth.
    That results in this type of product SS world average temperature graph.

    Notice that high end (present) is the same 0.8 degrees of “dangerous” warming that the CS were pointing at to worry us with back when Al Gore’s movie came out.

    I love Monica Crowley, but she cut corners on her PhD thesis, and that disqualified her from government service. That same corner cutting mindset permeates the people who draw up the world temp graphs. I don’t like them a bit. I don’t have time to look but will bet you that the same type of cheat if you go back in the lex nex way back machine, the plagiarist bug is present in the various global warming pushing CS’ PhD theses.
    If the inconsequential Crowley fudge is enough to disqualify her, then the much more consequential fudging of Hansen, Mann, and Schmidt must disqualify those guys from government work also. Kif-kif.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  55. 1) CO2 is the most essential trace gas of life and the planet can use more of it, it is not a pollutant

    2) Sun cycles 24-27 end the brief mild thaw out of the coldest era of the past 8,000 years, called the Little Ice Age, expect cooling for the next 30-50 years

    3) if California was serious about CO2, it wouldn’t have closed SONGS’ 2.4 GWs of emission free 24/7 $.04KWh energy

    Walter Horsting (a1451e)

  56. Well, all I can say is, Patterico, you need more information.
    Here is the most visited website for truth about the subject,
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/
    Next up is the second most popular and active I might add,
    http://www.climatedepot.com/
    And finally, this documentary made a few years ago, but still completely relevant,
    The Great Global Warming Swindle!

    https://www.google.com/url?q=http://m.youtube.com/watch%3Fv%3DD-m09lKtYT4&sa=U&ei=Bvn4VK6sI4r6yASv3oE4&ved=0CAsQtwIwAA&usg=AFQjCNE_77YLiaG7-eh73StPLTlV5eZF-Q

    David L (e4ff2f)

  57. The only undisputed change is the Keeling curve, the steady rise in Co2 content in the atmosphere.

    That has an effect that can change temperature averages, but not the way the climate guys present it.
    Pre industrial Co2 levels were a limiting factor on vegetation worldwide. The steady rise in Co2 is matched by a stead rise in the healthy vitality and extent of plant life. As the world has become greener due to Co2 fertilization, the overall albedo of the planet has become darker, absorbing more sunshine.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  58. BTW – I hate this topic now. Been doing it too long.

    It feels like I’m one of those feminist scolds wagging my finger in everyone’s face.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  59. we have more forest today than we did when squanto attacked the alamo

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  60. 12. The human Dana (1b79fa) — 1/17/2017 @ 6:36 am

    Human beings have lived, and adapted, to every dry-land environment on earth. We live in barren Arctic wastes, we live in the bone-dry deserts, we live in grasslands and steaming tropical jungles, and people have been living in those areas since long before modern technology. If the climate changes, we will adapt to it, because that is what human beings do.

    There’s an argument that’s true for people, but what about large land animals like elephants and even bears?

    Fish can swim in the ocean to another place, provided they aren’t sucked up by Chinese trawlers. Birds and many insects can fly north or south. Small animals like mice and rats and ants can manage to move. But fresh water fish may have some problems, and lions, tigers, bears and elephants are now hemmed in by civilization. Of course endangered species can be moved on a case by case basis. Also, so far no major problems have been reported.

    They have now settled on polar bears as the big losers. Not that they are stuck on ice floes, but that they don’t get enough food because there is not enough land-sea boundary.

    20. elissa (377b6d) — 1/17/2017 @ 7:39 am

    I know that in the bronze age “Oetsi” the Alpine iceman freely roamed, ate, and fought his enemies in the high Alps before they were covered in ice and snow.

    If it was before, his body would not have been preserved. There would have been just bones there, and maybe tatters of clothes and metal implements. Now maybe more snow fell later.

    22. urbanleftbehind (5eecdb) — 1/17/2017 @ 8:02 am

    Global Warming might be true, but who wouldn’t want to see oranges growing in Michigan.

    But the problem, or the argument, is that you might also get mosquitos, and maybe more mosquitos than before, and so a greater possibility of diseases like yellow fever, malaria, dengue fever, and the new villain, zika virus, not to mention West Nile virus, and pests that eat crops. Maybe even killer bees.

    But this is somehow managed in Florida – plus there’s ways to kill or get rid of mosquitos, although environmentalists are slapping them down one by one. First was DDT. Now they don’t want genetic engineering of mosquitos.

    Only cold weather is to be allowed to eliminate mosquitos from a specific area.

    32. nn (e79db6) — 1/17/2017 @ 8:46 am

    The system is chaotic.

    The point I wanted to make about it being chaotic is that you cannot say what the effect will be of a relatively small change in the amount of carbon dioxide etc. in the atmosphere, or in what direction.

    On that grounds alone, the whole notion of taking a small, first step is fallacious.

    42. Karl Lembke (e37f42) — 1/17/2017 @ 9:16 am

    Point #3 is even more debatable. If the studies of possible effects of warming wind up cherry-picking only bad effects, we’ll get a skewed picture of the effects of climate change.

    IF??

    They don’t really get publicity. I can think of two possible beneficial effects:

    1) Crops growing better. That’s been studied to the point that they know what plants are affected and what plants are not.

    2) People dying from cold vs people dying from heat. More people die from cold. Note this is probably actual exposure to cold air, so the effects are greatest in places that don’t usuall get very cold weather since people don’t wear warm clothing or don’t have heat where they live. Places that are always very cold in the winter don’t have as great a problem.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/19/well/beware-winter-is-coming.html

    Over time, as global temperatures rise, milder winter temperatures are likely to result in fewer cold-related deaths, a benefit that could outweigh a smaller rise in heat-caused mortality. In winter in the United States, mortality is generally 10 percent to 15 percent higher than on typical summer days.

    But you only hear about the people who died in France in 2003.

    Cold may be a stealth killer.

    About half of cold-related deaths result from blood clots that cause heart attacks and strokes, the British researchers reported. Blood becomes more concentrated during exposure to cold because blood flow to the skin is reduced to conserve body heat. This results in an excess of blood in the central parts of the body. To counter the excess volume, salt and water move from the blood into the tissue spaces, leaving behind “increased levels of red cells, white cells, platelets and fibrinogen” — thickened blood that is more likely to clot. Blood pressure, an important risk factor for heart attacks and strokes, also tends to rise with exposure to cold.

    Blood clots. I think traveling on airplanes is associated with that, too.

    There’s also pneumonia. Which is related to cold because antibody production goes down under stress.

    45. Kevin M (25bbee) — 1/17/2017 @ 10:07 am

    * The CO2 levels are higher now than at any time humans have been on-planet. It doesn’t seem a wise thing to do.

    They are about 50 ppm higher in cities, and it doesn’t seem to have any effect on health, and doesn’t help the type of plants it helps, all that much.

    * Solar cooling does not mean that we can willy-nilly ramp up atmospheric greenhouse gasses, since some day the solar activity will rise

    Something like that, maybe, happened in 1988.

    The climate can also suddenly get cooler, especially from a volcanic eruption, like in 1815 or in 1991, (1883 also?) and that can last for one, two or even five years. Nuclear bombs exploding in the atmosphere, like they did from 1945 to 1962, also reduce global temperatures. There’s a reasonable possibility that North Korea might counteract global warming for a few years all by itself, even if their bombs are intercepted on the way to the target, because they might still explode high up in the atmosphere. (or do they need to throw up a mushroom cloud to do that?)

    49. BobStewartatHome (c24491) — 1/17/2017 @ 10:29 am

    Those who support the notion of ACC due to CO2 emitted by modern industry are not of this quality. The most ardent make fantastic claims for future damage, and yet when that “future” arrives, their predictions have no bearing on what is observed.

    And then, like astrologers, they forget their predictions.

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  61. bud (2c19b3) — 1/17/2017 @ 10:34 am

    You don’t need a conspiracy. There doesn’t need to be a smoke-filled room, or today’s equivalent, an encrypted private chat room.

    It’s organized “science.” Peer review, plus establishing this as a special field.

    I don’t know how they got so many people to go along with an idea with so many flaws, but they’ve got control of the money.

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  62. Sammy Finkelman:

    I wouldn’t respond to the prophecy at all. We should continue to optimize processes, selecting technologies in context, and regulating and mitigating pollution. We should apply the double-edged scalpel of environmentalist propaganda equally or not at all. We should stop shifting and obfuscating ecological disruption. We should reconcile natural and moral imperatives, which requires a revival of science-based risk assessments and a religious/moral philosophy based on reproducible, consistent principles.

    nn (e79db6)

  63. You know the animals won’t be able to adapt argument.

    People are animals, and people adapt. I’m not talking about the put on a jacket and a hat because it’s chilly outside type of adapting. Actual real physiological climate adaptation in real time, not some multi generational if we live in the Klondike long enough, someday in the distant future our offspring will divert into Eskimos.

    All you have to do is move from the valley up to Lake Tahoe and in a weeks time your body will adapt, pores will close up shop, lungs will adjust to lower oxygen content, higher density of red blood cells and capillaries will adjust you to the new climate despite yourself.
    Also the reverse is true, upon returning to low altitude climates.

    I can’t imagine these types of real time adaptations are unique to humans.

    They stamp paid to the myth of climate changing too fast for animals to keep up.

    If the climate were changing in any meaningful way that is.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  64. Polar bears, for example, for some reason thrive in San Diego. Penguins too.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  65. What about sea levels rising, smart guy?

    Plymouth Rock, a national shrine, has been at the same spot, ocean kissed since 1620.

    Every little thing about global warming; concocted, fabricated, false.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  66. Fark me. Sorry about the finger guys.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  67. 57. papertiger (c8116c) — 1/17/2017 @ 11:05 am

    The only undisputed change is the Keeling curve, the steady rise in Co2 content in the atmosphere.

    That’s the only solid fact in the whole business.

    Maybe also the fact that the amount of coal, oil, and natural gas being burnt has risen, but as far as I know, nobody’s made a correlation between the two, let alone a correlation to average temperature. We could guess the amount of carbon dioxide added from historical recordss, or maybe from trapped air bubbles, plus there’s the Seuss effect.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suess_effect

    If you can measure the reduction in Carbon-14 from around 1890 through 1945, you’ll know how much carbon dioxide was added in those years.

    One thing is for sure. There’s tremendous amount of recycling going on. Carbon-14 levels in the atmosphere, have dropped tremendously since the early 1960s. The peak was in 1963. It has dropped now to less than 20% of what it was, and it’s approaching historical levels, (and will shortly fall below them due to the Seuss effect) although the half life of Carbon-14 is about 5,730 years.

    See the chart or graph down about a fifth of the way down the page.

    http://motls.blogspot.com/2015/07/does-climate-change-break-carbon-dating.html

    papertiger:

    Pre industrial Co2 levels were a limiting factor on vegetation worldwide. The steady rise in Co2 is matched by a steady rise in the healthy vitality and extent of plant life. As the world has become greener due to Co2 fertilization, the overall albedo of the planet has become darker, absorbing more sunshine.

    I didn’t realize this. That’s another thing that can be wrong with climate change theory

    And then there’s the possibility that increased temperatures can cause an increase in carbon dioxide, although that leads to the runaway greenhouse effect theory.

    Another thing: Burning coal actually tends to reduce temperatures, because of the amount of soot it injects into the atmosphere, although the soot falls out after a few years.

    63. papertiger (c8116c) — 1/17/2017 @ 11:54 am

    All you have to do is move from the valley up to Lake Tahoe and in a weeks time your body will adapt, pores will close up shop, lungs will adjust to lower oxygen content, higher density of red blood cells and capillaries will adjust you to the new climate despite yourself.

    So much so, that athletes preparing for the Olympics and other rare championship events sometimes go to train at high altitudes. (this is not considered cheating, as it would be if drugs were used)

    Someone collected a list of (links to) all the bad things allegedly caused by climate change. He stopped adding to the list in September, 2015:

    http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/warmlist.htm

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  68. The sea level has been rising rather steadily for over 100 years at about one inch per decade. (and there’s another extra inch in reservoirs) It’s not a problem. Although they claim there’s an acceleration.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sea_level_rise

    Here’s something interesting caused by atomic bomb tests:

    http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/nuclear-bombs-made-it-possible-to-carbon-date-human-tissue-20074710/

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  69. An old proverb states “you cant know where you are going – if you dont know where you have been”

    A) Mann’s hockey stick (along with all the others that “validated” the HS) expunged both the MWP and the little ice age. How are the scientists going to separate the natural causes vs man made causes if they have no knowledge of the natural changes

    B) The “models are all based on the rate of warming that was occurring during the warming phase of the ocean cycles (PDO & AMO) as if the natural warming cycle would last forever. This was done even though the warming and cooling cycles were very prominent in the temp records over the last 200+ years.

    Joe (debac0)

  70. All this talk has got me… https://youtu.be/HjO6FDCPIzA

    Colonel Haiku (6dd99d)

  71. If you start with the idea that oil won’t last forever.
    Then realize that nobody will care about that, till it’s all gone.

    You are then left to find something that will motivate them to do it any way .. by appealing to the narcissistic notion that “man is the center of the universe” (what Lefty couldn’t latch on to that ?) and simple guilt.
    With the carrot of permanent government funding to convince enough climate scientists, you get the UN IPCC and Global Warming.
    Now, imagine opportunists, dictators and hundreds of NGOs looking for a permanent source of funding, you get Climate Change treaties.

    Now, simply ask the question … who will supply all that funding ? Now, look in the mirror.

    Neo (d1c681)

  72. Well, I am an actual real scientist.

    The problem with the global warming debate as I see it, and this is hidden very well by the global warming enthusiast side of the debate, is that we are talking about two separate, and completely independent, theories.

    Theory 1: Temperatures increase by 1.3 degrees C for each doubling of carbon dioxide concentrations. This is due to the direct, physical effects of additional carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

    Theory 2: Increasing surface temperatures from Theory 1 will engender a positive feedback loop, that is to say warming will lead to even more warming. This additional warming will be 2-6 times the warming caused by the carbon dioxide all by itself. Theory 2 assumes that the climate is largely governed by positive feedbacks, as opposed to being largely in equilibrium.

    So, for example, if CO2 is at 200 ppm and then rises to 400 ppm, Theory 1 says the temperature would increase by 1.3 degree C. Theory 2 would say the actual increase is 2-6 times 1.3 degrees, or 2.6 or 7.8 degrees C. Now, an increase of 1.3 degrees in temperature would not be that big a deal, but an 8 degree increase would be catastrophic.

    Greenhouse warming is thought to be a logarithmic or diminishing return effect, so that the 200 ppm rise from 200 to 400 ppm would cause the same warming as the 400 ppm rise from 400 to 800 ppm. Another way to put this is that each ppm of CO2 added has incrementally less effect than the last.

    Got it?

    Now, Theory 1 is very likely to be correct – it is the kind of thing we can directly measure in a controlled laboratory setting. Theory 2 on the other hand is a lot more speculative. The earth is a big place, with lots of stuff going on. We could be vastly over or under estimating the climate sensitivity. It is very hard to test in the lab.

    What is frustrating is that global warming enthusiasts act like Theory 1 and Theory 2 ARE THE SAME THING. They are not. It is possible for theory 1 to be correct, and theory 2 is wrong, or = zero, or even a negative number!

    So…..here is the thing. Carbon dioxide concentrations have increased since 1950 from 270 ppm to 400 ppm, or 130 ppm, which is a 48% of the first doubling. Ergo, assuming everything is proportional, the temperature increase to date should be 48% of 1.3 degrees = 0.62 degrees based on Theory 1. Theory 2 says the actual amount of observed warming should be much greater than that, 1.25 to 3.72 degrees.

    Okay, so how much actual warming have we observed since 1950? 0.50 degrees. This is actually a bit less than Theory 1, and it strongly implies that there are no multiplier effects occurring, at least no positive effects (there may even be a weak negative multiplier). Thinking a bit more about this – it seems unlikely that the earth, which has been around for a long time, and habitable by plants and animals, is dominated by positive climate feedback. Systems dominated by positive feedback don’t tend to be very stable for long periods of time.

    That is where I stand, and where I have stood, since around 2003. I have yet to read a single speck of actual science that refutes my back of the envelope calculation, and all the data we have collected for 20 years is completely consistent with this viewpoint. Heck, this theory even predicts the temperature pause we have observed (since each unit of carbon dioxide has less effect, as concentrations rise, temperature increases should level off). In fact the IPCC, in each subsequent report, has consistently reduced the anticipated impacts from Theory 2. They are not there yet, but I suspect they soon will admit that Theory 2 = a small negative number.

    As such, there is no crises. It will take hundreds of years for carbon dioxide to create serious problems for the human race. In all likelihood there will never be a serious problem. We have plenty of time to transition to a lower carbon economy, and we are in fact well on our way there already.

    And for some reason, this pisses of certain people.

    Tenn (131b65)

  73. Danish statistician Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, the President of the Copenhagen Consensus Center: ‘We will spend at least one hundred trillion dollars in order to reduce the temperature by the end of the century by a grand total of three tenths of one degree…the equivalent of postponing warming by less than four years…Again, that is using the UN’s own climate prediction model.’

    Neo (d1c681)

  74. Sammy,

    although the soot falls out after a few years.

    CO2 is also captured by various processes, such as trees growing, so it also has a reasonably short life time in the atmosphere. In fact the portion of CO2 produced by man is about the same size as the error bar on the estimates of the amount of CO2 that is captured by all the natural processes.

    The carbon cycle has a lot of moving parts, and our estimates of their magnitudes are not a whole lot better than what you can do on the back of an envelope. Even something like temperature is hard to estimate. Our house is in a reasonably well wooded area, and during the day, the temperature (in the shade) from one side of the house to the other can differ by a degree or more. And if we had thermometers located in the woods, I’m sure we’d see a similar variability, and perhaps a significant offset from the house. If we wanted to estimate the growth of the trees based on temperature, rainfall, humidity, and sunlight, we’d have a very large error band on the result, especially if the temperature, humidity, rainfall and sunlight/cloudiness all had to be estimated from atmospheric models! And if we can’t make good estimates of the growth of trees, we can’t calculate the capture of CO2 from the air.

    The climate modeler are like the old time TV car dealer who claimed he lost money on every deal, but he made up for it in volume. The modelers seem to think that the shear scale of their models will some how cancel out the errors and omissions in their work. Engineers know better. Murphy’s Law ensures that every oversight and every mistake will bite you in the most painful spot at the most critical instant.

    BobStewartatHome (c24491)

  75. Thanks, Tenn.
    What is your field?
    Yes, living organisms have overlapping systems to maintain homeostasis,
    And some would like to say that an ecological system, an overlapping of organisms, has ways to maintain homeostasis as well.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  76. 72-

    What is frustrating is that global warming enthusiasts act like Theory 1 and Theory 2 ARE THE SAME THING. They are not. It is possible for theory 1 to be correct, and theory 2 is wrong,

    Good point

    Joe (debac0)

  77. Tenn,

    A small problem is that between 1950 and 2000 solar activity was above normal. Neither Theory 1 or 2 takes that into account, nor the current minimum which may also last for some time. There has been evidence of warming on Mars which is (almost) certainly natural, some of which might also be caused by solar activity.

    You are very correct about Theory 2 being simplistic. But Theory 1 also assumes that greenhouse gas levels are uniquely important. They might not be.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  78. The hoax is not the notion of anthropogenic global warming (which is almost certain), or even catastrophic anthropogenic global warming (which is far from certain). The hoaxes are the two treaties which were put into place ostensibly to reduce global warming. Under the 2016 Paris Accord, each country sets its own emissions target, and there is no mechanism to force compliance even with these self-chosen targets. That treaty follows the 2005 Kyoto Protocol, which required reductions in greenhouse gases from Western nations, but had no real effect in the USSR and its former European colonies, as their previous dirty industries upped their baseline pollution levels so that they were already below them; and no effect in China, India or the rest of the Third World. The primary effects of Kyoto were to move industry from the United States to China, where it would be even dirtier, but was not limited by the treaty; and to set up emissions trading schemes which amounted to payoffs from rich countries to poor countries.

    David Pittelli (0a4463)

  79. 71.If you start with the idea that oil won’t last forever.
    Then realize that nobody will care about that, till it’s all gone.

    That’s blatantly untrue, Neo. Oil will not disappear overnight. It will slowly be harder and harder to find and refine and therefore become more and more expensive to reflect the supply curve. And as those prices rise higher and using oil becomes less cost efficient entrepreneurs will do what they do best: employ others, in this case scientists, to come up with a cheaper more plentiful way of creating energy. That’s how shit happens in a world NOT run by governments. That’s the reason we live lives far greater, longer and more luxurious than emperors did just 100 years ago.

    Capitalism and Freedom will win if we let it. If we turn energy over to the government the rich will be warm, the poor will freeze to death, we in the middle will pay through the nose and the Clinton Foundation will be the first trillion dollar trust.

    If the government were put in charge of sand production there would be a shortage of beaches.

    Rev. Hoagie® (785e38)

  80. Papertiger, I agree with your general comment, but not the particular example. Plymouth Rock was not pointed out as “the place” until 1741, was split into top and bottom halves, and was intentionally moved to allow the covering portico to be built, and may not have been put back in the exact same spot.
    Of course, without the advance and then the retreat of the glaciers caused by natural cooling and warming of the planet there would be no Rock, so it in itself is evidence of how the climate changes with no human intervention.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plymouth_Rock

    Kishnevi (6a5d3c)

  81. On the general topic
    I think that climate is warming. Local to me, it certainly seems to be: winters seem shorter, and the shoulder seasons seem shorter, so summer temps and weather patterns seem to start earlier and last longer.

    Some comments mentioned the chaotic nature of climate, and how little we actually know about how it changes. Earth has certainly been warmer at earlier periods, with no apparent harm to the polar bears, and no possibility of human input. It can be argued that humans are better off with a warmer earth. We don’t know enough to say.

    So we don’t know enough to say what impact human activity actually has, and don’t know enough to say if warming is good or bad. Both considerations make me think we should go very slowly in “combatting” climate change. “First, do no harm”

    Kishnevi (6a5d3c)

  82. Kishnevi,
    My late grandmother talked about the summer of I think ’32, it was so hot that to keep her young baby from overheating, she put her in a crib outside under a tree, between two sheets hanging on either side that she kept wet so that the evaporation would keep her cool
    She died in 2003, said she had never seen a summer as hot as that one since

    That, for example, is why people in the 70’s thought that there was global cooling, the 60 and 70’s were not as hot as earlier in the century

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  83. For all of the talk about. “global” and not local, I think the hot us summer of 88 (east coast only?) was about when global warming talk started in the news

    But we are so self centric and stupid
    “record temperature”, meaning the highest or lowest in the 150 years or so that we have been keeping track

    Oh, wow, such and such hasn’t happened since 2009!!!!!!

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  84. Don’t care for Plymouth Rock. That’s okay. I have other tricks up my sleeve.

    World Heritage site #776; The Itsukushima Shrine of Japan. The Shinto religion worship this particular island because it was a beautiful example of islands as an architype, so they built a shrine , Budda Bless them, in 593 AD.
    Here’s some background info.

    Basically its a temple built at sea level situated so that the window frames the island.

    So that’s two historic icons, at far removed locations on the world, marking sea level across the sands of time.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  85. They come up with template, and craft the facts around that it.

    I do recall Whitney strieber had a novel using the premise slightly before that.

    narciso (d1f714)

  86. I think that climate is warming. Local to me, it certainly seems to be: winters seem shorter, and the shoulder seasons seem shorter, so summer temps and weather patterns seem to start earlier and last longer.

    That’s more likely to be an increase in your urban heat island, as (a) your city grows and (b) people use more energy and thus create more heat. Significant (˜4°C) heat islands are found even in uite small villages, and the ones for large cities can be enormous. I believe NYC’s heat island is in the mid-teens C.

    Milhouse (40ca7b)

  87. Tenn: Nitpick:

    Carbon dioxide concentrations have increased since 1950 from 270 ppm to 400 ppm, or 130 ppm, which is a 48% of the first doubling. Ergo, assuming everything is proportional, the temperature increase to date should be 48% of 1.3 degrees = 0.62 degrees based on Theory 1. Theory 2 says the actual amount of observed warming should be much greater than that, 1.25 to 3.72 degrees.

    Actually, that fractional increase in CO2 would yield a temperature increase of 56.6% of 1.3 degrees, not 48%. You used a linear function instead of a logarithmic one.
    The observed warming should be 0.74°C.

    Karl Lembke (cd9062)

  88. The Earth is currently in the middle of an ice age, called the Quaternary, that began 2.5 million years ago. Around 12,000 years ago, the Earth began to warm, and we entered an interglacial, called the Holocene. Both the Quaternary and the Holocene are still active. 200,000 years ago, modern man appeared. For 190,000 years, or 95% of humanity’s existence, we wandered around in small bands of hunter-gatherers. Then shortly after the Earth began to warm, man discovered agriculture. This led to surplus, which led to specialization, which led to civilization and history. Not only has all of human history and civilization occurred during global warming, global warming is at least in part the reason history and civilization exist.

    gahrie (12cc0f)

  89. If you start with the idea that oil won’t last forever.
    Then realize that nobody will care about that, till it’s all gone.

    Every single time somebody pronounces that we have reached peak oil, new discoveries actually increase the amount of oil available. EVERY SINGLE TIME.

    There is also increasing evidence that oil is not actually a fossil fuel and instead is created constantly in the Earth’s mantle, so oil is actually a renewable resource.

    gahrie (12cc0f)

  90. The effect of CO2 concnetrations to atmospheric temperatures is described by a very simple formula.

    http://patterico.com/2014/06/16/no-deniers-allowed/#comment-1649680

    Doubling the concentration increases temperatures by 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit

    Michael Ejercito (462fbe)

  91. BobStewartatHome (c24491) — 1/17/2017 @ 2:57 pm

    CO2 is also captured by various processes, such as trees growing, so it also has a reasonably short life time in the atmosphere.

    That’s what the great decline in the level of Carbon-14 since the bomb surge means.

    Now, the environmentalists have an issue with that too. A lowering of carbon dioxide means it is dissolving into the ocean, and making the ocean acidic, * and destroying coral reefs. And if you don’t care about coral reefs, well then without the reefs, the land will flood more often. Millions of people could be affected – except that we might be talking on a scale of thousands of years, assuming there’s no more changes in what’s happening.

    http://www.npr.org/2013/04/17/177566615/increased-carbon-dioxide-levels-damage-coral-reefs

    ————–
    * The ocean’s pH is estimated to have gone down from 8.179 to 8.069 “which means the ocean is about 30% more acidic now than it was in 1751″ and hald the carbon dioxide prduced by burning fuels and one third of what was added by all human activities since 1800 (?) was absorbed by the oceans according to somebody named Sabine in 2004. (Science 305, 367–371)

    http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/pubs/outstand/sabi2683/sabi2683.shtml

    I can’t follow this and don’t see where they get their estimates. I think part of it is looking at isotopes.

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  92. The quote about 1751 came from here:

    http://www.teachoceanscience.net/teaching_resources/education_modules/coral_reefs_and_climate_change/how_does_climate_change_affect_coral_reefs/

    The climate modeler are like the old time TV car dealer who claimed he lost money on every deal, but he made up for it in volume.

    That’s possible. All you have to do is keep on scaling up the borrowing.

    The modelers seem to think that the shear scale of their models will some how cancel out the errors and omissions in their work.

    The more complicated the model, the more degrees of freedom you have, ad te more likely that yu are fitting the curve to the noise.

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  93. ME,
    Did you read Tenn’s post above?

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  94. MD in Philly (f9371b) — 1/17/2017 @ 6:21 pm

    My late grandmother talked about the summer of I think ’32, it was so hot that to keep her young baby from overheating, she put her in a crib outside under a tree, between two sheets hanging on either side that she kept wet so that the evaporation would keep her cool

    She died in 2003, said she had never seen a summer as hot as that one since

    There’s an explanation for that. 1932 was just about the depth of the Depresson. In those days, burning of fuels was very related to economic activity. Most of that fuel was coal, and produced a lot of soot. The reduction in coal burning after the winter of 1929/30 caused the amount of soot in the atmosphere to fall, and temperatures rose worldwide.

    This used to be known, back around 1988, when it was said, stopping coal burning would actually raise temperatures for about 20 years. But now they no longer remember this detail.

    Many high temperaure records were set around the mid-1930s. Although there was some recovery stating in 1933, still the total amount of soot in the atmosphere wss less than in 1929, in the same way as the fact thet the days are getting longer now north of the equator doesn’t prevent temperatres from continuing to drop and from being lower in February than from mid-October to mid-November, even though early February is just as far away from December 21 as the beginning of November.

    To sum up: Carbon emmissions had been cut by about one third by the worst of the Depression. That resulted in an immediate rise in global temperature.

    I also think that the Great Depression was probably responsible for the Oklahoma Dust Bowl. You have to pay areful attention as to just when the drought actually began.

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  95. Tenn (131b65) — 1/17/2017 @ 1:47 pm

    I have yet to read a single speck of actual science that refutes my back of the envelope calculation, and all the data we have collected for 20 years is completely consistent with this viewpoint.

    Back of the envelope calculations are the ones most likely to be valid. And you can’t try to make the figures match too exactly. Otherwise, you are at risk of fitting the curve to the noise and that shows up any time you extend the curve beyond the data that was used to create it.

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  96. Thanks for the comments from everyone.

    My field is geology, but believe it our not, my master’s thesis was on paleoclimate conditions in the Silurian. Most of my career has actually be spent developing methods to minimize damage to natural resources as part of development projects. So I work both sides of the fence.

    My analyses is overly simplistic – that is its power actually. #77 – yes, you are right. My principal beef is that we are talking about two separate theories, one is greenhouse gas driven global warming, and the second is climate sensitivity (which is something entirely unrelated). Your point is actually very interesting – climate sensitivity is entirely independent of greenhouse gases! So solar driven warming could engender more warming under theory 2- no greenhouse gases required.

    #86 – yes – I thought someone might notice this. It is a curve, so each incremental unit makes less difference. But when I try and explain that, people get that confused dog look on their face. But yes, your number is correct, mine is more generous to global warming enthusiasts. The real number suggests, quite strongly, that climate sensitivity (theory 2) is a negative number. the beauty of this entire analyses is that instead of trying to determine all the inputs and generate a model, we simply look at the response of the climate to carbon dioxide in the past, and from that determine what the formula might be. We don’t have to know how climate sensitivity is negative, just that it must obviously be true.

    #94 – exactly. In fact it is a fool’s errand trying to make them match, exactly.

    Tenn (131b65)

  97. Yes, more than one theory based on more than one type of data,
    with a cross over of confirmation bias that is total obfuscation.

    Such as the insinuation that since we know what higher CO2 does in a box under laboratory conditions,
    “obviously” it is man made CO2 that causes the hurricane last summer, the record heat wave one summer in some part of the world, and local phenomenon in Antarctica or a group of South Pacific Islands,
    phenomena that actually may not be weather or climate related at all, but due to geological activity underlying.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  98. I will add a couple of other tidbits, things you can try at home.

    Experiment 1: Use excel and its random number generator to create a string of 100 high “temperatures”, ranging from say 80 degree to 100 degrees. There are your highs for your weather station over 100 years, okay? You know for fact they are random.

    Now graph that data. You might imagine this would create a flat line, since the numbers are random. occasionally it does. But most of the time it creates a rising or falling trend line. Why? Because random data can have a random trends. Right? You random number generator may spit out the highest numbers in the first 10 boxes, and the lowest in the last 10. Random data can generate random trends.

    If we are graphing real global temperature, we get a trend line that looks awfully similar to your random trend lines, both in steepness of the line, and distribution of the data points. therefore, how can we say that the trend has any meaning at all, when we can generate the same lines using random numbers? Especially when we are looking for very small increases, like a half degree.

    Experiment # 2: Let’s say you have 100 weather stations recording temperature for 100 years. During those 100 years, each weather station has a record 100-year high temperature right? There can only be one. Now, assuming high temperatures were randomly distributed, one might expect to set a record temperature each year at least one of the weather stations. However, in a chaotic system, we might expect there to be several stations that set the record in one year, and none the next, all evening out to one record set at one station each year.

    Now, this is purely math, statistics. Mathematically this must be true, right?

    Let’s say we have 500 weather stations in the U.S., I mean those with relatively long records. So each year, if weather and temperature were simply random, we would expect to set record 100-year highs and record lows, and record precipitation, and record humidity, right? This would happen every year.

    The problem is when you define climate change as being “anything out of the ordinary” and account for both floods, droughts, hot, cold, storms, no storms, then every year you are going to be able to report on 30 to 50 weather stations show this to be the hottest summer ever, or coldest winter, or stormiest July, and whatnot. And report that data as “proof” of climate change.

    Heck, you could even select out the weather stations with trends in the data showing global warming exists, and dismiss those that don’t as “anomalies” that need to be adjusted, because they don’t follow the “trend”.

    Again, and I cannot stress this enough, trends CAN be random, just like numbers. Absent any real global warming at all, we could graph temperature data and find a warming trend. And each and every year, someplace in the U.S. will report a record temperature. Perhaps many places. And this is evidence of exactly nothing.

    Tenn (131b65)

  99. 97. Tenn (131b65) — 1/18/2017 @ 9:42 am

    Random data can generate random trends… Again, and I cannot stress this enough, trends CAN be random, just like numbers.

    Well, it’s true that random 7-digit telephone numbers are usally not too dfficult to memorize because you can invariably see a pattern in them. The question is: To what extent is something like this true for 100 numbers that go from 1 to 20?

    And there’s another question: The climate alarmists are only interested in one sort of trend: Up.

    Absent any real global warming at all, we could graph temperature data and find a warming trend.

    Could you also find a cooling trend?

    Of course the one thing that’s clear is that there is no simple, year-by-year or even decade by decade correlation between CO2 levels and recorded temperatures, which has to mean that, at a minimum, there are factors other than carbon dioxide levels involved in affecting temperature trends. (and that’s not getting into what causes CO2 to go up)

    Sammy Finkelman (0cf810)

  100. Could you also find a cooling trend?
    Of course, that is why people warned about a new ice age coming in the 70’s.

    In medicine/epidemiology the issue of “random trends” is quite important. If there is a “cluster” of something, such as a specific type of cancer, in one locality, people are quick to want to say that there must be some common environmental risk present in that area;
    when the fact may well be it is just a random occurrence, and that you will find other areas where there seems to be an unusual lack of some cancer and that is not because of some protective thing present in the environment, either.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  101. The NY Times reported in 1989 that the NOAA said that there was no warming trend since 1895.

    http://www.nytimes.com/1989/01/26/us/us-data-since-1895-fail-to-show-warming-trend.html

    “After examining climate data extending back nearly 100 years, a team of Government scientists has concluded that there has been no significant change in average temperatures or rainfall in the United States over that entire period.

    While the nation’s weather in individual years or even for periods of years has been hotter or cooler and drier or wetter than in other periods, the new study shows that over the last century there has been no trend in one direction or another.

    The study, made by scientists for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration was published in the current issue of Geophysical Research Letters. It is based on temperature and precipitation readings taken at weather stations around the country from 1895 to 1987.”

    The article mentions that NASA was now pushing global warming and that the figures being discussed in it only concern the USA which is “only 1.5% of the earth’s surface.”

    Even so…. the same NOAA now says that we’ve warmed 1.5 degrees in the past century, after they’ve adjusted the data to show the past being cooler, of course.

    pkudude99 (87de41)

  102. The models being wrong in and of itself is not that big of a deal.

    It is the reason the models are wrong which is a very big deal and which points to the dishonesty of the climate scientists.

    The 60-70 ocean cycles are known and are well documented and have show up promintently in the temp records since circa 1750. The models were based only on the warming phase of the ocean cycles as if the cooling phase was never going to happen again.

    Did the climate scientists think we were stupid enough not to notice
    or climate scientists stupid enough to believe that co2 was more powerful than mother nature.

    neither answer speaks well of the climate scientists.

    Joe (debac0)

  103. Sammy Finkelman

    “The question is: To what extent is something like this true for 100 numbers that go from 1 to 20?” Good question – try it yourself. My experience, running the same simulation 10 times, is one, exactly one, showed no trend. Six showed a “warming” trend, 3 showed a “cooling” trend (I put warming and cooling in quotes because in reality, they are both random noise). And those trends were 0.5 to 1 degree. I suspect that the warming and cooling trends would eventually even out over hundreds of experimental runs.

    Think of it this was – you have 100 numbers. You are trying to show a slight bias, tenths of a single degree. Even generating a few above average random numbers at the end of the string, or a few below average numbers at the start of the string, is enough to create an illusion of warming and cooling.

    Just to point out – our current warming is just that…0.5 degrees measured over decades.

    This is not to say it IS random, just that it could still be just random noise. Certainly there is nothing that definitively precludes that possibility.

    By the way, this is one way science works – we measure something, observe a pattern, and ask ourselves, could this pattern be random noise? One way to check is to plug random numbers into your equations and calculations. If you get results similar to those you were getting with real numbers…most scientists would get suspicious of your findings.

    Tenn (131b65)

  104. I would add another bit of skepticism here for Patterico to consider:

    Not that long ago, anthropogenic global warming was considered to be around 0.5 degrees. This number was selected based on temperatures in the 1950s versus temperatures today. The 1950s were selected because that is when carbon dioxide concentrations started increasing significantly, and since they are supposed to be the driver, that is where we start measuring.

    Lately I have been noticing a lot of climate change enthusiasts quoting 1.5 degrees of warming. Triple the warming! How did that happen? Well, they are looking at warming that started in the 1870s.

    But wait….carbon dioxide concentrations didn’t increase till the 1950s, why are they talking about warming that occurred before that event? because…why not? They literally don’t know what their own theory says, and simply look at the temperature record that extends back to the 1870s and use that number in discussions.

    And what does that number imply? Simply that there was an entire degree of warming that occurred before carbon dioxide concentrations increased appreciably. In fact twice as much warming as we have already experienced! So part of using that number is an attempt to colonize the data, make the warming that occurred without carbon dioxide part of their own proof. But it can’t be. It can never be. In fact it should not even be discussed as part of the problem.

    Tenn (131b65)

  105. the last thing the climate change hoaxers ever wanna talk about is the science

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  106. Patterico, I can convince you right now that the Warmists are hoaxing you. Mammoths were huge animals, mammoth-sized in fact, and consumed tons of vegetation to survive and they have preserved remains of mammoths way up north where the permafrost is. They date these animals as living there during a time where their charts say it was much cooler than it is today.

    Think about that, Patterico. Mammoths couldn’t live up there today for a day. Too cold and no food.

    jcurtis (0a2fce)

  107. Another thing they do, is make graphs that make the differences look more impressive than they would otherwise look. Instead of a graph of measured temperature from 0 to 100, say, they plot the “anomaly”, the amount they think different from what it otherwise “should” be, even if the error bars on the measurements make clear that no meaningful trends could possibly detected.

    Or, at least that was one of the things I remember seeing when I first looked into it years ago, thinking if they were doing with their data things that would be marked wrong in a hs chemistry class, then it wasn’t worth taking seriously.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  108. Tenn (131b65) — 1/18/2017 @ 5:25 pm

    carbon dioxide concentrations didn’t increase till the 1950s, why are they talking about warming that occurred before that event?

    No, carbon dioxide levels did increase, as you can more or less prove from carbon 14 levels, but they only have month by month records from Mauna Loa in Hawaii since about 1957.

    Sammy Finkelman (6f9f42)


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