Sunday, September 15, 2013

Can We Get Conservo Idiots to Stop Babbling About Climate Change?

You know the ones I’m writing about. They don’t even have an “A.A.” behind their names but feel qualified to babble about any scientific issues that strike their fancy. They’ve never taken even a first year college physics course, or even high school physics, but to see them waxing on about some aspect of climate change – global warming in their blogs you’d think they’d published papers in Eos Transactions of the American Geophysical Union.

Recall I’d taken one such cretin to task before in my Sept. 21 blog from last year, when he couldn’t even get straight the differences between Arctic and Antarctic ice and melting in terms of global warming impact. I noted at that time several errors, including:

1) A serious error of omission, namely ignoring the critical land ice contribution and focusing only on sea ice. This is a common error made by those who rush into areas for which they have little or no preparation. In Antarctica, sea ice nearly entirely melts away during the S. hemisphere summer but is extensive in the winter.

2) Failing to distinguish the two forms of Antarctic ice: to wit, land ice is actually stored ocean water that once fell as precipitation. Sea ice, meanwhile, is ice which forms in salt water (sea water) mainly during the winter months.

3) Failure to distinguish Arctic from Antarctic ice cover and hence the relative importance of each. Arctic sea ice - while its cover fluctuates- remains all year round (so far anyway) and hence provides a reflective surface to increase albedo. (proportion of reflectance back into space).

You’d think after such errors were made, leading to terrible conclusions, i.e. claiming that Antarctic sea ice is "growing" and hence global warming is a hoax- they’d learn to shut their mouths and blogs after being exposed- but oh no, they’d rather be “wrong and strong”. Determined to remain irrepressible idiots when it comes to scientific literacy – as opposed to changelings (which might be effected if they actually took a physics course, instead of wasting thousands on “bible online courses” to be a fake preacher.

The latest incursion into territory these semi-educated nitwits don’t understand has to do with the claim of a “global warming pause” made by the UK Met office. I suppose the particular dunderhead in question felt that just by quoting “UK Met office” he’d garner some fake gravitas, but never appreciated someone might hold him to account.

But if the moron had actually checked the Met office site, he would have seen the error of his ways. (On second thought, it likely wouldn’t have mattered since he clearly can’t read anyway). But on the site, it is noted:

"The Met Office Hadley Centre has written three reports that address the recent pause in global warming and seek to answer the following questions:

What have been the recent trends in other indicators of climate over this period?

• What are the potential drivers of the current pause?

• How does the recent pause affect our projections of future climate?

The answers are delivered in three separate .pdf papers found at the site:

Summarizing the results of the papers, the site notes:

The first paper shows that a wide range of observed climate indicators continue to show changes that are consistent with a globally warming world, and our understanding of how the climate system works.

The second suggests that it is not possible to explain the recent lack of surface warming solely by reductions in the total energy received by the planet, i.e. the balance between the total solar energy entering the system and the thermal energy leaving it. Changes in the exchange of heat between the upper and deep ocean appear to have caused at least part of the pause in surface warming, and observations suggest that the Pacific Ocean may play a key role.

The final paper shows that the recent pause in global surface temperature rise does not materially alter the risks of substantial warming of the Earth by the end of this century. Nor does it invalidate the fundamental physics of global warming, the scientific basis of climate models and their estimates of climate sensitivity.

Did this gooniper read any of this? One wonders! A more salient point is whether there has indeed been any genuine pause in warming at all, as intimated in the 2nd and 3rd statements and I have dealt with this in a number of prior blogs. I noted a paper in Nature – written by Dr. Noel Keenlyside et al- which made a tentative claim for monotonic global cooling since ca. 1998. This 'jumped the shark' and then became embedded into the warming skeptics' arsenal of disinfo and set real global warming science education back at least a decade in my estimation.

I will get to why the Hadley assumption of an ongoing pause is wrong later (despite the fact - as the UK site admitted - it doesn't affect the fundamental physics of warming), but the root of the continued misapprehension by the faux skeptic brigade is their misinterpretation of the data appearing in the Nature paper - not at all helped by the media which have also misconstrued it.Instead of taking shortcuts, skeptics could have retrieved the ACTUAL paper from Nature! They could have studied the paper's key figure, the one that looks at past and (forecast) future global temperatures, "Hindcast/forecast decadal variations in global mean temperature, as compared with observations and standard climate model projections".

The first thing they’d have noted about the figure -- indeed, one major source of confusion -- is that each point represents a ten-year centered mean. That is, each point represents the average temperature of the decade starting 5 years before that point and ending 5 years after that point. Thus, the statistics for potential “cooling” could not possibly have been justifiably extrapolated beyond 1998 + 5 = 2003. Yet imbeciles all over the place have insisted it is ongoing.

Even the UK Met Office evidently blew it, as pointed out by the very reliable site for real climate scientists, In their extended caption attached to their Fig. 1, for example, it is noted:

Even the highly “cherry-picked” 11-year period starting with the warm 1998 and ending with the cold 2008 still shows a warming trend of 0.11 ºC per decade (which may surprise some lay people who tend to connect the end points, rather than include all ten data points into a proper trend

Real Climate also points out, in its caption for Fig. 2 (in its article on the supposed "pause"):

The animated graph shows the temperature difference between the two 5-year periods 1999-2003 and 2004-2008. The largest warming has occurred over the Arctic in the past decade and is missing in the Hadley data.

WHY is it missing? Out of neglect, incompetence, what? Did Hadley’s researchers not appreciate how deniers are hysterical to latch onto anything, any kind of “life raft” to peddle their bollocks and baloney? The point is that had the data been properly included, from the period 2004-08 the issue of any recent “pause” wouldn’t even be on the table, not even remotely!

This conforms to the red line for the figure labeled “"Hindcast/forecast decadal variations in global mean temperature, as compared with observations and standard climate model projections"in the Nature publication. Incredibly, this line represents the actual global temperature data from the U.K.'s Hadley Center for Climate Prediction and Research. Does one arm of the UK’s Met office not know what the other is doing?

In any case, any serious person that’s read the Nature paper (discounting conservo denier trolls) ought to have asked: Why does the red line stop in 1998 and not 2007? Again, it’s a running 10-year mean, and the authors used data from a Hadley paper that ends around 2003, In effect, they can't do a ten-year centered mean after 1998!

This again is consistent with Real Climate’s assertion that the largest warming has occurred over the Arctic in the past decade, and that the Hadley graph (in the Nature paper) essentially found the “pause” ended at 2003.

The final cautionary note from Real Climate ought to make even climate dunderheads who blog on issues they don’t understand, take notice:

“If we want to relate global temperature to global forcings like greenhouse gases, we’d better not have a “hole” in our data set. That’s because global temperature follows a simple planetary heat budget, determined by the balance of what comes in and what goes out. But if data coverage is not really global, the heat budget is not closed. One would have to account for the heat flow across the boundary of the “hole”, i.e. in and out of the Arctic, and the whole thing becomes ill-determined (because we don’t know how much that is). Hence the GISS data are clearly more useful in this respect (than the UK Hadley data), and the supposed pause in warming turns out to be just an artifact of the “Arctic hole” in the Hadley data – we don’t even need to refer to natural variability to explain it.”

This is an incredibly critical point, but whether the conservo cretins will follow it before they babble nonsense again, is another question. It basically means that the UK Met center had no need to even drag remote mention of any "pause" into the discussion - to stir up the deniers' idiots' nests, especially in the US of A.

No comments: