Monday, December 22, 2008

I Was Misinformed

Tom, over at Talk Polywell, and I have been having a discussion about Global Warming and how the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) may be affecting trends. And what the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) has to say about all this. Now shouldn't it be the Scientific Panel on Climate Change? Or some such? Of course not. Science is incidental because the IPCC is all about taxation and regulation. Science is in the back seat and will please keep quiet unless called on.

So here is what I had to say to Tom:


You are correct. The PDO - discovered in 1997 - has yet to make it in to an official IPCC report. I was misinformed.

If you follow this from 20 May 2008 it may explain why I got it wrong. I will give a few pertinent quotes.

You may have heard earlier this month that global warming is now likely to take break for a decade or more. There will be no more warming until 2015, perhaps later.

Climate scientist Noel Keenlyside, leading a team from Germany's Leibniz Institute of Marine Science and the Max Planck Institute of Meteorology, for the first time entered verifiable data on ocean circulation cycles into one of the U. N.'s climate supercomputers, and the machine spit out a projection that there will be no more warming for the foreseeable future.

Of course, Mr. Keenlyside-- long a defender of the man-made global warming theory -- was quick to add that after 2015 (or perhaps 2020), warming would resume with a vengeance.

Climate alarmists the world over were quick to add that they had known all along there would be periods when the Earth's climate would cool even as the overall trend was toward dangerous climate change.

Sorry, but that is just so much backfill.

There may have been the odd global-warming scientist in the past decade who allowed that warming would pause periodically in its otherwise relentless upward march, but he or she was a rarity.

If anything, the opposite is true: Almost no climate scientist who backed the alarmism ever expected warming would take anything like a 10 or 15-year hiatus.
What they mean by "so much backfill" is that the Official Consensus Climate Folks were making shit up. Which - you know - is considered moderately unscientific.
Last year, in its oft-quoted report on global warming, the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) predicted a 0.3-degree C rise in temperature in the coming decade -- not a cooling or even just temperature stability.

In its previous report in 2001, the IPCC prominently displaced the so-called temperature "hockey stick" that purported to show temperature pretty much plateauing for the thousand years before 1900, then taking off in the 20th Century in a smooth upward line. No 10-year dips backwards were foreseen.

It is drummed into us, ad nauseum, that the IPCC represents 2,500 scientists who together embrace a "consensus" that man-made global warming is a "scientific fact;" and as recently as last year, they didn't see this cooling coming. So the alarmists can't weasel out of this by claiming they knew all along such anomalies would occur.
Every one knows their predictions are impeccable. And if they make a minor mistake in the future they will correct the past to show how really good they are. They have to. There are a lot of governments depending on them.
According to the U. S. National Climatic Data Center, the average temperature of the global land surface in January 2008 was below the 20th-Century mean for the first time since 1982.

Also in January, Southern Hemisphere sea ice coverage was at its greatest summer level (January is summer in the Southern Hemisphere) in the past 30 years.

Neither the 3,000 temperature buoys that float throughout the world's oceans nor the eight NASA satellites that float above our atmosphere have recorded appreciable warming in the past six to eight years.

Even Rajendra Pachauri, the head of the IPCC, reluctantly admitted to Reuters in January that there has been no warming so far in the 21st Century.
Now it is that last bit which I bolded which may have confused me. What he said was not in any IPCC report. He was just speaking to some news agency which doesn't count. So officially the gravy train is still on the tracks. Whew. Close one. The IPCC needs to muzzle that guy before he emits further embarrassment.

So we have a notch in the hockey stick. The rise in temps is not as smooth as we have been led to believe. And you know even in a 30 year smoothed average an 8 year bump should be visible.

Now what do you call a model that leaves out known facts and has poor predictive value?


I like this bit from the UK Telegraph.
If the model could accurately forecast other variables besides temperature, such as rainfall, it would be increasingly useful, but climate predictions for a decade ahead would always be to some extent uncertain, he added.
But of course for a century ahead they will be right on the mark, because you can depend on the errors to average out. Lucky for them, huh?

Watts Up With That in April of 2008 had some nice graphs and comments on what the PDO stuff might mean.
From the PDO data itself, it is just too soon to be able to tell whether the current cool phase is just one of the shorter cycles, or whether it is the beginning of a longer term cycle like we saw back in the 1950’s and 1960’s. It is tempting, when looking at the warming rate cycles, to believe that we’ve just come out of a 60-66 year “Kerr” climate cycle, and are on the cusp of a cool phase like we see for the 1950’s and 1960’s.

But if you look closely at the end of the purple curve for our warming rate cycle, it seems to be about ready to turn back up. Now we do not want to put too much stock in the end values of a series that has been smoothed with HP filtering. So it could still be on a downward trend.

Then, to make it all the more interesting, we have solar cycle 23 lingering on. Considering that also, confidence is higher that we will continue to see a relative respite in the rate of warming and that we’re not likely to see our warming rate cycle jump back to where it was during solar cycles 22-23. But whether we see a full blown interlude between two strong warming trends, like we saw during the 1950’s and 1960’s, remains to be seen.

In other words, as we saw with Easterbrook’s analysis, we can be reasonably confident in projecting at least no further warming for a while. For that to happen, the purple warming rate curve must not only turn back upwards, it must rise into the region of positive values, and continue to rise for several years. If solar cycle 24 turns out to be a weak solar cycle, and there are historical precedents for cycle length suggesting it is likely to be weak, that probably isn’t happening.

I’ll have more on solar cycles 23 and 24 coming up in the next day or so.

So, in summary; probably no net warming for awhile, and maybe a period of extended cooling as in the mid 20th century. It all depends on whether this current PDO shift is a short term or longer term event such as we saw in the mid 20th century.
Things are so quiet on the solar front that a bulletin has been issued. Of course that was on 14 Dec 2008. No matter. A week later and things are still quiet. Today's sunspot number? Zero.

This is rather unusual since for the past few cycles (excepting this one) the sunspots from the previous cycle overlapped (although at different latitudes) the sunspots from the current cycle.

Now some of the solar boys - based on various theories predicted the strongest solar cycle ever in August of 2006. But you know there is always a contrarian in the bunch. A denier. Some one who just will not go along with the consensus. A renegade. An evil person who is to be despised and denigrated by all right thinking people who are in the majority and therefore unassailable. How can the majority be wrong?
But another group, led by Leif Svalgaard of ETK, a consulting firm in Houston, Texas, US, contends that the upcoming solar cycle will not be very strong because the magnetic fields at the poles are currently weak. That group is calling for the weakest solar cycle in 100 years.
Say isn't he from Texas? Don't they have a lot of oil there? Well obviously he is in cahoots with the oil companies in a plot to destroy the earth for profit. Don't you just hate that?

Unfortunately Leif appears to have a better handle on the subject than the consensus. How can that be? It goes against reason. It goes against belief. And worst of all it weakens the case for taxing the heat, the street, and your feet.

And what was I blogging about in May of 2007? Something called the solar conveyor belt.
"Normally, the conveyor belt moves about 1 meter per second—walking pace," says Hathaway. "That's how it has been since the late 19th century." In recent years, however, the belt has decelerated to 0.75 m/s in the north and 0.35 m/s in the south. "We've never seen speeds so low."

According to theory and observation, the speed of the belt foretells the intensity of sunspot activity ~20 years in the future. A slow belt means lower solar activity; a fast belt means stronger activity. The reasons for this are explained in the Science@NASA story Solar Storm Warning.

"The slowdown we see now means that Solar Cycle 25, peaking around the year 2022, could be one of the weakest in centuries," says Hathaway.
And cycle 24 aint doin so hot either.
...the Sporer, Maunder, and Dalton minima coincide with the colder periods of the Little Ice Age, which lasted from about 1450 to 1820. More recently it was discovered that the sunspot number during 1861-1989 shows a remarkable parallelism with the simultaneous variation in northern hemisphere mean temperatures (2). There is an even better correlation with the length of the solar cycle, between years of the highest numbers of sunspots. For example, the temperature anomaly was - 0.4 K in 1890 when the cycle was 11.7 years, but + 0.25 K in 1989 when the cycle was 9.8 years. Some critics of the theory of man-induced global warming have seized on this discovery to criticize the greenhouse gas theory.
You can read more of my thoughts on the solar slow down at the Power and Control link.

Of course the folks at Real Climate and Master NASA Scientist Hansen plus Climate Science Nobel Winner Al Gore - those bastions of the consensus - have dug out some heretofore missing epi-cycles to prove all this solar stuff is errant nonsense. And thankfully for all of us the Great Oz has spoken. And not just one Oz. A whole consensus of them. Which is a lot.

Cross Posted at Classical Values


Bhuvan Chand said...

i really impress with you blog and plz keep writing for this blog. i also start collection of information about causes of global warming in my blog.

M. Simon said...

Mr. Chand,

Suggests cutting back on everything by 20% this Christmas. Driving, presents, and packaging.

You know - I think he has a bad attitude.

If you believe in all that man made global warming stuff you should tell your friends you are doing nothing for Christmas. No presents for any one - no nothing.

After all he needs to make up for the folks who will not cut back. I mean really. Why just a token effort when you can go all the way?