Whose science are we talking about?

By March 14, 2019Other
[Word Press has upgraded me to a new level, some aspects of which I do not understand. Hence the failure to supply proper links save one. I hope to do better next time.]

For thirty or so years, from 1980 to 2010, a good deal of my professional life was taken up with assessing applications for money to allow individuals and groups to carry out the research they wanted to do. That led me into the arcane world of peer review and careful assessment. I learned a lot — about intellectual mafias, about arrogance, about the search for knowledge, truth and beauty. I have written about some of it, in part in essays here (search for ‘peer review’ for example.

More recently I have come across a new aspect of peer review, essentially its shift into the world of politics, where a policy proposal is advocated on the ground that ‘the science’ or ‘research’ or the work of ‘scientists’ must make the implementation of the policy proposal imperative, as well as immediate. There was some of that thirty years ago, mostly in the world of social science: education, criminology, indigenous affairs, and the like. Here the world of peer review would produce quite contrasting assessments of the proposal, from total support to outright condemnation. Today the area where it is most obvious is ‘climate change’, and once again we find advocates calling on ‘science’ to support or defend policy proposals. But what ‘science’ are they calling on?

Much of it is based on computer models, which forecast dire futures if things are left to go on as they are. Climate science is so complex a domain, and the disciplines needed to make sense of it, let alone the disciplines necessary to change human behaviour to ensure that the implementation actually happens, are so many, that there are no real experts. Each scientist, each group, works away at a single aspect of the problem, hoping to throw light on it and its connections to the rest of the problem. And there is not really one problem, but many. Is the earth actually warming? Is the warming significant? Is the warming like to be beneficial or harmful? Would carbon taxes and their like make any difference?

As in the rest of the research world, there has grown a group of scientist/advocates (indeed, some of them are not natural scientists at all), who think their work is so important that they become politicians who see the end as more important than the means. So they exaggerate the importance of their work, do their best to prevent rival views from being aired or heard, and can be found lobbying MPs and Ministers to get their point of view accepted as ‘truth’, or, if that is too hard, accepted as orthodoxy. That the earth is warming, that the warming is harmful to human beings, that the cause is carbon dioxide emissions from the burning of fossil fuels, and that we will all go to hell in a handcart unless we move quickly to alternative sources of energy — these assertions have become the orthodoxy, and are powerful in the counsels of governments, even when governments know that there are other perspectives.

That these propositions have an uncertain status in the world of real science is not much talked about, partly because they arethe orthodoxy, and partly because rival points of view have been hard to find in the literature — editors can be reluctant to publish articles that are flatly opposed to orthodoxy, and most reviewers will feel the same. Not only that, as the Climategate emails showed, the orthodoxy were in a strong position to influence journals, and used their power accordingly.

More, some of the scientist/advocates claimed that the great body of climate scientists agreed with the orthodoxy — 97 per cent of them, was the claim. The claim was rubbish, and I wrote a few trenchant pieces (search for ‘consensus’) showing why that was so. Nonetheless, it persisted, and has become an article of faith. One of the paradoxes of this whole contested area is that as the orthodoxy grew in strength, so did rival perspectives find it easier to be published. That didn’t matter, as governments were now so committed to at least the talk of climate change that it was difficult for them to adopt contrary policies, at least quickly.

Pierre Gosselin, a climate realist or sceptic who has a background in engineering and science, has compiled lists of sceptical papers that have actually been published. You can read his analysis by following the link at the end of the essay. His personal view is that humans have had a modest impact on climate, and he is open to persuasion, but only on evidence, not on appeals to consensus or simple assertion. On his account, more than 500 such sceptical papers were published in 2018, and around 1500 peer-reviewed papers between 2016 and 2018.

What is his methodology? I’ll set it out in a long extract:

‘More specifically, the papers in this compilation support these four main skeptical positions — categorized here as N(1) – N(4) — which question the climate alarm popularized in today’s headlines.

N(1) Natural mechanisms play well more than a negligible role (as claimed by the IPCC) in the net changes in the climate system, which includes temperature variations, precipitation patterns, weather events, etc., and the influence of increased CO2 concentrations on climatic changes are less pronounced than currently imagined.

Solar Influence On Climate (103)
ENSO, NAO, AMO, PDO Climate Influence (22)
Modern Climate In Phase With Natural Variability (8)
Cloud/Aerosol Climate Influence (4)
Volcanic/Tectonic Climate Influence (3)

N(2) The warming/sea levels/glacier and sea ice retreat/hurricane and drought intensities…experienced during the modern era are neither unprecedented or remarkable, nor do they fall outside the range of natural variability.

No Net Warming Since Mid/Late 20th Century (36)
A Warmer Past: Non-Hockey Stick Reconstructions (76)
Lack Of Anthropogenic/CO2 Signal In Sea Level Rise (16)
Sea Levels Multiple Meters Higher 4,000-7,000 Years Ago (18)
Nothing Unusual Occurring With Glaciers, Polar Ice (33)
Polar Bear (and other) Populations Not Decreasing (10)
Warming, Acidification Not Harming Oceanic Biosphere (10)
Coral Bleaching A Natural, Non-Anthropogenic Phenomenon (2)
No Increasing Trends In Intense Hurricanes/Storms (8)
No Increasing Trend In Drought/Flood Frequency, Severity (7)
Global Fire Frequency Declining As CO2 Rises (2)
CO2 Changes Lag Temperature Changes By 1000+ Years (3)

N(3) The computer climate models are neither reliable or consistently accurate, the uncertainty and error ranges are irreducible, and projections of future climate states (i.e., an intensification of the hydrological cycle) are not supported by observations and/or are little more than speculation.

Climate Model Unreliability/Biases/Errors (27)
No AGW Changes To Hydrological Cycle Detectable (6)
The CO2 Greenhouse Effect – Climate Driver? (12)

N(4) Current emissions-mitigation policies, especially related to the advocacy for renewables, are often ineffective and even harmful to the environment, whereas elevated CO2 and a warmer climate provide unheralded benefits to the biosphere (i.e., a greener planet and enhanced crop yields, lower mortality with warming).

Failing Renewable Energy, Climate Policies (17)
Wind Power Harming The Environment, Biosphere (19)
Elevated CO2: Greens Planet, Higher Crop Yields (20)
Global Warming Saves Lives. Cold Kills. (9)
Global Losses/Deaths From Weather Disasters Declining (2)

Gosselin goes on to make the obvious point that these papers do notsupport the orthodoxy:

‘In sharp contrast to the above, the corresponding “consensus” positions that these papers do not support are:

A(1) Close to or over 100% (110%) of the warming since 1950 has been caused by increases in anthropogenic CO2 emissions, leaving natural attribution at something close to 0%.

RealClimate.org: “The best estimate of the warming due to anthropogenic forcings (ANT) is the orange bar (noting the 1?uncertainties). Reading off the graph, it is 0.7±0.2ºC (5-95%) with the observed warming 0.65±0.06 (5-95%). The attribution then follows as having a mean of ~110%, with a 5-95% range of 80–130%. This easily justifies the IPCC claims of having a mean near 100%, and a very low likelihood of the attribution being less than 50% (p < 0.0001!).”

A(2) Modern warming, glacier and sea ice recession, sea level rise, drought and hurricane intensities…are all occurring at unprecedentedly high and rapid rates, and the effects are globally synchronous (not just regional)…and thus dangerous consequences to the global biosphere and human civilizations loom in the near future as a consequence of anthropogenic influences.

A(3) The climate models are reliable and accurate, and the scientific understanding of the effects of both natural forcing factors (solar activity, clouds, water vapor, etc.) and CO2 concentration changes on climate is “settled enough”, which means that “the time for debate has ended”.

A(4) The proposed solutions to mitigate the dangerous consequences described in N(4) – namely, wind and solar expansion – are safe, effective, and environmentally-friendly.’

There is a link to each paper, and while I have not read them all, I have read enough of them to see that the attributions Gosselin has made seem fair. So the next time someone says something like, ‘Oh yes, and which peer-reviewed scientists have said that?’ you can provide a link. My take-home message is that we simply don’t know a great deal about climate change, but what we do know does not suggest that humanity is in crisis or danger. Gosselin says much the same.

A note on syntax

Having been taught to parse and analyse when I was small, I have respect for syntax. Alas, younger generations don’t seem to know what it is, or care. This is especially the case on TV news, where the text can sometimes seem like a string of subordinate clauses without a subject or predicate — or verb. And the outcome is sometimes hilarious, as on Channel 9 a few days ago, where a story about public support for retaining some old buildings at Circular Quay in Sydney began with (something like) ‘Looming over the harbour for decades, the public action group…’ Another had the judge being the criminal, rather than the offender. Syntax is actually important.

Doesn’t anyone edit these texts for sense, if not for syntax?

Link to Gosselin:http://notrickszone.com/2019/01/03/consensus-500-scientific-papers-published-in-2018-support-a-skeptical-position-on-climate-alarm/

Join the discussion 77 Comments

  • Stu says:

    Don,
    I find what you just wrote really surprising. As you said you are not a physical scientist. You did however have some exposure to the scientific methid in your time at ARC. But I do recall folk who were somewhat surprised by your appointment and your decisions at that time.

    And now you publish something that really is full of holes. I might try and get some of those old sceptics (of your bona fides) to comment in light of your current, now published, views on published science in this special field.

    As I have written previously it looks like we do not have long to wait to have events prove you wrong. Things are changing much faster than under any postulated theory of natural influences.

    • spangled drongo says:

      “Things are changing much faster than under any postulated theory of natural influences.”

      What “things” are those, stu?

      Would one of those “things” be what your mate blith details below:

      http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/mean:360

      You know, that less-than-1.0c-warming since the LIA?

      We’re still waiting for you to stop hand-waving and produce some evidence “things” to make your point.

      Or are these “things” of yours too fake and embarrassing to specify?

    • Don Aitkin says:

      ‘ I do recall folk who were somewhat surprised by your appointment and your decisions at that time’. Really? Why were they surprised? I was the Chairman of the ARGC, the main body absorbed into the new ARC, a member of the Australian Science and Technology Council, and the Chairman of the Board of the Institute of Advanced Studies at the ANU, the second most important source of publicly-funded research after the CSIRO. I was in fact the obvious appointment unless there were someone the Minister wanted instead. As it happened, I didn’t know the Minister, and had no expectations, though he knew (because he had asked me) that I would like the job.

      FASTS (the Federation of Australian Scientific and Technological Societies) wanted a ‘scientist’ to be the new Chairman, and organised a great write-in from its constituent bodies, all singing the praises of the one man. The Minister knew a snowball job when he saw one, and declined to follow FASTS’ nomination. Some of it leaders were outraged (outrage is commonly to be found in academic circles), and did their best for some time to make my life difficult. But ‘decisions’? Can you name one? I was a chairman, not a dictator, and my role was to lead and persuade. You can read about it all in my ‘Critical Mass. How the Commonwealth Got Into Funding Research in Universities’.

      You say that what I have written is ‘full of holes’, and you go on to present no examples at all. Surely it would be easy to put up one or two? No? You take notice only of what ‘science’ says. Ah, of course. As another commenter says below, you are something of a hand-waver, aren’t you.

      • Stu says:

        Don, I apologise and withdraw those comments. It is a case of very poor drafting on my part and partly hearsay.

        Also I should not have been surprised by your views as they are reflective of the position you have already indicated through your writings in this space.

        Perhaps what I should have written was that I am surprised that given your prior status you align with some of the more fringe elements of the debate, such as Patrick Moore. Many of these regularly quoted “experts” on climate science have no history of published papers on the subject.

        You appear to me to be dismissive of the climate modelling. Published work generally indicates a fairly solid base for the hypothesis these models are testing. The models have been getting more rigorous but do need further work to increase the granularity of the cells and that takes lots of grunt. However over time, and with more horespower, they are showing increasingly accurate outcomes with reflecting historical change and therefore prediction.

        You seem to be writing more which is I hope indicative of improving health. I do wish you all the best and did not mean to offend or impugn your reputation.

        • Chris Warren says:

          Stu

          yes, your comment was not quite right. I spent a couple of years working with NBEET and saw the change-overs in appointments to the Schools Council and ARC. If there was any guts to your statement I would have heard about it.

          The only questioning of an appointment, I gathered from before my time, was Carmichael’s predecessor (CH) for the ESFC

          If anything the appointments from industry were less useful. One Board member (BF) told me they “had to be seen to be there” and they had to “do the business of business” first.

  • Neville says:

    A very good post Don , but I think we’re comparing the pseudo science of a fantasy planet compared to the real planet earth.
    Just look at numerous studies of Antarctica, Greenland, SLR, hurricanes, tornadoes, deaths from extreme events, human life expectancy today versus 50, 100, 200 years ago etc and we should understand that we live in a very benign climate.
    And we can’t change anything even if we wanted to, but the mitigation con and fra-d seems to have sent most people into the realms of la la land and pixie dust science.
    Here’s a recent video of maths/science expert Nic Lewis looking at the latest data/evidence for climate sensitivity or how much AGW for a doubling of co2.
    Don’t forget that Nic and his hero Steve McIntyre have brought about the retraction of a number of PR studies over the last decade or so.

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2019/03/14/how-sensitive-is-the-climate-to-greenhouse-gases/

  • spangled drongo says:

    Thanks, Don, for this very necessary dose of reality.

    Throughout my life of designing and building things that were breaking into new realms of thinking, I always found engineers such as Gosselin to be the first to understand what you were trying to do because they had that essential combination of theory and practice.

    I have yet to encounter such a practical person who will try to tell you that there is any problem humanity is in crisis or danger with our current climate.

  • Neville says:

    I think Nic Lewis is very intelligent and very bright, but I still go back to the HAD Crut 4 data before and after Jones’s 2010 BBC interview.

    He showed that all the warming period trends were about the same, yet then they adjusted down the earlier trends and adjusted up the two later trends.

    But there is still a warming trend from 1916 to 1945 that is 0.167 c/decade, but for how much longer will this trend last? I fear another DOWN adjustment waiting in the wings. Who knows?
    But we also have the earlier warming period in the NH / Greenland etc to fall back on, unless that somehow suffers a similar fate.

    • Chris Warren says:

      Neville

      Well done – you should go back to HAD Crut 4 data. You just have to look at global 30year trends.

      http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/mean:360

      Please print this out and stick it above your bed.

      • Neville says:

        Chris that looks impressive, but it is still just 0.56 c/century after the coldest period for the last 10,000 years and still no warming in the SP for the last 40 years.
        Oh and co2 levels are over 400 ppm at the SP and Greenland has had no unusual warming trends according to Vinther et al.

      • spangled drongo says:

        “Please print this out and stick it above your bed.”

        I’ll bet you haven’t got yours there, blith.

        If you did and were also sufficiently scientific of mind to realise it only represents ~ a quarter of the global Holocene temperature range [and the bottom quarter at that] it might just dawn on you that the world is well within the bounds of Nat Var and there is absolutely nothing to bed-wet about.

        At least your mum would be pleased.

        Do it for her sake.

  • spangled drongo says:

    Today’s School Strike for Climate is the end result of the doom-screaming, sandwich board wearers who have been at it for centuries but previously have never been able to convince many, other that similar Marxist loopies.

    Many of these Marxist loopies today are school teachers and academics.

    And now that they have brainwashed the kiddies [mainly because they have forsaken the real world for the virtual one] these loopies have risen in influence sufficiently to persuade politicians to cater to their requests.

    And meanwhile, the kiddies are today having a ball dodging schoolwork and shouting advice.

    The inmates are now in charge of the asylum.

  • spangled drongo says:

    As Greenpeace co-founder, Dr Patrick Moore says about AOC’s Green New Deal on climate change, it’s not just fake news, it’s fake science:

  • spangled drongo says:

    Don says:

    “And there is not really one problem, but many. Is the earth actually warming? Is the warming significant? Is the warming like to be beneficial or harmful? Would carbon taxes and their like make any difference?”

    Here’s an honest alarmist who admits he really doesn’t know but predicts doom anyway:

    “Fully modelling how the climate behaves in response to exponentially increasing carbon levels has the equivalent complexity of predicting where a toothpick will land after being dropped in a tornado.

    https://blog.usejournal.com/climate-changes-worst-outcome-thermohaline-shutdown-c8618d5bd90d?gi=6538ea4519ce

    “I believe I would not be doing this article scientific justice if I did not emphasize the uncertainty of Thermohaline trends in the scientific community. While a Thermohaline shutdown is frightning, data on Thermohaline slowdown is a reason for skepticism. The circulation is not constant and fluctuates in net flow. So while Bryden et al. may have noted a slow down, in such a short time frame (50 years is a short time frame relative to any global events) it’s not clear whether this event is correlated to global warming.

    “This article by no means declares what will happen. It simply explores one of the more frighting possibilities proposed.”

    If it wasn’t costing us trillions it would be hilarious.

  • Chris Warren says:

    Neville

    You cannot assess global warming by looking at Greenland and the South Pole.

    It is not relevant to claim “but it is still just 0.56 c/century”. This does not apply to the last century and will not apply to the next.

    Most informed people do agree there is global warming, and have different views as to the rate. This is also not the key point.

    The fact shown here: http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/mean:360 is an increasing rate for some time and then an apparent continuous linear trend since 1980.

    This is entirely consistent with scientific theory that the relationship is logarithmic with exponential increases in CO2 due to future population and Third World development.

    The linear slope is around a rise of 0.433 in temperature over a time frame from 1980 – 2005.

    While there are temporary variations around 1910 and 1950, and this allows some to claim “cooling”, “hiatus”, “pause” etc, the underlying, long-term trend is clear and concerning.

    We have an ongoing, unstoppable, global warming trend of at least 1.73 C per century.

    This will continue the present trend to melt all the land ice on Earth and increase the number of days and sites experiencing temperatures over 50C.

    This really is the end of the line.

    • Boambee John says:

      Chris

      If this “really is the end of the line”, then there is nothing to do but to enjoy the last 12 years granted to us by AOC. Eat, drink and be merry, for in 12 years we all die!

      The points that you never address are not whether the climate changes (it has been changing for millenia, and will continue to do so regardless of anything that we do), nor whether there is anthropogenic influence (there logically must be if conservation of energy is valid), but whether the effect will be catastrophic.

      The effects so far have been benign, even beneficial. Apart from computer models, do you have empirical evidence that doom will soon be upon us?

      • Chris Warren says:

        Boambee John

        I do not allow myself be distracted by comments from such as AOC.

        I use only data, not models.

        I look at global, long-term trends.

        I believe it reasonable to expect the current trend will continue into the future, and there is no stopping point in melting land ice.

        By itself – this guarantees a catastophe for some, although the feedback of increased water vapour may cause even more trouble,

      • spangled drongo says:

        BJ, our blith “only uses data”.

        Particularly the modern, well homogenised stuff.

        And he denies observations.

        As in the fact that his local sea levels are not rising.

        Any good data that goes back a few centuries that shows it has all happened before, he doesn’t want to know about.

        He’s into serious data denial of previous warm periods.

        I think in an earlier incarnation one of Hannibal’s elephants must have stepped on his toe.

    • Bryan Roberts says:

      “We have an ongoing, unstoppable, global warming trend“, a comment that an alarmist onlooker would have made at the beginning of any of the ‘warm’ periods. But the trend did stop. On its own. Without human intervention.

      • Chris Warren says:

        Bryan Roberts

        “But the trend did stop. ”

        Absolute lie.

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/mean:360

        • Bryan Roberts says:

          Chris Warren,

          You might want to be a trifle more circumspect in your language. Your reference shows nothing about prehistoric warm periods, of which there were two of note, the Roman, and the Medieval. Both ended without human assistance. As did the intervening ice ages.

          • Chris Warren says:

            Bryan Roberts

            Please stop playing tricks.

            Of course temperatures go up (ie warm) and down (ie warming ends) over any number of timescales – inluding here:

            http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/mean:360

            There is a lot of volatility in temperature history but this is not relevant to the current rocketing of warming which will not “terminate naturally without assistance”.

            This was your real point was it not – some claim or vague suggestion that the current warming will naturally terminate.

            So to be clear:

            Do you maintain that the current warming will terminate naturally (a lie)

            or

            Do you maintain that the current warming will NOT terminate naturally (a scientific conclusion).

            Please do not try tricks with me.

          • Bryan Roberts says:

            “Do you maintain that the current warming will NOT terminate naturally (a scientific conclusion).”

            If you wish. So you claim that the previous ‘warm’ periods did not terminate naturally? If they did not, who or what terminated them? And why would those same factors not terminate the current warming? You can either explain it by science, or you can explain it by belief. The “scientific conclusion” please.

          • Chris Warren says:

            Bryan Roberts

            If you agree that “current warming will NOT terminate naturally (a scientific conclusion)” then I am not sure what pointing to previous natural fluctuations up and down – all of which did terminate, was for?

            No one disputes this.

            Have you lost track of your own argument?

            What is the point you are making?

          • Bryan Roberts says:

            I say there is no evidence that previous warm periods did not terminate naturally, and the current one will probably also terminate naturally. You disagree, but can propose no causative mechanisms that would not be capable of terminating the current warming trend. I note also that supposed ‘tipping points’ have been passed centuries and millenia ago, and mother earth is still rocking on, quite undisturbed.

  • Chris Warren says:

    For those who are a bit befudled about trends in the Antarctica.

    https://www.pnas.org/content/116/4/1095

  • spangled drongo says:

    “I look at global, long-term trends. I believe it reasonable to expect the current trend will continue into the future, and there is no stopping point in melting land ice.”

    Here’s a nice, long term trend of continuous climate for the last 5 million years, blith.

    http://jonova.s3.amazonaws.com/graphs/lappi/Five_Myr_Climate_Change_Rev.jpg

    What part of that 12c range of natural climate variability takes your fancy?

    And while you ponder on it, please tell us where our current [and projected] “warming” is outside that historical range.

    I know who’s telling the absolute lies.

  • spangled drongo says:

    “For those who are a bit befudled [sic] about trends in the Antarctica.”

    You’re the befuddled one, blith:

    https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/nasa-study-mass-gains-of-antarctic-ice-sheet-greater-than-losses

    The fact is that the noise of Antarctic ice melt is far greater than any signal and far from losing ice, as the new study thinks, Zwally’s 2015 analysis found the opposite, that the ice sheet was growing.

    And you can also check those sea levels for yourself, if you really want to know, blith.

  • spangled drongo says:

    “The good news is that Antarctica is not currently contributing to sea level rise, but is taking 0.23 millimeters per year away,” Zwally said.

  • Neville says:

    My point about the SP is that it has not warmed in the Sat data since 1979. Also unfortunately for Chris and other believers the Antarctica peninsula has been cooling for about 20 years.
    See the BAS study of Turner et al and this was a poster child for Gore’s silly AIT book and movie. Also Dr Humlum shows no difference ( compared to 20th century trends) in SLR using both tide gauges and non-adjusted Sat altimeters.
    Also the majority of island states have more land area today than they had just 30 years ago ( see Kench et al) and some global studies show increasing shoreline area over the same period. See the recent Netherlands study.
    We know that a number of studies show a strong NH warm ( HAD 4 still shows global warming trend from 1916 to 1945) period in the earlier 20 th century, so it will be interesting to observe the changes when the AMO again returns to the cool phase.
    I should add that GISS and BEST still show an earlier warming trend to match HAD Crut 4.

  • Chris Warren says:

    Bryan Roberts

    The current warming period will not terminate while ever CO2 continues to increase in the atmosphere.

    This is the causal mechanism you seek.

    There is no point looking back to other natural fluctuations because they were not related to the new relatively modern industrial factor of CO2 emissions.

    If you had been following what people have been saying, including scientists, you would know that the causal mechanism is fossil fuel CO2.

    The tipping point occurred when all land ice started to continuously melt.

    • Bryan Roberts says:

      “Scientific studies have shown that atmospheric Carbon Dioxide in past eras reached concentrations that were 20 times higher than the current concentration. ” So CO2 levels must have fallen, by natural mechanisms, not by benevolent aliens scrubbing it out of the atmosphere.

      • Chris Warren says:

        Bryan Roberts

        CO2 levels only fell because the Earth’s distance from the sun changed.

        CO2 levels were never, never, never near current levels.

        • spangled drongo says:

          Good to see you at least accept that temperature drives CO2.

          But don’t forget we also had 2c greater warming with higher SLs during the Holocene with much lower CO2 than we have now.

          How does that align with your CACO2 theory, blith?

  • Neville says:

    Here’s the 2016 Dutch study as referenced by the BBC.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-37187100

    And reference to land and sea changes over just the last 30 years. NOTE these are observations by Satellites over this very short period of time. This is from the BBC article and note again “the coasts are growing all over the world.”

    “Coastal areas were also analysed, and to the scientists surprise, coastlines had gained more land – 33,700 sq km (13,000 sq miles) – than they had been lost to water (20,100 sq km or 7,800 sq miles).

    “We expected that the coast would start to retreat due to sea level rise, but the most surprising thing is that the coasts are growing all over the world,” said Dr Baart.

    “We’re were able to create more land than sea level rise was taking.” Could SD be correct? Certainly there seems to be support for him from this study and the Dutch are SLR experts to say the least.
    They’ve been in the land reclaiming business for a very long time.

    • Chris Warren says:

      Neville

      This makes no useful point.

      Reclaimation such as Dubai, does not cancel out the science of sea level rise due to global warming.

    • spangled drongo says:

      Neville, our blith pontificates:

      “This makes no useful point.”

      He could discover a useful point by simply checking king tides [which are the major sea level rise effect on our residential areas].

      Locally they are not increasing at all and according to the most knowledgeable of sea level scientist, Nils Axel Morner, neither are the world’s sea levels.

      But blith displays his utter hypocrisy by shouting catastrophe, bed-wetting and sceptic denigrating yet he won’t actually go outside and see for himself.

      Do you think this is because he is a/ incapable, b/ brainwashed or c/ agenda-driven?

      Or possibly all three?

      • Boambee John says:

        “CO2 levels were never, never, never near current levels.”

        Fantasy!

        Lay out your evidence.

        • Chris Warren says:

          Boambee John

          Within the lifespan of primate evolution. No doubt if you go back far enough you may find similar levels BUT not within the millions of years it took for early humans to emerge and evolve into the modern species we are threatening today.

  • Neville says:

    Just for interest sake here is the 1916 to 1945 warming from the 3 global data-sets and York Uni tool link. But I’m afraid I feel another cool change adjustment in the wind. Certainly more recent ( adjusted) human global warming from HAD Crut 4 after 2010.

    http://www.ysbl.york.ac.uk/~cowtan/applets/trend/trend.html

    GISS- 0.157 c/decade

    BEST- 0.169 c/decade

    HAD Crut 4- 0.167 c/decade

    • Chris Warren says:

      Neville

      Yes, but of course the more recent 30 year averages are all much higher and we are overdue for a cooling fluctuation which as in the past will naturally reverse.

      So if GHGs continue to accumulate in the atmosphere, future 30year averages will be even higher.

      • Neville says:

        So Chris please answer the questions below and please no BS, just facts and data for a change. Perhaps they’ve missed something? BTW I can provide that list ( AGAIN) of scientists who advised the RS & NAS .

      • Bruce of Newcastle says:

        Chris – The ~60 year cycle is quite clear in a number of datasets, including HadCrut. Therefore using a 30 year average is erroneous.

        This is what the IPCC did. They use a century from 1906 to 2005. As it happens 1906 was right at the bottom of the cycle and 2005 right at the top. So about 0.3-0.4 C of the rise last century was due to the cycle, not CO2.

        If they included the cycle in their models, eg by using 120-130 years instead of 100, it would drop derived climate sensitivity by roughly half since the models are fitted to that century to derive ECS.

        As for current trends the current trend in NH snow extent is flat. That tallies with the unadjusted temperature data but not the adjusted temperature data. Which strongly suggests the adjustments are in error.

        The Rutgers snow extent data does not need adjustment since it can just be read off a satellite pic. The area of snow cover is an isotherm at 0 C. Since that isotherm hasn’t changed for a couple decades the real temperature hasn’t either.

  • Neville says:

    Can anyone tell us how to reduce co2 levels in the atmosphere and how long will it take. Bill McKibben and Dr Hansen think we should reduce it back to 350ppm ASAP, but somebody forgot to tell the non OECD countries.
    The RS & NAS report tell us it would take many thousands of years EVEN IF we STOPPED all human emissions today. And even Nic Lewis seems to agree with this long lag time.
    Certainly the ice cores show that co2 always follows temp and the lag time can be many thousands of years.
    A pity someone didn’t inform the brainwashed kiddies before they went on strike. I mean according to their idiocy it can be changed back to the pre 1950s paradise within their own lifespan.
    Anyway the non OECD will be building 100s of new coal fired stns for many years to come and incalculable millions tonnes more coal needed to produce steel products forever into the future.
    OZ’s 0.006c of warming since 1800 looks horrific when compared to the above facts. SARC.

    • Chris Warren says:

      Neville

      An entirely different question.

      Can I assume that you accept the science of fossil fuel caused global warming currently at an accelerating rate as shown either by Cowtan or WoodForTrees or NASA?

      If so I will take you off my denialist list?

      I have never expressed any opinion as to the rest of your issues but once sees a problem then this becomes of interest. I certainly feel that current steps by government(s) are a complete waste of time.

      I fully expect, given present state of affairs, that CO2 will increase forever even though per capita emissions may fall.

      • Boambee John says:

        Chris to Neville

        “An entirely different question.

        Can I assume that you accept the science of fossil fuel caused global warming currently at an accelerating rate as shown either by Cowtan or WoodForTrees or NASA?”

        Translated:

        “Brother, do you believe?”

  • Neville says:

    Chris co2 emissions per capita have been falling since 1990 at least. That’s for OZ and all OECD countries but rising to at least EU levels in China, with rest of those countries to come.
    The US co2 levels per capita have fallen a long way since 1990, but you’re correct that co2 levels will increase for a long time because of growth in non OECD emissions.
    So what do we do about steel products and the coal used in that production? Non OECD countries or people also want to live longer/healthier lives and become more prosperous and own cars plus all the mod cons that make up a modern lifestyle. More air travel for most people in the not too distant future will be the norm.
    Perhaps some new wonder plastics may be developed in the future to build cars, trucks planes, farm equipment, buildings etc . Who knows?

    Here’s how they make steel with about 1.6 billion tonnes made in 2017. That uses a lot of coal and will increase by a huge margin in 20, 50 and 100 years. And don’t forget OZ only emits 1.3% of global emissions and our country absorbs many times that amount of co2 every year.

    https://www.worldcoal.org/coal/uses-coal/how-steel-produced

  • Stu says:

    You anti change guys must be tearing your hair out with the way things are going on climate. Right or wrong the climate change argument is holding sway. Your twitching on the sidelines seems be having no effect and even ignored. The next generation won’t have a bar of your story. Even the Reserve Bank, insurance companies and Defence Forces are lining up. I think you may have lost the argument. It must be disheartening for you to be so treated. Oh well you can go back to anti-vacc where the fringe is gaining ground or maybe chem-trails.

    • spangled drongo says:

      Our stu fails to supply one iota of evidence to support his CAGW religion belief but is so certain it’s all happening.

      When you don’t know the difference between consensual groupthink and facts it’s better to keep quiet, stu.

      Even though the lefty academics are brainwashing the kiddies into your groupthink.

      Teaching them “what” instead of “how” to think.

      Particularly when this is “the way things are going”:

      http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah6/from:2015/to:2019

      But I’m relieved to hear you admit: “Right or wrong the climate change argument is holding sway.”

      It summarises your confusion beautifully.

      • stu says:

        Once again you cant read can you, or you dont want to. I did not attest to the efficacy of the AGW argument at all. Read again. I merely suggested that right or wrong the public perception argument was over, the game is moving on, you have lost, or will soon, the war.
        Your hand wringing over temperature records is becoming irrelevant so far as the politics and action are concerned. Best you sell your fossil fuel shares and submit your invoices to whoever it is that is promoting your side. Forget proof and theories, just think weight of numbers.
        But you can sit self satisfied in your corner believing you are correct and the majority opinion is totally wrong. Group think wins this time. But just maybe the next few years will show you are correct. I for one would welcome that outcome, but I am certain it will not be.
        Cheers

        • spangled drongo says:

          There, there, stu. We know you are doing your best for “Climate Crisis and a Betrayed Generation” but if you had two pieces of evidence to rub together it might help.

          And please don’t patronise us by telling us you prefer logic and rationality,

          Blither is your speciality.

          It’s all you have got.

          It’s all you ever had.

          • Stu says:

            Once again you wilfully miss the point. Forget the science, forget your dodgy temperature history etc, the issue is that you are losing the argument in the public arena, the game is over. Your arguments have failed to convince, you are losing the debate. Never mind who is right or wrong, you are losing the argument of world opinion. That is what I am saying. You may be proved correct in your dodgy science but people have switched off and do not believe you.

            Please discuss how you think you are winnIng.

          • spangled drongo says:

            What you are claiming is that at the moment the stu-pid groupthinkers are claiming the “votes”.

            And that facts and science have been cast aside for the sake of Marxism.

            Well, the SJWs are certainly making the most noise via the brainwashed kiddies.

            But is that anything to applaud?

            And telling lies is just standard procedure for SJWs:

            http://joannenova.com.au/2019/03/greenpeace-lies-to-save-the-planet-erasing-patrick-moore-again/

            It’s interesting that you admit to supporting all this corruption and fraud.

            But maybe you go to confession regularly for absolution.

          • Don Aitkin says:

            A response to Stu: Yes, there is something in what you say, though it is all about public opinion and politics, not science. But you should remember that no government is walking the walk. They are stuck with the talk, yes, and others are joining them. But no one is stopping coal exports, and in Europe there is obvious rejection of the alternative energy credo. Coal is with its for at least the next forty or fifty years, unless something quite new comes up — and it might. And public opinion is a fickle thing. So I wouldn’t be quite so triumphalist.

      • Boambee John says:

        Stu

        Perhaps inadvertently you might have exposed the nub of the whole CAGW hypothesis.

        “Once again you cant read can you, or you dont want to. I did not attest to the efficacy of the AGW argument at all. Read again. I merely suggested that right or wrong the public perception argument was over, the game is moving on, you have lost, or will soon, the war.
        Your hand wringing over temperature records is becoming irrelevant so far as the politics and action are concerned.”

        You can’t attest to the efficacy of the argument, but gloat that the public perception favours it. Actual temperature records (that Chris assures he bases his argument on) don’t matter.

        In essence, you are saying that the whole business is about politics, not the climate. You might ask yourself what is the aim of many politicians. The answer is simple. Power, from Stalin, Hitler, Mao, Pol Pot to todays wannabes, power is the objective.

        Might that explain that no matter how often I ask Chris and others to detail their solutions to the problem, they never offer coherent answers? If the aim is power, the problem is just the route to power, and does not need a solution.

    • spangled drongo says:

      But your mate George from the Guardian supports you in your confusion:

      https://wattsupwiththat.com/2019/03/15/monbiot-capitalism-climate-change-is-destroying-the-earth/

      I bet you share your worldly goods with all and sundry like a good little Marxist, hey, stu?

  • Confused Old Misfit says:

    The proselytizers of catastrophic anthropomorphic global warming are like religious zealots.

    For a better scale of reference please refer to the work of Christopher Scotese which are freely available here:
    https://uta.academia.edu/ChristopherScotese

    I would suggest Phanerozoic Global Temperature Curve
    https://www.academia.edu/12114306 )/Phanerozoic_Global_Temperature_Curve
    and
    Some thoughts on Global Climate Change: The Transition from Icehouse to Hothouse
    https://www.academia.edu/12082909/Some_thoughts_on_Global_Climate_Change_The_Transition_from_Icehouse_to_Hothouse

    These papers (and others by Scotese) are easiily understood even by those with minimal ma thematic comprehension.

    Making policy decisions on the basis of models, that even the IPCC have conceded to be inaccurate int that their margins of error are greater than the changes they purport to project, invites economic disaster.

  • spangled drongo says:

    What I find interesting about the brainwashed kiddies who strike for “Climate Crisis and a Betrayed Generation” is that they say they want to treat unborn generations to the same rights as the living.

    But to the progressive socialist urgers who are organising them, these unborn generations not only don’t have the same rights, they simply don’t have any rights at all.

    And what they did have once, these progressive SJWs have done their utmost to remove.

  • Ian MacCulloch says:

    I don’t know what all the fuss is about. If you follow the BOM and agree with their start date of 1910 for their database (#3?) then you have global warming. If you start at 1890 which includes the extraordinary heatwaves of 1896 then you have global cooling. Take you pick.

    All jokes aside the analysis by Tinsdale is most illuminating. His results show that the maxima and minima for temperatures at all latitudes when plotted all end up flat lining – indicating that the patient warming idea is dead.

  • amortiser says:

    It’s interesting to note that the advocates of CAGW say that the science is settled. They have constructed models based on this settled science to make predictions of sea level rise. Remember the science is settled, there is no other explanation, carbon dioxide drives climate and increases in concentration will result in accelerated global warming.

    The models have been constructed to reflect this science. In September 1988 it was reported in the Canberra Times that the Maldives 1196 islands would disappear under water in 30 years as a result of gradual sea level rise.

    The government of the Maldives pleaded in the United Nations for climate action to save the country. There were regular media stories of the imminent danger to the Maldives and the government there was only too happy to hype the issue by conducting a cabinet meeting under water to dramatise the danger. There were no CAGW advocates contradicting this narrative.

    So what did the government of the Maldives actually do in the face of this coming catastrophe predicted by settled science. They built a new international airport and 20 brand spanking new tourist resorts.

    The 30 years was up last September and the Maldives still sit conspicuously above the waves with throngs of international tourists enjoying the beaches and reefs. It’s not what they say it’s what they actually do. They don’t believe the hype themselves but spouting the nonsense to get cash is OK.

    Tuvalu has been put up as another example of a nation about to go under. A couple of weeks ago, Craig Kelly, a Liberal MP said that Tuvalu was increasing in size, not sinking. He was pilloried. The ABC decided to fact check his statement fully knowing it was rubbish. The result – fact check TRUE.

    The Maldives case should be a classic case of the scientific method operating. The hypothesis (that is all it is) is tested and compared against experimental outcome, in this case a real world observation. Accelerated warming resulting from increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide results in sea level rise which will inundate low lying islands in 30 years.

    When the 30 years is up and the islands still sit above the waves, any honest scientist advocating the hypothesis would concede that the hypothesis was disproved and that another explanation for climate driver(s) was needed.

    What was the action? They kept mute about the initial prediction but said in 2007 that the situation was worse than expected and carbon emissions were rising faster than expected and the Maldives wouldn’t survive passed 2100!!

    This completely defies logic. One would expect if the science was settled and CO2 was rising faster than initially expected then the Maldives would be inundated faster not 82 years slower. The only conclusion one could draw would be that increasing levels of carbon dioxide stave off sea level rise.

    Logic and science have nothing to do with this, however. It’s religious fervour. A sign at the kids climate protest said it all – The END Is NIGH!! For real.

    • spangled drongo says:

      Thanks for that, amortiser.

      In response to this, sea level expert Dr. Nils Axel Morner wrote the open letter below to the President of the Maldives:

      “You have recently held an undersea Cabinet meeting to raise awareness of the idea that global sea level is rising and hence threatens to drown the Maldives. This proposition is not founded in observational facts and true scientific judgements, Accordingly it is incorrect. Therefore, I am most surprised at your action and must protest to its intended message.

      In 2001, when our research group found overwhelming evidence that sea level was by no means in a rising mode in the Maldives, but had remained quite stable for the last 30 years, I thought it would not be respectful to the fine people of the Maldives if I were to return home and present our results in international fora. Therefore, I announced this happy news during an interview for your local TV station. However, your predecessor as president censored and stopped the broadcast.

      When you became president, I was hoping both for democracy and for dialogue. However, I have written to you twice without reply. Your people ought not to have to suffer a constant claim that there is no future for them on their own islands. This terrible message is deeply inappropriate, since it is founded not upon reality but upon an imported concept, which lacks scientific justification and is thus untenable. There is simply no rational basis for it.

      Let me summarize a few facts (1) In the last 2000 years, sea level has oscillated with 5 peaks reaching 0.6 to 1.2 m above the present sea level. (2) From 1790 to 1970 sea level was about 20 cm higher than today. (3) In the 1970s, sea level fell by about 20 cm to its present level. (4) Sea level has remained stable for the last 30 years, implying that there are no traces of any alarming on-going sea level rise. (5) Therefore, we are able to free the Maldives (and the rest of low-lying coasts and island around the globe) from the condemnation of becoming flooded in the near future.”

      More here:

      http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.com/2010/03/dr-nils-axel-morners-reply-to-maldives.html

      His statement; (3) In the 1970s, sea level fell by about 20 cm to its present level. (4) Sea level has remained stable for the last 30 years, implying that there are no traces of any alarming on-going sea level rise…. agrees with my own observations from building sea front infrastructure throughout my life around the SE coast of Qld.

      But these island nations can see the giant honey pot and even though their shorelines are in fact growing, they won’t admit it.

  • Neville says:

    There has been record snowfall in the Himalayas and of course it must be caused by climate change or is it global warming?
    Who cares they just make it up as the go along.

    https://www.thegwpf.com/scientist-blames-record-snowfall-in-himalayas-on-global-warming/

  • Neville says:

    Another good column from Lomborg with many links to back up his claims. But for how long must we listen to extreme points of view that are easily refuted?
    It is truly embarrassing that so many people have been fooled by these religious fra-dsters and con merchants resulting in horrendous costs and all for a guaranteed zero return.

    https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/climate-change-alarmism-scaring-children-by-bjorn-lomborg-2019-03

  • Peter E says:

    The Gosselin N(1) – N(4) and the following A(1)-A(4) statements well sum up the major points of difference between the contending groups. Very useful. Now all that is required is evidence. This post certainly stirred folk up.

  • Neville says:

    There now seems to be a super abundance of polar bears after a low point in the 1960s.
    Was the Gore con merchant correct about anything in the last 30 years ?

    http://joannenova.com.au/2019/03/how-to-hide-30000-polar-bears/#more-63110

  • Neville says:

    The Climate Sceptics party was the big winner in the latest Holland elections.
    The religious extremists had stitched together a plan to reduce emissions by 49% and thereby ruin the economy.
    What sane person wouldn’t vote against these anti- Holland traitors?

    https://www.thegwpf.com/marcel-crock-a-historic-victory-for-hollands-climate-sceptics-party/

  • Neville says:

    And heaps more snow in the NH. Seems that Gore, Dr Viner, Dr Hansen, etc were also wrong about the future of snow.
    But don’t expect them to wake up any time soon.

    http://joannenova.com.au/2019/03/peak-snow-in-the-northern-winter/

    • Chris Warren says:

      So Neville

      Do you accept that if CO2 and water vapour increase in the atmosphere, then global temperatures will increase?

      • Neville says:

        Chris as far as I know that may be correct unless the feedbacks are negative as some scientists suspect. Who knows?
        I do know that you should be protesting over in China and non OECD countries if this is what keeps you awake at night.
        BTW here’s that quote AGAIN from Prof Humlum about SLR at tide gauges. About 1mm to 1.5mm a year or 4 to 6 inches a century.
        Check it out.

        “Data from tide-gauges suggest an average global sea-level rise of 1-1.5 mm/yr, while the satellite-derived record suggest a rise of more than 3 mm/yr. The rather marked difference between the two data sets has still no broadly accepted explanation, but some of the difference is likely due to administrative changes introduced into the raw data obtained by satellites. See the paragraph below on temporal stability of the satellite-derived data”.

        “Another factor that may explain some of the difference between tide-gauge and satellite data is probably that while any temperature-driven volumen expansion is recorded by the satellites, this change is not affecting tide-gauges at coastal locations, as the water depth here decreases towards zero”.

        • spangled drongo says:

          “Chris as far as I know that may be correct unless the feedbacks are negative as some scientists suspect. Who knows?”

          Yes, Neville, who knows?

          But when scientists can’t work out that the feedback from water vapour is negative when it accounts for 95% of the GHGs and that it totally overwhelms the 0.04% of CO2, you would think the might still be somewhat sceptical.

          Particularly when they must know that, as with WV, CO2 causes warming, not vice versa.

          If it did both then we certainly would be well past the tipping point.

        • Chris Warren says:

          Neville

          There is an element of hypocrisy here. It is like saying that all races are equal unless there are some inferiorities “as some scientists suspect”.

          The worth of this statement depends on the quality of what scientists suspect.

          So what scientists suspect? and what do they suspect?

          Who thinks that there are feedbacks that counter the warming of 410 ppm CO2 plus water vapour?

          What is the evidence?

        • spangled drongo says:

          Neville, blith is trying to tell us he knows that warming causes Co2 and Co2 causes more warming.

          Quelle science!

          Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts, blith.

          It’s up to you to supply the evidence otherwise.

    • Confused Old Misfit says:

      “More CO2 will benefit the world. The only way to limit CO2 would be to stop using fossil fuels, which I think would be a profoundly immoral and irrational policy.”
      William Harper
      https://thebestschools.org/special/karoly-happer-dialogue-global-warming/william-happer-interview/

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