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Posts Tagged ‘climate’

NYTimes story: no warming in a century

Posted by Richard on February 27, 2010

Don Surber pointed out an interesting story from the New York Times. It's about a study by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) scientists published in a journal called Geophysical Research Letters. The researchers examined a century's worth of temperature and precipitation records from U.S. weather stations.

According to the New York Times, they found "no significant change in average temperatures or rainfall in the United States over that entire period" and "no trend in one direction or another."

No, I'm not making this up. It really was a NOAA study, that's really what it found, and it really was reported in the New York Times. On January 26, 1989.

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More global warming pettifoggery

Posted by Richard on February 17, 2010

Roger Pielke, Jr., pointed out two conflicting claims, made less than a year apart, regarding "climate change" and fog:

National Geographic reports yesterday:

Declining fog cover on California's coast could leave the state's famous redwoods high and dry, a new study says.

Among the tallest and longest-lived trees on Earth, redwoods depend on summertime's moisture-rich fog to replenish their water reserves.

But climate change may be reducing this crucial fog cover. Though still poorly understood, climate change may be contributing to a decline in a high-pressure climatic system that usually "pinches itself" against the coast, creating fog, said study co-author James Johnstone, an environmental scientist at the University of California, Berkeley.

Last summer the San Francisco Chronicle carried a story about research on fog and climate with a different conclusion:

The Bay Area just had its foggiest May in 50 years. And thanks to global warming, it's about to get even foggier.

That's the conclusion of several state researchers, whose soon-to-be-published study predicts that even with average temperatures on the rise, the mercury won't be soaring everywhere.

"There'll be winners and losers," says Robert Bornstein, a meteorology professor at San Jose State University. "Global warming is warming the interior part of California, but it leads to a reverse reaction of more fog along the coast."

The study, which will appear in the journal Climate, is the latest to argue that colder summers are indeed in store for parts of the Bay Area.

More fog is consistent with predictions of climate change. Less fog is consistent with predictions of climate change. I wonder if the same amount of fog is also "consistent with" such predictions? I bet so.

More fog or less, more snow or less, more drought or less, more acne or less — whatever is currently happening is, to the true believer, evidence of anthropogenic global warming (a.k.a. "climate change").

If you don't believe me, check this list.

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Global cooling forecast, Phil Jones considered suicide

Posted by Richard on February 11, 2010

I don't know that there's any connection between these two bits of news, but they're both from the same Daily Express story, and for some reason the juxtaposition gave me a chuckle:

Professor Michael Beenstock said theories of climate change are wrong.

He warned climatologists have misused statistics, leading them to the mistaken conclusion global warming is ­evidence of the greenhouse effect.

The economics professor from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem said that just because greenhouse gases and temperatures have risen together does not mean they are linked.

He claims that the real cause of ­rising temperatures is the sun, which he says is at its hottest for over 1,000 years but is “beginning to stabilise”.

Professor Beenstock said: “If the sun’s heat continues to remain stable, and if carbon emissions continue to grow with the rate of growth of the world economy, global temperatures will fall by about 0.5C by 2050.”

Citing predictions by climatologists in the 1970s of a new Ice Age, Professor Beenstock said: “I predict that ­climatologists will look equally foolish in the years to come. Indeed, it may be already happening.”

Some of the commenters quickly seized on the fact that Beenstock is an economist, not a climatologist, claimed he was from a "right-wing think tank" (Hebrew University?), and said the Express had no business presenting him as an expert on climate.

I disagree. The "evidence" for global warming consists of statistical output data from complex computer models analyzing statistical input data (carefully chosen and adjusted to "normalize" it — or to arrive at the desired conclusion, depending on whom you believe). An econ professor is typically quite expert in statistics, mathematics, and computer modeling, and is thus quite qualified to comment on the manipulation of data relating to climate change. Certainly more so than the IPCC honcho who is a sociologist, or a flamenco dancer, or something. 

Later in the story, we learn that the fallout from the first ClimateGate scandal (how many have there been now, four?) has taken its toll on the chief perp:

Meanwhile, Professor Phil Jones from the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit – the expert at the ­centre of the Climategate scandal – said he had considered suicide and had death threats over leaked emails which appeared to show ­scientists rigging the data.

The story ends with this, apparently presented with a straight face: 

MPs have called on the Government to consider a carbon tax of £100 a ton “or higher” to force down greenhouse gases. But there are fears it could push up fuel and food prices.

Gee, higher fuel and food prices from a carbon tax — ya think? Really?

 

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ClimateGate, the NASA version

Posted by Richard on January 23, 2010

What little credibility the promoters of global warming hysteria had remaining has now been shredded. From Investor's Business Daily (emphasis added):

We recently commented on how our space agency for two years refused Freedom of Information requests on why it has had to repeatedly correct its climate figures.

In a report on global warming on KUSI television by Weather Channel founder and iconic TV weatherman John Coleman, that reticence has been traced to the deliberate manipulation and distortion of climate data by NASA.

As Coleman noted in a KUSI press release, NASA's two primary climate centers, the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) in Asheville, N.C., and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies at Columbia University in New York City, are accused of "creating a strong bias toward warmer temperatures through a system that dramatically trimmed the number and cherry-picked the locations of weather observation stations they use to produce the data set on which temperature record reports are based."

Joseph D'Aleo, of Icecap.us, said the analysis found NASA "systematically eliminated 75% of the world's stations with a clear bias toward removing higher-latitude, high-altitude and rural locations." The number of actual weather stations used to calculate average global temperatures was reduced from about 6,000 in the 1970s to about 1,500 today. The number of reporting stations in Canada dropped from 600 to 35.

E. Michael Smith, a computer programming expert who worked with D'Aleo, said he found "patterns in the input data from NCDC that looked liked dramatic and selective deletions of thermometers from cold locations." The more he looked, the more he found "patterns of deletion that could not be accidental."

Smith argues that the decrease in stations used and the selectivity of locations make NASA's data and conclusions suspect. D'Aleo goes further, saying such cherry-picking and data manipulation are a "scientific travesty" committed by activist scientists to advance the global warming agenda.

I wonder — if we graphed the amount of scientific fraud uncovered in the field of climatology over the past few decades, would it look like a hockey stick?

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400,000 years of climate change

Posted by Richard on December 14, 2009

I finally got around to checking out a link that David Aitken sent me (someone please persuade him to post these things on his blog). It's fascinating. J. Storrs Hall of the Foresight Institute presented a series of graphs showing temperature readings derived from Greenland ice cores (and, for the 400,000+ year perspective, Antarctic ice cores). In a masterful bit of presentation, he starts with a graph for the past 500 years, then a graph for the past 1200, then 5000, then 12,000, …

Check it out. It's like looking at a picture of our galaxy and seeing our place in it — it changes your perspective. And puts all the climate change blather by dipwads like Al Gore into a different light. As Storrs observed (emphasis in original):

we’re pretty lucky to be here during this rare, warm period in climate history.  But the broader lesson is, climate doesn’t stand still.  It doesn’t even stand stay on the relatively constrained range of the last 10,000 years for more than about 10,000 years at a time.

Does this mean that CO2 isn’t a greenhouse gas? No.

Does it mean that it isn’t warming? No.

Does it mean that we shouldn’t develop clean, efficient technology that gets its energy elsewhere than burning fossil fuels?  Of course not. …

For climate science it means that the Hockey Team climatologists’ insistence that human-emitted CO2 is the only thing that could account for the recent warming trend is probably poppycock.

Somebody tell all those clowns in Copenhagen that they should shut up and quietly fly their private jets home. 

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Climategate: the Jon Stewart episode

Posted by Richard on December 5, 2009

I understand that a growing number of young people rely on comedy news like The Daily Show to keep them up on current events. That's generally a bit troubling. But in the case of Climategate, it may be good news. Because while all the broadcast networks are basically ignoring the story, Jon Stewart is doing a terrific job of covering it. Enjoy:

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Scientists Hide Global Warming Data
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political Humor

Health Care Crisis

 HT: Black & Right

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More climategate fraud

Posted by Richard on December 3, 2009

A quick update from Instapundit (for the benefit of my legions of readers who aren't familiar with that obscure Tennessee blogger):

OOPS: Former NASA climate scientist pleads guilty to contract fraud. “A former top climate scientist who had become one of the scientific world’s most cited authorities on the human effect on Earth’s atmosphere was sentenced to probation Tuesday after pleading guilty to steering lucrative no-bid contracts to his wife’s company.”

Related, from the ClimateGate emails: “We need to show some left to cover the costs of the trip Roger didn’t make and also the fees/equipment/computer money we haven’t spent otherwise NOAA will be suspicious.”

'Nuff said. These "scientists" promoting AGW are both charlatans and crooks. They're not just fraudulently promoting their ideological agenda, they're also enriching themselves in the process. 

But by all means, check out Instapundit's links. Especially the second one's quoted notes from Ian "Harry" Harris. And check out the the HARRY_READ_ME.txt file, apparently from the same person. And those of you familiar with the FORTRAN and/or IDL programming languages might be interested in this post and its links (thanks, David B.).

Given that, according to Shakespeare, "the better part of valor is discretion," maybe the world's leaders should just cancel the Copenhagen climate summit. After all, its entire agenda is premised on now-discredited conclusions created by sloppy and unscientific computer models using raw data that was deliberately massaged to hide the truth and then destroyed.

And maybe someone should tell John Travolta, Sheryl Crow, Tom Cruise, Harrison Ford, Oprah Winfrey, Trudie Styler (wife of Sting), and other strident advocates of making the rest of us lower our carbon emissions, not to fly their private jets to Copenhagen.

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Hadley CRU destroyed climate data

Posted by Richard on November 28, 2009

David Aitken (who really should be posting this stuff at his blog instead of just emailing his friends) called it, "Not just the smoking gun, but the bullet." The UK TimesOnline reported that "the world’s leading centre for reconstructing past climate and temperatures" destroyed the raw data it used to arrive at its conclusions in support of anthropogenic global warming (AGW):

SCIENTISTS at the University of East Anglia (UEA) have admitted throwing away much of the raw temperature data on which their predictions of global warming are based.

It means that other academics are not able to check basic calculations said to show a long-term rise in temperature over the past 150 years.

The UEA’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU) was forced to reveal the loss following requests for the data under Freedom of Information legislation.

The data were gathered from weather stations around the world and then adjusted to take account of variables in the way they were collected. The revised figures were kept, but the originals — stored on paper and magnetic tape — were dumped to save space when the CRU moved to a new building.

The admission follows the leaking of a thousand private emails sent and received by Professor Phil Jones, the CRU’s director. In them he discusses thwarting climate sceptics seeking access to such data.

In a statement on its website, the CRU said: “We do not hold the original raw data but only the value-added (quality controlled and homogenised) data.”

… Climate change sceptics have long been keen to examine exactly how its data were compiled. That is now impossible.

Roger Pielke, professor of environmental studies at Colorado University, discovered data had been lost when he asked for original records. “The CRU is basically saying, ‘Trust us’. So much for settling questions and resolving debates with science,” he said.

Well, that explains why they've refused to reveal their raw data and stonewalled all previous requests. One of the core principles of the scientific method is transparency — you share with others exactly how you arrived at your conclusion so that they can replicate your results or disprove them. The proponents of the AGW theory have fought such openness every step of the way, as if they had something to hide. It's reasonable to conclude that they do. Indeed, it would be foolish and naive to assume that they do not.

Some recent comments on the TimesOnline post put things in perspective nicely: 

Joe Horner wrote:

"Dear Inland Revenue, I enclose my latest accounts. Please note that I accidentally destroyed all the original invoices but I promise they were all entered correctly. Honest"

Truely unbelievable!

 

Whitbread Tankard wrote:

One of them said in the leaked emails that he'd rather delete the raw data than release it, maybe he did just that!
 
Truth Orator, yes one could theoretically back out the corrections but that in turn implies trust in those values being archived correctly. What we've seen so far is a rather chaotic organisation when it comes to documentation etc.

The whole thing is an utter disgrace and a blot on British scientific work.

 
Whitbread Tankard wrote:
One of them said in the leaked emails that he'd rather delete the raw data than release it, maybe he did just that!
 
David Aitken wrote:
Reversing the alterations is probably impossible because the alterations were probably done by 1 or more complex algorithms that may no longer exist. It's not just a matter of adding or subtracting a simple number.
In a nutshell: The "consensus" about AGW isn't about science, it's about politics. I'm not 100% certain whether AGW exists or not (although the correlation of global temperature with solar activity strongly suggests that it doesn't). Neither are they. The difference is that they don't care. Their goal is to promote the AGW agenda, regardless of what the evidence says. They're socialists with an agenda, not scientists pursuing the truth.

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Spectacular space station flybys

Posted by Richard on November 27, 2009

Those of us in the know were treated to a rare and spectacular celestial event Thanksgiving evening. At 6:12 pm, the International Space Station appeared brightly in the WNW sky, followed 30 seconds later by the somewhat dimmer space shuttle Atlantis. The pair crossed to the southeastern horizon in about two minutes — they were really moving! Tonight, the ISS provided an even better solo performance (Atlantis had already returned to Earth), appearing even brighter and much higher in the sky. It passed very close to the moon, which was quite a sight.

So, how did I know when and where to look? Spaceweather.com. Click Satellite Flybys in the right sidebar, enter your ZIP code, and they'll show you a schedule for the ISS and several satellites. The latter are significantly less bright (and less interesting, at least to me), and probably hard to spot from a metro area. But the ISS is intensely bright. Tonight's flyby was at 5 pm, with still a fair amount of light in the sky, but it shone so brightly that that was not a problem.

I also like to check out the great celestial photos at Spaceweather.com. The last three days featured photos of the ISS-Atlantis duo. At other times, they have aurora borealis shots, sun dogs, and other cool stuff. Pick some dates from the archives (right sidebar) and see what turns up.

And of course, Spaceweather.com is where I keep up with current sunspot activity as we continue an unusually long and deep trough between solar cycles 23 and 24. In fact, NASA has acknowledged that we may be heading into a repeat of the Dalton Minimum (1790-1830, toward the end of the Little Ice Age).

Let's hope it's not a Maunder Minimum — that one lasted over half a century (1645-1715) and coincided with the depths of the Little Ice Age, when the Thames frequently froze over so solidly that a commercial district sprung up on it.

But we shouldn't worry about prolonged cooling. Al Gore and the climatologists charlatans at Hadley CRU have assured us that it's going to get hotter. They have computer models that "prove" the empirical data showing a cooling trend since 1998 are wrong. And they've carefully analyzed manipulated the data to show that there really was no medieval warm period.

So pay no heed to the fact that a graph that mirrors solar activity over the past 1000 years seems to closely match global temperature variations over the same period. <snark>Your SUV and lawn mower are much more powerful factors than a little thing like the sun.</snark>

UPDATE: If you want more info about the Climategate scandal, check out the links in the comments at this post.

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