The unstoppable MWP

It crops up repeatedly: but there was no medieval warm period (MWP), therefore the modern warming is unprecedented.

The CO2 Science web site has a long-running project to examine records all over the world concerning temperatures in the medieval period. Their overview page makes a great introduction to the project. They cite material from hundreds of scientists and institutions. Really quite impressive.

So when will the warmists stop saying there was no medieval warm period?

316 Thoughts on “The unstoppable MWP

  1. Andrew W,

    Bob, be honest, that quote refers to Greenland glaciers, not arctic sea ice extent.

    Why am I not being honest? Read what I said when I introduced Howat above:

    …the Arctic region had less ice than now in the 1930s and 1940s

    I’m talking here about the Arctic region in general, using Greenland as a useful proxy.

  2. Richard C (NZ) on September 24, 2012 at 2:11 pm said:

    “Now we know from actual climate scientists (Howat, for example) that the Arctic region had less ice than now in the 1930s and 1940s,” “Well, this will be a link I’ve gotta see! Where is it??”

    ‘Rapid Changes in Ice Discharge from Greenland Outlet Glaciers’

    ftp://www-ftp.tucson.ars.ag.gov/Tucson-Abs-Pres/Smith/Howat_et_al_2007.pdf

    NYT article:-

    ‘Greenland isn’t melting as fast as we feared.’

    It was big news when the rate of melting suddenly doubled in 2004 as ice sheets began moving more quickly into the sea. That inspired predictions of the imminent demise of Greenland’s ice — and a catastrophic rise in sea level. But a paper published online this afternoon by Science reports that two of the largest glaciers have suddenly slowed, bringing the rate of melting last year down to near the previous rate. At one glacier, Kangerdlugssuaq, “average thinning over the glacier during the summer of 2006 declined to near zero, with some apparent thickening in areas on the main trunk.”

    I asked the lead author of the paper, Ian Howat of the University of Washington, for some perspective. Here’s his take:

    “Greenland was about as warm or warmer in the 1930’s and 40’s, and many of the glaciers were smaller than they are now. This was a period of rapid glacier shrinkage world-wide, followed by at least partial re-expansion during a colder period from the 1950’s to the 1980’s. Of course, we don’t know very much about how the glacier dynamics changed then because we didn’t have satellites to observe it. However, it does suggest that large variations in ice sheet dynamics can occur from natural climate variability.

    http://tierneylab.blogs.nytimes.com/2007/02/08/greenlands-glaciers-take-a-breather/

    In the paper he and co-authors state:-

    “…special care must be taken in how these and other mass-loss estimates are evaluated, particularly when extrapolating into the future because short-term spikes could yield erroneous long-term trends. Rather than yielding a well defined trend, our results are significant in that they show Greenland mass-balance can fluctuate rapidly”

  3. Good grief. Glaciers are not sea ice.
    Glacier growth is more a function of precipitation at high altitude.

  4. Richard C (NZ) on September 24, 2012 at 2:19 pm said:

    The NATURAL PHENOMENON ATTRIBUTION (NAO, AO) is in respect to “The primary conclusion”.

  5. By the way, Andrew W, can you spell out what your concerns are regarding the Arctic sea ice extent? I’m just curious, because apart from some general hand-wringing about polar bears, I’d like to know exactly why we should be worried.

  6. I mean, I understand the issues regarding ice sheets re sea level, but why the alarm at the sea ice? It floats, and doesn’t affect sea level rise at all.

    Who cares if a minimum is greater or lower than average? It all re-freezes again in winter. The winter extent just six months ago was one of the highest in the same record.

    We had people going on a few years back in 2007 about “multi-year ice”, and how “new” ice could never survive season-to-season, etc. The years after 2007 shut them up, of course. A LOT of multi-year ice grew again, completely ignoring the predictions.

    Now we have the same hand-wringing, but I’d like to know exactly why the panic?

  7. Glacier growth is more a function of precipitation at high altitude.

    It’s good to see Simon has finally learnt something from us. :-)

  8. Richard C (NZ) on September 24, 2012 at 3:05 pm said:

    Andrew and Simon (echoing Bob to a degree), if there’s no anthropogenic attribution for sea ice extent – what’s the problem?

    Not for nothing is the word “passage” included in Northwest and Northwest Passages e.g.:-

    08/28/2008

    A Navigable Arctic

    Northeast and Northwest Passages Both Free of Ice

    By Christoph Seidler

    For the first time ever, both the Northwest and the Northeast Passages are free of ice. Shipping companies have been waiting for this moment for years, but they will have to wait a little while longer before they can make use of the Arctic shortcut.

    Shippers in Bremen are getting impatient. The Beluga Group, a shipping company based in the northern German city, had planned to send a ship through the Northeast Passage — or the Northern Sea Route, as Russians call it — this summer, according to spokeswoman Verena Beckhausen. The route leads from the Russian island Novaya Zemlya, off the northern coast of Siberia, through the Bering Strait between far eastern Russia and Alaska.

    This route is radically shorter than the normal trip through the Suez Canal. From Hamburg to the Japanese port city of Yokohama, for example, the trip using the northern route is just 7,400 nautical miles — just 40 percent of the 11,500 nautical mile haul through the Suez

    […]

    The ever-thawing Arctic represents a potentially major opportunity for the shipping industry. Currently, there are only between 20 and 30 days a year in which the Northeast Passage is 50 percent covered by ice or less, according to current statistics. But the Arctic Climate Assessment from the year 2005 estimates that such days will become increasingly frequent — with up to 120 largely ice-free days by the end of the century. And that is likely a conservative estimate.

    As the ice disappears, the previously impossible becomes potentially profitable. Shipping companies are even looking beyond the Northeast Passage to its counterpart along the north coast of the North American continent — the Northwest Passage.

    As of a few days ago, this route is also ice free, Mark Serreze of the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colorado told SPIEGEL ONLINE. “The route that Roald Amundsen navigated in 1903 has been open for the last few days.”

    >>>>>>>

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/a-navigable-arctic-northeast-and-northwest-passages-both-free-of-ice-a-574815.html

  9. Rob Taylor on September 24, 2012 at 6:17 pm said:

    why the alarm at the sea ice? It floats, and doesn’t affect sea level rise at all.

    Who cares if a minimum is greater or lower than average? It all re-freezes again in winter.

    Congratulations, Bob, you have raised willful ignorance to the status of an art form!

    Let me give you a clue: reduced ocean albedo -> increased heating -> warming permafrost -> methane emission -> increased heating -> warming permafrost -> methane emission -> increased heating -> warming permafrost -> methane emission -> increased heating -> warming permafrost -> methane emission -> increased heating and so on.

    This is called POSITIVE FEEDBACK and no, its not like saying “hey, I like your tie…”

    Clearly, you and NZCSET deserve each other!

  10. Andrew W on September 24, 2012 at 7:21 pm said:

    “…special care must be taken in how these and other mass-loss estimates are evaluated, particularly when extrapolating into the future because short-term spikes could yield erroneous long-term trends. Rather than yielding a well defined trend, our results are significant in that they show Greenland mass-balance can fluctuate rapidly”

    Given the loss of Arctic sea ice mass has been far more dramatic than the reduction in extent:

    http://psc.apl.washington.edu/wordpress/research/projects/arctic-sea-ice-volume-anomaly/

    I’d wager ice free by the end of the decade, and I’d expect the disappearance of late summer/autumn sea ice north of Greenland to show that indeed “Greenland [ice] mass-balance can fluctuate rapidly”

  11. Richard C (NZ) on September 24, 2012 at 8:10 pm said:

    Positive feedback on what?

    Positive feedback on natural variability is still natural variability.

    And before you start raving feverishly about GHG emissions you will have to explain these series in terms of CO2 levels:-

    Fairbanks
    Nuuk
    Akureyri
    Svalbard
    Ostrov Dikson
    Hatanga

    http://climate4you.com/images/ArcticTemperatures.gif

    Then explain away the AO-Arctic temperature influence (including Nuuk) wrt to CO2

    http://acsys.npolar.no/meetings/final/abstracts/posters/Session_1/poster_s1_009.pdf

    Then explain away the polar sunspot/temperature correlation wrt CO2

    http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2011/06/sunspot_demise_fig3.png

    Then explain away the Arctic solar irradiation/temperature correlation wrt CO2

    http://climatechange.thinkaboutit.eu/scripts/tinymce/jscripts/tiny_mce/plugins/imagemanager/files/Wilson.jpg

    Then explain away the IPCC CO2 forcing problem:-

    http://tallbloke.files.wordpress.com/2010/07/eggert-co2.png

    And so on.

  12. Richard C (NZ) on September 24, 2012 at 8:22 pm said:

    Reflections on the Arctic sea ice minimum: Part II

    Posted on September 17, 2012 | 468 Comments

    Judith Curry

    Pursuant to Part I, i ask the following questions:

    * Whence an ‘ice free’ Arctic?
    * Does an ‘ice free’ Arctic matter?

    Whence an ‘ice free’ Arctic?

    ‘Ice free’ is put in quotes, because ‘ice free’ as commonly used doesn’t mean free of ice, as in zero ice. The usual definition of ‘ice free’ Arctic is ice extent below 1 M sq km (current minimum extent is around 3.5 M sq km). This definition is used because it is very difficult to melt the thick ice around the Canadian Archipelago. And the issue of ‘ice free’ in the 21st century is pretty much a non issue if your require this thick ice to disappear.

    >>>>>>

    http://judithcurry.com/2012/09/17/reflections-on-the-arctic-sea-ice-minimum-part-ii/

  13. Andrew W on September 24, 2012 at 8:31 pm said:

    Richard C (NZ) says:
    September 24, 2012 at 8:22 pm

    Well, I’m sure there must be some point to that comment.

  14. Rob Taylor on September 24, 2012 at 8:37 pm said:

    RC2, do you really think your parade of denier sites matters to anyone?

    Why not throw in some creationist and Flat Earthers into the bargain?

    Seriously, though, I suggest you read a basic science text, such as “Global Warming for Dummies” before you embarrass yourself any further….

  15. Andrew W on September 24, 2012 at 9:00 pm said:

    For pete’s sake Richard C, the first thing you offer is data for 6 cherry picked weather station sites.
    Here’s a map of the globe, you can click on it till your hearts content to get station data from the entire globe, including lots of sites in the Greenland – North Atlantic area, most of which you’ll find far less useful to your cause that the sites you mention.

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/station_data/

  16. Did any of the “serious skeptics” here watch this video regarding the MWP?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CY4Yecsx_-s&feature=youtu.be&t=6m4s

    It has been posted up thread but the only person who appears to have watched any of it is Andy and his rebuttal to it was pure ad hominen. I think the video raises some interesting points about the provenance of some of the data behind the MWP and I would be interested if someone could provide a more reasoned analysis than Andy’s.

  17. Do you really believe that?

    Positive feedback has never yet been observed to occur in this way. In fact, we can state quite definitely that it doesn’t happen, because if it could it would have happened in the past, when the temperatures were significantly warmer, and for longer.

    Besides, I was asking Andrew W, not you.

  18. The current Arctic sea ice extent is six standard deviations from the mean, and you are arguing that there is no positive feedback? You’ve just been bitten by a low albedo black swan.

  19. The reduced albedo can only have an effect over the next few weeks, until the ice refreezes. Last maximum was almost as high as any in the recent years, so the current minimum was in fact NOT due to reduced albedo.

    I’ve just been reading what WG1 says on the issue, and they’re significantly less alarmist than you guys. They talk about permafrost melting only near the end of the 21st century, but they make the point that methane has a very short residence time, and the projection under A1B is for a reducing methane concentration after 2050.

    The IPCC says:

    Abrupt climate changes… are not considered likely to occur in the 21st century, based on currently available model results.

    Stop getting all worked up over nothing.

    We saw in 2007 there was a low minimum, yet the next few seasons were quite normal. We know the winds were responsible for that low minimum, and this year too.

    No positive feedback, no released methane, no runaway warming, or anything even close to that.

    If you have some evidence that this year’s minimum is due to reduced albedo and positive feedback, please provide it.

  20. My arguments were not ad hom, because I didn’t present any arguments.
    I listened to about 5 seconds of ex-Guardian journalist Peter Hadfield droning on in his irritating nasally voice and decided that I had better things to do with 15 minutes of my life.

    UPDATE – I did fast forward to a random segment in that video and found a “hockey stick” graph for the southern hemisphere. How is Gergis at al going by the way?

  21. but if he is correct, the whole MWP > current temperature argument is a manufactured crock achieved by cynical manipulation of other people’s charts.

  22. Presumably his argument requires some kind of faith in the hockey stick and related paleoclimatic reconstructions.

  23. Rob Taylor on September 25, 2012 at 8:09 am said:

    No, just some actual diligent science, which is why you are afraid to watch it… what are you going to tell your kids, Andy?

  24. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 8:26 am said:

    “do you really think your parade of [evidence refuting alarmism] matters to anyone?

    Yes. But not to you obviously because you don’t address any of it.

  25. Having now watched 6 minutes of this video, this is what it claims –
    – no, so far, mention of any science about the MWP
    – plenty of arguments around the hockey stick graphs, the Wegman report etc
    – arguments that the MWP graphs are being doctored, whilst at the same time showing several graphs of paleo reconstructions with the instrumental record spliced on, and no mention of the “divergence problem” (i.e “Hide the Decline”)

    Does it get any better?

  26. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 8:38 am said:

    “the first thing you offer is data for 6 cherry picked weather station sites”

    Arctic weather station sites Andrew. I thought that was appropriate given the stream of discussion had meandered to the Arctic.

    Curiously, those stations don’t exhibit CO2-forced-like characteristics. Did you notice that Andrew?

    Neither does this Box et al Greenland summer temperature plot:-

    http://hot-topic.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Greenland_summer_air_T_update_to_Box_et_al_2009.png

    Unless of course, there’s an as yet undisclosed anthropogenic event that occurred in the late nineties to cause the spike.

  27. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 8:51 am said:

    I suspect too that the IPCC methane forcing expression (simplified as it is) is as imprecise as the carbon dioxide forcing expression.

    And because the initial process that a methane feedback acts on (supposedly as a result of warming) is reducing albedo, that whole positive feedback argument is put on ice (Ha!) over winter.

  28. This video claims that the graphs showing a warmer MWP have been “doctored”.
    The argument for this is that they have removed the instrumental record part of the hockey stick graphs and rely on the proxy data alone.

    The proxy data, or at least the tree ring data, shows a decline in proxy-deduced temperature in recent decades,

    I would argue that the graphs that were originally shown – the instrumental record spliced onto the proxy series to “hide the decline”, are the ones that were doctored, not the other way around

  29. Andrew W on September 25, 2012 at 11:11 am said:

    http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/2012/09/the-unstoppable-mwp/#comment-118125

    Richard Treadgold says:
    September 20, 2012 at 10:18 am

    Rob,

    You’ve done a great deal of work here.

    The scientists that have produced the papers (here and here) do not postulate on whether the previous warming was greater than today or not because you simply cannot tell from the data gathered.

    Your links are absent.

    You say the temperatures cannot be compared with today’s, so in your comments on each study, which refer to the temperatures being higher or lower than the CWP, how do you know they’re higher or lower?

    Who defined the MWP as “between AD 950 to 1250″? I missed it. And why might it not have slightly different periods in different places?

    The site describes how the various definitions of the MWP follow the various authors, so are you correct to claim that CO2 Science “moved” the MWP?

    (my bold)

    http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/2012/09/the-unstoppable-mwp/#comment-118192

    Andrew W says:
    September 20, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    Who defined the MWP as “between AD 950 to 1250″? I missed it. And why might it not have slightly different periods in different places?

    If the MWP has different periods in different places, what would the effect on global temperatures be?

    The current list of NH peer reviewed temperature reconstructions, because the cooler tamperatures would pull downs the NH average while other areas would lift it, the peak would be lower, (lower than the current warm period!) the base more spread.

    That’s what the reconstructions show, and that’s what “skeptics” argue against!

    To me that was the end of informed debate on what CO2 Science is doing, and in my opinion, nothing of substance has been added by “sceptics” since then, Andy doesn’t have the foggiest idea what “hide the decine” means, and Richard C thinks the data from 6 cherry picked near Arctic weather sites counts for more than the data from the hundreds of others.

  30. Andy doesn’t have the foggiest idea what “hide the decline means

    “Hide the decline” refers to the splicing of instrumental records onto the paleoclimatic reconstructions to hide the apparent decline in temperature records as shown by the proxy reconstructions post 1960 (otherwise known as the “divergence problem”)

    I stated this before. Do you disagree with my interpretation?

  31. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 11:30 am said:

    “Richard C thinks the data from 6 cherry picked near Arctic weather sites counts for more than the data from the hundreds of others”

    Baloney, I don’t “think” that at all. I’ve merely provided a sample of Arctic stations that don’t exhibit CO2-forced characteristics and since then the Box et al Greenland summer record that doesn’t either.

    Care to present the “hundreds of others” (individually) that you seem to imply do so Andrew?

  32. Andrew W on September 25, 2012 at 11:34 am said:

    Earlier I said

    How about a post called “What would it take”?

    I think it would be interesting to ask people here:

    What would it take for “alarmists” to accept that the IPCC prediction of warming is exaggerated, and that there isn’t going to be major climate change.

    And

    What would it take for “sceptics” to accept that the IPCC warming predictions are largely accurate, and are going to result in major climate change?

    A few “sceptics” replied after a fashion, but not with anything of substance like “ice free actic”, or 20 years of warming despite a quieter Sun, etc. They responded only with waffle.

    So here’s what I think it would take in each case:
    What would it take for “alarmists” to accept that the IPCC prediction of warming is exaggerated, and that there isn’t going to be major climate change?

    It would take the end of warming for 20 years, and in fact a decline in temperatures by the amount they’ve risen without an explanation consistent with AGW theory as to why no turnaround.

    and

    What would it take for “sceptics” to accept that the IPCC warming predictions are largely accurate, and are going to result in major climate change?

    barring a climate catastrophe, I think the only thing that would convince “sceptics” they were wrong would be a carbon free energy source as cheap and versatile as fossil fuels, with the supply of this energy not being Government controlled.
    I say this because I believe the “sceptics” opinions are independent of climate events.

  33. Andrew W on September 25, 2012 at 11:39 am said:

    Thank you for the confirmation.

  34. Andrew W on September 25, 2012 at 11:40 am said:

    I’ve supplied you with the link. Go look.

  35. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 11:45 am said:

    Barrow WSO Airport, Alaska, daily temperature 1949 – 2012:-

    http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/cgi-bin/g1sod.pl?500546+19490902+20120924+0+50+0+-20+80+0000100000+12

    Barrow, Alaska, CO2 concentration:-

    http://serc.carleton.edu/images/introgeo/teachingwdata/examples/BarrowCO2.gif

    Houston, we have a problem.

  36. “Thanks for the confirmation”

    Confirmation of what?

  37. Since you love SkS so much, here is the great Oracle stating exactly what i did

    There are a number of misconceptions regarding ‘hide the decline':

    The “decline” does not refer to a “decline in global temperature” – it refers to a decline in tree growth at certain high-latitudes.
    “Mike’s Nature trick” has nothing to do with “hide the decline”, instead refering to a technique by Michael Mann to plot instrumental temperature along with past reconstructions.
    The decline in tree-ring growth is openly discussed in papers and IPCC reports.

    “Hide the decline” has become a slogan for climate skeptics. However, there are several misconceptions concerning this email that give a misleading picture of the science discussed in Phil Jones’ email. When one takes the time to read the email and understand the science discussed, the misconceptions are easily put into proper context.
    The decline is about northern tree-rings, not global temperature

    Phil Jones’ email is often cited as evidence of an attempt to “hide the decline in global temperatures”. This claim is patently false and demonstrates ignorance of the science discussed. The decline actually refers to a decline in tree growth at certain high-latitude locations since 1960.

    Tree-ring growth has been found to match well with temperature and hence tree-rings are used to plot temperature going back hundreds of years. However, tree-rings in some high-latitude locations diverge from modern instrumental temperature records after 1960. This is known as the “divergence problem”. Consequently, tree-ring data in these high-latitude locations are not considered reliable after 1960 and should not be used to represent temperature in recent decades.

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Mikes-Nature-trick-hide-the-decline-intermediate.htm

    Note the use of the term “divergence problem”, and the reference to the apparent decline in temperatures in tree-ring proxy data

    So I have just pulled a whole article from SkS that backs up my comments about Hide the Decline.

    Do you still claim that I don’t have a clue?

  38. Andrew W on September 25, 2012 at 11:59 am said:

    Congratulations on finally using a decent source, if you’d done it earlier you’d have known that the “divergence problem” does not refer to “the apparent decline in temperature records as shown by the proxy reconstructions post 1960″ but ONLY to tree ring proxies and since Mann’s ’98 paper the avialable range of proxies other than tree rings has grown to the point that tree rings are no longer required to do paleoclimate reconstructions to high levels of confidence (we now have way better data to work with than Mann did back then, which is why he had no alternative, if he wanted high confidence going back even 600 years other than to rely on the tree ring data and work aroud the divergence problem as best he could with the data then available to him).

  39. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 11:59 am said:

    “A few “sceptics” replied after a fashion, but not with anything of substance like “ice free actic”, or 20 years of warming despite a quieter Sun, etc. They responded only with waffle.”

    Your question Andrew was:-

    “What would it take for “sceptics” to accept that the IPCC warming predictions are largely accurate, and are going to result in major climate change?”

    My response was:-

    A better performance than this:-

    http://curryja.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/christy-fig.jpg?w=808&h=622

    And deference to radiative heat transfer science so we don’t see this:-

    http://tallbloke.files.wordpress.com/2010/07/eggert-co2.png

    If you dismiss that as “waffle” then you’re merely arguing from your own authority, in your own little bubble, and there never will be anything that can be said that will sway you.

    Meanwhile the climate refuses to play IPCC ball. I’m inclined to agree with the commenter who somewhere wondered if the “W” in Andrew W is for “Wriggle”.

  40. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 12:04 pm said:

    Data Tampering: GISS Caught Red-Handed Manipulating Data To Produce Arctic Climate History Revision

    http://notrickszone.com/2012/03/01/data-tamperin-giss-caught-red-handed-manipulaing-data-to-produce-arctic-climate-history-revision/

    Houston, we have another problem.

  41. So now that you agree I might actually have a clue about the divergence problem, go back and look at the video where Hadfield talks about “doctored graphs” whilst showing a graph that has instrumental data spliced onto the paleoclimatic series.

    If he wanted to make a stronger case, he wouldn’t have shown the instrumental record grafted onto the paleo series if, as you claim, these are not needed.

    Furthermore, he shows a SH reconstruction showing a hockey stick. The only one of these that I am aware of is Gergis et al which has been withdrawn, temporarily at least, from publications after statistical errors were pointed out (and acknowledged by the paper’s authors).

    Also, you say I used a “decent source”. I didn’t actually use any source before. I was using my own words. This might be a bit of weird thing for those that like to spray SkS and Wikipedia links everywhere

  42. Andrew W on September 25, 2012 at 12:19 pm said:

    So now that you agree I might actually have a clue about the divergence problem

    You’re funny.
    You can’t intelligently talk about the divergence problem without mentioning that it pertains only to tree ring proxies.

    I didn’t actually use any source before. I was using my own words.

    some people call that “making it up as you go along”

  43. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 12:20 pm said:

    The CMIP5 vs Obs is the up-to-date situation for AR5

    http://curryja.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/christy-fig.jpg?w=808&h=622

    All on the wrong trajectory.

    If that’s the best that state-of-the-art CO2-forced models can achieve then they’re irrelevant (as are the forcing expressions they employ) and we have to look at other models that do mimic observations e.g. Scafetta’s Empirical Model.

  44. So remind me Andrew, when you said I didn’t “have a clue” about the divergence problem, which statement of mine did you specifically have a problem with?

  45. Andrew W on September 25, 2012 at 12:38 pm said:

    “The CMIP5 vs Obs is the up-to-date situation for AR5

    you are so far out at sea it’s risible.

  46. NASA have produced a nice visualisation showing the cyclone that broke the Arctic sea ice up in August

  47. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 1:23 pm said:

    “…you are so far out at sea it’s risible”

    Really?

    CMIP5 – Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 – Overview

    It is expected that some of the scientific questions that arose during preparation of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) will through CMIP5 be addressed in time for evaluation in the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5, scheduled for publication in late 2013). The IPCC/CMIP5 schedule (pdf ) is now available and the three key dates are as follows:

    * Februrary 2011: First model output is expected to be available for analysis,
    * July 31, 2012: By this date papers must be submitted for publication to be eligible for assesment by WG1,
    * March 15, 2013: By this date papers cited by WG1 must be published or accepted.

    The IPCC’s AR5 is scheduled to be published in September 2013

    http://cmip-pcmdi.llnl.gov/cmip5/

    34 of the latest CMIP5 climate model simulations of global temperature that will be used in the upcoming IPCC AR5 assessment on climate change are now accessible via KNMI Climate Explorer as per the Christy plot.

  48. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 2:03 pm said:

    BH succinct as always:-

    Arctic ice loss was hyped

    There’s a terrible sense of deja vu about this story (via Climate Depot):

    In a September 18 video posted by NASA on its website, they admit that the Arctic cyclone, which began on August 5, “wreaked havoc on the Arctic sea ice cover” by “breaking up sea ice.”

    This is exactly what happened in 2007, when weeks of hype was followed by a quiet admission that the root cause of the loss of ice was winds and ocean currents.

  49. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 6:06 pm said:

    Barrow has turned into an interesting exercise. Barrow WSO Airport for which I extracted a series from the Western Regional Climate Center website up-thread is a station from NCDC Station Historical Listing for NWS Cooperative Network but GISTEMP seems to use a different site:-

    500546-9 BARROW WSO AIRPORT [Lat] 7118 [Lon] 15647

    http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/cgi-bin/cliMAIN.pl?akbarr

    700260000 BARROW/W. POS lat,lon (.1deg) 713 -1568

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/station_data/station_list.txt

    Both however are urban, hence:-

    THE URBAN HEAT ISLAND IN WINTER AT BARROW, ALASKA

    KENNETH M. HINKEL,a,* FREDERICK E. NELSON,b ANNA E. KLENEc and JULIANNE H. BELLa

    2003

    5. CONCLUSIONS
    Analysis of winter temperatures yields the following preliminary conclusions:
    1. Based on spatial averages for the period 1 December 2001 to 31 March 2002, the urban area is 2.2 °C warmer than the rural area.

    http://www.cas.umt.edu/geography/documents/Hinkel_etal_2003_winter_UHI.pdf

    When just Arctic rural (isolated) sites are considered, the temperature as measured at stations isolated from any UHI is simply tracking the AMO:-

    http://notrickszone.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/AMO-and-Isolated-Stations.jpg

    From ‘Arctic isolated versus “urban” stations show differing trends’

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/09/22/arctic-isolated-versus-urban-stations-show-differing-trends/

    Barrow WSO Airport last decade:-

    http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/cgi-bin/g1sod.pl?500546+20021001+20120925+0+50+0+-20+80+0000100000+12

    Barrow WSO Airport last 30 yrs:-

    http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/cgi-bin/g1sod.pl?500546+19821001+20120925+0+50+0+-20+80+0000100000+12

    From this website:-

    http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/coop-inventory/

  50. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 6:40 pm said:

    “When just Arctic rural (isolated) sites are considered, the temperature as measured at stations isolated from any UHI is simply tracking the AMO”

    From Wikipedia (sorry Andy):-

    Periodicity and prediction of AMO shifts

    Assuming that the AMO continues with its quasi-cycle of roughly 70 years, the peak of the current warm phase would be expected in c. 2020,[13] or based on its 50–90 year quasi-cycle, between 2000 and 2040 (after peaks in c. 1880 and c. 1950).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlantic_multidecadal_oscillation

  51. Andrew W on September 25, 2012 at 7:20 pm said:

    Richard C (NZ) says:
    September 25, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    I suspect I’ve worked it out already, but please tell, what are you waffling on about this time?

  52. The latest propaganda video from Peter Sinclair managed to mention the large storm that broke up the ice plus the AO ,and then “fades to grey” with some scary words of content free wisdom from a scientist called Jennifer Francis

  53. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 8:01 pm said:

    “GISTEMP seems to use a different site”

    No, the metadata coordinates are dodgy but looks like Barrow airport is the same for both GISTEMP and NCDC.

    Search for NCDC BARROW WSO AIRPORT (Wiley Post Will Rogers Memorial Airport) using 71.18, -156.47 returns a point “Unknown Rd” about 15 kms SE of the airport.

    Search for GISTEMP Barrow/W. Pos (Wiley Post Will Rogers Memorial Airport) using 71.3, -156.8 returns a point in the ocean about 2 kms NW of the airport.

    Search for Wiley Post Will Rogers Memorial Airport using 71.2856, -156.7661 returns a point next to the airport runway.

  54. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 8:11 pm said:

    Just focus on this part if you’re lost Andrew:-

    When just Arctic rural (isolated) sites are considered, the temperature as measured at stations isolated from any UHI is simply tracking the AMO:-

    http://notrickszone.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/AMO-and-Isolated-Stations.jpg

    And going by the Wiki link ‘Periodicity and prediction of AMO shifts’, expect current Arctic temperature conditions to continue until c. 2020.

  55. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 8:26 pm said:

    Jennifer Francis: Linking weird weather to rapid warming of the Arctic

    http://climatechangepsychology.blogspot.co.nz/2012/06/jennifer-francis-linking-weird-weather.html

    “Jennifer Francis is a research professor at the Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences at Rutgers University, where she studies Arctic climate change and the link between Arctic and global climates. She has authored more than 40 peer-reviewed publications on these topics.”

    40 papers but missed the AMO-temperature correlation and cycle.

    The article’s quite good though, including “it’s difficult to point the finger at Arctic amplification in causing any of these weather events”. Quite right, just look up “What are the impacts of the AMO?” for that

    http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/phod/amo_faq.php#faq_3

  56. Hi Richard C,
    Can you provide attribution for your figure please.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2012/02/2011-updates-to-model-data-comparisons/

    Shows a rather good match between model predictions and observed data so I’m trying to figure out how the data you have provided was derived.

  57. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 9:06 pm said:

    “40 papers but missed the AMO-temperature correlation and cycle”

    These guys didn’t:-

    # Odd Helge Otterå,1, 2, 3
    # Mats Bentsen,1, 2, 3
    # Helge Drange1, 2, 4
    # & Lingling Suo

    ‘External forcing as a metronome for Atlantic multidecadal variability’

    http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/v3/n10/fig_tab/ngeo955_F1.html

    Figure 1: Observed and simulated northern hemisphere temperature and Atlantic multidecadal oscillation.

    Figure 1c, AMO correlation with HadCrut3v (global) R = 0.90.

  58. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 9:19 pm said:

    “Can you provide attribution for your figure please”

    Sure:-

    Written Statement of John R. Christy
    The University of Alabama in Huntsville
    Committee on Environment and Public Works
    1 August 2012

    2. RECENT CLIMATE MODEL SIMULATIONS (page 12)

    http://epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Files.View&FileStore_id=66585975-a507-4d81-b750-def3ec74913d

    The RC article is AR4 plotted against land stations, the Christy plot is CMIP5 for AR5 (supersedes AR4 simulations) plotted against UAH and RSS. Christy has since added land series but it doesn’t help the model cause a great deal.

  59. Storms of a similar magnitude and timing have occurred 8 times over the 34 year satellite record but none have resulted in sea ice extent as low as it is this year.

    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/arctic-storm.html

    How does this storm which is unusual but not unprecedented explain the downward trend of sea ice extent over the last 30 years?

  60. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 10:07 pm said:

    “Christy has since added land series”

    Written Statement of John R. Christy
    The University of Alabama in Huntsville
    Subcommittee Energy and Power, U.S. House of Representatives
    20 Sep 2012

    2. RECENT CLIMATE MODEL SIMULATIONS (page 17)

    Figure 2.1 Global CMIP5 RCP45 38 Models (page 19)

    http://energycommerce.house.gov/sites/republicans.energycommerce.house.gov/files/Hearings/EP/20120920/HHRG-112-IF03-WState-ChristyJ-20120920.pdf

    He has added 4 more models since the EPW testimony, one of which (37, an outlier) looks like it might be on the right trajectory. I’m curious as to which model that is and what they’re doing differently to the rest but 1 out of 38 is not a good ratio of success.

    BTW, CMIP3 was the AR4 ensemble.

  61. Richard C (NZ) on September 25, 2012 at 10:20 pm said:

    “How does this storm which is unusual but not unprecedented explain the downward trend of sea ice extent over the last 30 years?”

    It doesn’t. It explains the 2012 extent relative to recent levels and to the 2007 level especially because the same thing happened then.

    Re “the downward trend of sea ice extent over the last 30 years?” see:-

    http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/2012/09/the-unstoppable-mwp/#comment-119377

    And down-thread but specifically this:-

    http://notrickszone.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/AMO-and-Isolated-Stations.jpg

  62. Rob Taylor,

    So, in denier fairyland, this all balances out, somehow? Let’s see – crippling drought in one place, horrendous floods in another simply shows that all is hunky-dory?

    Crippling drought, horrendous floods – you accuse us of approving of these things? And to follow up with something truly insane, you suggest we can prevent them? The bloody weather? Mr Taylor, take a deep breath because your mind has become unhinged from reality.

    These weather events are not hunky-dory, because a lot of people could be miserable, homeless or dead. Who could approve of them, you twit? But this is Mother Nature. This is God’s will. There’s nothing new here – not for thousands of years. This is life. This is how it goes.

    We can only adapt. Or at least, the wise ones adapt, and they manage it without crippling each other with guilt over their evil deeds.

  63. Andrew W on September 30, 2012 at 1:31 pm said:

    But this is Mother Nature. This is God’s will. There’s nothing new here – not for thousands of years. This is life. This is how it goes.

    Reminds me of a story Sir Bob Jones recounts in his book Travelling:

    “I..struck up a conversation with my seat companion, a … pilot [whose] job included training Arab pilots. He [said] they were first-class – but only so long as nothing went wrong.
    On two separate occasions, then in a supervisory role with these pilots, something had gone wrong eliciting an identical response from the Arab trainees. Both had leapt from their seats, crouched on the floor and prayed to Allah. That’s a fair enough policy for Moslems convinced of the eternal heaven awaiting them, but less satisfying to the atheistic western mind.”

  64. Rob Taylor on September 30, 2012 at 4:17 pm said:

    I agree, Andrew, fundamentalism comes in many guises, and is a great way of avoiding individual responsibility for one’s choices in life.

    In particular, the choice to remain ignorant and gullible…

  65. A nice study looking at lake sediments in Svalbad:
    “We find that the summer warmth of the past 50 yr recorded in both the instrumental and alkenone records was unmatched in West Spitsbergen in the course of the past 1800 yr, including during the Medieval Climate Anomaly, and that summers during the Little Ice Age (LIA) of the 18th and 19th centuries on Svalbard were not particularly cold, even though glaciers occupied their maximum Holocene extent.”
    http://geology.gsapubs.org/content/early/2012/09/18/G33365.1.abstract?sid=97d2d392-b80d-4c0f-
    9eb2-6277b09b779c

  66. Careful, Simon, you’ll fall foul of Andrew W if you’re not careful. He had a lot to say about people cherry-picking single studies:

    …those minority of data sets won’t give a proxy reconstruction of high confidence, especially if the people putting together that reconstruct are seeking data sets that support their preconceptions.

  67. The interesting thing about this paper is that is claims to be the first use of Tephrochronology to lake sediments in the area.

    This is based on 210Pb, plutonium activity

    Tephrochronology is based on events from volcanic eruptions, and has been used mostly in Iceland, which of course is a volcanic country

    It does seem quite a stretch to make these statements about temperature reconstructions in Svalbard based on this rather untested concept.

    But hey – this is cutting edge research

  68. An interesting paper dealing just with the NH, using 120 proxies including 49 with annual resolutions:
    Ljungqvist et al. (2012) “Northern Hemisphere temperature patterns in the last 12 centuries”

  69. If the modern instrumental record has been removed (and the x axis edited to hide the fact) how can these graph say anything about the MWP in comparison with today?

  70. Hi Richard C,
    As the Real Climate link shows the current temperatures are within the bounds of model uncertainties. Christy’s graphs do not show the model uncertainties so do not tell us anything about how successful the models have been.

  71. Hi Richard T,
    “this is Mother Nature. This is God’s will” is that really what you believe? I had been conducting these discussions on the assumption everyone accepted that science rather than divine intervention could explain the weather. Please correct me if my assumption is false.

    Does anyone else here think that any changes in the climate are “Gods will”? It would be helpful to understand the roots of peoples perspective on these issues.

  72. Replying to Nick. Do you think that it is an appropriate scientific practice to splice instrumental records onto proxy data in the same graph?

  73. Sure Andy, so long as it is labeled as such. Do you think it is OK to remove such data and then modify the x axis hide the fact that the data has been removed?

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