NIWA says it wasn’t about climate change

UPDATE1

So shut up, you lot!

NIWA, in its memorandum to Justice Venning about the costs of our court case, says some curious things. I’ve pulled out a few of the ripostes that the NZCSET’s lawyers have just delivered to the judge and which I’m delighted to share with you. (Bear in mind that the APPLICANT is the Coalition. The DEFENDANT is NIWA.) This one’s a pearler:

29. The defendant alleges in paragraph 17 that the proceeding did not concern climate change…

This is breathtaking. It will surprise their long-suffering supporters – having endured NIWA’s hogwash about the 7SS not being “official” or even a “national” temperature record (“oh, it’s only for study”), and that this organisation of top scientists has no obligation WHATSOEVER to strive for excellence, they now have to stand cringing as their favourite publicly-paid climate scientists argue that the court case had nothing to do with climate change.

Really? What rot. I’d like to shake these men up and make them see sense. They have quickly forgotten that the Coalition gave detailed evidence about the important consequences of the 7SS trend to national climate change policy.

But the case had nothing to do with climate change.

Some pretty fundamental central and local government policy decisions are based on the trend in our temperature history, and it is an important component of NIWA’s projections of future temperatures, which will have a profound effect on us all. The most prominent of the policies relying on the course of the climate is the ETS, but every day we pay heavily for academic courses and programmes in a diverse range of sectors at all levels to ward off climate change.

But the case had nothing to do with climate change.

NIWA are now contradicting some mighty powerful allies. Remember what the NZ Herald editorially opined

If the coalition had managed to discredit Niwa’s methods, it would also have discredited the evidence for climate change, and the part played by human activities.

So NIWA now says to their willing and most visible journalistic supporters that they didn’t know what they were talking about. Oops.

You know that NIWA are asking for money from named members of the Coalition, don’t you? Their reasoning is curious, for it implies that, had the Coalition won, NIWA’s scientists should have personally contributed to our costs. Which seems to follow the same idea of liability that convicted those Italian geologists of manslaughter for their failed earthquake prediction.

It’s hard to believe that NIWA thinks that would be fair and just, which means they don’t really think our members should be personally liable for costs either.

Sorry, have to rush, but there’s more to say on this business of costs.

UPDATE1 27 Oct 2012 17:43 NZDT

While I was distracted by work, first, Tallbloke’s Talkshop picked up the story, then WUWT repeated it. This is wonderful. Now we have John Christy looking at the details.

This is much more about Bob D than me, but I’ll try to keep up, with Richard Cumming’s help.

I’m catching up with Tall Bloke and WUWT.

266 Thoughts on “NIWA says it wasn’t about climate change

  1. What fundamental central and local government policy decisions have been based exclusively on the 7SS? New Zealand signed the Kyoto Protocol in 1998 based on global evidence and scientific advice. The original purpose of the ETS was to reduce our future Kyoto liabilities.
    If If NIWA and its legal team were confident that the CSET would pay its bills, there would be no need to name the individuals behind it.

  2. The reason CSET, Watt et. al. challenge surface air temperature records is that it is an easy target, they are relatively short time spans and prone to measurement change. Climate proxies such as ice core and tree ring samples go back thousands of years and provide an estimate of temperature and atmospheric CO2. The relationship is much more evident in these datasets.

  3. Australis on October 23, 2012 at 10:55 pm said:

    Hmm! I suppose they are right in a way. “Climate change” is defined as AGW and the IPCC say that really only started in about 1960. Yet NIWA’s temp record says most of New Zealand’s warming took place in the the 1940s and 1950s.

    But it seems self-defeating to me for NIWA to say that it spends its research efforts on things unrelated to climate change.

    Does anybody know whether there has been any significant warming in this country during the past 16 years?

  4. Peter Fraser on October 24, 2012 at 6:18 am said:

    With hearings now taking place with regard costs I assume this means there is to be no appeal. Was this because of lack of grounds for appeal or because of funding issues?

  5. Richard C (NZ) on October 24, 2012 at 6:42 am said:

    >”Does anybody know whether there has been any significant warming in this country during the past 16 years?”

    I don’t know about statistical significance for a linear trend for that period but a polynomial is a better representation of the entire dataset. There’s 2 years to be added to this 7SS anomaly plot (absolute 13.1, 12.8) but I think it is clear the warming has topped out as for HadCRUT4 global:-

    http://i54.tinypic.com/27xjm0k.png

  6. The 7SS is (obviously) only 7 stations with reliable data only back to 1908 covering a climatology diverse and variable country. It is an interesting dataset but hardly conclusive. Was it really worth going to the High Court over?

  7. Richard C (NZ) on October 24, 2012 at 7:19 am said:

    This is probably a pragmatic position (face saving) on the part of NIWA in view of the lack of recent warming and the fact that 7SS warming was given natural attribution by their scientists anyway (Salinger and Mullen). They wouldn’t want to be taken to task (or held liable) over these following predictions now that they’re looking improbable for all but the lowest estimate (no disclaimer on the page note):-

    New Zealand Regional Climate Change Scenarios

    NIWA scientists followed the downscaling approach used above to prepare New Zealand climate change scenarios for the 2040 and 2090, for the “Guidance Manual” for local government organizations. This has been published on the web by the Ministry for the Environment and is an update of the 2004 “Guidance Manual” (Ministry for the Environment, 2008). Like the IPCC, we are unable to indicate whether any one emission scenario is more likely than another, but do provide the average across all models and all emission scenarios. The extreme ends of the ranges may be slightly less likely than the central values, since they generally result from the one climate model which gives the most extreme projection, rather than reflecting the consensus from a number of models. Eliminating the most extreme models as outliers causes little change to the average over the remaining models, but can on occasion greatly reduce the range of the projected changes.

    […]

    Table 1.

    Mean temperature, Increase (****), All-scenario average 0.9°C by 2040,

    **** = Very confident, at least 9 out of 10 chance of being correct. Very confident means that it is considered very unlikely that these estimates will be substantially revised as scientific knowledge progresses.

    […]

    Mean Temperature:

    Downscaled projections of mean temperature changes over New Zealand are shown in Figure 3 (annual-average changes).

    Averaging over all models and all 6 illustrative emissions scenarios gives a New Zealand-average warming of 0.2–2.0°C by 2040 and 0.7–5.1°C by 2090. For just the A1B scenario alone, the projected warming is 0.3–1.4°C by 2040 and 1.1–3.4°C by 2090, with a 12-model average (or “best estimate”) of 0.9°C and 2.1°C for 2040 and 2090 respectively. For comparison, the IPCC quotes a best estimate of 2.8°C for the global temperature increase by 2090 under the A1B scenario, with a likely range of 1.7–4.4°C. The projected New Zealand temperature changes are in all cases smaller than the globally averaged changes for the corresponding SRES scenarios.

    http://www.niwa.co.nz/our-science/climate/information-and-resources/clivar/scenarios#regional

  8. Tree ring proxies are better than temperature records, unless they don’t match when we can use “tricks” to “hide the decline”.

    Oh, and we can take southern hemisphere proxy reconstructions and cite them in AR5 draft 1 even though the paper has been retracted.

    NIWA is right, it has nothing to do with “climate change”. It is all about maintaining their rights to foist any old piece of junk science on us and just to remind us that we have to pay for it,

  9. Speaking of the great Mann himself, he has now filed against Steyn and National Review

    Tempting fate coming up to the anniversary of Climategate, I would say.

  10. Still regurgitated old tired memes. Growth in some northern boreal forests slowed about 50 years ago. Reasons could include acid rain, the aerosol effect, or melting of permafrost. The years in those series were discarded and replaced with the surface temperature record. That sounds perfectly reasonable, it was not done to bias the results, unless you believe in a giant world-wide scientific conspiracy?
    There are some pretty good southern hemisphere proxy reconstructions now, there was a paper recently on North Island kauri.

  11. There are some pretty good southern hemisphere proxy reconstructions now

    Do you mean ones that haven’t been retracted? Why don’t we use them in the Draft 1 of AR5 then?

  12. Richard C (NZ) on October 24, 2012 at 8:19 am said:

    >”The 7SS is (obviously) only 7 stations with reliable data only back to 1908 covering a climatology diverse and variable country”

    And yet BEST would have us believe that Hobart represents ALL of NZ in the 1840s.

    * Site name: HOBART BOTANICAL GARDENS
    * Site number: 094030
    * Latitude: 42.87 °S Longitude: 147.33 °E
    * Elevation: 27 m
    * Commenced: 1841 Status: Open
    * Latest available data: 31 Jul 2012

    http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/averages/tables/cw_094030.shtml

    Set ‘Period’ to “1841-1870″, view ‘Annual’. For 1841 – 1854 (14 years):-

    Mean maximum temperature (°C): 17.0
    Mean minimum temperature (°C): 7.8
    Average mean temperature (°C): 12.4 (calc)

    Compare to BEST NZ output graph:-

    http://berkeleyearth.lbl.gov/auto/Regional/TAVG/Figures/new-zealand-TAVG-Trend.png

    In the order of 10.5 C, Diff (12.4 – 10.5) is -1.9 C.

    Summarizing means for the period 1841 – 1854:-

    12.4 BEST NZ input from BOM Hobart Botanical Gardens (assumed)
    10.5 BEST NZ output (Diff -1.9)

    Hobart Botanical Gardens, Latitude: 42.87 °S
    Kaikoura South Island NZ, Latitude: 42.41 °S

    This type of scientific bogosity Simon (non-rigourous adjustment), is why NZCSET sought legal recourse. They didn’t get justice but that doesn’t mean an end to the dispute.

  13. But there is no alternative Richard, there were no weather stations in NZ in 1840. The problem is granuality; while it might be possible to estimate an average global temperature for 1840 with a high standard error, it won’t tell you the average temperature for Ekatahuna in 1840. BEST works on a square grid and kriegs the interpolation, which in 1840 was only one station, Hobart. You shouldn’t treat the early temperature records as definitive, climate scientists don’t.

  14. Richard C (NZ) on October 24, 2012 at 11:20 am said:

    >”But there is no alternative”

    No alternative to adjusting Hobart DOWN -1.9 C to represent ALL of NZ – what are you smoking?

    Worse, BEST then goes on to adjust the two NZ on-shore stations DOWN for 1853 – 1863:-

    13.88 BEST NZ input from GHCN Dunedin/Auckland composite 1853 – 1863
    10.50 BEST NZ output 1853 – 1863 (Diff -3.38)
    11.93 NIWA 7SS 1913 -1922

    What possible and valid reason is there to adjust Hobart down -1.9 C and the GHCN Dunedin/Auckland composite down -3.38 C in a bungy-like stretch of credibility?

    >”You shouldn’t treat the early temperature records as definitive”

    I don’t. Neither do I treat the most recent globally averaged (and conflicting) OHC records as definitive. Same for DLR. But I do expect early temperature records to bear some resemblance to what was measured.

    >”…climate scientists don’t”

    But they do Simon. Then they decree that the great unwashed do to. And that they should pay for being such bad people as to cause it all.

  15. RC,

    And that they should pay for being such bad people as to cause it all.

    And why do people like Simon put up with that? It must synchronise with their internal view of the world. Surely there can be no other reason.

  16. Speaking of paying for things, Kyoto is expiring at the end of December, the NZ carbon price is less than $2.50, and no mention at all of climate change was mentioned in the US presidental debates

    We now have the regulatory overhang of an ETS bureaucracy that serves no one.

  17. Richard C (NZ) on October 24, 2012 at 3:10 pm said:

    12.45 HOBART (ELLERSLIE ROAD) 1901 – 1930
    11.93 NIWA 7SS 1913 -1922
    10.80 BEST NZ 1913 -1922

    13.05 HOBART (ELLERSLIE ROAD) 1981 – 2010
    12.69 NIWA 7SS 2001 – 2011
    11.40 BEST NZ 2001 – 2011

    12.35 HOBART (ELLERSLIE ROAD) 1881 – 1910
    12.40 HOBART (BOTANICAL GARDENS) 1841 – 1854
    13.88 GHCN Dunedin/Auckland composite 1853 – 1863
    10.50 BEST NZ 1853 – 1863

    Hobart Ellerslie Rd and Botanical Gardens data from BOM’s Climate Data Online here:-

    http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/data/index.shtml

    It could be argued that Hobart 1840s should be adjusted 0.4 – 0.5 C down (but NOT 1.9 C down) to represent NZ except that given the NZCSET analysis, the NIWA 7SS is on the low side in the early years by 0.5 C so Hobart is on a par with NZ at that time:-

    http://i54.tinypic.com/27xjm0k.png

    But it makes perfect sense that the 1840s Dunedin/Auckland composite level of 13.88 C is valid because the NZCSET 7SS trend trajectory is coming down from that level and not from present day levels and even the NIWA trend is coming down from a higher level.

    Either way, BEST is junk.

  18. Richard C (NZ) on October 24, 2012 at 3:34 pm said:

    >”We now have the regulatory overhang of an ETS….”

    We sure do, embedded in electricity costs, transport costs, production costs, forest plantations, govt budget and what have you. It will take some unwinding, moreso in Australia now their govt has got a taste of AU$23/tonne tax revenues.

    At least our guys only get to pay that NZ$2.50 or less to offset now.

  19. and on paying for things, Godfrey Bloom MEP nails it in this 2 min video clip from the European Parliament

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hB2Ft3t7ceg&feature=related

  20. Richard C (NZ) on October 24, 2012 at 5:04 pm said:

    “1840s Dunedin/Auckland composite level of 13.88 C”

    Should be:-

    [1850s] Dunedin/Auckland composite level of 13.88 C

    I need a proof reader.

    Yep, you need FastProof! – RT :-)

  21. Leonard Shahid on October 24, 2012 at 5:26 pm said:

    They’re not? Someone donated in using the name Adolf Hitler, from Berlin Germany. If that’s not foreign…

  22. Richard C (NZ) on October 24, 2012 at 6:56 pm said:

    Some appreciative testimonials. I see you’ve penetrated a niche market:-

    I just wanna thank you for your careful editing and show me how to use English properly. Very happy have business with you.

    – Yina

    Not mocking – probably fluent in more than one Mandarin dialect and possibly Mongolian going by the name.

    BTW, good photo RT.

  23. I’m glad you’re not mocking. It’s actually far from easy to mind-read what these students mean.

  24. I’m sure their English is WAY better than my Mandarin.

  25. However, in Afrikaans I’m heeltemal tweetalig. And Ah speak Sah Thafrican Inglish too.

  26. Where’s Brandoch?

  27. >”We now have the regulatory overhang of an ETS bureaucracy that serves no one.”

    and is hammering those who were encouraged to “invest”.

    “Carbon credit price crash could force sales”
    “… a quarter of people who invested in the scheme may have to sell their land. … landowners were encouraged into the permanent forest sink initiative only to see it gutted by the Government along with the Emissions Trading Scheme.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10842724

  28. From Ron’s article

    Some people had bought farms with mortgages on the basis that the price of carbon was between $15 and $20, he said.

    Idiots

  29. Alexander K on October 25, 2012 at 10:52 am said:

    Down the Kaponga RSA with his mates preparing to defend his uniquely pastoral and manure-filled world view, I suspect.
    At a family function In deepest ‘Naki around 30 years ago, I was alerted (by a cousin of a cousin, no actual relation of mine, thankfully) to the threat of imminent Japanese invasion and how ready the local collectors of WWII vehicles and armaments were for this event!
    How our government unwinds the ridiculous ETS will be interesting, if not entertaining, but not an exercise during which one should hold one’s breath.

  30. Doug Proctor on October 25, 2012 at 10:52 am said:

    Richard C (NZ) says:
    October 24, 2012 at 7:19 am

    …Like the IPCC, we are unable to indicate whether any one emission scenario is more likely than another, but do provide the average across all models and all emission scenarios. The extreme ends of the ranges may be slightly less likely than the central values …

    All this work and observations are unable to determine which way temperatures are going? Is this not saying that the CO2 forcing is as yet undetermined by experiment or history? If the extreme ends are not much different in probability than the center, does this not say that we cannot use current observation and history to differentiate a feedback power of 2X (a 2C rise from 1Cf) forcings of 5X (a 5C rise)?

    Wherein is the science settled and the outcome, certain when NIWA hedges like this? Of what value is their department wrt climate change legislation, accommodation or plain paper-writing?

  31. Richard C (NZ) on October 25, 2012 at 1:04 pm said:

    It gets better Doug (or worse – not sure). NIWA says this:-

    The extreme ends of the ranges may be slightly less likely than the central values, since they generally result from the one climate model which gives the most extreme projection, rather than reflecting the consensus from a number of models

    Right now, “the one climate model” giving the “most extreme projection” is the only one to actually mimic temperature this century (INMCM4.0, Russian Academy of Sciences). But NIWA says:-

    Eliminating the most extreme models as outliers causes little change to the average over the remaining models, but can on occasion greatly reduce the range of the projected changes.

    What NIWA will have to do now is retain the one outlier that’s performing and eliminate the rest – one of which is the UKMO Unified Model from which NIWA’s regional model is derived.

  32. There are no hearings regarding costs, just memoranda for Justice Venning. We have lodged an appeal, though. It’s low-key so far, I don’t have much information about it, and we still have funding problems.

  33. Richard C (NZ) on October 25, 2012 at 8:58 pm said:

    RT I’m relaying this comment from Tallbloke. I’ve replied but you may wish to do so:-

    tallbloke says:
    October 25, 2012 at 9:21 am

    Richard, did the three put their names to their reviews validating the affidavit, or were they ‘anonymous peer reviewers’?

    If the latter, even though I agree with you about their expertise, and that the judge was unnecessarily obtuse, I think NZCSET needs to move *very quickly* to get a named person well published in the climate science and temperature measurement fields to validate the study. That would help form grounds for an appeal I think.

    If payment for their time is needed, we would help with that.

    I would have thought that John Christy is the man for this job. developed Remote sensing of surface and tropospheric Temperature, has published many papers on surface temperature. He has done studies of surface gathered data in Africa and elsewhere. He has given senate testimony on several occasions, was an IPCC Author, and is an all round good guy.
    http://www.nsstc.uah.edu/atmos/christy2011/index.html

    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2012/10/24/how-niwa-added-lots-of-warming-in-new-zealand-and-got-away-with-it-so-far/#comment-33696

  34. Hi Richard T and everyone. I have contacted John Christy for advice about this situation, and to see if he would be able to audit Bob D’s study and hopefully validate it in writing. He is asking if Tmax and Tmin data is available for the 7 stations. Can someone please visit my thread on this and advise.
    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2012/10/24/how-niwa-added-lots-of-warming-in-new-zealand-and-got-away-with-it-so-far/

    Thanks

    Rog TB

  35. Great typo from Dr Wratt’s statement spotted by Omnologos over at TB’s

    (..”which together, compromise a record of New Zealand’s temperature..” )

    I took a screen grab here:
    https://dl.dropbox.com/u/48940782/compromise.pdf

    Copied from the original court pdf.

  36. Richard C (NZ) on October 26, 2012 at 6:19 pm said:

    Apart from the AGW-skewing, I have to say that Rob Painting produces some good posts at SkS. His latest (not using the skew title) ‘Summarizing Global Dimming in the 21st Century’ is a good one I think (apart from the skew).

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Global-Dimming-in-the-Hottest-Decade.html

    Does tend to radically dilute the AGW message and play into the hands of solar proponents and cosmoclimatology though. He only managed this at the end:-

    “This short-term global dimming should have counteracted a larger fraction of the long-term warming effect of the greenhouse gas forcing during this interval.”

    Not sure how he worked that out because the 2001-2007 dimming equates to -2,7 W/m2 globally but the all-CO2 (let alone aCO2) “warming effect” will only be in the order of +0.17 W/m2 over that period if the IPCC forcing expression is to be believed.

    The whole AGW blandishment falls apart when you actually quantify the CO2 “warming” in W/m2 (even using the IPCC’s dodgy expression) and slip it in among the other forcings operating as above. The CO2 dominated GHG component (exclusive of WV) always fades into insignificance.

    Also becoming increasingly obvious is that “global” anything (e.g dimming, SAT, OHC, DLR, SST, SLR etc) is not global by generally skewed by some regional phenomenon.

  37. Richard C (NZ) on October 26, 2012 at 7:17 pm said:

    >”the all-CO2 (let alone aCO2) “warming effect” will only be in the order of +0.17 W/m2 over that period”

    Should be (for 6 year period),

    the all-CO2 (let alone aCO2) “warming effect” will only be in the order of [+0.14] W/m2 over that period

  38. Richard C (NZ) on October 26, 2012 at 9:23 pm said:

    Wild et al (2012) show brightening continuing through to 2010 at Potsdam Germany on page 40 (see below).

    http://www.gewex.org/BSRN/BSRN-12_presentations/Wild_FriM.pdf

    Interesting too (well, to me anyway), that Wild et al came up with this in regard to solar SW:-

    Observed changes at 23 BSRN sites since early 1990s: 23 longest BSRN records (totally 306 years) covering period 1993-2010 [18 years, page 47]:
    20 stations with increase (11 significant)
    3 stations with decrease (0 significant)

    Change: +2.7 Wm-2/decade

    Hatzianastassiou (2011) from Rob Painting’s post using the same BSRN network plus GEBA:-

    Discarding stations with incomplete data over the 2001-2006 6 year period period, gave the authors 91 GEBA, and 14 BSRN, stations

    Change: -2.7 Wm-2 or -4.5 W/m2/decade or -0.45 Wm-2y-1

    What then, are we supposed to make of those 2 trends in SSR? More importantly, what will AR5 WGI make of it?

    Looking through the Wild et al BSRN station plots pages 40 – 46 (+0.35 Wm-2y-1, +0.43 Wm-2y-1, +0.58 Wm-2y-1, +0.29 Wm-2y-1, +0.41 Wm-2y-1), it is difficult to believe there was -0.4 Wm-2y-1 dimming 2001 – 2006 as per Hatzianastassiou (2011).

    The 23 BSRN sites composite on page 47 doesn’t indicate a negative trend 2001 – 2006 so it must have been the 91 GEBA stns and modeling that produced Hatzianastassiou’s dimming in their paper here:-

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/asl.361/full

    Concurs with Wild et al 2012 (see top of comment) “…there appears a post-2000 solar brightening in Europe that has succeeded a similar brightening during the 1990s (Wild et al., 2009)”

    “In North America, there is a clear brightening pattern, which is especially strong in the Great Plains, whereas solar dimming is limited to the western part (Sierra Nevada and Rocky Mountains), in agreement with station measurements from the Atmospheric Radiation Measurements (ARM), Surface Radiation (SURFRAD) and BSRN networks (Long et al., 2009; Wild et al., 2009)”

    “Specifically, in 54 out of 91 GEBA stations, i.e. in 60%, the model reproduces the same tendencies of SSR with GEBA”

    “The performed analysis (based on radiative transfer model computations) attributing the overall SSR changes to the various model input parameters which are relevant to solar radiation, revealed that primarily clouds, and secondarily aerosols, are responsible for the computed SSR tendencies. They clearly dominate the contributions of the rest of parameters, e.g. O3 and H2O, and thus only these two are discussed here”

    “…the ISCCP data indicate an increase in cloud cover by 0.89 and 1.29% (absolute terms) in the NH and SH, resulting in a dimming of 1.22 and 2.98 W m−2, respectively”

    “…in most of the world regions the tendencies of cloud cover and SSR are in line, from a physical point of view, i.e. increasing/decreasing cloud cover has produced a solar dimming/brightening over the globe. This is in line with detailed sensitivity studies (e.g. Hatzianastassiou et al., 2005) that have documented the strong dependence of SSR on cloud cover. In this study, the general solar brightening observed over Europe (Figure 1) is accompanied by a decrease in cloud cover there, by up to 5–10% in absolute terms. This is also the case in other world regions; for example, the dimming observed over India and northern Indian Ocean in Figure 1 is in line with an increase of cloud cover there. The computed correlation coefficient between the globally distributed changes of total cloud cover and SSR over the study period is equal to − 0.45, indicating an anti-correlation between the two parameters.”

    “…the regional patterns have a remarkably patchy spatial structure, with opposite SSR tendencies in neighbouring areas, even within the same continents, as for example in Europe, USA, South America, Africa and Asia.”

    “Clouds appear to have been primarily responsible for GDB beyond 2000, with aerosols playing a secondary role on a hemispherical/global basis.”

    # # #

    I don’t know what to make of the 21st century 2001 – 2006 SSR situation. BSRN stations show brightening, GEBA stations show dimming, and a GEBA-skewed GEBA/BSRN composite shows global dimming, with “opposite SSR tendencies in neighbouring areas” at a regional level.

    I’m inclined to think Hatzianastassiou (2011) is a more comprehensive study than Wild et al (2012) but whether it’s definitive or not is another thing altogether, it just could be.

    In any case, CO2 gets left out in the cold.

  39. It’s great to hear from you, Roger, and your offer of support is very welcome. I apologise for the delay in my reply, but I’ve been otherwise engaged. Now I’m poring over your thread to catch up…

  40. Richard, no problem, I’m really happy I have managed to engage John Christy’s interest. Hopefully, Bob D is now in direct contact and will be able to supply the data John needs to replicate/validate Bob’s work.

    The thing I don’t understand here is why Judge Venning allowed the case to proceed if he had already decided Bob’s work was inadmissible as evidence. I seems to me that Judge Venning is responsible for the amount of Time NIWA spent responding, and so you should simply pass the outrageous $118,000 dollar bill to him.

    I bet he’d then find some reasons why it was an unreasonably large figure pretty quickly.

    I intend to write a letter to a relevant member of the NZ government to advise them that the eyes of the world are now on what we had been led to believe was a country with a well organized and fair judicial system.

  41. In our country politicians are not supposed to interfere in the judicial process.

  42. Roger,

    Yes, our greatest hope is to engage the attention of renowned climate scientists. Thank you!

    The thing I don’t understand here is why Judge Venning allowed the case to proceed if he had already decided Bob’s work was inadmissible as evidence.

    Things changed at literally the last minute, so maybe it seemed reasonable at the time. But I tend to think that the judge’s decisions weren’t all made on the evidence.

    It seems to me that Judge Venning is responsible for the amount of time NIWA spent responding, and so you should simply pass the outrageous $118,000 dollar bill to him.

    It’s a great idea, but nah!

    As Simon says, politicians here stay remote from the judicial process, still, they are not automatons, and such a letter as you describe might have an effect beyond your imagination. Please write and send it. Cheers.

  43. cohenite on October 27, 2012 at 8:23 pm said:

    In his judgement Venning J. said:

    [186] The defendant is entitled to costs. Given the time involved and the steps taken, costs on a category 2 time band C would seem appropriate. However, if the parties are unable to agree I will receive memoranda and deal with the issue of costs on the basis of such memoranda.

    This is explained by Venning J. here:

    http://www.aija.org.au/ac06/Venning.pdf

    In effect this is no more than a restatement of the principle that costs follow the event.

    However Venning J. also said at paragraphs 33-35 of the Judgement that:

    [34] Although private individuals and corporate bodies could be affected by NIWA’s decisions, in the absence of judicial review, such parties could be left without redress.
    [35] I conclude that, in principle, the remedy of judicial review is potentially available to the Trust in relation to the decisions.

    This is an important public principle which should not be mitigated by the harshness of the legal pedantry of the basic cost principle.

    The argument against costs in these circumstances would be that a costs penalty to members of the public would make the availability of “the remedy of judicial review” prohibitive if the risk of the members of the public having to bear the cost was a real prospect.

    It would vitiate the public interest test which Venning J, has approved and said should apply to such organisations as NIWA.

    In any submissions to Venning J, about costs this issue should be raised.

  44. Simon, if I were to write with a request that she interfere in a particular case, I’m sure I’d get exactly that response. However, the case can be offered as an example of something the justice minister should be concerned about.

    NIWA is claiming that their temperature series is not ‘legally binding’ on them, but at the same time, the NZ govt. is relying on it in policy formation. There is a strong public interest case here and no-one should be faced with large penalties for questioning an agency which fails to back up their data with methodology which can be subjected to public scrutiny.

    It’s the justice ministers job to help guide changes to the way the system operates going forward. The justice ombudsman is probably someone NZCSET should be getting onto about the unusual singling out of individuals in the costs debacle too.

  45. Tallbloke also kindly links to the article in the NZ farmers weekly:

    http://www.climatescience.org.nz/images/PDFs/pages-1.pdf

  46. You should get the whole NIWA case onto Andrew Montford’s radar too for his visit here next year. The focus of his tour is on FREEDOM

  47. Ah, the famous Bishop Hill blogger! When’s he visiting?

  48. Ian Cooper on October 29, 2012 at 8:14 pm said:

    Simon (Oct 23rd at 9.19 p.m.)

    are you still so convinced about how good ‘those data sets’ are now that Briffa has released his latest work highlighted below?

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/10/28/manns-hockey-stick-disappears-and-crus-briffa-helps-make-the-mwp-live-again-by-pointing-out-bias-in-ther-data/#more-73211

    We await your response!

  49. It’s one data-set that should go into any meta-study.
    If I was the kind of person who focuses solely on data that validated my internal biases I would draw attention to the rapid increase in post-2000 temperature and suggest that this totally invalidates the “no warming this century” meme. It doesn’t because one part of Sweden is not representative of the entire climate. I’d also note that the authors are from East Anglia, which the Climategate conspiracy theorists would have you believe have been intentionally manipulating data for years. Maybe these guys really are impartial and honest scientists after all.

  50. Simon:

    …rapid increase in post-2000 temperature…

    No, the rapid increase in tree-growth.

    This was always the issue around Briffa’s data in the IPCC report, hence the need to hide the decline. If the tree proxies don’t match the temperature records exactly, how useful are they?

    For me at any rate, the jury is still out on how useful these proxies are, even if this particular result suits my “internal biases”. By the way, I regard Briffa as the best of a bad lot over at CRU – he was one of the few to ever question Mann et al. (unfortunately only internally) about their dodgy dealings.

    Steve McIntyre:
    http://www.climateaudit.info/pdf/mcintyre-heartland_2010.pdf

    For most analysts, the seemingly unavoidable question at this point would be – if tree rings didn’t respond to late 20th century warmth, how would one know that they didn’t do the same thing in response to possible medieval warmth – a question that remains unaddressed years later.

  51. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 9:20 am said:

    Spring’s a busy time for us cockies, Andy, but my mate Bruce Bayliss thought I should share this link with you, on the theme that climate change is a war by the wealthiest, against the rest of us;

    http://www.salon.com/2012/10/29/climate_change_war_on_the_poor

  52. I just ordered my (signed) copy of “Hiding the Decline” by Andrew Montford, the sequel to “The Hockey Stick Illusion”

  53. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 9:31 am said:

    Which “renowned climate scientists” did you have in mind, Mr. Treadgold?

    Real climatologists such as Jim Hansen, Gavin Schmidt, Kevin Trenberth?

    Or the fake-sceptic “climatologists” paid by the fossil fool lobby?

    http://www.salon.com/2012/10/29/bill_mckibben_does_the_sandy_math/

    What’s going on here is the astonishing power of the fossil fuel industry. They have essentially bought one party and scared the other. And they’ve done the same thing all over the world. They’re the richest most powerful industry on earth and they are able to keep people from questioning what’s become the most dangerous set of corporate practices in history.

    These are guys who faced with a melting Arctic decide to go drill in it for yet more oil. Faced with the warmest year in American history, 2012, they proudly announce how much more they’re spending to explore for more hydrocarbons. And that’s because they’re making absolutely record profits. And until we can rein them in a little bit the chance of any impact in Washington is, I think, very slim.

    We’ve spent 20 years appealing to politicians but I think it’s becoming clear that Congress acts as the customer service arm of the fossil fuel industry and they’ve basically had the rest of us on hold for two decades.

  54. I found Gareth’s references to Hague trials and “climate gestapo” a little disturbing, given the total lack of irony

    http://www.royalsociety.org.nz/media/LastClimateDenierInNZ_GarethRenowden_100.pdf

  55. Tree growth is inevitably affected by some limiting factor which could be related to solar radiation, temperature, nutrients, or rainfall. Problems may arise if the limiting factor changes over time and I hope the researchers look at that. You can tell a lot about what a growing season is like by looking at the early versus the darker coloured latewood bands. Northern Sweden might be trickier as the trees shut down over winter and the growing season is much shorter. Isotope ratios and carbon content can tell you a lot about atmospheric CO2. It’s not perfect but at least it gives us a window into the past.
    I once did a analysis that demonstrated that north-facing slopes in NZ grew stiffer and more dense timber because the latewood / earlywood ratio is much higher. The correlation was surprisingly good once you allowed for confounding factors such as tree stocking and genetics.

  56. The issues raised by Briffa et al were concerned with methodology and sample bias

    http://www.bishop-hill.net/blog/2012/10/27/a-warm-welcome-back-to-the-mwp.html

    The Torneträsk series does affect quite a lot of papers, as listed in the link above.

    It’s an Interesting area of Sweden – I went ski touring there years ago. Spring lasts a few weeks and you are aware of the days getting longer each day you are there, such is the rapidity of the onset of spring in the Arctic circle

  57. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 12:13 pm said:

    >”Real climatologists such as Jim Hansen……Kevin Trenberth”

    Those two can’t agree on radiative imbalance. Ignoring his whackier statements, I’m inclined to think Hansen has a better handle on the state of climate than Trenberth, just that when he goes searching for explanations of the present hiatus he stretches credibility a little with “delayed” rebound effect from Mount Pinatubo aerosols…..” (the rebound was soon after 1991).

    However, Hansen continues by acknowledging the solar climate driver “….and a deep prolonged solar minimum”. It’s only a matter of time before real climatologists finally throw out the CO2 “control knob” idea when they face the reality that real solar power is the predominant driver over unreal CO2 power, especially when what Hansen thinks is a “deep prolonged” minimum actually does turn into a deep prolonged grand minimum.

  58. Pro-AGW:
    Jim Hansen: Astronomer/Physicist
    Gavin Schmidt: Applied Mathematician
    Kevin Trenberth: Mathematician/Meteorologist

    Sceptical:
    Richard Lindzen: Atmospheric Physicist
    Roy Spencer: Atmospheric Physicist/Meteorologist
    John Christy: Atmospheric Scientist

    Seems pretty even to me. Science not settled, debate not over.

  59. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 1:42 pm said:

    I would add that cloud cover forcing is the other biggy, modulating solar input at the surface. The solar/cloud combination explaining more than CO2 ever will especially over the last 20 years.

  60. Speaking of “climate change”, the pictures from NYC look pretty incredible

    Expect the wailing to start any minute

  61. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 2:25 pm said:

    Mr. Cummings, you make the quite extraordinary statement that:

    The whole AGW blandishment falls apart when you actually quantify the CO2 “warming” in W/m2 (even using the IPCC’s dodgy expression) and slip it in among the other forcings operating as above. The CO2 dominated GHG component (exclusive of WV) always fades into insignificance.

    Given that the GHG forcing is far larger than the solar, and that H2O is a short-term feedback rather than a forcing, how can you possibly defend your position?

    http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/faq-2-1.html

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/CO2-is-not-the-only-driver-of-climate-intermediate.htm

    I suspect that you have, once again, failed to distinguish between data and noise, much of it internal.

  62. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 2:37 pm said:

    Really, Mr. Andy, why waste your money on tendentious pseudoscience, when the definitive popular science text is available?

    http://www.amazon.com/Hockey-Stick-Climate-Wars-Dispatches/dp/023115254X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1351564042&sr=1-1

    In quite a departure from Montford, Mann’s footnotes reference real papers that support the author’s conclusions. Also, it is Mann’s own work, rather than just lifted from someone else’s blog….

    Alastair McIntosh, writing for the Scottish Review of Books, concluded that “Montford’s analysis might cut the mustard with tabloid intellectuals but not with most scientists.

    The Hockey Stick Illusion might serve a psychological need in those who can’t face their own complicity in climate change, but at the end of the day it’s exactly what it says on the box: a write-up of somebody else’s blog.”

    http://www.desmogblog.com/andrew-montford

  63. I will buy the Nobel Prize winning Dr Mann’s book sometime, even though I have been banned from his Facebook page for some reason.

    By the way, this McIntosh guy has come my way before
    From his resume:

    My school education was all on the Isle of Lewis (1960-73), I have a BSc in geography from the University of Aberdeen (1973-77), submajoring in psychology and philosophy, a financial MBA from the University of Edinburgh (1980-81) and a PhD by published works in liberation theology, land reform and community empowerment from the Academy of Irish Cultural Heritages, University of Ulster (2008)

    I’m not sure what “liberation theology” is about, but it surely has nothing to do with climate

  64. Brandoch,

    the GHG forcing is far larger than the solar

    Richard C will make his own reply, but I really must ask you: are you serious in claiming that the small amount of solar energy re-radiated back to the earth by GHGs applies more energy than the sun?

  65. Montford’s credentials are not terribly impressive. He wouldn’t pass the Justice Venning expert witness test. The URL also links to a rebuttal by Tamino of Montford’s book and McIntyre’s work which is an interesting read:
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/07/the-montford-delusion/

  66. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 2:59 pm said:

    are you serious in claiming that the small amount of solar energy re-radiated back to the earth by GHGs applies more energy than the sun?

    No, Mr. Treadgold, you are putting up an absurd straw man that reveals much about yourself, and the level of science incomprehension on this site.

    Are you seriously claiming to be unaware that a climate forcing is a CHANGE in energy? If the solar forcing was greater than the GHG forcing, the Earth’s oceans would boil!

    Or perhaps you do live on a different planet from the rest of us? Someplace, say, where Wikipedia is not available?

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

  67. I think the second book is more about the climategate inquiries and the so-called impartiality of them.

    Of course I agree about the credentials. Unlike Michael Mann, he doesn’t have a Nobel Prize

  68. Solar forcing is the change in the amount of radiation emitted by the sun due to normal periodic variation.

  69. Like day and night, for example?

  70. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 3:37 pm said:

    No, Mr. Andy, because the diurnal cycle is caused by the Earth’s rotation, not by changes in the energy emitted by the sun.

    In general, a “forcing” refers to any perturbation of a system at or near equilibrium – at least, that’s what I learnt at Okato Primary… the term presumably has its origins in Newtonian mechanics.

  71. I think the term “forcing” is only used in climate science and set theory
    (in obviously two completely different contexts)

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

    I don’t think scientists ever used “forcing” before the climatologists came along.

  72. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 3:47 pm said:

    Extraordinary? Noise? I don’t think so, and neither do Krivova, Viera and Solanki 2010 (contradicts the IPCC’s long-term solar forcing), Wild et al (2012), Hatzianastassiou (2011), or any of the AO modelers that attempt to replicate weather, climate or ENSO using the short time increments and climatologies of GCMs and at finer resolution in regional models.

    Remember too, that “climate” is conventionally considered over 30 year periods – the most recent being only “noise” as you would have it.

    >”Given that the GHG forcing is far larger than the solar”

    Baloney. Over 1993 – 2010 (Wild) and 2001 – 2006 (Hatzianastassiou), solar at surface forcing is 10x all-CO2 using concentration. Then you have lack of strong long-term temp/CO2 correlation and that DLR problem to contend with.

    >”H2O is a short-term feedback rather than a forcing”

    Feedback on what? H2O as in water vapour (gas) or H2O as in cloud (liquid)? Over what timeframe? What regional case study can you refer us to as confirmation? And what proportion of a WV trend (up or down) is attributable as an GHG/aGHG feedback?

    My position is easily defensible as I said, simply by quantifying CO2 forcing assuming the IPCC’s forcing expression is valid (it isn’t) and slipping it “in among the other [observed] forcings operating ………the CO2 dominated GHG component (exclusive of WV) always fades into insignificance”. CO2/aCO2 forcing being almost indiscernible in among far greater forcings over the last two decades when a) a climate shift occurred ’97/’98, and b) climate failed to follow CO2-centric predictions.

    Over those two decades, solar/cloud forcing completely dominates – 90s brightening and 00s dimming (if we believe Hatzianastassiou et al). From now on, the prediction is for a quiet sun (quieter than last decade) heading into a grand minimum. Given CO2 didn’t dominate over a decadal scale (90s/00s) but solar did, it (CO2) is hardly likely to dominate over the coming multi-decadal scale when the solar effect will be even greater if astrophysical predictions are to be believed.

  73. Well, thanks for the polite clarification. So much was not evident in what you said and I’d thank you to mention definitions like that where they’re not universal. It was not a straw man I put up at all – it was a question about an oddity of your analysis of the greenhouse effect. And after Andy’s comment I should ask you what part of the solar “forcing” is evident at night and how does that relate to the solar “forcing” apparent during the day?

    If you cannot speak politely, whoever you are, though you speak at times humorously, you won’t speak here at all. Your science doesn’t require a rancorous tone and is scarcely detectable through it.

  74. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 4:02 pm said:

    I don’t think scientists ever used “forcing” before the climatologists came along.

    Wrong, Mr. Andy, it has been used for centuries, e.g. forced simple harmonic motion.

    A simile is “damping”, which I am sure you will have heard of – this refers to a negative forcing.

    Jeez, even when I was in the Territorials way back, we were trained to break step when marching over bridges, lest our combined motion force the structure into a resonant mode and damage it.

    Remember Tacoma Narrows? Positive forcing from wind destroyed the whole damn bridge!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-zczJXSxnw

  75. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 4:09 pm said:

    >”If the solar forcing was greater than the GHG forcing, the Earth’s oceans would boil!”

    Ocean insolation and heating is by far the greatest in the tropics where the angle of incidence is near vertical but the oceans don’t boil. Moving away from the tropics, ocean heating drops off quickly. I could dig out the numbers but I think you will find that tropical insolation and ocean heating is much more than the (I assume) 3 W/m2 GHG forcing you are alluding to.

    Hansen is of the opinion that “the oceans will begin to boil” due to our GHG emissions. Somehow I very much doubt that.

  76. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 4:27 pm said:

    Global Patterns of Insolation Receipts

    Figure 7g-1: Annual (1987) pattern of solar radiation absorbed at the Earth’s surface.

    http://www.physicalgeography.net/fundamentals/7g.html

    Equatorial solar radiation absorption is up around 300 – 380 W/m2 (300x GHG forcing since 1750) but no boiling that I’ve heard of.

  77. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 4:32 pm said:

    >”A simile is “damping”, which I am sure you will have heard of – this refers to a negative forcing”

    A bit like what’s happened to climatic temperature this century then?

  78. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 5:01 pm said:

    Mr. Cummings, my comment referred to GHG forcing relative to solar forcing, i.e. long term changes in the solar constant at TOA.

    You have, instead, seized upon discussions of regional surface dimming (aerosol + cloud) and the short term hydrological cycle for a Gish Gallop that quite unconvincing when one looks at your references, e.g. Hatzianastassiou et al (Atmos. Sci. Let. 13: 43–48 (2012))

    solar dimming masked greenhouse warming up to the 1980s, while the subsequent brightening in the 1990s led to accelerated global warming.

    Wilde, Liepert (2010):

    From radiation theory it is expected that with increasing radiative absorption due to abundance of anthropogenic greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and
    consequent warming, the emission of thermal energy from the atmosphere towards the surface is increasing
    (known as downward thermal radiation).

    This enhances the radiative energy surplus at the surface, and, where surface water is not limited, fuels evaporation besides warming the Earth’s surface. The enhanced
    greenhouse effect therefore tends to accelerate the hydrological cycle, as also shown in many climate model simulations with increasing levels of greenhouse gases (e.g., IPCC 2007, but also see Yang et al 2003, Andrews et al 2009).

    The different effects of solar and thermal forcings become particularly evident in the direct (fast) response of the hydrological cycle to them, while the subsequent
    longer-term response of the hydrological cycle, including all feedbacks induced by these forcings, is similar between the two forcing mechanisms (Andrews et al 2009, Lambert and Webb 2008).

    Since the 1980s, however, there are indications that downward solar radiation overall has recovered and contributed to the increase in the radiative imbalance at the surface, which had increased already due to the increasing downward thermal
    radiation (Wild et al 2008, see also figure 1(b). This increase in the surface radiation balance, estimated at 2 Wm−2 decade−1 in Wild et al (2008), fits the observational evidence for a recent increase in terrestrial precipitation and associated intensification of the hydrological cycle.

    Whilst I agree that cloud / aerosol effects are important factors in regional and short-term modelling, they do not affect the long term picture; the continual increase in GHG concentrations is a fundamental forcing to which the hydrological cycle responds, and it dwarfs any forcing due to solar physics (sunspot cycle, H depletion, etc).

  79. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 5:06 pm said:

    Richard, was it not you who recently pointed out that the climatic period is 30 years? Or are you still confusing short term with long term, regional with global, and raw data with statistical trends?

    If so, I can recommend a book for you:

    http://www.amazon.com/Global-Warming-Dummies-Elizabeth-May/dp/0470840986/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1351573568&sr=1-1

  80. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 5:14 pm said:

    Your science doesn’t require a rancorous tone and is scarcely detectable through it.

    OK, Mr. Treadgold, should I then restrict myself to contemporaneous examples of your own sedate tone, such as those at the top of this page?

    So shut up, you lot!

    This is breathtaking. It will surprise their long-suffering supporters – having endured NIWA’s hogwash about the 7SS not being “official” or even a “national” temperature record (“oh, it’s only for study”), and that this organisation of top scientists has no obligation WHATSOEVER to strive for excellence, <b. they now have to stand cringing as their favourite publicly-paid climate scientists argue that the court case had nothing to do with climate change.

    Really? What rot. I’d like to shake these men up and make them see sense.

    Or is it a case of “do as I say, not do as I do”?

    Please clarify, Sir.

  81. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 5:54 pm said:

    >”You have, instead, seized upon discussions of regional surface dimming (aerosol + cloud)”

    Err no. Hatzianastassiou et al (and Wild et al) have used global observed solar radiation at surface, clear sky and all sky (all sky modulated by cloud cover) from GEBA and/or BSRN networks.

    Why don’t you quantify the GHG forcing Rob? Are you adverse to doing that (if you can) because by doing so you might discover how insignificant it is (about 0.2 W/m2/decade for all-CO2) compared to the other forcings operating e.g. solar?

    Hatzianastassiou et al:-

    “…the subsequent brightening in the 1990s led to accelerated global warming

    Exactly, the solar forcing (sans cloud) was far in excess of CO2 forcing.

    Wilde, Liepert (2010):-

    “Since the 1980s, however, there are indications that downward solar radiation overall has recovered and contributed to the increase in the radiative imbalance at the surface…..”

    Exactly again. Wild et al 2012 calculates +2.7 Wm-2/decade 1993 – 2010 (+4.86 total) from BSRN-only observations but Hatzianastassiou et al calculates -2.7 Wm-2 or -4.5 W/m2/decade or -0.45 Wm-2y-1 2001 – 2006 from GEBA + BSRN (Note the solar per year forcing is more than double than the all-GHG per decade forcing).

    These solar numbers indicate the judicious application of Occam’s Razor to aGHG forcing don’t you think Rob?

    >”….the continual increase in GHG concentrations is a fundamental forcing”

    Assuming the IPCC’s forcing expression is valid (it isn’t), it is a forcing if concentration translates to a commensurate and dominant component of observed DLR (it doesn’t), but it is miniscule at best when considered by concentration only as evidenced by the above numbers.

    >”…dwarfs any forcing due to solar physics”

    Again, look at the above numbers – CO2 is the dwarf.

  82. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 6:17 pm said:

    >”Richard, was it not you who recently pointed out that the climatic period is 30 years?”

    Yes it was. If CO2 forcing doesn’t dominate over that period is doesn’t dominate, period.

    And it hasn’t. But just about everything else has.

    Meanwhile, the GCM projections track post 2000 CO2 rise (depending on RCP scenario) to the detriment of meaningful and realistic climate modeling:-

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

    Unrealistic, meaningless and useless as a 100 yr policy foundation if after only one decade they’re wildly off0track wouldn’t you say Rob?

  83. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 6:25 pm said:

    Just saw Jim Salinger on Closeup doddering on about Sandy being made worse (“caused” is the Closeup caption) by climate change.

    “Climate change” undefined as always leaving the suggestion of human complicity, Never let a chance go by eh Jim?

  84. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 6:34 pm said:

    >”I found Gareth’s references….”

    I found Gareth’s imagination rampantly vivid – but a little unhinged from actual circumstance.

  85. I don’t think scientists ever used “forcing” before the climatologists came along.
    Wrong, Mr. Andy, it has been used for centuries, e.g. forced simple harmonic motion.

    I think the Demon Lord is getting confused between Force and Forcing Function eg: f(t) = cos(ωt).

    If he was taught forcing functions in Otako Primary School then he had teachers who were well in advance of the syllabus of the rest of the world, it seems.

    Quite different things, of course, forcing and forcing function but yes, Richard C, you’re right. It’s a peculiarly ClimateScience(TM) term.

  86. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 7:19 pm said:

    >”but yes, Richard C, you’re right”

    Andy not me Bob.

    Brandoch’s reasoning in terms of forced friction, braking, harmonics etc seemed OK to me but those terms are a long way removed from the terms of the UN’s concoction, either FCCC or IPCC. Forced braking can be applied, released, applied and so on but UN climate forcing only accumulates over time since 1750.

    However, it is evident that even climate forcing is applied and released otherwise we wouldn’t have the hiatus we are currently experiencing or the 1940s warming, 1970s cooling so maybe Brandoch is right for the wrong reasons.

  87. BR,

    should I then restrict myself to contemporaneous examples of your own sedate tone?

    Restrict yourself as you wish, but who mentioned sedate? Posts aim to gain attention and, from the traffic figures, are quite successful in doing so. Comments, on the other hand, as my own demonstrate, take a polite, if vigorous, conversational tone and usually address the topic of the post, attempting to disagree, persuade, dissuade, entertain, as anyone can see.

    The “shut up” comment was aimed at inaccurate taunts from commenters here, trying to defend NIWA, that we had failed to win the court case on the science. I was pleased to exploit NIWA’s own denial of that.

    That has nothing in common with your anonymous, abusive personal comments against named individuals. They become vexatious and disagreeable, which is why they are deleted. You know exactly what you’re doing yet you do have something to say. Hence our patience. Kindly stop being difficult, I have other things to do.

    Oh, and I asked: what part of the solar “forcing” is evident at night and how does that relate to the solar “forcing” apparent during the day? Or is there (strangely) no solar forcing until it alters?

  88. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 7:54 pm said:

    >”Forced braking can be applied, released, applied and so on”

    ABS braking is a good example of that. I suppose Brandoch’s ABS “simile” with climate would be the annual rise and fall of CO2 but progressively increasing mean (an effect the opposite of damping – impetus?). That’s if CO2 were to have any actual effect beyond 200 ppm that is.

    Given CO2 concentrations are highest around tropical West Africa and northern India/Bangladesh according to GOSAT, I don’t think we need to worry too much about our industrial output of that particular gas.

  89. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 7:54 pm said:

    Actually, cuz, I’m right for the right reasons.

    if you bothered to read the helpful link I supplied, you may actually learn something – imagine that!

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/CO2-is-not-the-only-driver-of-climate-intermediate.htm

  90. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 7:59 pm said:

    I’ve learned Brandoch, that not only is CO2 not the only driver of climate, it’s not a driver of climate – far more powerful drivers are.

  91. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 8:04 pm said:

    OK, RT, would it be acceptable for me to follow your example of

    they now have to stand cringing as their favourite publicly-paid climate scientists argue that the court case had nothing to do with climate change.

    by saying

    they now have to stand cringing as their favourite AGW-denial host demonstrates his ignorance of basic concepts of physics, let alone climate science?

    Please elucidate the rules of engagement, or are they as capricious as they seem?

  92. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 8:06 pm said:

    Mr. C., please specify these more powerful drivers of climate – I await with bated breath.

  93. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 8:12 pm said:

    It’s not just the Nobel Prize that separates Mike Mann from Montford and his ilk…

    …obtaining both an MS and an MPhil in physics in 1991, Mann then studied at Yale University for his PhD,

    He was organizing committee chair for the National Academy of Sciences Frontiers of Science in 2003 and has received a number of honors and awards including selection by Scientific American as one of the fifty leading visionaries in science and technology in 2002. In 2012 he was inducted as a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union and was awarded the Hans Oeschger Medal of the European Geosciences Union.

    Dr Mann is author of more than 140 peer-reviewed and edited publications, and has published two books.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_E._Mann

    Get the point? This is a specalised field, where amateurs come to grief. Do you do your own neurosurgery at home, guys?

    (Actually, come to think of it, that might explain a few things…)

  94. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 8:21 pm said:

    >”Please specify these more powerful drivers of climate”

    Nodded off and missed it up-thread Brandoch? It was a lot to read and comprehend I do admit.

    I realize you must feel an obligation to mount a kind of rear-guard action for the cause Brandoch – reminiscent of the last Japanese soldier in the Pacific’s obedience to the Emperor – but don’t you see the futility when your rifle’s rusted up and your ammunition’s damp beyond recovery?

  95. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 8:27 pm said:

    Salinger said the pressure of Sandy was exceptional because it was the lowest recorded since the 1970s (or words to that effect). Now I read in the SMH:-

    “The atmospheric pressure at its centre was getting down to a record set in the late 1930s”

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/environment/weather/leviathan-how-sandy-links-to-a-warming-planet-20121030-28gg8.html#ixzz2Alwla133

    It’s not just what you say that matters – it’s also what you don’t say.

  96. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 8:28 pm said:

    As I thought, Mr. Cummings, you are reluctant to specify these oh-so-powerful drivers of climate.

    Come on, man, everlasting glory awaits you, the man who bought the entire rotten edifice of AGW theory to its knees!

    Unless, of course, you can’t…

  97. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 8:37 pm said:

    >”…basic concepts of physics”

    In respect to what?

    LWIR penetration of the ocean surface?

    http://omlc.ogi.edu/spectra/water/gif/hale73.gif

    CO2 pathlength curves?

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

    Second Law of Thermodynamics?

    http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/thermo/seclaw.html

    What?

  98. Richard C (NZ) on October 30, 2012 at 8:40 pm said:

    >”…you are reluctant to specify these oh-so-powerful drivers of climate”

    Already have. Read again up-thread, this time try to stay awake – try coffee.

  99. You obviously didn’t get the in-joke about the Nobel Prize. Or maybe you did

    Never mind.

  100. Brandoch Daha on October 30, 2012 at 9:11 pm said:

    (Yawn) In your own words, please, Mr. C., to avoid any – misunderstandings.

    I’ve learned Brandoch, that not only is CO2 not the only driver of climate, it’s not a driver of climate – far more powerful drivers are.

    Come on, name them, and the timescale they operate on.

    I’ll make it easy for you – here’s the usual list (none of which explain AGW)

    “There are many climate forcing factors spanning an enormous range of periodicities. The longest, 200 to 500 million years, involves the passage of our Solar System through the galaxy, and the variations in galactic dust (Williams, 1975a). These may be considered to be external forcing mechanisms (section 2.5.1). Other long time scale variations (10^6 to 10^8 years) include the non-radiative forcing mechanisms, such as continental drift, orogeny (mountain building) and isostasy (vertical movements in the Earth’s crust affecting sea level) (Raymo & Ruddiman, 1992; Ruddiman & Kubasch, 1991). These are internal forcing mechanisms (sections 2.6.1 and 2.6.2). External changes in the amount of solar radiation (Wigley & Kelly, 1990; Eddy, 1976, 1977, 1982; section 2.5.3) and the Earth’s orbit around the Sun (Milankovitch, 1941; Berger, 1978, 1984; section 2.5.2), and internal variations in volcanic activity (Sear et al., 1987; section 2.6.3), ocean circulation (Broecker & Denton, 1990; section 2.6.4) and atmospheric composition (IPCC, 1990a, 1992, 1995; section 2.6.5), all occur over time scales from 1 year to 105 years.

    Additionally, there are numerous other internal feedback mechanisms (see section 2.7) which all contribute to the changing of the global climate. The actual climate state at any point in time represents an aggregate response to all cycles of variation superimposed on the background noise.

    The response of the climate system to this combination of forcing factors itself depends upon the different response times of the various components of the system. The overall climatic response will then be determined by the interactions between the components. The atmosphere, surface snow and ice, and surface vegetation typically respond to climatic forcing over a period of hours to days. The surface ocean has a response time measured in years, whilst the deep ocean and mountain glaciers vary only over a period spanning hundreds of years (Henderson-Sellers & McGuffie, 1987). Large ice sheets advance and withdraw over thousands of years whilst parts of the geosphere (e.g. continental weathering of rocks) respond only to forcing periods lasting hundreds of thousands to millions of years.”

    http://www.global-climate-change.org.uk/2-4.php

    To be honest, Mr. C., I think you have got your external and internal forcings muddled up, but I’m open to persuasion that you might know something the rest of the world doesn’t, [so it’s time for you to either put up or shut up. – You’re awfully rude. Just who the hell do you think you’re talking to, and what are you so afraid of? Stop being hostile. Comments removed that attribute unworthy motives. – RT]

  101. “None of which explain AGW”

    Well if your theory is “anthropogenic”, (the “A” in AGW) then obviously no other non-anthropogenic theories will explain your anthropogenic theory

    We could also mention Svensmark’s theories too, which you seem to have left off your list.

    In the meantime, I hope all those folks on the East Coast of the States are OK, AGW or otherwise.

  102. It’s warmer than it has been for hundreds if not thousands of years. More heat means more hurricane energy and more moisture within those storms. It’s no coincidence that Katrina and Sandy have been during this very warm period.

  103. Richard C (NZ) on October 31, 2012 at 6:34 am said:

    >”Come on, name them, and the timescale they operate on”

    Already have. But what say you quantify all-CO2 forcing over the 30 years 1981 – 2010 so we can make some comparisons? Here’s the IPCC’s simplified CO2 forcing expression:

    dF = 5.35 ln(C/Co).

    Here’s the Mauna Loa data ftp://ftp.cmdl.noaa.gov/ccg/co2/trends/co2_annmean_mlo.txt

    Now, what is

    a) Total all-CO2 forcing 1981 – 2010
    b) Per decade all-CO2 forcing 1981 – 2010
    c) Per year all-CO2 forcing 1981 – 2010

  104. Richard C (NZ) on October 31, 2012 at 7:06 am said:

    Back in 1938 Simon:-

    AWFUL DEVASTATION

    New England Hurricane And Floods. Known Dead Total 600

    NEW YORK, September 24

    The awful devastation caused by the hurricane which swept New England and Long Island was revealed to-day. The coastguard cutter Chelan found last night that 200 or more people had been killed at Watch Hill, a small summer resort in Rhode Island. The rollers from the Atlantic, the report stated, had cut a swathe through Watch Hill, engulfing 68 houses and drowning whole families.

    This is only one of many moving tragedies revealed as the storm and floods subside. Numerous washed-out resorts have been wiped off the map. The known death roll is now near 600. Workers are feverishly engaged in strengthening the damaged dykes, but with the Connecticut River slowly receding from the 35-feet level the danger is passing. There are 150,000 people engaged in recovering bodies and restoring communications. Fearing an epidemic, airmen are distributing anti-tetanus and anti-typhoid serum by parachute. Looters are active, and the militia fired on numbers of them and wounded one.

    http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/81474878?searchTerm=hurricane%20new%20england&searchLimits=

    And,

    The #Frankenstorm in Climate Context

    By ANDREW C. REVKIN

    http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/10/28/the-frankenstorm-in-climate-context/

    Quotes Trenberth, Hoerling among others and papers but re your heat claim, from Michaels:-

    “By any standard, this is an impressive cyclone for our latitude. You might want to check Ludlum’s “Early American Hurricanes” for the Snow Hurricane of 1804, which was earlier and a bit further north — but NYC showed a pretty similar barometric pressure. Are you familiar with his great series of books on pre-1900 weather?”

    And,

    “It’s also consistent with a planet with colder temperatures as well as one with warmer ones. More important, events like this are inevitable on a planet that has an ocean with the geography of the Atlantic (meaning a Gulf Stream-like feature), a large north-south continent on its western margin without a transverse mountain range to inhibit the merger of tropical warmth with polar cold, and four seasons in the temperate latitudes. And I predict confidently that we will survive Sandy, which should not be a tropical cyclone at landfall.”

  105. I’m well aware of the 1938 storm Richard. I’m just saying that the probability of such a storm has likely increased. I read somewhere yesterday that ocean temperatures on the Eastern seaboard were 3 degrees (probably Fahrenheit) up on average but only 0.8 degrees of that could be attributed to global warming, the rest is due to unusual circulation patterns. I’m not sure how anyone could calculate the attribution.

  106. but only 0.8 degrees of that could be attributed to global warming

    What does this statement mean?

  107. I’m just saying that the probability of such a storm has likely increased

    and your reasoning is?

  108. Richard C (NZ) on October 31, 2012 at 7:34 am said:

    >”I’m just saying that the probability of such a storm has likely increased. I read somewhere yesterday that ocean temperatures on the Eastern seaboard were 3 degrees (probably Fahrenheit) up on average….”

    Revkin quoting Jeff Donnelly paper:-

    “Over the last 5,000 years, the eastern Caribbean has experienced several periods, lasting centuries, in which strong hurricanes occurred frequently even though ocean temperatures were cooler than those measured today, according to a new study.”

  109. Richard C (NZ) on October 31, 2012 at 7:46 am said:

    Storm power outages in the US are always exacerbated by 2 factors, 1) overhead line distribution once you get out of CBDs, and 2) lots of trees adjacent to those lines.

    It’s apparent in US movies (TV/cine) and news clips. I’ve seen it for myself and having worked in electricity distribution and knowing the tree/shelter-belt problem I expect there will be many homes without power there for some time.

    At least when a branch or entire tree takes out a line (or house), it wont do it again.

  110. Richard C (NZ) on October 31, 2012 at 8:13 am said:

    >”I’m just saying that the probability of such a storm has likely increased”

    Probability means nothing unless actual occurrence backs it up – it doesn’t:-

    ‘Sandy doesn’t tell us ­anything about climate change’

    http://opinion.financialpost.com/2012/10/29/terence-corcoran-frankenscience/

    If the IPCC says that man-made climate change would be unlikely to increase hurricanes, how can one hurricane — no matter how freakish — serve as a proxy for climate change? Roger Pielke Jr., a professor at the University of Colorado’s Center for Science and Technology Policy Research, says such links are impossible to make. In a paper he co-authored in 2010, Prof. Pielke found that, based on the existing climate models, man-made climate signals “are very unlikely to emerge in U.S. tropical cyclone losses at time scales of less than a century.” The overall time scale for such evidence is likely somewhere between 120 and 550 years.

    So far, however, there is no sign of climate-driven hurricane activity. In an interview Monday, Prof. Pielke said there are no signs of a trend in hurricane activity. “We’ve done long-term trends with respect to hurricane damage in the United States, and it’s very safe to say that regardless of how [Sandy] plays out, there’s a century-long time series with no trend in it — and that’s in damage, the number of landfalls, or the intensity of storms at landfall. So, if you are looking for signals of long-term climate change, focusing in on any one storm is the wrong way to go about it to begin with.”

  111. Beats me, that why I was skeptical about the attribution. I see the same numbers were quoted in Richard’s link, sea temps are up by 5F, of which 1F is global warming. Regardless, Sandy’s strength at these more northerly latitudes is a function of the higher water temperature.

  112. Agree totally. The frequency of hurricanes are the function of other factors, but the severity is affected by water temperature ceteris paribus. One storm doesn’t prove anything but Sandy + Irene + Katrina might get people questioning why the recent past appeared to be more benign than the current decade. The US Government might even consider doing a cost/benefit analysis of future mitigation, though somehow I doubt it.

  113. There is that paper of Hansen’s that shows how the probability distribution of extreme events has changed. As far as I know there hasn’t been a robust rebuttal of it yet. If there is one I’m sure you can post a reference for me.

  114. Was this paper based on reality or computer models?

  115. Simon:

    It’s no coincidence that Katrina and Sandy have been during this very warm period.

    Come on Simon, that’s really weak. Katrina was a cat 3 at landfall, Sandy hardly even a cat 1.

    We’ve just seen one of the longest spells without a serious land-falling hurricane in the USA, and you claim that “it’s no coincidence…”.

    What’s no coincidence? That we’ve had so few serious land-falling hurricanes in the US? Because that’s the only thing unusual that’s happening over there right now.

    If you believe that Sandy is anything out of the ordinary, then you have come to believe in AGW simply because you do, and you have no interest in the facts. Show us the trend graphs, the ones that show an increase in hurricane energy. Even the world’s experts admit that they show no change.

  116. Brandoch Daha on October 31, 2012 at 10:53 am said:

    I’m really happy I have managed to engage John Christy’s interest. Hopefully, Bob D is now in direct contact and will be able to supply the data John needs to replicate/validate Bob’s work.

    I would expect that Christy will be able to identify the error(s) in Bob’s analysis that have led him to a figure only 1/3 rd of that found by NIWA and BEST.

    I predict we will hear nothing more from this quarter, as embarrassment reigns.

    Christy, however, have his own history of repeated errors – strangely, these have always been in the same direction, that of “invalidating AGW”, so he and Bob will have that in common.

    According to a New York Times article, John Christy along with fellow skeptic Roy Spencer admitted they made a mistake in their satellite data research that they said demonstrated a cooling in the troposphere (the earth’s lowest layer of atmosphere). It turned out that the exact opposite was occurring and the troposphere was getting warmer. [6]

    “These papers should lay to rest once and for all the claims by John Christy and other global warming skeptics that a disagreement between tropospheric and surface temperature trends means that there are problems with surface temperature records or with climate models,” said Alan Robock, a meteorologist at Rutgers University.

    http://www.desmogblog.com/john-christy

    Mike Mann goes into Christy’s error-riddled history in interesting detail in his latest book. Enjoy.

  117. Mike Mann goes into Christy’s error-riddled history in interesting detail in his latest book.

    Oh, the irony! :-)

    You’re a funny little demon, Lord Daha, you really are.

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