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Thursday, October 23, 2014


Sou | 9:34 PM 4 Comments - leave a comment

Someone complained about Captcha changing and becoming more difficult to read. The reason I use it is to save work. I recently disabled it for a short time and got a huge amount of spam, more than I can cope with. And that was in only about four hours or so.

Thing is, I don't have any control over it. (I don't even see it.) Just the same, I'd be glad for some feedback. Let me know if it's worse than normal and I'll send a message to Google on the slight chance they'll read it and do something about the situation.

(If you're on the main page, click "read more" to send feedback.)

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

On Antarctic ice: The ongoing ignorance of deniers at WUWT

Sou | 4:55 PM 33 Comments - leave a comment

Some people will put down the disinformation spread by Anthony Watts to him being plain dumb and ignorant. Others will say that he's not really as dumb as he looks and sounds, he's just deceitful and has made a business out of conning the ignorant.

I don't know where on the idiot-liar scale Anthony Watts lies.

These past couple of days Anthony Watts has:

Now he's claiming (archived here) that John Cook at said that Antarctic sea ice is the result of the Southern Ocean getting warmer. He even linked to the web page where John Cook gave the following reasons for the increase in Antarctic sea ice:
  1. the drop in ozone levels over Antarctica, resulting in stronger winds, which creates polynas, which freeze up and add to sea ice.
  2. a change in ocean circulation with top layer of the ocean being colder and fresher, which freezes more easily than more saline water at the same temperature. It's colder at the top because of more snow and rain as a result of warmer air temperatures.

Another blooper by Anthony Watts, on his supposed specialty - surface temperatures

Sou | 2:24 AM 6 Comments - leave a comment

Anthony Watts is throwing caution to the wind. He is so over that little dinner he had with scientists the other week. That's done and dusted. Today he's forgotten it even took place. He's put firmly behind him any notion of presenting science, let alone "presenting science together".

Anthony's just failed ocean chemistry, now he's failed surface temperature 101 (archived here). Anthony took a shot at Andrew Freedman for this tweet:

Anthony claims:
Gosh, “giant conspiracy”.
Um, Andrew, they all use the same base surface data. The Global Historical Climate Network (GHCN) from NOAA’s NCDC. 

Except they don't all use exactly the same data. And what data they do share, they process independently.

This is what NASA uses:
Graphs and tables are updated around the middle of every month using current data files from NOAA GHCN v3 (meteorological stations), ERSST (ocean areas), and SCAR (Antarctic stations), combined as described in our December 2010 publication (Hansen et al. 2010). These updated files incorporate reports for the previous month and also late reports and corrections for earlier months....
...The GHCNv3/SCAR data are modified to obtain station data from which our tables, graphs, and maps are constructed: The urban and peri-urban (i.e., other than rural) stations are adjusted so that their long-term trend matches that of the mean of neighboring rural stations. Urban stations without nearby rural stations are dropped. 

This is what NOAA uses - No mention of SCAR. And it's processed differently:
What datasets are used in calculating the average global temperature anomaly?
Land surface temperatures are available from the Global Historical Climate Network-Monthly (GHCN-M). Sea surface temperatures are determined using the extended reconstructed sea surface temperature (ERSST) analysis. ERSST uses the most recently available International Comprehensive Ocean-Atmosphere Data Set (ICOADS) and statistical methods that allow stable reconstruction using sparse data. The monthly analysis begins January 1854, but due to very sparse data, no global averages are computed before 1880. With more observations after 1880, the signal is stronger and more consistent over time. 

This is what JMA uses, it's different to both NASA and NOAA, though it shares the GHCN up to 2000:
JMA estimates global temperature anomalies using data combined not only over land but also over ocean areas. The land part of the combined data for the period before 2000 consists of GHCN (Global Historical Climatology Network) information provided by NCDC (the U.S.A.'s National Climatic Data Center), while that for the period after 2001 consists of CLIMAT messages archived at JMA. The oceanic part of the combined data consists of JMA's own long-term sea surface temperature analysis data, known as COBE-SST (see the articles in TCC News No.1 and this report).
Here's a description of CLIMATE messages.

And this is supposed to be one area in which Anthony Watts claims expertise. Some expert he's turned out to be!

And here's a quick chart I did, just comparing GISTemp with NOAA, adjusting GISTemp to match the twentieth century mean used by NASA for the base period - you can spot slight differences:

Data Sources: NASA and NOAA


From the WUWT comments

It's late - so here's just a couple. You can read a few more in the archive here.

October 21, 2014 at 7:03 am
The longer it’s out there, the more Twitter becomes the litmus test for stupidity…

Oh yes, but not in the way Dyrewulf imagines.

Louis Hooffstetter
October 21, 2014 at 7:04 am
Did anyone bother to tweet the answer back to this idiot?
If not, someone needs to tweet the answer with a link to this article. (I can’t because I’m not on twitter).

Don't panic Louis, I'm about to do just that :)

Anthony Watts (and others) fail ocean chemistry - woefully!

Sou | 12:59 AM 16 Comments - leave a comment

I noticed Anthony Watts retweeted something the other day and wondered if he'd be dumb enough to copy and paste it at WUWT.

He is and he did.

Anthony loudly proclaims his ignorance of basic physics and chemistry, with the headline:

New paper debunks ‘ocean acidification’ scare, finds warming increases pH

He copied his article (archived here) from another denier blog that often makes scientific bloopers, the Hockeyschtick.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Denier Weirdness: "Why don't reporters get their science from the flat earth society?" wails WUWT!

Sou | 4:23 PM 1 Comment so far

The denialists at WUWT are up in arms that no serious environmental news reporter will go to science deniers and the flat earth society for their science stories (archived here). The WUWT commenters agree: "it's a conspiracy" they all cry out as one paranoid voice.

Anthony Watts posted this video Q&A with two science journalists and a documentary producer.

The panel of three was (left to right) Seth Borenstein of The Associated Press, Craig Welch of the Seattle Times, and documentary producer Steve Sapienza.

Anthony Watts highlighted a snippet at 45:35, where he misquoted Craig Welch, who actually said:
"Nobody in my newsroom quotes people who don't believe climate change is real, that I know of.  And if I find out about it, I will go talk to them myself. But I also work in a newsroom where my managing editor used to be an environmental reporter, so there's never been ... I mean he understands what we're doing so..."

Anthony added the word "who" between "newsroom" and "quotes", which messed up the meaning a bit and confused his readers, not one of whom was capable of listening to the spoken words (at the time of writing this).

Monday, October 20, 2014

How WUWT missed the memo about the IPCC WG2 report

Sou | 2:10 AM 6 Comments - leave a comment

I suppose it's because deniers don't like the UK Guardian and don't follow the right people on Twitter. Whatever the reason, Anthony Watts at WUWT missed the memo.

Today he's got an article (archived here) about how the Final Report of the IPCC AR5 WG2 is now out. Someone noticed how some changes, which were inserted into the Final Draft without advising expert reviewers, have been dropped.

Bob Ward wrote about this at the Guardian the other day. By his account, it was Richard Tol's chapter where some words were added into the Final Draft after the last but final went to reviewers. So nobody saw them until the Final Draft was released. The changes that were made were reverted, once it was acknowledged by all that they were in error.

If you are still confused, go and read what Bob Ward has to say about it. It's been discussed publicly ever since the final draft came out. I'm surprised that WUWT didn't know about this.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

The insanity of denialists at WUWT: On the impact of natural gas on global warming

Sou | 6:57 PM 32 Comments - leave a comment

I couldn't pass up some gems of denialist thinking I came across today. It was in response to a new WUWT article, about a paper in Nature. The paranoia runs deep at WUWT.

The paper itself is the result of a study looking to see if abundant natural gas substituting for coal would help mitigate CO2 emissions. The answer was "probably not". Another article in Nature News and Views, which was describing the research, gave three main reasons. From
  • Replacing low-carbon sources: Natural gas replacing coal would reduce carbon emissions. But due to its lower cost, natural gas would also replace some low-carbon energy, such as renewable or nuclear energy. Overall changes result in a smaller reduction than expected due to natural gas replacing these other, low-carbon sources. In a sense, natural gas would become a larger slice of the energy pie.
  • More total energy used: Abundant, less expensive natural gas would lower energy prices across the board, leading people to use more energy overall. In addition, inexpensive energy stimulates the economy, which also increases overall energy use. Consequently, the entire energy pie gets bigger.
  • Methane escape from production and distribution: The main component of natural gas, methane, is a more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. During production and distribution, some methane inevitably escapes into the atmosphere. The researchers considered both high and low estimates for this so-called fugitive methane. Even at the lower end, fugitive methane adds to climate change.

Speaking of "natural", naturally, the WUWT article only provided one of the three reasons - that of the lower energy prices leading to more energy being used overall (archived here). Once again, the article was by Eric Worrall - about the only person left (I mean, remaining) who is providing denialist fodder for Anthony Watts' blog these days.

The Red Cross World Disasters Report that you won't find at WUWT

Sou | 4:14 PM 1 Comment so far

The Red Cross has released this year's edition of its annual publication, The World Disasters Report 2014. This year the focus is on culture and risk.

Table 10 of the report shows that in the past ten years, almost two million people have been affected by all disasters (technological and natural), with more than 95% of these people being affected by "climato-, hydro- and meteorological disasters". Of the people reported killed in disasters in the past decade (Table 6):
  • 329,000 (31%) died as a result of climato-, hydro- and meteorological disasters
  • 651,000 (61%) died as a result of earthquakes and tsunamis
  • 80,000 (8%) died as a result of technological disasters (eg industrial and transport accidents).

The "feeble intellect" of Anthony Watts and Eric Worrall at WUWT

Sou | 3:59 AM 44 Comments - leave a comment

WUWT gets it woefully wrong again. Back to front. Deniers deal in black and white, they do not "get" subtle. They are extremists and only understand extreme language. Overstatement might register. The understatement for which the UK (and Australia) is known, doesn't register at WUWT. If you want to make a point with a science denier, do not expect them to understand you if you speak normally. As we've seen here on many occasions, deniers will ignore what is actually said and substitute their own weird narrative.

Today Anthony Watts gets several things back to front (archived here). He post another silly article by ignorant Eric "eugenics" Worrall. (Anthony Watts has been really struggling to find anyone half decent to write for his blog these past few weeks.) Anthony wrote:
Eric Worrall writes about “The Conversation” Austalia’s favorite hangout of climate doomers:

Except this article was in the UK edition of the Conversation. It was about one of Owen Paterson's recent gaffes. Owen Paterson is the Conservative MP for North Shropshire who's been in the headlines in the UK lately. He was sacked as Environment Secretary back in July this year. The article was about how Owen Paterson was exaggerating. The headline of the article reads:
Climate change: it’s only human to exaggerate, but science itself does not

Notice the last part - science itself does not exaggerate.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

"It's not the sun". Another look at what would happen if there were a Maunder Minimum this century.

Sou | 2:54 PM 7 Comments - leave a comment

Today WUWT-ers are in a dilemma. They are being asked to look at a climate discussion about the role of the sun in climate change. (The WUWT article is archived here.) Marcel Crok has posed a question for discussion at Climate Dialogue, namely:

What will happen during a new Maunder Minimum?

This question has been discussed at HotWhopper in the past, for example, here and here. And here is a link to a scientific paper on the subject, and one to a article. Even a grand solar minimum would only have a small temporary impact on global temperatures compared to the impact of rising greenhouse gases.

If you want to read the discussion by scientists, go to Climate Dialogue. The scientists who have presented their various scientific findings are:
  • Mike Lockwood from the University of Reading
  • Nicola Scafetta from Duke University
  • Jan-Erik Solheim from the University of Oslo
  • Ilya Usoskin from the University of Oulu
  • José Vaquero from Universidad Carlos III de Madrid

The only public comment that appears so far is by Jos Hagelaars.