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Thursday, January 10, 2013

HotCopper Deniers - Spinning on the Sun

MobyT | 11:06 PM 2 Comments - leave a comment
As if to underline the well-known fact that climate science deniers don't read any climate science, denmor, on HotCopper, posts an article by John O'Sullivan suggesting that NASA has just discovered the sun.  This is the same John O'Sullivan who, if you will remember, has very whacky ideas.  Only a year ago he was blogging about how he doesn't accept basic atmospheric physics of the greenhouse effect, which was first demonstrated 150 years ago in the mid-nineteenth century.

Typical of climate science deniers, John O'Sullivan mustn't read climate science either.  He put his own spin on a climate science workshop, which was held to: 
... examine the state of knowledge regarding the climate response to solar variability and will explore some of the outstanding scientific issues that might guide future research thrusts.
John's spin is that NASA has suddenly discovered the sun has a role in regard to our climate - duh!  (Yes, this is the same NASA that launched Voyager 1 thirty five years ago.)

If denmor or John O'Sullivan had ever read an IPCC report they might not have made such fools of themselves.  Even if they'd merely scanned the reports they would have realised that scientists have long  been aware that the sun exists and has a role in the energy balance on earth.  For example, look at the first two paragraphs in the box on page 14 of the IPCC Second Assessment Report, published in 1995, which shows, as any scientist will tell you, that the understanding incoming radiation (ie from the sun to earth) and outgoing radiation (ie from the earth to space) is fundamental to understanding climate:
Box 1: What drives changes in climate?
The Earth absorbs radiation from the Sun, mainly at the surface. This energy is then redistributed by the atmospheric and oceanic circulation and radiated to space at longer ("terrestrial" or "infrared") wavelengths. On average, for the Earth as a whole, the incoming solar energy is balanced by outgoing terrestrial radiation.
Any factor which alters the radiation received from the Sun or lost to space, or which alters the redistribution of energy within the atmosphere, and between the atmosphere, land and ocean, can affect climate.
In fact, they can't have even read anything about the greenhouse effect.  Is there an image explaining the greenhouse effect that doesn't include the sun?

What we're doing is slowing the outgoing radiation by putting our waste greenhouse gases into the air.  Roughly the same amount of radiation is coming in from the sun but there's less going out because there's a lot more greenhouse gases like CO2 absorbing it, so earth is heating up.

Misogynistic thalweg doesn't read science either.  He writes:


No, thalweg.  You've got it wrong.  If the sun were emitting ever more radiation (ie at a rising rate) then the warming would be worse.  But it's not.  Here is a chart showing the relative contributions to global warming:

You've got to wonder what is it that makes people like HotCopper's denmor and thalweg and blogger John O'Sullivan make idiots of themselves in public.


  1. Hi MobyT, I stumbled upon your hotwhopper blog , I use to read your posts at HC. It is great to be able to read your posts again.
    I do agree with your point of view, and I do disagree with the deniers on HC.
    I am waiting for the federal election, and if Labor elected out, I will be watching for the deniers to suddenly endorse a carbon tax and embrace climate change, which will prove/disprove that it is purely politics.
    Feel free to remove my comments for being off topic.

    1. It's always a pleasure to get a visit from a friendly face from HC.



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