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Friday, October 4, 2013

HotWhopper Fodder: Denier Don Easterbrook tells more lies, damned lies and statistics at WUWT

Sou | 8:18 PM Go to the first of 6 comments. Add a comment

Psst - A kind horse racing fan from downunder might tell oneonesit  about this HotWhopper article or any of these :) 16 October 2013

Anti-science blogger, Anthony Watts has put up another article by Denier Don Easterbrook (archived here). Denier Don is always good fodder for HotWhopper, where we demolish disinformation :)

I don't think that Don Easterbrook told the truth once in his entire, very long article.  It's just one big lie from beginning to end.  And it's so easy to disprove his claims.

Don starts off his article with this:
Mark Twain popularized the saying “There are liars, damn liars, and statisticians.” 
Denier Don couldn't even get that right.  I believe the quote is:
There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.
Don accuses the IPCC of telling lies but as HotWhopper readers know, Denier Don could barely write a sentence without telling a lie.  Don writes:
When compared to the also recently published NIPCC (Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change) 1000+-page volume of data on climate change with thousands of peer-reviewed references, the inescapable conclusion is that the IPCC report must be considered the grossest misrepresentation of data ever published.
Yeah, right.  The Heartland Institute paid a few deniers (not proper climate scientists) to put together a pack of climate disinformation and Don reckons it's the IPCC that "misrepresents" data!

Don's magical Little Ice Age bounce

Don writes this:-
After all these years, IPCC still doesn’t get it—we’ve been thawing out from the Little Ice Age for several hundred years but still are not yet back to pre-Little Ice Age temperatures that prevailed for 90% of the past 10,000 years. Warming and cooling has been going on for millions of years, long before CO2 could have had anything to do with it, so warming in itself certainly doesn’t prove that it was caused by CO2.
As well as implying that the climate is a bouncing magical ball, Don claims that the earth is not yet back to pre-little ice age temperatures.  And he thinks the Little Ice Age finished "several hundred years ago"?

On what does he base this particular set of lies? Well, nothing as it turns out.  He doesn't provide one skerrick of evidence that the global surface temperature was hotter than now for "90% of the past 10,000 years".  Why?  Because there is none.  The longest record of temperatures for the Holocene is that provided by the Marcott et al study.  Here is the data from that research:

Data Sources: Marcott et al (2013) and NASA GISTemp
Even allowing for uncertainty ranges in Marcott et al, the current surface temperature is likely to be at or above any previously seen in the entire Holocene or any time in more than 20,000 years, looking at the chart below (including Shakun et al (2012).

Adapted from Jos Hagelaars

Satellite temperatures in 1908?

Denier Don goes onto deny global warming, writing:
Their misrepresentation of data is ridiculous. In Fig. 1, the IPCC report purports to show warming of 0.5°C (0.9°F) since 1980, yet surface temperature measurements indicate no warming over the past 17 years (Fig. 2) and satellite temperature data shows the August 13 temperature only 0.12°C (0.21°F) above the 1908 temperature (Spencer, 2013). IPCC shows a decadal warming of 0.6°C (1°F) since 1980 but the temperature over the past decade has actually cooled, not warmed.
Denier Don is barmy! He refers to 1980, which is 33 years ago and says "no warming over the past 17 years".  And what's he going on about with his satellite temperature data from 1908?  Is he completely nuts, or maybe it's a typo and he meant 1980.  Even so, in referring to UAH temperature, he's wrong!  He's also obviously very wrong when he says that earth has cooled.  It hasn't cooled at all over the past decade, or over the past century!

Here's both 1980 and 17 years ago:

Data Source: NASA GISTemp
Here is Roy Spencer's UAH data of the temperature of the lower troposphere.  Unlike what Don implies, the temeperature of the lower troposphere has risen quite a lot since 1980:

Data Source: UAH
The fact that Denier Don puts up charts from Christopher "not a climate scientist" Monckton doesn't help Don's credibility.  He'd be better off doing what I do and go to the source directly.

Denier Don goes to Icy Greenland Again

Then Don goes completely bonkers and, quoting this statement from the Summary for Policy Makers (page SPM-3):
Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, and since the 1950s, many of the observed changes are unprecedented over decades to millennia. 
...Denier Don accuses the IPCC of telling "an outright lie", claiming that
A vast published literature exists showing that recent warming is not only not unusual, but more intense warming has occurred many times in the past centuries and millennia. As a reviewer of the IPCC report, I called this to their attention, so they cannot have been unaware of it. For example, more than 20 periods of warming in the past five centuries can be found in the Greenland GISP2 ice core (Fig. 3) (Easterbrook, 2011), the Medieval and Roman Warm Periods were warmer than recent warming (Fig. 4), and about 90% of the past 10,000 years were warmer than present (Fig. 5).
Thing is, the IPCC was writing about "global" warming, not warming of an ice sheet on the top of a summit in Central Greenland.  Don has put up this shonky chart as his "proof"!  Don doesn't say, but I am guessing it is his usual favourite chart of temperatures in Central Greenland!  The earth as a whole is a whole lot hotter than minus 36 degrees Celsius. (Click image for larger version.)

Don Easterbrook's Shonky Chart of Central Greenland (presumably) - from WUWT

Denier Don also puts up a chart from Ljungqvist (2010), showing a temperature reconstruction of part of the Northern Hemisphere - from Latitude 30 to 90 North only.  Even when Don selects a part of the world that was quite warm in the recent past, it is still warmer today than it was in times past!  I've done an animation so you can compare the actual chart with Don's version (click to enlarge):

Don, however, doesn't appear to "believe" Dr Ljungqvist himself, even though he borrows his chart.  The Ljungqvist paper states that even in that part of the world it's now hotter than than it was back in the Roman Warm Period and the Medieval Warm Period (my bold italics):
Substantial parts of the Roman Warm Period, from the first to the third centuries, and the Medieval Warm Period, from the ninth to the thirteenth centuries, seem to have equalled or exceeded the AD 1961–1990 mean temperature level in the extra-tropical Northern Hemisphere. Since AD 1990, though, average temperatures in the extra-tropical Northern Hemisphere exceed those of any other warm decades the last two millennia, even the peak of the Medieval Warm Period, if we look at the instrumental temperature data spliced to the proxy reconstruction. However, this sharp rise in temperature compared to the magnitude of warmth in previous warm periods should be cautiously interpreted since it is not visible in the proxy reconstruction itself.

I'm surprised someone as deep in denial as Don could bring himself to open the Ljungqvist paper, given the very next sentence in it refers (favourably) to Michael Mann's 2008 temperature reconstruction:
Although partly different data and methods have been used in our reconstruction than in Moberg et al. (2005) and Mann et al. (2008), the result is surprisingly similar. The inclusion of additional records would probably not substantially change the overall picture of the temperature variability.

Denier Don spends Winter in the Snow

Do I need to go on?  There is more of the same where all that came from.  Oh, okay.  I'll just show one more deception from Denier Don.  He claims that the IPCC is wrong when it writes about Northern Hemisphere snow cover:
The statement that Northern Hemisphere snow cover has “continued to decrease in extent extent” is false (despite the IPCC claim of ‘high confidence’ is false. Snow extent in the Northern Hemisphere shows no decline since 1967 and five of the six snowiest winters have occurred since 2003 (Fig. 7).
This time, unlike with every other lie he's told, Don doesn't quote directly from the IPCC report, because it would spoil his story.  This is what was written in the IPCC report (my bold italics):
Over the last two decades, the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have been losing mass, glaciers have continued to shrink almost worldwide, and Arctic sea ice and Northern Hemisphere spring snow cover have continued to decrease in extent (high confidence) (see Figure SPM.3). {4.2–4.7}
No wonder Don didn't quote the IPCC.  It doesn't say what he wants to deny!  Don puts up a chart of winter snow cover, whereas the IPCC statement was about spring snow cover!  Here is Figure SPM-3 from the IPCC Summary for Policy Makers:

Source: IPCC AR5 WG1 Summary for Policy Makers

Denier Don denies CO2

And a footnote - Don says that CO2 only started to rise after 1945!  What a nutter.

What was Anthony Watts Thinking?

Anthony Watts is playing his part in denying climate science.  To put up an article like that one shows that the sole purpose of his little blog is to publish disinformation propaganda.  No standards are too low for Anthony.  He exists to throw bones to his 8% dismissives.  Kenji is probably missing out today.

From the WUWT comments

Anthony Watts' Right Wing Authoritarians and 8% Dismissives love Denier Don and his lies.  Here is a sample of comments, most from people who probably don't have a clue about what Don has written, they agree with him just the same (archived here).

Larry Hamlin says:
October 3, 2013 at 5:31 pm
Excellent article. It will probably take months if not years to expose the outright lies and distortions that U.N. IPCC AR5 report contains. What is astounding is that this obvious propaganda is never uncovered by the main stream media who are so blinded by their clear bias in climate alarmist beliefs that they are a actually a major part of this global wide scientific scandal. The deapth of this scandal is reflected in that it is supported actively by the President of the U.S.

David talks about minutia wonders if the "alarmists" will claim that Don has made up stuff! (excerpt):
October 3, 2013 at 5:39 pm
Brilliant summation. It’s a good idea to address the big flaws in the claims and theories of the alarmists. Too often people are drawn into technical minutia regarding localised precipitation events or obscure papers full of maths and measurements trying to reveal small anomalies and get confused by the barrage of information coming out.
I’m wondering if it’s possible to have links to all the graphs provided tracing them back to the measurement source because if you show one of these graphs the alarmists will claim it’s made up.

philjourdan says:
October 3, 2013 at 5:51 pm
Outstanding point by point rebuttal!

Fabi says:
October 3, 2013 at 7:01 pm
Thank you, Dr. Easterbrook, for labeling their outright lies as such. Refreshing…

john piccirilli hasn't heard of the Marcott paper or probably any other climate science paper, but he knows for sure that wuwt is right and that climate science is b.s!:
October 3, 2013 at 8:01 pm
Pippen tell us, what is marcott paper, and give evidence it is proven . I believe the blogs and posts
On wuwt . The ipcc’s report is total b.s. agw is total b.s.

BW2013 is going to support the US postal service and send spam to politicians, he says:
October 3, 2013 at 8:05 pm
This needs to be sent to every politician in every country.
I am sending it to the folks in Washington Stte, USA. We have some of the loudest climate screamers in the world….

Don finds science quite perplexing.  He call it "gibberish" and writes:
October 3, 2013 at 8:35 pm
Professor, thank you for an outstanding rebuttal of the IPCC gibberish. Very glad you hail from Bellingham, WA. Go Vikings!

richardscourtney restrains himself from shouting, but not from chastising as "trolls" anyone who criticises Don for telling big fat lies.  He says (excerpt):
October 4, 2013 at 2:00 am
Easterbrook provides a clear, powerful and cogent scientific destruction of the latest piece of political propaganda from the IPCC.
The effectiveness and clarity of that destruction is demonstrated by the rapidity of trolls running to fill ‘the breach’.

There is the occasional rational comment which gets howled down by the WUWT illiterati, for example, Jeff Alberts (who AFAIK is himself a science denier) says:
October 3, 2013 at 6:59 pm
In Fig. 1, the IPCC report purports to show warming of 0.5°C (0.9°F) since 1980, yet surface temperature measurements indicate no warming over the past 17 years (Fig. 2) and satellite temperature data shows the August 13 temperature only 0.12°C (0.21°F) above the 1908 temperature (Spencer, 2013).
Whether or not there has been warming [of] .5c since 1980 is not answered by “yet surface temperature measurements indicate no warming over the past 17 years”. And you’re comparing the temp of a single day (august 13th) against some non-specific 1908 temperature? Very weak argument. Perhaps you meant to write this differently, but as a skeptic, it’s laughable.

Nick Kermode picks up on the snow deception and says:
October 3, 2013 at 11:18 pmMr Easterbrook, you do realise you are debunking the IPCC’s spring ice claim with the winter ice record? And very smugly too. Well that just makes you look even more foolish I’m afraid. Epic fail, but you will probably get hundreds of comments cheering you on from the sceptics so keep it up.


  1. Funnily, the claim about we "are not yet back to pre-Little Ice Age temperatures that prevailed for 90% of the past 10,000 years" is disproven by the Ljungqvist chart, which shows 20% of the past 10,000 years, and at most a few decades with temperatures that are comparable to the present ones. (Of course, the Ljungqvist chart is only for extratropical NH).

  2. " Kenji is probably missing out today."

    Kenji is probably raiding the neighbours bins as I type and finding that they throw away more wholesome fare than Watts posts.

  3. Actually a statistic is a number, not a statement with a truth value. Those who invoke 'There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.' are either totally ignorant or, more likely, they will misuse statistics to lie with.

  4. I wince every time I read this stuff about 90% of the Holocene (or whatever - it wasn't that much but disnae matter) was warmer than the present. Yes, sure, of course it was - at least in the NH - because precessional forcing was much greater during the earlier part of the Holocene that it is today. 'Greater' as in summer NH insolation was ~30W/m^2 higher than present values. The somewhat misnomered Holocene Optimum began to wane about ~6ka as precessional forcing abated. Pretending that early Holocene temperatures are the norm that should apply now is simply ignorant.

  5. As for the bouncing ball climate crap... unforced return to a 'normal' climate state that existed pre-LIA... it's magical thinking.

  6. Jct: I'll bet you $100 that global warming continues. I'm betting on Dr. Don. Pop on over to the Global Warming Bets FaceBook page and lay down your action. I'll also bet another $100 that the Dirty Thirties will prove to have had the warmest years in the last 100 years. So come put your money where your foul mouth is. Not enough to hurt your bankroll but enough to sting your pride.
    Great Canadian


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