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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Judith Curry picks a cherry in her motivated recycled denial

Sou | 10:09 PM Go to the first of 46 comments. Add a comment

UPDATE: (Note - I'm going through the video at the moment and making updates. I'll let you know when I've finished. Done.)

Judith Curry: "we are fooling ourselves to think that CO2 control knob really influences climate on these decadal or even century time scales,” (See update below)

Judith Curry has dived deeply into denialism. On her blog she has promoted an article about her by Marc Morano (infamous for his role in the "swiftboat" attack on John Kerry) on his CFACT blog, writing:
Marc Morano has written up a summary that includes some of the discussion [link], although I’m a bit puzzled by the headline.

If the headline is the only bit she's "a bit puzzled about", one assumes she endorses the rest. The rest includes a lot of twaddle such as:
“Even on the timescale of decade or two, we could end up be very surprised on how the climate plays out and it might not be getting warmer like the UN IPCC says,” Curry noted.
“We don’t know what’s going to happen. All other things being equal – yes — more carbon dioxide means warmer, but all other things are never equal,” she emphasized. 
And in response to someone who observed that snow packs are lessening and glaciers are disappearing and the world is changing so quickly "right before our eyes", Judith came up with some trite denier nonsense (Video 38:30).

She said: "Climate is always changing." Oh my!

As a scientist she should have said something like this, "Yes,  Inertia toward continued emissions creates potential 21st-century global warming that is comparable in magnitude to that of the largest global changes in the past 65 million years but is orders of magnitude more rapid."

Judith gave a plug to "what she happens to think" based on nothing at all, nothing she's published and nothing anyone else has published, and she contradicts known science, opining that "the anthropogenic effect is about half of what the IPCC says". (Video: 50:05) But the IPCC science is based on tangible observations and measurements, not random "I thinks" of a disinforming blogger. Gavin Schmidt rebutted Judith's gut feel very well. (Good scientists use their brain for thinking, more than their gut.)

Remember when Judith Curry said, less than a year ago:
I have long stated that scientists advocating for public policy can lead to distrust of scientists and their scientific findings.

She's recanted, with a vengeance. Not only is she advocating public policy, she's putting herself forward as an economic and governmental relations "expert", too, despite her warnings that when scientists advocate it can lead to distrust (my bold italics) Video at 1:06:48:
Relying on global international treaty to solve the problem — which I do not think would really solve the problem even if it was implemented – is politically unviable and economically unviable. 
Actually, I don't think that picking this out the way Marc Morano did gave justice to the context. I disagree that a global agreement is politically and economically unviable (think Montreal Protocol) and I'd go further to saying it's essential. If she'd said it's not by itself sufficient I would have agreed. However, Judith was also arguing for local initiatives here. She talked about being "stuck between a rock and a hard place" and "trying to find new ways of approaching the problem" like "regional, local, experimenting kind of approaches". (Which are already happening.) She doesn't want any more investment in climate models.

On the other hand she misrepresents the broad scientific findings, implying there is equal weight between the opinions of a small minority of contrarians and the findings of the majority of scientists. Notice how she slips in a policy dot point at the bottom, too. An issue that is not just for physical scientists but for economists and others to address:

Judith Curry misrepresenting the broad scientific consensus. Source: Video at 10:59

She also attacks Cook13 (video 11:10), a rigorous study of the actual literature supported by a survey of scientists who published that same literature, and says it was "deeply flawed" based on no evidence whatsoever. It wasn't. Judith just makes a bald statement. What a rotter. Parrotting a mantra of deniers like Marc Morano, Anthony Watts and Christopher Monckton (what company does Judith keep these days, one wonders). And she complains about being alienated. Is it any wonder? Her sole "evidence" are "two recently published" opinion surveys, which she doesn't identify, but which obviously lumps in non-expert with expert opinion and claims there is a lower "consensus" than 97%.  I'm guessing that one of them was the survey of American meteorologists, where a lot of weather forecasters, tv announcers and so forth, were not familiar with climate science. The other might have been the survey by Bart Verheggen et al with the "al" including John Cook. Which interestingly found that disinformers like Judith Curry get a disproportionate time on the airwaves compared to honest scientists. She neglected to mention other studies that all find that almost all scientific papers on the subject prove or build on the knowledge that humans are causing most if not all recent global warming.  Probably more than all, because some of what we pollute the air with (some aerosols) has a cooling effect.

If you need convincing, read this, which Marc highlighted up top and repeated in the main text (my bold underline). I couldn't believe what I read, so I checked. Yes Judith really did say out loud in front of lots of people. (Video 51:09):
“We just don’t know. I think we are fooling ourselves to think that CO2 control knob really influences climate on these decadal or even century time scales.” 

Judith has swung away from science and into utter nuttery. She is reported as saying:
We get called ‘deniers’. This is a very sad state of affairs,
Update 2: In the comments below, Joshua has pointed out that Judith has (very slightly) wound back her ridiculous statement above, writing in the comments: "This was an unscripted response to a question. Should have been ‘dominates’ not influences".  That's still absurd. Three points. Does she really need a script to remind her of the difference between "dominates" and "influences"? Secondly: Look at the chart below and tell me, what else could possibly be dominating the rise in temperature of the past 65 years. Why are temperatures today not the same as they were in the 1950s, 1960s or even 1970s? Thirdly: read Gavin Schmidt's response to Judith's denialism. Sou 21 September 9:32 am AEST.

Back in May this year, Judith admitted that on a "skeptic/orthodox" spectrum she had shifted from a 7 (mainstream scientist end) to 3 (denialist). Her dive into denialism has shifted further. Here is the updated graphic:

A sad state of your own making, Judith.

Sou Thurs 18 Sept 2014

Judith Curry spoke to the much-reviled George C. Marshall Institute yesterday. She spouted her usual nonsense (pdf here). You know the sort of crackpottery she comes up with these days. Having read her article, I bet most of the audience fell asleep while she was talking. It was boring, tedious and wrong.

My prediction was a bit off. She didn't spatter her handout with "wickeds". There was only one mention and that was "wickedness".  Not a single monster or stadium wave washed across the text. And she didn't mention Michael Mann once - or not in her written blurb anyway.

(Update: It wasn't in her handout, but in her talk she did talk about Marcia Wyatt's stadium wave, and there were lots of "wickeds" so I wasn't so wrong after all.)

I was right about some things though. There were 16 "uncertainties" or variations of same. Twenty-one IPCCs, full of disinformation. Her claims about the IPCC are nonsense needless to say, as Gavin Schmidt explains. And she doesn't want to reduce CO2 emissions. Her close to closing para was:
Motivated by the precautionary principle to avoid dangerous anthropogenic climate change, attempts to modify the climate through reducing CO2 emissions may turn out to be futile. The stagnation in greenhouse warming observed over the past 16+ years demonstrates that CO2 is not a control knob on climate variability on decadal time scales. Even if CO2 mitigation strategies are successful and climate model projections are correct, an impact on the climate would not be expected for many decades, owing to the long lifetime of CO2 in the atmosphere and thermal inertia driven by the ocean; solar variability, volcanic eruptions, and natural internal climate variability will continue to be sources of unpredictable climate surprises.

Utter rubbish. Judith does believe in the precautionary principle when it suits her. When there's a 30% chance she'll be inconvenienced, Judith advocates shutting down a city. When there's a 100% chance that the world will suffer serious hardship, Judith doesn't want to lift a finger.

Judith wants the world to get hotter and hotter and hotter. What does she care? She will, though.  She mightn't get swamped by rising seas if she stays inland but she's young enough to feel the real heat when it comes.

By the way, if that passage looks familiar it's because you've read something like it before, in Judith's testimony to the  US Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works back in January this year.
Motivated by the precautionary principle to avoid dangerous anthropogenic climate change, attempts to modify the climate through reducing CO2 emissions may turn out to be futile. The stagnation in greenhouse warming observed over the past 15+ years demonstrates that CO2 is not a control knob on climate variability on decadal time scales.

She's recycling the lies she told to the US Government. Isn't there a crime in that somewhere on the books? Does she think she's covered herself by using the word "may"? How many decades does she think it takes for CO2 warming? It's already been happening for decades. You'll notice that she added a year for some reason. Why would that be?

Cherry picking classic

Will you look at that. Sixteen years ago is 1998, the year of the super El Nino. The classic denier cherry pick. Craig Rucker of CFACT would be proud!

Data Source: NASA GISS


  1. Since this was a national press club event, did any reporter ask her about her crackpot IronSun-like theory of cloud nucleation?

    1. Alas, National Press Club was just the venue. They rent out meeting space the same way hotels do. -- Dennis

    2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    3. BB's comment has been moved to the HotWhoppery. Replies to BB have therefore been removed.

  2. The Marshall Institute put the talk and Q&A online.

    No comment, other than that Curry did not surprise.

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. You asked a not entirely unreasonable question, Billy Bob. The answer is at the HotWhoppery

    2. aaah... I geddit now. There can be no debate because there IS no debate. Fair enough. Be tough to handle when you turn out to be wrong eh?

      As for WHT, I stand by my comments. He has a shot at Curry and refers to a comment at her blog, yet by my reading WHT was well and truly sorted in that thread. His quibble was irrelevant. Granted I don't understand the science but I can follow an argument. Isn't it relevant to evaluating his comment here to have a complete sense of what he links to in the context of his attack on Curry's integrity?

    3. BB. If you don't have much of a science background then there is little point in following an entire comment chain on the rather tedious topic of whether Bose-Einstein statistics are relevant to cloud nucleation. However, it’s your time! I was just as voyeuristic as you were, although I had the excuse that I studied B-E stats for a few years. (That was just my excuse, as it was really a waste of time.) In fact, I thought the most important aspect of the whole debate was that JC was quite unable to answer the point that WHT was making, and had to leave a reply to her colleague. That told me a lot.

      If you really want to gain an insight into AGW you have to start with the basics. Go to the APS website and see their detailed commentary on the underlying physics. It's what every physics student at University anywhere in the world is taught at first year level, and it is fundamentally sound. Until you take that on board you will literally be floundering.

      Once you understand those basics it will help you parse much better the websites and commentary on those websites. You'd quickly see that 99% of what appears on WUWT is simply wrong.

      And don't tally up a count of pro and anti comments referring to any articles or associated comments. If you think the result is a sort of scientific web democracy that means anything, then you'd be horribly wrong. The reason you won't see much anti-comment on WUWT, or even JC, is that most physicists are either too busy to worry, or gave up many years ago due to the abuse they received on similar websites.

      I know about a couple of hundred physicists (although having stopped being an active one so long ago that I can’t remember the Claussius-Clapyeron equation). Not one of them would waste their time on an AGW website (although some tried in the past.) And not one doubts the basics of AGW. And not one has anything to do with climate. That’s not proof, but a pretty big pointer that there’s a lot of rubbish out there.

    4. Anon, I followed that rather long thread right through - I found it fairly interesting on the whole. WHT was definitely taken down as far as I could tell, but I didn't miss the point that Judith left the response to her colleague.

      However, the matter was largely irrelevant and was related more to Vitaly's expertise, after all it wasn't just Judith's paper. So I can't say I see that as particularly telling.

      I understand in quite some depth the basics of AGW. Do I understand the more complex detail of the science? No of course not as I haven't the training or talent to understand it at that level. But I do most definitely grasp the basics.

      And without going into it, I am of the opinion that the climate is not as sensitive to CO2 and associated feedbacks as the IPCC argues. But it's just an opinion based on lots of reading. Am I right?

      Well, you'd say no. That's OK. I happen to think otherwise.

    5. I second what Anonymous just said, BB. You admit that you can't follow the science, but then say you can follow an argument. Can you not see that if you can't follow the science then you can't understand a scientific argument? To me that is just common sense. It is like saying to a mathematician that you don't understand math but you can see there is a hole in his proof! That's just bollocks.

      Yet this is what happens with so many people who hang around the denier blogs. They are total scientific illiterates but think their opinion is as good as anyone else's, and then wonder why, when they come to a science based site like this, that they are laughed at. Your opinion is only worth something if it is an informed opinion, and sadly, in your case, it is not. So to inform yourself of AGW, it means learning some basic science. There is no way around it. Unfortunately, science is hard work, but if you want to have some relevance you need to do it. And don't think that by hanging around WUWT you will sort of, kind of, pick it up, by "osmosis", or somehow or other. Aint gonna happen. They don't discuss science over there, it is all conspiracy theories.

      I too have many friends in science, working with researchers in animal ecology and with scientists from all fields in Africa. Not one of them doubts the basics of AGW either, and they all appreciate the dangers. You want respect? Get a basic (scientific) education.

    6. Billy Bob claimed:
      I understand in quite some depth the basics of AGW. Do I understand the more complex detail of the science? No of course not as I haven't the training or talent to understand it at that level. But I do most definitely grasp the basics.

      He's not yet shown any evidence at all that he understands the basics or anything about climate. On the contrary, he doesn't understand much at all. It would pay him to spend more time learning and less time spouting denialist crap.

    7. This is why it is so frustrating arguing with Deniers. They simultaneously admit that they don't have the "talent or the training" in science, but then claim they know enough to make an informed decision, when, quite clearly, they don't.

      BB, could you post the bits where you think "WHT was definitely taken down"? Let us all have a look and see if your understanding is as good as you claim. You can't have it both ways. You can't say that you don't understand the science but yet that you think your opinion is as good as anyone else's. As I said before, you are entitled to your opinion, but you are not entitled to have it respected unless it is an informed opinion, which clearly, it is not.

  4. typo?

    "says it was "deeply flawed" based on evidence whatsoever"

  5. Judith Curry: "we are fooling ourselves to think that CO2 control knob really influences climate on these decadal or even century time scales,”

    This is a remarkable claim. She doesn't say "controls climate" or even "dominates climate", but "influences climate". She actually claims that CO2 doesn't have a noticable effect on climate for decades or even centuries. Amazing!

    And she doesn't just say that this might be the case, she says one is a fool for thinking differently.

    1. Agreed. I think you could - just about - make the argument that on decadal timescales, natural variability is dominant. But the forced trend dominates over multi-decadal, never mind the centennial scale.

      So this statement is probably the craziest thing I can recall JC ever having said. It, and it alone, places her outside the parameters of rational discussion of this topic.

    2. The several minutes either side (I couldn't watch the whole thing) were slathered with weasel-worded platitudes and faux-reasonableness, which is what most of her content consists of. But that sentence...eeep, she just totally jumped the shark.

      If she drifts any further on the scale in the article, she'll finish up in Slayer country...

    3. Rather than criticize Dr. Curry for inexact or careless, wording, one should look at the full quote:

      'Even on the timescale of decade or two, we could end up be very surprised on how the climate plays out and it might not be getting warmer like the UN IPCC says. We don’t know what's going to happen. All other things being equal – yes -- more carbon dioxide means warmer, but all other things are never equal. We just don’t know. I think we are fooling ourselves to think that CO2 control knob really influences climate on these decadal or even century time scales.'

    4. Indeed. When viewed in context it's plain that it was not simply a careless quote. She is quite deliberately spreading disinformation.

    5. The thing is, given what we know of basic physics - and can demonstrate in a lab at the drop of a hat - then for Curry to assert that perhaps the "CO2 control knob doesn't really influence climate on these ... scales", she needs to have a decent estimate of how climate would play out with vs without the CO2 influence.

      And since we only have one earth, that means climate models and/or inferences drawn from historical data, right? That's OK since she's well-known for the touting the validity of models and the reliability of inferences from historical data...

      ...oh, wait.

    6. " should look at the full quote: ..."

      Yes, David at Cal, look at the quote. I looked at it and realised how completely vapid it is. It contradicts itself and in sum says absolutely nothing! How can she say, in one paragraph that, yes, carbon dioxide means warmer and then we are fooling ourselves to think that CO2 really influences climate? Talk about an example of a lack of joined up thinking. And all that waflle about all things being equal or not is just obfuscating padding.

    7. Lottharson, maybe she meant CO2 hasn't been influencing the climate over centennial time periods in the past. As far as I can see the Pleistocene climate has had co2 functioning as a weak feedback (relatively speaking, of course). I recently estimated the peak co2 concentration attributable to the total reserves included in the BP world fact book. The value seems to be between 620 and 630 ppm. This tells me the kick we are giving the climate will be rather short lived. By 2500 human population will be much lower and we may be more worried about the lack of energy sources to keep us warm in a future ice age (I guess you can tell I'm not too keen on nuclear power).

    8. Fernando : Curry means CO2 isn't causing much, if any, of the current global warming. No more, no less. It's her schtick.

      Even if we stabilise at 600ppm that CO2 isn't just going to go away, and a future ice-age (if we have another) is tens of thousands of years away. The former is an issue, the latter isn't.

  6. Comment from David L. Hagen relocated to the the HotWhoppery

  7. What a total jackass is the author who penned this doggerel. Rude, crude and absurd but goose stepping right along with the True Believer Consensus Clowns.

    1. LOL - I take it this is what passes for a rebuttal. Sou, I think you should leave this here simply to show the lack of anything resembling evidence these clowns have.

      Just once I'd like to see a coherent argument that at least *tries* to account for paleo-climate, the rise in global SSTs over the past 150 years and the rise in OHC during the so called 'pause'.

      Mind you, I realize there is nothing other than CO2 that can explain all three, but at least if they tried it would show they actually understand the issues. Instead we keep seeing the same old tired one trick ponies. Or in this case nothing but ad hominem invective.

    2. I've seen some people think I was over the top with this article. I've re-read it and can't see why they would say that. I didn't use terribly snarky language, compared to the general tone of this blog.

      Judith's speaking tone belied what she actually said. Her speaking tone was soothing "listen to me, I'm a reasonable person". By contrast, the words she actually spoke were riddled with the dumbest of denier slogans. She misrepresented the science multiple times.

      I figure it's just confirmation bias from her fans. They love Judith. They mistakenly think she encourages "open debate". Just look at her blog roll to see what she really "encourages". Read the sort of rubbish she writes herself and the dumb articles she promotes on her blog.

      Listen to the words that she speaks, not the tone of her voice.

      Judith has steered into denialism. As she said in her talk, no longer holding the Chair position has freed her up, or words to that effect. I guess she no longer feels she has any responsibilities to science.

      And the fact is that not only does she misrepresent science, she felt free to tell lies about the work of other scientists, calling Cook13 "deeply flawed". That to my mind is appalling behaviour from a senior scientist. This needs to be told.

      I don't apologise. I hope more people speak out.

    3. I swear I can hear an irritating creaking noise. It must be a crank turning.

    4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    5. I am hoping this gentleman was making coherent arguments.
      "...roughly half the overall warming since 1860 occurred before carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from human activities had reached significant levels."
      “...we can state with some confidence that natural Holocene temperature fluctuations have been on the same scale as the human-caused effects estimated to result from greenhouse gases. Hence, we cannot assume that in the absence of human intervention, Earth’s temperatures would have remained stable.”
      - Wallace S. Broecker, 2001
      See the context here:
      His work on abrupt climate change was good. It would be fair to ask, what does he think some 13 years later? I'd say he was with the consensus then and now. SkS has an interesting graph:
      Figure 1. About a 1.0 C rise over the last century of warming. His prediction seems to be diverging in recent years.

      My first version of the above is in the HotWhoppery. I misread the context of what I read at some other website. I am sorry about that, and thanks for pointing that out.

    6. Wally Broecker on CO2: "We’re moving, but the goal is receding, so the gap is getting wider. We are learning, but one thing we are learning is that the climate system turns out to be a hell lot more complicated than we initially thought. […] We are going to learn all these things by experiment. […] On the time scale that this is all going to happen, we will not be able to make really good predictions. It is just too complicated.

      We use the atmosphere as a garbage dock, but we cannot do that. [..] There ought to be a way to retrieve the CO2 and put it away. […] But it is hard for a single nation to create a task that everybody accepts. […] We have to cut the fossil fuel emissions by a factor of ten to stop the CO2 from rising!”

    7. Much of the warming since 1860 has been due to a dramatic reduction in vulcanism. The period from 1783 to (I think) 1908 was very active and made the period relatively cold. The change from that to the very quiet 20th and 21st centuries (so far) led to warming. Climate adjusted to it by the mid-1930's, and it's had nothing to do with the warming since.

      Natural variation requires a natural cause; one natural cause of early 20thCE warming was that reduction in vulcanism. When one knows of causes one should account for them as much as possible.

      The warming since the

  8. I do think you were over the top and I think this makes your rebuttal of Curry less effective. Read John N.G's rebuttal of some of Curry's views on his website for an example of a not over the top critique.

    1. I don't think John NG does "over the top".

      Judith herself was so far "over the top" you could say she was stratospherically so. Especially given that what she said was poles apart from what she knows.

      I was mild by comparison.

      Of course, it could be a cultural thing. Australians can be blunt. We don't pussy foot around. We say what we think and don't sugar coat it. Or some of us are like that, anyway.

  9. Judith has clarified the comment that Lars picked up on:

    So it seems that Judith is significantly less uncertain than she used to be.

    I don't know exactly what the sensitivity figure would work out to if you calculated backwards from 50% of warming over the past 5 decades to determine a centennial rate (I'll leave it to the math-capable to work that out for themselves) - but my guess is that Judith used to think that there was at least a non-negligible possibility that a reasonable confidence interval for likely warming would include a sensitivity rate large enough to equal more than 50% of recent warming if projected on to a century scale.

    But now she thinks that it is "foolish" to consider that possibility. Mr. Uncertain T. Monster seems to be getting awfully small in Judith's eyes.

    1. Thanks, Joshua. I've updated the article.

      It's still an absurd statement to make.

      She has also said elsewhere that some time over the next few months she's going to try to come up with a response to Gavin Schmidt's article. Will it be as ridiculous as her current claims I wonder, or will she back-peddle?

      She'd better get a move on before the next hike in surface temperature makes her more irrelevant than she is today, except to the denialist speaking circuit she seems to favour these days. Which I guess is the real point to her rejection of science.

    2. Greg Laden has a new article up that's relevant here. Contrast the science with Judith Curry's ridiculous claims.

    3. As noted, Judith Curry explained her mistake in a reply at her blog. When someone asked about it there, I thought she had made a mistake. To many dominates looks like > 50%. The recent paper by Chen and Tung highlighted at Curry's blog: 'Cause of hiatus found deep in the Atlantic Ocean' is close to not disagreeing with Curry's modified statement. As Tung commented, “The argument on the roughly 50-50 attribution of the forced vs unforced warming for the last two and half decades of the 20th century is actually quite simple. If one is blaming internal variability for canceling out the anthropogenically forced warming during the current hiatus, one must admit that the former is not negligible compared to the latter, and the two are probably roughly of the same magnitude.” Tung is implying it's about 50%.

    4. In explaining one "mistake", Judith admitted to another mistake.

      Also, if you are going to quote Chen and Tung, please provide a link to the paper itself. At the very least, a link to the paper in the journal (subs req'd) or better still, a link to the full paper (pdf). When I read the paper I couldn't find any suggestion that CO2 warming does not dominate. What the paper is proposing is that the extra heat is been absorbed by the ocean.

      In the most recent paper, Chen and Tung state:

      During the current hiatus, radiative forcing at the TOA by the increasing greenhouse-gas concentration in the atmosphere produces additional warming in deeper and deeper ocean layers. This deepening warming is seen in Fig. 1A, calculated by using the in situ Ishii data (10), as an increasing fanning out of the OHC curves (integrated from the surface to different depths) after 1999. Globally, an additional 0.69× 1023 J has been sequestered since 1999 in the 300- to 1500-m layer by 2012 (Fig. 1A), which, if absent, would have made the upper 300 m warm as fast as the upper 1500 m since 1999. Because the latter has an uninterrupted positive trend, there would have been no slowdown of the warming of the surface or the upper layers. Therefore, the enhanced ocean heat sink is the main cause for the current slowing in surface warming.

      And in the conclusion:

      The fact that the global-mean temperature, along with that of every major ocean basin, has not increased for the past 15 years, as they should in the presence of continuing radiative forcing, requires a planetary sink for the excess heat. Although the tropical Pacific is the source of large interannual fluctuations caused by the exchange of heat in its shallow tropical layer (3), the current slowdown is in addition associated with larger decadal changes in the deeper layers of the Atlantic and the Southern oceans. The next El Niño, when it occurs in a year or so, may temporarily interrupt the hiatus, but, because the planetary heat sinks in the Atlantic and the Southern Oceans remain intact, the hiatus should continue on a decadal time scale. When the internal variability that is responsible for the current hiatus switches sign, as it inevitably will, another episode of accelerated global warming should ensue.

      So it is more likely you are referring to this paper, which is different.In the earlier paper by Tung and Zhao, they state:

      Superimposed on the secular trend is a natural multidecadal oscillation of an average period of 70 y with significant amplitude of 0.3–0.4 °C peak to peak, which can explain many historical episodes of warming and cooling and accounts for 40% of the observed warming since the mid-20th century and for 50% of the previously attributed anthropogenic warming trend (55).

      That paper doesn't make a lot of sense to me. If they can attribute so much warming to natural variability then why hasn't the earth cooled down to 1960s temperatures or close to?

      BTW, I understand why you didn't supply a link to the email quote, because it may have infringed the comment policy. But you can always use an archived version, like this.

      Regardless, any notion that CO2 isn't the dominant cause of the rapid rise in global temperature and won't be, on multi-decadal and centennial scales, is contrarian science verging on denialism. About the only thing that could change the current warming trend would be a rapid reduction in CO2 emissions, multiple eruptions of super volcanoes. Or maybe a large asteroid striking the earth, or possibly an all out nuclear war.

    5. I'd link to Curry's website where Tung wrote what I quoted but I fear that would be an anti-science site and then my reply would be removed. Tung's comment was given highlighted status by Curry and was in response to confusion over what they said and how it was widely reported.
      Their paper, I am not saying it's not in the oceans, but so far by a number of measures, it's not in the atmosphere. Perhaps a bit, but very hard to be sure given imperfect measurements.
      I'd agree in general with both the papers you linked., but we're still trying to understand the causes of the decadal scales.
      I'll use Kyle Swanson's name writing at RealClimate:
      His first graph. Eyeballing it shows about a 1.1 C rise per century.
      I am agreement with that graph, for what our working number is.

    6. I'll repeat what I suggested in my response to you, which you might have missed. It's also in the comment policy.

      >But you can always use an archived version...

      Links to places to archive are in the comment policy.

    7. Very Tall Guy, over at ATTP, has answered my question I asked in this thread, so I'm going to repost my response to him here:


      VTG –

      == > "TCR %Anthro warming (GHG only)
      1.05 49%
      1.33 62%
      1.80 84%

      So her own analysis contradicts her statement that there is a “vigorous debate” about “whether the warming since 1950 has been dominated by human causes” – it turns out she actually agrees with everyone else that it has been!"


      Thanks for that. I didn’t know how to work out the math – but I asked for the answer from Judith and her “denizens” in one of her threads –

      “I would appreciate it if someone could tell me what sensitivity figure would equate to 50% of warming over the past 5 or 6 decades if projected to a centennial scale.

      Would the resulting number be included in Nic Lewis’ 90% CI that goes up to 3.0°C per doubling?”


      So Judith said she would be “fooling [her]self” to think that ACO2 “dominates” (corrected from “influences”) on decadal or centennial scales..even when the paper she was in the process of getting published indicates that ACO2 dominated climate on a decadal scale over the past 6 decades or so.

      It seems clear to me that in public appearances, Judith has made a number of statements that don’t live up to scientific scrutiny.

      That, to me, is the kind of ‘advocacy” that should be avoided.

      That is, assuming your math is correct.

  10. “Notice how she slips in a policy dot point at the bottom, too. An issue that is not just for physical scientists but for economists and others to address...”

    Whether we can afford to radically reduce CO2 emissions, and whether reduction will improve the climate

    And taxpayers as well who in some ways will pay for the reductions would think of it as their issue. Curry is qualified to ask the question and note it's a subject that is not agreed upon. Curry has a lot of experience in front of the public and if she is moving to the science-policy interface I'd say she's qualified. As noted, she's cautioned about the perils of this. Possibly her message was intended for young Scientists. I don't think the 97% was asked this can we afford it, etc. question and I am not sure if they have, their answer was, We can afford it and it will make a material difference. Her other three points of disagreement on that graphic are still being studied.

    To introduce myself, I am Ragnaar who will post occasionally at Curry's blog. As others are, I am still trying to make sense of it all. Some interesting stops along this journey are abrupt changes, regime changes, Tsonis, sea ice as a negative feedback, a sped up hydrological cycle, Sornette's dragon kings, Ghil, Robert Sapolsky, line by line radiative transfer models, and lake ice as regime changes in Minnesota.

    1. >I don't think the 97% was asked this can we afford it, etc. question and I am not sure if they have, their answer was, We can afford it and it will make a material difference

      Americans by 2 to 1 Would Pay More to Curb Climate Change

    2. Ragnaar, welcome to HotWhopper.

      I appreciate that it's almost impossible for people not familiar with climate science to separate the dross from the meaningful at Curry's place. It's a veritable gish gallop that Judith loves and encourages, because it confuses people.

      If you are going to continue to comment here, I ask a few things:

      Read the comment policy and comply.

      Do your own research from reliable sources before making statements that are wrong. Cite the sources and make sure they are reliable. Avoid unsupported claims and claims based on denialist blogs.

      Don't cut and paste rubbish from denier blogs. I run out of patience and, more particularly time - and you risk some of your comments not even making it to the HotWhoppery.

      Recognise that there is a key difference between HotWhopper and Judith's blog. Judith's blog is for promoting disinformation and FUD and confusing stray readers. HotWhopper exists to demolish disinformation.

      Recognise all that and act accordingly, and your comments may survive and even be welcomed.


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