Monday, November 24, 2014

Bob Tisdale gets into a spot of hot water

Sou | 12:36 PM Go to the first of 66 comments. Add a comment

Today Perennially Puzzled "Bob Tisdale" is puzzling over sea level. He's branching out a bit from his normal sea surface temperature, or SST for those "in the know" like "Bob" :) - but not too far. And, for a change, he's decided to prove that it's not ENSO that's causing global sea levels to rise, sort of. He doesn't go quite as far as admitting that melting ice and thermal expansion of water from the hotter oceans or changing salinity have anything to do with sea level change, let alone that it's got anything to do with human activity. But it's a small step in the right direction.

Of course, he didn't admit to that.

The spot of hot water "Bob" got into (archived here) is near the Philippines. He wrote about "The region east of the Philippines" and said:
For months, I’ve wanted to plot the data for that region, so that I could get a rough idea of its contribution to the global rate of sea level rise.

And he's done the sums, he says:
...the contribution of the region east of the Philippines to the global sea level rise isn’t a lot. It looks bad on the map, but due to its small size (only about 1.4% of the surface of the sea-ice-free global oceans) it doesn’t add much to the global rate of sea level rise, less than 5%.

Apparently he went and got lots and lots of data. He reckons he went and:
...divided the region bordered by the coordinates of 5N-15N, 125E-165E into sixteen 5-deg latitude by 5-deg longitude grids. Using the CU sea level wizard, I downloaded the time-series data for the center of each of those 5×5 grids.  I then averaged the data for the 2 separate latitude bands (5N-10N and 10N-15N), and then took a weighted average of the sea level data for those 2 latitude bands to account for the very slight differences in area.

To what end? you ask. Well, he says that: "There is a very strong ENSO component to the sea level data for the region of unusual sea level rise, east of the Philippines."

He'd be right about that, but he didn't need to do all his sums to figure that out. One of the ENSO experts, Kevin Trenberth has written about this lots of times. For example, last January Kevin Trenberth pointed out that:
...the negative PDO might itself be setting the stage for a major compensation. The trade winds are a key player here, as changes in atmospheric pressure create the "sloshing water in a bathtub" effect that is a hallmark of both ENSO and the PDO. In the tropical Pacific, the tendency toward stronger-than-normal trade winds since the PDO’s last shift has pushed increasing volumes of water from east to west. Sea levels in and near the Philippines have risen by more than eight inches relative to the eastern tropical Pacific, which only added to the storm surge inflicted by Supertyphoon Haiyan in November 2013.

What "Bob Tisdale" was puzzling over was whether that wind-driven sea level rise in the western tropical Pacific is somehow contributing to the global mean sea level. If it is, it's not contributing much. And I'm not sure that it is. The water is being moved around. Oh, maybe there'll be a little bit of thermal expansion because the water is warm. But it's always warm there AFAIK. And there are cold anomalies elsewhere. In any case, the global mean sea level is calculated based on the volume of water in all the oceans. When one part of the sea rises, another part will fall to compensate, all the while the whole sea is rising. From the University of Colorado:
The term "global mean sea level" in the context of our research is defined as the area-weighted mean of all of the sea surface height anomalies measured by the altimeter in a single, 10-day satellite track repeat cycle.  It can also be thought of as the "eustatic sea level." The eustatic sea level is not a physical sea level (since the sea levels relative to local land surfaces vary depending on land motion and other factors), but it represents the level if all of the water in the oceans were contained in a single basin. Changes to this eustatic level are caused by changes in total ocean water mass (e.g., ice sheet runoff), changes in the size of the ocean basin (e.g., GIA), or density changes of the water (e.g., thermal expansion). 

The fact is that the higher level of water in the western tropical Pacific is to a great extent compensated by the lower level of water in the eastern tropical Pacific. That's where the wind blew it from. As Kevin Trenberth said:
“Eventually this difference in sea level becomes unsustainable, and the water sloshes back,” asserts Trenberth. “At some point, perhaps because of a fairly random weather event, we will likely have an El Niño event that leads us back into a positive PDO.”

Here's a map of the current sea level trends (not anomalies), so you can see that while the annual trend is rising near the Philippines, it's falling in parts of the eastern Pacific and elsewhere.

Source: U Colorado
I couldn't find a really clear map of current sea level anomalies, but here's one from 2007 showing the higher than normal sea level in the west and the lower than normal in the east. You can see it animated here:

There's also an outlook map on a BoM website, showing the higher sea level anomaly in the west and large expanses in the eastern Pacific where the anomaly is negative. (See below for the projections.)

ENSO can affect global sea level, not just the sea level in the tropical Pacific. Remember when there was that amazing La Nina that lifted up loads of water from the ocean and dumped on Australia and South America?

Data source: U Colorado
But in the medium to long term, all that balances out, except for the ongoing inexorable rise. The University of Colorado sea level people talk about ENSO in terms of interannual variability on sea level. What goes up comes down. And even when it comes down on land instead of in the oceans, it finds its way back to the sea sooner rather than later.

Anyway, back to "Bob" and his ENSO musings. He goes way further than most people would and computes how much the sea level rise near the Philippines contributed to the global sea level rise. What he didn't do was compute any corresponding fall elsewhere so I'm not really clear on what he thinks he was computing. He goes on to write:
Will the sea levels in that region continue at that pace into the future?  Much of it depends on ENSO, and that’s something climate models still can’t simulate. Extending that excessive trend into the future would be foolish, especially when we have no understanding of what ENSO will do in the decades to come.

For the life of me I don't know why he suggests anyone would think that the sea level in that region would continue to rise at the same higher than average rate forever and a day. You'd end up with the sea shooting up through the sky eventually. Who does he think would be so foolish, one wonders. At least he has the sense to acknowledge that the rise in that particular area is to some extent tied up with ENSO, though he doesn't mention the Pacific Decadal Oscillation for some reason. I think he restricts himself to explaining the entire world and everything in it in terms of sea surface temperatures and ENSO. I can imagine him wondering if it's going to rain, then rushing in to check his latest SST charts and ENSO diagrams to see if he should carry a brolly. A bit like reading tea leaves.

Here's an excerpt from article about a study from July this year about sea level rise in the region and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation. Only some of the rise is from the PDO, the rest is from human-caused warming. Goodness, can that be right? A rise of one centimetre a year from human-caused warming? That's a lot! I can't get to the paper to see if that's what the paper found or if the press release messed it up a bit. Whatever - that part of the ocean is rising a lot. We do know that much.  Kevin Trenberth mentioned a difference of eight inches (20cm) between the west and east tropical Pacific. Anyway, this is what the article says. (My emphasis.)
The research team estimated that areas of the ocean near the Philippines and northeast Australia are being raised by about 1 centimeter per year due to anthropogenic warming, which can increase the intensity of severe weather. “When water starts piling up there and typhoon-like storms are traveling over higher sea levels, it can be a bad situation,” said Hamlington.
Although global sea level patterns are not geographically uniform -- sea level rise in some areas correlate with sea level fall in other areas -- the average current global sea level rise is roughly 3 millimeters per year.  Some scientists are estimating global seas may rise by a meter or more by the end of the century as a result of greenhouse warming.
“When the current PDO switches from its warm phase to its cool phase sea levels on the western coast of North America likely will rise,” said Leben of CU-Boulder’s aerospace engineering sciences department. “I think the PDO has been suppressing sea level there for the past 20 or 30 years.”

Here's the paper in Nature Climate Change. The press release talks about the PDO switching from the warm phase to the cool phase. The PDO index been negative for a few years and has shifted to positive this year. Whether that means a shift of the PDO regime overall or whether it's just an El Nino related shift that won't last, we'll find out sooner or later.

I'm told by an authority on the subject that sea level has dropped in the far western Pacific and has risen across much of the Pacific east of the dateline by a few inches. This experimental sea level outlook chart from BoM suggests that trend may continue. I've marked the dates on the two animations - one for the next two months and one for May - July next year. Click to enlarge as always.

Source: BoM - Note: Experimental Only

From the WUWT comments

There aren't many comments. Some people think that sea level should be fairly much the same everywhere. For example, Louis Hooffstetter writes:
November 23, 2014 at 6:29 am
I agree with Latitude. A localized rise in sea level is anomalous. My guess is that it correlates with a gravity anomaly, a temperature anomaly, or is simply due to error in in the data.
Why is the estimated formal error (Figure 5) is so high in certain regions? WUWT?

R. Shearer plays the innocent and asks:
November 23, 2014 at 8:36 am
How does CO2 change gravity, by what mechanism?

Hamlington, B. D., M. W. Strassburg, R. R. Leben, W. Han, R. S. Nerem, and K. Y. Kim. "Uncovering an anthropogenic sea-level rise signal in the Pacific Ocean." Nature Climate Change (2014). doi:10.1038/nclimate2307


  1. The paper really does say 1 cm/year, which is a lot:

    "The large sea-level trends (>1 cm yr−1 with GMSL trend included) over the past two decades around the Equator near Indonesia and Papua New Guinea are greatly reduced by removing the PDO contribution. Off the coasts of the Philippines and northeastern Australia, however, the sea-level trends are still large (~1 cm yr−1, with GMSL trend included). Although the PDO contribution has been removed, it should be noted that other low-frequency internal variability is probably still present in Fig. 1c and could contribute to the trend pattern."

    The paper is more circumspect than the press release when it come to attributing the rise to anthropogenic warming. As usual the press release simplifies things and removes nuance that might confuse the proletariat.

  2. To forestall any questions, what Bob Tisdale was testing was similar to this. There's a bathtub full of water that has an average "whole of bathtub" water level. If the water in the bathtub sloshes from one side to the other without any tipping out, by how much does that raise the "whole of bathtub" water level on average?

    1. ummmmmmmmm by zero...

    2. Sou,

      I recently told a fellow that his rejection of AGW based on the past 20 years of surface temperature trend basically amounted to watching waves move along a sea wall for an hour and declaring tidal theory bunk because, "look it all it's doing is moving up and down a lot." I think these guys know it's possible to separate subtle long-term signals out of short-term oscillation and that Tisdale's post is a case of razzle dazzle "analysis" for setting up the punchline (which you've already quoted): "Will the sea levels in that region continue at that pace into the future? Much of it depends on ENSO, and that’s something climate models still can’t simulate."

      Comment watch:


      November 23, 2014 at 10:49 am

      The sea level data of the U of Colorado is spurious, infamously so. Why do you use it?

      Bob Tisdale
      November 23, 2014 at 2:32 pm

      mpainter, why use it? It’s remarkably similar to other satellite-base sea level datasets, and their “Wizard” allowed me to answer a question in which I was interested.

      November 23, 2014 at 2:39 pm

      The question is why do you use spurious data?


      I was thinking somewhat same thing since not a week ago Bob was thrashing satellite altimetry re: sea level rise. Now if Painter would only ask himself why he's so sure that the U of C data are so infamously spurious he'd be well on the way to proper skepticism.

    3. First conservation of energy, now conservation of mass. Which conservation law will Tisdale strike down next?

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

    5. Anonymous, thanks, really - but let's stay focused on climate.

    6. Brandon R. Gates says, "I was thinking somewhat same thing since not a week ago Bob was thrashing satellite altimetry re: sea level rise."

      Please provide a link. I don't recall that.

    7. Haha numerobis, you beat me to it! Tisdale can't understand conservation of energy, now conservation of mass.

      Hey, but I'll be first on another Tisdale repeat...Bob doesn't like to review global temperature anomalies to understand global warming so why would he want to look at global seal levels as a way to understand global sea level change?

    8. The bathtub model is wrong. Gravity plays a major role, particularly in variance in sea level rise.

    9. Sou says: "To forestall any questions, what Bob Tisdale was testing was similar to this..."

      Tisdale simply plotted the sea level anomalies for a specific region. I believe you're reading too much into this.

    10. Not at all. As "Bob" wrote, he was wanting to see the impact on sea level of the rise in sea level near the Philippines. He took great pains to point that out and say in detail how he did it. His mapping and calculations etc.

      What he failed to consider, despite all his supposed knowledge about ENSO (if not the PDO), which facts he got from very same scientists that he disdains so much (the fiction he makes up all by himself probably), was that that water came from somewhere else. Most of the rise in sea level in that area can be attributed to an increase in the mass of water, not thermal expansion. The water moved there from elsewhere in the oceans.

      "Bob" didn't think it through, as usual.

      Water can be in four places - in the ocean, on the land, under the land (groundwater) or in the air. The air can only contain so much before it rains out onto the land or the oceans. Occasionally a lot of water shifts from the oceans to the land - as in 2010-11 like I showed above. Over the medium term, there is a net flow of water to the oceans by way of melting land ice - from global warming, which "Bob" thinks happens by magic rather than human activity and the greenhouse effect.

    11. Joe says, “Bob doesn't like to review global temperature anomalies to understand global warming so why would he want to look at global seal levels as a way to understand global sea level change?”

      Tisdale provides a monthly global surface temperature anomaly update. [redacted] Has for about a year and a half. Also, Tisdale discussed global sea level in the article here. [redacted] Tisdale also presented global sea level in the post that’s the topic of Sou’s post.

      Are you talking about the same Bob, as in Bob Tisdale, who blogs at WUWT, Joe?

      Links to denier sites redacted. See the comment policy. Sou

    12. Numerobis, “First conservation of energy, now conservation of mass. Which conservation law will Tisdale strike down next?”
      Please quote chapter and verse where Tisdale discussed anything that would “strike down” the “conservation of mass” in the post that Sou is discussing.
      Regarding the conservation of energy, are you aware that Tisdale’s “chaotic, naturally occurring, sunlight-fueled recharge-discharge oscillator” is simply a paraphrasing of Trenberth’s work from over a decade ago and that Tisdale is simply documenting it with data and reanalyses? Are you aware that Trenberth is now saying that El Niño events cause “big jumps” in global temperature like a staircase, which Tisdale documented about 6-years ago?
      For further info, see my comments on the following thread at AndThenThere’sPhysics:

    13. Oh my. I hope you're not a fan of "Bob Tisdale". Do not compare "Bob's" various pseudo-science rambling blog articles about magical "sunlight-fueled" global warming (despite a less active sun), with Kevin Trenberth's 30 years of scientific research on the subject of ocean-atmosphere interactions, ENSO, the PDO, IPO etc etc.

      "Bob" is off with the fairies. Kevin Trenberth is a real scientist. A world-renowned scientists. What little "Bob" knows about ENSO is because of the work of Kevin Trenberth and other giants in the field.

      BTW - read the above article. That was exactly what was behind "Bob's" investigation. He figured the lump in the sea might explain the rise in the global mean sea level. He was wrong. He neglected to factor in falls in sea level elsewhere.

    14. Sou says, "What he failed to consider, despite all his supposed knowledge about ENSO (if not the PDO), which facts he got from very same scientists that he disdains so much (the fiction he makes up all by himself probably), was that that water came from somewhere else."

      Tisdale most certainly did discuss the source of the high sea levels in that specific region east of the Philippines. See his discussion right at the beginning of his post, under the heading of "THE UNUSUAL SEA LEVEL RISE EAST OF THE PHILIPPINES APPEARS TO BE ENSO RELATED". You, on the other hand, are discussing the general difference between the sea level trends between the eastern and western tropical Pacific, which is another discussion entirely.

      FYI, the generally higher sea levels in the western tropical Pacific versus the eastern tropical Pacific is in fact a response to the stronger trade winds, which are a part of ENSO. Tisdale has presented the variations in sea levels from east to west in the tropical Pacific in responses to El Nino and La Nina events in many posts. Most assuredly you've seen all of Tisdale's posts about that. You're always so critical about them. So you were correct to quote Trenberth about that. But that general east-to-west slope does not explain the extra-high pocket east of the Philippines. On that, Tisdale is correct. It does appear to be a response to a series of off-equatorial Rossby waves, which are another part of ENSO.

    15. Amazing, Fan, so ENSO can drive global sea level up, it can drive ocean heat higher, it can drive surface temperatures up and can even melt ice in the Arctic and on Antarctic land. Don't oscillators return to previous states? Does the word "chaotic" give it magical powers? You (and Bob) are claiming ENSO is a forcing and therefore a source of energy. Explain that. Otherwise, I'll continue to say that Bob Tisdale simply doesn't understand the energy conservation law.

    16. Sou, a "less active sun" relates to the TSI at the top of the atmosphere. Are we interested in that? Nope.

      What we're interested in is the downward shortwave radiation (sunlight) reaching the surface and entering into the tropical Pacific, more specifically the equatorial Pacific. Reanalyses confirm Trenberth's and Tisdale's understandings on that subject. Tisdale has confirmed that in many of his articles.

    17. You're just repeating the points I made in my blog article, although some of the points you claim I made, I didn't. And some of the points I made you don't seem to think are relevant, when they are.

      How do you know that the "general east west slope" accounts for whatever or not? Have you measured it? And what about other sea level changes around the world. Global means global, after all. And where do you think the winds blew the water from, for example? The trade winds blow east to west during neutral phases of ENSO too, you know. And just what direction do you think Rossby waves come from?)

      It does seem that we've one point of agreement. The rise in sea level near the Philippines isn't contributing in any major way to the global rise in sea level.

      Bob's hypothesis was off track and his article was pointless. Despite my facetious comment up top, you can't even use his exercise to "prove" or "disprove" anything about contributions to global warming and sea level rise, in part because "Bob" left out changes in sea level in the rest of the ocean. But also because, as usual, "Bob" doesn't see the big picture. He rejects and protests science and posts a mix of science and pseudo-science for the denialati to lap up. I mean, he rejects the greenhouse effect even.

      The rise in sea level in the Philippines is because water has shifted there. Which is what I've said all along.

      I'm beginning to think you are just writing to try to get a fake argument going. You seem to be trying to defend a rogue who you admire for some strange reason. "Bob's" article was foolish in many ways. He is a fake "expert". (And recently he's let show other sides of his character, too, which I'd never have guessed. I've been told it's not at all pretty, though I wouldn't be inclined to check that in detail for myself. Why? A sample I was shown was sufficient. I don't visit porn sites.)

    18. wuwt.fan.4.6.years is repeating himself ad nauseum. Sorry - I don't go to "Bob Tisdale" for science. He writes a mix of pseudo-scientific crap mixed in with real science he got from the experts he despises. One needs to learn about the subject before trying to figure out which bits "Bob" gets right and which bits are his own made up nonsense and which bits he's manufactured to deceive people like yourself. I've seen him do all three lots of times at WUWT.

      It's a whole lot better to just read the science straight from the scientists themselves, or decent science communicators. Reading science put forward by disinformers is a mugs game. The only thing you'll learn, if you rely on that, is the lengths some people will go to to reject science and try to deceive the willing - like yourself, I take it (since you're trying to defend "Bob" and this dumb article of his).

    19. "He writes a mix of pseudo-scientific crap
      mixed in with real science he got
      from the experts he despises."

      Music by Bruce Springsteen
      Lyrics by Sou.

    20. He he - I'll send it on to my sister song-writer to see if she can do something with it :)

      I notice HW is graced by visits from real sea level scientific experts. Not sure if "Bob Tisdale" gets the same on his blog articles :(

    21. Oh and to Fan's earlier comment about Global vs. Local. The reason why this is so funny to me is because Bob has previously said:
      You see Bob loves to dissect the world and look at trees instead of forest. He really said that quote, I'm not making it up.

      As for global sea level vs. local - that was a cut on this latest article because the pattern was the same. Bob again dissects the world to focus on sea level rise in one small subset of the Earth instead of having a rich discussion on global sea level and how melting ice and thermal expansion from AGW are influencing it. Bob is too caught up in his energy conservation-violating "chaotic" "oscillator" to compare notes with real scientists who have correlated sea level rise to AGW.

    22. My five and six year old children already have a solid grasp of conservation, aided in part by simple experiments I've consucted at home with blocks, flasks and beakers, and also by an excellent early school environment. It is therefore interesting to see Tisdale exhibit a cognitive developmental deficiency from this stage in childhood,... but then, I probably shouldn't be surprised as it reflects his overall miscomprehension of basic scientific principles.

    23. Is fan actually a sock puppet for "bob"?

    24. Is that a conspiracy theory, CF? [grin :D]

    25. Sou says (November 25, 2014 at 12:54 PM) "How do you know that the "general east west slope" accounts for whatever or not? Have you measured it?"

      Yes, I have, using the data supplied by the University of Colorado, confirming graphs presented by Tisdale. You also note it in your article. You wrote, "Here's a map of the current sea level trends (not anomalies), so you can see that while the annual trend is rising near the Philippines, it's falling in parts of the eastern Pacific and elsewhere." Thus my use of the term "general east west slope".

    26. Oh goodie gumdrops. How exciting is this. Now all you have to do is respond to the bit where I wrote: "And what about other sea level changes around the world?", share with everyone your data and code, and tell us where the water did come from. I can tell you're dying to spit it out. Don't hang back. Put it up on the web somewhere and tell us where you post it - or better yet publish it. You'll have one up on your hero. That would surely be tantalising for you.

    27. Joe says, “Don't oscillators return to previous states?”

      Data do not support your assumption. Also, why would you think that with a recharge-discharge oscillator that’s weather dependent?

      Joe says, “Does the word "chaotic" give it magical powers?”

      No, the use of the word chaotic is supported by data. The 1995/96 La Niña was a weak La Niña according to ENSO indices (NINO3.4 SSTa and SOI). But the tropical Pacific ocean heat content data (NODC) indicates all of the heat released by the 1997/98 Super El Niño was created during the 1995/96 La Niña. The NODC data also confirm the findings of McPhaden (1999) “The Evolution of the 1997/98 El Niño”.
      Quote from McPhaden:
      “For at least a year before the onset of the 1997–98 El Niño, there was a buildup of heat content in the western equatorial Pacific due to stronger than normal trade winds associated with a weak La Niña in 1995–96.”

      The word chaotic is also applicable because an ENSO event is a weather event (a very large weather event) and no two ENSO events are exactly the same.

      Joe says, “You (and Bob) are claiming ENSO is a forcing and therefore a source of energy.”

      No, ENSO is not a forcing but ENSO processes include a source of energy, a forcing. That source of energy is sunlight (downward shortwave radiation) that reaches into the depths of the tropical Pacific. The amount of sunlight reaching the surface and entering into the tropical Pacific is dependent on cloud cover, which is also a component of ENSO. Two Trenberth quotes support that. First comes from Trenberth et al. (2002)
      Quote (my caps and brackets):
      “The negative feedback between SST and surface fluxes can be interpreted as showing the importance of the DISCHARGE of heat during El Niño events and of the RECHARGE of heat during La Niña events. Relatively clear skies in the central and eastern tropical Pacific [during La Niña events] allow SOLAR RADIATION TO ENTER THE OCEAN, apparently offsetting the below normal SSTs, but the heat is carried away by Ekman drift, ocean currents, and adjustments through ocean Rossby and Kelvin waves, and the heat is stored in the western Pacific tropics. This is not simply a rearrangement of the ocean heat, but also a restoration of heat in the ocean.”

      Thus Tisdale’s “sunlight-fueled recharge-discharge oscillator”.

      Second is from Trenberth and Fasullo (2011).
      Quote (my caps):
      “Typically prior to an El Niño, in La Niña conditions, the cold sea waters in the central and eastern tropical Pacific create high atmospheric pressure and clear skies, WITH PLENTIFUL SUNSHINE HEATING THE OCEAN WATERS. The ocean currents redistribute the ocean heat which builds up in the tropical western Pacific Warm Pool until an El Niño provides relief (Trenberth et al. 2002).”

      Tisdale has also presented graphs of downward shortwave radiation (sunlight which increases during La Niñas) and downwelling longwave radiation (infrared radiation which decreases during La Niñas) at the surface of the equatorial Pacific which confirm the findings of two Pavlakis et al papers on this subject.

      In a later comment, Joe says, “You see Bob loves to dissect the world and look at trees instead of forest. He really said that quote, I'm not making it up.”

      Let me ask you, Joe. Suppose you drove past a house and decided you wanted one that looked just like it. You could easily replicate the exterior of the house: the siding, the window and door placement, the shingles that make up the roof, location of the chimney, etc. But without understanding the foundation and framework that supports the house, the exterior of your house would fall to the ground with the first strong wind. So my question to you is, would you only look at the exterior or would you also study the components that make up the whole house?

    28. Don't be shy "BT" fan. Tell us that the sunlight fueled magical leprecauns in the ocean feeding ENSO is causing global warming. That it's not the greenhouse effect. Feed us the gunk that your hero believes. Stop being such a wuss.

      Either that or convince me that you have earned some right to keep posting your long posts as if you've got something to offer people who understand the science. Tell us that you don't "believe" "Bob Tisdale" when he claims it's ENSO causing global warming and not the greenhouse effect.

      In other words, stop fluffing about pretending to support both science and "Bob Tisdale's" pseudo-science. You can't have it both ways. Come out on one side or the other.

    29. Sou, my apologies for the length of my reply, but’s caused by the quotes.

      Sou says on November 26, 2014 at 10:19 PM: “Don't be shy "BT" fan. Tell us that the sunlight fueled magical leprecauns in the ocean feeding ENSO is causing global warming.”

      Are you now disparaging Trenberth’s work, Sou? I quoted two Trenberth papers in my earlier comment. It’s Trenberth calling ENSO a recharge-discharge oscillator. Tisdale is simply restating it.

      Another Trenberth quote. This time a YouTube interview with Peter Sinclair:
      Peter Sinclair’s post:

      At 9 minutes, Trenberth says during a discussion of a strong El Niño (my caps):
      “One of the real prospects to look out for is whether we go back into a different phase of this Pacific Decadal Oscillation. And one of the potential prospects we can watch out for is whether the next whole decade will be distinctly warmer…uh, uh…and so, IN TERMS OF GLOBAL MEAN TEMPERATURE, INSTEAD OF HAVING A GRADUAL TREND GOING UP, MAYBE THE WAY TO THINK OF IT IS WE HAVE A SERIES OF STEPS, LIKE A STAIRCASE. And, and, it’s possible, that we’re approaching one of those steps. And WE WILL GO UP, YOU KNOW, TWO- OR THREE-Tenths OF A DEGREE CELSIUS TO A NEXT LEVEL, AND MAYBE WE WON’T COME DOWN AGAIN. I think that’s one of the things we could possibly look out for.”

      Isn’t that what Tisdale has been showing for 6 years? Why is it okay for Trenberth to say it, but wrong for Tisdale to say it and show it?

      Sou says, “Tell us that you don't "believe" "Bob Tisdale" when he claims it's ENSO causing global warming and not the greenhouse effect.”

      Tisdale has never said the greenhouse effect doesn’t cause global warming. He has said that he can’t find evidence of it in the Reynolds SST data and the NODC OHC data, but that is not the same as saying the greenhouse effect does not exist.

      Sou says on November 26, 2014 at 8:44 PM: “Oh goodie gumdrops. How exciting is this. Now all you have to do is respond to the bit where I wrote: "And what about other sea level changes around the world?", share with everyone your data and code, and tell us where the water did come from…”

      Sou, the data I used to verify Tisdale’s graph of equatorial sea level variations in response to ENSO is available here:
      No special code is required. Simply download the data. Or there is an older version of sea level data at Climate Explorer from KNMI:

      Global sea level? That data are available here:

      “tell us where the water did come from…” you asked.

      The additional mass contribution came from melting glaciers and ice sheets primarily, with a minor contribution from ground water pumping. Surface temperatures have been above the threshold at which glaciers and ice sheets melt since the end of last ice age and will continue to be above that threshold until we head back into another ice age. Are you expecting global sea levels to stop rising before then? If so, how?

    30. Fan is hilarious. He ran away from ATTP after posting the same contradictory repeat of Tisdale's nonsense. His idol, BT, also ran away from this thread where all the contradictions were pointed out in full:
      http://www.skepticalscience.com/argument.php?p=1&t=190&&a=57 In short, there's a reason why BT's nonsense never has and never will be published in peer reviewed science. It's chart cherry picking, energy conservation-violating, GHG denying, pseudo science. Here's Bob's reason for denying that GHGs warm:
      “Downward longwave radiation appears to do nothing more cause a little more evaporation from the ocean surface, which makes perfect sense since it only penetrates the top few millimeters.”

      I love this answer to Fan when I asked why doesn't the oscillator return to it's original state:
      "Data do not support your assumption."
      Ha! That's close - the data do not support BT's assumption! It's an escalator/staircase not an oscillator because GHGs are warming the atmosphere. You can't charge and discharge your way up an escalator unless you cherry pick chart crops as Bob does. You need a forcing to do that. BT doesn't have one and that's why everybody with any scientific understanding points out that he's violating the conservation of energy.

      Oh, and the whole last paragraph about the house...I'll answer your silly question with a question - if there were a warm blanket covering my house causing it to heat up, how would I know that if I only looked at a crack in my back door? Bob can't (and won't) try to understand the global effect of increasing CO2 so he looks at cracks in the back door of a house. BBD even sent a link when BT showed up to ATTP, but BT and you never looked at it did you. Here's the correlation of the house heating up with real (not pseudo-scientific) forcings:
      https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/www.moyhu.org/Hx/plotterv2.htm#HxB1?HxG=[[1900,2012,'Total net forcing; OHC 0 - 700m',[114,94],0,[]],[[[-5.841,4.208],1,0,[1979,2000]],[[-11.106,57.97],20,1,[1979,2000]]],[[[6,0],23,0,0,0],[[5,6],21,0,0,0]]]

      Look at it. It maps well. While, OTOH, your "discharges" of heat shouldn't allow OHC to go up, right? So your oscillator was proven wrong in one graph. Fan, we're talking 10^21 joules of energy per year of increased energy while the solar TSI has been on decline for decades.

      Fan's long post is contradicted by two simple points - one is that cloud cover has a neutral on warming because water is a greenhouse gas (and Bob denies the existence of GHG warming) and that counters the albedo effects. Second, solar TSI has been on the decline for over 3 decades, so why has it started to increase warming?

    31. Let me go on for one more poste. I'll quote ATTP when you showed up there (and ran off like your hero did). He sums it up much more eloquently (and politely) than me:

      Now, it is clear that internal variability (ENSO events) can indeed produce changes in the radiative properties of our atmosphere (for example, cloud feedbacks due to the change in temperature). The problem is, that we’d expect this to average to zero. We don’t expect internal variability to, for example, only produce warming.

      So, if Bob wants to push his ENSO idea, he has to consider a number of fundamental things

      What physical process associated with ENSO events is producing a change in the equilibrium surface temperature.
      Why does this internal process produce warming only. In other words, why doesn’t the effect average to zero over sufficiently long timescales (decades).
      Why now? Why is this process – which according to Bob is not influenced by anthropogenic forcings – producing long term warming now, but hasn’t (according to paleo evidence) done so in the past?
      What’s happened to the anthropogenic forcings and the resulting feedbacks?
      Basic physics tells us that increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations should produce a radiative forcing and any resulting warming should produce a feedback that is almost certainly positive. Why, is this negligible (according to Bob)?

    32. Yes, he's playing fudgery and avoidance. He starts off repeating his behaviour I criticised, acting as if by quoting some of real scientist's work he can be excused for also accepting "Bob Tisdale's" pseudo-science crap. Well, no - like I said, he can't get away with that. He can't pick and choose the bits he likes from science and mix it up with pseudo-science and hope he makes sense to a third party. It doesn't. It looks as bad as "Bob Tisdale's" mix of science/crap/disinformation.

      As wuwtfan's next nonsense shows - where he tries to explain why he rejects the fact that most of the water that's piled up in the west Pacific came from the east Pacific.

      The fan claimed that he worked out (ie calculated) that the volume of water rise in the west Pacific didn't come from water east of it, then when I asked for him sums, he basically tells me to work it out for myself, in typical denier fashion. Which makes me doubt he did any sums in the first place, let alone whether he got the answer right.

      Then when I asked him where the water that's piled up in the west Pacific did come from, he claims it all came from melting ice and groundwater, and wasn't blown from the east. I wonder how the west Antarctic ice melt and depleted groundwater from the USA (in particular) made its way to the Philippines? That's quite a journey, especially since it didn't get there via east of the Philippines. And what happened to the water that used to be in the eastern part of the Pacific. They are the next questions wuwtfan will need to think about.

      Now he's claiming that "Bob Tisdale" doesn't deny the greenhouse effect, he just denies that it causes warming! I think that's called going to extremes to try to defend you're idol. Bob's often claimed that it's not the greenhouse effect, it's ENSO.

      I've written about it here:


      Which was about this that "Bob" wrote here: https://archive.today/sQJho

      Particularly where he rejects this statement:

      If we remove the long-term warming trends, we can see once again that the short-term wiggles in the temperature data are strongly influenced by changes in ENSO. However, the long-term global warming trends are not – they are due to the human-caused greenhouse effect.

      Like I say, "Bob" rejects the greenhouse effect. Maybe wuwtfan is rejecting "Bob's" pseudo-science but wanting to deny that he is rejecting it. Which brings me back to getting him to explain himself.

      wuwtfan, going by your name I take it you prefer pseudo-science and science denial to actual science. Can you confirm one way or another. And don't go quoting Kevin Trenberth while posting nonsense afterwards, as if that's meant to prove something. It doesn't.

      You've demonstrated you opt for a mix of pseudo and real science, which don't mix by the way. You've shown us that's what you do. I'm just hoping you'll admit it.

    33. Here's a great read for Fan on clouds: http://www.skepticalscience.com/clouds-negative-feedback.htm
      In fact, scientific studies from the peer reviewed literature say that clouds appear to be a net warmer (not neutral as I said above), although there are uncertainties. This is a stronger counter-point than what I wrote.

      And Sou, you're right, Fan is misrepresenting Bob as you can see from my direct quote of BT. BT does not accept AGW, specifically GHG effects on energy buildup over the oceans. So who do we believe at this point? Fan - explain yourself as Sou asks? Do you accept science or pseudo science? And, since you're more than a BT fan, you're a WUWT fan, what do you think of Tim Ball's recent "work" at WUWT?

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

    35. The comment is not deleted completely, just moved to a more appropriate location: the HotWhoppery.

    36. Sorry to see you've cut me off, Sou. I was so enjoying our little exchanges. But it's time to tell the truth, as I always do. Captain Flashheart was very observant.

      wuwt.fan.4.6.years is, in fact, me, Bob Tisdale. Odd that you and Joe thought I was contradicting myself, when, in reality, I wasn't.

      Y'all have a nice day.

      Bob Tisdale

    37. Wow, talk about self-delusional and dishonest. I went to the HotWhoppery hoping for the best. Instead, he lied about my answer to his house question. The answer was much later in my post, which makes me think he didn't read much. This is unfortunate because as you've been telling him, Sou, he has the opportunity to learn if he just reads from the scientific literature. Next, the rest of his comment was "it's all so complicated you can't understand it but Bob and I can." Talk about D-K. So the 1000's of scientists from countries all over the world are publishing about an "antiquated and erroneous" understanding of the greenhouse effect, but Bob and his Fan are right. Got it. (/sarcasm)

      For any readers, follow the link in the 7:06 AM post to the science as to why clouds provide a net neutral to probably positive effect on warming and thus Bob's "sun-fueled charge-discharge ENSO oscillator" as a source of energy to warm the globe must be false (as described by Bob where reduced cloud cover during La Nina supposedly increases the energy of the overall system). For more proof, follow the (large) link in the 3:38 AM post (or any other graph of OHC) to see why the "discharge" part of the Bob's magical oscillator must be false (IOW, OHC can't be going up if the "extra" energy being "created" is discharged). Oh, and check solar TSI to see that the trend has been declining while temperatures are going up so the "sun-fueled" part is false.

      None of the above isn't to say that ENSO has no effect on global temps. Energy does flow in and out during the cycle between different parts of the system. The key thing, though, is no energy is added to the overall global system because of an ENSO cycle. The ENSO cycles just contribute to the up and down of temps not to the overall trend, which comes from GHGs according to pretty much every real scientist. Also, only GHGs have been shown to explain the increasing OHC.

    38. Bob, you contradicted yourself. That's what was confusing. You can't accept the GHG effect but not believe that it's actually warming the globe.

      Oh, and for that "wall" you were talking about? Look in the mirror. Try listening to why your stuff violates energy conservation when everybody points to it. Try reading ALL of Trenberth's work because if you do, you'll realize that your misinterpreting the paragraphs you quoted about internal variability and applying them to create a global trend. Otherwise, you'll continue to make simple physics mistakes.

      Energy conservation is a pretty important law.

    39. After lying, and contradicting himself, tripping over his own feet, and evading questions that showed up his ignorance, wuwt.fan.4.6.years reveals himself as the sockpuppet some of us suspected, as the thief and porn merchant "Bob Tisdale". Doing what his nemesis Wondering Willis does, smarmily and hypocritically ending with "Y'all have a nice day." A small time coward and sleazy character is all.

      Joe - Bob doesn't accept the greenhouse effect. He's a greenhouse effect denier. (See here.) He's a double denier. He even denies his denial.

      He is probably feeling smug, not realising that a) no-one gives a damn about his antics and b) he's demonstrated (again) he's a pseudo-science crackpot of little brain with a nasty disposition and not a moral fibre in his body. He's probably proud of that. It gives him status with the lowlife creepy misogynistic bigoted types he hangs out with.

    40. Ha! You guys all owe me a beer!

    41. It's odd isn't it. BT seems to thinks that just because he responds to a comment he has addressed it somehow. He also tried to twist and misrepresent.

      Sou did not cut him off as he claims. I guess he will now go somewhere else and claim to anyone who can be bother to listen that he was cut off from HotWopper.

    42. Perennially pseudonymous 'Bob Tisdale'.

  3. Where is the proof that bath tubs exist?

    1. It would be fun to argue for hours about bathtubs to demonstrate the pointless circular numpty arguments that seem to occur in Global Warming arguments.

      I think I'd articulate my point that I believe they do exist, although I haven't used one in decades. But bathtubs are supposed to be in bathrooms, and obviously, Bob Tisdale doesn't know this simple fact. Who would really compare bathtubs to oceans. Certainly not an expert like an oceanographer. I guess that's why Bob isn't considered an expert.

    2. AnOilMan says: "Who would really compare bathtubs to oceans. Certainly not an expert like an oceanographer. I guess that's why Bob isn't considered an expert."

      Please quote where Bob Tisdale compared the oceans to bathtubs. You're attributing it to the wrong person.

    3. AnOilMan: Maybe you need to reread Sou's article. It includes:

      "For example, last January Kevin Trenberth pointed out that:

      "...the negative PDO might itself be setting the stage for a major compensation. The trade winds are a key player here, as changes in atmospheric pressure create the "sloshing water in a bathtub" effect that is a hallmark of both ENSO and the PDO."

      Again, it was Trenberth who used bathtub. Would you like to amend your comment? We can all see that you wrote:

      "Who would really compare bathtubs to oceans. Certainly not an expert like an oceanographer. I guess that's why Bob isn't considered an expert."

      Are you saying that Trenberth "isn't considered an expert" because it was Trenberth not Tisdale who used the bathtub analogy.

    4. Actually, Tisdale (to my knowledge) has _not_ used a bathtub analogy. That comes from Sou's comment above, "...what Bob Tisdale was testing was similar to this. There's a bathtub full of water...". This is naught but a side-track.

      What BT was doing was (once more) focusing on a small subset of overall data, in this case wind-driven water redistribution, and trying to dissect it in the context of global sea level rise. Something of a red herring, in other words - he should know full well that redistribution doesn't change total water volume.

      But then again, he's shown a remarkable lack of understanding of conservation of energy, so I suppose a lack of understanding of conservation of mass isn't terribly surprising.

    5. Nope fanboy. You read it wrong, it clearly says the exact opposite. :-)

      I suggest you read it again. Only do it carefully this time. You need to provide actual evidence, OK?

    6. KR: The smilie after my posts was intended to convey that I was being a goof. If you read my first post;
      "It would be fun to argue for hours about bathtubs to demonstrate the pointless circular numpty arguments that seem to occur in Global Warming arguments."

      I figured that only the truly inept vacuous or incompetent would engage me on the basis of that post. Low and behold a truly stupid person did exactly that. :-)

      But I have to say it was freeing to just act like they do. Ignore what was posted and restate something stupid. (That was my last 6 years dealing with the denial crew.)

  4. Evreonose that sea level data is wrong because scientists dont look at real bathtubs, but use a computer model of a bathtub.
    And assume the 'bathtub' is a sphere suspended in a vacumm.....

  5. All these facts makes my head hurt. Why not take a break from it all and watch my climate denying video?


  6. CO2 affects gravity. Yes. You see solid ice caps weigh a lot and pull water too it. In fact the North Pole is 100m higher than with the ice there. If CO2 increases temperatures and melts them, then gravity around ice caps and glaciers will change. Interestingly if one pole melted, it wouldn't increase sea levels near it, they would go down, but the other pole would go up.

    It also affects the rate at which the world spins.

    Here's an actual expert talking about it all this.

    Can anyone find the paper he worked on with historic astronomical events? That would be really cool to read. Anyone? Sou? Beuller?

    1. I think the paper you are thinking of is this one:


      Note that this was (in part) a response to the earlier paper by Walter Munk (ref 27).

      There was a paper in Geophysical Research Letters a couple of years ago by Steve Nerem and others saying that you can see the melting of the ice sheets in recent length-of-day (i.e. Earth rotation rate) data.
      A more general comment: it seems to be popular to criticize the satellite altimeter data in some circles. In fact, the satellite altimeter data set is a high quality data set and a lot of work has gone into getting the best out of it. I suspect that the real problem for some is that it tells us things they don't want to know.


    2. This Neil White?

      If so, I'm pleased to meet you and thank you.

      I'm an engineer, and a bit of a history buff. To me this paper is pure awesomeness.

      If I understand what you're saying, you can see the uneven sea level rise in the satellite altimeter data? I guess I had just never thought of sea level rise that way, and I certainly wouldn't think of looking that closely at the data.

      But as always its better to have data backed my multiple sources.

    3. Hi

      Yes, that's me!

      The other paper that I mentioned is this one:


      Note that 'SLR' in this context is Satellite Laser Ranging - not Sea-Level Rise!

      On the subject of sea-level rise, A lot of people don't realize how much regional variability there is. I think the movies on this page:

      http://www.cmar.csiro.au/sealevel/sl_hist_last_decades.html - scroll down to near the bottom. Note the regional changes of a few hundred millimetres in some places, which average out globally as shown on the graphs further up the page.


    4. You're the second IPCC expert I've met. Richard Tol (aka Toldemort) had to be moderated in his replies to me. :-)

  7. The obvious cure for rising sea levels is to open up the big drain at the bottom of the Marianas Trench and let some of the water out. I wonder when WUWT will propose that ... ?

  8. So let me get this correct, deniers like PPBT say that the scientific climate models with thousands of more than one order of integral/differential and partial integral/differential equations with many variables are useless and wrong. PPBT then argues in total ignorance with a bathtub model for the Earth's oceans to try to prove his unfounded beliefs by cherry picking data that he barely understands produced by the very people he is trying to criticise. I find this puzzling! Bert

  9. Bob Tisdale makes the following claim in the comments of his new ad hominem blog:

    "... I’ve tried to leave comments at HotWhopper using my real name Bob Tisdale, but they have always been deleted in moderation. In fact, I tried once again within the past week. It never made it past moderation. "

    Does he get instantly deleted if he posts at HotWhopper? Or has he been permanently blocked?

    1. There has only ever been one comment made directly by someone claiming the name "Bob Tisdale".

      I did not post it.

      It not only contravened the comment policy by linking to a denier blog, the person who made it had the cheek to invite me to his new blog on which he'd used images and artwork he'd only just stolen from me, as well as my name. Ignoring etiquette. For obvious nasty motives. This from a person who hides because he wants to maintain his own privacy. It also hosted one of the most disgusting comments I've ever read and I expect there was a lot more of that sort of thing, which is what "Bob" would have expected and probably wanted, given that's what happened at WUWT, too, though not quite as obscene. (I don't go to that blog of his. I don't choose to read that sort of thing.)

      That is the sum total of his "have always". Once. That's it. He has only ever commented one other time with that name, when he was posting using his (other?) sockpuppet account and admitting he was also known as "Bob Tisdale" and that comment is on this blog.

      I do recall seeing a comment from him at WUWT, where he said he wasn't game to comment here. And that wasn't all that long ago. It probably explains why he used a sock-puppet to post a series of comments here over the past couple of days.

      I'll leave it to you to decide which is worse - his lying or his cowardice or his other rather disgusting qualities.

    2. Sou if it helps a bit Paul Keating when asked about his enemies and detractors, said he saw them all as a badges of honour he wore proudly. It is not a popularity contest but a contest of ideas. Bert

  10. Stated on Bob Tisdale's anti-HotWhopper blog:

    "The comments are open…there’s no moderation, except for comments with 3 or more links. Please refrain from ad hominem comments."

    Blocked after 3 or so comments with only 1 link, no ad-hominems and on-topic.


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