Friday, July 29, 2016

Another "ice age" fear for England - only at WUWT

Anthony Watts has posted another alarmist article, this time about how England might suffer from an ice age some time soon. The guest opinion was penned by John Hardy (UK), and was posted under a painting by Abraham Hondius: “The Frozen Thames” 1677 (during the Maunder minimum) (archived here).

One of the important messages from this article is that one would be very unwise to pay any attention to anything written at WUWT. I don't know why deniers have such an aversion to learning about climate. Nor do I know why they are so shameless about showing their ignorance. Nor why they are apparently unwilling or unable to do basic fact-checking or research.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Persil-brains: with James Inhofe, Eric Worrall, Andy May and WUWT

There used to be a laundry detergent called Persil, that advertised "whiter than white". I thought of it when I saw more evidence that climate science deniers have an strange aversion to washing. First it was whitewashing, now it's brainwashing that sends them into a spin cycle. Seems as if a lot of climate conspiracy theories revolve around washing, or should I say complaints about washing.

Washing Inhofe's Brain

I'd say that Senator James "snowball" Inhofe's brain would benefit from a thorough cleaning to get rid of all the rubbish floating about in there. Eric Worrall has written about the latest bit of idiocy being circulated (archived here). Senator Inhofe, a committed science denier in the USA, talked about his grand-daughter asking him why he doesn't understand global warming. Eric copied part of an article from the Washington Post:

Even if we stopped adding CO2 today*, we'd have to prepare for more hot!

In Nature's open access journal Scientific Reports there's a paper just out by Chris Huntingford and Lina M. Mercado about how much more warming to expect. Scientists report that even if we didn't add any more CO2 to the air *kept CO2 at current levels in the atmosphere (around 400 ppm), temperatures over a lot of land regions would eventually increase by more than 1.5°C. (*See comment by ATTP below.) There are two main reasons for this:
  1. until we reach equilibrium, with as much radiation leaving the planet as comes in from the sun, the earth will continue to warm;
  2. the land surface warm is a lot more quickly than the ocean surface and will continue to do so until the new equilibrium higher temperatures are reached.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The water vapour penny precipitates, almost, for Willis Eschenbach at WUWT

There's a new article at WUWT by Willis Eschenbach (archived here, latest here). It took him almost twenty years, but he's finally found the RSS total precipitable water (TPW) record. For years Willis has been arguing that Earth's climate can't change much because of thunderstorms. It seems that he may have finally woken up to the fact that there is more water vapour in a warmer atmosphere than in a cooler one and that this is contributing to the greenhouse effect. He wrote (about the dataset that was reported 20 years ago in 1996): "One of my great pleasures is to come across a new dataset."

I've been meaning to write about global warming, water vapour and precipitation for some time. There have been several papers on the subject (see below). What's happening is:
  • the amount of water in the air is increasing as the world warms,
  • the water cycle is intensifying,
  • therefore there is more rain (and snow), and
  • more greenhouse warming because water vapour is a strong greenhouse gas.

Warning: This is a rather long article, with no apologies :)

Monday, July 25, 2016

Explaining different results for climate sensitivity and the low bias

This was a month late at WUWT but better late than never I suppose.  WUWT's current leading blog writer, Eric Worrall, has written about a paper published last month in Nature Climate Change (archived here). The authors, Mark Richardson, Kevin Cowtan, Ed Hawkins and Martin B. Stolpe, had a look at how temperature records are sampled. They found that slower warming regions are preferentially sampled, which means that observations are biased low.

The authors reported that after adjusting for biases, and using observations, the transient climate response (TCR) is 1.66 °C with a 5% to 95% range of 1.0 to 3.3 °C. This is consistent with that derived from climate models considered in the AR5 IPCC report.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Christopher Monckton and fraud - fact check of @wattsupwiththat

Christopher Monckton is at it again, spreading climate disinformation. Today he's taking on Reuters and the World Meteorological Organisation and losing - badly (archived here, latest here). Anthony Watts had a brave headline accusing Reuters of fraud. It's not Reuters or the World Meteorological Organisation that is committing fraud. It's Anthony Watts and Christopher Monckton who are deliberately deceiving the public and publishing false information. They are the anti-science brigade who want the world to burn.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Ari Halperin falsely claims forgery by AAAS, with a whopper of a conspiracy theory @wattsupwiththat

Today Ari Halperin wrote an article that was posted at Anthony Watts' WUWT. It was about the recent letter to the US policymakers signed by the AAAS and 30 other leaders of science societies. Ari Halperin wrote to scientific societies to see if they supported the recent letter to the US Congress. All the replies that he got confirmed support.

Ari didn't get any reply from most of the 30 societies (he said nine of the 30 replied to him confirming their support for the letter), which prompted him to falsely allege in his headline that "Ooops! Not all 31 scientific societies actually signed the AAAS ‘consensus’ letter". In other words, his evidence is absent. Non-existent. He just made that up.

Why wouldn't they support the letter? It was clear and simple and non-controversial. Here's an excerpt:
Observations throughout the world make it clear that climate change is occurring, and rigorous scientific research concludes that the greenhouse gases emitted by human activities are the primary driver. This conclusion is based on multiple independent lines of evidence and the vast body of peer-reviewed science.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Hottest June on record - global surface temperature with year to date

According to GISS NASA, the average global surface temperature anomaly for June was 0.79 °C, which just pipped June 2015 (0.78 C) and June 1998 (0.77 °C). Last month is only the second time in nine months that the GISTemp monthly anomaly is less than one degree Celsius above the average from 1951-1980. It probably won't be the last, now that El Nino is over.

The average for the six months to the end of June is 1.09 °C, which is 0.28 °C higher than any previous January to June period. The previous highest was last year, which with the latest data had an anomaly of 0.81 °C.

There are now nine in a row of "hottest months" from October 2015 to June 2016 (that is, hottest October, hottest November etc). If we could look back over the entire Holocene, it's probably more than 7,000 years since there was a similar run of hottest months on record, that is, not since the Holocene climatic optimum (it's probably hotter now than it was back then).

Each of the previous months except May and June this year (that is, from October to April inclusive) had an anomaly more than one degree Celsius above the 1951-1980 mean. All of the previous months had an anomaly higher than any month outside of that October to April period.

Below is a chart of the month of June only. Hover over the chart to see the anomaly in any June:
Figure 1 | Global mean surface temperature anomaly for the month of June only. The base period is 1951-1980. Data source: GISS NASA

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Tropical cyclones and aerosols, with Breitbart's Steven Capozzola at WUWT

Anthony Watts has posted an article by Steven Capozzola, who seems to be presenting himself as some sort of authority on hurricanes or climate (archived here, latest here). I checked him out. Is he any kind of expert on tropical cyclones? No. Has he even the most basic understanding of climate? No. Yet he pits himself against experts as if he knows something they don't.

Steven Capozzola claims to be "Media consultant. CEO of CAP Media LLC. Advocate for U.S. manufacturing & affordable power" - not affordable, but expensive and dirty power. He's a denier for hire.

At WUWT today, Steve is writing how he doesn't think that the USA will ever get a hurricane landing on its shores again. Well, not quite that. He wrote:
The New York Times ran an op-ed today by Adam Sobel, an “atmospheric scientist at Columbia.”  The gist of Sobel’s article: Since 2005, the United States has been experiencing a hurricane “drought” (I.e. no major hurricane has made landfall in the time. We are currently at 3918 days, over a decade.)  But don’t worry, Sobel says, there will be more hurricanes soon, and the fact that they will be coming is proof of man-made climate change.
Yes, that’s what he’s saying.
The question is whether Sobel is writing the op-ed to buck himself up, and the rest of the alarmist crowd. 
No, that wasn't exactly what Adam Sobel was saying, as you've probably guessed.

The ice age wolf is lurking at WUWT, with Rod Martin Jr

Anthony Watts is not deluded. He's a science disinformer. Okay, his intellect isn't the greatest but that doesn't mean he doesn't know how to feed his fans the sort of nonsense they want to read. Today he's got another "ice age cometh" article (archived here). It's written at a level suitable for his fans. The reading level is for seven-year-olds, while the content is not suited to any outlet other than a climate conspiracy blog like WUWT.

Anthony's guest, Rod Martin Jr, starts off with a synopsis of the tale about the boy who cried wolf. So what does he do? He cries "wolf" even though there's virtually no chance of his wolf appearing inside of the next 50,000 years at least. Rod wrote:

Thursday, July 14, 2016

WUWT shows that 99.9% of recent papers don't dispute mainstream climate science

Scientists will be surprised to find their papers featured on a list that claims they are science deniers. They won't be surprised to find that the list is being circulated by disinformer Anthony Watts and a rabid denier, Pierre Gosselin (archived here and here and here).

Pierre is the same person who, eight years ago in 2008, predicted that by 2020 the surface temperature would have dropped by 2.5 °C. That prediction isn't looking too hot right now. It would have to drop by 2.83 °C from 2015.

Figure 4 | Global mean surface temperature (blue) and Pierre Gosselin's 2008 prediction (red). Data sources: GISS NASA and WUWT

Pierre is as woeful at understanding science papers as he is at predicting global surface temperature.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Un-American witch hunts: Karl Rove Tactic #3 from WUWT

If there is one thing that defines climate science deniers it is that they are conspiracy theorists. Some wilful deniers believe the disinformers who claim that climate science is a hoax and that scientists are committing fraud. WUWT is full of it. Today it's Eric Worrall's turn (archived here). This time he's doing a Karl Rove, and accusing Senator Whitehouse of being a conspiracy theorist because he is exposing the deliberate disinformation campaigns allegedly paid for in part by fossil fuel companies.

Some background. Over time, more and more evidence has been compiled showing that fossil fuel companies have paid money to climate denying organisations in the USA. This includes ExxonMobil, Peabody coal and others. Today Eric Worrall copied from the Guardian:
The Senate heard how fossil fuel companies such as ExxonMobil, Peabody Energy and the billionaire oil brothers Charles and David Koch had funnelled millions into groups that had spread doubt about the causes of climate change.
The Guardian article has a lot of detail, including the role of paid disinformers like Bob Carter. It also has links to other documentation of the deliberate campaigns to spread climate science denial, including in Australia.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Australasian temperatures are unusual in the context of the last thousand years - Joëlle Gergis

You might recall how four years ago science deniers, led by that unsavory character Steve McIntyre, went beserk over a paper by Dr Joëlle Gergis and a team of scientists. The paper was originally published in Journal of Climate but the authors requested it be put on hold. What the researchers were reporting was that recent decades of temperatures recorded in Australia were warmer than at any time in the past millennia.

The paper has now been taken off hold and has been published in the latest issue of the journal. About the paper, Joelle Gergis has said:
We found that the nature of warming experienced in Australasia since 1985-2014 is unusual in the context of the last thousand years...Analysis of climate model simulations shows that the warming experienced since 1950 cannot be explained by natural factors alone, highlighting the role of human caused greenhouse gases in the recent warming of the region.

In the paper the authors describe research looking at proxy reconstructions of temperatures in the warm season in the Australasian region between 1000 and 2001 AD (see Figure 1 below). Since then Australia has got even hotter. The paper is very detailed and interesting, including discussion of the temperature changes over time. For example, the authors point out that in medieval times, warming occurred in the Australasian region later than in parts of the northern hemisphere. However the timing of the minimum temperatures in the Little Ice Age was similar to that in the northern hemisphere.

I'll let Joëlle Gergis tell the rest of the story, from her article at The Conversation. It's not just a story about the research, it's also about sexism, FOI harassment, and general misbehaviour of the sort the world has come to expect from "climate hoax" conspiracy theorists.

Climate science deniers at WUWT diversify into human health

Not only are climate science deniers climate experts they are also human health experts. They are equally good at not reading articles about human health as they are at not reading articles about climate science. That's how one becomes an expert in deniersville. (Cue Dunning and Kruger.)

An occasional blogger at Curry's place and WUWT, Kip Hansen (who revels in straw man fallacies in climate science), has picked up on an article in the New York Times. Gina Kollata has written about how some ailments have shown a marked decline in the USA. They are still prevalent, but emerging in people much later in life than previously. Kip finishes with another straw man anti-environment throwaway to prove he is a well-trained WUWT monkey:
Kolata’s coverage is a breath of fresh air in science reporting, where we are more usually subjected to yet-another alarming report of impending personal disaster .  [Cue music:  “It Ain’t Necessarily So”] caused by vague “chemicals and toxins” [sic] in our environment.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Seriously deluded: wacky conspiracy theories at WUWT with more ozone hole denial

Denier blogs are in the doldrums and have been for quite some time. I wrote about Judith Curry, who actively agitates for no mitigation of global warming, complaining about scientists warning US Congress about the dangers of climate change. Seriously! Is that all she's got?

Jo Nova has been focused on politics. She likes One Nation's climate conspiracy theories and in one article she urged her readers to vote for a Senate candidate from an ultra-conservative populist party that stands on climate science denial, homophobia, islamophobia, and against almost all the values that decent Australians cherish. That is the Christian Democrat Party, which is the creature of Fred Nile. Joanne is a proud deluded conservative (DelCon) who regards centrist conservatives as socialist. She paints everyone to the left of Ghengis Kahn as subversive commies.

Anthony Watts has been posting a lot of political articles too. He hasn't been around much except to put up some very silly articles from his band of freeby contributors. His latest contribution is another wacky article by one of his favourite uber-conspiracy theorists Timothy Ball (archived here).

Australian politics - the Liberal National Coalition to form government

As a follow-up to my previous article about the "too close to call" election results, the Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has announced he will form government. This announcement was made, as is convention, following a phone call he got from the leader of the Labor Party, Bill Shorten, conceding defeat.

It's still not known yet whether the government will have sufficient seats for a majority in the lower house, however Antony Green has "almost" called it, and the ABC website shows the conservative coalition probably will just scrape in the required 76 seats, maybe with one more (or less).

What this election result will mean for climate action remains to be seen. The trends in the weather would be more certain.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Beware deniers wanting plant food - or - If science deniers were in charge

Over at WUWT, Anthony Watts has put up another article from his main contributor Eric Worrall (archived here). Eric is thinking of sending the world to hell in a handbasket by adding enough CO2 to the air to bring it to 1000 ppm in the next ten years. He says he wants to feed plants. His plan is to burn limestone.

Eric knows as much about atmospheric science and arithmetic as he does about climate change. His calculations are wonky. He thinks that there is only 920Gt of CO2 in the atmosphere at present. There's about 3,250 Gt or about 8 Gt per ppmv of CO2. So when he works out that he needs another 600 ppm, he thinks he only needs another 1,380Gt of CO2. In fact he needs to find about 4,800 Gt CO2. That means instead of just using 3,136Gt of limestone, he'll have to find nearly 11,000 billion tonnes of pure limestone.

Anthony Watts: culture kills. The European heat wave 2003

Anthony Watts has written a very long article about the 2003 European heat wave and its deadly effect (archived here, latest here). Actually, he didn't write most of it. Anthony doesn't write much these days (did he ever?). He just copied huge slabs of text from Wikipedia, followed by a copy of a press release about a new paper in Environmental Research Letters.

Death spike in the European heat wave

In the paper, the UK team of authors wrote about the impact of the 2003 European heat wave on mortality. Below is a chart from the paper, showing the unreal temperatures in June July and August. The only comparable summer so far was that in 2012.

Figure 1 | Mean summer temperature anomaly (relative to 1985–2010) in observations (CRUTEM4; black line) averaged over a region covering the Mediterranean [21]. The box and whisker plots show the median, interquartile range, 5%–95% range and more extreme data as + symbols over the same region for the (red) Actual scenario and (blue) Natural scenario. Horizontal dashed lines show the 5%–95% range of the modelled data. Year 2003 is marked with an orange arrow. Source: Mitchell16

Friday, July 8, 2016

Christopher Monckton lives in a fantasy future of science denial

Christopher Monckton has made a rare appearance at WUWT (archived here), complaining that an annual temperature chart stops at 2015. Presumably he thinks it should have included annual temperatures for 2016, 2017 and maybe 2018. The article that got Christopher's knickers in a knot was by Ryan Cooper at The Week. Christopher posted the chart below:

Figure 1 | Global average annual surface temperature from 1975 to 2015. Source: The Week via WUWT

Troposphere temperatures for June 2016

The troposphere temperatures are out for June 2016. The lower troposphere is recorded in UAH v6 beta 5 and RSS TLT v3.3. This report also covers RSS TTT for the troposphere (without the "lower").

In all records, the June global anomaly dropped again, as El Nino dissipated. In the lower troposphere (UAH beta v6.05) and the troposphere (RSS TTT) the June anomaly is lower than it was in 1998. The drop was greater than most people expected, particularly for UAH TLT. Anthony Watts called it "spectacular". However it was still the second hottest June in the UAH record and the third hottest in RSS TTT.

Troposphere temperature (RSS TTT v4) chart

First here is RSS TTT with the latest dataset, version 4. TTT seems to be measure more of the troposphere than TLT (that is, it has a greater vertical profile) with less of the stratosphere than the mid-troposphere data (TMT). It shows a higher rate of warming than RSS v3.3 and higher than UAH.

Hover the cursor (arrow) over the plots to see the data points, trend etc.

The chart below is the average of the 12 months to June, from July 1979 to June 1980, through to July 2015 to June 2016.
Figure 1 | Troposphere temperature for 12 months to June (TTT). Anomaly is from the 1979-1998 mean. Data source: RSS

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Judith Curry objects to scientists warning US Congress about the dangers of climate change

Deniers are getting antsy. Judith Curry is complaining about a letter from leaders of prominent scientific organisations in the USA to US Congress (archived here). She is framing it as a political stunt. She just wants to rail against science and climate science in particular, again. Boringly predictable is Judith.

Judith doesn't think much of the knowledge of scientists. She claims that scientists who study fish and amphibians don't know or care that climate change is changing the world's fisheries and frog habitats. She's wrong.

Jo Nova and Eric Worrall, racism, conspiracy theories and climate science denial

There is a lot of overlap between racism and right wing extremism. It seems to me to both are based on the at times deadly combination of extreme fear, ignorance and bigotry. Yesterday Eric Worrall was lauding the election of a person who has been inciting violence for a long time. Today it's Jo Nova. The people who are bigoted climate science deniers are Pauline Hanson and Malcolm Roberts. The party of bigots is called One Nation, which is the opposite of what they are trying to achieve. What they stand for is a nation divided.

Pauline Hanson was voted in by people who probably claim to be Christians, but lack any virtues of love and tolerance, and who are scared to their back teeth of anyone of a different race or religion to them. Pauline wants to install video cameras to perve on people in Mosques and Islamic schools. She hasn't said the same about other churches and other schools. She's also an anti-vaxxer and stands up for men who want to get out of paying child support. Malcolm Roberts is an anti-semitic conspiracy theorist. Graham Readfearn reported Australian journalist Ben Cubby writing about Malcolm Roberts:
In considering your request that I identify errors in the report you sent to me – CSIROh! Climate of Deception? Or First Step to Freedom? – I find myself confronting an unusual problem: how does one critically analyse a pile of horse shit?

Monday, July 4, 2016

Denier weirdness: Anthony Watts wants good economics but bad climate science

This is weird. Anthony Watts (a "climate hoax" conspiracy blogger) has written about a paper in one of the top economic journals, which a lot of people think shouldn't have been published (archived here). That's okay, sometimes bad papers get published and sometimes there are shonky things happening with peer review. Thing is, as shown in his article, Anthony wants bad research in climate science.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Circulating ocean waters of the past confuse Eric Worrall in the present, at WUWT

There was a new paper out in Science last week about past changes in ocean circulation. It's from a team led by  L. Gene Henry, a graduate student at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. What they were exploring was the past relationship between climate and ocean circulation in the North Atlantic, several thousand years ago. The paper focused on changes in the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC).

Australian Federal Elections - too close to call yet?

Australia has just held a double dissolution election, meaning people are voting for all the Senate positions as well as all the lower house positions (House of Representatives). Usually we vote for all the lower house but only half the upper house. It was a freezing cold day in this part of Australia, but voting is compulsory so that wouldn't have affected the turnout much. In any case, lots of people would have voted before today (by post).

The election is said to be too close to call. Malcolm Turnbull, the Prime Minister (to the political right) is on the left, and the left (Labor leader) Bill Shorten is on the right in the photo below:D
However, at the close of counting this morning, the results for the 150 seats in the House of Representatives on the AEC website are as follows:
  • Australian Labor Party (Bill Shorten leader) 72 seats
  • Liberal/National Coalition (Malcolm Turnbull Prime Minister) 66
  • Independent 2
  • Other minor parties 3
  • Not yet determined 7.
I'll let you do the arithmetic but be aware, the numbers are not final and can change.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Eric Worrall celebrates misery, at WUWT

One thing you'll soon discover about hard-core science deniers is how much distaste they have for the world they live in. Today Eric Worrall (archived here) is celebrating the fact that it's very unlikely we'll be able to keep the global temperature below 1.5 C above pre-industrial and will be battling to keep the temperature rise under 2 C.

I'm not kidding. His headline was: "Celebrate: We’ve Finally Hit a Climate “Tipping Point”". He was writing about another new paper in Nature, written by a team led by Joeri Rogelj. The scientists looked at the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) made by countries around the world, which set out the proposals to limit emissions. What they found is described in the opening paragraph of the press release:
Pledges made for the Paris agreement on climate change last winter would lead to global temperature rise of 2.6 to 3.1°C by the end of the century, according to a new analysis published in the journal Nature. In fact, the entire carbon budget for limiting warming to below 2°C might have been emitted by 2030, according to the study.

Oh No! CO2 can't be plant food, say the folk at WUWT

One has to wonder at the thinking process of WUWT fans. A lot of deniers can't accept their own memes when they are supported by scientific research, even though they were originally derived from scientific research. It's a knee-jerk reaction from the scientific illiterati that science must be rejected at all costs. This time a lot of WUWT-ers reject the notion that plants respond to extra CO2. The latest from lots of people in deniersville is that CO2 isn't plant food after all!

Yesterday Anthony Watts copied and  pasted a press release (archived here). (As usual he didn't link to the paper or the press release.)  The paper in Nature Climate Change was by a large team led by Jiafu Mao of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. The scientists looked at the greening of the extratropical northern hemisphere and compared it with what would be expected with no greenhouse forcing. They concluded that without human activity, the observed amount of extra plant growth would not have occurred.