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Warming again March 6, 2010

Posted by BlueGreen in Deception, Doesnt Understand, Misrepresentation.
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Bolt’s Post 6 March 2010

Finally, Bolt has the courage to put up the graphic he has long touted as being “evidence” that the globe was cooling and it hadn’t warmed for a decade, etc, etc.

No similar claims being made here now that deception is obvious even to his own readers especially seeing that Spencer is forced to acknowledge that:

The global-average lower tropospheric temperature remained high, at +0.61 deg. C for February, 2010.

I wonder if Bolt has thought to put this fact together with his evidence of the NH cold and snowy winter as supporting evidence that the IPCC and “warmists” are right that global warming and extreme weather events are completely compatible? I suspect not.

But Bolt does claim it’s evidence of:

The long post-mini-ice-age warming may be resuming after a break of a decade.

So he’s given up on the cooling idea he’s falling back on another tried and true deception. Already debunked of course (SkepticalScience).

Followed by another go at Flannery and Qld rain. Already debunked.

El Nino maybe?

Why doesn’t Bolt just go with Spencer:

trends since 11/78: +0.132 +0.132 deg. C per decade

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Gore’s Katrina con exposed February 26, 2010

Posted by BlueGreen in Doesnt Understand, Misrepresentation, Smear.
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Bolt’s Post 26 February, 2010

Andrew Bolt uses the summaries and extracts of Roger Pielke Junior made from a scientific paper to claim proof that:

Al Gore cynically exploited Hurricane Katrina to sell his warming scare…

And:

Most shamelessly, Gore even seized on the cyclone which devastated Burma in 2008 as proof of a warming world.

Let’s see if Bolt is correct in his assertion that he is justified in accusing Gore of a con and lying.

Firstly, what was it that Gore actually claimed in relation to the Burma cyclone? Bolt quotes Gore as saying (in a linked post) by Bolt that this cyclone and others indicated that:

we’re seeing consequences that scientists have long predicted might be associated with continued global warming.

As I’ve said before, there are times where Gore appear to say more than he is qualified to say and, given the large uncertainties in the cyclone and hurricane data, there are certainly limitations in the statistical confidence that can be discerned from trends – particularly with data from the 1800s through to the 1950s before the advent of satellite data and improved accuracy and spatial resolution of measurement of relevant surface and upper air parameters.

However, if Bolt were the least bit concerned with being fair to Gore, rather than attempting to misrepresent him, we might expect that he’d have included this statement by Gore, also in the same article Bolt linked to, which provides qualification of the first statement:

“It’s also important to note that the emerging consensus among the climate scientists is that even though any individual storm can’t be linked singularly to global warming – we’ve always had hurricanes,” Gore said. “Nevertheless, the trend toward more Category 5 storms – the larger ones and the trend toward stronger and more destructive storms appears to be linked to global warming and specifically to the impact of global warming on higher ocean temperatures in the top couple of hundred feet of the ocean, which drives convection energy and moisture into these storms and makes them more powerful.”

So, clearly, Gore did not claim the cyclones were caused by global warming but was making the point that the intensity (i.e. the strength) of such cyclones and hurricanes (clearly already devastating) was predicted to increase as a result of global warming and he even provides a bit of the science behind why this is the case – perfectly reasonable.

Note that Gore does not appear to have mentioned anything in relation to the frequency of hurricane or cyclone events in general (i.e. overall numbers of events). The statement about the category 5 cyclones is merely a statistical consequence of the fact that, if the intensity of tropical storms increases, more are likely to fall within the higher severity categories.

To scientifically expose Gore as a liar (albeit in a very loose sense, given Gore’s qualification and the fact that the paper wasn’t around when Gore made the statements!), Bolt and Pielke would actually have to prove that global warming had no influence on the intensity of the particular storms mentioned and that would be virtually impossible to do as they would have to show that global warming had not in any way effected those parameters critical to cyclogenesis in the areas in which the storms evolved.  And, given that global sea surface temperature increase and low-level atmospheric warming is an established scientific fact, an argument couched in probabilistic terms would certainly favour Gore.

So, Gore has actually correctly stated the scientifically based projections of climate scientists and modellers.

To contradict the scientists and the models upon which Gore and the IPCC have based their claims, Bolt and Pielke would have to prove that there has and will be no increase in the intensity of tropical storms arising out of global warming.

Both Bolt and Pielke provide a link only to the abstract for the paper which Bolt claims proves Gore a liar and therefore makes it impossible to determine the context and validity of the statements made relating to the extracts used.

The paper is:

Tropical cyclones and climate change, Thomas R. Knutson , John L. McBride , Johnny Chan , Kerry Emanuel , Greg Holland , Chris Landsea , Isaac Held , James P. Kossin , A. K. Srivastava & Masato Sugi

In relation to analysis of historical data for storm intensity (not frequency – which is irrelevant given that Gore talked only about intensity) Pielke provides only this extract:

The short time period of the data does not allow any definitive statements regarding separation of anthropogenic changes from natural decadal variability or the existence of longer-term trends and possible links to greenhouse warming. Furthermore, intensity changes may result from a systematic change in storm duration, which is another route by which the storm environment can affect intensity that has not been studied extensively.

Whilst the first statement says that the length of the data record does not allow sufficient confidence in trends in storm intensity associated with changes due to global warming, it certainly does not conclude that global warming has no effect or that there has been no increase in intensity due to AGW. The second statements says that there is the possibility that the increase in the energy levels of storms may actually be manifested in longer-lasting storms rather than or in addition to more severe storms. In other words, strong winds associated with some storms could blow for longer instead of winds being stronger  (only).

The paper (from Pielke’s extract) then says this in relation to projections for storm intensities and the ability to detect or measure the change due to global warming:

The intensity changes projected by various modelling studies of the effects of greenhouse-gas-induced warming (Supplementary Table S2) are small in the sense that detection of an intensity change of a magnitude consistent with model projections should be very unlikely at this time, given data limitations and the large interannual variability relative to the projected changes. Uncertain relationships between tropical cyclones and internal climate variability, including factors related to the SST distribution, such as vertical wind shear, also reduce our ability to confidently attribute observed intensity changes to greenhouse warming. The most significant cyclone intensity increases are found for the Atlantic Ocean basin43, but the relative contributions to this increase from multidecadal variability44 (whether internal or aerosol forced) versus greenhouse-forced warming cannot yet be confidently determined.

The first part says that the intensity changes due to global warming currently are likely to be relatively small and difficult to separate or distinguish. It does not say that intensities will not increase as a result of global warming.

The second part repeats what even Bolt must know by now: there have been significant increases in hurricane intensities in the Atlantic but, again, the component due to increase in greenhouse gases cannot be confidently determined and separated from other natural climate variability. Again, no contradiction of the IPCC science or Gore.

And from the abstract itself we obtain this:

However, future projections based on theory and high-resolution dynamical models consistently indicate that greenhouse warming will cause the globally averaged intensity of tropical cyclones to shift towards stronger storms, with intensity increases of 2–11% by 2100. Existing modelling studies also consistently project decreases in the globally averaged frequency of tropical cyclones, by 6–34%. Balanced against this, higher resolution modelling studies typically project substantial increases in the frequency of the most intense cyclones, and increases of the order of 20% in the precipitation rate within 100|[nbsp]|km of the storm centre. For all cyclone parameters, projected changes for individual basins show large variations between different modelling studies.

So, the paper backs up Gore’s claim that tropcial storm intensities are projected to increase over the period to 2100.

Conclusions:

  • The paper, Pielke and Bolt do not contradict scientists or Gore in relation to the projected increase in intensity of tropical storms due to AGW;
  • The paper does not conclude or allow the conclusion that AGW does not affect the intensity of tropical storms;
  • Bolt misrepresents Gore and is wrong to accuse him of a con or of lying.

Africa might actually love that warming rain February 24, 2010

Posted by BlueGreen in Deception, Doesnt Understand, Misrepresentation.
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Bolt’s Post 24 February, 2010

Here Andrew Bolt claims:

Yet another climate alarmist on Jon Faine’s ABC Melbourne morning show was allowed this morning to claim, unchallenged, that global warming would cause devastating droughts in Africa.

No sooner claimed than disproved:

Bolt goes on to reproduce excerpts from an article claiming that:

Scientists are now seeing signals that the Sahara desert and surrounding regions are greening due to increasing rainfall. If sustained, these rains could revitalize drought-ravaged regions, reclaiming them for farming communities.

I have no issue with the study or indeed the claim that, should this be true, some areas of Africa might become more viable for farming but, yet again, Bolt is wrong that this is any proof against or refutation of the fact that AGW is predicted by the IPCC to cause or exacerbate drought in Africa:

All of Africa is very likely to warm during this century. The warming is very likely to be larger than the global, annual mean warming throughout the continent and in all seasons, with drier subtropical regions warming more than the moister tropics.

Annual rainfall is likely to decrease in much of Mediterranean Africa and northern Sahara, with the likelihood of a decrease in rainfall increasing as the Mediterranean coast is approached. Rainfall in southern Africa is likely to decrease in much of the winter rainfall region and on western margins. There is likely to be an increase in annual mean rainfall in East Africa. It is uncertain how rainfall in the Sahel, the Guinean Coast and the southern Sahara will evolve in this century.

What Bolt fails to acknowledge or perhaps doesn’t understand is that, the fact that climate is changing and will continue to change with increasing global temperatures, means that it creates extreme economic hardship and instability. Bolt seems to believe that it will be a snap to move agriculture, industry and even settlements and cities in pursuit of or necessitated by changing climate.

And that doesn’t take into account the lower-probability or longer-term but more severe risks associated with AGW.

Broke Flannery just can’t resist another bet February 20, 2010

Posted by BlueGreen in Deception, Doesnt Understand, Misrepresentation, Smear.
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Bolt’s Post 20 February, 2010

Bolt has another go at Flannery claiming that:

Even with a trail of dud predictions to haunt him, the unembarrassable Tim Flannery can’t resist another:

Iconic Australian beaches such as Bondi in Sydney and Bells Beach in Victoria are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, environmental scientist Tim Flannery says…

“It’s hardly surprising that beaches are going to disappear with climate change,” he told reporters outside the National Climate Change Forum in Adelaide.

Bolt at least doesn’t try to refute the claim based on current or past cherry-picked information as he has done previously. Which is not to say that he won’t do so in the future of course…

But Bolt posts a series of updates that require scrutinising.

Update 1:

Meanwhile, a real climate expert – Richard Lindzen, Alfred P. Sloan professor of atmospheric sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology – says climate models of the kind that Flannery and other alarmists rely on are just not working:

…at this point, the models seem to be failing.

Wow, what a definitive proof from the expert. “Seem to be failing”. Bolt turns this into “just not working”.

Are they failing? No. From Skeptical Science:

While there are uncertainties with climate models, they successfully reproduce the past and have made predictions that have been subsequently confirmed by observations.

Update 2:

Then, via Watts, via Steve Goddard, Bolt claims:

Any sign of those models being right?

Bolt reproduces Goddard’s plot of data from Rutgers University Global Snow Lab purportedly attempting to show that “winter” snowfall over the northern hemisphere has significantly increased.

But look: Tamino has clearly demonstrated that:

Goddard purposely truncated the snowfall data before 1988 back to1967 (ignoring 21 years of data) and used only January & February (claiming this represents winter – what happened to December?) data, to produce a classic cherry-picked trend. Use the whole data series, i.e. all months and all years and:

If we look at monthly snow cover anomaly for all months of the year covered by the Rutgers data we see a long-term decline of 37,000 km^2/year, which is statistically significant.

But what happens when data from all years for just the winter months are used:

If we fit a line to all the winter-season data, we get a t-value of 0.211 — nowhere near significant.

I think Bolt needs to get himself some better sources.

Flannery flunks again February 19, 2010

Posted by BlueGreen in Abuse, Deception, Doesnt Understand, Misrepresentation, Smear.
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Bolt’s Post 19 February, 2010

Here Bolt thinks he’s countered some of Flannery’s

Ten predictions about climate change that have come true

[By the way, follow the link and the headline is actually: Ten predictions made by climate scientists that have come true (or are becoming true) – a small oversight on Bolt’s part, I’m sure.]

The predictions:

The ten biggest changes to the weather wrought by climate change

  1. Shorter winters
  2. Less runoff into dams and reservoirs in many regions of the world
  3. More violent and longer hurricanes
  4. Less chilly nights
  5. Less predictable seasonal conditions
  6. Less snow
  7. More heat waves
  8. Less rain in many regions at various seasons
  9. More severe storms in the North Sea and parts of the southern Ocean
  10. Generally warmer conditions

So what has Andrew got to counter Flannery with:

Rains now flood parts of Australia

Now, which of the 10 does that counter? Presumably Bolt is claiming 2 and 8?

I follow the link via Tim Blair to get at the story that “proves” the point and I find a link to the Sunshine Coast Daily that reports:

THERE is so much water in Sunshine Coast dams this morning that if another 100,000 people arrived tomorrow, and it did not rain for another three years, no one would go thirsty.

Rain during the past two weeks and heavy catchment downpours in the past 48 hours have filled most Coast dams to capacity and would guarantee four years’ supply for the present population of 300,000.

There has been flooding rainfall on the Sunshine Coast. So, you’d have to assume this would at least be an area of Australia that is predicted to be affected by lower rainfall. What does the IPCC say?

Precipitation is likely to decrease in southern Australia in winter and spring. Precipitation is very likely to decrease in south-western Australia in winter….Changes in rainfall in northern and central Australia are uncertain. Extremes of daily precipitation are very likely to increase. The effect may be offset or reversed in areas of significant decrease in mean rainfall (southern Australian in winter and spring). An increase in potential evaporation is likely. Increased risk of drought in southern areas of Australia is likely.

Sunshine Coast part of south-east or south-west Australia? And even over-looking that mistake, the decrease over south-east Australia specifically refers to winter and spring.

Strike 1 against Bolt.

Bolt goes on:

…and the snow has rarely been deeper:

According to Rutgers University Global Snow Lab, last week’s Northern Hemisphere winter snow extent was the second highest on record, at 52,166,840 km2.

Bolt is talking about a single winter but climate is about longer term so let’s check longer term snow coverage for the norther hemisphere via Tamino:

The decline is much stronger for summer months than for winter months. The January numbers don’t really show any significant trend.

Cherry-picking leads to strike 2.

Bolt up to the plate again:

Hurricane activity is at a low

Follow the link and we get to Watts. No surprise there but what does Watts actually report in relation to the NH hurricane season for 2009?

2009 was the quietest year since 1997 (ACE= 41) and the 16th slowest since 1940. Interestingly, 2009 saw 1/5th of the activity of 2005, the most active ACE season on record.

So, Bolt claims “the quietest year since 1997” equates to “at a low”. Strange.

And yet still we know that even a sceptic’s analysis that Bolt linked to has shown that:

Hatton’s data analysis does actually corroborate the IPCC and concludes that:  

…there is strong evidence that the Atlantic is becoming more active in both number of hurricanes and number of major hurricanes (≥ 3 on the Saffir-Simpson scale)… 

Strike 3.

Ordinarily, in the spirit of the sporting analogy, we could stop there but, let’s give Bolt some clearly much-needed additional batting practice:

He goes on to cherry-pick again via Watts:

…and record low temperatures are being set at many places in the US.

Now, you’d think that record low temperatures, if significant in the context of countering global warming, would translate to some form of signal in the global temperature series. Well, let’s even use Bolt’s global temperature analysis of choice to check on global temperature via Roy Spencer which actually indicates:

The global-average lower tropospheric temperature anomaly soared to +0.72 deg. C in January, 2010. This is the warmest January in the 32-year satellite-based data record.

Strike 4 and Bolt is back in the dugout.

Warmist predictions washed out February 19, 2010

Posted by BlueGreen in Deception, Doesnt Understand, Misrepresentation.
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Bolt’s Post 19 February, 2010

Here Bolt references Tim Blair

From Tim Blair, who has the links and more:

The Guardian, February, 2009:

The world’s pre-eminent climate scientists produced a blunt assessment of the impact of global warming on the US yesterday, warning of droughts that could reduce the American south-west to a wasteland and heatwaves that could make life impossible even in northern cities.

In an update on the latest science on climate change, the US Congress was told that melting snow pack could lead to severe drought from California to Oklahoma. In the midwest, diminishing rains and shrinking rivers were lowering water levels in the Great Lakes, even to the extent where it could affect shipping.

“With severe drought from California to Oklahoma, a broad swath of the south-west is basically robbed of having a sustainable lifestyle,” said Christopher Field, of the Carnegie Institution for Science…

ABC News (US), February, 2010:

In the span of just a couple years, the U.S. has gone from very high drought conditions to the lowest amount of drought in the last 10 years, [Doug LeCompte of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association] says. “It’s only a few times, really, in the last century that we’ve had this little of the country in drought. That is unusual.”

What is it you notice about the first quotes from the Guardian in 2009? The quotes extracted from the Guardian do not contain a timeframe and neither Bolt nor Blair talk about the timeframe?

This is a really cheap and completely deceptive “trick” by the Dynamic Denier Duo and shows complete lack of understanding or willingness to misrepresent the science:

  1. Take long-term predictions and pretend that they are immediately relevant;
  2. Cherry pick a short-term change in a particular area and claim it as evidence against the long-term prediction

Hence the use of the 2010 article.

Bolt has used this “trick” against Flannery and others. Which is not to say that Flannery has not at times been loose with his interpretations and predictions – he has.

Let’s explain it slowly so that Bolt and Blair can grapple with their apparent lack of understanding of a very basic aspect of climate change:

  • Predictions and modelling related to climate change put forward by the IPCC are about changes that will be most evident and possibly come to fruition over the coming century;
  • We currently have seen global warming of the order of less than 1C, which is likely well less than half what can be expected over the IPCC prediction time frame.

Thus, taking current events and short-term cherry-picked evidence does not disprove or contradict AGW climate science.

IPCC revealed as blowhards February 16, 2010

Posted by BlueGreen in Deception, Doesnt Understand, Misrepresentation, Smear.
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Bolt’s Post 16 February, 2010  

As is typical of the way Bolt works, here a reader alert him to someone else’s work (usually a blogger running a site that is running a “sceptical” agenda). As this blog demonstrates, Bolt does not appear to do what one would expect of a good journalist – to thoroughly check the reference and for the claims made. It has an anti-AGW bent, so Bolt puts it on his blog. Is that real scepticism at work?  

To the post referenced by Bolt.  

Andrew says:  

Now the IPCC is accused of telling untruths in its fourth assessment report about hurricanes, too.  

If Bolt had stopped there, he might have been able to claim it was only an accusation but Bolt is clearly convinced:  

Every IPCC error revealed so far exaggerates fears of global warming. That alone says plenty.  

Andrew Bolt references a post from The Register* which does contain the reference to the paper on which The Register and Bolt make their conclusions.  

I have no problems with the actual data analysis carried out in Hatton’s paper. Hatton claims the paper is “unpublishable” – the inference being that the paper is controversial in some way or uncovers some wrong-doing on the part of “the establishment”.  

In his conclusions, Hatton makes the claim that:  

Over the periods 1999-2007 or 1999-2009, it can be concluded that is no evidence to support that the average number of tropical storms, hurricanes, major hurricanes or proportion of hurricanes which mature into major hurricanes has changed in the last 60 years.

But, Hatton’s data analysis does actually corroborate the IPCC and concludes that:  

…there is strong evidence that the Atlantic is becoming more active in both number of hurricanes and number of major hurricanes (3 on the Saffir-Simpson scale)…    

Why does Hatton make the first statement, when his own paper does indeed contain exactly the same evidence that the IPCC used to make one of its statements? The Atlantic is evidence and Hatton’s paper confirms it.  

Hatton’s paper does not carry out an analysis with all the data for the various hurricane areas combined. I suspect and hope the reason he does this is that, as the IPCC says:  

…there are concerns about the quality of data in these other regions…
 Therefore, any analysis done using this data (i.e. a global data set containing all areas combined) could not be scientifically conclusive as a result of the poor data quality from areas other than the Atlantic. 

And yet, Hatton himself is quoted by The Register as saying:  

“When you average the number of storms and their strength, it almost exactly balances.” This isn’t indicative of an increase in atmospheric energy manifesting itself in storms.”  

But Hatton’s paper does not provide the results of such an analysis and, more importantly, the data cannot be relied upon in any area other than the Atlantic. Hatton and The Register have therefore misrepresented Hatton’s own work and make a conclusive statement which, if it is based on data, is based on data of poor quality.  

The Register paraphrases this to say:  

 He found that North Atlantic hurricane activity increased significantly, but the increase was counterbalanced by diminished activity in the East Pacific, where hurricane-strength storms are 50 per cent more prevalent. The West Pacific showed no significant change. Overall, the declines balance the increases.  

Hatton’s paper does not show that the declines balance the increase between the Atlantic data and the other areas. Not at all. Not only that – if he did, he is using poor quality data to make such a claim.  

So, what statements of the IPPC is Hatton left with to dispute?  

Here are the statements with Hatton’s comments, based on his paper (IPCC claims first, followed by Hatton’s claims in parentheses):

1. There has been an increase in hurricane intensity in the North Atlantic since the 1970s (that the increase correlates with increases in sea surface temperature, (corroborated here and highly significant), and not tested).

 2. The observed increase in hurricane intensity is larger than climate models predict for the sea surface temperature changes we have experienced, (climate models are corrupted by unquantifiable errors, not tested).

3. There is no clear trend in the number of hurricanes, (corroborated).

4. Other regions appear to have experienced increased hurricane intensity as well, but there are concerns about the quality of data in these other regions, (Only the Atlantic has experienced statistically significant increased hurricane intensity in this period. All other datasets show no significant change. This is a worryingly incorrect statement.)

5. It is more likely than not (> 50%) that there has been some human contribution to the increases in hurricane intensity, (Since there hasn’t been any significant increase in hurricane intensity, its hard to see what human contribution has got to do with it. Statements like this do not enhance confidence in the quality of the IPCC report).

6. It is likely (> 66%) that we will see increases in hurricane intensity during the 21st century, (Pure speculation based presumably on the same model used for the previous inaccurate statement).

And here we can see why Hatton’s paper really is “unpublishable”. 1 to 3 either corroborate the IPCC or are irrelevant to Hatton’s analysis. In relation to 4, Hatton claims to contradict the IPCC through his own data analysis which is carried out on poor quality data. He cannot therefore make the claim at all. The paper does not say on what basis the IPCC makes the claim but the IPCC does make the clarifying statement relating to the data quality. In relation to 5, Hatton indulges in speculation. In relation to 6, Hatton speculates that the IPCC bases this claim on speculation but provides no evidence and then admits to making a presumption about a statement that he has not proven to be inaccurate.

So, Bolt has referred to an article which in turn references a paper that:

  • Misrepresents the scope of the data analysis made;
  • Uses poor quality data to make inaccurate conclusions;
  • Finds no contradiction to the IPCC statements made;
  • Makes unfounded conclusions;
  • Resorts to speculation and presumption;
  • Is unpublished and is “unpublishable”, not because of any scientific conspiracy but because of the previous points.

Poor work Andrew Bolt.  

[* What is the register? The Register is the one of the world’s biggest online tech publications, with more than five million unique users worldwide. The US and the UK account for more than 1.5 million readers each a month…  

Most Register readers are IT professionals – software engineers, database administrators, sysadmins, networking managers and so on, all the way up to CIOs. The Register covers the issues they face at work every day – in software, hardware, networking and IT security. The Register is also known for its “off-duty” articles, on science, tech culture, and cult columnists such as BOFH and Verity Stob, which reflect our readers’ many personal interests.]

Been there before, and survived beautifully February 13, 2010

Posted by BlueGreen in Deception, Doesnt Understand, Misrepresentation.
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Bolt’s Post 13 February, 2010

Bolt asks a question:

So if the science on the MWP [Medieval Warm Period] is not settled, why did the IPCC use the since-discredited ”hockey stick” of IPCC author Michael Mann to claim it was?

But does he really want to know the answer?

Well, if he does, SkepticalScience can provide it:

Since the hockey stick paper in 1998, there have been a number of proxy studies analysing a variety of different sources including corals, stalagmites, tree rings, boreholes and ice cores. They all confirm the original hockey stick conclusion: the 20th century is the warmest in the last 1000 years and that warming was most dramatic after 1920.

I wonder, does Bolt understand what the grey shade is above and below the temperature line? They are uncertainties. Note that the uncertainties are a measure of the possible variation expected from the “true” or “real” temperatures. What this means is that, whilst the data collected provides the plotted temperature series (black line with 40 year running average in blue), theoretically, the temperatures at each point of the series could actually lie anywhere in the grey shaded area. And this is what sceptics use to suggest that the global temperature could have been as high as it is today by virtue of the uncertainties.

However, those sceptics that say it actually was as high are being disingenuous and misleading. The time series itself and its relatively continuous nature from one point to the next, in relation to the uncertainty, suggest that a “reasonable degree of confidence” can be assumed in the legitimacy of the temperature series.

However, as SkepticalScience says:

The principal result from the hockey stick is that global temperatures over the last few decades are the warmest in the last 1000 years.

No one denies that there were errors made in the initial study produced by Mann. But to continue to assert that the whole area of long term temperature estimation using ice core data and other temperature proxies is discredited and that subsequent results from reanalysis are unusable is untrue and deceptive.

Snow job February 11, 2010

Posted by BlueGreen in Doesnt Understand, Misrepresentation, Uncategorized.
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Post 12 February 2010

One of Andrew Bolt’s constant refrains has been that AGW advocates use weather events to claim evidence for climate change. This is a resonable response by Bolt and, whilst it is scientific to claim that weather events can be exacerbated by climate change, it is not reasonable, especially in these relatively early stages of climate change, to suggest that weather events are caused by AGW.

So, it’s clear that Andrew, to make this call, understands to some degree that weather is not the same as climate. Yet, here he has done exactly what he says is wrong and misleading. What does that say about Andrew Bolt?

But to the post:

Firstly, Andrew admits and even provides a link to the explanation for why these extreme weather events  are indeed part of the climate change associated with global warming:

Time Magazine:

There is some evidence that climate change could in fact make such massive snowstorms more common, even as the world continues to warm.

Keith Olbermann on MSNBC slaps down “deniers” and “idiots” who don’t realise climate change will bring exactly more such “extreme events”:

But then Bolt makes his own attempt to say how these weather events contradict the IPCC’s claims. And this is where Bolt provides yet more evidence of his willingness to misrepresent and shows his lack of understanding of the basics.

First, how could Bolt really “scientifically” or logically demonstrate that these weather events contradict the IPCC’s claims?

He’d have to demonstrate that the IPCC had said something like:

  1. Extreme cold weather events, including snow storms will no longer occur (after a certain amount of warming);
  2. Record or near record seasonal events, including snow, will no longer happen (after a certain amount of warming).

Let’s see if Bolt has shown this.

Bolt quotes from Joseph D’Aleo:

But Joseph D’Aleo says the warmists are wrong to now pretend they always knew global warming would bring more snow:

 

So to try and save their agenda, the green media and alarmists spin the tale that these storms are what you expect during global warming. Actually friends they conflict with statements from the IPCC and EPA Technical Support Document that drew on the NOAA CCSP.

EPA TSD ES3 “Rising temperatures have generally resulted in rain rather than snow in locations and seasons where climatological average (1961-1990) temperatures were close to 0C. (32F).”IPCC FAQ 3.2 Observations show that changes are occurring in the amount, intensity, frequency and type of precipitation. More precipitation now falls as rain rather than snow in northern regions.  For a future warmer climate, models project a 50 to 100% decline in the frequency of cold air outbreaks relative to the present in NH winters in most areas.
“The 2009 U.S. Climate Impacts Report found that large-scale cold-weather storm systems have gradually tracked to the north in the U.S. over the past 50 years.” …
 We are also told “The extent of NH snow cover has declined”. (IPCC4.2) They go on to say it will decline so much as to endanger the winter sports industry. Well two years ago, Michael Berry, President of the National Ski Areas Association told the AP that “This could very well be the record year”. Across almost all of North America, 2007/08 was the best, or one of the best seasons ever for those who enjoy winter sports. Practically every ski area from Alaska across Canada in the Western U.S. – the Midwest and New England saw plenty of snow; many places reporting all-time record snow.

And January in 2008, a new record for snowcover was set for the hemisphere.

The quotations from the IPCC are all statements and facts related to long term climate trends related to snowfall and rainfall.

The first is actually a statistic that very clearly says something about rainfall and snowfall in: seasons where climatological average (1961-1990) temperatures were close to 0C. (32F). The author and Bolt clearly do not understand the specificity of this statement.

The second statement outlines a probabilistic climate model projection: For a future warmer climate, models project a 50 to 100% decline in the frequency of cold air outbreaks relative to the present in NH winters in most areas. This statement is clearly completely irrelevant to a single seasonal event. Contradiction of this projection would require an analysis of the fequency of cold air outbreaks over many NH winters.

The 3rd is actually a statement of fact and a scientific finding. It is clearly irrelevant to the claim of contradiction and is just evidence of climate change.

What is very clear is that Bolt via D’Aleo comes nowhere near to proving 1 or 2 above.

But, here is the real kicker that demonstrates the possibility that AGW advocates could actually be correct about the fact that severe weather events are indeed associated with global warming:

These snow storms and this cold season in parts of the USA has occurred at the same time as we see that, from evidence that Bolt himself uses that January 2010 is the:

warmest January in the 32-year satellite record.

So, we have record breaking snowfalls in the USA at the same time as we have near record global temperatures. Exactly what climate scientists have claimed can occur.

New study: could the sun have warmed the world? February 11, 2010

Posted by BlueGreen in Deception, Doesnt Understand, Misrepresentation.
comments closed

Post February 10, 2010

Here, Bolt completely misrepresents the content of a paper by Professor Eelco Rohling of the University of Southampton’s School of Ocean and Earth Science.

Based on the media release (not the original paper!) at ScienceDaily, Bolt makes the following claims:

  1. Yet another paper questioning the theory that man is behind the warming of the earth over the past half-century.
  2. Why is Rohling’s research interesting? Because the IPCC’s argument that man’s gases have caused most of the post-war warming is based not on proof that those gases did indeed do that, but on an inability to think of any other cause. Rohling suggests he may just have found that alternative explanation, or part of it.

The study actually relates to the intergalacial cycles associated with changes in the earth’s orbit and our understanding and modelling of them for long-term climate prediction:

I read the media release and here are the pertinent extracts from it (my emphasis in bold):

“Understanding how climate has responded to past change should help reveal how human activities may have affected, or will affect, Earth’s climate. One approach for this is to study past interglacials, the warm periods between glacial periods within an ice age,” said Rohling.

He continued: “Note that we have here focused on the long-term natural climate trends that are related to changes in Earth’s orbit around the Sun. Our study is therefore relevant to the long-term climate future, and not so much for the next decades or century.”

Nowhere does the article suggest anything like the claims made by Bolt.

The paper does not question whether of not man is responsible for global warming at all.

The paper does not suggest that intergalacial cycles are responsible for current global warming trends at all.

I wrote to the professor himself and asked him to comment on Bolt’s assertions. He wrote:

This is always bound to happen, I guess. The piece [Bolt’s post] seems to be selective representation of parts of the press release, and I doubt that the paper (which is openly available in preprint) has been looked at. The complete release is copied below, and explicitly states that our work is relevant not for climate change in the next decade to century, but longer-term trends only.

Bolt has been advised but has made no retraction or correction.