Wednesday, May 18, 2011

New model of Greenland ice-sheet shows LESS melting than thought

There seems to be a bit of cognitive dissonance on the part of the writer below. He says that sea levels are rising at a rate which will give a rise of over 18 centimetres (7") by 2100 yet reports that Greenland will contribute less than 2" of that. So where is the rest of the water coming from? The Antarctic icecap is growing overall if anything and the rest of the Arctic is sea-ice, which can melt all it likes without raising the sea level. There must be someone up on Mars directing a big hose into the earth's oceans!

Good news is rare when it comes to the Greenland ice sheet. Yet a model that accurately mimics the way the ice responds to rising temperatures by slipping and sliding into the sea suggests the resulting rise in sea levels may be smaller than feared.

In its 2007 forecasts of sea-level rise, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change famously excluded contributions from the Greenland and Antarctica ice sheets because the physics were too poorly understood and complex to model. As a result, the IPCC's estimate that seas could rise by 18 to 59 centimetres by 2100 is almost certainly too low. Indeed, levels are already rising faster than the models predicted.

Using data from the last decade, Stephen Price of the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico has shown that his modelled ice sheet moves in the same way as the real one does. In particular, the model accurately reproduces how disruptions to the edge of the ice sheet leads to a large initial movement, which is followed by several decades of smaller movement.
Best guess

Price has calculated that changes which the ice sheet experienced between 1997 and 2007 in response to a thermal disruption in the early 2000s will eventually lead to a rise of 0.6 centimetres. Assuming that similar thermal disruptions happen every decade, the moving ice sheet will raise sea levels by about 4.5 centimetres by 2100.

That is about half of a widely quoted previous estimate of 9 centimetres, calculated by Tad Pfeffer at the University of Colorado at Boulder, and colleagues. But Pfeffer's study was a worst-case scenario, in which all the processes driving sea-level rise were pushed to their absolute limits (Science, DOI: 10.1126/science.1159099).

Pfeffer says Price's study is a more plausible estimate of what might actually happen. "They use a much more realistic scenario," he says, "and their model is really grounded in physics."


Svensmark's cloud hypothesis confirmed again

To quote Joe Biden: "This is a big f*** deal!"

The first laboratory test of the Svensmark hypothesis was the SKY experiment in Copenhagen, the outcome of which was published by the Royal Society of London in 2007. The positive results were of course politically incorrect, because Henrik Svensmark’s discovery of the effect of cosmic rays on clouds gave the Sun a much larger role in climate change than supporters of the man-made global warming hypothesis would like to admit.

The warmists were offered a delaying tactic by physicists who said, “Ah, but the SKY people used only natural cosmic rays and radioactive sources. Don’t believe them unless the CLOUD experiment in Geneva, simulating the cosmic rays with a fully controllable beam of accelerated particles, gets similar results.”

Conveniently for the warmists, CLOUD was very slow to get going. Meanwhile the Danes continued with their own experiments, including the one using an accelerator at Aarhus, as reported in Geophysical Research Letters a few days ago. The most important points are:

* The effect of cosmic rays in helping to seed cloud formation is verified with a particle accelerator, just as critics of SKY were demanding four years ago.

* A simple radioactive gamma-ray source gave just the same results in the Aarhus set-up so the earlier insistence, that only an accelerator experiment would do, was unwarranted.

Nevertheless, let’s say good luck to the CLOUD team. Their big chamber should be able to trace the growth of aerosol seeds much farther than in the small chamber used at Aarhus. And they have a large programme of future work, simulating atmospheric conditions at different altitudes.

SOURCE (See the original for links)

Greenland has been warming slightly -- so is that hurting the Greenlanders?

Alarmists have been decrying the effects of global warming on Greenland for years, even though Greenland was greenest during the Medieval Warm Period, and Greenland’s Vikings, who flourished during that warm period, died out when cold temperatures returned, reducing them to starvation. (It was warmer in the year 1003 than 2003.)

Now, the residents of Greenland, the world’s largest island, are once again profiting from warming, reports the Washington Post:

“Rather than questioning global warming, many of this island’s 60,000 inhabitants seem to be racing to cash in. The tiny capital of Nuuk is bracing for record numbers of visitors this year; the retreating sea ice means a longer tourist season and more cruise ships . . . Hunters are boasting of more and bigger caribou, and the annual cod migration is starting earlier and lasting longer. In the far south, farmers are trying their hand at an exotic form of agriculture: growing vegetables. ‘Before, the growing season was too short for vegetables,’ . . .‘Now it is getting longer each year.’”

Since 2009, the Environmental Protection Agency has sought to regulate greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide (which we breathe out and plants consume) because they supposedly threaten public health in the United States by causing global warming. President Obama has backed a corporate welfare-filled global-warming bill that would increase electricity bills. Obama admitted to the San Francisco Chronicle in 2008 that under his “cap and trade” plan to address global warming, ”electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.”

But even if greenhouse gas emissions are the principal cause of global warming (as opposed to natural causes), it’s not clear why such warming would harm public health in a non-tropical country like America. After all, people in America’s warmer cities have lower mortality rates, and higher life expectancies, than people in its colder cities.

Warmer climates may be particularly helpful for racial minorities in Canada. Most non-white Canadians suffer from Vitamin D deficiency, putting them at risk of cancer, osteoporosis, and diabetes, according to the Toronto Globe and Mail. Lack of exposure to the sun is a big part of the problem. More than 50,000 people die every year in the United States every year as a result of inadequate sun exposure.

While milk is Vitamin D enriched, many non-whites are lactose intolerant. Sunlight is the most potent source of Vitamin D. But in northern regions like Canada, sunlight alone does not provide enough Vitamin D for many people who work indoors. There, the sunlight is too feeble in winter and fall for people’s bodies to turn sunlight into Vitamin D. To get enough Vitamin D from the sun, people have to go outside a lot during spring and summer to offset the weak sunlight in fall and winter. But increasingly sedentary lifestyles and office jobs have reduced outdoor activity. And cold temperatures in spring discourage warmth-loving people from going outside, even when the light is strong enough to produce Vitamin D. Thus, cold climates can be bad for their health.

SOURCE (See the original for links)

Swedish windmill maker closing down

Dynawind laying off 17 employees at their tower factory

Tower manufacturer Dynawind AB in Kristinehamn, a subsisdiary of Morphic Technologies, has announced 17 layoffs. According to the Ombudsman, Lars-Olof Andersson, IF Metall Eastern Värmland has stopped production at the factory and all employees have been made redundant.

It is hoped that new orders for wind towers might come in before the redundancies come into force in mid-July.

Yesterday the company announced that they completed negotiations with the union and that nearly 20 office workers have been made redundant.

The reason was that the business situation in the subsidiary Dynawind AB did not develop in the way that the supervisory board of Morphic and the board expected. The data were included in the interim report for the first quarter of this year.

In principle, all production of towers for wind turbines has stalled at the factory.

Ombudsman Lars-Olov Andersson has been involved in negotiations. He said:

- All 17 workers have been dismissed because there are no jobs. We had a similar situation a few years ago and the company managed to obtain new orders. It is hoped that that will happen again this time. Despite the redundancies, it is better than the company going bankrupt. Now the machines and the like remain in place in Kristinehamn. As a bankrupt company they could have been purchased and the production moved from the place.

President Martin Valfridsson at Morphic Technologies said that Dynawind before the redundancy notices they had 38 employees. Now the company is just working on business and service.

- Sorry we had to lay off staff because there are no orders for towers on which to mount wind turbines.

SOURCE. (Roughly translated from the Swedish)

The Urban Heat Island Effect Distorts Global Temperatures

Has there been ANY real rise in global temperatures at all? Possibly not


How much do calculations of global temperatures represent the real temperature of the Earth? Every day, new stories appear about temperature records with errors or deliberate omissions. Essex, McKitrick, and Andresen’s article suggests that such a creature doesn’t exist. An important part of the debate is something called the urban heat island effect (UHIE). A new article by Dr. Edward Long says:

"The problem would seem to be the methodologies engendered in treatment for a mix of urban and rural locations; that the ‘adjustment’ protocol appears to accent to a warming effect rather than eliminate it. This, if correct, leaves serious doubt for whether the rate of increase in temperature found from the adjusted data is due to natural warming trends or warming because of another reason, such as erroneous consideration of the effects of urban warming."

In another paper, we learn that:

"The GISS adjustments to the USHCN data at Dale Enterprise follow a well-recognized pattern. GISS pulls the early part of the record down and mimics the most recent USHCN records, thus imposing an artificial warming bias"

What are they talking about?

German scientist A. Kratzer working on the impact of pollution on trees in the Ruhr Valley in the 1930s discovered urban temperatures were higher than the countryside. War interrupted the work, but shortly after T.J. Chandler studied the temperature of London, England. With a thermometer on his car he recorded temperatures along specific routes. When plotted, they showed a distinctive concentric pattern with higher temperatures in the centre. In 1952, Chandler published The Climate of London and B.W. Atkinson later showed precipitation patterns were also affected.

Several cities were studied since and each showed the concentric temperature patterns. The form is a distinctive dome of warm air with a centre height of about 1000 feet over the hottest part of the city

Temperature contrast between city and countryside is most extreme in cold climates, and the dome is sometimes visible in northern cities on cold, calm winter mornings. During the day, the dome rises like a hot air balloon and dissipates only to form the next night. With strong winds, it is pushed downwind away from the city. Figure 2 is a map of England for August 10 2003 with a distinctive UHIE over London but displaced to the north by a south wind. London was 36°C, but Hastings (just south of the city) was 24°C.

Alarmists linked it with the death rate and claimed both were examples of the impact of global warming. Actually, it was an urban heat island effect, and death rates were not higher than normal.

Main reasons for the temperature differences are colour and structure of surface materials, which determine their ability to absorb and release heat. Concrete, asphalt, bricks, and wood absorb heat quickly during the day and cool quickly at night while water grass and trees do the opposite. It’s a major argument for the preservation of old parks and the creation of new ones in urban areas. Trees are more important in the city than outside.

Greatest surface changes are in the centre of the city, an area called the Central Business District (CBD), which is almost 100% solid surface and impervious to water. Urban drainage systems carry water away quickly, while in the country it remains and evaporates slowly or is transpired by plants creating cooling. When water evaporates, it takes heat energy from the surrounding air or from the surface, which creates cooling – just like when you sweat. Impervious surfaces exist in the suburbs, but only 50 percent is covered. Roofs of houses, garages, driveways, roads, and sidewalks all absorb heat in the day and radiate it back to the atmosphere at night. Storm sewers remove water very quickly.

Chandler type traverses along major routes provide longitudinal profiles of the temperature variation across the city. For example at 12:30 am on September 15, 1973, Oke and Hay, of the University of British Columbia, did a 26 km traverse across Vancouver, Canada. Results showed many interesting changes:

* Temperatures ranged from about 7°C in the countryside to 15°C in the heart of the city (CBD).

* The most dramatic drop, from 14°C to 8°C, occurs in about 3 km from the suburbs to the countryside.

* Green spaces, even small ones, were distinctly cooler. Stanley Park with its tall trees was the coolest.

* Highest temperatures were in the centre despite proximity to the harbour.

* The parks, although cooler, were still warmer than the countryside.

Most weather stations are at airports, and cities have expanded and enclosed the airport so the UHIE has increased. When you separate urban weather stations from rural ones anywhere in the world, a different trend of temperatures appears. Urban stations show distinctive warming while there is very little change in rural stations.

City size determines the amount of extra heat generated by industry, automobile and people. Studies at airports show jet aircraft and heat from darker surface runways cause different readings. Unless a station remains in an unchanged environment it’s readings will change over time. Adjusting for these is the challenge.

How agencies like the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) or the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) adjust for the UHIE is the crux of the problem.

Original raw data is recorded to one half a degree, so reducing it tenths through statistics doesn’t mean much. Phil Jones claimed a 0.6°C increase since the end of the 19th century and said it is unnatural and clear evidence of warming due to human CO2 in the atmosphere. Jones still refuses to disclose which stations he used and how they were adjusted, especially for the urban heat island effect.

The automobile was a major factor causing urban expansion through suburban development. Warwick Hughes has studied temperature data for years and was the person who received the following email from Jones when he asked for his data in February 2005: "We have 25 or so years invested in the work. Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it?"

He illustrated the UHIE with two classic plots:

The temperature curve for six Australian cities

The temperature curve for 27 rural sites in Australia for the same time period

These graphs were widely distributed and buttressed arguments about what was wrong with the claim CO2 is causing global warming. Despite knowledge about the problem this was one of the first clear examples in the public arena. Hughes’ study ends in 1991, but Long brings it up to date and the urban/rural difference continues

Now you see why the CRU and IPCC limited the number of stations they were using and restricted them to mostly urban stations to get the result they wanted. You also understand why Tom Wigley told Jones in a leaked email of November 6, 2009 that:

"We probably need to say more about [the difference between land and ocean temperatures]. Land warming since 1980 has been twice the ocean warming and skeptics might claim that this proves that urban warming is real and important"

Exactly, Tom!

More HERE (See the original for links, more graphics etc.)

IPCC: Screw the Rules

They're still using non-scientific sources -- and covering that up!

We’ve been told the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is a paragon of virtue. Rajendra Pachauri, its chairman, says he: " …can’t think of a better process. There is not a parallel on this planet, in any field of endeavour as you have in the IPCC."

I’m sure every chef considers the dishes produced by his own kitchen exceptional, but what really matters is what the customers – and the health inspectors – think.

When a committee investigated the IPCC last year, they weren’t nearly as impressed as its chairman. Indeed, they concluded that while the IPCC has rules and procedures, they often aren’t followed. In one instance in particular, the committee found that the rule that said non-peer-reviewed source material should be identified as such when listed among the IPCC’s references was being utterly ignored.

The committee therefore made a specific recommendation, which it expressed in rather clear language: "Te IPCC should strengthen and enforce its procedure for the use of unpublished and non-peer-reviewed literature…ensuring that unpublished and non-peer-reviewed literature is appropriately flagged in the report"

But as Hilary Ostrov tells us today, IPCC bureaucrats had other ideas – and these bureaucrats have now prevailed.

Reading between the lines, it appears that the rule has never been followed because the IPCC’s clerical and technical support staff have always considered it to be too much of a bother. Thus, it was simply disregarded. (In a reputable organization, one with real checks-and-balances, that would never have been allowed to happen.)

After the committee pointed out this lack of compliance and told the IPCC to pull up its socks, the bureaucrats chose to reject the committee’s very clear instructions and instead proposed that the business about flagging non-peer-reviewed sources be abandoned.

According to an internal document (spotted by Hilary a month ago), the IPCC’s clerical and bureaucratic staff felt the: "…flagging of unpublished and non-peer reviewed literature would not be practical"

Without any discussion of why the rule was instituted in the first place or why, precisely, IPCC staff consider it so impractical, the internal IPCC document recommended that the flagging business be struck from the rulebook.

At an IPCC meeting earlier this week, this recommendation appears to have been approved. According to page 4 of this publication, the IPCC: "…agreed not to flag information derived from grey literature in the reports and focus instead on ensuring the high quality of all information, placing priority on peer-reviewed literature."

In other words, screw the rules. And screw the committee that investigated the IPCC last year which insisted the rules should be followed.

The IPCC is a bureaucracy. Which means it is governed, to a large degree, by people with a bureaucratic mindset. Rather than being responsive to the outside world, these people actually run the show. If there’s a rule they disagree with, their first response is to simply disregard it. When they’re called on this, they then arrange for the rule to disappear.

Transparency? Accountability? No better process on the planet? Yeah, right.

SOURCE (See the original for links)


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1 comment:

Stan said...

This could be something for your blog! Some of the most "prominent" global green fascists were exposed at the Swedish Royal Academy of Sciences in Stockholm this week:

Green Fascists Exposed at Stockholm Symposium