Sunday, September 16, 2012


According to a paper just out in the prestigious GRL. See below


Increased ice loading in the Antarctic Peninsula since the 1850s and its effect on Glacial Isostatic Adjustment

Grace A. Alexandra Nield et al.

Antarctic Peninsula (AP) ice core records indicate significant accumulation increase since 1855, and any resultant ice mass increase has the potential to contribute substantially to present-day Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA). We derive empirical orthogonal functions from climate model output to infer typical spatial patterns of accumulation over the AP and, by combining with ice core records, estimate annual accumulation for the period 1855-2010. In response to this accumulation history, high resolution ice-sheet modeling predicts ice thickness increases of up to 45 m, with the greatest thickening in the northern and western AP. Whilst this thickening is predicted to affect GRACE estimates by no more than 6.2 Gt/yr, it may contribute up to -7 mm/yr to the present-day GIA uplift rate, depending on the chosen Earth model, with a strong east-west gradient across the AP. Its consideration is therefore critical to the interpretation of observed GPS velocities in the AP.


Warmist sends himself up

He admits that he can't see the nose in front of his face and then projects similar myopia onto climate skeptics. He says that skeptics must ignore science articles "all of them". I am betting that he is the one who will ignore the paper immediately above.

The paper above is in fact one of many I put up either in Abstract or summary form on this blog so this blog alone falsifies the assertions of the klutz below. His high level of false generalization ("all of them") reveals that HE is certainly no scientist

I have to admit I can be lazy. I never eat breakfast, mostly because I don't want to take the time to prepare it. And if it weren't for the sandwiches my wife makes each day, I wouldn't eat any lunch either. Even then, half the time, I don't get around to eating them. My body used to complain about this but gave up long ago.

And it is easier to ask my wife where something is than look for it myself. She always seems to know. I can stand looking in the fridge and not see what I'm looking for and so I ask her and she finds it easily. Pure laziness, I admit.

In that way, I am a lot like the deniers who regularly post on this blog. I recognize lazy when I see it. I go to a lot of trouble to provide the links to every single one of my scientific sources but the deniers act as if they don't know how to click on the links. In their replies, they often angrily demand to know where I get my information. And then Randy or Renewable Guy will kindly and patiently do the deniers' work for them. Kind of like a sweet kindergarten teacher tying a child's shoelaces as they stand there crying, even though they could do it themselves.

Still, denying anthropogenic climate change is not an easy task. You have to work at it to maintain your denial. For one thing, you have to avoid all science magazines and science journals. All of them. And all those sources that Randy regularly lists? If you want to remain in denial, you must not read any of them. Ever. Refuse to look. Refuse to see. You might learn something. You might become educated, finally. What a loss that would be for the denier community if that happened.

Like me in front of the fridge. "Hon, where is the Parmesan cheese?" "Right here, dear. Right in front of your face." "On thanks sweetie, I didn't see it." "I know, you can't help your disability."


Global Warming Alarmists Seek More Power, Not Emissions Reductions

As U.S. carbon dioxide emissions continue to decline, one would think global warming alarmists would celebrate the ongoing achievement. Instead, alarm
ists are ramping up their vitriol. The alarmists’ increasing vitriol reveals that for many alarmists, the true goal is not a reduction in carbon dioxide emissions, but instead a transfer of wealth and power from individuals to government.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration reports that U.S. carbon dioxide emissions during the first quarter of 2012 were the lowest since 1992. With more and more U.S. power plants switching from coal to natural gas, the decline is likely to continue and the reductions are likely to be permanent.

The decline in U.S. carbon dioxide emissions is striking when we compare U.S. emission trends to global emission trends.

In 2000, U.S. emissions totaled 5.9 billion metric tons, while global emissions totaled 23.7 billion metric tons. Accordingly, in 2000 the United States accounted for 25 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions.

By 2010, however, U.S. emissions fell to 5.6 billion metric tons, while global emissions rose to 31.8 billion metric tons. Accordingly, in 2010 the United States accounted for merely 18 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions.

If the U.S. emissions reductions in early 2012 hold throughout the year, they’ll likely fall to merely 15 percent of the global total.

By the end of the decade, U.S. emissions will most likely decline to approximately 12 percent of global emissions, or less than half the U.S. share in 2000.

Keeping in mind that the United States produces 23 percent of the world’s Gross Domestic Product , reducing U.S. emissions to 12-to-15 percent of the global total is quite impressive.

These reductions in U.S. carbon dioxide emissions are taking place without all-intrusive, economy-wide, government-imposed restrictions. Yes, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations that economically punish coal power plants are somewhat responsible for the shift to natural gas power, but so too are technological advances and new natural gas discoveries that have dramatically reduced the price of natural gas.

If the alarmists’ true goal is significantly reducing carbon dioxide emissions, they would acknowledge and celebrate these ongoing reductions. Instead, however, alarmists are doubling down on vitriol and hateful rhetoric.

Consider, for example, Bill Blakemore’s most recent column on the ABC News Nature and Environment webpage. Among other things, Blakemore writes that “a number of climate scientists have told this reporter they agree with those, including NASA scientist James Hansen, who charge fossil fuel CEOs are thus guilty of a ‘crime against humanity.’” The traditional punishment for “crimes against humanity” is execution.

Why is it that so many alarmists are ratcheting up their vitriol and hateful rhetoric precisely when U.S. carbon dioxide emissions are rapidly declining? The answer is the alarmists are motivated more by a desire to reshape society into a government-centered model than they are interested in reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Emissions are rapidly declining, yet money and power remains largely with the people rather than the government. Accordingly, activists ratchet up their hateful rhetoric.

For those who truly care about reducing carbon dioxide emissions, now is a time for celebration. For those who truly care about transferring money and power to government, now is a time to intensify their attacks.


Obama’s Drought of Facts

Following up on his 2008 promise that “This was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow, and our planet began to heal,” President Obama has promised to do something about droughts, which are caused — in his opinion — by the dreaded global warming.

Obama gets a lot of his climate information from NASA’s Jim Hansen, an astrophysicist who heads the Goddard Institute for Space Studies. A federal employee, Hansen endorsed John Kerry for president in hotly contested Iowa ten days before the 2004 election. This year, he has been all over the media blaming the summer’s major drought on “global warming.”

Global-warming ideologues often make statements of “fact” that are actually testable hypotheses. Good! Let’s subject Hansen’s statement to some normal scientific scrutiny. Warning: Graphs to follow.

Hansen is saying, simply, that global warming is affecting U.S. temperatures in a way that makes us more prone to drought. Given that the equations that calculate likelihood of drought indeed include a temperature variable (warmer temperature = more evaporation), it would seem he’s home free, no?

The standard measurement of drought is known as the Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI); it is based upon the pioneering calculations made by Wayne Palmer, a federal hydrologist, back in 1948. When the index is below –2, that’s the threshold for drought. If it’s above +2, we are anomalously wet. The index is calculated every week for hundreds of locations around the country.

Here’s the history of the PDSI back to 1895:

Some possible trouble for Obama’s hypothesis: It appears the PDSI is going up, meaning the country is getting wetter.

So if, as Obama and Hansen would like us to believe, global warming is causing our droughts, a substantial portion of our national temperature increase should be related to planetary heating. That’s easy to calculate with simple regression. The plot below shows both the U.S. temperature history and the portion of it that is related to global temperature changes:

Green: U.S (lower 48) temperatures; Red: Portion of the U.S. history related to global temperatures

If Hansen is right, the portion of the U.S. temperature history associated with global warming should be correlated with increasing drought.

Here are the sad facts for Hansen and the president: There is no relationship whatsoever between global-warming-related U.S. temperature and drought. To wit:

Note the equation “p = .48” at the bottom of the graph. This is the confidence level in support of Hansen’s hypothesis. For the hypothesis not to be rejected, this level should be at .05 or lower. In fact, on the basis of the Supreme Court’s 1993 decision Daubert v. Merrell Dow, we can say that the Court would probably label Hansen’s contention as “junk science.”

To make matters worse, Hansen and Obama have it exactly wrong. Suppose we look at the U.S. temperature variation that is not related to global warming and plot it against the PDSI. VoilĂ ! The relationship is highly significant, at the .0001 level. In other words, anything but global warming is what drives U.S. drought.

When it comes to dreaded droughts, President Obama could do a lot for his climate credibility by listening to what Jim Hansen says — and proclaiming exactly the opposite.


Sea Level Acceleration: Not so Fast

Sea level rise is a topic that we frequently focus on because of all the gross environmental alterations which may result from anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions, it is perhaps the only one which could lead to conditions unexperienced by modern societies. A swift (or accelerating) sea level rise sustained for multiple decades and/or centuries would pose challenges for many coastal locations, including major cities around the world—challenges that would have to be met in some manner to avoid inundation of valuable assets. However, as we often point out, observational evidence on the rate of sea level rise is reassuring, because the current rate of sea level rise from global warming lies far beneath the rates associated with catastrophe. While some alarmists project sea level rise of between 1 to 6 meters (3 to 20 feet) by the end of this century, currently sea level is only inching up at a rate of about 20 to 30 centimeters per hundred years (or about 7 to 11 inches of additional rise by the year 2100)—a rate some 3-4 times below the low end of the alarmist spectrum, and a whopping 20 to 30 times beneath the high end.

To get from here to catastrophe surely requires a significant acceleration in sea level. And, because disasters pay scientists handsomely, a lot of people have been looking. Here is how the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in its Fourth Assessment Report summed up its investigation:
Global average sea level rose at an average rate of 1.8 [1.3 to 2.3] mm per year over 1961 to 2003. The rate was faster over 1993 to 2003: about 3.1 [2.4 to 3.8] mm per year. Whether the faster rate for 1993 to 2003 reflects decadal variability or an increase in the longer-term trend is unclear. There is high confidence that the rate of observed sea level rise increased from th3 19th to the 20th century, the total 20th-century rise is estimated to be 0.17 [0.12 to 0.22] m.

Since 2003—the last data assessed by the IPCC—the rate of sea level rise has slowed (Figure 1).

Figure 1. Decadal (overlapping) rates for sea level rise as determined from the satellite sea level rise observations, 1993-2011 (data available from

This observation seems to tip the scale to “decadal variability” rather than an “increase in the longer-term trend” in explaining the 1993 to 2003 behavior.

But there is much more evidence that no anthropogenic global warming-related acceleration of sea level rise is taking place.

A couple of months ago, an important paper was published that examined the changing historical contribution of ground water removal (for human water needs, primarily irrigation) to global sea level. A primary finding was that this non-climate component of sea level rise was both significant and rapidly increasing, currently making up between 15 and 25 percent of the current observed rate of sea level rise. Further, the rate of ground water extraction has been increasing over time, which imparts a slight acceleration to the rate of sea level rise over the past half-century or so. Once this non-climate signal is removed, there remains no evidence for a climate-related acceleration. We covered that finding here.

Another paper has just been accepted in the journal Geophysical Research Letters that identified multidecadal cycles in the historical mean sea level observations from many ocean basins. A research team led by Don Chambers from the University of South Florida examined tide gauge records from across the globe and found oscillations with a period of about 60 years in all ocean basins except the Central/Eastern North Pacific. Chambers et al., note that a 60-yr quasi oscillation has previously been identified in other earth/climate systems including ocean circulation, global mean surface temperatures, large-scale precipitation patterns, and atmospheric pressure, among other things. Many of these cycles can be traced back hundreds of years—an indication of a natural (rather than manmade) origin.

Chambers and colleagues note that given the strong possibility for such cycles in the global sea level data, that care must be taken when attempting to identify accelerations, as they, in fact, simply be upswings in the natural oscillatory behavior. For instance, in most ocean basins, the bottom of the cycle was reached in the 1980s and an upswing has been occurring since then—precisely when the IPCC notes that the rate of sea level rise has been increasing. For this reason, Chambers et al. note:
The 60-year oscillation will, however, change our interpretation of the trends when estimated over periods less than 1-cycle of the oscillation. Although several studies have suggested the recent change in trends of global [e.g., Merrifield et al., 2009] or regional [e.g., Sallenger et al., 2012] sea level rise reflects an acceleration, this must be re-examined in light of a possible 60-year fluctuation.

While technically correct that the sea level is accelerating in the sense that recent rates are higher than the long-term rate, there have been previous periods were the rate was decelerating, and the rates along the Northeast U.S. coast have what appears to be a 60-year period [Figure 4 of Sallenger et al., 2012], which is consistent with our observations of sea level variability at New York City and Baltimore. Until we understand whether the multi decadal variations in sea level reflect distinct inflexion points or a 60-year oscillation and whether there is a [Global Mean Sea Level, GMSL] signature, one should be cautious about computations of acceleration in sea level records unless they are longer than two cycles of the oscillation or at least account for the possibility of a 60-year oscillation in their model. This especially applies to interpretation of acceleration in GMSL using only the 20-year record of from satellite altimetry and to evaluations of short records of mean sea level from individual gauges.

The bottom line is this: the more people look for the anticipated acceleration in the rate of sea level rise, the less evidence they seem to find in support of it. All the while, we eat into the 21st century with a rate of sea level rise not much different from that experienced during the 20th century—and one which was hardly catastrophic, readily proven by a simple look around.

SOURCE (See the original for references)



The graphics problem: Graphics hotlinked to this site sometimes have only a short life and if I host graphics with blogspot, the graphics sometimes get shrunk down to illegibility. From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site. See here and here


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