Saturday, July 10, 2010

Greenhouse theory fails a basic test of science

Science proceeds not by "proving" anything but by examining theories and seeing if they appear to account for anything. The starting point is always a skeptical one: That a proposed theory accounts for nothing that is actually observed in the real world. That is the null hypothesis. If the null hypothesis cannot be disproved, the theory behind it is abandoned. The following paper shows that the null hypothesis is not falsified by the CO2 theory of global warming (i.e. it adds nothing to our understanding of events). Hence that theory should be abandoned

A null hypothesis for CO2

By Roy Clark


Energy transfer at the Earth's surface is examined from first principles. The effects on surface temperature of small changes in the solar constant caused by the sunspot cycle and small increases in downward long wave infrared (LWIR) flux due to a 100 ppm increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration are considered in detail. The changes in the solar constant are sufficient to change ocean temperatures and alter the Earth's climate. The surface temperature changes produced by an increase in downward LWIR flux are too small to be measured and cannot cause climate change. The assumptions underlying the use of radiative forcing in climate models are shown to be invalid. A null hypothesis for CO2 is proposed that it is impossible to show that changes in CO2 concentration have caused any climate change, at least since the current composition of the atmosphere was set by ocean photosynthesis about one billion years ago.

Energy & Environment, Issue Volume 21, Number 4 / August 2010

Two and a Half Millennia of North Atlantic Sea-Surface Temperatures confirm that the past was mostly warmer than the present

Discussing Bonnet, S., de Vernal, A., Hillaire-Marcel, C., Radi, T. and Husum, K. 2010. Variability of sea-surface temperature and sea-ice cover in the Fram Strait over the last two millennia. Marine Micropaleontology 74: 59-74.

What was done

The authors developed a high-resolution record of ocean and climate variations during the late Holocene in the Fram Strait (the major gateway between the Arctic and North Atlantic Oceans, located north of the Greenland Sea), based on detailed analyses of a sediment core recovered from a location (78°54.931'N, 6°46.005'E) on the slope of the western continental margin of Svalbard, based on analyses of organic-walled dinoflagellate cysts that permit the reconstruction of sea-surface conditions in both summer and winter. These latter reconstructions, in their words, "were made using two different approaches for comparison and to insure the robustness of estimates." They were "the modern analogue technique, which is based on the similarity degree between fossil and modern spectra" and "the artificial neural network technique, which relies on calibration between hydrographical parameters and assemblages."

What was learned

Bonnet et al. report that the sea surface temperature (SST) histories they developed via the two techniques they employed were "nearly identical and show oscillations between -1°C and 5.5°C in winter and between 2.4°C and 10.0°C in summer," and their graphical results indicate that between 2500 and 250 years before present (BP), the mean SSTs of summers were warmer than those of the present about 80% of the time, while the mean SSTs of winters exceeded those of current winters approximately 75% of the time, with the long-term (2250-year) means of both seasonal periods averaging about 2°C more than current means.

The highest temperatures of all were recorded in the vicinity of 1320 cal. years BP, during a warm interval that persisted from about AD 500 to 720 during the very earliest stages of the Medieval Warm Period (MWP), when the peak summer and winter temperatures of the MWP both exceeded the peak summer and winter temperatures of the first several years of the 21st century by about 3°C.

What it means

These several observations, as well as the many similar findings we have described in our Medieval Warm Period Project, clearly indicate there is nothing unusual, unnatural or unprecedented about the world's current level of warmth, which further suggests there is no compelling reason to attribute the Little Ice Age-to-Current Warm Period transition to the concomitant historical increase in the air's CO2 content.


Siberian tree-line evidence for it being warmer in the past

Discussing: Mazepa, V.S. 2005. Stand density in the last millennium at the upper tree-line ecotone in the Polar Ural Mountains. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 35: 2082-2091.


Noting that "dead trees located above the current tree-line ecotone provide evidence of the dynamic behavior in the location of the tree line in the recent past (Shiyatov, 1993, 2003)," Mazepa reports that "previous studies have concluded that increases in tree-line elevation, and associated increases in tree abundance within the transient tree-line ecotone, are associated with extended warm periods (Tranquillini, 1979; Kullman, 1986; Payette et al., 1989; Lloyde and Fastie, 2003; Lloyd et al., 2003; Grace et al., 2002; Helama et al., 2004)." Consequently, similar data were used by Mazepa to evaluate the uniqueness of Polar Ural tree-line and density response "to what is widely considered to be anomalous 20th-century warming."

What was done

The author's research, which was conducted over the period 1999-2001, extends the earlier (1960-1962) work of Shiyatov - who examined evidence of tree growth dynamics along a continuous altitudinal transect 860 meters long and 40-80 meters wide on the eastern slope of the Polar Ural Mountains (66°48'57"N, 65°34'09"E) - by repeating what Shiyatov had done four decades earlier.

What was learned

Most importantly, Mazepa reports that "a large number of well-preserved tree remains can be found up to 60-80 meters above the current tree line, some dating to as early as a maximum [our italics] of 1300 years ago," and that "the earliest distinct maximum in stand density [our italics] occurred in the 11th to 13th centuries, coincident with Medieval climatic warming."

What it means

Based on Mazepa's statement that "the vertical gradient of summer air temperature in the Polar Urals is 0.7°C/100 m," the large number of tree remains found 60-80 meters above the current tree line suggests that either (1) there must have been an extended period of time when summer air temperatures were 0.42-0.56°C warmer than they were over the last decades of the 20th century or (2) if late-20th-century warmth was as warm as it was as long ago as AD 700, it has not been maintained anywhere near long enough to produce the type of tree growth of that earlier period, which based upon Mazepa's stand density data likely continued to approximately AD 1300.


Refusing to Report the Truth

By Alan Caruba

I attended the first two International Climate Change Conferences when they were held in New York City, but a change of venue to the hometown of The Heartland Institute, Chicago, was enough to discourage someone like myself who no longer enjoys travel of any kind for any reason.

The most recent Heartland conference was held May 16-18 and drew over 800 people from nearly thirty nations. I “attended” electronically, watching the proceedings that were broadcast by Pajamas Media via the Internet.

My friend, Joseph Bast, is the founder The Heartland Institute and, in a recent issue of The Heartlander, he wrote a revealing and insightful article, “There’s Nothing Mainstream About Old Media”, that says much about the state of journalism in America today.

“Heartland’s first international conference on Climate Change generated 124 print articles with a total circulation of nine million readers. It was covered by the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, USA Today, Washington Post, Associated Press, Reuters, three of the four television networks, and dozens of publications outside the U.S.”

Though Bast did not say so, I can tell you that the bulk of the coverage was an effort to disparage the conference’s proceedings, devoted to debunking the global warming hoax.

The Fourth conference in May featured world-famous physicists from Russia and Israel, and the U.S..; two astronauts including one who walked on the moon…” Also addressing the attendees were the two men who exposed the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change “hockey stick” fraud in which a deliberately fraudulent graph conveyed the notion of a rapidly warming planet.

The blogger who broke the Climategate story in November 2009 that revealed how IPCC “scientists” had deliberately distorted their “research” to further the global warming hoax was there along with eighty elected officials, and many others who have steadfastly questioned global warming claims, some for decades, until it finally began to die of its own dead weight.

Guess how many from the “mainstream media” covered the Fourth Conference? None!

This was and is literally a conspiracy of silence and, as Bast points out, “It is unethical for a reporter to refuse to report that so many prominent scientists and policy experts believe the fear of global warming is overblown. It is unethical to boycott an important event with major public policy importance.”

Keep in mind that the Obama administration’s desperate effort to push through Cap-and-Trade legislation, a huge tax on all energy use, is entirely based on global warming and the lie that carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are “causing” it.

There have been many studies by journalism research centers that have long since established the liberal allegiance of the vast bulk of journalists working in the so-called mainstream media today, newspapers and news magazines, radio and television news outlets.

“This isn’t journalism,” wrote Bast. “It’s advocacy.” And it is advocacy of a global fraud called global warming. It is the deliberate deception of millions of Americans and others around the world to further the global warming fraud.

Noted climatologist, Dr. Tim Ball, writing in, asked “How long before politicians realize the public are simply not on board the climate change alarmism? It can’t be much longer as economies fail, jobs disappear, markets weaken, and deficits and debts soar?”

The politicians in Congress and the mainstream journalists who report on the torrent of global warming lies from the Oval Office and the Environmental Protection Agency are likely to be the last to give up on their attempts to fleece the American public in the name of global warming, climate change, or “green jobs.”

The new media is, of course, the rise and growth of the Internet and its many websites and blogs that provide the truth about the global warming hoax and many other issues that are causing Americans and others around the world so much grief.

“Best of all, wrote Bast, “most of the new media is free of the suffocating conceit and arrogance of the liberal old media that makes most news stories unreliable and every editorial predictable.”

“If the price of the rise of new media is the death of the old,” wrote Bast, “then I say it is a bargain.”


Rabbi Shmuley Boteach on Al Gore

IT IS not the cavalier attitude toward his wife or the incredible stupidity of a public figure putting himself into a morally compromising position that constitutes Gore’s most important moral failing. Rather, it has to do with the environment.

Let me explain. I love nature and I believe with all my heart in protecting the environment.

I am never more alive as when I get away from bricks and mortar out into open fields, forests, rivers, and mountains. Every year I take my kids way off the beaten track and as deep into nature as I can immerse them for our summer vacation. I want to teach them reverence for the beauty of creation and how it is a sin to pollute God’s green Earth.

So why aren’t I grateful to Al Gore for highlighting the environment? Simply put, he overdid it. Saving a tree, however important, is never as significant as saving a human life.

Stopping a rain forest from being decimated is still subordinate to stopping genocide.

What Al Gore did was create a level of hysteria that elevated the environment to the foremost moral cause of our time, even as Africans continue to die in Darfur, Zimbabweans continue to be brutalized by Robert Mugabe, Iranians continue to be cut down by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Hugo Chavez’s reign of terror intensifies by the day in a once-free Venezuela.

So many people of goodwill who might have worked to bring clean water to Africa, to stop the scourge of AIDS or to battle the oppression of women in the Arab world contented themselves with climbing up trees and ensuring they weren’t cut down. I love the Earth but I refuse to deify it. Human life is still the crown jewel of creation.

Some will say that my argument is specious.

How can you have human life without a healthy Earth to sustain it? My response is that respecting the Earth and reducing pollution is an urgent priority, not to mention a godly endeavor. Even those who reject global warming as a hoax would have to agree that all that black, belching smoke coming from exhaust pipes and factories can’t be good for our air quality or world. But when the hysteria over the environment pushes to the backburner the ending of famine, stopping the spread of AIDS, fighting terrorist regimes and giving orphans loving homes, our world is thrown into moral confusion.

Al Gore convinced the world that the environment was more urgent than even removing Saddam Hussein from power – an act he condemned and opposed – even as The New York Times reported that the tyrant killed 800,000 Arabs and 300,000 Kurds. A true leader is one who teaches his people moral priorities.

Yes, the Earth has a certain sacredness. But it is still the means to the even higher end of the infinite value of human life.


Australian PM told to slow down on climate legislation

Good advice, if not for the best of reasons

LABOR'S closest business adviser, Heather Ridout, has warned Julia Gillard to slow down as the PM prepares to rush out a climate change policy. As chief executive of the Australian Industry Group, Ms Ridout has offered consistently strong support to the Labor government and was a member of the Henry tax review panel.

She told The Weekend Australian yesterday that it would be "over-reaching" for the government to roll out a replacement for the emissions trading scheme ahead of the election and cautioned Ms Gillard to avoid embracing a carbon-tax quick fix, warning that business was not prepared nor ready.

"It is totally the wrong atmosphere -- we are getting way ahead of ourselves," Ms Ridout said. "I think the confidence of business has been really shaken by the breakdown of the domestic consensus on this issue. Business doesn't want the government to be in any hurry to come up with this in the lead-up to the election."

When she replaced Kevin Rudd as Prime Minister, Ms Gillard identified the government's position on climate change as one of her key priorities that had to be fixed before going to the polls. She has sharpened the position on the other two priorities -- the mining tax and asylum-seekers -- but has since been embroiled in debates over both.

Criticism is building that Ms Gillard is moving too quickly to address Labor's policy weaknesses in her haste to clear the deck for an election.

The government is considering a suite of measures to reclaim support from voters lost to the Greens when Mr Rudd ditched the ETS. These include a controversial idea to place tough new restrictions on all new coal-fired power stations and a national energy-efficiency target.

Reports this week have suggested the government is considering setting a price on carbon pollution, while green groups have urged the government to adopt an interim carbon tax. "I think we need to develop a deep and lasting community consensus about pricing carbon," Ms Gillard said yesterday, declaring herself to be a believer in human-induced climate change.

The Prime Minister's special taskforce on energy efficiency has concluded its report to hand to Ms Gillard, calling on her to adopt a national energy efficiency target. The target will lead to bans on many energy-sapping appliances being sold in Australia.

The Weekend Australian understands the government is considering placing an energy-efficiency target on retailers. They could meet the new target by buying "white certificates", which represent an amount of energy they have saved.

In practice, certificates can be awarded for a wide range of actions, including replacing inefficient heaters or airconditioners with more efficient models, installing insulation, improving the thermal efficiency of windows, installing energy efficient lighting and buying efficient refrigerators.

There is no national energy efficiency target. Some states have their own energy efficiency schemes such as the Victorian Energy Efficiency Target and the NSW Energy Savings Scheme. South Australia also has a scheme that provides incentives to adopt energy saving measures.

While the Greens are pushing for a 3 per cent annual energy efficiency target, The Weekend Australian understands the government's target will be lower.

In an interview with ABC TV's Lateline this week, Ms Gillard would not be drawn on whether her climate plans included a carbon tax, declaring she still supported an emissions trading system from 2012, while saying there were things the government could do in the meantime.

Although not wanting a hasty solution, many business figures do want whichever party is successful at the forthcoming election to set a clear direction on climate policy. AGL Energy chief executive Michael Fraser said yesterday a price on carbon was needed to guarantee Australia's energy future. "It is my firm view that a broad-based cap-and-trade emissions trading scheme is the best way to deliver least cost solutions for reducing emissions," he said.

An interim carbon price has been backed by MPs. One said a carbon tax was now the only option to restore Labor's battered reputation.



For more postings from me, see DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when is playing up, there are mirrors of this site here and here


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