Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Ya gotta laugh:  Those significant hundredths of one degree

I reproduce below a current news report derived from NOAA and GISS.  You will see that continuing warming is proclaimed with no hint that the data might be troublesome to Warmism.  It is classical warming propaganda much as we hear every year.

I have been naughty, however.  I spent about 2 minutes on a Google search to find out what the actual figures were.  Here is a quote from NOAA:

"The year 2013 ties with 2003 as the fourth warmest year globally since records began in 1880. The annual global combined land and ocean surface temperature was 0.62°C (1.12°F) above the 20th century average of 13.9°C (57.0°F). This marks the 37th consecutive year (since 1976) that the yearly global temperature was above average. Currently, the warmest year on record is 2010, which was 0.66°C (1.19°F) above average."
 Do you see what they are doing?  The differences in temperature that they rely on for a judgment that something was warmest are in hundredths of a degree!  They treat unbelievably tiny differences in temperature that exist only as a statistical artifact as if they told us something! For instance they contrast the 2013 anomaly of .62C with 2010, which is .66C.  The difference is only 4 hundredths of one degree Celsius!

Is there any point at which they would concede that a difference is too small to be taken seriously?  Thousandths of one degree?  Millionths of one degree?   Medieval theologians used to debate how many angels could dance on the head of a pin.  Theology is alive and well among Warmists!

America's two top scientific agencies have released separate reports on last year's climate, confirming the global warming trend is continuing.

The American space agency, NASA, releases a climate report each year - alongside a separate report from its sister agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

The two agencies collect their data separately and their reports show slightly different results. But the trend is clear.  At least nine of the warmest years on record have happened since 2000.

According to NOAA, 2013 was the fourth warmest year for the planet since records began in 1880.

Ocean temperatures were half a degree Celsius above the 20th century average.

NASA says carbon dioxide is at its highest level in the atmosphere in 800,000 years, having risen from 285 parts per million in 1880 to 400 parts per million last year.

Unless current trends change, the world should expect each of the coming decades to be warmer than the last, NASA climatologist Gavin Schmidt says.

He describes the warming of the past few decades as "unusual," and urges people not to judge whether climate change is happening or not based on random weather events like cold snaps.

"The long-term trends in climate are extremely robust," he said.

"People have a very short memory when it comes to their own experience of weather and climate, and the only way that we can have a long-term assessment of what is going on is by looking at the data."

Last year also marked the 37th year in a row with higher than average global temperatures.



David Whitehouse discusses below the issues I have touched on above  -- JR

In a joint press conference NOAA and NASA have just released data for the global surface temperature for 2013.

In summary they both show that the ‘pause’ in global surface temperature that began in 1997, according to some estimates, continues. Statistically speaking there has been no trend in global temperatures over this period. All these years fall within each other’s error bars. The graphs presented at the press conference omitted those error bars.

When asked for an explanation for the ‘pause’ by reporters Dr Gavin Schmidt of NASA and Dr Thomas Karl of NOAA spoke of contributions from volcanoes, pollution, a quiet Sun and natural variability. In other words, they don’t know.

NASA has a temperature anomaly of 0.61 deg C above the average of 14.0 (1951 – 80) making it the 7th warmest year. Note that it is identical to 2003 and only 0.01 above 2009 and 2006. Taking into account the errors there has been no change since last year.

NOAA also has 2013 as the 4th warmest year, at 0.62 deg C above the global 20th century average of 13.9 deg C. Note that only 0.09 deg C [nine hundredths of one degree] separates their top ten warmest years.

Given that the IPCC estimates that the average decadal increase in global surface temperature is 0.2 deg C, the world is now 0.3 deg C cooler than it should have been.


"Rigged" temperature data

A newly-uncovered and monumental calculating error in official US government climate data shows beyond doubt that climate scientists unjustifiably added on a whopping one degree of phantom warming to the official "raw" temperature record.  Skeptics believe the discovery may trigger the biggest of all “climate con” scandals in Congress and sound the death knell on American climate policy.

Independent data analyst, Steven Goddard, today (January 19, 2014) released his telling study of the officially adjusted and “homogenized” US temperature records relied upon by NASA, NOAA, USHCN and scientists around the world to “prove” our climate has been warming dangerously.

Goddard reports, “I spent the evening comparing graphs…and hit the NOAA motherlode.” His diligent research exposed the real reason why there is a startling disparity between the “raw” thermometer readings, as reported by measuring stations, and the “adjusted” temperatures, those that appear in official charts and government reports. In effect, the adjustments to the “raw” thermometer measurements made by the climate scientists “turns a 90 year cooling trend into a warming trend,” says the astonished Goddard.

Goddard’s plain-as-day evidence not only proves the officially-claimed one-degree increase in temperatures is entirely fictitious, it also discredits the reliability of any assertion by such agencies to possess a reliable and robust temperature record.

Goddard continues: "I discovered a huge error in their adjustments between V1 and V2. This is their current US graph. Note that there is a discontinuity at 1998, which doesn’t look right. Globally, temperatures plummeted in 1999, but they didn’t in the US graph."


New paper shows global warming DECREASES storm activity and extreme weather

A paper published today in Quaternary Science Reviews reconstructs storm activity in Iceland over the past 1,200 years and finds storminess and extreme weather variability was far more common during the Little Ice Age in comparison to the Medieval Warm Period and the 20th century. The paper adds to many other peer-reviewed publications finding global warming decreases storm activity, the opposite of claims by climate alarmists:

Late-Holocene land surface change in a coupled social–ecological system, southern Iceland: a cross-scale tephrochronology approach

By Richard Streeter et al.


The chronological challenge of cross-scale analysis within coupled socio-ecological systems can be met with tephrochronology based on numerous well-dated tephra layers. We illustrate this with an enhanced chronology from Skaftártunga, south Iceland that is based on 200 stratigraphic profiles and 2635 individual tephra deposits from 23 different eruptions within the last 1140 years. We present new sediment-accumulation rate based dating of tephra layers from Grímsvötn in AD 1432 ± 5 and AD 1457 ± 5. These and other tephras underpin an analysis of land surface stability across multiple scales. The aggregate regional sediment accumulation records suggest a relatively slow rate of land surface change which can be explained by climate and land use change over the period of human occupation of the island (after AD ∼870), but the spatial patterning of change shows that it is more complex, with landscape scale hysteresis and path dependency making the relationship between climate and land surface instability contingent. An alternative steady state of much higher rates of sediment accumulation is seen in areas below 300 m asl after AD ∼870 despite large variations in climate, with two phases of increased erosion, one related to vegetation change (AD 870–1206) and another related to climate (AD 1597–1918). In areas above 300 m asl there is a short lived increase in erosion and related deposition after settlement (AD ∼870–935) and then relatively little additional change to present. Spatial correlation between rates of sediment accumulation at different profiles decreases rapidly after AD ∼935 from ∼4 km to less than 250 m as the landscape becomes more heterogeneous. These new insights are only possible using high-resolution tephrochronology applied spatially across a landscape, an approach that can be applied to the large areas of the Earth's surface affected by the repeated fallout of cm-scale tephra layers.


Climate change is NOT main cause of floods, say experts: Building on plains and cutting down trees are among the true reasons

The debate about climate change is distracting us from the true causes of flooding, a group of eminent scientists warned yesterday.

Concreting over flood plains, cutting down trees and expanding cities is making flooding much worse – and we need to act on that knowledge, they said.

The exact link between global warming and flooding is much less certain, and those who keep pursuing the topic are taking attention away from the true problem of over-development, they said in a research paper.

David Cameron ignited a row at the height of the recent UK floods by proclaiming that he ‘very much’ suspected the devastation had been caused by climate change.

Environment Secretary Owen Paterson refused to endorse the Prime Minister’s views and the Met Office said there was no evidence that the winter floods had been caused by man-made global warming.

The 19 scientists, from prestigious universities and institutes in Britain, the US, Japan, Australia and across Europe, said that while greenhouse gas emissions are ‘strongly linked’ to flooding, there is insufficient evidence to accurately describe the connection.

They said that until there is firm evidence about the role of climate change, it is better to concentrate on what we do know – that the way we are changing our physical landscape is making flooding worse.

Many of the authors, all respected climate change scientists, have contributed to UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports. They include Professor Nigel Arnell, from Reading University’s department of meteorology, Robert Muir-Wood, a  London-based consultant who advises the OECD and UN.

The paper, published in the Hydrological Sciences Journal yesterday, says: ‘There is such a furore of concern about the linkage between greenhouse forcing [the process by which man-made greenhouse gases are said to force climate change] and floods that it causes society to lose focus on the things we already know for certain about floods and how to mitigate and adapt to them.

'The scientific community needs to emphasize that the problem of flood losses is mostly about what we do on or to the landscape and that will be the case for decades to come.’

The authors say we know there is a clear link between population density and flooding. Millions of houses and businesses have been built on flood plains, meaning that when rivers burst their banks the water flows onto roads and concrete, rather than bare earth.

When it cannot soak into the ground it causes untold damage. Cutting down trees – which take up water – exacerbates the problem, as does changing the course of rivers for irrigation and to make way for more developments.

But the authors say that when it comes to climate change they had only ‘low confidence’ in models that try to forecast the impact on flooding.

‘The linkages between enhanced greenhouse forcing and flood phenomena are highly complex and it has not been possible to describe the connections well, either by empirical analysis or by the use of models,’ they say.

But they add: ‘It is clear that current trends in human activity on the landscape continue to cause an increase in flood damages.

‘Decreasing or reversing this trend will require substantial attention from governments, private citizens, scientists and engineers, and the actions needed to accomplish this are largely the same regardless of the nature of the greenhouse gas-flood linkage.’

Bob Ward, policy director at the London School of Economics Grantham Institute, disagreed, warning that talking about climate change is vital to the debate.

‘Four of the five wettest years on record in the UK have all occurred since 2000, with 2012 being the second wettest, and this winter shaping up to be the wettest ever,’ he said.

The row about spending on Britain’s flood defences continued yesterday, when the Committee on Climate Change – the Government’s independent advisory body – said spending shortfalls could lead to £3billion in avoidable damage from a serious flood in future.


How the Keystone XL Pipeline is a New Diplomatic Lever

Just last month the International Energy Agency predicted the United States will become the world’s largest oil producer by 2015. That same week, White House officials noted that U.S. oil production outpaced imports for the first time in twenty years.

Developments like these led President Obama to declare in late November that, “After years of talk about reducing our dependence on foreign oil, we are actually poised to control our own energy future.”

While all of this is great news for the U.S. economy and consumer, one glaring hole remains in our national energy policy. Specifically, if we really want to control our energy future we must embrace an all-of-the above energy policy that includes the Keystone XL pipeline. Green lighting construction taps a reliable ally to help the U.S. reduce its dependence on volatile sources of oil.

President Obama has two choices: stall or lead. Ending the five year delay in approving the presidential permit needed for construction will clear the way for 830,000 barrels of U.S. and Canadian crude oil to be shipped each day to Gulf Coast refiners. Or, the president can give into the demands of one agenda driven billionaire. Facts are facts. Oil sands development is happening. Canadian oil imports are on pace to reach four million barrels a day by 2020. By utilizing the Keystone XL pipeline, the United States will reduce crude oil imports from overseas by 43%.

The shift away from overseas crude will have significant strategic implications for U.S. foreign policy. Recently a comprehensive study found that, “increasing supply from Canada allows the United States to reduce its dependence on more distant supplies of oil by tanker, often from regions that are less stable and more susceptible to disruption.”

Chief among those distant suppliers are nations like Venezuela – our 4th largest supplier of oil imports – whose leaders recently called U.S. officials “imperialists” while declaring they, “have…men and women of dignity that…will…confront [us] on all levels.”

In November, Florida Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen argued at the North American Energy Security Dialogues, that the Keystone XL pipeline will create a diplomatic lever to pressure Venezuela on its relationship with Iran. She stated, “Because the oil carried by the Keystone XL pipeline will be of similar quality and grade to that of Venezuelan oil, Gulf Coast refineries will be able to maintain full capacity as these sources directly compete for access. This competition may allow U.S. foreign policymakers to maximize pressure on the Venezuelan regime to return to its democratic principles and reassess its relationship with Iran.”

The president could largely erase our reliance on Venezuelan oil with approval of the Keystone XL pipeline - a project that a “solid majority” of Americans support. It’s true. During the first six months of 2013 the United States averaged just over 750,000 bd of heavy crude oil imports from Venezuela. Given that a large majority of these imports head to Gulf Coast refineries – the same destination as the Keystone XL Pipeline – the Venezuelan imports become far less important once the pipeline is in place.

Put another way, Keystone XL will bring oil supplies from a neighbor able to offer help during challenging times instead of from an adversary that touts confrontation as its agenda.

The short-term economic benefits of Keystone XL are significant, its long term contribution to America’s safety is even more important. The Keystone XL pipeline can be the main artery to reaching energy self-sufficiency and a new diplomatic lever to improve national security.

For these reasons, the President should approve the Keystone XL pipeline.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  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 or here


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