Archive for November, 2011

The Glacial Climate: Why so Cold?

Posted: November 30, 2011 by tallbloke in climate, Ice ages

On the ‘Suggestions’ page,

Roger Andrews says:

Reading through the RealClimate discussion of the recent Schmittner et al. paper on ice age climate sensitivity ( I came across the following claim:

“without the role of CO2 as a greenhouse gas, i.e. the cooling effect of the lower glacial CO2 concentration, the ice age climate cannot be explained.”


Thought this might be worth a thread.


The paper isn’t difficult to follow, and gives a useful insight into the current state of play with models which  are used to attempt tasks such as trying to determine the climate sensitivity (assuming it is linear), from long time span runs. This one runs from the Last Glacial Minimum in temperature around 23Kyears ago.


What is it with International Climate Jamborees and unseasonal weather? Two years ago Copenhagen got an early blast of wintry storms. Last year Cancun shivered in temperatures 9C below average. Now Durban gets flooded as the show gets underway.

According to the South Africa Weather Bureau, 2.5 inches of rain fell last night in Durban, which had already recorded 8.2 inches for November, almost double its average. It’s forecast to continue persisting it down all week. Awww, and I bet all the delegates had sun lotion with them rather than brollies… It’s almost like Nature has decided that climatologists and policy wonks won’t get any fun out of holding their conferences in exotic locations.

From The Mail and Guardian online:

A violent storm killed six people in Durban and Pietermaritzburg on Sunday night and destroyed scores of homes.


The Talkshop: second anniversary

Posted: November 29, 2011 by tallbloke in solar system dynamics

As of today, Tallbloke’s Talkshop has been running for two years. A moment for reflection and also for looking forward. Firstly I want to express my gratitude to the people who are the main reason this blog is still running – that’s you. Without the encouragement, admin assistance, guest authors and comment contributions, the talkshop wouldn’t be a talkshop, but a silent tomb of stillborn thought. I thank you all for your interest and involvement.

Some milestones have been passed this last week:

  • Total site views have risen to just over 1/3 of a million
  • Over 300 articles have been posted
  • Over 9000 comments have been published
  • Over 40,000 visits in November, our biggest month yet -thanks largely to a brief comment from ‘foia’ I should add.


Talkshop Poll

Posted: November 28, 2011 by tallbloke in climate, Politics

After the revelations of the emails, and subsequent blandishments from Phil Jones and the mainstream media that there is nothing untoward and it’s just that quotes have been mined out of context, I thought we should conduct a reality check to see what the readership thinks. Please visit below the break to cast your


CO2 or Sun ? Which one really controls Earth’s surface temperatures ?

Stephen Wilde – November 2011

1) Here is a chart showing the Temperature of the Lower Stratosphere (TLS) from 1979 to date.  From 1979 the modern satellite temperature record first became available.



SWISS banking giant UBS says the European Union’s emissions trading scheme has cost the continent’s consumers $287 billion for “almost zero impact” on cutting carbon emissions, and has warned that the EU’s carbon pricing market is on the verge of a crash next year.

In a damning report to clients, UBS Investment Research said that had the €210bn the European ETS had cost consumers been used in a targeted approach to replace the EU’s dirtiest power plants, emissions could have been reduced by 43 per cent “instead of almost zero impact on the back of emissions trading”.


Image 21st Century

Image credit 21st Century

Dr. Zbigniew Jaworowski died whilst undergoing surgery, Nov 12th 2011, Poland

A brief obit is  here on 21st Century Science and Technology

An EIR interview given last year is here

Warwick Hughes has a copy of another EIR text here

I apologise for not picking this up days ago.

Tim Channon

It’s rare that I republish a strongly political opinion piece here on the talkshop. Mostly because on other blogs it it tends to generate exchanges which create more heat than light. But the time has come to consider the consequences of the policies being foisted on us in the name of averting the threat of global warming if they turn out to be aiming in the wrong direction.

A common argument from the better informed people on the co2-drives-climate-change side of the debate is that although we don’t know for sure if co2 really does drive climate change (formerly known as global warming) the consequences of not acting now if it is true are so bad that we should not delay in drastically cutting co2 emissions.

The article below from Christopher Booker is the counterpoint to this line of thinking. It asks what the consequences of  pursuing the policies already in place will be for us if they continue. In the face of the evidence that the small group of scientists at the centre of the co2 scare have strongly oversold the certainty of their public pronouncements, this is a salient question.


For many years, attempts to encourage debate on global warming science or policy have run into the obstacle that the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has issued definitive statements, and therefore—the reasoning goes—the era of debate is over. The IPCC is made up of thousands of the world’s top scientists, it has one of the most rigorous and exhaustive review processes in the history of science, and the oversight by 195 member governments ensures balance, transparency and accountability. Or so we are told.


Reposted from Roy Spencer’s blog

November 23rd, 2011

Ever since the first Climategate e-mail release, the public has become increasingly aware that scientists are not unbiased. Of course, most scientists with a long enough history in their fields already knew this (I discussed the issue at length in my first book Climate Confusion), but it took the first round of Climategate e-mails to demonstrate it to the world.

The latest release (Climategate 2.0) not only reveals bias, but also some private doubts among the core scientist faithful about the scientific basis for the IPCC’s policy goals. Yet, the IPCC’s “cause” (Michael Mann’s term) appears to trump all else.

So, when the science doesn’t support The Cause, the faithful turn toward discussions of how to craft a story which minimizes doubt about the IPCC’s findings. After considerable reflection, I’m going to avoid using the term ‘conspiracy’ to describe this activity, and discuss it in terms of scientific bias.


From Google’s cache. the story posted by ENE news on Nov 24th has been pulled. Lawyers are working overtime it seems.

Radioactive substances belong to landowners, not us

Radiation Levels at Sunfield Nihonmatsu Golf Club, 45 km west of Fukushima meltdowns, on Aug. 10

2.91 microsieverts per hour was recorded 10 centimeters above ground at the tee of the sixth hole
51.1 microsieverts per hour near a drainage ditch in a parking space for golf carts, similar to level 2.4 km from the plant
A radiation testing agency checked the course on Nov. 13


Data errata caper: CRU methodology “inexplicable”

Posted: November 25, 2011 by tallbloke in Incompetence

Back in 2009 at the height of the climategate I revelations, we were all highly amused when we found a file called ‘Harry ReadMe’. This was the running log of Ian ‘Harry’ Harris, who had been tasked with sorting out the mess which was (is?) the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit database system. It appears this runs on homespun Fortran written by a self taught ‘programmer’. For those not old enough to know what Fortran is, don’t worry, you’ll never need to know, unless you get a job in a computer museum.

In the climategate II email folder, I just came across this exchange, which gave me a chuckle. I’ve reversed the order of the responses, so it works as a narrative.


Bill Carmichael: Solar Panels Are A Badge Of Shame

Posted: November 25, 2011 by tallbloke in Energy, flames, Politics

Green subsidies work a bit like Robin Hood – but in reverse. They effectively take around £8bn from the poorest consumers in the country over the next 20 years and transfer the cash to well off people who can afford the capital costs of installing mini solar and wind power schemes.

OH the squeals of outrage this month when the Government announced a modest reform to one of the biggest green rip-offs this country has ever seen.

You may not have heard of Feed-in Tariffs (Fits), but if you are lucky enough to live in one of the posher parts of town, you’ve no doubt noticed your more well-heeled neighbours covering their roofs with solar panels.

The reason for the mad proliferation of solar panels, and to a lesser extent mini windmills, is that householders are being paid enormous subsidies to generate their own electricity.


Playing with fire

Posted: November 25, 2011 by tallbloke in climate, flames, Politics

In email 3673 of the Climategate II files Phil Jones says:

Re: AW: Re: geomagnetic field and climate
> Jacopo,
> I’m not suggesting fraud, just that Bard/Delaygue weren’t able to reproduce
> what Courtillot et al claimed to have done.
> Courtillot et al may be considered high profile scientists, but this is
> in a non-climate field. The issue here is that they are not fully
>aware of all the literature in the climate field. They are very  selective of
>the papers they cite and the journal EPSL isn’t considered mainstream in
>the climate field. They tend to publish in what I would refer to as the
>non-climate literature. In this respect the editors have a harder time
>knowing they are getting access to the best climate reviewers.


Breaking news: FOIA 2011 has arrived !

Posted: November 22, 2011 by tallbloke in climate, flames, Philosophy, Politics

UPDATE 1-12-11 A searchable database of all the 2009 and 2011 emails is here:

Wattsupwiththat has the best collation of links and discussions here:

Climate Audit is well worth a visit:


Our old friend ‘Foia’ dropped an interesting comment on the Ian Wilson thread at 9.28am GMT today.

Downloading now, check it out at your own peril, I don’t know what’s in it yet:

UPDATE 10.34am GMT

OK, it’s genuine, and as far as I can tell, virus free. McAfee, Malwarebytes’, Avast, Superantispyware and Ad-aware all say it’s clean. (Thanks Niklas)

By the way, please redact any addresses, phone numbers etc before posting any juicy bits here.

Wattsup has a thread running

Climate audit

Air vent

Message to ‘FOIA’

Thank you, whoever you are, freedom of information is a principle worth upholding.

Here’s the README contents:

/// FOIA 2011 — Background and Context ///

“Over 2.5 billion people live on less than $2 a day.”

“Every day nearly 16.000 children die from hunger and related causes.”

“One dollar can save a life” — the opposite must also be true.

“Poverty is a death sentence.”

“Nations must invest $37 trillion in energy technologies by 2030 to stabilize
greenhouse gas emissions at sustainable levels.”

Today’s decisions should be based on all the information we can get, not on
hiding the decline.

This archive contains some 5.000 emails picked from keyword searches. A few
remarks and redactions are marked with triple brackets.

The rest, some 220.000, are encrypted for various reasons. We are not planning
to publicly release the passphrase.

We could not read every one, but tried to cover the most relevant topics such


I’m reposting this article from Ian Wilson’s blog, as it is highly relevant to the discussion in the previous post regarding solar rotation. Ian’s (Ninderthana’s) work is much more advanced than mine on this subject and the inter-relations he has been discovering lend more weight to our tentative hypothesis that the planets are affecting the Sun’s fluid circulations. Ian is here concentrating on possible planetary tidal effects. In comments to this article on his blog, Ray Tomes mentions his GR theory (direct gravitational effect). Charles Wolff  (Wolff and Patrone) in email to me said both these forces are operative.
A Mechanism for Amplifying Planetary Tidal Forces in the Sun’s Outer Convective Zone
Ian Wilson 2010
Figure 1 (left) is a cross-section of the Sun showing the rotational periods of a section of it’s interior.
The rotation rates range from about 34.0 days near the poles to about 25.2 days in the Sun’s equatorial convective zone. The dotted line that is located ~ 0.7 solar radii out from the centre of the Sun marks the positions the Solar Tachocline. This represents the boundary between the core of the Sun, were the main form of energy transport is by radiation, and the outer convective layer of the Sun, where the main form of energy transport is by convection.
Figure 1 shows that mean rotation period at a point just below the equatorial Tachocline is ~ 26.3 days, while the mean rotation period in the equatorial mid-convective layer is ~ 25.2 days.Amazingly, if the rotation period of the point just below the equatorial Tachocline was in fact 26.3365 days, you would get an amplified resonance between the tides of the two dominant tidal forcing Terrestrial planets, Venus and Earth.

In comments on the Jupiter Jackpot thread I noted in passing that there seems to be a relationship between the inverse of the period of Jupiters orbit and the rotation speed of the Sun. This didn’t arouse much interest at the time, possible because ‘inverse’ is an arcane mathematical term which doesn’t seem to relate to the physical world. But this was a shorthand. The inverse means one divided by the orbital period, which of course implies Earth years, because we measure orbital periods of the other planets in Earth years.

Let me restate the relationship in a way that may resonate more immediately with the reality of planetary motion:

Orbital Period (Earth) 1 year
————————————————-        =     Average  Spin Rate  (Sun)  0.0843 years = 30.79 days
Orbital Period (Jupiter) 11.86 years


Little one cops big one, Tokamak news

Posted: November 13, 2011 by tchannon in Energy, Nuclear power


A press pre-release of an important development has been picked by the The Register. A small UCLA team at San Diego intend to announce they have made an important discovery about plasma stability in tokoma reactor vessels.

Press release, PDF



Fig 2B

Sub image from paper.

Commenter DaveR have kindly provided a link to an In Press paper by Nicola Scafetta which is likely to interest several of the blog readers.

Citation: –

Scafetta, N., A shared frequency set between the historical mid-latitude aurora records and the global surface temperature. Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics (2011), doi:10.1016/j.jastp.2011.10.013

Preprint at Duke here