Archive for November, 2014

By Kelly Dickerson for Yahoo News:

ESA-Magnetospheres_600_MThe sun may be partly responsible for lightning strikes on Earth, and scientists think fluctuations in the sun’s magnetic field could be used to predict lightning storms weeks in advance.

The sun’s magnetic field can bend Earth’s own magnetic field, and this twisting and turning may be allowing an influx of high-energy particles into the planet’s atmosphere. These particles can cause a buildup of electric charge that can trigger lightning strikes.

From 2001 to 2006, during a period when the sun’s magnetic field was severely skewing the Earth’s magnetic field, the United Kingdom saw 50 percent more lightning strikes than normal, according to the new study. This severe skewing happens regularly as the sun’s magnetic field shifts. Scientists say this suggests the sun’s magnetic field could be used to predict the occurrence of lightning.


Nice blog post by Paul Homewood, deosntrating that global warming saves lives in the UK (and no doubt other northern countries)


By Paul Homewood


I wonder where Roger Harrabin is today!

I was waiting for the stats to be published by the ONS, but in the meantime the BBC beat me to it!

The lowest ever number of winter deaths was recorded last year, official figures for England and Wales show.

An estimated 18,200 excess winter deaths occurred in 2013-14, the lowest number since records began in 1950-51.

Last winter was notably warmer than in previous years and had a relatively mild flu season which contributed to the lower number of deaths.

The Office for National Statistics data compares deaths in winter months with averages in other seasons.

It showed 11.6% more people died last winter and elderly people were disproportionately affected.

Of the 18,200 excess deaths, 14,000 were in the over-75s.

Temperatures were 2C above average for December and January last year.

The ONS report said: “The peak in…

View original post 388 more words

Scientist Paul Pukite has built a simple model involving Total Solar Irradiance , the Chandler wobble and the Quasi-Biennial Oscillation which does an impressive job of emulating the Southern Oscillation index from Darwin and Tahiti. Here’s the result:




One equation for earth temperature

Posted: November 29, 2014 by tchannon in atmosphere, Gravity, Maths

At The Hockey Schitick MS has posted a brave article

The Greenhouse Equation

This seems to be a culmination of a series of articles.

[UPDATE: and another article showing a fit against Standard Atmosphere /UPDATE]



Forster_PiersWithout comment, an extract from a Guardian piece:

Prof Piers Forster, at the University of Leeds, led a project using in-computer models to assess six types of SRM (Solar Radiation Management). All reduced temperatures but all also worsened floods or droughts for 25%-65% of the global population, compared to the expected impact of climate change:

  • mimicking a volcano by spraying sulphate particles high into the atmosphere to block sunlight adversely affected 2.8bn people
  • spraying salt water above the oceans to whiten low clouds and reflect sunlight adversely affected 3bn people
  • thinning high cirrus clouds to allow more heat to escape Earth adversely affected 2.4bn people
  • generating microbubbles on the ocean surface to whiten it and reflect more sunlight adversely affected 2bn people
  • covering all deserts in shiny material adversely affected 4.1bn people
  • growing shinier crops adversely affected 1.4bn people


The BBC’s Roger Harrabin reports on a Royal Society report into the Somerset flooding (with a straight face). We covered this extensively as it happened last winter

somerset-flood-updateThe authors of a Royal Society report on resilience to extreme weather have told BBC News that they believe the campaign to protect the Levels prompted politics to override science.

They say those resident on the Levels may have to get used to living with floods, and they question whether investment to protect farmland is the best use of public money.

“These so-called experts haven’t got a clue what they are talking about. We are used to being flooded – but we don’t expect to get ignored for so long”

James WinsladeSomerset farmer


Reposted from

Energy policy and the return of the State
Rupert Darwall

RupertDarwallEnergy policy represents the biggest expansion of state power since the nationalisations of the 1940s and 1950s and is on course to becoming the most costly domestic policy disaster in modern British history. By committing the nation to high cost, unreliable renewable energy, its consequences will be felt for decades to come. Energy is an iceberg policy: its implications for the demise of a competitive market in electricity – the final achievement of the Thatcher years – are poorly understood and tend to be consigned to footnotes and annexes of policy documents.

Like its predecessor, the Coalition Government has three policy objectives:

Keeping the lights on;
Keeping energy bills affordable; and
Decarbonising energy generation.

These do not require the policies the Government is implementing. Indeed, energy policy militates against having cheap, reliable energy. Worries about the lights going out have intensified as the country becomes more dependent on the weather for its electricity. The market is the best way of providing reliable and affordable electricity. Converting the electricity system to wind and solar power does neither. Even on favourable assumptions, these are inefficient ways of reducing carbon dioxide emissions.


My thanks to Patrick Moore, co-founder and ex Greenpeace leader, and since 1986 ‘the sensible environmentalist’, for his permission to repost this article printed in the Australian recently. The name of Patrick’s own venture – Ecosense reflects his logical and humanist approach to the climate debate.

Patrick Moore: We Need More Carbon Dioxide, Not Less


Australian politics has been more influenced by the climate debate than any other country. Yet Australia is responsible for only 1.5 per cent of global CO2 emissions. Perhaps this speaks of Australia’s extraordinary commitment to the international community. Yet Australia has threatened to hobble its own economy while much larger ­nations take a pass while making pious pronouncements.

I am sceptical that humans are the main cause of climate change, and that it will be catastrophic in the near future. There is no scientific proof of this hypothesis, yet we are told “the debate is over”, the “science is settled”.

My scepticism begins with the warmists’ certainty they can predict the global climate with a computer model. The entire basis for the doomsday climate change scenario is the hypothesis that increased CO2 due to fossil fuel emissions will heat the Earth to unliveable temperatures.

This is a minor story, not a particularly dire case. Twist to this story.


When this uninteresting item surfaced on Reuters UK feed I took a quick look as it is not a subject of much interest, political and hogwash as the article reveals.

(Reuters) – Britain has pledged up to 720 million pounds on Thursday to a United Nations fund to help poor nations cope with global warming, the government said.

The contribution is equivalent to around 12 percent of the Green Climate Fund (GCF), whose total funds currently stand at around $9 billion (5.74 billion pounds), based on pledges from 13 countries, it said.

At the weekend, the United States pledged $3 billion and Japan promised $1.5 billion. Germany and France have pledged $1 billion each.

Britain’s contribution will come from existing funds earmarked for international climate work.



A classic, make a fuss about giving what is already given, if it is real anyway.

What instantly took my interest was the photograph. I already knew there had been alarmist games back in April so the re-use of materials by a Reuters contributor or editor is unwise.


R W Wood: Physical Optics

Posted: November 26, 2014 by tchannon in books, History, radiative theory


Solar spectrum due to Langley published in “Physical Optics, Robert W Wood, Professor of Experimental Physics in the John Hopkins University, year 1905, page 477.

R W Wood has been mentioned on the Talkshop so when a-private-place references the early edition is out of copyright I thought it would be useful to point. (no cite unless the person tells me to)

I am aware of Langley’s later work with Angstrom but this is very early.


Met Office woolly forecast for Christmas 2014

Posted: November 25, 2014 by tchannon in Forecasting, humour, weather

Now the dank chill of late autumn gives way to winter frosts


Dusk in winter, England, 1980s. The author.


Met Office 16 to 30 day forecast now stretches to Christmas Eve, not that it has changed over the past few days. A sudden weather change without a glimmer of notice for the 25th or 26th, I very much doubt it.

Met Office forecast for period day16to30 issued at 2014-11-25T16:00:00


Forecast for All regions (shared forecast) day16to30, from 2014-12-10 16hrs (Wed) to 2014-12-24 16hrs (Wed)

UK Outlook for Wednesday 10 Dec 2014 to Wednesday 24 Dec 2014:
  • There is no strong signal in weather patterns during this period.
  • However, the most likely scenario is a trend towards more unsettled and, at times, windy weather, especially in western parts of the UK, with eastern parts seeing the best of any dry weather.
  • Temperatures are generally expected to be around, or a little above, average for the time of year.
  • There is a chance of some overnight and morning frost and fog in places – this will be more likely across northern areas where there is also a chance of some snow on higher ground.


“There is no strong signal”. Aerial riggers called out…


H/T to @IntrepidWanders for this paper, which lays out in clear terms the argument for abiotic oil/gas. I’ll post the second half next.

Saturn seen across a sea of methane on Titan by Huygens probe 2005

Saturn seen across a sea of methane on Titan. Artists impression. Credit: NASA/JPL Gregor Kervina

Evgeny Yantovski
Independent researcher
Elsass str. 58, D-52068 Aachen, Germany

Thomas Gold was a main participant and contributor in the controversy between the biogenic
and abiogenic theories of the origin of hydrocarbons, a controversy launched by the abiogenic
views of Mendeleev and supported by other Russian and Ukrainian authors. The great success
of Gold’s forecasts is illustrated by a photo of the methane seas on the cold planetary body
Titan. Recently Scott et al.’s experiment on methane formation at high pressure suggests a
possibility of methane formation in the mantle. Some thermodynamic equilibrium
calculations suggest a possible exothermic reaction of carbon dioxide with fayalite producing
methane. In this view, carbon could play the role of an energy carrier from fayalite to
methane and then to a power plant and in a closed cycle be reinjected in Earth. Fayalite
becomes a fuel, with methane the energy carrier. Methane is then a renewable energy source.
The search for methane in Earth and resoluton of its origins deserve more efforts than ever


Over at the Hockey Schtick, Michael has an interesting new angle on determining planetary surface temperature from pressure and gravity – a subject covered extensively here at the Talkshop over the last three years. Here’s an extract. Of particular interest here is his new method of using the centre of mass of the atmosphere as a reference point. Head on over to read the full post.

Step 2: Determine the height at the center of mass of the atmosphere

We are determining the temperature gradient within the mass of the atmosphere and the equilibrium temperature is thus at the center of mass. The “effective radiating level” or ERL of planetary atmospheres is located at the approximate center of mass of the atmosphere where the temperature is equal to the equilibrium temperature with the Sun. The equilibrium temperature of Earth with the Sun is commonly assumed to be 255K or -18C as calculated here. As a rough approximation, this height is where the pressure is ~50% of the surface pressure. It is also located at the approximate half-point of the troposphere temperature profile set by the adiabatic lapse rate, since to conserve energy in the troposphere, the increase in temperature from the ERL to the surface is offset by the temperature decrease from the ERL to the tropopause.

Fig 1. From Robinson & Catling, Nature, 2014 with added notations in red showing at the center of mass of Earth's atmosphere at ~0.5 bar the temperature is ~255K, which is equal to the equilibrium temperature with the Sun. Robinson & Catling also demonstrated that the height of the tropopause is at 0.1 bar for all the planets in our solar system with thick atmospheres, as also shown by this figure, and that convection dominates over radiative-convective equilibrium in the troposphere to produce the troposphere lapse rates of each of these planets as shown above. R&C also show the lapse rates of each of these planets are remarkably similar despite very large differences in greenhouse gas composition and equilibrium temperatures with the Sun, once again proving pressure, not radiative forcing from greenhouse gases, determines tropospheric temperatures.

Fig 1. From Robinson & Catling, Nature, 2014 with added notations in red showing at the center of mass of Earth’s atmosphere at ~0.5 bar the temperature is ~255K, which is equal to the equilibrium temperature with the Sun. Robinson & Catling also demonstrated that the height of the tropopause is at 0.1 bar for all the planets in our solar system with thick atmospheres, as also shown by this figure, and that convection dominates over radiative-convective equilibrium in the troposphere to produce the troposphere lapse rates of each of these planets as shown above. R&C also show the lapse rates of each of these planets are remarkably similar despite very large differences in greenhouse gas composition and equilibrium temperatures with the Sun, once again proving pressure, not radiative forcing from greenhouse gases, determines tropospheric temperatures.

Step 3: Determine the surface temperature

For Earth, surface pressure is 1 bar, so the ERL is located where the pressure ~0.5 bar, which is near the middle of the ~10 km high troposphere at ~5km. The average lapse rate on Earth is 6.5 km, intermediate between the 10C/km dry adiabatic lapse rate and the 5C/km wet adiabatic lapse rate, since the atmosphere on average is intermediate between dry and saturated with water vapor.

Plugging the average 6.5C/km lapse rate and 5km height of the ERL into our equation (6) above gives

T = -18 – (6.5 × (h – 5))

Using this equation we can perfectly reproduce the temperature at any height in the troposphere as shown in Fig 1. At the surface, h = 0, thus temperature at the surface Ts is calculated as

Ts = -18 – (6.5 × (0 – 5))

Ts = -18 + 32.5

Ts = 14.5°C or 288°K

which is the same as determined by satellite observations and is ~33C above the equilibrium temperature with the Sun.

Thus, we have determined the entire 33C greenhouse effect, the surface temperature, and the temperature of the troposphere at any height, entirely on the basis of the 1st law of thermodynamics and ideal gas law, without use of radiative forcing from greenhouse gases, nor the concentrations of greenhouse gases, nor the emission/absorption spectra of greenhouse gases at any point in this derivation, demonstrating that the entire 33C greenhouse effect is dependent upon atmospheric mass/pressure/gravity, rather than radiative forcing from greenhouse gases.

Future low solar activity periods may cause cold winters in North America, Europe and Russia.
Jarl Ahlbeck – Abo Akademi University, Finland

Historically, low solar activity periods like the Dalton and Maunder Minima have been connected to cold winters in Europe. It seems very possible that the low solar activity forced areas of low pressures into a southern route or caused a negative Arctic Oscillation, AO, which in turn allowed cold air from the North Pole to flow across Europe. But can we obtain from real measurements that low solar activity really is able to do that?



saturn2From New Scientist:

Earth’s comfortable temperatures may be thanks to Saturn’s good behaviour. If the ringed giant’s orbit had been slightly different, Earth’s orbit could have been wildly elongated, like that of a long-period comet.

Our solar system is a tidy sort of place: planetary orbits here tend to be circular and lie in the same plane, unlike the highly eccentric orbits of many exoplanets. Elke Pilat-Lohinger of the University of Vienna, Austria, was interested in the idea that the combined influence of Jupiter and Saturn – the solar system’s heavyweights – could have shaped other planets’ orbits. She used computer models to study how changing the orbits of these two giant planets might affect the Earth.


More videos have been added to the monthly series.

  • compare most of the wet winter of 2013/14 with 2012/2013
  • how a good English summer looks
  • the dry September 2014 but unfortuantely not all of a descent into colder weather (happened in two phases into October, missing so far)

This is kept on a Talkshop static page off top menu portal.
Here is a link

I am both pleased and perplexed by a result which raises more questions.

There are 4 traces on this plot.Image

This is the Chilbolton data shown a few days ago but now I have worked out more of the insolation computation. If you look at the type CNR4 pyranometer specification this is within accuracy. Water vapour value from a specialist instrument is shown as a guide to humidity change, not used in the computation.


HT to the Hockeyschtick for spotting this essay from Marine Biologist Walter Starck at Quadrant Online. More scientists are coming out to call the alarmist position for what it is.

Walter Starck: The Climate Scam’s Meltdown

uksnowiceThe rent-seekers, opportunists, third-rate academics, carbon-market scam artists and peddlers of catastrophic prophecy can see the alarmist bubble deflating, so they’re trying harder than ever to sustain the scare. Problem is, Mother Nature isn’t cooperating.

This doesn’t mean the climate change “debate” will stop, the news media will cease reporting weather as a dire threat, or that the true believers will no longer be obsessed by it. However, the ultimate arbiter, climate itself, has made clear its decision by ceasing to warm for over 18 years. Despite the ongoing use of fossil fuels, a proclaimed 95% certainty of 97% of scientists and the high-powered projections of the world’s most advanced climate models, the climate has refused to pay the slightest heed.

Contrary to all the confidence and predictions of alleged experts, storms are no more intense nor frequent, while droughts, floods and sea levels have declined to confirm alarmists’ barely concealed hopes of disasters. The simple fact is that the alleged experts and their high-powered models were wrong. The climate has ceased to warm and, with little or no [enhanced] greenhouse warming, the entire theory of Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming (CAGW), aka Climate Change (CC), aka Global Warming, aka Extreme Weather, is left with no basis.


Jupiter and Uranus [image credit: Jimmy Eubanks / NBC News]

Jupiter and Uranus (as seen from Earth)
[image credit: Jimmy Eubanks / NBC News]

This brief look at Jupiter-Uranus synodic patterns follows the style of the Saturn-Uranus model post, where details of the method are given.

Here we’ll run through the relevant model details then compare with planetary data, as in the other post. It should be straightforward as it’s mostly based on just two Fibonacci numbers: 13 and 21.

For Uranus the notional orbit period will be 84 years (JPL value: 84.016846y).
13 Uranus orbits @ 84y x 13 = 1092 years (84 = 21 x 4).
This will be the full period of the model.

Willow Tit - RSPB

Willow Tit – RSPB

Sensible stuff from Better by Nature

Woodland wildlife under threat:

But perhaps not a lot of people know that the picture for our woodland wildlife isn’t looking very rosy. Birds like the willow tit, a woodland specialist, have declined by over 80%, making it our fastest declining resident bird. The State of Nature report showed that of the 1256 woodland species we have data for, 60% have declined over the past 50 years, 35% strongly. Some of our woodland birds migrate, so the problems might lie elsewhere, but equally we know that some of the causes of these declines are right here, in UK woodlands.