I’ve been out of the loop for a while, initially due to being away on holiday, then by a round of job interviews I had to prepare for (no success there), and finally by the hospitalisation of my dear old dad (he’s improving now). I’m immensely grateful to my co-bloggers Tim, Stuart (Oldbrew) and Andrew, who have been minding the shop and putting up lots of interesting articles during my absence – thanks guys.
This period has shown more than ever that the talkshop isn’t a one man band, but a vibrant community of bloggers, contributors, commenters and readers. The theory we are working on is moving along in the background as well as on the blog, along with a couple of other related developments I’ll be able to disclose in due course.
Prolific solar-planetary scientist and long-time talkshop friend Nicola Scafetta has a new paper published in Physica A entitled ‘Global temperatures and sunspot numbers. Are they related? Yes, but non linearly. A reply to Gil-Alana et al. (2014)’ which comments on Gil-Alana et al 2014; a paper purporting to dismiss any correlation between solar activity and terrestrial surface temperature. Nicola gently points out the limitations of their methods and patiently explains how the astronomical-solar signal can be found in the data. Here is Figure 3 to whet your appetite:
Nicola also provides plots of several of the various solar and temperature related indices and techniques for representing them over a wide range of timescales which clearly demonstrate the plain fact of the close coherence between the activity of our host star which supplies all our energy, and the fluctuations of the lovely moderate temperatures we live in on the surface of our planet.
Tim Ball has a new book out. ‘The Deliberate Corruption of Climate Science’ is a hard hitting critique of the development of the co2 scare covering the whole sorry saga from the inception of the IPCC up to present. I’m reproducing the preface here with his permission in order to promote this great read to as wide an audience as possible. Tim is still in the throes of dealing with the moribund lawsuit Mickey Mann launched against him after he quipped that Mann should be in the state pen rather than at Penn State. Please consider buying his book in order to support his effort to defend himself against the combined resourses of Mann and his financial backers.
The Deliberate Corruption of Climate Science
by Dr Tim Ball – Stairway Press January 21, 2014
Then up and spent the evening walking with my wife, talking; and it thundering and lightening mightily all the evening—and this year have had the most thunder and lightening, they say, of any in man’s memory.
—Diary of Samuel Pepys, entry for July 3, 1664
I’ve studied climate both scientifically and academically for over forty years after spending eight years studying meteorology and observing the weather as an aircrew and operations officer in the Canadian Air Force. When I began the academic portion of my career, global cooling was the concern, but it was not a major social theme. During the 1980s the concern switched to global warming which became a major political, social and economic issue.
I watched my chosen discipline—climatology—get hijacked and exploited in service of a political agenda, watched people who knew little or nothing enter the fray and watched scientists become involved for political or funding reasons—willing to corrupt the science, or, at least, ignore what was really going on. The tale is more than a sad story because it set climatology back thirty years and damaged the credibility of science in general.
A week ago, Christopher Monckton wrote a letter to Martin Rasmussen at Copernicus Publishing, to protest the preremptory closure of journal ‘Pattern Recognition in Physics’, following its publication of our special issue on ‘Pattern in solar variability, their planetary origin and terrestrial impacts’. No reply has been received, and so true to the timeline set out in the latter, he has asked me to publish it here at the talkshop. This document pulls no punches in highlighting the hypocrisy of those who seek to control scientific debate through censorship. Considering the publishers name, and the fact that our research was initiated by Johannes Kepler four centuries ago, a rich irony is in play here.
UPDATE 30-1-2014: Jo Nova has posted an article on the relaunch of PRP proposed by Lord Monckton
Closure and reopening of the learned journal Pattern Recognition in Physics
My kind friend Professor Niklas Mörner of Stockholm, who in close to 50 years has
published approaching 600 papers in the reviewed and general scientific literature, is an
internationally-renowned expert on sea level and is one of the most gifted instructors of
students I have ever had the pleasure to work with, has copied me in on your sad and,
indeed, bizarre decision to bring to an end the excellent learned journal Pattern Recognition
in Physics, less than a year after its first publication in March 2013.
One of our merry band of collaborators on our Special Edition of Pattern Recognition in Physics, the journal axed by executive officer Martin Rasmussen of parent publishing house Copernicus, and castigated by science blogger Anthony Watts, is Italian physics professor Giovanni P. Gregori. here’s the letter he sent to Rasmussen:
Martin Rasmussen, Esq.,
Ref.: Pattern Recognition in Physics
Dear Mr. Rasmussen,
following the letter by the Viscount Monckton of Brenchley, I guess I have to spend a few words on this unfortunate controversy.
I like to begin and recall a few statements by Jules-Henri Poincaré (1854-1912).
“La liberté est pour la Science ce que l’air est pour l’animal”
[“Freedom is for Science much like air for an animal”
Dernières pensées, appendice III]
“La pensée ne doit jamais se soumettre, ni à un dogme, ni à un parti,
ni à une passion, ni à un intérêt, ni à une idée”
[“Never submit thought to any dogma, or to any party,
or to any passion, or to any interest, or to any idea”]
“La pensée n’est qu’un éclair au milieu d’une longue nuit.
Mais c’est cet éclair qui est tout”
[“Thought is like a lightning in the middle of a long night.
But this lightning is everything”]
Science is made of ideas, both correct and wrong. How can we assess what is correct if this is not compared with what is wrong? Observations, models, extrapolations, forecast, etc. are not science. They are only tentative applications of science. But science is made of ideas.
Reposted from Richard Tol’s blog
I welcome the inquiry by the Select Committee into the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The focus of the inquiry is on Working Group I of the IPCC and its Fifth Assessment Report, neither of which are in my core areas of experience and expertise. I was a contributing author to IPCC WG1 AR3; I was a lead author in a few reports of WG2 and WG3; I am currently a convening lead author for WG2 AR5. I will therefore address only a few of the issues raised by the Select Committee.
· How effective is AR5 and the summary for policymakers in conveying what is meant by uncertainty in scientific terms ? Would a focus on risk rather than uncertainty be useful?
The agreed distinction between risk and uncertainty goes back to Knight (1921), with risk characterized by known probabilities (the throw of a dice) and uncertainty by unknown probabilities. Climate change is better described by uncertainty than by risk. In other arenas the IPCC has tried to redefine widely accepted concepts (e.g., vulnerability) which has led to endless, fruitless discussions on semantics. It would be regrettable if the IPCC would repeat this mistake with regard to risk and uncertainty.
Josh just sent me a mail to let us know his roundup of the year’s climate hilarity is now available for pre-order. There’s certainly been plenty to keep us amused, and Josh’s ability to capture the moment with insight, wit and superb graphic art will immortalise the events of 2013. Something to treasure for years to come. I’m planning on binding the old ones into a coffee table book for the amusement of guests.
Click the image to visit Josh’s ordering page
Date: 08/10/13 Richard Lindzen, MIT
Each IPCC report seems to be required to conclude that the case for an international agreement to curb carbon dioxide has grown stronger. That is to say the IPCC report (and especially the press release accompanying the summary) is a political document, and as George Orwell noted, political language “is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.”
With respect to climate, we have had 17 years without warming; all models show greater tropical warming than has been observed since 1978; and arctic sea ice is suddenly showing surprising growth. And yet, as the discrepancies between models and observations increase, the IPCC insists that its confidence in the model predictions is greater than ever.
Professor Banks is a colourful character, and his essays are entertaining to read, if you have an hour. I’ve edited this one for brevity. He did ask me to put a synopsis of his qualifications at the top though, so bear with me and read on.
Professor Ferdinand E. Banks (Uppsala University, Sweden), performed his undergraduate studies at Illinois Institute of Technology (electrical engineering) and Roosevelt University (Chicago), graduating with honors in economics. He also attended the University of Maryland and UCLA. He has the MSc from Stockholm University and the PhD from Uppsala University. He has been visiting professor at five universities in Australia, two universities in France, The Czech University (Prague), Stockholm University, Nanyang Technical University in Singapore, and has held energy economics (guest) professorships in France (Grenoble), Hongkong, and the Asian Institute of Technology (Bangkok).
Spot the error. The IPCC can’t
by Tony Thomas : August 19, 2013
Leaked reports of the Fifth IPCC Report, due next month, say the IPCC experts are now 95% sure that human activities and emissions are the main cause of global warming since the 1950s.
The same IPCC experts remain 100% sure that the Dakotas, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas are homes to tropical forests, and that they have been since 1995.
But given a doubling of global CO2, they expect the central US tropical forest belt to shift eastwards to Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa and Illinois, even stretching east to Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
Looking at my own part of the world, I see that the IPCC has Papua-New Guinea, Indonesia and the Philippines currently covered in savannas, dry forests and woodlands. But with global CO2 doubling, the prairies of south-east Asia will surge northwards to Malaysia, Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar, even southern China.
India, as in the map below, acquires tropical forests through about 70% of its area. For some reason, the IPCC’s tropical forest belt of northern Australia (most Aussies believe it is gum-tree land) advances south by about 1000km, such that tourists towns like Cairns and Townsville become surrounded by Congo-like vegetation, suitable for imported bonobos and, maybe, okapi.
Turning to South America, the Amazon rainforest is already mysteriously transformed by the IPCC into savannas, which with CO2 doubling will advance across the whole top half of South America.
WUWT’s resident cowboy-turned-climate-expert WIllis Eschenbach responded to a comment I recently made on his thread ‘Cycles Without the Mania’, where he set out to prove a negative – that the rest of the Solar system can’t have any effect on the Sun, and thereby, Earth’s climate systems. It was a followup riposte to Nicola’ Scafetta’s latest paper, under discussion here at the Talkshop.
This was my comment:
July 30, 2013 at 12:04 am
There are roughly speaking, three el ninos per solar cycle. the big one occurs soon after solar minimum when the ocean goes into reverse and kicks heat out instead of absorbing it, unless there was a volcanic eruption in the previous cycle, in which case the PWP is already partially discharged. Consequently the following big la nina usually occurs near solar max. That’s why there’s often a dip in global T near solar max.
If you smooth the temperature data at 1/3 solar cycle or at the average frequency of the ENSO cycle (around 40 months) you get a good correlation between solar activity and global temperature. The amplitude isn’t that big, but this is due to the antiphase nature of ENSO surface temps and solar cycle described above. The Sun is having a large effect, but it’s hidden below the surface, most obviously in the Pacific Warm Pool.
All fairly obvious easily empirically observed from the records, and not controversial, or so I thought.
But Willis wanted to set me straight:
Lying in bed late last night as the wind shrieked itself into a howling gale, I heard the tinkling of breaking glass. Upon inspection through the bedroom window this morning, I was dismayed to see my greenhouse has been ripped off its moorings and thrown bodily against the dry-stone wall at the boundary of my garden.
That certainly was a severe gale! High Bradfield, South Yorks Pennines had 78mph gust this morning. 67mph Church Fenton & 60mph Waddington
— Paul Hudson(@Hudsonweather) April 18, 2013
Psst, wanna buy some junk bonds?
This one made me laugh. He’s probably right so far as it goes, if it were to be one of the failed main parties sorting out the mess. However, Mr Schulz little world, constrained and demarcated by red tape and rules as it is, could be in for a seismic shift if the political tide turns in the UK and ordinary folk get a say in the matter, like they’ve been promised on more than one occasion. Ordinary folk in the UK are a little freer than mainstream politicos with the old anglo-Saxon and might take exception to what Mr Schulz is telling them…
Any attempt by the UK government to repatriate powers to Westminster is likely to be a drawn out and cumbersome negotiation.
Disgraced former climate change minister Chris Huhne and his ex wife Vicki Pryce have been sentenced for perverting the course of justice at Southwark Crown Court this afternoon.
Chris Huhne has been sentenced to 8 months in prison
An unexpected pleasure came my way today when I bumped into Dick Lindzen and his wife as they were on their way to prayer at Oxford’s Synagogue. At the time I was waiting for Jerry Ravetz outside Woucester College, and after he picked me up, we happened to pass Dick and Nadine further along the road. We pulled in for a word. Jerry furnished them with an introduction at the Synagogue, and we fixed to meet for lunch.
When they came out of prayer, Jerry and I walked them straight across the road and into a Lebanese restaurant. This amused them no end.
“In the states, everything’s a car ride away”
The recent death of Sir Alastair Burnet leaves a shining example of a quiet light spreading what only genuineness can do.
I never met him but I did know the older regime in broadcasting from my connections in radio and television behind the scenes. Independents really were hard working thoroughly professional and competent crowds, a pleasure to work with.
In contrast the BBC were losing the only marble it had as staff and departments were ejected. BBC Research for example had plenty of live wires, disbanded. I nearly went to work for the company they formed, no, not my style. What was left for today was predatory and horrid. Technically… well why did they pay outside experts? This is fine if there are competent in house overmanagers who know their stuff.
Our old friend Josh has sent me flyer for his 2013 calendar. This is great idea for a stocking filler, buy one (or more) for your climate friends (or foes) and support Josh’s fantastic (and mostly unpaid) work.See below the break for the description and ordering instructions. Humour is a powewrful force in shaping ideas, and Josh’s talent speaks volumes for his insight into the important factors in the climate debate.
An out of date update on the Crown vs Huhne & Pryce case from the Eastleigh News.
Eastleigh residents will be heaving a sigh of relief with the news that Chris Huhne, Eastleigh’s popular MP, will still be available to switch on the Town’s Christmas lights next month after a judge postponed his trial on charges of perverting the course of justice which were due to start this week.
Huhne along with his former wife Vicky Pryce are accused of dodging speeding penalty points – charges he has strongly denied.
He resigned his cabinet post as Energy Secretary in February in order to defend himself and on Monday it is understood his lawyers attempted to get the case dismissed.
After a week of legal arguments it has been decided by Justice Sweeny to postpone the trial to January 14 for legal reasons, but Eastleigh News cannot report on the nature of these legal reasons due to legal reasons. :)