Climate Fraudit

The graph below shows the predictions of James Hansen’s 1988 climate model overlaid (in blue) with observed temperatures. Hansen’s scenarios B and C have turned out to be very good predictions of what actually happened.

Of course, it is an article of faith amongst the global warming skeptics that the models are wrong, so what do they do?

i-0427a4c89b582f79b113c22e3c869da0-hansen original gwdebatefixed.jpg

Well, there are only two things you can do to make Hansen look bad — you can misrepresent the results of his model, or you can misrepresent the instrumental record.

The first approach is the one taken by Pat Michaels, who dishonestly erased scenarios B and C from Hansen’s graph. The second approach is the one taken by Willis Eschenbach over at Climate Audit. If you move your mouse over the figure above, you can see Eschenbach’s version. By doctoring the instrumental measurements so that they were all lower, he makes it look like Hansen’s model predicted more warming that what was actually observed.

The trick Eschenbach used was to use a single year for the baseline instead of the thirty year average that is normally used. Yes, it’s another version of the disingenous baseline game that produced all those bogus “global warming ended in 1998″ claims. Given the year to year variability of climate, by choosing the right year to use as a baseline you can manufacture almost any result you want.

Comments

  1. #1 Angus McFarlane
    July 26, 2008

    Re #196

    Cosmic rays haven’t changed. A non-change causing an effect belongs in fantasy land.

    This view is not supported by many climate scientists. The effect of cosmic rays on climate is not “fantasy land”. For example, Lockwood and Fröhlich (2007) postulate here that:

    There is considerable evidence for solar influence on the Earth’s pre-industrial climate and the Sun may well have been a factor in post-industrial climate change in the first half of the last century. Here we show that over the past 20 years, all the trends in the Sun that could have had an influence on the Earth’s climate have been in the opposite direction.

    Nevertheless, Svensmark and Friis-Christensen claim that cosmic rays are still an important factor in our climate. They firmly rebut Lockwood and Fröhlich’s claims here by stating that:

    The continuing rapid increase in carbon dioxide concentrations during the past 10-15 years has apparently been unable to overrule the fattening of the temperature trend as a result of the Sun settling at a high, but no longer increasing, level of magnetic activity. Contrary to the argument of Lockwood and Fröhlich, the Sun still appears to be the main forcing agent in global climate change.

    The jury may be out regarding the importance of cosmic rays, but both sides of the debate say that they are, or were, a factor.

    My opinion is that the cosmic-ray hypothesis is the best explanation for most of the major changes in the Earth’s climate over the last several tens of millions of years – asteroid collisions excepted. A brief review of past climate regimes indicates that CO2 alone cannot explain these pre-historical climate changes.

    For an excellent primer on cosmic rays, and their possible impacts on our climate, I suggest, The Chilling Stars by Svensmark and Calder, published by Icon Books in 2007.

  2. #2 Chris O'Neill
    July 26, 2008

    This view is not supported by many climate scientists.

    Sorry, “Svensmark and Friis-Christensen” do not amount to “many climate scientists”. But maybe your definition of “many” is different from mine. Try to look up the measurements of cosmic rays for the past 40 years and stop wasting your time.

  3. #3 Angus McFarlane
    July 29, 2008

    Re #199. Chris, if you looked at the references cited above and then looked at the references cited in these references, you would arrive at “many”.

  4. #4 bi -- IJI
    July 29, 2008

    > Re #199. Chris, if you looked at the references cited above and then looked at the references cited in these references, you would arrive at “many”.

    Great, McFarlane’s trying to pull another Heartland 500.

    News flash: if you cite a work in your book, it doesn’t magically make the author of the cited work agree with you.

    Which means O’Neill is still right:

    > Sorry, “Svensmark and Friis-Christensen” do not amount to “many climate scientists”.

  5. #5 Chris O'Neill
    July 29, 2008

    I see McFarlane still wants to waste his time and avoids looking up the measurements of cosmic rays for the past 40 years. Since he’s such a lazy sod I’ll point out one graph of cosmic ray flux here that shows no long term trend over the past 55 years. He still doesn’t seem to get it. Even if cosmic rays could influence climate (which is extremely unlikely anyway), they’re not going to change the climate because they’re not changing themselves. A few fringe scientists don’t change the rules of logic.

  6. #6 Julien Emile-Geay
    July 29, 2008

    It is simply astounding how climate skeptics have gotten cornered into such a tiny fraction of disinformation space that they must exhume 20-year old models to vainly poke holes into the current scientific literature.

    Hence, McIntyre and his clique can’t get over Mann Bradley and Hughes (1998, 10 years old), and a lot of those who have no clue about GCMs think it’s fair game to throw dirt at Hansen’s GISS model predictions (1988). Meanwhile climate scientists have moved on : some results have survived, some have not, but the basic result remains – AGW is real, no amount of disingenuous PR will make it go away.

    Given the simplicity and low resolution of Hansen’s 1998 model (which didn’t have anything remotely close to an ENSO, for instance), it is indeed remarkable that it was able to predict the temperature of the next 20 years to such accuracy. What the Skeptics keep missing (Mr McFarlane in particular) is that numerical modeling and computer power have done quite a bit of progress in the past 20 years, and no climate scientist is retarded enough to be hanging their hat over 1988 results.

    Sure, there still are legitimate questions concerning the relative importance of natural vs anthropogenic climate variability, some of which have implications for policy initiatives, and that would deserve healthy debate. Yet the Skeptics are so blinded by their political prejudices that they keep fighting old windmills.

    I can’t speak for every climate scientist, but the only reason why I’d ever show the Hansen 1988 figures at this day and age would be to demonstrate that the physics of greenhouse warming are rather basic (indeed, Arrhenius)
    had figured it out over a century ago), and that a good radiative transfer code (which is what the GISS model is known for) is enough to produce credible global temperature trends given a realistic forcing.

    Current GCMs are now focused on getting the regional scales right – that’s where the money is, and intelligent skeptics (I heard there were some) would be well inspired to get out of their rut and on board that train. If they keep whining at the 1988 stop we soon won’t be able to hear them.

    So, now that we’ve got that one cleared, can we please talk about something more interesting ? Abrupt climate change, operational climate prediction, regional climate variability, link with tropical cyclones, to name a few…

    Or is it that there just isn’t any stone left for the AGW skeptics to hide ?

  7. #7 Angus McFarlane
    August 1, 2008

    RE#202 I find your use of the term s** offensive and I request that you use more moderate language. Furthermore, and perhaps more importantly, the use of such language could result in my isp blocking this site.

    Nevertheless, I shall respond to your post once I have reviewed the information contained in your link.

  8. #8 Angus McFarlane
    August 2, 2008

    Re #203 Wow Julien! So many comments in such a brief response, but, unfortunately, liberally sprinkled with remarks such as disinformation, disingenuous, retarded, prejudices, etc. Nevertheless, I shall try to respond in a more rational manner.

    Exhumation of 20-Year Old Models

    It is simply astounding how climate skeptics have gotten cornered into such a tiny fraction of disinformation space that they must exhume 20-year old models to vainly poke holes into the current scientific literature.

    If you read my posts above it is clear that I didn’t exhume Hansen’s 1988 model. Jim Hansen did. Furthermore, he published his models here in 2006 and stated here in 2006 that Scenario B “was dead on the money”. In addition, Tim Lambert said in #47 in this blog that:

    Scenarios B and C don’t diverge until after 2006. Results so far are close to both B and C. In a few more years we’ll see if temperatures now stabilise (scenario C) or continue to increase (scenario B).

    I agree with Tim, but my chart here shows that what looked to be a reasonable fit with Scenario B in 2006 does not look very good in 2008. I reiterate my statement in #195, that:

    It is early days yet, but it would appear that our planet is following the zero-emissions Scenario C.

    From the foregoing, I contend that it is reasonable for me to comment on Hansen’s 2006 papers and posts in this blog without being accused of exhuming 20-year old models. Julien, perhaps you should target your responses at Jim Hansen. He was responsible for the initial exhumation of his 20-year old models.

    Mann, Bradley & Hughes 1998 [MBH98]

    I thought that McIntyre & McKitrick (M&M) did a well-balanced due-diligence on MBH98. Furthermore, despite more recent papers from the “Hockey Team” over the last 10 years, it would appear that M&M’s core conclusions still stand, namely: “no bristlecones, no hockey stick”.

    Incidentally, the MBH98/M&M discourse was one of the reasons why I began to doubt the AGW hypothesis.

    AGW is Real

    AGW is real, no amount of disingenuous PR will make it go away.

    Perhaps, but AGW is still currently a hypothesis. It has not yet been raised to a law of physics.

    ENSO

    Thank you for the Wikipedia link, but I didn’t need it. Nevertheless, I was half expecting a response stating that one of the reasons for the temperature drop in 2008 was that 2007-2008 was a La Nina.

    Computer Power

    A large part of my day job involves running complicated computer models and, therefore, I am well aware of the increased computational power available and the evolution of current GCMs. However, the GCMs that I am aware of “…don’t do clouds very well”, which may lead to incorrect temperature predictions.

    Retarded Climate Scientists

    … no climate scientist is retarded enough to be hanging their hat over 1988 results

    I wouldn’t call Jim Hansen retarded for exhuming his 1998 model, but, if you so wish; it is your choice.

    Arrhenius

    I can’t speak for every climate scientist, but the only reason why I’d ever show the Hansen 1988 figures at this day and age would be to demonstrate that the physics of greenhouse warming are rather basic (indeed, Arrhenius)

    I am well aware of Arrhenius’s work, but it would appear that this one should also be sent to Jim Hansen, because it refers to his exhumation of his 1988 models.

    Other Topics

    …can we please talk about something more interesting ? Abrupt climate change, operational climate prediction, regional climate variability, link with tropical cyclones, to name a few…

    I agree. In 2007, my company employed Weather Intelligence, UK, to carry out research for us on regional climate variability and operational climate prediction.

  9. #9 Angus McFarlane
    August 8, 2008

    Re #203

    I see McFarlane still wants to waste his time and avoids looking up the measurements of cosmic rays for the past 40 years….I’ll point out one graph of cosmic ray flux here that shows no long term trend over the past 55 years. He still doesn’t seem to get it. Even if cosmic rays could influence climate (which is extremely unlikely anyway), they’re not going to change the climate because they’re not changing themselves. A few fringe scientists don’t change the rules of logic.

    A Few Fringe Scientists?

    A CERN press release here in 2006 describes the CLOUD experiment.

    The goal of this experiment is to investigate the possible influence of galactic cosmic rays on Earth’s clouds and climate. It involves an interdisciplinary team comprising 18 institutes from 9 countries including USA and Russia.
    This should answer Chris’s comment on “a few fringe scientists”.

    Correlation between Recent Temperature Changes & Cosmic Rays

    The cosmic ray fluctuation shown in Chris’s link is virtually identical to that shown in Fig 29 of the ISAC report here. I include a cut-down version of the ISAC diagram here for ease of reference.

    It is evident that, by using data identical to that supplied by Chris, ISAC produce a very good correlation between temperatures and cosmic ray fluctuations. However, the ISAC conclusion is the opposite to that suggested by Chris.

    Contrary to Chris’s claim that cosmic rays are not changing and therefore cannot cause a climate change; ISAC concludes that small changes in cosmic rays lead to large changes in the Earth’s climate.

    Furthermore, ISAC cites many robust statistical correlations and a large number of pertinent references to validate their conclusion. Nevertheless, ISAC also highlights that the physical mechanisms of the solar-activity/cosmic-ray/climate correlation are poorly understood; hence the need for experimental verification, such as those being undertaken out at CLOUD and SKY.

    Is this not the way that science works? Postulate a hypothesis. Test it by experiment. Prove it, improve it, or disprove it. Then move on.

    Only time will tell if the cosmic-ray hypothesis is valid. It is currently at the test-it-by-experiment stage. Nonetheless, the research is being carried out by many respectable institutions and they are using valid scientific methodology. Consequently, it ill behoves Chris, or anyone else, to label this research as “fantasy land”

  10. #10 Chris O'Neill
    September 20, 2008

    Angus:

    I find your use of the term s** offensive and I request that you use more moderate language. Furthermore, and perhaps more importantly, the use of such language could result in my isp blocking this site.

    Oh you poor sod. Is your isp run by some Christian fundamentalist group? If so you’re probably better off using someone else.

    ISAC produce a very good correlation between temperatures and cosmic ray fluctuations.

    No-one is denying that cyclic (i.e. trend-removed) global temperature correlates with the solar cycle. But that in no way proves that cosmic rays are the mechanism for producing a long-term trend in global temperature, or even the short term variations in global temperature which are explainable by the short term variations in insolation.

    However, even in the unlikely event that cosmic rays are part of the mechanism, you have still not provided any explanation of where the long-term trend in global temperature comes from. Your graph shows cosmic rays without any detrending but the temperature graph has been detrended. If you want to put up an honest argument then show the temperature graph without detrending. The divergence between cosmic rays and temperature is then plain for all to see.

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