Anthony Watts’ abuse of the DMCA

When Peter Sinclair made Anthony Watts the subject of his “Climate Crock of the week” video, Watts response was to attempt to suppress the criticism by making a bogus copyright claim against the video. Naturally this hasn’t worked, with Desmogblog reposting the video. Better see it in case Watts tries again. Also of interest is Roger Pielke Sr’s harumphing about the video.

Comments

  1. #1 Former Skeptic
    August 1, 2009

    @Ferdinand Engelbeen:

    I don’t see why one need to look at proxies for UHI like calm/windy days, when the real trends can be calculated.

    It’s not a proxy per se; UHI theory is pretty explicit about wind impacts on UHI. If it is windy, there will be little/no difference between urban and rural near-surface T, especially for minimum T.

    Parker therefore argues that if there is a urban bias in T, you will see it clearly with windy vs. non-windy uncorrected station T data. He showed pretty conclusively, over both space (290 stations, worldwide distribution) and time (daily min and max T taken from 1950-2000), that local impacts from “urban bias/UHI” are negligible when seeing the global picture.

    Which is why when you say this:

    But that is not the current discussion: what is the influence of badly situated/maintained stations (urban or rural) on trends and how these are (or even can be) corrected.

    I think you’re missing the forest for the trees.

  2. #2 Mark
    August 1, 2009

    > Don’t you think that a 2% change in observed cloudiness over a solar cycle is equivalent to an opposite 2% change in sunshine hours?

    You have to have the SAME PATTERN as that, oh, 2% change each year increasing.

    Have a look at this graph:

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/Fig.A2.lrg.gif

    Now, to get graph increase from sunnier days you would need n% increase in 1970-1980, 2n% 1980-90, 3n% in 90-2000, and 4n% in the last decade.

    Please show that the number of sunny days has done so.

  3. #3 Hank Roberts
    August 1, 2009

    Which trend, Ferdinand? There are so many to choose from, e.g.
    http://www.google.com/search?q=trend+in+cloudiness+over+decades

  4. #4 Hank Roberts
    August 1, 2009

    Which trend, Ferdinand? There are so many to choose from, e.g.
    http://www.google.com/search?q=trend+in+cloudiness+over+decades

    PS, one place to look for longterm information on cloudiness would be the astronomy data sets, which pay a lot of attention to how much of each area of the spectrum is being blocked at any particular time by whatever’s in the air. This sort of approach isn’t simple yet, e.g.
    http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/512824

    It’s not an area I know anything about; but I’ve wondered why the climate work doesn’t often refer to this kind of data set.

  5. #5 Derecho64
    August 1, 2009

    The other thing that cracks me up about Watts’ Fan Club – they claim he’s being restrained, adult, and mature. Those are not three words I’d use to describe him. “Juvenile”, “petty”, and “silly” are far more apt. It’s hard to believe that Watts is an adult – he acts much more like a 14-year-old teenage boy.

    With bloggers of Watts’ “stature”, the denier movement is doomed. He can keep prattling on and on, but unless he rapidly and permanently changes his behavior, he’ll never gain any credibility whatsoever.

  6. #6 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 1, 2009

    Hank [#102-104],

    A good oversight of insolation (a better and easier parameter than cloudiness) is in the supplementary information of “From Dimming to Brightening: Decadal Changes in Solar Radiation at Earth’s Surface”:
    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/data/308/5723/847/DC1/1
    an article by Wild e.a. in Science:
    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/308/5723/847

    The minimum solar incidence was in the late 80ies, after that, the solar energy reaching the surface increased again, except in India (but the number of observations there declined).

    Interesting also is that the magnitude of the changes in insolation is in the order of 5-20 W/m2. Compare that to the expected near 4 W/m2 from a doubling of CO2…

  7. #7 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 1, 2009

    Mark [#102],

    Even if a step change of 1% more solar input at the surface (that is about 2 W/m2) simply is maintained, the temperature of the surface would rise with about 0.5 degr.C until a new radiation balance is reached… That is even without the impact of any (positive) feedbacks like water vapour.

    The solar cycle is good for +/- 0.1 degr.C variation in ocean surface temperature, each transition in only 5 years time, while the cycle at the top of the atmosphere is only 1.3 W/m2 change (thus less at the surface).

  8. #8 Dave Andrews
    August 1, 2009

    Mark,

    No, I see a lot of questions that relate to AGW/Climate Change and which lead me to conclude that it is yours, and dhogaza’s unquestioning belief in it that is wrong.

  9. #9 Mark
    August 1, 2009

    > No, I see a lot of questions that relate to AGW/Climate Change…

    > Posted by: Dave Andrews

    And how can all these questions relaing to it lead to you seeing unquestioning belief?

    After all, questions are not statements of belief.

  10. #10 Mark
    August 1, 2009

    > Even if a step change of 1% more solar input at the surface (that is about 2 W/m2) simply is maintained, the temperature of the surface would rise with about 0.5 degr.C

    No it wouldn’t.

    It wouldn’t take 50 years to reach that equilibrium. It would take vastly less than a day to do so.

    So your 1% has to be stretched out somewhat consistently over 50 years. 0.02% each year on average.

    Only then would your sunshine hypothesis explain the temperature changes.

  11. #11 Mark
    August 1, 2009

    > The minimum solar incidence was in the late 80ies, after that, the solar energy reaching the surface increased again, except in India (but the number of observations there declined).

    ???

    How can the sun not shine with equal strength over the earth on a continental scale???

    And where is your astrometry showing that pattern? We’re at a minimum of solar activity NOW.

    And we’re still WAY hotter than any year in the 1980’s.

  12. #12 TrueSceptic
    August 1, 2009

    111 Mark,

    I assume the reference is to global dimming, i.e., when global particulate pollution reached a peak. Wasn’t this the main observation behind the (minor and much exaggerated) theories about global cooling/mini ice age?

    Without that, where would the temps be now?

  13. #13 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 1, 2009

    Mark [#110-110]

    I think there is some misunderstanding here: the general increase in temperature from a momentary increase in solar insolation (that is what is absorbed by the surface, not reflected by the surface or clouds, nor absorbed by the atmosphere) needs 30+ years to reach most of the equilibrium, mainly due to the heat capacity of the oceans. That is what should be measured by well placed thermometers on the surface. These show the result of solar cycles, cloud cover changes, greenhouse gases, aerosols…

    Any thermometer placed on an asphalted lot will show Tmax temperatures composed of the same previous increase + a momentary bias, directly correlated to the increase of solar insolation (at the surface, not TOA – top of atmosphere).

    The link I provided to Hank Roberts shows the changes in amount of energy (solar + IR) reaching the surface over the decades at many places of the world (the US is only present as Hawai and American Samoa?). That includes the effect of the solar cycle, but also cloudiness, aerosols and greenhouse gases. That variation over the decades is much larger than from the solar cycle alone. Thus IF (and only IF) more energy hits the surface, the asphalted station will show an immediate trend jump for an immediate change in insolation (e.g. if there was an immediate change in cloudiness) or a long term divergence in trend for a long term change in insolation, compared to stations which are nicely placed.

    As there is a general change in the amount of energy hitting the surface (relative fast down before 1985, slowly up thereafter), one can expect that the badly placed stations will show a larger upward trend since 1985 than well placed stations. Regardless of urban/rural surroundings. In how far that influences the UHI effect, that is a related but different point, as the effect may be less pronounced than for an asphalted station.

    Thus the comparison of Parker for UHI effect is related, but not directly equal to the “bad stations” effect. The Parker/UHI points need more time to have a deeper search, but I will be away for a few days… Thus more on that later.

    Thanks for the level of interchange up to now.

  14. #14 Mark Byrne
    August 1, 2009

    Ferdinand,

    Since you are linking readers to in global dimming trends, you will no doubt have been interested in the [aerosols emission](http://www.pnl.gov/main/publications/external/technical_reports/PNNL-14537.pdf) trend.

    I was also hoping you could cite your source for the claim that:
    > the general increase in temperature from a momentary increase in solar insolation (that is what is absorbed by the surface, not reflected by the surface or clouds, nor absorbed by the atmosphere) needs 30+ years to reach most of the equilibrium,

  15. #15 Hank Roberts
    August 1, 2009

    But, Ferdinand, look at the work on aerosols.

    It’s not simple, and you can’t just count energy reaching the ground.

    For example, the early coal burning in temperate latitudes had different consequences that current coal burning closer to the tropics, I recall reading.
    I mentioned that paper over here:

    http://atoc.colorado.edu/~seand/headinacloud/?p=135#comment-10106

    The whole site there doesn’t get enough attention, and is well worth reading.

  16. #16 Marion Delgado
    August 2, 2009

    The other thing that cracks me up about Watts’ Fan Club – they claim he’s being restrained, adult, and mature. Those are not three words I’d use to describe him. “Juvenile”, “petty”, and “silly” are far more apt. It’s hard to believe that Watts is an adult – he acts much more like a 14-year-old teenage boy.

    I literally was shocked to finally see a picture of him. I pictured a 20-year-old TV weatherman at best. Aren’t there programs now to guess the emotional age of the author of a piece of writing?

  17. #17 Mark
    August 2, 2009

    > I think there is some misunderstanding here: the general increase in temperature from a momentary increase in solar insolation (that is what is absorbed by the surface, not reflected by the surface or clouds, nor absorbed by the atmosphere) needs 30+ years to reach most of the equilibrium, mainly due to the heat capacity of the oceans.

    Yes, there is some misunderstanding here.

    You’re wrong and misunderstand the physics.

    How does the UHI of a small block of concrete get out over the ocean 50 miles away WITHOUT letting go of that radiation in the more normal direction of UPWARD???

    Have you ever head of a sea-breeze?

    Warm land. Air rises as it is warmed. Ocean air comes in to replace the air rising.

    Rising air loses heat and gets pulled out to sea AT A HIGH LEVEL to replace the air lost over the sea.

    Now, how does that air that has cooled and is sitting maybe a few km above the ocean warm the ocean?

  18. #18 Mark
    August 2, 2009

    > Wasn’t this the main observation behind the (minor and much exaggerated) theories about global cooling/mini ice age?

    Maybe, but that is taken into account and STILL doesn’t explain why 2008 is warmer than even the warmest year pre-1998. Reduction in aerosols has not been a consistent % each year since 1980 from the 1980 peak. It dropped by magnitudes in a few short years.

  19. #19 Brendan H
    August 3, 2009

    Derecho64: “The other thing that cracks me up about Watts’ Fan Club – they claim he’s being restrained, adult, and mature.”

    The thing that cracks me up about the Watts’ Fan Club is the incessant boasting about their “civility”, all the while accusing warmers of nazism, communism, cultism, lies, scam, hoax etc.

    It takes a particularly sanctimonious form of rank hypocrisy to remain so oblivious to the bile that’s under one’s feet.

  20. #20 sod
    August 3, 2009

    Anthony has another “july was cool” topic up.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/08/02/roundup-of-some-interesting-july-weather-records/

    now all you need to do, is factor in the effects of the surface station project (“error>5°C”) and you will understand, that we are not moving towards a new ice age, but that we are actually in the middle of one already!

    all you need to do is ignore reality, of course….

  21. #21 dhogaza
    August 3, 2009

    I believe a quarter is 25 cents? A dime is 10 cents? How much is a nickel?

    I particularly enjoyed how he waves away the massive, record-setting heat wave we’ve experienced here in the PNW and up north through Alaska and the Yukon as being due to a weather station’s being situated at SeaTac, more or less.

    This global cooling is so pronounced that Portland just broke it’s all-time record for highest 3-day average daily temperature – twice – and 90F+ days in a row (9), with Seattle and a bunch of other places setting various records, too.

  22. #22 TrueSceptic
    August 3, 2009

    119 Derecho64,

    I’ve compiled a few quotes from the Watts thread for anyone who doesn’t want to go there. It’s not for those with weak stomachs, though.

    (If Tim doesn’t want this here and removes it, I’ll understand. ;) )

    Mike D. (00:50:49) :
    Anthony, your good humor and grace while subjected to execrable and actionable slander and libel by nincompoops is truly admirable. You have risen above the childish tantrum level exhibited by untalented fools.

    Well done Mr. Watts! I encounter (and demolish) these leftover hippies on a regular basis wherever I encounter them. Your dismemberment of these warmongers however is on the level of an art form! Well spoken sir!

    Ron de Haan (01:39:20) :
    Anthony, you are handling it perfectly.
You keep concentrating on the science which is their weak spot and never cease to be the true gentleman that you are.

    Patrick Davis (02:25:37) :
    Anthony, I bet you were wearing your Playtex 24hr Girdle as I am sure your sides split with laughter with this fellow and his “6 minute” sound bites to get Gore’s “gospel” spread.

    dorlomin (02:46:24) :
    Yes I agree with you, ad hominems are the sign of desperate people with no ability to argue science.
    Luckily there are no ad hominem attacks here at WUWT. A clear sign they are the real scientists unlike the world government AGW lackies.

    Jack Simmons (03:06:57) :
    It would appear a deep panic is setting in with the AGW crowd.
    I guess this is what passes for research for some people.
    Thank you so much Anthony for keeping a level head through all this.

    imB (03:30:01) :
    Anthony,
Hats off to you for your professionalism and perseverance through this long, strange trip.
The value you bring to the table with your endeavours is incalculable.
    h/t to YOU.

    Jimmy Haigh (04:05:06) :
    Excellent work Reverend Anthony.

    Gail Combs (04:58:54) :
    On the whole Anthony came off looking like a gentleman willing to stand-up for himself against a bully without descending to his level.

    pyromancer76 (06:39:31) :
    Mr. Watts, you are a true journalist, a true scientist, and a true gentleman. Your investigative journalist reporting on CCCC, especially copyrights, deserves awards.
    You are a hero for your careful, courageous work, generosity, and your tenacity.

    Phillip Bratby (07:19:41) :
    Anthony: This can only do your reputation a power of good. The behaviour of the warmists shows them as being nothing but brainless hypocrites. Congratulations for your very moderate and sensible behaviour in the face of such provocation. Keep up the good work.

    Sylvia (07:36:05) :
    You, sir, are a gentleman.

    Gary (07:38:38) :
    Your work is respected and appreciated. It is also of the utmost importance. Work on, my good man.

    Lance (08:29:41) :
    Well done Anthony,
    I don’t know how you can handle that kind of attacks and not have your blood boil over.
    Maintain the high ground, and keep up the great work

    AEGeneral (08:31:04) :
    I thought you handled this quite well, Anthony. Even if they foam at the mouth because they’re too far gone into the green and are beyond all reason, it wasn’t worth stooping to their level on this one.

    Frederick Michael (09:20:12) :
    Anthony writes like he’s taking the long view and knows that history is watching. There’s a word for that — professionalism.

    D. King (09:27:11) :
    You always stay above the fray.

    John Egan (10:11:52) :
    A Second Dear Mr. Watts –
    You are far greater the gentleman than Mr. Grandia or Mr. Monbiot.

    theduke (09:12:31) :
    Anthony’s demeanor in facing this onslaught is admirable and this post was clearly one of his best ever; it was thoughtful, restrained, gently satirical and on point.

    MikeE (16:36:32) :
    I take my hat off to you Anthony, its easy top let emotion rule your actions in the face of such contemptible personal attacks.

    craigo (16:48:12) :
    Anthony – excellent response. Keep stating the facts and eventually the truth will prevail.

  23. #23 TrueSceptic
    August 3, 2009

    122 Me,

    That should’ve been 105 Derecho64, 119 Brendan H.

  24. #24 Mark
    August 3, 2009

    re 122: Great. Next time I need an emetic, I’ll just pop over to wuwt.

    Eugh…

  25. #25 Mark
    August 3, 2009

    > Jimmy Haigh (04:05:06) : Excellent work Reverend Anthony.

    Truly Watts Is The Messiah.

    Jimmy should know: he’s followed quite a few!

  26. #26 dhogaza
    August 3, 2009

    Uh, in my post up there, I accidently pasted in something from elsewhere, oh well.

    This was meant to be there:

    Anthony has another “july was cool” topic up.

    referencing sod’s post…

  27. #27 dhogaza
    August 3, 2009

    Patrick Davis (02:25:37) : Anthony, I bet you were wearing your Playtex 24hr Girdle

    Uh, Patrick, that’s known as too much information …

  28. #28 Dave Andrews
    August 3, 2009

    dhogaza #121,

    If somebody had posted a similar comment to yours at WUWT about their local situation but with the emphasis on how cold it was, you would have been the first to cry, ‘but that’s weather not climate’ – hypocrite!

  29. #29 dhogaza
    August 3, 2009

    If somebody had posted a similar comment to yours at WUWT about their local situation but with the emphasis on how cold it was, you would have been the first to cry, ‘but that’s weather not climate’ – hypocrite!

    It’s not climate. The fact that it’s not climate has nothing to do with the fact that I found Watts’ attempt to hand-wave it away as being due to the existence of a thermometer at SeaTac to be amusing.

    The second part of my post was partially my laughing at all the “there’s global cooling because it’s cold in Chicago” crap I’ve been reading at WUWT, and to underscore the fact that regardless of Watts’ handwaving attempt at dismissal of the new records set at many places in the PNW, it really is *bleeping* hot here. By our standards.

    The fact that I know it’s weather, not climate, doesn’t mean that I need to state the obvious every time I post.

    The fact that Watts posts factoids under “weather, not climate” tags doesn’t mean that he actually believes it, either. If he didn’t, he wouldn’t bother.

  30. #30 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 6, 2009

    Mark Byrne [#114], Hank Roberts [#115],

    Was a few days at the Dutch Veluwe (large heather fields, lots of bike routes)…

    I doubt that global dimming has much to do with aerosols: there was as much global dimming in the SH (even in Antarctica) as in the NH, while 90% of the emissions of human aerosols are in the NH (and aren’t interchanged, the ITCZ is an effective barrier for aerosols). Seems to me that this has more to do with cloudiness than with aerosols.

    Moreover, while Europe (and the US) has reduced much of the SO2 emissions, that didn’t result in a huge increase of temperature at the places of largest influence, see:
    http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/aerosols.html
    And while in Asia SO2 emissions increased with 20% (China probably far more), dimming reduced there since 1990…

    See further my comment on aerosols at RC from some time ago:
    http://www.realclimate.org/?comments_popup=245 (comment #6 and following discussion).

    Anyway, the direct effect of global dimming and reverse is that all surface had a reduced impact of energy, which reversed at about 1990.

    Any change in direct energy impact gives a change in temperature: rather fast on land, but much slower in the upper oceans, as the specific heat content of the oceans is much larger. That can be seen in the amount of heat necessary to warm/melt different parts of the earth, see the second graph of Levitus at:
    http://www.climatescience.gov/workshop2005/posters/P-GC1.1_Levitus.pdf

    I once saw the effect of a sudden increase of CO2, which needs several hundreds of years to come to a new equilibrium, but most of the change is in the first 30 years. What is true for CO2 is true for any change in forcing… But can’t find the graph back in a short search…

  31. #31 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 6, 2009

    Mark [#117],

    The changes measured in the reference of “from global dimming to brightening…” in #106 is how much energy is reaching the surface. That was decreasing until about 1990 and increasing thereafter. While there are a lot of differences in these amounts, depending of latitude, the trends worldwide were/are more or less similar.

    The effect of a similar change in energy reaching the surface depends of the kind of surface: on solid ground, the effect will be rapid, for the oceans, it will take a lot of time to warm the upper layer (about 200 m) of water. Most of the warming where a new equilibrium between incoming and outgoing radiation will be reached in about 30 years, mainly as result of the time needed to change the ocean heat content.

    But the same change of incoming energy will have different effects on asphalt, concrete, brick walls and grass. That is what should give different trends for good and badly situated stations…

  32. #32 luminous beauty
    August 6, 2009

    >But the same change of incoming energy will have different effects on asphalt, concrete, brick walls and grass. That is what should give different trends for good and badly situated stations…

    No. Different transient responses, yes. Different trends, no.

  33. #33 luminous beauty
    August 6, 2009

    >But the same change of incoming energy will have different effects on asphalt, concrete, brick walls and grass. That is what should give different trends for good and badly situated stations…

    No. Different transient responses, yes. Different trends, no.

  34. #34 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 6, 2009

    LB [#132/133],

    With an increasing trend of incoming energy (whatever the source), I am pretty sure that the endresult (and even more the transient response) will be higher for a station on an asphalt parking lot (at least for Tmax) than on grass…

  35. #35 luminous beauty
    August 6, 2009

    Ferdinand,

    The wind will blow.

  36. #36 Hank Roberts
    August 7, 2009

    http://www.agu.org/eos_elec/2008/ohring_89_23.html
    Supplementary material to “Global Dimming and Brightening”
    — lots of details, seems to be publicly available;

    Behind a login barrier is the actual EOS article:
    “Global Dimming and Brightening”
    Eos, Vol. 89, No. 23, 3 June 2008

    Pointless to have this discussion in the Watts topic; is there a better place for it?

  37. #37 Barton Paul Levenson
    August 7, 2009

    Has anyone noticed that Ferdinand is confusing a high temperature with a rising temperature?

  38. #38 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 7, 2009

    Re #135-137

    Some additional remarks:

    Maybe this is not the right topic, but as the 70 good stations vs. all the bad stations was the only real interesting part of the film, I think it is relevant to look at that part here.

    Let us see what happens with good/bad stations if there is an upward trend in incoming energy reaching the surface. According to different sources, there was global dimming until about 1990 and brightening thereafter. From 1990 to current, the increase is about 3 W/m2/decade or about 6 W/m2 increase since 1990.

    The albedo of grass is about 0.25, of asphalt about 0.1 (fresh asphalt is around 0.04!). Or a difference in absorbance of about 15%. Of the 6 W/m2 increase in energy reaching the surface, thus about 1 W/m2 more is absorbed by asphalt than by grass over time. That surely will show in the temperature trend of a station positioned on an asphalted lot. Less for minimum temperature (where much of the extra heat content would be lost at night) than for maximum temperature and less on windy days than on calm days…

    Thus I wonder why there is no difference found between good and badly situated stations, unless part of the trend is already compensated for, beyond the necessary homogenization.

  39. #39 Dappled Water
    August 8, 2009

    Thus I wonder why there is no difference found between good and badly situated stations, unless part of the trend is already compensated for, beyond the necessary homogenization – F. Engelbeen.

    Duh, because the effect is incredibly small. Exactly what in the video did you not understand?

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/

    Have a read under “Current Analysis Method”.

  40. #40 MarkG
    August 8, 2009

    >{comments on surface albedo variability
    >Thus I wonder why there is no difference found between good and badly situated stations, unless part of the trend is already compensated for, beyond the necessary homogenization.

    Certainly it’s clear in the data that location of the individual stations is not critical in determining the long term trend at a point. There’s a very good reason for this. Anyone with a background or education in some micrometeorology should be surprised if the immediate local albedo did play a significant role.

    Consider the parcel of air delivering the temperature which is subsequently measured. Where was it when in warmed up (or cooled down)? Most likely not over the location of the actual temperature measurement. Surface air movement is moving around these parcels of air, and so the temperature measured at a stationary location is a function of the integrated albedo of all the surfaces the air parcel has passed over. These will vary significantly unless either there is very little air movement or the station is located in a large area of consistent albedo (ie: a large sandy desert).

    Does this answer your question?

  41. #41 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 8, 2009

    Dappled Water [#139],

    From GISS:

    in step 2, the urban and peri-urban (i.e., other than rural) stations are adjusted so that their long-term trend matches that of the mean of neighboring rural stations. Urban stations without nearby rural stations are dropped.

    GISS compensates for the difference in trends of UHI/non-UHI stations. And they have compensation rules for stations whch show a deviating behaviour. If NCDC did the same, what does the comparison between the 70 “good” stations and the 1200+ “all” stations show? That they used a good correcting algorithm, not that it doesn’t matter (it doesn’t, as long as you have a few good stations left!). In that case, Anthony Watts is right to say that one compares “cleaned” good stations with “cleaned” all stations, thus of course one doesn’t find a difference…

    Further, GISS and NCDC still have different trends for the US: +0.27 degr.C for NCDC since 1940…

  42. #42 Lee
    August 8, 2009

    JohnV’s analysis of Watt’s early stations compared unhomogenized data, and found no significant difference between best stations and all stations.

    The fact is that the only two analyses of the impact on trend of station quality ‘data,’ show no difference between best stations and all stations.

    Watts promised his own analysis when he hit 75% of stations. His own analysis is conspicuously missing, even though 75% was some months back. He claims he is waiting to get a paper published – where is the progress report on that? Watts has a long history of making promises to deal with open questions, and then failing to get around to it – in fact, he banned me and went back and scrubbed every post I’d ever made there, precisely because I asked him when he was going to get around to some of the updates he had promised.

    Anthony is saying that the existing analyses aren’t valid. He has the data, he is asking people to leave the analysis to him, he has promised to do the analysis, he has not reported anything about such an analysis. Anthony has a history of failing to keep his promises about such things.

    Y’all have the data you wanted – sufficient for preliminary analyses for a couple years now, and for final analysis by Anthony’s own standards, for several months.

    If you want to continue arguing that station siting has an impact on the trends, then y’all are going to have to either get Anthony off his butt, or convince him to release the data and do the analysis yourselves, and show that it has an impact on the trends. And if y’all won’t do that, then have the decency to stop claiming or implying that station siting has a significant impact on the trends.

  43. #43 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 9, 2009

    Lee,

    John V’s analyse shows a slight difference (about 0.1 degr.C over the past century) between “good” and “bad” situated stations, but as he said, there is a discrepancy between geographical spread of the good and bad stations. The same problem for the Peterson comparison, where several states are missing in the “good” count.

    Better have a similar comparison as Dr. Pielke did by looking at several stations in the same neighbourhood. These should show similar trends, but by far don’t:
    http://www.climatesci.org/publications/pdf/R-318.pdf

    But that is a lot more work to do than just averaging the bulk…

    Kenneth Fritsch did a more complete analyses, based on the CRN 1-5 classification of stations and found a huge difference in trends:
    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=3169 comment #79 and following. This is based on the official classification of station quality, which probably overlaps with the work of Watts and volunteers.

  44. #44 TrueSceptic
    August 9, 2009

    I see that Watts and JohnV are having a [little discussion](http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/07/30/on-climate-comedy-copyrights-and-cinematography/#comments) about JohnV’s analysis.

    It starts near the end of the thread; I can’t find a way to link to an individual comment.

  45. #45 bi -- IJI
    August 9, 2009

    Shorter Ferdinand Engelbeen:

    JohnV and Peterson’s analyses of surface station trends don’t include the whole of the US. A better comparison would be to use data from an even smaller fraction of the US!

    Also, Fritsch shows there’s a difference between “good” station and “bad” station trends. He doesn’t state whether he used the homogeneity-adjusted data or the unadjusted data — therefore, his results are perfectly rigorous!

  46. #46 Mark
    August 9, 2009

    > That was decreasing until about 1990 and increasing thereafter.

    Yet temperatures were increasing until 1998 and have stayed high since then.

    A lack of correlation DOES prove lack of causation.

  47. #47 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 9, 2009

    Mark [#146],

    Do you mean between CO2 levels and temperature? Just kidding, but as usual, one need to look at the long(er) term trends. The important point still is that on the basis of physics, a badly situated station should give a different trend than a good station. That can go both ways: a shadowed one will give a smaller trend and an asphalted one a larger trend, in either direction. Thus even if one doesn’t find a difference now (because both deviations compensate each other), that is no guarantee that it will not differ in the future, if stations are added or deleted or changed (physically or in status).

  48. #48 bi -- IJI
    August 9, 2009

    Shorter Ferdinand Engelbeen:

    Even if both the “good” temperature measurement stations and the “bad” stations show the same warming trend after homogenization correction, there’s still a very strong possibility that the warming trend in the “good” stations is caused by the badness of the “bad” stations!

    Therefore, Watts was absolutely right in making his bogus DMCA complaint.

  49. #49 Bernard J.
    August 9, 2009

    TS at #144 – you didn’t warn us that the Watts thread was so gross!

    As an aside, despite Watts protestations that he doesn’t censor, I’ve been removed several times from threads there, for what are really quite innocuous comments that simply point out inconsistencies in his postings. I do not even bother there anymore – which I guess is his point.

    Hardly makes for a representative discussion however.

    The news that he is preparing a ‘paper’ is mildly interesting though – that should be one to add to the [menu](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/08/two_weeks_from_blog_post_to_pa.php#comment-1824028)…

  50. #50 ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 9, 2009

    bi-IJI [#145, 148]

    Of course one need to take the highest number of good stations, but one need to compare these to the badly situated stations in the own neighbourhood, not to all stations, including the trend of states where no good stations were found (yet). That is the best way to do. That is what Dr. Pielke has shown for a small subset of stations.

    Fritsch (and RomanM later) probably used “areal edited” or TOBS corrected data, thus not corrected for station moves etc., they found an influence of classification and of urbanisation. The “homogenised” series of NOAA seems to be corrected both ways: “good” stations are corrected with “bad” ones and vv. (that may explain the difference in trend between NOAA annd GISS). Thus it is a good point that they haven’t used that dataset.

    But let’s see what Watts produces as comparison between good and bad, with a more complete list of stations, then it’s time to shoot at his (classification) data and/or methods.

    If they made a similar film of me (little chance someone does, but you never know), I shouldn’t have bothered to react, and surely I wouldn’t have ordered a retraction of any kind. It doesn’t help (except if you are a politician, then it doesn’t matter, as long as one is in the media either way…) and only makes things worse.

  51. #51 Lee
    August 9, 2009

    @ BernardJ:
    “The news that he is preparing a ‘paper’ is mildly interesting though”

    Don’t hold your breath.
    Anthony has a long list of promised analyses that he’s never quite gotten around to. And a history of banning people who ask him about it.


    @ Englebeen:
    The proper comparison is not between the ‘good’ and the ‘bad’ stations.

    It is between the ‘good’ stations with all appropriate TOBS and etc corrections applied, and the currently released corrected temperature analyses.

    Remember, the criticism is that the current analyses don’t properly deal with the effects of station siting. It don’t matter a hill of beans if there is a difference between 1,2 and 3,4,5 stations, if the corrections in the released analyses do an adequate job of handling that difference.

  52. #52 TrueSceptic
    August 10, 2009

    149 Bernard,

    I’m sorry but I assume that everyone here knows what to expect. ;-)

    As I keep telling anyone who’ll listen, it’s futile trying to have a rational discussion with the denizens of WattsUpWithMyBrain. A large proportion of them deny the most basic physics and, of course, they really do believe it’s all some leftist/green conspiracy to take away their freedom. I admire anyone who tries to educate them without losing their composure in the face of such arrogant idiocy, but it really is pearls before swine (actually, pigs are pretty bright so perhaps that’s unfair to pigs!).

    Did you see my collection of quotes at post 122?

    In another thread, my old pal Nasif Nahle is trying to lecture Leif Svalgaard on the meaning of heat!

  53. #53 Barton Paul Levenson
    August 10, 2009

    Ferdinand E writes: “a badly situated station should give a different trend than a good station.”

    You STILL don’t get the difference between a high temperature and a rising temperature, do you?

  54. #54 Dappled Water
    August 10, 2009

    What totally escapes me, is how those imbeciles can even suggest that the urban heat island effect could cause a warming trend over the course of years. Is their notion that each year another air conditioner is sited next to each station?. Contractors surreptiously return multiple times each year to lay more concrete, bitumen and build more structures beside the station?. Each and every one of them, year after year?. Yeah, sure, whatever. Morons.

  55. #55 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 10, 2009

    Barton [#153]

    I have tried to show that if there is a trend in incoming radiation, caused by solar, GHGs, clouds,… that this will have a different effect on different surfaces, depending of the albedo. With different albedo, one will see different absolute temperatures ánd different trends.

    A darker surface will retain more heat during the day (and release that at night), but also will retain a larger part of an increase in incoming radiation (1 W/m2 since about 1990 for asphalt against grass) than a lighter surface. Thus it is both: absolute temperature ánd trend.

  56. #56 Mark
    August 10, 2009

    However you haven’t shown that any trend is of the right shape and magnitude to make the changes you want to ascribe to it.

  57. #57 dhogaza
    August 11, 2009

    Don’t hold your breath.
    Anthony has a long list of promised analyses that he’s never quite gotten around to. And a history of banning people who ask him about it.

    Oh, but Anthony has brought out the heavy artillery – Evan Jones – to help out.

    (I’m sure many of you have run across Evan the Imbecile on various climate blogs)

  58. #58 luminous beauty
    August 11, 2009

    Ferdinand,

    You are making a gross over-simplification. It is the Harold Pierce, Jr. fallacy that local surface air temperatures are solely dependent on local radiative properties. The air is in constant motion, even on calm days. It self-organizes into large coherent masses we call weather systems. These are the source of local temperature variations and, over enough time, trends.

  59. #59 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 13, 2009

    LB [#158],

    Have a look at
    http://www.ejournal.unam.mx/atm/Vol21-2/ATM002100202.pdf
    a 2008 study about the differences in temperature of surface and air at 2 m height above different surfaces (asphalt/concrete, grass and soil) in Erzurum, Turkey.

    In windless, sunny days of August, the differences are up to 11 degr.C higher at 2 m level for air temperature above AC vs. grass at peak time (1 PM), and still over 3 degr.C higher at 6 AM.

    Mark [#156]
    Have a look at the above reference and think about what will happen if there is a trend in incoming (solar) radiation, e.g. as a result of more or less clouds. Will that change the differences or not? Will that result in different trends or not? See the evolution of the differences over a day…

  60. #60 Former Skeptic
    August 13, 2009

    Ferdinand:

    Yilmaz et al’s (2008) paper takes place in clear and calm weather conditions for ~16 days in August 2005, the hottest month of summer.

    How can it support your previous posts about long-term trends under different weather conditions (e.g. windy conditions), radiative forcings (e.g. winter) etc?

    Actually, I have a more relevant question for you. What exactly do you mean by “trend”? Like what BPL (#153) says, methinks you are still confused between high temps and rising temps.

  61. #61 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 13, 2009

    FS [#160],

    If the same input of energy (solar + GHG only in this case) gives a quite huge difference in temperature, what will happen if there is a change in energy input? For a smaller input (e.g. on cloudy days), the difference will be smaller, even might be zero. The same in winter conditions. But in average over a year, there still will be a higher temperature measurement over asphalt than over grass.

    If there was no trend at all in energy input over the years, the yearly average difference would remain the same. With a positive trend in energy input (more GHGs, more solar activity, less clouds,…), the average difference would increase, thus the trend of a measurement over grass would be less increasing than over asphalt.

    Viewed from another angle: Let us assume that there is only a difference of daily average 5 degr.C during sunny days, like the 16 days of the previous investigation. On all other days, the difference is zero, due to better air mixing, clouds, rain,… Thus the yearly average measured over asphalt is about 0.22 degr.C warmer than over grass.

    Now, for some reason, the number of sunny days increases from 16/year to 18/year. This will increase both average temperature measurements, but the one over asphalt now with two extra days with +5 degr.C more per year, compared to the one over grass. Thus the yearly average difference increases to 0.25 degr.C.

    In total, there is change in absolute temperature, both trends go up, ánd a difference in trends, as the trend over asphalt goes up 0.03 degr.C more than over grass…

  62. #62 Lee
    August 13, 2009

    Engelbeen, we get it.

    You have an untested hypothesis for an effect that may or may not exist.

  63. #63 Barton Paul Levenson
    August 14, 2009

    FE,

    Let’s suppose we have two objects whose temperature is determined solely by their albedo. A has an albedo of 0.5, it’s very bright. B has an albedo of 0.1, it’s very dark. These objects have no atmosphere to circulate heat, are not in contact, and are orbiting 1 AU from the sun.

    Let’s take the solar constant as 1366 W/m^2. The temperature of A is 234.25 K and that of B is 271.33 K, considerably higher!

    Now let’s say the solar constant jumps to 1370 W/m^2. Now A is at 234.42 K and B is at 271.53 K. A rose 0.17 K and B rose 0.20 K. It’s a larger increase for B! An urban heat island effect! Hugely artificially exaggerated by the conditions and numbers I’m using, but there nonetheless. The cities are heating 0.03 K per time unit faster than the countryside.

    Now let’s say the people observing temperatures, like those at NASA GISS, CORRECT THE URBAN TREND TO MATCH THE RURAL. Is there still a UHI? Does it matter? Does anybody but crackpots care?

    Here’s some more on the subject by people who have actually done the math:

    Hansen, J., Ruedy, R., Sato, M., Imhoff, M., Lawrence, W., Easterling, D., Peterson, T., and Karl, T. 2001. “A closer look at United States and global surface temperature change.” J. Geophys. Res. 106, 23947–23963.

    Parker, DE. 2004. “Large-scale warming is not urban.” Nature 432, 290.

    Parker, DE. 2006. “A Demonstration That Large-Scale Warming Is Not Urban.” Journal of Climate 19, 2882-2895.

    Peterson, Thomas C. 2003. “Assessment of Urban Versus Rural In Situ Surface Temperatures in the Contiguous United States: No Difference Found.” J. Clim. 16(18), 2941-2959.

    Peterson T., Gallo K., Lawrimore J., Owen T., Huang A., McKittrick D. 1999. “Global rural temperature trends.” Geophys. Res. Lett. 26(3), 329.

    Guess what all of them conclude?

  64. #64 Ferdinand Engelbeen
    August 14, 2009

    Lee [#162],

    Have a look at the raw and adjusted data at GISS stations data: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/station_data/
    And try a few towns/airports against stations in the neighbourhood marked as “rural”. Quite an eyeopener. I wouldn’t know where to begin to cleanup that mess…

    Barton [#163],

    The effect is quite more pronounced, as it is about a difference of 15 W/m2 in average worldwide from brighting to dimming and back (probably more due to cloudiness changes than direct solar changes), that is about 10% of the average solar energy directly hitting the surface.

    But still, the NASA/GISS corrects the urban trends by comparing to neighbouring rural trends. That doesn’t mean that there is NO UHI! only that the GISS control allows for a reasonable good compensation of the UHI effect for the USA. But that doesn’t imply that the same mechanism works fine for badly situated (either rural or urban) measurement devices…

    In contrast, the mechanism that NOAA uses seems to simply average all neighbouring stations, which means that rural station trends are “uplifted” to match the average… Maybe that is the cause af the difference between GISS and NOAA trends.

    Further, what seems to be a good procedure for the US, doesn’t work for the world trend. Simply have a look at all stations in the 30N-30S band (50% of the earth’s surface!). And try to find a rural station with a reasonable trend over a few decades…

    About the Parker and Peterson articles which compared rural/urban trends, well you may not like CA, but their critique is that both made a mismatch in rural/urban stations, so that there is a huge overlap between the two. See:
    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=1857 and
    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=1859 for Peterson.
    Parker used only airfield data for “urban” trends, many of which started far from or at the edge of towns 50 years ago, but many have rapid growing (sub)urban sitings nowadays. In how far that changes the trends is unknown.
    And forget the “global” comparison, there is very little to compare in the (sub)tropics…

    Will be away for the next weeks, traveling around in Iceland…

  65. #65 Dano
    August 14, 2009

    Iceland ought to make the tinfoil hat bearable, methinks.

    Best,

    D

  66. #66 Former Skeptic
    August 14, 2009

    @FE:

    1) I’m sorry, but you are still confused. You mix-up large-scale forcings (top-down) with micro-scale (bottom-up) forcings — Further, you can’t just rely on the surface energy balance (Rh+Re+Rg) to account for site differences as turbulence in the urban canopy layer affects advection as well – remember you are measuring air temps and not surface temps. LB pointed that out in at #158.

    Try reading Arnfield’s (2003) Int Jour Clim paper reviewing 20 years of urban climatology as a start to educate yourself about micro-site/UHI work. It may help.

    2) Now you are talking about global scale problems instead of issues in the USHCN/GISS/NOAA. To answer that, have you tried reading Easterling et al (1997) in Science, or Jones and Moburg (2003) in Jour of Clim? They both examined trends in Tmin and Tmax ~5000 stations worldwide with no significant differences found i.e. little impact by UHI/micro-scale site issues worldwide on surface T.

    3) The CA links you posted mention nothing relevant on Peterson’s stuff and nothing but a passing mention on Parker’s work. Try again.

    You know why serious scientists do not like CA? Do you know the history of the “auditors” to royally [screw up basic meteorology](http://atmoz.org/blog/2008/08/08/the-anatomy-of-a-climateaudit-post/) and have a totally biased agenda? (notice there is no post by McI on the statistical blunders in the McLean et al. paper recently? You would thought that with his “expertise”, McI. would be chomping the bit). It also says a lot that McI. can only criticize Jones and Moburg (2003) for their data sources (i.e. from Iran, Syria, North Korea MOs) with a glib insult on data quality rather than disagree with their conclusions.

    How mature of McI. – it’s his (i) inability to get past his errors in critiquing the MBH 1998 paper (ii) his overestimation of his climate knowledge and (iii) his annoyingly pompous and poor writing style that drove me away from following discussions at CA anymore. But hey, don’t let that stop you from wasting your time there.

    Bottom line is, when you return, stay away from them if you wish to have serious discussion.

  67. #67 Former Skeptic
    August 14, 2009

    As an addendum to my post above, [RealClimate](http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/08/resolving-technical-issues-in-science/) have also pointed out the bias and buffoonery in CA:

    …”There is however a different way of criticizing scientific papers that is prevalent in blogs like ClimateAudit. This involves challenging, ‘by all means necessary’, any paper whose conclusions are not liked. This can be based on simple typos, basic misunderstandings of the issues and ‘guilt by association’ though there is sometimes the occasional interesting point. Since these claims are rarely assessed to see if there is any actual impact on the main result, the outcome is a series of misleading critiques, regardless of whether any of these criticisms are in fact even valid or salient, that give the impression that every one of these papers is worthless and that all their authors incompetent at best and dishonest at worst. It is the equivalent of claiming to have found spelling errors in a newspaper article. Fun for a while, but basically irrelevant for understanding any issue or judging the worth of the journalist.”

    ‘Nuff said. Ok, back to Watts and his surfacestations folly.

  68. #68 Barton Paul Levenson
    August 15, 2009

    FE,

    The huge variation you cite is over the 11-year solar cycle, so it wouldn’t affect the TREND, would it? The difference in illumination between night and day is even huger — 1,000 watts per square meter in some locales — but that doesn’t affect the trend either.

  69. #69 Bernard J.
    August 15, 2009

    To all who tread the miasmatic marsh that is the settling lagoon of Ray’s thread…

    …I second the sentiments of Barton and others. There is no point engaging Ray, because he refuses to address the points of others. If no-one speaks to him here, he will only have himself to speak to, and that’s a conversation that would go nowhere fast.

    If there are others here who have questions regarding Ray’s distorted views on matters, for example on why money is not a directly proportional representation of energy over time, or why CO2 is not the manna from plant heaven that Ray imagines, ask them on one of the Open threads where Ray is not permitted. That way you will get an answer with much less bandwidth hijacked by Ray’s lunacy.

    If he feels the need to respond to such questions he can do so here, and thus not feel that he has been censored. There’s no point engaging him directly though, because he does not incorporate adjustments and counter-evidence to his world view, and he has demonstrably incorrect understanding about many fundamental points. And before you say anything Ray – yes, I frequently do so.

    Resist the temptation to further engage with Ray.

    He is a tar baby.

  70. #70 Bernard J.
    August 15, 2009

    Dang! Posted to the wrong thread!

  71. #71 Dave R
    August 19, 2009

    The video has now been restored by youtube. Climate Progress has a post on it [here](http://climateprogress.org/2009/08/19/youtube-peter-sinclair-anthony-watts-wattsupwiththat-censorship/#more-10247).

  72. #72 Bernard J.
    August 19, 2009

    What is the probability of a forthright mea culpa from Watts?

    Low, I suspect…

    He must be grinding his teeth to stubs at all the extra publicity that he has garnered for Sinclair.

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