Andrew Bolt claims that “new research” “once more shows Al Gore faked his findings in An Inconvenient Truth”. He offers his own translation of something which he attributes to “Elsevier”: (Yes, the company that publishes The Lancet.)

Frormer [sic] American vice president and Nobel Prize winner Gore has for years used the melting snow on Africa’s highest mountain (5892 metres) for his climate propaganda. The snow cover is shrinking and that is caused by man and his greenhouse gases!

The Dutch scientist Jaap Sinninghe Damsté debunks this story of climate guru Gore in the leading periodical Nature.

A natural process of large climate shifts seems to be the true cause, says the Dutch Organisation for Scientific Research on Thursday….

The researcher and European colleagues discovered that Kilimanjaro underwent successive periods of heavy monsoons and extreme dryness. Ice and snow retreat from the top in dry periods and return in the very wet ones….

Al Gore must find another symbol for his climate problem. Kilimanjaro does now have little snow on the peak, but that seems to be completely natural.

Well, it seems unfair to criticize Gore for not including the results of research published only yesterday. It is, however, perfectly fair to criticize Bolt for not including the results of the research in a post about that research.

Verschuren et al do find that ice and snow on Kilimanjaro retreat during dry periods and advance during wet periods. But they don’t find that the current retreat is natural. Look:

In its entirety, the 25,000-year Challa BIT record (Fig. 2g) implies relatively moist conditions in equatorial East Africa during the periods >25-20.5 (H2 excluded), 14.5-8.5 (the Younger Dryas excluded) and since 4.5 cal. kyr bp; and relative drought during the periods 20-16.5 and 8.5-4.5 cal. kyr bp.

i-5ca8ed26a8973ef91ca998fbd5f2e550-verschurenfig2g.png

So we are in a relatively moist period and the ice should be advancing and not retreating.

Verschuren et al also state:

The end of African Younger Dryas drought [YD in the figure above] at Challa matches the tentative age assigned to the base of the current ice cap on Mt Kilimanjaro.

So the Kilimanjaro ice cap survived the relative drought 8,500-4,500 years ago and now it’s vanishing during a relatively moist period. This doesn’t conclusively prove that global warming is responsible, but it is good evidence that it is.

Bolt continues (link adjusted by me):

No doubt a correction of this and all the other errors and exaggerations in Gore’s film, which made much of Kilimanjaro’s snow cover, will be sent to the millions of students forced to watch it as a lesson in “science”.

No doubt Bolt will write a new post to correct the record and inform his readers that the new study supports Gore’s claim. No doubt.

Comments

  1. #1 WotWot
    December 4, 2009

    There is a special place reserved in Hell for influential people like Bolt, who are shameless liars.

  2. #2 Donald Oats
    December 4, 2009

    Considering Bolt is alleged to have been busy on the emails actively campaigning for the move to hardline sceptic Liberals, sending “data” about the nasty climate scientists, I find him to be without redemption. And that’s from an atheist. I can however imagine him in Hell, going it’s just a natural cycle, this heat here.

  3. #3 Dan Olner
    December 4, 2009

    And look, here’s Christopher Booker in the Telegraph making the same sort of claims.

  4. #4 carrot eater
    December 4, 2009

    I think I found the source.
    http://www.elsevier.nl/web/Nieuws/Wetenschap/252385/Nederlander-ontkracht-klimaatbewijs-van-Al-Gore.htm

    Looks like a tabloid of some sort; I assume it’s unaffiliated with the academic publisher.

    As for the paper itself, I’ll want to read it before commenting. Perhaps Mr. Bolt should have, as well.

  5. #5 spangled drongo
    December 4, 2009

    I think you’ll find that Bolt was correctly pointing out that AIT ia a load of crap and that Penny Whetton marked it at 95%.
    But then I suppose you guys consider yourselves, along with the climategaters as the “gatekeepers of climate science”.

  6. #6 Marco
    December 4, 2009

    @carrot eater: Elsevier is a mainstream dutch magazine, but with a climate ‘sceptic’ as its main science ‘reporter’.

    However, the whole story comes, surprisingly, from the funding agency:
    http://www.nwo.nl/nwohome.nsf/pages/NWOP_7YDC49
    probably through the cited co-author (see at the end).

    Surprisingly, I say, because I have read the paper, and I can’t see a single line spent on the current glacier retreat being, or not being, caused by AGW. Not a peep.

    Also, the press release states that the glacier retreat is *not solely due to human influences*, which in my world is quite different from *all natural*…

  7. #7 Michael
    December 4, 2009

    Fancy Bolt championing paleo-reconstructions of climate.

    Isn’t that supposed to be some kind of evil-scientist fraud?

  8. #8 Michael
    December 4, 2009

    Marco is right about the paper.

    Has our dear Drongo read it?

  9. #9 carrot eater
    December 4, 2009

    @Marco: I was suspecting the issue was either a oddly written press release, or a misunderstood press release. That’s often how these things come about. That means it’ll probably show up on WUWT, too – they’re all about press releases, and not so good with actually reading the paper.

  10. #10 Chris O'Neill
    December 4, 2009

    There is a special place reserved in Hell for influential people like Bolt,

    I’d say there are a few people in the Australian Liberal Party thinking that after Tuesday.

  11. #11 Marco
    December 4, 2009

    @carrot eater: in this case it probably is a bit of both: the press release is oddly written (the paper doesn’t discuss any recent aspects of the glaciers at all, the press release does), but it does leave significant room for human influences, which would vindicate Al Gore’s use of Kilimanjaro (although the press release calls it a poor example).
    I’m really curious to know how much the scientist himself has been in on this press release. I’m inclined to send him a mail, but I’m not sure how well that’ll be received in this period in history…

  12. #12 Dick Veldkamp
    December 4, 2009

    As another (?) Dutchman I can confirm what Marco writes. Elsevier is right wing mainstream, but their science ‘reporter’ on climate change is a ‘sceptic’.

  13. #13 carrot eater
    December 4, 2009

    Looks like the most recent drought (the leftmost pink stripe in the figure) was 150-200 years ago.

    I don’t feel like chasing down the reference that describes the BIT method and index (Hopmans 2004). Anybody know what the temporal resolution is? It’d be nice to see the most recent part of the proxy index plotted with modern direct rainfall measurements; I’m curious how well they correlate.

  14. #14 Douglas Watts
    December 4, 2009

    So the Kilimanjaro ice cap survived the relative drought 8,500-4,500 years ago and now it’s vanishing during a relatively moist period. This doesn’t conclusively prove that global warming is responsible, but it is good evidence that it is.

    More to point, it provides no evidence to falsify the claim.

  15. #15 bob koepp
    December 4, 2009

    What Douglas Watts says…

    Sloppy thinking about methodological and epistemological issues is characteristic of fanatics on both sides of this issue.

  16. #16 Sock Puppet of the Great Satan
    December 4, 2009

    “Surprisingly, I say, because I have read the paper, and I can’t see a single line spent on the current glacier retreat being, or not being, caused by AGW. Not a peep.”

    Marco’s right. There’s nothing on the current retreat of Kilimanjaro in the paper *at all*. Bolt hasn’t read the fucking paper. Quel surprise.

  17. #17 Majorajam
    December 4, 2009

    Show me a tropical glacier that isn’t retreating. This seals it. Skeptics are dumb as bricks. How many ad hoc explanations coincidental contortions does one have to go through before they realize their could be an easier explanation?? So far I have seen at the very least-

    1 explanations for the arctic sea ice fast retreat that don’t involve warming
    2 explanations for the Kilimanjaro glacier’s retreat that don’t involve warming
    3 explanations for repeated ice shelf collapses that don’t involve warming

    I’m sure there are more- would love to hear why flowers are anticipating spring earlier. Cross fertilization with GM crops perhaps? And in this same vein, we have a group of people that can’t tell that their denial rests not on a single or small number of extremely problematic evidence for the mainstream view of the science, but on obstructionist silliness each step of the way.

    Is there a greenhouse effect? Yes but, C02 is such a small part of the atmosphere. And man has nothing to do with it. And its an insignificant greenhouse gas. And its saturated anyway so nothing to worry about. And there are negative feedbacks even if it weren’t saturated, so that’s just more insurance in case anyone started worrying.

    Is the earth warming? We can’t tell. The data’s bad. The temperature sites are laughable. The databases are poor. It’s a fraud anyway- CRU and climate scientists are fudging the data and destroying it. The satellites are wrong too, if for no other reason than that they agree with the surface station data. It’s probably been warming, but it stopped in 1998. Sure the earth is warming- the climate has *always* been changing- haven’t you morons ever heard of frying pan earth that was the MWP?

    Hearing the litany of unscientific mud these clowns have repeatedly thrown against the wall should really be all anyone would ever need to hear to know that ‘skeptics’ were full of it.

  18. #18 rob
    December 4, 2009

    Tim’s original post would make a lot more sense to me, a layperson, if someone could explain what the “BIT Index” in the “BIT record” is. From context I assume it has something to do with either rainfall, or snow coverage, or temperature.
    spangled drongo @5 also refers to “AIT”. What is that?

  19. #19 Douglas Watts
    December 4, 2009

    As I understand, Gore’s intent was to cite the recent and rapid melting of the Mt. Kilimanjaro ice cap as suggestive evidence of recent climate change, in the sense that this is the type of localized signal you would expect to see if global climate is changing in the manner and rate that the overall body of evidence has documented. This data point, like all localized data points, could, with further research, prove to be equivocal, for example if a wholly localized factor (deforestation, land use changes) provides a more robust explanation for the ongoing melting. This is the nature of suggestive evidence. In isolation, it’s not much and nobody serious about the science ever claims it is.

  20. #20 Tim Lambert
    December 4, 2009

    rob, the paper defines BIT index like this:

    >The moisture-balance history of equatorial East Africa is revealed in seismic-reflection data of Lake Challa’s bottom deposits, and the branched and isoprenoid tetraether (BIT) index of soil bacterial versus aquatic archaeal membrane lipids extracted from these sediments

    I’m not sure that this is going to help a layperson :-)

  21. #21 dhogaza
    December 4, 2009

    Rob, AIT is Al Gore’s documentary, “An Inconvenient Truth”.

    Some people seem to think that if they can discredit the movie (honestly or dishonestly), then all of science will fall apart and we can go back to believing the earth is 6,000 years old and flat.

  22. #22 rob
    December 4, 2009

    @20, 21; Thankyou.

    “BIT index” = a measure of moisture in past years.
    “AIT” = ‘An Incovenient Truth’.

    Much clearer now.

  23. #23 Iain
    December 4, 2009

    Standard Bolt. Truth is not the main consideration. The man makes me sick.

    Did anyone else see him on Insider’s accusing Joe Hockey of being a bit thick because he apparently didn’t understand Bolt’s incisive explanation of why climate science is all bunkum – Bolt knows, because he has been studying it apparently and he has it all worked out. Surely there is a point where arrogance crosses over into mental illness..

  24. #24 Hide the decline
    December 4, 2009

    Anyone interested in reading more profanity from Spangled Drongo can go here http://graemebird.wordpress.com/ .

    BTW MSU data show November to be the hottest on record.

  25. #25 spangled drongo
    December 4, 2009
  26. #26 WotWot
    December 4, 2009

    I can however imagine him in Hell, going it’s just a natural cycle, this heat here.
    Donald Oats @ 2.

    He he he.

    Surely there is a point where arrogance crosses over into mental illness.
    Iain @ 23

    Bolt is never seriously wrong. Just ask him. And even if he is, he is too important to have to acknowledge it and lower himself to giving an apology.

  27. #27 silkworm
    December 5, 2009

    Last week at Pharyngula I made the honest mistake of saying that denialists fell into two main camps – libertarians and fundies/creationists. I got a rude response from one guy who objected strongly to being bundled in with these two groups. I realized that this guy was a conspiracy theorist, and that I had underestimated their dominance in the denialist movement. In fact I am now inclined to think that the conspiracy theory camp is the major camp. The recent bogus “climategate” topic has proven that.

    I came across a blog post today where the conspiracy-type denialist went into denial about the conspiratorial nature of the denialist movement. Many of these denialists are illiterate in English, and this inevitably accompanies basic scientific illiteracy as the following post shows:

    Consipracy? No, I think there is a mental reason why so many people ‘including Scientists’ just have a whole hearted feeling that the Earth is taking a whooping from Man and whatever crisis’ the Earth faces it must be due to our activities. In other words, these Scientist truly want to help the Earth with there work. They truly believed others work (part of the problem according to some from the IPCC) that CO2 is causing the Earth to warm. Problem is, they never had the data to show it, so they had to change the data. Fraud.

    Here is a post from another denialist who is known from previous posts to be a creationist. Note the use of provocative Bolt-type “religious” language, along with the attempt to position himself as a skeptic.

    I fear that AGW may turn out be right because of anecdotal evidence coming along but the proponent scientists have let us down with their biased agenda and bungling and we really need to know. Lives may be ruined or lost because of not taking action to reduce global warming or worse may happen because of inappropiate or uneccessary action. You might say I am an agnostic about apocalyptic global warming.

    Finally, I’d like to offer this one from a conspiracy-type denialist. Note the anti-intellectualism with hints of jealousy, and the hypocritical accusation of “arrogance” against his intellectual superiors.

    I work with PhD’s. Their arrogance knows no bounds. No offense to anyone who has a PhD, but they are the dumbest smart people on the planet, in my opinion. They don’t give a damn about the way their policy recommendations affect real people in the real world, as long as the money rolls in and they get their way. My employer has been after me for years to get an advanced degree in either public health or epidemiology, and I won’t do it. I don’t want to turn into one of THEM. Epidemiology would be fine, but an MPH or higher limits me to research or policy development. I’d rather teach middle school science to a hundred hormone infested 7th and 8th graders every day. :))

  28. #28 Jeremy C
    December 5, 2009

    yep Silkworm,

    But they make great foot soldiers….. instantly responsive, infinitely suggestible, unquestionably obedient.

  29. #29 Sigurdur
    December 5, 2009

    And then there are the deniars of current temperature. And the deniers that co2 is a logarithmic gas.
    The deniers of emperical evidence rather than the slab models.

    The list that deniers spout off is incredible.

    And the sad fact is……the deniers are wrong most of the time.

    It is time to throw the membership of the Flat Earth Society under the bus and join the world of reality.

    That reality is that the current temps are not outside the error bars of normallacy for the Holocene period. That reality is that we are on a long term cooling trend that started 10,000 years ago.

    I am amazed how the deniers keep spouting such rubbish.

  30. #30 trrll
    December 5, 2009

    It seems to be a cherished myth of AGW contrarians that modern climate scientists forget that the effect of CO2 on temperature is logarithmic, although they never manage to produce any actual examples of this, and the logarithmic dependence is coded into modern climate models, the code for which is publicly available.

  31. #31 Marion Delgado
    December 5, 2009

    What Gore said, in an Inconvenient Truth and outside it, is that the melting snows on Kilimanjaro are an example of what we’ll see increasingly, since they’re glaciers and they’re receding. He also has pointed out that Kilimanjaro has weathered previoius droughts. If deforestation is actually the sole cause, even that wouldn’t make Gore even incorrect. It might make footage of Kilimanjaro strategically unwise, since it’s got more important factors involved than climate change – and right now, there’s a complex impact of that on Kilimanjaro – but it doesn’t make what he’s said incorrect. That’s because he’s wise enough not to commit himself. It reminds me of the hurricanes controversy. He didn’t blame Katrina on global warming, contrary to denialist lies that he did.

    If you don’t go beyond established science, you may be misrepresented, but you’ll rarely be wrong. And if you are, at least you’ll have a lot of company.

  32. #32 Marion Delgado
    December 5, 2009

    By the way, let me make this clear:

    EVEN IF KILIMANJARO WAS SHOWN TOMORROW TO BE MELTING 100% DUE TO GLOBAL WARMING, THAT WOULD NOT IN AND OF ITSELF MAKE A CLAIM BY AL GORE CORRECT – THERE IS NO SUCH CLAIM. WHAT’S BEING GOTTEN WRONG HERE IS THE INITIAL CLAIM … IT’S JUST LIKE GORE INVENTED THE INTERNET, GORE SAID HE DISCOVERED LOVE CANAL, GORE SAID GLOBAL WARMING CAUSED KATRINA.

    If a consortium of scientists said Katrina was caused solely by global warming, Gore could NOT claim a correct prediction. All of this cuts both ways. If everyone involved in the Internet said Gore invented it but then left it alone and took no initiative during his time in Congress in actually funding research and facilities and bringing the modern Internet – in the phrase he coined, the information superhighway – into being, Gore would actually be flat wrong.

    So, what DOES back up or contradict Gore? In this case, what backs up Gore is that glaciers worldwide are retreating. He picked Kilimanjaro because it’s (a) famous, (b) scenic, (c) definitely melting and hence (d) memorable, and then he CAREFULLY PARSED HIS WORDS when he declared that this SORT OF THING – RETREATING GLACIERS – WAS WHAT WE WOULD SEE INCREASINGLY AS THE CLIMATE CHANGED TO WARMING.

    He was correct, period. The planet has warmed, especially the oceans and the Arctic, and the glaciers have retreated.

  33. #33 Chris O'Neill
    December 5, 2009

    Sigurdur :

    we are on a long term cooling trend

    that has a cause, i.e. astronomical forcing

    that started 10,000 years ago

    and finished 100 years ago with no apparent cause according to second stage denialists.

    Climate changes but it changes for a reason. Second stage denialists never have a reason that stands up to scrutiny.

    Stick with your myths Sigurdur. It’s all you’ve got.

  34. #34 Richard
    December 5, 2009

    If you look at Figure 7 in the Supplements, you can see what the BIT index has been since 1000. You can easily see that the BIT index has increased from about 0.5 to 0.70 since 1750. This easily demonstrates the ‘wet’ direction of the Index currently.

    And then there is this paper which was published last month, Glacier loss on Kilimanjaro continues unabated. Not only does it document the glacier loss that may make the mountain bare of ice within our lifetimes, it had this in the Discussion:

    “Hence, the climatological conditions currently driving the loss of Kilimanjaro’s ice fields are clearly unique within an 11,700-year perspective. These observations suggest that warmer near-surface conditions observed in the region, coupled with observed vertical amplification of temperature in lower latitudes (23–25), are playing an important role. Regardless of the contributions of various drivers, the ice fields atop Kilimanjaro will not endure if current conditions are sustained and adaptive actions to minimize the potential impacts should be developed quickly.”

  35. #35 el gordo
    December 5, 2009

    The Younger Dryas may have been confined to the NH, with the tropics little effected. This might account for the wetness around Kilimanjaro during that time.

  36. #36 el gordo
    December 5, 2009

    sigurdue #29

    My heartiest congrats, a work of articulate sensitivity.

  37. #37 joe samuels
    December 5, 2009

    This NASA report has gotten little attention but is perhaps bigger news than the climategate scandal

    http://symonsez.wordpress.com/2009/12/02/nasa-data-contradicting-global-warming-assumptions-released-in-cone-of-silence/

  38. #38 Janet Akerman
    December 5, 2009

    Sigurdur, now all you have too is publish your compendium of evidence that demonstrated who the deniers are.

    El gordo, doesn’t need evidence, you’ve impressed him by making assertions that confirm his faith based prejudice.

  39. #39 Lee
    December 5, 2009

    re: 27, joe samuels,

    Oh good god… all that says is that one (one!) study concludes that CO2 sinks are not(yet) saturating, and absorption is not (yet) slowing as some models predict.
    CO2 concentration in the atmosphere continues to rise, as predicted.

    This study says NOTHING AT ALL about whether AGW is correct. It modifies, perhaps, slightly, one datum affecting the speed of the rise, and the duration of increased CO2 if we discontinue emissions.

    you guys really need to learn to read adn understand this stuff before you post it and make absurd claims about what it says.

  40. #40 joe samuels
    December 6, 2009

    It says the assumptions were way way way off…not just a little. And you show your own bias..when you say “yet” which indicates that you do not want to let evidence lead to a conclusion. You can’t make such assumptions. Since these assumptions are within various formulas, all of those formulas under now suspect to a true person of science looking for truth and not looking for evidence to support your truth. I’m not saying that AGW is not real, I’m saying that the arguments put forth are flawed and until there is something that is truly indisputable, then the jury is still out. Once something is established, then it must be determined if there is anything we can or should do.

  41. #41 joe samuels
    December 6, 2009

    Speaking of transparency…or disinformation…why do you not publish all comments of dissent? By not publishing all comments then it is a form of private censor in order to steer the conversation one way. Sorta like the phony “reality shows” Those shows are scripted because the editor can take the footage and make it tell the story or leave the impression that they want. Just a suggestion to post all comments or none at all, if you truly are interested in transparency, truth and not disinformation.

  42. #42 MarkusR
    December 6, 2009

    I’m not saying that AGW is not real, I’m saying that the arguments put forth are flawed and until there is something that is truly indisputable, then the jury is still out.

    I’m not saying that you are a creationist, I’m saying that I’ve read this same argument hundreds of times from creationists in the past 10 years that I’ve spent arguing on the ‘interwebs’.

  43. #43 Jack Lacton
    December 6, 2009

    It’s fairly well understood that the current loss of ice cover on Kilimanjaro is due to recent land use change around the base of the mountain, which has had the effect of drying the air leading to sublimation at the top.

    Nothing to do with global warming.

  44. #44 joe samuels
    December 6, 2009

    Markus, you are no different than Rush Limbaugh. He says with certainty that “it’s not happening” and you are just as certain the other way. If you blow hards on both sides would look at each other truthfully, you are really mirror images of each other. Whomever is running this board has “disinformation” in his title yet decides not to publish some comments that disagree with him. Again, the NASA report was for some reason not covered much in the media and it potentially could mess up everything since it necessarily would disallow any modeling data or studies that used those assumptions. You can’t just throw out a factual study because you don’t like the conclusion. It also shows that those who used those conclusions were (gasp) wrong and they are capable of being wrong. When people profit personally from any political situation, the veracity of that position must be examined closely and held with skepticism. The truth is, no one knows the truth…it’s too soon to tell. Man has always had it’s truths destroyed…its assumptions torns to bits. Fair minded people are not really fair minded if they do not accept that they might be wrong. Even Ptolemy was wrong…and if Ptolemy can be wrong, so can Al Gore. Hansen has already shown that he can be wrong by the number of revisions that have had to be done to the IPCC report. Trouble is, he won’t admit it. He thinks that he’s greater than Ptolemy and others who have been proven wrong.

  45. #45 Janet Akerman
    December 6, 2009

    Joe Samuels writes:

    >*Markus, you are no different than Rush Limbaugh. He says with certainty that “it’s not happening” and you are just as certain the other way.*

    Funny, I haven’t yet read which points Marcus is certain about.

    Besides, Joe you’re claiming the ‘centre ground’ between Rush Limbaugh and the overwhelming scientific evidence and the overwhelming majority of scientist competent in the field.

    That’s an odd centre ground. Sort of half way between extremist ideological propaganda versus the compilations of vast tracks of evidence and rigorous assessments and understanding based on the available evidence.

  46. #46 Janet Akerman
    December 6, 2009

    Jack Lacton writes:

    >It’s fairly well understood that the current loss of ice cover on Kilimanjaro is due to recent land use change around the base of the mountain….

    Jack, could you link to the evidence? I’m not sure that Andrew Bolt is aware of it. If he knew he could cease writing the sort of disinformation on which this thread is reporting.

    Marion, thanks for [posting Gore's claims](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/12/andrew_bolts_mountain_of_infor.php#comment-2126313).

  47. #47 Jeremy C
    December 6, 2009

    I love the language the deniers have been coached in to use…
    e.g. Post 43 by Jack Lacton.

    “It’s fairly well understood”

    Another one used a lot (e.g. by Marohasy) is ” It is generally well accepted”.

    These phrases always start such posts giving an air of world weary sophistication, gravitas etc as though they have had to break off from important duties to set people right.

    Of course there is never any solid data to back up such faux-authorative type statements.

    But has anyone here noticed the increasing use of the word ‘denier’ being applied to those who accept the reasoning behind the science of AGW and this is being used by deniers. This is an interesting development in the propaganda stance of deniers. You gotta hand it to them they never give up twisting.

  48. #48 Lee
    December 6, 2009

    joe samuuels @40
    “says the assumptions were way way way off…not just a little.”

    Bullcrap. Saturating of CO2 sinks is NOT an assumption of AGW. It is something that, if it happens, will slightly accelerate the increase in CO2 in the atmosphere – and that is ALL.

    You guys really need to stop pretending yo know what you;re talking about,when you haven’t a clue.

  49. #49 Janet Akerman
    December 6, 2009

    Lee, Joe doesn’t need to quantify the change in emissions growth. Denialist don’t need facts nor considered argument. They just need volume.

    If Joe yells enough that the science is all wrong, some easily led people (perhaps like himself) will start to yell the same thing.

  50. #50 jon
    December 6, 2009

    joe samuels @40: “It says the assumptions were way way way off…not just a little. And you show your own bias..when you say “yet” which indicates that you do not want to let evidence lead to a conclusion. You can’t make such assumptions.”

    So if you’re attacking his use of the word ‘yet,’ can you please share the data you have that the sinks cannot ever possibly fill? Or are you making assumptions that let you ignore things like basic chemistry to avoid having evidence lead you to a conclusion you don’t like?

  51. #51 joe samuels
    December 6, 2009

    You guys are so facist sounding. I never said I’m a “denier” yet you call me names if I simply say that there are many questions and there have been problems with the data collection and the methodology and the fact that politicians have interfered with the academic process.

    Janet…Markus’s calling me names and alluding to me being a creationist. Lee…it is so as the rate of absorption vs the rate of emission has got to be a part of a climate model that is considering AGW. It is an assumption in many regards..one of which is pointed out by NASA. Jon…using the word “yet” is when you have a level of expectation or assumption. The article itself is how NASA has brought such assumptions into disrepute by a long shot. So…you would be in the camp of “..okay…well…just cause we were not even close doesn’t mean it wont happen…” You must accept that the arrogance of man means that he only thinks he knows everything, not that he really does. We can’t predict hurricanes or tornadoes, but we think we can predict the climate of the earth over 50 years?

    Arrogance is at a premium and its only made worse when politicians are involved..politicians who stand to gain power and money.

  52. #52 Michael
    December 6, 2009

    joe samuels wrote:

    We can’t predict hurricanes or tornadoes, but we think we can predict the climate of the earth over 50 years?

    Weather vs climate Joe, weather vs. climate.

    You understand the difference, right?

  53. #53 Bernard J.
    December 6, 2009

    We can’t predict hurricanes or tornadoes, but we think we can predict the climate of the earth over 50 years?

    Joe Samuels, if [Michael's question](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/12/andrew_bolts_mountain_of_infor.php#comment-2127111) was too difficult for you, perhaps you could think about this…

    If I gave you a handful of dice, and asked you to tell me exactly what the total would be for the next roll, how would you answer? If I then asked you to tell me what the average total for a hundred rolls would be, would you feel any more confident in answering?

    Why?

  54. #54 Michael Ralston
    December 6, 2009

    I never said I’m a “denier” yet you call me names if I simply say that there are many questions and there have been problems with the data collection and the methodology and the fact that politicians have interfered with the academic process.

    When you engage in denialism, you get called a denier. Don’t want to get insulted, don’t take actions deserving of insult. See how easy it is?

    As for messages being “surpressed”, did you perhaps write a comment with multiple links? If so, it got caught in the spam filter and will show up when the blog owner takes a look and releases it. If you’re talking about something else, I’m afraid you’ll have to provide some kind of evidence of surpression.

  55. #55 joe samuels
    December 6, 2009

    Okay, I get it. As usual, those who call others names are exactly what they accuse their detractors to be. I did not engage in denialism, just questions. Again, that is a form of facism…if you question and bring facts, then you are labeled and tossed aside. Make sure that you tow the party line, comrade. And then there is michael, who chooses to ridicule instead of consider the example, which was not saying that weather and climate is the same. In fact, he is suggesting that somehow climate is easier to forecast than weather, which is nonsense. He does not deny that we cannot accurately forecast hurricanes in weather forecasts but, by implication, suggests that somehow forecasting climate 50 years out is an exact science.

    Look in the mirror. If you indeed work in advanced science, then shame on you because you know that the hallmark of scientific advancement is an exchange of ideas and thoughts in a healthy debate. What is going on now is not scientific debate, but instead partisan politics and that is the problem. No one knows the truth. The earth has been warming, yes. But John Muir made that observation in the 1870′s way before anyone has suggested that industrialization was at fault. He said the glaciers in the Sierra would be gone by the end of the century. He was right, they largely were. We were warming then…or do you call the founder of the Sierra Club a liar? I’m sure you’ve read his diary, right? If you say no, then you are not very informed fully on the whole subject. Just reading news papers or the internet does not make you an expert and those whom you hold up as experts can be wrong.

    The climategate story is not proof but is a red flag. Studies like the NASA report are not proof of anything but raises a red flag when people dismiss it. When people say there is a “consensus” and want to shut down discussion, that is a huge red flag. When proponents of any position stand to gain wealth and political power, its a huge red flag. When forecasts like modeling data of 10 years ago have been wrong, then there is a red flag.

    I will walk away from this message board. You can email me if you want to have a real, honest debate. You’d probably be surprised where I personally stand. From some of your comments, I bet its not as far from yours as you might think. But, I do reject that nonsensical, facist attitudes and thinking. Its not right, professional and its dangerous.

    Good bye

    joesamuels@hotmail.com

  56. #56 luminous beauty
    December 6, 2009

    Markus writes,

    >I’m not saying that you are a creationist, I’m saying that I’ve read this same argument hundreds of times from creationists…

    joe samuels responds,

    >Markus’s calling me names and alluding to me being a creationist.

    Some people (not me) might say your reading comprehension isn’t quite up to snuff, joe.

  57. #57 Dr Depends
    December 6, 2009

    By making the statement in the manner in which you did, you were in trying to be clever in calling him a creationist while giving yourself and out so that you can make a denial. Further, it was another not-so-clever way to obfuscate from the issue and avoid any meaningful discussion. IMO, he read between the lines quite accurately.

  58. #58 dhogaza
    December 6, 2009

    In fact, he is suggesting that somehow climate is easier to forecast than weather, which is nonsense. He does not deny that we cannot accurately forecast hurricanes in weather forecasts but, by implication, suggests that somehow forecasting climate 50 years out is an exact science.

    No, it’s not nonsense. I can predict that in Portland, Oregon the average temperature in January 2059 will be lower than the average temperature in July 2059.

    I can not predict the weather, though. I can not predict whether or not it will rain here on July 4th, 2059. I can confidently make the climatic prediction that the odds of it raining on July 5th, 2059 is considerably lower than the odds of it raining on July 4th, 2059, as there’s a strong step-change in the historical record on those dates (rains frequently before July 5th, while July 5th through August sees little rain).

    There are many, many climate predictions I can make far in the future, while there are no weather predictions I can make far in the future with any confidence.

    You have an opportunity to learn, if you care to. Asserting falsehoods is not the way to go about it.

  59. #59 Lee
    December 6, 2009

    joe,

    Whether and when the CO2 sinks will saturate are an active area of study – not an “assumption.’ Different models, I understand, handle the CO2 absorption dynamics different ways, and have different answes about sink saturation – and those answers fall out of the modesl, are not assumptins and inputs to them.

    Those differences in CO2 sinks alter the rate of CO2 increase and of warming a little bit – not a lot.

    The fact is, we are emitting CO2 at twice the capacity of existing sinks to absorb it. A variation of a few percent in the capacity of those sinks, or uncertainty of a few decades in when that variation might happen, in the face of our challenging them right now, today, with twice their capacity, is not a large factor in the AGW equation.

    There are other things not in the models at all – things like methane emission from warming permafrost, which act the other way (with ‘warming’ sign) and are potentially orders of magnitude larger. I don’t see you guys trumpeting that omission from the models. Why is that?

  60. #60 Timothy Chase
    December 6, 2009

    Re Negative mass balance of Kilimanjaro…

    From -40°C up the rate of sublimation/evaporation increases roughly as an exponential function of temperature — doubling for every additional 10°C — with sublimation being the process whereby solid ice makes the transition to water vapor without passing through a liquid phase. So assuming precipitation does not increase sufficiently to cancel out the effects of increased sublimation, a higher temperature will result in the loss of mass even if temperatures are insufficient for melting. Global warming, anthropogenic or otherwise, could still be the culprit simply as the result of higher temperatures.

    However, due to the ocean warming more slowly than land (given the greater thermal inertia of ocean), while relative humidity should remain constant over the ocean, the air will progressively warm and dry out towards the continental interior, and with global warming the effects of this will be intensified. Likewise, since warming trend will be greater at higher tropical altitudes (roughly by a factor of 1.3 in the lower troposphere if I remember correctly), there should be an even steeper decline in relative humidity in tropical mountainous regions.

    Finally, I believe Raypierre mentioned a while back that melt water has been collecting at Kilimanjaro in recent years.

  61. #61 jon
    December 6, 2009

    joe @50:

    “using the word “yet” is when you have a level of expectation or assumption. The article itself is how NASA has brought such assumptions into disrepute by a long shot. So…you would be in the camp of “..okay…well…just cause we were not even close doesn’t mean it wont happen…” You must accept that the arrogance of man means that he only thinks he knows everything, not that he really does. We can’t predict hurricanes or tornadoes, but we think we can predict the climate of the earth over 50 years?”

    (Sorry for the long quote.)

    The article doesn’t question the basic idea that the sinks can saturate, though. And we know for sure that they can — we can do experiments that show how much of a gas water can hold, for instance, and there’s a limit.

    But given how catastrophic to human life things like the ocean saturating could be, we really don’t want to come anywhere near that.

    And as others have said, broad climate trends are easier to predict than local weather effects. It’s not like we don’t still set record low temperatures in our warming world. But over the past several decades, we’ve been setting close to twice as many record highs as record lows, whereas it used to be a pretty even ratio (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091112121611.htm).

  62. #62 Jim Thomerson
    December 6, 2009

    The argument that the loss of snow on Kilimanjaro is due to human-made changes in land use, deforestation, etc. may have some validity. If so, it is an example of human mediated change in local weather. This seems important to note, even if it is not a result of other human activities driving global change.

  63. #63 Ed Darrell
    December 6, 2009

    My father was very fond of using Moly Bolts. I do not know what the hell an Andrew Bolt is.

  64. #64 TrueSceptic
    December 6, 2009

    63 Ed,

    The best Bolt is Usain. Nothing better at the moment. ;)

  65. #65 Janet Akerman
    December 6, 2009

    JoeSamuels writes:

    >*You guys are so facist sounding. I never said I’m a “denier” yet you call me names…*

    Pot, Kettle, black?

    Joe continues:

    >*… if I simply say that there are many questions and there have been problems with the data collection and the methodology and the fact that politicians have interfered with the academic process.*

    What Joe actually said:

    >*This NASA report has gotten little attention but is perhaps bigger news than the climategate scandal*
    < http://symonsez.wordpress.com/2009/12/02/nasa-data-contradicting-global-warming-assumptions-released-in-cone-of-silence/>

    >*It says the assumptions were way way way off…not just a little. […] all of those formulas under now suspect […] I’m saying that the arguments put forth are flawed* […]

    >*Markus, you are no different than Rush Limbaugh. He says with certainty that “it’s not happening” and you are just as certain the other way. If you blow hards on both sides would look at each other truthfully, you are really mirror images of each other.*

    >*[…] the NASA report was for some reason not covered much in the media and it potentially could mess up everything since it necessarily would disallow any modeling data or studies that used those assumptions.*

    Joe, if you don’t want to defend these claims (above) don’t make them. That will save us the trouble of pointing our the numerous flaws and destortions.

    But if you do make such unsupported clams, don’t then try and prendent you *”simply say that there are many questions and there have been problems with the data collection and the methodology”*

    Joe continues:

    >*Arrogance is at a premium and its only made worse when politicians are involved..politicians who stand to gain power and money.*

    Nice allusion Joe, now try turning it into a supportable statement relevant to climate change. Like this:

    Our political process is corrupted. It is distorted by plutocracy. Politicians need billions of dollars to run a successful campaign, and they get that money in disproportionate concentrations from those with disproportionate concentrations of wealth.

    This creates a terrible bias. [Lobbyist funded]( http://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/top.php?showYear=2009&indexType=s) by those wanting to purchase influence on legislation have disproportionate access to decision makers, and this results is further concentration of power.

  66. #66 Dr Harry Borhlsachs
    December 6, 2009

    joe samuels wrote:

    We can’t predict hurricanes or tornadoes, but we think we can predict the climate of the earth over 50 years?

    Oh dear. The phrase “fundamental lack of awareness of the most basic principle of climate” springs to mind. What a clanger!

  67. #67 Janet Akerman
    December 6, 2009

    Oh! and Joe can’t help himself, back at it again in post 55:

    >*I did not engage in denialism, just questions. Again, that is a form of facism…if you question and bring facts, then you are labeled and tossed aside. Make sure that you tow the party line, comrade. […]

    Joe, read my [response above]( http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/12/andrew_bolts_mountain_of_infor.php#comment-2128282)

    And then Joe drops this one:

    >*Studies like the NASA report are not proof of anything but raises a red flag when people dismiss it.*

    What did Joe say though?
    >* This NASA report has gotten little attention but is perhaps bigger news than the climategate scandal
    >It says the assumptions were way way way off…not just a little. […] all of those formulas under now suspect […] I’m saying that the arguments put forth are flawed […]

    So now Joe wishes readers to believe that arguing with him about the validity of these claims is equivalent to dismissing a report. Joe, just because people correct your erroneous claims about a paper does not mean they dismiss a paper.

  68. #68 Bernard J.
    December 7, 2009

    Tonight’s [Lateline](http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/) episode featured a commentary on the commencement of the Copenhagen summit, as well as a pretty intersting interview with James Hannsen, although it’s not rocket science… Well worth a look once the videos are available online.

    I predict foaming contradiction from all of the Australian Denialati, with the eponymous antihero of this thread jostling for a place at the front of the pack.

  69. #69 Bernard J.
    December 8, 2009
  70. #70 MadScientist
    December 8, 2009

    *yawn*

    I hate posting to change the number of posts from ’69′ (everyone’s favorite number), but what’s the news here?

    Denialist parrots have been on numerous other blogs squawking about what heroes they are – and yet the simplest questions unequivocally and repeatedly reveal that (1) they don’t know what they’re talking about, (2) they claim to have done things which they didn’t really do, (3) they’re just liars looking for some attention. A quick search with google further reveals that they’re merely parroting propaganda from other (paid) denialist groups.

    Is there anyone putting an effort into identifying the major funded denialist propaganda organizations and who’s funding them?