Asks RP Sr’s paper in GRL (or rather, ask Thomas N. Chase, Klaus Wolter, Roger A. Pielke Sr and Ichtiaque Rasool). Interestingly, they conclude “not really”. This of course is contrary to what everyone knows, so their paper has been ignored, to RP’s annoyance. And if I had demonstrasted conclusively that a well known thing was wrong, and everyone just steamed ahead and ignored this inconventient fact, I’d be annoyed too. But has he indeed demonstrated this?

I thought I’d have a closer look at the data.

i-33e1857394e4974931cde5f9389fa98e-rp_thickness.png Their main result is that the fraction of the globe (or rather, the fraction of 22N to 80N, which is a fair restriction, for reasons they explain) that is exceptional (measured not in terms of direct anomaly, but in terms of exceeding the mean by a given standard deviation) is not particularly high in 2003. I can replicate that, see inset picture. The four panels are for exceeding 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5. In none of them is 2003 exceptional; interestingly, the 1991 anomaly was clearly small but intense because it takes over from 1998 as you tighten the SD criterion. Red are warm exceedance; blue bars are for cold. This pretty well replicates the relevant parts of RP’s fig 2 so I think my data+methods are probably correct.

[Click on the plot to get a larger version]

If/when I get round to it,it would be interesting to plot out what the anomalies look like in the high years.



i-f928bee67998c58f55cb624e998ab5e8-rp_t1.5.png So far so good. But those results are for the 1000-500 hPa thickness anomaly (at least *mine* are; RPs are the same, but re-scaled into a temperature anomaly), which is a measure of the atmospheric temperature anomaly integrated between 1000 hPa (the surface, more or less) and the mid-troposphere. But as we all know, we live at the surface. What happens if you do the same analysis with near-surface (1.5m) temperature? The picture this time is rather different. For moderate SD (2 and 2.5) 1998 is biggest; for more exceptional anomalies (3, 3.5) 2003 is clearly largest.

the previous plots go back to 1979; which makes sense for the trop because its when the MSU comes in. For the sfc in the NH you can arguably go back further; see here for 1948 to 2006, if interested. 2003 wins again.

So what does this mean (apart from a possible Comment to GRL?). It means that whether 2003 was wildly exceptional or not depends on how you look at it. Its widely publicised impacts were all in terms of the surface, so its perhaps unsurprising that when you measure something other than the surface, it becomes less exceptional.

Comments

  1. #1 Eli Rabett
    2007/06/22

    This will circle back to the fact that weather station guys and girls started to party and set up barbies next to their Stevenson screens. This explains why pictures of grills have appeared on Anthony Watt’s web sites.

    [Not if they know what they are talking about, since sfc t isn't assimilated into the analyses -W]

    It was done on instruction from the IPCC propaganda office who were worried by the fact that temperature had dropped between 1998 and 2003. While they started in 2003 they were forced to stop by the brave climate auditors and the fact that US state climatologists refused to go along.

    On a more serious level, what happens if you do this for just Europe?

  2. #2 SomeBeans
    2007/06/22

    Can you say something about the “thickness temperature”? As it isn’t a combination I’ve seen before. Is the idea to get some measure of total energy content? In which case it might be a good global measure relating to climate…

    [The layer thickness between two pressure levels is directly proportional to the average temperature between those two levels. So its a convenient way of obtaining the average temperature, or something proportional to it. Whether its a useful measure of what you want to know depends on what you want to know. In this case, one could argue that the "important" info is what is happening at the surface, not higher up.

    Taking that a bit further/sideways, if you have "defined" the 2003 event as being exceptional in terms of sfc t - and by my analysis, it turns out that it is - then if you change that definition into some thing else - tropospheric t - then its not too surprising if the event b ecomes less exceptional by the new measure -W]

  3. #3 Dano
    2007/06/22

    It is important to remember two things:

    - The soil-plant-air continuum (SPAC) interface effectively happens at the planetary surface (think global forest cover %). Plus, humans live on the surface, not at mid-trop, unless you are in the Alps or Rocky Mts or Himalaya then you are at ~800 hPa or so-ish.

    - Roger’s contention that other forcings such as landcover change should be used as a metric to understand change and thus GHG reduction policies are incomplete…yada…

    Anyway, Roger’s ‘other forcings’ all take place at the surface.

    One wonders how this GRL paper affects his other contention.

    [I don't think it does. This one stands on its own -W]

    Best,

    D

    PS: Wm, I suspect this number in your passage should be 1000: ["...which is a measure of the atmospheric temperature anomaly integrated between 100 hPa (the surface, more or less) and the mid-troposphere... ]

    [Thats right - corrected thanks -W]

  4. #4 Eli Rabett
    2007/06/22

    “Not if they know what they are talking about”

    Well yes, that is the problem, no?

  5. #5 Eli Rabett
    2007/06/23

    Hey, it’s Rasool of Rasool and Schneider!:)

  6. #6 Nathan Rive
    2007/06/23

    RP’s article’s abstract includes a comment on perhaps one of the key questions: Regression analyses do not provide strong support for the idea that regional heat waves are increasing with time

    I assume that this is still based on their analysis of the mid-troposphere – has someone shown whether looking at surface warming would yield the same conclusion? Any word on frequency vs. amplitude of the heat waves over time?

    [Since the series only has 25 years, with only a few "exceptional" events I doubt you can get anything useful out of the trends -W]

  7. #7 Peter hearnden
    2007/06/23

    Why would you look at heatwaves the way RP does? Are the earth’s climate trends the same all the way up through the various levels of the atmosphere? Why mix up levels as he does?

    When I think of 2003 I think of the surface. Would we look at rainfall in the same way? Would an exceptionally wet month look less so if one measure rainfall up to 500mb? And if so, so what, does it make us any less wet?

    [I think its better to look at heatwaves in termed of what they bare defined by, which is to say the sfc. However (although I don't think RPs paper says this) you could argue that a GW-caused heatwave woudn't be forced *from* the surface, you would expect forcing from higher levels in the atmosphere. And therefore that if the 2003 event wasn't exceptional higher up, then local factors (starting very dry, for example) may have more to do with it. I'm not sure if I agree, or if anyone knows - its more a suggestive line of argument than anything else -W]

  8. #8 GMB
    2007/06/24

    Peter. Check out lapse rates. There are two types and it would be easy to get them confused. But more water vapour would reduce the lapse rate and so that you’d expect the change in temperature to be greater 5-10 km’s up.

    And you would expect exactly the same thing with CO2-warming. If it occurred at all, whatever difference it would make on the surface, it would make a greatly vaster difference 5-10 km’s up.

    While, despite the liars, there is no evidence that the extra CO2 has made any substantial difference on the surface its very easy to believe that it might be making a more substantial difference 5 km’s up and its very easy to believe that it could help melt mountain ice and the like. But we don’t have the data to conclude that this is happening as plausible as it might seem.

    [Please observe the std rules of politeness or your comments will be deleted -W]

  9. #9 Luboš Motl
    2007/06/24

    William, your method of talking about this whole issue is completely [Lubos is a silly person]. You engineer a criterion that makes 2003 first in some list and then you try to create the impression that it proves that 2003 was exceptional. This has three basic problems:

    1) your criteria are fine-tuned and there are many others that lead to different results
    2) being first in a list is not the same thing as being exceptional
    3) all these notions are quantitatively ill-defined. The very notion of claiming a weather event to be “exceptional” is clearly politically-driven because the ultimate result is that you want [Lubos is a silly person]

    RP Sr has just showed that there is no signal that would, via a rational treatment, reveal something extraordinary. One can’t really unshow it unless you find something wrong with the calculation which you have not. Incidentally, I agree with the content of GMB comments.

    [Errm, Lubos, I've showed that the heatwave, looked at in terms of sfc T, is exceptional. I don't see how you can call that fine-tuned: I call it the obvious variable to look at. Indeed it would be more obvious to accuse RP of tuning to get away from seeing the heatwave (which I'm not doing, BTW). As for GMB - most of his comments got deleted; you too will be if you talk like him -W]

  10. #10 Eli Rabett
    2007/06/24

    No Lubos, what RP showed is that there is one particular statistic that shows 2003 was not an outliers. Others have shown there are other statistics that show 2003 is an outlier. William used another. [GMB deleted -W]

  11. #11 Lubos Motl
    2007/06/24

    Eli: William didn’t show anything like what you indicate. [Lubos is a silly person]

    William has shown that by his random methods, 2003 was very similar to other years such as 1998 and depending on details, we can adjust the ordering.

    The only exceptional thing about 1998 was El Nino and it is not too exceptional. 2003 may have been even less exceptional, even in Europe. At any rate, comparing years within the group of the last 30 years has clearly no implications for the questions about the notorious “climate change” theory because all these years are recent, from the heavy-greenhouse-gas-producing era.

    The link is exactly zero. But nevertheless, certain people always want to pollute and misinterpret the situation, and if they don’t directly say that they have new evidence for “climate change”, they certainly at least formulate their sentences in such a way that insufficiently careful readers get this impression.

    [Lubos is a silly person]

    [Hi Lubos. Please stick to arguing your position and leave out the silliness, unless you like having your comments edits.

    Now in one respect, I do agree with you, and it seems to me that in your over-enthusiasm you have assumed things that you shouldn't. Nowhere have I said that the 2003 event was caused by GW. In some respects, the more exceptional it was, the less you can say this - you simply cannot attribute things so far outsied the normal statistics.

    But you are also wilfully misreading the data. Its plain that in terms of sfc T, 2003 was exceptional, and the European heat wave has no parallel in the earlier data. Its all right though - you don't need to make this false (which is just as well, since its true). You can just say "yes its true: so what". Don't nail your flag to the mast, just stop and think a moment -W]

  12. #12 T Allen
    2007/06/24

    Its a big mistake we are making talking to alarmists as if they have evidence of their own. We get caught out in various dead end arguments and it creates the false impression that there are some good points on both sides of the debate.

    Whereas in reality whats going on is the refusal of the alarmists to show up with evidence for their paradigm. A paradigm which is already falsified.

    This refusal to put forward evidence is a good tactical move considering the pack-instinct and common purpose of the alarmists. Because if they never put forward any evidence the relatively easy process of overturning this evidence cannot proceed.

    [Since you haven't even said what you're talking about, much less puit forward any evidence, I am unable to understand this comment. But if you have anything of substance to say, do please let us know. Perhaps you have an opinion as to whether 2 or 3 SD is a better measure of exception? Or whether the heatwave is better measured by sfc or upper air T? -W]

  13. #13 T Allen
    2007/06/24

    “Since you haven’t even said what you’re talking about, much less puit forward any evidence..”

    Notice how you quickly run away from the idea of putting forward any evidence of your own at all.

    The paradigm which sustains global warming alarmism is one in which all “forcings” are thought to be equivalent to eachother.

    Its a watts per square metre paradigm. We all know the paradigm but nowehere on this blog or on alarmist blogs generally can we find evidence that this paradigm pans out in the real world.

    Don’t ask me for evidence again. Lets see some positive evidence on your side for a change.

    [Sorry guv, I still haven't a clue what you're talking about. Are you on the right blog? If you mean the radiaitve forcing concept, yes its a useful concept, but I don't think I've discussesd it much -W]

  14. #14 GMB
    2007/06/24

    “So what does this mean (apart from a possible Comment to GRL?). It means that whether 2003 was wildly exceptional or not depends on how you look at it. Its widely publicised impacts were all in terms of the surface, so its perhaps unsurprising that when you measure something other than the surface, it becomes less exceptional.”

    Right. So that means Rogers right and it is unexceptional in relation to the CO2 controversy.

    Which of course means that you are wrong and your critique was pointless and just a distraction.

    Since if the CO2 component was causing the anomalous conditions on the surface….. the lessening lapse rate would mean that things were even more extraordinary 5 kilometres up.

    [I think you're missing the point - I have said nothing about GW in relation to 2003, so I don't see how I can be wrong about it -W]

  15. #15 Eli Rabett
    2007/06/24

    GMB raises an interesting point. One that I think our hmble host saw early. Let us say you want to see if someone is exceptionally rich. You might ask, is this bird worth 100,000 (whatevers)? Well there are a lot of people who have that, certainly if they own a house, and our guy qualifies, but that is not so hard to do, so he is not so exceptional.

    But we could ask the question, does he have at least 100,000 (whatevers) cash. A bit harder, but still there are a lot folk who reach that, say ~10%, so he is not exceptional by that test. Finally, reality makes a drive by, and the question becomes, does he have 10^7 cash. Well by that test, he is not only rich, but exceptionally so. RPJ set the bar relatively low and a lot of years jumped over. Wm moved it up a couple of notches.

  16. #16 SCM
    2007/06/25

    GMB:
    Your comments about lapse rates are a bit mysterious. Real (environmental) lapse rates are heavily affected by weather and to make any comments about the behaviour of lapse rates vs global warming expectations would surely require long term global averages and trends, just as is required to see temperature increases (hence the pointlessness of the “no cooling since ’98″ claim of your fellow traveller).

    However this has piqued my curiosity re expected changes in lapse rates with AGW. Lapse rate decrease from surface warming would be the same regardless of the cause of the warming would it not? So how can lapse rate changes tell you what caused the warming one way or another?

  17. #17 guthrie
    2007/06/25

    I believe T Allen is looking for the IPCC report. Or maybe he needs the url to SPencer Wearts book. Unfortunately his behaviour so far suggests that he may not understand what we are talking about.

  18. #18 Dano
    2007/06/25

    SCM:

    I suspect GMB is trying to parrot a specious and incorrect argument made by a frequent poster at CA, where they assert that increasing trop temps increase the lapse rate (r would only increase if the sfc Ts were increasing more than trop Ts) and thus increasing lapse rate increases convection, which would vent sfc heat faster, thus man-made climate change is not a problem, yada (IR iris argument).

    Of course, as GMB puts it, the lapse rate is actually decreasing, which would lessen convection. As I’m commenting at lunch, I can’t search for papers that show increasing episodicity of N Hem temps but I recall seeing them out there…

    Best,

    D

    Best,

    D

  19. #19 fergus
    2007/06/26

    Here’s another log to throw on the fire: http://www.clim-past-discuss.net/3/811/2007/cpd-3-811-2007.html
    Autumn 2006 this time, but the article (still under discussion and open access) is fairly unequivocal.
    Regrads,

  20. #20 GMB
    2007/06/26

    Not at all SCM. There’s no mystery there. CO2 is a greenhouse gas. And its presence would be expected to add to the effect of water vapour. Hence warmer on the ground but proportionately warmer as you go up.

    I suspect you are the only one bamboozled by what I said. I said “There are two types and it would be easy to get them confused.”

    You might have to untangle the two of them. We are not talking about a parcel of air moving upwards.

  21. #21 Carl Christensen
    2007/06/26

    I didn’t quite catch in the RPSr paper how their regression analysis that shows it’s not unusual is superior to say the Stott/Stone Nature paper on the ’03 heatwave which also used regression analysis to demonstrate the global warming contribution. Is it not that clearcut, is one’s man’s stats another man’s belly laugh (as seems to be the case with everything from Mann/McIntyre to Frame/Annan etc)?

    [SS didn't demonstrate a GW contribution to '03. They demonstrated that GW had made such events more likely. I didn't read the regression bit of RPs paper - it seemed to me that with so few events it was unlikely to show up anything useful -W]

    If so, I don’t really see where we can make policy decisions (I’m playing devil’s advocate); I mean the average yokel on the street isn’t going to be able to separate the two and it becomes like arguing who’s the best guitarist in the world etc.

    [Don't make policy based on exceptional events. The trend is enough -W]

  22. #22 Carl Christensen
    2007/06/28

    [Don't make policy based on exceptional events. The trend is enough -W]

    That sounds great & plausible to the “enlightened.” But has it ever worked in the past, i.e. CFC’s & DDT & smoking etc was based on real scary scenarios that the public understood (although real right-wing twits still deride DDT bans of course, and I guess a few crackpots like Singer think CFC’s & smoking are fine & dandy for your health).

    [CFCs weren't banned due to any exceptional events, though, but to a trend in ozone depletion -W]

    without some honest-to-goodness (i.e. not manufactured) “smoking gun” I really don’t see the US & China & India et al curbing their economy, or the public (here in the US at least) really giving a rat’s ass about .2-.3 degrees warming per decade etc. it’s sad to say, but without a hurricane that can be 80% attributed to global warming taking out Miami, nobody is really going to care. no huge mass of people in the US & China & India is going to care about an African drought, it will just be more sad fund-raising drives on late-night TV to help the starving & thirsty Africans, etc.

    [Sadly there is a fair chance that you are correct -W]

  23. #23 GMB
    2007/06/28

    The energy-deprivation-crusade is really just a substitute religion. It has all the fervency of any congregation of born-agains. Not only is there no smoking gun but there’s no smoke, gun, suspected shooter, victim or bullet-hole.

    A religion needs no evidence to sustain it but then talk of visions and speaking-in-tongues might be helpful. Because when you ask them for evidence for their model they are unwilling to show up with it, do not have it, and cannot point to anyone who does.

    Even to ask for evidence appears to be the height of rudeness. Just as it is in every religion. But this religion is in a primitive stage of development since all the energy-deprivation-crusaders seem to do is sit around hurling abuse and ridicule on the infidels and the heretics.

    Now tell me why this is wrong? Surely if the CO2-warming component was greater-then-insignificant we might have expected a noticeable reduction in the environmental lapse-rate since the end of World War II.

    If we don’t have this effective reduction in the environmental lapse-rate… at least in the first few kilometres…..the paradigm looks like it needs some massaging. Any speculative explanation for this dog that didn’t bark would be in order.

    [I presume you're talking about the difference between the observed rise in surface temperatures (otherwise known as global warming) and the observed rise in mid-tropospheric temperatures. The latter is less well observed; depending on whose dataset you pick its either bigger than, or about as big as, the sfc warming -W]

    CO2 is heavier then air. How much does this effect the relative concentration of CO2 as you go up 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 kilometres?

    [Oh dear, you're off the rails now. Hint: why aren't we breathing argon? -W]

  24. #24 GMB
    2007/06/28

    Lets assume that CO2 is the same proportion all the way up [cut -W]

    [Since its true, thats a good assumption. CO2 is well mixed in the turbosphere -W]

  25. #25 GMB
    2007/06/28

    “The latter is less well observed; depending on whose dataset you pick its either bigger than, or about as big as, the sfc warming -W]”

    Not really very convincing is it? If your paradigm was right it ought to be a substantially greater warming (lets say) 5 kilometres up.

    [Whether there is greater warming or not depends, as I said, on whose dataset you look at. Given the variance amongst the upper-air datasets, you're better off using the surface temperature. What you seem to fail to appreciate is that the upper-air is *consistent* with the sfc T and the theory -W]

  26. #26 GMB
    2007/06/28

    No good Stoat. You cannot use the surface temperature and ignore the other stuff. Thats one-way of pretending a dead paradigm is alive but it aint science. The data isn’t decisive as you said.

    [The data is exactly as I said it is, of course. The difficulty is in the interpretation. Measured by sfc T, summer 2003 was unique. Sfc T is what we care about. Attribution is another question -W]

    And already you’ve given the game away. Because if the greater increase in temperature is mid-troposphere we know thats a reduced lapse-rate up to that point due to WATER VAPOUR AND WATER VAPOUR ALONE according to your own testimony.

    [No, thats wrong, and shouting won't make it right -W]

    It cannot be due to CO2. Because CO2 isn’t over-represented there and so the difference CO2 was making would continue on upwards.

    [At this point, or earlier, you've become unclear. Quite what you're sourcing your arguments too is unclear as well -W]

  27. #27 GMB
    2007/06/28

    “[The data is exactly as I said it is, of course. The difficulty is in the interpretation. Measured by sfc T, summer 2003 was unique. Sfc T is what we care about. Attribution is another question -W]”

    That means its ambiguous. And by your own testimony its not JUST the interpretation. Its also got to do with which data-set you choose. So its ambiguous.

    We cannot find CO2-warming on the ground. So we must look for it higher up.

    “Sfc T is what we care about.”

    I care about ALL the data. But its the oceanic heat content that is the most important. Because only the oceans can hold enough energy for cumulative warming. Any accumulated energy in the atmosphere would have to be considered, by comparison, relatively ephemeral.

  28. #28 GMB
    2007/06/28

    [No, thats wrong, and shouting won't make it right -W]

    It cannot be due to CO2. Because CO2 isn’t over-represented there and so the difference CO2 was making would continue on upwards.

    [At this point, or earlier, you've become unclear. Quite what you're sourcing your arguments too is unclear as well -W]

    Not true. I’m right here and you are wrong. If as one poster said the greater change of temperature is mid (MID!) troposphere rather then upper-troposphere it is most clear that its the result of extra water vapour and not evidence of CO2-warming. Since the lessened average lapse-rate would have continued on up.

  29. #29 Rejean Gagnon
    2007/06/28

    Mr. W.C.,
    reference a comment you made about Argon – of course we breathe Argon, considering it is almost twenty-five times more abundant in the atmosphere than CO2 is. Fortunately Argon is an inert gas and does not affect greatly in this form. Although not my domain, a quick google search (“lung argon transfer”) shows some medical articles speak of Argon transfer into the blood through respiration – I was not about to pay to see though.

    {Ah, apologies for the misunderstanding. You have missed my point, which was in response to the nonsense about CO2 possibly not being well-mixed due to weight differences. People occaisionally think the same about CFCs. I meant, pure argon. Or whatever is the densest component of the atmosphere -W]

  30. #30 Chris O'Neill
    2007/06/28

    GMB:”CO2 is heavier then air. How much does this effect the relative concentration of CO2 as you go up 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 kilometres?”

    This person really knows what he’s talking about, doesn’t he?

  31. #31 Eli Rabett
    2007/06/28

    Depends if you want naturally occuring. If you do probably some simple bromine compound like bromoform or Br2. I

  32. #32 Dano
    2007/06/29

    I strenuously object to any insinuation that GMB is a parody character created by Dano. Dano is not clever enough to create Graeme.

    Best,

    D

  33. #33 Munin
    2007/06/29

    GMB has blogged about the removal of his latest post, claiming victory.
    http://graemebird.wordpress.com/2007/06/29/the-man-they-call-stoat-a-post-too-far/

    “The last post was a post-too-far. Because I’m supposing he just had no answer for it. With that post I’ve won decisively.”

    My supposition leads me elsewhere.

    [Hmm, I'm not really sure I needed to know that. But I'm glad he ended up happy -W]

  34. #34 William Connolley
    2007/06/30

    GMB seems desperate to post this, so I’ll put it back up with some answers…

    Now its pretty clear what happened last century. We were recovering from the little-ice-age and then we were fortunate enough to have a burst of solar activity the likes of which had not been seen in at least 1150 years and perhaps 8,000 years.

    [Its not really clear that "recovering" from the LIA means very much. And you faith in solar proxies is touching -W]

    The argument is sometimes made that solar activity variations are not strong enough to account for the increase. But a paradigm cannot be justified by reference to itself. And the solar variability is plenty strong enough if your paradigm is not the one that I say has failed.

    [You're fond of the word paradigm but you're not making any sense. Everyone (even the solar folk) acknowledge that solar forcing isn't strong enough by themselves. Not to mention that solar has, if anything, been downwards over the last 30 years, and that on;y careful analysis shows up the 11-y solar cycle, which is far stronger than any trend -W].

    An alternate paradigm, but one that I personally don’t think is radical enough…. is that solar variability has two multipliers. There is the production of water vapour which is a function largely of the heat content of the upper oceans.

    [Weird idea - only the skin temperature matters from the POV of WV -W]

    (Its the accumulated heat content of the oceans we ought to be following closely since only the oceans (and perhaps internally the planet itself) can hold enough energy for cumulative warming. By comparison the energy held in the atmosphere has to be considered ephemeral.)

    [Yes, but its only the atmos warming up that can warm the ocean -W]

    Under this paradigm…when the solar activity increases this CHANGE will get multiplied by the effect of extra water vapour if the oceans are able to accumulate a lot more energy.

    [Doesn't help you, since this is in there anyway. Solar is still too weak -W]

    In this, pretty conservative, paradigm a second multiplier (to the effect of solar variability) comes with the suns effects on cloud cover due indirectly to the suns effect on cosmic rays hitting the troposphere. But I won’t get into that too much here.

    [Since its all hand-waving, thats probably a good idea -W]

    So what we do is match the two paradigms against eachother. Two paradigms is not enough. It would be better to have six or so that you were ranking and re-ranking according to what the data pointed to.

    [OK, done that - read the attribution literature. Solar forcing should warm the whole atmos, GHG should warm the trop and cool the strat. Which do we observe? I'm sure you know -W]

    But for now lets just go with the two paradigms. And so we ought to see extra warmth wherever we can find more water vapour in the air. We ought to be checking out areas that have changed in terms of their temperature…… at various heights above sea level…. and see if we can figure out if there has been an increase in water vapour.

    So far it seems that there are some indications that mid-troposphere temperatures have increased more then temperatures on the ground. I’m taking this assumption directly from this thread.

    This data is in favour of the second paradigm and not in favour of the alarmist paradigm. Because when you think about it, it is the mid-troposphere that you would expect to be carrying more water vapour if the upper-oceans had increased in their imbedded heat content and had therefore been PRODUCING more water vapour.

    [You'd get the same result from either -W]

    So we would expect then that the 0.6% increase in average temperatures were the result of a massive accumulation in the oceanic heat content…. indirectly leading to more water vapour in the air and particularly in the region of the mid-troposphere.

    [Other way round, really -W]

    Not everywhere by any means. But the regional patterns of warming/cooling ought to correlate with which regions have increased/reduced the amount of water vapour in the air above them.

    [Look at the IPCC SPM. The regional warming correlates with what the models forced by GHG etc say should happen. But not with models forced by solar -W]

    Now since (as Stoat has explained) the increase in CO2 is dispersed pretty evenly, both vertically and I presume regionally as well… this is not really what we ought to have seen if the 0.6 degrees increase were due to CO2.

    [Oh? Why? -W]

    Rather one would expect a slight reduction in the average environmental lapse-rate.

    [Sigh. You've done that just above -W]

    I’d particularly expect that when you got to a height in the troposphere where the water vapour attenuates severely…. It is at this sort of height where I’d expect that the change in average temperature ought to be the greatest. Because thats where there would be no increase in water vapour but a very strong increase in CO2.

    [Well, you're invited to make this more quantative with proper radiative physics and so on -W]

    At this level we would expect the temperature increase to be greater then on the ground. Greater then at mid-troposphere.

    Thats if we are contending that the .6 degree increase in average temperature is due to CO2.

    At this point the alarmist paradigm isn’t looking that great. But then again. We expect the leftists to come back with a counter-argument. And it will be good if they do and I hopefully might learn something from their counter-argument.

    [Dunno about the leftists. I'd read IPCC if I were you -W]

  35. #35 Eli Rabett
    2007/06/30

    Shoot the paradigm.

  36. #36 Hugh
    2007/06/30

    Shoot the ptarmigan!!

  37. #37 GMB
    2007/06/30

    “[Its not really clear that "recovering" from the LIA means very much. And you faith in solar proxies is touching -W]”

    It aint faith in solar proxies. Its faith in specialists. And the alarmists for a long time were ignoring the solar guys. Who have immense data to work with since they have many other stars in the galaxay to compare our sun too.

    [The output from other stars doesn't help us reconstruct the output from our own. And since we don't know *that* well, its unlikely we know that of more distant stars -W]

    Proxies are all we have and they are fine if you have CONVERGENT proxies. We can rightly put our faith in convergence. If they have three or more proxies they can get a range that we can rely on.

    The solar reconstructions, when tracked against the temperature reconstructions refute the alarmist paradigm outright.

    [Firstly, the reconstructions of solar irradiance from different methods differ widely. Secondly, no, T doesn't track solar well. Especially recently -W]

    [Rest cut -W]

  38. #38 milo
    2007/07/01

    GMB: [It aint faith in solar proxies. Its faith in specialists. And the alarmists for a long time were ignoring the solar guys. Who have immense data to work with since they have many other stars in the galaxay to compare our sun too.]

    Yawn. John Travolta and Posh Beckham? –
    http://www.mpa-garching.mpg.de/mpa/publications/preprints/pp2006/MPA2001.pdf

  39. #39 GMB
    2007/07/03

    Now there’s a totally meaningless comment. Don’t hide behind a pdf milo. Put the argument in your own words and lets see if it has wings.

    This thread at realclimate would appear to confirm what I was saying about how we would expect a slightly reduced average environmental lapse rate with the extra-CO2.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/06/a-saturated-gassy-argument/

    Now lets see your argument that we ought to ignore what the solar specialists have to say?

    [You've picked an odd post to attach that too, maybe http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2005/08/et-tu-lt/ would be better. But no mind. The warming-in-the-trop is a prediction of the models; we know that; why are you bringing it up again? And... what exactly do you think the solar folk are saying? -W]

    By the way, they are saying we can expect a cooling trend pretty soon. So to the extent that this CO2 might have some heretofore undetected warming effect then we can say with great confidence that this hypothetical warming would be a very good thing.

    [Really? A P-R ref for that would be nice -W]

    A net benefit no question at all.

  40. #40 GMB
    2007/07/03

    “[Firstly, the reconstructions of solar irradiance from different methods differ widely. Secondly, no, T doesn't track solar well. Especially recently -W]”

    Totally wrong. You ought not mislead people by saying this. The only time when it didn’t track well was in the last two decades of the twentieth century. And that was an unexpected overshoot in temperature of about .1 degrees each decade if the measurements can be trusted. This might be attributed to the campaign to reduce SO2 release one supposes. But then has anyone investigated this possibility?

  41. #41 GMB
    2007/07/04

    “[You've picked an odd post to attach that too, maybe http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2005/08/et-tu-lt/ would be better. But no mind. The warming-in-the-trop is a prediction of the models; we know that; why are you bringing it up again? And... what exactly do you think the solar folk are saying? -W]”

    Right. So now you’ve confirmed that it ought to have happened. And it hasn’t. Which means most of the warming must be coming via solar increase, adding energy to the oceans, which means they produce water vapour. If this wasn’t the case then the pattern of warming would be different to how its described on this thread.

    [Oh dear - this is all a bit one step forward and two steps back. Your statement "And it hasn't" is wrong. The truth is that the current upper-atmos meaasurements don't allow is to say. They are *consistent* with the sfc T trend.

    Also, you're wrong to say that this inplies solar is the solution. The trop warming prediction from theory/models is n othing to do with CO2 - its simply a robust prediction about the atmos response to (tropical) sfc T changes. You expect exactly the same response from solar. You need to get your skepticism in order: the correct septic argument is that the trop stuff throws doubt on the sfc T measurements. Try to keep up! -W]

    The warming is where the water vapour has increased. Both vertically and geographically. So the transmission is solar-water vapour. Its the oceans regulating the troposphere. Inhaling and exhaling energy as it were. In accordance with the energy the ocean has accumulated.

  42. #42 GMB
    2007/07/04

    Peer review is just meaningless superstition. Its not part of science.

    [Its always funny when people think they can pin down exactly what "science" is. P-R is definitely a part of modern science and acts as a useful filter for rubbish. But its not perfect: try http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2005/01/peer-review-a-necessary-but-not-sufficient-condition/ for example -W]

  43. #43 GMB
    2007/07/05

    “[Oh dear - this is all a bit one step forward and two steps back. Your statement "And it hasn't" is wrong. The truth is that the current upper-atmos meaasurements don't allow is to say. They are *consistent* with the sfc T trend."

    Consistent isn't good enough. You guys might spend your time fitting a square peg into a round whole to force a false consistency on things. But you wouldn't need to keep re-asserting stuff without backing things up if you had the evidence.

    [Sorry, you're getting rather silly now. Consistent is obviously good enough -W]

    You are in the business. You ought to have the figures right at your fingertips. How is the data inconsistent with a situation where solar variation is ten times more important then the watts-per-square-metre paradigm would suggest?

    [Because you only have to look at the data, eg http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_variation , to see that the solar trend, if any, is downwards. Making the sensitivity to solar larger would only make this worse. And if you make the sens to solar large you then have to explain the absence of the 11-y cycle in the data -W]

    [wurble cut]

  44. #44 GMB
    2007/07/06

    Consistency is obviously not good enough. You have to be testing several theses in parallel. Not squeezing and massaging the data and the model together in such a way as not to look too obviously wrong.

    This is a sort of creationist way of doing things. And its wasteful because it is the paradigms-in-parallel that help you design you reasearch in order to resolve ambiguities cheaply.

    Anybody can spend all their time tweaking the computer models to fit a square peg into a round hole and for this reason consistency is OBVIOUSLY not good enough.

    It doesn’t tell you whats right or whats wrong. To be internally consistent by massaging the data and tweaking the models won’t tell you anything about the real world.

    You DO see indications of the solar cycle if you begin by looking at the right metric. Which is OBVIOUSLY the energy imbedded in the oceans. This could not be more obvious since the oceans hold at least 1000 times more energy then the atmosphere.

    The powerful way in which the oceans energy cycles up and down does most surely show that the solar variation is relatively far more important then this watts-per-square-metre business would suggest.

    But inductively speaking the watts-per-square-metre model is obviously wrong in the first place. And it does NOT fit with the data. Otherwise you wouldn’t have people playing down the holocene-maximum, the medieval warm period, and the little-ice age.

  45. #45 Chris O'Neill
    2007/07/07

    “You DO see indications of the solar cycle if you begin by looking at the right metric. Which is OBVIOUSLY the energy imbedded in the oceans.”

    The indications of the solar cycle in that metric are so obvious and ít’s so obvious that they should show up in that metric.

  46. #46 GMB
    2007/07/07

    WELL THEY DO SHOW UP.

    [Assuming by this you mean solar signals in the sfc T record, I'd be interested to know what you mean by it. Something quantiataive would be nice -W]

  47. #47 Munin
    2007/07/07

    My comments sit politely awaiting moderation while GMB’s bile just sails on through. What a topsy-turvy world we live in.

    No doubt the post initiating this response will be deleted, but anyway: “wurble” is a colloquial term in British English. It can have several meanings, but in this context I think the closest synonyms would be balderdash, twaddle or gobbledygook.

    On the subject of colloquialisms, I’m reminded of the term “fuhgeddaboudit” – probably just as an excuse to share this clip from Donnie Brasco.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zf0ZyoUn7Vk

  48. #48 Chris O'Neill
    2007/07/08

    It’s so obvious we only need to be yelled at.

  49. #49 GMB
    2007/07/21

    The global warming movement has the structure of an old-time communist front. In that the communist idea of democratic-centralism is one in which once the vote is taken total obedience is expected all the way down the line.

    So a consensus is formed. And all those who go against the consensus are heretics.

    Now bear in mind there is absolutely no evidence to the watts-per-square-metre paradigm. Its a stupid thesis and no evidence can be found FOR it in terms of it panning out in the actual world. It is basically a land/air/spectroscopy-only thesis as if it was developed by studying the light from a distant planet.

    We can see this by the startling truth that Stoat is unable to come up with a scrap of evidence for it. And is forced into answering with one-liners alone.

    Much in the same way that the communists instructed the Hollywood crowd to deny everything and to refuse to co-operate with the House enquiries.

    One time Eli told me that I only was allowed to ask 3 questions and that my quota was up. He was fond of saying that ‘ignorance was my problem’ but leftist reticence to cough up what they know is a problem for us all.

    Notice that this is purely a leftist movement and no conservative scientist lives but that he is a skeptic. And he’s been duped into being a skeptic simply by being a bit naieve about the way these people work.

    Because there is plenty of evidence. But all of it goes against this particular watts-per-square-metre paradigm.

    Consider the idea if you wanted to build a multi-level basement. If you had sufficiently insulative walls central-heating in the lowest basement would be doing double and triple duty for the house entire. But in winter having a heater in the top floor would do jack shit for you and when you went down in to your own personal dungeon to get away from your wife and daughters and shoot basketballs through a hoop you would be fucking freezing.

    Thats a total refutation of this leftist front paradigm right there. And THAT there is no empirical evidence for it is just icing on the cake.

  50. #50 guthrie
    2007/07/24

    Ahh, a troll. What fun.
    So, if we don’t recieve energy from the sun, measurable in units of Watts/ square metre, what on earth do we recieve? Bananas?

    As for a lack of conservative scientists who adhere to global warming, that is your claim, but none of us here are bothered.

    As for your refutation, you seem to be forgetting that air moves through the atmosphere, as does radiation. Do you have any more silly things to say?

  51. #51 guthrie
    2007/08/21

    How amusing. You have nothing to say yourself, instead post something from Prometheus containing a worrying number of “…”, suggesting things might not be as they seem.
    In fact, you don’t even provide a link back to where you copied it from.
    Here’s a question for you- how far into the ocean does radiation from the sun travel?
    The question stems from this:

    “then we would have to assume that all aerosols, black and white, are reducing the amount of energy being punched deep into the ocean.”

    Also, what about this assumption? Is it testable? Has it been tested? I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that assumptions on this magnitude should be tested before being let loose in public.

    [Its best not to reply to Birds posts, as they get deleted ;-) One day perhaps he will learn politeness -W]

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