Lindzen goes emeritus

For a fair while now I’ve defended Lindzen {{cn}} on the grounds that he is actually a Real Scientist, albeit edging ever further off onto the sceptical wing. And this has been difficult because whilst his papers have, I think, been reasonable his public pronouncements and his congressional-testimony type stuff has been poor.

But, happily, the recent “peer review gate” nonsense he has been spouting allows me to declare him Emeritus. I was going to say he has jumped the shark but I think that is wrong; this isn’t some Curry-like stupidity, this is more the kind of full blown Black-helipcopters-of-peer-review we expect from an incipient fellow of the Breakness Institute.

Eli has the story, as do others: Lindzen writes a paper. It gets rejected. He resubmits it to PNAS and asks for his buddies to review it, including some (like William Happer) who were manifestly unfit to review it. They tell him, quite properly, No. He throws a hissy fit. They keep telling him No, whilst doing their best to accomodate him without destroying the standards of their journal (the way Azen and Wegman managed at CSDA). And all of that could be defended as just a rather strong-armed attempt to get your views published in the teeth of bad reviews. We’ve all wanted to push stuff we “know” is good past review, sometimes; Lindzen is a bit different in that he has (or thought he had) enough clout to lean on PNAS.

What makes him stark staring Emeritus is his belief that publishing this tawdry tale is actually a good idea for him. How mad do you have to be to do that?

Comments

  1. #1 Andrew G.
    2011/06/15

    So he jumped the couch, rather than the shark?

  2. #2 cynicus
    2011/06/15

    Lindzen complains: “M.-D. Chou and I have not collaborated in over 5 years, and Chou had absolutely nothing to do with the present manuscript.”

    Hmm, what about Chou being co-writer of the original IRIS paper with Lindzen of which this manuscript is a follow-up? Lindzen apparently thinks Chou is not biased while at the same time claiming that Wielicki is (who wrote a critical comment to their earlier manuscript).

    Where is Lindzen’ sense of balance? Emeritus indeed?

    Lindzen also writes: “Wielicki has gone so far as to retract results once they were shown to contradict alarm.”
    Experience tells me that deniers ‘skeptics’ claims usually differ from -or misrepresents- reality, so does anyone know what he is talking about?

    The ‘skeptics’ cry foul ofcourse, they always do. And as a indicator of their true skepticism I don’t see any of them (i.e. Knappenberger) asking why the hell Lindzen chose old pal Chou and Marshall Institute chairman Happer to review his paper. Imagine how the ‘skeptics’ would react if Michael Mann had a new paper reviewed by, say, any of the other paleo-scientists? Oh wait, wasn’t climategate about that?

  3. #3 Alex Harvey
    2011/06/15

    Hi William,

    This is about Lindzen’s right to reply to criticisms made of his peer reviewed paper LC09.

    [Lindzen doesn’t really have a “right” to reply. If he writes good science it will be published. If he writes junk, it won’t be. Whining when PNAS won’t allow you to select your non-competent buddies as reviews makes him funny, and failing to realise that makes him Emeritus. You failing to realise it just makes you incompetent, I think, but there is nothing new there -W]

    RealClimate wrote their rebuttal ‘Lindzen & Choi Unravelled’ on 8 Jan 2010, which is nearly 18 months ago. At that time, Lindzen had already acknowledged mistakes in LC09 and advised that after correction, he still obtained much the same result.

    [Well, any time L wants to put his science into a blog, he can feel free to -W]

    It’s now June 2011, or 18 months later. I would say a lot of people have wanted to know what the hold up has been, and it’s good to know.

    [We now know the hold up: L’s paper was of too poor quality to publish in a decent journal. That is good to know, yes? -W]

    For myself, I’m glad to know the work has been (probably) reviewed by V. Ramanathan and that Lindzen apparently had no problem answering his objections.

    [You can make up fairy stoires if you like, but why will anyone believe you? -W]

    Anyway, your signature ad hominems aside, have you digested the paper yet? Would you care to offer up an opinion on the paper’s contents or Lindzen’s responses to reviewer criticisms?

    [I don’t read all climate science (I didn’t even do so in the days when I had easy access). Why would I bother read this paper? -W]

    Best regards,
    Alex

  4. #4 Neil Craig
    2011/06/15

    Arguably going “unpaid by politicians who want a scare story to keep the electorate obedient and just sticking to scientific principles” is not a bad thing. I guess it depends on your ethical standards.

    The history of publications refusing to publish anything that questions the alleged catastrophic global warming which has flooded out New York (or not as the case may be) is well established going back at least to McIntyre’s entirely justified pointing out of the fact that whatever data Mann put into his programme out wopuld come a Hockey Stick.

    [You’re wrong, which shows what comes of believing McI. This can and has been demonstrated -W]

    Is there a single real scientist, rather than government flack, who says refusing to publish that made Nature little more of a science journal than National Inquirer?

    [I think you’ve let invective get the better of grammar in that last sentence. What were you actually trying to say? -W]

  5. #5 Eli Rabett
    2011/06/15

    Neil Lindzen and Choi I was published in a fairly good journal. Obviously your claims are

    a) self refuting

    b) toe jam

    Best
    Eli Rabett

  6. #6 Chip Knappenberger
    2011/06/15

    Do I think the standing review procedures at PNAS are acceptable for a scientific publication? No. By employing such procedures, PNAS is really just an outlet for the pet projects/opinions of the NAS members. If you want the most robust science, you should probably look elsewhere.

    It is one thing to have to supply a list of “suggested” reviewers like for AGU submissions (a practice that I also dislike), but to have to include two reviews of your paper alongside your submission is ridiculous. How often are the included reviews negative? Never, would be my guess. So that requirement is pointless—other than, I guess, it allows for PNAS to claim itself as a peer-reviewed journal (in the loosest sense of the term).

    PNAS has a lax review policy and decided to firm it up in Lindzen’s case. Clearly, Lindzen received special treatment. Also pretty clearly, his final paper is better off because of it. Shouldn’t all submissions to PNAS be so lucky?

    [No, it is not at all clear that L received special treatment. As to the quality of the paper, relative or absolute, I can’t say, not having read it -W]

    -Chip Knappenberger

  7. #7 Marco
    2011/06/15

    Chip, the ‘special’ treatment, if any, that Lindzen’s paper received was someone actually checking whether the reviewers could be considered objective and expert enough. They were not.

    I am willing to put my neck out and claim that Lindzen is one of the few that couldn’t find any such objective, expert reviewers that would be willing to support his paper.

  8. #8 chris
    2011/06/15

    What nonsense Mr. Knappenberger.

    PNAS is an important journal that publishes outstanding, influential and well-cited research. Lindzen’s paper simply doesn’t make the grade.

    You’re missing the essential point ‘though. Scientists aim to find out important stuff, and submit manuscripts when they consider they have something valuble to say, and can support this with arguments and interpretations accompanying good quality data. Very, vey few scientists are engaging in Lindzen-style games.

    Your assertions are demonstrably incorrect. Most of the papers published in PNAS are similar to other high quality journal submissions with editors choosing several anonymous reviewers (“Track II”). Having been through the process myself (3 submissions, one successful publication), I can assure you the review process is pretty stringent. Track I submissions (authors submitting directly to NAS members) have/are being phased out. PNAS still allows Lindzen-style “Track III” Contributions from NAS members. This works by and large due to the scientific integrity of NAS scientists. Lindzen tried to “work” the system. He got caught out. His paper is poor and didn’t make the grade.

    I’m sure you’d agree that’s a plus for the PNAS review system. Lindzen tried to use his position to bypass proper peer review. Not sure what your complaint is in the light of a good outcome.

    Of course your other assertions (“pet projects”) are demonstrably false. Track III submissions are more than proportionally represented in the most highly cited papers in PNAS (see http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0008092#top).

    I suspect Mr Knappenberger, that your erroneous post reflects your misunderstanding of the personal integrity of the vast majority of scientists. It’s the reason science, and science publishing works, and Lindzen-style chicanery ultimately fails (of course it’s “successful” in its “blogworthyness” as your post illustrates!). The vast majority of scientists take an enormous pride in producing outstanding and important work and writing good papers. Good systems can accommodate rare examples of misuse from those that are somewhat deficient integrity-wise. Not really a big deal!

  9. #9 Jon
    2011/06/15

    Chip,

    Quoting from the first attachment laying out the PNAS review procedure, ” In rare instances, the Board expresses a concern about a Communicated or Contributed paper, most often because the referees are not considered appropriate or the member has not returned a significantly revised manuscript to the referees. If the final decision is delayed, I—or one of the Associate Editors—will notify the member personally. PNAS staff will routinely seek the advice of the original referees on a significantly revised paper that has not been rereviewed. If the original referees are not considered appropriate, however, the Board may suggest additional experts. Previously, these experts were anonymous to the communicating/contributing member. In response to
    concerns that some members have raised, the Board will henceforth suggest potential new referees who will be consulted only with the communicating/contributing member’s approval”

    I’d have to reread the account on your blog of the correspondence Lindzen had with PNAS to say so confidently but that seems to me, based on one reading, to be an accurate description of the treatment he received. I suppose one could argue that his treatment was “special” in that the overwhelming majority of submitted papers don’t raise such concerns within the PNAS Board and therefore aren’t subjected to the ensuing procedures but it certainly can’t have been unique given they managed to reject “32
    Communicated and 15 Contributed papers” during 2007. Rare, yes, given that was out of a total of ~1600 papers but not unique.

    Therefore, fine, Lindzen’s submission received, in some sense, “special” treatment. I haven’t yet read anything to convince me that treatment wasn’t both in line with pre-existing PNAS policies and merited.

  10. #10 Chip Knappenberger
    2011/06/15

    Chris (re:#8),

    Certainly, any review process is aimed at keeping scientifically “bad” papers from being published. To my mind, and Lindzen’s, and others, the definition of “bad” changes with the conclusions (and some authors) of the submitted papers. PNAS’s pal peer review procedures seem readily pliable to that end.

    [Funny how you had no concerns until L’s paper hit these problems. But if you’re interested in “pal” review, can I look forward to your strong condemnation of the way Wegmans plagiarised paper was slipped in by Azen? Or is that, mysteriously, of no interest to you? -W]

    -Chip

  11. #11 chris
    2011/06/15

    re Chip Knappenberger (#10)

    That’s simply paranoia though isn’t it Chip? There’s no evidence for that and your suggestion is pretty much negated by the PNAS reviews that Lindzen has dumped on the web. They seem pretty consistent in showing that (a) Lindzen hasn’t addressed major critiques arising from his 2009 paper with Choi despite the fact that the submitted MS pursued a similar approach and (b) that the interpretations are not supported by the evidence presented. They seem extremely careful and thorough reviews.

    One of the things we all learn when submitting papers is to be very careful to think about potential reviewers criticisms and to address these before submission. It’s an essential part of peer review itself (“self peer review”).

    Don’t really understand your “pal” review comment. Surely the point is that PNAS ensured that a substandard paper was not sneaked into publication through “pal-review” that you yourself criticise. So the PNAS review process has worked well in this instance. Of course you may assert that NAS member “Contributions” (Track III) have an element of “pal review”. They may well do to a greater or lesser extent. However the fact that these papers (Track III “Contributions”) are on average highly cited and presumably rather influential in their fields indicates that the personal integrity of the Contributing NAS members is pretty good (i.e. they contributed good quality research by and large). That’s what pukka scientists do!

    Dr. Lindzen has been in the game for a long time (he’s published 150-plus papers). He knows how to do good research and write good papers. For some reason he’s chosen to lower his standards when submitting papers on the subjects related to climate change and climate sensitivity (in order it seems to pursue political agendas). Lindzen and Choi 2009 is objectively a dreadful paper, I’m sure you’d agree. But it got published. Lindzen and Choi (2011) looks like its going to be published too. That’s fine isn’t it? Like all published papers it will live or die on merit….

  12. #12 Eli Rabett
    2011/06/15

    Somewhere there is actually a learned paper on what gets published in the Proceedings of Nuts and Nerds. As a general rule the papers communicated by the members are more extreme, that is

    “Our findings suggest that PNAS “Contributed” papers, in which NAS–member authors select their own reviewers, balance an overall lower impact with an increased probability of publishing exceptional papers. This analysis demonstrates that different editorial procedures are associated with different levels of impact, even within the same prominent journal, and raises interesting questions about the most appropriate metrics for judging an editorial policy’s success.”

    but here too GIGO is the rule and L&CII was G

  13. #13 Martin Vermeer
    2011/06/16

    > the Breakness Institute

    Ah, Jack Vance, golden…

  14. #14 Neil Craig
    2011/06/16

    Eli – “toe jam” – what a charming and erudite refutation. Not wholly unexpected.
    W – your link is clearly self serving and pushing an agenda.

    [Err, you mean that my link refutes your allegations but you have no answer, since you don’t actually understand what is written there -W]

    These 7 questions seem to go to the heart of the warming scare since if any of them cannot be answered in a way that supports alarmism then there is no case to answer. Indeed if # 3,4,5,6 & 7 cannot be answered honestly and supportively the case that deliberate fraud is taking place and everybody knowledgeable on the alarmist side knows it seems proven. For some reason Mr Mann has declined to answer them privately (as indeed has every other warming alarmist asked):

    [Sigh. You’ve clearly been browsing too many septic blogs. And given that, I really don’t think there is any hope of convincing you. Which is why Mann bounced your emails as spam. But for others who may be reading… -W]

    1 – Do you accept Professor Jones’ acknowledgement that there has been no statistically significant warming since 1995?

    [There are several answers to this. The best is, that you don’t understand the meaning of statistical significance (the actual situation is that the planet is warming, the warming is significant (assessed statistically) and whether or not the trend between two cherry-picked years is technically stat sig is of no scientific interest). Another is “yes”. Another is “you’re out of date”, because Jones says the warming since 1995 is significant -W]

    2 – Do you accept that the rise in CO2 has improved crop growth by around 10% & that the consequent influence on world hunger is more beneficial than any currently detectable destructive action of alleged global warming?

    [I’ve certainly seen no evidence for that. If you think there is such evidence, it would have been helpful to link to it.

    FWIW, though, I’m on record as not really believing the food-shortage stuff -W]

    3 – Do you accept that the Hockey Stick, as originally presented by Mann and the IPCC contained calculations that were inconsistent with good science and that Mann’s refusal to make calculations and algorithms available for checking were inconsistent with scientific principle?

    [No. Pretty well all of the anti-HS claims have unravelled over the years. The most recent is the “MBH produces HS out of red noise claim, which has been shown to be greatly exaggerated -W]

    4 – Do you accept that many claims from people and organisations on the alarmist side, from Al Gore’s claim that South Sea islands had already been abandoned due to rising sea levels and Pachauri’s claim that any dispute that the Himalayan glaciers will have melted by 2025 was “voodoo” were untrue and insupportable even at the time.

    [Again, you’re confused and you’ve failed to provide links (no wonder no-one bothered reply to you mails) and you’re talking to the wrong person (as I said ages ago the claim that SLR evacuations have already occurred is b*ll*cks.

    But as to the voodoo stuff: you’ve confused two different issues. As I reported at the time, the Indians brought out a report on the Himalyas that P, rightly, criticised as junk. It was in the context of that report that he used the term “voodoo” which, whilst somewhat harsh, is defensible: it really was a very poor report. The IPCC error over 2035 (not 2025 as you say) is an independent issue -W]

    5 – Do you accept that there are a number of geoengineering solutions which arithmetically can be shown would work (including stratospheric dust, the geritol solution or even just replacing CO2 burning with nuclear power) which would work at a small fraction of the cost of the war against fire, or in the case of nuclear, at negative cost?

    [I don’t know what the “war against fire” is, so I’m unable to assess its cost. But describing a solution as “arithmetically” viable is meaningless; you could jsut as easily say that arithmetically, we can solve GW by simply reducing our emissions. To answer what I think is you real question: no, geoengineering reseach is at a very early stage; we don’t know if it can be made to work at all, let alone at a reasonable cost and without side effects. See for-example this -W]

    6 – Do you accept that the refusal of alarmists to denounce fraud or telling of obvious untruths. on their side, or even its active support or covering up, detracts from the credibility of the entire movement?

    [You’re trying to skew the debate by your use of pejorative labels. Which is irritating of you. If you’re trying to have a polite conversation, you shouldn’t. But to answer your question: as far as I can see, the fraud and untruths are overwhelmingly on the denialist (ha, see I’m doing it too, but its my blog) side. For example, if I asked you to criticise Wegman’s plagiarism, you’d say “who cares”. Or if I directed you to a link that showed that McI had faked his MBH-makes-HS-from-random-noise stats, you’d refuse to read it and say “your link is clearly self serving and pushing an agenda” -W]

    7 – Of the alleged “consensus” – can you name 2 scientists, out of the roughly 60%, worldwide who are not paid by the state, who support catastrophic warming & if not can you explain how something can be a consensus when no member of a subset of 60% of the alleged consenting, consent?

    [I know very few who support “catastrophic warming”. I certainly don’t. However, just about everyone in climate science accepts the IPCC WGI conclusions as being about right, albeit on the cautious side -W]

    I regret to say that the trend on “scienceblogs” has, so far been towards personal attacks and censorship. Anyone with a knowledge of science will know that these are not included within the principles of science (though, except for they are founding principles of fascism) and incompatible to any claim to respect science.

    I await seeing if any accurate and supportive answer, or indeed 7, is possible.

    [I await your engagement with actual sources, rather than flinging unsupported assertions -W]

  15. #15 PeteB
    2011/06/16

    Sorry this amused me :

    7 – Of the alleged “consensus” – can you name 2 scientists, out of the roughly 60%, worldwide who are not paid by the state, who support catastrophic warming & if not can you explain how something can be a consensus when no member of a subset of 60% of the alleged consenting, consent?

    Well, as far as I can understand the question, (apart from misstating the consensus position), one might be the author of this blog :-)

  16. #16 Marco
    2011/06/16

    I just love Neil Craig’s number 5. Yup, let’s not remove the cause of the warming, but add something to the stratosphere and hope those models are good enough and that we have not missed some kind of crucial thing.

    It’s not like we’ve never before created a new problem while trying to solve another…

    And regarding nr 7, with my own interpretation of what Neil actually meant, let’s mention Gordon Bell (Microsoft), Winslow Briggs, Corey Goodman (venBio), William Rutter (Synergenics), and Mary Lou Zoback (RMS – Risk Management solutions). Four names I found on a letter from NAS members sent to Nature, who are not being paid by the government. They also happen to work at organisations that have no link to the climate field. That is, you can’t even claim they might benefit from hyping AGW.

    That’s more than two. In fact, adding William, we’re already up to five…

    Watch Neil Craig shift the goalposts on that one.

  17. #17 Eli Rabett
    2011/06/16

    Toe jam with a belly button lint chaser (#7) Pardon Eli for not paying lip service to the pretentious.

  18. #18 Thomas
    2011/06/17

    For Neil Craig’s point 7, let’s not forget James Lovelock. He’s an independent scientist, depending on funding from no one, and really into catastrophic warming.

  19. #19 monty
    2011/06/17

    Neil Craig’s point 7. What about all the retired profs who aren’t paid by the state who accept the consensus? Their pensions get paid whether they accept AGW or not. I can personally name about 10!

  20. #20 guthrie
    2011/06/17

    Neil Craig is a well known nutter who I bump into online sometimes. He is a conspiracy theorist, as evidenced already, and also anti-science. I once spent a dreary day or two pointing out that ocean acification was so called because the sea was getting more acid, but he insisted that it was misnamed and therefore there wasn’t a problem, because the sea was alkaline to begin with and would continue to be so. Other run ins with Neil have been along the same vein. It is only worth keeping him around for the entertainment.

  21. #21 Martin Vermeer
    2011/06/17

    > I just love Neil Craig’s number 5.

    Yep, some folks don’t get that technology is based on science, so trusting technology while rejecting science looks… weird. But I appreciate the vote of confidence in the general circulation models that are going to inform aerosol geoengineering…

    > And regarding nr 7,

    It’s a cunning ruse to exclude state-employed scientists, as few private companies will fund original research into climatology… so in one fell swoop, you got rid of precisely those folks whose positions would be most interesting, i.e., most relevant. There’s strategic thinking for you…

    But still, there are the (nameless) experts advising the big re-ensurers, the shipping companies planning to use the Arctic passages, and Google (did I say Google?). And then there’s tamino, privately employed but actively publishing in climatology (he illustrates why many prefer anonymity: you don’t want to involve your employer in the climatology denial mess if climatology is not in the company’s mission). And John Mashey, somewhat retired computer scientist and entrepreneur, and accountable to no employer. For starters.

  22. #22 Martin Vermeer
    2011/06/17

    …and here’s another scientist not employed by government who presumably doesn’t entirely disagree with the IPCC consensus on global warming:

    http://shewonk.wordpress.com/2011/06/15/off-with-their-eads/

    ;-)

  23. #23 JMurphy
    2011/06/17

    Is there any further information about Neil Craig’s assertion concerning “the roughly 60% [of scientists], worldwide who are not paid by the state” ?
    Where does that figure come from ?

  24. #24 Chris S.
    2011/06/17

    ^ Where does that figure come from?

    His fundament?

  25. #25 Hank Roberts
    2011/06/17

    Speaking of “publishing this tawdry tale is actually a good idea” it might be a good time to reassure Dr. Curry that you think she is a smart person putting forward stupid ideas, not a stupid person. Because she seems confused about that lately.

  26. #26 Eli Rabett
    2011/06/17

    Hank, Eli is of a slightly different opinion

  27. #27 Bertie Marcuse
    2011/06/17

    Curry is a smart person. There’s no question about that.

    What happened is that she painted herself into a corner. But her pride wouldn’t let her admit it, so she dug in her heels and said some rather silly things.

    Lots of smart people do the same.

    [I think I’d go with that -W]

  28. #28 dhogaza
    2011/06/18

    She’s not that smart. She pontificates on stuff she’s not qualified to talk about (models, for instance). Really smart people say … “I’m not qualified”.

    Grunts like me say “I can read the code, and it seems to follow from the documentation (GISS Model E) but I can’t speak to the underlying physics being correct, but reading it I can say it’s not a statistical model”.

    I mean, you really need to outline your qualifications … JC doesn’t do that. She’s D-K all the way, not smart enough to be able to admit that specialists in fields she complains about might actually know more about those fields than she does.

  29. #29 dhogaza
    2011/06/18

    maybe lacking in wisdom, rather than lacking in intelligence, is a better explanation of JC.

  30. #30 Neil Craig
    2011/06/19

    PeteB – Looking at the author of this blog he was previous employed by the British Antactica Survey but that woyuld not really disqualify him. Perhaps he might say whetehr he now gets any money from any ultimately government source, or hopes to in the future?

    [Errm you see the bit at the top of the page, where it says “Profile”? And there is a pic underneath? And underneath that, the words “My family and me. More…”? And the word “More” is this kind of funny blue colour? Well, that is what we call a “hyperlink”; if you click on it, it will take you to… my profile! Which will answer your questions -W]

    I note that on 5 of 7 questions there is no answer of any sort & taske that as acceptance that the tale is a fraud.

    [That is a rather simple and direct lie, as anyone reading your questions and my answers can see. What has actually happened is that I’ve answered all your questions, but you have no replies to my answers. If you have nothing further to say, then the best thing to do is not say it. But since you’re here, lets try a simple question: have you read, and understood, my reply to your first question? -W]

    I note that nobody disputes the other [You seem to have stopped rather suddenly. Did something go wrong? -W]

  31. #31 Eli Rabett
    2011/06/19

    Neil tu quoque, because Eli challenges you on the field of slime you trail after yourself, it is amusing that you find this objectionable.

    [I’m afraid I redacted N’s trolling, to save electrons -W]

  32. #32 Hank Roberts
    2011/06/19

    >> Curry is a smart person. There’s no question about that.
    >> What happened is that she painted herself into a corner.
    >> But her pride wouldn’t let her admit it, so she dug in
    >> her heels and said some rather silly things.
    >> Lots of smart people do the same.
    >
    > [I think I’d go with that -W]

    Been there, done that, myself.

    For painting corners, as for digging holes, better consider where you’re heading before you get there, if possible; if already stuck, pride doesn’t help; “D’oh!” works.

  33. #33 Eli Rabett
    2011/06/19

    Hank, someone who does that ain’t smart.

  34. #34 Steve Bloom
    2011/06/19

    Re Curry, her publication record demonstrates a lack of brilliance, and perhaps not unrelated to that her over-the-top public pronouncements of the last couple of years demonstrate a physical intuition out of step with the trend in the field. While she is certainly of above-average intelligence to have had the career she has, I don’t think those things add up to “smart.”

    But smart or not, the (rather imminent given her age) conclusion of her career won’t be affected by any of this. Likely she’ll retire on the same schedule as before, and she wasn’t going to win any prizes or be nominated to the NAS regardless. But the more cynical among us, perhaps Eli but not me I hasten to add, might note the coincidence of her heightened public profile with the launching (by her and hubby PW) of a non-modeling based climate consulting service.

    One, not me I hasten to say but probably Eli, could imagine the existence of a set of corporate clients whose business interests are vulnerable to climate impacts but who don’t trust the models and don’t want to get advice from any of those damned liberal alarmist scientists. One might even imagine them being found to cover the ground rather thickly in the vicinity of GTech.

    Of interest is a paper that they were co-authors on some months back, entitled something like “Could the Pakistan rain event of 2010 have been predicted?” They tried to make a big deal out of their answer (yes, basically), but the air rather went out of their balloon when it was pointed out by others that indeed it had been predicted by local mets, and that the problem was the lack of an ability to respond to the prediction. Some, not me I hasten to add but most certainly Eli (see how his reticence gets progressively worn down by this sort of thing), might suspect extra-curricular motivations on the part of the authors.

  35. #35 Hank Roberts
    2011/06/20

    > someone who does that ain’t smart.

    Eli, “someone doing that ain’t _bein’_ smart” — but it’s not an irrevocable condition, always.

    Just sayin’ — I’ve been in corners and holes of my own making once or twice in the past and when in such a spot there are two kinds of bystanders
    — those who appreciate an easy target and lob stuff at ya while you’ve got yourself cornered/in the hole, and
    — those who’ll point out that, well, you got in there, and there’s a way* to get out, but not by yelling at bystanders.

    *Watching paint dry is the talent required to resolve the painted-in-the-corner problem
    Stopping digging down and starting digging steps solves the other.

  36. #36 Hank Roberts
    2011/06/20

    > someone who does that ain’t smart.

    Eli, “someone doing that ain’t _bein’_ smart” — but it’s not an irrevocable condition, always.

    Just sayin’ — I’ve been in corners and holes of my own making once or twice in the past and when in such a spot there are two kinds of bystanders
    — those who appreciate an easy target and lob stuff at ya while you’ve got yourself cornered/in the hole, and
    — those who’ll point out that, well, you got in there, and there’s a way* to get out, but not by yelling at bystanders.

    *Watching paint dry is the talent required to resolve the painted-in-the-corner problem
    Stopping digging down and starting digging steps solves the other.

  37. #37 Rob Dekker
    2011/06/20

    Regarding this new Lindzen and Choi 2011 paper, as far as I can see on the various blog, there is a great deal of talk about the PNAS rejection, but very very little about the science in the paper.

    Lindzen and Choi obtain different feedback numbers from the same ERBE data than Trenberth 2010 and two other papers, and Lindzen claims (unsurprisingly) that his method is more accurately reproducing feedback numbers.
    When I looked at the details of his method however, I found something very concerning :

    The Lindzen and Choi method of doing FLUX/SST analysis (called “lead and lag” by Lindzen) seems to have a (strong?) bias towards negative feedback.
    Here is why :
    L&C analyzes fragments of SST changes that are either rising or falling, and then measures the FLUX response over the same period.
    No problem there, has been done many times before by numerous other scientists.
    The difference is that Lindzen is looking back and forth (lead and lag) in time, and finds the FLUX response that has the highest correlation with the SST change.

    First remember that the FLUX (response) has significant noise on it. Let’s note that if you do not look back and forth in time (no lead or lag), then on average the FLUX response will tell you the average FLUX response to that SST change.
    But also remember that the FLUX response with the highest correlation with SST will always be the response that starts at one extreme and ends at the other extreme. All other responses will correlate less, since they will show opposite slopes at the start and/or end points, which obviously don’t correlate well with the SST.
    So, if you are allowed to look back and forth in time through that noisy signal, you have a high chance of finding a lead or lag time where the FLUX response is larger (and thus correlates better) than the no-lag response alone.
    So Lindzen and Choi method will (for each fragment of SST analysed) find the lead or lag time where the FLUX response is the largest !

    When the FLUX response is larger for a certain SST change, the calculated feedback will be lower, and thus this method has a bias towards lowering the feedback calculated from the ERBE data.
    Let me note that the effect (bias) will be stronger the more lead or lag time is allowed, since there will be more start and end-points in the noise to consider, and the largest response will correlate the best.
    So for short lag times and strong negative feedback (large FLUX response), Lindzen’s method will be approximately correct. But for no-feedback or positive feedback the lead-lag bias will be very significant.

    In fact Lindzen mentions himself that his method works best for large negative feedbacks .
    He also mentions that his method works less good for small feedbacks (and consequently) large lag times, which, as I showed above is consistent with increased bias.

    Interestingly enough, he does not show what feedback parameter number he obtains for a system with no feedback or positive feedback, in which case the lead-lag-noise bias will be greatest.

    Needless to say that maybe Lindzen drew some very premature conclusions when he discards other scientists’ work (Trenberth et al, Dessler et al) who do NOT use his (biased) lead-lag-correlate method.

    Now I have not quantified this bias yet, but this bias should be very easily reproducible using Lindzen’s (Spencer’s) “simple model” simulation,

    Interesting ?

    [Hmm yes, I agree, of those pontificating on L+C, few (and that definitely includes me) have read the paper. Your analysis is interesting. This reminds me somewhat of the Schwartz paper a while back. And presumably the same thing can be done: you can take a model with known feedback and run data experiments using L+C’s method -W]

  38. #38 Russell
    2011/06/20

    Poor Richard- If he keeps it up I may have to reframe him in the next panel after Wegman :

    http://s1098.photobucket.com/albums/g370/RussellSeitz/?action=view&current=ThinnerStern.jpg

  39. #39 Neil Craig
    2011/06/20

    Well W I am so glad to see you say you would rather be polite than engage in the “trail of slime” your supporters display. I look forward to seeing you live up to it.

    In answer to your reply on 29 – no your profile doesn’t fully answer the simple questions I asked

    [Really? It seems like a fairly complete answer to me. Quite what are you missing? -W]

    On your picking up question 1 on #14 – If the period of no significant cooling from 1995 was “cherry picked it was cherry picked to the alarmists advantage which is probably why Jones made the mistake of answering truthfully. 1995 was not the warmest year, as you must know. Had it been “cherry picking” a scsptic would have taken the start year as 1998, which is agreed as warmer and and asked him if there had been warming or cooling since then. Since he knows perfectly well there has been cooling since then he wouldn’t have answered responsively.

    [As you know, there has been warming since 1998. http://tamino.wordpress.com/2011/01/06/sharper-focus/, or http://tamino.wordpress.com/2010/12/16/comparing-temperature-data-sets/ -W]

    Thouhgh Jones has now said that there has been “significant” warming since then this is not because there has been warming since he said made his original admission but because there have been more measurements allowing him to claim that his statistical “significance” can now be achieved without improved figures. He is (A) playing games there,

    [I’m baffled by your “playing games” comment. The warming, measured since 1995, is now significant. Why is that a game. It is, as I’ve already explained, the wrong question, as was yuor original question; but it isn’t a game -W]

    (B) wrong as serious (ie done without depending on ad homs and censorship) discussion here has shown http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2011/6/10/jones-post-1995-warming-significant.html

    [Again, this is baffling. I see a lot of discussion there, but very little of it was serious, and I didn’t wade through it all. If you think any of it disproves Jones, please post a more exact cite, to the actual comment -W]

    & (C) almost certainly going to see this “significance” disappear when the latest figures come out.

    [You’re whistling in the wind, I think. In any case, your personal opinion of the future is of no interest to anyone other than you -W]

    In any case warmings which are on the bare edge of dectectability, on measurement which are, at best, questionable do not come close to the 0.2% per decade increase promised by Hansen and other catastrophists.

    [Again, you’re confusing detectability with statistical significance -W]

    <trolling deleted>

  40. #40 Russell
    2011/06/20

    4

    As I can’t seem to find any papers by Neil in National Inquirer, its peer review appears rigorous

  41. #41 RW
    2011/06/20

    And still no one can explain why GHG ‘forcing’ will be amplified by over 400% when solar forcing is only amplified by about 60%.

    [It is hard to understand what you mean by this. I think you’re confused. The std positive feedbacks apply to all forcings, GHG and solar too. My guess would be that you’re comparing unamplified and amplified forcing, and then wondering about the (speculative) solar stuff. But you’ll have to be more precise if you want any kind of meaningful answer -W]

    Yet they vehemently object to a negative feedback of about 40% from Lindzen and Choi. I think the peer review process is seriously broken.

    [Do you really think peer review is broken? Your extensive experience of it leads you to this conclusion, is that what you’re saying? You might like http://denialdepot.blogspot.com/2011/06/co2-volcanoes-or-man-its-your-choice.html -W]

  42. #42 Neil Craig
    2011/06/21

    Far from showing more warming since 1998 as you claimed your link showed the opposite. http://tamino.files.wordpress.com/2010/12/5temp12.jpg
    There has been undeniable lowering safter 1998 and the latest alleged spike still shows, on 2 of the three measures, that it is cooler.

    [You’re really looking at peak-to-peak stuff? You must know this is wrong; individual peaks are not of interest, the overall trend is -W]

    <snips>

    “[Again, you’re confusing detectability with statistical significance -W]”

    Indeed. I think it is difficult to claim that an alleged temperature change is significant evidence of catastrophe if it is not detectable.

    [Why do you keep bothering with the strawmen? If you want to argue that the observed-to-date warming is catastrophic, you need to find someone else to talk to. And you still don’t understand the difference between detectable and “statistically significant” and “has significant implications”. “Significant”, when used statistically, has a precise meaning which is not the same meaning as when the word is used in common English.

    Updated: http://www.stat.columbia.edu/~gelman/research/published/signif4.pdf has just come my way, via http://julesandjames.blogspot.com/2011/06/statistically-significant.html. You should read both -W]

    You must know that the margin of error in any estimate of “global temperature” is far greater than the alleged changes.

    [No, I don’t know that at all. Indeed, you’re wrong -W]

    Which leads me to something you deleted from my last post:

    “Oh I forgot – you don’t believe in catastrophic warming. But if there is no chance of it being catastrophic perhaps…

    [<snips> Who said there was no chance of future warming being catastrophic? -W]

  43. #43 Neil Craig
    2011/06/21

    [Who said there was no chance of future warming being catastrophic? -W]

    You certainly said you didn’t believe it…. Since you did say “I know very few who support “catastrophic warming”. I certainly don’t”

    [Oh, that isn’t the same thing. There is certainly a chance of GW being catastrophic. If you’re going to ask vague questions (“Of the alleged “consensus” – can you name 2 scientists, out of the roughly 60%, worldwide who are not paid by the state, who support catastrophic warming”) you can expect vague answers, which you then should not over-interpret. I can’t even tell whether your initial “CAGW” stuff was about warming-to-present-day, warming to some future date given some scenario, maximum possible warming and maximum possible ecosystem sensitivity, or what. CAGW isn’t a good phrase, since it is far too vague -W]

    <misc snips of tedious claims of censorship>

    If you say you know that a figure of average temperature of the entire globe over an entire year can be meaningfully determined, with certainty, every year for over a century, to 0.1 C when the variation in global temperature is well over 100 C, by location alone, then you are clearly wrong.

    [If you wanted to, you could look up the uncertainty in the global average figure. Its in IPCC somewhere, or Jones’s work, or whatever. An accuracy (relative) of ~0.1 sounds plausible, though -W]

  44. #44 RW
    2011/06/21

    W wrote:

    “[It is hard to understand what you mean by this. I think you’re confused. The std positive feedbacks apply to all forcings, GHG and solar too. My guess would be that you’re comparing unamplified and amplified forcing, and then wondering about the (speculative) solar stuff. But you’ll have to be more precise if you want any kind of meaningful answer -W]”

    The positive feedbacks do not apply to all forcings, specifically the 240 W/m^2 entering the surface post albedo from the Sun is only amplified to about 390 W/m^2 or by about 60%. (390 – 240 = 150; 150/240 = 0.62 or 62%).

    The direct warming from 2xCO2 is 0.7 C (+3.7 W/m^2 at the surface from the Stefan Boltzman law = 0.7 C). 0.7 C x 0.62 = 0.43 C of amplification, where as 0.7 C x 4.3 = 3 C (or 430% instead of about 60%).

    What’s so special about GHG ‘forcing’ that the surface will respond to it 4.3 times more powerfully than the original 98+ % (240 W/m^2) from the Sun?

  45. #45 RW
    2011/06/21

    W,

    Let me try explaining this from another angle:

    There is roughly 240 W/m^2 coming in post albedo from the Sun, which is ultimately amplified to about 390 W/m^2 at the surface. 390/240 = 1.62, which is the surface response to solar forcing (an increase of about 62%).

    [Ah, you’re talking about the Trenberth pic, e.g. here: http://scienceofdoom.com/2011/06/21/whats-the-palaver-kiehl-and-trenberth-1997/. Or at least, that has 390 W/m2 leaving the surface (and therefore arriving at the surface). I can’t quite see 240 on it, but never mind, its close.

    But you’ve just confused two different terms. The useful measure for a small change in, e.g., solar or GHG forcing is the thing people normally call feedback. But that is a *change* in forcing. The picture you’re looking at is steady state. You can’t tell from that pic what would happen to the 390 is you were add 1 to your 240 -W]

    A 3 C rise from 3.7 W/m^2 from 2xCO2 requires an additional 16.6 W/m^2 of surface emission from the S-B law. 16.6/3.7 = 4.5

    4.5 is significantly greater than 1.6, is it not?

    [What you want, I think, is http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/ch2s2-8-5.html, “2.8.5 Efficacy and Effective Radiative Forcing” which discusses the effectiveness of the different forcings -W]

    If there is such vehement objection to Lindzen and Choi’s reduced net response of about -40%, you need to able to explain why a net response of about +300% can be justified when it’s so much greater than measured response of the surface to solar forcing.

    [I just have. The answer is, you’ve misunderstood the concepts. You can’t just take a pair of random numbers, divide them, and arrive at an answer. Or rather you can, but it won’t answer your question. You’re also wrong about the “vehement objection”. People are just weary of too much attention being paid to minor “sceptical” papers that have already been refuted -W]

    In other words, if 3.7 W/m^2 is to become 16.6 W/m^2 primarily through positive feedback, why doesn’t it take more like 1075 W/m^2 at the surface to offset the 240 W/m^2 coming in from the Sun (16.6/3.7 = 4.5; 1075/240 = 4.5)?

    Can you quantify specifically how the feedback will cause this much change in the next 3.7 W/m^2 and why it does NOT on the original 98+% (240 W/m^2) from the Sun?

  46. #46 RW
    2011/06/21

    W says:

    [Do you really think peer review is broken? Your extensive experience of it leads you to this conclusion, is that what you’re saying?]

    Yes. Lindzen and Choi’s estimated sensitivity is far more reasonable and falls well within the measured bounds of the system, unlike the massive amplification of 300% needed for a 3 C rise, which is way outside the measured bounds.

    [is far more reasonable – ah, this is argument from personal belief. It will convince you, of course, but it is hard to see why you expect anyone else to be interested -W]

    L&C’s response is also much more consistent with the system’s overall behavior, which is very tightly constrained from the year to year despite significant local, seasonal hemispheric, and even global variability.

    Even more so, no one seems to be able to answer the 64 million dollar question: Why GHG ‘forcing’ will be so enormously amplified when solar forcing is not.

  47. #47 Rob Dekker
    2011/06/22

    RW wrote : Lindzen and Choi’s estimated sensitivity is far more reasonable and falls well within the measured bounds of the system, unlike the massive amplification of 300% needed for a 3 C rise, which is way outside the measured bounds.

    For starters, it would be nice if you would sustain your opinion with at least a minimum amount of evidence. Where did you conclude that a 3 C rise for doubling of CO2 is ‘way outside the measured bounds’ ?

    And regarding Lindzen and Choi’s finding being “far more reasonable”, I would like to point out the Lindzen and Choi 2011 method has a fundamental scientific flaw which I pointed out above, which creates negative feedback where it is non-existent.

    Now, if you are happy to embrace scientifically flawed methods as long as they sustain your preconceived belief system, then by all means, stay ignorant.

    For the rest of us, and for the L&C reviewers, Lindzen and Choi 2011 obtains conclusions that are inconsistent with previous analyses of the same data, analyses that were not tainted by the fundamental scientific errors that have become a consistent theme for papers originating from Lindzen and Choi.

  48. #48 PeteB
    2011/06/22

    RW, there is a bit here (with references for further reading)

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/detailed-look-at-climate-sensitivity.html

    A common misconception is that the climate sensitivity and temperature change in response to increasing CO2 differs from the sensitivity to other radiative forcings, such as a change in solar irradiance. This, however, is not the case. The surface temperature change is proportional to the sensitivity and radiative forcing (in W m-2), regardless of the source of the energy imbalance.

    In other words, if you argue that the Earth has a low climate sensitivity to CO2, you are also arguing for a low climate sensitivity to other influences such as solar irradiance, orbital changes, and volcanic emissions. Thus when arguing for low climate sensitivity, it becomes difficult to explain past climate changes. For example, between glacial and interglacial periods, the planet’s average temperature changes on the order of 6°C (more like 8-10°C in the Antarctic). If the climate sensitivity is low, for example due to increasing low-lying cloud cover reflecting more sunlight as a response to global warming, then how can these large past climate changes be explained?

  49. #49 RW
    2011/06/22

    W,

    You’re not really answering any of my questions – you’re talking around them.

    [No, you just haven’t been able to understand my answers. Have another read, and follow the links I’ve provided -W]

    The Earth has an actual or ‘effective’ emissivity of about 0.61 or 0.62. Do you know what this means?

  50. #50 RW
    2011/06/22

    W says: “[But that is a *change* in forcing. The picture you’re looking at is steady state. You can’t tell from that pic what would happen to the 390 is you were add 1 to your 240 -W]”

    I’m not looking at the Trenberth picture, though I am familiar with it. The numbers I’m using are rough estimates, but they are generally accepted numbers for these things.

    You don’t seem to really understand what the numbers from my calculations mean, so I’ll break it down into a series of yes or no questions and we’ll take it from there.

    Do you agree that 240 W/m^2 post albedo from the Sun is incident on or radiatively ‘forces’ the surface of the Earth (directly or indirectly – meaning it ultimately gets there one way or another)?

    Do you agree that due to the greenhouse effect in the atmosphere from GHGs and clouds, this 240 W/m^2 is amplified by to 390 W/m^2 at the surface?

    Do you agree that 390/240 = 1.62?

    Do you agree that the physical meaning of the 1.62 is that it takes 1.62 W/m^2 of surface emission to allow 1 W/m^2 leave the system?

    Do you agree that this accounts for all the feedbacks in the system? If not, why haven’t the feedbacks manifested themselves over decades, centuries or even millenia?

    Do you agree that a 3 C rise in temperature from 288K to 291K requires an additional 16.6 W/m^2 (406.6 W/m^2) of surface emission?

    Do you agree that 3.7 W/m^2 from 2xCO2 will be incident on or ‘force’ the surface?

    Do you agree that a watt is a watt, independent of where it last originated from?

    Do you agree that 16.6/3.7 = 4.5

    Do you agree that 4.5 is greater than 1.6?

  51. #51 RW
    2011/06/22

    PeteB says:

    “A common misconception is that the climate sensitivity and temperature change in response to increasing CO2 differs from the sensitivity to other radiative forcings, such as a change in solar irradiance. This, however, is not the case. The surface temperature change is proportional to the sensitivity and radiative forcing (in W m-2), regardless of the source of the energy imbalance.”

    Yes I know, but this obscures the fact that all the previous watts are amplified to a far smaller degree. Perhaps more importantly, even during the perihelion/aphelion cycles where the incident solar energy and subsequent post albedo solar energy fluctuates, no where near an amplification factor of 4.5 occurs on the changes to the surface incident energy. They stay within the measured bounds of 1.6.

    PeteB says:

    “In other words, if you argue that the Earth has a low climate sensitivity to CO2, you are also arguing for a low climate sensitivity to other influences such as solar irradiance, orbital changes, and volcanic emissions. Thus when arguing for low climate sensitivity, it becomes difficult to explain past climate changes. For example, between glacial and interglacial periods, the planet’s average temperature changes on the order of 6°C (more like 8-10°C in the Antarctic). If the climate sensitivity is low, for example due to increasing low-lying cloud cover reflecting more sunlight as a response to global warming, then how can these large past climate changes be explained?”

    Very easily. The warming of about 6 C that occurs from glacial to interglacial is driven by the large change in the Earth’s orbit relative to the Sun, which changes the angle of the incident energy, which in turn ultimately changes distribution of the energy into the system significantly. This combined with the positive feedback effect from the ebb and flow of surface ice is enough to overcome the net negative feedback on the system and cause a 6 C rise. But you can’t equate the positive feedback effect of melting ice from that of leaving maximum ice to that of minimum ice where the climate is now. Also, there is no such change occurring in the orbit in the current climate, and we are very nearing the end of this interglacial period – meaning if anything the orbit has already flipped back in the direction of cooling and glaciation.

  52. #52 RW
    2011/06/22

    Rob Dekker says:

    “And regarding Lindzen and Choi’s finding being “far more reasonable”, I would like to point out the Lindzen and Choi 2011 method has a fundamental scientific flaw which I pointed out above, which creates negative feedback where it is non-existent.”

    I don’t understand your objection to the methodology. Their use of lead/lag is to properly distinguish between cause and effect or more specifically in this case, between forcing and feedback. That this consistently leads to negative feedback does not itself make it biased or skewed toward negative feedback.

    *I might also add that SW component in L&C is where most of the negative feedback is coming from. This is totally consistent with the basic physics of water vapor and clouds (i.e. increasing evaporation from warming causing increased clouds which reflect more sunlight).

    Other analysis that find positive feedback don’t make any effort to distinguish, such as Dessler 2010. He is just looking at TOA net fluxes and temperatures – he’s made no attempt to carefully discern cause and effect or come up with any physical mechanisms or reasons behind his interpretation of the data. He acknowledges in the paper at the beginning that the net effect of clouds is to cool by about 20 W/m^2, yet doesn’t even ascribe any significance to this at all or express any curiosity as to why. Clearly this would need to be explained.

    Furthermore, I notice that the SW component is also positive, which would seem to be consistent with decreasing clouds causing the warming rather than warming causing decreasing clouds. Even if the claim is warming causes decreasing clouds for positive feedback, how is this consistent with increasing water vapor from warming? Does increasing water vapor cause decreasing clouds? That doesn’t make any sense since water vapor concentration drives cloud formation.

    It seems to me that unless Dessler can explain all of this and corroborate it with all the other data and system behavior, he really doesn’t have a case.

  53. #53 Rob Dekker
    2011/06/23

    RW. Thank you for your post 44. That was a fun read, which reminded me of the nonsense that Miskolski jotted down in a paper, which was then promoted on the popular blogs (and some right-wing media outlets) as the end of the GW cabal or something equally laughable.

    Of course, just like Miskolski, you argument is utter BS. William already gently explained to you (“You can’t just take a pair of random numbers, divide them, and arrive at an answer. Or rather you can, but it won’t answer your question.”).

    Since you apparently did not understand the idiocy of your own ‘theory’, let me follow up with a more convincing, but incorrect deduction :

    RW, you have it all wrong !
    A reduction of 3.7 W/m^2 due to GHG increases at TOA would indeed have to be compensated by an increase in radiation from the surface. But not via the 390/240 factor. The only radiation from the surface to space is via the so called ‘Atmospheric Window’, which lets through 40 W/m^2, which thus needs to increase by some 9% to compensate for GHG induced forcing. This can only be accomplished by an increase of 9% in surface radiation, which thus needs to go from 390 W/m^2 to 426 W/m^2 (a 36 W/m^2 increase).
    This leads to a 10x multiplier in radiation, and thus (Stefan Boltzman) a 6.4 C increase in the surface temperature for a doubling of CO2.

  54. #54 Rob Dekker
    2011/06/23

    Regarding Lindzen and Choi 2011, and the bias in negative feedback of the “lead and lag” method, RW writes : That this consistently leads to negative feedback does not itself make it biased or skewed toward negative feedback.

    It seems that you missed the point. Let me explain with a simple example : If the SST and the FLUX are completely uncorrelated (for example, both show random noise) then the “lead and lag” method by Lindzen and Choi 2011 will report that there is a negative feedback.

    That’s simply incorrect. Furthermore, it is an indication that L&C did not do a statistical test of their method, which by itself is a gross scientific mistake.

    Regarding I might also add that SW component in L&C is where most of the negative feedback is coming from.

    You obviously have not paid attention to the developments here. This remark is about Lindzen and Choi 2009, where the negative feedback in the SW component was completely fabricated with an unprecedented fundamental blunder (I’d say deliberately inserted) mistake in the feedback formula.

    In credit of Lindzen, he does admit this mistake now in Lindzen and Choi 2011, only to insert other fundamental flaws like the “lead and lag” method which creates negative feedback bias as I pointed out above.

    Lindzen can’t seem to get anything right these days, and before you start defending him again, please note that WUWT readers are starting to hedge their bets against him.

    Here :
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/17/richard-lindzen-a-case-against-precipitous-climate-action/#comment-581070
    commenter John Brookes states : Lets say we all exclaim, “Wow, Richard Lindzen is so good, his explanation shows that AGW is wrong!”. This is a big mistake. Once you’ve done that, all some AGW nutcase has to do is publish a paper showing why Lindzen was wrong – and then where are you?”

    I advice you to listen to what John is saying here. I know it may be difficult to accept for true believers of the “skeptics” agenda, but Lindzen is by now so easily debunked that even though he might say what your internal belief system wants to hear, it may no longer be beneficial to support him. It may be better to follow the advice of John, and start denying the no-feedback response, as Jim Cripwell has been doing. Please keep up with what your spin masters are telling you OK ?

  55. #55 RW
    2011/06/23

    W says: “[No, you just haven’t been able to understand my answers. Have another read, and follow the links I’ve provided -W]”

    I understand your ‘answers’ and even followed the links.

    You write: “[The useful measure for a small change in, e.g., solar or GHG forcing is the thing people normally call feedback. But that is a *change* in forcing.]

    I already know this. That you don’t think I do shows me you aren’t reading very carefully.

    [No, you don’t know it. If you knew it, you wouldn’t have asked your original question, which betrayed exactly this confusion. Rob has also helped you -W]

    Look, if you’re not interested in answering my questions or asking any of your own, there is little point in discussing this any further.

    I’ll ask another question: The often quoted 1.1 C of ‘intrinsic’ warming from 2xCO2 – how is this derived? 3.7 W/m^2 only provides 0.7 C of direct warming. Where does the additional 0.4 C to get 1.1 C come from?

    [I think you really ought to provide cites for these numbers, that would be enormously helpful in making sure we are talking about the same things -W]

  56. #56 RW
    2011/06/23

    Rob (RE: 52),

    I’ve read Miskolczi’s paper, and I frankly don’t understand large parts of it. I’m not convinced by it.

    Also, if all you want to do is hurl insults and profanity rather than engage in genuine give and take discussion, I’m not interested.

    [I always find it somewhat amusing, and somewhat irritating, when people say stuff like that, and then continue the conversation. So, either you’re “big” enough to just ignore the “insults” – or indeed, you’re so miffed that you’re “not interested”. Make up your mind, but don’t try to do both. Bear in mind that you’re on the borderline for trolling – I had to delete your third comment as such.

    -snip-

    -W]

  57. #57 RW
    2011/06/24

    W says:

    “[No, you don’t know it. If you knew it, you wouldn’t have asked your original question, which betrayed exactly this confusion.]”

    OK, correct me where I’m wrong: The radiative forcing from 2xCO2 is 3.7 W/m^2, and this represents a change in forcing (not feedback).

    [OK: where you are wrong is in not citing your information. I specifically asked you to do that in my last reply. I’ve no idea where you’ve got your 3.7 or what you mean by it. In turn, I offer you “The combined anthropogenic RF is estimated to be +1.6 [–1.0, +0.8][2] W m–2, indicating that, since 1750, it is extremely likely[3] that humans have exerted a substantial warming influence on climate… The global mean concentration of CO2 in 2005 was 379 ppm, leading to an RF of +1.66 [±0.17] W m–2″ from [http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/ch2s2-es.html] -W]

  58. #58 RW
    2011/06/24

    W says:

    “[I think you really ought to provide cites for these numbers, that would be enormously helpful in making sure we are talking about the same things -W]”

    From the Stefan-Boltzman law, 393.7 W/m^2 (+3.7 W/m^2) with an emissivity of 1 = 288.7K or +0.7 C

    +1.1 C (289.1K) from the S-B law = 396 W/m^2 (+6 W/m^2).

    The difference of 0.4 C and 2.3 W/m^2, where/how is this derived?

  59. #59 Rob Dekker
    2011/06/25

    RW: When I stated “start denying the no-feedback response” I did not think you would take me seriously.

    Our planet cools to space with an effective temperature of 255 K and not from the surface (288.7K) as you suggest. Can you re-do your calculation of a 3.7 W/m^2 forcing on a planet radiating at 255 K ? And then tell us what it physically means.

    Also, you did not answer my question on why you believe that “a 3 C rise for doubling of CO2 is ‘way outside the measured bounds'”.

    And you did not dispute my argument that the change in surface temperature that is needed to compensate for a 3.7 W/m^2 forcing (doubling of CO2) at TOA is 6.4 C, which indicates that you either don’t dispute it, or are completely clueless about the physics of GHG induced GW.

    But let me note that so far you made every possible attempt to avoid the discussing Lindzen and Choi 2011, and instead you have made every possible attempt to divert attention away to off-topic arguments, by using condecending statements and dodging any criticism to your increasingly ignorant propositions.

    If you want to discuss Lindzen and Choi 2011, or my analysis of negative feedback bias in the paper, then please go ahead.

    But otherwise, please take a class in radiative transfer theory before post more off-topic ramblings.

  60. #60 RW
    2011/06/25

    Rob (RE: 58),

    “[Our planet cools to space with an effective temperature of 255 K and not from the surface (288.7K) as you suggest. Can you re-do your calculation of a 3.7 W/m^2 forcing on a planet radiating at 255 K ? And then tell us what it physically means.]”

    Yes:

    When there is a radiative imbalance, i.e. from additional CO2 added to the atmosphere which redirects more outgoing surface radiation back toward the surface, there is reduction in the amount of LW radiation leaving at the top of the atmosphere (more radiation is arriving from the Sun than is leaving at the top of the atmosphere). To achieve equilibrium, the system warms up until it again radiates the same amount of energy as is arriving from the Sun.

    To give a numerical example, there is about 240 W/m^2 arriving post albedo from the Sun and 240 W/m^2 leaving at the top of the atmosphere (240 W/m^2 = 255K). This represents the system in equilibrium (energy in = energy out). If there was a radiative imbalance (or ‘radiative forcing’) of say 3.7 W/m^2 from a doubling of CO2, the energy leaving at the top of the atmosphere would reduce by 3.7 W/m^2 to 236.3 W/m^2. Currently, there is about 390 W/m^2 emitted by the surface. The physical meaning is takes 390 W/m^2 at the surface to allow 240 W/m^2 to leave the system, offsetting the 240 W/m^2 coming in from the Sun. In this example, an additional 3.7 W/m^2 is received by the surface for a total of 393.7 W/m^2. If the +3.7 W/m^2 is treated the same as the 240 arriving from the Sun, it will be amplified by a factor of about 1.6 (390/240 = 1.6), as this is a measurement of the surface response to forcing of any kind. 3.7 W/m^2 x 1.6 = +6 W/m^2 to allow an additional 3.7 W/m^2 to leave the system to restore equilibrium (240 W/m^2 in and out). The new surface emitted radiation would be 396 W/m^2 (390 W/m^2 + 6 W/m^2), which corresponds to a 1.1 C rise in temperature.

    Does this explain it better?

  61. #61 RW
    2011/06/25

    -snips-

    The claim of 3 C rise in temperature from from a forcing of 3.7 W/m^2…

    [Like I say. You need to cite and source your numbers, or this is all meaningless. Please do so. Or start your own blog, where you can make the rules -W]

    -snip-

  62. #62 RW
    2011/06/25

    Rob (RE: 53),

    “[If you want to discuss Lindzen and Choi 2011, or my analysis of negative feedback bias in the paper, then please go ahead.]”

    OK, I will.

    You write:

    “[It seems that you missed the point. Let me explain with a simple example : If the SST and the FLUX are completely uncorrelated (for example, both show random noise) then the “lead and lag” method by Lindzen and Choi 2011 will report that there is a negative feedback.]”

    I know. The question is why does the method reveal negative rather than positive feedback? Are you claiming there is no delay between the initial forcing (SST increase) and the feedback response?

  63. #63 RW
    2011/06/25

    W says:

    “[Like I say. You need to cite and source your numbers, or this is all meaningless. Please do so. Or start your own blog, where you can make the rules -W]”

    Do you not understand the Stefan-Boltzman law? A 3 C rise in temperature requires the surface to emit 406.6 W/m^2, which is 16.6 W/m^2 more than the 390 W/m^2 it’s currently emitting. Conservation of Energy dictates this +16.6 W/m^2 flux at the surface has to be coming from somewhere.

    From wikipedia, the Earth has an effective emissivity of 0.612:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_model#Zero-dimensional_models

    I repeat:

    The things I’ve been discussing are related to L&C and/or are leading directly to issues regarding L&C. Let’s take for example, the smaller negative feedback of about 27% due to some sharing effect from mid-latitudes (from 1.1 C to 0.8 C). How is a negative feedback response of -27% unreasonable, but a positive feedback response of +300% reasonable when the measured response of the system to solar forcing is 3 times less?

    The ultimate point I’m getting at here is that the additional 0.4 C to get the 1.1 C already includes the lion’s share of the feedbacks in the system from decades, centuries and even millenia of solar forcing. The surface response to solar forcing (390 W/m^2) is just the reciprocal of net transmittance to space (240 W/m^2), which is about 0.62, corresponding to the ‘effective’ emissivity of the planet of about 0.62. The physical meaning of net transmittance is that for each 1 W/m^2 emitted at the surface, 0.62 W/m^2 (or 62%) escapes to space and 0.38 W/m^2 (or 38%) is returned or recycled back to the surface. This includes the effects of all the radiative and non-radiative energy flows in the atmosphere.

    The claim of a 3 C rise in temperature from from a forcing of 3.7 W/m^2 requires an additional 16.6 W/m^2 of surface emitted energy, but the atmosphere only provides about +2.3 W/m^2, leaving a deficit of 10.6 W/m^2 needed (16.6 – 6 = 10.6). Where is this coming from? If your answer is the feedback, specifically from where (and how)? And why doesn’t the feedback cause this much change on solar forcing?

  64. #64 Rob Dekker
    2011/06/26

    RW: Re 59 : You show that 3.7 W/m^2 forcing (solar or GHG induced) caused the surface to warm up 1.1 C in absense of feedbacks (in post 59, the emissivity remains constant and the lapse rate remains constant).

    So your own post 59 disproves your previous repetitive ramblings (“3.7 W/m^2 only provides 0.7 C of direct warming” and “The direct warming from 2xCO2 is 0.7 C” and “3.7 W/m^2 only provides 0.7 C of direct warming”).

    Also, since you post 59 does not show a difference between solar and GHG forcing (how would planet Earth know the difference any way), which puts in question all your assertions regarding differences in solar and GHG forcing.

    Not to mention that it implicitly also explains why the emissivity of this planet is currently 0.621 and why it seems to be exactly the reciprocal of your radiation multiplier between surface and TOA that you mention(currently 1.62)…

    You should be glad you made that post 59, since it really clears up a lot of the assertions and questions and ramblings that you are expressing here. At least for me it did show where you went haywire.

    Now, if you could just clarify the remaining nonsense you expressed, and answer my questions as you promised, then I’m sure we have this whole thing wrapped up in no time :

    Where did you conclude that a 3 C rise for doubling of CO2 is ‘way outside the measured bounds’ ?

    Do you dispute my argument that the change in surface temperature that is needed to compensate for a 3.7 W/m^2 forcing (doubling of CO2) at TOA is 6.4 C ?

  65. #65 Rob Dekker
    2011/06/26

    RW: Are you claiming there is no delay between the initial forcing (SST increase) and the feedback response?

    You still don’t get it. The issue of negative feedback bias in the Lindzen and Choi 2011 “lead and lag” method is not related to actual delays in this planet’s climate system. It is a statistical artifact of the method itself. When there is noise on the SST and FLUX data superimposed on the Stefan Boltzman response, then the “lead and lag” method by Lindzen and Choi will show negative feedback because it selects the largests changes in FLUX (over any lead/lag time) for a particular change (noise or real) in SST. This necessariry maximizes the FLUX response to any SST change, which thus minimizes the feedback parameter (F = deltaSST/deltaFLUX) and thus introduces a negative feedback bias. Is the negative feedback bias in Lindzen and Choi 2011 now more clearly explained ?

  66. #66 RW
    2011/06/26

    Rob (RE: 63),

    3.7 W/m^2 does only provide 0.7 C of direct warming from S-B. The additional 0.4 C comes from the fact that the atmosphere only lets 62% of what’s emitted from the surface escape to space, so the surface has to warm up 38% more to allow the 3.7 W/m^2 to leave at the TOA.

    The point is the lion’s share of the feedbacks are already embodied in the net transmittance to space of 0.62 from decades/centuries/millenia of solar forcing. How could they not be?

    [Argument from personal incredulity has always been void -W]

    -more unrefd stuff snipped. That was your last warning-

  67. #67 RW
    2011/06/26

    Rob (RE: 63),

    You say:

    “Do you dispute my argument that the change in surface temperature that is needed to compensate for a 3.7 W/m^2 forcing (doubling of CO2) at TOA is 6.4 C?”

    Yes, I dispute this. If we look at the Trenberth diagram… -snip-

    [Well, then you need to present your own calculation. But don’t do it here,please. Get yourself a blog, or some web space, both are cheap or free, and put together what you regard as a coherent theory, with all assumptions clearly stated along with all sources of data -W]

  68. #68 RW
    2011/06/26

    Rob,

    You say:

    “Where did you conclude that a 3 C rise for doubling of CO2 is ‘way outside the measured bounds’?”

    I keep trying to answer this question, but W keeps deleting it.

    [I don’t recall ever deleting anything that looked like an answer to that question. But never mind, you’re off elsewhere -W]

    It’s too difficult to have a conversation here because of this. If you’re interested, let’s continue this discussion here:

    http://judithcurry.com/2011/06/10/lindzen-and-choi-part-ii/#comments

    Just post your question there and I’ll respond.

    [Poissonally, I’d say trying to have a sane discussion in a cesspit is a poor idea, but I leave it between you two -W]

  69. #69 Dan Pangburn
    2011/06/27

    A simple equation based on the physical phenomena involved, with inputs of accepted measurements from government agencies, calculates the average global temperatures (agt) since 1895 with 88.4% accuracy (87.9% if CO2 is assumed to have no influence). See the equation, links to the source data, an eye-opening graph of the results and how they are derived in the pdfs at http://climaterealists.com/index.php?tid=145&linkbox=true (see especially the pdfs made public on 4/10/10, and 3/10/11).

    The future average global temperature trend that this equation calculates is down.

    [Really? Do you want to bet, then? -W]

    This trend is corroborated by the growing separation between the rising CO2 and not-rising agt. From 2001 through May, 2011 the atmospheric CO2 increased by 22.3% of the total increase from 1800 to 2001 while the average global temperature has not increased. The 22.3% CO2 increase is the significant measurement, not the comparatively brief time period. The trend of the average of the five reporting agencies has declined steeply since the peak of the last El Nino in about March 2010.

  70. #70 Rob Dekker
    2011/06/27

    RW.
    You are just wasting time pointing out in wording that Trenberth’s graph is consistent and the numbers add up. All that is needed to refute my (incorrect) argument that 3.7 W/m^2 forcing has to result in 6.4 C temperature increase is a physical explanation. And the same counts for your own assertions.

    Besides, you have now ignored my question three times :
    Where did you conclude that a 3 C rise for doubling of CO2 is ‘way outside the measured bounds’ ?

    And finally, where is your response to the negative feedback bias in Lindzen and Choi 2011 ? Are you deliberately ignoring Lindzen’s violation of scientific ethics or simply ignorant of climate science in general ?

  71. #71 Hank Roberts
    2011/06/27

    One for the “do you feel lucky?” file:

    http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/ngeo1179.html

    “…. The transient global warming event known as the Palaeocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum …. peak rate of carbon addition was …. much slower than the present rate of carbon emissions.”

    [Yeees… but that was a carefully constructed sound bite, not science -W]

  72. #72 RW
    2011/06/27

    Rob (RE: 69),

    I can answer and explain all of these things in elaborate detail, but not here anymore. I have tried multiple times only to have the explanations deleted by W.

    [You have never tried; you’ve just gone off onto tangents. Like I say: put your thoughts down in some coherent form elsewhere, and let us read the whole argument -W]

    If you want to take it over to another site – like the one I suggested, let me know. Otherwise, I’m done here.

    [It is your position – it is up to you to present what you think -W]

  73. #73 SteveC
    2011/06/28

    @ Neil Craig | June 16, 2011 5:56 AM

    Do you accept that the rise in CO2 has improved crop growth by around 10% & that the consequent influence on world hunger is more beneficial than any currently detectable destructive action of alleged global warming?

    No. On all counts. Care to cite a source for this “10%”?

  74. #74 SteveC
    2011/06/28

    Formatting derr…

    @ Neil Craig | June 16, 2011 5:56 AM

    Do you accept that the rise in CO2 has improved crop growth by around 10% & that the consequent influence on world hunger is more beneficial than any currently detectable destructive action of alleged global warming?

    No. On all counts. Care to cite a source for this “10%”?

  75. #75 Hank Roberts
    2011/07/30

    cross-reference: “RW” has posted his 400%/60% claim elsewhere and the blog hosts mostly ignored him. Gavin patiently pointed out his mistake where he’d posted it at RC. See here: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2011/07/misdiagnosis-of-surface-temperature-feedback/comment-page-1/#comment-211788 and prior comments by RW.

  76. #76 Hank Roberts
    2011/07/31

    and RW is continuing today, more: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2011/07/misdiagnosis-of-surface-temperature-feedback/comment-page-2/#comment-211892

    On http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/v4/n7/full/ngeo1179.html — ‘sound bite not science’? Well, yeah, it’s from the abstract not the paper, taken from the end of the Discussion section, similarly quotable:

    “The quantities of carbon added during the PETM span the estimates of current fossil-fuel resources, suggesting that the PETM could serve as a good analogue for future warming…. the current overall capacity for society to perturb the carbon cycle is comparable to that of the PETM, the rate at which we are imposing the current perturbation on the Earth system may be unprecedented.”

    I know, I know, “may be unprecedented” are weasel words, oops, no offense, I mean, er, lagomorphic vagueness, yeah, that’s it — anyhow what interests me there is the short term result from pushing the climate system with a very high rate of CO2 change (even assuming we stop that without burning all the available fossil fuel this time ’round).

    Analogy: patting a dozen times, or slapping once — the total amount of force applied may be the same, but the short term effect differs, as does the likely feedback.

  77. #77 Hank Roberts
    2011/08/04

    Aside, for the sake of completeness:

    Gavin gave up on RW this morning after RW went full circle.

    Nothing from RW but one early assertion in Curry’s thread he pointed to. (Perhaps coincidentally, Curry: “… parts of this thread has gone bonkers. I am deleting …. If your message has disappeared, now you know what happened ….”)

    RW continues at Spencer’s, e.g. http://www.drroyspencer.com/2011/07/fallout-from-our-paper-the-empire-strikes-back/#comment-19371, and mentions ‘Christopher Game’ as his source. Spencer’s been encouraging him a while: http://www.drroyspencer.com/2011/06/more-evidence-that-global-warming-is-a-false-alarm-a-model-simulation-of-the-last-40-years-of-deep-ocean-warming/#comment-17401

    RW went full circle shortly thereafter: http://www.drroyspencer.com/2011/07/fallout-from-our-paper-the-empire-strikes-back/#comment-19385

    —-
    Are Lindzen and Spencer still on the same page more or less?
    No results found for “lindzen on spencer” — but lots found for “spencer on lindzen”

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