Two new blogs & misc

ClimateScienceWatch is Promoting integrity in the use of climate science in government. But you know that because you read Chris Mooney. Lots of interesting politics-type stuff there. In Inhofe stuff is fun. I must post on the NAS stuff sometime.

So I pass quickly onto the second, which is more about the science than the politics: A Few Things Ill Considered by Coby Beck. Coby has being doing an excellent job on sci.env for quite a while, displaying a remarkable patience in explaining the obvious to skeptics again and again. His site is a great reference for some of the more obvious FAQ's on global warming related stuff. Many of his posts ref back to RealClimate posts. Providing a basic resourcefor climate science was part of RC was for. RC has a faq section too, but perhaps not so well organised at present. Does he have a section on Betting on global warming, though?

For those not in the habit of reading Prometheus, this post is worth a read, about signals of climate change in disaster statistics. And his point #1 may help clear up confusion in some peoples minds. I don't know if anyone has noticed, but I've been fighting Rogers Good Fight in wikipedia recently... probably best shown here.

Meanwhile, miscellany: BBC R4 news at 10 pm says "the concentration of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide is reported to have increased to 381 ppmv" or something like that. They said it very slowly and carefully: you could tell they didn't have a clue what this stuff they were reading off the autocue meant.

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Inhofe's letter to UCAR has the same tone and unreasonable demands that were in his letter to Mann et al. He is trying to intimidate scientists, not showing oversight. Oversight to this congress means not seeing (over-looking) the breaking of laws and ethics violations of the current Administration.

[That was "Smokey" Joe Barton, not Inhofe. But the style is similiar. Its odd, cos Barton got stomped all over, is Inhofe looking for the same? - W]

Borrowing a bit from realclimate, of the three types of denialists

1. Trend skeptics (it's no happening)
2. Attribution skeptics (it's not our fault)
3. Impact skeptics (it won't be that bad)

RPJr. has a lot of 1 and 3 in him, and is a real expert at playing the refs. I think you better recognize how he is playing you.

[I think you are doing what an awful lot of people do, which is to get annoyed by his words and fail to read them all. As far as I can tell, RP (Jr) has none of 1 in him and precious little of 2 - the post I linked to says "1. Anthropogenic climate change is real." - what more do you want? On impacts, again I think you are misreading him - he is *not* saying it won't be bad. He is saying that the GW signal is hard to see in the societal noise. And if that is wrong, someone isn't doing their job properly, because I haven't seen his arguments taken apart - only objected to -W]

William, I think you are missing the point. RP Jr is a political scientist. What he is doing is skillbulling (a new word, I meant to type skillfully, but skillbulling captures the thought) creating an impression that advances the denialist side of the argument for 99% of his public, while leaving enough clues that an aware reader can see support for the other hiding in corners. This allows him to retreat to a more realistic position when challenged but to still attract the denial crowd. It is a fundamentally dishonest tactic. Blur, to put it in terms you understand, is a master of the technique.

With regard to the damage arguement, has RPJ EVER said that it is likely that damage from anthropic climate change will EVER likely become obvious above the societal noise, and if he has not, then he clearly has signed on with the Lomberg crowd.

Huh. Interesting point Eli. I'll have to mull that over.

mull...mull...

D

Eli - I have in the past strongly disliked RP Jr's choice of words. I my view, he is trying to move the debate towards a point where his views and expertise are more relevant.

WRT the damage - I'm rather closer to RP's side. There is a strong current of opinion in the world that hurricance damage increase is *obviously* linked to GW. RP has pointed out that this is probably not true - and if you don't like that conclusion, you need to fight against his evidence. I haven't seen anyone doing that.

William, it is not a question of disliking RPJ's choice of words, it is a question of asking WHY he makes the particular choice of words that he does and what agenda that choice of words advances.

On the second point, IF hurricane intensity is increasing, then, absent a miracle, the intensity of hurricanes at landfall is increasing and the damage they do is increasing. If I were to try such a study the first question to ask is whether the increase of damage in Hati or Dominica, or Cuba is increasing. Given that the value of a tin shack is zero, what is the proper metric to use, and it obviously ain't dollars?

A useful metric might be lives lost, or homes lost or something similar. I retire in a few years and that looks like an interesting project.