Sense and Sensitivity

Sense and Sensitivity“. Citizen-scientist Willis Eschenbach becomes an expert on insolation and tells us that because the geographic poles receive 24-hour sunlight in the summer they can somehow get hot. Then he uses his sudden scientific insight to make up some predictions and declare his ideas proven.

So, how are these values calculated? And those error bars look pretty massive.

Here are Willis’ Thunderstorm Thermostat Hypothesis predictions:

  1. Climate sensitivity is less near the equator than near the poles, because “the almost-daily afternoon emergence of cumulus and thunderstorms is primarily a tropical phenomenon.” (No evidence presented.)
  2. Climate sensitivity is less in latitude bands which are mostly ocean, because the “ocean warms more slowly”, “energy [is] going into evaporation” and “clouds and thunderstorms can form more easily” over water. (No evidence presented or physical explanation offered.)
  3. The “damping effect of the thunderstorms” and “increase in cloud albedo from increasing temperatures” means that “climate sensitivity would be much, much lower than the canonical IPCC climate sensitivity of 3°C from a doubling of CO2.” (No evidence presented or explanation offered.)
  4. “Given the stability of the earth’s climate, the sensitivity would be quite small, with a global average not far from zero”. (No evidence presented or explanation offered.)

Earth to Willis: Regardless of your naive speculations the IPCC’s 3°C climate sensitivity from a doubling of CO2 is based on empirical measurements that suggest a range of 2.0 – 4.5°C. It is highly improbable that the sensitivity is less than 1.5°C. You’ve been engaged in an enthusiastic exercise in self-delusion.

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