Sea Ice News – Call for Arctic sea-ice forecasts, plus forecast poll

Sea Ice News – Call for Arctic sea-ice forecasts, plus forecast poll (May 19, 2011). Pull the other one, Anthony Watts! I almost shot tea out of my nose reading Anthony’s blithe claim:

It has been awhile since I’ve done a sea-ice report. That said, not much of note has been going on in the sea-ice arena, we are in that time of year when all of the years converge into a tighter grouping.

I guess his stalwart bobble-heads were starting to need reassurance that Global Warming was still over. Unfortunately there are a few differing opinions out there:

Anthony even thought he could bluff his way past his own chart. Nice try. He does try to bury it among a busy collection of eye-glazing squiggles and bar charts.

Nothing to see here, says Anthony... My annotations in red.

Stanford claims farmers “dodged impacts of global warming” in the USA, but you have to find it first.

Stanford claims farmers “dodged impacts of global warming” in the USA, but you have to find it first. (May 6, 2011). When Anthony Watts does his own posting you can be sure that it will be short and dishonest. Here Anthony disputes a Stanford University report on the impact of global warming on US crop production, which states:

Global warming is likely already taking a toll on world wheat and corn production, according to a new study led by Stanford University researchers. But the United States, Canada and northern Mexico have largely escaped the trend.

Anthony rebuttal is to slap together charts of US corn yield and US temperature to “prove” that noisy regional weather data shows no global warming. He also alludes to the comical “CO2 is essential for life” argument.

Yep, US corn yields are going up. It’s gotta mean something! Anthony grudgingly allows that “some of the gains seen below are likely the result of improved seed lines”, but the honest first approximation is that all of corn yield gains are “likely the result of improved seed lines”. After-all he’s pretty sure that there hasn’t been any change in the climate, isn’t he? Sez Anthony:

What global warming? The last two years of annual mean temperature for the USA (2009, 2010) is about the same as it was in 1980 and 1981, and lower than many years since.

So Anthony’s entire argument is to compare two years of the US annual mean temperature, 1980 and 1981, against the two most recent years and declare that since they are “about the same” this proves that there’s no global warming? Dude, you’re a frickin’ cherry-pickin’ idiot.

Anthony’s lame “we’ve seen exactly this before” deception is only faintly plausible if he deliberately removes the default trend line from his chart. We can fix that though (replicate it here, but ignore Anthony’s advice to exclude the trend line):

Anthony Watts took care to remove the trend from his version of this chart.

As usual Anthony’s also using several levels of cherry-picking to gin-up his “What global warming?” climate claim aside from the two-year comparison windows. The US Corn Belt is not the same geographic area as the continental US, so he’s not demonstrating anything at all about the Corn Belt climate. Likewise, the continental US represents only a fraction of the global record.

The Stanford article also mentions an US trend towards anomalously cooler summers, which coupled with the unequivocal rise in annual average temperature implies warmer winters. US agriculture has been partly insulated from global warming by keeping the growing season temperatures within the crop’s tolerance zone. Why didn’t Anthony address that? Hmmm.

The GISS divergence problem: Ocean Heat Content

The GISS divergence problem: Ocean Heat Content. Butter wouldn’t melt in citizen-scientist Bob Tisdale’s mouth, would it? He’s back with new proof that there’s no global warming and that them gubmint scientists is stupid. Anthony Watts approvingly notes the alleged “[denialist] reality versus [Goddard Institute for Space Studies] projection disparity” and declares “a GISS miss by a country mile.” Game over, yuck, yuck, yuck!

Tisdale’s claim is that Ocean Heat Content (OHC) hasn’t risen as fast as an old GISS model projected (note that this was not a prediction). Why? Well, because he can slap a projected straight line (Bob still loves ’em) on a chart that rises faster than the observations. Therefore, warmists are liars and their computers are too. This handily side-steps the real issue: Ocean Heat Content is unquestionably rising. We call this global warming.

Except… Even Anthony has to give Bob a nudge in the comments for failing to admit that his citizen-science fair project is showing “anomalies” i.e. deviations from the trend and not the trend itself. Sure, the target man on the street won’t spot it, but it’s like plastering “kick me” all over your own back for the benefit of informed scientific observers like Tamino, to whom Bob’s posts are like candy to a baby. Tamino indulges his sweet tooth in Favorite Denier Tricks, or How to Hide the Incline.

So how does Tisdale think he’s proven that the alarmist GISS projection of increasing OHC doesn’t match the measured increase? By using the classic denialist trick of showing the projection over a very particularly chosen time period from on a very particularly chosen point. This allows him to imply that OHC is flat but the GISS projection is increasingly divergent from “reality”. Anthony is silent on the this half of Bob’s deception because in the denialist playbook cherry-picking is enthusiastically endorsed.

The following graphic collates Tamino’s deconstruction of Bob Tisdale’s game-playing. Perhaps Bob should submit his work to the National Science Fair’s Beeville branch?

New cherry-picking and tunnel vision from Bob "Magoo" Tisdale. Deconstruction by Tamino.

World Opinion on global warming: not so hot

World opinion on global warming: not so hot“. Anthony Watts tells us that a Gallup poll result means that we don’t have to worry about global warming! Whew, saved by public ignorance.

It turns out that if ordinary folks don’t notice climate changes then they didn’t happen. Here are the global poll results that Anthony thinks prove there is no global warming (evidence be damned).

The question was “Temperature rise is a part of global warming or climate change. Do you think rising temperatures are”:

  • Result of human activity – 35% (54% of Canadians believe this, but only 34% of Americans)
  • Result of natural causes – 14%
  • “Both” (i.e. some human causes) – 13%
  • Don’t know/refused – 2%
  • Not aware of global warming – 36%

Anthony Watts prefers not to dwell on the fact that of the “aware” respondents, 48% think human activity is contributing to global warming and 14% don’t. Instead he invokes the ‘noble savages’ argument that more primitive people are more aware of their environment (which is weather, not climate…) and the “not aware” respondents here are keenly insightful.

Also, people in the western world are poisoned by the mainstream media.

Tell us Anthony, how are people supposed to notice a less than 1°C rise over several decades amidst a variety of much larger daily, seasonal, and locale changes?

This poll was about awareness of human activities as a factor, not whether people think temperatures are rising. Anthony has tried to spin both the question and the answers. Nice try.

Time Magazine blizzard science sets low standard for green journalism

Time Magazine blizzard science sets low standard for green journalism. Ryan Maue complains about biases of the “liberal media” (that would be Time Magazine). Apparently environmental journalist Bryan Walsh says that while most unusual weather events can’t be tied to “climate change”, the 2010 Christmas snowstorms fit into an expected climate pattern. Now that is an outrage!

Ryan’s evidence: a Star Trek clip from YouTube. But is Ryan arguing against heavier snowfall under Global Warming (apparently not), or the origin of this particular blizzard? It seems he’s trying to accuse Walsh of saying the blizzard was caused by “climate change” which isn’t something that Walsh claimed.

2010 – where does it fit in the warmest year list?

2010 – where does it fit in the warmest year list? Christmas Guest pudding from Geology Professor Dr. Don Easterbrook. Apparently 2010’s record temperature is “really much to do about nothing.” After-all, if you go back 10,000 years you can find plenty of warmer years. I guess the denialist leg-puller about only needing to look at the last 15 years is out of favor now that 2010 can’t still be brushed aside.

What strikes me in all of Easterbrook’s sloppy “data” is that, at a time when the Earth should now be following a pronounced cooling trend it is emphatically not. Wiggle your way out of that one, Professor.

There are enlightening insights into Easterbrook’s scholarship at Only In It For The Gold (Garbled Reasoning at WUWT) and Hot Topic (Easterbrook’s Wrong (Again)), but I’ll leave the technical criticism to this comment in the Watts Up With That post by “BillD”:

Where is peer review when you need it? This post conflates the global climate record with regional records for the US and Greenland. Then it fails to point out that “present” only goes up to 1905. Over the last 21 years, I have been the editor or reviewer for over 600 manuscripts submitted for publication in peer-reviewed scientific journals (I need to keep a record for my employer). I have to say that I have never seen a submitted manuscript with such blatant errors as in this post. Even submitting a manuscript such as this would be damaging to one’s career and would certainly cause the loss of all credibility with the journal’s editor and the reviewers if any (In most cases the editor peruses a manuscript to check it’s suitability for the journal and to decide on expert reviewers. These kinds of errors and misleading comparisons would almost certainly lead to rejection by the editor, without even sending the ms. out to reviewers).

Even Dave Springer, a Watts Up guest author, comments unhappily (emphasis mine):

The new guest author program, which include myself as one of those new guest authors, appears to have fostered a greater need for internal peer review before the articles are published. Anthony and Willis and guest authors like Spencer and Lindzen didn’t seem to need much in the way of peer review but with this new influx of guest authors the comments are now stuffed with repetitious exposure of errors in the articles.

Is Prof. Easterbrook really so sloppy? Or his he more concerned with finding a story that he can enjoy telling?

Lump of coal award: to IPCC lead author Kevin Trenberth for hiding the decline (or the lack of increase) in global temperatures

Lump of coal award: to IPCC lead author Kevin Trenberth for hiding the decline (or the lack of increase) in global temperatures. Alec Rawls awards Kevin Trenberth a lump of coal for not picking his words perfectly in a causal e-mail that was later stolen. Fair enough, right?

Alec will have to answer to Santa directly for his deliberate new misrepresentation of Trenberth’s remarks.

Tempest in a teapot: International team of scientists describes swirling natural phenomena

Tempest in a teapot: International team of scientists describes swirling natural phenomena“. There’s nothing as quite as fun as making ignorant fun of scientists, is there Anthony? In this post Anthony Watts draws attention to scientists using swirling fluids to model vortices. How crazy is that?

Anthony only refers to a press release and chooses to illustrate his post with a photo of a tea-cup. His commenters continue the downward intellectual journey.

The actual paper in Physical Review Letters, titled Finite-Size Effects Lead to Supercritical Bifurcations in Turbulent Rotating Rayleigh-Bénard Convection, used laboratory cylinders to model circulation. From the press release:

Ahlers and his team discovered a new unexpected phenomenon that was not known before for turbulent flows like this.

The authors showed that their experimental findings are in keeping with a theoretical model similar to the one first developed by Vitaly Lazarevich Ginzburg and Lev Landau in the theory of superconductivity. That same model is also applicable to other areas of physics such as pattern formation and critical phenomena.

Oh Anthony, so quick to mock knowledge!

ABC interview wrongly torches skeptic position

ABC interview wrongly torches skeptic position. Does Anthony Watts really think that denialists fighting in “the cause of climate skepticism” accept that “both CO2 and CH4 are “greenhouse gases”, and yes they do have a warming effect by backscattered long wave infra red“? Guess he doesn’t read his blog’s comments. Wait he does, compulsively and passive-aggressively. Anthony’s only other contribution here is to helpfully provide e-mail addresses that can be bombarded.

The reposted ‘concern troll’ complaint by Canadian denialist Tom Harris maintains that Australia’s ABC Radio Science Show interview with Bob Ward from the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment was too soft by half. (Funny how these guys manage to be on top of such distant matters and have their posts pop up in so many places at once.)

Harris thinks the interviewer should have asked a juicy leading question like “which is more important – the health and welfare of people suffering today, or those not yet born who might suffer someday due to climate change that even you admit is highly uncertain?” I think what he really wants to say is “why should I have to do anything I don’t want to when the effects will only be felt after I’m dead”. I’d be surprised to see a libertarian or Republican tenaciously fighting to improve the lives of anyone other than themselves.

The rest of the post is mere high-school rhetoric and deliberate misrepresentation (try to find the “vilification [of] Professors Carter, Lindzen and Plimer” that Harris claims). There’s something about denialists that compels them to recreate public debates in their minds and explain to themselves how they were really won them.

I love Harris’ embrace of eyeballed temperature trends “showing” negative temperature trends since 2002 though. What happened to “1998 was the hottest year”? Keep the cups moving Tom, keep ’em moving.