Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Point out news stories, on the net or in mainstream media, related to polywell fusion.

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RERT
Posts: 123
Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2014 9:10 pm

Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by RERT »

Maui -

I'm sorry for the sideways remark about food stamps. It was an attempt to make people busy advocating higher electricity prices to reflect on the consequences of their policies. On reflection let's not make this thread busy by getting into US politics (as well)!

Your remark on sea walls highlights some of the difference between us. Sea levels rose a foot in the 19th century, about a foot in the 20th century. It was not news: industrialisation, wars, technology, they were news. Not sea level rise. The rate in the 21st century is basically the same. Be generous, it might be up a couple of feet in the 21st. It still won't be news. There is no need to panic. I think Hansen's prediction that Highways in New York would be under water soon have already failed. Now, perhaps more sensibly, his predictions for sea level rise are for a sharp acceleration after he is long dead.

I reccommend the video from the Nobel prize winning physicist, unless you think he is not qualified enough to comment. I saw it some time ago. I suspect the pre-prepared assault on him is directly proportional to the persuasiveness of his arguments. I for one won't be taking instruction from committed parties on which Nobel prize winners I should hear out. Will you?

Someone suggested that it was easier being a skeptic than a warmist. Quite the contrary. Warmists are in authority, in the majority, they can be insulting, dismissive and nasty. There are enough examples in this thread. If you want an easy life, just say you believe in 'climate change'.

Before I sign off for Christmas, here is a story worth reflecting on over your turkey. Back in the 80's, there was terrible unemployment in the UK. It made the 'Great Recession' look like a walk in the park. It came to light later, that of around 20 'statistical adjustments' made to the numbers by government statisticians, all but one had the effect of moving the nemployment rate in the same direction.

Do you have to ask what direction that was?

As an independent observer, I don't need to know anything else. Someone was fiddling the books. I don't need to know or care what the adjustments were. Each one might even be valid. What is wrong is the 20 other missing adjustments which move the dial the other way, which were either vetoed or self-censored.

Fast forward to the temperature record today, and the same is true. Adjustments are all one way. YES. It sounds bat-shit crazy to suggest scientists are biased. But as an independent observer, my conclusion is the same as the first case. Somebody is cooking the books. And I know from Climategate that there are plenty enough climate scientists committed to 'the cause' that I can believe it. Where I go now with no temperature datasets I really believe, I don't know. There is an interesting article in Watt's up with that from a former Australian Meteorologist over the last few days which is disturbing. You might want to take a look.

Lastly, there are many references here to Skeptical Science. John Cook runs that site. Cook partnered Lewandowsky to write the fraudulent 97% paper. Why would I believe what he pushes? I'd like to find a level headed website to sample a different viewpoint, but I don't fancy that one. And before anyone says so, probably 50% of WUWT is either dodgy or political, but some is very interesting.

Yes, I really am a skeptic. But I can hold a reasoned conversation, and if people could restrain themselves from insulting me, dismissing me and trying to close the discussion, I would participate in forming a broader consensus.

That's it. I'm almost out of energy. No more posts until after Christmas.

Merry Christmas all!

happyjack27
Posts: 1438
Joined: Wed Jul 14, 2010 5:27 pm

Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by happyjack27 »

RERT, an explanation about how and why they do temperature adjustments.

The short answer is they do so to make it more accurate.

The following was found by typing "fudge data" into the debunker. it was the first result.

i didn't bother posting in the images because it's long and there were a lot, but if you want you can see them on the original page at: https://skepticalscience.com/understand ... -data.html

Understanding adjustments to temperature data

Posted on 26 February 2015 by Guest Author
This is a guest post by Zeke Hausfather

There has been much discussion of temperature adjustment of late in both climate blogs and in the media, but not much background on what specific adjustments are being made, why they are being made, and what effects they have. Adjustments have a big effect on temperature trends in the U.S., and a modest effect on global land trends. The large contribution of adjustments to century-scale U.S. temperature trends lends itself to an unfortunate narrative that “government bureaucrats are cooking the books”.

Slide1

Figure 1. Global (left) and CONUS (right) homogenized and raw data from NCDC and Berkeley Earth. Series are aligned relative to 1990-2013 means. NCDC data is from GHCN v3.2 and USHCN v2.5 respectively.
Having worked with many of the scientists in question, I can say with certainty that there is no grand conspiracy to artificially warm the earth; rather, scientists are doing their best to interpret large datasets with numerous biases such as station moves, instrument changes, time of observation changes, urban heat island biases, and other so-called inhomogenities that have occurred over the last 150 years. Their methods may not be perfect, and are certainly not immune from critical analysis, but that critical analysis should start out from a position of assuming good faith and with an understanding of what exactly has been done.

This will be the first post in a three-part series examining adjustments in temperature data, with a specific focus on the U.S. land temperatures. This post will provide an overview of the adjustments done and their relative effect on temperatures. The second post will examine Time of Observation adjustments in more detail, using hourly data from the pristine U.S. Climate Reference Network (USCRN) to empirically demonstrate the potential bias introduced by different observation times. The final post will examine automated pairwise homogenization approaches in more detail, looking at how breakpoints are detected and how algorithms can tested to ensure that they are equally effective at removing both cooling and warming biases.

Why Adjust Temperatures?
There are a number of folks who question the need for adjustments at all. Why not just use raw temperatures, they ask, since those are pure and unadulterated? The problem is that (with the exception of the newly created Climate Reference Network), there is really no such thing as a pure and unadulterated temperature record. Temperature stations in the U.S. are mainly operated by volunteer observers (the Cooperative Observer Network, or co-op stations for short). Many of these stations were set up in the late 1800s and early 1900s as part of a national network of weather stations, focused on measuring day-to-day changes in the weather rather than decadal-scale changes in the climate.

Slide1

Figure 2. Documented time of observation changes and instrument changes by year in the co-op and USHCN station networks. Figure courtesy of Claude Williams (NCDC).
Nearly every single station in the network in the network has been moved at least once over the last century, with many having 3 or more distinct moves. Most of the stations have changed from using liquid in glass thermometers (LiG) inStevenson screens to electronic Minimum Maximum Temperature Systems(MMTS) or Automated Surface Observing Systems (ASOS). Observation times have shifted from afternoon to morning at most stations since 1960, as part of an effort by the National Weather Service to improve precipitation measurements.

All of these changes introduce (non-random) systemic biases into the network. For example, MMTS sensors tend to read maximum daily temperatures about 0.5 C colder than LiG thermometers at the same location. There is a very obvious cooling bias in the record associated with the conversion of most co-op stations from LiG to MMTS in the 1980s, and even folks deeply skeptical of the temperature network like Anthony Watts and his coauthors add an explicit correction for this in their paper.

Slide1

Figure 3. Time of Observation over time in the USHCN network. Figure from Menne et al 2009.
Time of observation changes from afternoon to morning also can add a cooling bias of up to 0.5 C, affecting maximum and minimum temperatures similarly. The reasons why this occurs, how it is tested, and how we know that documented time of observations are correct (or not) will be discussed in detail in the subsequent post. There are also significant positive minimum temperature biases from urban heat islands that add a trend bias up to 0.2 C nationwide to raw readings.

Because the biases are large and systemic, ignoring them is not a viable option. If some corrections to the data are necessary, there is a need for systems to make these corrections in a way that does not introduce more bias than they remove.

What are the Adjustments?
Two independent groups, the National Climate Data Center (NCDC) and Berkeley Earth (hereafter Berkeley) start with raw data and use differing methods to create a best estimate of global (and U.S.) temperatures. Other groups like NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) and the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia (CRU) take data from NCDC and other sources and perform additional adjustments, like GISS’s nightlight-based urban heat island corrections.

Slide1

Figure 4. Diagram of processing steps for creating USHCN adjusted temperatures. Note that TAvg temperatures are calculated based on separately adjusted TMin and TMax temperatures.
This post will focus primarily on NCDC’s adjustments, as they are the official government agency tasked with determining U.S. (and global) temperatures. The figure below shows the four major adjustments (including quality control) performed on USHCN data, and their respective effect on the resulting mean temperatures.

Slide1

Figure 5. Impact of adjustments on U.S. temperatures relative to the 1900-1910 period, following the approach used in creating the old USHCN v1 adjustment plot.
NCDC starts by collecting the raw data from the co-op network stations. These records are submitted electronically for most stations, though some continue to send paper forms that must be manually keyed into the system. A subset of the 7,000 or so co-op stations are part of the U.S. Historical Climatological Network (USHCN), and are used to create the official estimate of U.S. temperatures.

Quality Control
Once the data has been collected, it is subjected to an automated quality control (QC) procedure that looks for anomalies like repeated entries of the same temperature value, minimum temperature values that exceed the reported maximum temperature of that day (or vice-versa), values that far exceed (by five sigma or more) expected values for the station, and similar checks. A full list of QC checks is available here.

Daily minimum or maximum temperatures that fail quality control are flagged, and a raw daily file is maintained that includes original values with their associated QC flags. Monthly minimum, maximum, and mean temperatures are calculated using daily temperature data that passes QC checks. A monthly mean is calculated only when nine or fewer daily values are missing or flagged. A raw USHCN monthly data file is available that includes both monthly values and associated QC flags.

The impact of QC adjustments is relatively minor. Apart from a slight cooling of temperatures prior to 1910, the trend is unchanged by QC adjustments for the remainder of the record (e.g. the red line in Figure 5).

Time of Observation (TOBs) Adjustments
Temperature data is adjusted based on its reported time of observation. Each observer is supposed to report the time at which observations were taken. While some variance of this is expected, as observers won’t reset the instrument at the same time every day, these departures should be mostly random and won’t necessarily introduce systemic bias. The major sources of bias are introduced by system-wide decisions to change observing times, as shown in Figure 3. The gradual network-wide switch from afternoon to morning observation times after 1950 has introduced a CONUS-wide cooling bias of about 0.2 to 0.25 C. The TOBs adjustments are outlined and tested in Karl et al 1986 and Vose et al 2003, and will be explored in more detail in the subsequent post. The impact of TOBs adjustments is shown in Figure 6, below.

Slide1

Figure 6. Time of observation adjustments to USHCN relative to the 1900-1910 period.
TOBs adjustments affect minimum and maximum temperatures similarly, and are responsible for slightly more than half the magnitude of total adjustments to USHCN data.

Pairwise Homogenization Algorithm (PHA) Adjustments
The Pairwise Homogenization Algorithm was designed as an automated method of detecting and correcting localized temperature biases due to station moves, instrument changes, microsite changes, and meso-scale changes like urban heat islands.

The algorithm (whose code can be downloaded here) is conceptually simple: it assumes that climate change forced by external factors tends to happen regionally rather than locally. If one station is warming rapidly over a period of a decade a few kilometers from a number of stations that are cooling over the same period, the warming station is likely responding to localized effects (instrument changes, station moves, microsite changes, etc.) rather than a real climate signal.

To detect localized biases, the PHA iteratively goes through all the stations in the network and compares each of them to their surrounding neighbors. It calculates difference series between each station and their neighbors (separately for min and max) and looks for breakpoints that show up in the record of one station but none of the surrounding stations. These breakpoints can take the form of both abrupt step-changes and gradual trend-inhomogenities that move a station’s record further away from its neighbors. The figures below show histograms of all the detected breakpoints (and their magnitudes) for both minimum and maximum temperatures.

Slide1

Figure 7. Histogram of all PHA changepoint adjustments for versions 3.1 and 3.2 of the PHA for minimum (left) and maximum (right) temperatures.
While fairly symmetric in aggregate, there are distinct temporal patterns in the PHA adjustments. The single largest of these are positive adjustments in maximum temperatures to account for transitions from LiG instruments to MMTS and ASOS instruments in the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s. Other notable PHA-detected adjustments are minimum (and more modest maximum) temperature shifts associated with a widespread move of stations from inner city rooftops to newly-constructed airports or wastewater treatment plants after 1940, as well as gradual corrections of urbanizing sites like Reno, Nevada. The net effect of PHA adjustments is shown in Figure 8, below.

Slide1

Figure 8. Pairwise Homogenization Algorithm adjustments to USHCN relative to the 1900-1910 period.
The PHA has a large impact on max temperatures post-1980, corresponding to the period of transition to MMTS and ASOS instruments. Max adjustments are fairly modest pre-1980s, and are presumably responding mostly to the effects of station moves. Minimum temperature adjustments are more mixed, with no real century-scale trend impact. These minimum temperature adjustments do seem to remove much of the urban-correlated warming bias in minimum temperatures, even if only rural stations are used in the homogenization process to avoid any incidental aliasing in of urban warming, as discussed in Hausfather et al. 2013.

The PHA can also effectively detect and deal with breakpoints associated with Time of Observation changes. When NCDC’s PHA is run without doing the explicit TOBs adjustment described previously, the results are largely the same (see the discussion of this in Williams et al 2012). Berkeley uses a somewhat analogous relative difference approach to homogenization that also picks up and removes TOBs biases without the need for an explicit adjustment.

With any automated homogenization approach, it is critically important that the algorithm be tested with synthetic data with various types of biases introduced (step changes, trend inhomogenities, sawtooth patterns, etc.), to ensure that the algorithm will identically deal with biases in both directions and not create any new systemic biases when correcting inhomogenities in the record. This was done initially in Williams et al 2012 and Venema et al 2012. There are ongoing efforts to create a standardized set of tests that various groups around the world can submit homogenization algorithms to be evaluated by, as discussed in our recently submitted paper. This process, and other detailed discussion of automated homogenization, will be discussed in more detail in part three of this series of posts.

Infilling
Finally we come to infilling, which has garnered quite a bit of attention of late due to some rather outlandish claims of its impact. Infilling occurs in the USHCN network in two different cases: when the raw data is not available for a station, and when the PHA flags the raw data as too uncertain to homogenize (e.g. in between two station moves when there is not a long enough record to determine with certainty the impact that the initial move had). Infilled data is marked with an “E” flag in the adjusted data file (FLs.52i) provided by NCDC, and its relatively straightforward to test the effects it has by calculating U.S. temperatures with and without the infilled data. The results are shown in Figure 9, below:

Slide1

Figure 9. Infilling-related adjustments to USHCN relative to the 1900-1910 period.
Apart from a slight adjustment prior to 1915, infilling has no effect on CONUS-wide trends. These results are identical to those found in Menne et al 2009. This is expected, because the way NCDC does infilling is to add the long-term climatology of the station that is missing (or not used) to the average spatially weighted anomaly of nearby stations. This is effectively identical to any other form of spatial weighting.

To elaborate, temperature stations measure temperatures at specific locations. If we are trying to estimate the average temperature over a wide area like the U.S. or the Globe, it is advisable to use gridding or some more complicated form of spatial interpolation to assure that our results are representative of the underlying temperature field. For example, about a third of the available global temperature stations are in U.S. If we calculated global temperatures without spatial weighting, we’d be treating the U.S. as 33% of the world’s land area rather than ~5%, and end up with a rather biased estimate of global temperatures. The easiest way to do spatial weighting is using gridding, e.g. to assign all stations to grid cells that have the same size (as NASA GISS used to do) or same lat/lon size (e.g. 5×5 lat/lon, as HadCRUT does). Other methods include kriging (used by Berkeley Earth) or a distance-weighted average of nearby station anomalies (used by GISS and NCDC these days).

As shown above, infilling has no real impact on temperature trends vs. not infilling. The only way you get in trouble is if the composition of the network is changing over time and if you do not remove the underlying climatology/seasonal cycle through the use of anomalies or similar methods. In that case, infilling will give you a correct answer, but not infilling will result in a biased estimate since the underlying climatology of the stations is changing. Thishas been discussed at length elsewhere, so I won’t dwell on it here.

I’m actually not a big fan of NCDC’s choice to do infilling, not because it makes a difference in the results, but rather because it confuses things more than it helps (witness all the sturm und drang of late over “zombie stations”). Their choice to infill was primarily driven by a desire to let people calculate a consistent record of absolute temperatures by ensuring that the station composition remained constant over time. A better (and more accurate) approach would be to create a separate absolute temperature product by adding a long-term average climatology field to an anomaly field, similar to the approach that Berkeley Earth takes.

Changing the Past?
Diligent observers of NCDC’s temperature record have noted that many of the values change by small amounts on a daily basis. This includes not only recent temperatures but those in the distant past as well, and has created some confusion about why, exactly, the recorded temperatures in 1917 should change day-to-day. The explanation is relatively straightforward. NCDC assumes that the current set of instruments recording temperature is accurate, so any time of observation changes or PHA-adjustments are done relative to current temperatures. Because breakpoints are detected through pair-wise comparisons, new data coming in may slightly change the magnitude of recent adjustments by providing a more comprehensive difference series between neighboring stations.

When breakpoints are removed, the entire record prior to the breakpoint is adjusted up or down depending on the size and direction of the breakpoint. This means that slight modifications of recent breakpoints will impact all past temperatures at the station in question though a constant offset. The alternative to this would be to assume that the original data is accurate, and adjusted any new data relative to the old data (e.g. adjust everything in front of breakpoints rather than behind them). From the perspective of calculating trends over time, these two approaches are identical, and its not clear that there is necessarily a preferred option.

Hopefully this (and the following two articles) should help folks gain a better understanding of the issues in the surface temperature network and the steps scientists have taken to try to address them. These approaches are likely far from perfect, and it is certainly possible that the underlying algorithms could be improved to provide more accurate results. Hopefully the ongoing International Surface Temperature Initiative, which seeks to have different groups around the world send their adjustment approaches in for evaluation using common metrics, will help improve the general practice in the field going forward. There is also a week-long conference at NCAR next week on these issues which should yield some interesting discussions and initiatives.

happyjack27
Posts: 1438
Joined: Wed Jul 14, 2010 5:27 pm

Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by happyjack27 »

RERT, i put "climategate" into the debunker.

This time i'm posting the second result because it's from a different website. Adding a little variety.

If you want to see the first result you can go here: https://www.skepticalscience.com/Climat ... hacked.htm

The second result was:
http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/so ... FxV81UrLRY

Again, i'm being lazy and not copying the formatting or images.

Debunking Misinformation About Stolen Climate Emails in the "Climategate" Manufactured Controversy

The manufactured controversy over emails stolen from the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit has generated a lot more heat than light. The email content being quoted does not indicate that climate data and research have been compromised. Most importantly, nothing in the content of these stolen emails has any impact on our overall understanding that human activities are driving dangerous levels of global warming. Media reports and contrarian claims that they do are inaccurate.

Investigations Clear Scientists of Wrongdoing

Six official investigations have cleared scientists of accusations of wrongdoing.

A three-part Penn State University cleared scientist Michael Mann of wrongdoing.
Two reviews commissioned by the University of East Anglia"supported the honesty and integrity of scientists in the Climatic Research Unit."
A UK Parliament report concluded that the emails have no bearing on our understanding of climate science and that claims against UEA scientists are misleading.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Inspector General's office concluded there was no evidence of wrongdoing on behalf of their employees.
The National Science Foundation's Inspector General's office concluded, "Lacking any direct evidence of research misconduct...we are closing this investigation with no further action."
Other agencies and media outlets have investigated the substance of the emails.

The Environmental Protection Agency, in response to petitions against action to curb heat-trapping emissions, dismissed attacks on the science rooted in the stolen emails.
Factcheck.org debunked claims that the emails put the conclusions of climate science into question.
Politifact.com rated claims that the emails falsify climate science as "false."
An Associated Press review of the emails found that they "don't undercut the vast body of evidence showing the world is warming because of man-made greenhouse gas emissions."
Background Information

Scientists Statement—An Open Letter to Congress from U.S. Scientists on Climate Change and Recently Stolen Emails (pdf)
Letter from James McCarthy, a former Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change lead author, to Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) (pdf)
Press Releases and Factchecks

Nov. 23, 2009—Contrarians Using Hacked E-mails to Attack Climate Science
Dec. 02, 2009—Members of Congress Advance Climate Change Conspiracy Theories
Dec. 02, 2009—More Scientists Join Call to Reject Stolen E-mail Claims
Dec. 04, 2009—Top U.S. Scientists Tell Congress Stolen Emails Have No Bearing on Climate Science
Dec. 17, 2009—Factcheck: Sen. Inhofe Can't Even Get the Dates Right on Stolen Emails
Dec. 18, 2009—UCS Urges Rep. Sensenbrenner to Stop Attacking Scientists
Dec. 23, 2009—Patrick Michales Falsely Blaims Content of Stolen Emails for Resignations at Climate Science Journal
Additional Resources

Real Climate has been following the hacked e-mail story with posts from scientists explaining what phrases in various e-mails mean.
Phil Jones did an interview with the The Guardian on the e-mails.
Michael Mann covered several of the claims on DeSmog Blog.
Michael Mann repsonded to an op-ed by former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin in the Washington Post.
Some news organizations have misreported critical aspects of the stolen email story. There is no evidence scientists did anything with temperature data they weren't already doing openly in peer-reviewed papers.

At this time, there is no evidence that scientists "fudged," "manipulated" or "manufactured" data. These unsupported claims, based on taking the emails out of context, are being promoted by long-time anti-science opponents of climate change legislation. The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the University of East Anglia and Penn State University are separately looking into the contents of the stolen emails to assess these claims.

While the emails have raised some concerns, the email content being quoted does not indicate that climate data and research have been compromised. Most importantly, nothing in the content of these stolen emails has any impact on our overall understanding that human activities are driving dangerous levels of global warming. Media reports and contrarian claims that they do are inaccurate.

University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit Director Phil Jones wasn't "hiding" anything that wasn't already being openly discussed in scientific papers. He was using a "trick"—a technique—published in the peer-reviewed scientific literature.

This email exchange from 1999 seems to refer to scientists examining past climate data and communicating with one another about it. In particular, Jones is talking about how scientists compare temperature data from thermometers with temperature data derived from tree rings. Comparing that data allows scientists to derive past temperature data for several centuries before accurate thermometer measurements were available. The global average surface temperature since 1880 is based on thermometer and satellite temperature measurements.

The "trick" is actually a technique (in other words, a "trick of the trade") used in a peer-reviewed, academic science journal article published in 1998. "Hiding the decline," another phrase that has received much attention, refers to another technique used in another academic science journal article. In any case, no one was tricking anyone or hiding anything. Rather, this email exchange shows scientists communicating about different ways to look at the same data that were being discussed at the time in the peer-reviewed literature. Later the same data were discussed at length in a 2007 IPCC report.

In some parts of the world, tree rings are a good substitute for temperature record. Trees form a ring of new growth every growing season. Generally, warmer temperatures produce thicker tree rings, while colder temperatures produce thinner ones. Other factors, such as precipitation, soil properties, and the tree's age also can affect tree ring growth.

The "trick," which was used in a paper published in 1998 in the science journal Nature, is to combine the older tree ring data with thermometer data. Combining the two data sets can be difficult, and scientists are always interested in new ways to make temperature records more accurate.

Tree rings are a largely consistent source of data for the past 2,000 years. But since the 1960s, scientists have noticed there are a handful of tree species in certain areas that appear to indicate temperatures that are warmer or colder than we actually know they are from direct thermometer measurement at weather stations.

"Hiding the decline" in this email refers to omitting data from some Siberian trees after 1960. This omission was openly discussed in the latest climate science update in 2007 from the IPCC, so it is not "hidden" at all.

Why Siberian trees? In the Yamal region of Siberia, there is a small set of trees with rings that are thinner than expected after 1960 when compared with actual thermometer measurements there. Scientists are still trying to figure out why these trees are outliers. Some analyses have left out the data from these trees after 1960 and have used thermometer temperatures instead.

Techniques like this help scientists reconstruct past climate temperature records based on the best available data.

In another email, Kevin Trenberth, a climate scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Colorado, wrote that systems for observing short-term annual climate variation are inadequate and complained: "The fact is that we can't account for the lack of warming at the moment, and it is a travesty that we can't…. Our observing system is inadequate."

Scientists have high confidence about global temperature trends over recent decades because those observations are based on a massive amount of data. That's why we can say with certainty that over the past several decades, the Earth has warmed. We can also say with certainty that continuing to overload the atmosphere with carbon dioxide will cause it to warm further.

But scientists are still trying to understand how the climate shifts in the short term, on a year-to-year basis for instance. In this email, Trenberth is bemoaning the lack of monitoring equipment in the ocean and atmosphere around the world that would give scientists more information to help understand exactly how short-term climate variation happens. In particular, he references 2008, which was cooler than scientists expected, but still among the 10 warmest years since instrumental records began.

The sentiments in Trenberth's private email reflect his public communication. Trenberth talked about this same issue in a scientific paper in 2009 (pdf), in which he addresses this exact question.

There is no clear evidence to date that scientists violated important principles of scientific integrity. And the emails do not undermine the science.

Some emails relating to avoiding freedom of information requests and keeping articles out of journals have raised concerns about scientific integrity. Scientists should always be as open as possible with their data and methods. Transparency is critical for accountability on all sides. For his part, Phil Jones claims he didn't delete any email messages in response to freedom of information requests. If he did, that conduct would be wrong. But to date, there is no evidence that any emails were deleted.

Science must be viewed in context. When one places the emails in context, they don't amount to much—and as noted above, they do not undermine climate data or research. Likewise, it is important to understand the scientific integrity claims against the scientists in context.

Regardless of whether the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit staff complied with freedom of information requests, their data is still rigorous and matches the three other independent temperature data sets at NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Japanese Meteorological Society.

Much has been made about emails regarding a certain paper that some scientists did not think should have been published in a peer-reviewed academic journal. These emails focus on a paper on solar variability in the climate over time. It was published in a peer-reviewed journal called Climate Research, but under unusual circumstances. Half of the editorial board of Climate Research resigned in protest against what they felt was a failure of the peer review process. The paper, which argued that current warming was unexceptional, was disputed by scientists whose work was cited in the paper. Many subsequent publications set the record straight, which demonstrates how the peer review process over time tends to correct such lapses. Scientists later discovered that the paper was funded by the American Petroleum Institute.

In a later e-mail, Phil Jones references two other papers he didn't hold in high esteem. "I can't see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow - even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!"

Yet, the papers in question made it into the IPCC report, indicating that no restrictions on their incorporation were made. The IPCC process contains hundreds of authors and reviewers, with an exacting and transparent review process.

The fact that groups opposing action on climate change are crying "conspiracy" shows how desperate they are to discredit scientists.

The thousands of stolen emails span more than a decade. Whoever stole them could only produce a handful of messages that, when taken out of context, might seem suspicious to people who are not familiar with the intimate details of climate science.

Opponents of climate action have been attacking climate science for years. The fact that out-of-context personal attacks on scientists are the most successful argument they can offer speaks volumes about their failure to gain any traction by arguing against the evidence.

Their strategy has unfortunate consequences, too. On December 8, the Guardian reported that University of East Anglia scientists have been receiving death threats.

The timing of the publication of these emails should make us suspicious about the motivations of the people who hacked them.

The stolen emails were published just two weeks ahead of a major U.N. climate change conference in Copenhagen. According to a British newspaper, they were originally hacked in October. Whoever published these emails likely wanted to spread misinformation about climate science to try to undermine the conference. The University of East Anglia, which housed the emails, has launched an investigation to determine who stole them.

Scientists are as human as anybody else.

Some of the other emails simply show scientists expressing frustration and—in one email—even talking (not seriously, we hope) about beating up someone who had, in his view, made an unfair, public attack on his colleague. Such chatter is not surprising to find in private emails. But they have generated widespread attention in part because they don't mesh with the public's image of scientists.

Scientists have a wide array of dispositions. But regardless of how scientists act, they should all advance their arguments through evidence and valid scientific interpretations. The process of science is what is important. Over time, rigorous analyses, vetted through expert peer review, tend to weed out poorly substantiated arguments. And only the best explanations for how the world works—such as the obvious evidence that excess carbon dioxide emissions are driving global warming—survive the process.

We Need Your Support
to Make Change Happen
We can reduce global warming emissions and ensure communities have the resources they need to withstand the effects of climate change—but not without you. Your generous support helps develop science-based solutions for a healthy, safe, and sustainable future.
Last edited by happyjack27 on Thu Dec 22, 2016 10:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

happyjack27
Posts: 1438
Joined: Wed Jul 14, 2010 5:27 pm

Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by happyjack27 »

RERT, I decided I might as well post the third result, too. in case you are still left with misconceptions.

You can go ahead and do more research yourself by just typing "climategate" into the debunker: https://cse.google.com:443/cse/publicur ... b_pytebcxg you'll find it's surprisingly easy.

The Fake Scandal of Climategate

Posted on 20 November 2010 by James Wight
It’s bad enough that global warming contrarians are successfully misleading the public by propagating misconceptions about climate science. But recently it has become popular to attack climate scientists themselves, to accuse them of fraud and conspiracy. Exhibit No. 1 of the climate conspiracy theory is a collection of emails stolen (or possibly leaked) from the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia (UEA), which appeared on the internet in November 2009.

Founded in 1972, CRU is only a small research unit with around 16 staff. CRU is best known for its work, since 1978, on a global record of instrumental temperature measurements from 1850 to the present, or CRUTEM. CRU’s land surface temperatures are combined with the UK Met Office Hadley Centre’s sea surface temperatures to form the global land-ocean record HadCRUT. CRU has also published reconstructions of pre-1850 temperatures based on tree rings, and CRU scientists have been involved in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

The 1,073 emails span 13 years of correspondence between colleagues at CRU. Much of it is mundane, but in this digital age it took only a matter of hours for contrarians to do some quote-mining. Contrarians alleged that the CRU scientists had manipulated data to support predetermined conclusions, that they had stonewalled Freedom of Information (FoI) requests for data, and that they had corrupted the peer review and IPCC processes.

The story was quickly dubbed “Climategate”, and it spread rapidly from arcane contrarian blogs through conservative columnists to the mainstream media. The hyperbole was turned up to eleven. Conspiracy theorists had a field day, claiming that anyone even mentioned in the emails, or remotely connected to CRU, must also be part of a conspiracy. In this way, the Climategate conspiracy theory snowballed to include the entire field of climate science. The Climategate emails were held up as “the final nail in the coffin of anthropogenic global warming”, and the media were only too happy to play up the controversy.

The CRU scientists have been cleared

In the months that followed, there were several inquiries into the allegations resulting from the emails. When a few of the more suggestive email quotes are reeled off by pundits without much context, they can sound pretty damning. But each and every one of these inquiries has found no fraud and no conspiracy.

The most comprehensive inquiry was the Independent Climate Change Email Review led by Sir Muir Russell, commissioned by UEA to examine the behaviour of the CRU scientists (but not the scientific validity of their work). It published its final report in July 2010 (all quotes are taken from this report unless otherwise specified). This inquiry was no whitewash: it examined the main allegations arising from the emails and their implications in meticulous detail. It focused on what the CRU scientists did, not what they said, investigating the evidence for and against each allegation. It interviewed CRU and UEA staff, and took 111 submissions including one from CRU itself. And it also did something the media completely failed to do: it attempted to put the actions of CRU scientists into context.

The Review went back to primary sources to see if CRU really was hiding or falsifying their data. It considered how much CRU’s actions influenced the IPCC’s conclusions about temperatures during the past millennium. It commissioned a paper by Dr Richard Horton, editor of The Lancet, on the context of scientific peer review. And it asked IPCC Review Editors how much influence individuals could wield on writing groups. Many of these are things any journalist could have done relatively easily, but few ever bothered to do.

The Review also commented on the broader context of science in the 21st century. To paraphrase from Chapter 5: the emergence of the blogosphere requires significantly more openness from scientists. However, providing the details necessary to validate large datasets can be difficult and time-consuming, and how FoI laws apply to research is still an evolving area. Meanwhile, the public needs to understand that science cannot and does not produce absolutely precise answers. Though the uncertainties may become smaller and better constrained over time, uncertainty in science is a fact of life which policymakers have to deal with. The chapter concludes: “the Review would urge all scientists to learn to communicate their work in ways that the public can access and understand”.

The Review points out the well-known psychological phenomenon that email is less formal than other forms of communication: “Extreme forms of language are frequently applied to quite normal situations by people who would never use it in other communication channels.” The CRU scientists assumed their emails to be private, so they used “slang, jargon and acronyms” which would have been more fully explained had they been talking to the public. And although some emails suggest CRU went out of their way to make life difficult for their critics, there are others which suggest they were bending over backwards to be honest. Therefore the Review found “the e-mails cannot always be relied upon as evidence of what actually occurred, nor indicative of actual behaviour that is extreme, exceptional or unprofessional.” [section 4.3]

So when put into the proper context, what do these emails actually reveal about the behaviour of the CRU scientists? The report concluded (its emphasis):

Climate science is a matter of such global importance, that the highest standards of honesty, rigour, and openness are needed in its conduct. On the specific allegations made against the behaviour of CRU scientists, we find that their rigour and honesty as scientists are not in doubt.

In addition, we do not find that their behaviour has prejudiced the balance of advice given to policy makers. In particular, we did not find any evidence of behaviour that might undermine the conclusions of the IPCC assessments.

But we do find that there has been a consistent pattern of failing to display the proper degree of openness, both on the part of the CRU scientists and on the part of the UEA, who failed to recognize not only the significance of statutory requirements but also the risk to the reputation of the University and indeed, to the credibility of UK climate science. [1.3]

These general findings are more or less consistent across the various allegations the Review investigated. Its specific findings will be summarized in the coming posts in this series.

Do the emails reveal a conspiracy?

The argument that Climategate reveals an international climate science conspiracy is not really a very skeptical one. Sure, it is skeptical in the weak sense of questioning authority, but it stops there. Unlike true skepticism, it doesn’t go on to objectively examine all the evidence and draw a conclusion based on that evidence. Instead, it cherry-picks suggestive emails, seeing everything as incontrovertible evidence of a conspiracy, and concludes all of mainstream climate science is guilty by association. This is not skepticism; this is conspiracy theory.

In reality, Climategate has not thrown any legitimate doubt on CRU’s results, let alone the conclusions of the entire climate science community. The entire work of CRU comprises only a small part of the evidence for AGW. There are all sorts of lines of evidence for global warming, and for a human influence on climate, which in no way depend on the behaviour of the CRU scientists. Global warming has been observed not just on land but also over the oceans and in the troposphere, as well as being confirmed by many other indicators such as ocean heat content, humidity, sea level, glaciers, and Arctic sea ice. And while the hockey stick tells us that humans have caused a profound disturbance to our climate system, we don’t need it to know that humans are causing global warming. The pattern of warming we observe is the same as that long predicted for greenhouse warming: the stratosphere is cooling, nights have warmed faster than days, and winters faster than summers.

But this reality doesn’t fit into the narrative that the contrarians would like to tell: that AGW is a house of cards that is falling down. It is very difficult to attack all of these diverse lines of evidence for global warming. Instead they tend to focus on some of the better publicized ones and try to associate them with a few individuals, making a much easier target. Yet while contrarians have been nosing around in scientists’ emails, the actual science has, if anything, become more concerning. Many major studies during 2009 and 2010 found things may be worse than previously thought.

The media dropped the ball

There is a famous quotation attributed to Mark Twain: “A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.” This is more true in the internet age than it was when Mark Twain was alive. Unfortunately, it took months for the Climategate inquiries to put on their shoes, and by the time they reported, the damage had already been done. The media acted as an uncritical loudspeaker for the initial allegations, which will now continue to circulate around the world forever, then failed to give anywhere near the same amount of coverage to the inquiries clearing the scientists involved. For instance, Rupert Murdoch’s The Australian published no less than 85 stories about Climategate, but not one about the Muir Russell inquiry.

Even the Guardian, who have a relatively good track record on environmental reporting and were quick to criticize the worst excesses of climate conspiracy theorists, could not resist the lure of stolen emails. As George Monbiot writes, journalists see FoI requests and email hacking as a way of keeping people accountable, rather than the distraction from actual science which they are to scientists. In contrast, CRU director Phil Jones says: “I wish people would spend as much time reading my scientific papers as they do reading my e-mails.”

In defending the CRU scientists, I don’t want to come across as someone who thinks people with respectable jobs can’t do anything wrong. That’s not it at all. Scientists are human like everyone else, they make mistakes all the time, and sometimes they may behave badly. My complaint is that the media seem to expect scientists to be perfect; those who expect perfection are always going to be disappointed.

This is part of a broader problem with climate change reporting: the media holds scientists to far higher standards than it does contrarians. Climate scientists have to be right 100% of the time, but contrarians apparently can get away with being wrong nearly 100% of the time. The tiniest errors of climate scientists are nitpicked and blown out of all proportion, but contrarians get away with monstrous distortions and cherry-picking of evidence. Around the same time The Australian was bashing climate scientists, the same newspaper had no problem publishing Viscount Monckton’s blatant misrepresentations of IPCC projections (not to mention his demonstrably false conspiracy theory that the Copenhagen summit was a plot to establish a world government).

Scientists attempted to defend themselves from these attacks. 255 members of the National Academy of Sciences signed an open letter calling for an end to the politically motivated attacks on climate scientists and urging immediate action on climate change. They submitted the letter as an op-ed to the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and the Washington Post. All of these newspapers had reported the attacks on climate scientists without any qualms, yet all of them refused to publish the letter. Instead the scientists submitted their open letter to Science.

This appalling double standard must come to an end. Where is the 12-part Guardian investigation on climate denial? Where are all the inquiries into Monckton’s misrepresentations of climate science, and the misinformation he is conveying to policymakers? Why doesn’t the InterAcademy Council review the scholarship of the Wegman report instead of the IPCC? (Wegman’s inquiry into the hockey stick was commissioned by and presented to the US Congress. The blogger Deep Climate has recently alleged that a large fraction of the text in his report was plagiarized. If the media applied the same standards to contrarians as they do to mainstream scientists, this should have been a huge scandal, but the media have given it almost no coverage.)

In the current model of environmental reporting, the contrarians do not lose anything by making baseless accusations. In fact, it is in their interests to throw as much mud at scientists as possible to increase the chance that some of it will stick in the public consciousness. But there is untold damage to the reputation of the scientists against whom the accusations are being made. We can only hope that in future the media will be less quick to jump to conclusions. If only editors and producers would stop and think for a moment about what they’re doing: they are playing with the future of the planet.

What are the scandal’s repercussions?

So the science is unchanged by Climategate. But politically, as many others have lamented, the affair has been very damaging both to public trust in science and to the prospects of mitigating future warming. Less has been written on the repercussions for the scientists themselves.

For one thing, the CRU scientists and other prominent climatologists are being targeted by unbelievably vitriolic and paranoid hate mail. Phil Jones told the Sunday Times he had received a number of death threats including two in one week, and considered suicide. In the US (where freedom of speech means the police cannot do anything about it), the late Stephen Schneider said he’d received hundreds of abusive emails. A number of climate scientists allegedly appeared on a neo-Nazi death list. In Australia too, climate scientists get hate mail, as do environmental journalists and Greens politicians.

Before you dismiss these emailers as nutcases unconnected with more sophisticated contrarians, consider that Marc Morano, communications director for US Republican Senator James Inhofe and owner of the website Climate Depot, makes a habit of posting the email addresses of those he disagrees with. Morano has also been quoted as saying about climate scientists: “I seriously believe we should kick them while they’re down. They deserve to be publicly flogged.” Michael Mann told the Guardian some of his hate mail looked “cut-and-paste”. And during the Copenhagen conference, The Australian attacked Ian Fry, an Australian representing Tuvalu, because he lives away from the coast; the front-page story included a photo of his house, making it possible to deduce his address.

Schneider said he noticed a dramatic increase in hate mail whenever certain right-wing commentators attacked climate scientists. When the CRU email story broke, popular Fox News personality Glenn Beck lamented that “there’s not enough knives on planet Earth” for the “dishonored scientists” to kill themselves. Talk radio personality Rush Limbaugh, said they should be “drawn and quartered”. Another talk radio host, Alex Jones, called proponents of AGW a “devil cult” who “want your property”, “a bunch of eugenicist killers” who “know it’s a scam” and “hate freedom”, “bloodthirsty control freaks” who “want to kill you and your family” (though he insisted he was “not trying to demonise them”).

Meanwhile, the US Republican Party has stepped up its war on science. In March, Republican Senator James Inhofe called for a criminal prosecution of at least 17 climate scientists — a witch-hunt against anyone even remotely associated with the CRU emails. The Republican Attorney General of Virginia, Ken Cuccinelli, went further. In April, alleging that Michael Mann committed fraud against taxpayers, Cuccinelli demanded that the University of Virginia (UVA) provide documents relating to all of Mann’s government research grants while he was at UVA between 1999 and 2005; as well as all Mann’s correspondence with anybody on a list of 40 individuals, correspondence referencing any of those people, and correspondence with UVA administrators; and more. After this was thrown out of court in August because the grants in question were out of Cuccinelli’s jurisdiction, Cuccinelli came back with a narrower case concerning a single grant which had nothing to do with the hockey stick, alleging that some of Mann’s conclusions were not statistically rigorous. As RealClimate pointed out: “This is not just an attack on Mike Mann, it is an attack on the whole scientific enterprise.”

All in all, it has been a pretty terrible year to be a climate scientist. These hard-working scientists should be the real heroes of this story, yet instead they have been the recipients of political bullying tactics.

Far from exposing a global warming fraud, “Climategate” merely exposed the depths to which contrarians are willing to sink in their attempts to manufacture doubt about AGW. They cannot win the argument on scientific grounds, so now they are trying to discredit researchers themselves. Climategate was a fake scandal from beginning to end, and the media swallowed it hook, line, and sinker. The real scandal is the attacks on climate science which have done untold damage to the reputation of the scientists involved, the reputation of climate science (maybe even science generally), and the fight to save the planet.

happyjack27
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Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by happyjack27 »

RERT, here's an article explaining the robustness of the 97% figure:
Communicating the expert consensus is very important in terms of increasing public awareness of human-caused climate change and support for climate solutions. Thus it's perhaps not surprising that Cook et al. (2013) and its 97% consensus result have been the subject of extensive denial among the usual climate contrarian suspects. After all, the fossil fuel industry, right-wing think tanks, and climate contrarians have been engaged in a disinformation campaign regarding the expert climate consensus for over two decades. For example, Western Fuels Association conducted a half-million dollar campaign in 1991 designed to ‘reposition global warming as theory (not fact).’

The 97% Consensus is a Robust Result
Nevertheless, the existence of the expert consensus on human-caused global warming is a reality, as is clear from an examination of the full body of evidence. For example, Naomi Oreskes found no rejections of the consensus in a survey of 928 abstracts performed in 2004. Doran & Zimmerman (2009) found a 97% consensus among scientists actively publishing climate research. Anderegg et al. (2010) reviewed publicly signed declarations supporting or rejecting human-caused global warming, and again found over 97% consensus among climate experts. Cook et al. (2013) found the same 97% result through a survey of over 12,000 climate abstracts from peer-reviewed journals, as well as from over 2,000 scientist author self-ratings, among abstracts and papers taking a position on the causes of global warming.

In addition to these studies, we have the National Academies of Science from 33 different countries all endorsing the consensus. Dozens of scientific organizations have endorsed the consensus on human-caused global warming. Only one has ever rejected the consensus - the American Association of Petroleum Geologists - and even they shifted to a neutral position when members threatened to not renew their memberships due to its position of climate denial.

In short, the 97% consensus on human-caused global warming is a robust result, found using several different methods in various studies over the past decade. It really shouldn't be a surprise at this point, and denying it is, well, denial.

Quantifying the Human Global Warming Contribution
There have also been various studies quantifying the human contribution to global warming, as we have previously documented.

attribution 50 yr

Figure 1: Net human and natural percent contributions to the observed global surface warming over the past 50-65 years according to Tett et al. 2000 (T00, dark blue), Meehl et al. 2004 (M04, red), Stone et al. 2007 (S07, light green), Lean and Rind 2008 (LR08, purple), Huber and Knutti 2011 (HK11, light blue), Gillett et al. 2012 (G12, orange), Wigley and Santer 2012 (WS12, dark green), and Jones et al. 2013 (J12, pink).

Again, there's very little controversy here. The scientific literature is quite clear that humans have caused most of the global surface warming over the past half century, as the 2013 IPCC report stated with 95% confidence.

In Cook et al. (2013), we broadened the focus beyond definitions that quantify the human contribution, because there's a consensus gap on the mere question of whether humans are causing global warming. Nevertheless, we used the 2007 IPCC position as one of our consensus position definitions:

"We examined a large sample of the scientific literature on global [climate change], published over a 21 year period, in order to determine the level of scientific consensus that human activity is very likely causing most of the current GW (anthropogenic global warming, or AGW)."

The IPCC position (humans causing most global warming) was represented in our categories 1 and 7, which include papers that explicitly endorse or reject/minimize human-caused global warming, and also quantify the human contribution. Among the relatively few abstracts (75 in total) falling in these two categories, 65 (87%) endorsed the consensus view. Among the larger sample size of author self-rated papers in categories 1 and 7 (237 in total), 228 (96%) endorsed the consensus view that humans are causing most of the current global warming.

The self-ratings offer a larger sample size on this quantification question because of the limited real estate in a paper's abstract. Most journals have strict word limits on their abstracts, so authors have to focus on the specifics of their research. On the other hand, the author self-ratings are based on the full papers, which have much more real estate and are thus more likely to both take a position on the cause of global warming, and quantify the human contribution.

Confused Contrarians Think they are Included in the 97%
There have been a number of contrarians claiming that they are part of the 97% consensus, which they believe is limited to the position that humans are causing some global warming. The first error in this argument is in ignoring the fact that the data collected in Cook et al. (2013) included categories that quantify the human contribution, as Andrew Montford and the GWPF recently did, for example.

The second error has been made by individuals claiming they're in the 97%, but failing to actually check the data. For example, Roy Spencer claimed in testimony to US Congress that he is included in the 97% consensus. Since we made all of our data available to the public, you can see our ratings of Spencer's abstracts here. Five of his papers were captured in our literature search; we categorized four as 'no opinion' on the cause of global warming, and one as implicitly minimizing the human influence. Thus Spencer's research was included in the fewer than 3 percent of papers that either rejected or minimized the human contribution to global warming. Bjorn Lomborg made a similar error, claiming:

"Virtually everyone I know in the debate would automatically be included in the 97% (including me, but also many, much more skeptical)."

In reality Lomborg is included neither in the 97+% nor the less than 3% because as far as we can tell, he has not published any peer-reviewed climate research, and thus none of his writings were captured in our literature search. The 97% is a consensus of climate science experts, and that, Lomborg is not.

Nir Shaviv took the opposite approach, claiming he was wrongly included in the 97%. Though Shaviv also admitted that Cook et al. correctly classified his abstracts based on their content, but claimed that he worded the text in a way to slip it past the journal reviewers and editors.

"I couldn’t write these things more explicitly in the paper because of the refereeing, however, you don’t have to be a genius to reach these conclusions from the paper."

However, Shaviv, Spencer, and all other authors were invited to participate in the self-ratings process that resulted in the sae 97% consensus conclusion.

Tol's Rejected Comment
Richard Tol has also advanced various criticisms of Cook et al. (2013). It's worth noting that Tol does not dispute the existence of the consensus, writing:

"There is no doubt in my mind that the literature on climate change overwhelmingly supports the hypothesis that climate change is caused by humans. I have very little reason to doubt that the consensus is indeed correct."

Tol has nevertheless criticized the methods applied during the Cook et al. survey. For example, he has argued that the literature search should have been conducted with Scopus rather than the Web of Science in order to capture more papers, but also that fewer papers should have been included in the survey in order to focus on those specifically researching the causes of global warming. Tol has also applied various statistical tests comparing the abstract ratings to the author self-ratings, but these tests are invalid because the two phases of the survey considered different information (abstracts only vs. full papers) and are thus not comparable.

In fact, when we released the self-rating data, we explicitly discussed the difference between the two datasets and how the difference was actually instructive. As John Cook wrote,

"That's not to say our ratings of abstracts exactly matched the self-ratings by the papers' authors. On the contrary, the two sets measure different things and not only are differences expected, they're instructive."

Ultimately Tol submitted his criticisms to Environmental Research Letters as a comment, but the submission was summarily rejected by the editor who described it as a speculative opinion piece that does not identify any clear errors that would call the paper's conclusions into question.

In short, the 97% consensus has passed peer-review, while Tol's criticisms have not. Moreover, all of Tol's criticisms only apply to the abstract ratings, while the self-ratings also found the same 97% consensus result, completely independent from the abstract ratings.

Taking Consensus Denial to the Extreme
One critique of the consensus has been published in a paper in the journal Science & Education. The argument made in the paper was first published by Christopher Monckton on a climate contrarian blog. Monckton has also suggested the conspiracy theory that the journal Environmental Research Letters was created (in 2006) specifically for the purpose of publishing Cook et al. (2013).

The Monckton paper takes the point about quantification above to the extreme. It focuses exclusively on the papers that quantified human-caused global warming, and takes these as a percentage of all 12,000 abstracts captured in the literature search, thus claiming the consensus is not 97%, but rather 0.3%. The logical flaws in this argument should be obvious, and thus should not have passed through the peer-review process.

Approximately two-thirds of abstracts did not take a position on the causes of global warming, for various reasons (e.g. the causes were simply not relevant to or a key component of their specific research paper). Thus in order to estimate the consensus on human-caused global warming, it's necessary to focus on the abstracts that actually stated a position on human-caused global warming.

When addressing the consensus regarding humans being responsible for the majority of recent global warming, the same argument holds true for abstracts that do not quantify the human contribution. We simply can't know their position on the issue - that doesn't mean they endorse or reject the consensus position; they simply don't provide that information, and thus must first be removed before estimating the quantified consensus.

As noted above, when we perform this calculation, the consensus position that humans are the main cause of global warming is endorsed in 87% of abstracts and 96% of full papers. Monckton's argument is very similar to the myth that CO2 can't cause significant global warming because it only comprises 0.04% of the atmosphere. 99% of the atmosphere is comprised of non-greenhouse gases, but these other gases are irrelevant to the question of the CO2 greenhouse effect. The percentage of CO2 as a fraction of all gases in the atmosphere is an irrelevant figure, as is the percentage of abstracts quantifying human-caused global warming as a percentage of all abstracts captured in our literature search.

It's also worth noting that based on Monckton's logic, only 0.08% of abstracts reject human-caused global warming.

Climate Consensus Denialism
Overall, the critiques of Cook et al. (2013) have all exhibited the characteristics of scientific denialism. Given the long history of consensus denial campaigns by fossil fuel interests and climate contrarians, continued resistance to the consensus is an expected result. Nevertheless, the 97% consensus is a robust result from several different studies taking a variety of approaches, including two independent methods used by Cook et al. (abstract ratings and author self-ratings). The criticisms of the paper have all exhibited the same few logical flaws, some more extreme than others, but all erroneous.

Intermediate rebuttal written by dana1981

hanelyp
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Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by hanelyp »

Happyjack, your "debunker" is producing garbage. Can you tell us what filter criteria it uses, or is that a secret like the methods used to "homogenize" climate data?
The daylight is uncomfortably bright for eyes so long in the dark.

happyjack27
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Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by happyjack27 »

hanelyp wrote:Happyjack, your "debunker" is producing garbage. Can you tell us what filter criteria it uses, or is that a secret like the methods used to "homogenize" climate data?
it doesn't sound like you're using it right.

type a climate change denial myth into the box and hit enter.

happyjack27
Posts: 1438
Joined: Wed Jul 14, 2010 5:27 pm

Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by happyjack27 »

happyjack27 wrote:
hanelyp wrote:Happyjack, your "debunker" is producing garbage. Can you tell us what filter criteria it uses, or is that a secret like the methods used to "homogenize" climate data?
it doesn't sound like you're using it right.

type a climate change denial myth into the box and hit enter.
let me walk you through an example.

i searched this forum for your name and the first thing i found was a PRATT. (point refuted a thousand times.)

i plugged the first sentence of that - "Raw temperature data show that U.S. temperatures were significantly warmer during the 1930s than they are today." into the box and hit enter. (usually you put in key words, but i'm trying to keep it simple)

i clicked on the first link that popped up after that and this is what it said:
What The Science Says:
Globally, 1934 is the 49th hottest year on record.
Climate Myth: 1934 - hottest year on record
Steve McIntyre noticed a strange discontinuity in US temperature data, occurring around January 2000. McIntyre notified NASA which acknowledged the problem as an 'oversight' that would be fixed in the next data refresh. As a result, "The warmest year on US record is now 1934. 1998 (long trumpeted by the media as record-breaking) moves to second place." (Daily Tech).
The year 1934 was a very hot year in the United States, ranking fourth behind 2012, 2006, and 1998. However, global warming takes into account temperatures over the entire planet. The U.S.'s land area accounts for only 2% of the earth's total surface area. Despite the U.S. heat in 1934, the year was not so hot over the rest of the planet, and is barely holding onto a place in the hottest 50 years in the global rankings (today it ranks 49th).

Climate change skeptics like to point to 1934 in the U.S. as proof that recent hot years are not unusual. However, this is another example of "cherry-picking" a single fact that supports a claim, while ignoring the rest of the data. Globally, the ten hottest years on record have all occurred since 1998, with 2005 and 2010 as the hottest.

The fact that there were hot years in some parts of the world in the past is not an argument against climate change. There will always be regional temperature variations as well as variations from year to year. These happened in the past, and they will continue. The problem with climate change is that on average, when looking at the entire world, the long term trend shows an unmistakable increase in global surface temperatures, in a way that is likely to dramatically alter the planet.
you see, that's what it does: it refutes points that have been refuted a thousand times. (PRATTs)

its method of operation is very simple: it just searches the web and finds some of the thousands of times the point has been refuted.

pbelter
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Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by pbelter »

happyjack27 wrote:
* two data points do not a trend make
* and Mars' climate is primarily driven by dust and albedo, not solar variations.
I haven't heard this particular research or this spin on the Mars warming. What I read was NASA explaining the warming away as Mars emerging form its own ice age due to its own version of Milankovitch cycles. Interesting, and could be true but Ockham razor says it is unlikely. If you compare 2 populations where one is your control group and both behave the same way, whatever stimuli you are testing on one group does not affect the other so it doesn't do what the experiment predicted it would.

Interesting you should say that Mars climate is driven by albedo. This is true but to a less degree than on Earth. Since Earth is 3/4 oceans, here are more clouds when it gets warmer. Clouds have much stronger albedo effect than dust. Venus, completely covered with clouds has an albedo of 0.75, Earth has 0.37 and Mars has 0.15. Increase in temperature increases evaporation which in turn increases cloud cover increasing albedo.

What I learned from the article you have posted and subsequent reading is that that negative feedback effect of increased albedo when it gets warmer apparently works on Mars too as the dust storms are more frequent when Mars is in perihelion rather than aphelion, and receives more solar energy.

It makes sense that both planets are in observed state because of self regulation mechanisms that keep them in that state.

I really wonder what the increased CO2 in Earth atmosphere really does. Between 1998 and 2016 the CO2 concentration increased from 300 to 400 ppm and and global temperatures hardly moved.
The only effect so far that I can see is the increased total biomass "global greening" and record high global harvests. If this is the only effect then we should definitely encourage producing more CO2. But it could be futile as the CO2 might have just increased naturally since geological record shows that CO2 lags behind warming and there was warming until 1998.

I wonder if the value of the increased harvests offsets all the economically harmful regulations and policies targeted at curbing CO2 production. I suspect it is so in the poor countries but not in the industrialized ones.

Maui
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Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by Maui »

NotAPhysicist wrote:Bit short on time at the moment but just to comment on the Antarctic sea ice. Yes, this is odd and counter intuitive. It turns out the sea temperatures in the Antarctic are high but due to various factors, principly to do with increased surface motion but reduced inter sea level mixing (if I read it right), we are presently seeing increased ice. This is very situational to the Antarctic and just shows climate change is complex... It doesn't show warming isn't happening.
Climate scientists do notice these things you know & they try to understand them...
Actually if you look at the IPCC sea level increase projections, while thermal expansion of water, glaciers and greenland ice sheets are major factors expected to contribute to sea-level rise, they actually predict Antarctica to gain more ice and counteract the sea level rise to a small degree under AGW. Antarctica is simply too cold to see any surface melt even at significantly warmer temperatures. However, warmer air can hold more moisture which leads to more snow which leads to more ice.

In their own words (hint: ablation = melting)
Over millennia, the slow horizontal flow of an ice sheet carries mass from areas of net accumulation (generally, in
the high-elevation interior) to areas of net loss (generally, the low-elevation periphery and the coastal perimeter).
At present, Greenland loses roughly half of its accumulated ice by surface ablation, and half by calving. Antarctica,
on the other hand, loses virtually all its accumulation by calving and submarine melt from its fringing ice shelves. Ice
shelves are floating, so their loss has only a negligible direct effect on sea level, although they can affect sea level
indirectly by altering the mass budget of their parent ice sheet (see below).

In East Antarctica, some studies using satellite radar altimetry suggest that snowfall has increased, but recent
atmospheric modelling and satellite measurements of changes in gravity find no significant increase. This apparent
disagreement may be because relatively small long-term trends are masked by the strong interannual variability
of snowfall. Projections suggest a substantial increase in 21st century Antarctic snowfall, mainly because a warmer
atmosphere would be able to carry more moisture into polar regions. Regional changes in atmospheric circulation
probably play a secondary role. For the whole of the Antarctic ice sheet, this process is projected to contribute
between 0 and 70 mm to sea level fall.
IPCC estimates for sea level change

Maui
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Location: Madison, WI

Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by Maui »

pbelter wrote:
Maui wrote:
happyjack27 wrote:
This suffices to reveal your sense of proportion.

"Global warming is a hoax. Because it's cold. Today. Where I live."
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=77GGn-E607E
It is important what data point it is.

Imagine a race of hydrophobic aliens evolving on a planet similar to Earth. They developed a scientific method and discovered that their world is round.
Now there a theory there that because the world is round it is logical you could start walking around it and walk back to the same spot without ever turning back. The problem is that no one has ever done that.
Generations of scientist gather data on humidity, winds, continental drift, etc.
Over centuries they publish millions of papers that it is got to be possible based on all the evidence.

Then they advance technologically and put a satellite in orbit. The satellite snaps pictures. It turns out there are continents but there are seas in-between and there is not a single continent that spans the entire globe and no, one cannot walk around the world.

That is a single data point that disproves the theory. But what about all the years of research and millions of papers published you say?
I would accept that a single data point can disprove a theory on two conditions:

1) There is no dispute on the data point itself. I haven't seen Happy accept any points of yours thus far... are you referring to "satellites show no warming in the troposphere"?

2) As with your scenario here the theory would require a black and white prediction while the data point must represent a black and white observation contrary to the theory's ultimate prediction.

AGW is not at all a theory that produces a black or white prediction and is not at all a theory that can be tested with a single black or white data point. AGW is a theory that says in general we expect to be able see trends in measurements that correspond with a complex formula as function of time. One data point that appears to be an outlier against all others deserves study. Some will turn out to be measurement errors. Some will turn out to due to factors previously unaccounted for and require adjustments to the theory. But I don't accept that there is any way the theory of AGW could hinge on one data point.

happyjack27
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Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by happyjack27 »

pbelter wrote:
happyjack27 wrote:
* two data points do not a trend make
* and Mars' climate is primarily driven by dust and albedo, not solar variations.
I haven't heard this particular research or this spin on the Mars warming. What I read was NASA explaining the warming away as Mars emerging form its own ice age due to its own version of Milankovitch cycles. Interesting, and could be true but Ockham razor says it is unlikely. If you compare 2 populations where one is your control group and both behave the same way, whatever stimuli you are testing on one group does not affect the other so it doesn't do what the experiment predicted it would.

Interesting you should say that Mars climate is driven by albedo. This is true but to a less degree than on Earth. Since Earth is 3/4 oceans, here are more clouds when it gets warmer. Clouds have much stronger albedo effect than dust. Venus, completely covered with clouds has an albedo of 0.75, Earth has 0.37 and Mars has 0.15. Increase in temperature increases evaporation which in turn increases cloud cover increasing albedo.

What I learned from the article you have posted and subsequent reading is that that negative feedback effect of increased albedo when it gets warmer apparently works on Mars too as the dust storms are more frequent when Mars is in perihelion rather than aphelion, and receives more solar energy.

It makes sense that both planets are in observed state because of self regulation mechanisms that keep them in that state.

I really wonder what the increased CO2 in Earth atmosphere really does. Between 1998 and 2016 the CO2 concentration increased from 300 to 400 ppm and and global temperatures hardly moved.
The only effect so far that I can see is the increased total biomass "global greening" and record high global harvests. If this is the only effect then we should definitely encourage producing more CO2. But it could be futile as the CO2 might have just increased naturally since geological record shows that CO2 lags behind warming and there was warming until 1998.

I wonder if the value of the increased harvests offsets all the economically harmful regulations and policies targeted at curbing CO2 production. I suspect it is so in the poor countries but not in the industrialized ones.
No "spin", pbelter, facts and data:

* mars climate operates very differently than ours - its heat absorption and capacity and what not is ruled by dust and reflection. thus, whatever temperature variations observed on mars are a horrible proxy for what we should expect to observe on earth under similiar conditions.
* there is no (credible) evidence that mars climate is warming

And i might add, as far as this doubly-refuted line of argument pertains to "proof that it's due to solar variation", we already know how much solar varation affects the climate on earth, because we measure it:

Image

Image
Last edited by happyjack27 on Fri Dec 23, 2016 4:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

pbelter
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Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by pbelter »

Maui wrote:]
2) As with your scenario here the theory would require a black and white prediction while the data point must represent a black and white observation contrary to the theory's ultimate prediction.

AGW is not at all a theory that produces a black or white prediction and is not at all a theory that can be tested with a single black or white data point. AGW is a theory that says in general we expect to be able see trends in measurements that correspond with a complex formula as function of time. One data point that appears to be an outlier against all others deserves study. Some will turn out to be measurement errors. Some will turn out to due to factors previously unaccounted for and require adjustments to the theory. But I don't accept that there is any way the theory of AGW could hinge on one data point.
Well seems we are getting some common ground here.
I agree with the above that AGW does not make a black and white predictions so it cannot not be disproved by showing that a color is black when the theory says it should be white because we operating shades of grey.

It is important however that some predictions are done and to see which one do hold up and which ones don't. It is equally important how the research is approached and how scientific method is applied.

Since climate fluctuations have occurred in the past and there were no humans around it is reasonable to expect that humans did not cause previous warnings. There were conditions that happened then and the first order of business to validate AGW should be to disprove that those past conditions are not occurring now. The presumption is that fluctuations the amount of solar radiation reaching Earth was the main reason.

The AGW should be all over this proving that there are no meaningful fluctuations in the Solar radiation presently occurring and getting more funding to Mars, Venus and other climate studies to use them as control group. For example, has there been a noticeable increase in mean surface temperature of the Moon? Some studies like that exist, but that are a niche product and not in the focus of the AGW proponents. Disregard for the control group is a significant point that makes the theory less plausible. Actually they started discrediting the solar variations research only after scientists studying the Sun stated that it today has an influence. They have started taking that into consideration only in response to criticism.

Another prediction is that as CO2 increases the warming increases, polar caps will melt and sea levels will rise. If this is so than why the increase of CO2 in Antarctica to levels not seen in the last 4 million years correlated with the record extent of sea ice?
Why there was noticeable cooling trend after WWII, with scientists predicting new ice age while the CO2 production did not pause during that time.
Why geological record suggests that CO2 lags behind the warming trend?

All of the above can be explained and several attempts are being made to do so. Some of them may be even right on the money, but the more explaining of unexpected behavior one has to make the less likely a theory is.

I was on the fence for long time and finally got convinced by the measurement of the Mars polar caps. The zealousy of people like happy trying to prove that everything agrees with their pet theory and there is no doubt, actually convinces me otherwise even further. When scientists like prof. Zharkova who studies Sun cycles say that there were attempts made do stop her publication, it further reinforces my current belief that AGW cannot tolerate dissenting view and is not so much about science as about a sacred belief.
Zharkova didn't even say anything about global warming, she only published prediction that there is an upcoming drop in the solar activity. Nothing about AGW, but the AGW crowd still seemed threatened.

I could entertain a thought that there is really an AGW, and there may be, but when its proponents advocate "acting now or it is too late" with several deadlines already in the past, it is too reminiscent of snake oil salesman that tells you that "you have to act now as this incredible offer is not going to last".

That behavior only does disservice, because if there is some AGW after all, nobody is going to believe it any more.
In the recent US election Trump made fun out of AGW and won while Clinton was advised by her team not to even bring it up too much as that may spoil her chances. People hear about the impeding doom for so long and then when nothing happens other than the record harvests....

pbelter
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Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by pbelter »

[quote="happyjack27"] Climate change denial myth debunker [quote]

The name calling sure indicates "Siege mentality"

If you must though, I suggest that the term more accurate than "denier" and "denial" would be "infidel" and "infidelity" :D

happyjack27
Posts: 1438
Joined: Wed Jul 14, 2010 5:27 pm

Re: Bill Gates is heading a $1 billion venture fund to combat climate change

Post by happyjack27 »

pbelter wrote:
happyjack27 wrote: Climate change denial myth debunker

The name calling sure indicates "Siege mentality"

If you must though, I suggest that the term more accurate than "denier" and "denial" would be "infidel" and "infidelity" :D
I'm calling denial denial and myth myth. Deal with it.

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