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Grist on Global Warming
Posted by: Jon Henke on Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Grist has a valuable corrective to a few of the skeptics arguments on (anthropogenic) global warming. Even if you remain a global warming skeptic, it's worth knowing that some of the anti-global warming arguments aren't worth making. (I'm leaving out their Kyoto counterargument, because it doesn't seem particularly compelling)

  • The "Hockey Stick"

    [...] According to Inhofe and other skeptics, [a] congressional investigation discovered that the hockey stick is worthless and thus that the entire edifice of climate science has fallen. The congressional investigation did not, in fact, find that. They found small errors in Mann's statistical methods, but the main finding was that the basic results of the study — the recent spike in global temperature — are basically sound and have since been confirmed by numerous other studies using a variety of methods. The hockey stick is a conservative obsession, but it's ultimately a sideshow. For more, see RealClimate here and here.


  • The 60 Canadian scientists

    ....60 Canadian scientists wrote a letter to the Prime Minister urging him to reject the global warming consensus. The letter was a vapid collection of myths; among those 60 scientists were long-time skeptics, known liars, and at least one guy who was tricked into signing. A few weeks later, 90 scientists — who unlike the original 60 were Canadian and active in climate research — wrote a letter of their own, denouncing the first. The moral: in a world with tens of thousands of PhDs, you can find at least 60 to sign anything.


  • Computer models aren't real science

    Yes they are. Furthermore, there's plenty of empirical field data supporting the basic conclusions of climate science. More here from RealClimate (written by, you know, real scientists).


  • Peiser refuted Oreskes; there is no consensus

    Back in 2004, Naomi Oreskes did a survey of peer-reviewed climate science and discovered that there was not a single piece questioning the basic climate change consensus. ... Later, social scientist Benny Peiser claimed to have refuted Oreskes' results by altering her search terms. Peiser's work has since been completely discredited, and he has admitted to major errors. ...


  • Scientists used to predict a "coming ice age"

    In the 70s, they were predicting an ice age — now they're predicting warming! Those scientists and their kooky hype. Only, that never happened. A few media reports hyped the possible ice age, but scientists never did. Climate science has been developing, as science is wont to do. Early on, there was some question about which "forcings" would be dominant, the ones that cool us off (e.g., pollution blocking sunlight) or the ones that warm us. Because scientists, unlike senators, cannot find all the information they need in their own rear ends, it took a while to settle the issue. But now it's settled — the warming forcings have it, by a mile.


I'm sure this will be about as beloved as these posts usually are, but these things are worth knowing.
 
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Comments
That said, there are some other points to be made.


  1. While it is clear that we are in a warming trend, it is unclear how significant it will be and how large the impact of man is on it.

  2. The one constant of terrestrial climate is that it is in a constant state of change. There have been several climate and ecology changes in the past 20,000 years. The redwood and sequoia forests on the west coast of the United States didn’t exist 20,000 years ago, for example.

  3. Kyoto is likely to be worse than the current problem, based on the "best" data available. Of course, if you only use worst case scenarios, that isn’t true. Most serious climate scientists don’t agree with the doomsday scenarios.

  4. Energy efficiency is a much more general issue that we should be tackling. If it turns out that humans are a significant contributor to our current warming trend, then pursuing energy efficiency is an even better thing. As long as the government subsidizes various fuel technologies, including BOTH ethanol and petroleum, there is little incentive for producers, distributors or consumers to choose the most efficient approach. Government could use its purchasing power to promote clean fuels without subsidies. For example, mandating that all new vehicle purchases by the government be zero emission.



Just a few thoughts on the topic for the morning.
 
Written By: Adam Selene
URL: http://www.thelibertypapers.org/
RealClimate (written by, you know, real scientists).
Yes, real scientists whose gravy train relies on Global Warming Climate Change.

You will also note that the author of the Hockey stick graph Michael E. Mann is a contributor
to RealClimate.


And the Global Warming Climate Change folks has no problem with dissenting opinions.
 
Written By: Paul L.
URL: http://kingdomofidiots.blogspot.com/
When they can predict the weather that I will have next week, then I will be able to buy into their models.
 
Written By: Blue
URL: http://
Amen to that, Blue!
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
The moral: in a world with tens of thousands of PhDs, you can find at least 60 to sign anything.
Or even 20,000......

http://www.oism.org/pproject/s33p357.htm
 
Written By: Come on, Please
URL: http://
When they can predict the weather that I will have next week, then I will be able to buy into their models.
Yup. Look back at the past hurricane season. Where were all of the massive killer storms in numbers greater and greater than previous eras we were supposed to have according to the Church of Global Warming? The wrath of Gaia never materialized this summer. Maybe it was Bush with his weather control machine or something.

Here’s how you KNOW if the local Global Warming zealot is really a watermellon (green outside, red inside)- if they’re so worried about global warming, but are also adamant against expansion of nuke power.

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
It’s not promising when Grists’s first point, about the hockey stick, is a lie.

The Congressional investigation did NOT find a "recent spike" in temperatures. It found that temperatures have been rising since the 1600s, the depths of the Little Ice Age (and, of course, before the industrial revolution). Which is precisely the OPPOSITE of the hockey stick. The hockey stick purported to show that temperatures were flat for most of the last millenium until the 20th century (the long handle of the hockey stick) and them rapidly shot upwards in the 20th century (the blade).
 
Written By: A.S.
URL: http://
Here’s how you KNOW if the local Global Warming zealot is really a watermellon (green outside, red inside)- if they’re so worried about global warming, but are also adamant against expansion of nuke power.
I’d say that just makes them a serious green fanatic. A watermelon is someone using environmental issues to push socialist agendas. So, a better example would be someone that is worried about global warming and uses that to justify government intrusion and regulation in the energy market. For example, by subsidizing ethanol or mandating zero emission vehicles.

Now, me, I’m some weird sort of melon, green on the outside and blue (is that the right color for free market capitalists?) on the inside. I am concerned about the environment (although I think "global warming" is way overblown and overhyped) and want to see the government stop its intervention and regulation. I think that the intervention/regulation of the market has prevented us from finding the best solutions to the issues.
 
Written By: Adam Selene
URL: http://www.thelibertypapers.org/
Some added grist for the mill...

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2006/11/05/nosplit/nwarm05.xml
First, the UN implies that carbon dioxide ended the last four ice ages. It displays two 450,000-year graphs: a sawtooth curve of temperature and a sawtooth of airborne CO2 that’s scaled to look similar. Usually, similar curves are superimposed for comparison. The UN didn’t do that. If it had, the truth would have shown: the changes in temperature preceded the changes in CO2 levels.

Next, the UN abolished the medieval warm period (the global warming at the end of the First Millennium AD). In 1995, David Deming, a geoscientist at the University of Oklahoma, had written an article reconstructing 150 years of North American temperatures from borehole data. He later wrote: "With the publication of the article in Science, I gained significant credibility in the community of scientists working on climate change. They thought I was one of them, someone who would pervert science in the service of social and political causes. One of them let his guard down. A major person working in the area of climate change and global warming sent me an astonishing email that said: ’We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period.’ "

So they did. The UN’s second assessment report, in 1996, showed a 1,000-year graph demonstrating that temperature in the Middle Ages was warmer than today. But the 2001 report contained a new graph showing no medieval warm period. It wrongly concluded that the 20th century was the warmest for 1,000 years. The graph looked like an ice hockey-stick. The wrongly flat AD1000-AD1900 temperature line was the shaft: the uptick from 1900 to 2000 was the blade. Here’s how they did it:

• They gave one technique for reconstructing pre-thermometer temperature 390 times more weight than any other (but didn’t say so).

• The technique they overweighted was one which the UN’s 1996 report had said was unsafe: measurement of tree-rings from bristlecone pines. Tree-rings are wider in warmer years, but pine-rings are also wider when there’s more carbon dioxide in the air: it’s plant food. This carbon dioxide fertilisation distorts the calculations.

• They said they had included 24 data sets going back to 1400. Without saying so, they left out the set showing the medieval warm period, tucking it into a folder marked "Censored Data".

• They used a computer model to draw the graph from the data, but scientists later found that the model almost always drew hockey-sticks even if they fed in random, electronic "red noise".


The author includes references and calculations he did in an attached PDF to the article.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://inactivist.org/blog/keith_indy
A simulation is a simulation. A simulation outputs simulated data — unreal data. A simulation is not real, by definition. Anybody who puts forth simulated data as evidence is feeding you junk science.

Give me a result and a body of data, any data, and I’ll build you a simulation that gives you the result you want.

 
Written By: rightwingprof
URL: http://rightwingnation.com
Same author challenging the economic assertions of the Stern report... (Not in the section I’m quoting.)

I find the tactics being used against skeptics to be one of the biggest indicators that something foul is afoot.

If the supporter of an argument have to resort to demonizing and dismissing those who oppose the argument, I tend to think that those opposed have hit a nerve somewhere. Certainly, it may be the case that those on the pro side are just exasperated with having to re-answer questions they think are proven incontrovertibly. But, one of the problems I’ve had, is they’ve alway used the same tactics to stifle debate, even in the beginning of the debate.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2006/11/12/nclim12.xml
Sir Nicholas Stern’s report on climate-change economics says the world must spend 1 per cent of GDP from now on to avert disaster. The current draft of the UN’s 2007 report says up to 5 per cent. Sir Nick’s team tell me: "We are confident that the UN will publish a range for costs next year in which ours will be centrally placed." So some quiet high-level co-ordination is going on. The oddest thing about Stern’s curious report was its timing. Publication of the UN’s next major science assessment is only months ahead. Why not wait and base the economics on that?

The UN needed Stern more than he needed the UN. Its 2001 report had numbers more extreme than anyone else’s, so sceptics abounded. This time, an international spinfest is shutting off dissent in advance. First, the damage done by the hockey-stick graph had to be repaired, so a series of papers supporting its conclusions quickly appeared, many written by associates of its authors.

Next, the failure of temperature to rise as the UN projected had to be explained. Hence another flurry of learned papers, this time about the "ocean notion" – the maritime heat-sink into which the missing temperature rise might be vanishing.

Above all, it was vital that this time the UN’s report should not be seen to print the biggest exaggerations around. Enter Stern.

My calculations last week had to be rubbished. Separately, The Sunday Telegraph’s letters editor and I received emails saying I’d wrongly assumed the Earth was a "blackbody" with no greenhouse effect at all (I hadn’t). The www.realclimate.org website, run by two of the "hockey-stick" graph’s authors, said the same in a blog entitled "Cuckoo science".

On Thursday, Margaret Beckett, the Foreign Secretary, compared climate sceptics to advocates of Islamic terror. Neither, she said, should have access to the media.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://inactivist.org/blog/keith_indy
I wonder how many people recall that Chaos Theory and the beginning of an understanding of how chaotic systems behave came about through the initial computer modeling (i.e. simulations) of weather patterns in the 1950’s. In other words, weather and climate are very difficult to predict with computer models because they are ........ chaotic.

The reality is that, yes, we have observed a warming trend over the past 30 years, perhaps a longer one over the past 150 years. Although the cooling trend of the 1920 to 1970 period is not accounted for in the "we’re 150 years into global warming" declaration. It may be two separate warming periods for all we know.

Anyhow, back to my point. Yes, we have observed a warming trend. We don’t know what it means yet. We may never know. It may turn out to be a random bounce of the ball off the pin and once the ball bounces again that will be the end of it.
 
Written By: Adam Selene
URL: http://www.thelibertypapers.org/
Give me a result and a body of data, any data, and I’ll build you a simulation that gives you the result you want.
Isn’t that how we all got through grad school? ;)
 
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
Grist claims "the main finding was that the basic results of the study — the recent spike in global temperature — are basically sound," but here is what was stated by the IPCC (http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/069.htm):
Mann et al. (1999) concluded that the 1990s were likely to have been the warmest decade, and 1998 the warmest year, of the past millennium for at least the Northern Hemisphere.
Here is what the congressional investigation report states (http://energycommerce.house.gov/108/home/07142006_Wegman_Report.pdf):
Our committee believes that the assessments that the decade of the 1990s was the hottest decade in a millennium and that 1998 was the hottest year in a millennium cannot be supported by the MBH98/99 analysis.
and
We note here that we are statisticians/mathematicians who were asked to comment on the correctness of the methodology found in MBH98/99. In this report we have focused on answering this question and not on whether or not the global climate is changing. We have discussed paleoclimatology only to the extent that it was necessary to make our discussion of the statistical issues clear. The instrumented temperature record makes it clear that global temperatures have risen since 1850 CE. How this present era compares to previous epochs is not clear because the uncertainties in the proxies. However, it is clear that average global temperature increases are not the real focus. It is the temperature increases at the poles that matter and average global or Northern Hemisphere increases do not address the issue. We note that according to experts at NASA’s JPL, the average ocean height is increasing by approximately 1 millimeter per year, half of which is due to melting of polar ice and the other half due to thermal expansion. The latter fact implies that the oceans are absorbing tremendous amounts of heat, which is much more alarming because of the coupling of ocean circulation to the atmosphere. (See Wunsch 2002, 2006).
The NAS also agreed that the specific statement quoted in the IPCC report was overstated (http://darwin.nap.edu/execsumm_pdf/11676):
Even less confidence can be placed in the original conclusions by Mann et al. (1999) that “the 1990s are likely the warmest decade, and 1998 the warmest year, in at least a millennium” because the uncertainties inherent in temperature reconstructions for individual years and decades are larger than those for longer time periods, and because not all of the available proxies record temperature information on such short timescales.
The lack of confidence in this part of the "hockey stick" does not undermine the evidence for increasing average global temperatures, but it does help to undermine the increasing alarmism being hyped by those who paint the gloomiest of pictures.

And maybe someone can point out where Inhof argues that "Scientists used to predict a ’coming ice age’"? The Grist link to Inhofe’s statements clearly shows that Inhofe blames the media for previously hyping a "cooling scare" just as he argues that they are hyping a warming scare now.

It seems to me that Grist is doing a bit of overstating as well.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Go with this theory -
it must be caused by us.....
or nothing we do can stop it.

Control freak meltdown.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Much like evolution, this is a bottomless pit for debate. If you want answers to those questions, they are available. Many of them (on Wegman, for example) are even available at the links included in the post. You can learn the answers to your questions if you’re willing to look it up.
 
Written By: Jon Henke
URL: http://QandO.net
Computer models are math, not science. They are not required to satisfy real laws of physics, only the mathematical approximation someone (a human) entered into it.

I work against computer models all the time. errr... with computer models. I say against because I spend much of the time explaining whey the computer model likely didn’t work when the system was actually tested.

Models are at best a reflection of a person’s understanding of certain phenomena. If their understanding is flawed, their model’s results will be flawed. They make pretty pictures people love. But I can make a model form clouds in the shape of the Virgin Mary. Doesn’t make it true.
 
Written By: jpm100
URL: http://
60 Canadian scientists wrote a letter to the Prime Minister urging him to reject the global warming consensus.
This is also a misstatement.
1) Who is claiming all 60 scientists were Canadian?
2) Where in the letter did they ask the Prime Minister to reject global warming consensus?

Why does the Grist post have to resort to repeatedly misstating the Inhofe speech? Isn’t the factual information strong enough on its own?
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
A few weeks later, 90 scientists — who unlike the original 60 were Canadian and active in climate research — wrote a letter of their own, denouncing the first.
Here is the letter. It doesn’t seem like all 90 are actually Canadian. It seems like Grist has a problem with facts?
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Oops. Wrong letter. Never mind!

Here’s the 90 scientist response letter:
http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/harper_conservatives/pdf/lettertoharper.pdf
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
If global warming presents dangers for the earth, the question regarding what percentage is man-made becomes secondary. Rather, we should ask what can be done to minimize the effect?

Comments about ’being sure’ just seem silly.
If you’re warned a hurricane is coming your way, do you want to wait until you’re absolutely sure this is true when you see your house fly across town?

The science is being attacked, to some degree, by the ’product protection’ industy. These are folks hired to issue misleading information to cause doubt about scientists’ claims. Re global warming, the oil industry has availed itself of such services (Pres. Bush’s premier adviser on the subject was an oil man)), just like the tobacco companies did in their day.

An ounce of prevention.....
 
Written By: Laime
URL: http://
More skepticism.

 
Written By: Unknown
URL: http://
Laime, the ’science’ is also being attacked/questioned by those who recognize the prudence of avoiding the waste of trillions of dollars and handing over more power to authorities to fight the ’War on Global Warming’ (WGW).
 
Written By: Unknown
URL: http://
Comments about ’being sure’ just seem silly.
You should dig a deep hole to live in, just to ’be sure’ in case of asteroid impact.

Hurricanes happen constantly. I’ve lived through a lot of them. Each year us Floridians get our fair share of them, and what misses us hits our neighbors. I’ve seen it a hundred times, I am sure the effects are real and possible.

Global Warming? Not so much. Yes, things appear to be getting warmer. Overall, this is good for life on Earth. Nobody is going to wake up one morning under 6 feet of water because of ice cap melting. It’s a slow process that will allow us to evolve with it or perish, just like life has done since the beginning of time.

The Earth weighs in at 5.972 sextillion (5,972,000,000,000,000,000,000) metric tons. There are ~6,215,000,000 people on Earth. Each person could own 960,901,045,856 pounds of Earth and nobody would have to share.

Do you really think you’re that important to this rock?
 
Written By: Robb Allen
URL: http://blog.robballen.com
More skepticism.
That was a pretty good article.
 
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
There’s nothing wrong with computer modeling per se.

But a computer model can also be dead wrong. Typically, we test them by using them to predict things, and seeing if they work even with new real-world data.

I don’t know that that’s been done successfully with any of the models used for Global Climate Change Studies.

(As this points out, referencing the first Telegraph article Keith pointed to, you don’t get to just change physical laws to make your model turn out the numbers you want. The Stefan-Boltzmann law says lambda is about .3, and you don’t get to make it 1.9, or 1, or even .6, and call your computer model anything like a realistic one.

After all, Starcraft is a "computer model" of warfare, but that doesn’t mean it applies to any actual wars ever fought or to be fought...)

Color me unconvinced of anthropogenic global warming, and doubly unconvinced that we can and should do anything about what climate change there is, especially if cost and benefit are brought into the equation.
 
Written By: Sigivald
URL: http://
~6,215,000,000 people on earth. Does anyone factor the sheer number of humans into their models?

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m4021/is_n2_v18/ai_17966623
Since 1600, the human population has increased from about half a billion to nearly 6 billion. The increase in the last decade of the 20th century exceeds the total population in 1600. Compared with human history prior to World War II, the world’s population growth rate since 1950 has been and still is unprecedented. Within the lifetime of some people now alive, world population has tripled; within the lifetime of everyone older than 40 years old, it has doubled. Yet never before the last half of this century had world population doubled within the life span of any human.
I’m just saying that’s a lot of heat and co2 generating vessels. So even if we get rid of all the cars and coal and such... what then?
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
Rather, we should ask what can be done to minimize the effect?
Whatever we do it had better not be the Kyoto Protocol. Both sides of the debate see it as a worthless - believers believe it will make little difference and skeptics think it can make little difference.

Analogy - if sea levels are going to rise by 1 m the Kyoto Protocal requires building a sea wall 6 cm high.
 
Written By: unaha-closp
URL: http://warisforwinning.blogspot.com/
I’m just saying that’s a lot of heat and co2 generating vessels. So even if we get rid of all the cars and coal and such... what then?
Since we don’t know how to do that without returning to a roughly 1600 CE level of technology, that means 5.715 billion people have to die. Or, about 92% of all humans. Of course, we will then have every disease you can imagine rampaging through the remaining 500 million humans, and I would expect there to be a massive die off of those folks as well.

But hey, we saved ourselves from the bad effects of global warming, that’s a plus!
 
Written By: Adam Selene
URL: http://www.thelibertypapers.org/
Yes, things appear to be getting warmer. Overall, this is good for life on Earth.
Interestingly, the places that it will be best for are third world areas. The places it will be worst for are the coasts of the US, among other areas. Interesting that the American coastal elites want to stop global warming, even though it will probably improve the standard of living for the third world quite a bit. Sadly, Alec Baldwin’s house will end up a wee bit wet.
 
Written By: Adam Selene
URL: http://www.thelibertypapers.org/
Nigel Lawson recently gave a speech to the Center for Policy Studies. The talk bears the title: "The Economics and Politics of Climate Change, an Appeal to Reason." This is an extremely thoughtful and articulate analysis of the issues raised by the controversy over global warming. One of Lawson’s observations is that, were one to conclude that the world’s climate is warming, the most effective way to address the issue is by "adaptation"...as the higher temperatures manifest themselves and the effects become better known, man can adapt and take action so that he (1) can take advantage of the benefits that certain regions would gain from this phenomenon (for example, some areas may become arable) and (2) take action on a localized level to address problems that the higher temperatures might cause(such as implementing anti-flooding programs in certain areas). This would be less costly, and more effective, than a Kyoto (limiting carbon emissions) approach which, especially since it excludes China, India and Brazil, is unlikely to be effective in the first place. Wealthier nations would have a responsibility to assist those countries less fortunate in developing a response to problems resulting from global warming. Another advantage of the Lawson approach is that it makes the question — is man the principal cause of the global warming phenomenon or is the earth’s climate going through one of its regular cycles — irrelevant. Whether or not man is the cause, he can and should "adapt" to the situation!
 
Written By: RAZ
URL: http://
If global warming presents dangers for the earth, the question regarding what percentage is man-made becomes secondary. Rather, we should ask what can be done to minimize the effect?
Seeing as the only change we can make is our own behavior, I’d say evaluating anthropogenic effects is only course, and naturally, the crux of the apostrophe issue. Otherwise, instead of trying to minimize the inevitable, we ought to be figuring out how to adapt.

And why is it that nefarious motives are always associated with the funding of the other side’s science.
These are folks hired to issue misleading information to cause doubt about scientists’ claims.
Of course the same thing could not be said of the Chicken Little side. /sarcasm
 
Written By: bains
URL: http://
But hey, we saved ourselves from the bad effects of global warming, that’s a plus!


Brilliant!
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
An ounce of prevention.....
Sure, well worth the investment - an ounce of prevention that costs 52 billion dollars and does nothing.

I think we should splurge, buy 8 or 9 ounces just to be sure.

Hey, are you sure what this prevention even looks like? No?
Well, never mind, just go ahead and do something, it’ll keep you happily occupied while the water rises (and the rest of us are moving to higher ground).
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
They found small errors in Mann’s statistical methods, but the main finding was that the basic results of the study — the recent spike in global temperature — are basically sound and have since been confirmed by numerous other studies using a variety of methods. The hockey stick is a conservative obsession, but it’s ultimately a sideshow.
My understanding is that the hocky stick is a lie because it ignores previous warm periods, implying that recent global warming is very different than past periods.

In other words, the recent spike is correct, it just isn’t unique.
Computer models are math, not science. They are not required to satisfy real laws of physics, only the mathematical approximation someone (a human) entered into it.


E=mc^2 is math, too. The language of physics is math, and computers provide an expanded vocabulary (powerful numerical methods for solving problems that can’t be solved in closed form).
If global warming presents dangers for the earth, the question regarding what percentage is man-made becomes secondary. Rather, we should ask what can be done to minimize the effect?
Yes, but most of what is proposed is cutting back on fossil fuel usage. If man-made warming is a very small part of the whole, then the primary solutions offered by Gore/Kyoto/et al won’t work.

In other words, if GW is a problem, a solid understanding of how to prevent it is key, and that requires an understanding of the causes.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
There’s nothing wrong with computer modeling per se.
It’s just a way of representing a theory using mathematics.
But a computer model can also be dead wrong. Typically, we test them by using them to predict things, and seeing if they work even with new real-world data.
Just as typical equations can be wrong.

Einstein’s Special Relativity was tested by verifying the deflection of light by a gravitation.

Newton’s "Laws" are really statistical approximations. We wouldn’t call them laws if we discovered them now (assuming we were otherwise as sophisticated as we are, which is doubtfull).
I don’t know that that’s been done successfully with any of the models used for Global Climate Change Studies.
I suspect that if you tweak enough parameters you can get the results you want for at least a short period of time in at least some of the models. My point is that the models are complex, and probably poorly understood by their creators.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Computer models are math, not science. They are not required to satisfy real laws of physics, only the mathematical approximation someone (a human) entered into it.
E=mc^2 is math, too. The language of physics is math, and computers provide an expanded vocabulary (powerful numerical methods for solving problems that can’t be solved in closed form).
Spoken like someone who’s never had to roll up their sleeves and deal with the consequences of someone’s theory made math.

I can make things happen in math that have impossible application in the real world.

It’s good you bring up E=mc^2. Remember that math that Einstein helped to replace? F=ma. Where F is force, m is mass, and a is acceleration

F=ma tells me all I need to go faster than the speed of light by 1000 m/s is apply 1000 N of force per every kilogram of an object for 1 second. Go ahead and try and get back to me when you break lightspeed.

I wouldn’t be surprised that E=mc^2 gives erroneous conclusions when misapplied as well.

Mathematics is an approximation to the real world at best and that’s when someone gets is mostly right. They also get it mostly wrong too. It is better to consider math models as an analogies of what happens in the real world. And like many analogies, they can make sense unto themselves, but may be poor or dead wrong to what they are trying to describe.
 
Written By: jpm100
URL: http://
Jon:

Cesare Emiliani, 1966, who predicted "a new glaciation will begin within a few thousand years." Of course after a while of no noted changes that he predicted, he started questioning his own work...
"the basic conclusion to be drawn from the discussions in this section is that the knowledge necessary for understanding the mechanism of climate change is still lamentably inadequate".
In short, they didn’t know what they were talking about.

Unfortunately the amount of sway they’ve had on the American public, has increased far more quickly than their understanding.

And again: 1971:

There was a paper by S. Ichtiaque Rasool and Stephen H. Schneider, published in the journal Science in July 1971. Titled "Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and Aerosols: Effects of Large Increases on Global Climate," the paper examined the possible future effects of two types of human environmental emissions:

1. greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide;
2. particulate pollution such as smog, some of which remains suspended in the atmosphere in aerosol form for years.

Greenhouse gases were regarded as likely factors that could promote global warming, while particulate pollution blocks sunlight and contributes to cooling. In their paper, Rasool and Schneider theorized that aerosols were more likely to contribute to climate change in the foreseeable future than greenhouse gases, stating that quadrupling aerosols "could decrease the mean surface temperature (of Earth) by as much as 3.5 C. If sustained over a period of several years, such a temperature decrease could be sufficient to trigger an ice age!" As this passage demonstrates, however, Rasool and Schneider considered global cooling a possible future scenario, but they did not predict it.
How Clintonesque....

The bottom line here, is that global cooling was the big deal, because it was scary as hell and mobilized a lot of people to support the environmental movement, and oh, by the way, the Democrats with them. Once somebody figured out that that wasn’t scientifically accurate (read this, ’they got caught’... everybody started backing away from it like a back away from somebody in the street yelling "Allah is great"...


And of course now we’re going the other direction.
But those who argue we are headed for extinction via global warming were the very same ones who were screaming global cooling not so very long ago. There’s this, also; the global temperatures that we have seen have tracked almost exactly the amount of sunspot activity. Indeed the temperature variances that we’ve noted here on earth have been noted on Mars.

And of course, nobody says anything about man’s interference on Mars. Must be that damned SUV they parked up there, huh?
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://
Seems there is a simple solution, as presented by Bithead...

Increase particulate pollution such as smog...

Or create a big sun shade in space to help cool parts of the earth now and then.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://inactivist.org/blog/keith_indy
"It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his job depends on not understanding it."—Upton Sinclair

Even if you don’t understand statistics, a browse through www.climateaudit.org and you’ll see that something in very rotten in the science of "Global Warming".
 
Written By: Jay Evans
URL: http://
Spoken like someone who’s never had to roll up their sleeves and deal with the consequences of someone’s theory made math.
Nope, not at all.
I can make things happen in math that have impossible application in the real world.
Yes, that’s easy.
It’s good you bring up E=mc^2. Remember that math that Einstein helped to replace? F=ma. Where F is force, m is mass, and a is acceleration
Newton’s equations were used in to put man on the moon; they haven’t exactly been replaced.
F=ma tells me all I need to go faster than the speed of light by 1000 m/s is apply 1000 N of force per every kilogram of an object for 1 second. Go ahead and try and get back to me when you break lightspeed.
F=ma falls apart at high speeds and small scales (the realms of relativity and quantum mechanics).

Your point is missleading, however: you are assuming something already at the speed of light.

To get to the speed of light from a stop, according to F = ma, you need about 3,000,000,000 N of force. To go faster than light by 1,000 m/s you need 3,000,001,000 N of force. Given the magnitude of the numbers involved, you might be inclined to question whether F = ma actually still applied, particularly given that it was discovered by a guy who probably never achieved 40 mph.
Mathematics is an approximation to the real world at best and that’s when someone gets is mostly right.
Perhaps. Sometimes the approximations are quite impressive. Like Maxwell’s equations, which predicted electromagnetic waves with a fixed speed, which lead to attempts to explain this counterintuitive result. Eventually resulting in relativity. And I would only consider these equations as approximations in that light can be considered a particle or wave, and these equations only describe the wavelike behaviour.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://

 
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