Climate Science Suffers Yet Another Body Blow
Posted by Jeff Id on August 29, 2010
It’s been an extraordinary 12 months in climate science, I’ve often said nobody knows how much warming additional CO2 will cause, including me. The implication being that all the IPCC models could be right. I’ve also often said that the IPCC is a political group before a scientific organization. These past 12 months have been a series of blows to the body and head of climate science which have left me more skeptical of their conclusions than I ever have been in the past.
First there was climategate, exposing the conspiratorial style corruption of the science, with browbeating for those scientists who weren’t repeating the party line, fear of publishing criticisms, discussion of removal of journal editors with the wrong opinions, blocking of FOI requests for data, hiding of probelmatic data – multiple times. We’ve all discussed it here endlessly, but it’s real it does exist and it did happen.
Then there were the coverups of the problem, covered far more widely by the news than the original event. Scientists exonerated! All you need is an above 80 IQ and enough time to read the emails and you know it’s crap. What does that say about the power of governments involved when they can create multiple reviews all coming to the same blatantly incorrect conclusions. What does it say about the state of the media when they all report the successful exoneration as thought it might possibly be correct. Fortunately, we don’t yet live in the anti-universe they seem to want for us. I wonder why they think they should print disinformation? The scandal would make a lot more money for them if reported honestly. The false exonerations made the truth worse and more obvious than the original emails.
After that, we see multiple discussions of variance loss in paleoclimate reconstructions Christiansen and public comments on Ammanns paper . Each step coming closer to the reality that the calibration methods don’t really work. The death of the rest of the hockeysticks. To me my recent CA post on the near complete lack of temperature signal in proxy data was also fairly shocking.
Recently, McKitrick, McIntyre and Hermans paper proving beyond a doubt that models overshoot observations by 2 to 4 times. This combined with knowledge of the repeated aggressive blocking of the correction to Ben Santer’s paper which showed good agreement between observations and models. The correction used exactly the same methods, yet more up to date data, and for some reason couldn’t get past the gatekeepers at the journals. Again exposing the mechanism by which reasonable work is kept from publication. This is the single most destructive paper to the estimates of severity of AGW I’ve EVER read. It still hasn’t had enough discussion. The methods were unique enough that people didn’t react as strongly as they could have.
All of that didn’t end here, Pat Michaels reported in the Wall Street Journal having 4 manuscripts blocked this year since climategate. And just in the last couple of days Roy Spencer has produced a rather unique result. He’s demonstrated that cloud feedback to warming, at least on a short term scale is negative.
In getting this result published, Roy Spencer wrote:
After years of re-submissions and re-writes — always to accommodate a single hostile reviewer — our latest paper on feedbacks has finally been published by Journal of Geophysical Research (JGR).
Years of his life to publish a single paper. Dr. Spencer is careful in the paper to state that long term feedback ‘might’ be different than short term, but the graphs seem to indicate that the feedback is generally negative. In addition, model feedback examined by these methods matched the model long term feedback. The model had a known equivalent short and long term feedback. The implication of the model verification is evidence for long term negative feedback and a net climate sensitivity to doubling of CO2 of about 0.6 C. Or basically nothing! Demonstrating with measured data, that increased CO2 is potentially no problem.
In other words, another body blow to extremist AGW.
The paper is here, and thankfully not behind a paywall.Spencer-Braswell-JGR-2010
I’ve read it fairly thoroughly but haven’t figured everything out. I’m not familiar enough with the various climate models, and have a few other questions but the satellite plots of short and longwave radiation vs temperature anomaly are quite clear. In other words, don’t take my word for it, I’m sure there will be critique from the pros.
Dr. Spencer has thankfully started allowing comments at his blog. He’s done a reader friendly description of what the paper represents. You just need to remember “internal radiative forcing,” means ‘probably clouds’.
The paper and blog post are very much worth the read.
What a wild year for climate blogging.