the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

A Travesty for Colose, Show the Data

Posted by Jeff Id on July 1, 2011

The main reason I tried to quit blogging is because I don’t have time to work math.  The family, business and life in general are far more important as so many of you were very adamant (and correct) in explaining to me.   It is nice though to talk with a bunch of very smart people on line about whatever topic, but my favorite part of blogging was the hours of reading papers and messing with data.  I simply can’t do it these days.  Today my data consists of corporate performance, planning, CAD and corporate efficiency more than anything else.   The rest of the data is food stains, learning to fly kites,  upgrading electric toy trucks etc.

A little while ago I correctly bashed Chris Colose, a young and budding yet self-assuredly world-wise climatoknowledgist,  for his comparison of Venusian atmosphere to Earth and the evil CO2 which caused the incredible hell hole temperatures on the planet surface.  My point was that Venus is a common scare tactic employed by climatoknowledgists who know there is a segment of the public that can’t tell you if an electron is bigger than an atom.

Chris Colose is apparently still mad about the Venus callout and has critiqued “the Skeptics” that’s me and by proxy you (sorry folks),  for uncritically accepting Roy Spencers recent disclosure on deep ocean temps dramatically lagging even the weakest warming climate models.

See the problem is that if CO2 is really trapping/retarding/backradiating heat, we would be able to see it in ocean temps more accurately than air.  That’s because so much of the earth’s surface heat capacity is in the water.

All the energy is in the water, whatever happens to air is moot.  And the plot worth  a thousand words from Roy Spencer’s post shows this:

The blue observed temperatures are markedly shifted from the modeled green ones. Heat capture from CO2 didn't collect in the ocean at the predicted depths by sophisticated climate models. Did the heat mysteriously go somewhere else, or did it simply not exist?

And the water is too cold according to the heat capture caused by CO2 of models.  Uncritically accepted right?  You too right?  Lessee if Chris Colose is in any way accurate. My first response was a compliment for the presentation followed by a request for data and code to back it up.

Jeff Id says:

This is an excellent demonstration. I hope that you will consider putting it into publication or in lieu of that, putting the code/data on line so that us non-pro’s can mess around with it. I would be interested in seeing how the math was done either way.

It is especially interesting considering the numerous posts done on climate blogs lately which have matched global model averages with very simplified equations.

Jeff, I indeed would like to put the model out there so others can play with it. It runs in an Excel spreadsheet. I just need to clean in up and put some explanatory notes in it…and maybe extend it down another 1000 meters.

But this coming week is very busy for me. Can you remind me after this coming week to do this?

IOW, show me the numbers.   It turned out that Roy did exactly that, he put the calcs on line, unlike Kemp2011’s latest sea level hockey stick pubished right into PNAS with absolutley ZERO credibility, zero data, and zero code whatsoever.  Total trash science uncritically accepted by journals in comparison to an amazingly simplified “blog post”, by a somewhat skeptical climate scientist who didn’t mind showing his work.  When/if the Kemp group finally does put the garbage on line, I do not intend to spend any time with it anyway.  I simply couldn’t bring myself tot ask because the garbage is so OBVIOUSLY bad that my life isn’t worth the effort.  Hopefully Chris will agree but such agreement is a naive expectation in the climate world as it could result in immediate blacklisting (see climategate emails for reference).

Paul K recently showed calcs at the blackboard which prove that you can fit multiple linear to high order polynomials to various climate forcings and all achieve good fit to historic temperatures.  The resulting proof was that nearly any sensitivity of climate can pass the current test for our multi-million dollar climate models, and IOW NO sensitivity to CO2 is known.

My challenge to Chris, who says I/we uncritically accepted Roy’s work is  — find an error.  Don’t point to papers Chris, we all can do that,  find the error and write it down.  We already know none of us uncritically accepted his work, instead we discussed how the lack of warming could exist in the realm of current models.  We wrote about PaulK’s demonstration to consider that any feedback may still be possible.  We noodled about whether it would make any sense at all for the heat to show somewhere else.

Chris can’t answer the challenge of course, because there isn’t  an error.  The only real possibility for Chris et climatology is increased complexities beyond what we know and beyond what we can estimate but more telling, beyond current ‘consensus’ publication.  Don’t mix that up though with the fact that these results are NOT beyond the realm of possibility.  Of course our answer is that while not impossible, they certainly aren’t in the main stream discussion.

Chris outlines it nicely himself:

There is still much to be said about the “missing heat” in the ocean.  A couple of papers recently (Purkey and Johnson, 2010; Trenberth and Fasullo, 2011; Palmer et al. 2011, GRL, in press), for example, highlight the significance of the deep ocean.  These show that there is an energy imbalance at top of the atmosphere and energy is being buried in the ocean at various depths, including decades where heat is buried below well below 700 meters, and that it may be necessary to integrate to below 4000 m.  Katsman and van Oldenborgh (2011, GRL, in press) use another model to show periods of stasis where radiation is sent back to space. It is also unsurprising to have decadal variability in sea surface temperatures.

My bold of course.  I wonder if there is still much to be said, why it is so bad for us to say it?

13 Responses to “A Travesty for Colose, Show the Data”

  1. timetochooseagain said

    As for myself, “uncritical acceptance” consistent of pointing out that the models can always be adjusted to produce less ocean warming by masking it with aerosols, so one shouldn’t expect this kind of result to bother modelers much. Perhaps pointing out that modelers can just fudge the numbers wasn’t critical enough for modeler fan Colose. Don’t pay him much mind, he’s a raging partisan.

  2. Paul_K said

    With terrible timing, I’ve just posted on the previous thread showing that there are important errors in Dr Spencer’s spreadsheet.
    The irony is that I agree with everything you have written.

  3. steve fitzpatrick said

    I think Chris may just miss the entire point of Roy’s work. Roy fitted to a model projection of ocean heat and showed that the real ocean uptake is way less than the model…..implying for that model to match the real ocean uptake the correct equilibrium sensitivity would have to be much lower. That doesn’t mean you could not assume a substantially higher aerosol offset (that is, a different level of aerosol fudge!) to maintain consistency with an estimate of high climate sensitivity.

    As Argo ocean heat content (and deeper ocean heat) data accumulates, count on increasing assumed aerosol effects in climate models. Aerosols will become the last refuge of the climate modelers and their models’ high climate sensitivities. Unconstrained assumed aerosol effects in climate models are nothing more than a grotesque kludge, which makes model projections essentially worthless. This too will pass; they will in the end be largely discredited. Let’s hope it passes before idiotic public policies are widely adopted on the basis of model projections.

  4. steve fitzpatrick said

    If there are compensating errors below the surface layer, the surface layer alone may not make much difference. The warming of the first 50 meters represents only about 20% of the total heat (if I remember correctly from the last time I calculated this). Lets see what Roy comes up with.

  5. Ecoeng said

    One fact which continues to fascinate me is that geomorphologists and paleaclimatologists etc., have long known that even in the Holocene i.e. the last 10,000 years, global sea levels have been up to as high as ~1.5 m above the present leves for periods up to not only thousands of years but in addition have gone up and down again not once but at least three times!

    This is over a period stretching from about 7500 years ago up to about 3000 years ago. Yet we can point to either orbital/precessional/obliquity effects (aka Milankovitch Effects) or to episodic elevated CO2 or methane levels as likely drivers of those significant sea level changes.

    Note the rates of sea level shift involved have been typically about 1 – 2 mm over centennial to millenial timescales.

    I am happy to be corrected on this, but I also cannot recall any published evidence for major oscillations in the global polar and glacier ice inventory which suggest sporadic melt water magnitudes having ever been significant enough (in the last 10,000 years) to cause 3 separate episodes of high seal levels stands of the order of 1.5 m above present.

    If so, this can only mean that the heat content of the oceans themselves has varied considerably in the recent past, on centennial to millenial timescales, thus producing sea level change of the order of up to 1.5 m due to expansion and contraction effects alone ?

    If so, this suggests to me that perhaps both Roy Spencer’s simple model and the GCMs of the AGW crowd may be invalid (in respect of global oceanic heat contents) because they either cannot, or have not, been run, out to sufficiently long timescales to allow validation by simply the known sea level record of the relatively recent past?

  6. Ecoeng said

    Sorry – a typo – corrected sentence is as follows:

    “Yet we can point to NEITHER orbital/precessional/obliquity effects (aka Milankovitch Effects) or to episodic elevated CO2 or methane levels as likely drivers of those significant sea level changes.”

  7. timetochooseagain said

    BTW, to me, the fact that the ocean contains more energy than the atmosphere does not intuitively make it clear that it is the best place to detect heat changes, because as a percent change, the same change of energy in the atmosphere and the ocean would be a much larger percentage in the atmosphere. I think the reason that the ocean is a better place to do detection of heat changes is that it is supposed to be the primary reservoir of heat, that is, where most of the heat allegedly goes. If it is not there, that is a problem for modelers because we haven’t detected enough warming in the atmosphere. And if the heat is not in the ocean and atmosphere, that basically leaves loss to space, hence it is either aerosols (warmer explanation) or negative feedback (skeptic explanation). I find it interesting that modelers, perhaps anticipating that aerosols can’t be pushed as fudge factor forever, instead want to postulate that the heat really is in the ocean…but in an unobserved very deep portion. From what I know this requires rather implausibly efficient transfer of heat through the depths, and besides that the actual evidence of this is virtually non-existent, considering the paucity of actual data.

  8. Paul_K said

    @Steve Fitzpatrick
    I’m afraid your argument doesn’t ameliorate the situation. It is the surface layer calculation that converts ALL of the radiative imbalance term to ocean heat. It’s not a trivial error. This is the only place in the code which actually uses the input climate sensitivity.
    Some irony that it is the gullible sceptics flushing this stuff out.

  9. j ferguson said

    Can the effects of aerosols in situ (so to speak) be measured? Surely this need not be theoretical, dare i say imaginary.

  10. Hmmm said

    “IOW, show me the numbers. It turned out that Roy did exactly that, he put the calcs on line, unlike Kemp2011′s latest sea level hockey stick pubished right into PNAS with absolutley ZERO credibility, zero data, and zero code whatsoever.”

    I wonder when Roy Spencer will release the UAH satellite record source code…

  11. timetochooseagain said

    10-Lovely innuendo that UAH’s results are not reproduce-able. In fact, The share their methods with competing group Remote Sensing Systems, and the two groups spot each others mistakes. But if you’d really like to see the data/code or whatever, I’m sure that you could ask. Instead you just suggest that it is impossible to get the information. Oh brother!

  12. Jimmy Haigh said

    That picture is worth close on 6 x 10^24 words. Is that an Avogadro’s Number of words or 10 Avogadros? – I can’t remember.

    I’ve just checked – it’s 10 x Avogadro’s number.

  13. EJ said

    Is this reporter an engineer? Has she ever taken the maths to even make a back of the envolope calculation to check some claim?

    Assuming 2 ppm CO2/ yr atmospheric increase, and assuming a world population of 7 billion, that means that the average individual contributes 0.000 000 000 000 000 009 ppv to CO2 per year.

    Wow, and Jeff, Thanks for stopping by and sticking your chin and calcs out there.


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